Sunday, November 2, 2014

Sherlock and "The Magic Bush."

"Once you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, no matter how improbable, must be the truth."

Sherlock Holmes? No, Stephen Willis Stotch.

No idea who that is? Butters's father? No? South Park? Comedy Central? Wednesdays at nine Central, ten Eastern?

What's interesting about Butters's father quoting Sherlock Holmes on South Park this week is that he's demonstrating how not to use Holmes's methods. During the episode "The Magic Bush," and its mish-mash parody of surveillance drones and internet privacy, at some point in the story, Butters's father decides that since no one admits to using their drones to do what the drones have been doing, the drones must have minds of their own.

Of course, Stephen Willis Stotch is just having trouble eliminating the impossible, as one of his character traits is that he's naively sure he has total control and understanding of his son. And once he has his theory in place, he's all the more willing to believe that anything his neighbors tell him is also true, and thus the simple explanation becomes the impossible, and once that's eliminated, all kinds of improbabilities become possible truths.

Yeah, that's a pretty dry analysis of a single joke based around a Holmes quote on South Park, but it's interesting to see what someone who's not Sherlock Holmes can do with the same principles the detective enjoyed reminding Watson of.

And how very wrong it can go.

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