When Wang Chung's 'Everybody Have Fun Tonight' Video Caused a Seizure Scare

Nick Feldman (L) and Jack Hues (R) of Wang Chung in May 1987.
Nick Feldman (L) and Jack Hues (R) of Wang Chung in May 1987.
Dave Hogan, Getty Images

Wang Chung—one of the most recognizable pop duo acts of the 1980s, comprised of Nick Feldman and Jack Hues—enjoyed a string of hits including “Dance Hall Days” and “Let’s Go,” but reached peak success with 1986’s “Everybody Have Fun Tonight.” In the catchy hit, Feldman and Hues implored listeners to “have fun tonight” and “Wang Chung tonight.”

Fans in the UK could not Wang Chung as much as they would have liked. That’s because the music video for “Everybody Have Fun Tonight” was banned by the BBC over fears it could cause epileptic seizures.

The concern stemmed from rapid cuts in the video—which was edited by musicians and video producers Godley & Creme—that created a strobe-like effect. A doctor retained by the BBC advised that the flashing lights could potentially induce seizures in viewers with epilepsy.

Taking such a precaution isn’t totally without merit. Among those with photosensitive epilepsy, light displayed at frequencies between 10 and 30 hertz, or the number of cycles per second, can bring on a seizure by prompting nerve cells in the brain to fire electrical impulses. The effect is worsened by sudden and frequent changes from color to black and back again. A 1993 commercial that aired in the UK for pot noodles was pulled for similar reasons. So was an animated segment created for the 2012 Olympics. The most notable example might be a 1997 episode of Pokémon that aired in Japan, where a scene with red and blue flashing lights sent hundreds of children to hospitals complaining of headaches, dizziness, or seizures.

Out of an abundance of caution, “Everybody Have Fun Tonight” was prohibited—a fact that Feldman considered overly conservative. “That was typical, maybe, of the slightly staid aspects of England,” he told the Chicago Tribune in 1987. “You either get eccentricity or this rather conservative view of things. Our video violated their guidelines on how many frames per second you can have on any transmission, so it was banned. They said that if we wanted, we could speed it up or do something to change it. So we sped it up to make it ‘legally OK,’ and they still wouldn’t show it.”

Feldman said the video did wind up airing on the BBC after all, thanks to Entertainment USA, a show that covered what was popular in major American cities that week. There was also a top five song chart; because “Everybody Have Fun Tonight” was in the number one slot, they had to screen the video.

There’s no evidence the video was altered for airing in the U.S. Wang Chung is still active and touring.

Looking to Downsize? You Can Buy a 5-Room DIY Cabin on Amazon for Less Than $33,000

Five rooms of one's own.
Five rooms of one's own.

If you’ve already mastered DIY houses for birds and dogs, maybe it’s time you built one for yourself.

As Simplemost reports, there are a number of house kits that you can order on Amazon, and the Allwood Avalon Cabin Kit is one of the quaintest—and, at $32,990, most affordable—options. The 540-square-foot structure has enough space for a kitchen, a bathroom, a bedroom, and a sitting room—and there’s an additional 218-square-foot loft with the potential to be the coziest reading nook of all time.

You can opt for three larger rooms if you're willing to skip the kitchen and bathroom.Allwood/Amazon

The construction process might not be a great idea for someone who’s never picked up a hammer, but you don’t need an architectural degree to tackle it. Step-by-step instructions and all materials are included, so it’s a little like a high-level IKEA project. According to the Amazon listing, it takes two adults about a week to complete. Since the Nordic wood walls are reinforced with steel rods, the house can withstand winds up to 120 mph, and you can pay an extra $1000 to upgrade from double-glass windows and doors to triple-glass for added fortification.

Sadly, the cool ceiling lamp is not included.Allwood/Amazon

Though everything you need for the shell of the house comes in the kit, you will need to purchase whatever goes inside it: toilet, shower, sink, stove, insulation, and all other furnishings. You can also customize the blueprint to fit your own plans for the space; maybe, for example, you’re going to use the house as a small event venue, and you’d rather have two or three large, airy rooms and no kitchen or bedroom.

Intrigued? Find out more here.

[h/t Simplemost]

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The Most Popular Songs Named After Each Country

Burst, Pexels // Public Domain
Burst, Pexels // Public Domain

Geography is a popular source of inspiration for many songwriters. When a musician sings about their home country, it can be a way to express patriotism—or criticism. Crooning about a foreign place, on the other hand, is a way to transport listeners to a different part of the world. Inserting place names into lyrics is so common, nearly every country on Earth has a song named after it. Budget Direct compiled the most popular of these songs in the map below.

To make the graphic, the insurance website searched every country name on Spotify and picked the songs with the highest play counts. The most-played track on the map is "China" by Anuel AA with 631,980,232 streams. Though the lyrics don't actually mention the country, the artist claims China's influence can be heard in the song's rhythm.

"Born in The U.S.A." by Bruce Springsteen is the most popular song named after the United States, which is funny considering the song's not-so-patriotic message. "Don't Cry for Me Argentina" from Evita, "Russian Roulette" by Rihanna, and "Walk Like an Egyptian" by The Bangles are a few of the other hit songs that make the map. Some entries, like the national anthem of Bosnia and Herzegovina, are deeper cuts.

You can check out the full map of popular songs named after countries below. And if you'd like to continue your musical tour of the world, Budget Direct put together a Spotify playlist of the tracks here.

Budget Direct//CC BY-SA 4.0