Thursday, August 07, 2008

South Park and Tucker Max

The whole "Gawker" episode that is currently going down I find rather humorous. As much as I generally hate recommending the message board- check this out. The posts over there explain what's going on. Suffice to say that Tucker is literally giggling with glee about how this "frenzy" is going. Gawker has bought him probably a million dollars of free press and we are AT LEAST 8 months away from release. Boy, Gawker really stuck it to him.

But Tucker's covered that angle. What I'm surprised no one has brought up is a pretty obvious comparison. Who doesn't remember a little show called South Park that stormed onto the scene in 1997. It was called "crude" "smut" and generally stupid upon it's release. (Throw in an article search for South Park circa September 1997). People who watched South Park were considered immature teens, sneaking around their parents for a glimpse at foul mouthed fourth graders. The publicity (largely negative) drove South Park to new heights never before seen at Comedy Central.

Let's fast forward 11 years. Trey Parker and Matt Stone have landed a remarkable deal that rewards them for being the most lucrative show on their network, they are in the process of taking back the digital rights to their episodes and have launched successful feature film careers. What do the critics say now?

So “South Park,” which begins its 12th season in October and has been extended to 15 seasons, is no longer merely the crudely animated, rudely scripted tales of Stan, Kyle, Cartman and Kenny. It is now a studio, a digital hub, a creative powerhouse in its infancy — but with the potential to become the kind of marketing monster that the boys might well find themselves fleeing from, a monster like, say, Mecha-Streisand.
-From the typically liberal elite snobby New York Times

The parallels here are incredible. "Rudely scripted" tales that involve creatives that demand control over their media. We'll see if Tucker is lucky enough to achieve in 4 years what took Trey Parker and Matt Stone 12.


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