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Treasure Ep.1: All to Zero

Updated: Mar 31, 2022

Intro: Long Journey, Pirate King, and Treasure

Ateez debuted with Treasure Ep.1: All to Zero which sets up their storyline as pirates through their double title songs Pirate King and Treasure. But before they get to the singing, they give us this beautiful intro with Maddox, a solo artist from KQ Entertainment, narrating.

I mean, WOW, the epicness of the location, Maddox's crescendo at the end to the last line...Yes, I will join you!!

Since most of you have probably heard Ateez's discography and seen all of their music videos, I am going to start with the theorists so you will know what to look for on subsequent rewatches. The first theorist I discovered is Bookish Theories. She sees things in music videos I never notice and does a wonderful job of making connections. Here is a link to her YouTube channel. I definitely recommend subscribing to her if you haven't already done so. For today, we are going to watch the portion of her theory video related to Ateez's first album.

My Takeaways

  • Ateez is using literature to represent their themes in their Treasure series, for All to Zero the connecting book is Treasure Island

  • All to Zero = Moving from a group of trainees to debuting and starting at zero as a rookie group

  • Treasure = Ambition (becoming kings of the seas (music industry))

  • Ateez needs us to help them find the treasure because we are how they will find it (how they will succeed)

  • Ateez wants to reach the treasure in their own way now that they have begun

The next theorist, 15Kim, I found through Reddit when I was searching for more information about the Treasure series. KQ Entertainment actually commented on some of her theory videos and even sent her a signed copy of one of the Fever series albums, so people in the Reddit universe were looking kindly on her theories. When I was corresponding with my friends I just called her "The Bunny" because that is how I thought she was originally introducing herself. So, 15Kim, if you ever read this, I'm sorry for referring to you as "The Bunny" for so long and thank you for your knowledge!! Here is a link to her YouTube channel if you want to check it out and subscribe. Again, her theory spans multiple albums so we are just going to watch a short clip and come back for more over the next few posts.

My Takeaways

  • Ateez filmed their Treasure Ep. 1: All to Zero album in the desert, away from all water (where pirates normally are) as a way to show them starting on their journey and the foot prints/tire prints of their movement towards their treasure

The last theorist I discovered, FixOn8, I actually found a few days after I wrote my original Part 1 note for my friends and had to add a Part 3.5 for them. I went back and forth on whether I should stick with my original "part" system, especially since she began her theory with the Say My Name and HALA HALA concept, but what she said about Pirate King and Treasure is so good that I am just going to just start with her in the mix now. You can get to her YouTube channel by this link if you want to subscribe to her. FixOn8's videos are longer than the others so I am just going to include clips here but please go watch the full video when you have time. She does a really good job and deserves a full viewing.

Clip 1:

Clip 2:

My Takeaways

  • Ateez pirates are anarchists!! Anarchism is a belief of no rulers or no masters. A society or group of people who totally reject hierarchy

  • The anarchy flag is represented by the colors red and black (found in the Hala Hala era which will be discussed in the next post)

  • A famous French anarchist, Louise Michel, wrote The New World while in prison which in an "ambitious utopia in the vein of Jules Vern" (Ateez references the new world in several interviews, giving hints to their anarchist storyline)

  • Flag clues in Treasure: white and black flag = give peace a chance (rejects the use of violence in the struggle for social change); orange and black flag = mutualism (the land belongs to those who work for it)

Now that you have learned about some of the theories behind the lyrics and imagery of Pirate King and Treasure, let's take a look it the music videos.

Final Thoughts

What is really cool about Ateez is that they have several layers of their music videos and overall concepts. These are in no particular order:

  • Layer 1: The imagery/storyline of their music videos, which for the Treasure series is grounded in literature (Treasure Island to be specific for this album)

  • Layer 2: Their lyrics, which for these songs talk about wanting to reach a treasure, needing us to help them reach it, and wanting to do it their own way

  • Layer 3: The symbolism (think anarchist symbols and flag colors)

  • Layer 4: Their personal journey through the music industry (Bookish Theories' theory)

  • Layer 5: Their overarching storyline which we don't know about enough yet from one album

  • Layer 6: Their overarching concept of pirates

Combining the theories posed by Bookish Theories, 15Kim, and FixOn8, I posit Ateez uses their debut album to set up their overt pirate concept but they are really describing themselves as anarchists. Luke Ayton published an article, "Where Pirates the First Anarchists? Possibly and Here's Why" in the blog, The Pirate Ship in which he took the three defining principles of anarchy and compared them to pirates.

  1. "Anarchism rejects all authority/hierarchies: Pirates did this: most of them were mutineers or escaped criminals who had rejected the extremely hierarchical nature of society at the time, especially in colonies of the Americas and Africa, where most pirates lived.

  2. Anarchism rejects the concept of the state: Pirates did this, they lived on their boats or on uncharted islands where they weren’t subjects to the laws of any land, and could live as free men.

  3. Anarchists reject traditional forms of ownership: As Pierre-Joseph Prudhon argued ‘property is theft’: Pirates generally pillaged with abandon and had no respect for the ownership of what they took."

So 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.

That's what I think I know so far...

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Devon May
Devon May
Jan 28, 2023

Ok I am a baby ATINY and finding this may have just saved me. I really wanted to know the storyline after watching the Halazia MV and found that there was a lot, like a lot. Finding this helps give me a place to start to deep dive. I feel like being a Doctor Who fan will help me understand their storyline. Thank you so much for making this and helping so many fans like me!!


Jhenny Nivaled
Jhenny Nivaled
Dec 14, 2022

Hi.. First of all I wanted to thank you for this very very helpful guide for us babytinys. I've been stanning ATEEZ for 6 months now. And I am really curious about their story line. I did watched bookish theories video before, during their guerrilla promotion. And It made my head ached because a lot has already happened before I even got here. But I won't stop. I really want to know and understand everything. This is what I love about Ateez, they won't just let you stan them because of their visuals, performances, and their talents but also because of their storyline that makes you anxiously waiting what will happen next in their every comeback. And I am really…

Jhenny Nivaled
Jhenny Nivaled
Dec 14, 2022
Replying to

Thank you again. And now I will dive deep into your pov for the ateez lore.

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