As many of you know, mormon-watching is one of my hobbies. My friend Tom and I have visited many a Mormon temple and chatted with the visitor centre guides. We've sat through the 20-foot Jesus telling us the story of the Book of Mormon. We've toured the complex in Salt Lake City, we've researched the celestial underpants, and Tom has even toured a temple before it was sealed and consecrated. In fact, I think he's toured two of them. We've even joked about joining up so we can get on the inside and see how kooky it really is. (There are lots of things you just can't do if you're not actually Mormon.)
Many of you have found this a strange hobby, and dismissed it as one of the oddities that no one but Tom and Mindy really understand. Well, HBO understands. And they created Big Love to feed our need for the oddest of the odd in the Mormon world.
To be fair, this is NOT about your standard LDS Mormons who lead normal lives (except for that marrying their dead relatives to each other business.) No, these Mormons are fringe Mormons. The ones that give the LDS folks a bad name...the polygamist fundamentalists who have been disowned by the church.
They just started airing this here in the UK, and it's OUTSTANDING. It has all the excellent writing and drama/humour of your standard HBO show, but with all sorts of insider references to the things that us mormon-watchers love. I tell you, for me it's like Antiques Roadshow to an antique collector or FoodTV to an amateur chef. This is so exciting I can hardly explain.
Oh. One more thing. Against all popular wisdom, I love that Tom Hanks and am not afraid who knows it. He's smart, funny, and likeable, and even though he has made a career of making blockbuster films that pander to the masses, I've always known in my heart that he's really a cool guy who's working the system. And who'd have guessed...Tom Hanks is one of the executive producers of Big Love. Now I have my proof.