I know it has been over a month since the final episode of “Produce 101 China” aired, and as usual, I am late with my comments. My apologies, life got in the way, and I think I finally quelled my disappointment.
Before I get into my thoughts about the finalists of the show, can I just complain about the length of the last episode? It was over FOUR HOURS long! It took me over two days to watch it. I found myself quickly getting bored, pausing it, and going to do something else. I did this especially when they were promoting that movie that I really did not care about.
What I did like about the last episode is that they made sure to showcase each contestant before the voting period ended, giving them one last opportunity for exposure. I really hope MNET was watching. That just may be a good idea for the last episode of Produce 48 since they have been biased and stingy with their camera time for the contestants. However, that is a different issue for another show.
It also irritated me that they did not announce the results in order. This is something that they have been doing throughout the show. They would announce the 7th rank, go to the 1st, go back to the 9th rank, and so on. It confused me and sort of killed the excitement.
The debuting team’s name is “Rocket Girls.” I love this name, but I immediately think of Stellar’s debut song when I see it. It is the best Produce 101 debut team name so far.
Eleven contestants debuted in “Rocket Girls.” While I am happy that some of my favourites made it into the team, I am still disappointed that some people who deserved some of the top spots got cut. My comments for each of the debuting members are as followed:
11. Xu Mengjie (Babyou Entertainment)
She is a member of Ladybees with Gao Qiuzi. I still do not know how to feel about her addition to the group. She was never one of my favourites. I barely noticed her throughout the show. However, I was impressed by her solo dance performance during the final show. I am interested to see what role she takes on in Rocket Girls.
10. Fu Jing (Banana Entertainment)
Throughout the whole show, she managed to maintain her position in the TOP 11 except for the last two weeks before the final. Despite that, she was not one of my favourites. Other contestants stood out to me more than she did, even during the final show.
9. Li Ziting (Huaying Yixing)
She is so gorgeous, and her voice is to die for! I am so happy that she got into the group! I was rooting for her throughout the season. The Thai princess deserved to debut! I am also glad she got with Zhang Zining. In my opinion, they both look similar, and they are both talented. My fingers are crossed for a subunit with these two girls!
8. Sunnee (K-L Entertainment)
All I can say is “YES!!!!!!” My other Thai favourite made it into the group! She was one of my top contestants for the show. I loved her since the ranking auditions in the first episode. She has charisma and a great personality. I have such a girl crush on her. Her image is different from the other members of the group, so I am curious to see how management incorporates that into their concept. I hope they do not try to change her or force her to do a concept that she is not comfortable with.
7. Zhang Zining (Mavericks Entertainment)
She was another one of my favourite vocalists. As I said before, I am happy that she debuted in the same group as Ziting. Recently, I learned that she is a part of MERA. These days, I have their song “Who Am I” on repeat.
6. Lai Meiyun (Qiyu Culture)
She became one of my favourites near the latter half of the show. I love her energy and small stature. Her voice and physique do not match at all. I expected a cute and small voice, but I got the complete opposite. I love people who surprise me like that. I am happy that she was one of the finalists.
5. Yamy (JC Universe)
She was another one of my favourites from the beginning. As the show carried on, I found myself loving her even more. She has this hip-hop and edgy style, but at the same time, she pulls off cute and bubbly concepts well. Girl groups need members with this type of versatility. She composes, raps and dances. She should be the ace of this group. I wished she ranked higher, but I am glad that she made it into Rocket Girls.
4. Duan Aojuan (Long WuTian Culture)
I like Aojuan, but I am surprised that she ranked as high as she did. I guess the viewers were wowed by her last few performances. I was as well. She is young but has mature vocals that blow away the crowd. She is one of the many great vocalists in the group. Her image is pure, so I would be interested to see how she would do with an edgier concept.
3. Yang Chaoyue (Wenian Culture)
What I am about to say is going to contrast my first “Produce 101 China” post from a couple of months ago. Initially, I liked Chaoyue because she seemed to be an underdog. She lacked in all performing skills and reminded me of Sohye and Risa from “Produce 101 Season 1” and Guanlin and Seonho from Season 2. They all lacked skills but greatly improved in the end. I also pitied Chaoyue because she knew of her lack of skills and often cried about it. However, halfway throughout the series, I got fed up with her tears. They got annoying, and she showed no evidence of improvement in any area. Her final performance was a disappointment, and even her first performance with Rocket Girls was cringe-worthy. I do not want to bash her, and I know she still has a large following, but I do not think she deserved a spot in the debuting team. She has not improved, and there are many other girls with the skill and determination that could have taken her spot. This was the biggest disappointment of the final episode, but it has passed. Now, I can only hope that she gets her head in the game.
2. Xu Xuanyi (Yueha Entertainment)
This did not surprise me in any way. Along with Meiqi, she was the most popular contestant on the show. I am not going to lie. Half of me is happy that she is in a group where the spotlight would be on her, unlike WJSN where she is constantly pushed to the back. However, I hoped that some other girls, like Wang Ju, who did not have the chance to debut would have gotten the spot. However, Xuanyi is talented, and I know she would shine in Rocket Girls.
1. Meng Meiqi (Yuehua Entertainment)
I have similar feelings about Meiqi’s debut and centre position in Rocket Girls as I do for Xuanyi. She deserves it as she is constantly overshadowed by other members of WJSN Cosmic Girls, such as Yeonjung and Cheng Xiao. This time she gets to shine in the centre spot, and I am proud of her for that. Nevertheless, a part of me still hoped that someone else who has not debuted got her opportunity.
Those are the finalists and members of Rocket Girls. They released their debut self-titled song on June 23, 2018. They have already made several public appearances since then and will have their own reality show.
Check out their recent music video for “Calorie!”
A few of my favourite contestants did not make the final cut, including:
and, Re Yina
While I am disappointed that these participants did not make it, I can only hope they find success elsewhere.