From Star Wars to Superman: Christ Figures in Science Fiction and Superhero Films
When cultures such as ours toss Jesus out one door, He comes in albeit disguised through another. That’s why author Jim Papandrea turned to Star Wars, Star Trek, The Matrix, Terminator, Spider-Man, Batman, Dr. Who, and half-a-dozen other modern shows, discovering in each one powerful images of Christ and salvation.
Nor is that surprising.
In stories of alternative universes, people always need rescuing; somebody needs to save the day; and sometimes the whole world cries out for a savior . . . which is just what a hero is.
About the heroes of some of the most popular sci-fi stories of all time, author Papandrea here answers questions that concern Christians who are also Trekkies, Whovians, Matrix Dwellers, or aficionados of popular science fiction: What kind of “Christ-figure” is the hero of this story, and what does that say about the show s vision of Christ, humanity and salvation?
In the interest of being scientific, Papandrea even gives each hero a Numerical Orthodoxy Score based on the description of Christ in the Nicene Creed, Christianity’s common definition of orthodoxy.
Included herein are astute Christian analyses of:
Batman * Captain * America * Doctor Who * The Fifth Element * I, Robot * Iron Man * LOST * The Matrix * Planet of the Apes * Pleasantville * Spider-Man * Star Trek * Star Wars * Superman * The Terminator * The Time Machine * Tron * Wonder Woman
Here you’ll read about:
- The pervasive Christian imagery in Doctor Who
- Star Trek s predicted “death of God”
- Free-will: the stumbling block in the first Matrix
- The crucifixion of Spider-Man
- Why Wonder Woman is an image of a gnostic savior
- The meaning of salvation in Star Wars (It masquerades as Christian)
- How Superman’s life begins as a parallel of Moses.
- I, Robot: the religious reason why the robot is called “Sonny”
- Whether, in any Christian sense, Neo is The One?
- Captain American and Iron-Man: one defends the innocent, the other brings justice to the guilty
- The tomb scene in the Fifth Element: it s not the resurrection we need
- Matter vs. Spirit in Tron: gnostic to the core
- The anti-Christian bias of Planet of the Apes
- Why the Force in Star Wars is no analogy to Grace or the Holy Spirit
- The Star Wars Christ figure: Obi-Wan? Luke? Or even, ultimately, Darth Vader
- What Heaven is understood to be in the LOST universe
- Time travel as incarnation in The Terminator: a compelling analogy
- Regeneration as resurrection in Doctor Who: Is it Christ-like?
- How Pleasantville reverses the dynamism of the Fall
- The baptismal significance of the plane crash in LOST
- Pleasantville: a twisted version of Eden
- The incarnation of the Christ-figure in Planet of the Apes
- Tron’s parallels between Christianity and the Roman Empire
. . . and much more about other science fiction and superhero shows!
Christians who enjoy popular culture will greet this fun book with interest and acclaim.