There’s this television show I just have to tell you about. It’s called the Young Pope. It’s about Pope Lenny, a pope who is so young. Pope Lenny has some new, fresh ideas about how to do things in the Vatican that the old fogies just don’t understand. In this thread, I want to share the joy this absurd show gives me with the world. This is The World’s Only Popreciation Station.
What’s this show about?
The Young Pope is a show about a Pope who is very young. The Young Pope does the following wacky stunts:
Demands Cherry Coke Zero every morning
Has a pet kangaroo he lets roam the Vatican
Has a make-over montage set to I’m Sexy and I Know It
Forces the cardinals to kiss his feet
Threatens to throw an old man in quicksand
Drops a baby
Sends his enemies to Alaska
Refuses to vape
Threatens the prime minister of Italy
Gives a priceless bible to an infant
Says the most influential artist and musician of the 20th century are Banksy and Daft Punk
Doesn’t believe in God
Used God to murder a nun from across the world
Forced a nun to chew a mint before speaking to him
Sits underwater for, like, three solid minutes
Hates Femen but is immediately cornered by them
Tells a man he crippled to try hand cream
Made the entire staff of a fast food restaurant wait outside while he ate
Shames a man over FaceTime
What’s this show really about?
It’s an unsubtle comedy-drama. Pope Pius is a radical conservative Pope who seeks to expand his power while feeding his ego, It’s aware of how dumb it is and plays into that, making it better than 95% of other Man Easily Manipulates Everyone style shows. There’s not a ton of depth that you wouldn’t get elsewhere, but it’s excellent popcorn television, kind of like American Horror Story. It was made for Italian audiences and aired on Sky Alantic in the fall. However it is airing on HBO every Sunday and Monday at 9pm for American audiences.
FAQ Does the Pope fuck? No. How young is the Young Pope? 44.
The Young Pope smokes but won’t let anyone else smoke. A cardinal tries to offer him a vape as a compromise but he immediately refuses it because he thinks they’re worse than real cigarettes and that compromise is unacceptable. This Pope called drinking Diet Pepsi instead of Cherry Coke Zero a “heresy.”
Just finished this show last night, and holy moly (pun intended). It’s really intense and good and the soundtrack and cinematography are breathtaking.
Favourite scenes include:
-Like, the entirety of Episode 5, from Lenny destroying Voiello to the sublime scenery-chewing of his address to the cardinals.
-In episode 8, his speech to the congregation in Africa, which was a great turning-point in Lenny’s characterisation.
-And then in the last episode, making a whole tour group of children cry.
Favourite non-Pope scenes:
-Pretty much everything with Gutierrez in New York
-Sister Mary’s perfect T-shirt
-“He is lifting the weight of God”
I do have a few problems with it though? Like, Voiello’s scenes with the disabled boy, which are uncomfortable in the constant insistence that “he is the only truly pure and good creature on God’s Earth”. It was hard to tell whether this was to exhibit Voiello’s relationship as exploitative or if that’s simply a narrative Sorrentino subscribes to. Also the All-Purpose-War-Torn-African-Country is pretty pathetic in its clichés, even if we do get some of the best scenes. But the show’s pretty phenomenal despite these awkwardnesses (is that a word?) and I have pretty much recommended it to everyone I know.
I agree. Voiello’s relationship with the disabled child is very Bad. I like how they described in on Papal Bull. That he was soliloquizing through another person and that the kid was reduced to a plot device. They also, correctly, criticized the very generic Africa. Personally, the self-aware nature of show made me think it was an intentional cliche. Almost like an inverse of how the Simpsons just live in Springfield, the Pope just goes to Africa. But the way they reduced a living person to a plot device for Voiello, even if it’s self-aware, crosses a line for me.
Apparently there’s words of a season two being in production. I can’t possibly imagine what could happen given how season one ended (and what a bizarre ending?) Are they just going to go full christ imagery and have him come back from the dead??