The K-pop industry is well known for its high production value in its music videos. The outfits, set design, colors, and locations all come together to give the viewer the most aesthetically-pleasing experience for each song. For some videos, it goes above and beyond aesthetics to draw in the audience. Here are six "OMG!" K-pop music video moments:
1. “You In Me” - Kard
The ominous opening notes of the song are enough to clue viewers into the much darker themes in the video, but they’re careful to not give too much away. While watching the video progress, it’s easy to assume the darkness stems from two loveless relationships. We are made to think that Somin and Jiwoo are the ones working desperately to save a love that's already lost, but BM and J.Seph don’t wish to return that same effort.
We watch as each girl goes through the motions with their motionless and less-than-interested counterparts. Then, right after BM’s verse, things take a deadly turn as we learn that the men aren’t just still, they’re lifeless. The girls are dealing with that denial by pretending they’re still alive; dressing them up for dinner and shaving facial hair that is no longer there. A very, very, very creepy move, but also a very, very, very smart one.
2. “Cherry Blossoms” - Busker Busker
Even typing in Busker Busker into YouTube’s search bar, the top search is “Cherry Blossoms ending,” and for good reason…
The video opens up with the band in the early stages of rehearsing. Their drummer seems to be transfixed on a broadcast on the TV, quickly drawing the attention of the other members, and the audience learns that they’re watching a news station interview a girl standing in a field with a lone cherry blossom tree in the background. They make it their mission to find out where she is, and the video follows them on their long journey throughout the country.
With the help of some cute animation, the director is able to lead as well as mislead viewers to the video’s conclusion: the fantastic moment where they finally reached the field. The girl is (surprisingly) still there, and they run right past her to the cherry blossom tree, which we then learn was their intention the entire trip. A cute and comical twist on what could have been another typical love story. Very clever boys!
3. “Don’t Say Goodbye” - Davichi
It’s safe to say that no one could have expected the dark twist this video took in the end. After finding a girl in a trash bag on his way out, our male lead takes her into his home and decides to take care of her. It’s not long until they both begin to fall for one another, and we’re shown glimpses of how she reminds him of--what we are made to assume--a lost love.
She finds out about the girl from his past through photographs that he keeps on his desk, but doesn’t seem to be fazed by it, believing along with the audience that he must have moved on. However, when he receives a mysterious call from a man offering to give him the love of his life back in exchange for the girl he has now, he doesn’t hesitate. Bringing the girl he found in the trash to the field where they shared their first kiss, he coldly returns her to her captor and walks away without looking back to see her being forced back inside the car. Cold-blooded man, just wrong.
4. “Ah Yeah” - EXID
This video comes with a message hidden beneath it. We see the women with parts of their bodies pixelated, specifically from the waist down, placed with images that are also pixelated. Given the nature of the song and moments where they're presenting themselves confidently in clothes that make them feel good, it's easy to assume that the images that are pixelated are inappropriate.
Near the end of the video, the pixels go away to reveal cute images of animated animals and simple ads related to studying--specifically the TOEIC and the TOEFL, both necessary tests for teaching abroad. It’s a play on the idea of unnecessary censorship on women, and the double standard female artists face. If you aren’t a fan of EXID and their headstrong girl power, yet, you definitely should be!
5. “One More Day” - Sistar
This video Packs. A. Punch. It opens with two female leads struggling through the streets with a large suitcase before transporting back to an earlier time, when it's revealed that the two close friends are in love with one another. One of the girls has an abusive boyfriend, which both complicates things and leaves the audience to empathize even more.
The boyfriend comes into the picture a lot more after his first introductory phone call, and he progressively gets more and more violent, literally pulling her away from her friend by her hair after pushing the other girl to the ground. He drags her back to the home, but soon learns that the other girl followed them after she attacks him with a brick. Seizing this opportunity, his girlfriend also takes part in the attack, hoping to rid him from her life for good.
He meets his fate, and the timeline jumps back to the present where the girls are struggling with the suitcase. Putting it in the trunk of the car that they later set on fire, they walk off to start their lives together. What a wild ride.
6. “Please Don’t...” - K.Will
This iconic video follows the story of three friends, played by K-drama royalty The Beauty Inside’s Ahn Jae-Hyun and Seo In-guk of The Smile Has Left Your Eyes as well as former Sistar member Dasom. After the announcement that two of the trio will be getting married, one friend is left in complete distress at the idea, leading viewers to believe it’s because he's in love with the bride-to-be. She haunts him in his car, and he watches with a pained expression as his friends showcase their love for one another.
It isn’t until the last fifteen seconds of the music video, after the song has come to its end, that it's revealed it was never the bride he wanted to be with--but the groom! It was a carefully plotted out music video that left viewers thinking they had all the answers up until the very end. You'll want to rewatch a million times to see what you missed!
Were there any twists you saw from the very beginning?
What were some other K-pop plot twists that left you having to think about life for a few days?
Let us know in the comments below!
Cover Image: Seo In-guk (BS Company); K.Will (Starship Entertainment); Dasom (King Kong by Starship); Ahn Jae-Hyun (HB Entertainent)