Offstage, CRAVITY Is Obsessed With Mukbangs, Cat Memes, And Reality TV
Here’s how they unwind when stepping off the “Gas Pedal.”
In Elite Daily’s series Rent-Free, celebrities unpack the one thought, memory, or unforgettable pop culture moment that'll always live in their head. In this piece, CRAVITY reveals the hobbies that keep them busy when they’re not in front of the cameras.
Since their debut in April 2020, CRAVITY has put out music at breakneck speed, and their latest single, “Gas Pedal,” shows they have no intention of slowing down. “No matter how fast we go, we’re not stepping on the breaks, they sing on the track (according to a translation by Genius). The lyrics represent how the group’s members — Serim, Allen, Jungmo, Woobin, Wonjin, Minhee, Hyeongjun, Taeyoung, and Seongmin — are eager to grow as artists and eventually perform in front of a live audience. That desire is part of what inspired their first full-length album, The Awakening: Written in the Stars, which dropped on Aug. 19. To celebrate their journey and what’s next, CRAVITY took a pitstop to reflect how they spend their free time when they’re not working.
The Awakening marks the group’s first release outside of their debut Hideout album trilogy, and Allen tells Elite Daily it explores their growth. “The title of this album talks about how we help each other discover this newfound confidence to take on any challenges as if we’ve been awakened, and that we were destined to be with each other as if it were written in the stars,” Allen says.
Of course, much of CRAVITY’s confidence comes from the encouragement of their fans, called LUVITY, who’ve helped the group earn over 20 award show nominations in just over a year, including Artist of the Year at the Mnet Asian Music Awards and the Popularity Award at the Seoul Music Awards. “We’re very grateful for all the love that we’re receiving,” Serim says. “The fact that we were nominated so many times for music shows helps us realize that there are many LUVITYs enjoying our music,” adds Woobin. Their seniors and Starship Entertainment labelmates, MONSTA X, also helped boost CRAVITY’s self-esteem. Wonjin says the best advice Monsta X imparted to them was, “When you guys perform on stage, think to yourselves that you’re the best.”
So far, all of CRAVITY’s performances have been virtual. While it’s sad they’ve yet to perform in front of fans in person, the group is able to push through thanks to all the unwavering support from those around them. If you’ve ever wondered what the guys do when they’re not slaying on stage, check out their hobbies and interests, below.
Wonjin says LUVITYs got him interested in his latest hobby: video editing. “I use VLLO because our fans recommended it to me,” he says about the mobile video editing app. “LUVITYs say that they enjoy seeing my work because they say that my characteristic comes through in my video editing.”
If he could direct one of CRAVITY’s future music videos, Wonjin says it would be “Celebrate,” off the group’s new album. “It’s my favorite song. The video concept would be a pool party,” he says. It would be very different than CRAVITY’s “Gas Pedal” video, in which the guys are treated as lab experiments in a futuristic world. Though Wonjin didn’t fully understand the video’s storyline when he first shot his scene solo, the final product helped him put the pieces together: “I could understand the story and got to understand my scene’s story as well.”
Woobin is challenging himself by diving deeper into songwriting. “I’m the type of person who doesn’t really express my emotions, so I really like that songwriting allows me to express my thoughts and feelings. I think songwriting is the best way to express and deliver your emotions to someone else,” he says. “However, in order to do that, you need to go through great pains of creativity and contemplate for a long time.”
He says he learned a lot about himself as an artist while working on The Awakening. “I thought that I only liked songs with a powerful beat, but I had come to realize that I also like relaxed songs as well,” he says. For example, Woobin’s favorite song on the album is the mellow, bossa nova-inspired track “GO GO.” “It’s extra meaningful because it’s the first song our members participated in from the main melody line to the chorus,” he says.
These days, you can find Hyeongjun watching Money Heist, a Spanish crime drama series on Netflix. In December 2020, the streaming service announced the show would be getting a Korean adaptation. Although Hyeongjun is only on Season 1 of Money Heist (there are currently three seasons), he says he’ll “definitely” watch the Korean version when it premieres, too. “Right now, I can’t see it that often because of the promotion schedule, but once I get more free time, I’m going to keep watching it,” he says.
As a TV lover, Hyeongjun says he loves filming the group’s reality series, CRAVITY PARK. “I think LUVITYs love CRAVITY PARK because they can see a whole different side of us [rather] than the idol CRAVITY performing onstage,” he says.
Minhee loves watching TV, too, especially the Korean variety series Infinite Challenge. “The [cast has] such great chemistry,” he says, adding he enjoys reality TV because it’s a “small deviation from everyday life.” He hopes he makes fans feel the same way when they watch CRAVITY PARK. “Our members enjoy shooting the show and I also enjoy [filming] because I can make LUVITYs laugh. I hope we can continue doing it more often.”
The series premiered in June 2020 and just concluded its third season in July. “When we first started CRAVITY PARK, all of us were still a bit nervous so we couldn’t fully show our true selves,” he says. “Now, we can be who we really are in front of the camera and because of that, the show has become a lot more fun.”
Serim can’t stop thinking about the 2018 Korean romance film Be With You, which centers around a woman who passed away but mysteriously comes back to life and reunites with her husband and son.“It’s such a heartwarming movie,” he says. “Romance and thriller. These two are my genres for both K-dramas and movies.” When asked if he would ever consider starring in a drama, Serim excitedly says, “Of course! If I get the chance, I would definitely love to star in a K-drama myself.”
LUVITYs would definitely agree Serim has what it takes to become an actor. Besides his good looks and undeniable talent on camera, he already has the ability to connect with fans. “It means so much that our music could resonate with a lot of LUVITYs,” he says. “I wish to touch more LUVITYs’ hearts in the future with my own music.”
Whenever he’s free, Seongmin watches mukbangs, which are live streams that usually involve the host eating a large quantity of food while interacting with viewers. “They help you decide what to eat when you don't have an appetite or when it's hard to choose a menu. Hamzy is my favorite mukbang YouTuber,” Seongmin says, adding he prefers watching Korean food mukbangs.
Seongmin says he loves live-streaming himself because it allows him to stay connected with fans. “We can read and answer comments in realtime, and even though we're not in the same space [with fans], I think it's good to feel like we're together,” he says. “I’m very thankful that our content is enjoyed by a lot of LUVITYs. I always want to show them more fun and unpredictable content.”
Jungmo relaxes by watching the National Geographic channel. He recently watched a docu-series about sharks because he’s intrigued by the ocean. “Stories about sharks are scary yet interesting. I learned about how sharks hunt,” he says. “These days, I’m watching documentaries about space.”
Interestingly enough, CRAVITY’s song “Divin” is about escaping to the ocean. According to a fan translation on YouTube, the group sings, “Just listen, yeah, listen to the waves. Hold your breath and count to three, feel this moment unfolding,” on the track. As for where Jungmo would love to escape, he says he would love to travel to Hawaii and Los Angeles. “I’ve never been there but, in the movies, both places look so cool and people there look very happy,” he says.
“Just seeing memes always makes my day!” Taeyoung says. “Watching memes helps me calm down and refresh my mind. My all-time favorite meme right now is maybe Reduce Reuse Ecyce.” He’s referring to a video shared by @bassoonman on TikTok in which a person finds a sign that’s meant to say “reduce, reuse, recycle,” but actually misspells “recycle” as “ecyce.”
Taeyoung says in addition to watching funny memes and videos, he loves using social media to connect with fans. “In this pandemic situation, we don’t think we’ll be able to connect with our fans without the help of social media! We try to post as often as we can so that we can communicate and show our love to LUVITYs,” he says.
Just like Taeyoung, Allen has funny memes on his mind. However, his favorite is the emo cat meme. “A fan attached it in a letter to me through our fan cafe saying it looks like me during this era and I couldn’t agree more. I love how accurate it looks since my bangs are super long and cover half of my face,” he says.
Funnily enough, Allen says he once had an emo phase: “I really enjoyed Green Day’s music back in the past. I especially liked ‘21 Guns,’ ‘Boulevard of Broken Dreams,’ and ‘Wake Me Up When September Ends.”