The Essential Variety of Dreamcatcher

Appearances from debut until September 2020 to get to know K-pop’s rock/pop girl group a little bit better.

The Essential Variety of Dreamcatcher
Handong breaks it down in a Freeze Tag game during “Deja Vu” era. Video credit: Genie Music

A question I’ve gotten a lot from newer Dreamcatcher fans ever since I started posting on Medium a short time ago is “where can I learn more about them”. This translates into variety show appearances — those places where you can get a better idea besides official channels of what the group might be like off-stage. The industry as a whole is built on an idea of building personalities that people connect to, and Dreamcatcher is no different in this regard. Dreamcatcher fans, especially newer ones, might be drawn initially to the group because of their non-traditional concept and hard-hitting music, but to really forge the connection, getting to know them is definitely needed.

Dreamcatcher’s rather slow rise up the ranks of popularity has meant that they’re not consistently on variety shows that are considered to be hugely popular or well-known. However, in the 4 years they’ve been around they’ve amassed plenty of appearances in places that have given them the time and space to shine and show to their fans what they’re like when not performing.

So without further ado, here are ten appearances over the course of their time that should give any Dreamcatcher fan looking to get to know them a better understanding (and perhaps endearment) to the group. I’ve included appearances with English subs wherever possible.

Appearance: Lee Hongki’s “Kiss The Radio”
Date: 02/12/17
Era: Chase Me
Why This Appearance: A thirty-six-minute interview from just after re-debut, this is a nice and insightful radio appearance where you get to hear about the origin of the nightmare concept, see each member establish themselves and their identities, and talk honestly about re-debut after MINX. There’s also a few songs members chose that have some emotional meaning to them and of course, a lot of talk about the “Chase Me” song and video.

For older fans, this is a trip down memory lane, and for newer ones, a good way to hear about the early days of the rock/dark concept Dreamcatcher was just starting to put together. Either way, it’s nice to see how far they’ve come, and how they got started.

Appearance: Fact iN Star —Dreamcatcher Is Flying High! I Can’t Stop Time
Date: 09/08/17
Era: Fly High
Why This Appearance: Aside from the fact that this is the now-famous “Pepero Game” episode that SuA and Siyeon bring up every so often (if you haven’t seen it, you just have to watch it to know what happened), Fact iN Star was one of, if not the first shows that gave Dreamcatcher, a new group, a chance to show a bit of their off-stage personality through multiple appearances throughout the years. This was their third, and this has just about everything you’d expect in a variety show appearance — performance of the title track at the time (“Fly High”) on both normal and 2x speed, challenges like doing choreography to their (now seven-song) discography, and fun games.

Aside from the aforementioned pepero game, you have Dreamcatcher attempting to make paper airplanes, catch balls in a basket, and try to jump rope holding tea sets on their heads, among other things, all while laughing, being generally extra, and acting not at all like their fierce, dark, on-stage presentations. It’s a nice intro to Dreamcatcher’s duality, and the start of seeing that what they show do people is likely their real personalities turned up to 11.

Appearance: Dreamcatcher’s Interview for AsianStar
Date: 04/22/18
Era: Full Moon
Why This Appearance: Dreamcatcher’s constant concert touring has meant that Asian pop websites and YouTube channels have had chances to interview the group when they’ve come through their area. These interviews, often coordinated with the help of the concert organizer (in this case, MyMusicTaste) are hidden gems — they may not have the biggest followings but provide some pretty decent insights.

In this instance, Slovakian/Czech site AsianStar got to spend twenty-four minutes with the girls, and you’ll learn about Dreamcatcher’s first impressions of each other, where they get inspiration to write lyrics, what they’re goals are, and more. There’s also a healthy amount of talking from all of the members, so no matter who your “bias” (the colloquial way to refer to a favorite in a K-pop group you follow) is you’re going to learn something about them.

Appearance: Dreamcatcher “Dream of US” Fanmeet in L.A — Q&A
Date: 08/10/18
Era: You and I
Why This Appearance: Dreamcatcher made their way to the US for the first time in 2018, albeit as performing artists at KCON LA. They had a great showing there, performing “You and I” and SuA’s choreographed version of Camila Cabello’s “Havana” as part of a special stage in conjunction with other K-Pop artists. But the real crown jewel for them was getting to meet fans for the first time in North America through a collaboration with prominent Dreamcatcher fansite 7 Dreamers.

The fanmeet’s Q&A, of which 18 minutes is shown here, was a nice way for folks to get to chat live with Dreamcatcher, hear them sing and dance not a few feet away from them, and get answers to questions like how Dami pulled out that stick so quickly during “You and I” and fun questions like “superpower that you’d want to have”. Of note — a communicated desire by the group to tour the US someday, which would inevitably be granted in the latter part of 2019.

Appearance: Newsade Telepathy Game
Date: 10/20/18
Era: What
Why This Appearance: Like Fact iN Star, Newsade has been a mainstay of Dreamcatcher variety support since their debut and has provided the group with its most chaotic moments (for a runner up to this video, check out the complete and hilarious mess that Newsade’s “What” Part Switch Version did to the group). This Telepathy game is no different, as two teams of Dreamcatcher members attempt to answer the same thing to a bunch of questions. I obviously won’t spoil anything, except to say you should really pity Yoohyeon for being stuck between the two loudest members of Dreamcatcher (Gahyeon and SuA).

Appearance: Emergency Emergency! Idol Exam Final Round
Date: 02/22/19
Why This Appearance: First off, if you want the full continuity of this segment, you can check out Idol Exam part 1 before you dive into this video. This is only a subunit appearance, with SuA, JiU, and Yoohyeon appearing, but the three of them provide more than enough fun moments and energetic personality for the entire group. Certainly, you’d be hard-pressed to think that JiU and SuA are indeed the two oldest members of the group.

Idol Exam tests group’s knowledge of their own history, and in this, the pivotal last portion of the round, Dreamcatcher might have to pull off something a bit crazy. Also, it’s SuA in the thumbnail preview, so I’d go ahead and turn your volume down a bit before you get started.

Appearance: RUN.WAV — Dreamcatcher
Date: 10/20/19
Era: Deja Vu
Why This Appearance: With “Deja Vu” era signaling Dreamcatcher had finally arrived on the scene as a more well-known and true alternative to the normal girl group concepts in K-pop, appearances on new and unique shows like the short-lived RUN.WAV were a nice way of recognizing they’re rising fame. This appearance had it all — covers, an explanation of “Deja Vu”’s choreography, and a few fun displays of talent in front of a live audience, including Handong both singing in Chinese and showing off her pirouetting skill in one of her last appearances before leaving for China to film Idol survival show “Youth With You”. All this was great, but there was also a small bonus — JiU’s preview of a self-composed and written song dedicated to Dreamcatcher fans, which would eventually find its way onto August 2020’s “Dystopia: Lose Myself” album as the ballad Dear. Check that one off the bucket list, JiU.

Appearance: Dreamcatcher — After School Club Episode 411 (“Scream” era)
Date: 03/10/20
Era: Scream
Why This Appearance: After School Club, with its partial English speaking and international fan interactions, has always been friendly to groups with more of a global following, and Dreamcatcher is no exception. There’s a bunch of information and a bit of charm here from the group, as the hosts' test Dreamcatcher on their history, talk about “Scream” era promotions, and interact with fans (Jerome, if you’re out there, you really showed Dreamcatcher how much international Insomnia love the group, well done). The best part of these appearances are always the activities, though — they tend to bring out the best and most chaotic of Dreamcatcher moments, even if they result in some mild danger to the hosts (Gahyeon, it seems, doesn’t know her own reflexes are that good).

Appearance: Dreamcatcher — Idol Radio(“Scream” era)
Date: 04/04/20
Era: Scream
Why This Appearance: By this time, Dreamcatcher had been on Idol Radio a few times — sometimes as a group (as with this broadcast) and sometimes as individuals. But this almost hour and a half episode was the first where Dreamcatcher was left to themselves, with DJ SuA and Siyeon leading the charge. There’s a ton of fun on this episode with various song covers and dances (including one last “Black and White” performance to cap off their promotions) but also a reflection on how “Scream”/”Black and White” promotions went as well. Overall a good appearance to take in if you like them showing off their range as well as their ability to keep things (mostly) calm in a radio setting.

Appearance: Dreamcatcher — Idol PickNic
Date: 09/06/20
Why This Appearance: The current pandemic means that variety shows have to get more creative about their shows to keep guests safe, and Idol Picknic, a relatively new show as of the summer of 2020, aims to do just that, as it is an outdoor vacation/activity show that allows for plenty of social distancing and fairly safe/isolated physical challenges. Dreamcatcher appeared on two episodes (episode 4 and episode 5, respectively) and there are all kinds of nuggets of knowledge to know about the girls while they’re doing things like clam or pepper harvesting, riding ATVs, or walking down nature paths. In this clip, they’re playing a kind of Truth or Dare variant where the members try to guess how the others would respond to a particular question, with some insightful (and sometimes loud) results. Having long-time MCs of variety shows take notice of Dreamcatcher can only be a good thing for future prospects on more well-known programs.

These videos only scratch the surface of the tons of appearances both short and long that Dreamcatcher has made over the years, but the ones I’ve linked should give you a good basis or idea of how they’ve acted, volunteered information, and provided both informational insight on their songs as well as some fun personality moments. Ultimately there are way too many to count or really talk about, but getting you a good foundation should help you appreciate this group all the more for their work in the variety and performance circuit.

If you’re interested in some other videos that didn’t quite make the cut, you can check them out below:


  • Dream Subs/7DreamSubs for their hard work subtitling a bunch of videos into English to use as reference