It’s been a standard of modern times that there’s a constant allegory between Superman and Jesus Christ. Of course, the Biblical metaphor works better with Moses, but hey, I’m not a religious scholar. Of course, the marketing team at Warner Bros. aren’t religious scholars either, but that apparently hasn’t stopped them from calling on church leaders to help them sell Man of Steel.
A story on CNN’s religous blog recently discussed Warner’s unique marketing approach to Man of Steel: “Jesus: The Original Superhero.” Several pastors from local parishes were invited to advanced screenings of Man of Steel, and were given notes and materials to help them formulate potential sermon material. “How might the story of Superman awaken our passion for the greatest hero who ever lived and died and rose again?” the sermon notes ask for instance.
“There was an actual push to say `We’re putting out something that speaks to your group,'” said Quentin Scott, a Baltimore pastor at the Shiloh Christian Community Church. “When I sat and listened to the movie I actually saw it was the story of Christ, and the love of God was weaved into the story. It was something I was very excited about that with the consultation of our senior pastor, we could use in our congregation.”
This isn’t the first time Hollywood’s pitched their blockbusters to regular church-goers, Les Miserables, The Book of Eli and The Blind Side were also pitched to the faithful, and some who are more on the critical side of Hollywood are actually okay with that.
“I think it’s a very good thing that Hollywood is paying attention to the Christian marketplace,” according to Ted Baehr, who runs a Christian-friendly movie review website called. Movieguide. “Where it gets sticky is when they try to manipulate the market and when Christians try to manipulate Hollywood. But here I think we have the right balance.”
Still, not everyone’s impressed.
“Any pastor who thinks using `Man of Steel Ministry Resources’ is a good Sunday morning strategy must have no concept of how high the stakes are, or very little confidence in the power of God’s word and God’s spirit,” writes P.J. Wenzel, a deacon and Sunday School teacher at Dublin Baptist Church in Ohio. “As they entertain their congregants with material pumped out from Hollywood’s sewers, lives are kept in bondage, and people’s souls are neglected.”
Well seems a little extreme, but I guess were all entitled to our opinion. And isn’t that what The Bible is all about?
I guess not.
Any of you Christian Bastards see Man of Steel this weekend, and was it Jesus-y enough for you? Sounds off below.