Boy bands. The phrase should conjure up images from the 90s, N*SYNC and Backstreet Boys, teens with funny clothes and frosty tipped hair. It should remind us of a young Justin Timberlake, whose voice was higher and who was dating a sane Britney Spears. But most importantly it should awaken a feeling of nostalgia, for a time when we were younger, when weekend homework was a phrase not yet understood and show-and-tell happened every week. But now, boy bands such as One Direction are resurfacing and reclaiming the hearts of preteen girls everywhere.
“Boy bands are the epitome of preteen girls. [They] are a way for preteen girls to explore their sexuality,” said senior Ben Milstein. This is undoubtedly true. We have evidence and photos from the ‘90s and also the present-day of preteen girls screaming and crying when their favorite boy band goes on stage. They kiss posters of their favorite band members every night before they go to bed and dream preteen lusty dreams of that band member confessing their love for them, a 13-year – old girl in the middle of the crowd. But is it a good thing for girls, especially young ones, to fall for these boys, who are famous for nothing but making harmonies with other boys? Boys that can do about one thing: wink at the camera while singing songs with the rest of their band of merry men. Justin Bieber, while not in a boy band but a young boy singer who preteen girls fawn over, is a perfect example. In an interview in Australia, Bieber said he didn’t know what German was, saying “we don’t say that in America.” Justin Bieber, and boys his age in boy bands, are famous for nothing but having a good voice. They aren’t intelligent and their only asset is making preteen girls swoon. Girls at every age should fall for boys who are more than just a pretty face, they should fall for boys with substance and try to find the right guy. When they idolize boys in boy bands they are setting themselves up to only look for pretty airheaded boys in the future.
Another reason why boy bands should not be idolized is because their music isn’t even tolerable to listen to. They can harmonize and capture the attention of preteen girls with their momentary solos, but in the end their music is nothing to cheer about. “I prefer more substance [in music]. One Direction does not bring me substance, does not bring more meaning to my life,” said sophomore Emily Anderson. Their voices are too high and the sound of most of the songs, across several different bands, is relatively the same. There is a modern day synth sounding noise in the background and the voices of boy bands such as One Direction, Big Time Rush, and The Wanted are almost identical. Even their band names are similar. What does it say about a genre when the only listeners are preteen girls? These boys are in their late teens, high school age, yet high schoolers avoid them like the plague. “Boy bands are the worst thing to happen to music,” said Junior Charlotte Kaufman. You know what other bands have cult followers much younger than themselves? The Wiggles.
The boys themselves are nothing to look up to. Of boys from boy bands in the ‘90s, only Justin Timberlake is still famous and not even for singing. He is now an actor and a comedian. The rest of the boys that preteen girls were screaming over grew up and their music goes relatively unheard now. They are ghosts of the past, boys that never grew up.
However, some remain blissfully unaware of the resurgence of the boy band. “I didn’t know they were back,” said junior Will Daly, responding after a few seconds of silence.