Blackpink’s Latest Comeback

After a two year long hiatus, Blackpink has finally reentered the music scene with their latest comeback album, ‘Born Pink’.


PUBG MOBILE:絕地求生M, CC BY 3.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

From left to right are Jisoo, Jennie, Rose, and Lisa. Blackpink not only showed their influence in music, but also through games. In July of 2021, Blackpink collaborated with PUBG, a video game. During the collaboration, PUBG released outfits based on Blackpink, and held an in-game concert, allowing fans worldwide to participate, free of charge.

Blackpink, a South Korean girl group formed by YG Entertainment, consisting of members Jisoo, Jennie, Rosé, and Lisa, skyrocketed in success in 2018, but suddenly fell off the face of the Earth at the height of their success. 

This, however, was not an uncommon occurrence. 

Blackpink has become a household name ever since their strong introduction to the K-POP music game in 2016, with the album ‘Square Up.’ They placed a firm foot down on the music scene from the start, putting a firm foot down with the lyrics ‘Blackpink in your area’ at the start of every song. Shortly after their debut, they released their second album, ‘Square Two’ in November 2016, with two new songs, ‘Playing with Fire’ and ‘Stay,’ and the acoustic version of ‘Whistle.’ 

After the release of ‘Square Two,’ Blackpink would go on a two year long hiatus, until ‘Square Up’ which they released in 2018 with the hit song ‘Ddu-Du Ddu-Du’ which accumulated over thirty six million YouTube views. This record beat the former record held by PSY’s song ‘Gentleman’, by 200 thousand less views. 

Once again, taking the internet by storm, ‘Blackpink’ would simply vanish, for another year, coming back in 2020 with the album, ‘The Album’, featuring Selena Gomez, including, ‘How You Like That,’ ‘Ice Cream,’ ‘Pretty Savage,’ and ‘Love Sick Girls.’ The title track ‘How You Like That’ debuted at number 5 and peaked at number 2 on the daily Spotify Global Chart, breaking the record for the biggest girl group debut in Spotify history.

With their longest hiatus in between, Blackpink has recently made a comeback with the album ‘Born Pink’ in September 2022. Needless to say, fans are excited beyond words for their comeback, one that they had been waiting for for two years. 

However, the album was not what I was expecting, with its meaningless lyrics and questionable melodies.

“Pink Venom,” the first released song of the album, starts off with Jisoo playing the Korean Geomungo, generating the beat of the song with ‘Blackpink’ repeated in the background. The peaceful sounding beat suddenly escalates to a rap, introducing Jennie, one of the rappers of the group. 

“I really liked the rap part, as it was a really strong start to the song. For me, the beginning rap made the biggest impact on me,” said Rafan Sarker ’24. 

One key aspect that makes the song so prominent is the “Blackpink” vibe to the song. Blackpink has a powerful, and mature, yet playful aura to every song. Vicky Tang ’24 said, “’Pink Venom’ is immediately recognizable as a Blackpink song, but the chorus is lame.”

However, even though the song is recognizable by its iconic “chic” style, Vicky Tang continues, “It’s different from the past songs they’ve done. It’s been ages, however, so I believe that with certain songs, they fell below expectations. Being able to hear more vocals is quite nice, since their previous songs all sounded the same after a while.” 

The chorus is the climax of the song, and while it is catchy, I cannot help but feel disappointed. Blackpink has a reputation for having catchy but meaningless lyrics, and this comeback cemented this reputation. 

However, the meaningless chorus is catchy. Tina Zheng ’23 said that, “The songs are catchy and prompted me to repeat the iconic lines.”

Yangchen Shermpala ’24 agreed, saying, “Some of the rap verses are really fun and catchy, but I’m still not the biggest fan of the chorus.” 

Of course, not all lyrics have to be meaningful, but the lyrics should at least make sense. The lyrics make the songs feel rushed, seemingly attempting to finish the production of the song just before the deadline. The last stanza of the song is “ratatata,” but it repeats over the course of twenty seconds. 

However, I loved the pre-chorus; the sudden shift from a soft sounding but powerful song to the complete oppositely, shifting to a fast-paced/”aggressive” rap, is quite unexpected, but welcomed nonetheless.

The next song released was ‘Shut Down,’ which was still underwhelming, though I preferred it tremendously over ‘Pink Venom.’ 

There were constant “Easter eggs” – a message, image, or feature hidden – throughout the video of ‘Shut Down,’ making listeners feel a wave of nostalgia for “Ddu-Du Ddu-Du” era. I enjoyed the flashbacks, as it shows how much Blackpink has grown since “Ddu-Du Ddu-Du.” However, Sophia Chen ’26 disagreed, mentioning that, “The reuse of material made the comeback seem poorly made and rushed. It was as if the director had no other creative ideas so they just decided to reuse the same scenes. I was kind of hoping for something more original, especially after the hiatus they just had.”

However, the flashbacks should not divert your attention to another music video immediately, as there are other creative scenes which are drastically different from their predecessors.

One thing I admired about the visuals is the use of props that emphasizes the lyrics. For example, when Rosé sings, “Praying for my downfall, many have tried,” she is shown on a globe, implying that it is not possible for her to have a downfall, as she is literally on top of the world. 

I also love what the lyrics imply, given that they show the world that Blackpink was ready to steal the hearts of fans once again. The sense of cockiness was refreshing to hear, after the major the impact they had on the media internationally. Americans are not prone to welcoming new concepts, but they made way for Blackpink, and the lyrics show that Blackpink knows that too. 

However, reactions to the music remain the same, as many people do not think it offers something new. Eungu Kang ’25 said, “The music is kind of boring. I was expecting a drop, but it never came. The song just stays monotone. However, I really enjoyed the classical music in the beginning. I wished that it stayed throughout, however, even if it makes the song unrecognizable as a Blackpink song.” 

‘Shut Down’ was rather disappointing as well, but once I looped the song, it became better. 

My favorite song in the album was ‘Typa Girl.’ The rap is a lot softer in this song than it is in ‘Shut Down’ and ‘Pink Venom,’ and it fuses into the bridges a lot more smoothly, compared to the sudden changes seen in ‘Pink Venom.’ Audrey Yong ’24 agrees, noting that, “‘Typa Girl’ had more of a melody to the song, rather than pointless rapping.” Although lesser known, it has gained more positive feedback in my interviews than the other songs. Although drastically different from any other song that Blackpink has produced, it still has the unique Blackpink touch. There is a specific “chicness” to the song, even if the song was soft. 

The introduction of the song is quite peaceful, and it becomes silent to make room for the rap, which did not disappoint. The rap is slower than most, but it fits the soothing atmosphere of the song. Additionally, the exaggerated ending syllable of every verse makes the song less empty and connects the rap to the chorus more smoothly. The pre-chorus and bridge of ‘Typa Girl’ is excellent. Rosé’s angelic voice peeked through the curtains of rap and disappeared after a few seconds, making listeners long for more, compelling them to listen to the entire song, which I did, over and over again. 

This album was not my favorite, but it differs from anything that I have ever heard, and it is certainly worth a listen. Experimental music is not for everyone, but for some, this album may be the greatest album in existence. Give it a listen, or several listens. 

My favorite song in the album was ‘Typa Girl.’ The rap is a lot softer in this song than it is in ‘Shut Down’ and ‘Pink Venom,’ and it fuses into the bridges a lot more smoothly, compared to the sudden changes seen in ‘Pink Venom.’