The Randy Episode: South Park Recap
Published: Tuesday, October 15, 2013
Updated: Tuesday, October 15, 2013 22:10
It was a Randy Episode. Those always do well with the fan-base and it delivered.
For those who don’t know what a “Randy Episode” is, it entails Stan Marsh’s father, Randy, being a complete child and/or a caricature of adult ignorance.
The show actually leads in with a statement directed toward the status of the Syrian refugees, though (thankfully) it took a turn in a more domestic issue.
Honestly, if South Park really pulled a Syria episode, right after the NSA episode that headlined the season last week, it would really show that the creators have taken a direction toward being “another politic show” that attacks everything the government does.
The issue now at hand was “informative crime porn” involving spousal cheating and murder, which the adults were watching. Kids were sick of their parents watching it, fearing that one day it would really convince them to want to kill each other, and tried to find a way to block it.
This is an obvious satire of something that happens across the entire country, parents complaining that South Park should not be watched by their children and prevent it with “parental controls”.
The password for parental controls involved having some experience with the popular computer game, Minecraft.
While there were plenty of graphics from the game displayed on characters screens, there were not as many in-game scenes like there were in the World of Warcraft episode which was a bit disappointing.
Aside from Randy’s antics with Minecraft, which holds the answer to the children’s parental controls over their “informative news porn” shows, the most well put together part of the episode were the interactions with the cable company which was all too accurate.
Students that live off-campus as well as faculty know the pain and suffering that comes with dealing with the cable company. The points which South Park made clear were the obnoxious windows of times to be home for the cable guy to unplug something and plug something else in.
While it was funny to watch the interactions between Randy and the Cable Company in his attempt to restore informative murder porn and consequently his sex life, the dialogue was very blatant.
The writers might as well have just come out and said “Here’s the things that suck about the cable company. Here’s two guys rubbing each other’s nipples so that parents won’t want their kids to watch our show even more.”
The comedy was hardly subtle, which has been a trend for South Park lately. The show used to be ‘smarter’ and asked the audience to pay attention to the themes of the show rather than serve jokes in plain speech.
To be clear, jokes in plain speech is necessary to the success of a comedy, but the series has moved farther and farther away from intelligent underlying messages, where at the end of the episode Kyle has a long dialogue explaining anything you might have missed followed by a simple concurring “Yeah” from Stan.
The one defining feature of South Park that has stood the test of time well is the role-reversal of kids and their parents. While the parents are actually the ones who have control of most situations, they are generally in complete ignorance of what actually is happening and what needs to be done.
This past week’s episode was a prime example of this style. Even though the parents were the ones being controlled by their kids, who are smart enough to figure out how to use parental controls, no one knows how to beat the cable company who plays the biggest troll in the episode.
That is just the point, there is no winning against the cable company, and there is no way to stop people from watching what they want to watch, especially in the age of the internet.
This could be one reason why South Park created southparkstudios.com. They figure that people are going to be able to watch their work somewhere on the internet for free, so why not provide it themselves and stop the conflict?
The episode was good, and just good. As with all South Park episodes it can hold on by the saving grace of the “little moments” often brought on by Randy or Cartman.