April seems to be the month of the ballad for Vpop stars making music comebacks after long periods of inactivity. I don't know why everyone decided to release slower ballad songs this month, but it is what it is.
CARA of DreamS Entertainment is back with a new MV. In Thôi Đành Rời Xa, CARA sings about saying goodbye to love and wanting to break up -- pretty standard nhạc buồn stuff. Thôi Đành Rời Xa is an okay song. I guess there are only so many ways in which you can sing about heartbreak and heartache -- just ask MIN. It's all the same to me, but I can at least appreciate the effort of CARA and DreamS in giving Thôi Đành Rời Xa a pop and EDM makeover rather than just going with a straight down the line ballad. Still, I feel like I have heard Lou Hoàng perform this same song in Mình Là Gì Của Nhau.
WTF MV Moments:
- The failed pill cosby attempt. I guess the dude rolled a natural 20 on his resistance check.
- The double backstab. I thought the theme of this MV was going to be CARA playing some arrogant dude with her lesbian partner. Nope, it turns out CARA is asexual and willing to backstab anyone GoT-style to get what she wants.
Anh Ơi Ở Lại by Chi Pu is some sort of Bizarro World version of the traditional Vietnamese Cinderella story (Chuyện Tấm Cám) where Tấm Cám, or Cám Tấm in this case, isn't the main hero or heroine in the story. Instead, Cám Tấm is some nobody and not some special chosen individual. That's life for you. Do you think that you're some special individual that is owed something in life? Think again, because the heavy hand of reality is always ready to slap some humility into anyone thinking that they are hot stuff.
For some reason, I really enjoyed watching Chi Pu suffer in this MV. Perhaps, it's the Vietnamese in me. Certain cultures in the world value suffering, and I would say Vietnamese culture is definitely one that does. Or maybe, I'm just a Chi Pu hater. Whatever the reason, I usually don't talk about Chi Pu that much on this blog. I mainly find Chi Pu's usual, heavily Kpop-inspired MVs to be quite boring. This Chi Pu MV, however, has a much darker tone that is more aligned with Vietnamese sentiments. Therefore, I am much more willing to talk about it than some of Chi Pu's other previous works.
WTF MV Moments:
- Chi Pu's friend somehow slipping past her and trying on the slipper before she does. Does she not know how to box out? Is her friend playing a rogue class with stealth abilities or something? Because, Chi Pu failed her perception check pretty badly here. Chi Pu probably needs to up her perception because she also failed to realize umbrella bro was DTF.
- The Tiki tea set. I didn't know they had free prime shipping in the ancient times too.
I don't know what is going on with Erik these days, and I am increasingly growing distrustful of Erik by the day. The MV for Anh Ta Là Sao was supposedly "leaked" a day in advance by a careless employee; however, I don't know if I buy that. Forgive me for being skeptical and cynical, but I have to question if Erik is pulling a Jussie Smollett here to generate sympathy and media attention for his new MV.
So, I am supposed to believe some employee accidentally made an unfinalized MV public a day early and that because it had a lot of views, you decide to go ahead and not take it down? If that is the case, then where is this second finalized version that Erik spoke of? Now, I'm starting to question if the rumors of Erik having work done and his sexuality are indeed true. Erik's obsession with making his face look like a duck and having a guy in drag play the female role in this MV really doesn't help to put those rumors to rest.
(*After doing some research, I have found that Erik has admitted to having some plastic surgery done in the past.)
I understand what Erik is trying to do with this MV. I just don't think it works. With Anh Ta Là Sao, Erik is trying to separate himself from the crowd by departing from the usual popular approach of combining a sad ballad along with releasing a super dramatic and depressing MV. Unfortunately, the colorful MV for Anh Ta Là Sao and the use of homoerotic humor (something that is super popular in Vietnamese culture for some reason) doesn't change the fact that Anh Ta Là Sao is still a ballad at heart. You can dress it up all you want. A ballad is still a ballad. A dude is still a dude even if you dress him up in women's clothing.
WTF MV Moments:
- Dude dressed in drag.
- Erik's duck face.
- This entire MV being "leaked" situation.
Jang Mi is perhaps another Vpop artist that I have been too critical of in the past. Personally, I don't like some of the Koreafication of Vietnamese culture that both Chi Pu and Jang Mi have chosen to embrace in order to be more popular with the youth of Vietnam. I think it's fine to be a fan of Korean culture, but I just find it off-putting when someone becomes obsessed with Korean culture to the point that they actual wish to become Korean.
With Tí Tách, Jang Mi kept that Koreaboo shit in check, so I don't mind it. Staring at the rain and riding around on a scooter -- those are definitely Vietnamese activities. You almost can't have a good Vietnamese ballad if there isn't some sort of reference to the rain or a scene with someone crying in the rain. Vietnamese nhạc buồn wouldn't exist without rain and heartbreak after all. They go together like peanut butter and jelly.
WTF MV Moments:
- That moment when you realize Jang Mi has the least WTF MV of these comeback songs.
Ballads and love songs have been such an integral part of Vietnamese music history that even with the advent of more complex modern music genres, love ballads still remain popular no matter what. It doesn't matter how many times you try to strike down old school ballads, they just keep rising back up more powerful than before like some Star Wars Jedi Voodoo shit.