~xUe HuA pIAo PiAO bEi FenG xIAo XiaO~ is the iconic chorus of a Taiwanese pop song from the 80s: “Yi Jian Mei” (by Fei Yuching). My Chinese parents know it, your Chinese parents know it, the Chinese aunties and uncles know it – and like all the best traditions, it’s now been passed down like folktales to us, the no doubt devoted, pious, Good Chinese Children.
They perhaps don’t need to know that we know it from Elite Tiktok(TM) trolling tiktoks.
There's no wonder it ended up as a neverending font of content at the hands of Gen Z's neo-Dadaist chaos humor [see e.g. Exhibit A: bullying a serial killer on Instagram with fairy and glitter emojis].
Once Brother Egg aka Eggman aka minor B-List Chinese director-actor Zhang Aiqin, known and beloved in China for his oddly shaped bald head, filmed a selfie-video of himself singing the now wildly famous refrain, against a background of the fluffy snow described in the lyrics, of course it went viral.
Of course it went even more viral once a clever fellow out there did the next best thing: remixed it. And remixed it well, at that. There's no question that Tiktok loves a dance trend, and it loves a remix even more.
You might have happened across any number of absolutely impeccable "WAP" (by Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion) remixes, mashed up with everything from "Let It Go" from Disney's Frozen, to the Queen classic, "Bohemian Rhapsody". Or you might have found (and cringed at) the excessively innumerable and unbearable @Tiagz remixes of meme audios, thereby signalling the Death Of That Meme (someone please stop him, thanks).
And if we turn our telescope to the Dark Side of the Moon* (*the moon being mainsteam Charli d'Amelio-Hype House-dance Tiktok), there's nothing that Alt/Elite Tiktok loves more than popularizing the most obscure audios it can find (which are then further popularized to Death by e.g. a @Tiagz remix). It thereby satisfies its dual purposes of: (1) creating chaotic inside jokes; and (2) clowning mainstream Tiktok's many, many so-called "dancers".
So the alchemical formula for internet stardom is realized. It is safe to say that our beloved Brother Egg, whose earnest-if-off-key rendition of "Yi Jian Mei" is quite sweet, has joined the everlasting ranks of: Gavin, Sweatshirt Ear Kid, Guacamole Song Lady, Two Men Sitting Five Feet Apart, Look At All Those Chickens Girl and many other heroes of our time.
Zhang Aiqin told the South China Morning Post that he was "excited and honored" by the recognition from "so many foreign friends". Please honor him further by enjoying a curated collection of our favorite remixes below.