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#SS9inManila: A Test of Super Junior and ELF’s Friendship

#SS9inManila: A Test of Super Junior and ELF’s Friendship

A postponement of a concert may sound so simple to others, but to ELF, it’s more than just that. For ELF, it seemed like a test of friendship with and loyalty to Super Junior. Siwon’s non-participation in the concert due to COVID-19 was already announced previously. When Eunhyuk did not appear in their airport photos, that’s when the worry began. How will the longing ELF take this?

The night before SS9 in Manila

PH ELF was so excited for SS9 in Manila to the point that some were not able to sleep. There was also some ELF at the airport, waiting to welcome Super Junior in Manila. Needless to say that PH ELF was very excited to meet Super Junior once again after almost 2 years.

But then, Super Junior’s airport photos in Seoul made their way on social media. Of course, ELF’s first instinct was to do a headcount. You know, it’s something that we always do. To everyone’s worry, Eunhyuk was not in the airport photos. On top of that, the worried and down expressions of the Super Junior members were not very reassuring for ELF that everything was alright.

Super Junior's airport photo before arriving in Manila. Photo from Newsen.
Super Junior’s airport photo before arriving in Manila. Photo from Newsen.

It made the exciting atmosphere a worried one. ELF Tweeted and posted all night, looking for Eunhyuk. It seemed like no one wanted to sleep until there was an announcement or statement about his whereabouts. Even though Super Junior arrived in Manila all safe and looking good, it didn’t distract the ELF from worrying.

Until an announcement by Super Junior’s official accounts was made, which of course, made everyone’s heart sink:

SS9 in Manila, D-day

PH ELF is undeniably torn about whether to be excited for the concert or otherwise. Some even thought twice of going to the concert. You see, Super Junior and ELF are families, and each member’s family is everyone’s family. What happened took a toll on ELF’s emotions and it was indeed hard to enjoy and look forward to that night’s concert. Not to mention the gloomy skies that seemed to join with the mourning.

As the time of the concert goes near, the mood is still unsettling. Although some ELF is doing their usual catch-ups around SM MOA, it is undeniable that everyone’s affected. Until the much-awaited announcement by the concert organizers and Super Junior’s official accounts was made:

It was the first concert postponement I’ve known where everyone was happy and not disappointed at all. It even felt like this is what we were waiting for.

Another major difference in this postponement would be the connection Super Junior has with ELF. How easy it would have been for everyone to just post this announcement on social media and then apologize. But no—Super Junior values their friendship with ELF so much that they even held a mini fan meeting with them.

A special night with Super Junior

The night officially started upon entering the SM Mall of Asia Arena. Even though the fan meeting hasn’t started yet, Super Junior’s ballad songs are already playing. Yes, ELF was already bawling their eyes out just by listening to the songs. It was a very new experience, at least for me. I’ve been to two Super Shows in Manila, but that was the first time that sobs filled the arena, not the usually excited shrieks. Indeed, that night was a different night.

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Super Junior during their SS9 in Manila fan meeting.

When the members appeared onstage and started introducing themselves, everyone lost it. The members tried their very best to still communicate with fans despite what they are feeling, save for Shindong who really wasn’t able to speak anymore from crying. Even though they did not need to apologize, they still did. Every time the members cry, ELF cried too. Super Junior promised that they will be coming back to Manila healthier and complete. The members can’t help but cry as they feel the overflowing love and trust of PH ELF, who even chanted ‘Saranghae’, meaning ‘I love you’.

As if communicating with ELF properly is not yet enough, they even performed songs for all the ELF who still came. They performed their fan-favorite, newly-released, ballad songs, My Wish, “‘Callin“, and my personal favorite, “More Days With You“. Of course, it’s an emotional performance, but Super Junior still did their best to perform amazingly like the legends they are.

It was a very short moment with Super Junior. However, I can confidently say that nothing can top that experience. It is indeed a blessing to be there that night—being able to be with Super Junior as they needed comfort and love.

An ELF’s thought

It’s been more than a week since the mini fan meeting for SS9 in Manila happened but the feels are still the same. Being inside the arena that night is a one-of-a-kind experience. Being their friend, being there while they cry, promising each other that we are going to see each other again soon… it’s an unexplainable feeling. Indeed, it is true that ELF is Super Junior’s Everlasting Friends, and that they only have each other. The connection, the respect, understanding, and most importantly, the love for each other is unbeatable. To be honest, if that fan meeting was all we paid for, that is more than enough for me as nothing can prove Super Junior’s love for ELF more than that night.

Super Show 9 in Manila was proof that only ELF understand Super Junior the way they need to be understood. It is true that you will not understand the situation if you’re not one of the people who truly love them. If there’s one thing that I will never forget from that night, it’s Super Junior’s vulnerability in front of ELF. The fact that they trust ELF so much to the point of being comfortable to ask a favor to postpone the concert, to be comfortable enough to cry… it’s priceless. What a true and amazing friendship that is!

I will never regret the fact that I chose to become Super Junior’s ELFtheir girls, their angels—as I don’t think anyone loves and respect their fans as much as they do. I guess that’s what 17 years do to a relationship, don’t you think?

Super Junior, we will wait for you… always. We promise.

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