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Which 4th gen group is better?
TOMORROW X TOGETHER and Stray Kids at the 2023 VMAs

   Often in the K-pop industry, there are conflicts between fans, commonly known as ‘fan wars’. ‘Fan wars’ occur when fans argue over which group is better. It happens within every generation; notably in the 4th generation, the most notorious is between the two popular boy groups, ‘TOMORROW X TOGETHER’ (TXT), and Stray Kids (SKZ). 

Who exactly are TXT and SKZ? 

   TXT is a K-pop boy group that was formed under the company Big Hit Music. The group consists of five members: Yeonjun, Soobin, Beomgyu, Taehyun, and HueningKai. There were several great expectations for TXT as they were the company’s second boy group after BTS. TXT, in my opinion, did not fail to meet these expectations, and if anything, exceeded them.  

    SKZ is another K-pop boy group who debuted in 2018, 1 year prior to TXT’s debut. The group is composed of eight members: Bang Chan, Changbin, Felix, Han, Hyunjin, I.N., Lee Know, and Seungmin. Originally, the group had nine members; however, member Woojin left the group due to undisclosed personal reasons in October, 2019. Stray Kids received several promotions before they debuted, which suggests that their vast potential was seen ahead of time. 

How the Groups Differentiate from one another 

   While both TXT and SKZ are K-pop boy groups, their agencies are a key factor that separates them from one another. Stray Kids is under JYP Entertainment, which is known as one of the “Big 3” entertainment companies in South Korea, while TOMORROW X TOGETHER is under Big Hit Entertainment, which is now known as HYBE Corporation.  Debut dates also set both groups apart: SKZ debuted on March 25, 2018, with “District 9,” while TXT debuted on March 4, 2019, with “CROWN.” 

Which Group is More Popular? 

   Both TXT and SKZ are popular in South Korea. However, we must take both their global popularity along with their popularity on social media into account. On Instagram, Stray Kids have 28.4M followers, while TOMORROW X TOGETHER has a following of 15.6M. However, on TikTok, SKZ has  22.6M followers while TXT has a following of 23.3M which surpasses Stray Kids. While both TXT and SKZ dominate one social media platform, their popularity is influenced by their fans.  

   TOMORROW X TOGETHER has gained significant attention due to their connection to BTS. Their music videos on YouTube receive up to 100M views, if not more. While SKZ has more international fans and more global popularity, TXT dominates in South Korea as well as in Japan as their Japanese fanbase is widely large.   However, Stray Kids receive an average of 200M views or more on their music videos. 

 Difference in Discography 

   While both groups share a similar genre, – K-pop – they possess distinct differences in their discography. Stray Kids is known for their intense and upbeat sound, along with their lean towards a harder-hitting style. Their songs often include heavy bass lines, powerful rap verses, and strong EDM influences. SKZ’s discography incorporates a variety of elements, ranging from hip-hop and R&B to rock and electronic, showcasing their versatility and experimental approach to music. Examples of their versatility can be heard in their songs “LALALALA,” “Sorry, I Love You,” “Case 143,” and “Silent Cry.” 

   On the other hand, TOMORROW X TOGETHER’s discography is characterized by a more melodic and dreamy sound. Their music often incorporates catchy hooks, bright synths, and harmonies, creating a soothing and refreshing atmosphere. Since they often explore themes of youth, friendship, and personal growth, their songs resonate with their teenage fanbase. While their sound is more pop-oriented, they still include a mix of genres such as alternative, dance-pop, and R&B in their music, further diversifying their sound, which is shown in their songs “CROWN,” “Anti-Romantic,” “Sugar Rush Ride,” and “Growing Pain.” 

Awards Received by Both Groups

Stray Kids performing their song “S-Class” at the 2023 VMAs

   Both TXT and SKZ have won numerous awards in their music careers. Stray Kids received the award for “Best New Male Artist” in 2018 at the Mnet Asian Music Awards (MAMA). They won the “New Artist Award” at the Seoul Music Awards in 2019 as stated on the website Koreaboo. In 2020, they received the “Best International Group” at the BreakTudo Awards in Brazil which highlighted their global popularity. One of their most recent awards was the “Best K-pop Group” award at the 2023 Video Music Awards (VMA). They were nominated for their song “S-Class,” alongside TOMORROW X TOGETHER’s “Sugar Rush Ride” and managed to win the award along with a performance of said song. All the awards that Stray Kids has received reflect the talent they have which solidifies their position as one of the most prominent groups in the industry.

     TOMORROW X TOGETHER was awarded the “Best New Male Artist” award at the 2019 Melon Music Awards. Their win was posted on the website AllKpop as well as their official fandom wiki. In the same year, they won the “Rookie of the Year” award at MAMA. Winning this award solidified their rising popularity within the K-pop scene. 

TXT alongside Anitta performing their new single “Back For More” at the 2023 VMAs

    However, they haven’t only had success in Korea, but also internationally. According to the website Soompi, on March 15, 2020, TXT won the “Best New Artist” award which displayed their international appeal. Much like Stray Kids, TXT also received an award at the VMAs for “PUSH Performance of the Year” as seen on the official website. They also performed at the VMAs where they debuted their latest single “Back for More” which featured Brazilian singer Anitta.  

Which Group is Overall Better? 

   While there’s often debates on which group is better, it’s a subjective question and depends on personal taste. Both TOMORROW X TOGETHER and Stray Kids are immensely talented and have dedicated fan bases. I recommend listening to both groups’ music and watching their performances to find which resonates best with your musical preference. It’s no doubt that both groups have a variety of versatility so that many fans, old and new, can find something they enjoy. The fan wars about which group is better are not only subjective, but time-wasting, as both groups are equally talented since they wouldn’t have debuted if their companies didn’t think they had the skills to join the industry.  

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  • K

    KomakiFeb 1, 2024 at 3:35 pm

    Isn’t t stray kids More popular in Japan than txt ?!

    • C

      CrystalFeb 2, 2024 at 11:06 am

      Actually that’s not true! In Japan, album sales are used to determine a groups popularity and TXT has had more album sales than SKZ has. TXT has also sold out their dome tours in Japan and they have a few Japanese albums that sell very well in Japan! ^_^

      • M

        MayaFeb 7, 2024 at 9:27 am

        Ah really but I also thought that Stray Kids are more popular in Japan cuz their social path album sold over 1million copies in Japan and in one of the site interviews where Japanese teens had to choose their favourite boy group Stray Kids was on No 1. and TXT was 3rd and then in music bank Japan most of the people who were present at the event were STAYs so I do think that Stray Kids is more popular in Japan and even Stray Kids sold out their dome tour in Japan so like they are popular than TXT I wanna say.

  • S

    staymoaJan 30, 2024 at 4:38 pm

    as a moa and stay it’s sad to see people pit the groups against each other :/

    • C

      CrystalFeb 1, 2024 at 8:39 am

      I agree with you!! Especially because both groups are friends with one another so it’s upsetting seeing others try to make one group look better than the other

  • L

    LaraJan 28, 2024 at 11:00 am

    this is true, this is happening because of haters because they like to make their lives more difficult.
    this doesn’t only happen to TXT and SKZ but also to other groups because haters like to compare them.
    I think that every group is good in its own way
    +many idols can’t even talk to one another on camera evan if they are very much friends in private

  • L

    LaraJan 28, 2024 at 10:54 am

    This is so truth, this is happening because of haters because they like to hate on other groups .
    I think the hate is unnecessary, they are people too and probably hang out in theirprivate life.
    But also when they are together at an event, haters start attacking them when they talk or interact with each other.
    +This doesn’t only happens between TXT and SKZ but also to other groups ,and hate that they have to be careful not to be caught on camera because of interacting with one another

    • C

      Crystal JarquinJan 28, 2024 at 11:44 am

      I totally agree with you! I think all the hate that groups get together is extremely unnecessary. It isn’t only between TXT and SKZ but it happens with so many gg and bgs. Girl groups and boy groups can hardly interact with each other because then dating scandals will stir. It’s not like second gen when idols were able to interact with one another without fear or dating scandals and whatnot.