Having taken a class on science fiction literature this semester, I’ve been extremely drawn to how elements of SF impact storytelling, and how it sets various moods and atmospheres. DPR Ian‘s latest single, “No Blueberries”, incorporates SF elements to represent his inner trauma and how he battles with his demons, which led to an extremely entertaining and exciting MV.
“No Blueberries” is a continuation of his previous song, “So Beautiful“, where we last saw the artist stumbling out of his apartment, escaping from his girlfriend. However, his past continues to haunt him, for we constantly see flashbacks to various scenes in the “So Beautiful” MV, and those shots are shown entirely in black and white. His traumatic past also leads to one big hallucination sequence, which takes up most of the MV, where DPR Ian is running from a masked figure. The aesthetics of the MV are similar to the popular Netflix series Stranger Things, for majority of the MV is set in a retro diner, and we can see the constant shift between “worlds” through the use of colours.
The use of colours and camera work are what makes the MV so fun to watch– at the very beginning, the camera constantly shakes as DPR Ian looks at himself in the mirror, almost threatening to shoot himself with the gun in his hand. It only stabilises after he consumes a few pills, and it is at this point the flashbacks stop, and he regains part of his sanity. However, it is evident that he is still wary of his surroundings and wants to hide as much as possible, since he wears a cap and sunglasses to cover up his face (or maybe it was a fashion choice? Let’s just assume it’s for hiding), and he is constantly looking over his shoulder and glancing around to look at the other customers in the diner.
However, once the hallucination starts, the set is washed in green lighting, and the camerawork becomes unstable once again. The use of quick cuts and pans makes the viewing experience a little jarring, but it is perfectly acceptable as it fulfils its purpose of creating a sense of chaos. Particularly during the sequence where DPR Ian fires his gun at the masked figure, only to fall and slide down the floor and into the hands of the masked figure who has teleported, the way the sequence is edited and filmed creates tension and excitement for the viewer. One may think that quick cuts and pans may lead to a disjointed looking MV, but the way each shot is edited and stitched together makes everything flow in one fluid motion, and it never gives the viewer any time to breathe, just like how DPR Ian feels while confronting the masked figure.
It is also worth noting that whenever DPR Ian has a physical interaction with the masked figure, the MV immediately switches to greyscale, once again referencing the “So Beautiful” MV, implying that the masked figure is most likely the trauma he experienced from his girlfriend. This is prominent in the scene where DPR Ian lights a match in retaliation towards the masked figure, and the MV immediately uses burns, and the images are distorted. Majority of the scene is in black and white, save for a few moments where we see overly saturated images of the masked figure, or a tint of green in some of the shots.
At the end of the MV, DPR Ian is back in the diner, and everyone else is living their lives as if nothing happened, but the scars he received from his encounter in the other world remains on his face. There is no definite resolution to the conflict at hand, but it is certain that he has yet to deal with it properly, for the final blow was not delivered to the masked figure.
Although the song is a standard K-hip-hop track, the MV definitely makes the song a lot more exciting, and it was fun to see how a chill song contrasts with, but also adds to, the tension in the action-filled MV. Furthermore, CL‘s and DPR Live‘s voices and verses complement the chill and relaxed tone of the song, making the song a great listen on colder days, or during nights when you just want to lie on your bed and do absolutely nothing.
Overall, the MV for “No Blueberries” was beautifully and artistically shot, and I look forward to see what else DPR Ian has in store for us in the future.
(YouTube; Images via Dream Perfect Regime)