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Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Gettin' more medieval on "Left Behind"'s behind...

Some others are weighing in about what was discussed here yesterday. The Refuse blog lays some serious smack down on Left Behind:
Left Behind™ is a media empire. But, more than that, it seems that the success of Tim Lahaye and Jerry Jenkins is what epitomizes the desired goal of every publishing house and record label in the Christian ghetto. It's a sign of the times in which we live, that cheap media to the masses in hopes of making a buck is competing with the command of John 21:17: "If you love me, feed my sheep."

How else do you explain the lack of honesty in the number one hits of CCM? How else do you explain the poor quality fiction coming out of Christian publishing? Or the poor quality Christian movies? How else do you explain Christian t-shirts, bumper stickers, license plates outlines, and posters? How else could you possibly explain fifteen novels in one series?

The cultural interrogation continues, courtesy of the good folks at the evangelical outpost:
But what do the millions of books and products represent? Does it reveal an interest in eschatology among non-believers or just a hunger for Tom Clancy-style thrillers with churchgoers? Is the dispensational theology inherent in the novels representative of evangelicalism or does it lead to misperceptions about our beliefs? Are the novels great popular art, good entertainment, or shoddy pulp being pawned off on a gullible public?
Hate to say this - I mean, I really hate to say this, given how certain people are going to understand how big an insult this is (although I don't intend to insult LaHaye and Jenkins at all: I met them briefly some years ago and they're both nice fellas) but this has gotta be said...

Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins have become to Christian literature what Rick Berman and Brannon Braga are to the Star Trek franchise.

Except that Brannon and Braga seem to have actually learned from their mistakes and made Enterprise a better show for it.

(Oops. Looks like I spoke too soon: literally learned less than a minute ago that Enterprise has been cancelled! Maybe it's a good thing: Star Trek has gone on non-stop for too long. That field needs to get some more nutrients in it before it's sown again.)

But y'know, this whole Left Behind thing has made me understand something for the first time: it's only dawning on me now why it's a good thing that George Lucas is leaving the Star Wars saga at six movies, instead of the projected nine and twelve that he talked about twenty years ago. If he did it per the plan that Gary Kurtz revealed to TheForce.net some years ago (and that's the second link to my old stomping grounds I've made today!) it would have been torturously slow and painful to endure the complete epic.

Perhaps, if they were to ever meet him, Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins might be given this timeless wisdom from The Plaid one that he has spoken many, many times over the years: