Blu-Ray Review – South Park (Season 19)

One of the things about South Park that was a mainstay since it’s inception has been that of its ability to be both timely and funny. Eschewing serialized story-telling for a work week that requires a show to essentially be completed in a week period, the first 18 seasons of South Park were designed on the fly. For the show’s 19th season Matt Stone and Trey Parker eschewed that style for a long form, serialized story-telling manner for the first time in the show’s legendary history.

It’s amazing to think an entire generation has essentially come and went without knowing a world that didn’t have The Simpsons in it. For the incoming college freshman, one can add this show to that mix and this season Parker & Stone decided to spend it lampooning the incoming PC culture that has become a part of modern American culture that has originated on the modern college campus en masse.

It all starts with the inclusion of PC Principal (Parker), new to South Park Elementary and brought in to bring some political correctness to the oft-incorrect city and school. What follows is a descent into PC Hell as he brings in a fraternity of PC, which Randy Marsh joins, as South Park doesn’t just dabble in modern PC culture. It fully drowns in the waters of political correctness as the town tries to lure a Whole Foods, among other things, into the city.

It’s an incredibly interesting proposition for Parker & Stone, to trade up their haphazard production style into a more traditional one, as the two took their usual style and traded for a long form story-telling manner. It evens out a lot of the inconsistency that makes up a season of South Park season; making an episode a week in their traditional manner led to a lot of incredible highs but also a lot of sometimes painfully unfunny moments as well.

Having a long form plan makes it much more interesting because Parker & Stone now have to focus on one cohesive story line as opposed to finding out what they can do to make fun of something that’s relevant now. It’s all the more interesting because this sort of story-telling isn’t something they’ve done with the show, ever, and it makes this season perhaps the best season yet because of it.

Parker & Stone clearly have something grand they want to say about modern society and took their time to craft the sort of narrative they’ve been waiting for.

There’s a number of commentary tracks, a handful of inconsequential deleted scenes and the trailer for the latest video game. Nothing significant, though.

Paramount presents South Park (Season 19). Created by Matt Stone and Trey Parker. Voice cast of Trey Parker, Matt Stone, Mona Marshall, April Stewart. Run Time: 220 minutes Not Rated. Released on DVD: 9.6.2016

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