The Trashy PD Has to Survive as an Idol Episode 137

Episode 137

“I’m kind of worried.”

The Japanese cover songs had been recorded a long time ago, but two of the original tracks were continuously being reworked.

It was because Kang Ichae wasn’t satisfied with them.

“I can’t get a grip; I’m not feeling it.”

Moreover, there was one bonus track.

In Japan, it was not uncommon for idol songs to be used for anime openings or endings.

This time, with our debut in Japan on the horizon, Daepaseong Entertainment finally snagged something decent.

Though it involved several complicated steps and final approval, they said there was a chance the bonus track could be selected as the ending theme for a new anime.

“Does this sound like it could fit an anime?”


While there were various genres, Japanese music, including J-POP, had a distinct characteristic that made it immediately recognizable.

And those were the songs that usually made it big in Japan.

Especially this song had an added mission of fitting an anime.

But the song Kang Ichae made?

“It just reeks of money from the beat.”

It was purely a slick and glossy beat filled 200% with Kang Ichae’s taste.

Until now, that vibe had sustained The Dawn, but the tracks for Japan needed to be different.

“I didn’t expect to be worrying about something like this.”

Kang Ichae tilted his head, seemingly unable to catch the vibe.

He appeared to be in a dilemma over whether to remove his signature style.

Moreover, unlike games, he had zero interest in anime, making it even more complicated.

“How do you remove the smell of money?”

“I fucking love the smell of money, so don’t ask me.”

“…Anyone but this money-grubber, please~.”

At Kang Ichae’s shout, Jeong Dajun, who had been spinning in a wheeled chair some distance away, asked Kim Seonghyeon to push him, and he swiftly glided over.

“Hyung!! Have you never watched The Whirlwind Ninja Extravaganza when you were young?”

“The Whirlwind… What’s that?”

“…I don’t want to talk with someone who knows nothing.”

Jeong Dajun, who had grown up (?) to be a drama enthusiast but devoured anime in his youth, looked at Kang Ichae with cold eyes before snatching away the laptop and opening a YouTube window.

“Look! The moment you listen to it, you get excited, your heart swells! Somehow, you feel like running across the schoolyard with a tire on your back against the setting summer sun! It feels like the throbbing youth you buried deep in your heart five years ago is bursting forth again!!”

“So, what were you doing when you were fifteen, Dajun~?”

“I went to an English cram school~.”

“…You did?”

“Seriously, isn’t that too much??”

Jeong Dajun and Kang Ichae bickered.

Anyway, Kang Ichae nodded. He seemed to get a bit of the feeling after listening to a few related videos.

“Ah, um, okay, okay.”

Then, he hummed a melody and immediately set down a beat.

Not like any factory, but he managed to produce a beat that felt like sweating under the blazing sun before catching a refreshing breeze out of nowhere.

“Wow!! This is the right vibe!”


Kang Ichae, who was roughly matching a melody to the beat, just turned his gaze to Jeong Dajun.

“…Is this good?”

Seemingly unsure whether it matched his taste, Kang Ichae tilted his head, his hand on his chin.

“Maknae, but the anime’s ending wasn’t about running around a schoolyard with tires… What was it? About a Japanese trainee trying K-Pop… something like that, wasn’t it?”

“…Ah, right?”

Jeong Dajun snapped his mouth shut, caught off guard.

Though the Hallyu wave seemed to have died down, the K-Pop craze had started to pick up again in recent years.

Eventually, it even became a theme in a manga, and The Dawn was working on an anime about Japanese male trainees achieving success as idols in Korea.

“Then, let’s just go with my taste.”

Kang Ichae, realizing he could incorporate his taste, seemed pleased—even the clicking of the mouse sounding cheerful.

Gone was the sweaty, youthful vibe.

It was replaced almost instantly by a cool, refreshing deep house genre EDM track.


It was overkill.

No matter how inspired, how could it be possible to completely change the course of a song in just a few minutes?

I would have been annoyed too.

This genius kid.

Lim Hyeonsu must have felt disillusioned for a reason.

Kang Ichae’s level and sense in creating music were skyrocketing, and now he was even incorporating plausibility into his songs.


The other members continued to marvel at the scene, no matter how many times they saw it.

“Why did you… just let things be, man?”

“I thought I’d experience some of life’s bitterness for once.”


You just didn’t want to do it.

Kang Ichae chuckled and stood up, heading into the recording studio.

It seemed he was going to do a guide recording.

“How is he so talented?”

He managed to extract such a beat.

Adding Japanese lyrics was something I figured the company would handle just fine, so I was mumbling along to the beat when Kim Seonghyeon glanced over at Kang Ichae entering the recording studio and said,

“Do you know about this?”

“About what?”

“Kang Ichae. I heard he’s gotten a ton of love calls from other idol group agencies. They want him to compose for them.”

I seemed to have heard something about it through the manager.

“At first, they tried going through the company, but when that didn’t pan out, they got his personal contact and went from there…”


“He flatly rejected them.”

…Why? Why turn down the chance to make money?

I wasn’t particularly against Kang Ichae composing for others.

As I stood there, puzzled, Jeong Dajun bounced over to me and waved Kang Ichae’s phone.



Jeong Dajun smoothly unlocked Kang Ichae’s phone.

He scrolled through KakaoTalk, selected a conversation, and handed me the phone.

It was a long message, going on about how they finally got his contact, reaching out after seeing his work, and if he was at all interested, to please reply.

They promised a generous fee.

But Kang Ichae’s response was something else.

– Kang Ichae: Oh no, I can’tㅠㅎㅎ

Scrolling down, there was another message from Kang Ichae.

No matter how persistent they asked…

– Kang Ichae: Please ask the company!!

Even when asked if he had specific conditions…

– Kang Ichae: Ichae doesn’t really know about that stuffㅠ

…It was like this.

Kang Ichae…

Talking in third person even to someone he had never met?

I felt sorry for the employee of the other company who got irritated in the face of a stubborn twenty-two-year-old rapper.

I then handed the phone back to Jeong Dajun.

“I was playing a game on Ichae-hyung’s phone when a notification popped up… and this was the kind of reply he was sending. He said it was okay to show it to the other hyungs when I asked yesterday.”

“Why? Just do it. It’s good money.”


Unless it was to a rival group, Kang Ichae composing for another idol group wouldn’t cause much of a stir.

Rather, it could fill the fans with pride that their group member was behind such compositions.

Moreover, idols with a knack for composition often composed tracks for other groups more frequently than one would think.

“Why do you guys have to make it sound so sad?”

A quick-witted guy who had left the recording studio caught on to our conversation topic just by the atmosphere and pouted.

“Do you like it when other people touch your stuff?”



“…Hoyun-hyung said he was keeping a check, but he’s gotten a lot tougher.”

“Being a leader is truly a tough job….”

Kim Seonghyeon walked away, looking disgusted.


Was it just too much trouble for him?

Kang Ichae then sprawled back on the sofa.

Complaining for two hours about not wanting to do it, then sending over a guide recording after being inspired for one minute and working for five.

This reminded me of someone…


Kang Ichae was occasionally arrogant.

Not out of ignorance, but because he had an accurate self-awareness, which made him even more so.

Solid mental strength, quick wit, and shining talent.

With such abilities, being humble would actually be weirder…

But Lim Hyeonsu is hitting a slump too.

It meant Kang Ichae might face that period someday too.

“Rather than these contacts, I wish our composer would hurry back. It’s been too long since we’ve last seen her.”

“Didn’t she go off in search of love?”

“Why on earth is she looking for love in California?”

Kang Ichae grumbled while picking up his phone.

Even so, the fact that he didn’t contact first showed he was well aware of the “mind your own business” principle.

“But did you hear about this!?”


“Why our composer is called ‘Blue Tiger.'”

“Eh? Why?”

Honestly, I was not that curious.

As I pushed away the clinging Kang Ichae, Jeong Dajun, who had been memorizing the Japanese lyrics of the newly finished song, chewed on the cap of his pen and said,

“Her first love―.”

This already sounded bad.

“―had a blue tiger tattoo.”



“Honestly, if it were someone else, it’d be super cringey, but since it’s our composer, it somehow feels cool.”

“Right! Isn’t it awesome?!”

Why would someone live like that?

Cheongbeom, why are you so tacky?

Despite having worked with Lim Hyeonsu for a long time in my original world, I had never heard such a story.

Of course, I couldn’t let such a baseless story infiltrate my ears.

Seong Jiwon quietly laughed and asked from beside me,

“Should we get a group tattoo?”

“…When Jiwon-hyung says it, doesn’t it almost sound real?”

“Want to try getting The Dawn tattooed?”

“Seriously, fuck, don’t even joke about that.”


A group tattoo, not even a group ring?

The youngest ones burst out laughing and quickly disappeared to the convenience store to buy snacks, wallets in hand.

Seong Jiwon and Kim Seonghyeon also said they were off to do a V-Live and left…

Left alone, I sucked on a candy and sprawled out on the black leather sofa.

“Why does everyone seem so crazy these days?”

I clipped a piece of paper to my clipboard, laid down, and fiddled with a pen before organizing my notes.

The elements affecting our expansion into Japan included the duration of activities, content, and local recognition.

Assuming Kang Ichae would handle the music…

“Hmm, this seems important.”

The domestic backlash against overseas expansion.

Actually, about that…

After the performance at the end of last year, I had a rough idea of the situation from the reactions that followed.

I rolled the candy in my mouth and muttered,

“I did a pretty good job of cleaning up, huh?”

If Jeong Dajun was still here and heard what I said, he would have asked if I actually cleaned something.

Drawing lines with my pen, I listed more names under our activities in Japan.

Even though I was going to scrap it all anyway, I wrote in a way only I could understand, while to others, it seemed incomprehensible.

I wrote down the initials of the people I remembered, then drew lines over them, added question marks, or underlined them.

And there was one person who notably stood out.

– ㅇㅈㅎ[1]

Referring to that person who must be having a stomachache from stress by now.




A few days later, Lee Jihyeon really started feeling a stomachache.

Pass on the Japan radio thing. Send an email for the anime soundtrack negotiations.

She crossed off tasks on her to-do list.

Jihyeon wanted to move on to a five-part series after finishing the Apocalypse trilogy, but the company strongly advised against it.

Jihyeon shook her head and grimaced.

Those dumbfucks…!!

But she had to admit they were right.

She realized going any further would be overkill, so Jihyeon decided to put the plan on hold.

Over the past year, she worked tirelessly as if she knew no fatigue.

Along with the solid universe of the Apocalypse trilogy, the Hemeko project that greatly appealed to fans’ hearts, and the innovative (or rather, crazy) self-content.

There was the perfect collab made possible by Jihyeon’s planning and Seo Hoyun’s execution.

This is a crucial turning point.

The Dawn had managed to grab attention and establish a foothold in the ever-circulating and saturated world of K-pop.

However, they couldn’t stop here.

If they wanted to quickly move up to mid-tier, now was crucial.

A new concept, a new universe, and this time, they had to capture the mainstream…

Activities in Japan…

That was the most troubling part.

It was time to solidify their domestic position, but she worried fans might curse them for venturing overseas.

“The PR team says they’ll be out soon!”

Activities, activities, activities…

Her legs trembled uncontrollably. Even hastily drinking coffee couldn’t calm her down.

During the active period of The Dawn, how many nights had she stayed up, fretting over every single response, shedding tears?

Recently, always being in a state of exhaustion, she used to feel a mix of accomplishment and emptiness at the same time.

But now, due to the tension, all she wished was for this affair to pass by smoothly.”

“Why are you shaking your leg so much, Jihyeon?”

“Ah, um, well….”

“Are you nervous?”

The team leader asked with a kind voice.

Just as she was about to nod in appreciation, thinking he was genuinely concerned…


She saw the calm expressions of the entire planning team.

In this office, the only person feeling anxious and restless was Lee Jihyeon.

“Aren’t you nervous, team leader?”


The team leader sipped his coffee and then tilted his head.

“Why would I be? Jihyeon is doing a great job, what’s there to worry about?”


“Always so reliable~.”

No, it seemed like he wasn’t worried at all.

…Ah, shit.

It was then Jihyeon realized.

T-this fucking…

These few people had left everything about The Dawn up to Jihyeon.

It wasn’t peace born out of experience but more akin to indifference.

Hearing that, Jihyeon blinked for a moment before hanging her head low.


It was to hide the sudden realization that hit her.

She didn’t want to show the hollow laughter that was about to escape.

That’s why people say to do things in moderation.

Don’t work too hard when you enter a company, claim you don’t know how to make a pivot table even if you have an Excel certification, and even if you know a second language, start by saying you don’t…

There was a reason for such advice.

No matter how hard you work, there were very few who would recognize its value, and while words could be kind, in the end, it was all a pretense aimed at using you for their benefit.

“Ah, an article just came out!”

“Now The Dawn will do their V-Live. Shall we leave now?”


As Jihyeon took a deep breath, everyone pretended to check the reactions but quickly used the excuse that it was the job of the PR team and hurried out.

Forget leaving.

Jihyeon, who had planned to stay and munch on a sandwich while checking the feedback and planning accordingly, shakily stood up with a limp.


“…I’ll go with you.”

“Oh, really~.”

I’m not doing it, not doing it!

With that, Jihyeon forcefully closed her eyes and threw her work phone, which she had carried around all year in case of a call, into the drawer.

“Let’s go.”

She stuffed her belongings haphazardly into her bag and trudged out of the office.

Even though it was late, the PR team was still working, so turning off the lights in the planning team’s office didn’t completely darken the company.

In the lobby, numerous posters of Min Jiheon and The Dawn adorned the walls, but Jihyeon tried to ignore them.

Honestly, I was being too sensitive. Right. What was I thinking?

“Isn’t the overtime too much these days?”

“It’s the beginning of the year, so it can’t be helped~.”

Jihyeon was too tired to argue or even respond to the planning team members chatting away.

She kept her mouth shut until she reached the subway entrance.



Suddenly, she turned around.

A startled planning team member grabbed Jihyeon’s arm.

“Where are you going, Jihyeon?”

“…Go ahead without me.”

It just didn’t feel right.

“I need to go back for something I forgot.”

“Really? Okay.”

Jihyeon wanted to go back and check.


It wasn’t about leaving early; she wanted to stay until the end to check the reactions!

I know!! I’m being way too sensitive!!

Jihyeon hastily said goodbye and rushed back.

Pant, pant….”

Jihyeon entered the dark planning team’s office, where she had turned off the lights earlier, and relied on the light seeping through the door gap to press her computer’s power button.



Now, entering her work computer password felt more familiar than her home computer’s

Jihyeon typed quickly, her heart trembling as she searched for “The Dawn” and “Daepaseong Entertainment.”

With shaky hands, Jihyeon clicked the mouse and blinked at the articles that popped up on the monitor.


[1] Lee Jihyeon = 이지현

The Trashy PD Has to Survive as an Idol

The Trashy PD Has to Survive as an Idol

Score 9.8
Status: Ongoing Type: Author: , Artist:
[Congratulations Seo Hoyun! You have been selected as a player in the Unknown Idol Tycoon.] The good-for-nothing PD, who is criticized by everyone, becomes a unknown idol in a parallel world. Only his younger sibling remembers him. To return to the original world, he must become a top idol and clear the game! “…Quest accepted.” “Are you crazy?” “Don’t we need to eat and live?” His specialty is blackmailing, his hobby is persuasion. The survival story of the unscrupulous PD-turned-idol who will stop at nothing!
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not work with dark mode