K-Pop music videos are often big-budget extravaganzas designed to amaze viewers with inventive visuals, complex choreography and huge sets. Usually, the main aim of a K-Pop MV is to showcase the artist’s talents and make them look extremely cool in the process. Although MV producers sometimes get a bit more inventive in their approach and give fans something very strange or unexpected. However, there have been a few videos that have left us a little perplexed, asking questions or just downright befuddled!
We have gathered a small selection of K-Pop MVs that have confused us either a little or a lot. Please do leave your own suggestions, opinions in the comments section too!
1. Lyn and Leo (of VIXX) – ‘Blossom Tears’
The narrative of this music video culminates in a very shocking ending, so no spoilers will be written here about it! The reason why it has entered this playlist is for the very enigmatic lead up to this ending. Even after you have watched it, you will probably find yourself replaying it a few times just to fully understand what has gone on. True to a few other of VIXX’s videos, it is a very dark concept and we see member Leo embracing a character that seems very damaged and unable to express his feelings of love very easily. Despite this, we are also shown how some individuals can experience extreme feelings of possessiveness over another when in a relationship.
2. Girls’ Generation – ‘The Boys’
An MV without a narrative is not unusual from SM of course, as the agency often favours showing off their idols via a simple ‘dance in the box’ setup. Indeed, not every music video needs a narrative. However, the opening sequence here along with the reoccurring imagery of a dove taking flight might leave many a little perplexed. All the girls look absolutely beautiful in this video and one can understand favouring a simple, dance-filled MV over one heavy in drama, but it feels like a slightly more coherent story could have been strung together nonetheless. For example, perhaps an intrepid explorer could be lost in the arctic and stumble in on a group of girls performing the dance as part of a tribal ritual to ‘bring the boys out’? (Okay okay, I may need more time to think on this). The MV is great overall, it just feels like the surrounding imagery is somewhat lacking and does not hold much relevance to anything.
3. TOP – ‘Doom Dada’
Fans of BIG BANG’s T.O.P will be very familiar with his strange and quirky side, which is often affectionately termed by his label mates and fans alike as ‘Bingu TOP’. However, within the weirdness of this MV it is certainly turned up a notch. We see a retro ‘Planet Of The Apes’ style set, hinting at the beginnings of evolution when one of them stumbles across a microphone. Inter-splice this with this a giant baby-headed child and TOP sitting atop (hehe) a zebra and you have only scratched the surface of this crazy video. As one UKP writer has previously pointed out, much of artist Salvador Dali’s work appears to be emulated here, and TOP’s love of art is shown further as he sits in designer furniture within a Wanki Museum exhibit.
The MV’s narrative could be said to show T.O.P’s transformation (evolution) from an insecure child/primitive being into a confident man through his discovery of music and his onstage persona. The rest, however, seems to be typical YG craziness – and fans love it.
4. WINNER – ‘Color Ring’
In many ways, this is your typical angst-ridden/regretting that past break up type MV. The boys all wait anxiously for a phone call that never comes. They get soaked in the rain, are driven to run into the night and fail to fill the void with material goods. There is a rather epic, and yet quite random part where one member is suddenly submerged into deep water. This of course, is most likely to symbolise him feeling overwhelmed and as if he is drowning in his sorrow. It just seems a bit strange to plonk it right in the middle of the MV with no further reference. It is indeed an awesome part though.
5. Son Ho Young – ‘Pretty But Hateful’
Here is a very cool Sci-Fi style story in an MV. It shows Son Ho Young unable to let go of a past relationship. He participates in augmented reality in order to re-live this past time with his loved one, but never quite finds the satisfaction he craves. He is driven to desperation, but his choices cause him to miss the opportunities of the present.
The most confusing factor of this MV is the machine Ho Young chooses to encase himself within. No actual explanation is offered as to what it is or why, so fans are left to presume that it is a rather inventive, futuristic way for him to escape his misery permanently.
Miss A member Suzy also features in the MV.
6. UV (feat. J. Y. Park) – ‘Itaewon Freedom’
Itaewon is a district in Korea’s capital city Seoul that is well-known as a very popular place for US military personnel and foreign tourists. Some have even been known to call it ‘Western Town’! It is also known as a fairly liberal place, allegedly having an underground homosexual scene (as homosexuality is often frowned up in wider Korean culture) and has many restaurants selling a plethora of exotic foreign cuisine. It makes a lot of sense that a song celebrating Itaewon’s ‘let loose’ attitude has been created.
This video is extremely silly and altogether wholly perplexing. The boys of UV, accompanied by JYP, parody all those classic electro MVs from the 1980s here. There is something resembling a narrative, but I fail to follow it. All in all it is a very fun and comedic MV that really cannot be explained in words.
There is also a separate piece on ‘Itaewon: Myth vs Reality’ for those who are interested!
7. JYJ – ‘Ayyy Girl (Feat. Kanye West)’
This song was part of JYJ’s global album entitled ‘The Beginning’ and is a track produced by American rapper Kanye West. While the track itself is a fairly good song, the music video left an awful lot to be desired. It appears to take place in a post-apocalyptic realm and features a lot of slow motion, lighting and jumping high into the air. JYJ themselves show their typically great dancing skills and some of their sweet vocals, but one becomes too distracted by the strange music video to fully enjoy it. It simply makes no sense and many fans were left wondering what the thinking behind the video really was (and why Kanye himself fails to make an appearance when he features in the song).
8. Naul – ‘Memory of the Wind’
A very dramatic video, but still quite confusing. The song is a very emotional ballad sung beautifully by NAUL, but it still does not seem to clearly explain the video’s meaning. A little girl loses her father in the midst of a meteor shower, she grows up still feeling the loss strongly, and is then met and embraced by a man riding a black horse. Perhaps this person is the personification of her grief? If any readers are willing to share their personal explanations of this MV in the comment section below, it would be very interesting to hear your take on it!
9. Super Junior – ‘MAMACITA’
This MV packs a really dramatic yet funny story into its 4 minute run-time. The narrative itself makes perfect sense and allows for the members of Super Junior to do what they do best – over-act and be silly for the camera! There is just one teeny tiny little problem though – what is a matador (Eunhyuk) doing in the old American West?!
Have you seen our [MV Monday] on this video yet?
10. G-Dragon – ‘MichiGO’
G-Dragon often shows us his larger-than-life stage persona through his MVs, couple this with YG’s own brand of hip hop on steroids and you often have quite a spectacle to behold. Exactly as the song title and content suggest, this music video is truly crazy and defies all explanation. What’s with the big feet? The man dancing in the toilet cubicle? G-Dragon shooting at himself with a laser gun? You tell me! It’s just GD!
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