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The Book of Mormon

Taylon Fay

Taking a clever and satirical swing at current-day religion, Matt Stone and Trey Parker have brought their comedic genius to the stage. Peppered heavily with edgy topics and offensive humor, The Book of Mormon has that same “nothing is off limits” approach that South Park has had for years. While Stone and Parker had to dilute it slightly to accommodate for a drastically different audience, their hit play takes hilarious topics and uses them to provide a little truth behind what religion really should be about in today’s society.

The Mormon religion is thought of by many to be extremely bizzare, and people who believe in a “second Jesus” from the United States who found golden plates with the word of God that no one else was allowed to see are moving targets for satire comedians like Stone and Parker. And while they certainly make fun of the religion a great deal throughout the two hours of the play, they also defend it.

The main point of the play is understood at the climactic moment when the people of Uganda perform the tale of Joseph Smith to the elders of the Latter Day Saints, including fornicating with frogs, the Death Star, and curing dysentery. And while I personally watched the audience quite literally in tears due to how ridiculously this scene was portrayed, in the middle of the chaos, a light went off in my head. And slowly around the room I saw the same light of truth come into everyone’s mind: Is this really THAT much more ridiculous than anything we believe in? Isn’t a bearded man in the sky, or the ruler of thunder and the sea, just as reasonable a belief as making love to a frog?

Now if you, like many around the world today, are very ingrained in your beliefs, you may take slight offense to that statement. How dare someone compare the Lord and Savior to Darth Vader, and how dare a teenager from rural Connecticut have the audacity to write about it? But that is the entire purpose of religion, at least from the play’s point of view. It doesn’t matter how ridiculous what someone believes in is so long as it inspires an individual to be a better person. This is hammered home when

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Religion’s sole purpose long ago in ancient civilizations was to provide hope for those who had nothing else to believe in. And if the belief that the Starship Enterprise is up there watching over us is enough for someone to get out of bed and go make the world a better place, then let them believe it.

Rating: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

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