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South Park 23.02 Review – “Band In China”

October 3, 2019 | Posted by Jeremy Lambert
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South Park 23.02 Review – “Band In China”  

I’m going to be very careful with what I type in this review. I don’t want to piss off China.

We’re back on Tegridy Farms as Randy remains the star of the show. Randy still wants to make money off his weed, which is the same narrative they told last week. The first act of this episode was nothing memorable and I was worried that we were headed for a real snoozer. Randy’s brilliant idea of bringing Tegridy to China (get it?) Seemed to be one-note and I wasn’t feeling it.

And then, Randy met Pooh and Piglet. The whole episode turned around at this point. Does the Chinese President look like Winnie The Pooh? I plead the fifth. But locking up Pooh for that reason drove up the point of communist vs. consumerism. Plus, we got the return of Mickey, who is still out to control everything. Mickey just wants to mooch off that Chinese money like any normal American.

Randy has gone completely dark this season and while it didn’t connect with me in the first episode, the story came together more in the second episode. There was something off-putting, yet enlightening when Randy strangled Pooh in a dark alley. It was a nod to No Country For Old Men and continued the anti-hero theme brought up from the last episode.

Randy is the Mexican Joker. What he thinks he’s doing is right. He’s trying to bring Tegridy to everyone. South Park needs Tegridy because it’s slipped over the years, which is normal for a show in its 23rd season. China needs Tegridy because they are a communist country. Randy is just trying to help, even if it means blowing up backyards and strangling Pooh. You’ve won me over, Randy. You bastard.

The second plot featured Stan looking for a way out of Tegridy, in another nod to the audience. Many people, myself included last week, are over the Tegridy Farms storyline. And Stan is over it as well. So, he tries to form a death metal band. The scenes of shooting his biopic gave me Vince McMahon vibes as the producer kept telling him “it’s such good shit, pal” while writers wrote something Stan wasn’t feeling.

It all culminated with the return of Fingerbang, which ruled so hard, even if Stan wasn’t willing to sell out on the nostalgia.

And hey, Kyle and Cartman are back. I’m fine with the quick finish to their story from last week. The show is serial, but not so serial that they can’t get away with giving you an abrupt conclusion that has you wondering what the hell actually happened.

Just like No Country For Old Men and WWE.

The final score: review Good
The 411
Had the first act of this episode been strong, it could have potentially been an all-timer. But the first act drags it down a bit. That said, it was a nice rebounder after an average premiere last week.

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South Park, Jeremy Lambert