9 K-Pop MVs That Are Straight Out Of The ’90s
On top of its versatile artistry, the beauty of K-pop lies in the fact that it transcends time. Subsequently, the genre borrows from previous eras to come up with concepts that are both innovative and nostalgic – which grants K-pop fans more juicy content to rejoice in.
Going back three decades earlier, here are nine K-pop music videos that are straight out of the ’90s. Enjoy!
1. Lee Hi – “Red Lipstick”
Ever since Lee Hi joined AOMG, she’s been blessing with lots of amazing music, and we’re here for it! From her bedroom decoration to her fashion statements and the electronics scattered around, the ’90s are making a comeback with a few subtle hints of other previous eras throughout the music video. The track itself sounds like it’s straight out of an early ’90s playlist. Find out for yourselves!
2. TWICE – “The Feels”
Leave it to TWICE to take you back in time to the late ’90s. The ladies recently returned with a music video that borrows from “Mean Girls” vibes (outfits and scrapbook spotted!) and every name-your-teen-movie with a classic high school prom. You can spot the prom queen seated on her throne while students are dominating the dance floor. The song itself would make an awesome prom jam to hype up the crowd. Plus, the fact that this is the group’s first full English single makes it even more special!
3. Jeon Somi – “DUMB DUMB”
Jeon Somi takes us three decades back with this rom-com-like music video, where she tells an ambitious high school “girl wants boy” story with a dark twist. The narrative visits all typical clichés as well as the sense of fashion encountered in late ’90s and early 2000s teen movies, and Jeon Somi surely slays the part of the main character who does everything to get her crush’s interest and eventually his heart. Bonus: this musical bop is the cherry on the cake!
4. CL – “LIFTED”
If anyone can successfully summon a whole decade into their music and visuals, it’s CL! The artist lifts us with this Wu-Tang Clan-sampled track briefly featuring Method Man himself. With this in mind, it is clear that everything about this music video screams ’90s style, and CL surely knows how to get in the party mood while bringing everyone on board!
5. EXID – “LADY”
All hail the queens of retro concepts! EXID may have released this gem about three years ago, but you’ll think that they’re teleporting you back to the 1990 era. The ladies go full hip hop in this one, with the outfits, the choreography, and the setting all following suit. Talk about going by the book!
6. SHINee – “1 of 1”
We can’t talk about mastering retro concepts without featuring SHINee. From the extravagant attire to the groovy dance moves, the boy group basically brought this decade back to life. Of course, the video would not be complete without the serenading vocals that give time travel a whole new meaning.
7. NU’EST – “LOVE ME”
This dreamy melody by NU’EST sounds like it transcended 20-30 years to reach us today. The main hint of the old era lies in the cinematography, namely with respect to the various electronic equipment and the drive-in theater that was still a thing back then. Obviously, the fashion is also a major hint that joins the previous indicators to give the audience a beautiful reminder of that time.
8. Yubin – “yaya (ME TIME)”
During the ’90s, the youth basically had two major ways of spending their evenings: chilling in their bedrooms or throwing wild parties when the folks are out. The picture this music video is painting makes us think that Yubin understood the assignment as she flawlessly represents that period. Plus, the palette used throughout the clip is a strong reminder of how lively, simple, and aesthetic things were back then.
9. Sunmi – “You can’t sit with us”
Last but not least is this glittery, sassy take on the ’90s era by Sunmi, where “Mean Girls” is yet again a baseline inspiration source. The all-pink bedroom aesthetics, the good old movie rental store, the old laptop and landline, and the attitude that goes with it all is a gentle nod to every female lead character in every coming-of-age movie released around that time.
Which ’90s-themed K-pop MV is your favorite? Did we miss any? Let us know in the comments below!
Esmee L. is a Moroccan lively dreamer, writer, and Hallyu enthusiast.