South Park Season 25, Ep 5 Review
It’s not easy being a teenager or having to deal with teenagers. Their hormones are flaring, and they can act moody for no reason and seek to test the limits to their freedom. So naturally, more mature forms of animation love to poke fun at this by cranking it up several notches, and South Park is no exception. But, by and large, if you’re a teenager in South Park, then you’re going to be unbearably obnoxious, incredibly horny, or some sick combination of the two. So this week, we see the Four Boys take center stage once more as they deal with their own teenage problems. The results are pretty hilarious but also end on a heartwarming note.
Oh, and Cartman’s still living in a hot dog.
Four Boys Just Trying to Have Fun…
In what has to be the first time since before the Pandemic (not counting the specials), the Four Boys are finally the main focus of an episode. And, in keeping with the season’s theme of largely staying out of current events, this week’s misadventure revolves around the simple activity of airsoft. Given its similarities to first-person shooter games and how it gives them an outlet to channel their love of violence, they are naturally drawn to it.
The episode does take a few shots at the entire concept of airsoft, such as how the fake guns used are eerily similar to the real deal. There’s probably a whole debate that can be discussed there, but the Boys don’t care. They just enjoy the chance to shoot each other without consequence. Cartman getting to shoot Kyle and say it’s the best day of his life brought a smile to my face.
There’s just one problem…
But Now they each Have a Teenager to Deal With
See, the most frequent users of the local airsoft field are a group of stereotypical teenage boys, and I do mean stereotypical. They say “bruh” in every other word; they’ve got acne and are moody as Hell. In other words, no one likes them. Sadly, the boys get stuck with a teenager of their own while playing airsoft, and, since this is South Park, that obligation extends beyond the field. Pretty soon, each teenager starts bothering the Boys in their everyday lives, asking for food, using their bathrooms (and lotion), and snapping at them whenever they’re called out for being stupid. And we mean really stupid; one teenager holds his hand over a lighter and burns himself.
This whole concept was pretty funny to watch. The Boys basically become surrogate parents for their teenager, and it’s clear that they have no idea what they’re doing. Whenever they try to bond with them or help them, they just get sassed. If you’re a parent with teenage kids, then you can probably understand what the boys are going through, which will only make it seem even funnier. As for me, it made me grateful that I was a pretty well-adjusted person during my teen years.
By the episode’s third act, the Boys are ready to quit rather than deal with the teenagers anymore. That’s when Kyle’s Dad steps in and comes up with a solution: ask their Dads for help. So Gerald gets Randy, Mr. McCormick, and Jimbo (for Cartman), and they team up with their sons (and Cartman) to put the teens in their place.
This final moment was equal parts heartwarming and hilarious for me. Heartwarming because, in a show where most of the adults are incompetent morons, it’s rare to see them act as genuinely good parents. Seeing the Boys bond with their Dads (and Jimbo) while playing airsoft is a fun experience to watch. It’s also hilarious because, since it’s South Park, the dads go over the top to beat the teenagers. Randy found a good use for his old Vaccination Special.
So, this episode had no big moral, no lampooning of current events, and none of the other trappings of recent seasons of South Park. It just had the Boys being, well, boys, and it was fun to watch even if it did remind us of the fact that Cartman still lives in a hot dog now.