Music Monday: 70 Million Ylvis Fans Can’t Be Wrong

It’s stunning. A silly song that started as a promo for their Norwegian television has exploded across the globe to become  the most stubbornly-sticky riff since Gangnam Style. And it has done that by taking an equally goofy approach.

You’ve probably already seen this clip from the Norwegian comedy duo of Baard and Vegard Ylvisåkerfrom, known more commonly as “Ylvis.” And if you have young teenagers in the house, you can’t escape it. It started going viral from the moment it was released on September 3rd, earning 40 million YouTube views in its first two weeks alone. The song is catchy, the visuals are playfully dada-ist, and good natured silliness permeates the whole endeavor. It truly is hard not to watch it and smile. The levels of dry irony approach the Faulkerian. Remarkable.

Of course, contrast that with this striving, over-reaching opportunism from Abercrombie & Fitch. The quickly-declining yet cluelessly still elitist retailer of teen sex and fashion tried to hook their fading star to this global phenomenon, but where Ylvis celebrates the joyously and intentionally dopey, Abercrombie and their vapid sculpted shirtless models come off as smug and self satisfied (did they have to applaud themselves at the end?). About the only good thing to be said about this relentlessly uninventive ‘parody’ is that it lasts barely longer than a minute.

If you need a visual definition of ‘polar opposites,’ you can’t find a better example.


By Dennis Ryan, CCO, Olson

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