I had an idea for a story, novel or maybe even a film earlier today. It came out of nowhere and caught me completely off guard since it happened on the way to a tee-ball game, of all places. But when inspiration comes, you have to grab it, right? And that’s exactly what I’m hoping to do.
The title of this post obviously gives away one of the secrets. Yes, the idea is for a zombie story. What can I say? I love them and never miss The Walking Dead, Dawn of the Dead or even a George Romero marathon on late-night television.
I just can’t get enough.
At the same time, I am normally very critical of my ideas and spend a great deal of time trying to “flesh them out,” pun intended. Few result in anything very interesting, but there are a few that seem to have a little something extra. You know what I mean? Those ideas that get you thinking about book tours, film sets and televised award ceremonies?
This idea belongs in that second category. At least it could if done correctly. The only problem is its subject matter, which is certain to cause backlash, controversy and everything in between.
Isn’t that what normally happens when someone satirizes a religion or religious figure? It certainly did when The Innocence of Muslims hit YouTube last year. And I wouldn’t want anything like that to happen again.
I just can’t ignore the muse, you know? And by writing this post and sharing this idea with all of you, I am hoping to hear if something like this has potential or is too offensive to even consider pursuing. You won’t hurt my feelings if you leave a comment to express your displeasure, but first keep these things in mind:
- I am not a heretic or some kind of blasphemer
- This is not a criticism of or attack on religion, in this case Christianity
- My idea is nothing more than fiction and is not intended to offend or insult anyone
That being said, here’s the thought I had in the car earlier—the premise upon which this story will be built—the question this tale will seek to answer: What if Jesus Christ was the first zombie?
Fire and brimstone! Sacrilege! Did he just say that? You’re going straight to Hell for that one? Eternal damnation!
Now that we have that out of the way—and trust me when I say these are responses I wouldn’t really expect to get from something so harmless—focus on the basic idea. The way I see it—and if I end up really writing this thing—there are a few different approaches I could take.
Here’s the first.
You have Jesus, the Son of God: born in Bethlehem to Mary and Joseph; raised as a carpenter in Nazareth; minister and teacher beginning around age 30. Only instead of following his normal path—which we all know ended with his crucifixion several years later—Jesus’ trajectory is changed by something unexpected: a mysterious virus.
He becomes a zombie.
So instead of spreading “The Word” and enlisting the aid of twelve disciples, Zombie Jesus spreads the virus and turns twelve followers into the first pack of flesh-eating zombies ever. Ironically enough, that’s kind of what they would have done anyway, given the symbolic eating of Jesus’ flesh during the Last Supper.
Approach two does little more than fast forward to the time Jesus is crucified and placed in his tomb. Only the Resurrection is when he returns as a zombie, subsequently appearing to everyone not to reinforce their faith, but to make communion out of them!
I know, I know. Blasphemy.
This is actually as far as I’ve gotten on this idea, and there are a lot of other things to consider. For instance, transforming JC and the Boys into zombies may inadvertently turn the Romans into the “good guys,” unless I can find a way to prevent something even I find rather tasteless from happening. I guess they could also be transformed into the undead, given this story need not run concurrent to religious history. And that would provide some justice after the horror of Jesus’ crucifixion, which the Romans surely deserved.
Still kind of a touchy subject, though?
Although I enjoy writing about controversial subjects—not for attention or financial gain, mind you—I can’t help feeling that this idea may be a little too edgy. On the other hand, it could be quite lucrative for the same reason. Yes, a lot of people would get pissed and there could potentially be all sorts of protests, but only after everyone read the book or saw the movie. An uproar like this would undoubtedly attract the media and before you know it, this thing would be everywhere.
Wishful thinking, I know, but stranger things have happened. And delusions of grandeur never hurt anyone… much.
So there you go: one story idea that could be good or bad depending on how you look at it. All it’s missing now is YOU. If you read this post and notice any kind of reaction within yourself—interest, disgust, joy, hunger, completeness, arousal, nausea—please consider leaving a few comments. And if you happen to think this could make a decent story, I would love some suggestion as to its genre. Horror? Comedy? Thriller? I have no idea which is best.
Thanks in advance for your help and please remember that none of this was intended to offend or insult Christians, Christianity or any other believer or religion on this spinning ball of mud we all call home. But if I did offend someone—especially to the point they feel I deserve no forgiveness—I ask first that they answer this question and act accordingly: What would Jesus do?
And I think we all know the answer to that.
Los Angeles high school senior Jake Davidson may be “Jewish and 5’9″ on a good day”—his words, not mine—but one thing is for certain.
He also has balls the size of church bells.
Last week, the 17-year-old “dreamer” made a hilarious video, posted it to YouTube, sat back and watched it go viral. What was the video about, you ask?
Okay. My title gave it away.
See for yourself right here.
Probably the coolest thing about all of this came Monday night, when none other than Kate Upton herself tweeted a response. Check it out.
Few things warm my heart as much as seeing a celebrity come down to earth long enough to interact with us common folk. And since Kate is supposedly checking her schedule to see if she is available to attend Jake’s prom, all the better. One unselfish act could guarantee an unforgettable evening not only for Jake, but also for every guy who sees them together that night.
Incidentally, anyone interested in making some serious money should load up on Kleenex and hand cream—perhaps some back issues of SI featuring the gorgeous model—set up a stand near the LA high school and charge top dollar to every star struck, boner-laden, prepubescent boy who stumbles out of that chaperoned event.
I predict lots of calluses, cramps and carpal tunnel syndrome in the days following Kate’s appearance.
But there’s more.
Yesterday morning, Jake popped up on The TODAY Show and got an even better surprise: a phone call from Kate! And the 20-year-old bombshell had nothing but good things to say.
“I absolutely love the video,” she told the brave young lad. “It was so hilarious and so creative. Thank you so much for doing that. I really appreciate it.”
And true to form, Jake responded with something just as hilarious as his video, at least to me.
“I’m telling you it will be a great night, great evening,” he promised his potential date. And this is the part that really cracks me up. “I could even get the curfew extended hopefully by my parents maybe.”
Go on with your bad self, Jake.
Unfortunately, though, my man Jake still didn’t get a straight response. Kate has to check her schedule to see if she’s available. Whether or not she actually makes it, she did end her call with something I found cautiously optimistic. You be the judge.
“You seem like so much fun and if everything works out, I’d love to go with you,” she told our pimply Casanova. “I know we’d have a blast.”
Here’s hoping you get your chance, Jake. You’ve got balls, my friend. And they just might pay off in spades…
It never ceases to amaze me how people engage in extreme sports without first considering why they are called extreme in the first place. Take the latest story from a resort in Russia’s North Caucasus mountains.
27-year-old Denis Burakov and 33-year-old Vladimir Shcherbov were visiting the resort and decided to do some zorbing. What the hell is that, you ask? Good question.
Zorbing is named for the company ZORB, which manufactures large, transparent plastic balls that people can ride down hills and other inclines. They look like the balls hamsters roll around in, only these are tremendous and would take thousands of hamsters to fill.
I’m glad no one has tried that yet, but it’s only a matter of time.
On January 3, Burakov and Shcherbov entered a large inflatable ball, which was not produced by ZORB, and started rolling down a steep, snow-covered slope. In a video posted to YouTube, the men can be heard laughing and having a great time, but it wouldn’t last.
For whatever reason, the ball veered off course and headed towards a cliff. Attendants were unable to stop the large ball from rolling and sadly, it tumbled over the edge.
Burakov broke his neck and died instantly. By some miracle, however, Shcherbov survived with only a concussion and some minor cuts and bruises. Police are investigating to determine if the “ball operators” should be charged with criminal negligence. And the ZORB company was quick to state that the equipment used did not come from them and should have included several safety features, but did not.
Despite all this, I have but one question: Did operators ever map the slope they chose to use for their ride? If so, then you would think a rocky cliff nearby would be cause for concern. Alas, that was not the case and now a young man is dead.
I guess the lesson we should all learn from this tragic story is this: balls can be dangerous. Feel free to interpret this any way you like and by all means, please be careful with them.
Need more proof that globalization through technology can lead to some amazing opportunities for totally unknown people?
Then check this out.
There’s a guy in Norway named Havard Rugland who posted a video of himself to YouTube in September that has since gone viral. In it, Rugland can be seen kicking a football in all sorts of different situations, a few of which are on a football field.
Normally, this wouldn’t be all that newsworthy, but there’s more.
Rugland kicks balls for 60 yards or more with almost pinpoint accuracy, oftentimes from seemingly impossible angles. On one occasion, he kicks the ball 40 or 50 yards to a friend in a passing car; on another, he juggles the ball with his feet (think hacky sack), turns quickly and boots it through a goal post at least 40 yards away.
It’s actually quite amazing. Check it out here to experience it for yourself.
Even more amazing is that not long ago, Rugland came to America to tryout with the New York Jets, who need all the help they can get. Each year seems to get worse and worse for Gang Green. Sanchez is transforming into a second or third string quarterback. Tebow’s limited skills are being wasted and worse, he’s being disrespected and insulted almost weekly by his own coaching staff.
I could go on, but I’m sure you get the picture.
The latest word comes from an anonymous internet source who quotes Michael Husted, a professional kicking coach from the Jets. Apparently, Husted is now working with Rugland, so things seem to be moving right along for the Norwegian man with the superhuman leg.
“Havard has incredible talent as a kicker,” Husted said recently. “As he continues to refine his technique, he could be one of the strongest kickers in the NFL.”
For the Jets sake, I hope they bring Rugland in soon. Given their questionable offense, I’m sure he could easily become their top scorer.
It’s hard to believe that all this started with a simple YouTube video and produced such positive results. It just goes to show you how being so connected can sometimes be a good thing.
And we need more good things, don’t we?
The video featuring the flamboyant rapper has been viewed more than 800 million times and receives roughly 10 million hits per day.
Is it me, or is this one of the dumbest videos/trends ever? The “horse dance” itself brings to mind the Macarena, which thankfully disappeared over time.
Here’s hoping “Gangnam Style” fades into obscurity even faster…
Joss Whedon, the 48-year-old creator of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and writer of “The Avengers,” just released a campaign video in support of Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney. This may seem odd given Whedon’s past support for Barack Obama, but there is a method to his madness.
“Mitt Romney is a very different candidate, one with the vision and determination to cut through business as usual politics and finally put this country back on the path to zombie apocalypse. Romney is ready to make the deep rollbacks to health care, education, social services, and reproductive rights that will guarantee poverty, unemployment, overpopulation, disease, rioting — all crucial elements in creating a nightmare zombie wasteland. But it’s his commitment to ungoverned corporate privilege that will nosedive this economy into true insolvency and chaos. The kind of chaos you can’t buy back: Money is only so much paper to the undead. The 1 percent will no longer be the very rich — it will be the very fast.”
If you haven’t done so already, I highly recommend that you take a look. Whedon’s talents obviously extend beyond the Big Screen, and Obama supporters are sure to love it.
I know I do. Nice work, Joss!
29-year-old Alexis Wright operates a Zumba dance studio there that apparently doubles as a full-service sex joint, too. More than 100 alleged “johns” frequented the establishment and the local population is very curious to see who among them have answered the Zumba booty call.
What is most interesting about this story is that Wright videotaped her sexual encounters. Authorities discovered more than 100 hours of video footage, as well as thousands of screen shots on seized computers.
Now Wright faces 106 counts of prostitution and violations involving privacy, tax evasion and a number of lesser charges. She of course pleaded not guilty, as did co-owner Mark Strong Sr., who himself faces 59 prostitution counts.
According to investigators, Wright’s clients include local professionals, law enforcement officials, well-known townspeople and even a celebrity. It should make for quite the juicy gossip once the names of these depraved individuals is released.
And who knows? You might even find some interesting YouTube videos to view soon!
“The Innocence of Muslims” is a low-quality film that has offended radical Islamists and incited violence throughout the Muslim world. The movie depicts the prophet Muhammad as a sadistic and violent person obsessed with sex, especially with young people. Its anti-Muslim sentiment has resulted in retaliation against Americans living abroad, including an attack in Libya that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens.
And to make matters worse, the protests and violence seem to be spreading. Now more than a dozen countries in the region have joined the fray, including Tunisia, Egypt and Yemen.
The film was directed by 55-year-old Nakoula Bassely Nakoula, a Coptic Christian from Cerritos, California. A non-profit Christian group known as Media for Christ applied for the permit that led to the filming of “Desert Warriors,” as it was originally known.
The strangest thing about this film is that all of the actors and crew members involved were misled by Nakoula. The true intent and purpose of the film was never revealed to them. And like those offended Muslims out there, they are not happy.
I must confess that I find all of this very disconcerting.
Sure, I can understand why Muslims might be upset and offended by an anti-Muslim film produced in America. We don’t have the best reputation in that part of the world and it seems like Americans are consistently targeted, kidnapped or killed when they travel there. Some have even been beheaded by fundamentalist Islamic groups, like reporter Daniel Pearl. They don’t like us and, as much as I hate to admit it, many of us don’t like them. I chalk most of this animosity up to 9/11 and all the wars our government has forced us to fight to protect our oil interests, but that’s another story.
My main issue is this: IT IS A MOVIE! And if you’ve watched the trailer available on YouTube, then you know it’s not a particularly good movie. It is low-budget, has terrible actors and could use some decent sound editing. I seriously doubt it’s the type of film that could convince viewers that Muslims are evil or inferior. If anything, I found myself disgusted by the film itself rather than the content. It certainly doesn’t deserve all the publicity it’s been getting because honestly, it sucks. None of that matters, though.
What does matter is that this film isn’t representative of how Americans as a whole view Islam or those who practice it. Instead, it is the interpretation of one individual, who may or may not have had the support of a fundamentalist Christian organization. In this country, we have freedom of speech and respect the right of all citizens to express themselves openly and without fear of persecution. It is unfortunate when the people expressing themselves are total jackasses, but the same rules apply to them, too.
Of course, it’s not the film as an expression of belief or opinion that bothers people. Muslims are angry because of the way “The Innocence of Muslims” depicts Muhammad and makes Islam look inferior to other world religions, most notably Christianity. I can understand and certainly sympathize. I might not appreciate a film that made agnostics look ridiculous, but I assure you the worst I would do is find another movie to watch instead. Or badmouth it to my friends later, only in an “it really stunk” rather than an “it insulted my beliefs” way. I don’t care what other people think because I choose to believe what I like. It’s called freedom, baby.
There are all sorts of analogies I could draw at this point. Do you remember when Mel Gibson‘s “The Passion of the Christ” was in the headlines back in 2004? Everyone was up-in-arms about excessive violence, historical inaccuracy and, most importantly, anti-Semitism. But I don’t remember any Jewish people bum rushing the movie studio to murder crew members or burn the place down. And that’s exactly what happened in Libya when Ambassador Stevens was murdered this week, on the anniversary of the September 11th attacks no less.
In terms of “The Innocence of Muslims” being insulting to Islam, I now apply the same logic to another truly offensive and shocking film: “Showgirls.” I am certain that strippers everywhere, as well as actors and filmmakers, truly despise this sorry attempt at entertainment. Of course, occupations like these don’t compare to deep-seeded religious beliefs, but I’m sure you see my point.
“The Innocence of Muslims” is just a movie. A very bad movie.
I am and have always been a firm believer in social justice and the right to protest, so by all means, get out there and organize, my Muslim brothers and sisters. Your voices should be heard. All I ask is that you leave all the violence and destruction behind. It does nothing but eat away at what little tolerance and understanding still exists between our different cultures. There is enough animosity already, don’t you think?
If you must avenge this insult and send a message to the film’s creator, though, I have a suggestion: make your own anti-Christian movie and post it to YouTube. Just do me one favor first.
Throw some money at it to hire some decent actors. That way you can add insult to injury by producing a film that doesn’t suck as bad as “The Innocence of Muslims.” I know I can’t wait to see it.