Crank-Calling Joel Osteen’s Prayer Line is a Weak Attempt at Humor

One of the most popular videos on YouTube over the past couple of days involves Justin Roiland, the co-creator of Rick and Morty, crank calling Joel Osteen‘s Lakewood Church during a taping of the H3 podcast.

Roiland called the church’s “prayer line” to say he wanted to make a big donation to Osteen personally. (“I have $83,897 right now for Joel Osteen, and I’m ready to pray!”)

He didn’t get anywhere with that. And then, about two minutes in, the lady on the other end of the line begins speaking in tongues. A little later, Roiland joins in just for the hell of it. The rest of the podcast crew can’t stop laughing.

RoilandPrayerJoel

What does any of this mean? I’m confused. If I were to translate this would it be, like, “Hey, don’t let people into the building during the flood because we don’t want their dirty footsteps walking on our nice carpets? [The blood of Jesus. The blood of Jesus. The blood of Jesus.] I heard you the first time!

[After the lady begins laughing at Roiland’s speaking in tongues] You’re laughing at it, ’cause you know it’s funny, ’cause it’s ridiculous! That’s why you’re laughing right now. I just made you laugh at your own ridiculousness! You are cracking up at [speaking in tongues]…

And then Roiland is put on hold.

I get why people find this entertaining… but it strikes me as a weak attempt at humor. If you want to criticize Osteen’s handling of his church-as-shelter during Hurricane Harvey, go for it. You have my support. But wasting someone else’s time, then mocking the way she prays, just seems like low-hanging fruit.

It’s like taking all the bibles in a bookstore and moving them to the fiction section. I get the joke, but you’re making life more difficult for people who have nothing to do with the issue you’re trying to address.

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