South Park is one of those classic TV shows that completely polarizes people; you either love it or think it’s a steaming pile of garbage. Funnily enough, the same could be said about Eric Cartman.
He’s objectively one of the worst fictional children ever to grace our screens, and for that, we should hate his guts – but there’s something absolutely hilarious about his total lack of filter that keeps us wanting more and more.
So whether you love or hate Cartman, you’ve made it this far, so read on for some hilarious, cringeworthy, and surprisingly informative facts about the worst cartoon character ever to exist!
Cartman is loosely based on a high school classmate of Trey Parker, one of South Park’s co-creators. The creators believe that children have no social etiquette or tact, and are generally awful, so Cartman was created as a version of the worst child they could imagine.
Many people thought Cartman’s name came from the famous Nazi German pilot Erich Hartmann, as a nod to Cartman’s love of Hitler. But, in reality, even Cartman’s name was based on their high school classmate, Matt Karpman.
Cartman was originally called Kenny, as seen in the South Park creators’ early animated shorts. All four of the main “boys” can be seen in the shorts, but when “Kenny” dies, it’s clearly the same character that later becomes Cartman!
In fact, South Park’s creators see a lot of themselves in Eric Cartman. They’ve previously said that Cartman is very much like their dark sides, and the things he says are what they would usually not dare to say.
In 2008, a two-disc DVD called The Cult of Cartman was released. It contained a compilation of twelve South Park episodes in which Cartman can be seen at his absolute peak. And by peak, we obviously mean at his worst!
Cartman has an incredibly extensive criminal record for a ten-year-old, and that’s just including the crimes he was arrested for. The worst of these include hate crimes, incarcerating hippies, whaling, and kidnapping Butters. Although to be fair, these are all incredibly tame compared to everything he did that he managed not to get arrested for!
He’s an excellent leader – in the worst of ways. His ability to gather people and get them to do things he wants is extraordinary, although his methods of doing so generally involve exploiting other peoples’ weaknesses.
Cartman’s ventriloquism is also one of his most incredible talents, and he uses his hand to speak sometimes. His hand, which Cartman calls Mitch Conner, is so realistic that it has an affair with Ben Affleck and gets its own record deal!
He has a knack for languages, speaking both fluent German and Spanish. That’s not to say he uses them for anything good, though; instead, using his German to be anti-semitic and his Spanish to hurl slurs at some Peruvians.
Somehow he also has time to be an incredibly gifted musician. He started the Faith +1 Christian rock group, a boy band called Fingerbang, and can play the violin, the drums, the French horn, the harmonica, the recorder flute, the acoustic guitar, and the pan flute.
Cartman has his own Facebook account. Unfortunately, the people from South Park Studios who run it don’t post on there acting as if they were Cartman himself, instead merely sharing things vaguely related to South Park.
Cartman’s alignment is almost certainly “neutral evil.” While he is, without a doubt, an awful excuse for a human being, he doesn’t particularly care whether there is any order to the universe.
Cartman sees life through Kenny’s eyes, literally. Cartman had awful eyesight, and after a few botched attempts to restore his vision, he ultimately got an eye transplant from a donor. The donor was Kenny, who had died earlier in the episode.
While Cartman’s mom might seem rather sweet, she’s the opposite–something Cartman’s schoolfriends constantly remind him of. Her promiscuous nighttime activities are probably a big reason why Cartman is so psychologically messed up.
Even Cartman’s racism came from his mother – as shown when she made him an Adolf Hitler costume for Halloween. He didn’t even know who Hitler was at the time.
Cartman’s way of mispronouncing words and obsessing over catchphrases isn’t unique to Cartman. His extended family also has the same form of speaking. They’re also all “big-boned” and tend to be awful people.
Cartman can make burgers taste like they were made from different fast-food chains by farting on them.
Cartman had a father and a sister in the original South Park pilot, which didn’t make it to air. His father was eventually revealed as Jack Tenorman in season 14.
Kyle is Cartman’s arch-rival. It’s incredible that the two ever hang out at all, considering their extreme hatred for each other. Neither of them likes the thought of being without each other, though, which is pretty twisted.
Eric Cartman’s middle name is Theodore, but this has only ever been used in one South Park episode. Since that episode, he sometimes gets referred to as Eric T. Cartman.
We hope you’ve had as much fun reading this as we’ve had writing this.
After learning more about Cartman, his background, and why he is what he is, we only have one question.
Do we hate him more or less? For a seemingly two-dimensional foul-mouthed little kid, he’s an impressively complex character!