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j-hope IN THE BOX

“What Zeus had kept inside the box broke loose from their confinement./

All that was foul was now unleashed upon the world./

Pandora, unable to undo what she had done, fell into despair./

As she grieved, she heard a feeble quiver from the box./

She lifted the lid once more, and out fluttered a small, bright, most/ beautiful creature she had ever seen./

It flapped its delicate wings as it danced around Pandora, lightly brushing against her shoulder./

Pandora immediately felt her angst melt away and her heart glow/ with warmth./

It was Hope that was kept in the innermost nook of the box./

It trailed behind the miasma of darkness, assuaging their ill effects on humankind./

Hope gave people the will to carry on living amidst the pain and strife.”


Thus began BTS’ chapter two with Jung Hoseok, aka j-hope, jumpstarting his solo career by coming out of the box and showcasing the different aspects of his personality within his album Jack In The Box. Its promotional activities culminated in his historical headlining act at one of the biggest music festivals in the USA, Lollapalooza. If we look at j-hope’s career trajectory, it may seem like he reached his peak too soon with his debut solo endeavor. But everyone knows there’s more to come for j-hope. How he ended up with this album is what the documentary “j-hope IN THE BOX” (and this blog) will delve into, as well as whether it fulfilled its purpose of showing j-hope’s preparations for his solo album.


Hope In The Box


j-hope revealed in the documentary that about half a year after releasing his debut mixtape Hope World, he thought, “This is what I’m going to do next”, adding “With Hope World, I was still inside the box. I always wondered if that was who I really was. I'm not saying that wasn't me; that's part of who I am. But at the same time, it felt like it was time to show a maturer side of me. I thought, when I finally pop out of the box, I want to sing about the experiences outside the box." With this mindset, he set out to create his new record with a detail-oriented determination.


The Journey To Pop Out Of The Box


“People don’t know about this. They know BTS very well, but they don’t know how j-hope of BTS makes his music, what steps he takes to create his albums and performances, or how the promotion works. I wanted to show these things in depth. I want every detail to go on record.” We see the work behind Jack In The Box in full swing, from struggling to finish the first bar of the song Arson to not getting a single lyric out.


Having sleepless nights over the dedication of preparing your first record means putting your personal life aside for a bit, which is why j-hope calls his dad to tell him he is unable to meet him in Seoul. But in the next scene, j-hope manages to make time to visit his home in Gwangju, which accounts for one of the most adorable scenes of the documentary, the most endearing moment being j-hope’s family having a foundation stone for him with the inscription “홉월드” (Hope World). His mother still has photos and memorabilia of j-hope from 2017 during the “WINGS” tour.


While on his way to Gwangju, j-hope mentions he made Namjoon (RM) listen to his record first and that he said the sound was different from what j-hope had done before. He also spoke more on the meaning behind the album’s title, stating that just as the clown/toy pops out of its box when opened, he’s also popping out as a musician in the wider world to share his experiences.


After returning to Seoul, we follow j-hope as he prepares for Jack In The Box’s listening party, saying, “When you release music, it deserves a celebration, and it should be enjoyed with others, regardless of whether we are close.” The day of the listening party has arrived, and j-hope is styled up and nervous as we follow him on the elevator, talking to his reflection, asking himself, “Who are you?”, “What are you doing here?” and “You can do this, right? Yes.”


The scenes and rehearsals are interspersed with j-hope’s Lollapalooza performance. One of the best parts of the Lollapalooza segment was j-hope observing the lack of chemistry between the dancers when he saw the rehearsal footage of them performing Dynamite (Tropical Remix). j-hope felt there was no interaction between them and lamented over not checking it beforehand. One of the staff members told him that the chemistry had just started to build up since it was day one of the rehearsals, so there would be improvements when he performed with them.


Watching “j-hope IN THE BOX” was a rollercoaster ride that lived up to j-hope’s expectations! It will be interesting to rewatch his hour-long act on YouTube with insights gained through this documentary. “j-hope IN THE BOX” is now on Weverse and Disney+.


Written By: Anugya

Edited By: LJ

Designed By: Waf


ARMY Magazine does not own any of the photos/videos shared in our blog. No copyright infringement intended.

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