Goin' Down to South Park 10.03.07: La Petit Tourette
Posted by Jerome Cusson on 10.04.2007
Cartman gets tourettes...do I need to say more?
The problem with South Park is its’ hit-and-miss nature. This episode is proof positive of that. While the first half of the show suffered because of a one-note joke, the second half showed why this series continues to remain one of the best on television.
The first half deals with Cartman learning about tourette’s syndrome and deciding to take advantage of the situation presented to him. He notices a child in a kids’ toy store swearing and wonder why everyone feels so sorry for him. Cartman learns about the disease and gets an idea, an idea so brilliant it causes him to sing. The song is a rehash of the “The Golden Ticket” from Willy Wonka.
A visit to the doctor’s office leads Cartman to be diagnosed with tourettes. The actual disease leads people to not be able to control what they say. The next day Cartman begins randomly swearing and being his usual anti-Semitic self. Kyle and Butters wonder why Cartman is allowed to swear so liberally. Principal Victoria and Mr. Mackey seem to ignore all the horrific things Cartman is saying, until he makes it clear that he’s got tourettes.
Kyle automatically knows Cartman is faking the disease because he’s done this about a million time before. During class, Mr. Garrison becomes so frustrated that he goes to complain about Cartman to Principal Victoria. A man with actual tourettes talks to Mr. Garrison about the disease and this is where the joke begins to wear thin. His random shouting of “piss” and “ass gets very annoying after about a minute.
Kyle complains and of course is accused of being intolerant because he won’t accept the fact that Cartman has the disease. He goes into therapy and this is the worst scene on the show. All the kids have little tics that get annoying. Between that and the counselor also shouting his spiel, we’re rapidly going downhill. Kyle decides to apologize to the class and to Cartman. When Cartman sees Mr. and Mrs. Broflowski, he shouts “big-nosed kike.” A fine way to end the first act.
Now here’s where it gets fun. Chris Hansen, the infamous broadcast journalist from NBC’s “To Catch a Predator,” announces a live network special with Cartman. Cartman’s letter even includes tourettes in written form as he calls Hansen a “donkey boner.” Bet the pedophiles are thinking that too. Cartman and Kyle talk about what’s actually going to happen. Eric wants to swear and once again be his usual charming self on the show. Both are drinking scotch… no wait, apple juice.
At a ceremony where Cartman is honored for his disease, he begins shouting things he’s not controlling. They include, “I wet my bed last night” and “I touched my cousin’s wee-wee.” When Cartman goes to the bathroom, Butters has his pants down at a urinal in a laugh-out-loud moment.
After some consoling, Cartman talks to Chris Hansen and says he won’t do the show. Hansen sits the little bastard down like he did on that horrible special. As a journalism major, Chris Hansen’s little special really bugged the piss out of me so him getting ripped a new one here is A-okay with me. On the night of the show, Cartman actually prays to God. Little does he know that Kyle and one of the kids with tourettes are plotting to insure this special doesn’t happen.
A man who is clearly a pedophile hits on the young tourette’s boy and goes inside to the studio. As soon as he goes in, he shoots himself. Other men go in and do the same. Well folks, South Park has just made suicide funny. Especially the guy who said “Oh my God, it’s Dateline.” Kyle actually won! Too bad this is what Cartman wanted this to happen along. His prayers were actually answered. At the end, Kyle and the tourette’s kid shout “Oh shit!”
The 411: A solid hit-and-miss episode that had a very good twist toward the middle that made things very interesting. I was expecting more, but it was still very enjoyable.