Review of South Park’s "Dead Kids" School Shooter Episode
Dead Kids was a boringly botched season opening episode for South Park. Spoiler alert - this was a shoddy episode even with ubiquitous information to grow plots. Safety Expert David Perrodin reviews the much-anticipated, taboo-soaked topic of school shootings relative to how the narrative was approached by a generational stalwart animated, edgy comedy show that had fearlessly taken on Saddam Hussein, Osama bin Laden, politicians of every stripe and self-important celebrities. WHAT WENT WRONG? So how did writers Trek Parker and Matt Stone completely fumble away the obvious storylines? “I’m not advocating for the show or condoning humor as a conduit to a discussion about school safety,” remarked Perrodin. “But, South Park’s an established player in black satire and had an opportunity to expose the thick, swampy rhetoric around school shootings and the nearly $3 billion school safety industry - and this episode wasn’t controversial, accurate or even interesting. It didn’t seem that the writers dodged the key themes as much as they weren’t informed of them,” added Perrodin. PARKER AND STONE’S BIZARRE APPROACH. The writers chose to stick with surface level psychology and the axle for the episode was the worn premise that the emotional / hormonal response from Sharon (Stan’s mom) was the sole driving force for “change” when it is known beyond a doubt that moms, dads and students equally emerge as outspoken champions of change for school safety. The episode was on the mark that nobody has a solid plan to actually decrease school violence. CARTMAN COULD HAVE SHINED, BUT HE INSTEAD WAS CAST AS A CREEPY RACIST. The episode began with Cartman being frustrated that he had failed a test, despite the fact that he cheated on Token, who received an “A.” Cartman quickly noticed that Token had erased his initial answers, purposefully causing him to fail. As Cartman often does, he turned this small issue into something much bigger, and he believed that it was all a race-related cover-up. He believed that Token wanted him to fail the test because there were "rumors" floating around that Cartman hated Black Panther. I suppose an interesting subplot, but it had not place in this episode.
FUNDAMENTAL FLAWS WITH THE STORYLINE.
WHAT SHOULD HAVE BEEN DONE DIFFERENTLY.
FOLLOW DR. PERRODIN: Twitter @SafetyPhD and subscribe to The Safety Doc YouTube channel & Apple Podcasts. SAFETY DOC WEBSITE & BLOG: www.safetyphd.com The Safety Doc Podcast is hosted & produced by David Perrodin, PhD. ENDORSEMENTS. Opinions are those of the host & guests and do not reflect positions of The 405 Media or supporters of “The Safety Doc Podcast”. The show adheres to nondiscrimination principles while seeking to bring forward productive discourse & debate on topics relevant to personal or institutional safety. Email David: email@example.com LOOKING FOR DR. TIMOTHY LUDWIG, PHD? Dr. Perrodin’s “Safety Doc Podcast” negotiates school and community safety. To be informed about industrial safety, please contact Appalachian State University Professor Dr. Timothy Ludwig, PhD, at www.safety-doc.com.
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