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Ylvis Wants to Know "What does the Fox say?"

Updated on October 16, 2013

Norwegian Comedy Duo Ylvis go Viral with "The Fox"

Watch out Gangman style. Norwegian comedians, Ylvis set out to answer the burning question, "What sound does a Fox make?" as part of a 3 minute silly promotion for their television talk show on TVNorge, "I kveld med Ylvis."

According to brother Bard, the song was just supposed to entertain a few Norwegians. Instead, it caught fire on the Internet and went viral.

Their catchy dance song was uploaded September 3, 2013 and as of this writing, 5 days later, this ear-worm tune has already received over 10,000,000 views and climbing. Since our family's roots are Scandinavian, we'd love to see this fox song and dance go on to become the next Gangman style. It is definitely more creative than the Harlem Shake and will be inspiring parodies, renditions and costume trends.

Intrigued, I set out to discover more about these two brothers, Vegard and Bard Ylvis, who were virtual unknowns in the U.S. until a few days ago. Now these two are near overnight Internet sensations joining the ranks of Psy and Justin Bieber and other Youtube wonders. A week after uploading the video and this unlikely Internet sensation has already had over 16 million views. Two weeks later at they have had over 36 million views. The best news is that The Fox is now available for download in iTunes and Amazon in the U.S.

The word about The Fox got to Ellen and on September 20, Ylvis made their U.S. debut singing "The Fox" with Ellen. On October 9 they made their Late Night debut on Jimmy Fallon and also performed on the Today Show.

We are also going to explore the real answer to the question, "What does the Fox say?"

For those who love this new viral phenom, I've rounded up different Fox Say shirts that are available on Amazon and eBay and found a few on Zazzle that can be customized with your own Fox saying.

If you like the song and the dance help spread the word, so everyone will be singing, dancing and wondering, "What does the Fox say?"

Fox Say Graphic copyright 2013 by Kirsti A. Dyer

What the fox happened?

— Ylvis
Screen Shots from YouTube
Screen Shots from YouTube

The Fox Song from Brothers Vegard and Bard

The latest viral video song and dance craze comes from an unlikely source, a brother comedy duo from the northern country of Norway, who set out out to answer the question, "What sound does a Fox make?"

The 3 minute promotion for their talk show, "I kveld med Ylvis" has all kinds of crazy elements with animal costumes, catchy tune, funny lyrics and choreography that makes you want to get up and dance.

They even added in subtitles so those who are unable to understand English with a Norwegian accent (or the sounds a fox makes) can figure out what they are saying.

Bard has been quoted as saying that the song was just "supposed to entertain a few Norwegians," but within 2 days of uploading it had already received 5 million hits.

Nearly a million views were recorded during the time I was writing this lens and another 4.5 million a day later.

The song has elements of Lady Gaga (with paws in the air) and jerky Thriller zombie moves combined with Star Wars light sabers. Parts with the mo-o-o-o-orse and ho-o-o-o-orse sound like the stuttering, staccato singing from Britney Spears and Katy Perry. The surreal video also has hints of the Alice in Wonderland videos with everyone dressed up in animal costumes. Part of the video is set in a dark forest, reminiscent of Once Upon a Time. They even have levitating (and dancing) foxes at the end.

I can't decide if it is cute or creepy. My daughters say that it is cute. It reminds me a bit of the Beatles, "I am a Walrus" song, which I always found a bit creepy.

See what you think and watch the video clip below.

Ylvis Brothers in The Fox Screen Shots from YouTube

The Fox MP3 on Amazon

The Fox (What Does The Fox Say?)
The Fox (What Does The Fox Say?)

Download The Fox from Amazon

Wa pa pa pa pa pa pow!


Watch The Fox Video

Ylvis - The Fox

Watch the latest viral song and dance craze from the comedy team Ylvis.

The Fox by Ylvis - Download from iTunes and Amazon

The Fox on iTunes and Amazon
The Fox on iTunes and Amazon

Download the Fox MP3

Fox Ears and Tail on Amazon

elope Cat or Fox Ears Elastic Headband & Tail Set for Women
elope Cat or Fox Ears Elastic Headband & Tail Set for Women

This elope cat set matches the color of Vegard's, the main fox head piece costume color.

Get your fox on with this ears and tail combination set.


Vote on the Sound You Think a Fox Makes

What is your favorite fox sound?

See results

The Fox in the U.S.

Ylvis with Jimmy Fallon

Watch Ylvis on Jimmy Fallon's Late Night. Their performance (which includes host Jimmy Fallon in his own fox costume) is remarkably well-staged for a Late Night show.

Ylvis and the Fox with Ellen

Ellen flew the brothers to the U.S. for an interview on her show and then joined Ylvis in singing 'The Fox' during their debut of the song in the U.S. on September 20, 2013. If you just want to watch them singing watch the second video). Unfortunately they only sing part of the song.

What sound does the fox make?

(Bay da de bum bum bay dum)

Image by Philippe Bouvier
Image by Philippe Bouvier

Standing Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes) adapted from Philippe Bouvier.

Used under an Openclipart license.

Look at the Making of The Fox

Go behind the scenes and see what it took to create the visual effects of the CGI fox for "The Fox" from Animaskin. The CGI fox sequence is in the second clip.


This song is made for a TV show and is supposed to entertain a few Norwegians for three minutes - and that's all.

— BÃ¥rd YlvisÃ¥ker on THE FOX Song

Fox Hat on Amazon

Brown Fox Plush Animal Hat
Brown Fox Plush Animal Hat

Look like a fox with this cute fox animal hat.

One size fits most.


Spread the word about the fox, put on your suit and animal head, and turn this dance into the next Gangnam style.

Please, we beg you.

It's too good.

— Sarah Barness, Huffington Post

Ylvis' The Fox debuts on Billboard Hot 100 at number 29!


The Fox Hits Billboard Hot 100

Within less than a week of being uploaded to YouTube The Fox debut on the Billboard Hot 100 at number 29.

So....What does the Fox say?

Image by © Kirsti A. Dyer
Image by © Kirsti A. Dyer

Fox Graphic © 2013 by Kirsti A. Dyer

Uncover the *Real* Sounds a Fox Makes

Image by hallenberg
Image by hallenberg

What types of sounds does a fox really make?

To answer this question, I looked to the scientist who are now giving the real answers to the thought-provoking question raised by Ylvis, "What types of sounds does a fox really make?"

According to the Live Science site, who interviewed Stephen Harris, a biologist at the University of Bristol, the Red fox makes as many as 20 different sounds, or calls.

Some of the sounds make by foxes include screams, adult barks (used as to contact other adults), cub barks (used to communicate between cubs and mother), whines, squeals (which can indicate excitement), growling, and the all important clicketing (used in mating season).

A screaming-howl is the sound most often heard during the breeding season. The scream is described by Dan Nosowitz for Popsci as "A shrill, hoarse scream of anguish, it sounds more than anything like a human baby undergoing some kind of physical torture." Although Devon Maloney from Wired seems to think that the scream of the grey fox is close to the "A-oo-oo-oo-ooo!" response from Ylvis.

The conclusion by Popsci it that the fox goes yow-wow-wow, ack-ack-ackawoo-ack, and of course the ever popular YAAGGAGHHGHHHHHHAHHHH!!!!!."

Listen to the video clips of fox sound below and decide for yourself.

Red Fox Cub by hallenberg. Royalty Free Use.

Fox Sounds, Screams and Calls on Video

Listen to what the fox really sounds like in these science-based videos from .

Articles on What the Fox Really Sounds Like

Huffington Post Comedy even put together clips of the actual fox speak and sounds to answer this burning end-of-the-summer question.

What does the Fox Say? T-Shirts

Customize Your Own Fox Shirts on Zazzle

Customize Your Own Cute Fox Shirts on Zazzle

Little Fox Shirt by PetiteFrite CHECK PRICE

Cute Head-tilt Fox T-shirts by blackunicorn CHECK PRICE

Ylvis Fox Song Shirts on Amazon

Cute shirts addressing this pressing question.

More Fox Shirts to Customize on Zazzle

Add your own Text and Customize these Fox Shirts on Zazzle

Cute Baby Fox Shirt by cutencomfy CHECK PRICE

Curled Sleeping Fox T Shirts by kitsune_rei CHECK PRICE

What does the Fox Say? Shirt on eBay

Assorted colors of T-shirts asking this pressing question....

Red Fox T-Shirts on Zazzle

Customize your own Fox T-shirts

Red Fox Design T-Shirt by jamierushad CHECK PRICE

Fox T-Shirt by proart CHECK PRICE

What Does the Fox Say? on eBay

Another T-shirt option for The Fox. I think this version is one of my favorites.

Learn The Fox Dance Choreography

Learn The Fox Dance Moves - Videos

For those who want to learn the dance moves, there are already video tutorials and a few dance responses.

Meet Ylvis

Brothers Vegard and Bård Ylvisåker

Brothers Vegard and Bård Ylvisåker

Image by PÃ¥l S. Schaathun / TVNorge pressefoto
Image by PÃ¥l S. Schaathun / TVNorge pressefoto

Ylvis Brothers, Vegard (l) and BÃ¥rd (r) from PÃ¥l S. Schaathun / TVNorge pressefoto on Wikimedia.

Used under a GNU Free Documentation License.

Who is Ylvis?

Ylvis is a Norwegian comedy duo. Ylvis are also brothers Bård (older blonder hair) and Vegard Ylvisåker (younger darker hair). The two host a television talk show, "I kveld med Ylvis" which translates to Tonight with Ylvis. "I kveld med Ylvis" has been on the Norge TV since September 2011.

The Fox Video was created as part of a 3 minute promotion for the September 2013 premier of their television show, "I kveld med Ylvis."

Fun Facts about Ylvis

Blogger Anne Kiplinger shares some fun facts about Ylvis.

"What do you want people to get from 'The Fox'?"

Nothing else than being amused, laughing and having a good time.

— Vegard YlvisÃ¥ker

Interview with Vegard Ylvisåker about The Fox

Here what Vegard Ylvisåker has to say about the sudden attention that their Fox song has received. If you don't know which brother is which, Vegard is *not* the one pictured first in the fox costume or in the photo for "The Fox."

Music Downloads from Ylvis on Amazon

If you look up some of the other musical offerings from Ylvis be advised that some of their prior works are more for adult late night audiences, carrying an "PG-13" rating for language and sexual innuendo rather than fun songs for children.

The Fox is now available for download in the U.S. Make sure that you get the right one (the one linked below) because there are a lot of tribute versions out there.


An earlier "PG" rated song by Ylvis.


What sound do you think the fox makes?

Comment on this Ylvis Song

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    • profile image


      5 years ago

      nice as visit


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