This week's episode, titled "Shots!", is largely a takedown of anti-vaxxers, but the b-plot follows up on Randy Marsh's dealings with the Chinese government, which began in last week's "Band in China".
The episode comes just two days after "South Park" creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker mocked both China's reaction to last week's episode and the way the National Basketball Association caved to Chinese pressure after the general manager of the Houston Rockets expressed support for Hong Kong protesters. China's government has gone full on anti-South Park and still, Parker and Stone don't really care. "Xi doesn't look just like Winnie the Pooh at all". Since they also bend to China's rules and regulations. "I can't sell my soul like this", says one character, who was under pressure from Chinese censors to rewrite his music.
South Park now joins the likes of Winnie the Pooh, who was featured in the episode. Think of that, if the government doesn't like it then they're bound to say "no more" and simply ban something. much as they've done with a few different social media brands that allow for freedom of thought and expression. Movie studios, especially, have worked to ensure that their scripts aren't at odds with state censors, lest they lose billions in potential business. Moviegoers in China bought an estimated $8.87 billion in movie tickets a year ago, according to box office analysts. On his flight to China, Randy Marsh was surrounded by characters from "Avengers" and "Star Wars", along with N.B.A. players.
Contrast Stone and Parker's reaction with that of the top brass of the National Basketball Association, who apologized to the CCP in the wake of Houston Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey tweeting his support for the Hong Kong protesters. The insult was said by Randy, who in the previous episode traveled to China in order to expand his weed business. South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone have for a long time now danced on the razor's edge when it comes to making fun of celebrities, situations, religions, and pretty much anything they can think of, but this time it definitely turned on them since being banned throughout a country seems like a heavy hit to the old wallet if one is being honest. "We, too, love money more than freedom and democracy", the apology read. Also, Winnie the Pooh is removed in China, accounting for this.
Brand-new episodes of "South Park" Season 23 air every Wednesday night. May this autumn's sorghum harvest be bountiful!
As South Park has pointed out over the past two weeks, American media companies, including Disney, often change their content to stay on the good side of China's censors, even if it means glossing over human rights violations.
This is how you respond to Chinese censorship.