Ed Sheeran may be one of the most successful musicians in the world, but, even so, he still can’t get past a 2005 episode of South Park that he said “fucking ruined” his life.

During an interview on Slam Radio, Sheeran said that it was a particular episode of South Park that made fun of red heads that really kicked off mockery of the hair colour in America.

“Having red hair in England was always a thing that people took the piss out of you for,” Sheeran said. “But it was never something in America. People never knew what a ginger was in America.”

The musician added: “That episode of South Park fucking ruined my life.”

The South Park episode that Sheeran is referring to is titled “Ginger Kids” and was released in 2005 as part of season nine of the popular cartoon show. During the episode, Cartman singles out characters with red hair and claims they have no souls, as well as a disease called “gingervitis”.

Characters Stan and Kyle take a stand against the prejudice and turn Cartman’s hair red while he sleeps. Cartman then retaliates by starting a “Ginger Separatist Movement” which leads to Ginger kids kidnapping non-gingers with the goal of sacrificing them.

During the episode, Cartman presents a speech to the class. “My speech is titled “ginger kids,” he begins. “Children with red hair, light skin and freckles. We’ve all seen them on the playground, at the store, walking the streets. They creep us out and make us feel sick to our stomachs, I’m talking, of course, about ginger kids,” he adds.

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Reflecting on the episode, the English singer says that prior to it’s release, he was constantly complimented on his bright hair when visiting the US.

“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?'” he said. “And then I remember that episode coming out and that was just it worldwide for the rest of my life.”

For more on this topic, follow the Film & TV Observer.

Watch a short clip from the Ginger Kids episode of South Park: