top of page

The World Ep. Fin: Will Part 2

Will Album: "World A": MATZ, IT's You, Youth, and Everything


I've said this in blog comments or when people message me asking when I will be ready to publish a post about whatever comeback is happening, but there is a big reason I wait a while before actually publishing my blog post...it's because KQ has been known to drop something weeks later and that happened again to me during this come back.

So in conclusion, in a perfect world, the Will: Outro video would have been in my Part 1 post, but since they dropped it 9 hours after I published it, I will be analyzing the Outro video in this post as a "bridge" between World Z and World A. We can pretend like it was intentional, although we all know it wasn't. And now you will know for sure why I wait so long to publish comeback posts. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯


The World Ep. Fin: Will Outro:

Hongjoong said, "Our album is about traces we left in the Z dimension" and I think this Outro shows just that. We get our little blue bird who broke the Cromer flying through the places of Strictland Ateez has left their trace with a red shining piece of Cromer in its mouth.

We also see our trusty dichroic cube, or what my friends and I lovingly refer to as "the prism", again. I saw a reactor say that the blue bird was carrying the cube and not a piece of Cromer during their reaction to the Outro, but you can see in the image above that the cube was already on the desk before the bird gets close to it. We have previously seen this cube in Illusion, Thanxx, Dreamers, and the cover art of Paradigm along with references to cube structures in other songs like Utopia and Déjà Vu. In Professor Hongjoong’s Ateez Storyline Special Lecture Hongjoong tells us that the Cromer is not the only ancient artifact, so that leads me to believe that the prism is one more artifact they have been using. If you want all the juicy details on this prism (up to now), feel free to go back to my The World Ep: Paradigm post where I really dive in. My current theory, based on a post written by @Riezukidoong1, is that the prism helps Ateez control dreams, but we see it being used along with the Cromer in the Will Outro so maybe a better explanation is that the prism helps them control the Cromer. So if the Cromer is the vehicle that helps them travel, the prism is the navigational system.

But why are both the broken piece of Cromer and the cube red? I think it all stems back to the blood moon. As a reminder, blood moons are a form of lunar eclipse but "because they require a full moon and total lunar eclipse to occur, blood moons amplify the already strong powers of the lunar cycle." They not only symbolize change but are amplifying the already strong powers of full moons. So in this situation, the Cromer and the prism are utilizing the blood moon's amplifying powers. What does this mean for Ateez? I'm not 100% sure. What I think is they were able to go wherever they desired in their travels back to World A using the Cromer instead of maybe to the replica of where they were in World Z (like when they went from warehouse to warehouse in Fever).


My resident prism evangelist, Carey, sent me this from the Twitter (ugh, X, I don't want to change the name) timeline about the cube being a tesseract.

She further shared some research on tesseracts (because she knows I shy away from all prism talk and wouldn't want to do the research on my own). Science ABC describes a tesseract starting from a dot = 0 dimensions, line = 1 dimension, square = 2 dimensions, cube = 3 dimensions. If you take a 3 dimensional cube and replace each face with a cube, you get a tesseract = 4 dimensions. The post above gives us a really good picture of one.


Apparently a tesseract was used in the book, A Wrinkle in Time. I have never read A Wrinkle in Time, and I didn't have time to read it before writing this post, but I was able to download a library kindle version and do a search of the word "tesseract" to see how it was used in that story. In the introduction to A Writing in Time, Anna Quindlen explains, "...a tesseract which is a way to travel through time and space using a fifth dimension." It is further explained in the book that they are, in essence, folding time and space in order for them to travel through it faster. They explain this in Event Horizon, which was a movie I completely forgot about but somehow remembered only this scene so I was able to do some quick googling to find it. I am assuming this movie is rated R just from the bit of the scene with the explanation, so watch only if you are ok with that.

Folding space and time to travel through dimensions makes sense in terms of Ateez lore so I'll go with it for now. Are Ateez using a tesseract or a dichroic cube? I don't know. I do know, based on Science ABC's lesson that humans have only evolved to visualize the world in 3 dimensions, so maybe the dichroic cube was the best thing KQ's prop department could find to represent the tesseract visually. Hopefully, a future diary entry will give us more information on that.


The Will Album "World A"

Ok, so now that we have re-discussed Crescent Part 2, let's get into the World A songs of The Will album. One of the best parts of this album release is that we got to hear about the creation of each song, especially the unit songs which were written by the members. I have included their discussion of each song creation, not always for lore reasons, but just because getting a glimpse of their thought processes in music creation is fascinating.


Dreamy Day

We didn't get a full music video for Dreamy Day like we did for the unit songs BUT they did add some imagery to it when giving us the World A preview.

Yes my friends, we are BACK in the warehouse from the Diary Film with everyone happy and "all together"!! When discussing this song during the Countdown live, San said, "I listen to this song on the daily, it is easy to listen to, it is our song for the fans and so this song gets me a little teary eyed, but it is from happiness. I am tearing up from being so happy.” Hongjoong also added he wrote Dreamy Day when he was 22 which puts the writing of this song during the height of COVID and makes the lyrics just that much more meaningful, at least to me. A dream of being together with Atiny when we were all apart. Oh it makes me tear up just thinking about it. Also, I hope this is their ending song in their upcoming world tour. I feel like it has to be.


During the Behind the Will Part 2 video, Wooyoung stated, "Hongjoong hyung produced this song. This is the only song I listen to these days. I hear Crazy Form when we practice for it so I like to listen to this one on the regular." Hongjoong replied, "This song is for our Atiny. We thought about our Atiny while we sang Dreamy Day. After Dreamy Day we transfer over to World A. We did a lot of World Z songs up to now after the Fever series we’re back to World A and our unit songs with a set list that contains stories. The songs are fun because they are so different. All four songs." 

"Even if it's a long dream, when you return to reality; It's just a dream of one night (Just that much)"

Maybe they are using this line to tell us when they are returning to. So for Ateez, they were in World Z for quite some time but when they return to World A, it would have been like they were gone for just one night.


In the Naver article reporter Kim Soo-jeong writes, "Taking 'Dream Day' as an example, "It is a song that expresses the feelings toward the fans and the hope and courage in the worldview narrative through ambiguous lyrics, so if it is written in the form of a letter to the fans, the message that is intended to be conveyed through the song is “I thought it would become clearer,” he said." So we are meant to feel the hope and courage through the song even though we wanted their message to become clearer.


MATZ

When discussing the creation of MATZ, Hongjoong said, "Matz [we] chose something hip. Seonghwa played a big role. When Seonghwa heard that he was going to be in a unit with me, he told me about the mood that [he] wanted to set. It all began from there. Seonghwa wrote a lot of lyrics too. He thought it through. I’m not kidding, he wrote about 120 lines of rap lyrics. I think that’s about how much he wrote." Yunho then asked, "You reduced from that?" To which Hongjoong replied, "Yeah, we got 16 bars from those lines. How was it? [asking Seonghwa]" "I had so much fun while doing this. To be honest I didn’t do much. It was like taking credit for something that’s already been done. I learned a lot while doing it.  Hongjoong produced this song so I thought he was really amazing. I could see that Hongjoong was being very generous and I was so thankful for it. So thus my personal satisfaction is huge and I look forward to it." Seonghwa answered. Hongjoong added, "And this goes for us but the universe is hidden in the unit songs. Our World A stories are stories about ourselves but we hid our universe in there as well. I think it’ll be fun to spot those things."


Ok, so based on Hongjoong's statement, we need to analyze all of the unit music videos from an Ateez perspective and a lore perspective. This will most likely take the form of lyrics = Ateez's perspective and music video imagery = lore perspective. for MATZ, we have Hongjoong and Seonghwa portraying the very definition of their name, they are "mad hyungs (eldest)". They took this opportunity to speak to the sasaengs and the antis as well as proclaim that they are in no way stopping their journey to the top of the music industry in their song.

"No midway, yeah; To be honest, we're not at the top, I can't rest still; Around the world, take a whirl, quickly unpacking, tracksuit mode; Gentleman, Hongdae time attack then; Quickly fly, run to Incheon, airport fashion, that; Was left to the brand, little by little; If there's time, I should catch up on lost sleep"

They are not going to rest until they are at the top. They will keep touring the world and rehearsing for new performances. They are aware they don't sleep enough but are prioritizing their job over that and they are reaping the benefits (using the fact that their airport fashion has become more and more brand name).

"I, who grew up looking at the sky; Now live in the sky, resolving things; If the GPS for necessities is on, not on the carnival but on the carrier; You can be busy too. Don't worry, regardless of above or below the stage; I don't live shamefully; Numbers without sources; Just don't sell them, no shame, enjoy as always"

Oh friends, they are NOT happy with the sasaengs! I love that they are finally calling out the nonsense. If you don't know what they are talking about, in August of 2022, a sasaeng put a GPS tracker on Ateez's Kia Carnival and KQ took legal action. I have linked the article in the picture if you want to read it directly.

Matz are saying, that they are so busy flying around to different countries on their tour that a sasaeng trying to track their car isn't even worth it. They should have tried to track their luggage but what would have been even better would be for the sasaeng to just get their own life (be busy too). There have also been situations where sasaengs have found Ateez member's phone numbers and called them, we see this often in San's lives and he has to speak to them on his live telling them he won't answer their calls. His lives are often broken up into small chunks due to their continued calling impacting his ability to video himself on his phone. Matz are shaming those who discover Ateez's numbers and sell them to other sasaengs asking them to enjoy Ateez for their music in a healthier way.

"I pay Euro, pay Dollar; Pay Yen, Won, pay, blah, blah; Pay for what, I've already done the pay off; Pay no mind, someone, blah, blah; Actually, a little bit; My body is already on fire; But yes, oh, my doctor said; There's a lot of space above"

I think these lyrics have two different meanings. When I first heard the song, I thought Seonghwa was talking about how antis call Ateez "nugu" (nobodies) and he is telling them they don't care about that name because they are raking in the money from all over the world. Then I saw a comment on of the the reaction videos I watched where the commenter, @stillastrayyayayaya explained this line in a way I was unaware of. They said, "[the line] is a diss at the Korean elders who asked for compensation because Ateez's concert is not 'child-friendly'." They also explain the doctor lyric being in reference to the WANTEEZ episode where they go to the doctor and reference it to "how the doctor told Seonghwa that he has a large stomach and is hungry for more achievements...basically saying they are hungry and that's how they eat up all of those haters by dissing them." Love it, @stillastrayyayayaya! Thanks for the insight!


Now lets get into the music video. There are 3 main character groups in this music video. Hongjoong and Seonghwa (Matz), the creepy cult-like men in black with what looks like VHS tape hanging from their masks, and the men in neutral colors who are dancing around Matz unmasked.

For those of you who were not alive to experience watching movies using a VCR and VHS cassettes, here is a picture of what I am talking about:

We had to rewind the tape after watching it in order to get to the beginning again, hence "Be Kind Rewind" being used as a catch phrase. It sometimes got caught in the gears of the VCR causing everything to stop while the person with the steadiest hands tried to gently untangle the tape, flatten out the creases, and manually wind it back into the cassette while the rest of the people hoped it wasn't destroyed. They were dangerous times.


So who is this VHS tape cult? I think from the Ateez perspective, they could be considered anti netizens, sasaengs, or the music industry as a whole who want Ateez to fail. Those individuals Matz are speaking to in their lyrics. From the lore perspective, now that Ateez is back in World A, I think they are Sciensalvar. Ateez stole the Cromer from them and then used it to go back to World Z. If they did come back the day after that occurred, the Sciensalvar may want to get back at them for their role in thwarting the cult's plan.


The men in neutral colors dancing unmasked around Matz would be consider on Matz's side. Whether that be true Atiny and those in the industry who champion them or people in World A who will end up working with Ateez against Sciensalvar.


The first main plot point we get is Matz's kidnapping.

We see the cult placing a GPS under their van (as per the sasaeng) and then kidnapping them as soon as they enter. We also see Matz's chains include clocks (which I believe are in reference to the Cromer's ability to control time and Sciensalvar's knowledge of that and their desire to control it). We see the cult members monitoring them just like Ateez is monitored by sasaengs and paparazzi.


Once Matz escapes captivity, we see the next main plot point, the record store.

Here we see the cult members walking around with a collection of CDs and even handling them inside their cases. I also noticed a video surveillance unit but one of their monitors looks more like audio editing software. What if Sciensalvar has started to change out the CDs for some of the messaging they end up using in World Z to subconsciously control their citizens? No worries, Matz locates the record store and destroys it. In the Making of MATZ film, Hongjoong says, "I'm here [the record store set] to film the most dramatic scene. I'll break the set and express my rage." Matz are raging against the establishment whether that be Sciensalvar or those against them in reality.


This leads us to the last plot point, what I lovingly like to refer to as the "I'll be watching you" portion of the video (cue Sting for background music).

Matz has a trail of cult members following them and under their final stage. When the camera zooms out, the cult members are gone and Matz's supporters are there instead, but I don't think we should forget about the cult. Even though Matz think they are safe from the eyes of the creepy VHS tape masked men, they are still lurking under the surface ready to appear and reek havoc again.


So what did Hongjoong and Seonghwa do when they returned from World Z? They got busy. They went right back into the fight. They focused whatever emotions they were dealing with after surviving what they did in World Z (with one of those emotions most likely being rage) into their new purpose.


Ateez released a performance version of MATZ and a Making Of the song MATZ while I was waiting to see if they were going to release something for Fin: WILL so I am adding the performance version here because it is GOOD!! They gave me what I never knew I was missing!


IT's You

When discussing the creation of IT's You, Hongjoong asked, "How would you describe IT’s You?" Yeosang replied, "It’s hip, charming, and quite sexy." Wooyoung continued, "The three of us gathered in Thailand to write the lyrics. I felt Hongjoong hyung, Mingi, and Eden-ary hyung’s struggles right away. I couldn’t find the answer. It’s so hard. I didn’t know where to start writing. San and Yeosang were quite good at lyric writing though." "You did well too!" San encouraged. "It was so hard for me. We huddled around to write the lyrics and in the process of production I learned something new. What was our unit called again?" Wooyoung asked to which both Yeosang and San answered, "B.O.S. Half of 50" and San continued, "This isn’t confirmed though." "We just wanted to make it sound funny", Wooyoung concluded. They spoke about their subunit name again in the making of IT's You video. Half of 50 means their Korean age, 25. Love it!


So what message is B.O.S. trying to tell us with IT's You? They are telling a story of the relationship between them as dedicated and passionate performers and Atiny as their fans. Songtell.com explains this song better than I could so I am going to summarize their explanation.

"Look at the way I ride; No shaking, vibe; 24/7, I; Get ready, flashing light; Dance, day and night; In line, feeling, right? Move, all day, night (All day, night); A show, a show, a flow, a flow that digs into your whole body..."

They don't let anything shake their vibe and are constantly ready to perform with their flashing lights and non-stop dancing. "The "show" they put on is described as a flow that deeply resonates within the listener, immersing them in the experience."

"Oh, my body, I don't wanna stop, until the break of dawn; There's no end to my performance for you; Yeah, it's you-ooh-ooh-ooh (Oh-oh-oh-oh) (2x); Oh, my body, I don't wanna stop, until the break of dawn; My song for you will spread all over the world; Yeah, it's you-ooh-ooh-ooh (Oh-oh-oh-oh) (2x)"

Their performance has no end when it comes to Atiny and they want to spread their music and message throughout the world.

"Just the two of us, oh; Freely without any distractions; There are no boundaries to our dreams, joyfully; Neverland is a fantasy that's prepared only for us; Fly endlessly like Peter Pan...It's okay; You and I are together; Come and let's leave; To our own world (Oh, woah, woah, woah)"

They are celebrating unity and freedom, and following their dreams while inviting us to "leave the confines of reality and enter their own world together."


Songtell.com finishes with, "Overall, "IT's You" conveys a message of dedication, passion, and the power of connection between the performer and the audience. It celebrates the mutual joy and empowerment found in music and performance." Honestly, I'm really grateful for Songtell.com because my brain was so stuck on the music video images, I couldn't switch it to dig into the lyrics like I normally do. I blame B.O.S!!


So let's start talking about the music video. The first thing we see is the word "trauma" which is the theme of the music video. We get a little fun easter egg in the car license plate: 1024 AZ (Ateez's debut date) and then enter Wooyoung's inner conscious through his eye.

Although we are accessing the inner conscious through Wooyoung, in IT's You we see inside each member's mind as they are grappling with the trauma of what they just experienced in World Z/Strictland. This is portrayed when B.O.S. is in white and sky blue.

During the Making of IT's You video we hear the director say, "It's the eye insert scene for a traumatic scene" when explaining the scene to Wooyoung, so we know what comes next is meant to invoke a feeling of trauma. We hear the director tell Yeosang to create an "unsetting and anxious" facial expression during the filming of his traumatic scene and see a caption labeling San's scene in the bird cage as a "suffering image". They for sure pulled off what the director was trying to go for in these scenes. They portrayed internal feelings of being overwhelmed, lost, anxious, and trapped. Feelings related to trauma.


My loretiny friend and I discussed these scenes, talking about why San was in the bird cage while Yeosang has been the one associated with birds and bird cages in the past, why they are all wearing blue, and why they are portraying trauma. I think this space, this dark room where B.O.S. are in the sky blue and white outfits (they are the bluebirds), is not just representing their feelings but all of Ateez. I think that is why San is in the birdcage instead of Yeosang; because if it was Yeosang, we would all think it was just about Yeosang. By putting San in there, we could separate the bird cage from only Yeosang and allow it to represent a feeling of being trapped that all of Ateez probably has. Also, by adding the birds looking at San while he is in the bird cage, we see them worried about the image they are portraying because people (in this case birds) who are free are seeing them being trapped.

In addition to the dark room of trauma, we get scenes washed in red. The Importance of Red in Film by Jayleen Suliveres states, "In film, Red is used a lot in lieu of these hidden emotional stimulants. The color is found to be associated with the following feelings: War, Danger, Strength, Power, Passion, Desire, Love but above all demands more attention than any other color...to garner an emotional response effectively." In this space we also see a storm and broken glass. When researching the meaning of storms and broken glass in dreams I found that storms signify some significant shock, loss, catastrophe, or struggle occurring in your life, as well as any fears, anger, or other strong, negative emotions which you haven't outwardly expressed and are keeping bottled up inside. Additionally broken glass may evoke feelings of vulnerability, fear, and uncertainty.


While all of these emotions are swirling inside B.O.S., they are still having to portray a sense of normalcy on the outside by dancing without stop. They are like ducks whose feet are constantly moving underneath the water but who look calm on the surface.

However, some of their feelings do start to creep on the surface. You see Yeosang wandering around the street looking lost and being overwhelmed by the sense of a plane coming towards him. I love how they added the plane in Yeosang's storyline since he was the one trapped in World Z during Turbulence.

We see San letting birds out of a bird cage because he wants them to experience the freedom he is longing for as he is currently feeling trapped. And we see that feeling he has of everyone needing something from him and coming after what they need.

Let's put this in the context of the lore. You have a bunch of high school aged boys who have spent the last (at least several months, maybe over a year) away from their families fighting for not only their survival in a familiar but very different place, but being asked to lead a revolution of sorts by people who are counting on them, which is A LOT of pressure. They do that, and in the course of that, witness people die in front of their eyes and have to literally fight people with guns pointed at them. They get home and are now finally able to take a breath from the months/year they have been living in a continual fight or flight cycle. Which means they finally have time to think about what has just happened to them and all of the emotions that comes with their reflections. They are dealing with a little bit of PTSD, if not a lot of it. If I am correct about when they return, they have to go back to their previously scheduled lives like the things they have survived in World Z never even happened (at least when they are around their families and friends who did not experience it with them). They are now trapped in a whole other way, just from the fact that they experienced all of what they did and like ANYONE would actually believe them because it is so far fetched. If they told anyone people would think they are crazy! So on the surface they were trying to look like everything was normal but underneath, they were feeling anxious, lost, overwhelmed, trapped, angry, fearful, vulnerable...they were feeling a lot. Trauma.


Youth

When discussing the creation of Youth, Hongjoong asked, "How would you describe Youth?" Mingi began, "It’s alternative pop genre. I think this song speaks for our youth and our age." "To continue on from the Thailand story, I think we were the first to record. Recording for Youth was very smooth." Yunho stated. Mingi continued, "Youth, compared to other songs is a song that needs a distinction in the voice so this song is quite difficult but we pulled it off very nicely and with that the lyrics were very metaphorical. It wasn’t like me at all. That’s why the song itself is more attractive." "I discussed the lyrics with Mingi and Mingi took the initiatives so everything worked out smoothly." Yunho added to which Wooyoung asked, "Wasn’t it difficult to write the lyrics, Yunho?" and he answered, "It wasn’t too bad for me. I had the blueprints already so..." "It was difficult for me." Wooyoung replied. Mingi then stated, "If you listen to Youth, I think you’ll hear Yunho’s voice like you’ve never heard before. That’s my personal thought." Hongjoong remarked, "After hearing this story, Mingi, you rapped but I also heard you sang as well." Yunho replied, "The parts with the melody are filled with Mingi. The voices are a nice match to the melody." Hongjoong added, "It was a new challenge for Yunho, but a new challenge for Mingi who did the producing." "It was a new step for the both of us." Yunho stated. "We listen to Mingi sing quite often but our fans don’t have much opportunity to hear him sing. Sounds good." Hongjoong concluded.


During the Countdown live Mingi said he wrote Youth when he was 22. If you take into account that he was most likely using his Korean age, Mingi would have been 22 while he was on hiatus from November 2020-March 2021. It would make sense that this song was written during that time.

"I don't care, I don't care, no; Why am I feeling down? This complicated world, no, my heart; It bites onto me and doesn't let go; I don't know the answer, my head hurts; Adults say that youthfulness, this one word; Means sadness as joy and to enjoy the present; They only say words that are hard to hear"

Reaching your lifelong dream and becoming a famous K-pop star at a young age seems relatively normal for K-Pop stars but most people in their early 20s are in college, finally getting their first taste of "adulthood" while still being in a semi-controlled environment and not having to face the true reality of being an adult (e.g., career, mortgage, saving for retirement, etc.). K-Pop stars are experiencing a career. They are living away from their families and whole companies are depending on their success. They are experiencing great stressors that normal young adults do not. They are living in a complicated adult world as youths and told to enjoy their present.

"Say, oh; Did you enjoy those times back then? Say, oh; Was happiness greater than pain? It's hard to even sleep, yeah; To achieve dreams in reality, yeah, yeah; I'm too young, it's hard right now; Say no, no, no, no, no"

Mingi and Yunho are asking adults who are telling them to enjoy where they are in life if they enjoyed when they were their age. Did they not experience pain? Mingi and Yunho have achieved their dreams but now, because they are young, it is hard. Honestly, I wonder how prepared idols are for the life they are signing up for. They want to dance and sing and perform but with that comes losing their youth to rehearsing, being away from their families and childhood friends, losing their privacy to either their agency or the public, being held to standards so high no normal person would want to be held to with no grace because any small step out of what the world sees as perfection could get them dragged across the coals.

"I’m dancing as if every day is my last; I want to shine like the pouring light; Looking at the starry night sky, I want to lean on you; Smile brightly when you see me"

Yeah, this idol life is hard, but at the end of the day, it is what they want. They want to dance. They want to shine. So they will lean on those who matter the most to them for comfort and support. Youth is a song reflecting the difficulties and uncertainties of life and the desire for solace and understanding.


In the music video we see Mingi and Yunho in the present wearing soft clothes (e.g., fuzzy sweaters, pastel colors, etc.) frolicking through fields of reeds and relaxing on trucks and the roof of a hut (they called this cabin/shack a hut in the Making of Youth film). This Mingi and Yunho are at peace; they are happy.

We see them look into the window of the hut and realize this not a usual hut. This is a hut of memories.

Mingi sees himself with the same earbuds and facial injuries he received when he fought the boys in high school and uses music as a way to isolate himself into a world he considered his safe place (see Diary Film).

Yunho sees himself leaning against a car in contemplation (see Wave) but this time this car is the one who crashed into his brother (see Diary Film).

He sees himself back in his brother's music studio and remembers again destroying his brother's guitar out of grief (see Diary Film), this time by slamming it against the crashed car. Yuhno confirms this in the Making of Youth film, when he said, "I took image cuts thinking about my (imaginary) brother."

During the Making of Youth film, Mingi states, "As for this song, I am representing the youth out there to seek question to the wiser people and ask, 'Why is youth so difficult?' This scene is where I ask for advice and these contrasting cuts overlap to create a very emotion-filled scene. On one side, I'm very calm and on the other side, I'm doing a lot of action scenes. I find this method very interesting..." Both Mingi and Yunho have hard youths in Ateez lore. Yuhno had to deal with the death of his brother not once but twice and Mingi lived a life of poverty and solitude where he was constantly having to fight others. Once he did find friendship, his grandmother got sick and Mingi used his defense mechanism of pushing people away to deal with that. That was all before they got swept away to World Z. His question in this song, "why is youth so difficult?" makes sense based on their "lore lives".

They are trying to grow up. They have put on suits like they see adults wear and are contemplating their upcoming adulthood. They are looking deep inside them to try to grow (see Answer).

But growing up isn't easy and can be a uncertain and make you feel vulnerable.

However, at the end of the day, they were able to face their memories and put them behind them.

They are ready to move on.


Everything

When discussing the creation of Everything, Hongjoong began, "Lastly, our solo. Maknae." Jongho continued, "First of all, as I prepared Everything and as I was writing, I took a look back as if we’re going back to World A. It was as if I was looking back on my own days. Everything means all. It means all and to some people, that everything can be careers or even dreams they had when they were young. It can also mean a lover who they loved for a long time. The meaning changes depending on who you are. But now when we’re with that Everything we tend to forget the preciousness due to the familiarity. At one point, that familiarity made it let go of naturally but when I think about it after some time, it was my everything. Thus it’s my way of using this song as a way to tell a story about my Everything. That’s the meaning behind the song. Once I had this dream as a child…I once had this job…I once had this person I loved. If you think about these things while you listen to this song, I think you’ll be able to enjoy it better." Seonghwa questioned, "From what I heard, didn’t Jongho write the lyrics at Hangang River?" "On a rainy day I went to the Hangang River by myself and took out my notepad but it’s better to sit in front of the computer and write the notes down." Jongho answered. "Somewhere warmer", Yunho added. "I have my earphones in so I can listen to music. I think I contemplated more since it was a ballad." Jongho added. "I heard Mingi was going to cover this song!" Hongjoong joked to which Minigi replied, "I’ll give it a try." Hongjoong concluded, "All the songs are really nice and it’s our first time releasing unit songs and I think the songs will be very fun to listen to."


Public service disclaimer: I am all up in my feels with Everything so you will have to go through some things with me here. I apologize in advance. You have been warned!


I have a confession to make. I LOVE Jongho's voice! I love it so much that I may or may not have downloaded all of his Jjongsts, songs he sang during interviews, and songs he sang on competition shows and put them on my phone so I could listen to them at any time. I am not saying I did that, as that would be wrong, but I am saying, if they were able to be purchased, like his OSTs are, I would have of course purchased them. All that to say, Everything is my favorite song on this album. You can't give me 3 minutes and 46 seconds of pure Jongho magic and not expect me to pick Everything over any other song. It was the music video I was most looking forward to and I 1000% agree with the person who posted this comment:

Also, Hyuk was my favorite character on Imitation before I even knew about Ateez, and I think it would be a crime if we don't get more actor Jongho in the coming years.


Knowing Jongho wrote these lyrics and then sang them like he is a man who has lost the love of his life and is in agony makes it just that much more meaningful.

"Why did I; A single word would've been enough; The words that rose up to the tip of my tongue; I'll borrow this song to tell them; You're my everything; If only I could turn back time; If only I could see you again; If only I could do that"

BREAK MY HEART JONGHO!!

"I tried to pretend it was okay; But it hurt to be stabbed by the lingering feelings that emerged; Why can't I face myself after losing you even once; And why do I keep trying to run away"

THE LOSS!!

"Back then, I should've told you; That you're the reason for my entire life; I'm going to run to you; I won't; Forget you even for a second; I'll give this song to you; You're my everything; If only I could convey my heart; If only I could meet you again; You were my everything"

THE REGRET!!


I love that he used this song to represent the loss of anything that is important to one's life whether that be a career, dream, or loved one. I am gutted!! But then, of course (and we all knew they would do this the second we realized they were going to make the unit songs into music videos), they had to put visuals to his words and we had to witness the pain.


We see Jongho remembering the happy days of his relationship.

We see the him pleading for his love not to leave him but then, after failing, having to watch her walk away from him.

We see him sitting in the apartment that he used to share with her and visiting the basketball court where they had a date as they burn around him. This is where we get the only connection to the lore in Jongho's music video. We are back in Diary Film/Inception with Jongho morning his lost basketball career. Remember, in the lore, he injured himself and was no longer able to play basketball. It was at that point he started to get into music and began hanging out with the rest of the members of Ateez in the warehouse.

During the music video we also see Jongho standing in front of a balloon store, feeling all of that loss and regret we are suffering through with him.

But why a balloon store? I mean, yeah, balloons are pretty, but they could have picked lots of other things to make a backdrop for Jongho's pain. In Spiritual Meaning of Balloons Explained [& Dream Interpretation] on unifycosmos.com, the author states, "Balloons are largely symbolic of our goals, dreams, and aspirations. Balloons take flight in ways that we’d like to. Balloons represent the need to let go. When we let go of a balloon filled with air it rises up into the sky, no longer tied down to the earth. This is exactly what the past is doing to us. Balloons represent freedom as well. More specifically, the freedoms that we experience from obtaining our goals or letting go of the past." So these balloons are a message to Jongho to let go of his past in order to gain freedom from it. In the music video, he needs to let go of his painful memories of his lost relationship. In the lore he needs to let go of his feelings about not being able to play basketball again. By doing that he can gain the freedom he needs to follow a new dream and obtain a new goal.


Jongho ended the Making of Everything video explaining his song's message, "Let's not let familiarity overshadow the preciousness." He goes on to explain, "Back in that time, back in that place, everything was so precious to us. The important memories and moments eventually become regrets and I expressed my regrets and sorrow though this song. Our Atiny can listen to this song and find a lot of hope and recollect the precious memories of the past. I hope this song brings them all back and [you] make more meaningful memories."


Fin: WILL

I have been waiting a full two weeks since Everything dropped just in case KQ decided to give us a video for Fin:WILL. We've received a performance version of MATZ, a making of video, LOTS of information about Aniteez, and a solo song from Mingi, but nothing related to Fin: WILL. Therefore, I am going to go ahead and post this without a video. Will they drop something the second I post? Maybe, but with Not Okay just around the corner, I feel like I need to pull the trigger on finishing this album.


Hongjoong finished the discussion of the album by saying, "And then the album finishes off with Fin: WILL. WILL foreshadows the future but also means perseverance. It has a double meaning to it. So the title of our 2nd album and the last track has “Will” in it. So that wraps up our second studio album." Yuhno continued, "Listing it like this makes it seem so neat!" Seonghwa added, "Reminds us of good times." "Each song reminds us of great memories." Hongjoong replied and Yuhno finished by saying, "So that’s what we have planned."

"What does emotion mean to you?
Aren't you still tormented by the pain from the past? Have you ever panicked and felt broken by sadness? Have you ever lost yourself in overwhelming fear? Have you ever felt so down that you wanted to be alone in this world?

This song starts with asking us questions about the more negative emotions. All of those emotions that we don't really want to feel because they take us to a dark place. These are the emotions that Z and his followers probably used to provide as examples to the people in government that allowed them to suppress emotions in the first place. Why would anyone want to feel this way if we had a choice? But the problem is, in suppressing these emotions, we also remove the positive emotions we could feel.

What does emotion mean to you?
Have memories of happiness ever lifted you up? Have you ever been inspired by a dream that felt both far and clear? Have you ever found comfort in the laughter of children? Have you ever fallen in love?

Now we are presented with the positive emotions. All of those things that bring comfort, joy, and color to our lives. I grew up with my mom telling me, "You can't have a rainbow without rain." When I searched for that phrase, a TinyBudda website had the full quote, "Everybody wants happiness, nobody wants pain, but you can’t have a rainbow without a little rain." So not only did Strictland remove all emotions, making everyone numb, the concept of just removing the negative emotions would have still caused a sense of numbness because in removing the negative emotions from our lives, we don't have anything to compare them to. Positive emotions won't have the same weight without negative emotions.

What does emotion mean to you?"

This is the real question. When you think about emotions, do you think about the negative ones, the positive ones, or all of them? Have you imagined a life where emotions (positive or negative) were removed? Do you understand the true value of experiencing the full range of emotions? Will you persevere through every hardship so you can experience the emotions that occur when you come out the other side?


Final Thoughts

In the World A section of The World Ep. Fin: Will we see Ateez back in their normal lives and having to live with this World Z experience without talking about it with others who did not experience it with them. The World A songs send us on an emotional rollercoaster as they first experience the euphoria of arriving back home safe and alive (Dreamy Day). Then we see the different members' emotional responses to what they have just been through.


Matz (Hongjoong and Seonghwa) are dealing with anger and a "Damn the Man" attitude (I am aging myself here but if you haven't seen Empire Records, please go watch it to fully understand the experience this saying) that makes them want to destroy the current system and maybe even start to try to bring down Sciensalvar before they take control (MATZ). B.O.S. (Yeosang, San, and Wooyoung) are dealing with their own trauma responses which are causing them to feel anxious, lost, overwhelmed, trapped, angry, fearful, vulnerable now that the real danger of World Z is behind them (IT's You). Yunho and Mingi are trying to look back on their memories to understand why their youth is harder with more sadness than the adults in their lives are claiming it to be. They are trying to learn about themselves through those memories and eventually come to a sense of acceptance where they can let go of the turmoil they bring and just keep the lessons (Youth). Jongho is dealing with a great sense of loss. Loss of a dream, loss of the innocence of childhood, loss of his Everything.


We end with a chance to self reflect ourselves where we can take stock of the negative and positive emotions in our own lives so we can determine what emotion means individually. I love how Ateez allowed us a glimpse into their souls so we can then use that to take stock of our own. They have asked us to join them on this journey and now they want us to really think about the importance of emotion in our own lives. Ateez is DEEP y'all!


I am ending this post with Mingi's solo song, Tunnel. Speaking of deep emotions! If you haven't already watched it, here it is for you. If you have, we are trying to get more streams anyways so a second or eleventh watch won't hurt.

Love you all 3,000!

794 views8 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Not Okay

8 Comments


sofia k
sofia k
Feb 12

again. i love all your writings! i also remembered i never did follow up research on the unit track videos, so your post is going to be my place to start. thank you so much!

just wanted to ask if you heard joong talking about the grills he wore in matz and how they looked like animals? i have learned to distrust EVERYTHING from ateez and as soon as they dropped aniteez and they looked like hwa's lil animal xing characters i screamed "I KNEW IT" lolll

overall, these unit tracks gave us so so so much insight into both ateez and the lore developments, and i'm so excited to see where they go!!

Like
Paisley1117
Paisley1117
Feb 12
Replying to

Matz are half of my bias line too so I get you. 😁

Like

Carey Velazquez
Carey Velazquez
Feb 09

My lovely cube 🥰

Like

Li De
Li De
Feb 09

And again you were right about a Japanese comeback following the cube thingy.

I have a question for you: I am currently writing an essay for school (big deal type of essay) about the rise of K-Pop in which I take a quick look into ATEEZ´ storyline as well. Can I list you as a source?

You are truly my biggest lore provider and without you I would still be lost trying to figure things out. Thank you so much for your work 🩷

Like
Li De
Li De
Feb 15
Replying to

Thank you so much!

Like
bottom of page