Crippled Summer

"Crippled Summer"
South Park episode
Episode no.Season 14
Episode 7
Directed byTrey Parker
Written byTrey Parker
Featured music
Production code1407
Original air dateApril 28, 2010
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South Park (season 14)
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"Crippled Summer" is the seventh episode of the fourteenth season of the American animated television series South Park, and the 202nd overall episode of the series. It originally aired on Comedy Central in the United States on April 28, 2010. In the episode, the South Park children try to help Towelie overcome his drug addiction, while Nathan and his lackey Mimsy plot to destroy Jimmy during athletic competitions at a summer camp for handicapped children.

The episode was written and directed by series co-creator Trey Parker, and was rated TV-MA L in the United States. The story of Towelie's addiction is presented as a parody of the reality series Intervention. Parker and fellow co-creator Matt Stone originally planned an Intervention parody around Towelie for the tenth season episode "A Million Little Fibers", but those plans were eventually scrapped. Several of the handicapped children in "Crippled Summer" are made to resemble characters from the Looney Tunes cartoon series, including Elmer Fudd, Beaky Buzzard, Daffy Duck, Pete Puma, and Porky Pig, as well as non-Looney Tunes characters Droopy and Fat Albert.

"Crippled Summer" received positive reviews, though some commentators expressed disappointment that the episode did not respond to the controversies surrounding the show's depictions of Muhammad in the previous episodes, "200" and "201". According to Nielsen Media Research, "Crippled Summer" was seen by 3.56 million viewers, making it the most watched cable show of the night, and outperforming even some prime time network shows that evening.


The drug addiction of Towelie, a living and talking towel, is growing so overwhelming that the South Park boys make attempts to help him. Towelie's history is shown, using head interviews and on-screen captions (in a parody of Intervention), starting with years of drug addiction to cannabis, crystal meth, heroin and crack. He previously had a girlfriend named Rebecca and conceived a child with her (a washcloth), but he was kicked out of their home due to his persistently getting high. Having run out of money for hard drugs, Towelie starts getting high off of cans of computer duster. His life continued in a downward spiral, leaving him in heavy debt and offering oral sex to strangers for money in the alleys. The boys help him get a job at Lake Tardicaca, a summer camp for kids with physical and mental disabilities, as a towel to dry off the campers. However, Towelie persists in drug use and fellating strangers in the supply closet, and is fired by the camp. The boys confront Towelie and make emotional speeches to him as a plea to help him from killing himself (except for Cartman, who uses this opportunity to read what appears to be several tens of thousands of pages of anti-Semitic remarks on television, which the psychiatrist allows to continue in respect of the "no interruptions" rule, much to Kyle's irritation). Towelie refuses their pleas until Butters reveals he has brought Towelie's child, "Washcloth", which finally prompts him to accept the offer to go to a rehabilitation clinic in Southern California. Later, Towelie reveals he has completed rehab and is now living with his girlfriend and son.

Meanwhile, at the summer camp, young bully Nathan and his lackey Mimsy plot to destroy Jimmy during the athletic competitions so Nathan can be declared the camp's champion. This sub-plot is also narrated in the same style as Intervention. Nathan uses Mimsy as a minion to carry out his plans to harm Jimmy, but is repeatedly foiled by Mimsy, who either misinterprets his instructions or takes them too literally and causes his plans to backfire. Nathan tries to plant a black mamba in Jimmy's canoe during a race, but Mimsy instead leaves it in Nathan's canoe (when told to put it "in the canoe"). Subsequently, Nathan tries to lead Jimmy's team into dangerous Indian territory during a scavenger hunt, but instead Mimsy switches the maps and switches them again (Nathan demanded him to "Switch the maps! Switch the maps!"), and leads Nathan's team there. When Nathan tries to use a whistle with a shark mating call against Jimmy, Mimsy, who was supposed to blow the whistle underwater, instead swims in the water briefly then blows the whistle on land and a shark jumps out of the water and anally rapes Nathan with its nine-inch long penis, according to the Colorado National Wildlife Association. During the talent show, Nathan rigs Jimmy's ukulele with C-4, hoping it will explode during a solo, but when Jimmy cannot perform the solo correctly, Mimsy starts to show Jimmy the correct notes. Nathan interrupts and confronts Mimsy about his failure to follow orders. With a lapse of judgment, Nathan plays the correct notes and causes the ukulele to explode, knocking him away before being further injured by his past plans attacking him again. (The ukulele solo is spoofing the Looney Tunes' repeated use of Believe Me If All Those Endearing Young Charms, where the last note is booby trapped, but the protagonist always somehow manages to play it wrong and causing the irritate antagonist to play the correct note and get blown up.) Nathan is subsequently escorted to an ambulance, but is given the champion's crown by Jimmy. Nathan tells Jimmy he hates him anyway before he is sent away to the hospital.

The episode ends with a message encouraging people who know towels in need of drug rehabilitation to visit "Restore Stephen Baldwin", a real-life website seeking assistance for actor Stephen Baldwin.

Other Languages
français: Été handicapé
Bahasa Hulontalo: Crippled Summer
Bahasa Indonesia: Crippled Summer
русский: Хромое лето