Jesus Christ: In The Name of The Gun
Each week, I go through the comic book new release list, looking for any interesting titles that I may otherwise have missed. Last week, a title jumped out at me as something I must absolutely find out more about. Jesus Christ: In The Name of The Gun. Now that does sound like a comic worthy of a Pop Culture Christ review, doesn’t it? I did some research and found that before being published in print form, Jesus Christ: In The Name of The Gun existed as a page-a-day webcomic. So I checked it out. Wow. There’s a whole mess of things to talk about here.
Jesus is up in heaven waiting for God to return from his centuries long wanderlust. When the Big Fella does show up, he is distant and uninterested in all the suffering going on down on earth. So Jesus decides to get proactive. He gets reborn in early 20th century Germany, grows up, gets his hands on a sniper rifle and prepares to assassinate Hitler. What we get from that point is a weird mismatch of “throw everything against the wall and see what sticks”. Ernest Hemingway, time travelling assassin. Werewolf Hitler. Jesus with explosive diarrhea. A whole bunch of swearing, violence and crude humour.
Have you ever wanted to see a buddy cop movie starring Jesus as a foul-mouthed, anger fueled, gun totting force of nature running around in sandles and a robe killing nazis? Then maybe you’d be interested in JC:ITNOTG. Want to see a comic where Jesus is created with respect and love because he is the sovereign lord over all creation? Then keep on moving because this book is not for you.
If this book had featured the prophet Mohamed instead of Jesus Christ, there would be riots. That’s how disrespectful this book is. I could go on about the non-caring, Marlon Brando suspended head God. Or that Jesus and God are very much not one and the same. Or that Jesus’ power is limited and constrained. There is so much I could pick apart here, but I’m not sure how helpful that would be.
At it’s heart, this book seeks to answer why Jesus allows events like the holocaust to exist. So the author has him rock up to Germany and go all Rambo on everyone. What we see in the Bible is vastly different. God, aware of all the sin and suffering in the world and wanting to do something about it, sends his son Jesus to earth. And then we kill him. But his death and resurrection do something that was otherwise impossible. It makes it possible to be in a relationship with God. It saves us from our sin. And one day, Jesus will return in glory. The forces of evil will line up to face the King in battle. But instead of a Schwarzenegger orgy of violence, it’s an anti-climax. In Revelation 19:19 the battle is about to begin. In 19:20 the battle is over. The forces of evil don’t even stand a chance when faced with the power of Christ. That’s the power and strength of the real Jesus. And that’s why JC:ITNOTG can’t even begin to show us the real Jesus.
Jesus Christ: In The Name of The Gun can be found here. I can’t recommend it. There’s very little about this book that is redeeming in any way. But in the name of freedom of speech and wanting you to make your own mind up I’d be negligent if I didn’t give you the opportunity to read it for yourself.
***Update*** Co-writer and artist Ethan Nicolle has written about his work on JC:ITNOTG and has apologised for any disrespect it may cause. Well worth reading what he says.