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South Park episode
Episode no. Season 2
Episode 3
Directed by Trey Parker
Written by Trey Parker
Matt Stone
David R. Goodman
Production code 203
Original air date May 26, 1998[1]
Episode chronology
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"Cartman's Mom Is Still A Dirty Slut"
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"Ike's Wee Wee"
South Park (season 2)
List of South Park episodes

"Chickenlover" is the third episode of the second season of the animated television series South Park, and the 16th episode of the series overall. It aired on Comedy Central in the United States on May 26, 1998.[1] This episode is notable for the first to use Cartman's catchphrase "Respect My Authoritah" which has become popular among the show's fans.


The episode starts with Stan, Kyle, Kenny, and Cartman visiting the Booktastic Bus, a mobile library. They start to get interested in reading but, after meeting the driver and realizing how weird and annoying he is, they all change their minds except for Cartman, who becomes intrigued by romance novels.

Then, word eventually spreads that a pervert is molesting chickens in town, evident when the boys heard a squawking. When Officer Barbrady starts the investigation, he is confronted with his illiteracy (proclaiming "I'm illegitimate"). He resigns in shame and anarchy immediately breaks out (he was the only police officer in the town). Later, he is put into the boys' class to learn to read. Meanwhile, the "Chickenlover" strikes again.

Officer Barbrady's book report on Go, Dog. Go! gets him an A. He then starts to enjoy the school life a little too much, behaving like a child on a swingset. Mayor McDaniels forces him to learn reading more quickly to solve the case. He recruits the four boys as deputies to help him in his task, showing his knowledge of the Police Code. From then on, Cartman patrols the town on his Big Wheel, enforcing his own brand of justice and dealing violently with those who fail to respect his "authoritah" (mainly by taking out a police baton and using it to attack peoples' shins), all the while being filmed in a parody of COPS. Examples include beating Stan's dad for obeying the speed limit (though Cartman thinks he is not), another man for soliciting a prostitute (Cartman in disguise as part of an undercover sting), and Mr. and Mrs. McCormick for domestic violence (with Mrs. McCormick as the aggressor). Meanwhile, Barbrady puts some clues together by reading some children's books. When he almost gives up, the boys keep up his spirits.

The molester is finally caught in the petting zoo wearing a mask of Richard Nixon, and turns out to be the Book Mobile driver. He plotted this all along to encourage Barbrady to learn to read. He gives Barbrady a copy of Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged. Cartman then begins clubbing the man in the legs, to which Officer Barbrady steps in and takes his club, telling him that "this isn't the way to uphold the law" and that he has to hit him in the head to make him go down quicker, giving a demonstration that kills the man (moments later, his legs are seen on the side of the screen in a small pool of blood). Barbrady tells the children he will "get in the bathtub, and then curl up with a good book", after which a generic crime drama theme tune plays as he gives the children the thumbs up. He remains, seemingly unable to move, in this position as the children walk away.

The town later holds a parade for Barbrady, and when he is asked to give a speech, he tells how Atlas Shrugged convinces him that reading "totally sucks ass." In the end, he swears never to read again. It is shown that Jesus drives the pick-up Barbrady stands in. At the end of the episode, the crime drama theme plays again, and still shots of the parade are shown, including Kenny's death, as he is crushed under a tree (he had escaped death three times throughout the episode).

Production notes

Originally, Cartman was supposed to receive a gun (instead of a nightstick) and shoot at people (instead of beating them) during his stint as a deputy police officer, but Comedy Central's censors were reluctant in showing a child with a firearm (despite airing the episode "Volcano" with no qualms).[2] The episode shows Barbrady's signs of illiteracy by having every sign he comes across written in characters belonging to languages which do not employ the Latin alphabet; a "STOP" sign, for example, is distorted into Korean characters from Barbrady's point of view (which, as it turns out, spell the Korean word for "idiot"). In the scene when Barbrady attempts to read in Mr. Garrison's class, the first letters in the alphabet above the chalk board read, "Dios Mio han matado Kenny, bastardos" or, in English "Oh my god, they killed Kenny! Bastards!" In the introduction for the South Park: Volume 8 home video, Trey Parker and Matt Stone explain that the title was originally going to be "Chickenfucker" but was changed as Comedy Central censors did not want any profane word that could not be said on television in any of its titles.


"Chickenlover" was originally broadcast on Comedy Central in the United States on May 27, 1998.[1][3] The second season of the show started in April 1998, with two episodes.[3] Then, on May 20, the episode "Ike's Wee Wee" kicked off a 6-episode run of the season.[4][5][6][7][8]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 "It's Back To School For Officer Barbrady In The New Episode Of 'South Park' Titled 'Chickenlover,' May 27 At 10:00 P.M. ET/PT" (Press release). Comedy Central. May 26, 1998. Archived from the original on August 17, 2004. Retrieved December 27, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. "An interview with Adrien Beard".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>South Park Studios. Accessed on Feb. 16, 2009
  3. 3.0 3.1 Johnson, Allan (May 26, 1998). "The Antics Continue". Chicago Tribune. Chicago. Retrieved December 22, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. "The Boys Set Out To Save 'Ike's Wee-Wee' In The Second Season Debut Episode Of 'South Park,' May 20 At 10:00 P.M. ET/PT" (Press release). Comedy Central. May 18, 1998. Archived from the original on August 17, 2004. Retrieved December 22, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. Huff, Richard (April 3, 1998). "'South Park' Fans Aren't Laughing Viewers Don't Suffer April Fools' Gladly, As Cartman's-father Episode Is Scratched". Daily News. Retrieved December 22, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. "South Park: New season begins". The Vindicator. Youngstown, Ohio. May 20, 1998. p. C6. Retrieved December 22, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. "'South Park' Kicks Off New Season". Press-Telegram. Long Beach, California. May 20, 1998. Stan, Kyle, Cartman and Kenny find out that tradition can be pretty scary when a loved one's anatomy is involved in 'Ike's Wee Wee,' the second season premiere of the much-ballyhooed animated comedy 'South Park,' airing at 10 tonight on cable's Comedy Central.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  8. "South Park (a Title & Air Dates Guide)". Epguides. Retrieved December 22, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links