An Aussie comedian has defended an unusual line saying Down Under that claims the beloved Mexican Wave is completely innocent.
Monty Franklin, who left Australia to move to Los Angeles, explained the origins of the “Mexican Wave” in a February TikTok after realizing the sports icon had a number of names around the world.
Mr Franklin took a stand for the Aussie term in the video with the caption: ‘Things in Australia that sound racist but aren’t’.
After moving to the US, he began to notice how many cultural differences there were between Australia and other countries and began to incorporate them into his comedy.
The stand-up comic poked fun at the odd inclusion of “Mexican” when describing the friendly sports chapter where crowds simulate the fluidity of a moving wave.
Monty Franklin, who left Australia to move to Los Angeles, explained the origins of the ‘Mexican wave’ in a February TikTok after realizing the sports icon had a number of names around the world
The sporty staple is hard to miss when crowds simulate the smooth motion of a moving wave
“You know the ‘wave’ at sporting events that goes around and everyone is doing and having a great time,” Mr. Franklin said in the video.
‘In Australia we call that ‘the Mexican wave’…I don’t know why. It is not necessary to put the Mexican in front of it.’
The comedian realized that the term was not as common abroad when he returned to Australia with his American wife.
“They said ‘the Mexican wave’ on TV before the cricket, she said ‘why do you call it that?'” Mr Franklin told Daily Mail Australia.
“She thought it sounded funny, but I realized I had no idea why we called it that and I’ve never questioned it, it’s just always been that way.”
New Zealand is one of the few countries to use the term ‘Mexican Wave’ rather than just ‘The Wave’.
After moving from Australia to Los Angeles, Mr. Franklin began to notice the differences and incorporate them into his comedy
This led to some investigative research from Mr. Franklin, who found out about the disputed origin of the term.
“The first time commentators saw this wave was during the World Cup in Mexico in 1986, so they started calling it the Mexican wave and it’s kind of stuck ever since,” he said in the TikTok.
However, a comment on his video disputed Mr. Franklin’s research, claiming it may have come about in 1979.
“The term was coined by “Krazy” George Henderson in October 1981 during the televised A’s/Yankees playoff game in Oakland,” the commentator noted.
‘Krazy’ George Henderson is widely credited with perfecting the Mexican wave before it exploded around the world
The Mexican Gulf was documented for the first time in a 1981 video shot during a Major League Baseball game.
Then it was introduced to the world at the 1984 Olympic Games, when 100,000 fans caused a wave during the football final.
During the 1986 World Cup in Mexico, the move gained worldwide notoriety when the public performed it at least once per game.
This is how the ‘Mexican’ description was introduced into the Aussie lexicon, as many around the world first saw it during the 1986 World Cup.
Franklin said many Mexicans happily reached out to him after he posted the video, which has since been viewed more than a million times.
“I had thousands of Mexican people reach out to me on Instagram who thought it sounded hilarious but they just called it La Ola, which is ‘the wave’,” he told Daily Mail Australia.
The Mexican wave isn’t the only oddity he’s discovered since moving to the US.
“You know the Americans have something called Aussie cheese fries — French fries topped with cheese — I’ve certainly never heard of that at home,” he said.
“As an Australian living in America, I say many things sound strange and raise eyebrows.
“Flat white is also a strange one.”
Aussie cheese fries are not a common dish in Australia, but are popular at Outback Steakhouse
Likewise, those living in the US are not familiar with the popular Aussie style of coffee we call a flat white