Eric Cartman is without a doubt the most popular character on South Park. Creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone have citied that he is their favorite character, and probably for good reason. Ever since South Park premiered back in 1997, Cartman has been portrayed as a lazy, arrogant, anti-semitic, and foul-mouthed child with a weight problem. As the series progressed, he became more amoral, showing all the signs of racism, xenophobia, and psychopathy. Although he is one of the big four of the boys in South Park, he is often shown as a villain. Cartman has a litany of outrageous schemes in his ledger and they even sometimes include people getting killed. In short, this is one kid that has some serious issues.
Despite Cartman’s issues, there have been times on South Park where is actually quite the opposite. South Park has been running for a long time now, and Cartman has his moments where actually saves the day, much to everyone’s surprise. Granted, it’s rare, but that doesn’t mean he has never been a heroic character. For those who think he is a complete problem child, here are Six times Eric Cartman was actually the hero on South Park.
6. He Saved His Class From The Rainforest Natives (Rainforest Shmainforest)
Kicking off the list is an act from one of the earliest episodes. When the boys and their class are forced to participate in an activist trip to help save the Rainforest, they are less than thrilled. Cartman, in particular, is rather difficult during the entire trip, even abandoning his class when their guide is unable to find them a way out. When a tribe of rainforest natives called the Yanagapa capture the class and are ready to execute them, Cartman shows up with construction workers and bulldozers to save the day. Although Cartman did initially abandon them, it led to him finding help so he could return to save his friends from horrible deaths. Maybe the boys should’ve laid off on the fat jokes after that.
5. He Talked Some Sense Into Sally Struthers (Starvin’ Marvin in Space)
Although poor Eric Cartman is usually the center of the fat jokes on the show, Sally Struthers was portrayed to look like Jabba the Hutt. She was in charge of a food drive for the starving Ethiopians, but it was really just a front so she can get all the food she wants. When the boys try to get Starvin’ Marvin and the other Ethiopians off Earth, they are attacked by Struthers and a group of missionaries. When their ship is captured by a tractor beam, they are seemingly defeated, but Cartman has a rare moment of empathy. He talks some sense into Struthers by saying that her acts of helping others inspired them to help their friend. This causes Struthers to have a change of heart and she frees the boys, allowing them to escape. Although Cartman is usually shown to be unsympathetic, his touching speech here undoubtedly saved the day.
4. He Drove The Hippies Out Of South Park (Die Hippie, Die)
Cartman has always been hateful of hippies (among other groups). When the hippies began migrating to South Park, Cartman takes it upon himself to hunt them down and capture them. He then imprisons them in his basement, but this later backfires when Officer Barbrady releases them and arrests Cartman. The hippies have a music festival where thousands of them make their way into South Park, literally endangering the town. Cartman instructs the adults to build a giant drill and after driving through the crowd, he plays Slayer, causing the hippies to disperse.
Keep in mind, Cartman forced Kyle to make him watch as he played with a radio-controlled bulldozer. That is more classic Cartman, but he still saved the town. What makes it even more ironic is that no one believed him about the hippies, but he still saved the day. His plan was basically a parody of the movie, The Core, but hey, it still worked.
3. He Stopped The Adults From Fighting Each Other (I’m a Little Bit Country)
When it comes to school, Eric Cartman is the worst student. Him and the boys are assigned to give a speech about the Founding Fathers view on the Iraq War. Cartman is so determined to avoid studying, going so far as injuring himself so he can have a “flashback” to 1776. It eventually succeeds, but he gets put into a coma. Surprisingly enough, Cartman does discover what the Founding Father would have said and when he wakes up, he gives a heartfelt speech that causes the adults to stop rioting. In this moment, Cartman not only stops the fighting, but also gives an educational speech, something we rarely get to see from him.
2. He Humiliated And Defeated Osama Bin Laden (Osama Bin Laden Has Farty Pants)
If only this happened in real life. When the boys are accidentally transported to Afghanistan, they become prisoners of Osama Bin Laden. When they make their escape, Cartman decides to take care of Bin Laden in his own way. This includes becoming a Looney Tune-like cartoon character and constantly tricking Bin Laden into doing bizarre things. He eventually tricks him into dressing up as Uncle Sam and holding a piece of dynamite, which explodes in his face. A random American soldier then shoots him the head, ending his reign of terror. What else is there to say? Eric Cartman basically caused the death of the world’s greatest terrorist. He’s a true hero.
1. He Defeated Saddam Hussein (South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut)
Osama Bin Laden isn’t the only real-life baddie he has defeated. When Satan and Saddam ascend from Hell to take over Earth, Saddam calls Cartman fat, prompting him to swear and cause his malfunctioning V-Chip to shoot a bolt of energy to Saddam. Cartman discovers he has a new power and uses intense profanity to power himself up and defeat Saddam. This eventually leads to Saddam to be thrown back into Hell by Satan and the day is saved. Throughout the course of South Park, Eric Cartman defeated not one, but two major enemies of America. Sounds like Uncle Sam needs to be replaced.
Eric Cartman is a fat, angry, and very racist little boy, but he has his good moments. Despite his antics, he is character we love to watch, which won’t end anytime soon. He might become more mature in the future but to be honest, that would be super weak.