The Red Badge of Gayness
As South Park prepares for its annual reenactment of the Battle of Tamarack Hill, friction builds between Cartman, Stan and Kyle. On the day of the reenactment, Cartman arrives dressed as Confederate commander Robert E. Lee. He bets Stan and Kyle (who fight on the Union side) that the South will win the war. If he's right, they have to be his slaves for a month. If he's wrong, he's their slave.
As the day goes on, the Confederate reenactors become progressively more drunk on the event's alcohol sponsor, Jagermen's S'More Flavored Schnapps. Cartman convinces them to beat the Union reenactors for real, which they do.
At the party after the battle, everyone gets drunk on schnapps. Soon Cartman convinces them to start a rampage across North America, capturing city after city -- in spite of the fact that they're only armed with blanks. Kyle and Stan briefly stop the rampage by stealing the alcohol supply, but Cartman manages to secure more. Soon everyone is drunk again and the onslaught continues.
The reenactment troops take Washington, D.C. and force President Bill Clinton to allow the South to form its own nation, effectively "winning" the Civil War. But at the last moment Kyle and Stan, dressed as Abraham Lincoln and Jefferson Davis, reenact the real surrender of the South. The army of drunken pretend soldiers promptly go away.
It seems that Kyle and Stan can now use Cartman as their slave for a month. However, Cartman cleverly points out that since the North still won, slavery is abolished so they have no claim on him. Disappointed, Stan and Kyle blame and insult Bill Clinton.
What I Learned Today
"You've learned that you can't rewrite history. You see, history is forever and everything happens for a reason. Sure, you can try and change the past, but usually you kno--"
Cartman ignores Kyle's speech by walking away to procure more schnapps for his army and continue his campaign to rewrite history.
- "You can't just hit a drum. You have to beat the shit out of it." (Eric Cartman)
- "I say we take Topeka!" (Eric Cartman)
- "Not now Stan, I'm pillaging." (Randy Marsh)
- "Boy, this just keeps getting weirder, doesn't it?" (Bill Clinton)
- "Screw you guys, home." (Eric Cartman)
- "Come, Kenny. Come fight for us and I'll make sure you get lots of plunder and womens." (Eric Cartman)
- "Confederate messenger Butters reporting, sir." (Butters Stotch)
- "Dear guys Words cannot express how much I hate you guys." (Eric Cartman)
- "Get me more S'more Schnapps, I'm gonna be sick!" (Jimbo Kern)
Suzette, the S'more Schnapps spokesmodel.
Just Kenny, killed by a warning flare fired by the National Guard. However a number of innocent townspeople in Topeka, Chattanooga, and Fort Sumter are beaten and bludgeoned without mercy by the approaching Southern army.
Behind The Scenes
When Mary Kay Bergman, who voiced for nearly all of South Park's female characters, died unexpectedly, this episode had to be written to not involve any female characters. Out of respect for Bergman, the South Park staff did not feel like hiring replacements right away. The only female characters to make an appearance this episode are the Jagermen's S'More Schnapps spokesmodel and the schoolteacher in Topeka, both voiced by Trey, and Kenny's mom who doesn't speak.
Where Did The Idea Come From
The episode's title is a play on the Civil War novel The Red Badge of Courage by Stephen Crane.
Matt and Trey noticed people take American Civil War reenactments very seriously, events they personally feel indifferent towards. This episode was also a little bit inspired by the 1993 war film Gettysburg which Matt and Trey panned for being dumb and too long.
Pop Culture References
The alcohol sponsor Jagermen's is a parody of Jägermeister, a well known German brand of herbal liqueur (a sweetened version of schnapps).
Cartman writes a letter to Kenny's mother stating that her son was killed at "Ruby Hills Funland in Chattanooga." This is a reference to a real underground waterfall and tourist attraction in Chattanooga, Tennessee called Ruby Falls.
Cartman blackmails Former President Bill Clinton to declare the Confederacy its own nation by saying, "If you do not meet our demand, we will be forced to show the video tapes we have of you with Marisa Tomei." It works. Marisa Tomei is an actress who rose to international prominence with her role in the 1992 comedy film My Cousin Vinny.
Bill Clinton, whom the boys call a dick at the end.
On TV, the news reporter mentions American singer Courtney Love "was forced to live off her own feces for several days".
- This episode began the change in Cartman's voice, particularly during the bulk of the episode where he speaks using a Southern accent. Trey notes that he couldn't drop the Southern accent afterwards, which helped develop Cartman's current accent.
- When the boys pull off Cartman's fake Civil War beard, his scream of pain is heard on the planet Marklar, which we first see in "Starvin' Marvin in Space".
- Former Vice President Al Gore has a minor role in this episode with a very different appearance. He becomes more significant and is ridiculed in subsequent episodes like "ManBearPig" and "Imaginationland, Episode III".
- After Kenny is killed, Grandpa Marsh says "You bastards!" instead of Kyle.
- 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 Chinpokomon
- 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