Listening to Olivia Rodrigo’s “traitor” is a cathartic experience. Watching Stray Kids’ Hyunjin and Felix listen to Olivia Rodrigo’s “traitor” is also a cathartic experience. Or, at least it is for me, someone who is deeply fond of both Olivia’s debut album Sour and Stray Kids.
On June 16, Felix went live on TikTok from his hotel room in Japan, where Stray Kids are set to kick off the Tokyo leg of their Maniac world tour this weekend. Hyunjin joined him soon after, marking their first-ever live together. The Danceracha duo talked their favorite films — don’t ask me to discuss Hyunjin’s admiration for the 2005 adaptation of Pride & Prejudice; it is a truth I will not acknowledge at this time for my own self-preservation — and did an impromptu version of “Jiggle Jiggle” (thank you for your TikTok savvy, Felix), and played each other some of their favorite songs.
While dictating the playlist, Felix queued up “traitor” for Hyunjin, who had never heard Olivia belt the lyric “God, I wish that you had thought this through / Before I went and fell in love with you” in all of her forlorn Swiftian anguish before today. It’s surprising, considering that Hyunjin’s love of sentimental, sad songs is well-documented on the internet, and we know he vibes with Taylor Swift. I still think about him recommending “Betty” on Bubble multiple times a day.
The result, of course, was perfect. You know when you play a song for a friend and you keep glancing over at them to gauge their reaction because you know they’ll love it? That was Felix, just vibing along and smiling at Hyunjin, who was physically going through it. It, being a roller coaster of emotions, from awe over Rodrigo’s voice and lyricism to the obvious pain of betrayal and heartbreak. As Felix commented, it’s Hyunjin’s kind of song. Soft and emotionally delicate.