South Park

Common Sense Media says

Outrageous, shocking humor carries a message.





What parents need to know

Positive messages

The show uses parody and gross-out humor to address semi-serious issues. Stereotypes frequent. 

Positive role models

No one is intended to be a role model. The fourth graders swear, are egotistical, and make iffy choices; adults are equally flawed. Chef is a mentor, though not perfect. 


Over-the-top cartoon violence is more gross than scary. The same character dies in almost every episode, often brutally. 


Sexual innuendo frequent; endless jokes about hermaphrodites, homosexuality, promiscuity, and pedophilia. Lots of bare butts.


"Hell," "damn," "crap," "s--t." Racist, homophobic, and antireligious slurs frequent. 


Parodies products such as iPads and other brands, including Chipotle and Starbucks. 

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Drug use (illegal and prescription) and alcohol are sometimes portrayed in a negative light.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that South Park is an animated satirical series that isn't meant for young kids. There are lots of mature themes, swearing, over-the-top cartoon violence, potty humor, and innuendo. People of every race, class, gender, religion, profession, and credo are parodied, and racial and religious slurs, stereotypes, and other politically incorrect content is frequently used to offer social commentary. One of the main characters dies in almost every episode. (Note: Episodes aired in syndication have been edited for content to meet network broadcasting standards.)

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

Brought to you by gross-out impresarios Matt Stone and Trey Parker, SOUTH PARK is an animated show featuring the bizarre exploits of four foul-mouthed Colorado elementary school children. Cartman is obnoxious, racist, anti-Semitic, spoiled, and selfish; Stan is earnest and afraid of girls (especially Wendy Testaberger, whose mere presence provokes vomit); Kyle is Jewish and confused about his identity, which isn't helped by Cartman's constant insults; and Kenny (R.I.P.) is mysteriously killed off in almost every episode under dubious circumstances. Insanity (and inanity) prevails in the boys' small mountain town as it's constantly overcome by strange events involving celebrities, the supernatural, and the just plain weird. Cows are abducted by aliens, snowmen go on killing sprees, and a piece of excrement teaches kids about the spirit of Christmas.

Is it any good?


Shocking, offensive, and hilarious, South Park continues to undermine authority with its creative and insightful critiques of the media, politics, and celebrity hype. Though not without its controversy, it offers a unique way of underscoring the hypocrisy of political correctness. 

The irreverent series requires a certain level of sophistication to understand its essential message. Granted, the show's point gets occasionally muddled in its outrageousness. But for the most part, later installments are as fresh as they were in the show's first few years.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the sharp satire that's buried beneath the series' crass jokes. What points are the creators trying to make? Does the show's over-the-top content detract from those points or help make them?

  • This show is considered controversial by many people/groups. Do you agree? What other movies/shows fall into a similar category?

TV details

Cast:Isaac Hayes, Matt Stone, Trey Parker
Networks:Comedy Central, UPN
Topics:Friendship, Misfits and underdogs
TV rating:TV-MA
Available on:DVD, Streaming

This review of South Park was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Kid, 11 years old May 1, 2010

Best show on Tv

OK. Everybody out there thinks that South Park is so horrible and stuff. In my opinion South Park is one of the best shows on TV. It makes fun of everything and it has some great points and brings up some great topics. The first time I saw it was when I was 8. You see everyone in America thinks that if you heard the word "sex" before you're 15 you'll end up a prostitute drug addict. Not true. This show has some great jokes and in most episodes there is some kind og moral. Trust me. I am a student in an elementary school and all of my friends there know perfectly well what sex is. A lot of kids must say f*ck an hundred times an day. So compared to what kids hear in schools, this so isn't that bad.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Great messages
Parent of a 15 year old Written byPumpkin pie3 November 23, 2009

South park

I am a Christian dad of a 12 year old boy and as long as you show your kids that they are not role models then I don't see anyharm in letting my kid watch it but I told him that if he starts acting like them then it's gone but it hasent effected him so maybe this wiill help you try to make a decision of your kids want to watch it
What other families should know
Great messages
Parent of a 14 year old Written byMr. Boxbox September 23, 2009
great show. content can range from a few swear words to explicit graphic raunchy humor. it really depends what episode you are watching.
What other families should know
Too much sex


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