A South Park pandemic episode is headed to Comedy Central later this month. The hit series from creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone will be airing a special hour-long episode that will lampoon various aspects of pandemic life.
Watch the trailer for the special South Park pandemic episode right here:
The South Park pandemic special will feature Randy Marsh setting up a sale for his weed farm, Tegridy Farms, as well as focusing on how the kids have to return to school. Of course, Eric Cartman wants to do whatever he can to avoid ever having to go back to school.
Normally, South Park begins airing its full season in September but it looks like the COVID-19 pandemic hit the animation crew of the show as well. It is leading to the show’s very first hour-long episode and it will be interesting to see how much buzz and interest this particular stunt generates.
South Park is often considered the show that launched Comedy Central as a big player in the cable landscape. Unfortunately, the channel has declined in popularity over the past decade. Even its flagship show struggled to average 1 million viewers per episode in its last season. Granted, most viewers likely watch the show on other streaming platforms but it is still a symbol of the show’s decline in popularity.
And to be frank, South Park has also declined in quality. Randy Marsh has become one of the show’s most annoying characters ever since the establishment of the Tegridy Farms storyline. Plus, the social commentary of the show is not nearly as biting or effective as it was during the show’s heyday. Parker and Stone’s feelings on the pandemic will be interesting to see, but there is a low likelihood that it will be nearly as funny as the best moments from the show’s storied history.
While the South Park pandemic special is a neat stunt, it also feels just like that: a stunt. The show has struggled over the last four or five years and hasn’t been able to find a narrative throughline that has really worked. Parker and Stone obviously got tired of the more episodic structure of the show, and the creators decided to add more and more serialized elements as the show has progressed.
Most of those elements have not been great. The show greatly fumbled the ball by having Mr. Garrison become a Trump stand-in – something the creators never expected to happen – and the show has lost its once razor-sharp edge. The idea of Parker and Stone tackling the pandemic sounds like it could be filled with potential pratfalls.
Still, a South Park pandemic special that runs for an entire hour does sound intriguing. Will it end up being one of the more popular episodes in the show’s recent history? Or could it fall flat on its face and be a big embarrassment for the series? We won’t know until after the special South Park pandemic episode premieres on September 30 on Comedy Central.