Culture

Korean rapper Psy's story immortalized in comic book

South Korean pop artist PSY waves to fans as the Los Angeles Dodgers play the Colorado Rockies in their baseball game, Tuesday, April 30, 2013, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

The story of South Korean rap sensation Psy's ascent to global stardom with his megahit "Gangnam Style" has now been immortalized in full colour and with appropriate dramatic flourishes in a comic book.

"Fame:Psy", which went on sale in the United States and South Korea on Wednesday, focuses mainly on what went into making "Gangnam Style," which catapulted the sunglassed singer with the garish jackets to global fame and became YouTube's most popular song ever with more than 1.5 billion hits.

"Has he fallen from the sky? Has he risen from the earth?" the comic begins, with illustrations showing Psy - in the suits he made famous in "Gangnam Style" and striking poses from his "Horse Riding Dance" - descending from heaven and bursting through the earth.

"It was the end of summer, 2012, when a little-known Asian rapper put his music video on YouTube. It exploded in popularity," continues the 26-page tale, from U.S. publisher Bluewater Productions and South Korean firm "able".

"His stubby build and dynamic stage presence caught people's eyes. Psy's not your typical pop star".

In similarly breathless prose the comic covers the decade of Psy's pre-Gangnam career in Korea, the origins of the video and the dance, and the fame that followed, including scenes of a delighted Psy teaching U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon his dance and performing for U.S. President Barack Obama.

The comic, which also touches on the less happy parts of Psy's past such as being charged with possession of marijuana in 2002, includes a guide that shows readers how to do Psy's dance themselves.

It ends with the release of Psy's second video, "Gentleman", last month. The video has racked up nearly 260 million YouTube hits after smashing the previous record of first-day views for songs, and hit fifth place on the Billboard Hot 100 last week.

 

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