Catholics can South Park

'Appalling' episode is dropped

Comedy Central has pulled a repeat of South Park after it incensed Catholics.

The US cable network has not commented about why the controversial episode was dropped without warning from Wednesday night’s schedule – but it did attract the ire of religious groups when it first aired on December 7.

Entitled Bloody Mary, the cartoon is about a statue of the Virgin Mary believed to be bleeding from her backside. However Pope Benedict XVI investigates and concludes the icon is only menstruating, declaring: ‘A chick bleeding out her vagina is no miracle. Chicks bleed out their vaginas all the time.’

Unsurprisingly, the script infuriated the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, which demanded an apology and a pledge the show never be repeated or released on DVD.

Under pressure from the campaign group, Joseph A. Califano Jr., a Catholic on the board of Comedy Central’s parent company Viacom, released a personal statement calling it an ‘appalling and disgusting portrayal of the Virgin Mary’.

‘It is particularly troubling to me as a Roman Catholic that the segment has run on the eve and day of the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, a holy day for Roman Catholics,’ he said.

He publicly called on Viacom chief executive Tom Freston to review the show ‘and determine whether any action should be taken’.

Now it seems the campaign has born fruit, even though the show’s makers are likely to revel in such notoriety.


Published: 30 Dec 2005

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