There's a side line about a python crashing through a ceiling after last being seen ten years previously which reminded me of a recent TV show (fictional drama) in which a tortoise was living for years in an air duct. The owner was just a child the last time they saw him and they find him as an adult.
Can anyone remember which show it was? It's really nagging me.
Jack Chick. Funny how these things come in clusters: a few days ago in Chester I was briefly spiritually mugged by a street preacher who thrust a Chick pamphlet on me. Hadn't seen one for years and then a few days later, FT and the Chick article. I guess as a minister, Peter Laws was able to get a degree of trust from the Chick organisation so as to be able to write it and reproduce the illustrations. But he must have felt like Aziraphile in "Good Omens"... Pratchett and Gaiman note that the Angel of the Presence who has been on Earth for several thousand years is obliged to be nice to people calling themselves Christians, and diplomatic in his dealings with them. Even if he feels like a combat veteran who is talking to somebody who goes to a Neighbourhood Watch meeeting in full combat dress (I think that was the picture P and G used). So the resultant piece is pretty context-neutral: it covers the controversies and criticisms of Chickism without being condemnatory and acknowledges they do have good intentions. It was - perhaps - a meeting between two radically different kinds of Christianity: I'm guessing the Reverend Peter is a CoE minister and runs a parish for an older, established, staider, Church. So his priority is not so much evangelism as people - the everyday nuts-and-bolts routine of, well, looking after people all the way through, not just being the "welcoming committee". As well as satisfying the bureaucracy of the church. What you might call ongoing care and engagement. Which must inculcate a different mind-set from the Chickists, who just want people to convert and then... that's it. What happens afterwards is not their business. The Chickists get people in through the door, stridently and with shock tactics. But never actually enter the building. Peter Laws and many others like him then manage the premises, so to speak. (I wonder if PL has ever had people coming to his Church who were moved to do so after reading a Chick tract... only to be gently re-educated into the CoE way of doing things afterwards?)
British v American religion. Which made the unspoken sub-text delightful. I wonder if the Chickists ever looked utterly baffled at any point in the dicourse?
Also thinking - Peter Laws must have gone into the meetings rather like Louis Theroux doing some aspect of weird America. You get a very Theroux-teasing-out-information vibe going on: like LT spending time with strange people - and in most cases, Louis likes and respects them as human beings whilst wanting to find out what makes them tick. Making the resulting documentaries compelling and oddly life-enhancing. Peter Laws as a Louis Theroux of the religiously Fortean?
Ahh! The Chick article originally promised for #377. It didn't disappoint, and was written by the appropriate-for-the-subject Reverend Mr. Laws. I was unaware of the full-size, full-color Crusaders series of comic books; I'm very interested.