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Treasure Ep. 2: Zero to One

Updated: Feb 5, 2023

HALA HALA and Say My Name

What we know so far: Ateez are a group of anarchist pirates who are starting on a journey towards a treasure that is different to every individual and need us to join them on their quest.

We now move into their second album, Treasure Ep.2: Zero to One with the double title tracks of HALA HALA and Say My Name. It is also the comeback that introduces us to Halateez (I love them!!). So let's see what my favorite theorists have to say about this comeback. Starting with Bookish Theories. She calls Halateez the Suicide Squade since that is in a lyric in their song, but I think Halateez as a name took off so I will refer to them as that.

My Takeaways

  • Say My Name is a prequel to Treasure

  • Halateez introduces us to the question of identity in relation to the theme of ambition that was presented in Ateez's first album

  • Halateez may be the dark side of Ateez (think Jekyll and Hyde)

  • Ateez wanting you to say their name as recognition is the first sign of success

  • The museum and the fog may be used to symbolize the theme of recognition

  • There are physical effects of Halateez taking over Ateez, extreme heat and racing hearts

Moving on to 15Kim:

My Takeaways

  • She has a different take on Halateez (not a dark side to themselves but alternate versions of Ateez in a parallel future world)

  • Items in Say My Name might represent the past while the items in HALA HALA represent the future

  • The trumpet calls the boys together to take a journey

  • Yeosang is locked in a box but escapes in the end

Now FixOn8:

My Takeaways

  • They are more overt about anarchy in Say My Name with the symbol behind Hongjoong's ear and the word on Mingi's pants

  • Each member had a corresponding Halateez member which may represent different sides of their personalities or how they desire their personality to be (e.g., Seonghwa)

Another general takeaway from these videos was that I needed to start watching the behind the scenes/making of videos and music video reactions because Ateez drops little hints about their storylines in them.

Here is some other general bits of knowledge that I honestly can't remember where I read in order to site them, but it was probably in the comments section of their music videos.

  • The notes at the end of Say My Name when they show Yeosang’s box being empty are the first few notes of Treasure to symbolize that the story is a prequel. They talk also about it in their reaction video. Hongjoong says, “This is a prequel of the first album Treasure. It’s about how we gather and…” they stopped him from saying more

  • The beeps at the beginning of Say My Name are morse code and spell out ATEEZ

Hints From the Making of Video

  • Hongjoong says, “Say My Name is the story of Ateez before becoming a Pirate King.”

  • Jongho also says in the making of video, “I think it would be nice that you interpret and understand the story by yourself. You would say, 'Wow, awesome story!' If you understand that. Is this…Ateez? 'Wow, is that why the title is Say My Name?' 'Is that why calling my name?' You will feel like this. What kind of Ateez are we?” Then Seonghwa told them not to give anymore spoilers away.

  • At the end of the making of video Yunho says, “I think our wardrobes and hair styles themselves are the spoiler.” Then Hongjoong says, “Don’t worry, this video will be uploaded after a sound source release.” Then San says, “Please guess what kind of Ateez we are now” and Seonghwa says “What kind of Ateez are we now?”

I’m not quite sure what all of that means other than to know there are definitely different kinds of Ateez. Bookish Theories connects them to Jekyll and Hyde which would mean they are two sides of the same person but 15Kim thinks they are two different people in a past and future realities. Based on this conversation at the end of their making of film, I’m thinking she might be right but I’m still going to lean into the book stuff since they are obviously using literary and movie references in their music videos and song lyrics.

Hints From an Interview

I saw an interview where they asked Hongjoong to explain Say My Name and he said it was a prequel to Pirate King and then this: “It’s about how we become pirate kings with a message of 'if you call us we will come.' It tells how the 8 of us came together. If you think of what kind of Ateez is appearing in the MV, if you think about the meanings, you’ll have more fun watching it.” He then rapped some of this lyrics from the song:

"Call me, call me, call me, my name will appear in the search box. I put on the name tag I always wanted. Bring y'all close friends."

He explained the name tag means they came to the world as Ateez and as each member and gathered as friends to set forth on the journey. The name tags they wore were designed by Atiny. He then rapped the part,

"Come on over and watch me, just the four letters in the name, put it on with finesse, zoom in here cuz I'm the captain."

The first letters in each of this set of 4 lines makes up the four letter that spell out Ateez in Korean. (MIND BLOWN) Seonghwa then explained the lyrics, “when the heart beats it starts to climb up maybe it’s destiny." = Atiny (Ateez+Destiny). They are so sly!!

Now let's watch the music videos and see if we can find all of the cool little clues they dropped.

Final Thoughts

This comeback continues the anarchist theme but makes it more overt. It has ”layer 1” connections to Jekyll and Hyde and Hongjoong explained some of the ”layer 2” lyrics of Say My Name through how his rap spells out Ateez and how they refernce Atiny. We also see how they "gather as friends to start their journey" and we are told the message, "if you call us we will come". We meet Halateez who may be either an alternate dark side of Ateez (Bookish Theories) or another set of boys who look like Ateez from a future parallel world (15Kim). No matter who they are, they are AWESOME!!

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