‘Left Behind’ teaser trailer doesn’t look good, but it looks better than the book


The filmmakers don’t seem to be expecting much of an audience apart from those already well-acquainted, or exclusively acquainted, with its End-Times, Rapture-mania ideology. For all their hopes that casting Nic Cage and a bunch of other semi-famous “real” movie stars might draw a larger audience, the producers don’t seem to be trying to reach that larger audience here. Instead they seem to be begging the Real True Christian fans of the books to find that audience for them by inviting their “unsaved” friends as a form of witnessing. [Read more...]

HBO’s ‘The Leftovers’ may doom new remake of ‘Left Behind’


“The Leftovers” looks interesting. Whether or not it turns out to be any good, it’s an HBO show, so it’s going to generate some buzz. People will be talking about it — and talking about the questions it raises — all through July, August and September. What would that be like? What would you do? How would you react? What would happen to …? [Read more...]

NRA: Spared by death

An absurd papal bull from an absurd pope.

It’s an odd form of consolation: “Perhaps the Lord spared him from the bombing” by killing him with an exotic virus first. Or perhaps the Lord spared him from the virus by killing him with the bomb first. This makes sense to Buck and Tsion and the authors because it’s the same logic at work in their death-denying belief in “the Rapture.” [Read more...]

NRA: Driving through the bloomin’ desert


If we were playing Left Behind Trivia Quiz and the question was “What did Rosenzweig’s formula do?” or “What became of Israel’s deserts after Rosenzweig’s invention?” I would have gotten those questions right. And yet I was dozens of pages into my umpteenth reading of Buck’s escape across the Israeli desert before it struck me that everything about this scene is wrong. [Read more...]

NRA: The miraculous pit stop


In order for this prophecy to unfold as prophesied, the Antichrist will either have to be uncharacteristically devoted to gentlemanly sportsmanship and fair play, thus refusing to stray from the agreed-upon script of prophecy, or else the Antichrist will have to be wholly ignorant of that script. Such ignorance seems impossible, though, in part because of the sensational popularity of things like the Left Behind books. If any future Antichrist were to arrive in accordance with Tim LaHaye’s prophecies, that Antichrist would surely know all about those prophecies because of the best-selling books of Tim LaHaye. Any such Antichrist should therefore be expected to deviate from the script of prophecy described in these books, ensuring that those prophecies never come to pass. [Read more...]

NRA: Driving while Katz


When you’re writing an adventure story in which the hero is fleeing from Country A to Country B, it shouldn’t be too hard to keep track of which country is which. It should be even easier in a book like “Nicolae,” in which the entire world has been simplified down to only two countries. But never underestimate the ability of Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins to get something wrong. [Read more...]

NRA: Jaime’s in Hell


We’re sad because we don’t want Jaime to be in Hell. He was a good guy. Every portrayal of him in this story was positive. He was loyal, faithful, reliable and brave. Those are good qualities and it seems wrong that someone who displayed such good qualities should be punished — punished absolutely with the same absolute punishment that awaits Nicolae and Stonagal and Fortunato and every other despicable villain in this story. [Read more...]

NRA: Feathering the throttle


As Chapter 11 ends, readers are treated to two pages of driving instructions followed by a full page of driving directions. We also encounter two unprecedented anomalies: Buck Williams expresses his gratitude, and Jerry Jenkins does a (very) little bit of research. [Read more...]