“The Losing Edge” Touches on the Stereotype of Jews and Sports

Though this isn’t one of my favorite episodes, it does have a few good moments – like when Randy tackles the even drunker and more belligerent father at the kids’ baseball game. And why do parents care so much about little league sports?

As it relates to religion, the episode does depict Kyle (that is, Kyle’s cousin, Kyle) as a ringer for the team – since they are trying to lose – because the boys think that there is no worse kid athlete around. He can’t hit or catch and he can barely see through his foggy glasses. He’s Jewish and he sucks at sports.

Interestingly, despite touching on this stereotype – that is, that Jews are unathletic and incapable of physical activities – other episodes suggest that this isn’t the case. For instance, Kyle himself always appears to be quite capable at sports. He is depicted playing hockey and football and makes the all-state team because he is the best basketball player at South Park Elementary. Unfortunately, he is not tall and black enough for basketball though and has to sit it out.

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South Park Episode 704, “Canceled,” Tackles Great Jewish Stereotypes

Though it seems as though episode 101 is repeating itself, we learn that this deja vu is nothing more than a rerun – and when reruns start coming on we know it’s time for a show to be canceled. Which show? Earth! That’s right, the Earth is actually a reality television show – one of the most popular in the universe – but since it’s becoming stale, it’s time for it to go.

This episode, excellent as it is, has two things worth focusing on for The Zen of South Park. The first is it’s self-reflective jabs regarding the length of a show’s run and that it should be canceled. Yes, South Park is talking about itself…jokingly. South Park has numerous self-reflective jabs (think of the Cartoon Wars episodes, in particular). Can you think of any others?

The second thing that’s great to focus on is the Jewish stereotypes. “What!?” you cry. “There are stereotypes involving people of Jewish descent?” Yes, I know it’s shocking, but also shockingly true, and a number of them are explored in this episode, particularly the notion that Jews control the media. Yep, they’re everywhere, especially when it comes to the media. Hitler knew it (see his Table Talks for evidence) and Trey and Matt know it. Considering the fact that Matt is Jewish, evidence of this stereotype is already emerging.

Joosians live on the planet Fognl, and are big green aliens that look suspiciously Jewish, have Brooklyn accents, control all the media in the universe and seem to be blood relatives of Kyle (discovered when they eat some gross food). If you don’t understand any of the references I’m making or if any of the jokes from the actual episode seem unclear (and are related to Jewish stereotypes), don’t hesitate to ask.

Did you like this episode? What was your favorite joke? What stereotypes did you notice that I didn’t mention here?

In The Zen of South Park I’ll explore the effects of revealing so many Jewish stereotypes as well as Cartman’s anti-Semitism, and discuss why South Park has provided us with an excellent medium of leaning about these things.

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South Park Tonight – Two Episode Wednesdays

Without new episodes of South Park airing in the off season, viewers like you and me are guaranteed an hour of enjoyable watching between 9:30 and 10:30. Tonight’s episodes are Free Hat (609) and Over Logging (1206). Despite the great lead-in with the latter episode, now, I don’t think, is the time to go into the effect of the internet on our society…oh, hell, for just a second maybe.

I love the internet. It’s a symbol of globalization. “Globalization!” you say, amazed that I could support a process that has such a devastating effect on the nearly extinct Nabotu tribe of southern Guinea that hasn’t contacted the outside world in 476 years. Well, fuck the Nabotu, I say. Don’t get me wrong – it’s great for people to embrace and appreciate their own cultures, but I don’t think the world should slow down because the Nabotu want to keep circumcising their women. And what is the ultimate symbol of the world’s speed and progress and most importantly, interconnectedness: the Internet. With the Internet we have all become connected to each other and we are all able to see the way that others love, making it impossible for those living in crappy circumstances to continue accepting a crappy deal from their crappy governments. And so they advocate for change. The Internet also creates more economic dependency faster than ever before and it is this that I believe is the key factor for preventing wars between nations: economic relationships.

Take France and Germany, for example. Terrible enemies for hundreds of years, and the major continental enemies of the World Wars, and after the economic integration of the post war years (thank you Allies for not devastating Germany the way you could have) the two countries have never been closer and a war between them would only result in mutually assured destruction for either. No more continental-wide European wars are even possible. It’s beautiful. Thank you globalization and thank you Internet for speeding that up. And that brings us to episode 1206, about our society’s dependence on the Internet.

What do you think of Globalization? Do you support its trajectory?

Yes, we certainly are, and it’s not always healthy or reasonable but hopefully the trend is pendulum like and eventually we will all start to realize the importance of a healthier balance in our lives than we have now – not that some of us don’t still play outside, enjoy sunshine and summer activities, interact with loved ones normally, etc. So, watch episode 1206 if only for Randy cuming so thoroughly that he covers the room in his semen.

Episode 609, Free Hat, is a great episode for a lot of reasons, including the way it attacks the foolish Hollywood enhancement of movies that were great the way they were. Notably, when the boys bring Speilberg and Lucas on Nightline, Cartman explains that the two director-producers are only concerned with money. Why? Coppell asks. Because they’re all Jews, Cartman explains. Lucas mentions, a bit confused, that he’s not a Jew. What is the purpose of this anti-Semitic (and hilarious) demagoguery? Chapter 9 of The Zen of South Park, all about stereotyping and anti-Semitism, will explain.

Do you have thoughts or questions about this scene or other similar ones or where a particular stereotype generates from?

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