‘South Park’, the American adult animated series, is all set to be back with its 24th season after fans have been waiting for months for new episodes to be released.
The series, created by Trey Parker and Matt Stone, has distinguished itself from other sitcoms with its depiction of taboo subject matter, sophomoric humour, and controversial portrayal of religion over the years.
Often for the same reasons, the creators have generated several controversies and have also locked horns with the international government over the course of the series’ 23 seasons.
- ‘South Park’s controversies
- How many episodes will ‘South Park’ Season 24 have?
Despite its unconventional style of comedy and treatment of sensitive issues, viewers globally have been waiting to see more of the hilarious comedy.
In September 2020, the show released an hour-long special pandemic-themed episode titled ‘The Pandemic Special’ on Comedy Central.
Many media reports suggest that the special episode was the premiere episode of the 24th season and that the rest of the episodes are yet to be announced. However other reports suggest that it is a stand-alone special and not the premiere of the 24th season.
‘South Park’s’ controversial episodes
The ‘South Park’ episodes that generated the most controversies are episodes titled “Super Best Friends”, “200”, and “201”. In “Super Best Friends”, a superhero team made up of different religious figures including Jesus, Buddha, Moses, Krishna, and Muhammad feature. The depiction of Muhammad, being figuratively depicted, is offensive to Muslims as it is prohibited in Islam. However, the episode aired without much controversy in 2005 and only found itself in the middle of controversy years later.
The episode triggered the radical group Revolution Muslim which claimed on its website that the creators of the series had insulted their prophet during its 200th episode by showing him in a bear costume.
While the group claimed that they weren’t threatening Parker and Stone, the web post included a gruesome picture of Theo Van Gogh, a Dutch filmmaker killed by a Muslim extremist in 2004, and said that the same could happen to the creators.
The extremist group also posted the addresses of Comedy Central’s New York office and the California production studio.
Comedy Central had to censor episode “201”, following the extreme reaction and beefed up the security around its office.
Parker and Stone slammed the network for censoring the re-runs of the controversial episodes and bowing down to extremists after the threats.
“In the 14 years we’ve been doing South Park, we have never done a show that we couldn’t stand behind. We delivered our version of the show to Comedy Central and they made a determination to alter the episode. It wasn’t some meta-joke on our part. Comedy Central added the bleeps. In fact, Kyle’s customary final speech was about intimidation and fear. It didn’t mention Muhammad at all but it got bleeped too.”
How many episodes will ‘South Park’ Season 24 have?
Despite the numerous controversies and threats, ‘South Park’ has been renewed for new seasons through season 26.
In total, the series so far has dropped a total of 308 episodes. However, the number of episodes in each season has varied each time. The show has had seasons come out with as many as 18 or even as few as 10 episodes for fans to stream.
But, since ‘South Park’ Season 17, the show has been pretty consistent with 10 episodes. So, if season 24 follows the same pattern, our best guess is that it should come out with at least nine episodes.
As far as the release date of season 24 is concerned, Comedy Central has yet to announce an official date. According to TV Line’s report on the recent HBO Max library deal, new episodes of the sitcom will be available to stream on South Park Studios, CC.com and the Comedy Central app immediately after they drop.