"Judgment Is Coming and What We Do Now Matters"
What You Need To Know:
THE MESSENGERS is well shot and has some good drama, along with a great cast and a lot of promise. What will really define the show is how it presents faith and how it presents God. The first episode doesn’t seem as preoccupied on making blanket theological statements as it does on exploring the faith of the characters. This could make the show more enjoyable. That said, while the first episode affirms faith, future episodes could very well include some politically correct viewpoints on faith and Christianity. THE MESSENGERS: Awakening has some strong violence, brief foul language and heavy elements, so strong caution is advised.
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THE MESSENGERS is a slickly produced TV series from the CW with a great cast and some compelling themes of faith.
The series introduces five individuals from around the country. Vera Buckley is an atheist scientist investigating some irregularities coming from a meteor. Erin Calder, a single mother with a past of alcoholism, is trying to keep her daughter away from her controlling ex-husband police officer. A federal agent, Raul Garcia, is betrayed by his own team while undercover in Mexico. Peter Moore is an awkward teenage boy who moves between group homes and has a history of being suicidal. Lastly, Joshua Silburn is a prosperity preacher following in his father’s footsteps as a famous speaker.
Each of these five lives are broken in some way. When the meteor that Vera was tracking lands on earth, a shockwave emerges and hits each of the five individuals, causing them to collapse and minutes later revive. What landed with the meteor is The Man (Diogo Morgado), who is revealed later to be Lucifer.
(Spoilers) For some of the five, they noticed no effects from the shockwave. For Joshua, after collapsing on stage while in the middle of a comically superficial sermon about how God doesn’t want us to fear him, he tells his father he needs to make a live telecast. On the live telecast, he warns that he’s seen the wrath of God and Judgment is coming. His father threatens to remove his son’s influence from his church, to which Joshua rightly responds, “It’s not your church. It’s God’s church.” Many Christians who see through the falsities and lies in modern America’s prosperity gospel will cheer after this line. However, things get over the top bizarre in Joshua’s narrative when his father reveals to him that he’s the actual father to Joshua’s unborn child, not Joshua.
The others also came away with “gifts” similar to Joshua’s vision.
Raul can hear people’s thoughts, and Peter gets super strength, which he unknowingly uses on a school bully in self-defense, accidentally killing the classmate. Erin, who was in a car accident after the shockwave hit her, unwittingly heals her injured daughter with her tears. The unknown is Vera, who’s approached by The Man and blackmailed into doing a mission for him in Houston.
Though unsaid, these five people are chosen to be Messengers of what’s to come. Each one needs faith, healing and purpose.
THE MESSENGERS is well shot and has some good drama, a great cast and a lot of promise. What will really define the show is how it presents faith and how it presents God. The science-fiction premise, which is roughly inspired by the Book of Revelation, but obviously goes in its own direction, is fine. Christians are willing to give up a certain amount of realism for entertainment, even when it comes to the subject of the end times. What will determine whether or not THE MESSENGERS can earn the Christian community’s support is if it represents not just faith, but Christian faith truthfully. The biggest threat THE MESSENGERS faces is that it will fall into political correctness and water down who God is and what faith looks like.
Also, many of the characters lead rough and gritty lives, so if THE MESSENGERS can give someone strong faith for the audience to stand behind and maybe a funny scene or two to shake things up, they’ll be heading in a good direction. THE MESSENGERS isn’t a slamdunk show by any means, but their characters need faith and redemption. So, if the writers can fulfill that need in a compelling way without offending media-wise viewers, they just might have a show worth watching.