Of loneliness and hopelessness – in the perspective of GD in “Crooked”

Here goes another (not so much) of an analysis of G Dragon’s latest release, “Crooked”. At first, listening to the song while watching the mv without understanding as to the lyrical content, it could come off as a really cheerful and upbeat song. The first impression of the music video is also that of him going about some town in London* and wrecking havoc all about. And as if he’s high all the time. It went really well with the title in that he did indeed portray himself being all ‘crooked’ and reckless. Then, I looked up for a translation of the lyrics to the song. It was beautiful and I have to confess that at this very moment, I can actually relate to it.

The lyrics is a stark contrast to the upbeat synth melody and tempo of the entire song. As it might have worked to suggest a disguise to the sadness and loneliness of the narrator of the lyrics. The lyrics sing of the vague feeling of being alone and without his lover. And because of this, the narrator of the lyrics becomes ‘crooked’ and destructive to ‘vent out’ his frustration. He says in the rap that he ‘start(s) fights for no reason’ and in the music video itself, he goes knocking into people and tries to crash into clubs, messing with people and etc. All of this is a result of him being broken-hearted by his ex-lover. He now realises that promises mean nothing; ‘nothing ever lasts forever’ and ‘everything is meaningless’ from then on. He also says that love is a hopeless thing and that people change without a reason. There is no such thing as sincerity so he refuses to have ‘sugar-coated comfort’ and wishes to be reckless. He also realises that this change is in fact scary to people and especially his own ex-lover. In the second part rap, he talks about how he wants to act crude and reckless in order to avenge his broken heart by causing guilt to his ex-lover:

I’ll put on thick eyeliner,
use a whole can of hairspray
Leather pants, leather jacket with
a frown. I want to hide my pain
and become even more crooked
So you can feel sorry,
I’ll spit toward the sky
You’re scared of my crude
words and my rough eyes
But actually, I’m afraid,
I want to go back but
I have nowhere to go
I want to love but no one to love,
what am I supposed to do?
I can’t turn it back

He also sings about how he wishes to return to the time when he wasn’t this horrible ‘crooked’ person but just like time, he ‘can’t turn it back’. In the first rap part, he talks about him and his ex-lover and how they were “main characters of the movie called ‘This World'”. But then he is now ‘a lonely island, // lost and wandering’. I believe this is also alluding to the famous quote ‘No man is an island’. Contrary to the famous saying, he feels like a lonely island.

Moving onto the music video itself, along with an understanding of the lyrics in mind, G-Dragon has portrayed everything in the lyrics really well through the video. He begins walking through this seemingly endless tunnel at the very start. Then through quiet, lonely streets and then through a really crowded club. Even when he’s gathered with a group of British guys, who I suppose we are to presume as his friends, and drinking with them yet he doesn’t seem happy at all. He tries to crash into clubs and the bouncer pushes him back into the streets as the line of crowd outside stares at him. (They’re all probably hired actors but I can’t help but think to myself that GD might have this impromptu and this might be real). He even goes out with his friends and trashes people’s table as they are having their meals. He also crashes a band on the streets and wants to join them with force.

He continues to run through streets. This time, he’s crying helplessly. In a tiny cubicle of a toilet, he cries his heart out. The hopelessness and loneliness shows through even more every time I watch the video. The portrayal has been planned well as GD displays his emotions with a pile-on effect and builds up towards the end of the; from running through deserted streets and shouting out to creating a mess in town and then to the point where he keeps crying in the cubicle or in the streets as he runs through them.

I can’t help but feel like I could relate to this song really well now; the music video as well. Being in a foreign country, away from family and friends as well as everything familiar, the loneliness can really get to you. As GD sings in the final part of the song ‘I didn’t know being alone would be this hard’, it is so true. But in contrast to the line ‘Unlike my heart, // the weather is so damn nice’, the weather isn’t what I’m used to. It’s bitter cold and unfamiliar. It is not the least bit nice. I can only heave a sigh and tell myself I can live through this. But I have got to agree with GD though when he demands for ‘sugar-coated comfort’ to be taken away.

All the romanticised thoughts should all be thrown out of the window and one should always stay grounded. I’m more of a geeky person and I am what the Chinese would call “宅女” ** (loosely translated, it means a girl who enjoys staying at home or indoors). I enjoy watching films, dramas and listening to songs; I also indulge in watching music videos multiple times and listening to songs on replay as I “analyse” it and put those thoughts into words, like this.

The line ‘But in the end’ (=gyeolgugen) sounds a lot like ‘외국인’ (oegugin) which means foreigner. Maybe it’s just my own mind playing tricks on me due to my limited knowledge of the Korean language but it reinforces the loneliness of being in a foreign place (for me) and seeing him, the only Asian person in the entire music video, it makes him stand out from the rest of the people – a foreigner. I believe this whole thing is just me but I just wanted to put that out there. Bear with me on this one.

What I am thankful for is the music of the song which works as a mask to that loneliness and helplessness. In contrast to a sad and slow ballad song, listening to it doesn’t make me feel like wrapping myself in a duvet and cry myself to sleep. It’s exactly what I need, and I believe, what everyone – who feels utterly lonely and helpless – needs at moments when they are alone.

I have always admired G Dragon’s song-writing skills. He has earned A LOT from writing songs for his own solos and for Big Bang. But with this song, I just can’t help but feel amazed. I have no comments about his fashion. It looks odd to me but it’s “fashionable and trendy” to a lot of people so if you’re interested, you can find a link of the list someone made of his wardrobe for this music video. And since I was searching about him, I came across this on his Wikipedia page:

“He is the only man selected as one of the “50 Reasons Why Seoul is the Best City” by CNN.”

The lyrics and music to this song was written by himself and Teddy (a lyricist and composer of YG and has always been working with GD & Big Bang). And so, allow me to end this post with the finale to his song ‘Crooked’ (for I find it rather poetic):

Will you not say anything
for me tonight?
I didn’t know being alone would
be this hard
(I miss you)
Will you be my friend tonight?
On this good day,
this beautiful day,
this day where I miss you

Notes and References:

* London: I had no idea it was actually London until I caught sight of the infamous red double decker in the background, after watching the music video multiple times.

** Please don’t Google translate this; I tried and it’s ridiculous.

[1] G Dragon’s official music video of ‘Crooked’

[2] Lyrics translation: here

[3] ‘Crooked’ style: GD’s fashion and a list of where to find the clothes he sported throughout the mv

[4] G Dragon’s Wikipedia page

[5] Coup D’Etat Wikipedia page (Here you find a list of his tracklist for the album and the lyricist and composer to the songs)

P.s. Taking a break from writing regularly ruins your writing skills. Words slip right through your mind and you forget stuff and that store of Vocabulary seems lost. I don’t know. Seeing as to I’ll be starting to write assignments and whatnot real soon, I should really really write more… and read more.

Related: Big Bang’s Loser on social anxiety, depression and chronic unhappiness

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6 thoughts on “Of loneliness and hopelessness – in the perspective of GD in “Crooked”

  1. Nice one! I can just imagine the emotional turmoil he went through as he wrote this song. This is my favourite song in that album. GD is an amazing songwriter.

  2. This is my anthem song, for me, how it relates to me is that I always know that I have a lot of things to do like the usual chores, etc and it is very frustrating but I know that if I am able to do those chroes etc, it can benefit others like 1, my house would be cleaned and 2, of course my parents would be happy w me for being a good daughter and sister to my sibs, but the thing is I just gotta have that motivation to do it and its so tiring.. But I know I can do it.. So I tot I can relate to how gd so singing in the mv although its abt breaking up and then being lonely, but for my case, its the feeling of frustration in a way…☺✌

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