Music / EXO

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We are one, we are EXO!

"We may be separated into two groups, but really, we are one big family."
Sehun

EXO (Korean: 엑소) is a South Korean-Chinese boy band who debuted under SM Entertainment on April 8, 2012, after 23 teasers. They are split into two sub-units, EXO-M and EXO-K, who promote in China and South Korea, respectively.

The group is composed of 9 members from South Korea and China. Namely, Xiumin, Suho, Lay, Baekhyun, Chen, Chanyeol, D.O, Kai, and Sehun. Former member Kris filed a lawsuit to terminate his contract in early 2014. There was debate about the group disbanding for a while, but members have reassured their fans that they will continue on. Also, as of 10 October 2014, Member Lu Han has decided to terminate his contract with SM Entertainment as well. There were rumors as far back as September 2014 which said that Lu Han would be leaving due to his health and because SM would make him work despite his health, so as sad as fans were that he decided to leave EXO they were not surprised. Member Tao went on hiatus from group activities beginning April 2015, and officially departed from the group in August.

The group's two albums, the 2012 debut EP Mama and the 2013 comeback studio album XOXO, were major commercial successes, selling over 1.5 million units in total worldwide. The group was also named the Best Korean/Japanese Act at the MTV EMA Awards.

Ex-members Kris and Lu Han have their own pages.

     Members 
  • Xiumin - (March 26, 1990)
  • Suho - (May 22, 1991)
  • Lay - (October 7, 1991)
  • Baekhyun - (May 6, 1992)
  • Chen - (September 21, 1992)
  • Chanyeol - (November 27, 1992)
  • D.O - (January 12, 1993)
  • Kai - (January 14, 1994)
  • Sehun - (April 12, 1994)
     Former Members 
  • Lu Han - (April 20, 1990)
  • Kris - (November 6, 1990)
  • Tao - (May 2, 1993)
     Discography 
Studio Albums:
  • 2013 - XOXO
    • Growl (Repackage)
  • 2015 - EXODUS
    • Love Me Right (Repackage)
Extended Plays:
  • 2012 - MAMA
  • 2013 - Miracles in December
  • 2014 - Overdose
  • 2015 - Sing for You
Live Albums:
  • 2014 - Exology Chapter 1: The Lost Planet

EXO provides examples of the following tropes:

    open/close all folders 

    Band and Member Tropes 
  • Accidental Pervert - D.O walked in on Kai dancing in the shower.
  • All Chinese People Know Kung-Fu - Averted with all the Chinese members except for Tao, who was trained in wushu starting from a young age.
  • Animated Music Video - The introduction of their MAMA music video.
  • Animal Motif
    • The concept for Wolf.
    • Tao is often compared to a panda because of his eyes.
    • Chen is a camel.
    • Lu Han is a deer. Bonus points because his name means "deer of the dawn" in Chinese.
    • Lay is a unicorn.
  • Annoying Laugh
    • Baekhyun tends to sound like he's having an asthma attack.
  • Anti-Climax - In their Star Wars MV, we see Kai, Sehun, and Baekhyun acting cool with their lightsaber, Kai waving lightsaber in the hallway with the music building up. Then the song ends and the hallway turns empty.
  • Artistic License Astronomy - What is Love MV. You couldn't watch solar eclipse directly like that. Sehun and Chen hadn't learned and did the same mistake in their Pathcode teasers.
  • Asian Speekee Engrish - The pronounciation of wolf in Wolf. Weird is that in the leaked demo version the wolf is pronounced properly.
  • Audience Participation - EXODUS' Pathcode teasers, with hints available from the official Pathcode twitter account. Analysis were rampant such as this one.
  • Back-to-Back Badasses - Shown here, about two and a half minutes in.
  • Badass - Tao, aka a Wushu champion. Xiumin and Baekhyun also know martial arts.
  • Badass Adorable - Tao (who is a Wushu champion), Xiumin (who practices Taekwondo and Kendo), Baekhyun (who practices Hapkido), and D.O (who utilizes jujitsu often). And they're all adorable.
  • Badass Baritone - Chanyeol has quite a low voice, which compliments his rapping which is generally well-received and seen as awesome.
  • Big Little Brother - Sehun is the youngest member yet is one of the tallest members. And he's still growing!
  • Bilingual Bonus - You could learn that "Comet is Appearing in 10 cities in the world" from Tao's pathcode teaser if you know Spanish.
  • Bishōnen - All of the boys have a pretty face and are lean and attractive. Technically kkotminam, since they're Korean.
  • Boy Band - One of the most popular examples in Korean Pop Music.
  • Breakout Character
    • Lu Han, who is by far the most popular member of the group. He was also voted as Asia's Most Handsome Man of 2013 and shows up often in Chinese newspapers.
    • Xiumin is also "the trend" in Korea.
  • But Not Too Foreign - Kris was raised in Canada and can speak fluent English.
  • Cast Full of Pretty Boys - And how! (See: Bishōnen.)
  • Catholic Schoolgirls Rule - Gender-inverted examples.
  • Eiffel Tower Effect - London Eye in Kai's Pathcode teaser.
  • Embarrassing Nickname - Lu Han does not like the nickname "Marilyn Monroe."
  • Eternally Pearly-White Teeth - Chanyeol's teeth is known for being quite white and pretty.
  • Even the Guys Want Him - D.O is the most popular member among men.
  • Everyone Is Gay - Normally invoked in fanfiction where all the members want each other.
  • Eye Scream - Baekhyun was hit with some fireworks after standing too close to the edge of a stage during a performance.
  • Fairytale Motifs - Both fairy tale and fantasy motifs appear a lot as themes or references in their music, including but not exclusive to Eldorado, Black Pearl, Baby Don't Cry, and Peter Pan.
  • Fangirl - Only two months after they debuted, they became the 2nd most popular tag on Tumblr. Not to mention the fanchants...
  • Fantastic Romance - A lot of their songs are implying this including Don't Go (with a butterfly girl), Baby Don't Cry (them singing from the mermaid POV), Wolf (the Korean title is even Wolf and The Beauty), also Paranormal Love in Angel (them as an angel loving normal girl they protect).
  • Female Gaze - Certain fancams aren't, uh, shy with following members' certain body parts and only said body parts.
  • Flanderization - Their fans are experts at this in their fanfiction.
  • Forgetful Jones - Lay, who frequently enters and leaves their house because of this. He's also so forgetful that he forgot he was forgetful.
  • Friend to All Children
    "It seems as if there is a young boy living in the body of a young man. As soon as he came into the studio, he squealed while looking at the baby shoes and had fun while touching the baby clothes that were hung in the closet."
    "The little kids clearly all really liked Lu Han, and kept talking to him. Lu Han would always stoop down to listen carefully, nod intently, and reply. Afterwards, as soon as the kids raised their heads, he would stoop, lean over and listen with a really gentle expression. Later, because it was easier to chat with the kids, he just crouched down and would keep one eye on the recording while constantly playing with the kids."
    • This video of Kris playing with a little kid. Shows just how much of a softie he is.
  • Gratuitous English - Shows up quite frequently, most noticeably in the beginning of MAMA.
  • Groupie Brigade: Frighteningly taken Up to Eleven with fans in South Korea and China, so much that the members are often injured by the groping, wind up with scratches and cuts, etc.
  • Guyliner - Baekhyun loves it.
  • I Have Many Names - Kris, oh my God, Kris. His birth name is Li Jiaheng. He changed his name to Kevin Li when he was in Canada and while he was in SM Entertainment, he chose Kris as his stage name and currently his stage name while doing solo work in China is Wu Yi Fan or Kris Wu.
  • Ice Queen - The love interest of their song Machine, an Emotionless Girl with perfect beauty, doll-like feature, and cold smile.
  • Iconic Logo - Their hexagon logo and its iterations.
  • The Illegible
    • Kris and is questionable writing is the main offender.
    • Sehun too. One time he was supposed to write "오세훈", and his writing... didn't look anything like it.
  • I Want to Be a Real Man - With Lu Han.
    "I'm the manliest member!"
  • Jack of All Trades - Lu Han speaks fluent Mandarin and Korean. He's also the lead vocal and lead dancer.
    • Xiumin dances, raps, sings, acts, hosted programs, does sports and martial arts, and attended school while still promoting EXO.
  • Just Friends - A theme of their song My Lady, also appeared in Tender Love.
  • Kaleidoscope Hair - During the Wolf promotions, especially, everyone's hairs were switching between all kinds of colours.
  • The Maze - Their logo for Overdose era, also appeared in the MV.
  • Meaningful Name - Suho means "guardian" in Korean.
  • Multicolored Hair - Sehun during the Wolf era had his hair dyed all sorts of colours at once.
  • Our Werewolves Are Different - Wolf is all about being a werewolf in love with a beautiful girl. In the Drama version of the music videos for both Wolf and Growl, we can see that being a werewolf in EXO entails having an exotic white hair colour, a cool tattoo on your arm, glowing red eyes at certain times, and no transformation (although the usual werewolf aspects of super-strength are still there).
  • Nonuniform Uniform: Their Growl era costumes are basically personalised school uniforms, from sleeveless jackets, neckties/no neckties and inside shirts.
  • Panda-ing to the Audience - Tao whose Animal Motif is a panda.
  • The Perfectionist - When asked who was a perfectionist in EXO-M during an interview, Lay pointed at himself.
  • Perpetual Frowner - Sehun tries to be this because he dislikes his smile.
  • Personality Blood Types - Sehun has a thing for blood types.
  • Performance Anxiety
    • Chen has a phobia with public speaking, although he's managed to avert a lot of his initial fears.
    • There are also dozens of interviews where Sehun barely speaks.
    • D.O. tends to stutter or mess up a lot of scripted lines, and generally keeps quiet unless prompted.
    • It wasn't until EXO Showtime that Xiumin began to talk and stand out a bit more. He even said on EXO 90:2014 that unless he's spoken to, he'll rarely speak to people.
  • Product Placement - Samsung Level headset in their Call Me Baby MV, Samsung phones and headsets in Pathcode teasers. Maybe because they have a tie-in with Samsung.
  • Prolonged Prologue - After 23 teasers...
  • Reality Show - They got their own show, conveniently named EXO's Showtime!
    • Later, they had EXO 90:2014, alternately named "K-Pop Time Slip"
  • Real Men Wear Pink - Kai likes the color pink and doing ballet... which makes him the butt of Chanyeol's jokes.
    • Chen's favorite color is pink.
  • Shirtless Scene - The Let Out the Beast VCR in The Lost Planet concert.
  • Shout-Out
    • Alice in Wonderland in Love Me Right MV. Analysis is here.
    • There's also a Murakami reference in the same MV.
    • Lightsaber, considering the Star Wars tie-in, doesn't have a lot of shout outs. Started from Darth Vader breathing in the song, lightsabers in Baekhyun's, Kai's and Sehun's hands , 'Jedi Only', 'May the Force', Security Notice: Concealed Sabers are Prohibited in This Facility' signs in the MV
  • Sigil Spam - A lot of their MAMA era costumes incorporate their logo somewhere. Logos also appeared on kites and caravan in What is Love MV.
  • Singer Name Drop - The "E-X-O" in Growl and Overdose, as well as the "EXO" in Two Moons.
    • Lately the "E-X-O" came back in Call Me Baby.
    • There's a subtle one in XOXO.
    • Also appeared in Drop That, "JUMP! JUMP! JUMP! JUMP! JUMP! JUMP! E X O".
  • So Unfunny, It's Funny - Averted with Kris, who tells horrible jokes no one enjoys.
  • Space Whale - On the cover of their second winter special EP, Sing for You.
  • Speech Impediment - Sehun has a lisp that is most noticeable during his parts in Two Moons. and after fans outright made fun of him for it, God help you if you bring it up now.
  • Spotlight-Stealing Squad - Kai and Lay for dancing, and Baekhyun, Chen, and D.O for singing. Even some non-fans admit that they're talented.
  • Spiritual Successor - The moment SM Entertainment announced they were debuting a 12 member group, comparisons to Super Junior arose and drove many people to despise the group before the members were even revealed.
  • Stage Names - Xiumin for Kim Minseok, Suho for Kim Joonmyun, Lay for Zhang Yixing, Chen for Kim Jongdae, D.O for Do Kyungsoo, Kai for Kim Jong-in.
  • Stalker with a Crush - Seems to be a constant wherever they decide to go, mostly thanks to dedicated fansite masters or overenthusiastic international fans. Unfortunately, many people stereotype all of EXO's fans as this.
  • Star Wars - Had a collaboration with the franchise, resulting in Lightsaber.
  • Stepford Smiler
    "No matter how difficult and hard something is, I will always be positive and smile like an idiot." - Chanyeol
  • Surprisingly Good English
    • Kris, who moved to Canada with his mother at 10 years old.
    • Suho is fluent enough to hold a conversation past pleasantries.
    • D.O has the best pronunciation among Korean members if he's given time to process the words.
    • Tao, to some extent. He also has an English name... Edison.
  • Talking in Your Sleep - Lu Han said Kris does this when he sleeps. He does it in four languages!

    Music Tropes 
  • Audience Participation Song - Drop That.
  • Cover Version
  • Christmas Songs - "Miracles in December" contains Christmas themed music. Also "The Winter's Tale".
  • Dubstep - Their music is very, very heavily influenced by the genre.
  • Genre Roulette - EXO's music spans a rather wide variety of genres, ranging from standard teen pop and R&B to hip hop, baroque pop, harsh Electronic Music and the occasional ballad.
  • Lyrical Dissonance - MAMA's lyrics is pretty symbolic, about people losing contacts and love with each other, while the MV is mostly about the group showcasing their elemental powers.
  • Merchandise-Driven - EXO-K's song for the Samsung ATIV Smart PC.
  • Metal Scream - MAMA in both versions:
  • Mohs Scale of Rock and Metal Hardness: They managed to enter the scale with MAMA, which is a solid 6, and Wolf, which is a hard 6/borderline 7 due to its intense rhythms and dubstep-influenced sound. On average though, their music can range from a soft 2 to a solid 6, with their ballads more likely to ping at 1 or go off the low end of the scale.
  • Mondegreen: Many heard the first line of EXO-M's "History" as "Listen, enjoy the mayo".
  • Onomatopoeia - From the songs Growl and Wolf; it's right in the titles.
  • Sequel Song - My Turn to Cry is the prince version of Baby Don't Cry.
  • Translated Cover Version - EXO-K and EXO-M sing in Korean and Mandarin, respectively. All three albums have two versions: Korean and Mandarin.
  • Vanity License Plate - The plates on the cars in the Call Me Baby MV read Tao, Kai, El Dorado, and EXO 12
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