Scientology Park

Jesus Kitty says: Instead of picking your nose, why not donate toys to little children?

Long after the couch-jumping climax of its popularity earlier this year, Matt Stone and Trey Parker finally preyed on Scientology in a surprisingly tepid episode of “South Park.”

Could they have been apprehensive about being sued? At the end of the episode, they list every credit as either John or Jane Smith. But it’s hard to imagine the boys who have treated the world to graphic puppet sex and who have portrayed Mel Gibson as a masochistic, bat-nuts freak in “The Passion of the Jew” running scared.

Maybe the episode was delayed because they worried it might offend Scientologist Isaac Hayes, the voice of Chef, so much that he’d never sling Salisbury steak or sing a dirty ditty for them again.

Most likely, they waited out of simple fear that whatever plot they mustered couldn’t be any weirder than the religion itself. They were right. The funniest moments of the show were the straightforward explanations of Scientology‘s thetans, E-meters, the evil Xenu and so on. The rest was predictable.

After an impressive E-meter reading, a leading Scientologist hails Stan as the second coming of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard and urges him to write some more mythology to keep the cash flowing into the faith’s coffers.

Meanwhile, an animated Tom Cruise (shown in full cartoon form, as opposed to the much more amusing human-head-on-cartoon-body form granted to David Hasselhoff and Saddam Hussein) asks Stan/Hubbard how he likes his acting.

When Stan replies that it’s OK, but not as good as the guy in “Napoleon Dynamite,” the forlorn Cruise hides in the closet. He’s eventually joined by John Travolta and R. Kelly, who, before retreating, was providing hilarious news coverage of the events in the style of his tedious operatic composition, “In the Closet.”

Countless “Tom Cruise won’t come out of the closet” jokes ensue. In the end, Stan, unable to stomach the scam, tells his followers that he’s a fake and that their religion is too.

Not exactly a “South Park” classic.

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(Listed if other than Religion News Blog, or if not shown above)
The Courier-Journal, USA
Nov. 19, 2005
Tamara Ikenberg

Religion News Blog posted this on Saturday November 19, 2005.
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