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Can a Paladin be funny?


Pathfinder RPG General Discussion

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I am curious, can a Paladin joke? Can he tell stories? Can he trick his friends, play pranks on them? Can he be a smartass? Can he be sarcastic? Is he able to be all these things while maintaining his code of conduct?

Just some questions I had, please feel free to answer them.

Shadow Lodge

Heck yes, so long as the actions are in line with his/her religious code.


Of course!

Cheliax RPG Superstar 2013 Top 32

Dhaenon wrote:

I am curious, can a Paladin joke? Can he tell stories? Can he trick his friends, play pranks on them? Can he be a smartass? Can he be sarcastic? Is he able to be all these things while maintaining his code of conduct?

Just some questions I had, please feel free to answer them.

Why couldn't he? As long as the pranks don't actually harm anyone or break any laws, there's no problem with it. Sarcasm and smartassing is probably okay as well, but I would say he probably only shows those traits to his closest friends. Others might misinterpret his intentions and take offense, but his friends probably know he is joking.

Shadow Lodge

Having a code of truth (meaning that you always tell the truth) doesn't mean you can't tell a fictional story, it just means that you have to state that the story you're about to tell is fictional.

A paladin of a trickster god might play pranks in order to teach valuable lessons to his/her squire or other charges.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Halfling Paladin would be a great concept.

Some people play Lawful Good as Lawful Stupid or Lawful Anal.


I had always seen a Paladin as sort of a PARAGON of honor and honesty... but I am not that way, nor would I want to role play it.

Shadow Lodge

Dhaenon wrote:
I had always seen a Paladin as sort of a PARAGON of honor and honesty.

Why?

Paladins are the knights of their religion. They follow their own strict religious code (the lawful part) while promoting the general good of society (the good part).

They may also bring in the laws of their society with the laws of their religion.

One can do all three of those while still being a paragon of honor and honesty, all the while still being sarcastic, playing tricks, and joking on friends.

They can still love, marry, bear children, and all the other things normal mortals do (you didn't bring this up, but I've seen others argue that paladins have to be celibate). We're not talking about characters from the bible, here. We're not talking about perfect people, we're talking about people who try to be the paragons of their religious teachings (in a lawful good way).


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Obviously if anybody in the paladin's family has ever told a joke or played a prank, the paladin instantly falls, even if the jokes were told before they were born.


Dhaenon wrote:
I had always seen a Paladin as sort of a PARAGON of honor and honesty... but I am not that way, nor would I want to role play it.

I'm not sure why that would affect someone's ability to be funny. Surely you can, for instance, tell a joke or make an acerbic observation about the pickle that his friends have gotten him into again without dishonouring himself, and in the case of the acerbic observation, as long as it's true, it's probably honest.

As for paladins being perfect or not perfect beings, I'd certainly consider someone incapable of being funny at least once in a while to be on the non-perfect side of that divide.


You might like some of the humor on religion found in reader's digest. I could very well see a paladin using one of the first jokes there:

Reader's Digest wrote:

A Sign From Above

Spotted on a church marquee: "Love your enemies; After all, You made them."

Great one liner to try and show mercy to an enemy, maybe :P

Edit: I suppose it is a source of inspiration in this context for active worshipers of a faith to indulge in a little good, clean fun and humor.


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Paladin: So I'm sitting in this bar, right? Not drinking of course... that, as all of you know, is against my code... and this BALOR walks in, right?!

Group: *Stares blankly*

Paladin: So, he sits down all normal like and orders a drink. Now, you know me, and Erastil be damned if I would normally let something like this happen, but I didn't even know what to do! I just sat there and stared!

Group: *looks slightly bored*

Paladin: So he turns to me, right? And I say... "Hey, take a wrong turn friend?" And he says "BSDG L:KJETW AD DFHJLTJKEW WRVDS" in this booming voic- no, JUST LIKE THAT, I'm serious! Couldn't understand a bloody thing he way saying! Turns out, he just had his WISDOM TEETH REMOVED!!!! HAHAHAHA!!!

Group: *collective sigh of disapproval, begins to disperse*

Paladin: JUST KIDDING! I attacked him on sight, and was obviously out matched, so I ran back to you guys for help... may want to ready weapons!


I don't think a paladin without gallows humor would be worth playing.


Yes. Any class can be funny... Except Necromancers, there's nothing funny about raising the undead...

Also, I'd be ok with letting paladins talk smack towards evil-doers. I'd just expect said evil-doers to not stand around and take it, however.

The "alignment" of the joke, however, may not be ok. Jokes about dirty peasants are not good.


I can see paladins joking about the crap they get to deal with from everyone else; less-virtuous clerics, rogues trying to screw with them, wizards who assume all paladins dumped Int, fighters who run when the going gets tough, barbarians who never understood Purify Hide & Loincloth etc.

I can also imagine them ridiculing evil enemies; like the stupid local cult of wearing black capes and being conspicuous.

Difference would be that they wouldn't make mean jokes about goodness; not ridiculing people who do the right thing but get hurt for it, because that's not funny, that's just said. So you've got someone who jokes most of the time, and yet sometimes he's not laughing because what you said was deeply hurtful to his beliefs.

Shadow Lodge

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Marthian wrote:

Yes. Any class can be funny... Except Necromancers, there's nothing funny about raising the undead...

Also, I'd be ok with letting paladins talk smack towards evil-doers. I'd just expect said evil-doers to not stand around and take it, however.

The "alignment" of the joke, however, may not be ok. Jokes about dirty peasants are not good.

This necromancer disagrees: http://www.dominic-deegan.com/view.php?date=2008-06-14


pranks, being a smart-ass & sarcasm are only potential problems - a paladin can be a sarcastic, smart-ass prankster as long as her pranks, sarcasm & smartness aren't mean spirited. Even towards evil-doers a paladin cannot be mean or cruel, but light hearted humor is always fine for paladins.

I'd be more worried an inquisitor trying to be funny, those buggers are paranoid and I'm sure it is just a ploy to try to get me to relax.


Stubs McKenzie wrote:

Paladin: So I'm sitting in this bar, right? Not drinking of course... that, as all of you know, is against my code... and this BALOR walks in, right?!

Group: *Stares blankly*

Paladin: So, he sits down all normal like and orders a drink. Now, you know me, and Erastil be damned if I would normally let something like this happen, but I didn't even know what to do! I just sat there and stared!

Group: *looks slightly bored*

Paladin: So he turns to me, right? And I say... "Hey, take a wrong turn friend?" And he says "BSDG L:KJETW AD DFHJLTJKEW WRVDS" in this booming voic- no, JUST LIKE THAT, I'm serious! Couldn't understand a bloody thing he way saying! Turns out, he just had his WISDOM TEETH REMOVED!!!! HAHAHAHA!!!

Group: *collective sigh of disapproval, begins to disperse*

Paladin: JUST KIDDING! I attacked him on sight, and was obviously out matched, so I ran back to you guys for help... may want to ready weapons!

...I have a problem with this: why wouldn't he be drinking? There's nothing in the paladin code saying they can't drink. This is just as silly as saying a paladin can't have sex, which is patently false.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Blue Star wrote:
This is just as silly as saying a paladin can't have sex, which is patently false.

After all, how you you suppose that stick got up there in the first place, hm? ;)


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

A Paladin can run a Brothel.
It will probably have the happiest customers and employees around.


Paladins are of course required to adhere to the social mores of the local community, but apart from that: if it won't make the matrons or maidens blush, it's fair game.

I'm not sure a Paladin could run a brothel though, as they have a duty to go out and fight Evil. Maybe a retired Paladin, who's now looking after more local affairs.


Blue Star wrote:
Stubs McKenzie wrote:

Paladin: So I'm sitting in this bar, right? Not drinking of course... that, as all of you know, is against my code... and this BALOR walks in, right?!

Group: *Stares blankly*

Paladin: So, he sits down all normal like and orders a drink. Now, you know me, and Erastil be damned if I would normally let something like this happen, but I didn't even know what to do! I just sat there and stared!

Group: *looks slightly bored*

Paladin: So he turns to me, right? And I say... "Hey, take a wrong turn friend?" And he says "BSDG L:KJETW AD DFHJLTJKEW WRVDS" in this booming voic- no, JUST LIKE THAT, I'm serious! Couldn't understand a bloody thing he way saying! Turns out, he just had his WISDOM TEETH REMOVED!!!! HAHAHAHA!!!

Group: *collective sigh of disapproval, begins to disperse*

Paladin: JUST KIDDING! I attacked him on sight, and was obviously out matched, so I ran back to you guys for help... may want to ready weapons!

...I have a problem with this: why wouldn't he be drinking? There's nothing in the paladin code saying they can't drink. This is just as silly as saying a paladin can't have sex, which is patently false.

It was completely tongue and cheek... however, a paladins code is a personal code as much as a professional code. They dont all get up in front of the class on initiation day and recite from a 10,000 yr old ledger... they have a personal code they dedicate themselves to. While the paladin in my joke says he doesnt drink ('as HIS particular group is well aware by the time they are going to face such a formidable for') due to his code, it doesnt mean all paladins dont.

This is what i like most about the code. There are a couple bits everyone knows, and then there is the rest that is purely player inspired.


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According to artist Rich Burlew, paladins can tell jokes.


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I'm just saying that the reason it's weird for a paladin to not drink, is because it's a quick way to die of dehydration. All kidding aside: ale and beer were amongst the only safe things to drink in the rough approximation of the pseudo-medieval-Europe that all of this takes place in.

Lantern Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Dhaenon wrote:

I am curious, can a Paladin joke? Can he tell stories? Can he trick his friends, play pranks on them? Can he be a smartass? Can he be sarcastic? Is he able to be all these things while maintaining his code of conduct?

Just some questions I had, please feel free to answer them.

There are certain limits. The Paladin is required to be lawful after all. And somehow a Paladin that plays practical jokes is at the very least skating on thin ice. And he really shouldn't be an Alein. It may be that the type of character you're looking to play might be a Dragon Cavalier.

Storytelling should not be an issue. But being a smartass is a good onramp on the road to Paladin fail.


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Prostitution is legal in many parts of Golarion.

Remember, it is called the oldest profession for a reason.
Also, even here, in the real world, it did not always have this silly relation to immoral acts.

A Paladin could run a clean, well managed Brothel.
He could do this whilst having a few drinks after work, and tell a few jokes.


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Modern society makes me want to bang my head on a wall sometimes. "War is okay, but natural bodily functions are not." It's why I feel free to burp or fart wherever I want to.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Modules Subscriber
Blue Star wrote:
All kidding aside: ale and beer were amongst the only safe things to drink in the rough approximation of the pseudo-medieval-Europe that all of this takes place in.

Huh? No wine today?


Well, wine was in relatively limited places, and it's really bad about leaving you with a hangover, so I wouldn't use it as my primary beverage.

Also, I forgot to mention it.


Well, with Purify Food & Drink being cantrips, the strict need for alcoholic beverages as safe drinks is lessened somewhat.

A paladin shouldn't be a drunkard, but he doesn't have to be straight-edge either I'd say. Some of them probably are, preferring maximum purity, while others think it's better to keep the common touch, that it's much easier to convince others to lead good lives if they don't think you're an elitist prick.

I suppose a paladin might go a little lighter on the racist/sexist kind of jokes because they don't mesh well with their generally Nice People ethics.

I can certainly imagine a paladin teaching others that laughing in the face of danger is as healthy as any a way to cope with mind-numbing terror.


I get the impression that spellcasters are supposed to be rare, there's a lot of things that should be different because of spellcasters, but aren't.


blackbloodtroll wrote:

Prostitution is legal in many parts of Golarion.

Remember, it is called the oldest profession for a reason.
Also, even here, in the real world, it did not always have this silly relation to immoral acts.

A Paladin could run a clean, well managed Brothel.
He could do this whilst having a few drinks after work, and tell a few jokes.

I'm keeping this idea in mind.

And actually, a Paladin of Erastil managing a brothel sounds funny in how absurd it seems, at least initially.

Shadow Lodge

LazarX wrote:
Dhaenon wrote:

I am curious, can a Paladin joke? Can he tell stories? Can he trick his friends, play pranks on them? Can he be a smartass? Can he be sarcastic? Is he able to be all these things while maintaining his code of conduct?

Just some questions I had, please feel free to answer them.

There are certain limits. The Paladin is required to be lawful after all. And somehow a Paladin that plays practical jokes is at the very least skating on thin ice. And he really shouldn't be an Alein. It may be that the type of character you're looking to play might be a Dragon Cavalier.

Storytelling should not be an issue. But being a smartass is a good onramp on the road to Paladin fail.

Why does being lawful prevent one from playing practical jokes?

Lawful is not an all encompassing behavior that dictates that one must be strict and follow every law in existence. In the case of a paladin, it means s/he follows at least their own religion's code strictly. One might argue that practical jokes are not morally good (I argued earlier that a paladin might play one in order to teach a lesson to his/her squire), but I don't understand how it would violate the lawful part of the alignment.

Lantern Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
bookrat wrote:
LazarX wrote:
Dhaenon wrote:

I am curious, can a Paladin joke? Can he tell stories? Can he trick his friends, play pranks on them? Can he be a smartass? Can he be sarcastic? Is he able to be all these things while maintaining his code of conduct?

Just some questions I had, please feel free to answer them.

There are certain limits. The Paladin is required to be lawful after all. And somehow a Paladin that plays practical jokes is at the very least skating on thin ice. And he really shouldn't be an Alein. It may be that the type of character you're looking to play might be a Dragon Cavalier.

Storytelling should not be an issue. But being a smartass is a good onramp on the road to Paladin fail.

Why does being lawful prevent one from playing practical jokes?

Lawful is not an all encompassing behavior that dictates that one must be strict and follow every law in existence. In the case of a paladin, it means s/he follows at least their own religion's code strictly. One might argue that practical jokes are not morally good (I argued earlier that a paladin might play one in order to teach a lesson to his/her squire), but I don't understand how it would violate the lawful part of the alignment.

A practial jokester is an expression of a chaotic personality. Not descending to such antics is not the same as "being strict and following every law in existence". Part of being a Paladin is exhibiting honesty, and respect to one's companions and a Paladin should be exemplary in such matters. It may be something you do one time as a tool to reform or to defeat a bad guy, but it should not be a regular part of a Paladin's personality.

Andoran

Icyshadow wrote:
blackbloodtroll wrote:

Prostitution is legal in many parts of Golarion.

Remember, it is called the oldest profession for a reason.
Also, even here, in the real world, it did not always have this silly relation to immoral acts.

A Paladin could run a clean, well managed Brothel.
He could do this whilst having a few drinks after work, and tell a few jokes.

I'm keeping this idea in mind.

And actually, a Paladin of Erastil managing a brothel sounds funny in how absurd it seems, at least initially.

Paladin of Abadar or Saranrae or maybe even Iomedea, but not Erastil.

Erastil is about family, and "is very pro-marriage, seeing it as the proper way to create families and frowning on those who would bend
or break the sacred bonds with adultery or divorce." From AP #32, Erastil's write-up.

If someone was single, sure a brothel would be fine, but no priest or paladin would be associated with one.

/bubbleburst

But a Paladin of Saranrae I could totally see running a clean, shared profits, brothel.


LazarX wrote:
A practial jokester is an expression of a chaotic personality.

I partially agree, but that doesn't mean that it is incompatible with a Lawful Good personality.

I remember my grandfather as pretty much the paragon of Lawful Goodness. Strict, proud, disarmingly honest, generous but also expecting much from those who have much to offer, righteous in every aspect of his life etc. I think I heard him laugh twice in my whole life.

Now I learn from my aunts that he was a hopeless practical joker. He never practiced jokes on me, probably because I wasn't an 'honorable target' or something like that, but cousins from his side of the family told me some pretty crazy stuff, usually more on the clever side than on the humiliating side.

I think even the more rigid people need to loosen up somehow and apparently for my grampa, practical jokes where his 'chaotic' side.

'findel

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Cards, Companion, Maps, Pawns, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
Blue Star wrote:
Modern society makes me want to bang my head on a wall sometimes. "War is okay, but natural bodily functions are not." It's why I feel free to burp or fart wherever I want to.

Or, as I describe American television, it's OK to show a woman being cut in half by a chainsaw, but only as long as you don't show a nipple.


I'm currently running a paladin of Shelyn that carved a nude statue of a vacationing noble. She regretted posing for the piece afterwards and demanded it be destroyed, fearing what would happen if her fiance found out.

He sent the statue to her fiance as a wedding present.

Paladins can have a sense of humor. They may be paragons of virtue and righteousness, but they still have a pulse.


A Paladin can be:

Sexual/Erotic: They just can't forced or coerce themselves on others and moderate their actions at times to be respectful of others morals, to a point

Funny/Joker: As long as the jokes are not harmful (without cause)

Hot Headed: But must control their actions and be certain on their aqctions

Paladins are not stick in the mud, humorless, sexless and without emotion machines


Heaven's Agent wrote:

I'm currently running a paladin of Shelyn that carved a nude statue of a vacationing noble. She regretted posing for the piece afterwards and demanded it be destroyed, fearing what would happen if her fiance found out.

He sent the statue to her fiance as a wedding present.

Paladins can have a sense of humor. They may be paragons of virtue and righteousness, but they still have a pulse.

I like this. Amusing and appropriate for the deity. If it's a stunning piece of art, nude or not, why would a paladin of Shelyn destroy such a thing?


LadyRabbit wrote:
Heaven's Agent wrote:

I'm currently running a paladin of Shelyn that carved a nude statue of a vacationing noble. She regretted posing for the piece afterwards and demanded it be destroyed, fearing what would happen if her fiance found out.

He sent the statue to her fiance as a wedding present.

Paladins can have a sense of humor. They may be paragons of virtue and righteousness, but they still have a pulse.

I like this. Amusing and appropriate for the deity. If it's a stunning piece of art, nude or not, why would a paladin of Shelyn destroy such a thing?

Exactly. I'm really looking forward to seeing how the character develops. Unfortunately, there hasn't been much chance for levity at this point in the campaign: travel to the Lands of the Linnorm Kings, expect a warm welcome only to find the village sacked by cannibal marauders, and have to venture into the cold, dark night in the hope of finding survivors.

He's going to have a sense of humor, but there's not really anything funny about the situation he and the rest of the party are currently in. >.<


Heaven's Agent wrote:
He's going to have a sense of humor, but there's not really anything funny about the situation he and the rest of the party are currently in. >.<

Well, if he comes across a cannibal suffering from intestinal distress, he could quip that, "It must've been something he ate"

(ducking)


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Even if you don't like the idea of a Paladin telling jokes & whatknot...

Role-Play him like The TICK! Isn't the Tick a paladin with some well placed low scores?

Taldor

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

hmm ... next time I play a paladin, I think I'm going to have him play the dozens with his opponents ...


I play a paladin (Iomedea) that is a bit off a joker, a bit rude and hot headed. That is, when is is with friends. To the rest of the (non-enemy) world, especially children, she tries to set a good example. (And sometimes fails horribly)


Wasn't "The Andy Griffith Show" a comedy about paladins? ;-)


Funny strange or funny ha-ha?


I think part of what people are not saying well is that some kinds of joking (most especially pranks) have a victim. It is a joke at someone else's expense. Pranks where someone is embarassed or humliated. Jokes that make fun of someone.

In my opinion, that is the type of humor that would not be allowed for paladins.


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BB36 wrote:

A Paladin can be:

Sexual/Erotic: They just can't forced or coerce themselves on others and moderate their actions at times to be respectful of others morals, to a point

Funny/Joker: As long as the jokes are not harmful (without cause)

Hot Headed: But must control their actions and be certain on their aqctions

Paladins are not stick in the mud, humorless, sexless and without emotion machines

By all gods, I wish this was written in the CRB. And the GMG. and Faits of Purity. Actually, it should be written on everything that mentions Paladins!

Paladisn should value Good above Law. Order is just what they believe to be the shortest path to a better world. Ask if a Paladin if he likes Devils (LE) better than Demons (CE). He'll probably say he hates both equally. Ask if he likes Azatas (CG) better than Devils (LE), and he'll answer "Of course!" and probably be offended and smite you for even daring to ask!

Qadira

Does David Boreanez joke around on Bones? Cause he's a perfect example of a paladin on television

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