Characters: South Park Elementary School Staff
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Mr./Ms. Herbert/Janet Garrison
"I tell you, there's some crazy stuff going on in this town."The boys' eccentric homeroom teacher throughout most of the series. He used to carry a sarcastic hand puppet with him (two, actually: Mr. Hat and Mr. Twig), but later left them behind. His gender and sexual preferences have been in constant flux.
- Anything That Moves: He's been anything that moves and back again at this point.
- Apathetic Teacher: When he's not busy belittling his students, he basically phones in his job.
- Ax-Crazy: Has tendencies of this.
- Bad Bad Acting: His ventriloquist act...isn't.
- Catchphrase: Occasionally, when he or Mr. Hat is angry:"You go to hell! You go to hell and you die!"
- Character Development: Of all the cast, Garrison's story is one of the most dramatic in the show, and wouldn't be out of place on a soap opera. Over the course of the series, he's gone from being a closeted homosexual, to an outed homosexual, then got a sex change so he was a hetereosexual woman, became a lesbian, and then got another sex change so he's now a hetereosexual man.
- Cloud Cuckoolander: He believes Mr. Hat and Mr. Twig to be sentient beings, for starters. Though eventually, it turns out they are.
- Comedic Sociopathy
- Companion Cube: Mr. Hat and Mr. Twig. Subverted, as they actually are alive.
- Demoted to Extra: Originally the second-most prominent adult on the show, he's now limited to a single line in scenes inside the classroom.
- Depraved Homosexual: He's been a Depraved Homosexual, a Depraved Heterosexual, a Psycho Lesbian... He's a depraved whatever-his-orientation-is-at-the-moment. As Chef puts it:"Children, there's a big difference between gay people and Mr. Garrison."
- Dirty Coward: In "Super Fun Time" he tries to sacrifice some children to save himself from gunmen.Please, don't take me. Take the children, they're worth more for you!
- Dynamic Character
- Evil Counterpart: Is hinted to be one for Big Gay Al. While Al is out and proud, stylish and wears a pink shirt, Mr. Garrison is self-loathing, plainly dressed and wears a green shirt. Mr. Garrison made Stan feel like a wuss for getting beaten by his sister, while Big Gay Al taught Stan that being gay isn't a bad thing. Big Gay Al is kind to animals, while Mr. Garrison rammed a gerbil up Mr. Slave's rectum. Mr. Garrison uses "fag" as a slur against gays, while Big Gay Al wants to reappropriate it to use against Harley riders. Both are mentor figures to the main boys and have had a relationship with Mr. Slave.
- First Law of Gender-Bending: Played straight in the episode where he first gets the male-to-female operation. He changes his mind, but his testicles get destroyed and he is unable to go back to being a man until the Season 12 episode mentioned above. Then subverted in season 12, when he gets another operation to go back.
- Freudian Excuse: Inverted. He has been deeply tormented all his life because his father didn't molest him as a child, thinking it meant that his father didn't love him. Bizarrely, his mom also thinks the same thing.Garrison's Mom: That's not true! Your father loved you! Often!
- Gay Conservative: Despite his ever-changing sexual orientation he is generally depicted as being one of the town's Republicans rather than a Democrat.
- Hair-Trigger Temper: The only adult in South Park as remotely volatile as Eric Cartman.
- Have I Mentioned I Am Heterosexual Today?: He was this way before coming out of the closet.
- It's All About Me: Got a sex-change operation because he wanted to be a woman. Mr Slave was understandably upset as Mr Garrison expected him to just turn straight and accept a change he didn't get a say in.
- Jerkass: Though since his second change in season twelve, this has been toned down somewhat.
- He is, however, incredibly racist.
- Know-Nothing Know-It-All: Whenever he tries to teach children. From the first episode alone: "Christopher Columbus discovered America and was the Indians' best friend. He helped the Indians win their war against Frederick Douglass, and freed the Hebrews from Napoleon, and discovered France." Becomes a Running Gag in later seasons when he tries to teach the children the plots of various popular plays and television shows, for example presenting the plots of Game of Thrones and Les Miserables as real history.
- Pet the Dog: In Best Friends Forever, Mr. Garrison is arrested for trying to bring food and water to Kenny whilst the latter is in hospital.
- Rape as Backstory: Averted, much to his disappointment.
- Sadist Teacher: His emotional imbalances cause him to be this quite often.
- Straw Misogynist:Well I'm sorry, I just don't trust something that bleeds for five days and doesn't die.
- Transparent Closet: For the first few seasons.
- Transsexual: Became a woman in season 9 and back to a man in season 12.
- Turn in Your Badge
- You Are What You Hate: He was quite homophobic in the early seasons before coming to terms with his sexuality.
- Then became homophobic again after becoming a woman... until s/he became a lesbian.
Chef (Jerome McElroy)
"Hello there, children!"
Voiced by: Isaac Hayes (regular voice), Peter Serafinowicz (Darth Chef)The school chef and token minority of the early seasons (Seasons 1-9). The former go-to guy for advice for the boys, which was often dispensed in R-rated songs about making love to women.
- Big Beautiful Man: Women love his chocolate balls even though he's overweight.
- Brainwashed and Crazy: In his final episode.
- Catch Phrase: "Hello there, children!"
- Dropped a Bridge on Him: A massively violent and gory one to boot. Given the falling out between his voice actor and the rest of the staff, it's not at all surprising.
- Reappears in the Video Game, only to die again...and his skin is burnt off.
- Everyone Calls Him Chef
- Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: Along with many other things, such as mutilation.
- Intercourse with You: The subject nearly every time he sings, intentional or not.
- Killed Off for Real: In "The Return of Chef". Or maybe not.
- Longer-Than-Life Sentence: Subverted in "Chef Aid" when Chef sues Capitalist Records for plagiarism and is found guilty of harassing a big company. The judge declares that Chef must either pay two million dollars or serve eight million years in prison. However, when someone informs the judge that nobody can be forced to serve more than four years for what Chef is being sentenced for, the judge does comply and says that Chef will serve four years in prison if he doesn't pay.
- Loveable Sex Maniac
- Magical Negro: In fact, while he was on the show he seemed to be the only adult with any kind of common sense.
Chef: Hello there, children!Stan: Chef! What would a priest want to stick up my butt?Chef: ...g'bye!
- Subverted when he sometimes decides that helping the boys would be more trouble than it's worth (in "Simpsons Already Did It", for example, he starts singing a song when he realizes the boys just told him that they killed their teacher and the autopsy found their "sea men" in her stomach, and he starts preparing to send them to Thailand instead). And when Chef goes crazy, he really goes crazy.
- In the episode "Red Hot Catholic Love", when the confused boys asked Chef why and what the priest want to put something on their butts, he walks away.
Chef: Dag-nabbit, children! How come every time you come in here you've got to be asking me questions I shouldn't be answering!? "Chef, what's a clitoris? What's a lesbian, Chef? How come they call it a rim job Chef?!" For once, can't you kids come in here and say "Hey Chef, nice day isn't it?!"
- Similarly, when they ask him what a prostitute is in "Fat Camp" he gets angry:
- Mentor Occupational Hazard: Although this was really just a case of Real Life Writes the Plot.
- N-Word Privileges: Subverted. He calls the boys "crackers."
- Of course, the boys don't even know what it means. (Although Cartman does later on, as he says to Stan: "Token is gonna want to kick your cracker teeth in!)
- Only Sane Man: At least among the other adults.
- Until his final episode, he was brainwashed into becoming a child molester.
- Pluralses: While at the proctologist, he at one point tells Kyle that a proctologist is, "a doctor that specializes in your asshole."
- Really Gets Around: He has alot of sex with alot of women.
- Reasonable Authority Figure
- Take Our Word for It: Whenever the children ask about something he really doesn't want to tell them.
- Token Minority: The only non-white adult in the town in the early seasons.
- Verbal Tic: Always greets the kids with "Hello there, children.", even if there's only one of them.
- His father has also been heard using "children" when referring to one child. Although it was Cartman, so it could have been a fat joke.
- Where Da White Women At?: He has had sex with lots of white women (cf. "An Elephant Makes Love to a Pig," where, while watching Kyle's elephant make love to Cartman's pig, Chef realizes that it's similar to the many times he's made it with a white woman), but really, he's not picky.
"Drugs are bad, mmm-kay?"
Voiced by: Trey ParkerSouth Park Elementary's guidance counselor with a very large head. Incredibly mellow, mmm-kay?
- Berserk Button: Don't crap in the urinal. Don't touch his mountain of stuff. Don't take tooth decay even remotely lightly. And don't partake in whatever other new childhood trauma-spawned pet peeve he's dealing with this week.
- Beware the Nice Ones: Is often nice unless one of his various aforementioned buttons are pushed.
- Butt Monkey: Most of the kids have no respect for him whatsoever, as shown in "Mystery of the Urinal Deuce" and "Erection Day".
- Clueless Aesop: Often tries to deliver messages to the kids with no logic or knowledge behind them. At one point he fails at teaching sex ed because he's forgotten how it works.
- Drugs Are Bad: The Trope Namer, heavily parodied. After giving an anti-drug speech to the class, he got busted for allegedly holding marijuana, leading to him being fired. The ensuing depression and poverty led him to using the same drugs he talked about to cope.
- Flanderization: "Mystery of the Urinal Deuce" and onward have begun play up the angry aspect of his personality. That was originally a one off/one time thing, but with Seasons 14 onward, Mr. Mackey's temper has become more frequent to the point of consuming his personality. Many fans feel that this has derailed his character severely. Compare "Ike's Wee Wee" to "Royal Pudding".
- Freudian Excuse: The reason for his stern attitude towards directing a play about tooth decay is because his father was killed by tooth decay.
- Hair-Trigger Temper: He seems to have developed quite a nasty one recently, for example "Mystery of the Urinal Deuce", "Insheeption" and "Royal Pudding"."I will rape you in the fucking mouth, m'kay! I will rape you in the fucking mouth!"
- He Who Fights Monsters: In "Bass to Mouth," he (along with the Principal Victoria) severely rebuke Cartman for nearly driving two kids to suicide. The near-end of the episode sees him throwing Cartman under a moving bus, while making it look like a suicide, for his own purposes.
- Jerk Ass: Seasons 14 onwards.
- Meaningful Name: Say his name out loud a few times.
- Odd Attraction: Being considered so very unattractive by society is what attracts Ms Choksondik to him.
- Ominous Owl: In "Insheeption," he's revealed to have a hoarding problem stemming from a childhood incident when he was molested by a Woodsy Owl mascot ("Give a hoot, don't pollute!"). When Mr. Mackey faces up to this traumatic memory in a dream, the owl mascot turns into a monstrous embodiment of Mr. Mackey's trauma. Eventually, believe it or not, the other people in the dream have to bring in Freddy Krueger to stop the owl.
- Stern Teacher: Although he's started crossing over into Sadist Teacher as of late (see above episodes).
- Too Dumb to Live: No one in their right mind would accept a gift from Eric Cartman of all people after throwing him bodily under a bus. You can't really feel sympathy for Mackey's comeuppance in this episode.
- Took a Level in Jerkass: See Hair-Trigger Temper.
- Verbal Tic: Mr. Mackey ends most of his sentences with "m'kay".
- It also crosses over into other languages; when speaking Spanish in "Rainforest Schmainforest" he uses "m'bien".
Voiced by: Trey Parker (2000-2002)A grossly big-breasted woman who temporarily teaches the 4th graders until her death in Season 6.
- Death by Irony: It seems, from the comments made about the contents of her stomach post-mortem, that she literally... well, I'm sure you can figure it out.
- Extreme Doormat: Until Mr. Garrison teaches her how to keep her students from walking all over her.
- Fan Disservice: The sex scene between her and Mr. Mackey in "Proper Condom Use".
- Gag Boobs: They practically sag to her feet. In one episode the rest of the staff discusses asking her to wear a giant bra but they are too afraid of offending her to do so.
- Killed Off for Real
- Meaningful Name: Just read it out loud. Interestingly, the children never catch on to this obvious source of mockery, instead calling her "Ms Makesmesick" or some tame variation thereof.
- Odd Attraction: Being considered so very unattractive by society is what attracts Mr. Mackey to her.
- Stern Teacher: She at least tries to be this.
"Ooh my, what an exciting day!"
Voiced by: Mary Kay Bergman (1997-1999), Eliza Schneider (1999-2003), April Stewart (2004-present)The principal of South Park Elementary, constantly trying to please everyone and failing.
- American Accents: Minnesotan.
- Benevolent Boss: Sometimes.
- Berserk Button: She has zero tolerance for jokes about breast cancer, to the point where she not only allowed, but encouraged Wendy to beat up Cartman for making fun of it. This stems from the fact that she is a breast cancer survivor.
- Meaningful Name: A spoonerism of Dallas actress' Victoria Principal's name.
- Only Sane Woman: with Chef being Killed Off for Real, Ms. Victoria now remains the closest to this trope out of the school faculty.
- Pointy-Haired Boss
- Stoners Are Funny: In "Helen Keller! The Musical."
"SIT DOWN AND SHUT UP!"
Voiced by: Mary Kay Bergman (1997-1999), Eliza Schneider (1999-2003)The school bus driver in the early seasons of the show.
- A Day in the Limelight: Subverted. She had a prominent role in City On The Edge Of Forever, though it turns out to be part of a dream within a dream, something that even the "dream" Veronica Crabtree acknowledges.
- Back for the Dead
- Breaking the Fourth Wall: In Cartman's Incredible Gift, Sergeant Yates addresses her lack of prominence in the show whilst investigating her murder."I know she hadn't been in any recent episodes, but dammit, she deserved better than this."
- Given Name Reveal: Not that there was much point by the time it's revealed.
- Jerk Ass
- Kick the Dog: In City On The Edge Of Forever, she continually threatens to shoot a cute little bunny if the kids don't "sit down and shut up." Though it's later revealed to have been all part of Stan's double-dream, this raises questions as to how much he (and possibly the other children) feared her.
- Killed Off for Real: Was murdered by Michael Deats (a.k.a. the left hand killer) in Cartman's Incredible Gift.
- No Indoor Voice: Crabtree yells almost all the time.
- Put on a Bus: Ironic trope indeed. The Simpsons Already Did It was her last proper appearance, aside from a cameo in the ending of I'm A Little Bit Country. She disappeared for a while, until... well... see Killed Off for Real.
- Running Gag: Kids would say something rude or vulgar, only for Mrs. Crabtree to yell "WHAT DID YOU SAY?!" The kid would respond with something non-vulgar that sounded similar, and she would let it go. Example:Stan: Yeah, whatever, ya fat bitch!Ms. Crabtree: WHAT DID YOU SAY?!Stan: I said I have a bad itch.Ms. Crabtree: Oh.
Stan: We're not getting on, you fat ugly bitch!Ms. Crabtree: WHAT DID YOU SAY?!?Stan: I said "We're not getting on, you fat ugly bitch."Ms Crabtree: Oh. Alright then... (drives away)Kyle: Whoa dude.Stan: I always wondered if that would work.
- Played With in "Cartman's Mom is a Dirty Slut:"