Feb 17, 2016
AOA Cream Unleashes The Sugar With Debut MV "I'm Jelly Baby"
It does feel like it's been a while since a new sub-unit entered the scene, almost as if the idea of having sub-units in itself had faded a bit compared to two or three years ago. Instead there's been a rise of idol members going solo, and indeed did AOA's main vocalist Choa release a single of her own not too long ago. The group have, however, found a new unit in Hyejeong, Yuna and Chanmi, who together make up AOA Cream. I'm not too fond of the name but I really like both Yuna and Hyejeong so I was happy for them ro receive some well-deserved spotlight. Along with youngest member Chanmi they've made their official debut with the super sweet and sugary "I'm Jelly Baby".
The teaser video for this debut seemed, right from the start, very interesting as it made references to the popular anime Sailor Moon with showing the girls' transformations with lots of special effects. It was also made clear that the concept they'd be going for was more cute than sexy, unlike what their regular group AOA normally does. The teaser pictures were also very pink and cutesy, with the girls wearing tutu skirts, tiaras and princess dresses such as worn most often by children.
Of course you immediately think of Orange Caramel and their debut with "Magic Girl", which was similar in many ways with the overly cute and almost childish approach, but unlike said sub-unit this one is still very "AOA". Orange Caramel were made to stand out from the sexy and fierce After School, and they did, but AOA Cream doesn't nearly as much. The video feels exactly like a regular AOA MV with only some slight variations, and the song follows the same trail.
Although the song "I'm Jelly Baby" (which is a name I neither get nor like) doesn't automatically feel like an AOA track it does feel like it would blend in quite well with the rest of their discography. Of course this doesn't mean that AOA Cream is particularly bad as a sub-unit because other units have done the exact same thing (Sistar19 and TTS for example), but the song itself is not really that great. Sure, it's listenable and I enjoy the fact that Yuna and Hyejeong get to show off their vocals in a way they normally wouldn't, but it's sadly a really bland song that doesn't grab your attention in any way. I find the lyrics very questionable as well as I don't really understand what their meaning, and the MV isn't exactly helping either.
If you're setting out a goal to get revenge for his actions then dump him as well while you're at it! No use in keeping around a boy who's not even that committed to you. The "pranks" pulled by the girls are quite tame as well on top of it, as if they're only trying to tease him rather than actually making him regret his choices, and it comes of as quite half-hearted. Dal Shabet, for example, does a much better job in their MV for "Someone Like U", without letting go of any of the lightheartedness.
Because of course that's the main focus of this video, rather than any actual plot or depth. The shining visuals, bright colors and cute outfits are what really matters, and I have no problem admitting that all of them look amazing and Hyejeong especially stands out with her pink hair. The problem for me though is that it's just too much of everything.
I don't mind cute, not at all, but when it's done like this I'm finding it much harder to tolerate. It's too sugary, too pink and not to mention way too immature for my liking, and the fact that they've added so many sexual undertones to it makes me feel uncomfortable. One second there's giant teddy bears, hair bows and an outburst of hearts and the next there are sexually suggestive dance moves and the girls licking whipped cream off of their fingertips. Of course it's, unfortunately, quite normal for cutesy videos to be somewhat sexually objectifying because most female groups are, but the grave contrast between overly sweet and sexual in this MV here really doesn't sit well with me.