David Matthews, New York Daily News
Following reports that Comedy Central’s long-running series “South Park” was banned in China following an episode that criticized China’s treatment of prisoners, the creators of the show have responded in a mocking fashion that is completely keeping in their style.
After the episode critiquing Hollywood for trying to avoid offending Chinese government censors was reportedly scrubbed from the Chinese internet by those same government censors, creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker issued an extremely sarcastic statement.
“Like the NBA, we welcome the Chinese censors into our homes and into our hearts,” Stone and Parker said. “We too love money more than freedom and democracy. Xi doesn’t look just like Winnie the Pooh at all. Tune into our 300th episode this Wednesday at 10! Long live the Great Communist Party of China! May this autumn’s sorghum harvest be bountiful! We good now China?”
Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey created a stir over the weekend after tweeting his support for Hong Kong protesters, potentially alienating fans in China where the Rockets are immensely popular because of former star player and Chinese national Yao Ming.
In the offending “South Park” episode, the character of Randy is arrested for selling marijuana in China and witnesses severe treatment of Chinese prisoners, including Winnie the Pooh and Piglet.
Those characters were banned in China after unflattering comparisons to Chairman Xi and Pooh went viral on the internet.
In a separate plot, a character is told by a movie producer that certain elements of a story need to be changed or removed to get by Chinese censors.
“South Park” has courted controversy several times throughout its run for episodes about Scientology, Mormonism, and depictions of the Islamic prophet Muhammad, among other examples.
“South Park” is currently in its 23rd season.
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