South Park, you either love it, or you think it’s childish and raunchy.
Then again, it’s definitely both childish and raunchy. While even the show’s biggest fans will probably admit that, they’re also quick to point out that South Park’s satirical elements are often overlooked. For those who don’t watch the show, every episode focuses on a couple topics that reflect current events. The plot typically spins these together in a way that shows just how ridiculous parts of our modern society really are.
So what does this have to do with the Book of Mormon?
Well for starters, I’m referring to the play from the creators of South Park that’s going on in Chicago until May 17th, not, y’know, the actual Book of Mormon.
Now I’m sure some of you are reading this and thinking, “Wow, they made a play satirizing a major religion and everyone thinks it’s funny.”
Well… You’re kind of correct. The actual Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (or Mormons, for those that don’t know) has even come out and said, “The danger is not when people laugh but when they take it seriously.” To top it off, they’ve even taken to advertising in the playbills with phrases like, “you’ve seen the play, now read the book,” and “the book is always better.”
While I’m sure they’re not happy about it, the church is smart enough to know that this is indeed satire, and they’re alright with people laughing as long as they don’t actually believe the views in the play are true.
Got that? It’s okay to laugh.
Now that we’ve tackled that issue, let’s get to the point. Why should you see the musical?
I’m not going to focus on the nine Tony awards or the fact that the New York Times calls it “the best musical of this century.” You can find all of the rave reviews splattered across the web. What’s important here is the awareness that the play brings to its audiences.
The Book of Mormon raises awareness about issues in Africa including female circumcision, AIDS, and the tyrants that take up arms against their own people while being one of the funniest musicals of all time. Not an easy feat.
The music is actually pretty damn good too. Remember those nine Tony awards I mentioned? Best Original Score was one of them. Oh and have you seen Frozen? Robert Lopez, the creator of the catchy song “Let It Go” wrote the tunes for this play as well.
Honestly, even if you hate South Park, you’re going to love this play. It kind of goes without saying, but I should mention that fans of the TV show will love the Book of Mormon as well. Catch it before it’s gone on May 17th!
You can get showtimes and purchase tickets here.