PHP in templates is so last decade
Back in 1998, when commenting on blogs started to take off, the web was a different place. Blog comments were friendly, hey I like your site, or super nice pasta recipe. Then the bots started coming around, first they were robotic, programmed, then they were human, paid.
A Package would start off with a branch of Textpattern, throw a Theme on it, add some Plugins, and make the necessary configuration settings, like adding sections.