Orange Caramel, the eye-catching and colorful After School sub-unit, finally makes their comeback with the addictive Euro-pop electro title track “Lipstick.” This time around, Orange Caramel storms the scene with their very first full length album, complete with previous hits like “Shanghai Romance” and “Magic Girl,” as well as plenty of new tracks including “Bubble Bath,” “Milkshake,” and solo tracks by each Nana, Lizzy, and Raina.
In the short time since it’s release, “Lipstick” has already become a guilty pleasure of mine. Normally aegyo overdose rots my teeth and wears me out with its repetitive nature, but Orange Caramel brings a certain fierce factor and a unique, well crafted lolita charm that makes their music and concept actually quite enchanting.[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Z9R57maGvc&w=560&h=315]
For this MV, Orange Carmel drops their outright story-book fantasy scenarios for this cheesy and yet adorable modern prince-princess love story about the girls’ affections for a dashing ping-pong player. We open to the girls practicing their ping-pong at the ‘Orange Academy,’ sporting their, you guessed it, orange jerseys.
Their attempts at the sport are soon aided by the handsome ping-pong prince, as he shows them a couple fancy moves for an excellent game. As the plot progresses, the girls take it upon themselves to defeat his fiercer opponent, and even the apparent, other love interest (who looks like a guy in drag, not gonna lie).
What I love about this production is it’s inclusion of humor as opposed to consisting of just soul-sucking aegyo. By rounding out the cute edges with a more chirpy atmosphere, the entire concept becomes much more unique and enjoyable.
I also appreciate how the girls are active protagonists in the story instead of being merely damsels in distress. This allowed the girls to both maintain their lolita image and showcase an edgier, feistier side to Orange Caramel.
The twist at the end, or the introduction of the evil ice queen (honestly thats the phrase that popped into my head as I watched the MV), created that storybook effect that I thought Orange Caramel had originally abandoned for this MV. However, one quickly realizes that “Lipstick” becomes more of a modern fairytale rather than an old school picturesque one, where the damsels in fact do the saving.
Aesthetic-wise, I adored the use of plaid and the highlighter orange color, which was also offset by the darker set and the black leather outfits. (Seriously, TTS has nothing on OC in regards to use of the black-contrast wardrobe). Orange Caramel also succeeded in preserving their lovely lolita image with the subtle use of details, such as the chandeliers, the orange eyebrows, the glittery lipstick, the hair accessories, and even their shoes.
If there was anything I didn’t like, it was the dance scenes, particularly in the black outfits interspersed in the middle of the MV. I don’t know if it was the lighting, or the lines of the outfits, or the choreography itself, but these choreo looked sloppy to me, even after multiple views. Don’t know what the deal was there, but thankfully the MV was more story-based rather than a dance montage.
All in all, I was extremely pleased with the delivery of this MV. It was very different from what I expected while also staying true to the Orange Caramel image, and therefore I can appreciate the effort that went into the “Lipstick” articulation. Aside from a few moments of shoddy choreo, Nana, Lizzy, and Raina don’t disappoint with this not-so typical storybook fairytale about a girl in love.
Overall Rating: 4 out of 5
And that’s a wrap! Was this shade of lipstick perfect for you, or was it a bit too bright? Let us know, and be sure to follow Orange Caramel’s comeback and be the judge of them yourself!