South Park: “Grounded Vindaloop” Season 18 Episode 7 Review

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This week’s South Park would have really benefited by having one foot in reality.

Grounded Vindaloop was a parody of the Oculus Rift and its growing popularity. The episode started strongly enough with Cartman apparently convincing Butters he was trapped in a virtual reality. It looked to be a classic Cartman tricks Butters story to be used in the same sentence as the classic AWESOM-O from way back in Season 8 (which was now ten years ago folks).

But things got complicated when Cartman was the one supposedly stuck in the virtual reality. It seemed like a funny enough premise to try and figure out who was truly stuck in the virtual reality, but the episode really stopped making sense when Butters’ dad got involved and didn’t really know why his son was grounded.

I’m all for a trippy South Park episode, but this took it to the next level, destroying a narrative that at the onset had serious potential.

By the time it’s suggested that Kyle was the one to truly be in the Oculus Rift, the episode lost all of its steam. It doesn’t help that the whole thing relied on one joke. What could have been a simple episode that just focused on the things that make us love Cartman and Butters devolved into madness. By the time the live-action resolution came around, it was too late. All momentum had been lost.

Grounded Vindaloop is a low point for Season 18. As an Oculus Rift parody it doesn’t make it past one joke. As an episode relying on the show’s best characters, it doesn’t make the most of the presence. As a general piece of storytelling, it lacks any and all coherence. Yes, that is the point, but is it a worthy one to make? This is one of the worst South Parks in recent memory. Easily. Not even Butters could save it, and that’s saying something. Grade: D

By Matt Dougherty

3 Responses to South Park: “Grounded Vindaloop” Season 18 Episode 7 Review

  1. Steve from Whatever says:

    First, I could not believe that someone would give SP the D.
    But after strolling through you review – I must admit you make some good points. Yes, you may have been misguided into expecting a butters and cartman gta scenario. And yes, myself as well, was confused about the behaviour of butters´ dad and lost track when all the boys could´ve been the one trapped.

    However, you simply skipped the whole customer service, which is essential for an conclusion. They clearly accented their concept of the time/matrix paradox, where nobody could tell the difference, instead of telling “one” smooth story. The real life plot twist was neat and gave it an appropriate ending.

    I really appreciate your rating, due to its focus on some of the episodes biggest weaknesses.

  2. someone says:

    one of the worst reviews. easily.

  3. B says:

    Thank you for the honest review. I agree completely. Customer service guy was annoying at best and not worthy of a mention. More than other episodes, I think that this one does not bridge the age of the fans. It seems to skew young. The older the fan, the less they like this episode. Worst episode ever.

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