G.I. Joe or Team America: World Police?” width=”560″/>
Now: G.I. Joe (2009)Then: Team America: World Police (2004)
Although the new G.I. Joe movie manages to incorporate a lot of the catchphrases from the ’80s kids’ cartoon (including, hilariously, “Knowing is half the battle”), it forgoes the infamous theme song, “A Real American Hero.” Why? Perhaps because that song bears some uncomfortable similarities to “America! F–ck Yeah!” — the theme song from South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone’s puppet-animated 2004 Team America: World Police, a parody that lampoons movies, well, pretty much exactly like G.I. Joe. In fact, there are so many similarities between the two movies that it’s almost impossible to keep track of them all. Read on for a sampling!
The New Generation
G.I. Joe: Army officers Duke (Channing Tatum) and Ripcord (Marlon Wayans) are recruited into the secret GI Joe organization by the older General Hawk (Dennis Quaid). Ripcord promptly falls in love with weapons expert and super-genius Scarlett (Rachel Nichols)
Team America: Acclaimed Broadway actor and language expert Gary Johnston is recruited into the Team America counter-terrorism organization by the older agent Spottswoode. Gary prompty falls in love with psych expert Sarah.
The Fall of Paris
G.I. Joe: Attempting to keep supervillains The Baroness (Sienna Miller) and Storm Shadow (Byung-hun Lee) from detonating a nanotech-fueled warhead, G.I. Joe’s Team Alpha levels half of Paris — culminating in the Eiffel Tower collapsing into the Seine.
Team America: Attempting to keep terrorists from detonating a WMD in the City of Light, Team America levels half of Paris — culminating in the Eiffel Tower collapsing into the Arc de Triomphe. Sound familiar?
“We’re Gonna Need a Montage!!”
G.I. Joe: As hip-hop plays on the soundtrack, Duke and Ripcord are trained in the uses of various Joe machinery.
Team America: As a rock song extolling the virtues of montages plays on the soundtrack, Gary preps to save his fellow team members from the clutches of Kim Jong Il.
The Traumatic Flashbacks
G.I. Joe: Duke recalls the time years ago when he was engaged to The Baroness, while good guy commando Snake Eyes recalls his childhood rivalry with bad guy Ninja Storm Shadow.
Team America: Gary recalls the time when his acting skills resulted in gorillas killing his brother, while martial arts expert Chris recalls the time when, as an impressionable young teenager, he was raped by the cast of Cats.
Our Team’s Secret Lair, Destroyed
G.I. Joe: The Joes’ secret HQ, hidden deep under the Sahara Desert in the shadow of the Pyramids, is trashed by The Baroness and Storm Shadow after its location is leaked.
Team America: Team America’s secret HQ, hidden deep in the recesses of Mt. Rushmore, is blown up in a burst of anti-American rage by documentary filmmaker Michael Moore.
Winner: Team America. G.I. Joe gives it the old college try, but Team America had their number — five years ago.