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South Park (S8)
DVD disk
09.05.2006 By: Quigles
South Park (S8) order
Director:
Trey Parker

Actors:
Trey Parker
Matt Stone
Isaac Hayes

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
The long-running SOUTH PARK series continues with yet another outrageous season of attempts to piss off as many people as possible. So enjoy, as the four foul-mouthed youngsters have even more adventures in their not-so-quiet little mountain town.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
While seasons 9 and 10 have noticeably dropped in quality somewhat, everything from seasons 3 onward through season 8 represents a time where SOUTH PARK was at its very best, and all was well in the world... at least in terms of quality television. However, there's something particularly special about season 8 - it's the only season that forms a perfect balance of creative storylines, clever movie cliché parodying, current events, and political issues (whereas the most recent seasons have tended to focus more on the latter two categories, sans the brilliantly twisted stories).

It's all subjective of course, but I find SOUTH PARK plays best when it showcases the boys just being boys (as shown perfectly with GOOD TIMES WITH WEAPONS, AWESOME-O, and QUEST FOR RATINGS). It tends to be these episodes that are not only funniest, but also the most crowd-pleasing since they don't rely so much on controversial political issues (which tend to split audiences half and half). However, me being more of a non-Republican than I am a Democrat, I'm always eager to see both sides get a solid thrashing. In other words, I'm game either way.

SOUTH PARK has always been a relatively preachy show, but ever since it started dealing with current events on a normal basis, it has just gotten so much more so. While this may piss off the general viewer, I personally love listening to Trey Parker and Matt Stone express their (in my opinion oftentimes accurate) political viewpoints through the voice of little Stan at the end of each episode. This aspect of the show is what raises it above just being a standard sophomoric piece of fun trash, because each episode actually has something interesting to say. Whether it's making a point concerning how dumb people can be over something like Janet Jackson showing her nipple on TV (referenced at the end of GOOD TIMES WITH WEAPONS), or dealing with Michael Jackson's bizarre living choices (as shown in THE JEFFERSONS), SOUTH PARK never runs out of interesting things to poke fun at. It kind of makes you think, if only for a little while (approximately until Cartman makes another Anti-Semitic comment toward Kyle... so, about 3 seconds).


DISC 1

Good Times with Weapons
"Mel Gibson was right, Kyle. Right now the Jew in you is screaming "No! Those cost money! Get your money back!" You know this to be true. Go ahead. Prove Mel Gibson wrong, Kyle. Do it!" - Cartman

This episode, which involves the boys getting their hands on martial arts weaponry, has got to be one of my favorites of all-time. Not only is it filled with tons of downright hilarious moments, it also features an awesome new animated style (which plays like a combination of classic SOUTH PARK animation and Japanese anime).


Up the Down Steroid
"Dude, I can't believe they exploit handicapped people like this. I mean, making them compete against each other just for our amusement." - Cartman

This episode represents what THE RINGER should've and could've been - a shockingly hilarious portrayal of what would happen if somebody tried to fix the Special Olympics. It may be twisted, outrageous, and offensive, but that's why I love it. Unlike the people behind THE RINGER, Trey Parker and Matt Stone don't pussy out.


The Passion of the Jew
"Look, this isn't about the eighteen dollars ticket money anymore - it's about being able to hold bad filmmakers responsible. This is just like when we got our money back for BASEketball." - Stan

SOUTH PARK's interpretation of Mel Gibson may be riotous, but Cartman in Hitler-mode has it beat. If you, like me, found THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST to be nothing more than two hours of pure torture (note the double entendre), then this episode will have you applauding.


You Got F*cked in the Ass
"Look, nobody likes having to rise to a challenge. But competing against other people and getting in their faces saying "Haha! I'm better than you!" is part of life. And someday you're gonna have to stop running from what happened and start dealing with it. Otherwise, you might as well move to France with all the other pussies." - Stan

I know many people who hate this episode, arguing that YOU GOT SERVED doesn't deserve SOUTH PARK's time. I disagree. If there were any movie more deserving of being mocked than this one, I'd love to see it (well, actually, I probably wouldn't). Besides, the real highlight of this episode deals more with poking fun at clichés regarding all "showdown" movies. I loved every second of it.


AWESOM-O
"Oh, well, I'm not sure. Eric is still supposed to be grounded for trying to exterminate the Jews two weeks ago." - Cartman's Mom

Yet another genius episode, this time focusing centrally on Butters and Cartman - the show's best two characters. Cartman tricks Butters into thinking he's a robot, one with whom he should share all his secrets with... but then it backfires on him. Cartman catches wind of a certain embarrassing video Butters has of him, and he's determined to do anything to get it back. Non-stop hilarity ensues.



DISC 2

The Jeffersons
"Your name is Blanket. Right. Well, Blanket, I'm Howdy Doody, and these are my friends Timsy, Winky, and Nod. Unfortunately, we have to be off to the Land of Booger Trees, so we'll be leaving now." - Cartman

Mocking Michael Jackson is nothing new, to be sure, but that doesn't make it any less funny. If the idea of Cartman nearly locking lips with the "Thriller"-singing weirdo makes you laugh, you'll probably enjoy this episode as much as I did. Especially funny is the way the police can't help but frame all the rich black people they come across.


Goobacks
"THEY TOOK ARR JOBS!" - Angry Mob

Many people consider this to be the episode where SOUTH PARK finally jumped the shark, leading to a series of unfunny episode upon unfunny episode. And while this particular episode may not be any great shakes, that comment is still completely ridiculous (the show may not be as awesome as it once was, but it's still better than most of the crap on TV). The story here basically deals with the immigration issue, except instead of people coming in from other countries it involves people coming from the future. This should lead to non-stop hilarity, but instead, the jokes are few and far between. Thankfully, the hilarious final third of the episode almost saves it entirely.


Douche and Turd
"...Uh, you know, uh, my opponent wouldn't even know the answer to that question. If you ask him the same question, he would not answer it. He would stand around and just babble on and on about nothing until he was finally saved by the buzzer sound..." - Turd Sandwich Candidate

This episode has some funny moments, and also has a good point to make, but it says all that needs to be said within the first ten minutes. After that, the joke gets pretty tiring. Luckily, some great humor involving PETA picks up the pace a bit, rounding out the episode to be fairly decent.


Something Wall-Mart This Way Comes
"I didn't say that! I love Wall-Mart! With all its... fantastic bargains and one-stop shopping, who can't love it, right?... And, uh, Wall-Mart takes the hassle out of shopping and, and makes it both affordable and fun. Ah, and Wall-Mart really gives back to the community! Us people are certainly happy to have a store like Wall-Mart, aren't we?" - Manager of Wall-Mart

I loved this episode the first time I saw it (especially the "shitting as you die" running gag), but after another viewing it feels a tad weak. It's not terrible by any means, but it just doesn't pack the punch that the other episode's have. Still, the jokes work pretty well, and the way the store is represented as being an evil demon definitely kicks things up a notch.


Pre-School
"From the test results, it would appear your child was tortured by a bully. He received a massive snuggie, his underwear pulled up so high it nearly killed him. He also received two Indian sunburns on his forearms, a charlie horse on the thigh, and a second-degree titty twister. And from the damage to his head area, it appears he was also given a swirly, a colossal one. It also appears like he received a noogie, and, a Polish bike ride." - Dr. Doctor

Anybody interested in seeing what Cartman, Stan, Kyle, and Kenny were like during their earlier years should be pleased by this episode, as it shows just that. Also shown is the biggest bully to ever get released from juvenile hall, and he's out for revenge. You see, back in pre-school, he got framed for a crime he didn't commit (nothing to big, just horribly disfiguring the teacher by lighting her on fire). Well, now he's back, and he has plans to set things straight. This may not be the funniest episode, but it does have plenty of great moments (Cartman's boobs, anyone?).



DISC 3

Quest for Ratings
"Eric, the outfits are even skimpier than before leaving very little to the imagination. No doubt that if I were a little older, I would be aroused." - Stan (in newscaster-mode)

Ah, yet another one of my favorite episodes. This time, the boys have their own news show, but unfortunately, Craig's show (Animals Close-Up With A Wide Angle Lens) is crushing them in the ratings. Pushing their ethical stance aside ("We're in fourth grade. We don't even know what ethical means."), they decide to amp up their show by whatever means necessary. Cue SEXY ACTION NEWS! (...truth not included.)


Stupid Spoiled Whore Video Playset
"Butters, never get in a car with a stranger... unless it's a limousine!" - Chris (Butters' dad)

The title for this episode is perfect, as the first three words almost immediately put the image of Paris Hilton in your head. It made me so happy to see the stupid b*tch get her due here, and the way they involved Butters in the story just made things that much more awesome. Although, my two favorite things concerning this episode have gotta be Mr. Slave's method of winning the whore-off against Paris Hilton, as well as the reappearance of the Frog King (as seen in the Lemmiwinks episode). See if you can put the two together.


Cartman's Incredible Gift
"Stand back, mother! We're having a telekinetic battle of minds!" - Cartman

Here's another episode that got a bad reception from the fans. I don't understand why, though, as I laughed pretty much non-stop during it. Basically, Cartman does something stupid, winds up in the hospital, and a bunch of stupid detectives think he's gained psychic abilities. This lends itself to some pretty hilarious references regarding THE DEAD ZONE, RED DRAGON, THE X-FILES, and SILENCE OF THE LAMBS.


Woodland Critter Christmas
""Where can they learn that?" the boy said with a frown. "I know! The abortion clinic, just outside of town." So he picked up the cubs and down the mountain he stormed. And took them to where abortions are performed." - Narrator

Wow. This is one f*cked up episode. Hilariously f*cked up, but f*cked up none-the-less. If you don't find the idea of a bunch cute little animals preparing for the birth of the Antichrist funny, then this episode will probably test your patience. I, on the other hand, find the idea to be as hilarious as they come, so obviously I loved it. It's pretty much a stock Christmas Special combined with satanic rituals, blood orgies, and animals getting their brains blown out. Does it get any better?

THE EXTRAS
Ahhh, another season of South Park, another collection of those kick-ass "commentary-mini's" on every episode. Sure, more special features would be very welcome, but I've given up by this point. Now I just take what I can get, and these brief tracks deliver more than enough to keep me satisfied.

Mini-Commentaries (with Trey Parker and Matt Stone): These guys are hilarious... which is why it annoys me that they don't like doing audio commentaries. SOUTH PARK: BLU? No commentary. TEAM AMERICA? No commentary. ORGAZMO? No com- oh wait; they did do a commentary. But it was a drunken one. And it was lame. So there. ...Anywho, the point is, that, fortunately for us, they've finally settled into something that works - a brief 3 to 5 minute commentary track on each episode. This is great because, once you've finished watching all episodes on a single disc, you can just hop from episode to episode listening to their comments. Switch disc, rinse, repeat, and enjoy.

Also included are several Comedy Central Quickies (which are brief clips from random television shows) and a bunch of DVD Previews.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
Season 8 of SOUTH PARK may not be its all-time best, but it comes pretty close. It's got everything you could ever want in a TV show, including lampoons of famous celebrities (Paris Hilton, Mel Gibson, Michael Jackson), movies (THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST, YOU GOT SERVED), political issues (illegal immigration, presidential elections, drug use, nudity), and tons more. It may be sophomoric, perverted, and downright wrong at times, but it's also one of the best damn television shows to ever hit DVD. For all you fans out there, season 8 is a must-own!
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