Blasphemy as Cry for Help

First of all, it’s fairly obvious that this has nothing to do with My Little Pony fandom, other than that bronies might need to know about this just to pity it. (And I link to it because it doesn’t link to the artist’s site or the magazine’s, which is handy for this purpose of criticism without providing traffic.)

Secondly, it’s fairly obvious that this “artist” wishes desperately to have the chops and courage to create real religious art of Mary, but turns to satire out of fear of putting himself on the line. It’s pretty sad to confess to the world instead that mass-market action figure designers and kitsch artists are braver and better at art than yourself, but I guess anything beats exposing your heart to the world.

MLP fandom has its failings (many) but fear of sincerity ain’t one of ’em.

However, the really ironic thing is that Mary, being a mother, probably did her bit of dress-up play with her Son and the neighbor kids as an adult, and with her friends as a kid. So dressing her up in Superman robes or a Power Ranger helmet isn’t exactly the way to shock her. So yeah, kinda pointless and fairly safe, on the supernatural level, especially since Mary is notoriously hard to torque off.

There’s one fairly nice one (albeit replacing the red hair of the House of David with orange hair is a silly ref) of Our Lady of Fatima in a space helmet, “standing on the Moon” as per the Book of Revelation. Mary merged with some kind of Annie Oakley doll, or a kimono, or some kind of Native American doll? That’s not even pop culture; it’s just normal to depict Mary in the garb of all world cultures. The artist also does one “ouvrante Vierge” with the aid of an inset Polly Pocket playset, but lacks the guts to do it unironically.

The useful point to take away is that damaged saint statues can be saved, and that a well-done repaint can make a big difference. (As opposed to a bad repaint, such as we suffered back at my original home parish.)

The artist does not just do Mary, though. Occasionally the artist also repaints female saint statues into Mary ones (for example, one repainted into Jedi Knight Mary), which is a bit hard on mother foundresses but certainly says something about blasphemy marketability. Since this is all supposed to be a comment on the role of women in the world, you can see that it’s really not the work of someone who likes individual women as people. But this kind of disrespect for others’ individual identity and goals (and heck, for that of the goals of toys and their creators) is always given a pass if you have the correct political view.

If you look long enough, the artist does actually manage a few really really offensive pieces. Also, some anti-American pieces and a singularly stupid version of the French Revolution symbol, Marianne. (Stupider because of course the French Revolution was also anti-Catholic, so yeah, it’s taking a Jewish girl and dressing her up as a Hitler Youth, while not realizing that was the offensive part.) So you’ll probably be happier if you don’t rubberneck Google Images. I do it so you don’t have to.

1 Comment

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One response to “Blasphemy as Cry for Help

  1. …When you have to label them to let folks know who it’s supposed to be, you didn’t do so very well. Even Our Lady of Akita didn’t need a label!

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