Defending the First Three Seasons of South Park

South Park started its 15th season on Wednesday night, continuing its great run of irreverent comedy.  Rumor has it that next season might be its last.  If so, it will be dearly missed.  I've been watching the show since the very beginning and continue to marvel at its satirical wit and sharp social commentary beneath all of its crude jokes.  I was surprised, however, to read recent comments by the animated series' creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone disrespect their own creation by trashing the first three seasons. 

Maybe their brush with legit theater greatness thanks to their Tony Award-winning musical The Book of Mormon has made them feel a bit more high-brow.  In an interview they claimed to be embarrassed by their early efforts and didn't consider them to be very funny.  I wholeheartedly disagree.

Early South Park had some truly memorable episodes that rank right up there with some of the finest from later years.  Here are my personal favorites:

Season One

"Pinkeye"

"Damien"

"Starvin' Marvin"

"Mr. Hankey the Christmas Poo"

"Mecha-Streisand"

Season Two

"City on the Edge of Forever (Flashbacks)"

"Summer Sucks"

"Chef's Chocolate Salty Balls"

Season Three

"Rainforest Shmainforest"

"Are You There, God?  It's Me, Jesus"

The last time I wrote about South Park was in commemoration of its 200th episode.  I'm glad to see it continue to bring us more laughs and satire.  Parker and Stone should have nothing to regret about the early years.  That first batch of episodes still holds up.

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