R1SE recently celebrated their first anniversary on June 8, 2020. To commemorate their anniversary, R1SE released a new song called, “Yao” (曜). Since the music video was released on June 12, many fans have been complaining about the group’s leader and center, Zhou Zhennan (周震南), not getting enough screen time, the line distribution, him not being placed in the center of the dance choreography, and other problems.
Zhou Zhennan addressed the fan complaints in a livestream session on June 14. He revealed he was the one who distributed the lines so there are no grievances on his part. He expressed, “Each person must go do the part most suitable for themselves. They must all complete the best part they can do. I think this is something we need to do.” He thanked the fans for supporting him and staying with him, but also said that since the group debuted, he felt R1SE is one whole entity. To him, boy groups wasn’t about distribution on camera time or distribution based on position. He said, “I can feel everyone thinks that R1SE is a boy group with soul. The 11 of us have a good relationship. I think this is the most simple. This is also what we want everyone to see.”
Fans weren’t appeased by Zhou Zhennan’s response, so he uploaded the following in a now-deleted post: “If you don’t understand, you don’t need to understand it. I don’t want to explain it either. Don’t like it, think the product isn’t good, go out and turn right.” He left a bunch of comments under that post: “Whether you understand it or not, I accept it. Whatever suggestions there are, I accept it, but everyone, please stop all the complaints.”, “I understand what everyone is trying to do. I am very thankful. I also blame myself, but today there is definitely nothing to blame. But I also said, it’s definitely not just the things in front of our eyes.” He also clarified his words were not against all his fans, just a small group of them. He made a new post saying: “There should be a lot of beautiful things we persist on even if it doesn’t exist.”
R1SE member, Xia Zhiguang (夏之光), also posted a lengthy post about the complaints. Xia Zhiguang started off thanking Zhou Zhennan as he has a lot of responsibilities and stress as their leader. He expressed, “Each person’s point of view is different. What each person faces is also different. There is definitely areas where it’s wrong, but there are also times when choices can’t be made. We are just doing the best in what we should be doing in our positions. There might be times when everyone can’t understand it. Honestly speaking, there are many times when I can’t understand it either. My staff members can’t understand it, my company can’t understand it either.”
He continues saying that when things happen, it ends up being something very trivial. If there are things they can’t solve, Xia Zhiguang expressed, “Why not try a different option or way?…After some time passes and you have more experiences…it might not even be a problem anymore.” Xia Zhiguang finishes off saying, “I definitely won’t force everyone to think like this or definitely do this. I just simply want everyone to be happy. There is no such thing as eternity, but there is a present that can’t be returned to. Lastly, once again thankful for my brothers, our Twelves (R1SE’s fandom name), my company. I AM X. WE ARE R1SE.”