Imaginationland: Parker and Stone’s Minor Masterpiece

So, like everything related to television, I’m about a year late on this one. (‘Hey, have you guys seen The Wire?’) I haven’t had a reliable TV since I went to college, so I make do with DVDs and downloads. In general, if I’m going to take the time to watch something, film seems like the more pressing, worthwhile medium. Television, however, is increasingly the more reliable one.

The central conceit of Imaginationland that Trey Parker and Matt Stone brilliantly expanded into a three-part, Emmy-winning mini-series is the oft-heard diagnosis that on September 11th, the terrorists, in addition to the tangible destruction they wrought, ‘bombed our imagination.’ The series depicts this abstraction literally: radical Islamic terrorists breach Imaginationland, the kingdom where all the characters humanity has dreamed up (specifically, characters from popular culture) dwell, and bomb it.

Like all South Park material, there’s some humor on the unfunny side of crude, some clever but ham-fisted political insinuations (Nielsen ranks South Park as having the ‘highest Republican engagement‘ of any cable program), and heaping helpings of irreverence: Jesus sits on the Imaginationland counsel alongside Gandalf and Luke Skywalker. But the series in general, and especially this mini-series, has an extremely high laugh ratio (which I think is an acceptable way to judge comedies), and whatever its shortcomings, to paraphrase Stone and Parker’s take on Mel Gibson, ‘You can say what you want about them, but the sons of a bitch know story structure.’

So enjoy! (If you didn’t already when it aired over a year ago.)

Part 1, Part 2, Part 3. (Approximately 60 minutes total)

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~ by ohkrapp on October 23, 2008.

One Response to “Imaginationland: Parker and Stone’s Minor Masterpiece”

  1. late pass

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