Siwon And Han Geng Meet: Dissecting Past Tensions Between Super Junior And The Chinese Star

By Staff Writer | April 13, 2014 05:08 PM EDT

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A video of Super Junior's Choi Siwon greeting Chinese star Han Geng at Jackie Chan's fanmeet 'Peace & Love' recently gained a lot of attention. This was the first public interaction between any member of Super Junior and Han Geng since he left the group. The clip came from a Chinese television show that featured the event, and fans quickly took notice of the short meeting.

Siwon and Han Geng (known as Hankyung in Korea) debuted together in 2005 as members of SM Entertainment's mega group Super Junior. The two worked closely together as members of Super Junior M, which promoted in China. But in 2009, Han Geng sued SM Entertainment for a slave contract, and ended up leaving the group to return to China and pursue his career there.

Although Han Geng's career took off in China, and he is so popular in China that he was even cast in the upcoming Transformers movie, his relationship with his former group members has been difficult since the split.

In 2009, Super Junior had three members with issues: Han Geng's contract dispute, Kim Kibum was simply missing in action, and Kangin was involved in a DUI. Kangin is the only member to have returned to the group after serving his military duty. Since Kim Kibum is technically still an actor at SM Entertainment, Han Geng is the only member of Super Junior to have a bad relationship with SM Entertainment and Super Junior.

2009 was not only the year with Super Junior's difficulties, but it was also the year when Super Junior shot to stardom with its hit 'Sorry Sorry.' Because Han Geng was a member of the group during its rise to popularity, many fans still consider him to be a member of Super Junior.

Super Junior's fan base has very strong feelings about who is a member of Super Junior. For instance, even though Henry Lau and Zhou Mi are members of Super Junior M and appear at Super Junior's concerts, they are not accepted as official Super Junior Members.

In contrast, many fans all over the globe still support the idea of Super Junior being thirteen members, which includes Han Geng.

However, whenever Super Junior or Han Geng have discussed one another, it has always been a bit awkward; each side has tried to portray themselves in the right, while acting as if there weren't harsh feelings between the two sides.

In an interview on Radio Star in 2010, Leeteuk, Sungmin, Shindong, and Eunhyuk discussed their feelings on the matter, saying that they felt a bit disappointed in him and that they miss him. The Super Junior members said that they, at least those four, never had any contact with Han Geng.

Although the members may be speaking the truth, there is something a bit off about the interview.

Also in 2010, Han Geng discussed that he was willing to meet with the other members and perform with them, if the Korea side was willing. However, even at the time it was clear that SM Entertainment would not reconcile with him. Han Geng said that he was in contact with two of the members. Super Junior never confirmed this.

In 2012, during an interview Han Geng publicly recognized that he may seem ungrateful to Super Junior, but that the situation was too difficult for him to remain in. During this latter interview, this interview was less about rejoining the group as the earlier one had been, but about how he was right in his decision to leave.

At the beginning of 2013, Super Junior M member Zhou Mi said that he hoped that the group and Han Geng would be able to casually meet during the group's time in Beijing.

Despite Zhou Mi's comment, there has never been any mention by the group or Han Geng that they have ever met.

Siwon's appearance with Han Geng, where the two first shake hands and then Siwon playfully hugs Han Geng, may very well be the first time that the two have run into each other since 2009. Based on what Han Geng and the Super Junior members have said in interviews, there is little contact between the two sides.

If Han Geng is no longer a part of Super Junior and the Super Junior members have nothing to do with him (Super Junior is a group that has managed to thrive despite members' absences,) there is really no reason for this recent run in to be big news.

To some, it is simply a meeting between a Chinese solo artist and a Korean boy band member.

However, fans were struck in 2009 by several contract disputes at SM Entertainment-Han Geng and JYJ. Although the parties on both sides, TVXQ and JYJ, and Super Junior and Han Geng, have become successful, there was never any closure for fans that the two sides were comfortable with each other now.

K-Pop runs on the ideal that the idols are perfect. Any complications, such as disbandment, are unpleasant and break the illusion of what idols are. The fact that Han Geng and Super Junior's relationship was so awkward negatively impacted their images as idols.

Seeing Siwon and Han Geng appear relatively comfortable with one another creates the illusion that there are no hard feelings on either side. This illusion encompasses all of K-Pop, and in this case makes fans feel better about the scandal that nearly ripped apart Super Junior.

Does it mean that Super Junior has no hard feelings towards Han Geng and vice versa? That is impossible to know.

Tagged :  Han Geng, Hangeng, Hankyung, Super Junior, Siwon, choi siwon, Super Junior Siwon

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