A few years ago I traveled America with Chris Morris in support of Four Lions, the first Drafthouse Films release. Along the way we spent an afternoon with Matt Stone, co-creator of South Park, who had torn himself away from work to chat with one of the greatest comedy legends of all time. We hung out and Stone was charming and funny and smart, but most of all he was tired. I have seen few people who were so obviously worn out from the pace of their work. Stone and his partner, Trey Parker, work like dogs on each episode of South Park, doing impossibly long days all week long to deliver an episode to Comedy Central sometimes hours before it was to air. After talking to Morris for a while (a lot of the discussion was about research Stone had done for the then-upcoming Book of Mormon) he left to go back to work. The rest of us hung out and had dinner and then did a Q&A and went to bed.
I've always been amazed that these guys can work that way, especially as they're getting older. I've wondered for years when the system would break down and they would blow an episode.... and the answer is this week. But the fault doesn't lie with Stone and Parker's fatigued bodies, it lies with electricity. Or the lack thereof.
Tonight's episode, Goth Kids 3: Dawn of the Posers, has been unexpectedly pushed back a week and replaced with a rerun. The reason? The power went out at South Park Studios. Here's the statement from the South Park Studios site:
On Tuesday night, South Park Studios lost power. From animation to rendering to editing and sound, all of our computers were down for hours and we were unable to finish episode 1704 “Goth Kids 3: Dawn of the Posers” in time for air tonight. Trey Parker said, “It sucks to miss an air date but after all these years of tempting fate by delivering the show last minute, I guess it was bound to happen."
It is incredible that it took this long to happen. The South Park Studios website has some cute pictures of the crew trapped in the hellish darkness caused by the power outage.