Rookie K-pop boy group ATBO found itself in hot water after NCT 127 fans accused it of copying the SM Entertainment group’s Kick It.
ATBO constantly sparked issues before its debut. Initially, the now-debuted boy band wanted to have ABO as its name. However, international fans called the group out as the name could be misunderstood as an offensive slur in Australia.
One of its members, Yang Donghwa, also exited the group after getting involved in a bullying controversy.
After these issues, ATBO is facing a new problem ahead of the release of its second album.
Did ATBO Copy NCT 127?
On ATBO’s official social media accounts, including Twitter, the group uploaded the concept photo of its second mini-album, The Beginning: 始作, on October 18.
NCT 127 fans immediately accused the rookie group of plagiarizing the 2 Baddies hitmaker’s concept. It followed the previous issues where fans pointed out that ATBO has a similar concept to the NCT subunit.
They also brought back the problem with the choreography for ATBO’s Monochrome, which reportedly looks very similar to NCT 127’s Kick It.
Because of these, fans said ATBO truly copied its senior boy group. Others also shared how they thought ATBO is just a cover group of NCT 127.
IST Entertainment is yet to comment on the allegations. NCT and SM Entertainment also have not released a statement.
ATBO originally had seven members who passed the agency’s survival audition program, The Origin - A, B, Or What?, which was created in collaboration with MBN and Kakao TV.
The trainees who made it to the cut after battling for a spot from March 19 to May 7 included Jeong Seung Hwan, Oh Jun Seok, Seok Rak Won, Ryu Jun Min, Bae Hyun Jun, Kim Yeon Kyu, and Yang Dong Hwa — the latter has since left the group due to bullying issues.
ATBO became the latest group to debut under IST Entertainment after THE BOYZ and Apink, among others.
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