Jun 24, 2015
Kara's "Cupid" Is Sugar Without Sweetness
A year after making their grand comeback onto the scene as four members, Kara are back to show us they're still in the game. "Mamma Mia" was one of the highlights of last year, and possible my favorite comeback of the year too, so to say my expectations were anything but sky high for "Cupid" would be lying. Now I've seen what they can do and how they still work even after loosing two members, and in my head it was a no-brainier they would soon return to the top. After watching the MV for "Cupid" though, I wasn't so sure anymore.
Kara has a thing for crazily catchy track with a high drive and a lot of energy and ambition, and "Mamma Mia" was a prime example of that. Right off the bat though, you call tell that that's not how "Cupid" playing out. This song is notably more low-key and laid-back, and even when the chorus kicks in and the beat intensifies a little it still isn't at all what we know this group for. In fact, the chorus is probably the only part of the song that truly like, because the verses seem like the drag on forever and never go off in any direction. It's not that the song is bad, but for being a Kara title track it's terrible. Not only that, but to degrade this much since last year not only makes me disappointed but angry at their label for not developing utilizing their new-found potential.
The video, too, is a disappointment. Although it's very similar in style to their 2014 MV, this one does all of the things that "Mamma Mia" did right, wrong. They were portrayed as goddesses, and now they've been demoted to...cowgirls? I don't get the concept of it, because that if anything to me is childish and immature. I guess it matches the juvenile lyrics though. Seriously, adult women should not be singing about these kind of topics and if they did, at least put a mature spin on it!
Apart from wearing ugly hats and clothes, they are also supposed to portray jewelry found in gift-boxes, as if their production team thought they didn't do the girls wrong enough and decided they wanted to objectify them as well. I don't know about you but for me it's all just a bit too much going on, and the pink satin curtains aren't exactly improving the situation either. Kara aren't usually this passive and it angers me, knowing the powerful image they've had the last years since "Mister".
As if the video wasn't difficult to watch thanks to the dreadful styling, boring sets and props as well as the childish concept, the filters added onto the final product is awfully distracting. "Mamma Mia" had its fair share of filters and different tones, this MV certainly takes it to a whole new level. Some scenes are not only really brightened but also a bit blurry. I think only the edges are supposed to be a bit faded, but the overall impression it leaves is not a pleasant one.
Another huge complaint of mine, and yes I'm going to stop soon I promise, is the choreography. It's no secret the members of Kara can dance, or at least execute choreography with much power and finesse, and in the past they've had some great routines. Again I'm comparing to "Mamma Mia" but that's the only other OT4 release we've got to go on here so so bear with me, but the dance for "Cupid" is embarrassingly plain in comparison. Especially the moves in the chorus, the ones that are supposed to really stick with you, are very basic. It's the same moves that have been done a thousand times before and are a terrible representation of what Kara are capable of doing.
Now you may ask: "isn't there anything you like about this video?", and the answer to that question is yes, there is. Naturally I can't look away from the fact that the members of Kara are divine human beings, and that although they're dressed in hideous clothing they're all still really beautiful. I love Gyuri's blonde hair, Hara's tan and Youngji's lack of bangs (shame that Seungyeon got them instead), and the makeup they're wearing is worth praising.
However it's not enough to save this disaster of a video and comeback, and I know I'm not the only one feeling this way because they've made very little noise with this comeback overall. Media play and noise marketing can be annoying, I know, but DSP needs to make some more effort in promoting Kara as the goddesses we know they are. All I can say is better luck next time.
Total Score: 2,8/5