Bonus: Gangnam Style

21 Sep

Two months ago, a music video hit YouTube and since then you can’t turn your computer on without it appearing… everywhere.

It’s Gangnam Style, created by Psy, a Korean pop star.

The link for this (if you haven’t seen it already, odds of this is like 0%):

Seriously, this song is everywhere like a bad sweat rash.  What’s really crazy is that people can’t seem to get enough of it. 

WHY?  Is there a reason or formula to this?

First answer is this, the song is catchy and the video is funny. 

That goes a little deeper, there are phrases that are easily memorable and there is a dance that anyone can do which is both silly and immediately recognizable.

Now I’m going to go absolutely apeshit and go into an extremely deep delve into what is being presented.  I think there’s a lot more going on here that people might not be aware of. 

Now I don’t speak Korean, so I have no idea what he’s saying.  From what I’ve been told by media, this song is about a section of Korea, it’s lifestyle and his appreciation of the women found there. 

This description, also describes Will Smith’s ‘Miami’.


This song was/is incredibly popular.  And in parallel to Gangnam Style, it both shows appreciation of a location, it’s women and pokes fun at itself at the same time.

Is that the reason?  Is this simply Gangnam’s version of Miami?  Heck, the place even sort of looks like Miami at times.

I don’t think so, the story that Psy tells is much more deep.  It’s the story of birth, turmoil, love and success.

What?  Ok, by the second below.

For one, this video

Total Length of Video: 4 minutes, 13 seconds

0:01-0:03 seconds, dream like sequence which turns into a reflection of Psy’s glasses.

This isn’t just a reflection or dream, it creates the link that Psy could be in a state of memory.  He is reflecting upon himself.

0:03-0:33 seconds:  Psy is in a children’s playground where there is a little kid dancing like he owns the place.

However, what’s significant is that the kid isn’t the LMFAO shuffle, this kid is dancing to a Michael Jackson song.  He is rocking it really well too.

Wait, that’s a rather out of place dance, but it places the link between Psy and the boy that could represent that as a child, it was Psy was dancing like the King of Pop MJ.

0:34 – 0:47 Snowstorm Pimp Walk

This is a hint of the chaos that the viewer is about to undergo.  By having the scene turn ridiculous almost immediately it’s a reminder that this video is NOT meant to be taken seriously.  Effectively, it becomes a plot device.

It also links to the Psy story that this ‘endgame’ that Psy wants from childhood is happening ‘the wrong way’.  At least for now.

0:47 to 0:50 Psy in a Sauna

Well, I’m reaching here but I’m going to take a wild guess that Psy’s personality is revealed in this ‘naked’ scene.  There’s a guy who is ‘ripped’ and stretching while Psy sits complacently in the background all covered up. 

In one manner, he is acting comfortable with the guy beside him.  Another way this could be interpreted, is that maybe he is feeling defeated in the presence of tattoo man.

0:52 – Old guys playing Chinese Chess. 

0:55 – Dancing with a pretty girl on a Tennis Court

0:58 – Tattoo man is popping break dance style

1:00 – On a charter bus and making going insane.  And there’s a woman in the back of the bus who is dressed hilarious with an umbrella.

1:08 – Syncing of images of him on the bus and the old guys standing on a platform, followed by explosion.

This symbolism of destroying old ways, or possibly his subliminal hatred of Chinese Chess, is also introducing Psy’s catchphrase of the song. 

1:12 – :1:30 – Introduction to the DANCE.  Not just a dance, the Psy dance.  This is significant, as it ties in with the boy image that was initially given.

Psy is doing his ‘thing’ in the hopes of success and he’s going all over the place to do it.  He effectively sideway gallops his way off screen and reappears on top of a roof top.  He just sideway gallops everywhere he goes.

But it shows him chasing away people while he cowboys his way around. In a form of rejection, they walk backwards against him.  Psy is receiving resistance.

There are dancers with him, but based on the way they’re dressed these are either close associates or imaginary in the sense.

1:35 Introduce the Butt.

Cause butts make everything better.

1:39 Psy screaming at the Butt.

Seriously, who hasn’t wanted to do this at one in time?  A fine piece of ass can make one crass, I guess.

1:41 Parking lot showdown

I’m not sure what’s going on, but it looks like Psy is winning the dance battle against..  Bruce Lee.  The yellow suit is a bit like the one that Bruce Lee and Uma Thurman had used. 

1:55 Elevator with Pelvic Thrust man

Ok, what the hell man, what the hell.  Seriously, what the hell is that supposed to mean? 

The first time I saw this, I thought Thrusto was wearing a mask.  I was that wrong.

Psy is in a subservient position during the pelvic thrusting marathon which again implies his failure to defeat the cowboy of Pelvicity.  It’s a moment where you want to look away, but stare at it and go blind instead.

Yeah, this could be simply a dance move too.  But any dance move that requires the use of an elevator, pelvic thrusting and a cowboy hat, usually needs to have a license.

2:09 Psy WINS the dance battle!

And almost immediately, Psy’s luck turns around and he meets someone new.

2:10- 2:30 Psy falls in love with a mysterious stranger.  On a subway.

Very everyday man.

2:31 He teaches her the ‘Dance’.  Sure, the dance could mean something more but he shows it to her and based upon her reaction, he is accepted.

And being accepted, isn’t that we all want?

Let’s face it, if someone with Psy’s ‘frame’ was walking down the street, they wouldn’t be begged to be in next year’s photo calendar.  That makes his love success, all the more meaningful.

3:00 Psy is wiping out in a giant hot tub, much to the joy of his neighbor.

All I can say is, whatever the meaning behind this, it is so deep that no one will ever crack it. 

On the other hand, it reminds us to not take the video that seriously and to laugh.

3:03-3:10 Dance floor and Finale foreshadowing.  Psy is accepted by his subway lady love and it’s in a public place too.

3:11-3:18 Not so public place.  Proving that any place is good place to be Gangnam Style. 

3:19-3:43 Success!  Psy’s dance is adopted by all.  There’s nurses, doctors, kung fu guys, an incredible amount of randomness all dancing the Psy Dance. 

Psy has gone through a complete transformation, from being a kid that danced to MJ, to being rejected and dominated by Sir Thrustalot, only to fall in love and find complete acceptance by everyone.. in the barn.

Or the dancefloor, or wherever they are.  Possibly Gangnam, but I seriously don’t know.

So although people might have liked this journey of a youth travelling the world and finding his home in the world, chances are this is all pure luck too.

You know why this video is popular?  After all this, I think I finally know why.

Cause the music is catchy and the video is funny.


-Updated every Friday

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Posted by on September 21, 2012 in Uncategorized



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