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|South Park episode|
|Episode no.||Season 8
|Directed by||Trey Parker|
|Written by||Trey Parker|
|Original air date||April 14, 2004|
Cartman plays a prank on Butters by disguising himself in a crude cardboard suit as a robot named "A.W.E.S.O.M.-O 4000" and by putting himself in a crate "from Japan" on Butters's doorstep. Cartman is planning to befriend Butters so that he can discover his most embarrassing secrets, which will allow him to blackmail him and/or embarrass him in school. Butters falls for the trick and reveals several highly personal secrets. However, just as Cartman is about to reveal his identity, Butters mentions that he himself knows one of Cartman's secrets. Butters has a videotape of Cartman doing a Britney Spears dance routine to a life-sized cutout of Justin Timberlake while dressed as her and making out with the cut-out, which he plans to show to his classmates the next time Cartman plays a prank on him.
Cartman, terrified of Butters' plan of revenge, searches desperately for the tape, but to no avail. Cartman soon begins to starve because Butters believes that, since he is a robot, he does not need to eat. Butters also forces the robot to do all his chores for him, including some of the more unpleasant tasks. With the agreement of Ms. Cartman, Butters' parents (knowing who AWESOM-O really is, but thinking it is an elaborate game that Butters is in on) decide to let AWESOM-O come along with Butters on a trip to Los Angeles to see his aunt. Cartman realizes that he will have to accompany Butters on the trip, in order to keep up his disguise. Upon arriving, he is so hungry and worn out after wearing the suit for a whole airplane ride that he makes up an excuse to use the bathroom and proceeds to eat toothpaste.
During their visit to Universal Studios Hollywood, two movie producers find out about the "robot" and decide to hire him to create movie ideas. Cartman, as the robot, comes up with over two thousand terrible, nonsensical film concepts (800 of which would star Adam Sandler), which the movie producers all find brilliant. To make matters worse for Cartman, the fortune that he makes from the movie ideas is donated to charity by Butters, who believes that AWESOM-O has no need for the money. Meanwhile, the U.S. military hears about AWESOM-O, and decides to capture it and make it into a weapon. AWESOM-O flees the movie studio in panic after a film producer tries to engage in sexual activity with him, thinking that he may also be a "pleasure model". The military captures AWESOM-O by shocking him and conveying him to a secret base.
Cartman tries to explain that he is really just a kid, but the military believes he is a robot with artificial intelligence enabling him to think like a human, even possessing the memories of a non-existent 8-year-old child. A scientist, moved by this, attempts to save Cartman, who is about to reveal that he is a human when Butters shows up to rescue him. He has to maintain his disguise, allowing the military to kill the rebellious scientist. Butters pleads with the military to spare AWESOM-O: the general is touched. Just as it appears he will get off undetected, Cartman farts, causing everyone—including Butters—to suspect and finally discover his true identity.
Butters carries out his promise and shows the video to the whole town, as well as the movie producers and the military at a special screening. The theater is filled with wall-to-wall laughter. As Butters finally celebrates his revenge, the general responds to Cartman (who's also in attendance), "Wow kid, you're a little faggot!" Cartman, humiliated and upset, utters, "Lame".
"Awesom-O" was written and directed by series co-founder Trey Parker, and was rated TV-MA in the United States except on syndicated broadcasts where the episode is censored and rated TV-14 instead. It first aired on April 14, 2004, in the United States on Comedy Central. Shortly after "Awesom-O" was broadcast, T-shirts and hooded sweatshirts based on the episode were made available at South Park Studios, the official South Park website. They feature Cartman in the AWESOM-O costume and the words "I will be your best friend." "Awesom-O" has the shortest production in South Park's history, being made in just three days.
The episode was released on the two-disc DVD collection A Little Box of Butters.