Superhero Spotlight: Blue Devil

200px-Shadowpact_DevilWould you sell your soul to the Devil for superpowers? Think of all the good you could do as a superhero. All the lives you could save. Wouldn’t all that be worth the sacrifice of your soul? Isn’t that the kind of thing Jesus would do? That’s what Daniel Cassidy aka Blue Devil did. But was it worth it? And is it even possible?

Daniel Cassidy made his first appearance in the DC Comics Universe in 1984. He was a master of special effects who doubled as a stunt man. Trying out a robotic suit (modelled to look like a blue devil) for a new movie, he is caught in the cross fire of a real life demon. He finds himself permanently bonded to the suit. There’s no way out of it. So he becomes the superhero Blue Devil.

A few years later, Neron, who represents Satan in the DCU, was going around making deals with a whole stack of people. He was offering power upgrades to super villains left, right and centre. And even some heroes. Neron approached Cassidy with an offer – fame beyond his wildest dreams in exchange for a simple act of destruction. He says sure, why not. However, the ensuing explosion leaves his best friend dead. Funny how these things tend to backfire, isn’t it? Even worse, Cassidy dies not long after and comes back to life as a full blooded demon. Maybe doing deals with the Devil wasn’t that great an idea after all. Cassidy might be famous, but he’s sold his soul to the Devil.

It’s a common thing in fiction to see people selling their souls to Satan. But the question on my lips is this: what’s in it for Satan? Why would Satan try and buy your soul? Because at the end of the day, your soul does not belong to you. If you are a Christian, then your entire being belongs to God. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 reminds us that “You are not your own; you were bought at a price.” If we believe that Jesus conquered sin for us, then we have been bought buy God. We belong to him. On the other hand, if you’re not a Christian, your soul isn’t your property either. Because it doesn’t matter how good you are in this life, if you don’t belong to God, you belong to hell. If you’re not a Christian, then Satan is already getting your soul. He doesn’t have to buy it off you – it’s his property. That’s why selling your soul to Satan just doesn’t work. Either your soul belongs to God and can’t be sold or it already belongs to Satan and he doesn’t have work to get it.

Even if you could sell your soul to Satan, that would be the stupidest thing ever. A life time of fame and glory for an eternal life of torment in hell? It just isn’t worth it.

Daniel Cassidy recently won back his soul during a legal battle in hell. He still has the demon form, but he’s his own man again. It’s a good thing he’s a comic book character, because he just can’t happen in the real world where Jesus is boss.

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About Joel A Moroney

Associate Minister at St Luke's Anglican Church, Liverpool (in the Sydney Diocese). A very strange man, but he usually has Pez, so that makes it okay.

2 responses to “Superhero Spotlight: Blue Devil”

  1. gcohn says :

    It’s always bothered me that DC committed to a definitive Christian cosmology, replete with swipes from the movie Prophecy and the Christian hell. I was much happier with the vagueness of Kirby’s DEMON origin, and we were pretty careful to be kinda Dr Strangish with Nebiros…a “demon” from an alien dimension, in my mind akin to the Dread Dormammu. So I was really appalled when they took my character and made him a real Demon from Satan’s hell. Hate the Neron character, too. I especially hated that he sold his soul…totally outside BD’s motivation set, especially since he’s a believing Catholic. Fame was never a big deal for Dan Cassidy as Mishkin and I wrote him. DC should’ve stayed away from locking itself into any mythology other than its own.

    When I wanted to explore Christian themes I self-published DEMON GUN, about the redeeming power of love and repentance. Blue Devil was a lark, pure and simple, and should have remained so. Glad you took some time to think about Big Blue, though.–Gary Cohn

  2. Joel A Moroney says :

    Wow. Is it okay if I’m a little bit overwhelmed with excitement for a moment? To have a someone who’s created some great characters and stories for my favourite comic publisher to actually take the time to comment on my site is a great honour. I’ve read bits and pieces of your work and wish I’d read more, as most of it was produced before I started reading comics and isn’t readily available in trade.
    My main exposure to Blue Devil comes through the Shadowpact comic. It always struck me that it was a very different character to the one I’d heard about from the 80s.
    Even though I’m a Christian minister, I’m not a big fan of DC’s Christian cosmology. To me, characters like the Spectre don’t really work in a superhero world. Any attempts to fit the Christian after life into the DCU ends up coming across as forced. But I guess because Alan Moore wrote it that way back in Swamp Thing, that’s the way things must be.
    Thanks for dropping by Mr Cohn. You’ve encouraged me to finally getting around to hunting down those issues of Blue Devil and Amethyst in the back issue bins that I’ve always wanted to read.

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