Electric Boogaloo

Electric Boogaloo

Updated Mar 06, 2014 at 10:54PM EST by Brad.

Added Mar 21, 2013 at 02:57PM EDT by Platus.

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“Electric Boogaloo” is a phrase typically appended to the title of a sequel TV or film production to mock its poor quality. Originally featured in the title of the poorly received 1984 dance film Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo[3], the term refers to a type of dance move that arose out of funk and hip hop styles in the 1970s, popularized by the street dance team The Electric Boogaloos.[9]


Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo (trailer shown below) (trailer shown below) was released on December 21st, 1984 and was met with mediocre reviews from Variety[10] who called it a “comic book” and Roger Ebert[11] who gave it 3 stars. As of March 2013, the film has been given 4.3 stars out of 10 on IMDb[3] and 3.4 starts out of 5 on Rotten Tomatoes.[12] Online, the phrase became adopted as a denotation of any sequel release as early as October 2nd, 2001, in a blog post about a radio show by actor Wil Wheaton.[3]


In the early 2000s, the phrase was used offline in titles of works by Christian ska band Five Iron Frenzy[14] and indie rock band Minus the Bear.[15] In July 2005, the first YTMND site using this title format was created by user Pandaman87[16], as it was a sequel to one of his previous sites. As of March 2013, there are nearly 20 other sites[17] that use “Electric Boogaloo” in their titles.

In November 2005, “Electric Boogaloo” was first used in this manner by a journalist on the Huffington Post[7], regarding election reform in Ohio. In July 2007, the New York Times[18] used the term in reference to the sequel to the viral video “I’ve Got a Crush on Obama,” marking one of the first times it was used in a negative fashion. In August of that year, a blog post on the Oxford University Press[1] examined the titling structure and defined it as a snowclone that is used to denote any sequel production, which later became supported through its documentation on the Snowclone Database[19] in 2008. On May 25th, 2008, “Electric Boogaloo” was similarly defined as a general description for sequels on Urban Dictionary.[8]

As of March 2013, there are nearly 500 search results for “electric boogaloo” on Reddit[20] and more than 100,000 on YouTube[21], although a handful of these relate to the original movie or the dance. There are also articles chronicling the use of the term on TV Tropes[5] and Encyclopedia Dramatica.[6]

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