Tuesday, November 4, 2008

What Election's Have Become

The week before the election in 2004, Trey Parker and Matt Stone, the creators of South Park, offered their usual crude, twisted commentary on whatever the current events may be. While most people scoff and look the other way at South Park, I am forever amazed at their ability to make a very intelligent statement (albeit completely offensive) about something that might have just occurred days before their episode airs. Even though I frequently say it about many episodes, the election episode was/is a classic. Here's the gist:

(please don't be offended)
The mascot for South Park Elementary had long been the Cows. The people of PETA step in and demand that they change their mascot. The school decides to take nominations for what the new mascot will be. As nominations come in, the boys decide to nominate something completely ridiculous as a joke. Dissent begins amongst the boys as to what it should be. Eric wants the mascot to be a Turd Sandwich, while Kyle thinks a Giant Douche is much funnier (thus begins the offending). The school holds an election to help settle the division in the school. At the center of it all, is Stan, who is unsure why he should even vote/participate in such a frivolous exercise. When he asks his parents why it's important to vote, they simply fight over which candidate is better. Soon Puff Daddy arrives in town to enforce his Vote or Die campaign, literally. Stan is hunted by Diddy and his entourage getting shot at, b/c he refuses to vote. The two campaigns use scare tactics and bribes to sway students to their cause ("Would your vote be swayed with perhaps a.....butterscotch candy? Or perhaps..................another butterscotch candy?")
A great moment occurs when Kyle finally convinces Stan of the importance of voting, and Stan decides to vote. When Kyle sees Stan fill out his ballot and mark Turd Sandwich (not the candidate Kyle supports) - HE GOES BALLISTIC!

Kyle - Wait, what are you doing?
Stan - I'm voting.
Kyle - But you wrote down Turd Sandwich
Stan - Yeah, I know.
Kyle - Dude, you're supposed to mark Giant Douche.
Stan - I thought I was supposed to make my own decision?
Kyle - Yeah, but not if your decision is for Turd Sandwich! What the hell is wrong with you!
Stan - You didn't want me to vote! You wanted me to vote for your guy!

Stan then tears up his ballot. So often the "get out the vote" cry is the "get out and vote - BUT ONLY FOR MY GUY". Stan is then banished from the town for failing to vote. An extremely sick sequence takes place for the next 5-10 min about Stan going to live on the PETA ranch that I won't get into. As Stan decides to return to South Park to vote. They all ask, "did you realize the importance of voting?". He says, "I realized that I better get used to voting for either a douche or a turd sandwich, b/c it's likely the only choice I'll have."

It is episode 8 of Season 8 or episode 119. You can watch it at SouthParkstudios.com for free (along with all the episodes).

So, get out and vote today for a douche or a turd, b/c in today's world you have to be a douche or a turd to get that far in politics.

"and my I remind you that a vote for Turd Sandwich is a vote for change"
- Eric Cartman