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Stan becomes interested in Scientology, and the Scientologists try to convince him he is to be their new leader. Tom Cruise goes into Stan's closet and refuses to come out, and even denies the fact that he's in the closet. Even R. Kelly's desperate pleas won't convince Tom Cruise to come on out. Meanwhile, Stan's involvement in Scientology puts a strain on his friendship with Kyle.
According to Matt Stone, the treatment of Scientology in this episode is the reason why Isaac Hayes would later leave the show.
When the Scientology president tells Stan the story of Xenu, a caption flashes on the screen that says: "THIS IS WHAT SCIENTOLOGISTS ACTUALLY BELIEVE."
As a joke, the end credits of this episode were all changed to either "John Smith" or "Jane Smith" to protect themselves against lawsuits from the Church of Scientology.
This particular episode was nominated for an Emmy in the Outstanding Animated Program category.
The episode was released on several DVD's despite having been requested by Tom Cruise and the Church of Scientology to never be put into DVD format.
Stan: Let's just do something fun that's free.
Cartman: Stan, don't you know the first law of physics? Anything that's fun costs at least eight dollars.
Stan: Dad! Tom Cruise won't come out of the closet!
Nicole Kidman: Tom, don't you think this has gone on long enough? It's time for you to come out of the closet.
Tom Cruise: But . . . I'm not in the closet
Nicole Kidman: Yes you are, Tom. You need to just come out. I'm not going to think any differently of you, Katie's not going to think any differently of you. You just need to come out, Tom.
Tom Cruise: But I'm not in here though.
Cartman: Stan, I just want you to know, I still hate Kyle more than you.
Scientologist: What's better than telling people a stupid story and having them believe you? Having them pay you for it!
Trapped in the Closet
The title of this episode comes from the title of a song by the same name by R. Kelly
Stan: (to Tom Cruise)
Well... I mean, you're not... you're not like as good as Leonardo DiCaprio, but you're okay, I guess.
is a famous American actor known for his roles in films such as What's Eating Gilbert Grape
, and Catch Me if You Can
Stan: (to Tom Cruise)
I mean, you're not Gene Hackman or that guy who played Napoleon Dynamite, but you're okay.
Movie star Gene Hackman
is famous for starring in films like The French Connection
, The Unforgiven
, and Mississippi Burning
The guy who played "Napoleon Dynamite" is American actor Jon Heder