Neekology 101: Episode #31 – Remember the Age of Ultron?

Are you ready for something exciting?!?  If not…you should totally stop reading this right now because this post has some CRAZY EXCITING STUFF about to come your way.  Here comes the aforementioned excitement.  The wonderful folks from Gods Among Geeks invited me on their Neekology 101 podcast to talk about Avengers: Age Of Ultron.  We chat about the theological implications of artificial intelligence, explore the twin forces of hubris and guilt that motivate Tony in this film, geek out on all things MCU, and even talk a little about the point and purpose of art.  In addition to getting to hear me instead of reading my words you also get the chance to follow their blog and podcast if you don’t already.  So you should totally click here or here or here or – if you missed those chances – here and then you can listen to me on Neekology 101: Episode #31 Remember the Age of Ultron? (and yes, that was another link I hid there because I want you to listen to this). Continue reading

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New American Resistance – March for Our Lives

I was honored yesterday to travel with a group of my students to Washington D.C. to participate in the March for Our Lives.  Like the movement itself, the entire trip was their idea.  They wanted to go.  They organized it.  They talked to administration.  They found chaperones.  They figured out the busing and worked to raise the money.  I was there because they asked me to chaperone and I was proud to march alongside them.  I’ve had people asking me what it was like or about pictures I took or things like that.  At the end of the day, I seemed to be able to say more with this short reflection than I could with anything I’d put on a Twitter or Facebook post. Continue reading

Thor’s Battle with Gorr the God Butcher: A Question of Divine Implications

Jason Aaron began his run writing Thor: God Of Thunder by introducing the villainous Gorr the God Butcher.  For millennia Gorr travelled the cosmos, killing all immortal beings he encountered in the most macabre fashions he could imagine.  The story is obviously rich with theological implications, considering both the nature and purpose of our ideas of the divine as well as introducing the question that will form the core of Aaron’s run to date – what is a worthy god?  In preparation for a paper I’ll be presenting on Jason Aaron’s use of the Divine Feminine in The Mighty Thor at the ACA/PCA Conference on Popular Culture next month, I’ve been reading all of Aaron’s work with Thor (both Odinson and Jane Foster).  My research also led me to many articles interpreting Aaron’s work as a sort of atheistic manifesto, something I felt warranted further discussion. Continue reading

The Last Jedi and Star Wars’ Movement from Mythology to Folk Tale

When I came out of my first showing of The Last Jedi, I was ready to say I liked it.  By the time I exited my third showing of The Last Jedi, I was ready to say I really liked it.  I was still struggling to figure out where to place this film in my larger emotional and intellectual experience of the Star Wars Saga but I was able to say, as a film, The Last Jedi was well done.  I was not ready for the heatedly divisive storm that followed.  As someone who needed a year and a half to be able to like The Force Awakens, I certainly appreciate the pain many feel over this film.  I’m just a bit surprised, given reactions to The Force Awakens, this film caused such an uproar.  Anyway, I’m finally ready to delve into my thoughts and feelings on The Last Jedi.  Be warned MASSIVE SPOILERS WILL FOLLOW.  So if you haven’t seen it, I suggest you come back and read this once you have. Continue reading

Star Wars in the Classroom

Remember a month ago when Hyperspace PodBlast had Hannah and I on to discuss our Star Wars class?  I know!  It was so fun!  Well Charlotte and Caitlin of Skytalkers: A Star Wars Podcast heard the episode and they invited Hannah and I on their show to talk about our class too!  Yay!  We had so much fun chatting with them and, if you’re in the mood for some great Star Wars banter, you should totally click this link and head on over to Skytalkers to give it a listen.  BONUS – you’ll also learn which five people associated with Star Wars (fictional or real, alive or dead) Hannah and I would invite to a dinner party!!  Um, what are you still doing here?  It’s time to click the link and enjoy the show! Continue reading

Teaching Star Wars 101

I’ll keep this short so you’ll actually click the link.  On Monday, Hannah and I were guests on Hyperspace PodBlast (A Star Wars Podcast) to talk about our Star Wars & Contemporary Myth class!  For real.  How amazing is that?!?  We had so much fun with Bryan and Shelby and it was a nerd dream come true.  So please (pretty please), click on this link and bounce over to their site so you can hear us all geek out about Star Wars and talk about the nature of our course!  Best.  Day.  Ever :). Continue reading

Who is Rey?: An Avatar as a (Possible) Answer

As we inch ever closer to The Last Jedi, my excitement continues to mount.  No matter how much I tell myself not to get my expectations too high, I can’t help but speculate!  As I’ve said before, this random and excited speculating is part of the fun of Star Wars.  I remember the months leading up to The Force Awakens were filled with hours and hours of pondering and hypothesizing.  What will happen??  Who are these new characters??  How will the fit into the world of Star Wars?!?  Geeking out with other Star Wars fans is one of life’s great joys :).  And like many fans of the Saga, I’ve been spending a lot of time puzzling over who Rey really is and how she fits into the Force.  Somewhat unexpectedly, the answer I keep coming back to that makes the most sense comes care of Hinduism. Continue reading