View from the choir

I am a Catholic layperson and Secular Franciscan with a sense of humor. After years in the back pew watching, I have moved into the choir. It's nice to see faces instead of the backs of heads. But I still maintain God has a sense of humor - and that we are created in God's image.

Saturday, January 07, 2006

The book on Daniel

I watched The Book of Daniel last night.

I probably won't watch it again.

I wasn't offended. I've seen worse treatments of religion. I've even been guilty of crossing the line in some people's minds.

I just thought it wasn't very good.

Too many stereotypes and issues crammed in one episode.

Gay son.

Promiscuous adopted son (Chinese, too).

Drug dealing daughter.

Alcoholic wife.

Pill popping priest (Episcopal).

Crooked, unfaithful brother-in-law.

Theft of church funds.

Preaching a questionable homily while the bishop is sitting there (a female one at that).

Rich pushy parishioner (whose underage daughter is involved with promiscuous adopted son).

Italian priest with mob connections.

Oh, and Jesus popping in for pep talks and quips.

Literally.

Or is it the pills the priest has been popping?

Anyway, I found it cliched, too busy, and not very well written. Even arguing that the episode was intended to give us exposition doesn't hold up. There are better ways to introduce us to characters and situations. And did there have to be so much dysfunction in one family?

Then again, given the melodrama in the Episcopal Church in the last year or so, maybe not too far from the truth of that denomination! (Heck, what can you expect from a church that started because a king couldn't keep his pantaloons up?)

If you're going to tweek religion, you should at least do a good job of it.

Where's Monty Python when you need them?

3 Comments:

Blogger boinky said...

CHINESE adopted son?
Yup...clueless...the Chinese keep their sons...most Chinese daughters are thrown out to orphanges for adoption...ditto in Korea, although I do know one family who adopted a Korean son...
And how did an alcoholic family pass the home study for adoption?

4:23 PM  
Blogger Lee Strong said...

Good points. A few more problems with the writing.

4:54 PM  
Blogger Patrick said...

First time visitor here, Lee. I found your blog through a blog search on the topic of the show itself because I was curious about what people were saying about it after actually SEEING it.

I agree with you that it was no great program, but I did find a few entertaining moments in it.

What disturbed me more than the show itself was the protest about it that began before the show ever premiered, which seemed to me to be a little unfair: how can so many people honestly condemn a show when they haven't seen it?

My take on the show, and especially the reaction before the fact, is here at my blog.

As for Boinky's question about how an alcoholic and pill-popper were able to pass adoption checks, I think, based on what I read about the show going in, that the drinking began after the death of one of their other children...so I assume that they would have adopted the son before their other son died. But then, if I'm having to do that much guessing as a viewer, that's one more red flag with everything they're trying to cram into one family's storyline.

12:50 AM  

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