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"Reverse Cowgirl"
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Episode no. Season 16
Episode 1
Production no. 1601
Original airdate March 14, 2012
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"Reverse Cowgirl" is the first episode of Season Sixteen, and the 224th overall episode of South Park. It aired on March 14, 2012.[1]


When one of the boys leaves the toilet seat up after he uses the bathroom, an unspeakable tragedy occurs.[1]


SPW pic -- Spoiler Spoiler warning!
Plot details follow.

The boys and Clyde are playing football in Clyde's backyard when his mother, Betsy Donovan, frantically screams for Clyde to come to her. After Clyde and the boys arrive at the upstairs restroom, Betsy begins yelling at Clyde for leaving the toilet seat up despite her repeated warnings. After his mother leaves, Cartman proclaims that parents should not be able to "put rules on toilet time" while Kyle asks him if his mother is always "like that". Clyde does not respond to Kyle's question and instead asks them to not talk about the incident at school.

At the start of the school day, Cartman is seen telling the rest of the fourth grade class an exaggerated version of the story. Shortly afterwards, Betsy shows up at the school, demanding that Clyde come home and put down the toilet seat. Later that day, Cartman is shown laying on his bed, talking to Kyle on his phone about the incident in class. Kyle tells him that he already knows, as he was there. After Cartman begins to exaggerate the incident, Kyle calls him out on his exaggeration and says that the incident was not funny. Kyle then says that Cartman should feel bad for Clyde, as he should not be screamed at for something that "isn't that big a deal". Just then, sirens are then heard in the background.

Betsy is seen stuck in the toilet. After examining her, a fireman tells Clyde's father, Roger Donovan that there is nothing they can do. He asks if they can disconnect the plumbing, but, due to the pressure changes it would cause, it would rip out his wife's organs, killing her. Clyde is then called by his mother, who tells him that she does not blame him, because she was not strict enough with him when he left the toilet seat up before. She then asks him to put the toilet seat down next time for his sister's sake. At her request, a fireman shuts off the plumbing, killing her.

Stephen Stotch is seen talking at her funeral, saying that he hopes her death will be used as an example, so women will "take the extra second" to put the toilet seat down. Linda Stotch then goes on to say that men should be the ones to put the seat down, which garners the applause of the women at the funeral. After another man disagrees, a woman says that they should show some respect, since they were at a funeral. She then goes on to say that Clyde will never see his mother again and that the "blood is on his penis".

Two employees of the Toilet Safety Administration are seen at the Cartman residence, installing a safety belt to their toilet, much to Cartman's chagrin. Stan, Kyle, Jimmy, and Clyde are seen at a lawyer's office, asking if they can sue the toilet's inventor (who was revealed to be Sir John Harington), as they think that it was not Clyde's fault his mother died, but Harington's. Despite the fact that the defendant is dead, the lawyer proclaims that anybody can be sued, even the dead, as they can perform a "sue-ance" in order to communicate with the dead. After confirming that Clyde has the money, the lawyer agrees to perform one.

Randy is seen defecating while not wearing his safety belt, a cop catches him, and despite Randy's pleads, he gives him a ticket. Randy calls the cop an asshole under his breath, however, the cop hears and angrily asks him if he said something. Randy frantically makes up an excuse, saying he was talking to his anus. Later, Cartman and Butters are seen at IHOP, waiting in line for the bathroom; the line has grown excessively long due to the TSA setting up an airport-style security check. Cartman then opens up the door to the bathroom, demanding that he have access to the bathroom because he is about to defecate in his pants. A TSA agent asks if he minds her inspecting his scrotum, to which he angrily responds, saying that, yes he minds. Shortly afterwards, Gerald Broflovski is seen coming out of a bathroom stall. A TSA agent then inspects his anus and wipes it, soothing Gerald by saying that he is a "big boy".

Stan, Kyle, Jimmy, Clyde, and the lawyer are seen performing the "sue-ance". A spirit named Jimmy Bonds begins to communicate with them, saying that he needs compensation before revealing anything about the John Harington. After supposedly receiving two hundred dollars and revealing some information about Harington, Harington supposedly begins to shake the room, as well as create what appear to be miniature explosions. After the boys put the rest of the money in a box, the explosions and shaking stops; the lawyer says it went well and they will continue tomorrow.

Randy is once again seen trying to go to the bathroom, however, this time, several TSA agents attempt to inspect him. After realizing there is a camera watching him defecate, he is told that only one person views the recordings in a discreet location. The man who views the recordings is then seen laughing and masturbating to the various cameras installed in bathrooms across the United States. Cartman is then seen speaking at a rally, saying that they should simply bolt their toilet seats down so the government can no longer enforce toilet seat laws. The women, however, disagree, saying that the men will just pee on the seat. After a brief scuffle, the crowd decides to simply live with the TSA and the laws.

Stan, Clyde, Jimmy, Kyle, and the lawyer are seen performing their second "sue-ance", however, the lawyer's motions are supposedly denied. The lawyer then claims they must get their friends and family to sign a petition and give about fifty dollars each. The TSA agent is once again seen masturbating to various people being recorded going to the bathroom, however, after flipping the streams a few times, he notices Cartman, who has a baby and a gun. Cartman then pulls a tied up TSA agent into the view of the camera. Then he sprays black paint on the camera, causing the man to call "security breach" into an intercom.

A reporter is seen on the news, talking about Cartman's "terrorist" actions. As a result of his actions, a mass of people proclaim that they are fed up with the TSA and are going to perform a "sue-ance", much to Cartman's confusion. The mass of people and the lawyer that Jimmy, Kyle, Clyde, and Stan used to perform their aforementioned "sue-ances". After demanding the spirit appear before court, the lights go out and the ghost of Betsy appears, revealing that the dead cannot be sued, the lawyer had been scamming the people of South Park out of their money. She goes on to tell Clyde that her death was not Sir John Harington's fault, but his, for failing to put the seat down. However, the ghost of Harington interjects, saying that it was no one's fault, that everyone has been using his creation incorrectly. He reveals that you are supposed to sit on it inwards while defecating, while using the cistern as a shelf and being able to reach the handle so you don't have to see your poop. When Randy states that doing so would require a person to have to remove their pants to use it this way, Harington responds that he indeed intended for users to do that and, pointing to the hole on one of the walls of the prop toilet, indicates that this was why he designed toilets with a laundry hole, much to the surprise of Randy and the others.

Cartman is shown laying on his bed on his phone again, talking about the incident with Betsy's ghost, however, it is shown that he was talking to Clyde himself, who denounces his exaggerated claims. After finishing defecating, he puts the toilet seat up, while flipping off his mother.

Critical Reception[]

AV Club gave "Reverse Cowgirl" a "A-" rating saying: "Potty humor and civil liberties: they are two of the hallmark subjects of South Park, so it only makes sense that its 16th season kicks off with those two topics in the forefront. And if “Reverse Cowgirl” wasn’t the most laugh-out-loud funny the show’s done in the recent past, it was certainly had sharp points to make about government encroachment in the lives of Americans. You need not have been personally inspected by a TSA agent at an airport or the subject of a frivolous lawsuit to enjoy the way “Reverse Cowgirl” satirized both the government and those willing to cede personal freedoms under the guises of “safety” and “never having anything be your own damn fault.”"[2]

IGN gave "Reverse Cowgirl" a "7.5" rating saying: "South Park has built much of its reputation on tackling current events and social etiquette, but in the Season 16 premiere, "Reverse Cowgirl," Trey Parker and Matt Stone delivered a double whammy with the TSA -- a subject that was long overdue for a lampooning -- and putting the toilet seat down. And while picking on the Transportation Security Association might feel a bit dated, there was still some unsung comedy to be had. Beginning the episode with the death of Clyde's mom was indeed a wild way to start things out. I always forget just how utterly heinous the show is until a new season kicks off, but after that flush of doom, I was fully back in South Park mode. And the cutaway to the funeral casket was the topper on the bit."[3]


  1601: "Reverse Cowgirl" edit
Story Elements

International House of PancakesToilet Safety AdministrationHoffman and TurkWickieSir John Harington


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South Park: The Complete Sixteenth Season