"South Park" creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker have long made sport of skewering cultural icons, and are known for poking at religion with particular delight—from Jesus to Scientology to Mohamed in a bear suit, no faith is any safer than the celebrities ridiculed weekly on their Comedy Central show.
With that LOL-legacy in mind, I will admit that when I went to see their Broadway musical The Book of Mormon in previews last week (geeks: this is like your app being in beta before the 1.0 launches), I expected a few hours of clever Joseph Smith mockery. It was clever, there was some Joseph Smith, and much mockery. But the show was far more complex and entertaining than those expectations allowed. And holy golden tablets, was it ever packed with easter eggs for nerds: Mothra! Vader! Uhura! Yoda! Tolkien! Seriously!
Here is the TL;DR version: The Book of Mormon was fucking awesome. This is the funniest live show I have ever seen; tight, colorful, blasphemous, outrageous. The music, developed with Robert Lopez (of "Avenue Q" fame), was terrific. Throughout the evening, the entire audience was choking with ROFL. It does not matter if you are an atheist, an agnostic, or faithful (hell, even LDS), this show will make you laugh so hard you'll weep.
Matt Stone described the show to me as "an atheists's love note to religion." Both Stone and Parker are nonbelievers. "In a way," Parker has said,
"'Star Wars' was our religion, and Spider-Man's a religion."
But Book of Mormon has more to do with how we create culture, and the roots of why humans express kindness or violence to one another, than some rote send-up of faith. I would feel just as confident taking my Catholic auntie to see this show as I would Richard Dawkins, and not just because I know they both appreciate a good scrotum joke and a chorus line. Wait what did I just type.
Opening night at the Eugene O'Neill Theater is March 24. If you are reading Boing Boing, you will love it, and you should go see it.
Here are some press clips and early reviews. Maybe start with the New York Times piece.
The Book of Mormon: Web, Facebook, Twitter.
Fingers of Steel chronicles the hardcore world of finger skateboarding. Warning: some of the tricks are so gnarly you’ll wonder how fingerboarder Chris Heck escapes with fingers intact.
Day Dreamers Limited — the artist collective of Kelly Tunstall, Ferris Plock, and creative studio Form & Fiction — are making an animated series starring Donald Trump’s Hair as the protagonist! From Hair to the Throne: Whenever the President drifts off to dreamland or is too busy Tweeting to notice, The Hair gets to work: […]
The Nerdwriter presents a fascinating analysis of why Louis CK’s jokes are funny.
Looking to upgrade your weekend? Here are three randomly awesome products on my mind this week.#3 FRESHeBUDS Pro Magnetic Bluetooth EarbudsAs more and more phones and gadgets switch to Bluetooth-only compatibility, you’ll need to get Bluetooth headphones like the rest of us. I’ve been super impressed with these affordable magnetic headphones. Pull the magnetic earbuds apart to auto-connect […]
Traditional folding wallets are designed for paper bills—but these days, carrying cash is rarely a necessity. More often than not, I don’t carry cash at all. This Bogui Clik Wallet is the best answer I’ve found for avoiding the hassle of those tight-fitting credit card pockets.This attractive, minimalist wallet features a protective lip, so my cards don’t […]
Using my iPhone while it’s charging is always a hassle. With tucked-away outlets and the meager length of included lightning cables, comfortable scrolling while plugged in is annoying. These 10-Ft MFi-Certified Lightning Cables are super convenient and probably the best iPhone accessory purchase I’ve made.At over three times the length of normal cables, these reach anywhere you […]