New South Park Trailer Has Gags, Causes Gagging

By Nathan Grayson on December 8th, 2012 at 3:00 pm.

Even the smiley face on Cartman's hat is staring at you.

Ah, South Park. When it’s got a good head of steam going, it’s marvelously spot-on, but when it steps over the line, it ends up miles off the mark. So naturally, I’m approaching South Park: The Stick of Truth with some trepidation, because it looks exactly like an episode of the show. Granted, with Obsidian at the wheel and years’ worth of development time to make sure every joke lands just so, this one certainly has a far better chance of being consistently strong than an average drop in the series’ ridiculously large bucket. But yes, new footage! There’s cursing and Kenny jokes and Cartman being Cartman and all that good stuff. Go watch.

So yep, Stick of Truth pretty much ticks all the boxes: unabashedly offensive, fairly clever, and – of course – up to its scandalously exposed hindquarters in gross-out humor. I still don’t really have a good sense for how it’ll play, though. Obsidian’s combat/skill work on Alpha Protocol was marked by a mix of admirable ambition and sobering flaws, but – given something a bit simpler in Dungeon Siege III – the result was far more consistently functional. So that’s something, at least. But with so little to go on, it’s pretty much all speculation at this point.

There are definitely poop jokes, though. Thank god for that.

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85 Comments »

  1. Jimbo says:

    I didn’t laugh once.

    • luukdeman111 says:

      Please tell me more about how childish and not funny south park is….

    • golem09 says:

      Me neither.
      But hey, a grade schooler used the word fuck twice. Must be funny, right?

    • noodlecake says:

      You might see it as unfunny and childish… I think most of the rest of us see pretty smart and daring satire.

      • GHudston says:

        It’s understandable. It used to be unfunny and childish and, somehow, has become clever satire.

        I love South Park, but I cringe when they show reruns of old episodes. It’s an entirely different show now.

        • danielgrak says:

          It was always fairly clever, and now South Park fans are sort of divided between those who liked the outright surreal comedy of the earlier episodes and those who prefer the show to be “smart,” whatever that may mean. I still think the show has some pretty funny moments, but I would not be upset if they were to finish the series and start some other kind of TV show or made another film. Most of the earlier episodes make me laugh constantly though.

        • sinister agent says:

          It’s pretty surprising how shitty the first few seriesseseses look compared to middling or later ones. Even with their simple, cheap animation style, they’ve made big improvements. And that’s just the look of it – South Park’s bucked the animated comedy trend (watchable beginning to brilliant middle to awful, embarassing end that should just lie down and die) and instead got better pretty much constantly from its first series to its latest.

          It misses the mark with some episodes, but the majority are good, and a plurality are very witty satire and/or just plain good comedy. Honestly, anyone who thinks it’s nothing but kids swearing is either very imperceptive or hasn’t watched an episode since 1999.

      • InternetBatman says:

        It can be very, very funny. I genuinely laughed harder at free Willzyx than anything else I’ve seen in my life. That doesn’t mean it’s smart. Their satire is hamfisted and usually relies on stereotypes.

        • Answermancer says:

          Oh man, oh man, I know EXACTLY what you’re talking about. You’re talking about the end of that episode right? Right?

          I watched that episode with a friend back when we were in college, and it was a pretty decent episode, good times were had. And then it cut to that last shot, and I swear we both could not stop laughing for a minute straight. I’ve never laughed so hard at one simple gag, for such a long time, certainly not together with another person who couldn’t stop laughing.

          It was amazing.

      • Teovald says:

        I love South Park (even if I fear that Parker & Stone are mostly out of ideas and that it may be time to end the show) but where was the daring satire in that trailer ?

      • LeeTheAgent says:

        Shhh… They’re Family Guy fans, there aren’t enough non sequiturs for them. :P

    • noodlecake says:

      It’s far smarter than any of the other comedy cartoons.

      • sabrage says:

        Archer.

      • iridescence says:

        Damning with faint praise…

        (Torn between my love for Obsidian games and my dislike of South Park as to whether or not I want to play this.)

      • MikoSquiz says:

        It just seems that way if you don’t play close attention. It’s dumb disguised as clever playing dumb. Watching it is like hanging out with a smug, condescending, 14-year-old know-it-all with a sideline in turd-based pranks. Really, the big laughs come in two varieties: “I can’t believe they did that” and “ewww lol gross”.

      • Xardas Kane says:

        The first episode of The Boondocks is smarter than anything South Park has ever made.

      • InternetBatman says:

        It’s not really. Shock humor is not smart. It’s a childish attention-grab.

        • noodlecake says:

          It’s not just shock humour. It makes some pretty good points about society and satirizes them in quite a clever way. I’m assuming you’ve only seen the earlier ones.

    • lurkalisk says:

      I wanted to throw my two cents into the age old “humour is objective and it’s based entirely on my own taste” argument, but then I remembered that such are the worst arguments anyone can ever have, and are nothing but a waste of time.

      Yes, time *I* just wasted.

    • JiminyJickers says:

      Then this game is not for you, quite clearly.

      I like South Park and it’s humour and am quite looking forward to this game being released.

    • Stevostin says:

      There is not such a thing as universal humor. Name the thing that made you laugh the hardest and you’ll find plenty of people here to say “didn’t laugh once”.

      South Park is famous because it’s pretty successful at making a lot of people laugh. Hence it’s a license that is now turned into a video game. What’s reasonable to ask is to make laugh the people who already laugh at the TV show, and for the other to not care at all for a second, because there is no chance at all it suddenly becomes for them.

  2. BockoPower says:

    Here is a link to the whole VGA 2012- http://www.spike.com/netstorage/events/video-game-awards/live/
    The Sounth Park trailer is at the beginning, 5th minute or something.

    • DickSocrates says:

      Not sure how to react to the show itself. Is that what videogames are now? It’s like a scene from the Running Man. Gamers LOVE swearing and violence! WHOOOO!

      • The First Door says:

        It’s quite depressing, isn’t it? Woo, pointless swearing!

      • enobayram says:

        I think this is also an American thing. They seem to like cheering a lot.

        • Deuteronomy says:

          Is that a bad thing? Should they be more like grumpy Europeans?

        • Teovald says:

          I love how pronouncing the word fuck is a taboo for them, going as far as referring to it as the f-bomb but you have this kind of politically correct show with 50 beeps per minutes.
          Because you know, as long as it is beeped, it is not really one of these swear words that is turning our youths into dirty socialists.

          • Eclipse says:

            Are you saying that when they say stuff like “F*beep* you!” the beeped word is “fuck”? Wow, now everything has meaning to me

          • Teovald says:

            @Eclipse : Oh foolish me ! Your innocence is lost now !

        • Phantoon says:

          We also enjoy clapping, and saluting the flag.

      • RedViv says:

        Gamers are all 13-18 straight males, didn’t you get the memo? Seriously. Some people.

        • thecat17 says:

          Keep in mind that this awards show was created by and aired on the Spike TV channel. Which has such riveting and important shows like:

          MANswers: “The ultimate survival guide for men.” that teaches viewers “how to pick up women, how to survive dangerous situations and more.”
          Bar Rescue: “Nightlife expert Jon Taffer travels around the country and employs his expertise to return struggling bars to the cash cows they once were.”
          Jail: “Shot on location in cities across the U.S., Jail follows prison inmates from their initial booking through their first moments behind bars. Each episode captures the harsh and sometimes humorous reality of what happens to criminals after they’re caught.” (italics added by me)
          World’s Wildest Police Videos: “Gathers footage of law enforcement personnel from across the country and around the world as they face the most dangerous pursuits, the most frightening shootouts, and the most extreme lawbreakers to ever challenge police, and put them in their place to keep our streets safe.” (cue Bill Hicks’ infinitely bottomless disgust)

          I’d say Spike really tapped into their audience with this VGA.

      • stupid_mcgee says:

        Have you ever seen an action movie? People, in general, love violence and swearing, but mainly violence. It was a lot more graphic back in the days of the Roman Empire.

        • karmafarm says:

          It’s funny, because what people really seem to like is sex, but for some reason that’s far less acceptable in mainstream media.

    • adonf says:

      I heard this show was bad. I had no idea, no idea!

      • Bhazor says:

        The recent highlight in stupid PR shit was about Super Mario Wii

        “First we had Mario land, then we had Mario World, then we had Mario Galaxy. But now for the first time we are making the leap to the fourth dimension, thats right! Four player Co-Op!”

      • stupid_mcgee says:

        Shit like this is always bad. None of the marketing types know how to really advertise to the “gamer” market, so they just advertise to the 16-21 demographic and hope that works for the rest of gamers, because all gamers are just man-children forever stuck within a juvenile mentality due to arrested development. “I’m a 40 year old man and I still eat hot pockets because I don’t know how to cook and my favorite movie is Jackass! Woo!”

        The truth is, advertising to gamers is really easy. Show what the features are and how it plays. The problem is, that doesn’t fit into how advertising is done today. Modern advertising has completely done away with informational adverts and gone full-tilt towards the beer-commercial technique.

        Back Ops! Jonah Hill! Guns! Robert Downey Jr.! Explosions! Fuck yeah! Black Ops!

        What did you learn about the game to inform your purchasing decision? Nothing. Instead, it plays to base-instinct of, “I just watched something exciting with celebrities that I like. Ergo, the game will be exciting and filled with cool and important people that I like.”

        It’s completely mindless and patronizing, but it actually works very effectively.

        • Aedrill says:

          It does work on people older than 16-21, unfortunately. I’m working with guys aged 30+ and they’re all excited about every single new CoD, they love stuff like this Hitman vs nuns commercial, and they’ll buy everything that has explosions in it. But talk to them about Crusader Kings… Even XCOM was too much for most of them.

          • Phantoon says:

            So you’re saying people have bad taste?

          • Aedrill says:

            I’m saying we’re deluding ourselves when we’re saying that shit like that doesn’t reach older gamers and it’s there only because marketing companies lost touch with reality. It’s working on masses, regardless of age, like it or not.

          • stupid_mcgee says:

            Oh, sure, it will work on certain segments of older people. The target demographic for those kinds of pitches, though, are geared towards a younger audience. Which, I guess, speaks to the notion that a lot of people today aren’t “growing up” like they used to. In other words, people today are getting married later in life, settling into more permanent jobs later in life, and generally moving into that “boring stage” of adulthood at later points than previously. The idea of never letting go of one’s “inner child” has given way to a sort of “Never Never Land” and a Peter Pan kind of syndrome. I know people in their mid-30′s that adamantly state that they “will never grow up.” And those that I know with this view tend to be very immature and childish.

            So, yes, it works on people outside of that demographic, but it says a lot about the level of maturity, self-awareness, and desire (or lack thereof) for intellectual honesty of the recipients.

            I would also argue that there’s just a lot of people who don’t know how to tell a story or properly advertise, and that the consumer base has become highly accustomed to seeing poorly constructed and/or completely inane commercial narratives. There’s some US car commercial where Peter Frampton shows up as a replacement guitarist for some band. It took me forever to figure out he was saying “Welcome to Dale’s Roadhouse,” presumably the name of the dive-bar where he was playing. I kept on thinking that he was saying something relevant to the product or something insightful about it, but he wasn’t. And it would have been made a lot clearer that he was saying “Dale’s Roadhouse” if they had a 2-second shot from the outside showing the facade with a big, neon Dale’s Roadhouse sign. Instead, the opening shot is of a bartender cleaning glasses. That is just one tiny example, but it highlights just how poorly the commercial was cobbled together.

            At the end, isn’t it a bit telling that I can remember Peter Frampton, I can remember the jumbled and mumbled dialogue, but I can’t remember the car that they were advertising? This happens with a lot of commercials. Most advertising is actually quite horrible at being both informing and memorable, so a lot of firms stick with being memorable rather than being informative.

      • PopeRatzo says:

        For those of you in the UK and Europe who don’t enjoy South Park, I want to apologize for the fact that it’s not nearly as sophisticated and intellectually satisfying as say, a Jerry Fucking Lewis movie, or an episode of Mr Bean, but those of us in the colonies need our diversions too, you know. Comedy is more than Benny Hill.

        • bill says:

          I always wondered why Mr Bean and Benny Hill were much more popular in the USA than the Uk, but i guess you are right that they’re pretty similar to Jerry Lewis.

        • tossrStu says:

          Dude, nobody in the UK has given even the remotest of shits about Benny Hill since somewhere around July 1977. You’re the ones obsessed with him, not us! And you’d be hard pushed to find anyone here who really knows Jerry Lewis anyway, let alone like his films.

          Besides, South Park IS ace. We’re all still friends here, right? Let’s not go dumping teabags into the harbour over it.

        • Koozer says:

          Hey, hey, don’t have a go at us just because we only ship over the comedies colonials can understand!

    • Koozer says:

      Look, look.

      I like games. I like Samuel Jackson.

      But…why Samuel, why??

    • hypercrisis says:

      Consoles really have created this bizarre schism, this is nothing like the games i have known and cherished in my lifetime, nor the ones I experience today. Is this really what it has become? Is this the peak of Doritos mountain, or is worse to come? I’m utterly embarassed by this juvenile display.

    • Sparkasaurusmex says:

      Here’s a cam recording of the trailer. At least it’s on youtube. (not that I like youtube, but the viewing software is pretty much the best.

    • The Random One says:

      Thank you for the link. Viewer beware: jump forward to the five-minute mark unless you want Samuel L. Jackson to be introduced as if he was an amalgam of every character he’s ever played in a movie.

  3. Big Murray says:

    We spend years trying to dispel the myth that FPS games are murder simulators training kids how to use guns … and then the VGAs roll out a few actors from The Walking Dead to introduce the award for best shooter as “the games which are training us for the day we need guns”.

    God. Dammit.

    • Skabooga says:

      When you said ‘Walking Dead’, I thought you were referring to the video game. And I thought, “At least the VGA is recognizing video games outside their usual purview, even if they are grossly misusing them.” Then I remembered there was a show. And then there were no redeeming qualities.

      It’s like two steps forward, one step back.

      • Nick says:

        Well, The Walking Dead won game of the year so..

        • Phantoon says:

          In what could be the most unimportant and useless awards for the entire year, yes. They won at the VGAs, which no one sensible takes seriously.

          I cite Call of Duty being proof that there are a lot of people with few sensibilities when it comes to free time.

          • Nick says:

            Yeah, the VGAs are terrible but I was responding to ““At least the VGA is recognizing video games outside their usual purview, even if they are grossly misusing them.””

    • thecat17 says:

      You sure that wasn’t tongue-in-cheek, though? I mean, they are cast members of a zombie apocalypse show. And in a corporate video game awards show, it seems more likely it was supposed to be taken as something funny rather than anything political.

  4. RvLeshrac says:

    Really? We can’t even legally watch a fucking advertisement now?

  5. Meneldil says:

    The *beep* was this?

  6. figvam says:

    Looks like this is the trailer:

  7. Kong says:

    We maim, kill, torture but nobody should be heard saying motherfucker in public media.
    There exist at least two worlds. A real one where we are bad motherfuckers and the other where we are nice and all pansylike.
    I am looking forward to roleplay a nazi. I want to be Eric Cartman.

  8. Potocobe says:

    Anyone who doesn’t get South Park needs to look at how the South Park Movie got made. They deliberately made the movie as offensive as they could as a big “fuck you” to the censors in America and they let it pass. The original idea was a musical/love story.

    • PopeRatzo says:

      The end result was quite a good musical. The creators of South Park have done some excellent work in movie musicals (and stage musicals with The Book of Mormon). Team America: World Police had great songs, as did the South Park movie.

      The television show is not as consistently funny as it once was, but it’s still worth watching.

    • Stickman says:

      The icing on the “fuck you” cake was the title. The MPAA told them “South Park: All Hell Breaks Loose” woudn’t fly because of the word “Hell”, then signed off on “South Park: Bigger, Longer, and Uncut”.

  9. miuqnbsab says:

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  10. piesmagicos says:

    After reading these comments to this i have come to the horrifying and shameful conclusion that gamers are the new hipsters :( It makes complete sense….no matter the game that is displayed everyone is at a rush to proclaim just how much they didnt find it funny/awesome/pretty/fun etc. Then when someone comes out and makes a more eloquent dismissal of said game the one upsmanship begins. I read through half the comments before i started flashing back to seattle coffee houses during the late 90′s. Soon enough people will be buying games that everyone said were awful ironically in order to be cool because they are playing a uncool game before everyone else found it cool. It started with Dikatana when people bought it up a few years ago to play because it was so bad and then bragging about it then debating who hated it more! Its gotten so much worse sense then. Oh whatever kind and loving god that exist help us all.

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