Skip To Content

    Must-Watch: Richard Dawkins' Insane Psychedelic Rap About Memes

    This is extraordinary.

    Richard Dawkins invented the concept of memes, so you'd expect him to speak with some authority on the subject. What you wouldn't expect from him is a bizarre audio-visual assault on the senses that incorporates disembodied heads, nausea-inducing graphics, and a sort of semi-rap featuring the lyrics, "Memes, memes, memes, genes, genes, genes."

    It's like a psychedelic cross between Mars Attacks and the 'Terrorists Are Gay' sequence in Nathan Barley. Here are a few highlights to look out for.

    Floating heads!

    Floating brains!

    A laser-owl!

    Weird, druggy slogans!

    "Sharks and hedgehogs".

    Then there's a bit where Dawkins walks on stage playing a sort of digital saxophone - seemingly a reference to the Holophoner episode in Futurama.

    It's all part of a talk Dawkins gave in Cannes for the Saatchi & Saatchi New Directors' Showcase. Watch the video in full.

    View this video on YouTube

    So what's it all about? According to Memo Akten of Marshmallow Laser Feast - who helped design the presentation - it's a commentary on how Dawkins' word "meme" has been hijacked by the internet.

    "So we decided to get Dawkins to deliver a short scientific speech on evolution, genetics and memetics. Then go into how the internet has hijacked the word meme. Then we hijack his speech, evolve it and create a short animation which is an ode to cultural evolution and the internet."

    You can read more about the video in this Wired article. But in the meantime...