South Park Episode Analysis

Updated May 6, 2022

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South Park Episode Analysis essay

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In the “Apologies to Jesse Jackson” episode of South Park, Matt Stone and Trey Parker were shedding light on the use of the n-word. During the time that the episode was aired, there was a major economic collapse and the elections were going on. With Barack Obama, being the first candidate to be nominated by a major party for president. There’s also mentioning of Jesse Jackson, an American Civil Rights activist. I think that Matt Stone and Trey Parker wrote this episode as a depiction of the relevance of racial issues in America at that time. The creators use satire, irony, cartoon characters, and plots to express controversial topics. In a way, this episode exposes society’s ignorance on the use of the n-word. “Apologies to Jesse Jackson” depends on the fact that racial injustice and inequalities still remain in our culture.

This episode more so focuses on racial tension between Randy Marsh and the black people after he commits an act of racism on television . South Park used satire and ironic racial humor to demonstrate the perspective of using the n-word and how it affects black people- encouraging viewers to think critically about racial issues. An example of how they used irony was when Randy Marsh created a scholarship foundation for African Americans. He tries to explain how he wasn’t racist and that he was tired of being referred to as “Nigger-Guy”. He then goes on to say, “..you really don’t know how hard it is to be constantly reminded of something lame that happened in your past…bring up a painful chapter in my history and all that negativity that went along with it.” (14:07) This boils down to the fact that he said this in front of black people, and how he believes that they don’t understand what he’s going through. In reality, black people are the only ones that truly understand how that feels. In addition to how the creators used irony was when Randy went to the poetry slam and performed a poem to the audience. His poem starts of with, “I’m a person, I’m a man, but no matter how hard I try people just say ‘Hey, there’s that Nigger-Guy.’”, and ends with, “…when will it end, will there ever be a time when I can be thought of as more than just ‘Nigger-Guy’”. (11:40)

The creators made Randy look ridiculous for feeling victimized and their use of the poetry slam establishes the satire of him appropriating black culture. In both these scenarios, there’s irony in the fact that Randy is a white man who is discriminated for being called “Nigger Guy”. On top of that, he’s expressing this concern in front of mostly black people, who just look at him in confusion and disbelief. This shows depth at how powerful language is and the force that one can come with using it. These two examples expose the misconceptions about racial dynamics and stereotypes that subconsciously assert racial appropriation that we have been taught to believe are natural.

South Park Episode Analysis essay

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South Park Episode Analysis. (2022, May 06). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/south-park-episode-analysis/


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