November 12, 2004

Review of the South Park Wal-Mart Episode

This episode is a masterful debunking of anti-WM hysteria and pro-WM lore. Here's a short synopsis that includes details you might not want to know about before seeing the episode:

The townspeople spontaneously flood the new WM, purchasing a continuous, tremendous supply of goods day and night. Local stores are put out of business; the entire downtown becomes a slum overnight, WM's power is unstoppable, until the townspeople realize what is happening, and want it out.

Upon confrontation, the WM manager is portrayed as not liking his work at WM. He is fearful of talking, or the WM gods will strike him down. he hangs himself.

The townspeople agree to boycott WM, but everyone shows up anyway. The mystical, evil WM force can't be stopped, so they burn the store down, inflamed by their lack of personal responsibility.

However, the next day WM is back up and running.

The boys go to Bentonville, Arkansas to meet the bigwigs. Cartman is possessed by WM, and tries to stop the others. But they make it to headquarters, meeting the "inventor" of WM.

Before killing himself, the "inventor" tells the boys that "every WM has a heart somewhere near the television department" that needs to be destroyed in order to stop WM.

The boys invade like commandos; however, WM offers great bargains and lowers its prices in order to stop them. In the TV department, WM takes the form of an elderly gentleman, to talk to the boys.

The heart of WM turns out to be a mirror--the consumer--, which the boys break, causing WM to implode and disappear.

Moral: You have to pay more in order to keep a small town. But shopping en masse at small town stores causes them to become big boxes.

Posted by Kevin at 2:53 PM