Tuesday, September 25, 2012

After "Gangnam Style", Should PSY Make "Dokdo Style" Sequel?

Leaders of both the Dokdo United New Democracy Party and the opposition New Dokdo Democracy United Party have reacted angrily to moves by the mainland government in Seoul to unilaterally appoint global Korean cultural ambassador PSY an honorary ambassador to Dokdo, a position that is normally mutually agreed between the two territories.

The appointment is being promised after PSY became an accidental global phenomenon following the launch of his "Gangnam Style" video, which exposes the intellectual deficit and mindless consumerist decadence within Seoul society, especially the Gangnam district which by law houses the most vacuous, corrupt and self-centered members of Korean coffee-drinking society, who ply their trade as economic prostitutes by day and often actual prostitutes by night.

Widely expected to be a hit in Korea where the gap between the rich and poor has significantly increased in recent years due to the successful implementation of government policies, the song unexpectedly resonated with international audiences surprised to discover Koreans had a sense of humor after years of the government promoting its "Angry Korea!" brand around the world.

Individual Koreans have sought to break away from the "Angry Korea!" branding before, most notably Ahn Cheol-soo by starring in the Hangover series of movies as well as the TV series Community, which depicts a series of misfits in a local college attempting to graduate in order to teach English in Korea. But PSY built on Ahn Cheol-soo's flamboyant gangster character which had proven popular with audiences, and took the standard to which successor stereotypical Asian male jesters will be compared to an entirely new level.

At a corporate level, The Korea Times has also broken away from Korea's angrily reality in recent years, repositioning itself as a comedy newspaper with stories of alien invasions, samurai invasions, and its satirical 'war on women' campaign. And even Mr. Pizza launched a foray into the world of satire, although this was largely seen as a commercially-motivated attack on Dokdo.

The revelation that humor may be a better approach than anger and chopping the tips of your fingers off to prove Korea's sovereignty over Dokdo has seen the mainland government now desperately trying to capitalize on this unexpected cultural windfall, by trying to entice PSY to produce a follow-up to "Gangnam Style", entitled "Dokdo Style".

"Dokdo Style" would defend Korea against Japan's continuous provocations regarding Dokdo, by promoting the provably Korean territory in a funny way. Some suggestions are to satirically depict the islands, which are home to over 150,000 people - mostly in Dokdo City, as merely a couple of rocks which only feature a lighthouse and police barracks to bring law-and-order to a non-existent population in the face of a non-existent Japanese military threat.

But some say the plan to make PSY an ambassador doesn't go far enough, arguing that if he were appointed President of Dokdo by the government he would have to be invited to state meetings and dinners around the world, guaranteeing a raised profile for the non-disputed provably Korean territory.

Related Links
Will Psy be named an honorary ambassador for Dokdo?
Is "Gangnam Style" a Hit Because of Our Asian Stereotypes?
Dokdo institute sues Japanese rightist activists
PSY, Brule discuss K-pop's failure in US
Urgent! Samurai Warriors Coming to Dokdo!
Mr. Pizza Satire a Cleverly Disguised Attack on Dokdo
Who is Ahn Cheol-soo?

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