Comedian Patton Oswalt Explains the Origin of Religion August 31, 2009

Comedian Patton Oswalt Explains the Origin of Religion

Here’s comedian Patton Oswalt, from his latest standup special My Weakness Is Strong!, explaining how religion was invented.

It has to do with cake.

(Thanks to Josh for the link!)

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  • I vote Patton Oswalt as the new sky baker.

  • Daniel

    Not. Funny.

  • I giggled. My giggle cancels out Daniel’s Not. Funny. and Mike’s vote for Patton the sky baker stands.

  • Chuck

    This may be dated, but I was expecting it to lead to a “The Cake is a Lie” joke

  • Zadius

    That was hilarious.

  • Sorry Daniel. I thought it was funny. You’re losing in the tally so far.

  • Pony

    SKY CAKE!!!!

    That. Was Awesome.

  • He didn’t mention the other reason religion started. So the weaklings wearing robes could partake in some raping themselves (on all sorts of levels).

  • Jeannie

    That was the absolute best way to start my week.

  • Ron in Houston

    Put me in the mildly amusing category.

    Patton is no George Carlin. However I guess George was sort of in a class by himself.

  • J. Allen

    But not only do you get cake if you don’t rape, if you do you get served Underworld Turnips

  • No fair comparing Patton Oswalt to George Carlin. Oswalt is a totally different comedian; more self-deprecating, less cynical, and way more willing to go out on a geek limb than Carlin ever was (not that Carlin ever did, in the first place).

    Patton Oswalt is at his best when he’s talking about his weaknesses – his love of food and his lack of willpower where dieting is concerned (at one moment, he exhorts himself by yelling “Willpower! Hal Jordan!”). He saves his most cutting jabs for advertisers (like his classic “KFC Famous Bowl” routine, or the one he tells about Stella Dora Breakfast Cakes).

    So he doesn’t really wear his atheism on his sleeve, and thank FSM he doesn’t. I think he’s funnier that way. (Honestly I haven’t really found any funny atheist standup material after Carlin’s “There Is No God” routine.)

  • Andrew Morgan

    I didn’t think it was funny either.

    Incidentally, I think Oswalt’s joke re: the origin of religion is essentially Nietzsche’s argument in On the Genealogy of Morals, but I could be wrong.

  • cicely

    And we all know that The Cake is a Lie.

  • DreamDevil

    Doesn’t he know that THE CAKE IS A LIE!!!

    And yeh, comparing Oswalt to Carlin is in no way fair. George Carlin was in a league of his own.

    Oswalt is funny, but Carlin was a pioneer. It’s like comparing quartz to a diamond.

  • Jeff Satterley

    This was funny, but there were funnier moments in this special. I almost peed my pants when he talked about Uncle Touchy’s Naked Puzzle Basement. The Lucky Charms/Christian conspiracy theory on LSD was also really funny.

    And I agree that comparing Oswalt to Carlin isn’t fair. To me, there’s George Carlin, Bill Hicks, and everyone else.

  • Siamang

    I want to see Remy the rat from Ratatouille animated to THAT!

  • mikespeir

    I could see how believers wouldn’t be amused.

  • For the record: I’m a Christian and I thought that was really funny, and a way to break down all the atrocities committed by believers (and non-believers) into words that even I could understand.

    Also Patton is no George, that’s like comparing Joseph Smith to Jesus (OK…that was a religious joke) but seriously Carlin was on a different level.


  • @jeff – “Uncle Touchy’s Naked Puzzle Basement”! Jesus, I almost died when he let that one go. I also loved that routine about him, his wife, and his realtor interrupting an orgy, what with his description of the “fuck fumes rolling out” of the door and the “fucksquatch” spotting in the Hollywood hills.

  • AlphaBitch

    What is it with religion and cake?

  • Chal

    Kind of meh, really.

  • Benmark

    I am a huge Patton fan, so let’s get that out of the way, but this was definitely one of the few skits he has done that are just “ok”.

    They can’t all be winners. However, “Hatefuck the crowd with magic” is my new motto.

  • Name Dangled

    Aren’t those who believe in any of the major religions supposed to be truthful? How honest is it to write, “That wasn’t funny” instead of “I’m opposed to his atheistic point of view”? Isn’t the Christian who resorts to that strategy lying by omission?

    It’s also hilarious for Andrew Morgan to say he doesn’t find Oswalt funny, reference Nietzsche as if writing a footnote in a thesis (always the surefire sign of a witty sensibility!) and then berate a stand-up comic for *stealing his ideas from a famous German philosopher*!

    Besides which, if Oswalt’s unoriginal for having views that coincide with Nietzsche’s, then what does that make everyone in the world who goes around paraphrasing the Bible, the Torah or the Koran?

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