Colbert dares Sweden: 'Take a chance on me!'

David Landes
David Landes - [email protected]
Colbert dares Sweden: 'Take a chance on me!'

US comedian Stephen Colbert invoked Swedish super-group Abba on Thursday as he ratcheted up the pressure in his ongoing bid to take over Sweden's official Twitter account.


"If I’m not granted control of the Twitter feed by this time next week… The Colbert Nation will cut off all diplomatic relations with Sweden," Colbert said during the Thursday night broadcast of his Colbert Report television programme.

"So before things get ugly, let me make a last appeal with the words of Sweden's greatest living poets, Benny and Björn."

The ultimatum, referencing Abba members Benny Anderson and Björn Ulvaeus, came following Thursday's report in The Local that officials in charge of the @Sweden Twitter account would decide next week on whether or not to give Colbert control of the account.

For the past six months, Sweden's official Twitter account has been handed over to a different Swede every week as part of the Curators of Sweden project.

After former @Sweden curator Sonja Abrahamsson kicked up a storm by tweeting "whats the fuzz with jews", Colbert launched a campaign dubbed #artificialswedener in an effort to pressure officials at Visit Sweden and the Swedish Institute to give the US comedian a turn as curator of Sweden's official Twitter account.

"Operation #artificialswedener" appeared to gain traction when officials from both agencies confirmed on Thursday they were "in discussions" about the prospect of Colbert taking over the @Sweden account.

Colbert in turn jumped on the development in order to "to claim what's rightfully mine", striking a rather combative tone to emphasize he had no plans to let up in his bid to tweet in the name of Sweden.

"I’ve got Swedish fever, I’ve got Stockholm syndrome,” he said.

He also took aim at Johannes Karlsson, the head of PR and Social Media at Visit Sweden, calling him the "one obstacle standing between me and the Swedish tweeting supremacy" after Karlsson expressed concerns that Colbert "may not be able to give an authentic view" of Sweden.

“How dare you sir," Colbert retorted.

"I have made a long study of your nation’s history, from its founding by Hagar the Horrible to its renowned herds of snow giraffes.”

Colbert also accused Sweden of being the "aggressor" proclaiming that, in contrast, he was "a man of peace".

He then delivered his threat to "cut off all diplomatic relations" before proceeding to grab a microphone and break into a heartfelt and hilarious rendition of Abba's hit song, "Take a Chance on Me".

After crooning a couple of verses of 1978 Abba hit, accompanied by four Abba member look-alikes, Colbert, closed the segment with one final plea.

"C'mon Sweden, gimme the feed!"

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Operation Artificial Swedener - C'mon Sweden, Take a Chance on Stephen
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