South Park is one of the longest-running shows on TV for a number of reasons: Trey Parker and Matt Stone are absolutely brilliant and have amazing working chemistry. The program is also animated in such an efficient way that they're able to write, voice, and animate an episode in about a week. That's absolutely bonkers for a cartoon.
But I think the key to the program's success is its blend of scatological humor with relevant cultural phenomenon, like their Thanksgiving Special episodes.
The best South Park Thanksgiving episodes:
It isn't really a holiday that gets a lot of love, just ask Nicole Westbrook who, with the help of legendary music producer Patrice Wilson, just want everyone to know that "It's Thanksgiving."
But the South Park team often treats the holiday to special episode events. Here are seven of the show's best Turkey Day features that have brought us wonderful new characters, scathing criticisms of Black Friday, and of course, general irreverence.
"A History Channel Thanksgiving"
Shows like Ancient Aliens and a sensationalized approach to covering historical events with the unorthodox approach of introducing some rather "out there" theories from experts laid the hilarious groundwork for this episode that spoofs The History Channel. Like whether or not the first Thanksgiving was haunted or aliens were the ones behind the concept of stuffing. It's wonderful and South Park at its best.
If there's anything that grinds my gears more than a bunch of saps camping outside a store in order to "save money" by purchasing a bunch of useless garbage that they don't need, I can't think of it right now. What's great is that the writing team made this a three-part series that's also a spoof of Game of Thrones - it's followed by two other episodes in the trilogy of Thanksgiving specials.
"A Song of Ass and Fire"
If humanity's proven one thing, it's that people will create allegiances and oppositions for the dumbest reasons ever, and will rip another person's throat out for said allegiances. Obviously there's Democrats vs. Republicans, for tech nerds, it's the Android vs. iOS debate, but for kids, it's the "console wars." South Park lampoons that perfectly in this episode.
"T******s and Dragons"
Part 3 of South Parks's scathing commentary on the idiocy that is Black Friday concludes with the penultimate battle at the mall which decides which console manufacturer will reign supreme, Sony or Microsoft.
One of the earliest South Park episodes (Episode 8 of Season 1) has the boys calling a charity organization that helps hungry and malnourished children, all because they want a free digital sports watch. Unbeknownst to them, in order to get the gift they must agree to adopt a starving child... and that's when a young Ethiopian boy shows up at their door who they affectionately call, Starvin' Marvin.
"Starvin' Marvin in Space"
The 13th episode of the show's third season has Marvin happen upon a spacecraft after wandering from his mission during a lesson where Christian missionaries try to convert villagers under the false promise of free food. Marvin goes inside the ship and accidentally pilots it, which captures the interest of the CIA... who reach out to the boys because they previously housed the young man.
"Helen Keller! The Musical"
I feel like I'm going to hell just writing the description of this episode... but here goes. Cartman is on power trip while directing a special school Thanksgiving production of The Miracle Worker to show up the kindergartners with their competing play. Eric has the idea of replacing Helen Keller's dog with a turkey that performs tricks. Oh and Helen is played by Timmy.
So if you're wondering what you should do for this Thanksgiving, maybe binge these classic episodes to help get you over your turkey-induced coma?