It is few and far between when a K-Pop song plays second fiddle to the plot in a music video, but that’s what happened in “Child in Time” by Sunny Hill. The last time I could remember the plot of a K-Pop video more than the song was K. Will’s “Please don’t.” Neither K Will’s song nor Sunny Hill’s song were made to be forgettable, but they did have an unassuming nature to them as if they existed outside of public opinion. The songs existed to exist, and that allowed the video to become more than the song.
This is not a story that is inaccessible if you don’t understand Korean, believe me I would know. 1theK helps out their international viewers by providing an English translation of the lyrics, so even though the text and the short conversation clip are without translation, you can follow along with the flavor of the lyrics.
***SPOILER ALERT*** Short video breakdown
After the scene in the first teaser, we find that the protagonist has traveled back in time approximately 12-13 years, back to her middle school days. She finds herself sitting across from herself on the bus and follows the younger her to her school, where she is mistaken for a teacher. She spends time taking care of the younger version of her, treating her to street food and photo booths, and even sets up her younger version of herself with a middle school admirer.
I sat here thinking how she could be doing this without opening up a paradox of some sort, but really all of the pampering came down to the big reveal at the bridge of the song, making the sci-fi part of my brain not really care so much. The main character is embarrassed by her drunken father and while she obviously cares for him, she has some baggage that left her feeling alone and unwanted. The point of the video was showing how in hindsight you can learn to love the past and what has transpired, in order to keep moving forward and keep making yourself a better person. Common sense would dictate that this was all just a dream when she wakes back up on the bus, but after she finds the money that her father gave her in her pocket, she begins to think otherwise. It leads her to respond back to the person texting her all this time, reconciling with someone she cares about.
This was a fantastic music video, one that I will rewatch just for the story and the nuances, instead of the song or dance. It is fantastic, and is something that should be spread to anyone appreciating a nuanced story.
Also, that bus driver… I’ll have me some of his gold teeth.
Did you have a different interpretation of the plot? Or perhaps, you are able to expand on it by sharing a translation of the phone conversation. Either way, be sure to let us know what you think!
Edited by: Laura Dees
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