‘South Park’ COVID special scores series’ best ratings in seven years

'The Pandemic Special' aired on Wednesday

The South Park pandemic special has scored the series its highest ratings in seven years.

The one-off hour-long special episode, titled ‘The Pandemic Special’, premiered on Wednesday (September 30) on Comedy Central.

The episode was watched by 2.3million Live+ Same Day viewers, and scored a 2.1 rating. The demo number is up 168% on the average for South Park‘s 23rd season.


“We’re thrilled with South Park’s return and it’s clear the audience was as well,“ said Chris McCarthy, President, Entertainment & Youth Brands, ViacomCBS to Deadline.

“The success is a testament to Matt and Trey’s creative genius and we used our full portfolio to let everyone know it’s back – propelling it to the No. 1 scripted telecast of 2020 and delivering its highest ratings in seven years.”

South Park Studios shared a clip going behind the scenes of the special on their YouTube channel yesterday – check it out below.

The episode ended with a first for the series, in which a character, President Garrison, broke the fourth wall to encourage fans to vote in the upcoming presidential election.

“Don’t forget to get out and vote, everybody! Big election coming up!” Garrison said, before burning a pangolin deemed responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic in the episode.


Elsewhere in South Park news, five episodes were recently excluded from HBO Max due to the depictions of Prophet Muhammad.

The affected episodes include Super Best Friends from season five, and episodes 200 and 201 from season 14 – which were also previously removed from streaming service Hulu and the official South Park website.