Christ and Pop Culture

Merry Christmas from Seeing & Believing! Our last episode before Christmas starts off with a bang as we take a look at the much-buzzed-about Roma, Netflix's latest shot at Oscar gold. Does Alfonso Cuaron's highly personal film about a domestic worker in 1970s Mexico deserve the hype it's been getting, or will the high expectations be dashed by cold reality? We also offer a little something for the superhero fans in our audience with our review of Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, an animated adventure starring everyone's favorite webslinger, multiplied by seven. Producers Phil Lord and Christopher Miller waved a magic wand over The Lego Movie- can they repeat the feat with a Marvel property?

Music interlude by Erik Margolin, "Carol of the Bells." Used under Creative Commons license 3.0.

Theme music by Alexander Osbornand Lindsey Mysse. Used under Creative Commons license 3.0.

Direct download: Seeing_and_Believing_181.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:53am EST

In this episode of Persuasion, Erin Straza and Hannah Anderson wrap up their holiday mini-series, Lessons & Carols. The first conversation covered the lessons we’ve learned about Christmas meeting the soul’s longing for connection and love. And the second episode turned to the ways we attempt to buy our Christmas joy (for others and even for ourselves). Here in the finale, Erin and Hannah dissect the tension between the peace we sing about and internal chaos we so often experience during Christmas. Can we learn to appreciate the message of Silent Night even when our reality is no match? Is a Silent Night even realistic? Is it possible we have unreasonable expectations for the season that magnify our need for the Prince of Peace? Listen in for dialogue on questions like these, and continue the conversation on Twitter @PersuasionCAPC or in the CAPC members-only community on Facebook.

Direct download: Persuasion_155.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:15am EST

Period pieces and Oscar chances come to the fore in this episode of Seeing & Believing. First up is The Favourite, a darkly funny look at courtly backstabbing, political intrigue, and the nature of power in the court of England's Queen Anne. The guys then move closer to home with their review of Green Book, Peter Farrelly's based-on-a-true-story film about racial tensions and friendship when a white bouncer agrees to be the driver and bodyguard for a black concert pianist in the Jim Crow-era Deep South.

Music interlude by Floral Dreamasaurs, "The Man Inside." Used under Creative Commons license 3.0.

Theme music by Alexander Osbornand Lindsey Mysse. Used under Creative Commons license 3.0.

Direct download: Seeing_and_Believing_180.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:57am EST

What do you want for Christmas? Children are ready for that question, quick to list all the toys and treasures their little hearts desire. We’ve learned from an early age to make our lists and send our requests to Santa, all in the hope that come Christmas morning, everything we want will be underneath the tree. Our culture has tied Christmas fulfillment to the amassing of stuff.

In this episode of Persuasion, Erin Straza and Hannah Anderson continue their holiday mini-series, Lessons & Carols. The first conversationcovered the lessons we’ve learned about the way Christmas can meet the soul’s longing for connection and love. And in this installment, the conversation turns to the ways we attempt to buy our Christmas joy for others and even for ourselves. Maybe you attempt to hold consumerism off by implementing the three-gift or four-gift rule. Or maybe you attempt to redeem your participation in the season by donating your budgeted money for each person to a charity helping those much less fortunate. Try as we may, the commercialization of Christmas is here and the fault is ours to bear. How do the Christmas traditions and carols we practice each year contribute to this skewed perspective? Is there any way to uncouple our real need for joy from the false promise that it will be waiting for us under the tree on Christmas morning? Listen in for dialogue on questions like these, and continue the conversation on Twitter @PersuasionCAPC or in the CAPC members-only community on Facebook.

Direct download: Persuasion_154.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:35am EST

Both the internet and audience's hearts get broken with the films in this week's episode. Wade and Kevin check out Disney's sequel to Wreck-It Ralphto see if its satire of internet culture holds up, then offer their review of Japanese director Hirokazu Kore-eda's Palme d'Or-winning Shoplifters.

Music interlude by Derek Joel, "Grateful." Used under Creative Commons license 3.0.

Theme music by Alexander Osbornand Lindsey Mysse. Used under Creative Commons license 3.0.

Direct download: Seeing_and_Believing_179.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:47pm EST

Christmas blues are nothing new. And in today’s therapeutic and authentic age, we’re more willing to admit to and discuss how the holidays are something anything but merry and bright. For some of us, it’s grief. For others, it’s troubles and trials. But for all us, Christmas is when our longings are piqued and our hearts yearn for something more. Movies tell us Christmas is the perfect time to find our soul mate. Advertisements tell us Christmas is the perfect time to get the latest and greatest goods. Society tells us Christmas is the perfect time to be present to everyone in every circle we inhabit. But is this really what Christmas is all about?

In this episode of Persuasion, Erin Straza and Hannah Anderson kick off a holiday mini series called Lessons & Carols. This first conversation covers the lessons we’ve learned about the way Christmas can meet the soul’s longing for connection and love. From Hallmark Christmas specials to receiving the perfect gift from that perfect someone, we’ve all taken in ideals that lead our hearts to unavoidable disappointment. What we see in romance stories and jewelry commercials tells us we’re missing out. Is it possible we have unreasonable expectations on relationships that exacerbate our Christmas blues? How can we find joy in the holidays when our relationships are draining us? Listen in for dialogue on questions like these, and continue the conversation on Twitter @PersuasionCAPC or in the CAPC members-only community on Facebook.

Direct download: Persuasion_153.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:38pm EST

1