Deadpool Poster Mocks Latter-day Saints Petition Claims

Deadpool Poster Mocks Latter-day Saints Petition Claims December 12, 2018

The Deadpool franchise is rereleasing their most recent film in a PG-13 version dubbed “Once Upon a Deadpool.”

In the film, Deadpool captures Fred Savage (who starred as the little boy in “Princess Bride”) and tells him a storybook version of the film editing out the portions that made the film rated R.

The film seems like it might be a hit with Latter-day Saint audiences who love “Princess Bride” and PG-13 edits of R-rated movies.

But on that front, the film may have made a misstep with its advertising campaign. The poster for the film bears a strong resemblance to a painting commissioned by the Church of Jesus Christ:

The painting by Harry Anderson is a common one found in the chapels and homes of members of the Church (it hangs in my local chapel.)

Cassidy Carter found replacing Jesus with the profane superhero to be in bad taste and has appealed to the director, Tim Miller, to replace the advertising. The petition now has more than 30,000 signatures.

If you’d like to sign, I included the link above. One of the most common criticisms is that being offended is a choice we make, with many people quoting a 2006 talk by apostle David A. Bednar making that point.

My take on the petition?

I largely agree with the critics on this one. One of the main purposes of this blog is pointing out discrimination against Latter-day Saints, and even I struggle to get too upset over this one.

I mean the movie is a re-release of the film, so the advertising crew got the cute idea to compare it to another more famous second coming. They probably googled “Second Coming Painting” and guess what comes up first?

I honestly doubt there was any more purposeful animus against Latter-day Saints than that. And honestly, with the purposefully offensive character at the center of the film, I can’t imagine much press they’d like more than “The Mormons Think We’re Being Offensive.” This petition plays right into the brand Deadpool tries to cultivate.

I understand how instinctively upsetting it is to see the Savior removed from a painting, and our desire to stand up for Him. I just don’t think it’s a useful fight.

Now let’s be honest, there is a tremendous opening for mocking Latter-day Saints in our culture that doesn’t extend to many other groups. But this is simply not an example of it. Movie posters are in the business of drawing attention and they have a long history of boring religious iconography to do it. Images specific to our faith are not normally used simply because it wouldn’t resonate with many people. But until we’ve been put through what the horror film industry has put the Catholic church through, I think we can safely just roll our eyes and move on.

That’s my take. Let me know what you think.


"Yep - like an exercise on avoiding coming to grips with the obvious..."

The God Who Changes His Mind
"Doesn't this column feel like the proverbial "mental gymnastics?""

The God Who Changes His Mind
"Where’d you go brotherman? Am missing your fresh takes"

The God Who Changes His Mind
"It sounds more like Darwinism than Mormonism."

The God Who Changes His Mind

Browse Our Archives

Follow Us!

What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • The Last Danite

    This is neither some “epic dunk on the LD$ inc!” or “horrific blasphemy that must be resisted!”. It is a cringe inducing ad campaign that should just be ignored.

  • Big Brutha

    Let me ask a semi-serious question which has been asked before: how often does “blasphemy” take place against items and ideas or persons that Muslims hold sacred? Not very often. Mostly because it is surpressed ruthlessly by rank and file Muslims.

    What kind of witnesses of Jesus are we if WE let His name get trampled by those who are intent on mocking Him? Can He defend Himself? Sure.

    But my baptismal obligation is to stand as a witness of Him all the time. We’ve allowed this to happen. We let it happen with the “Book of Mormon” musical which mocked and blasphemed, etc. We’ve tried to be tolerant and “cool” about things and taken a kind of perverse pride in being doormats to a filthy culture that denigrates decency and truth. And in the process we’ve create perverse incentives which ensure that this kind of garbage will continue.

    And anyone who signs a petition or points out that this is an effort to offend gets told to be quiet and calm down etc.

    I’m tired of calming down in the face of denigrating depictions of deity. Forcing people who hold Jesus sacred to desecrate Christian imagery is an age old strategy of control. Because once you cross those lines then it is easier for those pushing that kind of thing to go after other virtuous and decent things: family, honor, chastity, etc. Any shred of wholesomeness and goodness is then fair game.

    Where are you going to draw the line? When do you stand as a witness? Symbols are also important.

  • The Last Danite

    Just ignore it and it will go away. If you raise hell over it you will only be drawing more attention to it. Reserve your anger for things that are actually worth it.

  • Christopher D. Cunningham

    I think these are the right questions. I was speaking with my wise sister-in-law who shares your opinion that this is worth standing up against, and she convinced me to write something about the difference between being offended and standing up for the Savior.

  • Stewart

    I think the best way to get our point across is to not go support the franchise. It’s my understanding that Dead pool has been crass, crude, blasphemous, and inappropriate from the beginning. There’s nothing new here. I was surprised during a facebook discussion on this same topic a few days ago, to see people who I consider good, faithful, thoughtful Latter-day Saints say that they really enjoy the Deadpool movies. I’m not judging them, their media choices are between them and God. But for me, Dead pool, offensive cover art or not, is clearly across the line.

  • Stewart

    When do you be a Captain Moroni and rally an army and when do you be the Anti-Nephi-Lehis who lay prostrate on the ground while their enemies slaughtered them? Good question. There’s a time for each.

  • TinnyWhistler

    Clearly, no other flavor of Christianity has ever painted anything that looks even vaguely like that deadpool poster. This is definitely targeting LDS people specifically.