A weekend trip to experience the finer points of camping, fishing and blowing animals to smithereens is threatened by an erupting volcano.
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. The rumbling comes from the volcano that will soon 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 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 townspeople 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 but 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.
What I Learned Today
"Only now in this late hour do I see the folly of guns. I'll never use a gun again."
- "I did it! I did it! I finally killed something!" (Stan Marsh)
- "My mom says there's a lot of black people in Africa." (Eric Cartman)
- "Maybe she'll suck my dick." (Kenny McCormick about Cartman's mom)
- "It's coming right for us!" (Jimbo Kern)
- "Everyone look away please. Nothing to see here." (Officer Barbrady)
We get to see Randy Marsh, though he is not revealed to be Stan's dad until "An Elephant Makes Love to a Pig". We also meet Jimbo's war buddy Ned Gerblansky, who has no right arm and uses a voice box.
Behind The Scenes
Where Did The Idea Come From
This episode plays 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. Trey and Matt consider the two films some of the worst ever made.
Pop Culture References
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 television shows -- newsmagazine series Inside Edition, docudrama series Rescue 911 hosted by William Shatner, and celebrity gossip program Entertainment Tonight, as well as her stylist.
Additionally, Ned and Jimbo hope to get on the cover of Guns & Ammo, a real US magazine dedicated to firearms.
Ned sings Christian folk song "Kum ba yah" around the campfire. The song is featured again in "Something Wall-Mart This Way Comes".
Patrick Duffy, star of TV's Dallas and Step by Step, is implied to be employed as an appendage by a hideous mutant.
South Park's residents view an "educational" film called Lava and You, which tells anyone caught in the path of red-hot molten rock should "duck and cover." This is a reference to the 1951 civil defense film Duck and Cover which also suggests to "duck and cover" in case of a nuclear attack.
- In the second-season episode "City on the Edge of Forever (Flashbacks)" an alternate-universe version of Scuzzlebutt uses sports announcer Brent Musburger for a leg.
- In the Spanish-language version of this episode, Duffy is replaced by Ricky Martin. In the Hungarian version, Duffy is replaced by Tom Cruise.
- The Happy Tarts snacks mentioned in this episode are also discussed in Trey and Matt's film 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.
- Ned announces at the end of the episode he'll never use a gun again. However, he later takes up arms during the bloody battle against mutant turkeys in "Starvin' Marvin".
- Mount Evanston is based on the real Mount Evans in Colorado.