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Case Number 12464: Small Claims Court

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Christmas Time In South Park

Comedy Central // 1997 // 154 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge David Johnson // November 28th, 2007

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All Rise...

Judge David Johnson thinks Critter Christmas sucks.

Editor's Note

Our reviews of South Park: The Complete First Season (published April 7th, 2003), South Park: The Complete Second Season (published March 8th, 2004), South Park: The Complete Third Season (published January 14th, 2004), South Park: The Complete Fourth Season (published July 19th, 2004), South Park: The Complete Fifth Season (published February 23rd, 2005), South Park: The Complete Sixth Season (published October 11th, 2005), South Park: The Complete Seventh Season (published March 21st, 2006), South Park: The Complete Eighth Season (published August 29th, 2006), South Park: The Complete Ninth Season (published February 28th, 2007), South Park: The Complete Tenth Season (published August 21st, 2007), South Park: The Complete Eleventh Season (published August 12th, 2008), South Park: The Complete Fourteenth Season (Blu-ray) (published May 1st, 2011), South Park: The Complete Fifteenth Season (Blu-ray) (published March 23rd, 2012), South Park: A Little Box Of Butters (published October 13th, 2010), South Park: Imaginationland (published March 24th, 2008), South Park: The Complete Twelfth Season (published March 9th, 2009), South Park: The Complete Twelfth Season (Blu-Ray) (published March 10th, 2009), South Park: The Cult Of Cartman: Revelations (published October 1st, 2008), South Park: The Hits, Volume 1 (published November 8th, 2006), South Park: The Passion Of The Jew (published September 13th, 2004), South Park, Volume 2 (published January 21st, 2000), and South Park, Volume 5 (published January 21st, 2000) are also available.

The Charge

Howdy-ho!

The Case

The brilliant South Park is known for a lot of things—envelope-pushing, censor-cringing sophomoric comedy, pointed social satire, unleashing Tom Cruise's ire—but what also should be mentioned is their string of bizarre and memorable Christmas specials. Like the revered Simpsons Halloween specials (but tripping out on some wacky Indonesian hallucinogen), Trey Parker and Matt Stone's yuletide offerings have carried a reputation for being successively notorious and twisted. Above all, they are funny, as exhibited by this collection of seven Christmas classics.

"Mr. Hankey the Christmas Poo"
Arguably the most important entry on this list, the 1997 episode introduced the world to one of South Park's most enduring and relentlessly juvenile characters: a talking piece of human excrement named Mr. Hankey. Kyle is convinced Mr. Hankey is appearing to him, though no one believes the fecal-smeared little boy. Eventually Kyle's friends and the rest of South Park come around and soak up the joy of Mr. Hankey.

It's base sure, but that scene with Kyle's mom walking into him in the poop-smeared bathroom is iconic.

"Merry Christmas Charlie Manson"
The boys go to Cartman's family's house for some holiday warmth and are stunned to see what amounts to a multitude of Cartman clones in various shapes, ages and sizes. And when Cartman's escaped felon uncle shows up with a surprise guest—Charlie Manson—this year's Christmas adventure will be exceedingly memorable.

The Manson stuff is uneven, but Cartman's family—and his little cousin in particular—is a riot.

"Mr. Hankey's Christmas Classics"
Mr. Hankey hosts a selection of Christmas songs, South Park-style. There's some cleverness here, but it's my least favorite inclusion on the disc.

"A Very Crappy Christmas"
When Mr. Hankey fails to show for Christmas, the boys, hoping to resurrect the spirit of Christmas in South Park, scramble to find their favorite Yule log. Turns out Mr. Hankey is busy managing his dysfunctional family and keeping his scrappy new wife in control. To renew the town's Holiday vigor, the boys make a Christmas video.

The Mr. Hankey stuff was pretty funny, especially with the drunken, verbally abusive wife and the boys' attempts at making an animated video were clever, but it was that poop-themed Lion King musical number that makes this episode a big winner.

"Red Sleigh Down"
Cartman, desperate to get on the "nice" list, convinces Santa that it would be super gesture to bring Christmas to the Iraqis. But the delivery goes wrong when militants shoot down the sleigh. The boys and Mr. Hankey enlist none other than Jesus to rescue Saint Nick and much blood is spilled.

Wow, does this one push the limits of good taste and as a Christian I probably should be slightly offended at the sight of Jesus taking out Iraqis with a machete, but…it made me laugh hard.

"It's Christmas in Canada"
The new Canadian Prime Minister passes a law saying that all adopted Canadian children must be returned. Kyle is shocked to see Ike taken away so he and the boys head North and brave the weirdness of Canada to save Ike in time for Christmas.

I dig the Wizard of Oz parody and it's always funny to see Canadians given the South Park treatment but this episode isn't high up on my favorites.

"Woodland Critter Christmas"
On the other hand, the "Critter Christmas" happens to be one of my favorite episodes ever and easily the bet on this disc. Stan is approached by some lovably woodland creatures to help pave the way for their savior—and he quickly regrets his actions once he discovers who the savior is.

That's all there is to say because you need to watch this episode. So awesome.

And that's it for the DVD. Standard-issue full frame transfer and 2.0 stereo mixes across the board and no sign of extras. Not even the mini-commentaries from the season sets made the cut. In the end, recommended for enthusiasts. If it's cheap enough, though, the "Red Sleigh Down" and "Critter Christmas" episodes will make it worth your investment. If you've got all the season sets already, move along.

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Scales of Justice

Judgment: 85

Perp Profile

Studio: Comedy Central
Video Formats:
• Full Frame
Audio Formats:
• Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo (English)
Subtitles:
• None
Running Time: 154 Minutes
Release Year: 1997
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Genres:
• Animation
• Christmas
• Comedy
• Television

Distinguishing Marks

• Previews

Accomplices

• IMDb








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