Now that their Halloween reboot is in the can, Danny McBride and David Gordon Green have reached down deep into their big bag of comedic Southern archetypes and pulled out a new show. As Variety reports, the duo (and their frequent collaborator, Eastbound & Down and Vice Principals creator Jody Hill) have set a new half-hour comedy pilot at HBO, a televangelist satire called The Righteous Gemstones.
McBride will play Jesse Gemstone, heir to a worldwide televangelism empire who “fancies himself a maverick in the ministry game.” He’ll star alongside John Goodman as family patriarch Eli Gemstone, an unbending man who demands absolute loyalty from his family and followers and whose love of the Lord is matched only by his hypocrisy and his love of money.
He’s kind of like this guy, Louisiana televangelist Jesse Duplantis, who recently asked his followers to cough up $54 million to buy him a new private jet, the luxurious Falcon 7X, because the three private planes he already owns can’t make it around the wold without stopping to refuel. Did Jesus ever stop to refuel? Ask yourself that:
Or this guy, Todd Coontz, another televangelist who was convicted by a federal jury on charges of tax evasion and filing false tax returns in April. Owner of a million-dollar condo and a collection of luxury cars that includes a Ferrari and a Maserati, Coontz made his millions by promising his followers that if they sent him money, God would give it back to them many times over. Never mind how; “mysterious ways” and all that. Here he is, telling the gullible not to overthink it before writing him a check:
Point is, when it comes to the naked greed of the so-called “prosperity gospel” that’s overrun modern evangelical Christianity, the satire writes itself. No date has been set for The Righteous Gemstones as of yet, but if you PayPal us $100, it’ll debut faster. Trust us.