Anyone who’s spent any time on the internet has come in contact with a troll. You know, the person who is an off-topic prick in the comment section because it’s anonymous and they can. Trolling has become such a staple of the internet and pop-culture, it was only a matter of time before South Park took a stab at the topic. Well, this season looks to be the time.
The second episode of South Park’s twentieth season picks up right where first one left off. The girls of the Colorado town continue to be victims of “skankhun42”, who we now know is Gerald Broflovski, and his relentless trolling. Gerald has let his mark on everything from crude and ruthless comments on Instagram to photoshopping dicks into people’s mouths on Facebook. But we still don’t know why.
The devastation created by Gerald forced many to take drastic measures such as quit twitter for good, or in the case of a Danish website for women with breast cancer, temporarily shut down.
The boys still believe Cartman is behind all of this, and with severe retaliation from the girls looming, they decide to silence him for good. Stan, Kyle, Butters, and others lure Cartman into the woods and smash his phone, computer, and tablet, hoping it will end the reign of “skanhunt42”, but that night he strikes again. This forces the girls to take action and breakup with every boy at South Park Elementary, and subsequently forcing them into depression.
Sounds like a light hearted episode doesn’t it?
Unlike the previous episode, this one actually had some pretty funny moments. My favorite in particular was the early montage of Gerald trolling the internet accompanied by a glass of wine and the music of Boston. The image of a middle-aged man trolling people online with the deep passion of an artist had me in stitches.
Similarly, when the boys were leading Cartman out to the woods they had the demeanor of people who were truly going to “silence” him for good. This whole scene was great because we knew they weren’t actually going to kill him, so it left the audience wondering what could be just as bad.
In general, however, South Park continues with its overdone pop culture references and lazy writing. Recently it seems like Matt and Trey have lost their creativity and are taking the easy route with season long story arcs and constant current event themes. I also don’t like how each episode seems to abruptly end. It’s not even that they are leaving us with a cliffhanger, they just stop, getting the audience no closer. For example, tonight’s episode just ended after a montage of the girls breaking up with all their boyfriends. It’s like telling the buildup of a joke but leaving out the punchline which was very unsatisfying.
- Where’s Kenny? He’s rarely been seen so far this season and wasn’t even part of the group that smashed Cartman’s stuff. Out of everyone, you would think Kenny would love doing that the most.
- R.I.P Stendy. I don’t think there was a couple out there who showed us what true love was better that Stan and Wendy.
- Butters may be one of modern days’ best philosophers. Tonight he gave us the thought provoking line, “That’s how the world works now. You get blamed for the group you belong to, even if you didn’t do nothing.” Truer words have never been spoken Butters.
Overall, this episode was marginally better than the last, but South Park continues to show its obvious shortcomings. It certainly isn’t what it used to be.