Thursday, April 3, 2008

Inmates, Gloria-ous, Inmates

Well, the dancing inmates in the Philippines are at it again. Oh, surely you are familiar with the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center (the CPDRC) located in (surprise) Cebu (that's in the Philippines). Allow me to provide you with a brief summary of the situation over there in case you're unfamiliar with this oddity. (Also allow me to warn you that this brief summary will likely be followed by the brief exclamation, "WTF?")

The CPDRC is a jail. Apparently, Byron Garcia, who is a security consultant for the local government over there, wanted to start some sort of an exercise program for the inmates that would allow them to exercise for an hour a day. While watching throngs of prisoners just milling about in the prison yard, he came up with the idea to choreograph dance moves set to music for about 1,500 of them. A natural thought, of course.

He eased the prisoners into his dance-o-rific world by just having them march to a drum beat. Once they seemed to have the hang of that (Left, right, left, right. How long did that take?), he added the music. In the beginning, he selected the songs "In the Navy" and "YMCA" by The Village People because he did not want the "macho prisoners to be offended at being asked to dance." Oh, OK, I see...wait a minute. What? He didn't want "macho prisoners" to be offended so he chooses two of the gayest songs in the history of gay songs performed by four of the gayest gays to sing gay songs?! THAT is how he's going to avoid offending macho offenders? Just because The Village People sang "Macho Man" does not mean that they are, in fact, macho men themselves. Because they're SO not.

Anyway, finally, he had the whole group of them to the point where they could dance to Michael Jackson's "Thriller". Garcia then uploaded a video of this hilarity to YouTube in July of 2007 and since then it has been seen by over nine million people.

The "Thriller" presentation even made Time Magazine's Top Ten Viral Video list for 2007, where it was described as "Orange-jumpsuited accused murderers, rapists and drug dealers paid homage to Michael Jackson's Thriller in a dance performance filmed at the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center in the Philippines." Time also felt the need to add, "Questions arose about whether the 1,500 Filipino jailhouse rockers were enjoying some well-choreographed creative expression or suffering abuse at the hands of prison officials with MTV aspirations. The late American actor Vincent Price was right when he said that, "No mere mortal can resist the evil of the Thriller." Catchy.

Now you're caught up. Feel better? Good. This time, the musical dance number is supposed to be a "protest dance." (I didn't even know there was such a thing.) They seem to be protesting the comments of one Jun Lozada in regard to the inmates beloved Cardinal Vidal. (I have no idea who he is. But the inmates seem to love him.) I guess this Lozada character called the Cardinal the "Archbishop of the Palace." (Since the inmates are dancing in protest, let's assume that "Archbishop of the Palace" is a bad thing in the Philippines, shall we?) As if that wasn't enough, Lozada's female companion called the Cardinal "a Congressman in a cassock." (A cassock in that long frock thing that the clergy wear. Again, assume it's bad if it's being said against the prison Cardinal in the Philippines.)

The dancing prisoners feel that the comments made were "unfair" and that they are an "unjust vilification of the archdiocese of Cebu, Cardinal Vidal". Thus, they shall dance in protest. And what is the most appropriate song for 1,500 currently incarcerated men in the Philippines to dance in protest to? Why, yes, that would be "Gloria" by Laura Branigan. WTF?!

OK, the dancing inmate thing is a bit weird to begin with. It didn't get any better with the oh-so-not-macho-tuneage of The Village People tidbit up there either. But how in the hell does "Gloria" by Laura Freaking Branigan qualify as the most appropriate song to choreograph a prison yard dance protest to?! WTF?!

If you figure it out, let me know. In the meantime, behold! The CPDRC's Protesting Inmates present "Gloria".

Stumble Upon Toolbar Sphere: Related Content

No comments: