“The Book of Mormon Musical” Coming to Broadway 2011

This post was written on April 14th, 2010. If you would like the read the REAL review, then please go here: Theatre Review: “The Book of Mormon” @ Eugene O’Neill Theatre, 04/12/2011

Yes, a show called, The Book of Mormon musical is coming to Broadway in March 2011, by none other than the creators of South Park, Trey Parker and Matt Stone and Avenue Q composer and co-creator Robert Lopez.

When I first heard about this, I actually never thought producers would be willing to produce this for a number of reasons, but it’s even more surprising to me that they are shooting for Broadway. Why Broadway? What ever happened to Off-Broadway? Or I have a better idea, stick to South Park boys, Broadway doesn’t want you.

I’m a huge fan of parodies – Avenue Q is one of my favorite musicals. It’s hysterical for all the right (and sometimes wrong) reasons. It makes fun of something that most of us grew up with – “Sesame Street”. Everyone has seen “Sesame Street” at some point in their life and that’s why it was so funny. Every person in the audience has a personal connection to the material.

What are the producers thinking? (Scott Rudin – “God of Carnage,” “Fences” – and Anne Garefino, the executive producer of Comedy Central’s “South Park”) Who’s their audience base for this? Who’s gonna spend over $100 dollars to see this on Broadway? And how is it going to have any staying power on Broadway? What is the personal connection that the audiences are going to have with this material? Mormons aren’t going to go see this, so who?

Now, let’s look more closely at The Book of Mormon musical. Michael Riedel of the NY Post says, “…they’ve have made a couple of field trips to Salt Lake City and have pored through The Book of Mormon.” He quotes Parker saying, “We’re bigger authorities on The Book of Mormon than most Mormons.” Wow, could you be more insulting to the general Mormon population? A couple of field trips? Pored through The Book of Mormon? Does that really make you an expert? Oh wait, you grew up with a lot of Mormons, now it all makes sense.

This isn’t a musical that is going to lightly poke fun of Mormon’s big families or their conservative values. As NY Post continues to report, “The musical tells the story of two young Mormon missionaries sent off to spread the word in a dangerous part of Uganda. Their tale is told alongside the story of Joseph Smith, founder of the Church of Latter-day Saints.”

What is funny about sacrificing your life for two years to be a missionary at the age of 19 years old? What is funny about Joseph Smith, a man that was assassinated by an angry mob at age 39 years old, for his religion? (And no one was ever convicted for the murder.) Where is the funny or satire in all of this?

Sure, poke fun of the peculiar nature of Mormon’s cultures, but when you start your irreverent fun about things you don’t understand, it’s just offensive. There are some things out there that are sacred to people, regardless of your own personal beliefs. At the very least, be respectful to one another. Based on Riedel’s interview The Book of Mormon musical will be extremely offensive in more ways than one and being offensive just isn’t that funny.

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63 thoughts on ““The Book of Mormon Musical” Coming to Broadway 2011

  1. I don’t understand what base the producers think this show is going to appeal to. Honestly, this is going to cause more harm and is going to be an expensive flop, especially since, by the looks of it, the storyline will be weak. This is a waste.

    1. The writer and all the commenters who agree are ignorant pretentious tools who obviously have never really paid attention to what Trey Parker has done as a writer and director. He truly is a brilliant man. His original lyrics and music were nominated for an oscar and legitimate theatre critics have called the South Park movie a “brilliant musical.” The core audience will be the millions of fans of South Park who realize the brilliance Parker has. The show has remained successful for 15 years so obviously there is an udience. Not to mention all the intelligent people who understand the absurdity of a religion born from fear and racism that didn’t even exist 200 years ago. Thats all I will say for now, and I will not be back to respond so take your shots. Have a nice evening.

    2. Parker and Stone’s criticism of religion has always been intelligent, trenchant and hilarious. Those who automatically become offended when such criticisms are leveled should deal with there own insecurities rather than immediately helping “that’s stupid!”

  2. Seriously someone tell the person who wrote this to get the sand out of there vagina
    F what you think is sacred
    Being offensive is funny because nothing is sacred
    You don’t have to have hateful feeling’s to those you make fun of
    The fact is they have said on a few occasions that they have nothing against the Mormon people
    They just find it hilarious that they could believe what is in the Mormon book as literal truth
    Why don’t you wait to see it before you make pretentious preconceived notions about how horrible these guys are to make something so Offensive
    I doubt that most Mormons who actually see this will feel that way about it
    I could be wrong
    And If I am so what
    They have every right to make a musical about anything they want
    Thank Buddha for the South Park Guys
    They bring the only Intelligent show on TV to the masses

    1. Wow, I feel sorry for you. It’s sad to think that nothing to you is sacred. oh and in the future, you might want to try to be more subtle about showing your lack of intelligence. I think even most south park fans would admit there is nothing intelligent about the show. That’s the only funny thing about it, how stupid it is.

      1. Actually, the show is very intelligent. Covering up important issues with crude humor does not make it stupid, it takes a lot of wit and acumen to do so. It is people like you, who have a stick up their ass and take everything too literally, who assume that the show is stupid. Yes, they are making fun of Mormons, but the pretense for the show is their South Park view of Mormons. They are not touring the country trying to badmouth the religion or kill Mormons. This is a satirical view of a religion, FROM THE CREATORS OF SOUTH PARK.

      2. Dude, obviously more people are not in agreeance with you. The mormon religion is retarded and disgraceful. So is anyone who thinks there isn’t an audience for anything Trey Parker does. He’s done nothing but hit home runs for the last 15 years. The man is brilliant.

    2. haha wow, classic. broadway needs this. from reading this it sounds like a bunch of sandy vaginas! this will appeal to everyone outside of broadway. christ id skip a celtics game to drive to new york and see this broadway show. so be happy its getting new people to your stupid street…

      p.s. hide your jew gold

    3. James, I’m sorry. But I think a man who didn’t watch South Park and knew how to use proper punctuation and grammar would be able to change the way I see things. sadly, though, you do not. So go look back at your comment.

      You said” Seriously someone tell the person who wrote this to get the sand out of there vagina”.

      What does this mean? And are you really as immature as to put things like this on the internet? It’s not for you to decide what is funny or sacred to anyone else. So I just have two things to say to you. Grow up, and actually do some research before you make stupid remarks about another person’s religion.

      Thank you.

    4. I’m sure you or Jason Hatch will see it since you would have to purchase tickets, and since you both are obviously fans of Parker and his juvenile “humor”, you probably don’t have a job. Maybe you could ask Mommy or Daddy?

  3. Could these south park boys spend their time, energy and money on something that will actually help to make the a little better than to bring out what’s worst in people???

  4. I admit that I am not a huge fan of the “South Park” TV show. I am not even sure that I have seen an entire episode from start to finish. However, I am a huge fan of the “South Park” movie, which is a musical. It is not only extremely funny (and only occasionally “offensive-funny”), but the music was catchy, memorable, integrated, and at times, musically complex. If anyone doubts the intelligence and political satire that these two men are capable of, watch that movie; it will change your mind.

    Secondly, I am first and foremost a musical theatre fan. In fact, I am a theatre teacher. So, to read something from someone that makes unfounded accusations about a piece of material that they have not seen performed, read, or even talked to someone who has seen it performed, is concerning. Do you not think there were (and still are) those who criticized of such “controversial” shows as “Cabaret”, “Tenderloin”, “Chicago”, “Avenue Q”, “Jesus Christ Superstar”, “Spring Awakening”, “Assassins”, “Nine”, “Hair”, “Godspell”,”The Life”, “Next to Normal”, “Rent”, and “Urinetown” based only on summaries, plot descriptions, or even just the title? These shows have withstood the test of time, because the product is strong, and they have a message that rises above their “concerning” content.

    Everyone is entitled to their opinion, but when you question the character, appropriateness, and relevance of a piece of art and its creators, the least you can do is see it first.

    1. I’m criticizing the interview and the press release that was published in Broadwayworld.com and the New York Post.

      If I do see the show, then I’ll criticize the show itself. But I never alluded that I had seen the piece of “art” in my article. I actually explicitly say at the end of the article that is this is all “based on this interview…”

      I’ll continue to create opinions about any other new musical that is announced.

      No one has answered my questions that the producers should be asking themselves:

      Who’s their audience base for this?

      Who’s gonna spend over $100 dollars to see this on Broadway?

      And how is it going to have any staying power on Broadway?

      What is the personal connection that the audiences are going to have with this material?

      Mormons aren’t going to go see this, so who?

      1. I’d pay more than 100 dollars to see this. I’m a huge fan of theirs, and I’m sure the music, and portrayal of the Broadway story will be hilarious and entertaining.

      2. The audience base is going to be fans of both Trey Parker and Matt Stone, and Robert Lopez. They are all well known people with a good audience and reputation.

        Many people would spend 100$ to see this on Broadway, I would, people have spent more on things that are far more ‘offensive’, or stupid as you think this musical will be

        Once people really see how epic this is going to be I think the money that will be made from it will keep it on Broadway

        Personal connection? you don’t need to have a personal connection to go see something……I’m most likely going to see this because the south park creators are making it……that’s my connection, and I am just one of many millions of south park fans

        Some Mormons will go see it, but many south park fans will (or just fans of Trey Parker and Matt Stone in general, which is a lot of people) also fans of Robert Lopez will go see it and people who just simply like musicals

      3. how do you look at this and not go “a musical about Mormons how the hell are they gonna pull this off” its so unique and different that aside from all the huge fans of trey and the guys, people will want to see it… these guys are brilliant they really are, and they do things tastefully yes what they are saying is offensive to some people, but get over yourselves they’re not making things up about the religion they’re just telling the story in a different way, everyone is entitled to they’re own believes but also entitled to the freedom of speech… we will see how it goes, but i’m not too worried these guys haven’t disappointed me yet and i think its going to be a hit.. not everyone is as stuck up as you and i believe many Mormons will even see this with an OPEN mind unlike yourself

  5. I completely agree with this article. No serious Broadway enthusiast will want to see a musical meant to deride a religion. The only people in the audience will be those who hate Mormons and the curious. You don’t have to believe by why insult others, and on Broadway of all places?

    1. The people in the audience will see the show because they are fans of Avenue Q and the creators of South Park, not because they hate mormons. Anyone with any sense at all knows the producers dont hate mormons.

  6. Hi. I understand your skepticism. Most satire, though, isn’t making fun of the content it uses to make its fun. In other words, the South Park creators are mostly likely using the Mormon plot to illuminate something universal about humans.

    You write, “There are some things out there that are sacred to people, regardless of your own personal beliefs.” This is so true. What is most sacred to us IS our personal beliefs, and satire is good at helping us see, with humor and compassion, the folly of clinging too rigidly to these and everything else we use to define and differentiate ourselves. This satire will only be funny if its creators do not think they are superior to Mormons. See? Comedy has a built-in “humili-meter”!

    What’s wonderful about satire — and I’m not saying this will be one, but it certainly has potential — is that if it is good, and it’s especially good if it’s funny, it does the job of religion: It makes us see others as ourselves; it makes us forgive others and ourselves; and it makes us more conscious and willing to change.

    1. Lise – You make a lot of great points. I have a feeling – and it’s purely based off of what the South Park creators have done in the past and what was said in the interview – that this particular foray into satire isn’t going to do the job you are describing satire should do.

      Maybe I would be more apt to believing it would if they changed their title and had a different plot.

  7. My point is that you (like most people in the 13 year history of the “South Park” TV show) have apparently underestimated the ability of the creators and the fans of this type of humor. Throw in Mr. Lopez, and I would imagine that this show will appeal to a younger/more politically minded “Broadway” crowd than you give it credit for.

    Remember, the “South Park” movie grossed $83,137,603 in theaters alone. So, someone must have liked their biggest foray into musicals. Granted that was 11 years ago and a $10 movie ticket is different than a $100 Broadway ticket, but the audience is there.

    Additionally, like the previous poster noted, based on their previous work, it is safe to assume that the creators will use the “Mormon” storyline as a backdrop for more currently relevant political topics. Therefore, I would imagine that there will be a significant liberal-lean to this show, which, if done right, should appeal to a rather sizable portion of the New York, theatre-going crowd.

    And also, don’t forget that the “South Park” movie was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Song (“Blame Canada”).

    As for changing the title and plot, as I’m sure you know, many new musicals change titles during the rehearsal process, so who knows. Secondly, and more importantly, you don’t really know what the plot is. You read one interview (by a well-known muck-racking yellow journalist) and included two sentences about the “plot” in your article. With all due respect, I see little more than a bare-bones plot outline, not a full plot. I can tell you that if I had gone only on the plot outline of a show about people who had to pay to pee, I probably would have never seen “Urinetown”, or solely on the idea of a stage musical version of one of the worst movies of all, I wouldn’t have seen “Xanadu”, both shows, which far transcended their off-putting or limited summaries.

    My original post was basically not focused on your questions about audience, base, and appeal (because I think that ANY musical on Broadway, especially a new one, is a financial gamble for investors), instead it was in response to your insulting, self-important, judgmental comments, like, “Or I have a better idea, stick to South Park boys, Broadway doesn’t want you.” You say that as if you (someone who lives in California) speaks for “Broadway”, which as I’m sure you know, is a street, not a living human being. Secondly, I found it ironic that you chastise the authors of the show as being insulting towards Mormons for only visiting Salt Lake City a few times and reading poring through the “Book of Mormon”, yet, your whole article is based on one interview, where it seemed to me that they were being glib and sarcastic. Yet, they still seem to have done quite a bit more research than you have. You are making judgments based on what YOU assume a piece is going to be. THAT is why I have a problem with this article. Time will tell if this show will materialize, and if it does, then we will learn if it is of quality, or if it is as offensive as you have already decided it is.

    If you had said that you did not believe that this show, based on the one article you read, was something that you wanted to see, because you didn’t think that people should make fun of religion, that would have been fine, but you didn’t. You vilified a show, its creators, and investors based on a 700 word article you read.
    I, personally, am excited about this show, because of my limited exposure to the work of the “South Park” creators (basically only the show’s movie version and another of their movie’s “BASEketball”), I find them funny, insightful, and very politically-aware. Perhaps more importantly, I am looking forward to it, because this show has the opportunity to bring a new crowd of people to the theatre, just as “American Idiot”, “Spring Awakening”, “Rent” and others have done before it. Will the show be for everybody? No, but I am willing to believe that this show will find its place on stage somewhere.

  8. Who’s their audience base for this?

    Today’s youth are the people who are the future of the arts staying alive. You can revive a great musical as many times as you want, but that doesn’t make it all-new and exciting.

    Who’s gonna spend over $100 dollars to see this on Broadway?

    Same people who spent money on tickets for shows like Avenue Q, Spamalot and The Producers.

    And how is it going to have any staying power on Broadway?

    Who knows, it could be a flop. Or it could be successful. But that may not be something easily predicted. For example, Wicked was predicted to be a flop, and I’m pretty sure it’s one of the most successful musicals on Broadway to this day.

    What is the personal connection that the audiences are going to have with this material?

    You don’t have to live in Oz to have a connection to Elphaba. You don’t have to be Jewish to have a connection to Tevye: Just pure, human emotion. It’s about a journey, and it doesn’t matter where you start with a character, just where they take you and where you end.

    Mormons aren’t going to go see this, so who?

    Well, since there are13+ million Mormons in the ENTIRE world, and since most Mormons don’t live in North America, I’d say quite a few people. There’s over 19 million people in NYC alone…

    1. The reason this play will be seen and loved is the same reason we all love South Park. Yes, its crude. Yes, it’s offensive. Yes, it’s disgusting. Isn’t every religion crude, offensive, or disgusting to some people? Aren’t people in general crude, offensive, and disgusting. No? Ask pro-choice advocates if Christians are offensive. Ask Muslims if Catholics are disgusting for eating body and drinking blood. We love them because we all know that people disagree with us and because we can all laugh at ourselves and the stupid things that people inside our own communities and organizations do. That’s what makes this show amazing, it doesn’t discriminate, it makes fun of EVERYONE!

    2. you are making great points but as a member of the church I feel the need to point out an error even though a the majority of u.s. Citizens are not mormon they usually are religious and many religions serve missions and somewhere along the way a member of their church was a martyr. Its not funny the struggles that people go through for their religion whether it be on missions or even the extreme of dying for whats right. Jesus christ himself was a martyr for everyone on to ever walk the earth. Do you really think any half religious person who really truthfully is righteous would want to see a musical disgracing another faith, the answer is no. there are the select few who will watch it just to slam the mormon faith, but they will only be showing how truly sacreligious they are even to their religion. We are christians just like baptist, methodist, catholics, lutherans and many many others. the world is made of many people of many different religions but we are all children of the same god and should all be respected in that.

    3. Everyone has a personal connection to Oz because we all saw the movie it’s poking fun at growing up. I know because I’ve red The Wizard of Oz and Wicked as well as seeing the musicals. Fiddler on the roof was a dramatic piece and that’s why we could connect to it. Satire is mostly inside jokes so only people who are familiar with the Book of Mormon and the Mormon religion will get it.

      Also, reread your comment for “Who’s their audience base for this?” because it was just a comment; not an answer.

      To everyone: People make offensive stuff all the time. Jesus Christ Superstar offended a lot of Christians; I even think it’s sac-religions.

      If you don’t want to see it: DON’T. If you do: DO.

  9. Great. Maybe they’ll do the Spanish Inquisition next. That one will really be a hoot. Or maybe a musical satire of pedophile priests? Or, Buddha forbid, actually look into the looney ideas of the holy enlightened Buddhists? Like the concept that we are all doing karma for our great-great-great grandpa’s sins?

  10. Nicci is right. I wonder how many of the critics here felt the same way before “Spamalot” came out. There are many similarities to “Book of Mormon.” “Spamalot” brought out a lot of people who typically wouldn’t attend theatre, especially musicals. Personally, I’m in the wait and see school, since South Park is notoriously uneven, but there is no denying Parker’s and Stone’s talents, especially musically. Check out “Somalian Pirates We”, a spot-on homage to Gilbert and Sullivan: http://www.southparkstudios.com/clips/225458/

  11. I’ve noticed that every musical you all have been comparing “Book of Mormon” to isn’t based on a specific branch of religion. I totally agree that it’s not funny to make fun of a man that died for his religion. How about we write a show about President Lincoln being shot. That would be great wouldn’t it? He was a man who died for his ideals, was he not? As was Joseph Smith Jr.. Whether or not you believe in the LDS religion, you should respect a man who died and stood up for his beliefs. How many religions after the Constitution were persecuted as much as the Mormons are? None. In Missouri, there was a law written saying you could kill any Mormon without questions if they even came near you. By the way, this law was repealed only 15-20 years ago. Is this a funny subject? Missionaries go out to serve their Lord and religion, for 2 years, and this is something to poke fun at? Awesome. Granted some of the things that happen on missions are hilarious, but those things that are sacred shouldn’t be touched. Joseph Smith Jr. was a great man. He never harmed a soul and was murdered for preaching the gospel. If you find this funny, you have one twisted sense of humor and should work on getting that fixed.

    1. @Jon- Please take your head out of your ass and learn the facts. Joseph Smith was not a good man. He was a notorious brainwasher who is responsible for many deaths. He was also a well-documented egomaniac who created a religion to satisfy his need to dominate and control. Most of his life he was enormously unsuccessful (mostly because he faced incredible hate from the Christians of his time) until he moved out in the middle of nowhere (Salt Lake city was only occupied by a small faction of tribal Indians then) where no one could bother him. There he continued his crusade by slowly converting those who had been cast away from the Christian church by taking them in and brain-washing them with his nonsense. But it worked. He slowly campaigned and pushed his fabricated story on people until they slowly began to believe. After enough time, he amassed a small army. When the developing east finally caught wind of his potential uprising, they saw his threat and killed him off. But it was too late. His cult had grown enough support to spread into what we call a religion. At the end of his life, he had gone so far off the deep end that he believed full-heartedly in polygamy and it was the only thing left to satisfy his insane desire to be the center of attention. These are all facts. Look them up.

      The point is: Just because someone dies for strong beliefs doesn’t make them right or good. Adolf Hitler had strong ideals that he died for. Was he right, too?

      Oh and yes, it’s all funny. I would love to see a show mocking Adolf and I will love to see this show mocking Mormon missionaries. It’s all about the same thing: misguided belief.

      1. Dave,

        Your “facts” are completely off. Joseph Smith was killed in Illinois in 1944, 3 years before the first Mormon arrived in the Salt Lake valley. How can any of what you wrote be taken seriously after such an obvious mistake (which serves as the foundation for much of what you wrote after it)? It’s ironic that you tell someone to get their facts straight while you offer completely erroneous information. Where did you get it from?

        Personally, I won’t go see this show simply because it doesn’t interest me. As a practicing Mormon, if it is anti-mormon in nature, I’m fine with it (mormon baptisms always increase significantly after an anti-mormon video is made). I also think the U.S. doesn’t care enough about mormons to make this a successful musical. My guess is it will be a total flop (like all other anti-mormon movies).

      2. Thanks, Donny.

        Also, Dave, I don’t know how you could think Joseph Smith was responsible for any deaths when he never fought back at his attackers and all the Mormons that were MURDERED where completely unprovoked. Why were people getting so pissed off because some people wanted to start their own religion? They weren’t even ACCUSED of breaking any law. They were just attacked by men who never saw trial for their crimes.

      3. Again, a brainless ape making accusations at a man that was undoubtedly one of the greatest of our time. I’m sad that Donny beat me to the punch, but your “facts” are indeed completely off, and I don’t know where on earth you heard this. we could take up THOUSANDS of pages talking about other religions, for example, indulgences sold to early Catholics. As for Polygamy, yes, it was practiced in the early years of our church. But can you honestly find fault with our leaders and our gospel today? I dare you to. Go read our book of Mormon. Study our “cult”. It could be good for a man like yourself, anyway.

        Oh, and by the way, Adolf Hitler and Joseph Smith are nothing alike. Adolf planned out the death of millions of innocent people, and killed himself for fear of being killed. Joseph Smith was killed for bringing people to God.

      4. @Donny – so you accuse someone of getting their facts wrong, yet you write that Joseph Smith died in 1944? Yeah, Dave confused JS with Brigham Young, but he’s right about Joseph Smith’s megalomania, and the overall cultish behavior of Mormons – magic underwear, anyone?

        @ Stevie – I can find tons of fault with the Mormon religion today. From funding anti-same sex marriages in other states (bluring the line between church and state) http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/15/us/politics/15marriage.html to their treatment of women (for starters, the different ways celestial marriage is interpreted whether you are a man or a woman), and their fanatical secrecy about their “rites,” there are multiple examples. If your argument is that “all religions are doing it” – that is, they all have faults – I’ll say amen to that, but that’s no endorsement of the Mormon cult.

        @Marie – Mormons certainly did fight back in their day – have you read about Mountain Meadows? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mountain_Meadows_massacre Oh, they let the children live, just so they could farm them out to other Mormon families for brain washing.

        Dave may have his facts wrong, but many Mormons conveniently ignore or gloss over elements of their own history and current activities.

  12. So broadway is a place for only people who think the way you think to express their views? Got it. Sorry, I was mistaken. I thought theater was for everyone. Sorry theater geeks who also love Matt and Trey, we’re gonna have to sit this one out. Broadway doesn’t want us. 

  13. Who would spend over $100 to see this?
    -I would.
    Who is the base for this show?
    -Well for starters probably the millions of South Park viewers, and people who are looking for something a little bit different in the Broadway scene.
    How is it going to have any power staying in power?
    -I would say that is has a good chance staying in
    power for a little while. People are going to want to see this because its going to stir up controversy in the months to come.

    What are the personal connections the audience will have with the show?
    -Everyone has had a Mormon show up on their door step evangelizing to them. I’m not belittling Mormon people, but just as Christians have been the pun of a joke, so can the Mormons. And as a person who is very interested in religious studies, a satire on the subject will be very interesting.

    Mormons aren’t going to see this who will?
    Again, I know you prefaced it by saying you wrote all of this based on an interview you read. But how could you even write all of this without any reading of a script or hearing any selections of the songs? I really hope that you hear a selection from it, or rather I really hope you see it and find yourself eating your words. For me, I will be driving from Tampa Florida to New York City to see this performance. If that doesn’t prove you a little bit wrong about how you think no one will see it, look around and see how many people will literally travel to the city just to see it.

    1. Mormons are Christians: Christian means you believe in Christ. It’s called “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints”.

      Just thought I’d let you know.

  14. I think a Broadway musical on this subject would serve to popularize this native religion. It could bring it out of the shadows and stimulate interest in investigating its origins.

    1. Its origins lay in the fertile imagination of Joseph Smith and his cohorts. I have yet to find any evidence that the Book of Mormon is a genuine historical document. It’s better to see the Book of Mormon as a document that illustrates the level of ignorance in upper New York state during the 1820 when radical evangelism was rampant.

  15. Hmm, ok, i see.
    Hater gonna hate.

    Listen, If you had ever seen South Park or heard any interviews with Trey and Matt, then you would know that the entire novelty about South Park is that they push the limits. That they aren’t afraid to make fun about ANYTHING.

    And good for them!
    Everything needs to be made fun of once in a while.

    Also, in watching south park, you will discover that it is the Mormon faith that is allowed into heaven as opposed to any other religion. (Season 9, Episode 4: Best Friends forever)
    But since you are obviously not a great fan…you probably won’t follow the source i just cited…

    And, also, have you ever read the book of mormon? It is…
    It renders me quizzical.

  16. It’s pretty easy to make fun of peaceful, industrious, family-centered people. I love the fact that these brave artists take on “The Mormons”. I don’t see them drawing a cartoon of Mohammed…

    1. you need to watch south park then dude. they have already drawn mohammed

      They actually showed mohammed in season 5 – episode called ‘Super Best Friends’ and no one cared lol

      Then they made more episodes dealing with the free speech and mohammed
      season 10 – episodes called ‘Cartoon Wars’ part 1 and 2
      season 14 – episodes called ‘200’ and ‘201’

  17. @Bob: Actually they HAVE taken on Mohammed, three times no less. The first was in an episode “Super Friends” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Super_Best_Friends. Also in “Cartoon Wars” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cartoon_Wars_Part_II and most recently in Epoisode 201, which made the national news: http://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/2010/04/20/website-warns-south-park-creators-face-retribution-depicting-muhammad/. The last two caused controversy (and a lot of press) because of Cartoon Network’s refusal to air the shows uncut because Mohammed was depicted.

    Fact is Bob, South Park has taken on every religion at some point in its run. You might want to consider doing your homework next time before posting.

  18. I posted on this thread months ago and I am still surprised that people who claim to care about and support the arts are missing the point. Where in any interview or promotional material has anyone said that this show is going to be “anti-Mormon? I will tell you where… no where.

    How can people who are railing against the apparent insensitivites of this show do so without having seen it? I do believe the old addage “Don’t judge a book by its cover” goes both ways.

    I think it is a fair guess to say that there will be jokes aimed at the Mormon faith, but I would also think their would be jokes at many non-Mormons as well. I in fact would bet money that in the end, the Mormon faith, or at least the Mormon characters in the show, turn out to be portrayed in a sincere, positive light.

    However, I can’t know that for sure, just as none of you can know whether or not the show is going to be “anti-Mormon”. So my suggestion to all is to stop the hand-wringing and accusations until at least when the show is in previews. Because i bet it ends up being different than any of us think.

    (I apologize for any misspellings or typos, the spellcheck on my phone won’t work on this website)

  19. This is patently ridiculous. I’ve already bought my tickets and I know plenty of people who want to see it. There’s certainly an audience for this musical, otherwise it would never have made it to Broadway in the first place. “Stick to South Park boys, Broadway doesn’t want you?” Again, clearly it does, or they wouldn’t have ended up with their own Broadway musical. Besides, what are you, the medium through which Broadway speaks? Just because you don’t like something doesn’t mean “Broadway doesn’t want it”. Parker has proven himself to have a real gift for musical theatre in the past, and this musical is not about hating Mormons. It’s about being funny. If you don’t think it’s funny, whatever, but I think it’s great to live in a world where humor can be used in any situation. If humor that offended certain people was off-limits, the world would be a very bland place. Hell, I’m Wiccan and I’d be okay with it if they made a musical about Gerald Gardner and his bizarre sex life. Not everyone enjoys the same kind of humor and that’s what makes comedy so interesting. I’m proud to be part of the audience for Book of Mormon and I can’t wait until February when I get to see it!

  20. Having heard a few interviews with the South Park boys, it seems they know a lot about Mormons. In fact, what I thought was interesting is that great satirists need to know a lot about what they’re writing because they tend to reveal the truth about things. Contrary to that, it seems a lot of religious people in general will express there disapproval with things without knowing anything more than a title or basic plot. I acknowledge that these are generalizations but I think this seems to be happening here.

  21. Unfortunately we understand Mormonism only too well. The show is hilarious because it’s true.

  22. I am so glad to say that you were right. Clearly you are the smartest theatre critic around. You can determine the entire theme, content, and tone of a show based off of piecemealed interview with a world-renowned lying hack with 100% accuracy. You sir should get the Pulitzer Prize for your insightful critiques of a show you never saw, heard, or read. As you said it would, clearly this offensive show has gone too far and I am very glad that all of those open-minded people who said it could have no redeeming value were right and that so many theatre fans and critics have called this show out for what it is; tasteless, unfunny, and emotionally-void, especially now that it has closed without a single Tony nomination.

    Continue doing your great work of tearing down these terrible shows without benefit of knowing anything about them first!

  23. Well after all the nominations and watching tonight’s Tony Awards I believe the answers to the questions posed by the critic that did the interview and all those that supported his contentions… THE ANSWERS ARE IN….. WELL DONE

  24. People just don’t understand that religion is very sacred to them! I am LDS and yes i do get offended when one makes fun of what i know and believe 100% to be true. Why would you make a show making fun of ones beliefs? And you cant say that they arent making fun of us, read the lyrics to the music. This makes me sick to my stomach

  25. Surely the timing isn’t by happenstance. The timing certainly has nothing at all to do with the possibility (probability) that Mitt Romney will be the Republican nominee!! The media has learned well that to ridicule the Republicans neuters them as viable candidates – witness the slings and arrows unleashed against Palin (many people actually believe that she – not Fey – said “From my house I can see Russia”). Such intrusion by the media into elections is part of what is ruining our political system. Add it to the fact that many Americans seem totally incapable of rational thought, preferring entertainment to intellectual pursuits, and we get the government we now have. Lookin’ good is waaaaaaaaaaaay more important than actually being able to do well at the job. Anyway, folks who think it’s great to poke fun at Republicans (because, after all, they are the “bad guys”) might want to ponder how far JFK would have gotten had the media launched an unrelenting campaign designed to mock his Boston accent, his over-populated family, his vast wealth, his oh-so-funny Catholicism, etc., etc. Some day mayhaps Americans might just grow up and be willing to look at issues, not personalities. Probably not in time to stop up from sinking, however. O tempora, o mores.

    1. Kate… how’s that Koolaid you’re drinking? Are you seriously suggesting that “The Book of Mormon” is a media plot to discredit Mitt Romney, or Republicans in general? First, even a cursory review of interviews from the show will tell you that Parker/Stone/Lopez have been working on this show for seven years. Unless they have a time machine, how could they time the opening around the Republican primaries (and even if they had, why wouldn’t they wait until later in the political process if they wanted to throw hand grenades)? Second, it’s obvious that you aren’t at all familiar with “South Park” which is brutal to both political sides, but especially to soft-thinking liberals. Third, since you don’t mention the musical, you must not have seen it, or know what it’s about. You only want to try to steal the stage to hype your political agenda and bemoan that America isn’t the way you think it should be. And by the way, I was around in 1960, and JFK’s political opponents tried to use his Catholicism against him. I realize that anything I say here won’t change your warped opinion of the world or politics, but just in case others read your rantings and try to give them any credence, they should hear something that’s based in reality, not paranoid delusions.

  26. HAHAHAHAHA… this article got owned by the fact this play has received 9… that’s right count em 9 Tony Awards.

    As for Dylan… why would you and your church want to influence the rights of others? IE Prop 8. It seems you can dish it out but you sure can’t take it. The Mormon church backed slanderous and extremely false TV advertisements. This is just a play and the only way for one to see it will be to buy a ticket.

    Suck it up and get over it already.

    1. Are you serious – the article was written over a year ago… check the date.

      Also — if you read my review, you have seen that I said (back in April when I saw it) that it would win all the awards.

      Winning awards doesn’t change my opinion about the piece at all.

  27. This is the most judgmental and hypocritical review i’ve read in a while. First off, when you wrote this, the play had not premiered. So you were destructively criticizing something that you had never seen based entirely on your misconceptions of the writers competence and your previous religious prejudices. Time has proven you quite wrong (Sorry, I’m sure you get that a lot). Secondly (more importantly), how can you possibly expect people to look at religion with an open mind if you don’t look at this play with an open mind? You clearly don’t give a (substitute profanity) about the genius in this musical and are trying to support your fiction-based opinion with logically flawed arguments (“It’s making fun of Mormons. Therefore, Mormons will not go see it. Therefore no one will, and the writers are stupid.”).

    Dylan, thats completely rational and my rational advice would be, “don’t see it.” The beauty of the writers of South Park is that they make fun of everyone. You always are laughing at someones expense, but every once in a while, they get to laugh at your expense. Thats just they way it is so if you can’t take the ridicule just don’t see it.

    KatefromVA, you should seriously consider getting tested for learning disorders.

    The most frustrating part is that so many people who haven’t seen the musical are pissed. Either go see it with an open mind, then talk merde or don’t go see it and don’t talk merde about it. Pardon my French.

  28. I would like to amend my previous statement. (Just read your other comment) You are not reviewing the play, you are reviewing an interview. This small bit of information makes my previous comment false, I apologize. But my argument still stands and most of the questions you asked can be answered by recent history.

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