I’m sure everyone that reads this blog is aware of the Korean superstar, PSY’s, newest track, Gentleman, which released worldwide just a few weeks ago. It has the makings of another hit – a catchy beat, a funny hook, a dance that’s impossible not to imitate (borrowed, of course, from the lovely Brown-Eyed Girls Abracadabra). I’m not denying that it’s a good song – but I still do not like it.
Gangnam Style, while overplayed, I liked. I’m not surprised it reached the momentum it did; it was catchy and fun, and just sitting on the edge of risque. It appealed to foreigners in a way regular KPOP songs cannot, by sticking a man who is mediocre in outward appearance but in reality everything but, in a music video that’s quirky and endearingly weird. It’s obvious that after a mega hit like this, PSY would be under a lot of pressure for his next release – and thus, Gentleman was created.
Gentleman, the song, isn’t all that different to Gangnam Style. Say what you want, but I don’t really blame him for continuing with this style, he’s found a groove that works for him and he’s attempting to make it stick. It’s not the song I have a problem with – I could easily sit down and listen to it if it comes up on the radio, and be proud to hear yet another KPOP song in such an environment.
However, I have many problems with the video.
I mentioned before that Gangnam Style sits right on the edge of risque, it’s not exactly appropriate for young children but not so inappropriate that mothers are scrambling to keep their kids away from the music video. And thanks to the youtube video success. the song is, undeniably, extremely popular with children. For the past few months, there hasn’t been a day that I haven’t at least one child singing or dancing along with the song, as I do my daily pick ups from the Elementary school.
Gentleman, I find, is a completely different story. It sits on the wrong side of risque, with the provocative dance and the “MOTHER FATHER GENTLEMAN” lyrics clearly hinting to be misheard. My biggest concern, however, is the severe lack of respect for other people (women and otherwise), which will lead his inevitable children viewers to believe it’s cool and even funny to purposely annoy and injure other people around them. (for example: pulling the chair out from under the lady, not only once, but twice; releasing gas in an elevator after pressing all the buttons, etc)
There were other ways for him to go about keeping up his selling streak, and I think he tried a little too hard to be out-there in this one. Hopefully his next release will be something that I, as a 9-year fan of KPOP, will gladly show to the children I look after, and anyone else that may show an interest.