The election of Mr. Donald Trump as President of the United States and his first days in power have generated a shockwave of reactions, from the overjoyed to the scared and the furious. And obviously, his actions have seeped into entertainment, from the rapidly increasing number of political speeches at Hollywood events such as the SAG Awards, to late-night TV.
So you'd expect a show like #SouthPark, whose whole structure relies on satirical commentary on current events, to be overflowing with inspiration, ready to tackle every mind-boggling move made by the new president. Alas, the creators of South Park, Trey Parker and Matt Stone, are moving away from Trump-mocking topics. Could it be that we're actually living in what used to be satirical comedy? How do you mock events that reflect so closely what we used to make fun of?
'They're Already Going Out And Doing The Comedy'
In an interview with ABC News Australia, the creators of the show admitted they weren't really sure how to satirize events that would have seemed unreal a few months ago. When asked whether South Park would continue mocking Trump, Stone admitted:
"It feels like it's going to be more difficult. [...] We're having our head blown off like everybody else."
Season 20 has already tackled tons of Trump-related themes, from safe spaces to debates with Hillary Clinton — and his lookalike Mr. Garrison was elected President in Episode 7, "Oh Jeez."
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But the reason the 21st season is going to lay off politics isn't necessarily that the actions of the government feel too serious to be made fun of — in fact, it's more because news these days already feels like it's written for a satirical #TV show. As Parker puts it:
"They're already going out and doing the comedy. It's not something you can make fun of. [...] It's tricky and it's really tricky now as satire has become reality. We were really trying to make fun of what was going on [last season] but we couldn't keep up. What was actually happening was way funnier than anything we could come up with. So we decided to just back off and let [politicians] do their comedy and we'll do ours."
Whether you think it's sad that the creators of South Park are telling you you only need to turn on the news to get their brand of humor is up to you.
What's your favorite episode of South Park?