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April 22, 2024, 08:09:17 AM

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South Park - Season 26

Started by JesusAndYourBush, February 19, 2023, 12:15:50 AM

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JesusAndYourBush

I just discovered the latest South Park season started, with 2 episodes aired already.  One of them is about Harry & Meghan.

This is just a heads-up to anyone else who didn't realise the new season started.  I've not seen them yet but saw a clip of the Harry & Meghan one.

"'South Park' parody of Prince Harry, Meghan Markle could turn into legal threat, royal expert claims"
https://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/south-park-parody-prince-harry-meghan-markle-could-turn-legal-threat-royal-expert

"South Park Meghan Markle joke that most fans missed 'goes too far'"
https://www.derbytelegraph.co.uk/news/celebs-tv/south-park-meghan-markle-joke-8163002

idunnosomename

it's very funny how a lot of UK royalists like Piers Morgan are all "is this the US finally turning against Harry and Meghan" when they don't understand the precedent of the British royals portrayed as Canadian from S15 E3 aired 11 May 2011, which ends with the Canadian Prince pulling his wife's arm off at the high altar of the Canadian "Abbey" and shoving it up his ass

I've been watching all of South Park recently right from the very beginning through all of the episodes I never saw at the time, I'm up to the Pandemic Special as of tonight, I think it's still funny (though there are some episodes in S23 I found boring and sadly predictable in their plot elements where they never were before), but if you look to it to validate your political views, you're a giant fucking douche.

Led Souptin

I accidentally started another thread cos I didn't see this one and I'm a dunce so I'll echo what I said in there

It's quite middle of the road in terms of south park, very mildly ribbing its targets this time round. But no tegridy farms so far which is a plus.

And I did really enjoy
Spoiler alert
prince harry revealing he has a blue penis and then rubbing his blue penis against kyles window
[close]
which is the sort of absurd joke that I really enjoy from South park. It did help that it only took up about 20 seconds of the episode too.

Also what the heck is up with the sound mix in recent years? I get that they're producing it in 6 days or whatever it is at the moment but sometimes the music is so loud that it drowns out the dialogue. Can't be that hard to get that right.

BritishHobo

I've done a big catch up in the last week - I'd fallen off after the first pandemic special, as the Tegridy stuff had gotten really dull. Especially the fact that they had done an episode all about it getting dull, but then still continued. The pandemic specials were a tough watch in the way anything about the pandemic is a tough watch, because we're all sick of it, but I did quite enjoy the two-part IT parody, and the genuinely quite good thing with Cartman sacrificing a happy, mature adulthood so everyone else can be happy.

The Streaming Wars was fine, but I think the longer specials feel like an idea stretched too thin. Whereas series 25 and the first two episodes of 26 feel really refreshed to me, the show going back to basics with kid adventures while still keeping the continuity stuff in a way that doesn't overshadow everything.

This royal episode shows why I love South Park, as I find the 'oh they want their privacy so why are they going on TV' criticism so groanworthy, but they're still able to really get me despite fundamentally disagreeing with the episode's argument. I absolutely loved the Canadian Royal Wedding episode, and this tickled me in exactly the same way. When they showed the cover of the prince's book, and the newsreader reading the title, just killed me.

selectivememory

I have no recollection of actually watching any of the previous season, but apparently I did because I had a look at the plot descriptions of the episodes and they definitely ring a bell. Just caught up with the last two specials (the Streaming Wars parts one and two) and thought they were decent. Randy as a Karen was a laugh, I liked Cartman with his ridiculous giant breasts, and I thought the takedown of all the sellout celebs who were shilling for crypto last year was brilliant.

Need to catch up with the latest episodes. Can't believe I'm watching this show in 2023, but eh, it's still pretty good innit.

steveh

I liked The Streaming Wars more than the last season even if it was a little stretched out. Bit meh on these first two in season 26.

Do feel though that since Trump their politics has been even more all over the shop despite often still coming across like it's leading the comedy rather than the reverse.

JesusAndYourBush

I watched them now. The Royals one made me laugh a lot, especially Elton John's song and the spoilered bit above.

JaDanketies

Both episodes made me laugh a lot. I think the Harry and Meghan one might have been funnier, maybe, but Kanye provides lots of room for laughs too. It's been pretty consistent for me these last 25 years tbh


idunnosomename

it's funny how the 2nd episode of this season has blown up South Park bigger than like, the last 20 years. anyway now i've got through 25 years of this I can finally comment on it.

The first episode of S26 was pretty incendiary too, surprised it's basically not been mentioned at all. Valiantly ignoring any "gay fish" memberberries to take on certain wackos saying outwardly racist shit, and continuing the whole Tolkien arc. the commitment to continuity in a show where no one's aged in 25 years is really impressive (although partly it's because the way it's animated they just keep characters on file as assets: note the music teacher in Cupid Ye who hasn't been in the show since 2000!). I love how Cartman is still living in the Coney Island Hotdog for instance

I guess this was just a joke over "let the Jew run it!". if it isn't, it's the only episode Stone has ever written and directed solo. I guess it is because South Park has a lot of these "jokes" and that's why it's still worth watching


the last couple years are really increasingly meta, Randy becoming an obnoxious weed-business-obsessed asshole like jerkass Homer in partnership with Towelie, The Worst Character Ever (the voice of who has been a producer on the show for 16 years) has been a metaphor for at least Parker losing enthusiasm in the show. The 2019 season 23 pushed into "hey, fuck YOU" anti-humour for changing the intro to Tegridy Farms, not that it was totally terrible, but Randy's character made it a slog. The Streaming Wars was ultimate in the whole meta thing, in that it was taking the piss (!) out of the very reason of its existence. Christ knows how they're going to keep writing these specials: South Park works best as a neat 22 minutes, a two-parter at nearly an hour a part is bound to drag.

I know Parker hates them, but S1-3, aside a few duff episodes, are still hilarious, and Bigger, Longer and Uncut is still a musical high they might never equal. Mary Kay Bergman is also a big part of the early phase, she needs a lot more kudos for how much she put into establishing the female voices and in the case of Ms Crabtree, doing a performance no one can equal. She basically invented nearly every recurring female voice (at least adult) on the show and had impeccable comic sense too.

markburgle

The future-plotline was the last good thing they did (or Token/Tolein, whichever came last), I was expecting something smarter and more cutting from this Harry Megan ep but it was really basic. Streaming wars was too boring- I bailed

Mobbd

Quote from: idunnosomename on February 25, 2023, 11:56:48 PMMary Kay Bergman is also a big part of the early phase, she needs a lot more kudos for how much she put into establishing the female voices and in the case of Ms Crabtree, doing a performance no one can equal. She basically invented nearly every recurring female voice (at least adult) on the show and had impeccable comic sense too.

I always remember Principal Victoria saying "ooh what an exciting day!" after telling Wendy her grandmother has died. I assume that was Bergman? Very, very funny.

idunnosomename

#12
I thought the Worldwide Privacy Tour was fine. Obviously it was conceived as a way to make fun of Harry and Meghan as celebrities of the moment, but the main push of the story was more about how culture these days forces even kids into acting like celebrities and making themselves into little brands. The CumHammer (I thought that name was very funny and laughed everytime it came up but then I am an idiot) video Kyle was watching on his iPad reminded me of those scammy "become a YouTube star" tutorials.

Quote from: Mobbd on February 26, 2023, 06:55:23 PMI always remember Principal Victoria saying "ooh what an exciting day!" after telling Wendy her grandmother has died. I assume that was Bergman? Very, very funny.

yeah Principal Victoria was very funny when Bergman did her. The incredibly optimistic, very northern American (Wisconsin/Minnesota) accent. her character is really dulled later on. Eliza Schneider made a really good attempt at all of Bergman's characters 1999-2003 (except Kyle's mom who was taken over by Mona Marshall who basically does her and any other female Jewish/Noo Joisey voices), she tried to hardball Parker and Stone to keep the roles for a union contract, but they declined. Good for her. April Stewart is fine at the voices but I never find her funny. Despite Liane Cartman becoming more assertive recently having lots of potential.

Quote from: Led Souptin on February 19, 2023, 11:15:09 AMAlso what the heck is up with the sound mix in recent years? I get that they're producing it in 6 days or whatever it is at the moment but sometimes the music is so loud that it drowns out the dialogue. Can't be that hard to get that right.
I don't find any dialogue hard to hear but think I know where you're coming from in this. the head of sound design at South Park has always been Bruce Howell (husband of Jennifer Howell, who serves as a supervising producer at the studios and has always voiced Bebe). Back in the early series the sound design carried the extremely limited animation and it's something to appreciate on a rewatch of the early days.

There's some really good bespoke instrumentals in the background as well as the obvious repeated scene-establishers in the mid period. They do fall back on the same crowd-cheer sound library clip a lot then though, which I don't think is meant as a joke (unlike "rabble rabble rabble"). But still it's generally still a creative mix overall

But recently I wonder if they started using stuff made for the games (Stick of Truth, Fractured But Hole) for the more washy-movie-soundtracky stuff these days as the visuals (if not the animation) is on par with just about any cartoon. I wish they'd stop using that tinkly unresolved piano motif. diddle diddle deee....!! It's more straightforward manipulative score than creative.

Quote from: BritishHobo on February 19, 2023, 12:26:32 PMWhen they showed the cover of the prince's book, and the newsreader reading the title, just killed me.
also just have to agree with this. It's just the sort of thing Trey Parker is funny at. silly voices saying silly things. there's still a lot of classic Python vibes in South Park

JaDanketies

I did think the audio was dogshit on these last two episodes, but I watched them on my laptop and had a sinus infection so I assumed it was that.

Mobbd

Quote from: idunnosomename on February 26, 2023, 08:09:55 PMKyle's mom who was taken over by Mona Marshall who basically does her and any other female Jewish/Noo Joisey voices

"Kyle, stop being a bastard!"

I don't know who voiced that one, but there's all these incredibly small moments that stick in my memory from literally decades ago, creased me at the time and live on in my imagination. So good.

Quote from: idunnosomename on February 26, 2023, 08:09:55 PMIt's just the sort of thing Trey Parker is funny at. silly voices saying silly things. there's still a lot of classic Python vibes in South Park

Very much so. I can kinda do that voice. The one he uses for, for example, "here with a special report is a quadriplegic Swiss man on a pony." I deploy it sparingly. The origin of that voice (the timbre of it, not just the kind of things its says) I'm certain, is Python-era John Cleese.

Mobbd

Just watched Cupid Ye. Hmm. It's okay. Is he called "Cupid Ye" because of Kanye? If so, that's a bit weak.

I like that
Spoiler alert
Cartman's shoulder angel has agency if its own though. That's funny.
[close]

And I especially like how Cartman is
Spoiler alert
spreading hate under the guise of being "a good Christian".
[close]
It's very much of the moment but it's also the sort of thing Cartman has always done. The audacity that he could think he's the victim or doing anything other than evil. It's like in the movie how we hear the "golden ticket" refrain when Cartman learns about Tourette's Syndrome. As if he's been a poor Charlie Bucket up until now! Brilliant.

The final punchline is great too.

Mobbd

Spoiler alert
Harry and Meg's voices are very funny.

The way the talk show host welcomes them on is hilarious.

Also: "Hey! Hey you! What are you looking at?! Haven't you ever heard of privacy?!"

A small thing but I like how Cartman is being prissy at the school canteen table. He's acting like a parent at Friday night dinner. "Stan, are you going to say something or am I?"

Victim.
[close]

Great episode.

Mobbd

Almost forgot:

Spoiler alert
The Queen's dead body!
[close]

JesusAndYourBush

^ Oh yes, that made me howl.  And then Elton's song just after!

And he's called Cupid Ye because Cartman's cupid (established in some other episodes) is called Cupid Me.

Mobbd

Quote from: JesusAndYourBush on February 27, 2023, 03:34:28 PMAnd he's called Cupid Ye because Cartman's cupid (established in some other episodes) is called Cupid Me.

I still don't get it. How do we get from Me to Ye? What does that mean?

markburgle

Quote from: Mobbd on February 27, 2023, 05:30:13 PMI still don't get it. How do we get from Me to Ye? What does that mean?

That's a Kanye thing right? Probably originally short-for, and also became Yeezy and, uh y'know, whatevs

Mobbd

Quote from: markburgle on February 27, 2023, 05:37:49 PMThat's a Kanye thing right? Probably originally short-for, and also became Yeezy and, uh y'know, whatevs

Well, that's what I first thought. I guess it's a combination of those two things, Cupid Me and Kanye. The Cupid Me thing was the missing piece for me.

idunnosomename

#22
"Ye" is apparently his full legal name now (no surname or anything), and what he posted his Twitter racisms under.

The other Cartman Cupid appearances are Cartman Finds Love (S16:E7, 2012) and Tweek x Craig (S19:E6, 2015)

Spoiler alert
It's heavily implied the Cupid is Eric's make-believe hallucination, yet it still occasionally has independent agency beyond him (re: Hennnnnnifer Lopez/Mitch Conner, his toys Clyde Frog/Rumpertumskin/Polly Prissypants etc). In its first appearance it's basically just him being racist. Its second appearance is him doubting his heterosexuality
[close]

like a lot of things it's basically funny because it's an even higher-pitched Trey Parker saying "tee hee hee hee!!!" a lot. very Looney Tunes really

idunnosomename

Didn't really get the new one, "Japanese Toilet" (it was announced as "Japanese Toilets" but they seemed to have changed it to the singular before the air date)

Spoiler alert
Well, okay, there's an obvious allegory on the futility of taking on corporate America, and explicit ones to the Kennedys. But the apology straight to "camera" at the end and then getting all of "South Park" to apologise points at something specific.

It's surely to do with this legal case that's just launched between the representatives of HBO Max and Paramount, and the allegories in The Streaming Wars specials isn't it?

https://edition.cnn.com/2023/02/26/business/south-park-hbo-max-paramount-lawsuit/index.html

In The Streaming Wars they have Pi Pi's streaming service which (arguably) is specifically targeting Paramount Plus as being a giant corporate stream of piss. Presumably here the "Old Blue" toilet Randy goes back to at the end is Paramount again. Why else would the toilet be blue? It's undeniably Paramount's branding colour.
https://www.paramount.com/news/content-and-experiences/behind-the-paramount-brand-name-and-logo

I thought it was bogged (lol) down by all this rather cautious allegory and much less funny than the load of stuff about shitting that it should have been. I don't really want to have to work all this shit out tbh.

Also not to go into it too much but sound mix was noticeably bad again. Noticed Jimmy on the bench the second time, his voice noticeably went up in volume to be heard over the background music. Bits like Stan and Randy arguing shouldn't have had music. They're over-reaching on what you can do in a week regarding this I think
[close]

ShadowRaichu

I had a look at the episode and apparently

Spoiler alert
the weed farm is still going and that annoys me because it's just an overtired joke now.

[close]

idunnosomename

#25
this week's "Deep Learning" much better. funnier, anyway. Parker is clearly struggling to make some of his voices work, don't blame him for that though (he had a problem with Mr Mackey last season, now they're all dropping a bit. I guess he's trying to do them in new pitches)

Spoiler alert
anti-climactic ending, but we know what's to blame for that

[close]

oh also, although the Marshes are still living on Tegridy Farms, there's been no Towelie or "specials" so far this season

BritishHobo

Agreed on being a bit bewildered by the Japanese toilets episode but really enjoying the ChatGPT one.

JaDanketies

Great episode there but I do take a lot of credit for ChatGPT's work so it hit home for me

Consignia

I really liked the Japanese toilet episode. Felt more of a classic South Park episode vibe. Also, my mate's got a 日本のトイレ and his joy with it is reflected in Randy.

selectivememory

I thought the toilet one was ok, but I wasn't really bothered about whatever point they were trying to make; I just enjoyed the silliness of it.

ChatGPT one was great.