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Orthodoxy & Comics: Is Paganism and the Old Ways being brought back via Comics?

Discussion in 'The Ancient Way - Eastern Orthodox' started by Gxg (G²), Jan 17, 2012.

  1. Eastern Drifter

    Eastern Drifter Senior Member

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    I think the poster you quoted was trying to say that you have to read Miller to understand Nolan's version, which really doesn't make much sense when Gurney said he prefers Burton, who drew more directly from Miller than Nolan.
     
  2. ArmyMatt

    ArmyMatt Regular Member

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    Burton drew heavily from Moore's The Killing Joke, especially concerning the Joker's origin in the film. Burton even said it was the only comic he ever loved. Miller's Year One is more gritty and real than Burton, much more like Nolan's Batman Begins. in fact, that graphic novel is the one that has Batman doing the growling that everyone hates Bale for doing.
     
  3. Eastern Drifter

    Eastern Drifter Senior Member

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    I mentioned Year One a couple of posts ago. Burton also read TDKR, and used it as a blue-print for Batman's characterization (and heck, the entire atmosphere of the film), while TKJ seems to have just been the blue-print for The Joker.
     
  4. ArmyMatt

    ArmyMatt Regular Member

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    I dunno, Moore had more of a moodiness and the surreal black comedy that fit in well with Burton. it just seems to me that Burton drew more from Moore's version than Miller (although Miller's is still there), sorta like how the Man Who Laughs influenced The Dark Knight, even though Year One is much more of a blueprint for that series.
     
  5. The Dark Knight

    The Dark Knight Time to shine, son.

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    Yes. This is what I was saying.
     
  6. The Dark Knight

    The Dark Knight Time to shine, son.

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    But, while I am convinced that Frank Miller's Dark Knight is the basis for the current movies' Dark Knight, far be it from me to argue that point with anyone whose signature features a giant Sephiroth. You don't mess with Sephiroth. You just don't. ^_^

    I hope you all have a wonderful Holy Week and Pascha!
     
  7. Gxg (G²)

    Gxg (G²) Pilgrim/Monastic on the Road to God (Psalm 84:1-7) CF Ambassador

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    Reading through Year One, I was rather amazed at how much religious imagery was present throughout the series, including the mobsters praying just as the citizens do. Including that made the series seem very gritty/real since even people in the underworld, odd as it can be, seem to have some form of faith...from crooks who pray to hitmen who attend church/feel like they do a job that they cannot escape and daily need forgiveness for....and the same with the cops who have to pray often not to get hardened/cold by all the depravity they see in Gotham. A good place for review would be Batman: Year One: Religious Imagery and References.


    Would be interesting to see if Batman became Orthodox--although from what I know, he's not an active attender of any faith. In fact, as the comics have often shown him to be, he seems akin to a lapsed Catholic--or perhaps an Episcopalian/Catholic who has backslidden due to the conflict he has with seeing destruction daily and being a vigilante.

    For more:

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    Last edited: Apr 7, 2012
  8. Gxg (G²)

    Gxg (G²) Pilgrim/Monastic on the Road to God (Psalm 84:1-7) CF Ambassador

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    Superman for me, personally, always seemed way too powerful....and with weaknesses they were extremely difficult to exploit, for how in the world is someone going to just find some Kryptonite laying on the ground somewhere if you're a criminal?

    With Batman, the risk of death was much more present--and I just found myself relating to him more so, as he seemed to be the Superman of the Hood..the only one who could be a PART-Time member of the Justice League and yet know how to beat all of them if he needed to since he was that ingenious/brilliant....and having real conflict.

    But the ways that others often compare superheros to the Lord are always interesting. There was actually a fourth grader who took a priest to school on which superhero Jesus is more like, in one issue of the Jesuit magazine America. "Jesus was human, so he is more like Batman or Iron Man, only better," the youngster told the Rev. Richard Leonard, director of the Australian Office of Catholic Film & Broadcasting and the author of Movies That Matter: Reading Film Through the Lens of Faith.

    Leonard used this as a chance to talk about the premise of the comic superhero and the powers of the Son of God in history, culture and faith from Greek philosophy. He drew step by step comparisons between the Gospel experiences of Jesus and the cinematic adventures of Superman and Batman but, of course, Leonard notes, "... we are not saved by Jesus the way Batman saves the citizens of Gotham City..."

    Sometimes, one cannot help but wonder if otherss find religious parallels in superheroes or is there something beyond religion in these eternal ideas of ordinary mortals rescued from disaster by someone of miraculous strength, moral judgment and love. Things to think on...
     
  9. gurneyhalleck1

    gurneyhalleck1 The Orthodox Dark Knight Rises!

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    It's interesting that you say these things because my wife and I were talking about this a few months back. Superman is so awesomely powerful that his weaknesses are miniscule thus reducing the threat level and suspension of disbelief. Batman and Iron Man are basically men like you said. The X Men and the Avengers and the rest have plenty of weaknesses.

    I always enjoy the HUMAN STORY in these comics. People who bash comic fans usually think we're a bunch of geeks. Reality is, without the human story, it just doesn't compel me. The X Men are all cast-outs and rejected by humans as freaks and weirdos. They all have a monkey on their back to grapple with. What a conflict!---trying to pity and protect the very people who want you locked up and isolated! So you can understand, somewhat, why the Brotherhood of Mutants feels so much hate for humans and yet....you get my point. That's why I like X Men so much. Very complex and human stories about people who aren't entirely human at all.

    Captain America at first glance, seems overly simplistic and just good American PR. Actually, if you look at Steve Rogers, he has the heart of a just warrior who wants to defend the little guy. Problem is, HE IS the little guy! He has the body of a wimp with the soul of someone so brave, courageous, loving, truthful, and just. The supersoldier program brings out the great or the terrifying in each man. Only Steve can be trusted to undergo it because he has a GOOD HEART.

    Only Hal Jordan can handle the ring.

    Tony Stark has the love for his country and for doing the right thing that makes him one of the only men capable of wielding the suit.

    I like these aspects of comics, not just the powers or colorful badguys. I like the Daredevil trying to come to terms with the contradictions between his faith and his actions. That makes for good reading....and good movie-making.

    So, that is why in my post, I said AS A KID Superman was my favorite superhero but as I got older, Batman became more my speed. I just hate what they've done with the Dark Knight in movies largely.

    That all being said, I'm a MARVEL guy so DC isn't really muh thing overall. It's not a total Chevy vs. Ford thing for me but I generally prefer Marvel for sure.

     
  10. Gxg (G²)

    Gxg (G²) Pilgrim/Monastic on the Road to God (Psalm 84:1-7) CF Ambassador

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    So real..

    Finding strength in weakness is truly one of the things that makes heros what they are.


    Ain't NOTHING wrong with being a Geek. I'm often amazed to see how many people don't realize I'm a geek because I can switch from talking about Asceticism/Desert Fathers or Social Justice issues to debates about what a comic hero really symbolizes....as if being a believer means that comics are not truly about sophistication. But in my view, the same people who bash seem to have NO compulsions with watching movies/T.V shows since they feel those things are a means of sharing stories and philosophies that impact the way man things.

    To me, comics are the same kind of reality...no different than what occurred in previous times when stories/folklore and tale tales were used to communicate truths about mankind's existence and how he is to handle struggle. Comic book tales are really a sophisticated means of communicating truth---and one of the reasons why it's so key for believers to at least KNOW something about it. For those who work in the realm of the arts are not going anywhere anytime soon---and they often have the biggest voice of influence. If people doubt that, they can simply look at how often the name of Spiderman or Batman is quoted by children and how many iconic symbols have literally influenced culture for DECADES. :)




    As said earlier, seeing how the story of X-Men was intentionally made to mirror the events of the Civil Rights movment/show the struggles of those who were either Intergrationists/Adovactes for Non-Violent resistance or others who were Seperationists/Advocats for Protection by Any Means necessary so long as persecution came from the DOminant culture, it's no surprise it connected so well.

    It's a REAL struggle---and within the struggle of X-Men, there are intracacies of showing what happens when the struggle in being different is taken to justify all things done in the name of being "different"---such as mutants who are extremely powerful and yet want to destroy all humans/mutants alike or want all Mutants to destroy one another.......just as it is with others who may be different today and yet harm others in all camps.

    Ethics comes into views since there are often times "black and white" solutions are not all that clear--and X-Men did an excellent job of that by showing people who were simply doing what they could with what they had....and having NO guarantees it'd all turn out for the best in the end.
     
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2012
  11. Gxg (G²)

    Gxg (G²) Pilgrim/Monastic on the Road to God (Psalm 84:1-7) CF Ambassador

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    The saga of Captain America has been interesting to consider in light of how he has had to battle against his own dedication to America when seeing what America has become on differing levels---and often feeling as if he has to fight for a nation he often doesn't feel represents what he used to believe about the American way. The "Civil War" saga was amazing, seeing how Captain America wanted to resist the U.S Government when it came to demanding that all superheros register with the government in order to fight crime--for he saw it as a violation of privacy and what being a superhero meant....and ended up leading war against his OWN nation.

    [​IMG]


    And yet in the end, he could not beat Iron Man (who sided with the government/brought other heros in) when he had the chance since he felt he betrayed what he was always about...

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    Made me really think about what it means to be a patriot--and how far one goes. And I was shocked to see how the man ended up retiring and becoming an undercover agent for the government in the aftemath of things

    The writers are definately becoming more real..:cool:



    Yes sir..


    Didn't like how he ended up betraying the entire Superhero community years ago when it came to fighting for the government in the "Civil War" saga..and BETRAYING Thor by creating another from his DNA/Trying to force Thor to register. remember that Tony Stark and Reed Richards made a clone of Thor, and things didn’t go so well for Goliath during Civil War. In the new volume of Thor, Thor is back, and he’s sharing a body with Dr. Donald Blake, and ends up in the middle of the American heartland, with the local diners, and Chevy pickups with gunracks. Thor then decides to rebuild Asgard in a giant field outside of town.....and later, Tony Stark confronts him. Needless to say, if keeping up with the series, it didn't go well:
    [​IMG]


    I think that Iron Man is not necessarily evil...and that in many ways, He’s a very good guy, yet Marvel did a good job of showing his noble vilification in the pursuit of Civil War, and we’re still trying to shake it now.:)


    Sometimes. the Bad Guys have just as much conflict as do the heros. For as the old saying goes, the villian is always the hero in his own story. Some of the villians I've often been able to relate to more than the heros....especially when it comes to defining what it means to be a villian and how often the comic book world examines ethics in a universe where there are no moral absolutes..​


    Magneto, in example, will always stand out as one of the greatest villians ever...simply because you relate to where he's coming from when it comes to seeing how his motivations are not that bad, even though his methods may be things people disagree with.​

    :thumbsup:
    Got ya. Thanks for the clarification...​


    Right there with ya, as it concerns preferring Marvel above D.C.​


    Geeks rule....​
     
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2012
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  12. Gxg (G²)

    Gxg (G²) Pilgrim/Monastic on the Road to God (Psalm 84:1-7) CF Ambassador

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    Interestingly enough, the writers in X-Men have taken the platform about being "different" and have used that struggle to branch out into other areas that may be controversial for others not comfortable with certain differences. In example, the subject of women in Eastern Backgrounds are now being portrayed as heros in famous storylines. The example coming to mind is a character within the X-Men known as "Dust", who is Muslim. One can go here, for more and review the article entitled "Female, Muslim, and Mutant: A Critique of Muslim Women in Comic Books" (Part 1) and Female, Muslim, and Mutant: A Critique of Muslim Women in Comic ...(Part 2).





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    She's a mutant who is able to turn her body into organic sand and do amazing things...and being a comic book junkie and following the X-Men series, it was surprising for me to see them being willing to include someone from that background as a prominent mutant/heroine. The realm of comics has long been something that has been utilized to portray prominent issues of our day.



    But it did hit me....how odd is it that they've been willing to make someone who's from Eastern culture into a prominent figure and yet there has yet to be a strong Eastern Orthodox or Oriential Orthodox figure portrayed as well. The ones that are portrayed as Orthodox are never seen or shown in comics to dress in Orthodox clothing styles and are only known to be affiliated with Orthodoxy (such as Black Widow) but never explicitly shown as religiously devout with it.

    If they could do one for someone who is Muslim, surely Orthodoxy could be included..
     
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  13. Gxg (G²)

    Gxg (G²) Pilgrim/Monastic on the Road to God (Psalm 84:1-7) CF Ambassador

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    Would there be anyone here of the thought that what happened in ancient art (including iconagraphy) was a form of comic book presentation relevant for their time when it came to conveying stories? Additionally, would anyone here happen to be of the mindset that icons could be painted in comic format/design to the Glory of the Lord?
     
  14. Eastern Drifter

    Eastern Drifter Senior Member

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    Orthodoxy doesn't seem as. . . how should I say it. . . assertive (?) as other religions. Which makes me think of a meek female (a feminine Bride/Church). Which is probably why we haven't seen a character like that yet. Nobody has pushed for it.

    What we need is someone with credentials and skill in either writing or art to insert themselves into the comic industry. Preferably one of the big names, DC or Marvel. Someone who's devout, who wants to have Orthodox awareness in an original hero.

    My idea was a literal angel, which you took some issue with, Easy G. I'm going to ask you: If you were to make a superhero who was a devout Orthodox, how exactly would you go about doing it?
     
  15. Gxg (G²)

    Gxg (G²) Pilgrim/Monastic on the Road to God (Psalm 84:1-7) CF Ambassador

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    That's real. Sometimes, though, talking with those who are Orthodox converts, there seems to be a good bit of aggression in some..


    But if they pushed for it, who knows..

    I think you may've misunderstood, Eastern Drifter --as a literal angel is (IMHO) an angel literally defined the way scripture shows it/tradition depicts it, in the service of God/devout. An artifical being genetically engineered with angel like qualities wouldn't be a literal angel and alot of folks in Orthodoxy would take issue with depicting something using Orhtodox symbolism and possibly leading to a misunderstanding of what Orthodoxy is about....kind of like what happened with the "WitchBlade" series and others misunderstanding Catholicism due to how it was portrayed there.

    There is of course angels in the sense of mutants, like the character "Angel" from X-Men, and in that sense I don't think there'd be anything wrong with having an angel character who was religious.

    But in doing so, one would need to be careful as to not secularize everything.

    As said before in #33 , the X-Men series already went the route of having angels depicted as either being highly advanced mutants or enginnered (as demons were) and thus taking away all levels of supernatural development-----something many in the comic book world have taken issue with when it comes to how the Divine Element/God are watered down in the comics. That goes back to the OP issue of how there are philosophies that many comics seem to be aggressively pushing in the world today and many are not comfortable with some of the ideas.


    To have a vampiric angel gives the impression of mixing the beauty of the Angelic with that of the Dark--and that's something that many in the realm of comics have had some concern over.

    If making a comic series about Orthodoxy, you could always have someone with superpowers of some sort like a mutant but who practices Orthodox faith like Nightcrawler is devout in his Catholic faith...or have him be a vigilante like Daredevil who has conflict in living out his faith and yet trying to do things in ways that are definately untraditional.

    Or, as said earlier, go the route of making depictions of angels (as other comics have done) by showing the life of an Orthodox believer....and the angelic realm and the demons sent to attack him as well as the angels sent to defend him. Show the angels in worship as well as in fighting scenes with demons as the orthodox believer lives out his or her own life in seeking the Lord. That gives the greatest sense of realism.

    But again, that's just me...:)
     
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2012
  16. Gxg (G²)

    Gxg (G²) Pilgrim/Monastic on the Road to God (Psalm 84:1-7) CF Ambassador

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    If nothing else, there is the option of going the route that they did with TV shows such as "Angel" or even Blade....as it concerns having characters that may be in the position of being considered cursed even though they are trying to redeem themselves, like having a vampire who happens to also be a Devout follower of Christ and yet struggling against vampiric nature while trying to do his part to harm other vampires harming others....or a werewolf who happens to go to church and does pennance by fighting crime and wondering why he's cursed as such.
     
  17. Eastern Drifter

    Eastern Drifter Senior Member

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    There was a misunderstanding, perhaps because I gave the wrong impression by bringing up Trinity Blood: I wouldn't suggest an artificially-created angel necessarily, because it doesn't interest me nearly as much as if the angel were actually an angel. Personally? I don't think the idea in TB is blasphemous in the least. Now, if you had a character who started off as an angel and was later augmented with cybernetics (our sciences as humans), then yes, because that would be implying that we as humans can improve on non-fallen creatures of heaven; like you mentioned, secularizing the matter.

    I can see where you're coming from. Have you ever watched The Prophecy starring Christopher Walken? That film's portrayal of angels was pretty intriguing. I'm not commenting on the plot of the film itself.


    Agreed.

    Sounds more like an idea for a one-shot than an ongoing series.
     
  18. Gxg (G²)

    Gxg (G²) Pilgrim/Monastic on the Road to God (Psalm 84:1-7) CF Ambassador

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    Got ya...
    In some ways, it'd be going into the realm of what was noted in Genesis 6 when the angelic came down/mixed together with the Divine. And things such as the Book of Enoch do give extensive detailing of that specific issue in a myriad of interesting ways (more discussed here in #1, #2, #3/ #5) . If a comic was made showing angels expermenting with mankind and trying to either breed with them or create new species by mixing the Divine with the Angelic, that would seem to be legitimate.

    Hated it actually, as it was on the same level as the film "Constantine" with trying to show the Angel Gabriel as rebelling against the Lord and making it out as if the angels are simply trying to find their way. The same goes for the other angels passing souls to others.

    Just not for that kind of stuff in general, especially when it comes to things like exorcisms..and to be, don't get me wrong since I do think it is intriguing when showing angels in the heavenlies with conflicts that may not be described in the scriptures. I just think there may be a place where it can go too far---like saying, in example, that there was actually a 23rd chapter in Revelation (As the movie "Prophecy" did) describing the other angels who rebelled...or saying, as some films do, that there were some things in scriptures describing the angels that were really false stories.

    The film "Dogma" immediately comes to mind, as it concerns going beyond with pushing boundaries
    Seeing how there've already been series that were ongoing and describing things like angelic warfare over the souls of men--with those in high demand (like the one referenced earlier called "Archangels the Saga") being in a financial struggle which caused it to be discontinued---it could go on with the proper funding.

    The other option, of course, is to discuss things from the perspective of where all things that exist do so within the theological framework of Monolatry--that is, that there are other beings/gods that are sources of power for others and divine means of accessing abilities/powers (be it called magic, the occult or even means of revealed/discovered knowledge in science and technology, etc) and yet there's one God above all who is worthy of Worship and that all other beings/levels seek to avoid service to....and decieving others into giving worship freely over to them rather to Him. Within that framework, there are differing sub-plots of differing beings battling against each other/having civil wars and yet having central characters above it all who are trying to find their way to the Lord.
     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2012
  19. Gxg (G²)

    Gxg (G²) Pilgrim/Monastic on the Road to God (Psalm 84:1-7) CF Ambassador

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    For others who really wish to see other beings within mythology discussed and examining the ways that they'd interact with those who may be Christian, you could go the route of what was discussed in shows such as Gargoyles when they literally had everything together...people who were Christians and others who were Atheists working alongside Creatures of myth and legend under the notion that all things are true..or that most legends contain a seed of truth.


    Of course, the show did seem to make a little more push towards paganism was Gargoyles. And I really did/do like that series, mostly for the really interesting plot lines and the voice actors. (Many of which are Star Trek Alumni). Hands down, one of the most melodramatic series I've ever seen...and very epic, in regards to the complex story archs that'd continue throughout the saga, as well as amazing character development.

    The people in that show are unforgettable and I loved how they used much of folklore/mythology to make characters enjoyable...although again, it did seem to push more of paganism in specific regards when it came to magic. I actually happened to learn alot about differing mythologies from that show whenever they'd introduce something, including Puck from "A Midnight Summer's Dream" or Anansi the Trickster from African legend..and many others. It did seem to push on the theme of not fearing what one doesn't understand--or being afraid of what's different...especially when examining the complex love relationship between Eliza (Human ) and Goliath (Gargoyle), two people from different worlds who have to overcome a myriad of obstacles simply because of a difference in species and a world that hates mixing of both.

    One of my favorite episodes on the issue, called "The Mirror" where Eliza and Goliath become the same species and break down barries to realize their love for one another:



    The World Tour Saga was pretty amazing as well.....especially the "Avalon" episodes...and the ones such as "The New Olympians" where they showed how other creatures of legend (i.e. minotaurs, centaurs, etc) may feel racist toward humans in the same way humans are racist toward one another.


    But suffice to say, the show seemed to hit on a myriad of complex themes that were very mature for a Disney Kids show. And thankful they did make it. The actors they chose to play those parts (i.e. Jonathan Franks, Keith Green, etc) were amazing in their abilities.


    If there were characters within the show that were Orthodox, that would have added another dimension to it :):cool:
     
  20. Gxg (G²)

    Gxg (G²) Pilgrim/Monastic on the Road to God (Psalm 84:1-7) CF Ambassador

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    I just hope people in Orthodoxy will not trip if others make a comic hero out of a camp within Orthodoxy that others may not agree with....such as having someone from Oriental Orthodoxy (i.e. Coptic, Ethiopian, Syrian, etc) be chosen rather than someone from Eastern Orthodoxy...
     
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