D-Day
That's as close as the author will get to Suga.

When my boss Thelma and I failed miserably to score tickets online for the Suga/Agust D “D-Day” tour last April 2023—we were just too slow for the kids, and that demand-based pricing was also obscene—I had no choice but to rely on online snippets and hope a good movie of the concert would be made. Well, one was, indeed.

Props to my friend Tiffany, who took care of buying a ticket for me when I was rattled with work, and together with her friend Ria, we headed to Podium last April 13 for a 7 pm screening of D-Day: The Movie.

D-Day

On the acoustic guitar—but a string broke! (Photo by Nikko Dizon)

D-Day

(Photo by Nikko Dizon)

D-Day

Commanding the crowd (Photo by Nikko Dizon)

D-Day

Hydrating with water, and the occasional shot of booze (Photo by Nikko Dizon)

D-Day

On guitar for ‘Trivia: Seesaw” (Photo by Nikko Dizon)

Suga’s D-Day Concert Tour was the first worldwide concert tour of this second eldest member of BTS, the sardonic baby-faced rapper with a gift for instruments and weaving words together. Ria and I both count him as our bias, with Tiffany all set to defect (from V—or is it RM?). The difference was, both lucky ladies had the good fortune of catching the live concert in Singapore last year.

The screening was a sponsored affair, so we ended up in a theater with cushy seats and free popcorn and drinks. Since many people had arrived ahead of us—complete with ARMY bombs, banners, and all, we felt sooo Tita—I ended up in the first row. Fortunately, I learned that if you lean the reclining seat way back, you’ll actually have a great view. I also dressed “normally,” in a T-shirt with a Suga Daechwita drawing I bought online, and with a tote bag featuring an image of all seven boys—ready for the event without looking too, uhm, overkill; tita, you know.

Did I still wish I had seen it live? Yes, but after seeing D-Day the Movie, I didn’t feel so deprived anymore, and thought it was a great alternative to standing for hours, maybe to see a dot-sized Yoongi on stage (despite the mammoth screens). Of course, live energy is different, I agree, but this was the lazy ARMY’s way out, and a great consolation. The movie had actually earned a staggering US$10.16 million worldwide from April 10 to 14, so ARMYs really came out for it.

As expected of something BTS and company would produce, the movie, directed by Jun Soo Park, was slick, well-edited, and gripping. Even as the other kids in the theater were screaming, waving their Army bombs, and gathering in groups in different parts of the theater, I couldn’t help but raise my hands and yelp, as well. Poreless Agust D on the big screen was a sight to behold, sweaty and smirking at his audience through his Korean cuss words (Shibaaaal!). But Min Yoongi was likewise riveting: lost in concentration in each song, emotional in some moments and amused in others, looking delighted as he introduced each member of his live band—something I guess you would expect a songwriter to do.

As Suga himself has said, he started out his career with BTS nervous as hell, then became angry and conflicted about living the idol life, until he finally learned to accept his lot and find happiness in what he does, despite still being quite deep and reflective. He also still demands much of himself: “When I go onstage, I think to myself that I have to kill it,” he narrated in the movie, his voice coming through in between performances.

Suga looked delighted as he introduced each member of his live band—something I guess you would expect a songwriter to do

D-Day

The stage in flames (Photo from HYBE)

Much has been written about the massive stage that would shrink to a single platform, symbolic of Suga stripping down to his essential self. There were also those live flames, and that much-written-about incident when a crew member had to take a fire extinguisher to them when they burned a little too much for comfort.

After being carried in to the sound of thunder and laid on the stage, Suga started strong in the set list—Haegum, Daechwita, Agust D—you wonder where he got his energy, considering the show lasted two hours, without an intermission. Then he got a little smoother with Trivia: Seesaw, People Part 2, and Moonlight, before pulling in his bros, fellow BTS members, for performances that drove the theater audience crazy: Burn It with a long-haired (pre-enlistment) JK—this, after all, included many scenes from his last show in Seoul; Tony Montana with Jimin; and Strange with RM, who danced the least, but somehow had the strongest stage presence.

D-Day

‘Life Goes On’ at the piano, in Suga’s beautiful new arrangement (Photo from HYBE)

Suga’s haunting Amygdala would be the second to the last song, and by the time he sang The Last, he was on the floor, amidst all the equipment, and utterly convincing. My favorite of the whole show, however, was when he took to his true love, the piano, with the decanter of liquor atop it (how cool is that?). Then Suga proved that he could not just sing; he could also rearrange a BTS song as he damn well pleased and come up with something equally beautiful—or in my opinion, even better: his version of Life Goes On. Who would have thought?

Watch how the crowd chanted along to his performance (Video by Nikko Dizon):

Another revelation for me: Despite being stereotyped as the least energetic of the seven BTS members, Suga has come to love being in front of his audience. “Concerts and singers are inseparable,” he narrated. “I’m someone who thinks a concert is what completes your career as a singer…I’m someone who loves performing.” And like all the members, he professed his love for ARMY, the massive fan base, and in so many words, said he was offering this concert tour as one final gift for now, like a keepsake for fans before the boys headed off to their enlistment for what many ARMYs consider an unbearably long time. Indeed, as we watched the film, it felt like the guys were still around.

‘I’m someone who thinks a concert is what completes your career as a singer…I’m someone who loves performing’

“Personally, my experience in Singapore was emotional,” said Tiffany. “I cried when he performed Amygdala. Despite the size of the indoor stadium, the concert felt intimate. He was able to establish a connection with each individual ARMY. And rewatching the concert through the movie relived that feeling.”

D-Day

Photo by Nikko Dizon

D-Day

Singing with drink in hand (Photo by Nikko Dizon)

Tiffany noted, however, that the movie did not include two highly-charged moments: Suga in tears (which he himself probably didn’t want included), and that powerful conclusion when he opened a door to leave the stage after the last concert—with a glance back and a small smile. No frills, no sentiment—Suga to the end.

“I felt the concert was Min Yoongi’s most personal and sincere sign of trust and commitment to BTS and Armys,” added Ria. “It’s the culmination of everything he’s been through, separate from what he faced with his band of brothers. D-Day is AgustD’s/Suga’s/Yoongi’s display of bravery, perseverance, and survival.”

D-Day

Yoongi’s tribute to his music hero, Ryuichi Sakamoto, brought tears to our eyes. [Photo by Nikko Dizon]

Suga will probably be the last of the BTS members to return from enlistment because he’s assigned to a desk job, I heard. But watching performances from D-Day: The Movie, as well as the wealth of material the internet has kindly preserved for ARMYs, will tide us over. I can only wonder: How will Min Yoongi’s own very evident growth and evolution affect the overall trajectory of BTS in 2025?

Abangan. In the meantime, Thelma and I will probably beg more tech-savvy friends to reserve concert tickets for us next time.

Yoongi’s June 25 concert that the maknae line watched

About author

Articles

She is a writer, editor, breast cancer and depression survivor, environmental advocate, dog mother to three asPins, Iyengar yoga instructor and BTS Army Tita. She edits part-time for a broadsheet, but is headed towards a full-time vocation as an online English writing coach and grammar nazi.

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