Colette Balmain

My top 10 Kpop videos of 2018, chosen on the basis of their visuals, storytelling, songwriting and musicality: 10. #Cookie Jar (Red Velvet) Red Velvet are one of the few girl groups to successfully switch between the girl crush and cute concepts. #Cookie Jar, their single from their first Japanese EP, combines the sweet & […]

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It will pass, someday: Gothic ethereality and introspection in RM’s Mono

by Colette Balmain 6 December 2018
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RM’s second mixtape, Mono, dropped on 23 October 2018 almost two and a half years after the self-titled RM, which was released on 20 March 2015. Mono was accompanied by a music video for the final track “Forever Rain” with lyric videos released for “Seoul” and “Moonchild” on 23 and 24 October respectively. It followed J-Hope’s earlier […]

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The Top 5 Gothic KPOP Music Videos

by Colette Balmain 31 October 2018
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Dr Colette Balmain applies her specialism in Gothic Cinema to the world of KPOP – perfect for the Halloween season… ‘Gothic forces its readers, viewers, and listeners to identify the ghosts that haunt them…’ (Isabella van Elferan, 2012, Gothic Music, p. 15). 1. SHINee “Married to the Music” (2015) “Married to the Music” doesn’t sound […]

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Affective becomings and musical transformations: BTS take London

by Colette Balmain 23 October 2018
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Dr Colette Balmain, or maybe a ghost writer, reports from the biggest KPOP event in the UK this year: Taking the Plunge This is the first concert review that I have written although I have been to many concerts, some of which I have good memories of and others which I wish I could press […]

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The end of the journey: desire, recognition and redemption in BTS’s “IDOL”

by Colette Balmain 1 October 2018
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Dr Colette Balmain examines the culmination of the BTS Love Yourself series: “IDOL” is the lead single from BTS’s final album in the “Love Yourself” series. The series comprises one extended storyworld music video, Love Yourself 起 Wonder; one mini album, Love Yourself 承 Her; one full length album, Love Yourself 轉 Tear; and one […]

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The Garden of the Forking Paths: Difference and Repetition in BTS “Epiphany”

by Colette Balmain 21 August 2018
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Dr Colette Balmain examines the BTS comeback trailer for Love Yourself 結 Answer: “Epiphany” is the comeback trailer for BTS’ last entry in the LOVE YOURSELF Series: Love Yourself 結 Answer. LOVE YOURSELF is a transmedia and multimedia project involving the expansion of the BTS Universe through the construction of a metafictional storyworld established by Music […]

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Artistry, Creativity & Emotionality: Choreographies of the self in “Fake Love”

by Colette Balmain 31 May 2018
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Dr Colette Balmain examines the lead single from BTS’s Love Yourself 轉 Tear: “Fake Love” is the lead single from BTS’ third studio album Love Yourself 轉 Tear (they have also released three Japanese studio albums, two repackages, five EPs and two single albums to date) and follows, both temporally and thematically, the comeback trailer “Singularity” […]

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Trajectories of Meaning in “Singularity” – the BTS Comeback Trailer: Love Yourself 轉 Tear

by Colette Balmain 14 May 2018
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Dr Colette Balmain analyses the comeback trailer for BTS’s third studio album: From Serendipity to Singularity: A Universe of Meaning “Singularity” is the comeback trailer for BTS’ third studio or full length album, Love Yourself: Tear which will be released on 18th May 2018. This follows up the mini album or EP, Love Yourself: Her […]

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Neverland: Holland’s ground-breaking K-pop debut in context

by Colette Balmain 19 February 2018
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Dr Colette Balmain discusses the controversial debut MV from Korea’s “first openly gay” KPOP idol. “Never lose self-esteem and be confident” (Holland, 2018) On 22st January 2018, at exactly midnight KST, Holland released his debut single and MV “Neverland”.  Since its release, “Neverland” has racked up over 6 million views on YouTube and Holland has […]

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Andersen’s Gazes – an outstanding fusion of body, image and sound

by Colette Balmain 3 July 2014
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Andersen’s Gazes is the second in a series of collaborations between Lee Kyung-ok Dance Company and pop artist Mari Kim. The first, The Boy in the Red Shoes, was performed at KB Haneul Youth Theatre in November 2013. The Boy in the Red Shoes was created by the National Dance Company of Korea, and choreographed […]

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Crossroads of Youth – a constantly-evolving performance of Korea’s earliest silent film

by Colette Balmain 5 August 2012
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Crossroads of Youth is one of Korea’s earliest silent films, which would have at the time had narration by a byeonsa (the Korean equivalent of the Japanese benshi). The function of the byeonsa was to tell the story in the absence of diagetic dialogue (which in Western cinema was told through intertitles), in addition to […]

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Film Review: The Man From Nowhere

by Colette Balmain 23 June 2011
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Colette Balmain reviews the opening film of LKFF 2010 The Man From Nowhere (아저씨- Ajeossi) (Lee Jeong-beom, 2010) Cha Tae-sik (Won Bin), is a man shrouded in mystery, a loner who runs a small pawnshop and who is positioned on the margins of society. His only meaningful relationship is with the young girl, So-mi (Kim […]

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Discovering Korean Cinema book launch closes the 2010 festival

by Colette Balmain 31 January 2011
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Colette Balmain reports from the book launch of Discovering Korean Cinema at the Korean Cultural Centre UK Tuesday 23 Nov 6pm For the launch of the book, Discovering Korean Cinema (edited by Daniel Martin and Mark Morris, The Korean Cultural Centre: London, 2010), both the editors, Daniel Martin and Mark Morris, and one of the […]

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Dr Yeon’s introduction to Korean

by Colette Balmain 10 November 2010
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Not only am I lucky enough to be studying Korean for free at the Korean Cultural Centre in London, but I managed to obtain a ticket to a special lecture (again free) on the Korean Language by Dr Jaehoon Yeon, Senior Reader in Korean Language and Literature, SOAS, on Wednesday, 27th October 2010. The Centre […]

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An Afternoon and Evening with Hong Sang-soo at the National Film Theatre.

by Colette Balmain 11 October 2010
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Colette Balmain, editor of the upcoming Directory of World Cinema: Korea, encounters Hong Sang-soo at the screening of Hahaha on Friday 3rd September 2010, which opened the month-long retrospective of his work at the South Bank. Before the screening of HaHaHa, which was followed by a Q&A with Tony Rayns, at the NFT, I had […]

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Call for papers: Directory of World Cinema: Korea (Intellect Press: 2011)

by Colette Balmain 23 March 2010
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Please find below the call for papers for the forthcoming Directory of World Cinema: Korea, to be published by Intellect Press in 2011. This is an exciting project. Intellect’s Directory of World Cinema: Japan has just recently been published. Details can be found here: http://www.intellectbooks.co.uk/books/view-Book,id=4679/ Directory of World Cinema: Korea CALL FOR PAPERS The directory […]

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Remembering Murder: from “Memories of Murder” to “Mother”

by Colette Balmain 14 November 2009
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Colette Balmain reviews Bong Joon-ho’s latest hit, and finds themes which echo his 2003 success Bong Joon-ho’s Mother, the Korean Film Council’s submission to the 2010 Oscars – 82nd Annual Academy Awards – under the category “Best Foreign Language Film”, has much in common with his 2003 Memories of Murder: a film based upon the […]

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