GFRIEND (여자친구) – Sunrise (해야): MV Review

Good day, readers! As expected, January has seen a number of new groups and new music videos from K-Pop. This time, we will feature GFRIEND, with their freshly-baked song “Sunrise.”

I felt tensed and excited at the same time, as this is my first attempt to do a review on their MV, and first time to do it through a criteria. Pardon if I would be frank on these reviews like this.

Hope all Buddies will appreciate this. Hope also that content creators can consider this MV review helpful for them in GFRIEND’s next comeback. Before you read this review, you may watch their video here:


  1. Video must have a storyline – 5 points

The music video starts with different girls reminiscing their memories together. On the question how to express this feeling, they started to play with tools related to what they are feeling. Like that of preparing tea, birthday cake, playing with old CD, reading photo albums, and picking a piece of jigsaw puzzle.

They have to play these things till time come that their meet-up becomes real. That’s the point when they expressed happiness with each other.

Upon realizing that the time is running out, they decided to cherish these moments by blowing a cake. They then now wait for sunrise to come again, which implies that although memories spent are short, they are longing to meet each other again. The video ends with Sowon realizing that it was just a dream.

  1. Theme must be consistent and clear – 5 points

Their theme revolving on memory and gloominess is consistent. Different kinds of memories are featured, as illustrated by clock, photo album, jigsaw puzzle, birthday cake, and an old CD, which shall be explained further in Criterion No. 13.


  1. The music video as a whole must be colorful – 4 points

The video is quite colorful, but seems pale just to express a bit of sadness. The video paints the tension between happiness and sadness – not too colorful and not too gloomy.

  1. Must be done in good taste – 5 points

I see the music video as done in good taste. I did not find it awkward or gross looking at the whole video. I do not necessarily need to close my eyes or look at somewhere on some/all scenes.

  1. Does not celebrate Halloween, Easter, or similar celebrations – 5 points

This music video just merely celebrates their being together. And it celebrates the sunrise, which represents the warmth given to each other and readiness to meet next time.

  1. Does not feature astrology – 5 points

In the whole video, no traces of any kind of astrology were featured.

  1. As much as possible, less horror or soft horror is featured – 5 points

Less horror is involved, particularly from 3:32 – 3:34, where it implies that the ground is shaking. Actually, the music video (or some parts of it) was not scary enough, as it focuses on sadness.

  1. Not too revealing outfits – 5 points

The outfits presented are decent enough. Also, their long, white gowns they wear embodies the theme they want to show to us. They don’t reveal themselves, but reveal the essence of the song they are performing.


  1. Ability of the music to make one cry – 5 points (updated)

Recall that initially, the music must excite the listener. But since they set the mood into a sad one, I changed the criterion to involve passionate emotions.

Fortunately, if a K-Pop group wants to perform sad songs, the group can make me cry with these. The girls can really make me cry with “Memoria,” and “Time for the Moon Night.” And now, they did it again in their new song, though not as moving as the previous two.

In GFRIEND’s case, the few seconds of the video are played really slow. But in fairness to them, this was a little bit exciting. The tune starting at 3:05 would make the listener stop and think that the music would be a sad one.

  1. Music should not be deafening on the ears – 4 points

Even if I have to raise the volume, that was still not too deafening, except on one thing. I just want to point out that Eunha singing in highest note at 3:33 was distracting. She should have toned it a little lower.


  1. Dance can be learned easily even by beginners – 4 points

In fairness to the group, their dances that they show in the video can be learned easily even by beginners. Also, their dances are very synchronized, as what reviewers and netizens have noticed on the video.

One thing they missed is that they made it too simple, up to the point that it would no longer be exciting to dance with.

  1. Dance must not be too sensual – 5 points

The dances they portray are wholesome, and can be done even by minors. No express or implied sensual matters are seen in the whole length of the video.


  1. Moral lesson must be clearly stated – 5 points

Like in their previous MVs, they repeat the same lesson of valuing memories. But this time, they are giving it a different approach by featuring different things.

Their state of being incomplete without them is being illustrated in a jigsaw puzzle. The game tells of valuing every moment we share and every person we meet.

Photo albums illustrate what exactly happened in their meet-togethers. This shows how we give color and meaning to every snapshot of our lives together.

Blowing a birthday cake represents their celebration of once-in-a-while moments that needs to be cherished.

Old CD playing represents frozen moments that are preserved. This waits to be replayed to retell what happened in the past.

The telephone booth (as seen in US/UK streets) represents moments we call our friends when we are in need. This portrays the value of being dependable.

  1. They must impart something beneficial for their viewers – 5 points

Viewers could learn something beneficial from this group.

It is given that few people now will have interest in playing musical instruments or playing with mind games. These things sharpen the mind. Featuring the piano and how to play it, and completing the jigsaw puzzle will somehow spark the interest to play these instruments.

Other Matters

  1. Ability to express emotions through acting – 7 points

Recall that sense of humor is given greater weight, as this lifts up the mood and excites the listener. However, as this is a sad MV, I changed the standard to give greater emphasis on acting skills.

Since the music video is rendered between a happy one and sad one, being pokerfaced in the scene would be okay. What makes it outstanding is that the emotions between happiness and sadness are in a constant tug of war.

  1. Ability of the song to make it to mainstream media – 1 point

As of now, this might not make it to mainstream media (TV and radio) due to its nature as a sad song.

  1. Review by other sites – 5 points

Here are some comments by netizens:

“Maybe GFRIEND’s genre are not on the trendy one. But what makes them unique is their type of music.”

“The song sounds the same and have the same arrangement like any of their other song.”

“This song Sunrise is so amazing”

“Really perfect and amazing!”

A review commented about the different emotions played in the song, “ranging from cutesy to absolutely pained wails.” The blogger raised a very good point on the music not being so catchy, to the point that one might forgot the lyrics.

Another review had commented that GFRIEND had been doing great in vocals, music, the MV, and even in the minutest of details, as what I explained earlier. This, according to the blogger, surpassess expectations in several ways. The music alone will be a good start for them.

Meanwhile, KPopreviewed noted that unlike other groups who have unequal line distribution, “the song focuses squarely on the vocals of each member. No one sounds overshadowed and stands out all in their own way.” Emphasis is placed on Eunha who now hits high notes.

Finally, TheBiasList noted that the song shares sentimental value with “Rough,” and the lyrics on “Memoria.” It looks upon Yuju as taking the lead, though it can be seen otherwise.

  1. Review of the music video as a whole – 4 points

Honestly, the title itself “Sunrise” appears to lack emphasis on how frequent the sun rises. It just repeately showed the sunlight, but features the sunrise only once. Repeating the sun rising would be helpful for viewers to understand that the sun will shine again after the night.

  1. Other factors
  • Closeness to other songs: 5 points

The music nearest to their new song is “Time for the Moon Night”. We can tell that because of the song tempo. They both start in a slow tempo then gets faster as time progresses. It just so happened that other reviewers had seen “Sunrise” as prequel to the “Time” video.

The melody shares similar tune with “Time,” particularly on the chorus part. You may test this by singing “Sunrise” to the tune of “Time,” or vice versa. Here are the misheard lyrics:

SUNRISE (0:58 – 1:21)


Joking. Hey, you! Hey, you!

No, he buy your, buy your make-up

Whole box here or may re-bottle

Shook up. Seek a gag car who saw

The lower rid red bit, but I cannot. They know.

A Billy poor go. Hey, Nancy!

Come. Bang! Hear at all

Sarah, she call cartoon there

Chopped food. You’re Hansel? Boo!

More who check who wheeze all

John, they’re cofee now

So Miss, I’ll cater

He call, “Hey, Seulgi!”

Kate, are you dough? Shake an itch, and I’ll go

It’s a boner chicken!

I know, I’ll take good model

May bun, yeah, bun love on love congee?

Car go, she bone!

Meanwhile, the theme nearest would be “Memoria,” especially in terms of imparting lessons to viewers.

  • Other minute details expressed clearly: 3 points

A blogger-commenter explaining the story made me realize why Eunha was separated from other members. Reason is that “Sunrise” is supposed to be the prequel for “Time”. This has not been expressed clearly on the storyline (in relation with their another video), though the MV’s storyline by itself was clear enough.

While other members would play on puzzle, clock, and something memorable, only she has the piano. Theory is that Eunha died on the “Time”, to be seen only on “Sunrise.”

  • Uploads video to 1theK: 5 points (updated)

Recently included this criterion, so as to engage agencies to upload vids to the channel. This will be discussed shortly later.

  • Music video is featuring the 1theK Logo: 5 points

Why consider this little detail as another factor in rating the MV? 1theK was created to be the ultimate hub for K-Pop, and stepping stone for rise of more K-Pop groups. All groups who are part of 1theK, including GFRIEND, ideally have to feature the logo. This is to tell everyone that they are part of the team, and they share the same dream.

The logo may be noticed or not, depending on where it is placed. The logo is seen on 0:46 where Sowon picks her most memorable picture. I don’t know if this can be seen on other times.

TweetNewscaster’s Overall Rating: 88.70% (Updated)

Final Words

Only one thing may be considered. For their next comeback, I suggest they use the concept of “Sunset” to explain further what happened to Eunha between the time spent on “Time” and the events leading to “Sunrise.” Look, if we are going to take this further, they are featuring first the “Moonlight,” then “Sunrise,” and finally the “Sunset,” thereby completing their series of memory-telling stories.