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Now before I go into this post, I have to tell something. To get the analysis of this music video to this level, I literally had to read and study through many sources on the references that were shown throughout this MV. And this includes Greek mythology, sculptures, paintings, novels and so much more. Of course the insight we can have into this, can go into so many directions and levels, but this is my analysis on it.
To watch the music video please click here
There are many references in this MV, but one that is undeniably present is Hermann Hesse’s novel , Demian. This novel talks about the innocent protagonist, Sinclair, who loses his innocence and good, and goes into the dark/evil with influences from his friend Max Demian. This was obvious from the continous reference of the novel throughout the 7 short films. Sinclair as a child, comes from a high class and modest family and knows only of the “good”. This is similiar to the excerpt from Demian in Lie short film, where they talk in reference to his home, and his model school.
It is also mentioned in the book, that the first lie that Sinclair said was lying about some apples he took, for which he got bullied later. In Lie and Awake we see the symbolism of this apple. The apple also symbolises temptation, with references to the story of Adam and Eve. Also it is mentioned that, Sinclair confused in thoughts, absent mindedly paints three paintings. One is of Demian, which is also a reference to the painting of the boy from Begin . The second painting is of Eva, Demian’s mother, who also symbolises Eve, which we saw in MAMA, Stigma and Awake. The third picture that Demian draws is of a bird, that breaks from its shell and escpaes, an image we saw in Begin , Reflection and Awake, where the bird is a symbol of freedom. In the book, the bird is said to be flying to a God called Abraxas. Abraxas is a symbolism of the good and the evil, the tempation, the loss of innocence.
With these thoughts in mind, let us start with the analysis of the MV!
As the MV starts, we see the members come inside a museum like hallway, filled with sculptures and paintings. Yoongi is on a bicycle and hits Jimin on the head as he cycles past him. Jimin rubs his head and we notice that he has a catapult in his hand. Hoseok and Taehyung walk in together and are keenly observing the statues in the room. Namjoon and Jungkook are seen to be together, reading a book.
From the short films, we know that Yoongi and Jimin were connected as we saw the bathtub overflowing with water in both First Love and Lie . We know Hoseok and Taehyung are connected as we both saw images of the portrait of a mother and child in Stigma and MAMA. We also know that Jungkook and Namjoon are connected, as Jungkook on seeing the picture of the bird, puts it in an envelope and sends it to Namjoon, to know what it is, in Begin and Reflection. As I mentioned before, Namjoon is Jungkook’s Demian.
And finally Jin. We see that he walks off alone and is staring at a painting on the wall.
The painting that Jin is looking at is the The Fall of the Rebel Angels by Pieter Bruegel.The story of the painting is as follows. Lucifer, corrupted the minds of the angels with sinful temptations which eventually led to the angels falling from the heaven due to their direct rebellion with God. This could be a symbolism of the horrible fate that they all face in I Need U.
Now we will focus on each pair of members.
Namjoon and Jungkook
Throughout the MV we see Jungkook suspended in mid air on a swing, and Namjoon in another room.
If you look closely we can see a portrait behind Jungkook which is the portrait of The Lament of Icarus by Herbert James Draper. The story is about Icarus and his father Daedulus, who was an inventor. The story goes that, Daedulus made wings for Icarus that were sealed together with wax. Icarus was warned not to stray too high up near the sun, and will fall because the wax will melt. But Icarus did not heed his father’s warnings and ended up falling. In the shots with Jungkook we can see that he seems to be falling.
There are also scenes with Namjoon showing the warning of the sun.
There are also scenes where the candle was melts and falls on Jungkook’s hand, which he licks representing Jungkook to be Icarus and Namjoon his father. Even in the beginning of the video, Namjoon is seen to be explainign something to Jungkook out of a book.
Jimin and Yoongi
Yoongi is initially shown to be in a room alone, with some green smoke. The same kind of smoke that was seen in Namjoon’s and JUngkook’s room in the video. As the video continues, there is a particular scene where Yoongi holds a blindfold, and Jimin an apple. The apple symbolises the lie and temptation which, Jimin gives into. We know he gives into the lie or the temptation as he is blindfolded and appears lost.
Throughout the MV, Hoseok is placed in a setting where he is in front of Michelangelo’s Pieta. The statue is of Virgin Mary holding the dead body of Jesus Christ after his crucification and his removal from the cross. This statue is in direct reference to motherhood, and the strong connection that Hoseok has with his mother and how it affected his past.
Taehyung is seemingly sitting on the edge of a balcony. Towards the end we can see that the background of the image is Landscape with the Fall of Icarus by Bruegel. We can see Icarus in the water after his fall in the painting.
The Ending Scenes
These scenes are actually very important and pivotal to the story.
Towards the crux of the music video, we see the 7 members with Jin at the head of the table. The setup looks very similair to the setup of The Last Supper , which is also a very important reference to Demian. It is said in the book, that once Sinclair went to boarding school, things were pretty downhill wherein he got depressed and developed bad drinking habits. The point where SInclair is said to have lost his childhood/ innocence/ fallen to the temptations is during his lessons on Confirmation day where it was about the Last Supper. Therefore this scene highlights that final moment before they finally give in to the temptation. We can also see apples on the plates, which symbolises the same.
However, while raising the glasses, Jin hears something and turns aorund, just like how he did in Awake. This futher confirms that Jin knows something more than the others, although it is not sure what. There is something that is seemigly present throughout this story.
As the MV progresses, we see Taehyung give a rather cheeky smile and literally jumpwillingly into the portrait. A scene is shown where Jin appars to be attempting to hang himself. And we also see that the hands covering Jin are slowly removing, as if revealing him to whatever is the truth.
It is at this moment where we cut to this scene of Jin, holding a balloon, the last shred of the childlike innocence. A voice over by Namjoon says-
He too, was a tempter. He too, was a link to the second. The evil world with which I no longer wanted to have anything to do.
This is a line from Demian where Sinclair is talking about Demian. He says that Demian is his link into the second worlnd world. The first world being the good, and the second the dark and evil.
We see the scene shift to Yoongi playing the piano (This was actually played live by Yoongi for the MV). We see five of the members run through the door at the end of the hallway. Taehyung looks back and notices Jin staring at something from where they ran in. Taehyung walks up to him and covers his eyes.
When Taehyung removes his hands, we see a giant statue of Abraxas. At the same time we see a cloth being lifted off of someone.
As the scene progresses, Jin walks up to the statue and kisses it. This isynonymous to a part in Demian where Sinclair kisses Demian goodbye. The kiss could also symbolise the signing of a contratc, they have indeed fallen for the temptation.
At the same time, it is revealed that Taehyung is underneath the cloth, where on his back are marks of lost wings. He turns and gives a very neutral and cheeky smile. Many theories have been developed from this, with the most predominant one comapring Taehyung to the story of Icarus and that he is the trickster that soemhow leads everyone to their fates although no one suspects him to do so.
Towards the end of the MV, we see loud splashes of color, tears of paint from Jimin and Abraxas.
Finally the video ends with Jin. He is sitting in front of a mirror where on his side there is a vase with white Lilies while the reflection shows another flower. This also symbolises another part of Demian where at a particular point, Sinclair sees him and Demian as the same person in the mirror. This denoted that SInclair has completely come into the dark side. As Jin looks at the mirror, we see there is a crack coming on his face.
The Japanese MV
The Japanese MV further provides us a more modern setting and the clues seem to suggest what could be the continuation of the story,
The video starts with Jungkook lying in the exact same position we saw him in Begin. It is an unnatural kind of pose, as if he is acting dead.
He slowly rises up from the bed an on the bed we see the marks of wings. But on him physically, there are no wings. Earlier in the Korean MV, Taehyung was portrayed as the trickster, but here it seems Jungkook’s character has something hidden as well.
We see Jimin is sitting alone in a particular room, and in a following scene, we see Yoongi with the piano, like we saw in First Love, and Jimin running away from him. Taehyung seems to be in a daze. Notice that this video is comprised on neon and bright and striking colors that seem to suggest an unreality in the evnts that it portrays.
In another room we see that Namjoon and Jungkook are together. Just like in the Korean movie, Namjoon is holding a glass filled with a liquid, but this time he makes Jungkook drink it instead of drinking it himself. We then see scene os Jungkook in the back of the truck that they used in The Prologue video, Run etc.
In a kithcen like setting, Jimin is seen to be taking a bite out of an apple, just like in Lie . Then a blender is shown to be blending something.
In the same kithchen like setting, Jungkook and Jimin seem to be holding Taheyung back and Taehyung looks visibly terrified as someone aims a dart at him.
The following scenes then show Jin and Taehyung having a fight. While Jin is punching Taehyung the music pauses and we can hear Jin saying “Sorry”. Taehyung pushes him ack and we see him lunging forwards as if to stab jJin.
Whatever has been fed to Jungkook doesn’t go well with him as he vomits it all out. Yoongi comes running to him, but Jungkook seems to be in a daze, similair to how Jin is in Run, The Prologue video Awake, Blood, Sweat and Tears etc. His mind seems to be a little affected and he collapses on the floor.
Hoseok is also shown to be in similiar settings to how he was in I Need U.
In the final scenes, there is a huge explosion and shattered glass revolves around Namjoon just like in Reflection. Taehyung has a sharp object in his hand which he is grazing along the wall as he climbs up the stairs. This is just like how he scratches away at the spray paint image of Abraxas in Stigma .
Jimin and Hosoek are dancing in two different rooms. But there is a stark difference in their background. Jimin seems to be in a red room, while Hoseok in a blue room. This seems to suggest that they are indeed connected, but not in the same way. Both their characters seem to be having opposite polarities.
We see Jimin sitiing in a blue room and Jimin at the same time running through a corridor.The Jimin who was running opens a door which is the blue room. Here we actually see two Jimins. The moment Jimin opens the door, Yoongi covers Jimin’s eyes as if to protect him from what he saw. Jimin seems to be having a rather serious mental problem, this scene suggests that his mind is fragmented and that his very identity is confusing or a Lie.
in the final scenes, we see an image of Jin shattering just like in the end of the Korean Mv and we see Namjoon has his hands injured as well.
Towards the end of the video, we see Jin standing next to a wormhole and the iamge of a butterlfy. This seems to suggest parallel dimensions and time travel or the butterfly effect. This seems to strongly indicate that the story will continue with relation to this.
After the song ends, we see an extra scene where the truck from The Prologue video and Run drives into the petrol pump, we saw in I Need U and The Prologuee. Just like in the setting of I Need U, Namjoon is there alone, and he peers into the vehicle. The glass rolls down and we see that its Jin. Namjoon shocked at seeing him says-
“Oh it’s Jin Hyung” (Hyung is a term younger men call older men or brothers)
and Jin replies-
“It’s been a long time has’nt it?”
Then Jin hands Namjoon a lighter, and the scene ends.
What we understood
By far, Bloos, Sweat and Tears is one of the most complex and detaileed music videos ever done by them. Kudos to the entire production team for this. It was interesting on how them losing their innocence/falling into the evil was represented using the themes of various statues and paintings. Towards, the end of this we have come to a conclusion that the boys have definitely stepped over to the dark side. From the short films, it is apparent the tragedies in I Need U were not just that, but has a huge backstory behind it, for each member. Something very important that I would like to note out is the fact that Jin is aware, and Jin knows something. There also is something else, another presence that has seemingly trapped Jin and is controlling him, although Jin is trying to break from it’s grasp.
Also in the Japanese mV, we see that there is a definite indication of the continuing story to have influences with parallel dimensions of time, and the Butterly effect. All we can do is go into the future video, to know if it is true. Also the ending scene where Jin is giving Namjoon the lighter seems to suggest Jin knows what is happening and in one way or the other he might be trying to stop or alter it. How-we do not know. All we can do is move onto the next video.
The rest of the story will continue in Bangtan Universe : Spring Day
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