Ed Sheeran says South Park episode mocking ginger people "ruined his life"
4 January 2022, 16:53 | Updated: 4 January 2022, 17:16
The South Park episode is said to have inspired the controversial National Kick A Ginger Day.
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Ed Sheeran has said an episode of South Park about ginger children "ruined his life".
The long-running cult animation is known for offending just about everyone and Ed has a particular problem with season 9's "Ginger Kids" episode, which aired in November 2005. In the episode, Eric Cartman develops "gingervitis" and becomes ginger, freckled and paler overnight. After being discriminated against for his hair colour, he recruits other ginger children to fight the children who have mocked them.
The controversial episode is thought to have inspired National Kick A Ginger Day in 2008, which saw several red-haired students attacked at school.
Now, the 'Bad Habits' singer has revealed how the episode made the teasing about his hair colour worse, especially in America, where red hair wasn't made fun of as much as in the UK.
"Having red hair in England was always a thing that people took the piss out of you for. But it was never something in America. People never knew what a ginger was in America," Ed told Slam Radio. "That episode of South Park fucking ruined my life. I was going to America and everyone was like, 'I love your hair dude.' And I was like, 'Oh my God, people like my hair?' And then I remember that episode coming out and that was just it worldwide for the rest of my life."
Despite the taunts, Ed has insisted that he's still a massive South Park fan and he would love to voice himself one day.
Ed's ginger hair might saw him become on the receiving end of bad jokes, however, it has actually worked in the favour of other red-haired people. In a 2015 interview with a US radio station, Ed said that the sex lives of ginger men had improved thanks to his popularity. "There are a lot of ginger dudes in England who are using me. That's why I'm not hating on it," he explained.
"You know what, we're finally getting laid. This is a good thing. My cousin went on holiday with all her mates. Her mate was in a bar and this dude came up to her and said: 'I have my song on the radio and my name is Ed Sheeran.'"