In the previous episode of Queendom 2, the pairings for the cover song round were revealed. For those with short memories, the pairings are:
- Hyolyn -> LOONA
- WJSN-> VIVIZ
- Kep1er -> Brave Girls
In this episode, we learned the performance order for the second round. Again, Hyolyn was objective in her decision-making and gave those who went early in the first round to go on later this time.
This pushed those who went later in round one up to the top of the cue sheet. That’s a fair and non-petty way of giving each team some opportunity. So another drama-free moment in Queendom 2.
Hyolyn decided to go on last after, explaining she wanted to give a performance that would show her juniors who the real queen bitch is. (I’m paraphrasing for my enjoyment here.)
The first three groups to perform are all looking for redemption after facing adversity in the first round. The first group to hit the stage was WJSN.
They decided to cover GFRIEND’s NAVILLERA. Unfortunately, due to my unfamiliarity with GFRIEND’s early discography, it’s difficult for me to comment on this particular cover.
I thought WJSN performed similarly to round one. They certainly have the theatrics down, and it was nice for Yeoreum to make the most of her opportunity to do a solo. Again, no comment on whether the song lived up to the original. VIVIZ enjoyed watching their friends, so the cover couldn’t have been entirely terrible.
The online reaction to WJSN’s rendition appears to be a mixed one. Those more experienced with GFRIEND’s music say that WJSN went a little too far to bend the song to their will but appreciate the performance aspects. You know, because nothing broke this time.
LOONA was the next group to hit the stage. They were automatically ranked sixth since they could not participate in the first round.
With the group given a clean bill of health, they are ready to go for round two. But unfortunately, the producers of Queendom appeared to have left them in the dark about who picked them for the cover battle.
A video call revealed they were chosen by the person they wanted to avoid, Hyolyn. Because of the large number of members in LOONA, they felt part distribution for her songs would be complex.
The members had many ideas for songs but ended up selecting Shake It. Rather than go with the summer anthem feel of the original, they changed it up to musical style instead.
This style is nothing new to the world of Queendom, as Lovelyz did the same thing for their song Cameo in Queendom 1. But this is a different case since LOONA also has to take a song that is not theirs and make it their own.
LOONA don’t often show their cutesy side, and they are more well known for having a stronger image that doesn’t require them to be super smiley. But they went into a full-on bubbly mode for their interpretation of Shake It.
I thought it was a fantastic display of what LOONA can bring to the big stage of the competition and was thoroughly entertained. Were there nit-picky things like lack of props for all the dancers and stuff? Sure, but that didn’t take away from my enjoyment of the overall performance.
LOONA showed they were out for blood for their first real moment on the Queendom 2 stage. However, even without seeing the other performances, I would say this would already place them in the top two at a minimum.
The final group to perform in this episode is Brave Girls. So far, they have been portrayed as grandmas who can only sing one song and are not seen as a threat to anyone. Coming off the disappointment of placing fifth in round one, they encountered further roadblocks by drawing Kep1er for the second round cover battle.
Brave Girls went through Kep1er’s limited discography with little choice but to carry on to find a song that suited them. Minyoung wanted to try Shine but was outvoted due to her cringe-worthy attempt to capture the youthful energy of the music. I would have found it hilarious if the other members had accepted that choice.
With Shine out of the equation, the obvious choice from Kep1er’s EP was MVSK. Every other song on First Impact would not work for Brave Girls realistically.
Further misfortune hit Brave Girls during the preparation period as every member but Yuna contracted COVID-19, severely limiting their practice time together for an unfamiliar song.
So were Brave Girls able to get themselves together for showtime? The answer is yes. Even with three members still feeling the after-effects of COVID, they performed as if nothing was wrong.
The movie Now You See Me inspired their concept. While it may not have been fully realized with the magic and thievery combination, it was still a much better performance than expected.
Brave Girl’s version of MVSK sounded like it was their song. That vibe carried throughout the entire time they were on stage, and it built up well to the finale of bribing the audience with Brave Bucks during the song’s final chorus.
This performance was a much better outing for Brave Girls that should hopefully get them out of the bottom ranks and into the middle of the pack.
And that ends episode three of Queendom 2. The previews for episode four have a short snippet of VIVIZ’s performance, Kep1er crying and Hyolyn hanging from a ring above the stage, preparing to blow us away with her Superbowl level greatness.