South Park roared back with a new episode called “Poor and Stupid,” the cartoon’s take on NASCAR culture. Or rather, Cartman’s take on the sport. The round brat yearned to be a NASCAR driver but thought he wasn’t “poor and stupid enough.” He gave away what little money he had and tried to make himself dumber by watching a marathon of Two and a Half Men.

Still not feeling stupid enough, he noticed a commercial for Vagisil, which listed among its possible side effects “short-term memory loss.” Inspired, Cartman ran to a drug store and consumed enough of the stuff to “kill every brain cell” he possessed. The ensuing publicity for the product moved the company’s CEO to give Cartman a Vagisil-sponsored car in the next NASCAR race.

The half-hour was fairly anodyne — after all, it was Cartman who was the idiot; the cartoon versions of real drivers such as Jimmie Johnson and Danica Patrick were well-spoken. Cartman was the one who went on a Vagisil-fueled rant for the TV cameras, condemning President Obama and higher taxes.

I’m reasonably sure the manufacturers of a certain feminine hygiene product probably weren’t overjoyed at the depiction of their product, but the company got off easy when compared to other objects of South Park satire.

Me, I liked the Two and a Half Men joke best.

Did you watch?

South Park
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