South Park

Season 7 Episode 13

Butt Out

Aired Wednesday 10:00 PM Dec 03, 2003 on Comedy Central

Episode Recap

The children are assembled in the school gym for the anti-smoking presentation "Butt Out!" The cheesy song, dance, and stupid dialogue bore the children. At the end when the boys hear that if they don't take up smoking, they'll be just like the singers and dancers, they immediately decide to take up smoking. They are smoking behind the school, when Mr. Mackey almost catches them. Before he arrives the boys manage to throw their cigarettes into the dumpster. Mr. Mackey realizes (after the dumpster and subsequently the school catch fire and burn down) that the boys have been smoking. In Principal Victoria's burnt out office, the boys await their punishment. The parents arrive and want to disown their children, but they realize that "Big Tobacco" is to blame for their children's deeds. They contact Rob Reiner, who between mouthfuls of food, decides to bring his "Smoke Stoppers" campaign to South Park and the nearby "Big Tobacco" plant. Anticipating that things are going to get out of hand as usual, Kyle suggests that they come clean about their smoking and keep their parents from causing things to get out of hand. Since there is a punishment waiting if they do confess, the other boys aren't interested, they don't believe it will happen again, despite Kyle's thoughts to the contrary. A rotund Reiner arrives in South Park, with big plans to stop "Big Tobacco."
Between eating Rob Reiner lays out his plans to take down the Big Tobacco Company with some help from the boys. When someone in the bar where they are meeting is smoking a cigarette, Rob Reiner goes off on him and plans to get smoking banned from all bars and restaurants in Colorado. Because he is able to force his will upon others, Cartman thinks that Rob Reiner is his idol. At the Big Tobacco plant, the boys (and Rob Reiner in disguise) take a musical and informative tour of the plant. Rob Reiner takes the photo he wants and brings the boys back his "Smoke Stoppers" headquarters, where he plans to make the photo incriminating. Reiner finds out that his bill to get smoking banned from bars and restaurants didn't pass. It seems that the people of Colorado aren't convinced about the dangers of second hand smoke. So Reiner's next plan is going to involve one of the boys appearing a commercial about second hand smoke. Cartman is enamored with Reiner and is anxious to get the commercial. The other boys leave and Kyle tells the others that he wants out of this situation; he just knows in the end the whole town is going to turn out for a big showdown with an obligatory lesson. Stan and Kenny agree with him and they are all about to leave when Cartman shows up challenging them for the commercial. Kyle informs him that they don't care, but Cartman is oblivious.
Cartman tries to prevent Kyle from being able to appear in the commercial, because he just doesn't believe that Kyle doesn't care. Kyle tries to tell him that the anti-smoking people are liars and bullies who will stop at nothing to get what they want. Cartman gets to be in the commercial and begins reading the words on the teleprompter, which say that he'll soon be dead from terminal lung cancer caused by second-hand smoke. Cartman realizes for their plan to work, he is going to need to die. Rob Reiner tries to convince Cartman to be a hero. Cartman runs to the other boys for help; he realizes that maybe he can get help from "Big Tobacco" and he convinces the boys to accompany him. Kyle tries to get the boys to break the formula so that they won't wind up in a standoff with everyone in town. Given the choice of that, or being grounded for three weeks, they go to "Big Tobacco." As Kyle has predicted, there is a standoff between "Big Tobacco" with the boys and the people of South Park and "Smoke Stoppers." Rob Reiner (between mouthfuls of food) reveals his plan that Cartman must die for their commercial to be effective. As he also predicted, Kyle gives the lesson that he has learned and calls Reiner and his organization nothing more than fascists. This gets the people of South Park back on the side of "Big Tobacco" and the boys get their grounding.