Monday, December 21, 2009

V and applications to all sorts of beliefs

I haven't seen this and don't know if it's changed in the past two months, but this caught my eye-- from Todd Hertz in Christianity Today...

In the first episode of ABC's remake of the '80s alien-invasion series V (Tuesdays 8/7c), a teen boy is led down the path of destruction by a powerful force: the winsome smile of a cute girl. The dark threat behind innocent flirtation illustrates [that]...things are rarely as pretty as they look.

And the show asks: Would we believe them? "The chief allegory here is the idea of blind devotion," said V executive producer Jeffrey Bell..."If anyone is showing up and saying something too good to be true, are people thinking? Are they asking questions? Are they prepared and informed? Are you just accepting and believing what you are told?"

The show's chief cautionary voice is Father Jack, a priest. He is skeptical of the Vs—indeed, of the existence of aliens. "I don't see any basis for this in Scripture," he tells his elder priest, who has quickly concluded that the aliens are part of God's plan—not because of miracles as much as increased attendance at worship. Surely, he thinks, God is in this. Besides, the Vatican has officially endorsed the Visitors as part of God's creation. So Father Jack is initially the lone skeptic, preaching that people should fully explore anything they are tempted to believe in. They must compare claims to what they know is true: Scripture. It's refreshing for a strong Christian character—especially one facing his own existential crisis—to speak for informed, intelligent belief....

For many readers of this magazine, the series will yield comparisons to the Christian walk, spiritual warfare, and the church. Others may see the story's depiction of blind devotion as an indictment of the Christian faith. Others still may view the story politically—associating the aliens' hidden agenda with recent presidential administrations.

In the end, this suspenseful alien yarn suggests a passage from 1 Thessalonians: "Test everything. Hold on to the good. Avoid every kind of evil." Whether they look like lizard aliens or not.


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