Judicious application of hip-hop hamsters

By Mir
August 3, 2010

Have you seen this Kia commercial? I apologize in advance for the fact that the music will BURROW INTO YOUR BRAIN, but you really must see if if you haven’t:

I have just one thing to say about that, by the way: DO. DOP. DIPPITY!

Okay, technically that may be three things. And it also isn’t the only thing I have to say about it, because I’m a dirty liar.

Here is the thing about this commercial: At some point, somewhere, someone in a room full of executives said, “You know what this campaign needs? RODENTS. LOTS AND LOTS OF RODENTS. Preferably rodents who are totally rocking out and getting their groove on. And some of them should be riding down the street in toasters. Others, in washing machines. And some should even be in dishwashers.” And instead of taking that person away to a psych unit where he would no longer be a danger to himself or others, the people in that room AGREED, and soon, that there commercial was born.

And they’re all evil geniuses, because—while it hasn’t caused us to run and buy a Kia—this commercial has permeated our everyday lives, DAMMIT. The Kia hamsters now live on a giant wheel in my brain, and that wheel is all blinged out and constantly spinning.

I mean, think about it for a minute. There are EVER SO MANY life situations to which the addition of a good bass rhythm and a little bit of “You can get with this, or you can get with that” is the perfect accompaniment.

If I announce after dinner that one child should load the dishwasher and the other one should wipe down the table, and they start bickering about it, I need only start pointing to the left and right and asserting “You can get with this, or you can get with that. This, or that. This or that. DO. DOP. DIPPITY!” And in their mad scramble to PLEASE MAKE MOM STOP PSEUDO-RAPPING, the children complete their chores in a flash. It’s like magic.

A few days ago we got our annual AYP letter from the school district, the one that makes me roll my eyes and laugh a little. Basically, the deal is that if your assigned school fails to meet Adequate Yearly Progress two years in a row, the school is put into Needs Improvement status, and then we parents have the right to request that our children be transferred to a district school which actually met AYP.

I am ever-so-proud (um…) to share with you that my son’s elementary school and my daughter’s middle school both flunked AYP this year. The elementary school passed last year, though, which means we’re not yet in Needs Improvement status and not given the option to transfer. The middle school, however, has attained Needs Improvement and therefore a letter went out to tell us that we have the option to request a transfer…

… except that—OH, SNAP!—it turns out that EVERY SINGLE MIDDLE SCHOOL in our district is in Needs Improvement status, so, oh well, they won’t be offering transfers. (To clarify: We have no wish to transfer, nor am I worried. The dichotomy between the top students and bottom ones is huge and unfortunate, but I am actually quite pleased with the education my daughter’s getting.)

So, naturally, we read the letter and commenced with the “You can get with this, or you can get with that! You can get with this, or you can… actually not get with that. Oh.”

And then, of course, there’s only one thing left to say, you know.



  1. Leandra

    Those hamsters freak me out just a little. Their heads are so tiny.

    What sticks in my head is that $)(%#)%( Geico ringtone. Ringity ding ding ding a doh.

  2. Beachgal

    *shiver* That commercial is so disturbing to me. Thank goodness I watch the majority of my TV programs from the DVR and thus they get fast forwarded through.

  3. Otto

    I kind of want a Kia now … and I want to go see Moochie & the Woodchips but the marquee says it’s sold out … DO. DOP. DIPPITY.


  4. elz

    I hate that commercial with a passion usually reserved for opposing teams during college football season. What the heck?! A bunch of hamsters rapping in toasters? The tune is catchy, but the commercial? AUGH.

  5. Beth R

    I actually grabbed a Kia Soul the last time I used a Zipcar so I could give the “hamster car” a try. It drives really nicely, but DAG it’s big for somebody who drives a Mitsubishi Eclipse :)

    And I LOVE the ads – they crack me up.

  6. Aimee

    I actually hadn’t seen that ad before. Thank you?

  7. Dallas

    that’s my car! I bought it back in January.

    I asked if I got a stuffed hamster or a hamster decal with it.

    No dice.

  8. Alana Morales, Author Domestically Challenged

    You don’t even understand how much I love this stupid commercial. Love. I walk around the house doing the same thing. I will now be singing this on the way home with my kids. I’m sure they will appreciate it. Lol

  9. Michelle

    We crack up everytime that comercial comes on, love it!

  10. Jamie

    I like that commercial A LOT better than the Quiznos ones with the 5-4-3 cats. They are evil! This Soul commercial was fun.

  11. Mike Golch

    I guess since they thought the hampster dance birthday dances were popular way back whe that they would use hampsters for the commericial as well.Go figure.

  12. Megan

    Heh. I have NEVER (hopefully WILL never) heard the music to that as I have a firm belief that the mute button is the most important invention EVER (wow – that’s a lot of caps there…). In fact, in our house it’s called the happiness button.

    My kid’s middle school failed so badly and so consistently that they reached the point of being threatened with having every last person fired. To avoid that they restructured themselves as an arts magnet school – a bit of a problem as they didn’t HAVE an arts program and none of the teachers were given any training at all. Also, the restructuring meant that the only Golden Apple teacher they had was forced to leave the school because of conflicting schedules – and of course he was a music teacher which meant the music program was lost too. Yah. It was so good. V grateful my kid left that year!

    Oh, and we too live in a city where pretty much every single middle school fails their stuff – gee, could that be partly because of our really high Spanish-only speaking population and the fact that the stupid tests are English only? Hmmmmm….

  13. bob

    My daughter (in college) and her friends call cars like the Kia Soul and the Scion xb “rocket toasters” so maybe that’s why the Soul is offered as an alternative to a toaster?

    Plus, I don’t think this is the 1st Kia commercial with the hamsters, but I could be wrong about that. Us old farts don’t rememberize to well.

  14. dad

    Its wrong.
    Just wrong.

    I fear the full length film sequel: Planet of the hampsters.”

  15. Emily in IL

    The hamsters kind of annoy me a bit – but then I was the crazy one who loved the Quizno’s sub commercial with the screeching things singing about sandwiches and the moon…

    None of the schools in my area meet AYP either. Test scores can only go so far in telling you about the quality of education your child will receive. (It’s also really hard to do well on standardized tests when they are given in English and that’s not the language you speak – just sayin’) I wish others would realize that ….

  16. tiffany

    my boss drives a soul and my coworker and I will mimic the hamsters while she is driving up….she rolls her eyes while we bust a gut lol

  17. Little Bird

    That bit about the rapping hamsters has made it to my own facebook page in a long drawn out back and forth “recitation ” of the lines. It was kinda fun.
    And I desperately want the Geico ringtone, but I think it should be designated to one person. One person who doesn’t really call all that often.
    Good luck with the schools!

  18. hokgardner

    I am so using that with my bicker twins at chore time.

  19. Ms. P

    Unfortunately this tune really does stick in your head. Sometimes I just start singing it while washing dishes… my fiance really appreciates this :)

  20. Katie in MA

    I managed to avoid clicking on the commercial (undercover stealth reading at work, you know), and yet, the “song” is still stuck in my head.

  21. Jennifer Morgan

    I also enjoy the DO. DOP. DIPPITY. The commercial that makes me change the channel/fast forward — the raspy kittens screaming at me to buy Quizno’s. I’m a cat lover; who on earth thinks that is cute??

  22. carolyn

    We LOVE LOVE LOVE that commercial in our house! My 17 year old daughter and I text parts of the song to each other randomly during the day. (Yes, we are nerds!) Can’t get the 15 year old boy to do it, but he is not very tolerant of mom and her weirdness, although I do notice him tapping his foot to the beat when the commercial runs on TV.

  23. Tracy

    Actually, this is my most favorite commercial. Seriously. And yes, it gets stuck in your head and NOW, thanks to you, I’m gonna put it to good use but NOT at home but at work! =)

  24. Jenn

    Dear God I love that commercial.

    I somehow don’t think the target audience for that commercial was a bunch of 30-something moms.

  25. Kirsten

    *sighs* this is the part where I admit that this was one of our favorite songs to dance to at my high school dances…. because you could totally diss “the other girl”…. Cause you could get with “this” *point to self* or you could get with “that” *point to other girl*…..

    And when I heard it in a commercial I totally regressed back to that… and I am ashamed.

    But, can I just say the rump shakin’ girl hamsters at 0:49? Induced a monitor washing coke spit LOL

  26. Clay

    Cute commercial, but lest anyone run out to buy a Kia, it’s rumored that the brand is going to be phased out in a year or two. It’s unnecessary competition for its parent company, Hyundai, so those who buy one now may remember with regret this hamster commercial.

  27. MamaChristy

    Fatboy Slim sings (remixed?) that song, if you’d like other songs stuck in your head that aren’t related to giant hamsters.

  28. Mon

    I don’t quite know about the washing machine, but I think the toaster reference is a jab to the Scion XB, which apparently is referred to as the Scion Toaster. Affectionately. By people who have Scion XBs. Now I want toast. ARGH.

  29. Anna

    Every school?! Too funny. I guess that goes to show that you can’t just legislate your cares away.

  30. addy

    thanks for the laugh….

  31. Laurel

    love love love commercial and song, but be careful when searching youtube or you might get the original rap version, it’s a little. . . complicated to explain the original meaning to 10 and 8 year olds. ha.

  32. Cele

    Actually I thought the hampsters were innovative andm as has been pointed out, much better than Quiznos dead rodents of past advertising campaigns. Now really dead rodents vs hip hop hampsters – no contest. I think several others in my community will agree – Quiznos in Florence closed.

    Kia did the hampsters-wheels in rush hour traffic didn’t they?

  33. statia

    I can’t tell you how excited I was when I heard that song. It’s an oldie, and I remember when it came out. I actually put it on a mixed tape.

  34. Hecticmom

    This post made me laugh so hard I cried and gave myself an asthma attack… OMG. I haven’t laughed that hard in forever… I’m just sitting here at the computer LMAO…
    Hubby thinks I’ve gone over the edge…

    “And instead of taking that person away to a psych unit where he would no longer be a danger to himself or others, the people in that room AGREED, and soon, that there commercial was born.”

    OMG… O.M.G…. I think you just described my day at work…

    “PLEASE MAKE MOM STOP PSEUDO-RAPPING, the children complete their chores in a flash. It’s like magic.”

    HAHAHAHAHAHAH!!!! Awesome…

    (note, I wasn’t cracking up at the school part – just everything else…)

  35. Saskia

    On the use of hamsters in commercials: here in the Netherlands one of the major supermarket chains uses hamsters in their commercials several times a year. The Dutch verb “hamsteren” (to hamster) means to collect a large amount of supplies (like in preparation for a storm or emergency situation or whatever). So the commercials will feature hamsters that are ‘hamstering’ to announce several weeks of major price reductions in the stores. And they’re absolutely adorable! I personally love them and can’t wait for the “hamsterweken” (hamster weeks) to roll around again..

  36. Brigitte

    What!? No videos of YOU pseudo-rapping? ;-)

    My kid looooves those Kia hamster ads, and I think they’re cute, but they tell me nothing about the car.

    Sometimes I wonder about the ad men as well, your description is too funny! Too bad your school situation is not nearly so amusing. :-(

  37. Amy S.

    My 15 yo daughter LOVES that commercial and will regularly break out with a Do. Dop. Dippity. that always gets me laughing. Our community has a large Kia dealership that puts all kinds of different inflatables on it’s roof to draw attention to itself from the highway … and the current inflatable is, yes, a VERY LARGE hamster!

  38. My Kids Mom

    Oh that AYP crap. Our school wasn’t making it and was on the needs improvement list. Then, due to a school closure that added kids to our school, and a bad economy that pulled private school kids into our public school… the special education classes were moved out to another school. And, guess what? We started meeting AYP– and congratulating ourselves for having made improvements! The poor English as a Second Language kids, no matter how long they’ve spoken English, were tested AT GRADE LEVEL IN ENGLISH and special needs kids were also tested AT GRADE LEVEL. Should I continue the all caps shouting? It amazes me that the staff and parents think we have something to be proud of here. Or that we think this AYP designation means anything at all.

    Now I’m all tense and pissed off. I’ll get some chocolate and be ok in a minute.

  39. My Kids Mom

    Or should I skip the chocolate and just try Rodent Rapping?

  40. Nancy R

    I can’t tell you how many times I’ve sat watching that trying to puzzle out the decision-making paradigm for this commercial…

    Are the hamsters a euphamism for ‘gangstas’?

    Are the toasters, washing machines, cardboard boxes a way of dis’sing other brands of cars? Are we, the viewers, supposed to be able to tell which ones they’re dis’sing?

    Did it take them a long time to find actors who could dance like ‘gangstas’ who were also WILLING to dress as hamsters?

    We may never know.

    Peace out.

  41. Karate Mom

    I love to imagine that when they filmed that commercial they didn’t TELL the performers that they were going to be transformed into giant hamsters. So the guys were all like, “Dude, I’m totally rapping in this Kia commercial and it’s gonna LAUNCH my career! Watch! It’s getting ready to come on RIGHT NOW. You gotta watch!”
    “WTH?!? I’m a HAMSTER!”

  42. Woman with Kids

    I had a Kia Soul as a rental car. I felt a bit like a hamster. It was awful but I did have the urge to be a gangsta hamster…

Things I Might Once Have Said


Quick Retail Therapy

Pin It on Pinterest