There is one thing that always draws me back to South Park and that is the unbridled authenticity of co-creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone.
Have I always agreed with their social/political commentary? Nope, but I don’t take it too seriously when I don’t because, after all, it’s South Park.
In our current world we approach controversy and skeptical news events from the perspective of: “How do we, as a community, feel about this?” Outrage plagues social media, and outrage over that outrage plagues our day-to-day conversations.
Our discourse has become vividly bombastic, and yet here is South Park doing what it has always done best and holding a mirror to our worldwide community’s inherit hypocrisy. This episode was one of their best. While American media eagerly shows us the crimes of villainous governments such as Russia, Syria and elsewhere, here is the Communist Party of China, our country’s owner, exploiting western media as we know it.
Much like lobbying in government, this influence is well-hidden and disguised as a normal thing. Rarely reported by our news stations in fear that local advertisers and interests in China will pull their content and restrict their profit. It’s a communist manipulation of capitalism that is prevalent in a world where many wars are waged in subtle, yet highly influential ways.
If you know me, I’ve been a huge critic of Disney in the past 10 years. Many corporations have delved closer to monopoly and it has restricted our entertainment. The Marvel films are not only theme parks (lol), but they are safe – South Park illustrates here why they are so safe.
All the money Disney lost by Christopher Robin being banned in China (over the most petty of reasons) obviously is noted and scares Disney. If something isn’t China friendly (the most populated country), then that’s a huge damage to profit margins.
Now with issues in eSports and the NBA, it’s clear that we have an issue with manipulation (we’ve always had this) in western media.
I’m still surprised Comedy Central allowed this episode through, but I’m glad they did – there is hope. While popular music, movies, and games copy/paste their safe content we’ve created a rouge black-market for independent entertainment. South Park is anything but independent, but Comedy Central knew what they had from the beginning – a group of passionate, creative, and vocal performers who watch the world’s most heinous events through the lens of parody.