Time before a comeback is always filled with anticipation and excitement, and this week’s lead-up to Permission To Dance was no exception. Ready to recap all things BTS of the past exhilarating seven days, ARMY? Let’s get it!
The Debut of Cowboy Bangtan
Fresh off of celebrating Butter’s 6th week at the top of the Billboard Hot 100 and the 900k sales mark for BTS, THE BEST, ARMY began preparing for what SUGA dubbed the “baton touch” to the new single. When the short trailer for Permission to Dance was released, social media erupted in excitement. Of particular interest was the cowboy-esque theme of the new era, which many U.S. Twitter users commented as “Yeehaw Bangtan.” With styles including tassled shirts, gallons hats and lots of denim, this look marked a clear departure from the 70s-themed Dynamite and 80s-themed Butter.
Putting Models Out of Business: For Real This Time
However, a new song wasn’t the only thing up the boys’ sleeves this week, as ARMY was surprised and delighted by multiple videos exemplifying BTS’ range and talent as visuals and artists. On July 3 KST, Louis Vuitton announced that BTS would be modeling the Men's Fall-Winter 2021 Collection by Virgil Abloh in an exclusive virtual fashion show based in Seoul. This was the first full-length modeling project presented by BTS since it was announced that they would serve as House Ambassadors for the luxury fashion brand, in late 2020.
The video premiered July 7 and started with a voiceover from V, who introduced the theme of the show: “hope amidst turbulence.” Following a grey small blimp with the word “Hope” on it, viewers were taken through a “tall skyscraper” in which each BTS member modeled new pieces from Abloh’s collection. The video included individual shots of the members as well as angles that featured other models. Transitions were primarily facilitated by members gazing intensely at each other, matching the stark and sleek industrial tone of the shoot. Clothing pieces featured classic Louis Vuitton patterns and flight-inspired imagery—much of which incorporated Abloh’s Ghanian influences.
It’s Alright to Cry (about Grandpa Bangtan)
Louis Vuitton stated that the collection “aims to redefine how our minds identify archetypical wardrobes which are tied to societal presumptions,” and indeed Jimin’s plaid skirt in the final group shot also continued the group’s degendering of fashion at a global scale. Gender was also discussed during the boys’ interview with Jaeki Cho for Amazon Music on Twitch. Cho, who speaks both English and Korean, conducted an impressive and adept bilingual conversation with the boys, discussing everything from their current music to the ways in which BTS has, if unintentionally, redefined masculinity (particularly for Western audiences). Yoongi also continued to normalize crying and expressing emotions, another important part of this process. Additionally, BTS discussed how they approach the pressure of success, their hopes and dreams for the future and their desire to continue making music until they become “Bangtan papas or Bangtan grandpas.”
The amazing content didn’t stop at modeling and interviews. July 9 is known as ARMY Day, as it was the date in 2013 when BTS officially announced that ARMY would be the official name of their fanbase. To celebrate, BTS released “ARMY Playlist” on YouTube, videos featuring each member performing a snippet of one of their solo songs. Fan favorites such as People, Still With You and Abyss, made appearances. Additionally, ARMY Playlist marked the performance premieres of RM’s 2021 FESTA song Bicycle, V’s Snow Flower, and j-hope’s Hope World. The set closed with an adorable performance of Filter by Jimin. Each member used unique props to showcase their songs, from Taehyung eating cake to Jin gazing contemplatively at a large clear gem (a callback to his BE room theme). The boys also released seven short videos on YouTube based on their Butter Concept Photos.
In return, Twitter and Weverse were filled with ARMY celebrations, with many users telling stories about how they became ARMY or their most heartwarming interactions with other fans. It was the perfect lead-in to the premiere of Permission to Dance, which welcomed another year for ARMY and BTS alike.
Permission to Dance performances seem like they will dominate the next few weeks, from the premiere of full choreography on Naver Now to the return of BTS to The Tonight Show on July 13 and 14. In the meantime, stay tuned, keep yourself hydrated and don’t forget to stream Butter and Permission To Dance!
Written by: Mariko
Edited by: Tori Rose
Designed by: ThornToHisRose
ARMY Magazine does not own any of the photos/videos shared in our blog. No copyright infringement intended.