When South Park innovators Trey Parker and Matt Stone set their pop culture stun gun on any topic they are relentless and fearless. I joke that for even those that love the show (myself included) eventually they’re going to touch a nerve and offend everyone.
In one of South Park’s most ambitious lampoonings they went after Scientology full bore in the 2005 episode, “Trapped in the Closet.” This gem exposed some of the considered bizarre teachings of the upper-level members of the religion and it apparently did not go unnoticed by the Scientology brass.
Before I go into the “investigation” of Stone and Parker lets take a look at a clip from the episode in question:
The revelation that Scientology was looking into the backgrounds of Parker and Stone has been revealed by Marty Rathbun. Marty was a high-level member of the church but he defected in 2004 and has been spilling secrets via his blog about church leader David Miscavige for some time now. In a recent post he released documents from the organization’s Office of Special Affairs that center around trying to find “vulnerabilities” in Parker and Stone’s past.
Here is the internal memo in full from Rathbun’s post, “-16 April 2006 Report by Commanding Officer Office of Special Affairs.” The information in parentheses is Rathbun’s explanations of what the information is detailing.
Eric Sherman (then-corporate Scientologist writer), who is good friends with Lloyd Kaufman (independent film maker), contacted him about South Park. Kaufman knows Trey Parker and Matt Stone and has been friends with them for years. As regards their attack on Scientology, Kaufman felt that this is the same thing they do to everyone. He said that they consider that what they do is satire and that they attack anyone or any group without any regard for who they are or what they are. They love it when they get some reaction. This week they created a new flap when they were going to show a picture of the prophet Mohammed but were censored from doing so by Comedy Central. (This was covered in the press – Comedy Central was criticized for being hypocritical, i.e., they allowed South Park to show Jesus defecating on an American flag and George Bush, but not to show an image of Mohammed. This upset Christians in particular the Catholic League.)
To find a direct line into Stone and Parker some of their friends have been identified. One is Matthew Prager, who has been a friend since 1991. He worked with them as a writer on a show called, “That’s My Bush” which Parker and Stone created. Prager said he worked in executive positions at Disney, MTV and finally, at HBO, before shedding his tie for blue jeans at “That’s My Bush.”
Another is John Stamos who is best friends with Matt Stone. Apparently his ex-wife, Rebecca Romijn, is also good friends with Stone. Rebecca is a former supermodel and currently has her own TV show. In 2000’s X-Men, she had her first major movie role as Mystique and returned to the role in the 2003 sequel.
David Goodman is another friend of Parker and Stone. He was in college with them and has co-written some of the South Park episodes with them.
These connections are being PRC’d. (PRC = Public Records Check –an intense collection of every public record available on the target)
There are some strings that will be pulled on the PRC on Stone. Otherwise the special collections (covert information gathering such as trash collection, purchased phone records, hacked airline reservations, purchased bank records) will be debugged in order to get some viable strings that can be pulled.
It is clear that this investigation is not going anywhere and DCOE (D/Commanding Officer External OSA) is getting it debugged.
That is some creepy stuff for a church to be doing if Rathbun’s information is accurate.