Blame Canada!: South Park and Contemporary Culture / Edition 1

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Now running into its tenth season, South Park has still not "jumped the shark". Satirically edgier than The Simpsons, South Park responds immediately to cultural controversies: four days after Saddam Hussein's capture, an episode lampooned it, and the show has no fear in tackling subjects as divisive and outlandish as Terry Schiavo, The Passion of the Christ, Tom Cruise's alleged homosexuality, and Michael Jackson. Its mixture of iconoclasm, cultural referents, and intertextuality makes it the perfect lens through which to examine contemporary popular culture in America - and television's role in the creation of that culture.

Blame Canada! is a smart, readable book that will appeal to the show's many fans, placing the show in a tradition of fearless and often foul-mouthed satire dating back as far as Rabelais.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780826417312
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
  • Publication date: 3/30/2007
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 6.01 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.83 (d)

Meet the Author

Toni Johnson-Woods is President of the Pop Culture Association of Australia (PopCANNZ) and Senior Lecturer in the English, Media Studies and Art History School at the University of Queensland.

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Table of Contents

Author's Note — Chewbacca Defence

Introduction - Yesterday's future is today

Section I - Oh My God

1. Who cares about a guy that makes beer?: History

2. Towelie Ban: In the Media

3. Trapper Keeper: Internet &Fandom

4. Phase 1 Collect Underpants: Marketing

Section 2 You Killed Kenny!

I — South Park — A jihad on Family Guy

5. Warping Fragile Little Minds: The Show

6. Ending Fart Sequence: Humour

7. Barnaby Jones as Cultural Text: Intertextuality

8. Token, Give me a Sweet Bass Line: Music

II The South Park World — Only Stupid People

9. Pissant American Town : The Community

10. Kick the Baby: The Characters

11. Teaching Children to Despise Paris Hilton: The Celebrities

III Issues — Respect My Authoritay

12. Democrats Piss Me Off: Politics

13. When it comes to a spelling bee, always bet on a Jew — or Black People in China: Stereotyping

14. Blessed Art Thou: Religion

15. South Park is Totally Gay: Gender

16. No, Kitty, That's My Pot Pie: Food and Drink

Conclusion — You Know, I've Learned Something Today

Select Bibliography

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 12, 2007

    'Not Just A Town But A State Of Mind'

    `Blame Canada: South Park and Contemporary Culture¿ Toni Johnson-Woods Reviewed by Rachael Ryan ¿South Park is not a town, it¿s a state of mind¿¿ One of the most recognisable television series of all time, South Park¿s effect on contemporary culture is phenomenal. In Blame Canada, Toni Johnson-Woods explores the impact this irreverent and iconoclastic animated series has on all facets of culture from language, toys and music, to consumer products such as food. The author¿s exploration of these topics and South Park¿s religious and political disillusionment is thorough and highly engaging. For the general reader, the section on web and merchandise statistics can be slow-going, but it is well worth persevering for the unknown facts and interviews with the creators, Trey Parker and Matt Stone. For the scholar, Blame Canada is easy to navigate with detailed reference points for further investigation. If you¿re curious as to the origins and development of South Park, Johnson-Woods provides an accessible account of the series, from its beginnings to the present. Hardcore fans who enjoy musing on the more humorous moments of the series will take pleasure from the quotes that accompany the topics. Overall, Blame Canada is a conversational trip into a phenomenon that should engage anyone who is interested with popular trends in today¿s media.

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