Let me sum up:
Improv Everywhere's stunt at the New York Public Library.
Let me splain:
It's rare for me to encounter a flash mob video that doesn't reduce me to tears. Doesn't matter if it's essentially a commercial for a new reality show or a performance for a wacky talk show mogul. Synchronized human movement is sexy as hell...but this only really applies to musical mobs. With musical mobs, I get a kind of perverse delight from the fact that a group of people are countering my husband (and many other folks') main objection to musical theatre--when do people ever burst out into song and dance in unison?
But whether your mob is musical, riddled with zombies, or simply absurd, the common delightful thread seems to be introducing the possibility of the impossible into everyday life. And when everyday life seems to be overrun with fear and apathy, there's something really neat about the way spectators in these videos gradually overcome their surprise and confusion and buy into the whimsy. I was super bummed last winter to miss an adorable mob of high school kids at our local grocery store (love the old guy who just wants to keep picking out apples). I'm confident that if I ever do find myself witnessing a flash mob I will be reduced to a puddle of laughter and tears. And I look forward to it.
PS--If you enjoyed Improv Everywhere's Ghostbusters video, check out their Star Wars Subway video.