The Red Badge of Gayness

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"The Red Badge of Gayness"
South Park episode
Episode no. Season 3
Episode 14
Directed by Trey Parker
Written by Trey Parker
Production code 314
Original air date November 24, 1999
Episode chronology
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"The Red Badge of Gayness" is episode 45 of Comedy Central's animated series South Park. It originally aired on November 24, 1999.

In the summer of 2013, fans voted "The Red Badge of Gayness" as the best episode of Season 3.[1]

The episode's name is a play on the Red Badge of Courage.

Plot synopsis[edit]

As the entire town of South Park is preparing to hold its annual American Civil War reenactment of the (fictional) Battle of Tamarack Hill, the children rehearse as a Union Army rally band.

In the morning of the reenactment, Jimbo informs the reenactors that over 200 people will come to see them reenact the battle, setting a new record. He also takes the time to remind everyone that the primary sponsor of their event is Jagerminz S'more-flavored Schnapps, "the schnapps with the delightful taste of s'mores." In addition, the special guest will be Stan's grandpa, Marvin Marsh. Meanwhile, Cartman comes dressed as General Robert E. Lee, and the boys are outraged by his dressing as a Confederate officer. Evidently under the impression that the reenactment is a competition of some sort, Cartman bets that the South will win the Civil War, and if it does, Stan and Kyle will be his slaves for a month, or vice versa. Knowing that the outcome is supposed to be historical victory for the North as planned, Stan and Kyle eagerly accept the challenge.

At 0900 hours on Tamarack Hill, the reenactment begins. Although the intent of the reenactment is to let the Union soldiers claim Tamarack Hill and the bell thereupon, Cartman, still dressed as Lee, steals the bell and ruins the entire reenactment. The reenactment is then slated to be started over again. As both sides prepare once again, Cartman manipulates the now drunken Confederate reenactors into actually striving to win the reenactment, in order to win his bet. Motivated, the Confederates proceed to ruin the reenactment once again by routing the Union soldiers, leaving several injured.

At the after party, the children are very angry at Cartman for cheating and restate that the wager hinges on the victory of the Civil War, and not upon the reenactment. As all of the reenactors, Confederate and Unionist, are now drunk on the Schnapps, Cartman rallies them to attack Topeka, which is presumed by the reenactors to have been the next battle. The next day, Topeka is assaulted by the drunken South Park Confederates and the entire town falls. As the invasion continues town by town, their ranks are continually bolstered by either Confederate supporters or men who would simply choose to avoid getting on their bad side. Back in South Park, Butters delivers a letter to Stan and Kyle from "General Cartman Lee". A Ken Burns effect sequence starts using a 19th-century sepia superimposed image of Cartman Lee as he recites the letter, boasting of his success. Horrified, Stan, Kyle, and Grampa Marsh travel to Chattanooga which is under attack by the Confederates. The National Guard also arrives on the scene and shoots a warning flare into the air which kills Kenny (who had joined the Confederates under Cartman's promise of "lots of plunder and womens").

The boys hatch a plan to rid the army of their primary fuel, the S'More Schnapps. The army soon wakes up with raging hangovers and quickly disbands, but Cartman calls the Jägerminz company, who deliver to the entire army truckloads of alcohol. With the men drunk again, the next target of the Confederates is Fort Sumter. Though they easily overrun and secure the fort, they are then faced with the National Guard. The latter is defeated with help from Confederate reinforcements made up of the entire population of South Carolina.

Finally the Confederate Army reaches Washington, D.C.. The army demands the Confederate States of America to be a separate country and blackmail President Clinton by threatening to release a (bluff) video of him with Marisa Tomei. With Cartman's victory at hand, Stan and Kyle decided to give up and accept their fate as Cartman's slaves, but Grandpa suddenly realizes that the drunken men still think that the entire campaign is a reenactment, so he gets Stan and Kyle dressed up as Jefferson Davis and Abraham Lincoln, just in time to prevent President Clinton from signing the surrender. The children re-enact the surrender of the Confederate States of America, with the added condition that the South receive a free year's supply of Schnapps. The entire army breaks up happily and leaves upon surrender to Cartman's dismay.

Stan and Kyle are deciding what to make Cartman do, having won the bet, but their triumph is short-lived. Cartman is saved from the terms of the bet after remembering the North still won the war, and that slavery was abolished because of it. President Clinton makes this clear by pointing out that the abolition of slavery was one of the significant outcomes of the Civil War, making slavery illegal and the bet nullified. Angered by the nullification of the bet, Stan, Kyle, Grandpa Marsh, and Cartman go home, after Stan and Kyle mockingly say, "Thanks a lot, Bill Clinton" and "Yeah, thanks dick", respectively.


After the production of the previous episode, the voice actor of many female South Park roles, Mary Kay Bergman, committed suicide. Parker and Stone, still in shock from her death, did not feel like auditioning people right away, which is why this episode features no female voices (Trey Parker voices the S'mores Schnapps Lady and the schoolteacher in Topeka, and Kenny's mother appears with no speaking parts).


External links[edit]