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Recap / South Park S 2 E 11 Roger Ebert Should Lay Off The Fatty Foods

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Airdate: September 2, 1998

The town is brainwashed by the curator of a planetarium. Meanwhile, Cartman auditions for a new Cheesy Poofs commercial.


This episode contains the following:

  • Accidental Hero: Cartman, furious that no-one saw him on TV, knocks over the mind controlling Planetarium projector in a fit of rage, inadvertently saving Stan and Kyle and wiping the mind of the Planetarium owner.
  • Early Installment Weirdness: Aside from screaming in "Damien" and laughter in "Mecha-Streisand", this is the first episode where Butters has lines. He says "Me too!", although his voice sounds a lot more like Stan's rather than his stuttering Southern accent he has nowadays.
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  • Expy: The poor little girl with the windswept hair who is in the call back with Cartman and the others is none other than Cosette, the girl from Les Misérables. If you look at the board behind her, you'll see a poster for the musical which bears the question, "Who will be the next Cosette?".
  • Fate Worse than Death: Barbrady considers being brainwashed into thinking he's Elvis Presley is this.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: Literally. Dr. Adams' mind is erased by the device that he's been using to brainwash everyone into liking the planetarium.
  • Motive Rant: Dr. Adams goes into a rant about how no one likes planetariums anymore since technology has advanced so much that it's caused kids to forget about the planetarium and how he's going to change that.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Stan and Kyle's catchphrase reactions to Kenny's death are revised to reflect this.
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  • Nonindicative Title: This episode has nothing to do with Roger Ebert and his diet of fatty foods (though he was mentioned in passing during one of the planetarium sessions).
  • Recognition Failure: Mr McKay assumes that Officer Barbrady thinks he's Charlton Heston.
  • Running Gag: Cartman's mom telling him not to pick his nose and him claiming he's just scratching it.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Mr. Garrison is teaching kids with reruns of Barnaby Jones.
    • The song during the laser show at the planetarium is Footloose.
    • Cartman's rendition of the Cheesy Poofs jingle ends with "I'm talking Night Court-in-its-fifth-season lame!"
  • Take That!: The episode name is a Take That! at Roger Ebert, likely due to his poor reviews of Orgazmo and Baseketball.
  • They Killed Kenny Again: Stan and Kyle accidentally kill Kenny by turning the planetarium device up to full power, which causes Kenny's head to explode.
    Stan: Oh my God, we killed Kenny!
    Kyle: We're bastards!
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  • Verbal Tic: Dr. Adams has a Speech Impediment that prevents him from pronouncing the T in planetarium (but not in any other word, apparently).
  • Whole Plot Reference: The main plot involving the planetarium is a spoof of the Star Trek episode "Dagger of the Mind". Dr. Adams is even an Expy of Dr. Tristan Adams from that episode.
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