Secrets Blackpink Tried To Hide

Blackpink has all the makings of a successful K-pop girl group. Their electrifying stage presence, catchy pop hits, and eye-catching outfits have amassed millions of incredibly loyal fans. The group's members have accomplished a lot since they debuted in 2016. Six years later, they even became the first K-pop girl group to earn the No. 1 spot on the Billboard albums chart with their second album, "Born Pink." That same year, Blackpink was named Time magazine's Entertainer of the Year. They spoke to the outlet about their success thus far, and it turns out perfection isn't their default. "We put in a lot of work so we could look like superwomen," Jennie said in the interview with Time. "We're very normal girls, at the end of the day."

Frankly, that's putting it lightly. Blackpink appears to work tirelessly to juggle brand partnerships, photoshoots, tours, performances, and all of the many other aspects that go into maintaining a top-selling group. The notoriously strict rules placed on K-pop stars likely adds another layer of pressure on Blackpink. YG Entertainment is the highly-successful entertainment agency behind the girl group, and they reportedly impose a long list of taboos that their talent is forbidden from indulging in. As a result, there is a chance that anything that's potentially damaging to Blackpink's reputation will remain hidden. Still, a few shocking incidents have regardless come to light.

These are the secrets Blackpink tried to hide.

The group allegedly had a secret fifth member

Blackpink reportedly went through many changes before the group became what it is today. Many K-pop groups go through an extensive initial training period as the members learn how to sing, dance, and rap. It is also during these early days that trainees can be eliminated if it is decided that they don't have what it takes to become a multi-talented superstar. This is allegedly what happened to Blackpink's "secret" fifth member, Cho Mi-yeon. Channel Korea reported that the singer was assumed to have once been in Blackpink when photos of her posing alongside the group members surfaced online. After parting ways with the group, Mi-yeon went on to join (G)I-DLE, another K-pop girl group.

However, she wasn't the only star rumored to have once been in the running to become a member of Blackpink. Jinny, who is now a member of the K-pop group, Secret Number, was reportedly on track to join the group before their debut, according to South China Morning Post. Back then, Blackpink performed under the name Pink Punk. Jinny spent five years training with them but didn't enter the final cut. She ultimately embarked on a career outside of Blackpink's YG Entertainment. After a brief stint on a singing competition show, Jinny found her footing with the girl group, Secret Number.

One of their music videos was edited after controversy

The music video for Blackpink's "How You Like That" sits at an impressive 1.1 billion views as of this writing, so it appears to be a fan favorite. However, the clip sparked a great deal of controversy when it first dropped. The original version of the music video included a brief scene featuring a statue of the Hindu deity, Ganesha used as a background prop. Across social media, some fans suggested the sequence was disrespectful. On Twitter, an account for Indian fans of Blackpink shared their upset regarding the inclusion of the sacred statue. "We are aware of the issue," they wrote. "We believe that it's offensive to [use] Lord Ganesha's Idol and we will try to contact YG Entertainment regarding it."

Some fans put together a petition urging YG Entertainment to remove the music video or apologize. It garnered over 4,000 signatures. With all of the backlash Blackpink and its management team faced following the controversial clip, you might not be surprised to hear that changes were made. Variety reported that the Ganesha statue was edited out of the final cut of the "How You Like That" music video. However, neither Blackpink nor YG Entertainment issued a statement or apology regarding the controversy.

They have to follow a long list of strict rules

Like many K-pop stars, Blackpink has to follow a long list of rules. It is assumed that the group's management company, YG Entertainment, imposes these rules to protect Blackpink and its reputation. Some of the things Blackpink allegedly isn't allowed to do include driving, dating, drinking alcohol, receiving plastic surgery, going clubbing, and more. Although some might say that these rules are way too restrictive, Blackpink appears to be okay with it. During a 2017 interview on the South Korean talk show, "Radio Star," Rosé opened up about how the no dating rule was enforced during her days as a trainee. As translated by Soompi, she shared that male and female talent wasn't allowed to interact — at all. Management even went so far as to prevent them from eating together.

Rosé also clarified that these rules aren't necessarily as strict as they may seem. "I wasn't allowed to get a driver's license," she said during the "Radio Star" interview "However, exceptions can be made if you discuss it with the company. The restrictions are just there to tell you not to do any of those things secretly." And there is one member who has been rumored to have taken advantage of just such a policy. 

Jennie is rumored to have a secret dating history

Many Blackpink fans are familiar with the no-dating rule YG Entertainment's talent has to follow. As Rosé clarified on an episode of "Radio Star" (via Soompi), the band can sometimes get approval from management if they really need to break a rule. There's a chance that Jennie has had to make a few of these special requests herself because she's been romantically linked to a few other K-pop stars in the past.

In October 2019, fans speculated that she was dating Kai of the K-pop boyband, EXO. The two had been spotted out and about together several times, including a romantic walk where they were spotted holding hands. Kai's management team later inferred that he and Jennie were more than friends, stating, "Kai and Jennie have become fond of each other," per The National News. The couple reportedly parted ways in January 2019. Two years later, she was rumored to have dated South Korean rapper G-Dragon, who is a member of the boyband, BigBang. 

In 2022, there was also speculation that she was potentially in a relationship with V from BTS. This was prompted after personal images had been illegally leaked and distributed from Jennie's phone that appeared to show the two spending time together, per Newsweek

Did they lip sync at the 2022 VMAs?

Blackpink unexpectedly created controversy online after their "Pink Venom" performance at the 2022 MTV VMAs. In a not-so-well-received article concerning the best and worst moments of that year's event, Variety listed the group's lively on-stage appearance in the latter category. The outlet bundled the group in with other artists whom they accused of lip-syncing at the awards show. "[They] devoted attention to their killer dance routines but left little room for the actual singing," wrote Thania Garcia for the outlet. 

Many Blackpink fans perceived the performance much differently and took to social media to praise the group's vocals and dance skills. Some fans even criticized Variety for suggesting that Blackpink didn't sing live at the VMAs. "Wait what?," one Twitter user said after finding out about the article. "Are they kidding? I mean you could hear them clearly singing. Not to mention Lisa's part when she was rapping her hair got stuck on the mic and you could hear the noises of the mic while she was trying to fix her hair. You could hear them breathing."

It's not the first time Blackpink has been accused of lipsyncing. In 2019, video footage from an Illinois show appeared to demonstrate the group holding microphones to their mouths after the vocal track had started. However, there's also plenty of evidence showing the girls singing live and killing it. Whether Blackpink did indeed lip-sync at the VMAs remains up for debate.

Lisa and Rosé's secret feud

Some fans have claimed that there appears to be occasional tension between Lisa and Rosé of Blackpink. There are even a number of fan-made YouTube videos that feature moments where the bandmates seem to be avoiding each other on stage and in interviews. However, the alleged beef between Lisa and Rosé looks to be rather light-hearted as many Blackpink admirers have pointed out. "It's cute and funny because it's like twins who are fighting, like, you know they're going to make up at some point," one fan wrote in the comments of a YouTube video that documented tension between the two.

It seems that fans may have been on the right track with their assumptions. As it turns out, a scene was deleted from Blackpink's Netflix documentary, "Blackpink: Light Up The Sky," that revealed Lisa and Rosé didn't get along at first. The clip, which has since been shared to YouTube, featured the girls talking about their early days in Blackpink. "We used to fight a lot," Lisa said in the documentary. "Like every single day. Like I [had to say], 'Oh Rosé can you just stop.'" They went on to share that some of their problems stemmed from cultural differences — Rosé was raised in Australia while Lisa grew in Thailand – but they have since made amends.

Some fans believed Lisa was being mistreated

As previously mentioned, Blackpink's management company, YG Entertainment, has a reputation for being pretty strict with its talent. Their rules rubbed some fans the wrong way after they discovered that Lisa had been prohibited from attending certain events, while her bandmates had not been. 

Chaos erupted after Bulgari CEO, Jean-Christophe Babin shared a since-deleted statement to Instagram (via South China Morning Post) in which he alleged that YG Entertainment didn't allow the star to attend his runway show during Paris Fashion Week. "Lisa is in Paris but unfortunately due to [COVID-19] her agency doesn't want her to participate in events," he wrote. Lisa was a global ambassador for the brand at the time and missed out on a campaign shoot for the Italian fashion house due to this restriction. 

Fans also suggested Lisa was being neglected by her team after they had to inform the Thai Embassy in Seoul of the death threats she had been receiving. Blackpink enthusiasts suggested that YG Entertainment should have taken care of the situation long before fans had to intervene. On a separate occasion, fed-up fans took to Twitter to urge YG Entertainment to improve their relationship with the star. "Lisa deserves to be respected as the artist," wrote an Indonesian fan account for the star. "You have absolutely no consideration [of] how your actions affect Lisa and her relationship with these brands. Start treating Lisa correctly and actually put in effort for her. Treat Lisa Better.

They aren't always all smiles

Because the group is typically all smiles on stage and during interviews, sad details about Blackpink can often go unnoticed. Just like many massively successful stars, the K-pop group has also faced the dark side of fame. During a Rolling Stone interview, Blackpink reminisced on their days in trainee camp where they spent years learning how to become pop stars. While they share some good memories, the experience was also difficult and incredibly high-pressure. The trainees were meticulously tested every month, and if they weren't deemed to be a good fit they were eliminated. Lisa recalled wondering when the assessments would ease up. "I'd call my mom [in Thailand], wanting to quit, and she'd tell me to hang on just another year, just hang on," she shared. 

Rosé also found it difficult to cope with the demanding environment. "If I was going through a hard time, I'd go to the bathroom, sob my heart out, then on to the next thing," she told the magazine. "I was on autopilot or something. If you told me to do that again, I could never." In a separate interview with Rolling Stone, Jennie revealed that for the three years following Blackpink's debut they worked tirelessly without breaks. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the intense demands of such a schedule took their toll on her health. "I had no immune system at all," she said. "... I didn't have time to learn how to take care of myself."

If you or someone you know needs help with mental health, please contact the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741, call the National Alliance on Mental Illness helpline at 1-800-950-NAMI (6264), or visit the National Institute of Mental Health website.