The Comedy Central hit series South Park is returning with Season 17 September 25, although it will be slightly shorter than previous seasons. Series creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone revealed that the Season 17 Premiere will kick off a 10-episode season that will air back-to-back, instead of the show's normal format of 14 episodes split into seven-episode halves. Here's what Matt Stone had to say about the format switch.
"Why did we do seven and seven to begin with? We just sort of made that up. And we are switching to 10 for the same reason. It just sounded like a good number, and we won't break up the year so we can more easily do other stuff."
Trey Parker also spoke about the lack of "appointment viewing" on television, and why he doesn't care about his show's ratings.
"There is no appointment viewing anymore. In our first season, you had to show up on Wednesday nights at 10 p.m. on the comedy channel to catch the show. Now, I don't even know where or how people watch our show. We sort of don't really care about ratings. It's more important to come up with work that will add to the library in a way that we're proud of and will make people want to catch the show wherever they want to."
"We want to keep South Park going for a long time to come, and given what is going on in television, I don't think it matters as much how many episodes you have."
Doug Herzog, president of Viacom which controls Comedy Central, revealed he is behind the creators' decision for a shortened schedule.
"South Park has yet to meet a platform it hasn't been able to conquer. We're happy to take as many or as few as they can produce. Frankly, I'm surprised it took them this long to get to a schedule like this."