The video’s host explains “some behavioral research findings that might point to the inherent power of the color red to command our obedience.”


In particular, the clip highlights a 2011 study from Psychological Science that involved male rhesus macaques—a species of monkeys living in Puerto Rico—and how they responded to certain apple slices.

Here’s how it worked, via Psychological Science:

Two human experimenters, one male and one female, entered the monkeys’ colony and found isolated males to test. Both people knelt down, placed a Styrofoam tray in front of them, drew an apple slice from their backpacks, held the slice at chest level for the monkey to see, then placed the apple on the trays. Both stood up simultaneously and took two steps back.


The results were striking. The monkeys paid no mind to the sex of the experimenter. Green or blue made little difference to them either. But in the significant majority of cases, they steered clear of the red-clad humans and stole the food from the other tray.


One of the researchers suggested the findings could mean that “color may have a deeper and wider-ranging influence on us than we have previously thought.”

It’s just one study, but who knows? Maybe we’re predisposed to respond fearfully of red. Or, maybe, after a half-century of responding to red stop signs, red traffic lights, and the blinking red lights of cop cruisers, it’s just too damn hard to ignore the color when we drive.