Remember the Turd

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Reason writers around town: At The American Spectator, Jesse Walker lays odds on whether South Park can survive respectability.

NEXT: Paging John Schmitz

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  1. Why is it that the only time you’ll consistently find libertarian ideas on television is inside cartoons?

  2. South Park has not only joked about every excretory function that exists, it made up a new one.

  3. Actually, come to think of it, I just want to know how they do episodes so fast. I mean, they’ve only had two months since Janet Jackson’s wardrobe malfunction. They seem to be able to change at least a part of their show in a matter of weeks. From what I know of TV production schedules, that’s beyond light speed.

  4. Two months is nothing. Sometimes they manage to react to news that’s less than a week old.

  5. They use computers to do the animation and have said in an interview that they can make an episode in about a week, compared to months for a show like The Simpsons.

  6. I think the bottom-of-the-barrel crudeness of the animation has something to do with it.

  7. This leads to the further question: How is it that we all know we’re going to be watching the most sophisticated coverage of Election 2004 on a comedy station?

  8. Nice piece Jessie.

    In branding bubba as “dumb” tastelessness for depicting shaggy as a crack whore – did you forget that Mrs. Cartman’s status as a crack whore (on the cover of Crack Whore Magazine) was a major element of the first few 2 years of SP?

    South Park IS all the great things you wrote – but lets not avoid the fact that it can often be just as dumb as anything on morning FM radio.

  9. “Shut up, Critic! Shut your goddamned Joo mouth!”

  10. Screw you guys . . . . I’m going home.

  11. I have nothing against crack whore jokes in general. The ones on South Park are funnier than the ones on the Bubba show.

  12. Minor quibble: When Andronicus served Chiron & Demetrius to their mother, Shakespeare was stealing from the story of Philomela & Procne.

  13. While I’ve been a South Park viewer since Season 1, respectibility didn’t quite come as fast. However, the kindergarten election Southpark held one week after the 2000 Presidential elections clenched my affection. Not only was it extremely funny, but it was timely to within 2-3 days of the news.

    Season 7 also had the capture of Saddam as a main plot aspect of an episode (Episode 715), within days of his capture. Amazing.

  14. They also had a Jar Jar like creature show up and ruin an episode days after The Phantom Menace opened.

  15. Little Known Fact: the famous talking taco that also poops ice cream is from an obscure poem by Octavio Paz.

  16. “I think the bottom-of-the-barrel crudeness of the animation has something to do with it.”

    I think “Terence and Philip” cartoons are supposed to be some kind of inside joke about the low production values of South Park.

    One of the funniest things I ever saw was T & P playing “pull my finger”:

    “OK, pull my finger. [grunts–nothing] Wait–try it again. [more grunts] OK, NOW pull it [loud fart, T&P laughing hysterically].”

    Then the scene pans out to show them sitting on a pew, with a big cross on the wall, and dozens of horrified church-goers around them.

  17. What I love about Southpark is the sophmoric humor is the most inspired since Beavis and Butthead and is almost as “smart” as the Simpsons. My only (minor) pet peeve is that recently they’ve been relying on the current events too much (some is cool, but I think using it too much is annoying) in recent seasons. At least they’re resisting the urge of going the Scooby Doo/Married With Children/Simpsons path with special guests every damn episode.

    Actually, they’re a few seasons from the clout that’s required for that move, so I shouldn’t be too happy abou it yet.

  18. My watching kind of faded away after the first 2 or 3 years. Good to hear they’ve picked up again.

  19. I busted up the most in recent seasons when the boys go to return the goat to Afghanistan and meet Osama.

    Cartman, in a parody of Bugs Bunny, yanks down Bin Laden’s pants, revealing a penis so small that Eric has to whip out a cartoon magnifying glass with huge magnification so we can actually see it. Then Eric whips out the cardboard sign on a wooden stake with the huge letters, TINY AIN’T IT??

    Reminding us that Southpark is the only toon to date that routinely shows penises.

    Oh WAIT, that reminds me of Mr Garrison’s super invention, the gyro-bike….hahahahahahahahahahahahaha

  20. (in an extremely bogus Hispanic accent)…”Taco flavored keeses for my Ben…”

  21. Kevin Carson… what the hell are you talking about? Terrance and Phillip are *real* people, not cartoons.

    My favorite episode was Butt Out… great stuff there. And I can’t get “Cheddar Cheese Girl” out of my head… that, and…

    “Who gets into Heaven?”
    “I’m afraid it was the Mormans. Yes, the Mormans were the correct answer.”

    Well, their religious stuff has always been a little… strange.

  22. They sure love the Mormans, don’t they?

    “Dum, dum, da, da, dum”

  23. touche to mo

    southpark is amazing precisely because the moral of every show can hardly be disagreed with by any liberterian. the juvenille humor is an excellent backdoor for getting the ideals of freedom out to the otherwise politically apathetic masses.

    PS i’m a walking example of why the drinking age should be lowered to 18…right?

  24. I actually like the newer ones better than the older ones. The older ones were dumb.

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