In my review for 'The Ring' last week, I wished for a Cartman or a Randy story this week. And I got my wish! Not only that, but what a good episode. Although 'The Ring' was alright, 'The Coon' would have served far better as the season opener in my opinion.
The episode perfectly spooks the 'dark comic book movies', of which there seems to be a lot arond at the moment. Both The Coon and Mysterion's low, growly voices are a perfect take on Christian Bale's 'Batman'.
I would say that this is the best 'South Park' episode for quite while (taking into account some of the so-so episodes from last season), and it had me laughing out loud at a number of points – something that TV shows haven't been able to do for a while.
I love how the townsfolk (especially the Police) don't care about The Coon, but all embrace Mysterion, and how Cartman tries to talk up The Coon by no-one cares!
The episode also marks the return of Professor Chaos (Butters) and his sidekick General Disarray (Dougie), the first time they have been seen in quite a while. Although at first I was worried that it would descend into a generic Cartman-and-Butters story, thankfully things tied up nicely in the end.
Without giving anything away (!), the story's ending, with the unmasking of Mysterion, is perfect, and only something like 'South Park' could try and pull something off like that and get away with it.
Also amusing is the title – Coon is of course a racist term, but there was no mention of this in the episode; maybe the joke is that no-one commented on it.
As much as I like this episode, it probably isn't one of my all-time favourite 'Cartman stories' (there are a number of other candidates for that). But for a show that has had mixed quality episodes after the year or so, this episode stood out as being a really good one, and I really hope to see more of this quality in the coming season.
Now, where's that Randy story... =)