Sunday, June 5, 2011

KBS’s “Immortal Song 2″ PD addresses viewers’ concerns about the show

KBS’s “Immortal Song 2” certainly debuted to a strong start, but it was also embroiled in a series of controversies that left viewers with some concerns.
The show recorded remarkable viewer ratings, coming in at 7.9% according to AGB Nielsen Media Research. To put the achievement into perspective, it beat out MBC’s “We Got Married and it was only 1.1% off from SBS’s Star King.”
But with the impressive start came criticisms, as many were of the belief that the show was too strongly similar to MBC’s “I Am a Singer.“ PD Kwon Jae Young sat down with E Daily for an interview answering the concerns. Check it out below:
1. “Some are criticizing the show’s concept for being too similar to ‘I Am a Singer’.”
PD: “It’s something we expected. Singing battles have become a trend for broadcast companies. Not only is ‘Immortal Song 2′ in the same frame as ‘I Am a Singer’, but ‘Superstar K‘ and Birth of a Great Star‘ if you look at it that way. ’Immortal Song 2′, however, is a corner created from the original ‘Immortal Song.’ The concept of having other singers learn to sing another famous singer’s song has always been ours, but just changed to match up to the current trend of song battles.
When ‘1 Night 2 Days‘ first aired, it, too, was criticized for being similar to MBC’s Infinity Challenge.‘ But how is it doing now? As time passed, it created its own individuality and there is barely anyone that still thinks the two programs are similar. We hope to take ‘Immortal Song 2′ through the same transformation, as it is something the producers definitely need to work out. 
Instead of the results, our program places emphasis on the process, which is why we spend so much time preparing the idol singers and their song arrangements.”
2. “There are also viewers that don’t like the way the winner is chosen.”
PD: “We discussed the way winners are selected a lot.
Although there’s already the standard format of calling all six out and choosing the final winner, it’s already being used by ‘I Am a Singer’ so we couldn’t just do that. While looking for something that would be both unique and fun, we came up with our current system.
Honestly speaking, we also thought of using a traditional tournament style where #1 and #2 would go against each other, #3 and #4 would go against each other, and the final winners would then go against each other. But going that route puts too much pressure on the artists and they’d have to prepare three songs a week. It’s kind of meaningless to battle again with a song you’ve already won with.
It already takes all week long for artists to arrange just one song by a legendary artist, so a traditional style would kill the artist. We are, however, considering a change to the system, but we won’t be changing the way we only choose a winner. We will be leaving open the possibility for changes in the program, as long as it doesn’t break any major rule.”
3. “When two people are on stage, the idol singer with the least votes get their spotlight turned off. Viewers thought this was cruel.”
PD: “‘Immortal Song 2′ is a variety program, but as it is a singing competition, there needs to be a certain level of tension. We turn off the spotlight to raise that tension.
We hope that people will regard it in a warmer light.”

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