South Park's battle with the Church of Scientology is good for ratings. The first episode of the 10th season scored well in the Nielsens.
The episode, The Return of Chef, generated a 2.8 household rating and drew 3.5 million total viewers, 2.3 million of those 18-49s. That demo rating was 21% better than the debut episode of Season nine.
The episode was controversial because Scientologist Issac Hayes, the voice of Chef, had quit the show and denounced it for religious bigotry, apparently tied to an episode last fall slamming the religion.
But using snippets of Hayes' disalogue from previous episodes, creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone depicted Chef as a child molester who had been brainwashed by a "fruity club," the Super Adventure Society, that travels the world abusing children.