A group of Palestinian comedians’ parody of Jean-Claude Van Damme’s Volvo commercial, which went viral last month, may not be “crafted to perfection,” but it is sure to leave you “split” over its humor and underlying message.
Whereas in Volvo’s commercial, which was viewed over 50,000,000 times on YouTube, Van Damme is suspended between two trucks and ends up with his legs in a full split, the Palestinian skit features an actor standing on two Kias, his feet only ever so slightly separated from each other.
As the spoof progresses, a voice-over can be heard talking about the troubles of Gaza’s citizens, while a number of men manually push the two vehicles forward.
“The electricity cuts off for 12 hours,” the man says, clearly mimicking Van Damme’s discussion of his hardships in the original ad. “The water turns on when the electricity cuts off. I miss taking a shower!”
An Enya song plays in the background.
“All of this doesn’t make Van Damme better than me,” the voice-over says. “But unfortunately, there is no gas in town.”
The skit has garnered close to 100,000 views on YouTube and has been shared repeatedly on Twitter and Facebook.
According to ABC News, Mahmoud Zuiter, one of the short film’s creators and a member of the Tashwesh Productions group, said he hoped to raise awareness for the Palestinian people’s hardships.
“Van Damme is very famous, and millions of people like him,” he said. “I made the video in the style of Van Damme, but I changed some of the things so that people would understand the suffering.”
Zuiter added that the video was a great success among residents of the cities of Deir Al-Balah and Khan Younis, where all of the comedy group’s members currently live.