Gangnam Style leads to gang shootout in Thailand (HT to reader):
The dance has inspired a host of parodies, the song has hit the top of the charts in South Korea, Malaysia, Finland and Latvia, and the YouTube video has accumulated more than 227m views. Now, according to Thai media, Gangnam Style, by the K-pop star Psy, has inspired a West Side Story-esque show of rivalry between two Bangkok gangs who are said to have had a dance-off before engaging in a gun battle.
The INN website reported that the two gangs were dining in the same restaurant when “the younger members of both groups danced provocatively at each other in the manner of top hit Gangnam Style”. The dance-off escalated into an argument and, eventually, a gun attack in the upmarket Ekkamai neighbourhood, in which one of the gangs fired at least 50 bullets from a carbine and an 11mm gun.
Several speakers suggested the city had missed a golden opportunity for a town of 115,000 residents and should have capitalized on the attention the video has drawn. The video has been watched more than 1.5 million times on YouTube.
But Mayor Andre Quintero said the video spoof of “Gangnam Style” by Korean musician Psy had been hurtful to the city. “Our brand as a city has taken a big hit,” he said.
The guard-made video—“Lifeguard Style”—quickly went viral after the lifeguards and their supervisor were fired for unauthorized filming on city premises and appearing in the video in the city’s fire-engine-red swimsuits.
I’ll let you process that.
In the UK, Gangnam Style almost hit No. 1 in the singles’ chart. It placed a very respectable No. 3.
Forbes, incidentally, ran a very good piece (IMHO) on what makes Gangnam Style so damned popular. This might grab your attention:
That PSY is from South Korea is a viral benefit, as well. As we have seen from many of the big recent pop hits, having a local fan base abroad (Adele in the UK, Gotye in Australia and Jepsen in Canada) is a social media magnet when a song or video hits here. That Korean Pop (or K-Pop) is huge in Asia but almost unknown in the US outside of Asian communities means that there is more where PSY came from, as well. PSY s only #4 on the Billboard K-Pop chart, but he is the only K-Pop artist on the mainstream charts (like, ever): #11 on the Hot 100, #28 on Pop Songs, #68 on Radio Songs, #4 on Digital Songs and #43 on On-Demand Songs.
Finally, if this doesn’t make you mourn the death of Western civilization, I don’t know what will.