G-Dragon moves viewers with his powerful video ‘That XX’


Just when everyone was expecting something upbeat and sexy basically because That XX was rated 19+ G-Dragon shocks everyone with a sad love song in the form of a slow acoustic ballad. Seriously!! NO ONE WAS EXPECTING THIS!

GD with lightning fast rap is ok, or GD with a upbeat electric song is ok! But We get a sad looking GD singing his heart out and of course he tugs on every fans heartstrings!

One word which can represent this songs mood is Melancholy..  ‘That XX’ contrary to the belief is not rated cos of the scenes and here I was expecting a part 2 of ‘Strong baby’ and all we got was a forehead peck!! Apparently it is cos of verbal explicitness..GD used the word Bastard/son of a bitch in place of XX. In the offical MV this word was bleeped out leading to a hilarious version of an MV with many bleeps. But I still cannot understand Korean media laws cos me and many more k drama fans will testify to the fact that we have heard that particular word countless times in dramas and we haven’t been corrupted honestly.

Despite the R rating ‘That XX’ was a mellow single where GD displayed his vocals. His leading lady was Jennie Kim who will debut as a member of a new girl group of member with YG entertainment. Now onto the review!

Credit: 

SONG

The song was painful! That’s a fact.. Anyone who knows GD will know he is a master when it comes to writing sad love songs..Like ‘Lies’ , ‘Haru Haru’ are the best example. But he surpassed this by mixing his pain with a few choice words describing his feelings which ultimately led to the rating.

‘That XX’ is a video which is in the form of a soliloquy  We see GD relating his thoughts to himself and to the audience but not to the girl who is the main stimuli behind his thoughts.

Here are the translated lyrics,

Walking on the street, I bumped into your man (Yeah I saw him)
I didn’t want to believe it, but my hunch turned out right (I told you)
He’s not wearing that ring you gave him, there’s another girl by his side
But I’ve said enough (I don’t wanna hurt you)

Now you’re getting angry with me (Why?)
You say “He’s definitely not that kind of person” (Sure you’re right)
Seeing your eyes, I reply that I probably got it wrong
See, I lied for you (I’m sorry)

I hate that you don’t understand me
I hate all this waiting
Let go of his hand (break it off with him)
When you’re sad, I feel like I’m dying

That XX, what does he have that I don’t
Why can’t I have you
That XX doesn’t love you
How much longer are you going to cry yourself silly?

When you speak of him, you look so happy (you look happy)
It’s good that you can be this happy (I’m happy)
You say you really love him, want to be with him forever
You trust him completely (I don’t know what to say no more)
Your friends all know that guy (yup they know)
It’s so obvious, why can’t you see (it’s you)
They say love is blind, Oh baby, you’re so blind
Please, I beg you, break it off

Oh I hate that you don’t understand me
I hate all this waiting
Let go of his hand (break it off with him)
When you’re sad, I feel like I’m dying

That XX, what does he have that I don’t
Why can’t I have you
That XX doesn’t love you
How much longer are you going to cry yourself silly?

Rap)
Expensive cars, beautiful clothes, high-class restaurants, they all suit you well
But that XX beside you, he doesn’t suit you, he really doesn’t
He smiles like a hypocrite with you, brushing your face and hair
But he’s thinking of another woman for sure, how dare he
The amount of tears you’ve cried, I want to make you happy by the same amount, baby
Rather than going through the pain alone, share some with me, baby
Please look at me, why can’t you realise that I am your love
Why are you the only one who doesn’t know

That XX, what does he have that I don’t
Why can’t I have you
That XX doesn’t love you
How much longer are you going to cry yourself silly?

That XX, what does he have that I don’t
Why can’t I have you
That XX doesn’t love you
How much longer are you going to cry yourself silly?

Credit: Kpoplyrics

Here XX = Bastard

The lyrics was completely a friend zone anthem which talks about how the girl he loves falls for a bad guy who doesn’t treasure her love.

It was so painful that I was crying about 1 min into the video without even knowing why I was crying. Just like ‘Haru Haru’ this song leaves a painful ache in ones heart. GD’s rendition of the song was perfect. He did not falter even for one second and the guitar at the background provided just the right sound and feel. One can fall in love with his voice and it is rare to hear this side of him as he is more partial to the hip hop genre.

Each line was powerful..

But this part..

I don’t know what to say no more

Yes the girl he loves has fallen too deep in love with a wrong man. She trusts him completely and is happy with him. This puts GD in a situation where his words are powerless. And thus he doesn’t want to say anything any more cos it is not of use.

YGE artists have a powerful grasp over English and most of their songs have good pronunciation of English. Yet this line was not correct grammatically. It raises a question did mighty GD make a mistake? Nope he is too much of a perfectionist to do that!

I think he did this on purpose.. to prove that his words have no meaning to the girl and so he uses a line which is not correct to show how wrong his words will echo in the girls mind. He makes his meaningless thoughts to appear as a text in the MV too.

Yes the song was overwhelmingly sad but when combined with the MV it made it even more beautiful in all our eyes.

On one hand we had ‘One of a kind’ where the lyrics were boastful to the extreme. And now we have ‘That XX’ which moves people with its overwhelming sadness.

VIDEO

This video is even more complicated than One of a kind. According to me one can break and analyse this video in three ways. I will be focussing on the view which I find most intriguing.

# 1

This is the most popular version where GD plays two roles. One of the bad guy who cheats on the girl with the gelled up hair, weird ahjussi glasses, tatoos etc. And the good guy who fell in love with innocent girl is sweet and has his hair down and minus tatoos or too many piercings. He feels bitter towards the guy who made the young girl his own.

# 2

This is something like forbidden love. The guy who is XX in this video is too fake and artificial. He is not fitting to be a love for the young girl. In many scenes we actually see GD look old *personally I think GD borrowed TOP’s stylist and hairdresser! LOL he is TOP Ver 2.0 in this MV* and sophisticated – a man of the world. While the girl looks young and lost. Especially in the last scene where GD is leaning in for a forehead kiss Jennie doesn’t respond to the kiss showing how much of a wrong pairing this is! I think the reason GD selected this young 16-year old for this mv was to convey this to the viewers that this love is forbidden another reason is it will serve as a good publicity for any new artist who is about to debut to star as a lead in GD’s MV . The victorian background and the fashion further solidifies this cos ladies of the olden generation are more reserved and delicate. They follow certain etiquette and are inexperienced which makes them the easy prey for men who are out to take advantage.

#3

Now this is the way I see the MV and I will review the MV based on this 🙂

Two sides of a coin

This MV is a soliloquy as I mentioned and I believe that this video is just not about a third person who steals the girl and a dragon who is friendzoned. *as if that is even possible*

What I feel is that both Good and Bad Guys in this MV are the same.

G-Dragon is actually the guy who Jennie falls in love with but he has a dark side to him. He is struggling with his own self to try and accept her love and change into a better person. But he cannot.

To me both these guys are the same..

One who is a player..*Can I for one moment stop and just point out how those piercings are sexy!!! wow*

One who really cares for the girl..

The video starts with the sad GD looking out of a window where some sound of a woman laughing is heard..It looks like he is creeping on someone.. Throughout the video the sad GD is seen looking at the girl from afar like he is scared to approach her. It gives off a weird vibe when he looks through the keyhole into her room. Maybe this sad GD is just not all it seems. He has a diff side to him. And that side is the player GD. He knows he is hurting her. But he continues it. He plays around with her feelings. He lies and she believes.

Mine & Yours:

Player GD and Jennie share couple piercings and tatoos. It is like their closeness is shown this way. But under all the couple stuff one can see that player GD is the dominant.

The couple tatoos really show this. On the girls neck we have Mine written and on player GD’s neck we have Yours written.

Note that the girl has Mine like a brand written on her..Yours seem less powerful than mine. More like he is stating his power over her. He can be anyone’s Yours but she is only his Mine.

This shows that he is not willing to give her up and that he will forever be his own. This is quite similar to what the sad GD is feeling. Even though he is upset the girl is falling for the bad side he cannot do anything. In other words he will not do anything. Only the girl has to break it off proving that the sad GD and the player GD are same. They will not do anything to break off with the girl as she is Mine to him. She has to do it on her own. G Dragon has also said that in many interviews. In reality G Dragon never breaks up with girls. He tries to make the girls themselves break off but the girl has to do it. As always GD writes from his personal life.

Memories:

When Jennie is not around GD looks around her room. He sees many things which reminds him of her. Like photographs, polaroids. Does he really like those? In another scene we see him actually close a black book. It looks like it is a journal containing letters. The player GD doesn’t like those. In a moment of weakness sad GD collects memories of her. But afterwards the player GD just puts them in his drawer and closes them off effectively putting a stop to the influence of memories.

The bath tub scene is also a very touching scene in this MV.

We see Jennie first submerging into the tub and then GD rises out of it. It speaks about how Jennie is nearly drowning in her love for GD. She really cannot identify any good or bad in her lover and is just submerged into the pool of memories both happy and painful. But GD emerges out of it. He is suffocating due to the love. He wants to give into her love but he finds he cannot and thus escapes it. This scene also signifies that Jennie is loving till death. She is willing to sacrifice anything for GD as she is submerging and no shot of her resurfacing is shown. She is really at the edge.

This is my most favorite scene..It is too powerful and painful. GD wants to share her pain but he cannot do it and finally emerges out.

Dark and Light:

What was really amazing in this video were the effects. It was mostly in a dark background. Also GD in one of the shots really showed how both good and bad GD are same.

Here you clearly see the effect of light and dark. One side of him shows a light side with not much makeup or eye liner. But the other is dark both with the hair and the eye. This shows that both the sad and the player GD are the same. Yes he loves her but he cannot seem to stop cheating on her. His dark side triumphs most of the time leading to frustration. He really wants to stop hurting her and starts loving her.

The amount of tears you’ve cried, I want to make you happy by the same amount

When he fails to make her happy he can only show his frustration through wrecking his room.

Here you can clearly see the difference where one eye has guyliner while other is bare.

GD clearly fluctuates well between these two. One moment you see a guy with tears in his eyes. And the next you see a cold look and a man who jus hugs the girl without sincerity. It is quite scary to see how he acts out the split personality.

There is another scene to show the two sides of GD.

GD standing between two angels. Mayb it represents the girl and the player GD. But isn’t it more apt to denote a GD who is reaching out on the left to the one who has his hand held on by the girl but is actually facing the other direction. This shows that GD wants to hold her but his eyes also stray far away.

Visual Effects, Makeup and Tattoos:

First thing which I found weird in this video was the amount of makeup which was caked onto GD. Did he not have enough time to make sure his makeup was well spread? This was my first time experiencing this as Koreans are known for smooth skin and BB creams really are a integral part of their makeup.

Then I saw that the lack of smooth skin was too apparent! Wait! did GD do that on purpose? Why does his skin look like sandpaper in some shots?

I remember interviews where GD has told everyone of his nickname “Sand Paper Kwon” !! It denotes a person who has a tough and rough personality on the exterior and looks unapproachable. Mayb all this extra makeup was to denote that cold-city personality tag which he carries. Also the makeup made him look really old and even more emphasized the age difference between Jennie and player GD.

I don’t think GD is a person who will accidentally apply heavy makeup which makes him look old and weird.

The video also had this sharp visual effects which was highly seen during the player GD parts. The coloring was more rich during his scenes like the scene where he removes Jennie’s couple ring and embraces an unknown girl. But the effect was soft and dreamy when it came to sad GD. Some scenes even looked smoky when sad GD came again showing that sad GD had less influence and player GD was the stronger of the two. He continues to struggle with his self throughout the video.

The tatoos which GD had besides the Mine & Yours couple tatoos are the ones on his left hand.

It shows the follwing Love, Hate, Rock, Diamond, Number 8, Rose.


Maybe the diamond = rock equates a ring which in turn means ‘engagement/marriage’. Rose signifies romance and 8 is GD’s special number. His birthday falls on 18/08/1988 and thus he uses 8 in many cases. He even used it in his One of a kind MV!

I think love and hate again points that he has a dual outlook on romance and marriage. GD half loves romance/marriage and half hates love/marriage. This again shows his reluctance to commit to Jennie. Sad GD loves her but player GD cant seem to stop looking at others and thus ultimately lying and hurting her. He is in a dilemma where his split personality fights against each other.

The MV closes with a scene with player GD and Jennie sitting together while he leans in for a kiss. So the girl does end up with bad guy but what if there is a good side in him which will maybe shine through??

I really love the MV because the song and video match each other. “One of a kind” had been a fast song with varied scenarios and GD shows another side through ‘That XX’. He really is a versatile musician who proves he can adapt to any genre of music he wants. My only regret is that we never could see GD playing guitar in the video. But hopefully his live performance will have a guitar part.

To all those who like something slow and bluey to suit ones gloomy mood this is the right song!!

Credit of pics,gifs: Owners,uploaders,tagged,tumblr etc.

So will be running off and waiting patiently for GD’s next song and hopefully the title song. BYEEE!!!

 

You might also like: G-Dragon ‘One of a kind’ review, ‘Shine the light’ G-Dragon concert, SeungRi ‘Strong Baby’ review

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18 thoughts on “G-Dragon moves viewers with his powerful video ‘That XX’

  1. You just make me realized how beautiful G-Dragon’s mind is. Those symbolic things he used for his music videos are just magnificent. Thank you for the perfect review. You’re so awesome. ^^

      • You deserve the praises! I think you’re a brilliant reviewer. Your reviews are by far the best I’ve read. I had the same interpretation of the video depicting GD’s struggle with dual personality but I wasn’t able to spot the minute details like the eyeliner (impressive btw). The MV with the song is a brilliant concept overall. Thanks for the very insightful explanations!

      • Thank you ^_^ Its fun to look at all things GD does in his videos..he is indeed a genius… To plan such things in such a large scale is amazing..

  2. Hey this was a really good analysis of the MV. You pointed out so many things that haven’t been pointed out, and believe me, you have, since I’ve been reading all the reviews and analysis all day today. LOL.

  3. This is the best! My mind is blown once more! Because i keep realizing the little pieces but it all points to differ guys not the same gd. Thanks! It was a good read

  4. Ok, so here my comment to this interpretation. It might be chaotic, treat it more like some lazy thoughts of mine 🙂

    I would add one reason for your interpretation: lyrics of ‘Tonight’ where GD sings about not being able to stick to one woman but that he’s also nice. Just like “bad GD” in this MV – he cheats but is nice (meaning: cool) so girl sticks to him.

    All in all everything sounds nice but what about those lyrics:
    “That XX, what does he have that I don’t
    Why can’t I have you”
    “Please look at me, why can’t you realise that I am your love
    Why are you the only one who doesn’t know”

    This sounds rather akward when you think he’s singing about his other side, therefore about himself. First quote would make the girl look rather shallow because then it sounds like she only loves “play-ish” side of GD and ignoring/not liking “sad” side. Lyrics states that she knows both guys (talk with sad one, being with bad one), so when we interpret that both guys are one guy (with two sides of him), why then she would stick to bad side? I’m not dissing your interpretation, I just think something is missing. Maybe the point is that GD has problems with opening his heart to others? And that’s why his girlfriend would know only his bad side? But again, she doesn’t believe her boyfriend has bad side, she push off suggestions of him cheating on her etc.

    And again the lyrics: “Why can’t I have you” – following this interpretation we could say to him: ‘oh, you have her, GD, but you are a jerk to her’. But why would he sing about not having her when he have her and just being a jerk? Maybe it means something deeper like: ‘why can’t I have you on my own and not to have to share you with bad side’ meaning: ‘why can’t I be a good guy’. But somehow I think that such interpretation is going too far. Lyrics of this song are awesome, I think GD has a gift to write lyrics, he can write what he want to say in very accurate form. Why should we interpret simple “Why can’t I have you” (which, for me, is very strong, accurate and painful sentence) as something different? Without MV lyrics are clearly about friendzoned guy who can stand that girl is with some jerk (which happens in real life very often).

    All in all in my opinion “friendzone” interpratation has less weak points and GD playing both roles could mean that he also has this bad side in him (he admits it himself), but this time he sees the whole situation from the outside, he see the pain of a girl and that she totally believe in her bad boyfriend, which is sad to watch. It can be even more sad for him because he can have reflections how bad he was to girls he had before. Like sudden realization how much pain you caused to them. So, he sees bad himself in her bad boyfriend = GD sees GD.

    Please, don’t be offended by my comment, I just want to discuss 🙂

    • LOL!! I agree…but I did say that there are many ways one can intepret the video and since the other one is quite popular I would like to challenge something new…Yeah the whole other guy who is bad gets the girl seems more practical but I felt the way some scenes in MV was construed pointed that there is something more than what is on the surface..am sure many would have analysed the 3rd person view and so i believed this would be a good to give some scenes more meaning..Esply how the dark and light side is actually shown..and yu seem to forget that many girls ultimately fall for guys who have that player vibe..Looking at K dramas will prove that..LOL!! Maybe she fell for the bad side cos he is full of charisma and charm..
      “Why can’t I have you” seems like he is actually pointing to the third guy…but in my overworked delusional mind it looks like the shy side wants to cherish the girl and have her for himself but he cant succeed…Mayb i am over analysing but some scenes just gave off that vibe..
      Also many men/women who are charismatic on the outside are in reality quite reserved and shy..Or in other words they cover their awkwardness with social and communication skills..
      Anyways thanks for ur views.. 🙂

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  6. hmm, your analysis is wide, and at some points i think a bit too analytical, i mean, if GD was to agree with all 3 interpretations of your MV review i may think or feel different.
    All these reviews predicated on the fact he play the two roles in the m/v. Here are two, just two (2) simple reasons why he could have played the two roles:

    1) He could have played the two roles simply to spend less money in the MV production, in that he doesn’t have to pay anyone to play the other role…(bad boy role)

    2) Also GD is a eccentric, artist who like doing/ trying new stuff, so probably he just wanted to play both roles in the MV (do it just for fun)? Like why would he be cursing himself as that xx. clearly he is the good guy..
    .( In reality it is perceived or rumoured he loves DARA right…wouldn’t these perverse interpretations render Dara insecure…7 have her thinking can i trust GD??)

    other reasons:
    by him playing two roles, he gets all the attention…if any1 else played it they would of gotten shared publicity, or maybe a YG suggested it to him :”Hey GD why not play both roles?” and the list can go on & on &on..

    So all these theories spur because he played both roles in this m/v. If he had use some one else to play the bad guy role..all these other views most likely wouldn’t had surfaced. I am saying ok it can be fun to speculate and come to various interpretations… but u cannot deny the above 2 points for him using himself. And until GD state otherwise,…i’m going with what he said in his lyrics.

    (hope we get GD’s interpretation & not our own…not saying what i highlighted above is his intended interpretation…but i am going by his lyrics/ if GD says otherwise, then i will accept other interpretation(s) as how he sees it).

    peace & love u all 🙂

    • I don’t really agree with your reasons. This is why:
      1) I truly do not believe money is a big issue with YG or GD, so if they wanted another actor to play the bad guy, they would’ve gotten one.
      2) Also GD is a very serious guy, when he is talking about music or his songs he is all business. In numerous interviews he has said that when he writes a song he thinks and plans the dance and the MV. He wouldn’t want to just play a role because its fun, no, he already thought about the MV and who is gonna play who.
      “Like why would he be cursing himself as that xx. clearly he is the good guy.” Clearly us as fans do not know GD personally, so he is actually telling us his true feelings through this MV, saying that he may not be good all the time and that he has a dark side.
      3) by saying that YG suggested to GD that he should play the role of the bad guy is completely weird. YG has said that he gives his artists freedom in their music. GD said the he likes doing solo projects because everything goes his way, hair, outfits, MV sets, etc.. I also don’t think anyone can overshadow GD in his MVs. just sayin’.
      And this is just my opinion on your comment. please do not take this the wrong way I am in no way trying to troll.

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