Kim Jong Il’s Death Sparks Interest in ‘Team America’

Andrew Sullivan‘s posting of Team America’s depiction of a puppet Kim Jong Il singing “I’m So Ronery” naturally sent me to look for other snippets from the flick. Apparently, I’m not the only one. NY Daily News (“‘Team America: World Police’ surges as Twitter topic following Kim Jong Il’s death“):

The death of Kim Jong Il has brought renewed interest in the North Korean dictator’s most high-profile performance on this side of the Pacific — as a singing puppet in “South Park” creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone’s 2004 comedy “Team America: World Police.” The marionette movie became a high-trending Twitter topic almost immediately after North Korean television announced Sunday night that the country’s “Supreme Leader” had died of a heart attack in Pyongyang at the age of 69. “I will remember Kim Jong Il by observing 90 minutes of silence while I watch ‘Team America: World Police’ this weekend,” tweeted @imagethief. The movie pits a covert team of U.S. military puppets against some of the world’s dictators — including a piano-playing Kim, who croons the politically incorrect song “I’m So Ronery.” “Kim Jong Il, Colonel Gaddafi, Osama bin Laden & Saddam Hussein all dead within the last 5 years. Conclusive proof that Team America exists,” posted FourFourTom.

I am aware of all internet traditions, and this is among its finest. So, too, are jokes that inevitably follow such occasions.

  • Roger Simon: “Letterman always said Kim Jong-il would be succeeded by his son, Menta Lee-il.”
  • Brian Beutler: “Shouldn’t Kim Jong Il be replaced by Kim Jong the Third?”


  • “Rick Perry & Michele Bachmann SCRAMBLING to find out who Kim Jong Il was.” – Rob Delaney
  • “Kim Jong il is dead. Looks like his Korea is over.” – Sickipediabot

Oh, here’s a montage of all the Kim Jong Il scenes from “Team America.” Probably not safe for work.

FILED UNDER: Humor, Popular Culture, Quick Takes
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. John Burgess says:

    Josh Trevino’s observation that Hitchens and Havel got to choose who would complete their death-triad strikes me as an excellent observation.

  2. mantis says:

    Let’s not forget Margaret Cho’s appearance as Kim on 30 Rock.

    “North Korea, everything sunny all the time, always. Good time, beach party.”

  3. Just noting: OTB at 8:51 am vs. Sully at 10:41 am