Early day South Park really was the best. After a hilarious first season not bogged down by current news matters, Season 2 continues the silly yet clever adventures of the four kids. It’s hella good.
Season 2 starts with what the internet would call a troll. With the first season ending on a cliffhanger, we are greeted to an unrelated full-blown episode of the Canadian fart duo Terrance and Phillip. You can just imagine the outcry when this was first aired, but now it can be appreciated now it nestles itself at the start of the collection. Fart jokes might not be funny, but Saddam Hussein taking over Canada certainly is. Hey, relax guy!
From then on we get business as usual with the revelation on who Cartman’s father is, a surprise no one could have guessed, and the sub plots which go side by side with the main action are just as good as the main plot. In the season we see Counselor Mackey on drugs, the kids hiring a hooker to give their parents herpes, Charlie Manson having a wonderful Christmas, a man from 1996 thawed out after two years of being frozen and many more wonderful and bizarre concepts. The crazy plots are tightly written with excellent pacing, jokes and themes, showing these just aren’t randomly thrown in and hoping they stick.
Season 2 manages to maintain the quality set by the first and there aren’t really any episodes which can be considered less than decent. The flashback episode around midway may feel like a cop-out, but the strange romance between an Elvis alike and the school bus driver while the kids are left stranded in a leaning bus on a cliff, and the flashbacks randomly changing to something with ice cream, means it is actually a fun way to poke fun at the whole flashback episode shows like to have.
My personal favourite episode of the season is probably ‘Chicken Lover’. In this episode Officer Barbrady is on the hunt for a man making love to chickens, but can’t read the notes left behind. We see his great mission to learn how to read, while Cartman goes around as a deputy putting down his authority. Respect my authority! The season seems to be the one to bring in a lot of the classic catchphrases from the little fat boy.
Season shows that South Park has always been clever and not just a crude show of swearing and violence most people who haven’t watched it in a long while think. But it does have lots of that too. Sweeet.