South Park’s Latest Episode Gets an AI Touch


| LAST UPDATE 03/20/2023

By Riley Hammond
South Park ChatGPT AI
South Park (1997) Comedy Partners via IMDb

Television shows have always been the result of the creative minds of talented writers who come together in a room to carefully craft each scene, every character arc, and each plot twist. But did you hear that the latest episode of South Park, "Deep Learning," was co-written by ChatGPT?! Yep, even television writers are getting replaced by machines now. But hey, who needs human creativity when you could have a robot spitting out jokes and plot twists, right?

The episode starts with the students at South Park Elementary figuring out that ChatGPT can do all their homework for them. Brilliant! But their discovery doesn't stop there. The boys of the school realize that they can use AI to do something even more important - talk to girls. As Clyde helpfully explains to Stan, "There's a bunch of apps and programs you can subscribe to that use OpenAI to do all of your writing for you. People use them to write poems, write job applications, but what they're really good for is dealing with chicks." Ah, those teenage hormones driving innovation. But their plan fizzles out pretty quickly when the girls catch on to their scheme and use an app to detect AI-generated messages. Don't you just hate it when technology ruins all the fun?

South Park Deep Learning AI
South Park (1997) Parker-Stone via IMDb
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The remainder of the episode is one long comic misadventure - complete with students accidentally texting their crushes love notes that were supposed to be school papers and hiring a “shamanic cheater-hunter with a falcon named Shadowbane” to identify the culprit. Finally, our hero Stan saves the day by using ChatGPT to write a meta-solution that pokes fun at predictable TV shows, including South Park. The episode's third act was apparently conceived using the same method, so basically, the AI wrote itself into the script. Talk about self-referential humor!

It’s all very funny and tongue-in-cheek, and the increasing integration of AI technology into our entertainment is certainly an interesting topic to ponder. But for now, let’s just enjoy the absurdity of a South Park episode with a shamanic cheater-hunter and a falcon, and be grateful that artificial intelligence is getting into the comedy game in more ways than one!

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