‘I live alone’ under the guise of a rainbow… ‘Only men live’ on that screen

In the 510th episode of <I Live Alone> ( MBC , hereinafter referred to as <I Live Alone>), which aired on September 1, SHINee’s Key comes home after filming the music video, removes his makeup and washes his hair. In each scene, sighs erupt from the panelists (Rainbow members) asking, “Why would they go that far?” The merits of going to sleep without washing up are preached, or men make a powerful statement by saying that they wash themselves from head to toe. The subtitles describe the atmosphere of the scene as “a quarter of a quarter.” On this day, Park Na-rae was unable to participate in filming due to health issues, so all panel members are male. Key later told Park Na-rae, who returned, “I was so lonely. “Don’t get sick again,” he appeals. The panelists describe Park Na-rae’s empty seat as “it was dull because she wasn’t there.” No, but this scene… Where did you see it a lot? Come to think of it, even on the ‘Rainbow 10th Anniversary Package Tour’ that <Nalone Mountain> left in May 2023, there was only one female member, Park Na-rae. Even though it was a combination that reflected history and characters, from original member Kim Gwang-gyu to Cocoon, who joined in the first year. <I live alone>? A rainbow? Why are the colors of the rainbow in <Nalone Mountain> male?

Although there were brief periods when the gender ratio was 50%, the Rainbow Club was traditionally a male-dominant group. Let’s find out why it is difficult for female celebrities to become regular members in <I Live Alone>. First, the way daily life is structured in observational entertainment. Viewers want something that is ‘different from what they are used to seeing’, that is, something that is differentiated from the staged celebrity award. Revealing one’s daily life means being able to share intimacy with viewers and form a consensus. The signature opening of <I Am Alone>, which begins with a celebrity waking up from sleep and revealing her bare face, shows exactly what the program aims for. Conflicting demands, such as flashy yet modern design, flow through observational entertainment. Be as natural and fun as possible. Like the case of Han Hye-jin, a world-renowned supermodel, who gained the character ‘Dhalsim’ in <I am alone> and solidified her position in entertainment, celebrities reveal their unexpected, sloppy and trivial sides through their daily lives. However, winning viewers’ favor and building a character from everyday appearances is a surprisingly difficult task, and it is especially disadvantageous for female celebrities.

<Nalonesan>, as I attacked Key earlier, is a humane world view that needs to be ‘somewhat sloppy and messy’ in order to form a consensus. Guests who brush their teeth twice before and after eating are sometimes criticized as unusual. Although Kian84’s strange sense of hygiene and messy housekeeping skills are areas where likes and dislikes are greatly divided, these characteristics were used as a powerful character and made him a deep-rooted tree in the rainbow group. Recently, the hygiene concept that announcer Kim Dae-ho described as “offensive” to even Kian 84 has been gaining popularity by showing off its charm. Of course, there are times when a female guest who is referred to as ‘female Gian’ appears. But in fact, no one has reached that point. To be precise, there are certainly such people among women, but they cannot be revealed and are difficult to accept. This is because if a woman cannot cook, has no sense of hygiene, and is dirty, it is a completely different problem. The pilot program of <I Live Alone>, <When a Man Lives Alone>, was created in an environment where a man living alone in a single-person household was allowed to lead a clumsy or somewhat messy household. What female celebrity would be able to reveal a yellow pillow like Yuk Jung-wan, causing people to say, ‘Do you sleep while squeezing out pus?’ Although it is said to be a daily observation entertainment, it is ultimately the result of planning, selection, editing, and processing. For female celebrities, revealing their daily lives inevitably falls into a tighter web of restrictions. Hwasa and Park Na-rae successfully landed in <Nalone Mountain> with the boldness of not being afraid of being broken. However, unlike Jeon Hyun-moo, who often uses the third eye as a subject for jokes, Hwasa’s no-bra is not allowed in <Nalone Mountain> and is the target of all kinds of malicious comments and sexual harassment.

In most episodes, the overwhelming majority of male panels… Park Na-rae’s struggles
range from ‘sloppy’ to ‘delicate’, and the character construction is one-sided,
repeating old stereotypes that are unfavorable to women… Where can female viewers sympathize?

These restrictions also affect the diversity of characters. Among the Rainbow members, Key’s atypical masculinity is his unique character. The appearance management that shows the long-time idol activities, the fashion sense of changing clothes several times a day, the skill at housework, and the delicacy of not neglecting plating even when eating a single meal became a hot topic. Cocoon’s friendly way of speaking and eating habits are also attractive points. However, for women, these characteristics are not a very differentiating factor. Taking care of one’s appearance, housekeeping skills, delicacy, and a friendly tone of speech are mandatory, and eating habits that are unhealthy are often targets of dislike. This is why many girl group members and actresses try to appeal to ‘eating well.’ Revealing one’s daily life means that one’s every move becomes the subject of evaluation. It is very difficult to overcome the high standards placed on women and find a place that is not too dirty, not too tidy, and yet appropriately attractive. A female celebrity who prepared a little less food for guests due to her thrifty personality was criticized, and a female celebrity from a girl group who loved reading and studied stocks was ridiculed for being a setup.

‘Relationship’, another attractive point of <Nalone Mountain>, is also the reason why it is difficult for female members to survive for a long time in the rainbow group. ‘Three and Four Idiots’, ‘Gi Line’, ‘Yeo Eun-pa’, ‘Mu Line’, and ‘Palm Oil Line’ were popular, and the so-called ‘Legend Episode’, which was considered the most entertaining episode, was also ‘Rainbow 4th Anniversary Trip’ and ‘LA Special ‘ . It came out when rainbow members gathered together noisily, such as ‘Summer Narae School’, ‘Narae Bar Housewarming’, and ‘Palm Oil Line Vietnam Seminar’. Relationships are important because they affect the atmosphere when viewing and commenting on an edited version together. However, there is a high probability that a union between opposite sexes flows into a pink atmosphere like a romance or romance. Since it is a male-only group, there are male members who are not mobilized for the love line, but there are no female members who are not mobilized. Once a female guest appears, everyone attacks the male member at least once. The love line is high risk, high return. If it goes well, you’ll become popular, but if you’re found out that you’re not interested, or if it turns out to be fake, it’s easy to backlash, and you shouldn’t be too business-like, and that’s why dating for real is also a problem. Park Na-rae is so sensitive that she won the Best Couple award with Kian 84, had a crush on ‘Starlight Chungjae’, showed off the so-called ‘romantic visual chemistry’ with Sung-hoon안전놀이터, and survived while going on a daily date with Cocoon, but not everyone can do it like Park Na-rae. It is impossible. Becoming a regular member of the Rainbow Club means that you must be able to maintain good relationships and chemistry with other members. However, if you keep throwing out the possibility of romance, the position of female members will only narrow.

When Park Na-rae needs a love line or when she cooks skillfully, she gives a daily dose of female TO . At the same time, they are treated as asexual beings or are called ‘bro’ and masculinized. Rainbow’s 10th anniversary trip had the concept of ‘life and hardship’ and used gender-neutral accommodations. This picture would not have proceeded if there had been a female member other than Park Na-rae. Only Na-rae Park could become a member of the trip as her family and brother. Jeon Hyun-moo jokes to Na-rae Park, who has a scar on her face, saying, “Did you cut yourself while shaving?” Na-rae Park’s InBody results are teased with the same evaluation criteria as male members (it is common knowledge that men and women have different standards for obesity due to differences in body fat percentage) ). When a woman is recognized as a member of a group by erasing or reducing her femininity. It is one of the representative strategies for a small number of women to survive in a male-dominated group, and it also overlaps with the long-standing practice of not recognizing female comedians as women. Park Na-rae struggles as a female member, creating the character of a bold woman with the famous saying, “Bikini is momentum,” or shooting water on her armpits. However, from my perspective, I feel sad. I can’t help but think that a woman needs to be at the level of Park Na-rae to be in that position.In situations like this where the gender ratio is mismatched, it is easy for Park Na-rae to be singled out when what is conventionally considered ‘femininity’ or ‘feminine values’ is needed. Saying that it was dull because Park Na-rae was not there is not much different from the old stereotype that women are the flowers of the scene or that they should make the atmosphere better. Of course, the atmosphere of the rainbow group has changed a lot since Cocoon and Key joined, and elements such as empathy and care are distributed to other members. However, as long as the male-dominated phenomenon of the rainbow group, which is a regular member, continues, it will be difficult to avoid criticism about whose life is the daily life of the single-person household shown in <Nalone Mountain>. <I Live Alone> has already faced a crisis as it was criticized for only showing the glamorous lives of wealthy celebrities. No matter what the initial naming intention was, since the name ‘Rainbow’ emphasizes diversity, it is time to seriously consider the problem of biased gender ratio.

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