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‘Duty calls’ Jin: I thought I was a strong ARMY

BTS’ oldest member is the first of the septet to enlist in the military

Jin shares on Weverse this photo from the completion ceremony after five weeks of military training, with message to ARMY: ‘I’m enjoyably spending my time here. I’m posting photos after receiving permission from the military. ARMY, always be happy and take care’

It was very Kim Seokjin to make us laugh on the day of his military enlistment.

On Weverse, he said in Korean:

“Well, now it’s time for a curtain call.
(I’ve been wanting to do this when enlisting)
(Game character Jhin’s line)”

Not being a gamer, I was oblivious to what he was referring to. But when I learned the context, I laughed, soothing the pain in my heart.

Jin was referring to a line from a League of Legends character named, Jhin, whose strongest power is called the “curtain call”.

As of this writing, media reported that Jin has entered the military and Suga, RM, j-hope, Jimin, V, and Jungkook saw him off.

A handful of fans gathered at the military base. Jin had asked ARMY not to go to the camp as there will be other soldiers enlisting with their families to see them off. The true ARMY heeded Jin’s request.

It’s one thing to know that BTS will be serving in the military, and another to actually see them all set to go. So when Jin posted a selfie showing his buzz cut, I heard myself let out an “Ohmygod!” I thought I was a strong ARMY. I guess not. That shaved head made Jin’s military enlistment so real.

Jin, whose full name is Kim Seokjin, is the first to enlist being the oldest of the seven Bangtan boys. He turned 30 (international age) last December 4.

At 12mn (KST) on December 13, ARMY trended #SafeFlightOurAstronaut as a send-off to Jin.

He’ll be back from the army after 18 months. In a press statement, Big Hit Entertainment said he is scheduled to be discharged on June 12, 2024, a day before BTS’ 11th anniversary.

This is one of those moments when I am grateful that time flies fast. Jin will be back before we have even finished catching up with BTS content. ARMY can’t wait for 2025 when Jin, RM, Suga, j-hope, Jimin, V, and Jungkook regroup and will show us what’s next for BTS.

Meanwhile, here’s a list of things about our Jin that will help us survive the next year and a half waiting for worldwide handsome throw us a kiss again:

1. Jin’s nicknames have made millions of ARMY hearts flutter.

2. Jin’s mukbang show, Eat Jin, is a gem. He has done 24 episodes, the last was in July  2020. Each episode is downright smart, funny, and charming. Eat Jin is on Weverse, but check out BTS Wiki, too, for its very organized archiving of Jin’s show, complete with a synopsis of every episode.

3. I’ve read Jin’s “Cooking Diary” hundreds of times and I laugh aloud each time. . This blog is a testament to Jin’s wit and humor – and his genuine adoration for food and his family.

4. When I was a baby ARMY in 2019, among the fan-made compilation videos that pushed me down deep the BTS rabbit hole were the “Don’t fall in love with Jin challenge”, “BTS Jin cute and funny moments”, and the “Jin ahjussi” moments. While waiting for him to come back from the military, I am sure I’ll be bingeing on these videos again.

I also love the videos that featured him and Jungkook. Let me make it clear though that I’m not talking about the shipping videos. I don’t watch those. What I like are compilation videos of Jin and JK’s funny and endearing moments together.

The seven members are obviously very close to one another but there’s a special kind of bond between the oldest and youngest members. May kurot sa puso. Jin is five years older than JK, who was only 14 when he moved to Seoul alone from Busan as a trainee. Jin looked after BTS’ little one like a true older brother.

5. Jin’s heart events. I wish I was already ARMY when Jin did his heart events for the Wings tour. I want to turn back time.

6. The concert hairstyles. If I’m not mistaken, Jin started this with the apple hair after seeing a fan writing down the request in the chat room of the online 2021 Muster Soowoozoo, which was held online. Jin did several other hairstyles in the succeeding concerts, like when he cosplayed the Younghee doll in Squid Game and tied his short hair in pig tails at the Permission to Dance concert in LA in November last year.

7. Seokjinnie and his six babies. Need I say more?

In a CBS interview in 2019, when BTS were already certified global stars, the boys were asked about their plan to serve in South Korea’s military. Jin replied: “As a Korean, it’s natural. And someday when duty calls, we’ll be ready to respond and do our best.”

Duty calls now. Stay safe and healthy, Jin. Borahae!

About author


Nikko Dizon worked as journalist specializing in security and political issues for nearly two decades. She is doing consultancy work during her time-off from journalism and remains immersed in the Korean Wave, in particular with BTS, actor Ji Chang Wook, and K-drama.

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