Wednesday, May 04, 2005

MeSo Michelle doesn't get it

In Why I'm not a 'South Park conservative', Malkin tries to beat coarse behavior with a verbal stick... and misses. Cute.. perhaps she is intelligent but she should not attempt to analyze pop culture. Please Michelle... leave that to professionals.

The actual phrase is South Park Republican (created by the blogosphere’s resident panic attack guru, Andrew Sullivan). There is a rise of the South Park conservative (as evidenced by the website - not safe for work, the book) but she misses the point of the show.. which happens to be one of my favorites. I think fans of the show identify with the themes of self-reliance (want to make money? Dress up as the tooth fairy… or start a religious cult) and government incompetence (have you seen the Mayor of South Park??). And it’s really freakin’ funny.

Both Matt Stone and Trey Parker tend toward the libertarian side of the political spectrum. To show how evil the show is, Malkin cites that South Park holds the record for most bleeped words in a single episode. OK... but... does she know why Matt and Trey decided to have the s-word said 162 times in one episode? Because EVERYBODY was flipping out about the s-word being said on NYPD Blue. In an interview, they said they wanted to take it to the absolute furthest extreme possible to point out the absurdity around the media being all a-flutter over a word that we hear daily… but because it was going to be on TV… wow….. *sense of awe*
“Tonight on Cop Drama… stay tuned to hear the word… s***.”
[TV Executive] “Next week on Cop Drama… in order to keep it edgy.. lets say s*** twice!”
Did she watch the episode where they call hate crime legislation a “savage hypocrisy?” Or their post 9-11 episode in which they tell people who hate America to get out “Go America. And go Broncos.”? And how could we not forget Mecha-Streisand? People go nuts when Timmy joins a rock band, saying that those with differing abilities shouldn’t do stuff like that. Stan rightly points out that they should be there to support Timmy because Timmy is doing something he really enjoys. The cult of Paris Hilton (and her genius marketing team) gets held to the fire when the young girls of South Park all try to turn themselves into spoiled stupid wh**es. Mr. Slave wins in the wh**e-off against Paris.

Matt and Trey rip on everybody - those on the right, those on the left and especially Canadians and hippies (my favorite episode to date is where hippies take over South Park and they have to enlist hippie-hunter Eric Cartman to clean the nest.)

In Team America: World Police, they chide the US for acting as.. the world police. If there is a problem, the US will solve it... (shameless Vanilla Ice reference). And often the US goes about it in a very hap-hazard way that causes large amounts of damage along the way (seeing Paris leveled was really cool though!) But they smack the UN for being incompetent and only sending strongly worded letters of disappointment - as if that will make a megalomaniac dictator stop!

Malkin says that conservatives should hold themselves to a higher standard in terms of their speech and the entertainment choices they make. I’m sure, by extension, we can talk about the large amount of crap produced by Christian companies as alternatives to mainstream TV shows and radio. I stopped listening to the local Christian stations because the music is almost unbearable. The lyrics are inane and simplistic. The tune itself is often not very interesting. And as Elena said “I want to hear worship music when I’m at worship. If I’m in my car, I want something I can really sing to.”

Are there better choices to make than South Park? Undoubtedly. I didn’t watch the show for 7 of the 8 years it was on but now own the first 5 years on DVD because it is funny. It is pointed. It is intelligent. I certainly wouldn’t let kids watch the show, but adults can make their own choice. Given that it has been on for 9 years and the ratings are still strong, I’d say they have. Malkin’s criticism is nothing new and I doubt anyone will stop watching because she said so.

As Vox said “Deal…”