Will Charles respond to the gospel in time?
If the cover art is any indication, the titular “Assignment” is apparently to hypnotize men into going to the bathroom.
I’m sort of thrown by the nebulousness of this Tract’s summary. “Respond” how, exactly? Sure, from context, we can assume that he’s supposed to respond by adopting it as a personal philosophy. Or, well, rather, more accurately put, he’s supposed to adopt the fundamentalist set of beliefs, which are mostly preexisting prejudices and cultural stigmas that are reinforced and excused by religious belief, and then claim he’s somehow abiding by the teachings of Jesus. But I like to think that Charles will surprise us and “respond” by, oh, I don’t know, deciding to dedicate the rest of his life to feeling as many things with his tongue as possible, or making a loud beeping sound, or spontaneous reflexive urination.
Why do I get the nagging sensation that I’m supposed to take a shit in this thing? Oh, wait, that’s normal.
This type of Christianity amuses me: “Hey guys, I have a great idea: Let’s be entirely nonchalant about all the human suffering that results from death, and the painfulness, fear, and emotional trauma of dying itself, giving no amount of a fuck at all about quality of life so that we can focus exclusively on converting people.”
Just ask that dried-apple-headed, non-consensually sadistic bitch Mother Teresa (Go on — dig her up. Nobody’s looking): God doesn’t care that you helped other people and made their lives better, he only gives a hard shit if you convert them to your belief system. So it’s totally fine to let them writhe and wallow in abject misery and dick-clampingly horrendous pain, so long as you’ve gotten them to say “I accept Jesus”. As long as you keep people suffering and use almost all of the money people donate to your charity to further your religious propaganda, you’ll have all the fodder you need for your twisted little Munchausen-by-Proxy masturbation fantasies.
“Hey, guys, check out my gigantic Paul Newman playing card!”
Meanwhile, at heaven’s Fog Machine Testing Grounds…
So, angels with giant, wall-mounted TV screens figuring out which mortals they can “use” to do their bidding — that’s Jack Chick’s heaven.
“Yes, two potentials — the first is Hank Hill who works at the propane store with Bishop. The second is Olympic figure skater Michelle Kwan.”
“I think we can!”
“Preparations must be made. Turn on the free-will-override machine! Muahaha! Well? Come on, guys, don’t just stand around with your wings up your asses, looking at me like I’m giving a lecture on deconstruction in some kind of made-up moon-snail language — get cracking!”
“Jesus Christ, Larry, could you tone it down with the pot smoking? I mean, even just a little? You know, so that maybe I can make it across the room without needing someone to come in and install a lighthouse?”
Well, with all these special missions and shit, at least heaven’s not boring. Just stupid.
Pfft, so is this what Jack Chick thinks the afterlife is? A bunch of angels and demons sitting around magic TV screens trying to figure out how to interfere with people’s lives, plotting ways they can turn the person’s intentions in one way or another? Sweet fuck, is this ever silly. I mean, you’ve got one guy who’s basically omnipotent, and another guy who’s maybe not so much, but still seems to have a shitload of power and immortality and knowledge and such, and this is what they care about? Whether Charlie Bishop is going to say the magic phrase before he drops dead? Come on. How can anyone believe in such a petty, goofy jackass of a God?
It’s like — okay. It’s like if I had the fastest, most powerful internet in the world — internet that could see the future and give me live video of anything that’s ever happened throughout history — but I spent all my time, effort, concentration, and resources counting carpet fibers. Or, like, dropping toothpicks onto a cutting board and trying to get as many as possible to drop so that one end points at me. Or stacking granules of cat litter. Even profoundly autistic kids have more interesting priorities for what they obsessively focus on than God does.
Word is out, people. Where do they get this precise info, anyway? A team of precogs? Or do God and Satan, with their omnipotent powers, directly alert the respective angels and demons of every event that’ll be taking place? And if that’s the case, why bother with the middle men? Apparently, they’re all bound by the same laws as time and space, so by the time you schedule all this shit up and relay the information to all the appropriate parties in their little smoke-filled offices and they all subsequently get to reading all of it, you’ve lost a substantial amount of time.
Also, why “with” a coronary? It’s not the cause of death, it’s just accompanying him.
What’s the “B” stand for? And why doesn’t Ethel have a middle initial? Wait a second, maybe the “B” stands for “Bob”! This is Bob Dobbs, without his trademark pipe!
Yes, yes, it’s always the women who lure the men to destruction and set the whole world awry. We get it, we get it.
“Send Shawn Eckhardt to smack her in the shin with a pipe. Wait, shit, no, never mind, that was Nancy Kerrigan.”
These guys pull back their hoods to reveal that they’re the festering, maggoty corpses of the Three Stooges. “You’d better be right or else, ya knucklehead!” *bonk* *slap* *punch* *poke* *fist*
It’s hard to believe anyone could possibly believe that this — this goofy-assed, kindergarten drama about demons getting their dicks all up in a knot over some girl who *gasp* has read the Bible, and therefore having to devise some harebrained scheme to prevent her from talking about it with a guy who’s going to die — is somehow in any way an accurate depiction of the mystical realm of existence outside human perception.
Yes, Jack, you are the savior of all mankind, and your Tracts will be the deciding factor in the battle for souls. Maybe if you stopped wanking over yourself and patting yourself on the back, you might be able to draw a little better.
“Well, in all fairness, Mr. Bishop has had more pressing matters to deal with, like those two enormous space spiders hugging most of North America with their mighty death-grips.”
Now, that’s what she’s thinking, there in the little bubble, but what she’s saying out loud is apparently “Buk-GAWLLK!?”
So, quick show of hands: How many of you have had sudden thoughts pop into your head that were accurate depictions of the behaviors of your loved ones miles away, accompanied by suggestions on how their actions might impact your life? And have then answered those descriptions as though they actually came from someone else, never once acknowledging in any fashion that the experience was in any way odd?
Then again, my mind might get a little foggy and confused too, if a decomposing pizza wearing a garbage bag started telling me about random things people I knew were doing.
“That’s right, Ethel, dear… eat your mirror. Eeeeat your miiiiirror… yeah, that’s right, bring it all the way up… into your mouth…”
BARK BARK BARK *SLAM* BARK *SLAM SLAM* BARK BARK *SLAM*
You might not all know this, but in real life, if people mention religious beliefs, they’re fired immediately. Also, all women are materialistic, self-centered, manipulative cunts who care only about their “security”. Leave it to Jack T. Chick for cutting social commentary that sounds like it came from someone who’s been sealed in a cave since 1953, whose closest interactions with other people have been incoherent arguments with the ‘friends’ he fashioned from chewed-off toenail clippings and various vegetation found on the undersides of rocks.
“OH NO HOLY GEE WHIZ I’D BETTER NOT TALK ABOUT RELIGION WITH MY BOSS WHO JUST INDICATED VERY CLEARLY THAT HE THOUGHT PRAYING WAS A NICE GESTURE — I COULD GET FIRED.”
I mean, what, does Jack think that bosses go around firing people who pray quietly at lunch time? Like, businesses in America have employed a Prayer Patrol of shitheads with nothing better to do than wander around trying to figure out whether each person’s lunchtime hand movements might have any kind of religious significance.
“I just thought it was a very nice gesture. Kind of like this one I’m making by flapping my arm unnaturally up here by my nipple.”
Handsome? He looks like a cross between William Shatner, George Lopez, and a flank steak. Gyah, every man in this thing looks like his face belongs in the glass case at a butcher shop.
Wow, she answers his questions before he even asks them! What, are we supposed to drop tea leaves on the panels to figure out what order they’re supposed to be read? Poke in the spinner from a Twister board and give it a few whirls?
There are so many ways to read this, and none of them really make much sense. You can either start at the top and work down, kinda counter-clockwise. In which case, she’ll “let [Buz] know tomorrow” whether she’s Cathy Hillman. OR, when you get to “Cathy, would you object if I asked you to go to the beach with me this Saturday?”, you can jump back over to the left (which, I think, is what the space between Buz’s speech bubbles is supposed to denote), meaning she’s going to get back to him tomorrow about whether or not she objects to his asking her. Kind of like “can I ask you a question?” “I’ll get back to you tomorrow about that…” Or, you can ignore the space in the speech bubbles, in which case, she’s going to get back to him tomorrow about escorting her to her next class.
Any way you slice it, though, you come up with unnatural dialog that sounds like a rough approximation of human verbal interactions, like Jack wrote this by throwing darts at some kind of encyclopedia of phrases people are the least likely to utter in conversation. “Now turn on the charm, Buz baby!” “Young lady, I’m going to escort you to your next class!”
Hahahaha, wow. So, okay, angels trip people. Not only that, but it’s somehow okay for them to trip people into violent fuckwads with spasmodic trigger fingers who might actually do them some serious, rather painful harm, as long as it’s for the purpose of converting some random guy.
“Sorry, Buz! I guess our respective pinstriped baseball uniform components — my shirt and your pants — were momentarily drawn toward each other by, I dunno, fashion gravity or something.”
From the side, he looks a little like Rob Lowe. Rob Lowe mixed with a flank steak, of course.
You know what this Tract needs? A montage. Angels all exercising, getting in shape, practicing skiing, reading the Bible, getting prepped for the Big Day… The demons, meanwhile, are just kinda sitting around, radiating hubris. “Man, I don’t need to practice shit. I’ve skied that slope a thousand times. Ain’t no way those angels are gonna beat us. They’ll never raise enough money to save their frat house.”
“I must be a genius! It was so easy! All you do is just pick up this C-shaped part, and then you push the buttons on the other part, down at the other end of the curly wire!”
Yeah, ’cause insurance companies just LOVE taking policies from older people with heart problems, so that they can dump out a bunch of money to the recipients after receiving only a handful of monthly payments. “What a great idea! I’ll lose my company a shitload of money!”
What is she, obsessive-compulsive? Is washing her hair an all-day activity? I mean, I know the container says “lather, rinse, repeat”, but they only mean, like, once or twice. Not “until you collapse onto the bathroom floor from exhaustion and/or starvation with friction burns on your scalp”.
I don’t know, am I missing something? ‘Cause I’ve basically never in my life had some mysterious voice appear in my head telling me to wash my hair, sell some random person an insurance policy, go over to a friend’s house, tell my husband to keep his mouth shut, etc. I must really be in for a fucked-over afterlife if even the demons aren’t whispering shit at me.
“She’s going to wash her hair!” “I dunno, I think I might go see a movie, or go to the beach, or–” “I don’t think you understand — you’re GOING. To WASH. Your HAIR.” Then he grabs one of her pigtails and yanks her up the stairs.
Angels steal people’s spare tires, and set down spike strips.
“Mr. Bishop is an unrelenting tyrant who would simply be incapable of tolerating everyday inconveniences and breakdowns!”
Holy shit, where do they live? Run too far into the back yard, and you’ll be engulfed by the infinite vacuum of black despair.
“Come on in — she’s washing her hair. She’ll be upstairs well into tomorrow. If you stick around, you can help me drag her back to her bedroom after she passes out, and clean all the matted clumps of worn-off hair out from between her fingers.”
“Hey, Sandy. Oh, jeez, what happened to you?” Sandy looks nervously over at the angel. “I, uh… I fell down some stairs. *whimper*”
“Hey, Cathy — is that a Bible you’re carrying? Or are you just happy to see me?”
“Come on, Cathy, share it with me. No, not the Bible, silly — this glass of lemonade!”
I’d like to think this guy just wanders around his house holding up drinks in the faces of everyone he encounters. “What do you see in here? Tell me. Tell me!”
So… why the four-foot-wide doorway?
Man, he looks totally crushed, here. “I’m not righteous — I’m just… I’m just a great big stupid, worthless nobody. *sigh* Well, if this book I don’t really believe in says it’s true, then it really must be.”
“Cathy, if God loves us, he must have remained entirely obsessed with this extremely petty bullshit that should really be inconsequential and nearly meaningless to an omnipotent being, and then cooked up some ridiculously contrived, easily misinterpretable set of instructions that really only serve to give fundamentalists license to be oppressive, fascist dicksmears to as many people as possible. If he really loved us, he wouldn’t just, y’know, outright forgive us. You know, like humans do to each other.”
Why is that angel just standing outside lazing around? Doesn’t he have some teenager to shove into a bully, or a dog to kick in front of a bus, or a nursery to set on fire, or someone’s grandma to push into a bear trap?
“Don’t stop, Cathy! *fapfapfap* I’m almost there! *fapfap* Keep reading! *fapfapfapfapfap* Read harder, Cathy! Harder! *fapfapfapfapfapfapfap*”
Is there any particular reason the demons talk like patronizing movie producers from the early 1950s? “Irving baby, I’d like you to meet Buz baby!”
“@!!! that was dirty! Man, I never knew an old lady could get so raunchy talking about her arthritis like that!” Such a dirty story, in fact, that the insurance salesman had to kill himself in embarrassment.
Wait, she’s… she’s actually on his lap. “Go on, Cathy, you’re getting through! My pants, that is. That’s right, keep bouncing. Ohhhhoho, Mr. Bishop likey!” I mean, just look at the expression on his face. This is… just… glorious. It’s an effective way to convert pervy old businessmen, I guess.
Why would his friends ever even need to know? I thought the premise was that Jesus was, quoting the previous page, here, one’s “own personal savior”. Does accepting Jesus mean walking around with a goddamn bullhorn shouting about it? Do you have to go door to door, alerting your neighbors, like you’re on some kind of sex criminal list? Announcing it obnoxiously to every person you encounter? “I’m sorry, Jim — your cancer is spreading. But I do have some good news: I just saved 15% on my soul by switching to Jesus!”
What a fucking moron. If he really did believe but just didn’t want to because of his friends, why not accept Jesus as your heart is all sputtering out? It’s… *sigh* You know, fuck it.
This is a really amusing Tract. The entire idea of “free will” just gets saturated with a torrential rain of piss by angels who trip people, give people flat tires, force teenagers to spend the whole day washing their hair, steer old ladies into long-winded pay phone conversations, etc, in order to compete with demons who force people to sell high-risk insurance policies, convince irritable wives to lash out violently at their husbands… all in the name of some laughably silly conversion game.
Why should we believe that an entity that can do or be or create basically anything is going to spend so much time giving a shit about this? And come on — teams of angels and demons analyzing data about individuals on Earth so they can fuck with the lives of as many other people as is necessary to convert them one way or another? If God really cares so much, and this kind of interference isn’t an issue, then why doesn’t he just appear to every person, one time in their life, and tell them “hey, listen, I’m right here, believe in me, okay?” and be done with it? That’s a simple, clear, concise solution. Look, I’m not even omnipotent, and I came up with a more effective approach — what the hell is God’s problem?
And what exactly are the consequences of this whole “soul war”, anyway? What does the winner get? I mean, if people roast in hell for an eternity regardless, then obviously Satan wins on some level. And if not for our benefit, then what is God competing for? What could an omnipotent being possibly have to gain? So, what, like, God wins the soul-counting contest, and, I dunno, gets some kind of trophy, while his victims — all the pawns he lost in his fucked up, vague little game of implicit Simon Says — spend an infinity being mercilessly tortured?
Anyway, remember, folks: The next time you trip, it’s just some asshole angel proving a point.
Stay tuned, and tell your friends.