A Palatable Messiah
I have a dirty secret. I don't like The Chosen.The hit TV series has become a viral phenomenon among Christians. Billing itself as "the first ever multi-season show about the life of Christ," the project explores the Gospel story from the point of view of the people closest to Jesus: his mother, Mary Magdalen, and the apostles. The show claims to be the highest crowd-funded media project of all time and has been viewed by over 160 million people. Director and creator Dallas Jenkins has plans for seven seasons in total. So far, two have been released, with a third fully funded and in the works.
Clearly, the series resonates with audiences. The show's website features positive reviews by influential Christian and pop-culture figures, including Kirk Cousins and Dr. Alveda King. My own Catholic circles are abuzz with positive reviews. Recommendations have flooded my Facebook feed. Countless friends have heartily endorsed the show, saying it has brought Jesus alive for them in a wholly new way. The consensus seems to be that this show avoids the issues that typically plague "Christian" television and movies, especially the dreaded accusation of "cheesiness."
I'm not convinced.
Modernized Middle East
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Kateri Kuplic is a graduate student at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota.
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