Humoring the Chinese: An American Comedian has a Run-in With Chinese Censorship

The World

Jesse Appell imitating the K-pop star, Psy (Photo courtesy of Jesse Appell)


Fulbright scholar Jesse Appell went to China to study the tradition of Chinese stand-up comedy. After he made a spoof video of Psy's megahit, "Gangnam Style" which he called "Laowai Style" he found himself at the center of his own comedy. His video went viral on the internet in China. When a Chinese TV show approached him to perform the song on their show he was told he needed to change or "harmonize," that's the Chinese way of describing censorship, certain lines in the song. Anchor, Marco Werman interviews Appell about his brush with censorship and celebrity in China. Check out Appell's take on the hit Psy song: