China ‘Bo Bo Chicken’ dance craze sweeps nation with catchy tune sampled from street vendor cry, surpasses ‘Subject Three’ mania
A new dance craze named after China’s famous Bo Bo Chicken snack has gone viral on mainland social media.
Two months after the hip-twisting folk dance known as “Subject Three” became an online sensation, new dance moves inspired by the spicy skewer snack featuring chicken, its offal, and a variety of vegetables and meats, have become all the rage online.
On Douyin, the mainland version of TikTok, people have been posting different versions of the Bo Bo Chicken dance since January.
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The most popular version by far features the dancer’s head bobbing back and forth like a chicken’s, and leg and hip twisting movements similar to the iconic moves of the Subject Three dance.
Aside from the dance moves, the accompanying tune, with its catchy rhythm and lyrics, has intrigued people the most.
It also includes a sample of the cry street vendors in southwestern China’s Sichuan province make when they sell the dish.
Hawker shouts of “Bo Bo Chicken, Bo Bo Chicken, one yuan (14 US cents) per skewer”, were reportedly captured by a car driver as he passed by a vendor during a traffic jam, and went viral before being used in various memes.
The sample was even added to a concert video of Singaporean singer and songwriter JJ Lin because people thought it went well with his dance moves.
Despite many people finding it amusing, Lin himself was not impressed, posting on Instagram that people who put “weird music” over his concert footage “should not come to my concerts next time”, with the hashtags – #notfunny and #norespect.
The sister dance to that of Bo Bo Chicken, Subject Three, went viral online after staff at branches of the Haidilao hotpot restaurant chain, which is famous across China for its entertaining service, performed it for customers.
Known as ke mu san dance in Chinese, it was said to originally be a folk dance performed at weddings in the southern Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region and a symbol of joy and blessing.
Haidilao rewarded the staff members who thought of the idea, and promoted the dance across all its mainland outlets, asking its employees nationwide to learn the moves.
The dance became so popular that young performers from China and the US performed it during the Lunar New Year party at the Chinese embassy in the United States on January 28.
It is also set to be performed during the China Central Television Spring Festival Gala, the country’s most-watched show.
However, not everybody is a fan.
Some have criticised the hip-twisting moves for being “too vulgar”.
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