Dramatic Chipmunk

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The prairie dog after turning its head

Dramatic Chipmunk is a viral Internet video.[1][2] The video is a 5-second clip of a prairie dog (erroneously referred to as a chipmunk) turning its head while the camera zooms in and dramatic music is played.


The clip became widely known through uploads on YouTube and CollegeHumor on June 19, 2007. [1] An earlier and identical version, titled as Dramatic Look, had been uploaded to YouTube on June 6, 2007.[3]

The clip of the prairie dog is from the Japanese television show Hello! Morning featuring Mini-Moni's segment, Mini-Moni Chiccha.[4] The clip has a prairie dog inside a transparent box being shown to the hosts in the studio. CollegeHumor also released a longer clip under the title Undramatic Chipmunk, showing how the video looked in the original Japanese version.[5]

The audio used in Dramatic Chipmunk is taken from the score of the 1974 Mel Brooks film Young Frankenstein, which was composed by two-time Oscar nominee (and longtime Brooks collaborator) John Morris, and orchestrated by Morris and EGOT recipient Jonathan Tunick.[6][7][8] It uses three dramatic chords (A minor, C minor, and E minor) performed in full orchestral tutti, and has a rumble of kettledrums in the background. The "chipmunk" turns its head and stares at the camera with a "surprised" look while the music is played.[citation needed]


Since its release, the video has received over fifty million views.[Note 1] People Magazine named the Dramatic Chipmunk as one of The 10 Wildest YouTube Stars of 2007.[9]

Since 2013, the Minnesota Golden Gophers have been known to play the Dramatic Chipmunk video on the Jumbotron during home football games to distract opposing kickers.[10]

In the video game Overwatch, the Wrecking Ball character – an enhanced-intelligent hamster that pilots a mecha – was given a highlight introduction in April 2019 that spoofs the Dramatic Chipmunk meme.[11]


  1. ^ Determining an exact figure is impossible, because the video is uploaded multiple times on different websites. The most popular version on YouTube Archived 25 November 2016 at the Wayback Machine had over 36 million views as of October 2014. Other versions on YouTube Archived 5 June 2014 at the Wayback Machine have received millions of views each.


  1. ^ a b "Five-second 'Dramatic Chipmunk' video takes the Web by storm". CNET. CBS Interactive. Archived from the original on 1 November 2013. Retrieved 8 July 2015.
  2. ^ "NME Music Blogs". NME.COM. Archived from the original on 17 October 2012. Retrieved 8 July 2015.
  3. ^ Dramatic Look. magnets99. 6 June 2007 – via YouTube.
  4. ^ "Spot the memes in Weezer's Pork and Beans". News.com.au. 23 October 2009. Retrieved 10 March 2020.
  5. ^ Undramatic Chipmunk Archived 27 May 2010 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ Young Frankenstein – Original Isolated Score – John Morris. YouTube. 4 September 2016. Event occurs at 4:40. Archived from the original on 6 November 2019. Retrieved 30 May 2017.
  7. ^ IMDB Full Cast and Crew for Young Frankenstein
  8. ^ "PBP – Jonathan Tunick". picturebookproductions.com. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 8 July 2015.
  9. ^ "The 10 Wildest YouTube Stars – THE DRAMATIC CHIPMUNK". People.com. Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 8 July 2015.
  10. ^ "Minnesota unveils 'Dramatic Gopher' vs. Wisconsin". Big Ten Network. 25 November 2013. Retrieved 8 July 2015.
  11. ^ Boudreau, Ian (21 April 2019). "Overwatch's Wrecking Ball is now Dramatic Hammond". PCGamesN. Retrieved 21 April 2019.