Vanness Wu is a popular C-pop artist who was born and raised in America. He shot to fame playing F4 member Mei Zuo in Meteor Garden— the Chinese version of Hana Yori Dango. From there, the F4 released three studio albums jump-starting his musical career. Since then he has acted in various dramas films, and released. Vanness Wu is no stranger to K-pop. He has collaborated stars like H.O.T’s Kangta and Fly to the Sky’s Brian Joo, and is also a fan of 2ne1. This time around he paired up with 2PM member, Junho, to sing the OST track for Vanness’s new drama, Ti Amo Chocolate.
The two worked together to sing and produce a music video for the OST, releasing behind the footage video. I’m not going to lie; I spent a good portion of my weekend watching the two interact.
Undefeated is a classic C-pop song with a nice ballad introduction transitioning into an upbeat pop melody. It’s cute and happy, reminding me of Vanness’s earlier works in the genre.
Visual and Aesthetic Technique: 4 out of 5
The video starts out with an unidentified woman donning a short black dress and heels
creeping observing Vanness and Junho on a laptop. It’s a simple introduction, with the scenes of the woman and the duo changing intermittently. It then cuts to the solo shots transitioning between the two. The set with the textured walls close to each other and the light at the back provided a nice ambiance to the video and adding a little bit more depth. The shots of Vanness and Junho in that small room doing whatever it is that they’re doing were also interesting; the frazzle of the video was a nice touch. It effectively showed that they were being filmed, slightly creepy in my eyes but I digress. It was also nice to see the video would split into two or three; the ending with the frozen stills of the duo fading away also was interesting.
What was confusing was the scene with Junho drop kicking a suitcase full of roses. Though the falling petals in slow-motion looked pretty, it had left me in a confused state. Why is he punting a suitcase? Who would someone fill a suitcase with rose petals?
Other than that scene of randomness and the weird slow-motion fighting, the whole video was clean-cut and simple. The camera shots weren’t terribly complicated but effective, and the neutral and cool colors highlighted the upbeat nature of the song.
(If I could, I would give a five out five for how fine Vanness Wu and Junho looked in their suits but I need to keep fangirling out of my analysis.)
Performance: 3 out of 5
The music video did not call for intense feelings or actual depth; it’s an upbeat OST track with two cute guys dancing around in suits and making chocolate. They smile beautifully at the camera and their eyes twinkled like the stars in the night sky. To be honest, it’s a classic fan service video–two attractive men donning suits and performing adorable actions such as arranging roses or making chocolate. It’s Super Junior‘s “No Other” all over again. Granted, Junho did a good job of singing the song and I commend him for singing a whole song in Mandarin, which is arguably one of the most difficult languages to pronounce. Overall they get a 3 out of 5.
Intellectual and Emotional Value: 2 out of 5
The lyrics of the song are cute, the boys are cute, the song is cute, but the storyline is creepy.
Anyone watching this video with an analytical mindset could see that the actual plot-line is kind of disturbing. For some reason, both Junho and Vanness are in an all-white room with no windows while a mysterious woman watches on. If that doesn’t raise any red flags, I don’t know what will.
The woman is obviously monitoring the two men in a very Big Brother kind of way, the frazzle effect of the video shots and the close-up on the camera is evident of that. This is my interpretation of the story from what the music video gives me. The unidentified woman, whose face we never see, kidnapped the two and has them locked up. She wants their love and has ordered them to make gifts that express their love, but the one who has the most heartfelt token of love gets to live. I also have to add, this woman might also be a psychopath, that’s the only logical explanation to her actions. Said woman was most likely unable to choose so she has them try to kill each other. But there’s a twist in the plot. Vanness throws the suitcase of rose petals, which is actually poisoned, and Junho drop kicks it towards the woman. She dies. They leave. That would explain their title “Undefeated”; it’s not about love rather it’s about a struggle for survival.
But that tangent aside, the music video wasn’t too intellectually stimulating. The lyrics speak of not giving up on love even if one has been hurt by it. It urges the listener to believe and persevere. It’s sweet and the two men looked charming in the music video. Other than having me smiling like a fool the video didn’t connect to me on a personal level.
Though the only drama of Vanness’s I watched was Autumn’s Concerto so I can’t exactly comment on the song in relation to the drama. It’s not incredible but it’s passable, especially since it’s an OST track and not a promoted single. The overall video was okay the only enjoyment for me being the eye-candy earning them a 3 out of 5 .
So while I go re-watch the two interact and squeal like the child I am, leave your thoughts and comments below!