Penn Jillette

October 18, 2013

Penn Jillette here -- Ask Me Anything.

Hi reddit. Penn Jillette here. I'm a magician, comedian, musician, actor, and best-selling author and more than half by weight of the team Penn & Teller. My latest project, Director's Cut is a crazy crazy movie that I'm trying to get made, so I hope you check it out. I'm here to take your questions. AMA.


Hey y'all, brothers and sisters and others, Thanks so much for this great time. I have to make sure to do one of these again soon. Please, right now, go to and watch the video that Adam Rifkin and I made. It's really good, and then lay some jingle on us to make the full movie. Thanks for all your kind questions and a real blast. Thanks again. Love you all.

[No question]

We still need to the "Bullshit of Bullshit" episode and bust ourselves. We never got a chance to do that show. It looks like a deal is close to broadcast the U.K. "Penn & Teller: Fool Us" in the States, but can't say what network yet. Then maybe make some new ones.

[No question]

We have plans to do the U.K. next summer, but that's the only overseas plans we have.

[No question]

Penn & Teller will be playing a few locations in the U.K.

[No question]

Teller and I maintain what seems to be one of the best working relationships in showbiz by having a business relationship. Over all these years, he's become my best friend, but we didn't start with affection, we started with respect. We keep things pretty formal. We probably hang purely socially about 3 times a year

Hi Penn,

Do you think that one day a world will exist free of religion? Where we can all live together, explore the world, space and science as humans without the label of religion?

Keep up the good work

I would love to see a world free of religion, as long as it's not free of diversity. I love people believing things that are crazy to me. That's life to me.

Hey Penn. I've been a big fan of your Bullshit! show for many years and some other work you've done.

I just wanted to ask you, what are your thoughts on anarcho-capitalism?

Well, once we get full libertarian ideas working, why not try Anarcho-Capitalism, if we like that.

Hi Penn! Would you ever consider running for political office in some capacity?

I've been asked to run for office, but I think the job I have is better.

What is the most vulgar phrase you would wear on a t-shirt?

I would wear most anything on a t-shirt. What you got?

What is the most vulgar phrase you would wear on a t-shirt?

"Fuck God Hard"

How did u get in to magic?

the best way to get into magic is to read and practice too much.

How did u get in to magic?

I got into magic through juggling and desperately wanting to be in showbiz and not having enough musical talent.

Do you firmly stand behind all of your views expressed in Bullshit? Have you changed your mind about anything since releasing an episode?

I'm sad to say I haven't changed much on the Bullshit topics. We were pretty careful. But, you have to pay attention to what I really say and not what people say I said, like "Global Warming" and "Second Hand Smoke."

Really? Out of curiosity I just watched beginning of the episode on global warming and it doesn't seem very accurate to me. You start by saying that three decades pretty much everybody thought we were heading to an ice age, which as far as I know is a wild exaggeration. Then you have a guy saying that global warming is caused by sun cycles, which is wrong (and I'm fairly sure it was well known at the time too). Even the fact that you let speak weather forecaster as an authority on global warming is ridiculous as he's not a scientist and weather is something quite different from climate.

I do respect you a lot as an entertainer, but this is really a bullshit.

thanks. I sure see that POV.

What dark side of yourself did you have to tap into when filming your Director's Cut promo? It was freaky & awesome!!!

There's not real dark side to tap into -- it's a celebration of life, like all horror.

Have you ever thought of an April Fools Day show where you just mime and Teller does all the talking?

We've done appearances with Teller talking and me silent. Mostly for magician gatherings.

Hi Penn! Big fan. Blahblahblah.

How come you've never had a beer? Are you curious about it?

Hope you're well!

I've never had a beer.

Hi Penn! Big fan. Blahblahblah.

How come you've never had a beer? Are you curious about it?

Hope you're well!

It's habit for me not to do recreational drugs. I'm always so busy.

Will you have any nude scenes in "Director's Cuts"? Just need to know how to adjust my contribution...

I' like to do a nude scene in "Director's Cut." Penn & Teller were the first male full frontal nude on the Las Vegas STrip.

What is your relationship with Teller off-screen/stage? I know a lot of great comedy/TV duos actually aren't great friends off-screen (Jamie/Adam from Mythbusters and Colin/Ryan from Whose Line), so I'm curious as to how your guys' relationship is.

Our relationship is WAY better than the ones you mention. We get along fine and respect each other perfectly.

Whats the one thing that's really pissing you off right now?

I'm pretty bummed by the New York Times -- I may have to stop reading it.

Hi Penn, I love your magic shows, I wish I could see one of them live one of these days.

How do you manage your time? You seem like a really busy person, with magic shows, guest appearances, TV shows, writing a book, having a family. When do you get time for some rest?

I'm very very careful with my time. I try to do nothing that someone else could do. So, I write, I perform and I spend time with my family.

You're a personal hero of mine, Penn! (I'm a poor judge of character)

What kind of TV shows do you watch now? (If you want to be popular, Breaking Bad is a good start) Movies?

I agree with everyone in the world that "Breaking Bad" is one of the greatest things ever done. It's Moby Dick. It's Dylan.

Hi Penn, were you teased about your size growing up? If so, are you comfortable with it now?

What does Teller's voice actually sound like?

Teller have a very well-modulated, kind, professorial voice. Not soft-spoken, but slow and careful. I was teased (and hit and hurt) because of my size (couple with my refusal to ever hit anyone in anger). But, we're not talking real danger to me, just annoyance.

You have stated in the past that magicians help out the new guys and bring them into the fold, have you done this with any magicians? Have you done this with jugglers or other performers? Do you think it's a sort of responsibility to the craft for more known performers to help out the lesser known? Do you think this also extends to podcasting? If so would you do my podcast?

If I get an answer, thanks. If not, Happy Birthday.

I don't think much about mentoring. It's just not the way I interact. "I wanna be your lover baby, I don't want to be your boss."

As someone who obviously loves music, what's your favourite song, album and artist of all time? And what's the best concert you've ever attended?

PS - Your Vegas show was the absolute highlight of my last visit, (which incidentally included the conception of my son). It was awesome.

Thanks so much. Sometimes conception is less fun than the stuff leading up. I can't find better than Dylan -- I often have to go back and "talk to Bob" when I need to think. I also love Sun Ra.

[serious] What was clown college like? A friend of mine wants to go. Is it hard to get accepted? Are the only run by Barnum and Bailey?

It was wicked hard to get into Clown College. It was important to me to meet people who took funny seriously. I'd never met anyone like that before CC.

A while ago Val Valentino (the masked magician) did an AMA, and he says the event you discribed in your book (about him in a strip club) never happened. I would deny it too if anything like that ever happened to me, but really, is it true, or is it just a cool but made-up story?

Anyway, big fan. I already donated to Directors Cut a few weeks ago.

I believe it's true. I'm sure his memory would be different and the examples I give of who doesn't wear a mask, were not remembered perfectly, they were recreated. Also, I wasn't nearly as aggressive in reality as I tell it in the story. But, yes, he asked me to verify that he was the MM and I refused to for those reasons. And it was at a strip club. But, my memory is not perfect.

You mentioned on Twitter you were trying to get new episodes of Bullshit! picked up on a new network. Can you elaborate a little on that?

I can't talk about where Bullshit might end up, but we're very very very eager to make a deal. We loved doing that.

Are you familiar with Daniel Chesterfield's work? If so, what do ya think?


I love your brashness toward American Exceptionalism. Good work!

What are your thoughts on Gob the magician from Arrested Development?

I've never seen Arrested Development, but I"ve heard it's wonderful.

Why are you guys so amazing?

Best show in Vegas hands down.

You guys should tell Copperfeild to stop taking himself so seriously, his show might suck a lot less.

Edit: Last saw your show about a year ago at the Rio, any new tricks added since then? Will likely see it again soon either way.

Copperfield is a good friend and has a GREAT sense of humor. GREAT.

what helps you relax in such a volatile, bullshit-filled world?

I have my family, so relaxing is easy.

what helps you relax in such a volatile, bullshit-filled world?

I have a family, so they always give me the relaxation I need.

Why do you love found footage films so much? And will we get a directors cut of The Aristocrats? lol

I like that movies are getting cheap enough that they can be "found footage" -- you know, we want them as cheap and pen and paper.

Hello Penn, love the shows. What job would you have done as a Plan B?

My plan b was prison.

On P&T Bullshit!, I sometimes thought that the calibre of ’expert' you brought on was not really up to standard, and other people in the field may have been much harder to call 'bullshit' on. So, basically, what I'm asking is, on what basis did you choose your experts on?

We chose or "experts" on Bullshit mostly based on who would come on. But, we didn't cheat. We represented the "bad guys" points as best we could. We were fair but very biased.

I LOVE that you guys stay around after the show to meet and greet everyone, especially after how tired you must be then.

Has anyone ever done something particularly funny or said something that makes you remember that particular night?

I always remember signing breasts or anything sexual people say.

Is it more important that your movie is a fiscal or critical success?

I don't rank things like that. Not my style.

Hey Penn! Great to hear that you're doing an AMA, I missed the previous ones! If you don't mind, I have a few questions I'd like to ask:

1) What is the magic trick that you enjoy performing the most?

2) Have you ever personally played Desert Bus, from the Penn & Teller's Smoke and Mirrors game? If so, how long have you managed to play it without losing your sanity/crashing the bus? (If anyone would like to play it, you can find it here)

3) On a scale of 1 - 10, how likely - or unlikely - would a new series of Bullshit be?


I like doing Cowboy in our show a lot. I've never played Desert Bus. I would give it a 4.

Hi Penn

How do you respond to the people who think that you turning to crowd funding is bad. Not that they don't like crowd funding, the ones who don't like YOU crowd funding.

For the record I think it's great. Keep up the awesome work!

Also, any hints as to what is gonna be in the grab bag of your favourite things? You've gotten me all excited to receive mine.

I haven't had anyone say I shouldn't crowd-fund. The people who don't want me to, should just not give money. It's an easy fix.

What do you do to actively try and keep Penn & teller live shows new and interesting? Will be seeing you guys 19th of november flying from australia. Hope it's a good show!

We are professionals, we must be able to love and do the same show over and over or we have the wrong jobs. That being said, we also love to write new stuff and that's our job too.


Favorite food? Favorite movie?


Orange jell-o with grated carrots and pineapple and Miracle Whip on top. Dawn of the Dead (Romero, although the Gunn is great too).

Have you ever refused to perform a trick because it was too dangerous?

Or have you ever been told not to perform a trick for the same reason?

We will not perform (or watch) any trick that is really seriously dangerous. It's morally wrong. And a morally wrong claim to make.

Hi Penn, I scrabbled to find a computer at work where Reddit wasn't blocked so I could post this.

In (I think) one of your Penn Talks, you mentioned the patter around your 'nailgun memorisation' trick.

(As I remember) You mentioned how you and Teller had decided to change the patter from it being a genuine feat of testing your memory, as that meant there was a risk of injury to you or Teller, and that as such, you were making the audience implicit in that story, and that it wasn't right and that you'd since changed it.

But when I was lucky enough to see you perform in london a couple of years ago, the patter still seemed to follow the conceit that it was a demonstration of the power of memory.

What precisely is it that causes an issue in having the audience 'buy in' to the story of that trick?

And was there a reason you returned to the 'memory patter'? (and i'm very sorry if I remember the two in the wrong order.)

p.s Massive fan, you and Teller were (and are still) a huge inspiration to me when I started performing magic a few years ago. (I must have watched your Cups and Balls routine hundreds of times) :D

I have signed programme from your London show and it's one of my favourite possessions.

I say that it's a trick and not memory and say that clearly.

Hey Penn! We met in Orlando, FL a while back when you guys performed at the Hard Rock (great show btw), and I also perform magic inside the parks at Universal! I do mainly magic shows there (have done over 15,000 15 min shows so far) and I really look to you guys for inspiration :)

But to my question, I always loved that you juggled, and have been working on my juggling skills as well. I got 3 and 4 balls down, and can do 3 clubs, any advice on how to better hone my skills, or what I should move on to next with juggling? Thanks!

Practice. There's nothing else. But, I think following Jason Garfield might help you practice better.

Have you or Teller ever been injured doing your illusions? (Please describe)

Side note, my wife and I are huge fans and wish you still had the Bullshit show, it was great!

We have never been really hurt nor anyhone working with us. That's very very very important and we're proud of that. There is nothing else that is acceptable.

If you could instantly convert every last person to atheism, would you?

If I had that power, atheism wouldn't be true.

Skeptics are supposed to be willing and open to having their minds changed, so what's one thing that you have changed your mind on as a result of your life experience?

I dont' change with life experience, I change with information. My life experience doesn't matter much.

How's your whole friendship with Glenn Beck going?

We don't seriously date, but I love when I'm around him, and we email now and again.

Hi Penn!

I just wanted to thank you for being really enthusiastic about Book of Mormon on YouTube, prompting me to go to London to see it.

What was your favorite song from the musical?

I love "fuck god"

Penn, first of all I really enjoy your participation in The Apprentice. During the finale, did you at some point think that Mr. Cottoncandy Hair would do the right thing and declare you the winner? Or was it always in the back your mind that the whole season was just a build up to him finally getting back at you?

It seemed to me pretty unlikely that he would rise above that, but stranger things have happened. And Trace is great, so who gives a fuck?


I'm always writing. Just always. There will always be new books from me.

Hey Bad Penn... I have already thrown coin at the project and can't wait to see it. One question about Director's Cut I have is will there be a commentary track on top of the commentary track? I love commentary tracks and it would be great to have people who have nothing to do with the movie do one (like they did with Rules of Attraction). Would be great to get some of your friends to do a track just having fun with the movie.

Yes, we are planning on doing a commentary track over the commentary track. We are nothing if not Meta.

How much are your hot tubs for her pleasure ?

Just build one. And invite me over to watch it being used.

What's the best place to eat in Vegas

I like Lotus of Siam

hello Penn! have you ever taken the Myers-Briggs MBTI test? if so, which type are you?

I'm not a big test taker. I don't know.

Penn, Could you go into detail on why you don't endorse the public school system.


I think it's a bad idea to be educated by your government. Not part of the job. But, my son goes to public school and likes it. (My daughter goes to fancy-ass private school.)

Penn, you seem like one of the most politically well-informed celebrities out there, what are your thoughts on the government shutdown?

The government "shut down" seemed jive-ass. I hated all the hysterical bullshit.

Why not run for office?

The job i have is better, and I don't think I'd be a good politician.

Hey Penn!

Thank you again for this AMA and look forward to your responses!

Everything I do is "Wow, I never would have dreamed I'd get to do this" Really everything. I don't book my interviews.

Howdy, I just wanted to say I've seen your show in Vegas 3 times already and am still filled with wonder every time I see it. My question is, are there any magicians out there who still completely bow you away/ fill you with that feeling of wonder? Or have you figured out most of the tricks that other people perform?

Johnny Thompson kills me. Eric Mead, Mike Close. Lots of great guys.

Are you going to buy Eminem's new album?

I like EminEm.

What are your feelings about the so-called dumbing down of our society (poor global education rankings, a lack of general knowledge in the population, etc.) that we constantly hear about from the news media? How would you counteract this trend?

Yeah, I don't care about collectives much. I'm happy with great individuals.

Hi Penn! Not a question but I just wanted to let you know that my boyfriend and I travelled to Las Vegas from the UK in 2011 and your show at the Rio was really the highlight of the whole thing! Thanks for the awesome time :)

Thanks so much.

An all encompassing voice says to you "I AM GOD" what do you say back? Btw big fan of your appearances on Opie and Anthony (with jimmy norton).

Me hearing a voice is not really very good evidence.

Hello Penn. I was wondering if you still had contact with anyone in the Residents. What was it like working with those guys? How did you ever come into contact with them in the first place? I still think it's strange that a big celebrity (comparatively speaking) such as yourself has worked with one of the most enigmatic and mysterious avant-garde music groups of all time.


I love The Residents and we're still friends. Always.

Adam, I know you talked a bit about Look on Penn's Sunday School, if you were to make the movie again in with the current state of surveillance using the web and posting pictures online, how would that have changed it?

There's nothing to change in "Look." It's not about surveillance to me, it's about art.

can you discuss the director's cut script yet? maybe tell us about an interesting change adam rifkin made that you particularly like?

Adam made the "Director's Cut" script more gory and more sexy. He's good at that. He also made the plot clearer. He's brilliant.

You told a hilarious story on Opie and Anthony once about a boy and his older sister wearing a too tight assistant outfit. The boy had a mishap with too much lighter fluid and a dove. Care to share with Reddit? I laughed my ass off on that one.

I can't type it all up now, but that Dove story is in one of the "Penn & Teller" books under "Best Magic Trick I ever Saw" or something like that.

Is Gary Busey as batshit crazy in real life as he is for the cameras?

Gary Busey dances beneath the diamond sky with one hand waving free. He's odder in person than he seems on TV.

Man, I love you and Teller and have been a fan since "Penn & Teller Go Public" -- so here's my question: Is the force card always the 3 of Clubs? I once thought it was because that's the card Ann-Margaret chooses in "Magic" but have been told that's not it.

It's because it's humble and visable.

Huge fan here. You had my curiosity with the magic, but the show bullshit got my attention. I am also a fan of pen point. Two questions please: 1. Why do you use so many cameras when doing an episode of Penn point? 2. What has been the hardest challenge of raising a daughter in a world where girls/women are judged for their looks more than anything else? P. S. Your daughters name is my favorite girls name ever. Mad love for you and what you do

I dont' do Penn Point any more, so no crazy camera stuff. I now do Looks have always been part of humanity. I did fine without good looks, I wonder how Mox will do with good looks.

How Disciplined are you?


I can figure out half of the things you can do. but the bullet trick still amazes me. congrats on your deception!

Good for you, but you're wrong.

I don't really have any questions, I just want to thank you for making me both laugh and be in amazement from your shows.

Thanks baby.

Hey Penn, how long have you been a jazz bassist and do you play any other instruments? Great to see you play before your show!

I've been playing jazz upright bass for about 12 years. I play electric bass too. I know how to play guitar and drums, but I can't play.

What was celebrity apprentice like for you? Mostly a good experience or something you wouldn't do again?

I really enjoyed the second season of CelebApp a lot and the first season was okay. I always ave a good time. Some people don't and it's sad and creepy.


Oh, I wish.

Your books (Play With Your Food, Cruel Tricks for Fear Friends, etc.) helped my annoy and alienate many friends and family members in middle school, so thanks for that.

When you performed the water tank card trick on SNL, how close did Teller come to dying? He looks extremely relieved to be out of the tank at the end.

He was in NO danger of dying -- he was in big danger of ruining the trick and studio 8H.

Penn you have been a hero of mine for ages! Things that you have done and said have made huge impacts. Who are your heros and how have they changed your life.

Amazing Randi created my life.

Why do you hate god.

I hate the belief in god that takes away love of life. but, there's no god to hate.

Has there ever been an illusion that just absolutely dumbfounded you?

Lots. But, I don't like illusions much, I like tricks.

Why do you polish one of your nails?

It's for my Mom. I wear her nail polish.

Hey Penn, I've been a fan for a long time and I hope to catch a show of yours sometime in the future.

I just rewatched "The Aristocrats" the other day and remembered how incredibly funny it was. It seems like it would be a lot of fun to talk to some of the best comedians in the world about a classic joke. Of all the versions you've heard, do you have a favorite or a few that stand out?


How's piff the dragon? :)

Might be moving to Vegas.

Penn, thank you for doing an AMA!

My question is about juggling. How long have you been doing it? How did you get started? Who taught you? What is your greatest juggling accomplishment?

I've been juggling since I was 12. I liked when Mike Moschen and I passed 9 clubs for the first time.

What are your views on the socialist medicine in other countries (like the UK, love my NHS). And have you kept up to date with the UK governments current 'War on the Poor'?

I don't follow UK politics at all.

Does going on stage for 6 days a week in a Las vegas casino feel like a grind?

It's 5 days a week, and no grind to it. My dad was a jailguard, I know what hard work is and I don't do it.

Hey Penn! You got a lousy act!

Thanks, baby.

Is there any casting news YET? Anyone locked in? Can you release the name of the casting director yet?

Well, ask Adam if he wants to give you her name. I'm too excited to type it.

What is the typical structure of your day?

up at about 9. Write and do business until 3. See my family until 6:30. Go to Rio. Half hour of business before show. Play bass for an hour in preshow. Do magic show at 9. Meet audience and talk for about 45 minutes. Eat. come home, and read for a couple hours maybe watch a 20 minutes of a movie, go to sleep at about 3.


You got robbed on Celebrity Apprentice. Could you see that result coming from a mile away? You handled yourself graciously. I'm glad you gave that show a second chance, I think your personality came through much better the second time around.

Yeah, Donny has some problems with me. It's his show, there's no rules, he just does what he wants. Trace is a good guy, I'm glad he did well.

What overlap - if any - is there between your politics, and the Tea Party's?

The Tea Party claims to want small government. I'm not sure thye really do, but I agree with the idea.

Loved "God No" and, ""Athiest Holiday". Any plans on a third in the series and will you be reading the audio book again?

I bet I'll always do the audio books, and I'm always writing.

What's the longest time you have stayed after your shows taking pictures? It's amazing you guys do that for anyone who asks.

We try to never turn anyone down for anything.

Man this is awsome that your doing this. Thank you. So here goes. Has there been any trick or illusion that you have seen or herd of that really made you go "what the fuck?". And never figure d it out

Yeah, lots. See Eric Mead or Mike Close.

Is there a magic trick that you guys have tried and tried, but just never been able to perform? (or get to work reliably enough to perform it)

We worked forever and spent a lot of money on a good version of Walking on Water with a fire hose and couldn't make it safe for the stage. When walking on water is done on TV it's the stupidest trick ever, but live we thought it might be good. We were wrong.

Thank you so much for writting "God, No!". I was catholic for the first 20 or so years of my life and the touching stories combined with your wit really helped me become more comfortable with the fact that I was not just like the rest of my family.

Also, i guess I should ask you a question. If you could do your life all over again and join a band, which band would you have wanted to be a member of?


"Bullshit" was awesome, but too dirty to let my little kids watch. Any chance of a cleaner version to teach kids critical thinking at a younger age.

Yeah, we did "Tell a Lie" for children.

Penn and Teller - the great libertarian atheist magicians! I love a line from Bullshit that went like this - "people calling us atheists like it was a bad name and calling us magicians like it was a good name". I've watched nearly all your work but I must say it was all from YouTube. Do you have a problem with this work being available in basically a pirated way? Love you long time!!!!

The issue of pirate and copyright is too complicated for me.

I like your ponytail

Thanks, baby.

I dont actually have a question, but I did want to say... about two years ago I saw your show in Vegas and it remains one of the highlights of my trip. Really REALLY outstanding performances and worth every penny I paid for the tickets. Thank you!


Penn, hope I am not too late. I really admire your thoughts on libertarianism and my question is if you are friends with Glenn Beck or just more of a professional relationship? Do you listen to him regularly?

It's more professional, but I like all the time I spend with him.


I think Trump is pretty clearly what he is. What could I add to what you can see?

just about how many dicks did you get to see while filming the circumcision episode?

We didn't see a lot of dicks on that show.

Dogs or Cats? Do you have any pets?

We have turtles.



I was coming back from Tokyo in 2003 and I could swear you were on the plane. If yes, what were you doing in Japan, work or vacation?

I dont' think that was me. JUst another big fat ugly guy. We all look alike.

Hi Penn, I went to one of your shows in Vegas on January. I just wanted to ask where did you pick up your mannerism where we are all "the boss". I really enjoyed myself, hope to see you again soon!

I talk like my Mom.

Since you've done Celebrity Apprentice twice, I have to ask, do you believe that Trump honestly believes all of the wild things that he says, or does he simply know that it is excellent publicity to make some pretty crazy claims?

On a side note you should have won on your second outing. On a side side note, I feel kind of bad for actually watching The Apprentice.

I can't know what is in Donald's heart, but I think he does just talk sometimes, but not lying. But, what do I know?

Hey Penn, thanks for doing an AMA.

I love technology, electrical stuff mostly, but the tech behind a lot of big magic tricks and set designs have always fascinated me. Realizing that the magician crowd is a secretive lot, what is the most technologically intricate illusion/trick/etc that you could talk about openly?

EDIT: also, when are you in Philly next!?

There isn't a lot of technology in magic. It doesn't fool people. Lying is better.

Hey Penn, glad to see you on Reddit again! I'm super stoked for your movie Directors Cut. Will Teller be making a cameo if it takes off?

Also, you should come do some shows in the Great White North... specifically Winnipeg.

Yeah, we gotta find a place for Teller.

Would love to ask about a story I heard from a magician I know who was explaining why he wasn't a fan of yours.

It was at a convention of magicians several years ago. No specific date given as is common for such stories. Penn & Teller were scheduled to perform and this magician was told that if he was easily offended he probably shouldn't show up. This guy (who is of hispanic descent) used some racial humor in his patter so he wasn't too worried, so he shows up.

You enter with some sort of contraption behind you covered in a sheet. You pull off the sheet to reveal Teller on a cross and a midget "performing" fellatio on Teller and you announce "Ladies and gentlemen, the second coming of Christ!"

Apparently he was more easily offended then he gave himself credit for because that was his reason for not liking you. Since we were at a mutual friends wedding I decided not to inform him that if that actually happened I would have laughed my ass off.

Well, after bleaching my eyes to remove the sight of Teller naked. :)

I'm skeptical of the story, but since the opportunity to ask has presented itself...

Keep preaching love preacher man!

It was a private party for Amazing Jonathan. He shouldn't have been there.

Hey Penn! Who was the biggest pain in the ass you worked with on Celebrity Apprentice?

I like Clay and we're still in touch, but he's annoying to be around for too much in one day.

I'm pretty sure supporting a public library doesn't have to mean anyone would have to kill someone over it, contrary to what you've said. How did you get so 'far gone' regarding economics & the nature of civilisation? Are you an Ayn Rand fan?

I'm a Rand fan, yup. And I never said that about libraries, I said I wouldn't build one at gun point. There's a difference.

WHen I was a child, I remember seeing a TV show where you and teller were showing the viewer around your homes. You had a dungeon with a sex swing and a bible cut into the shape of a gun, and Teller made a point of showing the viewer that he brushed his teeth in the shower. Did this really happen or is my 10 year old mind making it up?

All true.

Are you a big Run-DMC fan?


What wanted you to get into magic?


Hi! How was it decided between you and Teller that he would never talk, and why?

Teller was working silently before he met me.

Penn, I'm a huge fan of yours and agree with you on pretty much everything except for your non-interest in sports. How big of a donation to Director's Cut it would take to buy your college football fandom for next season?

We're going to have a reward on where you can name your price and your prize. Come in high enough and I'll follow sports for a year.

Hi Penn, big fan not only of your magic but also your books. In God No! you mentioned a naked pissing elvis impersonator that you hired for one the crazy drug/alcohol free parties you used to throw. Have you met any more characters like that? People so off the wall that it blew your mind?

Yeah, I loved Extreme Elvis and I try to meet as many out people as I can.

Will there be any special fx to make you bad in Directors cut

I think I can do bad by myself without SFX.

How did you come up with your daughter's middle name?! It's awesome!

It was my wife's idea.

Other question that is more important than the other one I asked:


We are trying to make a deal for Swirtle to return. Please talk to Walgreens about it. Push.

I like everything i've seen you do, from your magic with Teller, to Bullshit, to Penn's sunday school. I'm glad you're trying to make your movie without studio interference your way. My question is, do you ever feel like you have convinced a religious person to quit their religion and become an atheist? Do any of them contact you and tell you that you were the reason they no longer believe?

Many people have told me that I was part of helping them come out as atheists. But, I'm not responsible for there not being a god. That's just good fortune.

Well this got to the front page quickly!! Only an hour in, and over 500 comments already! Penn, I am a HUGE fan, I've watched every episode of Bullshit, tons of your interviews, and a lot of your other work. I have two questions for you...

  1. Are there any ideas for shows that you would like to do, but don't have enough support from broadcasters to accomplish? If so, what are the concepts?

  2. Is it true that Showtime wouldn't allow you to do an episode of Bullshit on Scientology, and that you encouraged Matt Stone and Trey Parker to write the episode of South Park that dealt with Scientology, believing they had more pull with comedy central than you did with Showtime? This was a rumor I heard a long time ago, and I have wondered about it ever since.

Thanks SOOO much for doing this AMA!

edit: Wrong Channel. ;)

It was Showtime, but yeah, kinda sorta.

when are you going to appear on joe rogan's podcast?

Whenever he invites me.

Favorite movie? Musician/band?

Dawn of the Dead/Dylan

Penn, I found your interview bits in "The Band That Would Be King" fascinating. Are you still friendly with Jad Fair?

Yup, I love Jad.

Hey Penn, you probably do not remember me but I was an Intern at 92.3 Free FM In NY when you were doing your afternoon show. I think you were only at that studio once when I was there as I believe you did the show from your home. In any case How was that experience for you? Did you enjoy doing radio

I love doing radio.

Hey Penn! Listen to you every week. Here's a welcome lase of you and your beautiful family! Link

Here's the question: Could you record your podcast a little hotter? I have to crank everything wide open sometimes to hear you over the road noise. Thanks!

We're trying to get it hotter. Thanks,

Did you really get blown by Adriana La Cerva?

Nope. She just talked about it.

Please tell us about the "Second Coming Of Christ" performance piece you and Teller did at Jonathan's roast. Thank you.

Youv'e just told about it.

When are you coming back on the Opie & Anthony show, you magnificent bastard?

I'm on in a couple weeks. End of October.

How do you maintain libertarian beliefs when by human nature, people often develop into socially irresponsible organisations. Screw each other over every chance they get, and don't take care of people they put down in the first place.

Surely socialist/democratic/capitalistic integration is statistically the best option?

Why do you think Libertarian is the way?

Here is an example of missing the point of existing together peacefully on this planet, and instead making it all about £$£$£$£$

This is the funniest "question" so far.

If you could ask Ron Paul one question, what would it be?

Why do you believe in god?

Big fan here, with more of a story than a question. My sister saw you in Vegas, and asked if she could get a picture with you, for me. You agreed, and while posing, I guess ever the entertainer, screamed to my sister "STOP GRABBING MY ASS". My sister laughed, and said "I'm not touching your ass", but my sweet Italian mother ... took your joke as an invitation, and pinched your ass. When my mother pinches ass, she doesn't just do a light pinch on a small amount of skin, she grabs ASS, and squeezes with the strength of a jackhammer operator. Apparently she scared the ever-lovin piss outta ya, and you took off running.

Firstly, I apologize for my saintly mother's actions. Secondly, do you even remember it? I'm not sure how often a man such as yourself gets his ass grabbed in quite that way, but the story is burned into my memory. If you're forgiving man, it'll be a fond memory.

Yes, women sometimes pinch my ass hard . . . and I like it.

If you could ask President Obama one question, what would it be?

What the fucking fuck?

Thoughts on Clay Aiken?

He sings in tune.

If you had to pick one thing to be the ULTIMATE bullshit of all time, what bullshit is it?


What do you think the world needs more of?


Do you find that some people believe your superfluous usage of the F-word is extremely fucking off-putting?

Fuck them.

Mr. Jillette,

No real question, I'd just like to thank you for having that theistic conversation with Mr. Beck. It made me respect atheists/agnostics a lot more. Even though I already respected their viewpoints, it helped me understand that not all of them are like the redditor's in r/atheism.


Rock stars have groupies, actors have groupies, what kind of groupies fuck carnies? I bet it was awesome when you guys were on the road back in the day doing the renaissance fair thing.

I've had some fun.

Hey Penn!

  1. Are there any episodes of Bullshit! that you made which you looked back at and decided you've changed your view of since? If so, which ones?

  2. How has your act evolved since you started your career in magic? Are there things you can get away with saying or doing that you couldn't do when you hadn't quite "hit it big" yet? Are there other things that you can't due because of "hitting it big"?

  3. Teller doesn't talk, but does he type?

  4. My next door neighbor looks a lot like you. When I moved into my house in 2nd grade, I looked at him and thought "Is that Penn?" That was around 12 to 13 years ago. He still looks a lot like you.

  5. Finally, thanks for being you. Thanks for being outspoken, funny, critical, and all the other things that make you truly, truly unique. There's not a single person I can think of that does anything close to what you do, and I don't think anyone could do it better.

Thanks. I've covered these on this thread other places.

Hey Penn. I work at a grocery store in NJ that you visited. You don't need to answer this, but I appreciate how nice you were despite the conditions. Easily the friendliest to the staff, and it was awesome to see you (and Vanilla Ice).

Thanks so much.



Hi big fan(you're on my Celeb permission list ;) ), I have two questions, 1. What is a polite respectful powerful atheist replacement for I will pray for you (I will keep you in my thoughts seemed dwarfed in comparison to I will ask my all powerful God for his aide in your problems). 2. How can I make my partner understand how wrong I feel circumcision is? Ps. I am begging you... I will crowd fund the hell out of another season of Bullshit, (As a forensic scientist I would love to see you do an episode on bullshit forensic science). Thank you for making me feel less alone.

I find some form on "love" is always the answer.

How do you feel when other magicians reveal how to pull off tricks and illusions?

I like it.

Hello Penn,

First of all, I would like to thank you for the wide swath of amazing content that you produce. I would also like to thank you for getting me and vicariously my friends, hip to Look. Its amazing and I can't wait to see Director's Cut.

I would like to know:

-What is/who has the best physical magic trick you have ever seen? (ie best slight of hand or other trick that requires a physical aspect)

-Who has/what is the best illusion you have seen?

-Other than Adam Rifkin, is there an other director(s) that you highly recommend?

Thanks again for all the wonderful things you have done. I am a huge fan though I am sure you get that a lot.

I love Eric Mead and Mike Close as magicians. I love George Romero as a director (after Rifkin).

Do you consider having a Vegas-based show an achievement or a surrender? Perhaps neither. I'm specifically curious if you'd rather have a traveling show or be back in NYC, or if you prefer the consistency of a steady check...

I like Vegas.

Hey. How's my buddy B.J. doing? He's an old friend of mine and I accuse you guys of kidnapping him from the religious fold!

BJ is doing great, and thanks,

You are apparently friends with Glenn Beck. Do you feel that perhaps this is a sign of the end of times?

Sure seems that way.

Are you the bassist who plays before your Las Vegas show? I recognized it when I went to see you at the beginning of this year but would love to confirm this.

Yeah, I play jazz bass before the Penn & Teller show.

[No question]

Okay, I hope you're all impressed with how fast I type. I've been going since 9. I have to pee. Please check out our video at while I'm gone. BRB

[No question]

Okay, I'm back. I've changed from Miles to Ornette and I'm back.

What are your favorite podcasts?

I haven't found time to really check them out seriously


Oh fuck. Yeah, I gave it to our crew. That was a hard thing for us to get done. Sorry if we fucked it up.

Hey Penn, you cut off one of the reporters I work with on the freeway here in Vegas.

So I guess my question is: are you always a bad driver, or is that just for special occasions?

I'm a slow and careful driver, but I make mistakes. Sorry.

(I may just not know and this may sound like a dumb question. If there is such a thing already, please point me there.) Are you ever going to do the old podcast show again? I really miss Monkey Tuesday's, and the shows with Gilbert had me torn at the sides I would be laughing so hard.

We do and Monkey Tuesday shows up.

All jokes aside if I came to see you and Teller, can I take you two to dinner after sometime? Also, thank you for making God No! I knew it would be funny but I never expected it to be so humbling. Thank you for sharing your talents with us, good sir!

I try to eat dinner whenever I can with my family. sorry.

Hey Penn, you got married out of circumstance seeing as you don't particularly believe in marriage., is that right? What was the decision making process, did you two sit down and discuss it together and weigh the pros and cons?

Thanks in advance.

It was just for our children that we got married. It's hard to be assured of certain rights if you don't.

Who was the most full-of-shit person there when you were on Celebrity Apprentice?

There was some tough competition.

Penn, are you still active in the poker scene? If so, what have you been up to recently?

No, I don't really play games, except MineCraft with my children.

What time is it where you are?

10:33 AM



What really happens if a magician gives up the secrets to their acts?

They make more money?

Hey penn!

I have a question for you. What is it like being as famous as you are? Everyone has heard the name 'penn and teller'

Also, what is your best fan experience?

I sure like signing breasts.

Do you believe in love?

Is love a belief system?

There is evidence for love.

How much do you guys get paid when you perform at Rio in Las Vegas?

We get a cut of the gate.

Hey Penn, I just wanted to say that your role in Hackers really made the movie for me...


What would you say is worse? Modern day religion or Hitler?

Hitler was modern religion.

Hey Penn. I like your specials where you give some of the tricks away, like when Teller got ran over by a truck. That being said, how do you catch a bullet between your teeth?

it's a trick.

Hey Penn, I share your love of all things Bob Dylan. What are your favourite Dylan songs/albums/performances etc.?

I like the new Dylan stuff the most.

What do you think of the "Freemen on the land" movement? I ask because the Free Keene people often use a clip of you in their videos that implies you are a supporter.

I like the idea.

I remember on MTV cribs they showed you have a dungeon. Do you use it or was that a prop for a trick?

It was for sex, then it was a nursery, and now we store luggage there. So there.

Hey Penn! Remember an episode with 'the angriest guy alive' (about manners) in Chicago a buncha years back? I met the guy's stepson and he said his stepdad had no idea about the show before coming on. How many other people do your show not knowing they are going to be ridiculed?

It was explained and made clear to everyone on the show. Even if they deny it later.

What is the best nonfiction book you have read?

I like Hitchens.



Favorite comedian?


So, how did you and Teller get on Babylon 5? Were you approached? Or did you approach them? And do you have any interesting memories from it?

They came to us. We loved it.

Favorite movie?

Dawn of the Dead (Romero) Or maybe Hitchcock Rope.

Hey Penn, what do you consider the single greatest magic trick ever performed, by yourself or by someone else?


Hey penn! I want to ask, what's your opinion of the recently ending government shutdown?

What shutdown? It was hysterical jive.

You and Teller have confronted quite a number of whackadoos and various purveyors of (and believers in) flim-flam in your time.

Have you ever seen anyone who believes in some variety of flim-flam actually change their belief when confronted with evidence to the contrary?

Yeah, I've seen it happen. I've seen people drop religion. My Mom did it. Amazing bravery.

What is your opinion on Criss Angel?

He's always nice to me.

What's up with the card, Three of Clubs?

It's humble and visible.

What was your favorite topic to cover on Bullshit? My family particularly loved watching people go nuts for tap water presented in different ways.

I like the Vaccine episode.

Someones wife my ex knew sucked you off and that caused their divorce. Don't really have an opinion of it. Just thought I'd throw it out there.

I'm sorry if that was a bad thing, but I'm sure I liked it.

Hey Penn. As of today, how long is your hair?

Down my back.

Why do you sometimes sign autographs with a scribble?

I'm sorry, I write really really badly. I cna't read my own writing. That really is my signature and I'm embarrassed by it.. I'd rather take pictures. . . but, I'm ugly too. I can't win.

what kind of Pen do you use?

I just type. I don't write.

Do you really fully not believe in any entity of a supernatural origin or do you simply dismiss the idea of the god of the bible? I consider myself an atheist but sometimes wonder about option 1, to a very vague extent

I think what we have is what we have.

I personally would actually rather see you do a political discussion show, maybe with Teller being the "statistics and research guy." Have you ever considered doing a show like Bill Maher's show?

I'd love to, but no one has hired me.

I work out at the Texas Renaissance Festival, which is somewhere y'all once were. What was the experience like for the two of you?

It was a good job.

What are the chances of Monkey Tuesday making a comeback? That was some of the funniest stuff ever.

Monkey Tuesday is featured on all the time.

So i'm here smoking my last bowl of marijuana for the day, did you ever smoke? Do you smoke? Thoughts on legalization? BTW you are one funny dude.

I've never smoked dope, but I want it totally legal (along with all drugs)

Seriously, did you burn the flag during Zoey's birthday party or not!?

We did not.

Will Tim Jenison be at any of our Directors Cut openings?

I bet he will. He's a buddy.

Penn, I had a book as a child written by your duo. When you thumbed through it backwards it would appear that the book had no text. Do you remember it? What was it called?

"Penn & Teller : Cruel Tricks for Dear Friends"

Is it true that you're The Best A Man Can Get? or is that just hype?


PLEASE ANSWER (or read...) I've never had a real questions answered in an AMA, but you two are my favorite magicians and I've meet you both. Love the podcast!!

Penn, what was the best trick you have done that went wrong on stage? What is your opinion on Criss Angel? What would you say was the hardest sleight you've had to prefect? Who is your favorite card guy?

And how does teller get in the damn box??

BOTH Penn and Teller wait at the end of EVERY ONE of their shows and shake hands/take pics with any and all members of the audience. I was given a vip ticket for my birthday-great show.

Criss is nice to me. I like Mike Close for cards. Everything is too hard for me.

What is your relationship with Bill O'reilly and how much do your politcal views align/diverge?

I don't know Bill

I thought Man of Steel was pretty awful, there was too much CGI i.e. the cape, and I think that they replaced story with explosions. What is your take away from it?

Not the kind of movie I see.

Penn! What are your thoughts on monogamy? If it's not too personal a question, you've alluded to being involved in some sort of open or polyamorous arrangement yourself, and I'm curious if that's true. If so, how's it going? Was it difficult to implement?

Very thrilled to help fund Director's Cut! And thanks in advance for any answer you care to give to my question.

It seems silly to me.

I'm really enjoying God, No! right now, especially in audiobook format - your perfect mix of humor and crassness makes my commute wonderful.

I really, really enjoyed the chapter you did about your sister. It was a wonderful, loving tribute and I had to wipe my eyes a bit when the chapter was finished.


How did you go about building your PR?

I don't think of things that way.

Hey Penn! Only one question:

What ever happened to Penn Point on YouTube? It was a really entertaining show and it was great hearing your opinions on certain issues. Will it ever come back?


I now do

I'm currently reading God, No! I really like the twist on the ten commandments, what propelled you to write the book? Why now?

Glenn Beck asked me to write it.

What are your thoughts and feelings on Canada?

Is that that place north of us?

Hi Penn! My husband and I were rooting for you in The Celebrity Apprentice with Trace Adkins. We LOVE the way you both were so professional and friendly with one another. Our level of respect for (both of) you went sky high!

Do you still talk to Trace or anyone from the show?

Trace was just out visiting. Played golf with my wife every day.

May have been asked already, but how screwed do you feel about your loss on Celebrity Apprentice? By the way, I love the ice cream you created. Amazing!

It's a fucking TV show? Who cares? I had fun.

I think the first time I had ever been aware of the existence of Penn and Teller, was when I was young and watching David Letterman. They opened up some sort of serving dish that had cockroaches or some sort of insects in it.

It was a better trick than that, but thanks.

What is government good for?

Defense, courts, police.

What's one job/role you wish you had gotten at the time, but looking back are glad you didn't?

Can't think of anything.

Your Bullshit episode on academia came off as rather "sour grapes" IMO. Do you really feel that you dealt Chomsky a fair hand in your portrayal of him?

This made me laugh.

I loved your character Drell on Sabrina The Teenage Witch! Can you tell us any interesting facts/any funny stories from filming?

I love Sabrina.

The created/head writer tried to make sure that I didn't have any lines in that show that she hadn't heard me say in real life to her.

Penn, I got you and Teller to sign my wallet after your show a couple weeks ago. Just wanted to say thanks, and which way is up in your signature?

I write badly. Sorry.

So the magic bullet trick... It's a wax bullet and sugar glass right?

That wouldn't work. Please don't try it. Wax will kill you.

Your role model?

Amazing Randi.

So in your personal headcannon, did you vote for Vinick or Santos? Also, how much input did you have into the content of that guest shot on TWW?

I don't know what this means.

Hi Penn, I just wanted to say thank you for making my time in Afghanistan bearable. I went through the Bullshit series, and every other talk or blog post of yours I could find. I basically came out of the atheism closet, and am now motivated to bring others out and confront religious bullshit wherever I see it.

That said, I've been out of the military for 6 weeks now, and I suddenly feel impotent and directionless on that front, which leads me to my question: If you were 'starting over' at 28, what would you do? No magic, no Teller, just you. Thanks.

Thank you for your service.

I don't know. Such a hard question. And too important for me to just give a quick answer to. But, my heart is with you.

Out of all the magic tricks, bizarre claims, and oddities you have seen throughout your career, which claim were you most skeptical of?


If you could have, or do one thing, -anything-, what would it be?

What I'm doing right now.

Penn, I thought you should have won celebrity apprentice!

No doubt about that.

First, the very best of luck to you with the film. I've enjoyed your work for a very long time. I'd like to mention one more thing, though.

In Princeton in 1995, you and Teller were performing at the McCormick Theater there, and during the afternoon before your show, I saw you and a younger guy at the Burger King on Nassau Street. I gushed and went on and on about how much I'd loved seeing the Penn & Teller show a couple of times before in Chicago, and while your younger friend looked a little uncomfortable and maybe annoyed, you were really gracious and sweet even though I'd totally interrupted your lunch. Then, when I saw you in the street later, you kindly asked if I'd managed to get the tickets I'd planned to buy (unfortunately, the ones in my budget at the time were gone so I didn't catch the show that night). I love telling this story to people if your name comes up. Thanks for being so nice to gushing fans!


Has anyone ever asked you this question before?


What is your relationship with Matt and Trey?

I love them and worship them.

Do you beat Teller?


I have no questions but in all seriousness, I love you.


Did many people critize you when you were growing up for loving and performing magic?



Not at all

Do you guys still maintain the empty grave in the Hollywood Hills Cemetery that you mentioned in the Death Inc. Bullshit episode?

Yes we do.

Penn, thank you so much for doing this! I am a huge fan and aspiring close up magician who focuses on cards. I love fancy appearances on cards, the ornate backs, etc, and I have to ask;

When performing, what is the best way to assure an audience or person that the cards are in-fact normal, and not a gaff of any sort?

Even after an inspection some people simply refuse to believe a trick can be done with practice, which i find horribly frustrating, as i take great pride in finally get a move down.

I love what you and Teller do, thank you so much for all your shows and performances!

Yes, it's frustrating.

Are you and Ricky Jay friends?

I like Ricky, but don't see him much.

Did you ever figure out Mathieu Bich's Spreadwave trick?

Yup. He helped us.

I feel like you're a person who enjoys meatballs.

Can you confirm?


Bugger. I'm probably way too late.

Anyway, on the off chance this gets seen, I've read your book probably 10 times, and it probably seems incredibly fake or silly after hearing it a million times, but I find you to be one of the extremely rare role models in my life.

I completely stole your balloon idea that replaces religious type things, when my grandpa passed away 6 months ago, it was devastating, and I wound up at his grave every week just talking and crying, then one day I got back in my truck and it clicked somehow that I had your book in my pack.

I ended up reading that entire chapter sitting with my grandpas gravestone, not speaking to him really, but reading for me.

The next day I got some balloons and I went to his grave site again, and I released them and it was the first time I had smiled in weeks, I was remembering him for the times we played cards on thanksgiving until 3 in the morning, laughing and sipping old whiskeys, and playing pool, and trap shooting all over the country.

Maybe it wasn't really your book, or your ritual, maybe it was just time for me to be ready to stop crying over his passing, and instead being happy for his life. I still however give you credit for vicariously helping me through that time in my life which was really difficult.

So.. I guess I don't have a question. I've just never told that story before even to the rest of my family, and I guess if you happen to see this somehow, I want to thank you for being wiser than I was at that time, and that you really did help someone.

Thank you and I'm so sorry for your loss.

Do you think climate change is real? And, if so, are you a climate impact denier? Just trying to figure out how far down the libertarian rabbit hole you've gone.

Climate denying is not libertarian.

No question, just wanted to tell you that you are among my top 5 who have walked this planet. Love what you do!


What did you have for breakfast, Penn?

Usually fruit.

Are you really a full blown libertarian? I would say I lean heavily towards it myself but I think we do need "some" regulation because people are generally stupid and all too capable of making bad decisions.

I don't think people are stupid.

Have you ever been asked to randomly fuck somebody?

Not enough, but I like it a lot.

please reply to this

Sure, baby.

Hey, man. I saw an article online a bit ago about a guy with this thing that he called, "grift sense," and he took a pen out of your shirt pocket while you guys were talking and apparently removed the ink cylinder from the pen, and then when you went to use your pen, you realized he had done all this handiwork while you guys were talking, right across from each other. Was this bullshit or not?

It's true, it was Apollo Robbins.


Penn. Just gotta say, I absolutely loved listening to your stories about the pussy colored car and different assortment of amazing Jillettisms on Pointless with Kevin Pereira.

You're a riot man.

Here's my question:

How many different "girl tests" did you have to perform when building your house?


Was there ever a magic trick you thought of but couldn't figure out how to make it work, or was too risky, etc.?

We won't do anything risky, and anyone who does, isn't doing magic.

It seems like playing bass is a real passion. Have you always played? If not, what made you choose the upright?

Dick Smothers.

What is your Opinion of Glenn Beck.

I like Glenn

Are you happy with how well Celebrity Apprentice represented your charity? And would you mind telling us how to donate?

Opportunity Village Las Vegas, find them on line and help.

Why is Ben Stein such an asshole?

I like Ben.

What are your thoughts on referring to men's ponytails as "rattlesnakes"?

Also, I love you.

Never heard that. Thanks,

Penn, I just wanted to say that of all the celebrities in the world, you have the made the greatest impact in my life. Your old radio show was a big influence on me when I was at a crossroads in my life. I just wanted to say thank you and you'll always have a special place in my heart.

Thanks so much.

who are the residents?!

My friends.

What's your favorite Bullshit episode? I liked the cheerleader one, that Varsity is quite the operation.


So Penn, how did the whole 'Teller being silent all the time' thing come around?

Teller worked silently before he met me.

I'm getting married in December. Want to come to Texas and officiate my wedding?

Make a deal, for enough money to make my movie at I'll do it.

What do you make of the Dennis Rodman--Kim Jong Un relationship after working with him on Apprentice?

Nutty. Just insane.

Regarding GMOs. Your episode and clip of Neil Borlaug is commonly brought up here. While I am in no way opposed to GMOs on any sort of fundamental level (I think they have great potential), I am worried about the regulatory process behind them. Since they are covered by patents, they cannot be tested in a peer reviewed journals without the companies consent. However the FDA says that testing in the companies responsibility, not the governments. The result is the companies test their GMOs, submit reports to the FDA, the FDA sends a letter acknowledging receiving the report and informing the company that will still have liability for any health or environmental claims against the product. I understand how each of these decisions might make sense in isolation, but I think the end result is that a massively powerful technology (one capable of reshaping entire ecosystems, food chains, and human health, over decades) is deployed without proper scientific peer review. I imagine, your response is that the free market will ensure that companies won't put out products that they don't think are safe, but that was the same argument that lead to the financial crisis of 2008.

I guess this question really boils down to a question about intellectual property rights and what, if any, role the government should have in setting the rules of the market (i.e. enforcing IP vs enforcing or funding open scientific research).

Are you libertarian for primarily ideological reasons (non-aggression principle) or for primarily pragmatic reasons (market efficiencies)? Would forcing GMO companies to allow open scientific research on their products, but still enforce their patents commercially, be an acceptable solution to you?

Very very good points. And ideological and moral, not pragmatic.

I love your Las Vegas show and Fool Us, but Bullshit was mostly a platform for you to express your libertarian ass backwards ideas so my question is, why you so stupid?

Both nature and nurture I would think. And yes, Bullshit was our POV, that's why our name was on it.

What was your biggest motive for never touching alcohol?


No question here but I wanted you to know that my mentally disabled brother and I saw your show in NY (many moons ago) and you had him toss out a giant fuzzy dice. You should know that he still talks about it and it was a highlight in his life.


Wow. Thanks for telling me that.

[No question]

Hey y'all, brothers and sisters and others, Thanks so much for this great time. I have to make sure to do one of these again soon. Please, right now, go to and watch the video that Adam Rifkin and I made. It's really good, and then lay some jingle on us to make the full movie. Thanks for all your kind questions and a real blast. Thanks again. Love you all.

I always find these god damn things too late! I love you, man!


This interview was transcribed from an "ask me anything" question and answer session with Penn Jillette conducted on Reddit on 2013-10-18. The Reddit AMA can be found here.