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Welcome to South Park, Fats Ass: Our 1998 Cowl Story

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This text initially appeared within the March 1998 concern of SPIN. It’s being republished in honor of the twenty fifth anniversary of South Park.

Right here’s the way it works within the post-Simpsons period. The tremors begin at espresso retailers, film queues, dorm rooms: younger folks speaking in weird pinched voices. Goateed cashiers spouting off-color catchphrases. Unusual little icons on T-shirts and display screen savers. Then, the Internet sites spring up. The upstart community prospers. The one is launched. The film is introduced. Out of the blue, earlier than you realize it, we’re as much as our bungholes in ’90s cartoon Zeitgeist.

With the unstoppable pressure of a dead-Chris Farley joke, Comedy Central’s sick, crudely animated half-hour present South Park—that includes the adventures of 4 gimlet-eyed, foul-mouthed third-graders—has change into not simply the most well liked cartoon however the hottest youth-cult phenomenon within the nation. Like Bart and Butt-head earlier than them, the construction-paper-hewn Stan Marsh, Kyle Broslofskyi, Eric Cartman, and the completely hooded Kenny McCormic now rule the shops of America. Their likenesses are in every single place, together with on final yr’s hottest-selling T-shirt (“We’ve merchandisers lined up across the block!” boasts Comedy Central spokesman Tony Fox). Their signature strains—”Kick ass!” “Omigod, they killed Kenny”—are on the lips of paperboys and grad college students throughout the nation. They’ve even impressed the critics. Subsequent to “such common brokers of homicide and mayhem” as South Park‘s “cackling characters,” observes the New York Occasions‘s Michiko Kakutani, “the Satan doesn’t even stick out.”

Business seismologists measure fan ardor extra straight. “CNN has to have a worldwide catastrophe to give you a 1.4 [rating],” mentioned one tv trade guide. For its Christmas present, South Park earned itself a 5.4 ranking, the best for an unique sequence in Comedy Central’s historical past; 4.5 million folks tuned in, greater than seven instances Comedy Central’s common. Rights to a South Park soundtrack album, presently within the works, have a rumored worth of $2 million. In the meantime, showbiz giants from Jay Leno to Jason Priestley to George Clooney have both provided or given the present subliminal voice cameos—the final performing the woofs of a homosexual canine.

All of this—plus a feature-length movie and the inevitable client effluvia (mugs, boxer shorts, seashore towels, backpacks)—comes on the energy of only a handful of episodes. Gen-X faculty roommates Trey Parker and Matt Stone hit the motherlode of goofball hip with one alarmingly easy concept: Take a bunch of cute li’l quaintly animated characters—redolent of early-’70s tutorial movies and Peanuts vacation specials—and slam them into ’90s grossness and dread. By some means, by that includes vomiting, farting. racial slurs, and decapitations, their not notably high-minded inventive enterprise seized pole place within the tradition trade. By some means, South Park should communicate to some starvation deep inside us, should reaffirm some fundamental truths about humanity. That, or we’re actually a nation of retards.

South Park
(Credit score: Getty Pictures / Handout)

“There is no such thing as a extra direct and correct method of discovering out what is absolutely on a folks’s collective thoughts,” writes Alan Dundes in his e book Cracking Jokes, “than by listening to exactly what’s making the folks snicker.” To that finish we flip to 1996’s “The Spirit of Christmas,” the $750 video Hallmark that launched South Park. In “Christmas,” Parker and Stone launched the 4 snowsuited characters and their perpetually wintry milieu, had them quarrel and bait the Jewish Kyle and hurl fats jokes on the rotund Cartman, and introduced within the off-color surrealism that might change into a South Park trademark. In flowing robes, Jesus seems earlier than the children saying he has arrived to avenge the despoiling of his title by Santa Claus. (“Don’t say ‘pigfucker’ in entrance of Jesus,” Stan admonishes Cartman.) Jesus begins a Mortal Kombat–model kung fu duel together with his arch-nemesis “Kringle” whereas the children fret over whom to root for. All the weather have been in place: sadism, sacrilege, and nonstop profanity.

After the furiously circulated video led to a take care of Comedy Central, South Park debuted to flesh out the 4 children’ world. Early episodes launched us to the priapic faculty Chef (voiced by Isaac Hayes), the schoolteacher Mr. Garrison and his hand-puppet/id Mr. Hat, Wendy Testaburger (whose presence makes the love-struck Stan vomit), and different city folks. As in “The Spirit of Christmas,” all of the characters remained jittery composites of cut-up paper shapes whose eyes blinked and enamel gnashed in distant approximations of facial expressions.

With a built-in viewers of the tens of 1000’s who had seen the Xmas bootleg, South Park was an prompt hit—particularly amongst snickering white pubescents. Elektra Data’ Brian Cohen, chargeable for buying TV business time for the label, knew the present was made-to-order for promoting the likes of Pantera, Metallica, and AC/DC. “You go to the concert events and also you see a variety of younger boys who’re able to, you realize, minimize one thing and make it bleed,” he says. “It was fairly clear that this was the appropriate viewers.”

However whereas the present works brilliantly as a cult hit, it makes a curious switch to the bigger tradition. Not like comedian sensations of yore—Monty Python, say, or Firesign Theater—you don’t sound like a soigné aficionado of effective comedy if you repeat South Park sound bites in school: You sound Particular Ed. And whereas there’s sufficient splenetic wit and manic element to generate obsessive fandom (complete sections of Internet sites are devoted to deciphering simply what Kenny is mumbling), topics like alien abduction, genetic engineering, and Kathie Lee are hardly unique targets for satire. South Park fares properly compared to Beavis and Butt-head, however to not its different apparent forebear, The Simpsons. A years-old establishment with a full group of writers, The Simpsons is each higher-yield jokewise and extra virtuosic, with gags compounding gags and a extra coherent sense of the characters’ foibles and predilections. The Simpsons and its follow-on King of the Hill additionally undertake a broader critique of suburbia, mass media, household life, and beer-swilling fats guys than does South Park. South Park‘s extra about puking and aliens and stuff.

In a way, although, that’s the purpose. South Park is a punk-rock Simpsons: not as droll nor as well-executed, however sooner, cruder, with fewer characters and fewer ambition. Not solely is there a agency grasp of early punk’s nihilistic juvenilia—Cartman’s Hitler Halloween costume was positively Ramonesian in its gleeful dangerous style—however South Park additionally shares punk’s slapdash manufacturing values. Turnaround time per episode is lightning-fast—as soon as each three weeks—which makes it essentially the most shoot-from-the-hip comedy program on tv.

Like many subcultural crazes, the present’s enchantment is about model and type greater than content material. Cartman’s voice—a trebly, gravelly mixture of Truman Capote and Wolfman Jack—is alone well worth the worth of fundamental cable. And, at its most elemental, South Park is based on a sight gag with legs. Of the evergreen comedian tropes on the market—males in attire, speaking computer systems, vice presidents—some of the reliable is the dismembering of cute little moppets. (Witness Saturday Night time Reside‘s immensely common “Mr. Invoice” sequence.) The central irony is that, for all its absurdity, South Park might be more true to the child expertise than some other program on TV. It has the acquainted sadism, the shameless greed, and the exuberant curiosity—in spades. Perversely, South Park could also be one among realest social worlds on TV.

However very similar to childhood itself, South Park isn’t a franchise that’s constructed to final. Even by the sixth episode, “Dying,” Parker and Stone have been already making none-too-subtle allusions to crass TV reveals “which have come and gone which have been very dangerous [and usually] get taken proper off the air.” Possibly, because the creators themselves appear to acknowledge, this wouldn’t be such a horrible factor.

Will South Park linger ignobly like Roseanne and the Rolling Stones, cashing checks whereas tarnishing its luster? Or will it—because the current sub-sub-lowbrow Christmas episode suggests—exit in a blaze of speaking poo? South Park‘s important comedic machine—the conflict between childhood innocence and grownup puerility—is in any other case referred to as “junior excessive,” and everybody graduates in the end. With a brand new film beckoning and their place in historical past secured, Parker and Stone could be savvy sufficient to sabotage their creation earlier than it turns in opposition to them. Even Cartman is aware of it’s higher to gross out than fade away.

South Park
South Park creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker with Larry Divney, Pres., Comedy Central, (Credit score: Kevin Winter/ImageDirect)

The Creators: Cannibalism, Pornography, Psychological Disabilities, Et Cetera

Todd Krieger explores the ever-indelicate cultural choices of Trey Parker and Matt Stone

“Whoever rents this porn,” says Trey Parker as he observes a faux knife plunging into the pinnacle of a principally bare porn star, “goes to be so pissed off.” On a balmy Saturday afternoon in Los Angeles, Parker and fellow South Park creator Matt Stone are stress-free from the trials of inventing televised leisure by internet hosting a weekend porn shoot at their beachfront condominium. Because the forged and crew transfer about the home capturing varied scenes, Parker and Stone are readily available to contribute just a few private prospers, together with what must be essentially the most uncommon homicide scene ever to be filmed within the sex-vid trade: loss of life by tone-poem compendium. That Parker possesses a quantity of symphonic poems by the Nineteenth-century German composer Richard Strauss hints that beneath these lowbrow amusements lies a intellectual pedigree; that he and Stone have helped create a movie that depicts one bare actor killing one other with mentioned e book throughout intercourse hints that these two culture-makers-of-the-moment are unabashedly bizarre.

Whereas South Park‘s sudden success has led to the belief of pubescent fantasies like at-home pornography and “assembly the chick from Species,” the 27-year-old Parker factors out that the present has additionally been an area for private progress. ”We discover every little thing,” he says. “It’s nice remedy.” And although Comedy Central has allowed their remedy to discover some pretty uncommon territory (see elephant/pig intercourse, anal probes for the younger, and so on.), there are limits to what they will air. “The one factor they wouldn’t allow us to do was make enjoyable of the Nation of Islam,” says Parker. “We expect it was out of worry that we’d be killed, after which they wouldn’t have a present.”

Hungry South Park followers will readily eat up the brand new episodes of their critically acclaimed hit (20 extra have been ordered), however it’s the live-action porn trade send-up Orgazmo, slated for a summer season launch, which will show to be a more true measure of their abilities. Orgazmo stars Parker as Joe Younger, a Mormon reluctantly reworked into porn star Captain Orgazmo, and Stone as an overzealous lighting technician. Showing alongside them are veteran porn actor/cult hero Ron Jeremy, a trio of intercourse queens espousing a twisted type of woman energy (“I’m not going to do any ass-licking at the moment”), and a sidekick with a dildo strapped to his head. But for Parker and Stone, working in porn is remarkably much like engaged on South Park. “The good factor with the children is that you may put them in just a little bag on the finish of the day,” says Parker. And porn stars? “Not a lot totally different. They already get fucked and so they’re not like, ‘I don’t need to try this, I’ll look s-s-s-s-s-stupid.’ I imply, c’mon, they’ve had anal intercourse close-ups.”

In January, whereas Orgazmo was making its U.S. debut at Sundance, Cannibal: The Musical, Parker’s first work as author/director/star, was premiering on the underground Slamdance Pageant. Shot for a minuscule $125,000, Cannibal (billed as a cross between Oklahoma! and Friday the thirteenth) has begun exhibiting across the nation at a sequence of midnight reveals. Viewers participation is inspired within the hopes that it would change into the following Rocky Horror Image Present.

Naturally, Hollywood needs in. Parker’s accomplished script for a live-action challenge titled Fuzzies just lately drew the eye of producer Scott Rudin. The story revolves round a nine-year-old with a psychological incapacity (he constantly repeats the phrase “bacon and cheese and carrots and peas”) who triumphs over the forces of evil (giant “blue-horned fuzzies”) threatening to wreck his hometown. Within the movie’s climactic scene, a brigade of mentally disabled children prices over a hill to avoid wasting the imperiled city from the clutches of the fuzzies. Like earlier tasks, this one seems to be weird and barely reckless. However Fuzzies—and its estimated price range of $20 million—has been shelved at Parker’s behest. “The one method I might do it’s if I left South Park,” says Parker. “They wished to do it in January. I mentioned no. They freaked out. They’re like, ‘How are you going to not need to do a Paramount film?”

Stone and Parker, in the meantime, have taken roles within the subsequent film from the legendary Zucker brothers (Airplane, The Bare Gun). “We’re a part of this ‘baseketball’ group. It’s a mixture of basketball and baseball,” explains Stone because the porn crew prepares for one more scene in his front room. “It’s about our rise to fame as the game turns into common. Plenty of what we’re engaged on comes from what’s occurred to us up to now six months and what we’ve been coping with,” he says, pausing to look at a tube of “scorching tamale”–flavored lubricant sitting in entrance of him. He squeezes a small dab onto his finger and tastes it. “It comes,” he says lastly, “from actual life.”

South Park
(Credit score: Getty Pictures / Handout)

The Future?: “Oh My God, They Molested Kenny!”

Its debut season was an prompt hit. Now, South Park will face the age-old dilemma: How do you prime your self?

July 4, 1998. Reasserting South Park‘s fame as essentially the most edgy and eccentric present on tv, the launch of the second season is widely known at a “rave” in a disused San Pedro curler rink, with journalists given instructions written on the again of Fats-burger french-fry luggage. Hosted by a pointlessly grouchy Janeane Garofalo, the get together was “silly, boring, and pretentious,” Parker and Stone later chortle, however media hype continues unabated. The lone dissenter is New York Occasions tradition critic Michiko Kakutani, who calls the present the “lede equine of the 4 horsemen of the approaching Gen X cultural apocalypse.”

July 8. The primary episode of the second season, “Gangsta Gangsta,” airs: After Mr. Garrison provides the category an Ebonics lecture, Cartman and human beatbox Kenny (managed by Kyle), rename themselves “The Infamous P.I.G. and Okay-III.” Backed by their posse, the South Park Killers, the duo minimize a gangsta rap single, “SPK—What Does It Imply?” Even Chef is shocked by lyrics akin to “Straight outta South Park, loopy motherfucker named Cartman / Spent my youth anal-probed by an ali-ennn!” Watching his personal video at residence, Cartman yells to his mother, “Yo, get me some Tacky Poofs, bitch!” When Kyle’s mom finds her child son Ike singing the catchy refrain, “South Park, South South Park,” she petitions the Mayor to cancel P.I.G. and Okay-III’s upcoming efficiency on the faculty expertise present, however is thwarted by the ACLU. In the meantime, P.I.G. and Okay-III fireplace Kyle as their supervisor as a result of he’s Jewish. Confused about his musical course, Cartman vanishes, reappearing for the sold-out live performance, unveiling his newest persona—Heavy C—and a brand new R&B-tinged hip-hop sound: “I say big-boned, you say overweight / I’m blowin’ up larger than Dom DeLuise / Each step I take makes hearts begin to break / ‘Trigger I’m beefcake, beefcake, beefcake!” An enraged crowd bum-rushes the stage. Outdoors the varsity auditorium, Kenny avoids a drive-by capturing, however is tragically cornered by a Kangol-sporting Quentin Tarantino, who makes an attempt to “flip him on” to some obscure Bushwick Invoice B-sides.

July 9. Racial activist Al Sharpton joins forces with rappers Fats Joe, Large Punisher, and Biggie Smalls’s mom, Voletta Wallace, to protest the present’s “stereotypical depiction of tragically chubby hip-hop performers.” Prodigy pattern Cartman’s voice on their track, “Cheese My Bitch Up” and launch an X-rated video by which a topless stripper is pelted with snack treats. The Nationwide Group for Ladies requires boycotts of each present on Comedy Central aside from reruns of Completely Fabulous.

July 13. Carrying “Company Cartoons Nonetheless Suck” T-shirts, a cranky Parker and Stone seem on an E! community broadcast of the Howard Stern radio present, trashing the “overmerchandised elitism” of The Simpsons and attempting to fondle Stern sidekick Robin Quivers.

July 15. Episode 2, “Skinheads, Skinheads, Roly-Poly Skinheads,” airs. On a go to to Denver, Cartman meets some “new mates,” and upon returning to South Park, startles Kyle and Stan with a brand new look: flight jacket, jackboots, and carefully cropped hair. “Hey, Cartman,” says Stan, “you appear like Sting!” In the meantime, Starvin’ Marvin, the Ethiopian youngster the children mistakenly adopted by way of a Sally Struthers business, arrives again on the town as a part of a U.N. convention on the New World Order. Cartman’s new mates additionally come to city to carry a seminar on “the black helicopters.” When Cartman introduces his new buddies to Kyle, they beat him up as a result of he’s Jewish. “Dude,” a bloodied Kyle says, “these guys are skinheads.” “Fuck you,” replies Cartman, “they’re not skinheads, they’re French.” After the skinheads tag swastikas on the entrance window of Tom’s Rhinoplasty, the Mayor delivers a hysterical TV warning and asks talk-show host Jerry Springer to talk at a rally in opposition to racism. On the rally, Springer tells the gang about his experiences as a baby of Holocaust survivors, however Stan’s Uncle Jimbo and his good friend Ned the Vietnam Vet (each militia members) drown him out with gunfire. Chef steps to the microphone and breaks into track: “I’ve a dream / That in the future all of God’s girls / Black girls and white girls / Jewish girls and Gentile girls / Protestant girls and Catholic girls / Might be making candy love / Candy, candy love / Sure, I’ve that dream / Oooh, sure I do / Virtually each night time.” Chef’s track is interrupted by the skinheads, who’ve found that the tiny African tot is bundled up in a hooded snowsuit. They stomp the primary youngster they see in a hood, solely to find they’ve crippled Kenny.

July 16. The “Skinhead” episode receives Comedy Central’s highest scores ever (besting even It’s a Paula Poundstone Christmas!). Dogged by paparazzi, Parker and Stone are noticed with David Lynch gulping sugar substitute packets in a darkened nook sales space on the Dresden Room.

July 22. Episode 3, “Simply Say Nagano” airs: South Park‘s show-within-a-show, Terrance & Phillip, will get a brand new sponsor, the ultra-sweet sweet “Gummi Euphoria.” The children are excited to attempt the brand new confection, however all of the native shops are bought out. At a 7-Eleven on the opposite aspect of the railroad tracks, Cartman meets up with actor Robert Downey, Jr. “Have you learnt the place we are able to get some Gummi Euphoria?” asks Cartman. “Certain,” says Downey, handing him some small white tablets. Caught with the Euphoria in Mr. Garrison’s class, Cartman learns an vital lesson about sharing: “If you wish to eat sweet at school, you need to carry sufficient for everyone.” When the principal discovers the category engaged in a bunch hug/blackout, it’s revealed that Cartman has really turned the scholars on to GHB. The Mayor calms the fears of hysterical dad and mom by arresting Robert Downey, Jr., and holds a particular press convention, the place Downey pitifully apologizes for every little thing he’s ever accomplished. To maintain South Park youth away from pushers, faculty officers arrange an emergency area journey to see the Colorado Avalanche hockey group play the New York Rangers in “the most well liked recreation on ice.” Cartman declares that his favourite Avalanche participant is surly goon Claude Lemieux. “Cartman,” protests Kyle, “Claude Lemieux is the most important cheater within the Nationwide Hockey League!” “Screw you, hippie,” says Cartman, “dishonest’s cool!” Stan and Kyle’s taunting of the Avalanche’s hapless mascot “Flurry” results in a melee between gamers and followers. Lemieux tries to fatally cross-check Kenny, however unintentionally renders hockey trophy spouse Janet Jones comatose. Chaos reigns. “Dude,” says Stan, “hockey is method higher than medicine!” “Yeah,” agrees Cartman. “Violence kicks ass!”

July 23. Nationwide Hockey League commissioner Gary Bettman protests the stereotyping of the NHL as overly bloody. “We’re the most well liked recreation on ice,” insists Bettman. Nevertheless, CBC Hockey Night time in Canada commentator Don Cherry praises South Park‘s realism. “Lastly, someone on tv understands that hockey isn’t for wussies.”

July 29. Episode 4, “Cooks Large Rating,” airs: Pursuing a lifelong dream, Chef takes a depart of absence from the cafeteria to attempt his hand at an R&B profession. Mrs. Crabtree, the varsity bus driver, substitutes within the lunchroom, however the outcomes are disastrous. Salisbury steak is changed by “Pleistocene pot pie,” and Stan throws up, even when Wendy Testaburger is nowhere in sight. Unable to eat, Cartman begins losing a few pounds quickly. In the meantime, “Theme from Chef’ threatens to knock Elton John’s “Candle within the Wind 1998: Track for Sonny Bono” off the highest of the charts; its wah-wah-driven refrain is in every single place: “Who’s the kitchen man who’s hotter than a pan? / Chef, whoo, Chef! / Who’s the lunchroom stud who makes feminine hearts go thud? / Chef, whoo, Chef!” Whereas in L.A. to report a brand new Free Tibet profit report, “Monk Assist,” with the Beastie Boys, Steven Seagal, and Carrot Prime, Chef is caught at the back of a limo swapping recipes with a transvestite fry cook dinner. His profession in a shambles, unable to get booked on even the Keenen Ivory Wayans Present, Chef returns to South Park. Discovering the city abandoned, he discovers that everybody is on the hospital the place Kenny has almost starved to loss of life, and a vigil is underway for an emaciated Cartman. Chef shortly whips up a Salisbury gravy I.V., saving Cartman, who out of the blue begins shouting “Get jiggy with it!” for no explicit purpose.

July 31. In an effort to insurgent in opposition to the Hollywood “impressed by” soundtrack system, postmodern poster-boy DJ Spooky helms an album entitled South Park (Re)combined, that includes 35 totally different “sonic musings” on the present’s unique theme track. Launched by Geffen Data to nice fanfare, the album is a crucial and business embarrassment.

August 3. Nervous concerning the present’s declining hipness, Comedy Central’s publicity division begins planting false tales in nationwide gossip columns about Parker and Stone’s “secret relationship.”

August 5. Episode 5, “Trial of the Century,” airs: Kenny is discovered lifeless within the basement of his dad and mom’ home, apparently strangled and sexually assaulted. “Oh my God,” says Kyle. “They molested Kenny!” Though suspicion instantly facilities on Kenny’s household as a result of they’re poor, everybody in South Park is a suspect. A notice surfaces demanding a yr of free cable, and the penmanship seems to completely match a handwriting pattern from Mr. Hat. NYPD Blue detectives Sipowicz and Simone are introduced in to interrogate the smart-alecky hand puppet. When Mr. Hat proves uncooperative, Sipowicz slaps him round, which Mr. Garrison seems to take pleasure in just a little an excessive amount of. “I’m starting to get a sense that you simply and your little puppet good friend are in want of some bodily remedy,” warns Sipowicz, “and if that’s the case solely one among us goes to stroll out of this room, and imagine me, it’s not going to be Kermit right here.” Mr. Garrison shortly provides up Mr. Hat and agrees to testify in opposition to him. Mr. Hat brings in Johnnie Cochran as his protection legal professional. In the course of the trial, it’s revealed that Kenny’s deadly wound was inflicted anally. “If he doesn’t match,” declares Cochran, holding up the hand puppet in query, “you should acquit.” “Ooh, that’s gross, dude,” squeaks Kyle.

August 11. Homosexual activists categorical outrage on the damaging depiction of gay hand puppets. “That is the type of hate-filled setting that has saved Lambchop within the closet for all these lengthy, devastating years,” cries an outraged Shari Lewis in Out journal.

South Park
(Credit score: Getty Pictures)

Late August. Regardless of Parker and Stone’s erratic habits and the present’s incapability to fire up a good boycott menace, South Park‘s rising cult success ends in a substantial bidding struggle, and a deal is struck with ABC, the community that had gambled over time on such taboo-busting sequence as Cleaning soap, NYPD Blue, Nothing Sacred, and Hiller and Diller. However the present’s community premiere is delayed after ABC execs, underneath strain from their company headmasters at Disney, veto potential story strains. As an example: Kenny tries to commit suicide through autoerotic crucifixion; Stan will get lured by pedophiles into an Web child-porn ring; Christian males’s group the Promise Keepers harass the boys’ good friend Large Homosexual Al; Kyle turns into a Lubavitcher Jew; and Chef goes to the Million Man March.

Even when plots acquire clearance, the children’ locker-room chatter is cleaned up drastically. Not solely is there no foul language, however Kenny is allowed solely a sequence of simply treatable illnesses. One inside memo from a requirements and practices exec declares that “if I wished to listen to 22 fucking minutes of bleeps I’d go purchase a fucking Orbital report.”

October 1. ABC airs promotional spots for South Park by which Stan and Kyle ice-skate and have a snowball combat in entrance of a large community brand, all to a bouncy new theme track penned by the Cardigans.

October 9. The debut ABC episode kicks off as Cartman’s mother remarries a widower with lovable twin ladies (visitor voices by Full Home‘s Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen) who vie for consideration with Eric when Mrs. Cartman will get pregnant utilizing fertility medicine. Kenny hurts his knee curling. The McCaughey septuplets costar.

October 1o. The Southern Baptist Conference points a press launch commending the present’s “life like depiction of at the moment’s youth.”

October 16. Episode 2 airs: With assistance from a miracle, Stan and his sister uncover the true which means of Arbor Day. Jonathan Lipnicki visitor stars as Stan’s guardian angel, who helps him get in contact with the spirit of Princess Diana.

October 17. The New York Submit‘s Web page Six reviews a rumor that Matt Stone has been learning the cabala with Madonna and Sandra Bernhard.

October 23. Episode 3: Mr. Garrison will get transferred to rough-and-tumble, inner-city South Central Park, the place he evokes his detached and generally intimidating college students to throw their palms within the air solely after he’s requested them a query. Kenny shuts his finger in a locker. Coolio visitor stars because the ghetto faculty’s no-nonsense principal.

October 25. ABC execs usher in writers from the farcical romp Dharma & Greg to “lend steerage” on Parker and Stone’s scripts.

October 30. Episode 4: Kyle and Stan transfer to L.A. and hire a beachfront condominium, the place their next-door neighbors are two buxom dental hygienists (Elle McPherson and Rebecca Romijn) with hearts of gold and a style for Scientology.

November. The unconventional remodeling of South Park touches off a backlash from its core viewers—fan-generated Internet sites unleash flaming assaults on the present’s new course. Guilt-ridden creator Trey Parker, in an try to get again in contact together with his unique followers, begins haunting chat rooms and turns into romantically concerned with an internet groupie, who seems to be a precocious 12-year-old named Missy from Tifton, Georgia.

December. Regardless of the promise of a live-action characteristic movie challenge, Stone and Parker pull the plug on their beloved scamps with a remaining, tear-jerking episode.

December 23. The ultimate episode, “Au Revoir, Les Enfants.” Chef broadcasts that he’s leaving the cafeteria to switch Sinbad because the host of Vibe. Mr. Garrison wins the Nationwide Trainer of the Yr award and goes on an area shuttle mission. Kyle will get accepted to a gifted and proficient program at a center faculty in Aspen. Stan and Wendy pledge everlasting love. Kenny unties his hood to disclose that he’s really E.T., the extraterrestrial. Cartman learns to simply accept himself for who he actually is.

South Park
(Credit score: Getty Pictures)

The First Season: South Park For Dummies

Danny Drennan explicates the which means and meaninglessness of the primary ten (relentlessly repeated) episodes

Authentic Episode: “The Spirit of Christmas”

On this five-minute quick, we meet our principal characters, the 4 scamps from South Park: Stan, in a blue ski cap with crimson pom-pom, crimson jacket, and blue pants; Kyle, inexperienced hunter’s cap, crimson jacket, inexperienced pants; Eric Cartman, mild blue ski cap with yellow pom-pom, crimson jacket, brown pants; and Kenny, crimson parka, crimson pants. The kids gleefully sing Christmas carols till Kyle is reminded he’s Jewish, so he begins singing “The Dreidel Track,” which brings on the Cartman critique, “Hanukkah sucks,” which escalates right into a rousing refrain of epithets solely stopped by the looks of Jesus, who has come looking for retribution in opposition to Santa Claus, whom he claims has defiled the which means of Christmas. Finest Epithet Award goes to Cartman’s use of “pig-fucker,” final uttered by Mink Stole in Serial Mother. Jesus and Santa change blows, unintentionally killing Kenny. The children’ ethical predicament (Jesus or Santa?) is solved by determine skater Brian Boitano, and Jesus presents to purchase Santa an orange smoothie, as hordes of mice devour Kenny’s physique.

Useful references: Mortal Kombat, Edward Gorey’s Gashlycrumb Tinies, males’s determine skating

Kenny’s Reason for Dying: pierced by a Santa projectile

Ethical: Whether or not you’re Christian, Jewish, Hindu, or atheist, Christmas is about one crucial factor…presents.

Secondary Ethical: The eight days of Hanukkah present capital incentive to change into Jewish.

Episode 1: “Cartman Will get An Anal Probe”

Cartman’s alien abduction signs are acknowledged by Chef, whose postulation of an enormous metallic “hooba-jube” implanted up Cartman’s butt matches Cartman’s “nightmare” precisely. The looks in school of flaming flatulence and a giant-eyeballed anal probe that expands into an 80-foot-wide beacon additionally belie Cartman’s denial. In the meantime, the “Guests” kidnap Ike (Kyle’s puntable child brother), the mutilation-phobic cattle need to hop the following prepare to Denver, Stan can’t speak to Wendy Testaburger with out throwing up, and Cartman is re-abducted, solely to catch pink eye from Scott Baio.

Useful references: Communion, the Little Rascals, the golden age of Looney Tunes

Kenny’s C.O.D.: UFO-beamed onto the highway, Kenny is stampeded by cows, then run over by a police cruiser.

Ethical: Having just a little brother is a fairly particular factor.

Too A lot Info second: “‘You weren’t searching to your little brother, Kyle! he can’t assume on his personal, Kyle! Brush and floss, Kyle! The place has that finger been, Kyle!’” —Kyle

Particular Visitor Star references: Scott Baio, David Caruso

Episode 2: “Weight Acquire 4000”

Cartman’s plagiarized “Walden” beats out Wendy’s dolphin opus within the “Save Our Fragile Planet” essay contest. In the meantime, Kathie Lee Gifford’s award presentation poses an ideal mayoral media alternative, Cartman bulks up for TV, schoolteacher Mr. Garrison remembers the previous Kathie Lee Epstein’s grade-school talent-show victory, and his hand-puppet sidekick Mr. Hat results in the psychiatric ward after looking for revenge on Kathie Lee. Such-a-fat-ass-he’s-unable-to-leave-the-house Cartman sees his TV want come true on Geraldo, and Chef provides Kathie Lee “candy lovin’.”

Useful references: Princess Cruises, Magic, Taxi Driver, Lee Harvey Oswald, The Return of the Jedi

Kenny’s C.O.D.: impaled on a flagpole

Ethical: “You’ll be able to’t win on a regular basis. And when you don’t win, you definitely can’t maintain it in opposition to the one who did, as a result of that’s the one method you ever actually lose.” —Wendy

Particular Visitor Star reference: Mary Tyler Moore

Episode 3: “Volcano”

Stan’s Uncle Jimbo and his Vietnam vet sidekick Ned make a journey up the aspect of a volcano the place they present the boys the best way to hunt varied endangered and in any other case light, furry creatures with an arsenal of army-surplus weaponry. However Stan can’t carry himself to shoot, the volcano awakens, the Mayor employs media histrionics, Cartman’s scary-monster campfire story involves life, an armless Ned does a “most cancers kazoo” serenade of “Kumbaya,” and the townspeople entice the hunters on the opposite aspect of a ditch they dig to divert the lava to Denver. “Scuzzlebutt,” the mountain monster, performs a gasp-inducing wicker-basket rescue, however takes a bullet from Stan, who hopes to win his uncle’s approval by killing one thing.

Useful references: The Atomic Café, Miss Saigon

Kenny’s C.o.D.: Crushed underneath an enormous ball of molten lava, Kenny later receives a bullet to the chest.

Ethical: “Some belongings you kill, and a few belongings you don’t.” —Uncle Jimbo

Secondary Ethical: “Solely now on this late hour do I see the folly of weapons.” —Ned

T.M.I. second: “My geologist? Now? Inform him the an infection is ok, and I don’t want one other checkup.” —Mayor

Particular Visitor Star reference: Patrick Duffy

Episode 4: “Large Homosexual Al’s Large Homosexual Boat Journey”

Uncle Jimbo causes a homecoming-game betting frenzy over Stan’s quarterbacking capacity, whereas Stan’s “homosexual gay,” pink-kerchief-wearing canine Sparky begins shtupping different pooches up the butt. Mr. Garrison explains the “thick, vomitous oil” that oozes by way of homosexual folks’s veins, Coach Chef provides a pigskin sensuality pep-talk, and Uncle Jimbo and Ned booby-trap Center Park’s mascot in order that it’s time-bombed to go off throughout John Stamos’s older brother’s halftime efficiency. In the meantime, Stan stumbles onto “Large Homosexual Al’s Homosexual Animal Sanctuary” whereas looking for Sparky and will get a historic tour of gaydom on Large Homosexual Al’s Large Homosexual Boat Journey. Stan learns to like Sparky for who he’s, throws a spread-beating landing go, and reunites the disbelieving townsfolk with their misplaced homosexual animals. Stamos’s brother lastly hits the excessive F in Minnie Riperton’s “Lovin’ You,” blowing the Center Park mascot sky excessive.

Useful references: Pong, Solomon’s Key, The Wizard of Oz, Rudolph the Purple-Nosed Reindeer

Kenny’s C.O.D.: decapitated by the opposing group

Ethical: “It’s okay to be homosexual!” —Stan

T.M.I. second: “I haven’t seen so many youngsters molested since….” —PA announcer

Particular Visitor Star references: George Clooney, Barbra Streisand, Rodney King, Hugh Grant

Episode 5: “An Elephant Makes Love To A Pig”

The dimensions of Kyle’s mail-ordered elephant is problematic till a classroom dialogue about genetic engineering ends in the crossbreeding of the elephant with Cartman’s potbellied pig Fluffy; a science-fair-project struggle sparks up with Terrance, who’s concerned in human cloning. In the meantime, Stan’s sister Shelly inflicts some dental-headgear-induced wrath on her brother, and the boys tour the South Park Genetic Engineering Ranch, the place Stan’s stolen blood yields a mean-dispositioned, out-of-control Stan clone. The clone is dispatched by Shelly, who then stands up for Stan, whereas Cartman’s pig lastly provides beginning to one thing resembling Mr. Garrison, who awards the boys’ challenge first prize.

Useful references: The Island of Dr. Moreau, Babe, The Omen

Kenny’s C.O.D.: launched right into a microwave

Ethical: “Maybe we shouldn’t be toying with God’s creations. Maybe we must always simply depart nature alone, to its easy one-assed schematics.” —South Park geneticist

T.M.I. second: “If some woman tried to kick my ass, I’d be like, ‘Hey, why don’t you cease dressing me up like a mailman, and making me dance for you when you go and smoke crack in your bed room and have intercourse with some man I don’t even know on my dad’s mattress!’”—Cartman

Particular Visitor Star references: Loverboy, Elton John

Episode 6: “Dying”

Stan’s grandfather’s 102nd birthday want is for assisted suicide, an ethical dilemma for Stan that Mr. Garrison, Chef, and Jesus received’t contact with poles of assorted sizes. Kyle’s mom protests the fart-ripe Terrance & Phillip present, and encourages the townsfolk to slingshot themselves in opposition to the Cartoon Central workplace constructing. Doo-doo jokes abound in regards to the Kenny-transmitted abdomen flu (i.e., explosive diarrhea) and “Dying” chases the supervision-less boys into city, the place all of them cease to look at Terrance & Phillip in a retailer window till the present’s sudden cancellation. Their favourite exhibit the air, the boys resort to fuel fumes, crack, and porno, whereas Stan’s African safari-bound grandfather desires of the statistical likelihood of voracious lion assaults.

Useful references: Enya, A Christmas Carol

Kenny’s C.O.D.: touched by Dying himself

Ethical: “If dad and mom would spend much less time worrying about what their children watch on TV and extra time worrying about what’s occurring of their children’ lives, this world can be a a lot better place.” —Stan

Secondary Ethical: “Mother and father solely get so offended by tv as a result of they depend on it as a babysitter and the only educator of their children.” —Kyle

T.M.I. second: “I’ve acquired the green-apple splatters!” —Mr. Garrison

Particular Visitor Star reference: Suzanne Somers

Episode 7: “Pink Eye”

After a pre-Halloween Mir space-station crash kills Kenny, his embalming takes a flip for the more severe on the morgue, and within the morning a now-zombified Kenny meets the boys (of their Chewbacca, Raggedy Andy, and Adolf Hitler Halloween costumes); the boys make enjoyable of Kenny as a result of he’s poor and gay-bait Stan. The city physician diagnoses deadly zombie-like signs as pink eye, Chef and the boys hunt for zombie genesis clues, Stan and Cadman go chain saw-happy, and Kyle negotiates a maze of Worcestershire sauce-hot-line dialing choices. The day saved, the boys depart Kenny’s gravesite and return to their sweet and Crack Whore journal (that includes Cartman’s mother), whereas a stitched-up Kenny bucks for a sequel.

Useful references: Illusion, Night time of the Residing Lifeless, “Thriller“video, Carrie, Triumph of the Will, Star Wars, Pippi Longstocking

Kenny’s C.O.D.: Crushed by the Mir area station, Kenny is re-killed when Stan cuts him in half with a series noticed, and re-re-killed by a toppling cemetery statue, plus a crashing MiG jet.

Ethical: “Halloween isn’t about costumes or sweet, it’s about being good to 1 one other and giving and loving.” —Stan

Secondary Ethical: “Dressing up like Hitler at school isn’t cool.” —Puffy the Bear

T.M.I. second: “That’s good, simply use these mouth muscle groups like the women in Beijing.” —Mr. Garrison

Particular Visitor Star references: Jackie Collins, Evel Knievel, Richard Nixon, Tina Yothers, Edward James Olmos

Episode 8: “Starvin’ Marvin”

The boys order a Teiko digital sports activities watch on Stan’s mother’s bank card in a TV giveaway. In the meantime, Mr. Garrison conducts a Thanksgiving meals drive, the pinnacle of the South Park Genetic Engineering Ranch messes with turkey manufacturing, and the boys show-and-tell a ravenous African youngster (mistakenly delivered as a substitute of the sports activities watch) because the pissed-off, exponentially rising, experimental gobblers assault the city. Cartman is mistakenly exiled to a foodless, fly-ridden existence in Africa by black-suited brokers in sun shades, solely to uncover a gluttonous Sally Struthers chowing down. The mayor desires up a grab-a-can meals gimmick starring Kenny, and Chef battles the mutant turkeys. “Starvin’ Marvin” returns triumphant and turkey-laden to Africa, switching locations with a none-the-better-off Cartman, whereas Kenny’s poor household grapples with their no-can-opener existential dilemma.

Useful reference: Braveheart, the letterbox model; Guide of Job

Kenny’s C.O.D.: pecked to loss of life by mutant turkeys

Ethical: “It’s very easy not to consider photographs on TV as actual folks, however they’re. That’s why it’s straightforward to disregard these commercials, however folks on TV are simply as actual as you and I” —Stan

Particular Visitor Star references: Sally Struthers, Engelbert Humperdinck, Charles Dickens, Vanessa Redgrave, McGyver

Episode 9: “Mr. Hankey, The Christmas Poo”

Offended by the blatant non secular overtones within the Christmas play and incensed that Kyle has been forged as Joseph—delivering a purple Jesus fetus from a moaning Wendy Testaburger—Kyle’s bitch-for-a-mom rallies the townspeople in opposition to the play…and Christmas. In a feeble try to please his mom, placate the townspeople, and thus put a cease to songs akin to “Kyle’s Mother’s a Large Fats Bitch in D Minor,” Kyle means that the proper non-offensive and non-denominational Christmas icon is Mr. Hankey, the Christmas Poo, who doesn’t discriminate by religion, simply by fiber. Recognized as a clinically depressed fecalphiliac and nuttier than Chinese language hen salad, Kyle is dedicated as townspeople tear down insufficiently PC decorations. Mr. Garrison phases essentially the most secular and avant-garde Christmas play ever, prompting a riot. Occult-loving Chef reveals that Mr. Hankey is certainly actual. Impressed by religion, Mr. Hankey springs to life, sings a track, and saves Christmas as he leads South Park in a candlelit vigil outdoors Kyle’s cell.

Useful references: A Charlie Brown Christmas, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Jiminy Cricket, Al Jolson

Kenny’s C.O.D.: None. In an unprecedented flip, Kenny miraculously survives each electrocution and shark assault.

Ethical: “Jewish individuals are okay.”—Stan

Particular Visitor Star reference: Philip Glass

 

The Characters: Baby Help

Looking back, maybe psychological remedy ought to have been thought-about sooner. Actually, the warning indicators have been there for some time: poor motivation in school, bouts of hysteria, grisly killings, homosexual pets. With that in thoughts, we requested Dr. Ava Siegler, a famend youngster psychologist, and creator of The Important Information to the New Adolescence: How you can Increase an Emotionally Wholesome Teenager, to delve into the mysterious inside worlds of South Park‘s rambunctious jewels. “For the reason that present as an entire appears to be about anger, rage, and narcissism, it’s protected to say these children might use some remedy.” Certainly. Her analyses comply with. Zev Borow

Stan:

He appears essentially the most regular. He has emotions. He cares for his canine, even when he learns it’s homosexual. He tries to modulate aggression. He has what we might name an observing ego, which means he can criticize himself. He has affection, seemingly, for the little woman who makes him vomit. He does have an intense sibling rivalry together with his sister, who’s abusing. One of many issues Stan may conceivably work on in remedy can be standing up for himself. The abuse from his sister might make him increasingly timid, cautious. However I’d be nervous about Stan the least.

Treatment: maybe for his sister

Kyle:

He appears principally regular and appears to come back from a comparatively regular household setting. He’s shut together with his little brother, although there appears to be a little bit of a sibling rivalry there. However Kyle is a delicate little boy. He doesn’t need to kill issues; he agrees to decorate up as Raggedy Ann; he appears to have wholesome relationships with ladies. He’s additionally the one with the overweening, over-intrusive, overprotective Jewish mom. And I assume you can say that this has produced a baby who, to the opposite children, appears to be like just a little wimpy. Maybe this might impact the way in which Kyle offers together with his masculinity. His mom might undoubtedly use some mum or dad steerage. She erodes Kyle’s vanity and self-confidence. You can count on Kyle to be extra of a follower due to this.

Treatment: Valium, for his mom

Eric:

He’s the focused, neurotic fats child. Cognitively he’s a large number. For all we all know, he might have some main studying disabilities. However this might all need to do with the truth that, clearly, Eric has a pathological relationship together with his mom. His mom retains him a child. She tempts and seduces him with meals—with that cheese stuff he likes. His great quantity of aggression towards different folks might be linked to this underlying infantilization. I’d advocate play remedy. We might play struggle, and I’d level out the way in which that he cheats and makes himself really feel massive and robust by making different folks small and weak. This can be a boy who, beneath, has enormously poor vanity. He might wind up like that character in Dr. Strangelove, a army monster. Alternatively, he might equally change into depressed and simply get fatter and fatter and isolate himself much more. Or, he might seize his life, perhaps when he’s a young person. However it’s laborious to think about a constructive end result.

Treatment: I’m not an enormous proponent of medicine for younger youngsters, however definitely, Eric is likely to be helped by some Prozac. He might even have an Consideration Deficit Dysfunction, by which case Ritalin might be helpful.

Kenny:

He’s a child who seems to be selectively mute. Often this has to do with underlying aggression. Very fascinating that Kenny turns into the child with aggression issues when he’s aggressed in opposition to in each episode. This might have its roots in one thing in Kenny’s background—marital strife in the home, a depressed mom, an enraged mom. Or he is likely to be what we name pathologically shy. If he isn’t helped, he’ll be compromised in each future educational and social settings. And although he’s accepted by his little group now, as he strikes on, folks will probably get uninterested in his not talking and may isolate him. That may grow to be critical despair.

Treatment: There are a variety of serotonin re-uptake medicine which may work for Kenny, to say nothing of him simply typically being extra cautious.



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