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'South Park' vs. Lucas and Spielberg: Too far?


Never mind "The Daily Show" and "The Colbert Report," the most welcome Comedy Central program this election season just might be "South Park."

The series has been on a roll for the past four/five seasons, and whether turning an alien invasion into an examination of immigration, or leprechauns into targets of terrorism, "South Park" has been presenting relatively reasoned examinations of cultural issues.

Until, perhaps, last night. "South Park" has missed out on skewering this summer's pop-culture events, and last night, the episode was on the attack. As dark and twisted as "The Dark Knight" was, "South Park" was just as aggressively over the top.

Returning with new episodes as part of its 12th season, "South Park" didn't level its aim at presidential candidates Barack Obama and John McCain (fingers are crossed for such an episode to be forthcoming). Instead, the series had Hollywood heavyweights George Lucas and Steven Spielberg directly in sights.

Oh, there was also a paranoid Cartman convinced that China's Olympic opening ceremony telegraphed an attack on the United States, but Cartman's mockery of Chinese stereotypes was almost an afterthought after Matt Stone and Trey Parker completely dismantled the worldwide hit "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull."

"We all saw it happen," says the handicapped Jimmy, discussing "The Crystal Skull" as if it's a personal tragedy. "Do you remember that scene with Indiana in the refrigerator? It didn't make any sense, Stan."

From there, an excited Stan sits down to watch the latest film in a dream sequence/nightmare, but soon has to warn Indiana Jones that Spielberg and Lucas are nearby. And then in a series of film parodies, Indy's pants come off.


The boys of "South Park" spend much of the episode struggling to come to grips with the raping of Indiana Jones. In its rave review of the episode, IGN wrote that "South Park" went "beyond offensive and into some sort of hyper-offensive stratosphere," all of it hilarious.

Indeed, each scene builds upon the other, with Spielberg and Lucas eventually becoming two rednecks in the woods who demand Indy "squeal like a pig" as the pair humiliates and degrades a cinematic icon. A Stormtrooper gets it even worse, prompting the "South Park" police to lock up the directors to prevent such travesties from happening again.

Not that anyone didn't see this coming. Parker and Stone tried to warn Spielberg and Lucas from even making a fourth "Indiana Jones" flick. Back in 2002, the series took the two to task for re-editing their films for the worse, hoping to prevent a ruining of "Raiders of the Lost Ark."

But was continually -- and graphically -- having Spielberg and Lucas violently rape Indiana Jones too far? "He's gonna do it right there!" shouts a cartoon Spielberg in one scene, holding back Indy's hands over a pinball machine. Or was seeing a Stormtrooper completely defiled still easier to swallow than having to watch Shia LaBeouf swing like a monkey, or worse, inserting aliens into the film?

Show Tracker put a call in to Lucasfilm to try to get their thoughts (ha!), but in the meantime, do you side with "South Park," or those behind the "Crystal Skull" on this one? Coming a few days after The Times' Hero Complex wrote that "Indy 5" is still a possibility, it might be time to make your voice known. 

-- Todd Martens

Photos: http://www.southparkstudios.com/

Comments () | Archives (302)

Wow, too bad. Seems South Park can "offend" people of religion, and anyone else, but let them "offend" that poor Liberal Spielberg or Lucas and THEN you ask if they went too far. Brilliant.

I thought this episode did a great service to all of us who are tried of these guys ruining my childhood. I said all summer that I felt raped of my childhood by this movie, I even gave them the benifit of the doubt after all of those horrable Star Wars movies. The first half had potential and then BAM, the jungle scean. After that it got lazy and unimaginitve, they killed my Childhood hero and raped my memories once again. I felt cheep and used like a rape victium. Indy 5, I hope to dear God this South Park stops them from doing it. I just hope Steven Spealberg dosn't by the rights to Clavin and Hobbes and throughly distroy imagintion once and for all.

Geez, I actually like Indy 4... :(

I actually paid money to see that crappy Indiana Jones flick. It was bad enough watching it but to think I PAID to do it!! Spielberg and Lucas really do deserve this South Park. As a woman it didn't offend me at all. This is not the 19th century and I didn't get the vapors watching it, but thanks for your concern. And thank you once again, Matt and Trey, for making me laugh!

Geez, I actually like Indy 4... :(

The real problem with the episode - the reason it was so offensive to its viewership - was that it was totally irrelevant, not to mention untimely. Who cares about some stupid popcorn flick that came out last spring? I remember when South Park was able to turn out an episode within two weeks of a culturally salient event. The world is begging to be satirized right now, and we're talking about George Lucas? From May?

If you thought this was overboard, but showing Steve Irwin with a bloody stingray sticking out of his chest right after his death for the world (and his daughter) to see wasn't, then you've got your priorities screwed up.

You give these guys WAY too much credit for "examing social issues". They are two hateful, spiteful children.

We waited 6 months for this? I am just as big a South Park fan as anyone here, but i wonder if there will be some very serious repercussions in the near future over the rape scenes. Being "on the edge" as Parker and Stone are does not mean hinting at criminal behavior from others. I get the message they are trying to convey, but did we really need to see 3 seperate rapes, one of which clearly hinting at an ejaculation (Lucas)???

This is an outrage to see this kind of offensive trash done to cinematic icons of Hollywood. They have definately gone beyond what is acceptable. I

BTW all the offensive stuff about the Pope and Jesus, Muhamad. that they have done over the years That's perfectly fine, wonderful stuff that people are just far too sensitive about.

I love the selective outrage.

Remember the Mohammed episode? Comedy Central decided to keep away from the potential controversy by blacking out the screen in its entirety when Mohammed appeared. Yet at the end of that very same episode the closing scenes featured Jesus, George Bush and the American flag being spattered with feces. No censoring, no outrage.

Now South Park takes on the Hollywood establishment, and its biggest money makers in Speilberg and Lucas. How will the incestuous business that is the entertainment industry react to the attack on their personal idols? Does the same company own both Comedy Central and the production companies that make the Indy pictures? Who knows. I can't keep track of who is buying whom these days.

It'll be interesting to see how the Hollywood crowd that so abhors government censorship deals with this one.

funniest episode ever. anyone who like the new indiana jones should be ashamed of themselves. after all you just stood there and let it happen

Was it over the top? Yes. Did they go too far? Don't they always. It was classic South Park. If you understand the show, you understand that this is part of the deal. This show is so much smarter than anything else on TV. Even with the sometimes childish and rediculous content. I didn't think the episode was particularly funny but I am not offended. Of course like most South Park fans I don't get offended. Life is too short.

Let's face it. This is not the worst rape scene South Park has created. Woodland Critter Christmas was much more difficult to watch.

Having said that I loved this episode and although it's regrettable that scheduling prevented them from showing it at the time Indy 4 was out in theaters this episode was still amazing.

And speaking as someone who has spent a good part of his life in China I found myself sympathizing with Cartman though more for human rights issues than racial ones.

Having said that this episode was a great way to kick off the remainder of the season. Keep it up Matt & Trey!

Liberals only complain when liberals are spoofed. South Park would be guaranteed an Oscar if Bush and Cheney were used in place of Lucus and Spielburg.

Your poll lacked a needed option: The film wasn't that bad, but you get where Parker and Stone were coming from, and it was an amusing attack.

I hope we never get to a point in this country where anything is considered "too far." Our First Amendment is too precious to let that happen. We all have remote controls with the ability to change the channel almost immediately. I was far more offended by Family Guy's season premier, when Lois and Peter repeated "Laura Bush killed a guy" about six times. For what purpose? She's not running for office, or occupying an elected position (unlike Ted Kennedy, who killed willfully and maliciously). George is term-limited and isn't running for any other office anywhere. Other than a deep-seated hatred of the Bushes, it was a pointless, and unfunny, segment. At least in the South Park series Parker and Stone have a history of antipathy towards Spielberg and Lucas.

As for the poll question, I can't answer either way. I never saw the movie, so the qualifiers after the "yes" and "no" choices aren't relevant. I do not believe they went too far at all, period.

says the handicapped Jimmy, discussing............

Not Jimmy - it's Timmy.

It would be nice if you knew what you were talking about. Like say for example, the correct names of the show's creators before you trash their work.

Hey I am all for it. Yes South Park went extremely and graphically offensive, but the kids and their guilt. I cant say I cant sympathize, when I saw commercial for the Alvin and the Chipmunks, or those horrible Garfield movies, was not my childhood being raped? Were the Star Wars prequels nothing but a big **** in the *** to the fans of the original? I cant comment on Indy 4, I haven't seen it, and having seen this episode I may never.

This episode was classic! They put into a cartoon what people across the country have wanted to say since May.

Indiana Jones 4 was an injustice to everyone involved, and everyone that bought a ticket.

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