By Andrew Zerman | Staff Writer
South Park was banned in China and removed from all search engines after an episode rankled the Chinese government. Though the show has seen its fair share of controversy, this one seems to continue a conflict between the U.S. and China that had begun in the NBA.
Trey Parker and Matt Stone, the show’s creators, did release an apology on Twitter that was sarcastic in nature. They stated, “Like the NBA, we welcome the Chinese censors into our home and into our hearts. We too love money more than democracy. Xi doesn’t look like Winnie the Pooh at all.” Tune into our 300th episode this Wednesday at 10! Long live the Great Communist Party of China! May this autumn’s sorghum harvest be bountiful! We good now China?”
The episode that provoked criticism was titled “Band in China” In it, Randy Marsh, a regular on the show, gets arrested for drugs in China. His punishment consists of forced labor and education on the Communist Party. He is then forced to read from a card or else face electrocution. He has to say, “I am a proud member of the Communist Party. The Party is more important than the individual.” This was the first point of controversy.
In another scene, Marsh engaged with Winnie the Pooh and Piglet, which resulted in comparisons between China’s president Xi Jinping and Pooh. Winnie the Pooh was then removed from the Internet. Or as Piglet said, “made illegal.”
It is unknown for sure if future episodes will parody this event of the government of China, but this confrontation with the Chinese government gives Stone and Parker new material that they can work off of for use in future episodes in they choose to do so.