Annyeong everyone! I’m starting this blog post as I watch Melon Music Awards on another tab, where BTS has already won 3 awards. I think it’s safe to say that I’m now an ARMY, although I still don’t feel like I’m one because there’s so much about BTS that I don’t know.
I know this post will take me days to finish, and I’m still excited to write ALL THE THINGS. Also warning: this is going to be a long blog post. You might want to free yourself for a little bit. #sorrynotsorry
Burn The Stage is the documentary of BTS’s Wings tour, which took them all over the world in a year. It contains behind the scenes, random fun the boys have, their hardships and their wins, and also exclusive interviews.
In all honesty, the experience was a wild ride. And only some of it was the actual movie.
When my friends and I found out that India will be one of the countries to see Burn The Stage, we were STOKED. This was the first time Indian ARMYs got recognition. There were so many ARMYs who immediately started saving up money for the tickets, which we expected would be a little expensive at least.
The movie was acquired by INOX theatres and the booking was all online. For the movie, to be released on 15th November, the bookings was supposed to be on 4th November. And the worst part? The plan was to show only ONE screening of the movie in SELECT cities.
This was nerve-wracking because there are TONS of ARMYs and my friends and I planned on being on the website at all times that day to grab tickets ASAP.
But the movie was not listed online that day. For the next few days all ARMYs were anxiously checking the INOX website, slowly getting discouraged. Would we even get to see the movie?
A lot of people started spamming INOX on twitter and the official BTS India Instagram page reached out to them as well.
Eventually we got a reply that the movie had still not gotten cleared from the Indian censor board. We were ENRAGED, guys. As it is, the Indian censor board doesn’t have a good reputation.
On November 15th 2018, all Indian ARMYs saw the rest of the world watch and react to the movie while we still didn’t know if we’d get to watch it. And all we could do was continue spamming INOX, but stopped that as well once they told the official Instagram page that they’ll update once they have any news.
Since everyone was bashing the censor board, they released a statement that they didn’t have any problems with the movie. The reason it was getting held up was because of insufficient documentation and they requested blurring of an alcohol label in ONE scene.
The movie finally got cleared, though. The tickets were released on 19th, first for Delhi. The second the news got out, everyone who was free went online checking for their cities.
I was home, thankfully, studying for an upcoming test when one of my friends called asking my confirmation to book the tickets. But by the time she got back to me, telling me to book with my card, the servers of the website were overloaded. My friends and I kept refreshing the website but after selecting the movie and the show, we got errors. I encountered at least three different types of errors.
And just like that, within 10 minutes, the show sold out. We had 1 show in 1 mall on 25th, and it sold out. Needless to say, my friends and I were SO DISAPPOINTED.
We gave up but later we found out that ARMYs who kept refreshing the website for hours and kept checking found seats. Due to many people being online at the same time, servers crashed and free seats were marked blocked.
Hearing this, my friends and I went back online and kept refreshing. While we were doing that, I saw ANOTHER mall in the listing with one show there. I freaked out, my friend called me and told to book there IMMEDIATELY.
I tried and after refreshing a few times (because the servers got overloaded then as well), I finally saw the screen to select the seats. By then most of the seats were already booked. Since we were 4 people going together, I selected whatever 4 seats I saw together, which was the second bottom row, and clicked next. My heart was beating FAST. I kept hoping that it won’t cancel on me.
After I entered my card details the first time, it didn’t go through and I was asked to do it again. I knew that if I tried again from the start, I won’t get tickets. But thankfully it only told me to enter my card details again.
At this point my hands were shaking so much. I could barely type. Right after I finished typing the card details, the card slipped from my hands but I did not care.
It took A WHOLE MINUTE to process the payment, during which I was worried as heck. But I finally got the confirmation and I stared at it for at least 30 seconds, checking if it’s real.
I GOT THE TICKETS! Right as I called my friend to let her know, my phone switched off. (It does that sometimes, just switches off when there’s too much going on in the phone.) I was thankful that it, at least, didn’t crash on me during booking.
I called her after I connected my phone to the charger (and retrieved my card from under the sofa) and told her, and even she took a couple seconds to register what I said. I was still shook from the experience of just booking the tickets. My heart was beating really fast as if I ran a kilometer but my brain was not registering much beyond “I got the tickets”.
Good thing too because later I found out that the show I got tickets for sold out in two minutes. TWO.
My friends and I calmed down and went on to study. That night we found out that INOX kept adding shows all over the city. I think they were waiting to see the response before adding more shows.
They even added a show near our area, which would have been so much more convenient! We got tickets for an 8pm show in a mall which is over an hour away from us. Of course since they added more shows, the chaos of exchanging and buying tickets online between ARMYs ensued. And there was a lot of it.
We didn’t exchange though. We didn’t want to take the risk.
Now that there were shows and enough tickets.. all the planning started. It’s the first time ever that there’s an official BTS thing happening in India and everyone wanted to make it special.
Everyone made whatsapp groups for all the malls. My friends and I found and joined the one for our mall as well. Only a fraction of all attenders found the whatsapp groups, but it was enough for us to plan things.
In a few days, we decided on the following:
- Everyone would wear purple ribbons to signify that we’re ARMYs.
- We would take videos and document our experience as part of a nation-wide GCF project.
- The dress code was black and purple, if not BTS merch. (Not many stuck to that though)
- Some people were selling posters and fanarts.
- One person was selling postcards of BTS pictures, which we had to pick at random without looking. (I got two photos—one of Jin, who is my bias, and one of Jimin.)
- One girl was making glittery purple heart pins for everyone who shazamed Waste It On Me.
- My friends and I got some badges made with the BTS and ARMY logos and sold them. (I’m kinda proud of our badges, not gonna lie.)
Some ARMYs had also planned on flash mobs and dances (which we got permission for in prior) but it couldn’t work out due to state mourning of a sudden death that day.
We also sang Magic Shop, Two! Three! and Epiphany before going into the theatre.
Right before the movie we did the ARMY fanchant in the theatre, we tried an ARMY light wave and took videos.
All-in-all it was a big day.
Now, the actual movie?
Was B E A U T I F U L.
The movie went up and down in emotions, in waves. It was serious, nostalgic and somber and then it was joyful, funny and uplifting. And repeat.
The movie was narrated by 4 of the members (we think) and they compared parts of the wings tour to words such as “desert” and “oasis”. The comparisons were so fitting with the meaning of the words and the footage that followed.
The first half an hour I spent with my hand on my heart, not looking away from the screen. I can confirm that I teared up multiple times during the movie.
What I liked best about the movie was that it was real. We saw them having fun, cooking, getting awards and crying out of happiness. We also saw them get injured, practice hard and get bloody tired during a concert. It felt—was—unfiltered.
ARMYs know that the BTS members work HARD. They keep pushing themselves harder and harder, and it shows. The movie just showed more of the work and practice parts of it, which we’ve never seen before.
I didn’t want to blink throughout the movie in fear that I would miss something.
In fact, near to the end of the movie, I started worrying about it ending. I didn’t want it to end. And in that thought process, I missed the last line. The movie ended abruptly, just leaving us hanging, wanting more.
It was beautiful. I fell in love with them all over again.
When I got home, which was at 11pm, I texted my best friend Hema and was telling her everything that happened. And I was still so into the movie that I was emotional. I couldn’t stop talking.
Hema said that she’s never seen me have such deep feelings, and it’s kind of true. I don’t usually feel much for anything other than books and characters that I’ve gotten attached to overtime. And I usually don’t text her when I’m feeling emotional about things. But, I couldn’t help it this time.
Some ARMYs stood at the entrace of the 8pm show theatre and gave out these tiny photos of BTS with the date and time written below. Bless their souls. That small thing made us all so damn happy.
Here are some texts that I sent Hema. I’m just copying and pasting them here because they exactly show how I was feeling then.
[11:47 PM, 11/25/2018] Sumedha: I can’t.
[11:47 PM, 11/25/2018] Sumedha: It’s so unbelievable.
[11:47 PM, 11/25/2018] Sumedha: And BTS are so pure man.
[11:48 PM, 11/25/2018] Sumedha: They kept talking about pushing harder than they can almost bear because one day they can’t do this even if they want to.
[11:48 PM, 11/25/2018] Sumedha: They spoke about how much energy the ARMY gave them.
[11:48 PM, 11/25/2018] Sumedha: That in concerts etc just seeing ARMY’s eyes light up, seeing them, was enough to give them energy.
[11:49 PM, 11/25/2018] Sumedha: They spoke about how they’re all very unique but through the years grew together.
[11:49 PM, 11/25/2018] Hem: Omg
[11:49 PM, 11/25/2018] Sumedha: They’re not themselves anymore.
And then after that I still had so much to say so I gave up typing and just sent her a voice recording. I was already emotional and TALKING about them got me to cry in the recording. I legit could not speak without sniffing and my voice wavering.
The movie was THAT GOOD. It was so emotional. Even now I’m becoming emotional just thinking about it. I’m very close to tearing up again.
They spoke about how they’re not just them as individuals anymore. They’re now part of BTS, and each of them are an integral part of BTS.
RM spoke about how they still find joy in being with each other, even though they do it all the time.
There are so many feels running through me right now, just by remembering the movie. I’m currently listening to Spring Day because it’s perfect for such moods. It’s also a beautiful song.
(side note: as I’m writing this part it’s December 4th, Jin’s birthday, and Jin just came live. It’s so funny oh my lord, they took Jin’s profile picture to the next level, more than ARMY. BTS and ARMY are all crackheads.)
My friends’ thoughts
I think I’ve spoken enough now. I can keep going on but I better stop now.
I asked my friends to write a little bit about the movie and the experience so I can add it here, just so you know that it’s not just me who is this emotional.
This movie was so inspirational, motivational, and beautiful. It really showed a whole other side of BTS, what pure beings they are that made me love them even more and I’m so so so proud to be an army. I laughed, cried, oohed and awwed along with everyone in the theater and it was such an experience. And meeting the finally found fam(ARMYs) gave me a whole new level of happiness. We are a fam only coz of BTS.
BTS is not just a kpop group. Basically they are THE kpop group. No one has done it like them. They’ve helped and connected with so many people including myself and they are perfectly imperfect. They’re just as beautiful on stage as they are off-stage. I wish I could watch the movie again, it was worth the struggle :”) Never thought I would be so connected with 7 people I’ve never met before. I love them with all my heart and they deserve all the love in this world💜😭
Burn the stage… this movie was wow, seeing the boys on the big screen was a totally different experience, I loved the narration, it really hits you right in the feels, especially when yoongi says “sometimes we see ourselves in the crowd there with y’all”. I mean how beautiful is that. The movie was an emotional roller coaster, like one minute you’ll be thinking “bts is working to death are they really happy?” and feel sad and the next minute its all of them jumping and pushing each other into a pool😂 but the best part about this movie was that it showed how strong BTS is as a group and how much bts genuinely cares for army. We are inseparable.
Overall, the movie was amazing. The meetup other ARMYs just made the experience even better. It was one of the best days of the year, for me.
Even if you’re not a BTS fan, I definitely suggest watching the movie because it’s just a documentary which is beautiful. It’s not specifically targeted at ARMYs. It’s worth a watch, ARMY or not.
If you’ve stayed so long and read this bloody long post, kudos to you. And thank you.
Have you seen Burn The Stage? Are you a fan of BTS?