Review: 1, 2, 3 – Purfles

Hey y’all! Don’t laugh at this group’s name-I’m not entirely sure what it’s supposed to mean. A week or two ago, a new 3-person girl group debuted. That group is Purfles. They’re from a rather small entertainment company called Crescendo Music. This company is so small, in fact, that they don’t have their own Wikipedia page (but they are mentioned on LOEN Entertainment’s page as an independent label associated with LOEN). Still, these girls don’t need a huge entertainment company to back them. I’d say they’re doing pretty well as they are. So without further ado, let’s take a look at Purfles’s debut song, 1, 2, 3.

purfles 123 cover

Here’s the music video. There isn’t a subbed video yet, so you can read the English lyrics on this page.

The lyrics are from the perspective of a girl, talking to a female friend who was just dumped. The entire song is basically a wake up song for her. It says, “Yeah, I know it sucks and I comforted you, but come on already. Stop moping!” Some lyrics can read as a bit harsh, but when it’s your best friend, harsh words can be forgiven. It’s not telling her that she can’t be upset about losing a guy, but that’s she’s been upset for so long, it’s time to just move on and be happy again.

The music video has very little to do with dumping. Most of it consists of dance scenes (including club scenes), and one set of scenes that takes place in the gym. One member is boxing, another is jumping rope, and the other is dancing. I guess these scenes are meant to show how powerful and strong they can be, as the lyrics call for the friend to be. The only “dumping” scene is about 2/3 of the way through. One of the members is sitting next to a guy at a bar, and puts her hand over his. He pulls away. She grabs his arm when he gets up to leave, and he has to pull it out of her grasp. This isn’t so much a break up as it is a bad club interaction. Yet, she looks devastated. I’d tell her to get over it too.

"oh no he didn't want to hold my hand :(((("

“he didn’t want to hold my hand :((((“

The dance is very upbeat and almost powerful, with strong, deliberate movements. The point of it isn’t to be sexy or cute (though there are some sexy moves), but to be strong. To say to a friend “it’s okay, you don’t need a guy to be awesome,” you have to show it. And they certainly do. If I had to use dance to decide if I trusted someone’s advice, this dance would be trustworthy. They seem in control and comfortable performing, which fits the song. There has to be an element of confidence in telling someone what to do, and this dance is certainly confident.

There isn’t much plot in the video, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t enjoyable to watch. It is actually extremely enjoyable to watch. And I’m not just talking about the male back-up dancers (okay maybe I am). With only three members, they’re able to pull in male and female back-up dancers for different kinds of choreography, and it’s more dynamic than it would be otherwise. Plus, it’s kinda amusing watching the guys be objectified (hello biceps) rather than the girls. It’s an interesting inversion of the trope that doesn’t happen often. Men use women to frame themselves in music videos, but in this one, the men are framing the women.

purfles 123 male dancers

Women completely covered from the waist up, men showing skin? I am so here for this.

The song itself is a very upbeat dance song. It starts with a simple “na na na” repeated, but it’s already stuck in my head. When I review songs, I have them play on repeat in the background, and I can’t stop dancing right now. There’s nothing inherently unique about the composition of the song, but it makes you want to dance. Not to mention, the repetitive English phrases are great for a non-Korean speaker like me. I want to say forget about it like De Niro- fuhgeddaboudit. It has the right attitude and everything.

Honestly, I’m loving the trend in k-pop of strong women. It’s not always perfect (Female President, anyone?) but steps are being made. I can’t speak for Korean culture, but considering that most of the world has to deal with sexism, I’d say they’re going in the right direction. It’s also great to have a song by a girl group that isn’t directly about a guy. Indirectly, it may be about a guy, but the main focus of the song is on the friend. I see it more as a song about female friendships than about romantic relationships. And that is beyond okay in my book.

"Strong women trope" isn't always a bad thing.

“Strong women trope” isn’t always a bad thing.

All in all, a great girl-power song with a great beat. It would be perfect on a playlist for getting pumped for girls’ night or just getting ready to go out. I’ll probably listen to it a lot more often than that though. For a debut song, I think it’s great, and I can’t wait to see what these girls come out with next! They remind me somewhat of She’z, who had a great debut song, but have kinda dropped off the map since. They’re both from smaller companies, so I hope the same thing doesn’t happen to Purfles (even if I hope they do get a new name).


-Great message.

-Catchy song.


-Light on plot.

Rating: 4.5/5


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