DAVID BIANCULLI

Founder / Editor

ERIC GOULD

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JONATHAN STORM

 
 
 
 
 
1997: Comedy Central Introduces 'South Park'
August 13, 2017  | By TV WW
 
On this day in 1997, Comedy Central introduced four unforgettable third-graders: Stan, Cartman, Kyle and Kenny, from a snowy Colorado mountain town called South Park. 

The fledgling cable channel had an immediate hit with South Park, despite the fact that many of the nation's cable systems were not carrying Comedy Central when the show debuted. (That changed rather quickly, thanks largely to viewers demanding to watch South Park.)

Created by Trey Parker and Matt Stone, the animated show is known for its foul language, dark humor, and social satire, and isn't intended for children. One aspect of the show that makes it unique is that episodes are written and animated in the week prior to air, which allows the South Park team to build episodes around or include references to current events.

Full episodes can be viewed online on the South Park Studios website.
 
 
 
 
 
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Good news, TVWW readers: David’s new book from Doubleday, The Platinum Age of Television: From I Love Lucy to The Walking Dead, How TV Became Terrific is available on Amazon for $20. (Paperback will be available September 5th, here.)

Doubleday says: “Darwin had his theory of evolution, and David Bianculli has his. Bianculli's theory has to do with the concept of quality television: what it is and, crucially, how it got that way."

"The Platinum Age of Television is an effusive guidebook that plots the path from the 1950s’ Golden Age to today’s era of quality TV. For instance, animation evolved from Rocky and His Friends to South Park; variety shows moved from The Ed Sullivan Show to Saturday Night Live; and family sitcoms grew from I Love Lucy to Modern Family. A high point is the author’s interviews with Carl Reiner, Mel Brooks, Norman Lear, Bob Newhart, Matt Groening, Larry David, Amy Schumer and many others...Bianculli has written a highly readable history." —The Washington Post

 

This Day in TV History