And so we’re back with a late (very late) recap of Highschool Rapper! I’ve watched the second episode just after it was aired but I wasn’t able to finish the reaction so here we go with more episodes to come along with it.
So we continue with episode two where they go to Kyungin East province, most popularly known as the center of hiphop as a lot of known rappers now come from this place like The Quiett, Don Mills and Changmo. The other district they went to was in the center of Seoul.
So let’s talk about the kids that left a lot of impression.
First there’s Kim Gangwoo who reminds us a lot about Deepflow. Haha! And did you notice how Deepflow smiled when the boy came out? I swear he’s Gangwoo’s father. Haha! But kidding aside, he was good. Just the right voice tone and beat choice. Ultimately, he received 253 points, earning him 1st rank in the province.
Next up is my boy Rudals. Yes! THAT’S MY BOY! I’ve been following this kid for two years now and he has never disappointed me. When he came out to join, I was so excited. His stage was really good. The thing about Rudals is that he creates his music all by himself and thus was able to find that sound and style that showed himself so much. And his music is quite impressive as well. Everyone seemed to have liked him, including Mad Clown (who sort of resembles him, too). He ranked 2nd. Unfortunately, he got eliminated as more rapper ranked higher than him.
Of course there will be some of these kids that we wouldn’t like. And first on my list is Moon Jihyo. She’s the girl that gave an audition video “rapping” and then saying “shy shy shy”. I don’t even know why they accepted her into the game when that clearly wasn’t rapping, not even making it look like she was trying hard. At least she didn’t get in. Sorry. Then there’s Yenjamin. Okay. I kinda like him because well,he has a good flow. And as far as I can remember, I already heard him on a song somewhere. Just can’t remember. I just didn’t like his song choice, I guess? I don’t know. There was just really something off-putting about him for me.
Then there’s Mark of Seoul School of Performing Arts (long name huh?). He’s also a member of idol group NCT. Last year, during their performances in MAMA 2016, I remember criticizing them because their rappers were weak. When he performed, must admit, he sounded so pop-rap. Not that it wasn’t nice to hear but I was hoping he did something more lit than this.
And here comes the best four names in this episode.
Yes. We already heard of him before. BUT I NEVER IMAGINED HE WOULD JOIN HIGHSCHOOL RAPPER. Like.. This guy is a pro! His music, his raps, his style, even the connections he’s already got in the scene. And I admire the kid for pursuing his dreams despite his parents not agreeing in his passion, making him run away from home. That’s real hustle. And he just showed how good he is, especially after ranking first.
So we got Luda and Bully Da Bastard in Kyungin while Young B is in Seoul. As expected from anyone from Dickids, they went hard! Luda and his smooth and cool style with that rap. OMG. *fangirl feels* If Luda’s style was chic, Bully Da Bastard went hard. Just like each of his songs, he rapped fast and well. WHY ARE THESE BOYS IN THIS SHOW ANYWAY?! Sadly, event though both of them aimed to be ranked first, either one of them, they ranked 3rd and fourth. Good still since they both stayed in the region’s top 9.
And then there’s Young B, who before he got to rap was teased to have a love line with Moon Jihyo. I hope he got her number somehow. XD We’re not being biased here or anything but we all know that Young B’s just too good to not rank first. And well, he did.
But more than that, anyone else noticed how Xitsuh kept smiling at the sight of these three? Haha! Since all three of them were contestants from Street Rap Shit, he definitely would feel proud that they’re doing good in front of the other mentors.
In episode 3, they go to Busan and Gwangju, two of the most hailed provinces in South Korea when it comes to music, being that some of the best come from these areas. And as much as I am excited to see kids from these provinces perform, you can’t just deny that there’s really a difference between them that come from the provinces, from those that live around Seoul. First because most of the kids have awkward gestures, a skill that you can achieve after being exposed to more crowds. But also, the difference in lyricism is quite obvious. While a lot of Seoul-based rappers talk about life in the city, the ones from Busan and Gwangju talk about either a lot more serious stuff or care-free, fun ones.
So from Busan, there’s Lee Dongmin who is quite known in the underground Busan rap scene, mainly joining bridge cyphers. Jung Inseol, a kid who auditioned in SMTM5 (later on eliminated by Gil during the first round), also came out in Highschool Rapper. He originates from Daegu and I kind of left a piece of my heart in his hands. In his interview, he said that he’s joining because he wants people to be aware of his school, Geongchan High School, because it will soon be closing down as there are no more students in their area. I feel for him because I too went to a highschool that was on the verge of shutting down because of a very small number of students (400 in total) and poor performance. But with hard work, we managed to put our school on the map and after 10 years, it’s already grown. I hope Inseol helps make that happen with their school, too! Fighting!
And lastly, there’s H2adin (who I thought at first, was Khundi Panda. lol). We’ve known this guy since SRS 2016 after he got into the finals and headed to Seoul to compete with the other finalists (and yes, Xitsuh looks at him with much love). We know he was good and he showed just exactly what he had in front of the other mentors. And yes. He’s headed to Seoul!
In Gwangju, the land of OSIXTWO, there wasn’t really much that they showed on air. However, I want to talk about Choi Seohyun who looks like a shaved BeWhy. According to Xitsuh, he looks like Yoo Ah In. And when he started rapping, he sounded like Esens! My jaw just dropped.
The episode continued with all of the finalists coming over to Seoul and meet up with each other, showcasing themselves as a team. They explained that the contest continues on with them choosing a mentor for each team. But to do so, the teams need to go through a cypher per rank per team. Whoever accumulates the biggest score will get a chance to choose their mentor.
So for the first round, Giriboy and Xitsuh chose Rank 3 to do the cypher. Surprisingly, Chin Chilla is in this contest, too and it’s nice that they focused on him this time because yes, he did so well. And it’s worth to mention that Jessi liked him! In the end, Kyungin West ranked first with Oh Daryul (Chin Chilla) and Kyungin East came second with Bully Da Bastard.
YDG chose which rank to compete for the second round. He chose the 6th rank, the ranks that belong to Mark and MC Gree, the idols. I was actually really impressed with Choi Seokhyeon here. He rapped first and it was nice to lisen to him because he played with the beat so well. And there was Johnny who didn’t do so well. MC Gree did well though. And Mark… The mentors said he did well, but for me, his performance was still a bit messy. But yes, it was nice to hear him ride the beat well. Since it was “Hypnotize”, it earned Mark a bit more respect from the other rappers since it meant that he likes the same songs as them, raps the same rap as them. In the end, Kyungin East ranked first with Choi Seokhyeon and on second place was a tie between Kyungin West (MC Gree) and Seoul Gangsoo (Mark).
The third and final round was sort of obvious with Swings choosing the 1st ranking rappers. That meant Young B and Osshun Gum against each other. Osshun Gum did real well, also did H2adin (my boy)! But then there’s Young B who didn’t do so well after he rapped along to a trap beat. Surprisingly, his team mates (and crew members) started commenting on how he would do rapping to trap, when everyone knows it’s not his style. And well, Young B failed there. Giving him the last spot this time. Kyungin East ranked first with Osshun Gum and Busan Gyeongsang ranked second with H2adin.
Kyungin East ranked first earning them the chance to choose a mentor of their own. The next epsidoe is said to show elimination rounds. I don’t know. But let’s all anticipate that. It’s also said that they extended the show for another episode, stretching it to a total of 8, so if that doesn’t excite you, I don’t know what else will.
It was fun watching this episode because we get a glimpse of the rappers being the kids that they are, trying to cheer their teammates on. Like… I was happy to see Luda laughing and smiling with his team, even acting as the leader, making them stand up and huddle and cheer. He was just too hyper that day, even reacting to YDG’s jokes. And it was nice to see them all giddy and hugging each other after they did the cyphers, even dancing along to the songs they know. It’s refreshing because you’re reminded that these aren’t just rappers we’re all watching. These are also kids and having fun is just really part of whatever they do. But also, it’s nice to see that we already have young rappers like them, who in the future may become the next Simon D, the next Tablo, the next Paloalto, the next Tiger JK. I originally did not approve of this concept but now, with this in mind, I’m gonna be hanging onto my seat.