Pranksters give ‘China’ a taste of its own medicine with homemade ‘spy balloon’

Joshua Pieters and Archie Thomas Manners, who make up the comedy duo Josh & Archie, are being accused — in jest — of trying to start World War III after launching a “spy balloon” over the Chinese embassy in Central London.

The U.K. pranksters are well known for posting videos of practical jokes and other crazy challenges and their latest effort was shared on TikTok in the wake of the real Chinese spy balloon being shot down earlier this month after President Joe Biden allowed it to traverse across America — the U.S. is now shooting everything out the sky, having dropped three other unidentified flying objects in the past week.

“We thought that considering the Chinese are such fans of these balloons that they would have liked it,” Pieters told Kennedy News — their balloon took to the London sky last Wednesday before the three other objects were downed.

@josh_and_archie We flew a Spy Balloon over China #spy #fyp #spyballoonchinese #china ♬ original sound – Josh & Archie

Pieters and Manners said they bought the giant white balloon they used for their mock intelligence-gathering mission on eBay. They outfitted the balloon with a GoPro camera and bought a large tank of helium to inflate it.

“We saw a balloon was shot down in the USA, so we thought if China can spy on the West then why can’t the West spy on China,” Pieters said, before quipping, “Flying to China would take a while and it’s expensive so we thought what’s an easier way and that’s to fly a balloon over the embassy as that’s technically China.”

It didn’t take long before police showed up to let the air out of the impromptu intelligence-gathering operation, the telling moment here being when an officer said, “The people inside might be offended.”

“Yeah, we definitely don’t want to offend the Chinese, that was definitely not part of the plan,” Manners deadpanned.

The clip concludes with the guards telling them to “deflate the balloon” and “take it away.”

After popping the imitation spy balloon, a deflated Pieters said, “It seemed that there was a very fast response to bring the balloon down, and we think that has something to do with the Chinese noticing our spy balloon and not being happy about it. We knew this sort of thing was high-level stuff, so we were prepared for a high-level response, but when we saw the armed police officers, we did get just a tiny bit scared.”

As for responses, here are a few from TikTok users:

Try not to cause a diplomatic Incident please guysss!!

Bro could literally start a war

Bro’s trying to start a war’

Bro got revenge for the usa

The people inside might be offended- and… carry on



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