There can be many ways to express one's feelings after leaving the post of prime minister of the United Kingdom. David Cameron seems to have chosen song.
On July 11, Cameron announced his handover to Theresa May, who won the Conservative Party's internal leadership race. He had promised to step down following the results of the Brexit referendum, in which 51.9% of voters in the UK said they wanted to leave the European Union (Cameron had campaigned to remain).
He then walked towards Number 10, the prime minister's office, when a lapel mic that was still recording documented Cameron singing a short jingle.
Digital crowds were delighted by Cameron's tune and indulged in jokes and memes on the subject. As uncomplicated as it was, “Doo doo doo doo right” nonetheless provided a solid base for a dance remix, swiftly produced by @graemecoleman. Within less than 24 hours, it was shared by 2,600 Twitter users.
— Graeme Coleman (@graemecoleman) 12 July 2016
Another user suggested a Darth Vaderian turn and transformed the occasional humming in “Evil Tory Theme Tune” (the Conservative Party is colloquially referred to as the Tories):
— Chris Hollis (@chris_hollis) 11 July 2016
Taking the turbulent political context into account, a theatre-related user dragged in a comparison between Cameron's line and dramas by William Shakespeare:
Because every great speech gets better when you add the Cameron hum to it… pic.twitter.com/pxuj7jEWT7
— Samuel French UK (@SamuelFrenchLtd) 12 July 2016
Some commentators suggested that the ex-prime minister was contemplating a new career and could not have chosen a better day to release his track, with all the attention and cameras switched on.
https://t.co/SO1ETrLJ9w ‘Assuming ‘Doo Doo, Doo Doo’ isn't a track he's been “sitting on for years but finally felt right to release”‘
— Molly McGee (@mollymcgee92) 12 July 2016
“Doo Doo, Doo Doo” by @David_Cameron is probably going to be song of the year 2016
— Robbo Baggins (@RobHorrocks432) 12 July 2016
‘This is the way the world ends, not with a bang but a DO DOO DOO DOO. Right.’ https://t.co/AcJwjpG9Ks
— Daniel Walker (@DanWalker0) 12 July 2016
Or was it actually a teaser of a decent musical?
— Samuel French UK (@SamuelFrenchLtd) 11 July 2016
A tech-savvy user from Germany quickly turned the viral humming in a ringtone, suggesting that downloading the (now cult) song to one's mobile phone was worth paying for.
— Was mit Fabian (@WasmitFabian) 12 July 2016
Others stressed that this tune belonged to the people and offered a tutorial on playing it for free.
Haha! The Doo Doo Doo song! https://t.co/YbPqyCM5w2
— Wendy Kerfoot (@1965Wendy) 12 July 2016
— westendproducer (@westendproducer) 12 July 2016
Jokes aside, research on Internet memes suggests that viral content and memes often contain complex ideas and references to serious politics, or even point to the prevailing public opinion on the news or meaningful ideas.
Unsurprisingly then, many digital commentators seized the opportunity to criticize Cameron for leading the UK to the Brexit referendum. Though a majority of voters chose “leave,” 48.1% voted to stay in the European Union, and the results have bitterly divided the country.
“Doo doo doo”. The song of the gentleman amateur who has just led the country off a cliff https://t.co/RUGPu3mUCM
— Graham Linehan (@Glinner) 11 July 2016
Survey says: You're a dumb doo doo head.
— MarMar (@pinningnut) 12 July 2016
Among the doo doo jokes and stinging barbs, however, was a striking wave of compassion and understanding. At the end of the day, the politician had a couple of tough weeks.
David Cameron's resignation hum is ridiculously humanising (bearing in mind he's a shape shifting lizard etc). https://t.co/cCoYpm6oC9
— Sanderson Jones (@sandersonjones) 11 July 2016
Didn't think I could like David Cameron, but that bit of singing, and the unashamedly posh ‘right'… Nothing as humanising as a doo-de-doo
— Bethan Ruddock (@bethanar) 11 July 2016
Was this humming a sign of relief, or just a catchy tune that got in the ex-prime minister's head? We will probably never know. However, it certainly was a breath of fresh air for British Twitter users who could take a break from gloomy economic forecasts and heated political debates. Right.
— Chloe Bridgen (@chloebridgen) 12 July 2016