‘South Park: Post COVID’ Skewers Anti-Vaxxers and ‘Woke’ Comedy squib
The pandemic is almost over in South Park: Post COVID. Unfortunately, Trey Parker and Matt Stone’s first Paramount+ made-for-TV movie (“It’s not a movie—it’s made for TV”) is set forty years in the future, in a disease-ravaged America still grappling with the catastrophe. That’s the set-up for what turns out to be the first chapter of a two-part event (the second half drops sometime later this year) that finds the now-adult kids of South Park searching for the origins of our modern plague—and discovering, along the way, that their friendship just might be the most important thing in the world.
An hour-long adventure that finishes with a cliffhanger which will likely be resolved in December, South Park: Post COVID (currently available) begins with a cheery news story about the imminent end of our long global nightmare. The subsequent revelation that this is taking place decades from now is the first of many jabs that Parker and Stone make about our collective inability to get this virus under control, which is also demonstrated by the fact that a few Americans continue to refuse to get vaccinated. In this case, that would be Clyde, a pudgy doofus who tells his former classmates that he hasn’t gotten the jab because he has a shellfish allergy, and that there’s a chance that scientists could contaminate the vaccine in a laboratory if they’ve simultaneously been in close contact with shellfish, thereby begetting… shellfishness.
The more things change, the more they stay the same in South Park: Post COVID, which dispenses the very type of juvenile and topical lunacy that has long been the show’s trademark. That should make it a significant draw for Paramount+, especially given that its incomplete finale demands that fans who want to see the conclusion to its tale maintain their subscriptions for another month—possibly after any free trial has expired. Die-hards will no doubt view that as an easy request to fulfill. Even those who haven’t stayed up to date with the series, however, should get considerable amusement out of Parker and Stone’s latest dose of insanity, which takes pointed aim at the unpleasant reality we’ve all been dealing with since early 2020.