South Park Review: To Make a Long Story Short...

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South Park is at its strongest when it finds a bit and it commits to it. That's what made last week's episode so great, and the same can be said here.

On "I Should Have Never Gone Ziplining" the writers spoofed "I shouldn't have..." reality shows. Stan, Kyle, Cartman and Kenny on a ziplining tour? What could go wrong, right?!? And, let's face, things going wrong is the cornerstone of comedy because if everything went right, it probably wouldn't be all that funny.

Ziplinging On Spring Break

To make a long story short, when sliding down a rope at a moderate speed is combined with annoying time-wasting tour groups that discuss pointless minutiae ad nauseam, it causes the boys to suffer. That's some good comedic material ripe for South Park to mine!

The constant cuts to diagrams of internal organs, showing synapses in the brain going off or just what was causing Cartman's diarrhea throughout the episode, was too much. They were also the kind of hilarious exaggerations - reality shows really do depicts these kinds of diagrams-  that the episode absolutely nailed.

But none of the mockery of tours and tour groups that came before the boys found themselves on a boat in a way we've never seen them before... as actual humans. These live-action bits provided the best moments. Mocking the reenactments seen in these "I survived" progrms, seeing a teary confession from "Stan" while the group suddenly developed "cold sores" - thanks to Kenny - would be funny on its own.

Witnessing an actual version of Stan reveal the reason why they went ziplining in the first place? That pushes it to classic territory.

We've become so accustomed to the animated versions of the boys that when the show breaks its style (like the realistic sketches from "Free Willzyx") that it is instantly memorable. Could I have done with seeing real-life Cartman suffering the after-effects of Diet Double Dew and fast food off the side of the boat? Maybe. But it was disgustingly comical at least. Then, the revelation of how the boys got home, and the "actual rescue photographs" that went along with it, were absurd, featuring a welcome cameo from a character we haven't seen in a while.

Also, in great moments in Comedy Central advertising: the episode mocked Mountain Dew the whole time... then Ugly Americans had an ad for Mountain Dew. It's not as dissonant as when an Indiana Jones DVD ad aired after the South Park episode making fun of it, but, hey, Comedy Central knows who butters its bread. Dew the math.

This episode sharesd a lot of strengths with last week's "Butterballs," even calling back to the San Diego bit, because both just had so much going for them. There were fewer laugh-out-loud moments here, but it was another memorable half hour of television. Relive it now in our section of South Park quotes.


Editor Rating: 4.3 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 2.8 / 5.0 (316 Votes)

Everyone bashing the EP has no sense of sarcasm or humor whatsoever. Ive seen ALL episodes at least twice and this easily fits in my top 5 favourite ever. They're making fun of shitty re-enactments, so they make a shitty (pun intended) re-enactment. This is the first episode in years where I actually laughed out loud multiple times. You guys are either bitter or too young...


I didn't expect much from this after the beginning, but man, this is probably my favorite episode of SP in YEARS. Old absurdity, classic humor and almost a "I learned something today". Anyone saying it was bad has obviously just started watching South Park, or is so accustom to the newer episodes that are all just movie mocking, that they either 1. Forgot about classic SP or 2. Never seen it in the first place.


Live action part was DISGRACEFULL. I don´t agree with people who say the episode was all bad. In fact I was cracking up until the live part. Nonetheless, that was so lame it really left a horrible impression in me. I really hope that South Park will never do this again, you are seriously tainting your reputation with this shit.


"There were fewer laugh-out-loud moments here," Really? I've been watching this show since the beginning and have to agree with AbedSwanson; "whoever doesnt find herpes and double dew diarrhea jokes funny isnt watching the right show." My wife and I laughed so hard at the boating segment we had to hit "pause" to wipe the tears from our eyes and catch our breath. Then we replayed it a few times and laughed just as hard. Lighten up guys, sheesh.


I liked it. Mostly because it is exactly the way I view and feel about tourist groups. There is always that one guy who has toask idiotic questions and seems fascinated by pointless crap like trees and waterfalls.


I'm glad to know there are some sane people that hate this episode too. This was by far the worst one. Usually the bad ones still have their moments. This was just sad to watch.
I was shocked by all the high reviews on the official SP forums. @MrSlave you honestly believe shooting the crappy boat scene took much effort?


Very funny take on the show, I liked it. matt n trey are kings of satire


Defint the worst episode. I can understand that a sarcastic look onto Srciptet realty shows could be a nice thought. But bring reel life characters in the show make this episode from bad to superbad.


I have seen every single southpark created and i have never posted any reviews or even looked up reviews, there was no need. But after watching this crap i had to make sure it wasnt just my own sense of humor that was shit, its just a poor attempt at creating more southparks that are just getting worse and worse.


This takes the cake for the worst one yet. I want my 30 min of life back.

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South Park Season 16 Episode 6 Quotes

Cold sore is what girls call it, Kenny. It's actually herpes.


For four elementary school boys, an ordinary day becomes a descent into madness on "I Should Have Never Gone Ziplining."