Huldra Forsvant (Theodor Kittelsen)

Huldra Forsvant (Theodor Kittelsen)
Huldra Forsvant (Theodor Kittelsen)

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

The Bible on Tele

What did you think of The Bible mini-series? Did you watch it? I've been surprised and a little dissappointed at how many people I've spoken to have said they didn't watch it-- sort of just assuming it wouldn't be any good. If Jesus is going to be portrayed on tele, I want to see it, if for no other reason than for the fact that it might be a bit of a water-cooler topic.

For what it's worth, I liked it, and was sad to see it end last night. There are heaps of things that I could criticize, but overall, I thought they did a pretty good job of it, especially trying to cover so much ground in ten episodes. A few random thoughts-

  • I liked King Saul- good actor, and a good portrayal of his tortured character and downfall
  • not Biblicly accurate, but I couldn't not like the ninja angels
  • I thought Sodom was treated rather politically correctly, but I guess you've got to choose your battles
  • I didn't like the Moses actor so much
  • But I really liked Daniel
  • I know you can't show everything, but I would have loved to see Ruth. I love Ruth.
  • I thought it was clever how they wove the telling of the Creation story into the flood sequence
  • I liked how in-labour Mary wasn't all quiet and demure on the donkey, but was yelling 'he's coming!'
  • Jesus grew on me. He was a touch wet, but it's pretty hard to get a satisfying Jesus!
  • I liked dreadlocked John the Baptist, but wanted to see more of him
  • The crucifixion was done well
  • I was happy to see some of the Acts stuff-- seeing the angry Saul and his transformation to Paul. But wanted to see more of him as Paul. Bit sad to not see the Malta/snake incident too.
  • Cool to see John at Patmos and the revelation stuff. 
What about you? What did you think?


Jessica said...

I want to watch it without ads. I gave up the first week unfortunately.

Ben McLaughlin said...

It's worth pressing on if you can see it some time. Without ads would definitely be better.

Karen said...

The ads annoyed me as well. It was weird to see promos for cooking shows and car ads at important moments like the Israelites crossing the Red Sea. And all the actors had perfect teeth like they'd just been to the dentist :) That said, I'd give it another go if it came out on DVD.

Laetitia :-) said...

We've been simultaneously impressed and disappointed.

Impressed that they didn't portray the angels as wet weaklings. However, a bit over the, "I have a line to say; I'd better pull back the hood" standard sequence for the angels.

Disappointed that there were large chunks of the OT (that would really tie things together for those who haven't read the book) completely skipped e.g. the Tower of Babel; the creation of the nation of Israel through the 12 tribes; how they ended up in Egypt in the first place; how idolatry that really got underway in Solomon's time tore the nation into two and how the northern kingdom disappeared...

We were also disappointed with the attention to some (generally secular) detail (some blue tiles on the gates of Babylon) but then the dismissal or twisting of great swathes of the details given in the Bible. There was no need to change large chunks of the stories and words of Samson, David, Daniel and his mates (would have loved to have seen the writing on the wall) - why do it? It detracted from those people. Can you imagine the David in this depiction writing the psalm of contrition (Ps 51)? And of course, the only 'sin' that the people of Sodom could be guilty of was having a party which just depicts God as a wowser.

Disappointed with the wise men turning up the night Mary gave birth rather than up to two years later, never mind the number of them and Mary being on a donkey despite she and Joseph being too poor to afford the normal cleansing sacrifice.

Haven't watched last week's episode but was pleased with the depiction of Judas as a conflicted person rather than just outright greedy and out to feather his own nest. (BTW, did you notice the actor who plays Thomas is the one who plays Joe Miller on Broadchurch?)

Overall, more disappointed than impressed.