With the new South Park season changing things up with new principal, it’s time to grade South Park school system. That’s right; we’re counting down everyone who’s ever worked in South Park Elementary’s hallowed halls.
If any place is a constant in the South Park universe it’s City Wok. After that, however, it’s gotta be South Park Elementary, where Stan, Kyle, Cartman, Kenny, Butters and their less interesting classmates learn, love, and commit horrific acts on a weekly basis. Helping the children along the way are an equally offbeat group of characters with a lot more turnover with a not much more intelligence or rationality.
From one-episode substitutes to tenure-earning educators, we’ve included every teacher of note on South Park Elementary’s payroll. Just for housekeeping purposes, we’re including teachers and faculty who have been referred to by name, so anyone in the background of a scene or without a name like the recess lady are disqualified. Guests like Sexual Harassment Panda and the little person who fought with Cartman don’t count either, because they were guests of the school, not employees. With that out of the way, come on down to South Park and meet some teachers of mine…
23 – MR. WYLAND (SUBSTITUTE TEACHER)
South Park Elementary teachers are sometimes relegated to delivering exposition and staying in the background, but even the least-important characters have some sort of quirk. Mr. Wyland does not; he’s just a boring dude who replaces Mr. Garrison for a few episodes and does nothing of note. He looks like he should be interesting, but nope, pure bland.
22 – MR. GARRETT (COACH)
Like Mr. Wyland, Mr. Garrett seems like just another character invented to replace a recently departed long-running character. After Chef died, a new character had to teach basketball to kids. Mr. Garrett only appeared in an episode where kids didn’t want to take part in sports due to their brief obsession with High School Musical.
21 – MS. PEARL (HOME EC TEACHER)
Ms. Pearl isn’t very interesting on her own, but her coupling with Mr. Adler makes for some funny observations. For one thing, she’s screwing the guy who hates screwing around. Also, she’s dating the shop teacher, and the world be a better place if every school’s home ec and shop teachers dated. They’re so good for each other!
20 – MS. ELLEN (SUBSTITUTE TEACHER)
There’s an entire episode devoted to Ms. Ellen, but it leaned a little to heavily on the children; in this case, Wendy Testaberger. This guest teacher was a lesbian (because lol Ellen lol get it?) and also an Iraqi spy who could wield a mean saber, but none of this really manifested in a character that did or said anything interesting beyond getting Cartman to chew on boxes.
19 – MR. MARYL (AV CLUB)
Mr. Maryl is also devoid of quirk, save for the fact that a teacher should care more about giving students audio-visual tips instead of ratings. He threatens to cancel the boys’ TV news program in favor of Craig’s “Animals Close-Up With a Wide-Angle Lens,” and calls them gay for caring about informing rather than entertaining.
18 – MR. TWIG (TEACHER’S ASSISTANT)
Look, Mr. Hat was kind of a dumb thing that was never really all that funny, but at least the character was somewhat memorable. Mr. Twig’s defining characteristics are (1) not being Mr. Hat and (2) just being a stupid stick. Twig’s one interesting moment is the reveal of his French accent, which is mere seconds before he’s gone forever.
17 – PRINCIPAL VICTORIA (PRINCIPAL)
For the leader of South Park’s faculty and one of the few characters to speak in every one of the show’s first 18 seasons, Principal Victoria never really stood out. She has an outrageously midwestern accent and is often the voice of reason amongst South Park Elementary’s outrageous quarrels, which is probably a necessary character. Unfortunately, it doesn’t make for a very memorable one.
16 – MS. BRONSKI (NURSE)
It doesn’t take much to top the lack of humor Mr. Twig brought to the table. Ms. Bronski pulls hamburgers out of Cartman’s ass, and she looks like the kind of nurse who would pull hamburgers out of an idiot’s ass. She doesn’t do much else besides look dumbfounded, but the assburgers really elevate her otherwise low-key appearance.
15 – MR. HAT (TEACHER’S ASSISTANT)
Mr. Hat was a central element of early South Park; if you asked someone in 1997 to mention 10 interesting things about South Park, the foul-mouthed puppet of Mr. Garrison would probably bear mention. Here’s the thing though; he never really did anything funny. “YOU GO TO HELL AND YOU DIE” was worth a chuckle, but that was in the first episode. There’s a reason he was replaced by a stick early in the second season; there wasn’t much more humor to explore inside Mr. Hat.
How do Ms. Choksondik and Mrs. Crabtree fare? Find out on the next page!