Two responses to the musical illustrate just how culturally clueless the right now is. Both Terry Teachout and Bill Donohue dismiss the show as made for "12-year-old boys who have yet to graduate from fart jokes to 'Glee.'" Amazingly, they call Matt and Trey cowards for not doing a musical about Islam! Yes, two geniuses who have actually been subjected to death threats because of their refusal to kowtow to Islamist threats are now "cowards."
Teachout is just unable to comprehend what's going on. To imply that Parker and Stone picked Mormonism for a musical because they found out by bitter experience that they could not get away with a musical about Mohammed is as absurd as it is untrue. Almost no pop-cultural artists have pushed the Muslim envelope more than Matt and Trey; and their profound amusement at Mormons goes back all the way to their movie, Orgazmo.
Teachout has to concede that the cast is marvelous, and that "Tuesday night's preview audience shrieked with frantic joy all night long," but is so p.c. he cannot grasp why. Bill Donohue, on the other hand, simply writes another homophobic screed, without even seeing the show. Money quote:
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.
The people with AIDS in the musical, of course, are straight and got HIV by heterosexual intercourse. But that would deny the hoary old bigot a chance to sneer at gay men, or rather, as every rancid bigot calls the male objects of his hatred and fear, "boys."
P.S.: bonus Charlie Rose interview with the two "boys" here.