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Can You Explain One Direction? No, Seriously

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So, being that I experienced that sort of connection with an artist that's objectively manufactured and (not-so-objectively) lowest common denominator, I can say that I totally get the Justin Bieber thing. He's cute -- if a little feminine. He's wholesome, his voice is okay, and he has millions of dollars of backing money to make sure you think his talent is more than mediocre. He has enough media penetration to reach me -- a 24-year-old woman whose high school and college experiences led her musical taste slightly away from the mainstream. His current music is catchy and edgy enough to earn my respect, but not my fandom.

But seriously: What the fuck is up with One Direction?

No, don't tell me. I think I get it. This is the troll to end all trolls. As someone who spends about 60 percent of my waking life on the Internet, there are few memes I miss, but I can't help but think the perpetuation of British boy "band" One Direction was thanks to the neckbeards over at 4Chan, just looking to find the next Rebecca Black. Except, they're the only ones in on the joke. The rest of us are left to take One Direction seriously.

I missed the boat on this one.

Now, that's just a theory, but I really can't believe that anyone -- even tweens -- can think this music is good. Their smash hit, "What Makes You Beautiful", is loud as hell, but not in an angsty teen punk sort of way. It's loud in the same way American Idol or America's Got Talent are excessively loud. It's the only way they can get you to pay attention because there's no substance backing it up. It makes sense, since One Direction was grouped together on the 2010 season of Britain's X Factor.

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Christina Caldwell