Hooked on Monkey Fonics
Cartman's mom buys him a study aid called Hooked on Monkey Fonics. It comes with an actual monkey, which taps out a beat on a tiny set of drums and makes learning to spell easier. Cartman figures the monkey makes him a shoo-in to win The 15th Annual South Park Spelling Bee Finals. But on the big day the monkey, instead of playing his drums, begins masturbating furiously. Cartman, flustered, misspells "chair" as "chare."
The spelling bee championship is, to Kyle's amazement, shared by two home-schooled kids, Mark and Rebecca. Mark becomes fascinated with the bizarre interactions of the public school kids, while Kyle becomes infatuated with Rebecca. Mark enrolls at South Park Elementary, where he's relentlessly ripped on by his classmates. Meanwhile Kyle pursues Rebecca, asking her to attend the South Park Bay of Pigs Memorial Dance. She agrees -- and kisses him to boot.
Unfortunately Rebecca's first kiss has some undesired effects. She shows up at the dance dressed like a hooker and kisses every boy she sees. Mark, enraged, beats Kyle to a pulp -- giving him instant "street cred" with the other kids, who suddenly accept him. Mark realizes that keeping him and his sister from the "real" world of public school turned his sister into a whore, and him (almost) into a social cripple.
What I Learned Today
"Public schools may be a bit lacking in education, but it's the main place where children learn all of their social skills. You can't teach a child social skills. They have to learn them themselves. And the only place to do that is on the playground and the cafeteria and so on."
- "If your monkey arrived in the box dead, call 1-800-555-4500 to get a new monkey." (Hooked on Monkey Fonics Instructional Tape)
- "All right children, let's just try to pretend there isn't a little boy in a huge plastic hamster bubble here and go on with our studies." Herbert Garrison
- "Oh God, that kid's gonna last about five seconds out on the playground." Stan
- "Screw you guys, I'm gonna be home schooled." Cartman
- "No fonics monkey! That's a bad fonics monkey!" Cartman
- "You bitch! I'm gonna whip your bitch ass!" Mark Cotswolds
- "Put your hand down, cream puff." Herbert Garrison
- "Please hit me." Pip Pirrup
- "You made my sister into a slut!! I'll kill you!!" Mark Cotswolds
Kenny, killed by Fonics Monkey in a fight over a cupcake.
Kyle picks up a guitar and sings his heartfelt, acoustic song "Rebecca" outside of his love's window.
Behind The Scenes
Where Did The Idea Come From
Matt and Trey have a mutual friend who home schooled his kids, so this seemed like a perfect opportunity to "investigate" the issue. Also they'd seen a spelling bee on TV and thought the kids (most of whom were home-schooled) seemed seriously stunted. Matt thinks this episode sums up South Park's attitude toward children. Most people see them as kind little creatures, but "We just view kids as just evil little bastards."
Controversy Over Butters' 1st Kiss
10 years later, Rebecca's quick kiss on Butters would create quite a bit of fan controversy. In the episode "Butters' Bottom Bitch", the boys rip on Butters for "never having kissed a girl", which then acts as a catalyst for him to pay Sally Darson for his first kiss (and later, become a pimp). Just goes to show... what happens at the Bay of Pigs Memorial Dance, stays at the Bay of Pigs Memorial Dance.
Pop Culture References
- The encounter between Kyle and Rebecca in her father's garden is a parody of the Star Trek episode "The Gamesters of Triskelion", in which Captain Kirk sweet talks an alien woman.
- Hooked on Monkey Fonics is a clear parody of the learn-to-read series "Hooked on Phonics", which gained popularity in the 90s.
- Heavy metal icon Ronnie James Dio, who apparently has fallen so far down the food chain that he's hired to play at the South Park Bay of Pigs Memorial Dance, where he serves up his anthem "Holy Diver".
- When Mark rolls into Garrison's class in his hamster ball, Cartman says "Dude, what's wrong with you? Do you have some kind of John Travolta disease?"
- During the school dance, an instrumental version of Chef's song "Stinky Britches" briefly plays. It can also be heard in the background of "Two Guys Naked in a Hot Tub".
- The word Kyle has to spell in the Spelling Bee Finals is "Kroxldyphivc", which is not an actual word.
- This episode features Kyle's first crush, and his second kiss. It's quite a dramatic change from his first smooch with Bebe in "Clubhouses", after which he runs away screaming.
Flag of Slovenia
Rebecca has a flag of Slovenia on the back of her bedroom door.
- e1 Rainforest Shmainforest
- e2 Spontaneous Combustion
- e3 The Succubus
- e4 Tweek vs. Craig
- e5 Jakovasaurs
- e6 Sexual Harassment Panda
- e7 Cat Orgy
- e8 Two Guys Naked in a Hot Tub
- e9 Jewbilee
- e10 Chinpoko Mon
- e11 Starvin' Marvin in Space
- e12 Korn's Groovy Pirate Ghost Mystery
- e13 Hooked on Monkey Fonics
- e14 The Red Badge of Gayness
- e15 Mr. Hankey's Christmas Classics
- e16 Are You There, God? It's Me, Jesus
- e17 World Wide Recorder Concert