High Resolution DVD Cover art for South Park (TV Series)
SRP $49.99 1.33:1 Dolby Digital Stereo PARAMOUNT
 
High Resolution Blu-ray Cover art for South Park (TV Series)
SRP $69.99 1.78:1 Dolby TrueHD 5.1 PARAMOUNT
 

Trey Parker and Matt Stone may arguably be the most consistently witty writers in television today! Their animated series, "SOUTH PARK" is typically brilliant and the fact that they have been able to come up with so many weekly episodes that, in general, have been terrific, separates them and "SOUTH PARK" from most series of any genre in tv history. That's not to say the series doesn't have its flaws. While trying to push the envelope as far as they do, there are occasions, wherein the episodes are not only unfunny, but gross, without any reward. Perhaps, such is the price for genious!

"SOUTH PARK: THE COMPLETE 12th SEASON" is now available on dvd, as well as blu-ray, for the first time!  Not their best season, there are some terrific episodes, "MAJOR BOOBAGE," in which a homage is paid to the oversized busty animated fantasy girls of "HEAVY METAL" magazine and the film, itself. While most younger audiences( we mean 17 to 30)may not know of "Heavy Metal," may not know of the animated "heavy metal" cartoon itself, there's more than enough funny moments built around Kenny, to make the show a favorite, regardless. Another episode, "AIDS VS Cancer" may be one of the top ten episodes of the entire series! Of course, all of them have side-splitting moments, but a couple of episodes, especially "ABOUT LAST NIGHT" and "EEK, A PENIS" are amongst the weakest episodes of any season. Even with a few poor episodes, an episode as brilliantly topical as "THE UNGROUNDABLE" more than makes up for a few bad apples, and makes this set worth getting regardless!

PARAMOUNT/COMEDY CENTRAL has provided the correct aspect ratio for dvd and blu-ray gets 1080i(not "p") and AVC MPEG-4 encoding! Does the high-def make a difference? Well, the dvd looks as good as previous seasons. Animation is intentionally low-key but stylized and even vibrant at times. The blu-ray offers better saturation control and while the high-def image isn't groundbreaking, it's more pleasurable to see the widescreen image than the 1.33 ratio that has typically been the ratio for the past seasons. So, dvd image is good, with minimal edge enhancement, but the blu-ray is notably better and worth spending theextra twenty bucks over dvd. The blu-ray is still flawed, however. Unfortunately, there are some blurring/motion artifacts popping up at times.

PARAMOUNT/COMEDY CENTRAL has included a Dolby Digital Stereo mix for dvd and Dolby TrueHD(as well as 5.1)for blu-ray. The dvd mix is suitable and while surround are missed, there are a lot of separation effects spread across the front channels to make it entertaining throughout. The lossy mix offered on blu-ray, is notably better, with various scenes creating a totally immersive experience, completely overlooked on dvd, in comparison. Dynamic range is outstanding, and really adds greatly to the advantage of choosing blu-ray over dvd. GREAT JOB, PARAMOUNT!

The creators offer some mini-commentaries for episodes here, but they're obviously not too excited about it, and they're really not too worthwhile a listen. However, a 6-part featurette examining the undertaking of an individual episode, "SIX DAYS TO SOUTH PARK," is fascinating and shouldn't be missed!