The Life of Brian was famously hated by members of my religion for its superificial mocking of it. The offense taken by Christians to the movie seemed stupid and shallow. They were offended by The Life of Brian overwhelmingly, not because of its message or its effect on the audience but because of its ostensible subject matter. While, without question, the movie is pro-atheist and critical of faith. That’s about the sum of it being anti-Christian. I’m perfectly fine to joke about myself believing in a sky-daddy and comparing angels to fairies. I believe in my religion for philosophical reasons, primarily, and the straw-man argument the movie makes against my religion is not only poor but also genuinely funny. I will happily suspend my own religious belief and join in the laughter.
Assuredly, the intellectual and moral nutrient-bankrupt affluence-porn of the average Kardashian episode is far more offensive to God. Looking to the avarage TikTok influencer brandishing the lives of the winners of capitalism while shedding not an iota of compassion for literally anyone is significantly more anti-Christian than ever was anything on Monty Python.
To use examples I’ve used before, since they’re stereotypical influencers and among the most famous and accessible to a broad audience, Loren Gray versus the Barbie vlogs. Loren doesn’t seem to give a shit about anyone less fortunate or any altruistic cause and has built her empire on physical attractiveness and possibly something else but I can’t tell and Barbie has a conscience but not much of one although she has been around much longer and has more power. Barbie’s critics have traditionally harked on Barbie’s prettiness as opposed to representing a hedonistic and selfish fantasy that is bad for the environment and marginalized people.
The Satan Shoes from 2021 elicited much condemnation like The Life of Brian for much the same reason. It had an obvious, on-the-nose, anti-Christian thing going on that possessed zero nuance, sophistication, or subtlety to understand. Anyone with an IQ of 60 and 3rd grade education would understand it was superficially anti-Christian. Nothing more complicated than that ever seems to enrage the core ranks of my coreligionists. I recently listened to Gabby Barrett’s rendition of “Silent Night” and the woman, like her Country fanbase, seems to be a devout Christian but her biggest hit is “I Hope”, which I would argue is actually Satanic since it justifies hatred and openly wishes harm to befall someone.
Many of the conservative Country fans of her would likely find The Life of Brian to be offensive and contrary to Christianity. Their ideal Hollywood, however, would not preclude anthems of hatred, greed, pride, cruelty, or any of the other vices our religion is against. It would seek to not offend the Lord by dissing him as if Jesus were a rapper kingpin poisoned by pride who wanted BDSM-style submission insofar as everyone would be deferential and rhetorically placatory. Jesus can handle being teased in good fun and the Monty Python boys didn’t really offend him with The Life of Brian. Which is how moral panics tend to conduct themselves, to focus on the obvious but asinine while forgetting the true monsters are in their periphery.
One thought on “The Life of Brian Versus The World”
I wish all Christians felt as you do.