Australian TV network Channel 9 has issued an apology to fans of the band BTS after they aired a controversial take on the group for last night’s episode of 20 To One.

If you’ve taken even a cursory look at the world of music over the last few years, you would likely have heard of BTS.

A South Korean boy band that were formed back in 2013, the seven-member collective has gone on to have exceptional success in the last few years, with chart-topping singles and albums, and sold-out tours around the world.

As you could expect, the group therefore wields a rather dedicated fanbase. So when Channel 9’s 20 To One program aired a segment on the group that was quickly deemed to have been done in extremely poor taste, the BTSArmy did not take it lying down.

Aired as part of their ‘Greatest Global Crazes’ episode, hosts Erin Molan and Nick Cody referred to BTS as “the biggest band you’ve never heard of”, while labelling them “the South Korean One Direction” and referring to their fans as “crazy”.

Noting that BTS were the first Korean group to have a number one record in America, Molan appeared to downplay the group’s success by adding that “only one band member actually speaks English”, while Cody joked that the band’s speech at the United Nations was likely regarding “hair products”.

Understandably, response to the segment was swift and negative, with the hashtag #Channel9Apologise becoming a trending topic overnight.

Similarly, comedian Alex Williamson also found himself at the centre of a hashtag campaign, with the term #FireAlexWilliamson gaining traction after he defended the program’s content.

“Shut the fuck up cunt it ain’t racist they just don’t give a fuck about boy bands who are designed solely to extract $ from the hip pocket of 14yo’s,” Williamson wrote on Twitter. “I’ll always revel in the genuine talents of South Korean professors such as Cheon Jinwoo. Fuck these cuntz.”

“After careful consideration I am hereby nominating myself to be the 8th member of BTS, thankyou for your unwavering support,” he later added. “I will make you cunts proud with my generic vocals xoxox good night.”

Following the massive backlash, SBS PopAsia reached out to Channel 9 and received a statement from the network addressing the controversy.

“As a light-hearted entertainment program, it is our belief that last night’s episode of 20 to One, which highlighted the ‘Greatest Global Crazes’, did not breach any broadcast regulations, and was intended to humorously highlight the popularity of the group,” spokesperson explained.

“We apologise to any who may have been offended by last night’s episode.”

However, this too did not sit well with the BTS fanbase, with many calling for an additional apology from the channel, something they are still waiting for.

Check out ‘Boy With Luv’ by BTS (feat. Halsey):

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