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‘South Park’ Finished Season 20 Premiere With One Hour to Spare

South Park Season 20 Premiere Delay Member Berries
Comedy Central

Perhaps the only South Park trivia cited so often as its six-day turnaround might be the one time creators exceeded it, owing to a power outage at South Park Studios. As it turns out, last week’s 20th anniversary premiere very nearly added another footnote to the record, as malfunctioning audio delayed “Member Berries” right up to an hour before showtime.

The brief scare emerged in a New York Times look behind the scenes of Season 20 production, which saw creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone collaboratively ironing out details of the September 14 premiere. Most surprising of all, it seems “Member Berries” suffered another technological setback that very nearly derailed the airing:

“Member Berries” was broadcast at 10 p.m. on Sept. 14, but hardly without last-minute incident. That morning, South Park Studios suffered a system crash, and the episode’s audio went missing for an hour and a half.

When the episode was transmitted to Comedy Central, it had a mystery six-frame sync problem that was finally fixed and delivered one hour before airtime.

The last minute save proved especially serendipitous, as Comedy Central today reports that “Member Berries” brought the show’s highest ratings since 2006, reaching 3.7 million viewers in a 27% increase from last year’s premiere.

In the meantime, Season 20 will continue with tonight’s “Skank Hunt,” a clip of which you can find below.

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