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Afreeca TV star ChulGu makes triumphant return

Afreeca TV‘s BJ ChulGu salutes his viewers during his stream on Sunday. (Afreeca TV)
Afreeca TV‘s BJ ChulGu salutes his viewers during his stream on Sunday. (Afreeca TV)

Broadcasting jockey ChulGu’s return to Afreeca TV on Sunday night was watched by nearly 330,000 fans who had eagerly awaited his comeback following his discharge from military service on May 15.

“Hello everyone, it’s been a very long time,” said ChulGu as he started streaming. “I’ve come back for the first time in a year and seven months,” he continued as he expressed being nervous turning on his stream for the first time after his discharge.

When ChulGu, widely known to the younger generation in Korea as “Afreeca TV President,” started his broadcast on Sunday, the streaming attracted as many as 328,898 people at once at one point, causing the Afreeca TV chat server to crash multiple times during the show. He sat in front of his camera in the iconic digital military T-shirt all Korean soldiers are given when they start military service.

ChulGu started off by going through his Army experience and then went on to give explanations about several rumors that have been circulating since he joined the Army, including one that alleges that he did not pay the guests who performed songs for money on his streams.

He said that one of the two performers said he did not want to receive the money, but he had forgotten to pay the second. He apologized and said he would pay what he owed immediately.

ChulGu’s wife, Jeon Ji-hye who runs YouTube channel OzilTube, joined him for a portion of his stream. In June, Jeon became mired in controversy herself, and apologized for making sexually harassing statements during a stream about other broadcasters.

ChulGu also talked about his gambling in Vietnam while on vacation last year during his mandatory military service. He said that while gambling was legal in Vietnam and he did it for personal entertainment, he had three days of his vacation days canceled for damaging the military‘s image.

On Sunday night, ChulGu reached the No. 1 spot in searches on Korean portal sites.

More than 240,000 people had seen the replay video of the Sunday night’s broadcast on Afreeca TV as of Monday morning.

By Lim Jang-won (