John Mulaney is currently on tour in the United States and if you want to see him, you better have some tickets already because very few stand-up comedians sell out the big rooms faster than him. Mulaney, who got his start as Saturday Night Live writer and survived a short-lived sitcom stint before pivoting to his hugely successful current arc, is a surprisingly old-fashioned comedian. His tracks are well-rehearsed but delivered with spontaneous energy, his jokes are self-deprecating but not depressing, his material is observational but not banal. His life has been the subject of a huge amount of tabloid fodder, some of which he delicately turned around in his final set, where he discusses recovery and new fatherhood with disarming acumen.
But one topic that has always been on his mind is religion. He was raised Catholic and has a lot of thoughts on the experience, but his relationship to faith these days is a bit more complicated. Nonetheless, most of Mulaney’s jokes about religion come across as good-natured banter. Here are some of our favorites.
Please note that some of these videos contain explicit language.
1. What the Catholic Church has changed.
For those of you who are not Catholic, I don’t want to exclude you, though we like to exclude you, but… There’s a part in church where the priest says, “Peace be with you. And for many years, we’ve all said…
“And also with you.”
But they changed it to “And with your mind”. Because that is what needed to be rethought in the Catholic Church. It was the squeaky wheel that needed grease. In Rome they said, “Let’s see. What problems can we solve? »
2. Jesus’ greatest miracle: Having 12 best friends
“It’s hard to make friends when you’re an adult. I think this is the greatest miracle of Jesus. He had 12 best friends in his thirties, and they weren’t the husbands of his wife’s best friends. Do you remember when your father went fishing once? These guys went fishing every day! And they were all best friends and he was doing magic tricks on them and they loved it.
3. “God Can’t Hear You” beautiful child
My family went to church every Sunday when I was a kid. My wife can’t believe it. She’s like, “Did you go there every Sunday?” “Yes.” “What if you were out of town?” I was like, “They got them out of town.”
I don’t know if you grew up going to church and now you don’t, but it can be a weird existence. ‘Cause I like to make fun of it all day, but if someone like Bill Maher says, [Sarcastically] “Who would believe in a man in the sky?” I say to myself: “My mom, then shut up! Stop calling my mom stupid.
If you grew up going to church and you have adult friends who didn’t, they have a lot of questions. They say, “Wait, so they forced you to go?” Yeah, I was five years old, I had to go everywhere! No child just goes to church. Passing on her Huffy, like, “Whoa! What is this place? A weird Byzantine temple with green carpet where everyone’s got bad breath and I’m wearing clothes I hate on one of the mornings of my two days off ? Let’s do that.”
But people are getting very suspicious. They say, “What did they say in there? What are they doing? What did they tell you? I don’t know, it was an hour. This should be the slogan of the Catholic Church. “It’s one o’clock!” It’s a few stories, normally about a guy with a crazy name whose wife has a normal name. “In this city live Zepherius and his wife Rachel. How come she’s Rachel? “On the way to Galilee, Jesus met Enos and Barak and their wives, Kylie and Lauren.” And you’re like, “What?”
4. On Marriage to a Jewish Woman
Before we got married, my mother asked me if my wife was going to convert to Catholicism. You are right to laugh. It’s a stupid question. I don’t know, mom! Let me go ask. Let me go see if a 29-year-old Jewish woman who doesn’t like any of my suggestions would convert to – what is it again? The Roman Catholic Church. How could I even have this conversation? What, you come home with a brochure and you’re like, ‘Hey, honey! Let me tell you about an exciting and not new organization. Don’t google us.’
5. A dramatic misunderstanding about the Last Supper
When Mulaney’s (now ex) wife blurts out that in her mind Jesus and the disciples were eating turkey dinner at the Last Supper, Mulaney have a real feast of this one.
“I said ‘you think in Da Vinci’s The last supper that jesus of Nazareth sits in front of a turkey? And my wife said ‘Yes, I do.’ And I said ‘Thank you for your honesty. Just another follow-up question. So what do you think they celebrate? What do you think these guys are celebrating? …And my wife looked at the floor, and then she looked at me and said ‘Thanksgiving.’ »
6. John Mulaney and Stephen Colbert bond over their time as altar boys
“Altar boys. It’s pretty ceremonial. You’re holding candles. You’re wearing a white robe. It’s kind of like the guy holding the umbrella for Puff Daddy. …While your Jewish friends are having a Bar Mitzvah, which is some kind of party where you ride the electric slide and win bags of money, you’re in a church oiling your forehead At 14, your skin is oilier than it ever was And then you’re asked to reject Satan right at the start of high school, when you need him the most!