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Kim Jong-un impersonator entertains University of Illinois students

Taryn Ziegler

A Kim Jong-un impersonator entertains University of Illinois students

Kim brings shock and laughter to the University of Illinois

A Kim Jong-un impersonator You may have seen Kim Jong-un on the news, or you may have heard of him in class- but have you ever seen him in person? Not many Americans can say that they have, but there’s an entire population of college students in Illinois who claim more than just having seen him: in Illinois, “Kim Jong-un” strolls college courtyards, plays on basketball courts, and involves himself in the local bar scene.

The Real Deal

Kim Jong-un is the declared supreme leader of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. He is the son of the late Kim Jong-il and the grandson of Kim Il-sung. After the death of his father in 2011 Kim Jong-un was declared his immediate successor and since then has made waves in international press for his variety of hairstyles and his continuation of the worshipped dictatorship over North Korea.

The Impersonator

Also called “Dragon,” Minyong Kim is an international student who has been bringing Kim Jong-un to South Korean and American audiences since 2012. Wholly dedicated to his task, Minyong Kim is a 25-year-old native of Seoul willing to pack on weight, cut his hair, and wear clothing all designed to transform himself into a walking and talking Kim Jong-un. Minyong Kim has been enrolled at the University of Illinois since 2009, but due to national service and financial reasons has had to return to South Korea twice since his original enrollment. While working at an educational facility in South Korea he dressed up, for the first time, as Kim Jong-un- which would lead to his rapid ascension to fame, including involvement in movies, commercials, and South Korean dramas.

The Controversy

Since his return to Illinois, Minyong Kim has been regularly performing as Kim Jong-un to the delight and astonishment of his fellow classmates. The South Korean native is taking a risk by making such serious jabs at the supreme leader of North Korea. He claims to do it purely for fun, and only for the result of making people happy. However, there are many people who say that making fun of Kim Jong-un in such a way will detrimentally de-sensitize global citizens to the very serious issue that is the oppression of North Korea. Regardless of your political stance on the subject, Minyong Kim’s talent at impressions is undeniable and it is likely he will gain a foothold in America’s media landscape just as he has in South Korea’s.

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