LOS ANGELES – Hit boy-band One Direction are celebrating their 10-year anniversary this week before surrendering their bodies back to the music industry to be recycled.
The group was assembled during the 2010 edition of The X-Factor TV talent show after judges determined that Harry Styles, Zayn Malik, Liam Paine, and the other two, were too weak to survive alone. “We’ve all seen how fragile one medium talented teenager can be,” said producer Simon Cowell, who signed the group to their first contract. “But when you combine five medium talents, then you can take over the world.”
One Direction quickly became a global sensation. Their bright pop sound and unthreatening sexuality garnered a massive following amongst both teenagers and older women who are attracted to teenagers.
Despite their massive success, in 2015 the group reached the end of the industry-standard 5 year boy band shelf life and faced recycling for the first time.
“It’s boilerplate language in every boy band contract,” said music executive Liz Graydon. “Think of O-Town, Westlife, those 40 kids from Menudo who weren’t Ricky Martin. These groups simply aren’t designed to survive that long. There’ve been attempts to extend their lifespans by forcing them to learn instruments, or swapping out members and writing petty diss tracks about them, but the results are generally rejected by humanity.”
“But One Direction achieved such a profound level of fame it was decided that as a reward they would receive a generous and unprecedented 5 year life extension to pursue solo projects.”
Styles and Malik used their reprieve to release music of their own, and Styles also dabbled in acting. “It was great to have the extra time,” said Malik. “You try and use it the best you can, dating supermodels and hoping to become the next Justin Timberlake. But the world can barely tolerate the current Timberlake. And living with the stress of knowing you’re one flop away from singing the Trolls theme songs just to stay alive? Doesn’t seem too attractive.”
Styles seemed accepting of his impending recycling in a recent interview. “There are worse fates than a nice clean recycling. We’ve all seen what happens when you choose exile, all those aging heartthrobs wandering the wastes desperately hoping for a reunion tour every decade or so. If the choice is recycling or becoming the next NKOTBSB, it’s not much of a choice, is it?”
Boy band labels hope that their genetic experiments to make “perpetual teens” will one day do away with the current recycling program but say that world governments continue to block their research. “Of course we want to be able to exploit these young people forever, but it’s up to fans to change these laws,” said Graydon.
As farewells and tributes for the band continue to pour in, the music industry was quick to assure One Direction fans that soon there will be freshly hatched replacement groups for the world to devour, and to remind BTS that their clock is ticking.