After promoting as a sub-unit; Kyungri, Hyemi, Keumji and Sojin are now stepping out as the new official Nine Muses line up. However, the continuous graduation-and-addition system doesn’t seem to be slowing the ladies of Star Empire down as they are back with their sexy EDM track, “Remember”.
After haunting teasers, we finally get to see what story unfolds in the music video and already theories are jumping left, right and center. However, in true K-Pop fashion, the music video is left for several interpretations and theories. So for this Breakdown, let’s take note of what happens in the video and piece together what the true tale could be.
Although we see the aftermath at the beginning, the story actually begins within the second verse with Keumjo. Out of the four members, she’s seen to be more innocent as she runs for what is suggested as her life. A dark male figure looks for her but as she tries to run away, he is desperate to chase her down until she is cowering in a bathtub in fear. There’s no suggestion that anything heinous act is done to her, but her scenes do indicate that her own innocence is threatened by this figure. As she sprints down the hallways, she is clutching onto a large teddy bear, a symbol which is often use to portray a childlike nature or a little knowledge of the dark adult world which is perusing Keumjo at this moment.
Hyemi’s scenes are very brief and separate from the story as she is far away from the dark depths of the abandoned warehouse Keumji is in or the poolside of Kyungri and Sojin. In fact, she is locked in a whimsical forest, shrouded by mist. She seems to wake from Keumjo’s nightmare in a similar fashion as she emerges from a bathtub to find herself surrounded by mirrors. To the naked eye, her scenes might just be filler so Hyemi could be included in the video but under further investigation, the mirrors could act as a brilliant symbol of the story told. During research for this music video, we uncovered a breakdown of the poem, “Mirrors” by Sylvia Plath, which tells the story of a young woman who reflects on her own growth and looks at her future self, instead of the assurance or desire that many would have of her. Instead, the woman sees her true self. Liking to Keumjo, Hyemi could be looking into the mirror and witnessing what she has become as the innocent way they see the world is broken, only leaving the exposed darkness lurking inside – shown by the growing red hue in Hyemi’s eyes.
Sojin represents what this reassurance is and what the male – now revealed as a photographer – wishes from a woman. She seems coy and sensual but still desired by him as shown in his gestures. He caresses her face and seems to attempt to seduce her during the photoshoot, framing her as an object of desire.
Taking a step aside from this theory, the individual shots of the members singing also builds on them as objects or seen as figure of beauty. The girls appear in white gowns but are encased in a glass box, cameras spinning around them as they appear on full display. White is, of course, a color symbolic of purity, innocence and perfection but as they are trapped, they are restricted in what they are able to do. With the depiction of Keumjo and Sojin, the cages can also represent the male gaze that is shown with the photographer. He seems obsessed with the female form that he is willing to capture it and also claim it as his own. With the girls encased and show in full panoramic view, they are exposed and shown fully to the spectators as mere objects of beauty and sexual desire, but nothing else.
With those elements in place, there is one final piece of the puzzle; Kyungri. She seems to be fully aware of the photographer’s intentions and acts as the femme fatale, who will use what he longs for in order to get her revenge. This theory can fall into place as all the girls represent the same individual; Keumjo as the innocence, Hyemi as the aftermath, Sojin discovering the cause and also Kyungri who is the woman this life has made.
Each girl seems to be immediately charmed by the man in question, whereas Kyungri sees the real world and is indeed twisted by the deceptive intentions of this man who lulls Hyemi, Keumjo and Sojin into his romantic trap. This image is mainly shown through the slow dance scenes close to the end, as three of the members have a touching moment while Kyungri is dancing on her own with a skeleton; which would suggest her character’s mental stability as she strives to get revenge for the damage caused.
Kyungri knows that men will immediately go for her beauty and abuse that aspect to whatever they wish, so instead uses it to her greatest advantage. She acts as a fellow model and acts to seduce him through the camera and lulling him into her own trap; playing hard to get as he tries to make his move. Linking with the supernatural concepts of the teaser images, this figure represented could be that of a enraged succubus – if linking Hyemi’s scenes or a vengeful woman. The end scenes that also mark the beginning of the video also appears to be very dark, as we see both what Kyungri is willing to go through and also the photographer’s evil intentions. He is surrounded by multiple images and in a dark warehouse, the same place where he chased down Keumji. However, as he stares into the camera to capture her in fear, Kyungri instead raises a gun to shoot him down, dragging the body in a bloody sack with a broken expression.
Kyungri continues to shoot the dead body and to also burn it to get rid of the evidence and also the dark memories that this man appears to have caused. In the flames, Keumjo’s teddy bear is also burning as other images appear in Kyungri’s mind. The photographer sits among the flames in one scene, admiring the images in his hand with a stone cold expression, noting that he has no remorse or regret for the damage he caused in all four girls while Kyungri watches on with a broken but accomplished expression as she got her vengeance.
Although it may appear to be a dark video to accentuate Nine Muses’ ethereal image in this album, each symbol and progression can in fact link to how the song and the video link together. The song speaks of erasing all the memories of a man who never loved them and trapping them in a relationship of lies while they believed that they couldn’t live without him. In this video, the photographer acts as this figure, who lies to simply feed his own obsession to the point where he is willing to taint innocence and use all four of the members to fuel his own objective desire. The members acts as the progression of this relationship; the dream of romance, learning that they are simply being used and utilizing that to finally break free or in this case, destroy that one thing that changed them forever.
This is just one out of many theories linking with this video, ranging from the supernatural to the dark revenge-exploitation seen explicitly in horror films. However, that is the fun of breaking down these intricate videos. The directors intend the story to be read differently for each fan yet no matter what, they still link up to the hauntingly beautiful concept of Nine Muses’ album and also their hard-hitting comeback song. If you have not seen the full video yet, be sure to give it a try and see if you can build on your own story in the comments below. We would love to hear your own interpretation of this haunting video and depict the story behind the second addition in Nine Muses’ Diary series