Welcome to the fourth article in our series, “K-Pop Lyrics Explained”, where we take a look at the lyrics to some of your favorite K-Pop songs. Previously, we explained WonHo’s ‘Blue’, WEi’s ‘Starry Night’ and Coldplay’s ‘My Universe’ featuring BTS. Today, we are explaining Park JiHoon’s ‘Serious’.
On October 28, 2021, Park JiHoon officially made a comeback with his 5th mini album “HOT&COLD” featuring the title track ‘Serious’. PENOMECO was one of the artists who co-wrote and composed ‘Serious’, giving it a unique edge perfectly suited to Park JiHoon’s musical temperament. The music not only gives us a different sonic aesthetic, but the lyrics are much more than skin deep.
If you’re wondering what ‘Seriously’ is, read on for a full breakdown of it!
Right off the bat, musically, Park JiHoon explores a new color and tone that is both refreshing and intriguing. It sets the mood for the subject, which, needless to say, is pretty “serious”. Visually, the music video reminds us of early 2010s punk/alt-rock, but with a new twist. The cinematography and color palette reflect the very title of the album: “HOT&COLD”.
‘Seriously’ expresses our protagonist, Park JiHoon’s character’s terrible attempts to hold on to a lover who has almost moved on. It’s hard to say, however, if this is a toxic repetitive cycle familiar to the couple or if the ties have finally been severed. That’s exactly the struggle that Park JiHoon is portraying in the music video, even more so through his lyrics. This is not simply a song about love, loss and heartbreak, but about being trapped in an inescapable pattern that takes a toll not just on the heart, but on rationality itself.
The song starts with “Here we are” and ends with the same, closing the circle and sealing all means of making an exit. What starts out feeling like a painfully common push and pull between lovers takes a dark turn when we are faced with repeated reality: “Round and round, here we are“. Park JiHoon begs his partner to “take it off” with him, indicating the desperate need for catharsis, but again, he adds, “no matter what you say i’ll be yours“, reestablishing the futility of any conversation because, at the end of the day, their hearts beat too passionately for each other, suppressing the importance of healthy communication. Naturally, therefore, both parties are trapped in their own glass cases – an image which is repeated consistently throughout the music video.
“The directions are different, the destination is the same”
Through these lyrics, Park JiHoon artistically extends the metaphor of a circle. Tangents drawn from any point on the circle will point in different directions, but being a continuous line, no point can actually leave the circle. He bets everything on a second chance, but it’s definitely not their first time at this rodeo.
Park JiHoon is hurt, lost and alone, hopelessly close to tired resignation. However, the song ends on a beautifully touching note with a simple request: “give me your love“.
Seeing how Park JiHoon pitifully (yet brilliantly) expresses his pain, there’s only one thing left to say: WE CAN always be together (pun fully intended).
What did you think of Park JiHoon’s comeback? Share your thoughts with Kpopmap in the comments section below!