Matt Stone and Trey Parker are the creative minds behind Team America: World Police, Orgazmo, The Book of Mormon (the Broadway smash, not the foundation of the religion), and South Park. South Park is one of the best cartoon shows ever. It is funny on every level. It is crude, controversial, satirical, and always hilarious. The show follows Stan, Kyle, Kenny and Cartman, four friends growing up in South Park, Colorado.
Stan Marsh is the everyman. He is the most normal of the friends, and he’s usually the voice of reason. Kyle Broflovski is also relatively normal, but he’s Jewish and Cartman won’t let him forget it. Kenny McCormick is the unlucky one of the group. Not only is he poor, he has an unfortunate habit of dying (especially in the first few seasons). Eric Cartman is the fat asshole of the group. He is racist, manipulative, a brat, and a terrible person in general… He’s also the fan favorite and a majority of the best episodes revolve around him.
There are a lot of great supporting characters, way to many to list them all. So I will just mention Butters, Jimmy, Timmy, Token, Towelie, Chef, and Mr. Hanky the Christmas Poo. And Kyle’s mom’s a bitch.
There have been 230 episodes over 16 seasons. That’s pretty fucking impressive. The show was a hit from the start, but it took a few seasons for the show to find its groove. The early seasons are kind of hard to watch now. The show gradually became more bold and distinctive. Scott Tenorman Must Die is the episode when South Park truly became South Park. That’s also the point where you learned that Cartman is capable of anything and you don’t want to be on his bad side.
The animation style looks intentionally shitty. The characters look like paper cut-outs (the pilot actually was filmed with paper), but it is all computer animated so they can churn out episodes in 6 days. An episode of the Simpsons can take 6 months to produce in comparison. The result is that South Park can be topical. And they have fun with that. They will mention sports scores and spoof news events just because they can. It’s pretty amazing to think that they are creative enough to write a script, animate it, record and add the dialog, add sound effects and music, do rewrites, and edit it within a week’s time. And then everyone will be quoting it around the water cooler that next day.
Trey Parker is a genius. And Matt Stone is lucky that he knows Trey Parker. And we are all lucky that Trey Parker gave us South Park and the South Park movie. When South Park first came out, my cable provider didn’t carry Comedy Central. I had never seen an episode of South Park before I saw Bigger, Longer, and Uncut. My head practically exploded.
South Park is a great TV show. It challenges everything and everyone. You can’t get too offended though. It’s South Park. That’s what they do. You never know that to expect with each new episode of South Park. They don’t even know what to expect. It’s guerrilla art.
Critically Rated at 14/17
Written, Rated, and Reviewed By Brendan H. Young.