Warning: full spoilers for South Park’s 20th season follow!
One of South Park’s greatest strengths is its ability to lampoon pop culture and current events at a speed no other animated sitcom can match. The only downside to that is that the show tends to miss a lot of worthwhile material during those long gaps between new seasons. 2016 will go down in history as one of the most interesting, bizarre and upsetting years ever. South Park may have missed the majority of 2016, but it certainly made up for lost time when it did finally return.
South Park has shown a gradual shift towards more continuity-driven storytelling in recent years. It started small, with characters suddenly referencing the events of the previous week’s episode. Then Season 19 came along, offering a loosely connected, season-long narrative involving political correctness and the town’s efforts to become a more progressive place worthy of Whole Foods. With Season 20, South became more continuity-driven than ever. These episodes didn’t just reference one another; they combined to form one giant saga. It was as if earlier three-part epics like “Imaginationland” or “The Black Friday Trilogy” were stretched into 10 episodes.