Venus: the name of the Greek goddess of love, beauty, victory, and yes, my razor. It also, however, is part of the name of Pledis Entertainment‘s newest female rookies Hello Venus, who have just made their K-pop debut with their title track “Venus.” It is almost as if Pledis couldn’t wait to crank out another group, having previously debuted their latest rookie boy group NU’EST, who make cameos in this debut MV.
Let’s just put it this way: the teaser photos for the group and concept behind the name was one I thought was rather innovative. The group, comprised of actually six ‘goddesses’ (member Yoonjo injured her leg and was unable to dance in the MV) would be named after the Greek goddess Venus in order to underscore the idea of beauty; the ‘Hello’ aspect behind the name lies with the intention of greeting: the members supposedly have beautiful composure and demeanor, so much so that they are personalities you want to meet, per se, by the word ‘hello.’ And I found that a very clever play on words. When the teaser pictures came out, it was hard not to adore the vintage, floral prints and pops of color going on. With two good marks in my little black book, Hello Venus was cleared for my investigation.
Cinematography: 2 out of 5
In my honest opinion, this MV really fell flat. You could have told me this was a KARA/Girl’s Day mashup MV and I wouldn’t have bat an eyelid — in short, it is a very standard debut MV for a girl group. On a more positive note, the pastel color scheme is pretty, and for the some reason the shoes in this MV are especially cute. Aesthetically, it’s a lot of aegyo and a lot of charming antics, however, that is also exactly why the MV doesn’t capture the attention. Not to say that those things don’t normally consume our attention, but the emotions and the effort seems rather robotic, and it’s hard to apply to that. The party scene at the end is a nice splash of color and and props, and NU’EST, among other things, to contrast the neutrals and pastels that dominate the rest of the production. Still, I was hoping for a more antiquated, floral look (thanks to the teasers) and all I got was shiny metallics and a lot of winking.
Like mentioned above, the emotional delivery is a bit robotic. The lack of energy supplanted by rehearsed glances and facial expressions failed to give this MV the life it needed, the life the song itself breeds more readily than the MV. Lime (yes, her name is Lime) or the member with the mint-colored hair, aka the rapper, does perhaps the best job in delivery of performance — she’s got some attitude and spunk, but certainly not enough to make up for what the others members are lacking. I will hand it to the girls, though, for restructuring their choreography for five instead of six, to compensate for Yoonjo’s absence due to injury during the dance. Also, the pose at the end is a cute, Sailor Moon-esque touch. Perhaps the most interesting thing in the MV by far.
X-Factor: 2 out of 5
The story is apparently about being a motivator for a guy trying to win over another girl’s heart, which I find both weird but also interesting to some degree. It is definitely a small plot I did not in the least suspect, but the members’ expressions and antics actually did more to confuse than translate the story — it was hard to tell which one the guy was trying to mack on, and which one was trying to help him. If we’re talking about X-factor, all of it lies in Lime’s hair and the shoes. The production otherwise looks very typical, even a bit low-budget. Which, in reality, surprises me considering Hello Venus is the sister group to After School, who, over the years, has had very interesting and unique concepts and stories in their MV’s, even early on in their career.
Well, for those of you who had high hopes for Hello Venus, as did I, I hope this sour review doesn’t burst your bubble. But, in all honesty, I expected a lot more from Pledis and Hello Venus, considering how much I enjoy After School and NU’EST. And yet, it is still way too early in the game to be completely judging Hello Venus, so let’s cross our fingers and hope next time the production is more hello-worthy.