Tue | Apr 16, 2024

Dahlia Harris thrills with ‘Markie G’ and ‘Bro Gad’ TikTok skit

Published:Friday | March 1, 2024 | 12:06 AMYasmine Peru/Senior Gleaner Writer
Dahlia Harris
Dahlia Harris

Who won the Jamaica Local Government Elections was the $64,000 question of the week. And, with the Electoral Office of Jamaica (EOJ) still counting, and both the ruling Jamaica Labour Party and the Opposition People’s National Party claiming victory, in this age of social media, that script is the stuff of which great memes and skits are made.

Enter actress, television and radio personality, public speaker, and film and theatre director, Dahlia Harris, with a made-for-guffaws TikTok skit that is pure genius, and fans are loving it. Her one-woman performance sees a relaxed Harris dressed in a black T-shirt, sitting in front of a green screen, watching the news and chatting on the phone with her friend, Jennifer.

In the midst of the convo about Monday’s election results “which nobody cyaan tell mi a who win all now” Dahlia gets extremely agitated and starts cheering breathlessly for her supposed party leader: “Mi nuh tell yuh ... mi nuh tell yuh ... mi nuh tell yuh! No gal ... hol’ on deh... hol’ on deh! Talk to mi! Yes gal! Markie G! Markie G! Who can beat him? Markieeee!”

Harris immediately pulls out her orange PNP T-shirt and puts it on to represent Mark ‘Markie G’ Golding. But then, swiftly, everything changes as more news comes in indicating that it’s the JLP who have won. Swiftly, Harris shakes herself out of orange and pulls out her green T-shirt then starts cheering for Prime Minister Andrew Holness, also known as ‘Bro Gad’.

“Yes man! Di whole a oonu put oonu mout pon mi prime minister and mi a tell oonu seh onnu cyaan beat mi prime ministaaaa! Bro Gad! Bro Gad! Bro Gad!” she chants frenziedly. “Oonu a gwaan like seh dis a national election .... and a local government ....” she stops in her tracks as the numbers sway again and cries out, “Markie G!”

Getting ready to do another T-shirt change, the numbers flip yet again and in total indecision her subdued (and confused) chants alternate between “Markie G!’ and “Bro Gad!” Hapless, she eventually puts a T-shirt over each shoulder and focuses on the television screen with a perplexed look.

“A which party name EOJ? Yeah ... it nuh look like a dem win. A wha’ colour dem wear?” Harris asks Jennifer.

The video has been viewed and forwarded thousands of times and has attracted several comments online. A happy Harris told The Gleaner that this is one of her best videos in terms of numbers and shared why she thinks it is making such an impact.

“I think it’s so impactful because it resonates with almost every Jamaican right now. Seriously, who win? To be honest I posted without expecting it to be so popular. I’m pleasantly surprised and very grateful,” Harris said.

Quizzed on how important is it for creatives to look at the landscape, political and otherwise, and shine the spotlight on it in this manner, she stated, “It’s very important. There was a lot of anxiety and tension about the results and this allowed us to laugh at the situation, to poke fun at ourselves. We equally have the capacity to encourage people to look seriously at issues that need to be be addressed. We are a critical part of national dialogue.”

Harris admitted that making the video has been a ton of fun, and emphasised, however, that she doesn’t get carried away and cross the line.

“If I’m not having fun I don’t think audiences will and when I post it’s more about them than my own entertainment. I always want to have a great experience. I don’t cross the line with issues such as gender-based violence and sexual assault. I also try not to be disrespectful of anyone,” she explained

When asked about the possibility of creating a play or song, she responded,

“You never know,” she replied with a sly smile. “I write based on my experiences and interactions. Jamaica Land We Love [play] deserves a remix ... elections are a must.”

Harris noted that TikTok is a great platform for creatives to promote their talent and connect with audiences.

“I’ve just started to post, this is only my second video, and I know that there are people who have seen my videos who have never seen my work. It has also allowed me to connect with the people who have always supported me. I’m going to try to be more consistent with my posts,” she shared.

Currently she is working on a number of projects which will see Jamaica Land We Love returning this summer “with new sketches from the same great team”. She will also be filming Season 3 of Ring Games and Thicker Than Water.

And, as to the colour of the “party” EOJ, she declared, “Lol ... I hear is black so me lucky.”

yasmine.peru@gleanerjm.com