IVE’s “Narcissus” Concept In “Love Dive” Is Actually An Ongoing Theme Since Debut, Here’s What We Know

It started from “ELEVEN”…

IVE‘s comeback with “LOVE DIVE” was an instant hit. Not only was the song modern and catchy, but it also had an addictive choreography. This particular move below was dubbed the “mirror princess” move. The members look into a “mirror” formed by their left hand with a smile.

The “mirror princess” dance move. | KILLPO

The move embodied the chorus’ opening line.

Narcissistic, my god, I love it.


Fans quickly deduced that the concept was based on the origin of “narcissism,” the Greek God Narcissus. There are many versions of the tale of Narcissus. The ending of his story, however, is agreed upon unanimously. Narcissus dies by drowning. He fell into a pond after being so entranced by his reflection.

Narcissus looks at his reflection in the pond. | Psychology Today

Fans quickly drew the links between the Greek legend of Narcissus and “LOVE DIVE.” The album cover art for the single spells out the word “LOVE DIVE.” If you look at the colors, the words can be read as “LOVED IVE” instead. It can be inferred that the song meant to convey the meaning that IVE was “diving into love” with themselves.

“On the album cover, the black and white is split into ‘loved ive.'” | Nate Pann via theqoo

Even the album’s photobook was mirrored between the two halves.

“Because Narcissus was looking at his reflection in the water… the album is mirrored by halves down the center. Goosebumps…” | Nate Pann via theqoo

The reason for IVE’s concept teasers being based on Cupid? Legend has it that Narcissus fell in love with his reflection because Cupid had struck Narcissus with his arrow.

IVE’s concept teaser features a Cupid theme. | Starship Entertainment

A clever fan even came up with a theory about the adlibs in the song. “LOVE DIVE” features a pre-chorus with the catchy adlib of “ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh.” The fan thought this to refer to the legend of Echo and Narcissus.

A fan’s analysis of Echo and Narcissus in “LOVE DIVE.” | theqoo

In Greek Mythology, a fairy called Echo was cursed by Hera. Echo was forced to copy other people’s words. Echo fell for Narcissus. But Narcissus was in love with himself and did not accept Echo’s feelings. Ultimately, he died while yearning for his reflection as reflected in the water, but Echo remained by his side until the end, loving him. Of course, Echo was angry at Narcissus for rejecting her and asked Nemesis to punish him, but I really think we can interpret the “ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh” as Echo’s voice if they really have been using the Greek legend of Narcissus. I might be a little too into it, but I think this sort of analysis is fun.

— Fan

Little did fans know that the concept seemed to have been planned right from the start. IVE’s debut song, “ELEVEN,” subtly makes references to Narcissus’s legend.

The last line of “ELEVEN” can be interpreted using the legend.

You who is in front of me, and me who is reflected in those eyes [whom] I’ve come to love.


Even the verse sung by Yujin after the first chorus seems to allude to Narcissus looking into the pond.

The transparence between you and me, when I stay still and look at it, I fall deeper into the wavering waves.


Lastly, IVE’s greeting, “Dive into IVE,” was the cherry atop the cake. It wrapped up the theory nicely with the allusion that both IVE and fans would fall into the water where IVE was reflected. IVE is also based on the English contraction for “I have” (I’ve), indicating a strong affinity with the theme of self-love.

Don’t take it from us; watch the music video to see if you can spot the theory coming to life!

Source: theqoo