Monday, February 25, 2013 By Aaron Brown
For an example of the Harlem Shake form, here is the Duluth Shake:
The speed of the meme's spread has created some unique problems. Students at Mound Westonka High School in Minnesota were suspended after attempting to record a Harlem Shake video at lunchtime. The
Honestly, it seems to be a case where the meme traveled so fast among internet users that it utterly dumbfounded those out of the loop. I'm a pretty connected guy, but I didn't catch the thing until Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert spoofed it -- marking the decline of the novelty.
This thing won't be around much longer, but can I just add something? Most would use this space to argue the stupidity of the Harlem Shake. I dissent.
The 30-second format of the traditional Harlem Shake video and the "required elements" (masked solo dancer, dispassionate group for first :15, jump cut to pandemonium in second :15) makes for a sort of visual poetry. What is a haiku, a sonnet? Merely the expression of art in prescribed formats, right? A good Harlem Shake video is more than just the duplication of dance moves; it's high order choreography that relies on people, place and theme. A lot of Harlem Shake videos are boring and repetitive. Good ones stand out.
For Harlem Shake videos from regional colleges, check below the jump:
College of St. Scholastica Shake: