Why ‘South Park’ is the funniest, smartest show on television

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Max Yera staff writer

Well into its 19th season, “South Park” has obtained the reputation of being a satirical, rather crass cartoon series that often tests the boundaries of irreverence. The style has undoubtedly brought the television series massive success and thus a review of the show once again proclaiming its excellence seems rather ridiculous. Nevertheless, the reputation among many regarding the sheer vulgarity of “South Park”is what makes this so necessary. “South Park” is not merely vulgar. The show is irreverent yes, but vulgarity is often synonymous with stupidity and as “South Park”has proven to many of its fans over the years, and particularly to me since the dawn of its nineteenth season, “South Park” is far more than just funny, it’s remarkably intelligent.

In this season, “South Park”has refocused its satire on a new group in particular: the politically correct. With a new principal that essentially embodies a college student in a fraternity, “South Park” has managed to poke fun at the overly sensitive society that perhaps creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone have had to deal with far too often over the course of its previous 18 seasons.

This senseless need to deal with what is politically correct has thus been embodied throughout several, if not every episode, this season. For example, in the season premiere “Stunning and Brave”, Kyle is shamed for believing that Caitlyn Jenner is not as heroic as the politically correct proclaim. It then becomes rather evident that aside from just Kyle, others agree with Kyle’s stance, who claims that he should not be fascinated by Caitlyn Jenner merely because she is now a woman if he wasn’t fond of Bruce Jenner prior to the transition. The others are afraid to speak up regarding their argument, as they fear the taunting and overly heated arguments of the politically correct. In the end, Kyle, having been harassed as a backwards thinking bigot, must succumb to the majority and take the stance of the politically correct.

Whether you believe Caitlyn Jenner is a hero or not is besides the point. The point is that Stone and Parker managed to demonstrate how being PC can often drive one to be fearful of their own arguments against the majority, against what they believe is simply not common sense.

This is not to say that political correctness is the worst threat to society, but “South Park’s” ability to blatantly demonstrate its flaws through comedy proves that Parker and Stone’s intentions are not merely to offend, but rather to enlighten.

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