Friday Flashback: In Which ‘Animaniacs’ Teaches Us All The Countries In The World Via Song

Editor-at-Large
01.23.15 17 Comments

The year is 1993. The rambunctious children of America have temporarily put away their slap bracelets and stopped playing with their Hypercolor shirts, and are sitting down to watch television. Cartoons, specifically. Ah, sweet cartoons, mindless havens of joy in which cats and mice try to murder each other with frying pans. Just pure entertainment. Until … wait, what’s this? Am I … learning something?

Yup, enter The Animaniacs and the song “Yakko’s World,” in which the titular Yakko ticks off almost all the countries of the world to the tune of “The Mexican Hat Dance.” From Animaniacs Wiki:

The song was written by Randy Rogel, a writer from Batman: The Animated Series, whose son was studying geography. When he saw that “United States, Canada, Mexico, Panama” all rhymed, he got to work on the lyrics and sent the song to Animaniacs.

That’s pretty cool. As is the song. If you’re an adult of a certain age — say, about 27-34 — you almost certainly remember this, and I bet you can keep up with the song for at least a little too, even after 20+ years. But don’t worry if you can’t, because, uh, the song isn’t exactly accurate anymore. For example, what was once just “Russia” is now 14 different countries, which would add almost an entire extra verse. There are other changes (and a few errors) too, but for our purposes, who cares? Hop in the Wayback Machine and enjoy.

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