‘Gangnam Style’ Dance-Off Ends in Shoot-Out

In Bangkok, a viral dance turns violent

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Charles Sykes / NBC / NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

PSY appears on NBC's "Today" show

A late-night “Gangnam Style” dance-off in Thailand ended in a gun battle on Saturday, after two partying teenage gangs squared off in the invisible-horse-riding dance competition at a Bangkok club Friday night.

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According to the Bangkok Post, the competition got heated and words were exchanged. One group of gang members left, but returned around 6 the following morning, armed with guns, and began firing shots into the sky. The gunmen left again, but three of them returned two hours later shooting in all directions and prompting several bystanders to run for their lives, the newspaper quoted a witness as saying. The teenagers used the “Gangnam Style” moves to provoke one another, according to another witness. While cars were damaged, no one was injured in the shootings.

Thailand has been struggling with rising levels of violence between rival school gangs; more than a thousand attacks involving guns, knives and even grenades have been recorded in the capital, Bangkok, in the first half of this year alone, Agence France-Presse reported earlier this month.

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The shoot-out is possibly the most extreme example yet of the global impact of Korean rapper Psy’s viral music video, which has already inspired copycat renditions by everyone from Britney Spears to the Oregon Duck (sports mascot of the University of Oregon) to North Korean state media. The music video has already attracted 260 million views on YouTube and set the world record as the most liked video in YouTube’s history.

MORE: The Wholesome Hidden Message of ‘Gangnam Style’