Yes, we are talking about one of the most irreverent and beloved TV series on the international scene, broadcast for more than 20 years on Comedy Central. Over the years, the critics of Stone and Parker’s product have always been more ruthless and subtle at the same time. Have you read how much excitement the episode of last week made? So great that the whole series was totally censored in China! The authors’ fault was to severely criticize Hollywood and the NBA for the almost servant relationship that binds them to the Eastern superpower, and on the other hand there are also hits dedicated to China itself. Already in the title, “Banned in China” the authors knew that it would end like this, and I strongly invite you to read their brilliant answer to the Chinese government.
Also other series have touched on the issue of vaccination
In this episode, the 300th of the series, we basically have two small stories: in the first, I’ll be very brief, Randy Marsh, father of one of the protagonists, is very happy to have earned a lot of money from the deal with the Chinese, while his family practically hates him. Randy represents the authors’ thoughts, despite all this hate we have reached the number 300, which is repeated many times during the episode, while the family represents those who have been complaining for years that the program has lost its soul.
One thing in which the two writers excel: to be hated by as many people as possible
The second story is the one we’re most interested in. One of the four children, Eric Cartman, doesn’t want to be vaccinated.
He’s afraid of needles, and his mother can’t convince him in any way.
At school, the headmaster is very clear: If Eric doesn’t get his shots, then he won’t be able to attend.
He then says this : “Everyone must vaccinate themselves, otherwise everyone is in danger”.
From the construction of the sentence and especially from the emphasis given by the dubber plus the eyebrows raised in all, emerges the first contradiction in terms of vaccination effectiveness.
If I vaccinate myself, I am not really safe and everyone has to do so. Or all or none, but I am vaccinated so why should I have problems?
Clearly then the scene moves to the school assembly, with parents angry at the presence of an unvaccinated child.
Here, we have a beautiful examination of the situation: Eric’s mother strengthens herself, and on a sheet clearly written by her son, she states the potential harmful ingredients present in the vaccines that we all already know, aluminium formaldehyde mercury. The risk of autism is then mentioned, but it is crippled: from aUtistic, they choose aRtistic. So, by vaccinating there would be a risk of becoming artists, and the thing does not go down to one of those present in the room.
We have the parent who repeats the usual saying “our children are in danger! The CDC and other health authorities have reiterated that vaccines are safe,” and recalls the rarity of adverse effects. Then we have a second contradiction, not so much against mandatory vaccinations but more about freedom of choice.
A second parent lets go to this comment “I just don’t understand, all the families in this community agree on this practice! Why only one is not agreeing to this?”
At first glance, of course it may seem like the “stupid mother who knows nothing and reads a paper written by a child” but if you just know a minimum style of creators, it is not like that. And then: the homologation, we must all be equal and all do the same things. Does anyone think otherwise? Ew, ostracism and so on.
Then comes, of course, the comment of the mother that “those who do not vaccine does not love their children” and there Eric’s mother explodes with anger. The only way to vaccinate Cartman is to take him by surprise, because when he goes to the doctor he turns characterially into a pig who tries not to get caught, and no one can!
The parents of the Colorado community then understand that the moment is complicated, and decide to call an expert to vaccinate. “It’s time to bring in an expert”
He is not a paediatrician, he is not a luminary: he is a zotician who participates in the rodeo and captures pigs.
Not even the expert initially succeeds in vaccinating Eric.
In the next scene, brilliant, Cartman is angry to death with his mother, guilty of exposing him to possible vaccination. And it seems that it’s time to say goodbye, with him ready to leave home. I’ll tell you about the conversation, but first I’ll show you 3 characters from this series.
On the left we have Timmy, a child in a wheelchair with an obvious neurological disorder, can not say more than his name. On the right we have Jimmy, a stuttering comedian with crutches from birth.
This is just Token
“Mom, did you tuck me in first and then, without telling me, did you want to vaccinate me against my will?“
“I’m sorry, honey, sometimes parents are wrong and they don’t know what’s best for our kids.”
“So you conform in every way to society, wanting to vaccinate me by force, even knowing that there are health risks? What if the vaccinations had made Timmy what he is now? What if they did the same thing to Jimmy? What if they did it with Token too?“
When the conversation is over, we discover that it is his mother who must leave her home.
So we can see two big arrows from the authors, with Cartman worrying about the risks, and wonders if his disabled friends are so because of the vaccination. To ease the situation, and because Cartman is Cartman, as a last question he wonders if Token has become black because of the vaccinations. And then, seeing that it is the surprise mother who leaves the house, you can only give in to a laugh. Stick and carrot, it seems that the addition of the joke on Token may mean “here, who says that vaccines hurt is actually stupid” but this is not the interpretation.
Then continues the episode with the CDC expert desperate at the bar because he can not vaccinate him. A parent then asks him “Maybe you should start to believe that forcing vaccination for access to schools is wrong given the possible unknown side effects?
At that point, the face of the expert, we always remember that he is a zotician who captures pigs, changes radically and responds harshly to this criticism “Do not dare contradict me. If someone believes that the most common adverse effect, anaphyphylaxis, (yes, he pronounces it badly) happens at most once in a million, that’s me”.
And what did he propose to vaccinate all the children in the county? A fucking rodeo.
Before the rodeo, we see Eric’s mother confessing to Randy, desperate because no one believes she is a good mother since her son is not vaccinated. And she lets go to some words that many times we have already heard from many doubtful mothers “I know that probably vaccinating is the best thing, but then when I go on the Internet and read certain things … it’s scary!
I do believe it’s scary, how many stories have we read in recent years? Always the same, the same symptoms, the same concerns. Mothers and fathers who were not antivax, and have experienced on their skin what it meant to vaccinate. The story of Dawn, that of Martina, that of Colton. Just a few we collected, but the list is potentially endless.
One after the other, unvaccinated children are released in this arena, and hunted down by doctors, despite screams and tears, they are vaccinated. In the meantime, the stadium rejoices and cheers for the treatment that is reserved for these anointers. They exult when a child is vaccinated for HPV, with the commentator saying “HPV is for genital warts!”
It’s Cartman’s turn, who is presented as an orthodox Jew and conscientious objector, but when it seems that he is now captured, his mother bursts in to protect him and gets the vaccination in his place. It seems that something has changed immediately in her eyes
Here we have the apotheosis of the episode. Healthy, defenceless children are released in an arena where doctors and CDC experts, all rodeo enthusiasts and someone in their shirts, capture them one after another. Images that can make you laugh, but that are very powerful. The crowd that enjoys seeing how brutally people are treated whose fault is not to have accepted a health treatment. A perfect representation of today’s society, a fucking rodeo. The not accidental joke about HPV, they did not say “it’s for fighting cancer!” but they make you think this “if it’s only for the warts, do I really need it?” and we know that 90% of them spontaneously regress. Even here a little carrot, Cartman deeply hates the Jews and in order not to be vaccinated he professes himself as one of them.
How does the episode end? Cartman at the hospital who receives bad news: her mother received a high dosage not intended for adults, doctor dixit, and unfortunately became aRtistic.
We are not yet given to know how the story will continue, if she will heal, if officially then they will say that she has always been aRtistic. Despite the admission of the doctor, who then saying “high dose for adults”, and knowing that that vial was intended for his son, is telling us indirectly that Cartman would had died?
I don’t know if you’re interested in it or not, but it’s curious that just at the 300th episode of one of the series I like most, we came to talk about vaccinations in such an interesting way.
Looking at the episode of South Park in a superficial way, it seems that they targeted antivax, and their children compared to pigs to be caught in a rodeo. An episode in which they make fun of the side effects of vaccines, the aRtism or becoming black.
But then it’s the small elements that tend just the other way. The CDC’s hoof that can’t even pronounce anaphylaxis well, the rodeo, Cartman’s questions.
They get hated is true, but they do it with style