Who would have guessed Trey Parker and Matt Stone had just picked an arbitrary number when they decided they would only make 14 episodes of South Park per season? Apparently that was the case, or at least that’s what they claimed when news broke out they had decided to shortened their seasons down to only 10 episodes. They had just picked 14 because well, why the hell not? And now that they’re busier than they’ve ever been, Parker and Stone have decided ten will be the new number simply because “it just sounded like a good number.” This is the creative process at its finest example.
According to Entertainment Weekly, this reduction in episodes will allow South Park to air in one big block rather than splitting up the seasons into two halves, as has been the practice for many years. This gives the creators more room to do other stuff, which seems to be more their focus these days. With a South Park videogame just being finished and the expansion of The Book of Mormon to more cities, it’s no wonder Parker and Stone are looking for anyway to make their lives easier. And they’ve made it quite clear they’re not too concerned about when or how these episodes are seen by fans. “We sort of don’t really care about ratings. It’s more important to come up with work that will add to the library in a way that we’re proud of and will make people want to catch the show wherever they want to.”
That “wherever” of course refers to the ever-increasing availability of television programming on platforms other than a TV set. South Park may be set to return air Sept. 25, but how many of us are actually planning on watching it as it premieres? Some of us will DVR it to watch later or catch it online once it’s uploaded.