Kyle, Stan, Kenny and Cartman go hunting with Stan's Uncle Jimbo and his one-armed Vietnam war buddy, Ned. Unfortunately, Jimbo's idea of "hunting" is blasting anything that moves. He always shouts, "It's coming right at us!" before firing, because a legal loophole allows the killing of any animal in self-defense.
Stan tries to follow suit, but discovers he can't shoot innocent creatures. The mountain the boys have camped on begins to rumble -- a fact soon noted at the South Park Center for Seismic Activity. It's really a volcano, and it's about to erupt.
That evening around the campfire, Cartman tells the story of Scuzzlebutt, a hideous mutant with a piece of celery for a right hand and Patrick Duffy for a left leg. The creature likes to weave wicker baskets, and to slaughter anyone trespassing on its territory -- which happens to be this very mountain.
Not surprisingly, no one believes him. Infuriated, Cartman puts on a Scuzzlebutt costume and tries to scare his friends. Instead they try to kill him. Stan hopes to redeem himself by shooting the cornered Scuzzlebutt/Cartman, but once again hesitates. His indecision gives Cartman just enough time to squeeze out of his costume and wave off the attack.
Back in town, the South Park citizenry dig a huge trench to divert the lava. Suddenly the mountain erupts. The hunting party flees, only to be stopped at the trench. Suddenly the real Scuzzlebutt appears. He weaves a giant wicker basket and uses it to hoist the group to safety. The lava trench does indeed divert the magma flow -- onto Denver, which is incinerated.
Stan, still trying to impress his uncle, then guns down the obviously peace-loving Scuzzlebutt. Baffled when the adults react with horror, he and the other boys decide hunting sucks and go home to watch TV.
Ned, disgusted by the carnage, vows never to use a gun again and throws down his rifle. It misfires, killing Kenny.
- "I did it! I did it! I finally killed something!" (Stan)
- "My Mom says there's a lot of black people in Africa." (Cartman)
- "It's coming right for us!" (Jimbo)
- "Everyone look away please. Nothing to see here." (Officer Barbrady)
What I Learned Today
"Only now in this late hour do I see the folly of guns. I'll never use a gun again." However Ned soon takes up arms again during the bloody battle against mutant turkeys in "Starvin' Marvin" .
After the lava is safely diverted away from the town, Chef breaks into a funky jam "Hot Lava", surrounded by a plethora of dancing women.
Behind The Scenes
Pop Culture References
South Park's residents view an "educational" film called Lava and You, which tells anyone caught in the path of red-hot molten rock to "duck and cover." This is a reference to the 1951 civil defense film Duck and Cover. When Mayor McDaniels finds out South Park is "totally screwed" by the impending volcanic eruption, she doesn't panic. She puts the warning message out to the right people -- "Inside Edition", "Rescue 911", and "Entertainment Tonight" - as well as her stylist. Ned sings "Koom By Ya" around the campfire. This episode played upon the boom of volcanic disaster movies that came out in 1997, as it was made only months after feature films "Volcano" and "Dante's Peak" were in theaters.
Is it insulting to imply that Patrick Duffy, star of TV's Dallas and Step by Step, might be employed as an appendage by a hideous mutant? If so, then consider him impugned.
In the second-season episode, "City on the Edge of Forever" , an alternate-universe version of Scuzzlebutt uses sports announcer Brent Musburger for a leg. In the Spanish-language version of "Volcano," Duffy is replaced by Ricky Martin. Finally, the Happy Tarts snacks mentioned in this episode are also discussed in the Trey Parker movie Orgazmo. Uncle Jimbo makes Kenny his "honorary nephew", much to the dismay of Stan. The title is short-lived, as Kenny is killed minutes later. What the F -- k Happened to Ned? A hand grenade took off his arm in 'Nam. He lost his voice to throat cancer. This is the first (and so far only) episode that contains no "bleeps."