From Casablanca to Dubai, young Arabs have made parodies of the one-billion-views Youtube video "Gangnam Style". Some offer sharp political satire, other witty societal critiques… and all are creative and hilarious! Check out Free Arabs' roundup.
(Original Gangnam Style video here)
Syria. God damn!
A virulent satire of “Beeshu” and his father Hafez Al-Assad, the continued spirit of whom is deemed the root cause of Syria’s repression. “Gangnam Style” tune becomes here “Il3an ro7 7afez” (God Damn Hafez’s soul)
Tunisia. Vote for me!
This hilarious, cartoon-esque round up of Tunisia’s political parties was created for the “Captain 5obza” Youtube comedy Show. From the Islamist Rached Ghannouchi to the communist Hamma Hammami, the country’s top politicians make their case on the Gangnam Tunes.
Saudi Arabia. Guys in underwear
5 million views!! That’s the amazing score of the Gangnam Style Saudi version, renamed “Serwal wa fanila” (“undershirt and thobe pants”: the type of clothing Saudi youth typically wear during idle, bored days, both inside and outside the house—to the extent that it triggered wives’ complaints across the country!). The video below added Saudi-specific lyrics, as a second layer to the original parody.
Egypt. Protesting curfews
Made by a young group of talented Port Saidis, this parody mocks the haphazard actions of Egypt’s Islamist President Mohamed Morsi. His recent 30 day imposition of a curfew and emergency laws in the three Suez Canal cities of Port Said, Ismailia, and Suez moved the group to produce a song that is both a parody and a challenge to authority. Even as tanks patrol their streets and while under curfew, Egyptians show their resilient sense of humor.
Morocco. Hey, prime minister!
“People chose you, now take responsibility and get ready for opposition!”—this is the message from Moroccan rapper Chekhsar and singer Abdellah Abujad to prime minister Abdelilah Benkirane. In this funny parody, the “hey sexy lady” lyrics become “Hey, ya cha3baoui!” (Hey you populist!). However, critics accuse Chekhsar of bashing elected Primer minister as a way to condone the autocratic monarchy
Sudan. Dancing dictator
Accused of crimes against humanity, the Sudanese leader Omar Hassan Al-Bashir continues to defy the population—and the international community. Luckily, Youtube offers some breathing room. This “Beshu” parody mocks the president, as it features him performing clumsy dance steps on the Gangnam Style tunes
Algeria. Machismo unleashed
Made famous by his cheesy TV show parodies on Internet, Algerian satirist Irban Irban turns “Gangnam style” to “t’go3di feddar” (Woman, stay home!), the complaint of a newly-wed husband who can’t bear his young wife claiming a free, modern lifestyle. “Stay home”, he replies, adding “hada 3robi style” (this is traditional/backward style)
Lebanon. Sea, sex and fun
Al Jadid TV's Gangnam version is a playful parody of a "touristic" promotional clip for Saida. Main features of the third largest Lebanese city, as promoted by the clip: clubs, alcohol, sex and... "addiction".
Dubai. Football style
No social satire or politically loaded lyrics in this Emirati version of Gangnam style, but a tribute to… football. The clip shows young men performing the main figures of the Gangnam choreography—but with a twist: juggling footballs.
...and finally: Axis of Gangnam
Some chorographical moves for the pro-Assad regional alliance of villains!