I am nominating this for featured article as part of the South Park Featured Topic Drive. It has already passed as a GA. An additional peer review has been archived since then, and I've incorporated the suggestions there. I think it's ready for FA now. — HunterKahn(c) 06:19, 2 November 2009 (UTC)
Which part? I used licensing from other Wikipedia images as the model for this, so it's possible I had an error in there... — HunterKahn(c) 21:35, 6 November 2009 (UTC)
The image of the popemobile is in the public domain, it is not a fair use image as it states on the image description page - also the link to commons seems to be broken. Guest9999 (talk) 21:45, 6 November 2009 (UTC)
I've made changes accordingly. Is that better? — HunterKahn(c) 19:55, 7 November 2009 (UTC)
Problem seems fixed. Some users might question whether a non-free image is justified considering it illustrates a relatively minor part of the episode, you might want to be prepared to justify it - although it's perfectly possible no one will have any issue with it. Guest9999 (talk) 23:28, 7 November 2009 (UTC)
You're right, it looks like the link is dead now. To fix it, I went to the Internet Archive and replaced it with an archived link to the site as it appeared in 2008. Does that address it? — HunterKahn(c) 02:59, 10 November 2009 (UTC)
Comment I know nothing about this serires at all. As a reader, I need to be given a clue as to who the characters are that you mentions. Who is this Mr Garrison? Who is Cartman? Telling me that the other character mentioned is a celebrity is enough to give some idea about her identity. Do the same with the others. Amandajm (talk) 12:41, 12 November 2009 (UTC)
I've added quick descriptions to each character in the plot summary except for Jimbo, because his only real significance here is as a gun shop owner, which is already reflected in the text. Do you think this is sufficient? — HunterKahn(c) 14:10, 12 November 2009 (UTC)
I think that's good, but I would like to see the explanation that Mr Garrison is a teacher and Cartman is a 4th grader right up there in the intro. It would give me more of a picture of the chaos that would ensue if this Garrison character actually assassinated someone. This would make me more interested both in reading further and seeing the show. Amandajm (talk) 11:34, 13 November 2009 (UTC)
Oops, forgot about the intro! Fixed. — HunterKahn(c) 15:17, 13 November 2009 (UTC)
I think you've written a really good intro which covers everything well. Amandajm (talk) 08:09, 14 November 2009 (UTC)
Thanks! I've also updated it to reflect who Mr. Garrison and Cartman are. Let me know if you feel this addresses those concerns... — HunterKahn(c) 08:26, 14 November 2009 (UTC)
OpposeSupport(Note: I have participated in the South Park Featured Topic Drive.) Currently, I think that the structure and information included in the article reflect too much of a "fannish" orientation. I just laughed comparing "Cartman Gets an Anal Probe" (the article I wrote) to this one - the entire emphasis and structure of the article is different! It really is an amusing exercise and I learned a lot about my own writing and assumptions from it, so thank you. There is no doubt that scholars do things differently. :) However, I think that we can come to some sort of compromise here. Let me explain my ideas and reasoning:
The bulk of the first paragraph of "Cultural references and impact" is a long list of details about the show that are only interesting to fans. More importantly, they only make sense to fans. I know a lot of this kind of trivia about Star Trek and I love to chat about it with other trekkies, but it doesn't belong in a Wikipedia article about the episode. Perhaps we could keep information such as that about the mayor and leave out the bits about the first time something was seen on South Park?
Please see my comments below (under your third bullet point). — HunterKahn(c) 20:03, 15 November 2009 (UTC)
There are an excessive number of examples of the "Beefcake" cultural phenomenon. I agree that this phenomenon should be discussed, but I don't think we need so many particular examples of it. The number of examples weigh the article down and make it more about the reception of the episode than the episode itself. I would stick with one or two examples.
Agreed. I've removed a number of the examples and left only the beef-cake.com website, the video game and the reference to "Two Guys Naked in a Hot Tub". If you think that is still not sufficient, you can drop the latter reference... — HunterKahn(c) 20:03, 15 November 2009 (UTC)
The fourth paragraph of the "Cultural references and impact" section is unnecessary - it is trivia in paragraph form, listing only a handful of the references from the episode. We don't include references like these until they turn into motifs or symbols in the show as commentators note them as such (such as the death of Kenny).
I strongly urge you to reconsider these two objections (see the one I've noted below). It seems to me that the items you are objecting to are 1) the first appearances of characters and other South Park elements in "Weight Gain 4000 and 2) cultural references featured throughout the episode (like references to movies, books, etc.). Both of these are extremely common elements of television episode articles. As you probably know from your participation in the South Park Featured Topic Drive, three of the four South Park FAs (Starvin' Marvin, Volcano and Mr. Hankey, the Christmas Poo) have such information, and those of course were passed through the FAC review. And many articles from The Simpsons drive (including some FAs) also include these kind of things; cultural references are a common section throughout practically every article there, as well as most updated South Park articles and other shows (The Office, as another example). Under WP:MOSTV and other Wikipedia guidelines, the burden is to make sure information is verifiable through reliable sources, and in this case all these references are. Nothing is included in these "Weight Gain 4000" sections that is uncited or fancruft. That being said, if you have specific items you object to we can address them, but to do a overall sweeping objection to all them I don't think is consistent with Wikipedia guidelines, precedent from other articles and the work done so far on the South Park Featured Topic Drive... — HunterKahn(c) 20:03, 15 November 2009 (UTC)
The argument that "we have always done it this way" or "we have done it before" is weak, as it does not give the reason for including the information in the first place and is flawed logic (think of this example: "but we've always had slaves!") I didn't see this section recommended in my quick skim of WP:MOSTV, but that is really neither here nor there - MOSTV is not a requirement and we can certainly be better than its suggestions. Moreover, we don't include every piece of information that is in reliable sources, we include what helps construct an encyclopedia entry. These references are, IMO, too fannish and in many places, simply too obscure. No context or critical commentary is given for them - why is it important that these elements appear in the show? Why, for example, is it important that Gifford is placed in a popemobile of a sort? The only commentary that the article offers is that this is "hilarious" - this is not helpful to the reader at all. If, for example, we had commentary discussing South Park's jabs at religious institutions, that would be another story. Awadewit (talk) 20:09, 18 November 2009 (UTC)
You make some excellent points. I've made what I feel are some pretty significant changes to the entry. I'm of course willing to do more, but I ask that you consider what I've done and my logic for keeping what I have, and consider whether that is enough for you to lend the FAC your support...
I've expanded the themes section. See my further comments on this below...
I've added some language that I feel stresses why the information about the characters and Jesus and Pals is important. Specifically, I framed the characters information less like trivia, and more about the fact that this episode marked the first of what would become important recurring elements of the South Park series as a whole. Also, I added a quote from producer Debbie Liebling was to an important role she felt the Jesus and Pals show served in partially establishing the tone of the South Park town...
I completely cut altogether the more trivia-ish elements of this section, including the movie quotes from Star Wars and Scooby-Doo and the parts about "Walden" and the Book Depository, among others. I found these cuts painful because I still feel there is a place for cultural references such as these in an article as long as they are properly sourced, but in the spirit of compromise and an improved final product, I've made the cuts...
For the moment, at least, I've kept the part about the popemobile. The reason for this is because unlike the other, more trivial references, I feel this one actually serves a purpose, in that it explains a portion of the episode that readers might not otherwise understand. Although it is obviously common knowledge to some people that a bulletproof dome affixed to a truck is a reference to the Popemobile, not every reader would understand that; for example, my wife (who is a smart person; and is way, way smarter than me) is an atheist who is not very familiar with Catholicism at all, and she did not understand the reference when we watched the episode together. Plus, this when and if this article is read 20, 50, 100 years from now, that kind of knowledge may be even less commonplace. So for now, I've kept it in. If you really feel it needs to go, let me know and I'll reluctantly cut it... — HunterKahn(c) 06:14, 19 November 2009 (UTC)
Let me know what you think, Awadewit! I hated to see some of the content go, but I also believe in compromise, and I hope I've at least come a bit closer to earning your support for this article! — HunterKahn(c) 06:14, 19 November 2009 (UTC)
The additions to the Jesus and Pals bit is just the sort of thing that helps readers understand the show better - thanks for adding that! Is there any way that this kind of material could be added for the following sentences: ""Weight Gain 4000" introduced several characters who would maintain important recurring roles throughout the rest of the series. Among them were Jimbo Kern, Mayor McDaniels, and Wendy's best friend Bebe Stevens. It also introduces Clyde Donovan, a student from Mr. Garrison's class who would eventually play significant roles in future seasons, although he was not identified by name."? Awadewit (talk) 16:05, 21 November 2009 (UTC)
Thank you for cutting the list of movie quotes. In the spirit of compromise, I will not extend the debate over the popemobile. Awadewit (talk) 16:05, 21 November 2009 (UTC)
I've made some additions about McDaniels and Jimbo. I don't have anything on Clyde and Bebe, but of course I'd rather not drop them if I don't have to. I still think the mere fact that they are introduced is worth at least a brief mention, but let me know what you think either way... — HunterKahn(c) 23:40, 22 November 2009 (UTC)
These are excellent additions, especially the connection to Gifford - thanks! Awadewit (talk) 15:47, 24 November 2009 (UTC)
The lead and the caption under the first image promise the reader a discussion of satire and consumerism, however this style and theme are barely discussed and relegated to the "Reception" section. I would suggest creating a "Styles and themes" section, or at least a "Themes" section and integrating some of the material from the "Reception" section into it. Every TV episode has themes and a general style from the show it is a part of and currently that is elided in this article. For example, the third paragraph of the "Reception" section could be the beginning of a "Themes" section. I've read many of the sources that describe the first five South Park episodes and there is plenty of material in those sources from which to create such a section.
I've created a themes section as you suggested. I believe I have exhausted all sources that discuss this issue, so I think this is all the material there is for a Themes section. If you know of any others that I've missed, though, let me know... — HunterKahn(c) 20:03, 15 November 2009 (UTC)
The general satire of the show is explained in many of those reviews that looked at the first five episodes. You might look at some of the articles I used in Cartman Gets an Anal Probe to write about satire. Awadewit (talk) 19:57, 18 November 2009 (UTC)
Well, the problem is that any information about themes or interpretations that I include here should be specific to this episode, since that is the subject matter of the entry. A lot of the style and themes information in your "Cartman Gets an Anal Probe" is about the series and animation in general, which is very good, and is more appropriate for that article than your typical episode article because "Cartman Gets an Anal Probe" is the pilot, and thus where a lot of those styles and themes were first established. I wouldn't want to get too deep into the themes of South Park in general here because this article is about "Weight Gain 4000", and if I were to include it here, presumably I'd have to include it in every episode article; better to keep that stuff in the pilot and the articles about the individual seasons (and the series in general), and keep the "Weight Gain 4000"-centric themes here. All that being said, I have added a bit to the "Themes" section touching on consumerism and celebrity. If you feel more needs to be added, any specific guidance would be appreciated... — HunterKahn(c) 06:14, 19 November 2009 (UTC)
Since the style of the show is the same from episode to episode, that means, in my mind, that certain elements of each episode article will be the same. We have to note the style of show, particularly since sometimes it can change. To give an example, one episode of Smallville was done in film noir. Obviously, that article would explain the film noir style and how it was used in that episode. Each episode has a style, even if it is repeated throughout the series. In my opinion, that style is an integral part of the episode. If a reader only reads an episode article but never the main South Park article, he or she may never see a discussion of style. That is one reason why, in my opinion, it needs to be included in each episode. A few sentences on the symbolism of the appearance of a show is crucial - about the "grade-school aesthetic", as one critic put it. Awadewit (talk) 16:05, 21 November 2009 (UTC)
Ok, I've added a bit of content from the "Cartman Gets an Anal Probe" article (as per my comments on your talk page) as well as a bit more info that I tried to keep more focused on "Weight Gain 4000" itself. While to an extent I agree with you, I think we need to strike a balance between discussion of the series as a whole and the episodes specifically. There are 195 episodes of South Park, and I don't think we would want to reinvent the wheel in each article and provide a detailed commentary on the general style of the series in each one. I tried to strike that balance here, so if it needs further improvement or tweaking let me know. (I'm going to work on your other comment later today or tomorrow at the latest...) — HunterKahn(c) 16:12, 22 November 2009 (UTC)
I think this really helps the article. Awadewit (talk) 18:28, 22 November 2009 (UTC)
I hope this is helpful. Awadewit (talk) 17:05, 15 November 2009 (UTC)
I've switched to support. Awadewit (talk) 15:47, 24 November 2009 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive. Please do not modify it. No further edits should be made to this page.