Cartman, Butters and a Crack Whore in SOUTH PARK - Season 15 - "Crack Baby Athetic Association" | ©2011 Comedy Central

Cartman, Butters and a Crack Whore in SOUTH PARK - Season 15 - "Crack Baby Athetic Association" | ©2011 Comedy Central

Writer: Trey Parker
Director: Trey Parker
Network: Comedy Central, airs Wednesday nights
Original Telecast: May 25, 2011

I’m starting to feel really guilty for ripping into SOUTH PARK so much. So far, Season 15 has been wildly uneven and after last week’s comeback episode “T.M.I.”, this week’s “Crack Baby Athletic Association” sends the show right back into the crapper again.

After a brilliantly funny opening gag parodying those incredibly depressing Sarah McLachlan animal shelter commercials (substitute crack babies for animals), the episode never really comes together and then ends up becoming more about Slash as a surrogate Santa (more on that later).

When those crack baby commercials start appearing in between an episode of Terrence and Phillip, Kyle feels guilty and heads down to the hospital to volunteer and play with some of the crack babies. When he arrives though, he sees Cartman leaving.

Realizing Cartman is up to something, he discovers that Cartman has a new business/scam. He’s filming crack babies playing crack baby basketball (essentially two crack babies fighting over a small piece of crack). Cartman is making money off these videos on the internet and he needs a Jewish accountant. Kyle, surprisingly gets suckered into this scam and slowly finds his soul stripped away as Cartman’s influence sends him into denial about his wrong-headed involvement in this.

Meanwhile, Cartman demands that his lackeys find Slash (of Guns ‘N’ Roses) who seems to be everywhere lately – Slash even performed at his birthday party. What they discover though is that Slash is fictitious person and the reason he seems to be everywhere at once is because one of their parents dresses up as him.

It’s a total Santa parable that would have seemed funny in the 1980s at the height of G’N’R fame, but the joke just isn’t that funny. It ends up being a gag that goes on too long and detracts from what should have been a the funnier A story of the crack babies.

There are a few random jokes and lines that really worked for me though. I loved Sarah McLachlan saying, “Hi, I’m Sarah McLachlan and I was famous for three months.”

The idea of crack baby basketball is funny, but the pay-off, two babies pushing a piece of crack around, isn’t as funny as what you can conjure up in your head.

There’s also a couple of funny jabs at Denny’s for their recent bacon celebration items – aka Baconalia.

Random lines of dialogue and potentially funny ideas though, don’t make up for the episode not being cohesive and consistently funny throughout. This feels like to two half-written episodes that didn’t quite blend together. I almost wanted the crack baby basketball to slowly accelerate into something more outlandish and ridiculous. The pay-off of Cartman and his business getting screwed by EA Games, the same way he screwed over the crack babies and their parents, just isn’t strong enough of a pay-off.

The other thing that’s becoming painfully obvious, creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone seem to be in their “doing it for themselves” phase. They’ve always done what they’ve wanted to do and pushed the boundaries of bad taste in the name of comedy. Yet, the last three episodes almost feel like you’re hanging out with people who have all these inside jokes they find hilarious, yet no one else gets it or sees the humor in it (the Slash thing being the major case in point).

Like I said from the outset, I feel bad for criticizing SOUTH PARK, because I love it death and look forward to it each week – even when it doesn’t work. Yet, I also expect it live up to at least some of its previous standards of quality. The pattern Parker and Stone use to create the episodes (one week from the time of inception to completion) seems to finally be catching up to them. They’re not giving themselves enough to time to think things through and they’re definitely not giving themselves enough time to connect-the-dots before airdate.

“Crack Baby Athletic Association” is a missed opportunity – a very funny idea in search of an actual story. I know I’m going to take heat for ripping on this so hard, but come on, even last season’s worst episode is still leagues better than “Crack Baby Athletic Association.”

AGREE? DISAGREE? Let your voice be heard – COMMENT BELOW!

Click on link for: SOUTH PARK – “You’re Getting Old” review

Click on link for SOUTH PARK – “City Sushi” review

Click on link for SOUTH PARK – “T.M.I” review

Click on link for SOUTH PARK – “Royal Pudding review

Click on link for SOUTH PARK – “Funnybot” review

Click on link for SOUTH PARK – “HUMANCENTiPAD” review

CLICK HERE for AX’s  Blu-ray review of SOUTH PARK: THE COMPLETE FOURTEENTH SEASON

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Comments:

  1. I agree that my favorite show SP is over the hill but you totally missed the point of that episode which was bashing college athletics for making money of their student atheletes. If you miss the main joke than yes, this episode seems half written. They still have some good points to make but the formula is stale. Also, I dont know why many fans liked TMI but did not like Funnybot. Oh well. BTW Book of Mormon was incredible!!!!!

    coleshere
  2. Matt and Trey need to re-evaluate the way they create their episodes. Clearly they don’t have the time to be creative enough to make funny episode in a week anymore. South Park is my favorite show of all time, but I feel like I’m watching a close friend slowly die every time I see an episode like this.

    And coleshere, Funnybot was f***ing awful.

    Clayton Bigsby
    • Couldn’t have said it better myself. I get depressed when I watch the new episodes.

      brandy shea
  3. All I can say about this episode is WOW! It was pretty funny, well, it was extremely funny! I’ve been watching ‘South Park’ since it debuted a few years ago and each year, it just gets better and better. Of course, my favorite character is Cartman because he keeps me extremely entertained the entire show. Now, I will never miss an episode because I can watch it on my phone using the DISH Remote Access app with DISH Network. The app works with the Sling Technology so I can watch live and pre-recorded shows and I don’t even have to be at home. The app is compatible with Apple and Android Mobile Devices and is free to download from the App Store and Android Market. I know I love it and now that I work at DISH Network, I’m always recommending that people check it out and experience a value unseen by any other provider!

    *Danielle

    Danielle
  4. this episode was hilarious, what are you talking about!!!? the only fault was the ending didnt quite come together well, but all the way before the last 2 minutes was great… talk about picky- go watch family guy losers

    Jake
  5. dude, you’re honestly an idiot. It was a paradoy of the NCAA. Idiot. Open your brain.

    locs
  6. I’m at a loss for words for this review. This was a solid episode, not a classic, but solid. How can you think the Slash jokes are simply inside jokes. Do you live under a rock? How would it have been funnier if it were in the 80s during the height of Guns ‘N’ Roses’ fame? Don’t you think that would defeat the purpose? I think you missed the point completely. It seems that every single charity event of the past few years has featured Slash. That’s obviously where the Santa Claus reference comes from.

    BMF
  7. Totally agree with this review. I’ve been wondering whether I’m the only one who’s not impressed with this season so far. I’ve seen every single episode of South Park and the last three have probably been among the worst ever. The other two weren’t brilliant either. They just seem lazy and uninspired. Not the usual clever SP. I’m sure Matt and Trey will get their stride back.

    Jimmy RSX
  8. I totally agree with this comment
    HumancentiPad was a blow out and it just makes all the other episodes feel more sluggish an as you said unsparing and lazy

    Christian
  9. Yep, The reviewer isn’t getting it at all..
    Parker and Stone wanted to highlight the NCAA and their wrong doings..metaphorically, the crack in the episode represents a college education. With Cartman going to the university about tips on the slave trade, how could the point of the show go over the reviewers head? He’s looking for d**k and fart jokes to keep him entertained. There is no show on t.v. that tackles any issue that the creators have with society like south park.
    Parker and Stone deserve the Nobel prize for kickass.
    WORD.

    St.Alphon
  10. Given that the NCAA wasn’t even mentioned in this review tells me the author missed the whole point of this episode. The sad thing is this parody wasn’t even subtle as Cartman visits the univ of Colorado to ask how the avoid paying their “slaves” . That scene was hilarious. also, BMF nailed the true meaning behind the slash jokes, and it wouldn’t have been funny at all in the 80’s

    Nick
  11. I thought this was quite a good episode. They managed to rip on a lot of things and people they haven’t had a chance to. I think this episode was more comic relief, though, than any other. From Baconalia to Vunter Slausch, there were so many good jokes that never would have fit in other episodes. Matt and Trey deserve to have some comic relief room – there’s so many people out there criticizing the show, and this is their way of saying, “Hey! t(-.-t) haterz!”

    Of course, SP is the best show EVER. My friends and I are going as the characters (I’m going, predictibally, as Kyle) for Halloween.

    I’m eagerly awaiting the second half of season 15!!!

    Kyle

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