For some time now, many have said that Matt and Trey are losing interest in South Park. Apparently the boys would rather focus their efforts on musicals, among other projects. And while that may be true, for the mid-season finale the duo brought us a pretty impressive episode.
Sharon really puts it best at the end of the episode when she says that “it’s like the same shit just happens over and over and then in a week it all just resets until it happens again. Every week it’s kind of the same story but in a different way and it just keeps getting more and more ridiculous.” Has there ever been a more accurate description of the show?
As the show gets older, it’s also becoming more reflective and that’s what this episode was all about. Getting old and examining what growing up really means. After Sharon’s aforementioned speech, her and Randy divorce. But like Sharon says, “it all just resets”, so is this final, or will Randy be back with Sharon next episode?
The episode’s main storyline had Stan finally turning 10 and as he does, he significantly grows up. All of the sudden he becomes very cynical. He doesn’t find anything fun anymore and he can’t relate to the other kids. Whatever they enjoy doing, he just finds something to dislike with it. Due to this, the boys feel that they can’t hang out with him anymore, he’s too much of a downer. And so, they ditch him. But once again, like Sharon and Randy, is this final, or will it all reset when the show comes back?
It’s a message that really everyone can relate to. Birthdays suck because it means you’re one year older. One year further from the enjoyment of being a kid and one year closer to cynicism, hardships, responsibility and ultimately death. It’s a message that also speaks to the fans. Every week people complain that South Park just isn’t funny anymore, they don’t find enjoyment in it like they used to. Just like Stan.
This episode in particular had its moments and featured a few nice jabs at popular movies like X-Men: First Class, but really, the episode was more notable for what it was trying to say. Like Stan, Matt and Trey have grown up, the humor that they used to find funny just doesn’t do it anymore, hence the fact that they’re starting to lose interest in the show.
Are the boys really going to shake things up though? Are things really changing in South Park? A lot of interesting ideas and reflection were seen in the episode and it said a lot about the creators and the series as a whole. Its characters are like the show itself, they never really grow up, they never evolve. And although most shows have this aspect to some degree, no one has it like South Park.
But now that the show has shown growth and has shown change, can it really move on? Can South Park still be even with all the change that have gone on tonight, or is it just going to hit the reset button when it returns?
With that super sad ending (a montage of everything falling apart set to Fleetwood Mac’s Landslide), there was a clear sense of finality. Many were even questioning if that was it for the season. Chances are the answer is no, especially since Trey and Matt are still under contract to finish off the season. But still, it’s clear that the boys are just about done with the series.
They know that the show has hit a bit of a rough patch for the past couple years and it hasn’t been as brilliant as it once was. The episode’s title “You’re Getting Old”, wasn’t directed at Stan, it was directed at the show itself and it’s something that Matt and Trey have known for some time now.