|Written||March 19, 2008|
|No. of Chapters||4|
Lex Talionis is a fanfiction written and published on FanFiction.Net by Foodstamp. It's title is Latin for "Eye for an Eye". It is one of the most popular fanfics in the South Park fandom. The story is told and observed from Kenny’s point of view.
Though generally a popular fanfic - it is one of the only South Park fanfics with it's own TV Tropes page and countless reviews - it came under criticism in later years. In January 2015, Foodstamp removed all of thier fanfiction, including this one.
Years after losing contact with their childhood friends, Detectives Marsh and McCormick pick up a domestic abuse case that exposes their own dark history.
Lex Talionis, a Latin biblical term that refers to the judicial law of retaliation, is a suspenseful and exciting thriller concerning two best friends, Stan Marsh and Kenny McCormick and their experiences as police officers with the newly established South Park Police Department. The spirit of law enforcement was instilled in them at a young age and it carried into their lives as young men. They both studied criminal justice during college and returned to their small rural hometown with hearts full of righteousness and moral integrity, hoping to make a difference. Yet, the crime rate in South Park was low, and the town was generally harmless. With careers dictated by pointless deskwork and childhoods filled with traumatizing difficulties, Stan and Kenny irked for experiences that would provide justifiable purpose to their lives. And when Christophe, an old acquaintance of Stan’s, walked into the station; that’s exactly what they were in for.
When Christophe walked in and reported his spousal abuse situation to the two detectives, they knew something was wrong. Family abuse was a topic that occurred often, but was rarely discussed in the rural county they lived in. The unique case that Christophe discussed concerned that of a homosexual couple in the region. It is during this scene that we find out the impactful characteristics and histories of our two main characters. Stan had become a homosexual during his life and had lost a mate in his past. His homosexuality gave him a sense of self-respect and resonance that Kenny greatly admired. On the other hand, Kenny experienced familial abuse from his parents during his childhood. Although his dad despised his love for criminal justice and morality, Kenny pursued his aspirations and had eventually attained the satisfaction of hearing his dad say the words, “I’m proud of you son”; Every boy’s proudest memory. With this information as the basis of characterization for our heroes, readers begin to unfold the inner discoveries of who Stan and Kenny really are and who they might become as the story progresses.
The episode of Christophe’s introduction spurred an immense succession of intense scenes as Stan and Kenny investigate the true underlying immoralities of their beloved county. As the detectives experience, “an entire district of corrupt officers, murder and blackmail, a kidnap victim who finally fought back. Priests, for God's sake. Dirty laundry”, the officers begin to question their moral judgments of the county and the people that they knew and once so heavily believed in. The thoughts that lingered in the back of their minds came to light as the little innocence they had left was taken from them. Everyone became a suspect, even the detectives’ own co-workers. Specifically with the add-on of the new British, hot shot transfer cop, Gregory, Kenny became skeptical of his intentions with his involvement on the scandals when he discovered that him and Christophe shared a sexual relationship. Upon realizing the injustices surrounding him, Kenny began to question his belief in the justice system. Yet, on the other hand, Stan was reunited with his previous lover of ten years, Kyle, who showed up in a vast surprise. The two lovers reignited their relational spark with a deeply intimate love scene as Cartman, another detective, watchs from behind a closet door. During this scene, Cartman expresses heavy jealousy on behalf of Kyle, claiming that Stan wasn’t nearly as good of a lover as him. Blinded by his revived love, Stan then sets to carryout justice in the fashion of the title, "Lex Talionis" or “an eye for an eye”. He believes that this way is the only true way to deal with crime as he intends to hold everyone accountable for his or her actions. As the story continues, the detectives further investigate the spousal abuse case, discovering that the case goes deeper into a sort of psychological kidnapping of the abuser’s spouse, Norman and a series of blackmailing on the county residents by the abuser. When the detectives crack the case, they discover that the abuser was actually Cartman and that Kyle and Norman were one in the same person. Cartman, at the other police headquarters, coerced county residents in order to complete his criminal tasks and keep them under the radar of the justice system.
Cartman is caught and murdered and it becomes unclear as to who killed him. Thus, the FBI is brought in and places all remaining detectives are put under investigation in order to discover who had a motive. The full scandal of how a small county cop managed to manipulate the system, kidnap his spouse and then blackmail the county residents becomes a huge countrywide dilemma. The investigation failed but the reader learns that the person who murdered Cartman was Stan. Angered by the fact that his past lover, was being abused and held against will, Stan took matters into his own hands to protect Kyle. Hence, Stan also manipulated the justice system to do what he thought was right and to free the person he loved from oppression. Stan defended his actions saying, “"Justice exists beyond the police, even it makes someone take a life.” He then turns himself in to the authorities under the strong legal representation of his lawyer, Token, in order to protect his soul mate, Kyle, who the FBI pungently confronted because they believed he had the strongest motive. Stan’s legal documents transferred all his belongings to Kyle, so that Kyle may live comfortably while he awaits Stan’s release from jail. The final scenes of the story contain a conversation between Stan and Kenny, in which they discuss Stan’s actions and their futures. Kenny is forced to arrest his best friend, Stan, reads him his rights and takes him to the holding cell where he awaits his trial and jail time. With the loss of his best friend to the cruelty of the justice system’s manipulation, Kenny loses his love for criminal justice, leaves his badge by the door at the Police Station and “never looked back”.