Catholic League president Bill Donohue comments on the way critics are receiving the new Broadway musical, “The Book of Mormon”:
When Trey Parker and Matt Stone die, the obit page should label them as talented yet cowardly artists. After all, as Terry Teachout in the Wall Street Journal says, it takes no guts to bash Mormons on Broadway. Real men would rip Muslims. But the creators of “South Park” have already proven they aren’t men. They’re boys. And that is who this scatological exercise appeals to.
The critics, of course, adore the musical. The New York Daily News and the New York Post are supposed to be competitors, but their play critics have the same sense of humor: they both like the part where “a giant middle finger to God” appears. The Los Angeles Times chuckles over a scene featuring genital mutilation of African women. AP loves the “running joke” about a man who has “maggots in his scrotum.” And Andrew Sullivan gets a big kick out of the part where they twist a Mormon teaching to read, “F**k You God in The C**t.”
Real men would admit they love bashing Mormons. But the critics are also mere boys. Sullivan praises the musical for its “humaneness.” The Los Angeles Times boasts of its “good intentions.” AP calls it a “pro-religion musical.” Newsday writes that it “seems smitten” to “do good.”
The reaction of homosexual reviewers is always fun to read. Sullivan justifies the Mormon bashing by saying we should judge “Mormonism by Mormons.” Ben Brantley of the New York Times is hot over the scene where there are a “few choice words for the God who let them [AIDS victims] wind up this way.” But if we were to judge homosexuals by what they do, we would know who caused them to wind up with AIDS. That would take real guts.
As Teachout observes, this production is made for “12-year-old boys who have yet to graduate from fart jokes to ‘Glee.'” It should do well.