Poor Little Leopold Butters Stotch and The Kids of South Park

A Not So Complex Analysis

Hello and welcome to this look back at the characters we have come to know and love over the past 14 years of South Park. Wow, has it really been that long?

First a little introduction to those who might not be so familiar with South Park. It was created by Trey Parker and Matt Stone, developed from 2 short animated films they made in 1992 and 1995. The Spirit of Christmas became one of the Internet's first "viral videos" which no doubt helped South Park to become one of the worlds best known cultural phenomenons.

The show as we know it now made it's debut in 1997, and the cartoon world would never be the same again. Renowned and criticized the world over, South Park has divided opinions but has never shied away from controversial issues such as religion, child abuse, obesity and racism.

I have always wanted to look a little more into the characters, what makes them "tick," was there hidden depth to them or are they just single dimensional fart gags. The characters are not presented here in any kind of order of favoritism, I will leave it up to you to decide your favorites.

A word of warning, it's impossible to talk about South Park and it's wonderful characters without a little adult humor, language and themes. If you are easily offended, don't read on. I have kept it to a minimum, but the video links may not be so "civilized!"

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Leopold Butters Stotch

Leopold "Butters" Stotch voiced by Matt Stone.

Poor little Butters. Born on 9/11, he is often the most abused character in the show, even by his parents who are always threatening to ground him. He is the most childlike of the boys, yet the most sexually mature. Perpetually anxious, he is always rubbing his hands together in a nervous way. He has shot people, in the balls no less, killed multiple people with his tap dancing shoes, nearly drowned when his mother tried to kill him (in Butters' Very Own Episiode) and tried to re-build society after an alledged meterorite crash (Casa Bonita). After Kenny's death, Butters spent most of series 6 trying his best to replace him, but as the boys reminded him time after time, he just wasn't Kenny.

Butters does get the chance to fight back occasionally. He has a secret alter ego in Professor Chaos, and has had several nefarious plots to cause total choas foiled. He also got to fart on Cartman.oiced by Matt Stone.

Poor little Butters. Born on 9/11, he is often the most abused character in the show, even by his parents who are always threatening to ground him. He is the most childlike of the boys, yet the most sexually mature. Perpetually anxious, he is always rubbing his hands together in a nervous way. He has shot people, in the balls no less, killed multiple people with his tap dancing shoes, nearly drowned when his mother tried to kill him (in Butters' Very Own Episiode) and tried to re-build society after an alledged meterorite crash (Casa Bonita). After Kenny's death, Butters spent most of series 6 trying his best to replace him, but as the boys reminded him time after time, he just wasn't Kenny.

Butters does get the chance to fight back occasionally. He has a secret alter ego in Professor Chaos, and has had several nefarious plots to cause total choas foiled. He also got to fart on Cartman.

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Kyle Broflovski

 Voiced by Matt Stone

Kyle is generally speaking, a good boy. In fact, he is so good his parents didn't bother to hire a future self to scare him onto a better future (no, really)!!

His jewish family have given him a fairly strict set of moral guidelines, even if his father's moral judgement if ofter flawed (Sexual Harassment Panda). His family originally come from New jersey, something they have all taken great care to hide since moving to South Park.

He is one of the more complex characters in my opinion, having been occused of Fecophilia (Mr. Hankey, the Christmas Poo) and was even institutionalised for it. He has suffered several major crisis of faith, mostly due to a certain Eric Cartman, and was transformed into a tall balck basketball player because "jews don't play basketball."

His relationship with Cartman is confrontational to say the least, and the 2 have fought over religion constantly, and more worryingly, Family Guy. Cartman has received 2 bloody noses that I can remember, yet somehow they remain friends (kind of). It is worth noting that Kyle has a fine singing voice, and gets some of the best songs in the show. He is not a stereotype, as he says repeatedly.

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Eric Cartman

Voiced by Trey Parker

Where on earth do you begin with Eric Theodore Cartman? Born to a mother thought to be a hermaphrodite, but who ended up just being a slut on the cover of "Crack Whore Magazine." He is in my opinion extremely intelligent but uses it to further his racist agendas. No one is off limits here, Jews, Muslims, Christians, poor people, people with red hair and freckles, the list is almost without end.

He is a fat, nasty, biggoted, racist, antí-semitic, greedy, mean tempered, spoilt little bastard! The strange thing is, all of these terrible qualities make him just about the shows most popular character. Why is this? Do people really think he is cool?

He sums it up best himself in the episode Election Day
"You need people like me so you can point your f****ing finger and say "That's the bad guy!""

But is Cartman really evil? He certainly is amoral, insofar as he just doesn't know the difference between right and wrong. This is due to his upbringing by the aforementioned crack whore who so spectacularly failed to give him any boundaries.

One more thing that defines him is money. Cartman always has a get rich scheme brewing. A warning to anyone trying to scam him, he once fed Scott Tenorman his parents for trying just such a thing.

Oh, by the way, he also HATES hipped, loves Mel Gibson (to the point of actually praying to him) and hates Kyle, going as far as to give him Aids just for the fun of it.

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Kenny McCormick

Voiced by (if you can call it that) Matt Stone

Summed up in one sentance, poor little white trash. But he is more than that. Just recently we found out that despite dieing almost every episode he is in, he can never really die. His friends never remember the death, but it turns out that his mom and dad have a ritual associated with his re-birth every time it happens. This has finally been revealed to us in a touching scene in one of the "Coon and Friends" episodes in season 14, Mysterion Rises.

He started off as a pretty one dimensional character, the first 5 seasons saw him do little other than die in horribly amusing ways, whilst one of the other 3 original boys, usually Stan and occasionally Kyle shouted "Oh my God! You killed Kenny, you bastards!" This soon wore thin for many and he was killed off for good in season 5. He did not appear for most of season 6, allowing Butters to bask in the limelight for a short while.

Since coming back he has featured more heavily in storylines, had a girlfriend, shown himself to be very sexually aware, and has provided many opportunities for the others to compare themselves to him, making them feel better that no matter how bad life is, at least they're not as poor as Kenny and his family.

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Stan Marsh

Voiced by Trey Parker¨

The hero of the group, often finishing off episodes with "I've learnt something today." He seems to instinctively distrust adults, usually with good reason. If Kyle is the logical thinker, Stan wears his heart on his sleeve, often championing causes like saving veale calves and whales, even putting his own body on the line repeatedly.

He is the only boy to have had a long term girlfriend, Wendy Testaburger, despite throwing up in her face when she talks to him. Thankfully for him, this happens far less now!

For me, Stan represents a normal western democratic kid, and as such I find him much less interesting than the other kids. Oh, he was once the head of the Church of Scientology, but gave it up as he doesn't like lying to people.

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Comments 4 comments

kittythedreamer profile image

kittythedreamer 5 years ago from the Ether

can't help it, but butters is my favorite! he always says the most obvious things but they tend to be hilarious. great hub, nice to meet another south park fan. :)


Zakmoonbeam profile image

Zakmoonbeam 5 years ago from Parts Unknown Author

Thanks for dropping by and reading :) Yup, butters is our family fave as well, I just love his optimism!


LuisEGonzalez profile image

LuisEGonzalez 5 years ago from Miami, Florida

Funny and a good read, It's funny how there's even a history behind these characters.


Zakmoonbeam profile image

Zakmoonbeam 5 years ago from Parts Unknown Author

Thanks for reading Luis, as it turns out, many of the characters are based on family members and kids they grew up with, which gives them even more depth.

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