South Park has been well-known for over a decade for satirizing pop culture in its own unique and pointed way - but there have been at least a couple times when they miss the mark. Not too surprising, given each episode is produced in about 6 days. Still, they hit so often that when they miss, it stands out. Here's a few times that it wasn't even clear whether they were familiar with the thing they were making fun of.

 

1. 'Game of Thrones' Nudity

  3 Times South Park Didnt Even Understand What They Were Parodying

Over the course of three episodes ("Black Friday" / "A Song of Ass and Fire" / "Titties and Dragons"), South Park took on Game of Thrones, through the lens of the Console War between Xbox and Playstation. And throughout the whole thing, there were constant references to the nudity in Game of Thrones - but not the female nudity, but the male nudity ("Wieners" specifically).

 

 

The thing is - Game of Thrones is sorta renowned for having wildly disproportionate amount of female nudity compared to male nudity. The only wieners seen on the show belong to Hodor (and...not in much of a sexual way), Theon (at one point sexual, then later...less sexual), the guy who tried to poison Daenerys (extremely non-sexual), and one of Craster's sons (VERY EXTREMELY NON-SEXUAL). Whereas the show constantly inundates you with all variety of female nudity and almost always in a sexual manner.

And really, they're almost at a point where more wieners have been CUT OFF in the show than shown to the audience.



2. The George Lucas / Steven Spielberg Relationship

  3 Times South Park Didnt Even Understand What They Were Parodying

In the episode "Free Hat", South Park reacted to Steven Spielberg's decision to re-dress the kids in E.T. as hippies instead of terrorists, and replace the guns with walkie-talkies. In the episode, Steven Spielberg is portrayed as a history-rewriting madman obsessed with altering his previous works, while poor George Lucas is his bullied subservient sidekick.

 

The problem is - everything was pretty much the exact opposite. George Lucas more or less pioneered the art of going back and futzing with previous works - most famously with the Special Editions of the original Star Wars trilogy back in the 90's (and continuously since then), and has gone to great lengths to ensure the original versions of the trilogy are difficult to procure. While Spielberg did allow for E.T. to be toyed around with, the re-release also included the original 1982 cut - and that's the version Spielberg recommends people watch. In an interview with Ain't It Cool News, Spielberg said:

 

"There's going to be no more digital enhancements or digital additions to anything based on any film I direct.... When people ask me which E.T. they should look at, I always tell them to look at the original 1982 E.T.If you notice, when we did put out E.T. we put out two E.T.s. We put out the digitally enhanced version with the additional scenes and for no extra money, in the same package, we put out the original '82 version. I always tell people to go back to the '82 version."

 

South Park revisited them in "The China Problem," which depicted Lucas and Spielberg raping Indiana Jones in light of Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull. To be fair, it is definitely not a good movie, and it is unquestionably made with the approval of Steven Spielberg. But a few things should be known:

  • George Lucas wrote the story.

  • Spielberg spent about 20 years telling Lucas he didn't want to make an Indiana Jones movie about aliens before giving up and just conceding defeat

  • Frank Darabont (of The Shawshank Redemption and The Green Mile) wrote a draft that Spielberg loved - but Lucas didn't like.

Basically, don't rip on Spielberg as the one who likes to mess with original versions and ruin Indiana Jones. I mean, he definitely did both those things, but Lucas did them WAY harder.



3. Inception

  3 Times South Park Didnt Even Understand What They Were Parodying

In Insheeption, there's a scene that copies a CollegeHumor sketch ("Inception Characters Don't Understand Inception") quiiiiiiiiite a bit. As in, there are lines literally lifted from the sketch in their entirety.





 

In case you think it might just be a coincidence, Matt Stone came out and admitted they had watched the sketch as a reference point since they didn't have a copy of the film. Which...is not the greatest answer. They claimed they thought the joke of the sketch was that the characters were quoting actual lines from the movie, which - if you watched the sketch - is an insane thing to think.


The episode as a whole does a reasonably good job at making fun of Inception, but the fact that they lifted so much from an internet comedy sketch (as a "reference point")  brings into question if they even had seen the thing they were parodying, or whether they saw a bunch of promotional material and went Googling for the rest.