Gerald buys a hybrid car, which causes problems for Kyle when they move to San Francisco.
"Smug Alert" contains examples of:
- Abusive Parents: Randy verbally abuses Stan for his song and the smug that it produced. He then has zero sympathy for Stan when he's afraid that Kyle died with San Francisco.
- An Aesop: Driving an environmentally conscious car doesn't give you the license to be smug.
- Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Ranger Mcfriendly initially comes off as a nice ranger for a few seconds, then he assaults Stan and leads the other adults in blaming Stan for the smug and treating him like shit.
- Jerkass: Every adult in this episode.
- Gerald is a holier then thou asshole who forces his family to move to San Francisco because people don't want to tolerate his fake tickets on their SU Vs.
- The adults in South Park all immediately turn on Stan as soon as they know about the smug and blame him for it, when they're to blame.
- Never My Fault: The adults all refuse to take blame for their smugness and verbally abuse Stan the whole episode.
- Only the Leads Get a Happy Ending: Kyle and his family are saved, Stan has his best friend back, Cartman has someone he can banter with. But thousands are left homeless and the Midwest is devestated and San Francisco is completely destroyed along with it's entire population.
- Pet the Dog: Cartman saves Kyle and his family from dying in San Francisco during the smug storm, because he needs Kyle around to banter with. He's privately relieved when Kyle fights back after being called a sneaky Jew.
- The Scapegoat: Stan gets all the blame and heat for everything the adults did. Even after Kyle point-blank tells them that everything could have been avoided if they stopped being smug while driving hybrids, the adults decide they "aren't ready".
- Status Quo Is God: The Brofloski family are back in South Park and by the next episode the town's fully rebuilt and back to normal.
- Stealth Pun: People with smug attitudes are depicted as enjoying the smells of their own farts. In other words, they think their shit doesn't stink.
- Take That!:
- People who drive hybrid cars (specifically the Toyota Prius, which allegedly owes much of it's popularity to the fact that it's the most recognizable one of it's kind and, therefore, a greater status symbol) are depicted as smug jerks who act like the simple act of driving a low-emission car is the most noble act of environmentalism.
- San Francisco is portrayed as hipster paradise and with almost every adult being so self-important that they enjoy the smell of their own farts.
- George Clooney's 2005 Oscar acceptance speech ends up producing a smug cloud strong enough to start a huge smug storm when colliding with the ones from South Park and San Francisco.
- Took a Level in Jerkass: Gerald becomes a smug holier then thou asshole due to buying a hybrid and spends the first part of the episode giving fake tickets to SU Vs in the hardware store parking lot.
- Victory Is Boring: Initially Cartman is ecstatic that Kyle's moved away and denies Stan's claim that he'll find life boring without Kyle to rip on, because he's got Butters. He quickly grows bored when Butters doesn't fight back and apologizes when Cartman calls him on it.