So how did Vertigo, DC’s edgy sci-fi imprint, decide to celebrate the Christmas season? By taking the religious icon tied to that season and make him look pathetic. Second Coming is an upcoming title, announced in December, that imagines God sending Jesus back to Earth to learn how to be a better messiah with Superman analog called Sun-Man. The fact that Jesus, the Son of God who was sent to Earth as one of us to teach us on a level we could understand and take the weight of sin upon himself to break the barrier between sinner and salvation with his death and resurrection, needs a not-Superman to teach him anything is already bordering on blasphemous right at concept. Of course we can assume they aren’t stopping there as you read the solicit:
Witness the return of Jesus Christ, as He is sent on a most holy mission by God to learn what it takes to be the true messiah of mankind by becoming roommates with the world’s favorite savior: the all-powerful super hero Sun-Man, the Last Son of Krispex! But when Christ returns to Earth, he’s shocked to discover what has become of his gospel—and now, he aims to set the record straight.
It should be noted that the writer of this story is Mark Russell, an atheist who wrote a book trying to tell Christians what their own Holy Book says, and it seems like he’s going to go through that again. To put this in perspective let’s look at the opinion of another non-Christian, Mim Headroom, and see what the problem is with this on a conceptual level. Note that he’s more willing to be vulgar than the BW norm but it does go into a bit of hypocrisy about this title versus other religions. Then read the thoughts of an actual Christian as I set up my thoughts.
If a non-Christian finds this offensive, imagine what Christians are going to think? I know Russell doesn’t care. He wants to slam Christianity and Christians, either because he hates them that much or to get the anti-censorship fanatics (as opposed to people who are against censorship of the critics as well as the creators) on his side like certain video game creators obviously made their bad games vulgar enough to get the Night Trap type defenses against Jack Thompson, Hilary Clinton, or Joe Lieberman and make money for a horrible game. I’m willing to believe both, but it doesn’t bode well for the story. It certainly doesn’t bode well for any kind of respect for people of faith. Let’s break down the solicit.
Witness the return of Jesus Christ, as He is sent on a most holy mission by God to learn what it takes to be the true messiah of mankind by becoming roommates with the world’s favorite savior…
Again, Jesus doesn’t need to “learn what it takes”. Jesus is God. God sent a part of Himself down as his Son. I’m not going to go into the depths of the teaching. This isn’t a Bible course. The short version is the Trinity (Father, Son, Holy Spirit) are all God and God doesn’t need to teach Himself how to be Himself. It kind of comes with the omniscience. The fact that Jesus needs a mortal (then again, we’ve seen writers make the actual Superman an immortal so maybe Sun-Man is) to teach Him how to be a better savior of our souls from eternal damnation is ludicrous from a lore perspective and blasphemy from a spiritual one. Nobody’s teaching Zeus how to be a better womanizer.
…the all-powerful super hero Sun-Man, the Last Son of Krispex!
So you named the home planet of your superhero after a breakfast cereal? Where is/was this planet, just to the right of planet Cheerios? I know, this is a comedy (I can’t judge that crown obviously since the book doesn’t come out to March and the only reason I’d read it is for a review) and “Sun-Man” is a play on how Superman gets his powers from a yellow sun, but when you’re planet title sounds like something out of Marville you aren’t expecting quality humor here.
But when Christ returns to Earth, he’s shocked to discover what has become of his gospel—and now, he aims to set the record straight.
Yes, the atheist who wrote God Is Disappointed In You (I guess Christianity is an exception to current calls for “representative writing” and against alleged “cultural appropriation”) is just the right person to be telling readers what Jesus’s teaching are. Wait, no, that wouldn’t be my first choice at all. Bleeding Fool writer Chris Braly points out one other misstep into the blasphemy arena.
First off, the “second coming” is one of the holiest events in the Christian faith and it is what the church-goers long for, Christ’s return to take them to heaven, not a training boot camp to relearn how to be heroic. Secondly, Jesus is already perfect. God said so in the Bible, and this is what Christians believe. Suggesting he needs to learn how to be a hero or that God was somehow disappointed in Jesus is blasphemous to Christians.
Sadly, insulting the dominant religious faiths is nothing new to the big comic book publishers. In fact Marvel recently dealt with a controversy with former Indonesian illustrator of X-Men Gold #1 including references to Koranic verses warning against friendship with non-Muslims along with other anti-Jewish messages. And even just this month, in Uncanny X-Men #5 (currently in shops), they insulted Muslims, Catholics, and Hindus for alluding that each of their religions is “fake.”
I’m sure the anti-censorship people, especially those who hate people of faith, will rally to Russell’s side and boost knowledge of the book. And he’ll get the praise of the anti-Christians among the creative community. He may even follow the foolish mindset that “any press is good press even if it’s bad press”, which is a terrible way to think. Accepting you will be hated by some is a lot different from wanting to be hated. This is unfortunately the mindset out there right now and I’m sure this won’t be the last book to show a hatred of Christians while the Muslims get a pass because some people out there don’t know the difference between religion and culture or the lack thereof. No good person wants Muslims as a whole or their religion to be under assault, but fanatics are bad in any group. Yes it does include Christians but why do the anti-Christians deserve a pass the anti-Muslims don’t?
This song takes a different meaning in 2018. We just changed which people we’re supposed to hate.