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Sep 30 2012

Sunday Song: Gangnam Style

After today, I may have no readership. This post contains content that may be offensive to all viewers. There will be the “Oh gawd that song is horrible and now it’s stuck in my head!” crowd. There will be those who found elements of the video unforgivable, especially those with a sense of taste or color coordination. There will be those who roll their eyes and say, “Dana, are you really that far behind on pop culture?” to which I will have to admit, “Yes,” which will then cause those readers to abandon me as hopeless.

So there are huge potential losses, but I’m going to post this anyway. Because, and I hate to admit this, I actually do like the song and think the video’s a scream. And because – but we’ll get to that in a moment.

First, watch this video, and please try to remember that you once loved me, or at least liked me in a vague sort of way.

So that’s what Starspider foisted on me on Friday. Possibly a horrible thing to do to a sick woman. And then there was trying to explain this song to someone who was already muddled on cold medicine. I’ve gone back and read the Wikipedia entry, and it turns out she did an excellent job pounding certain concepts through that cotton wool-stuffed brain of mine.

“Gangnam Style” is a Korean neologism that refers to a lifestyle associated with the Gangnam district of Seoul, where people are trendy, hip and exude a certain supposed “class”. The term was listed in Time’s weekly vocabulary list as a manner associated with lavish lifestyles in Seoul’s Gangnam district. Psy likened the Gangnam District to Beverly Hills, California, and said in an interview that he intended a twisted sense of humor by claiming himself to be “Gangnam Style” when everything about the song, dance, looks, and the music video is far from being such a high class. In another interview with CNN, Psy added that:

“People who are actually from Gangnam never proclaim that they are – it’s only the posers and wannabes that put on these airs and say that they are “Gangnam Style” – so this song is actually poking fun at those kinds of people who are trying so hard to be something that they’re not.”

The song talks about “the perfect girlfriend who knows when to be refined and when to get wild.” The song assists in defining this by the singer exclaiming “Ehhhhh Sexy Lady!” The song’s refrain “오빤 강남 스타일 (Oppan Gangnam style)” has been translated as “I live a Gangnam style”, with Psy referring to himself; “Oppa” is a Korean expression used by females to refer to an older male friend or older brother.

And why have I foisted this bit of Korean pop culture on you? For the same reason Starspider did it to me: so that you could truly appreciate this epic parody.

Okay? Even if you hate the song, you have to respect this. Even if you aren’t a Star Trek fan, you surely must admire the dedication required to translate a Korean pop song into Klingon, and make the costumes (although I suspect several of them had their costumes already. Look, I belonged to a Star Trek fan club once. I know how we are).

Nothing will ever beat that. Well, I say never, but something might, it’s just that they’ve got a hell of a hill to climb. Still, the fact someone sat down and caused a game to do this makes a nice runner-up. Although it does get upsetting in some places…

There. I’ve inflicted that song on you three times now, and I’m only slightly sorry. I hope you find it in your hearts to forgive me, someday. Or, if you found these wildly hilarious and inflicted them upon friends and family, that you do not end up abandoned and alone. Just remind your loved ones that time heals most wounds, and will probably, eventually, and with appropriate therapy, heal these.

10 comments

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  1. 1
    davidhart

    Where do I get me one o’ them lurid yellow dancing suits?

  2. 2
    julian

    I didn’t know any of that. Tank you.

    All I know of Korean pop is Girl’s Generation so I’ve been walking around with this idea it was all glam with the (not so) occasional cock tease.

    That’s actually pretty cool.

    P.S. I enjoyed the video before this information. Yes. I am an abomination :p

    1. 2.1
      julian

      Watching it again, I’m kicking myself at missing all the meta aspects of it. So awesome.

  3. 3
    rq

    The video was a lot of fun, and I am not ashamed to admit that!!! :) Thanks for the other versions. The original is still the best. ;)

  4. 4
    Lithified Detritus

    OK, I see how it is. You’re sick, so everyone else has to suffer, too. ;-)

    All kidding aside, I hope that you are feeling better.

  5. 5
    Achrachno

    “After today, I may have no readership.”

    Perhaps. Can you reassure us nothing like this will ever happen again?

  6. 6
    Trebuchet

    I’m at least twice your age and even I had heard of “Gangnam Style!” But I’m not sure why and had not watched the video. Now I can’t unwatch it. The Trek parody is great but the video game version is kind of boring, and doesn’t even have the toilet scene.

    Hope your throat is better!

  7. 7
    Adrian

    Wow! Dana,

    Where can I get some of that stuff you are taking? I think I need it to get through the next two vids.

    Seriously, I can’t make out whether he is a satirist or pop singer.

  8. 8
    Atheist Chaplain

    Thanks Dana :-)
    Honestly I mean it, I love that song and play it LOUD when I hear it, my 17 yo son thinks I have a kangaroo lose in the top paddock but then I also listen to Triple J (ABC Radio station aimed at Australian youth, they stream it to the web so you must try it some time)
    Love the clothing in the vid as well so that might give you an idea of where my head is at.

    I hope you get well soon, I hear if you gargle some good rum you don’t actually get better, but you don’t give a flying fornicate about your throat being sore ;-)

  9. 9
    Trebuchet

    @Adrian:

    Seriously, I can’t make out whether he is a satirist or pop singer.

    I don’t think it’s an “or” proposition!

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