Chick Dissection | The Assignment

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.

73 thoughts on “Chick Dissection | The Assignment”

  1. Actually, Buz’s first appearance brought to mind Andre the Giant, then gradually he morphed into Patrick Swayze, after being accepted into the trenchcoat mafia.

    You know, when I was twelve I cut my wrist on a broken bottle while trying to force a trash bag into the garbage can. Clearly, this was a message from a hidden angel–who knows how deep that bottle would have cut if I had pushed any harder? And then I’d have died without accepting Jesus! THANK YOU, INVISIBLE ASSHOLE ANGEL.

  2. Amazing dissection as always, Jabberwock. Specially the girl on the lap thing.

    A word in Re: Mother Teresa. She may have voiced and had weird&rigid convictions, but she did a hell of a lot for the people of Kolkata/Calcutta. So, if you don’t mind, a little easier on the dried-apple skull abuse.

  3. Congratulations Jack you have once again beaten your high score at the game of Batshit Isanity.

    Unfortunately, I believe the highest score is still held by David Icke who believes (and I am not making this up) that the world is controlled by shape shifting, lizard like aliens from another dimension who have disguised themselves as the british royal family, bush administration, and others. These alians also eat people with their anuses and crap out of their mouths. and he knows this because they telepathically beam their thoughts into his head.

    But don’t despair Jack, a few more tracts like this and you can beat him.

  4. ’bout to shit myself during the introduction of the insurance agent

    a fucking omnipotent being-and he just uses his cheap laborers to do his work.So Chick doesn’t believe in free will.it’s either a demon or an angel leading you.

  5. Mother Teresa reminds me a little of my late paternal grandmother, actually: When my aunt — my dad’s sister — died at about age 35 in a car accident, leaving a husband and two teenage children behind, tragic experience for all involved, etc, her (my grandma’s) initial response, upon hearing that the accident was abrupt and painless, was, “well, that’s a shame. She should’ve suffered before she died, so she could’ve made her peace with God.”

    See, as much as Mother Teresa may have done for the people of Calcutta (which actually isn’t as much as most people think — her “hospitals” were little more than places with beds for people to suffer and die), she had, well… kind of a creepy thing for people suffering. Basically, her attitude was that people need to suffer in order to come close to Jesus. And, of course, in much the same way as depicted in this Tract, quality of life doesn’t matter as long as you can convert people.

    And according to Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League, “Mother Teresa wanted people to live in impoverished conditions so she could identify with the poor, whom she’s serving”. In other words, it was a particularly self-centered approach to “helping” the poor.

    In addition, most of the money her charity received — often unbeknown to those who donated — went to mostly nunneries, while the hospitals were often cramped hovels with bathrooms where people had to shit in front of each other. She had the money, but instead of using it to help people — even if she may have already been using some money to help people — she was using quite a substantial portion to developing nunneries and other methods of religious propagation and institutions.

    (There’s also this little thing about how she took money from Duvalier family — money that was basically stolen from the Haitian people, who were all rather destitute — and used basically none of it to help the Haitians themselves, instead setting up some more nunneries in Calcutta. But I don’t really know enough about that to really get into it.)

    Of course, because most of the money is kept in the Vatican, and the organization itself is one of the only charitable organizations that doesn’t have to report its expenditures, it’s hard to really hold it accountable.

  6. “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.”

    Either that, or it’s a kind of palsy. Chick likes palsy people a lot, doesn’t he?

    Very good, and back up to your usual standard, especially with the metaphors (“torrential rain of piss”, the recluse passage, etc.). These never fail to raise a smile. Perhaps you should become a professional literary commentator.

  7. Nice dissection, as always.

    Interesting thing. When old lady is talking on the phone she says her arthritis started in 1932. This tract was written in 2004 which means she is suffering from it for 72 years. As arthritis generally develops at old age means this lady is veeeeeeeeeeeeeeery old. Probably oldest woman in the world.

    also the panel where Buzz and Cathy are talking for the first time you are supposed to read bubbles going from top to bottom. that way it makes some sense. If you ignore the fact that dialogue sounds like something from 1950s. Not that this is something new for Chick…..

  8. I’ve run into quite a few members of the Christian “conversion squad” and they have never been able to convince me that anything in the Bible is meant to be taken literally. The more Biblical literalism and Fundamentalism I am exposed to, the more I lean towards Panentheism, pantheism, and other non-theistic understandings of God.

    For fuck’s sake — God is omniscient, why does he need angels with HDT TV sets?

  9. yep funny for the ussual reasons… loved the washing my hair bit… kinda goes with the jesus theme “Gotta get that sin outa my bleeding scalp” or perhaps though no man is born free of sin you can get into heaven with hair fit for an angel… Call timote….

    The whole thing had no logical premis… how can you know when someone will die if free will exists it means that you are discounting my choice to commit suicide or the literly endless permutations created by other people’s choices that might lead to a premeture or late death… perhaps if those fucktard angels had got the paramedics to come over instead of a bible thumping lap dancer… also I notice he did say oh god help me when he died aparently thats not enough… you’ve got to get down on your knees before ol’ JC… BJ perhaps?

  10. I honestly think that Jack is doing the work of his devil. These tracts are so corny, unbelievable and scary, that people must run from his religion in droves.

    I do think Ethel was telling Tim Dobbs not to say anything because she was having an affair with Tim. She told Tim they would be through if he spoke. Did anyone else get that or has Jack warped my ability to percieve anything around me?

  11. Since there are far more non-fundies then fundies, doesn’t that make deamons better at the soul catching game then angels?
    Or is it like the part of the bible where god hardens pharohs heart so that he won’t free the isrealites from slavery, and then sends 12 plagues on all of egypt as punishment when he doesn’t free the slaves?

    Also if god is watching everything I do, then I am going to sue god on jugment day for violating my privacy. Anyone know a good lawyer I could use?

  12. Needs more sex scenes.

    After all that build-up, I was at least expecting demonic/angelic hand to hand combat or someone crawling through a ventilation duct to put a Chick Tract on a nuclear weapon control console.

    And really, to be honest? I think the angels are playing a bit lower than the demons. At least the hell boys (are they boys? You can’t tell under there) aren’t tripping people, pulling hair, or blowing out tires. Half the time the tracts make me favor the devils over the Christians.

  13. If a guy’s finger pointed at his head produces a sound like POW, those teachers were right to suspend that little bastard with the dangerous fish stick…

    Seiber: No kidding. Point in case, Wounded Children. The angels were saying “Your way of life isn’t acceptable and you must conform!”, while the demons were more along the lines of “You’re fine the way you are! Don’t kill yourself!”

    I’ve always thought Satanists were mostly just annoying teenagers rebelling against their parents. Now I think they may be on to something…

  14. Panel 17, on the left. Charles Bishop asks Cathy if that’s a Bible she’s carrying and his armpit answers the question. I wonder what his armpit wants to share with Sandy. Hmmm.

  15. I didn’t know chick tracts had guest stars! It appears that Charles Bishop is being played by George Gaynes, star of “Punky Brewster” and the “Police Academy” movies.

  16. Another thought. Did Jacko really want to say that angels sometimes PREVENT people from hearing the Goyspiel? The angel sends Sandy off to wash her hair, preventing her from hearing the story of how Jeebus loves her. WTF Jacko? I thought slavation was an urgent that needs to be settled immediately so that one need not fear the reaper (“or the wind and the sun and rain”). Is Charlie’s old soul more valuable than Sandy’s? Is it okay for Sandy to continue to wallow in her sin since it was an angel who prevented her from hearing about Jeebus? Does that get Sandy a break at the judgment seat of the faceless one? For that matter, the insurance agent could have heard the good news, too, if only the angel hadn’t thrown down the spike strip. Seems Satan might owe the angels a fruit basket or a box of steaks or something for the souls of Sandy and the insurance guy.

  17. I actually laughed at this one harder than usual. Especially the hair-washing bit.

    BTW, this has nothing to do with the tract, I know an eight-year-old girl whose mother is a fundamentalist, and my mom is friends with the girl’s mom (although my mom is agnostic), and one week my mom was visiting them and the daughter and she were talking, and my mom told me that she said something (I forget what) and the girl said “Well, nobody’s perfect. Not even God is perfect.” My mom was taken aback, and the girl’s mom heard it and she got in trouble for it, but even so, I’m thinking there might be hope for this kid yet if that’s her attitude toward religion at the age of eight.

  18. My mom was taken aback

    I meant to add “because of the way the girl’s been brought up” but forgot it. Sorry.

  19. Apparently, even though Christianity is the majority religion in the United States and, people are horrified at the idea of praying in public and being a person of a Christian religion. It is just horrifying!

    God, what a fucking asshole. Also, that part where Hank Hill was going to give him the tract is even more smug and self glorifying.

    Relating to the tract part, why didn’t he talk about the tract to Bishop. He was in the office on his way to talk to him, and suddenly, he is at home with his wife who is acting like the Chick version of a non Christian, loud, furious, and horribly ugly.

  20. “If the cover art is any indication, the titular “Assignment” is apparently to hypnotize men into going to the bathroom.”

    Perhaps Larry Craig could try that?

    …sorry.

  21. Pff, I love how manipulative Chick makes the angels. Somehow, they don’t seem like the types I want to be in charge of my soul.

  22. First — I just realised something. Chick-boy has all his demons and non-saved people cussing, but of course he can’t ~print~ all those EEbul Words, so he uses the @$!@# substitutions. OK now tell me — when you see those symbols, don’t you automatically fill them in mentally with whatever your favorite expletive happens to be? Therefore, Jack Chick is ~causing~ you to sin by actively thinking curse words in your mind! Because in Chickworld, and in the literal reading of the Bible, to think a sin is to commit the sin. But didn’t Jesus have some really harsh things to say about those who cause other people to sin? How does Chicky get out of ~that~ one, hmmm?

    This tract annoys moe more than many others, because Whatshisname was clearly interested in “The Gospel Message,” he even kept urging that girl to continue with her preaching, but because he didn’t say the Magic Words of The Jesus Formula, he was not considered “saved.” God sure is an obsessive nit-picker in Chickworld, isn’t he — the state of one’s heart doesn’t count, only Those Magic Words.

    And of course Mrs. Tim B. Dobbs would be a ball-busting shrew, because Mr. Tim B. Dobbs, by not being a Real True Christian, obviously hasn’t Taken Headship and Dominion Over His Household and thus is a meek little mouse-toast. He needs to grow a Chick-approved pair and Show His Wife Just Who’s Boss, in Chickworld terms. (Issues, anyone?)

    Gah.

  23. AMM: Hahaha! That’s excellent. I’ve been meaning to go back and re-do some of the Tracts I dissected back when I was young and stupid. I think I’ve learned a lot in the… jeez, I think it’s been about five years… since I started this site, and I think my rhetorical skills have improved significantly since then. We’ll see what happens. There are only about, what, 200 Tracts anyway — I’ll eventually run out of material. 😛

    Mau: Good point, I hadn’t thought of that. And re: the wife: exactly. All women will get out of line if you don’t browbeat them into submission. They might even coerce you into eating an apple you don’t really know about, thus condemning you and all your kind to an eternity of suffering! OMGZ!

    Lith: Hah, nice.

    MysticalChicken: Heh, point the girl to my site one of these days. 😛

    Travis: Well, that’s the fundamentalist God for you. Of course, this is why fundies feel the need to be CONSTANTLY SPEAKING AT ALL TIMES about their religion. It’s possible that God misdirected someone else for the purpose of converting some OTHER person, so they have to kind of saturate the airwaves in order to ensure maximal permeation.

    Crane: I often wonder if Jack (like Ann Coulter and others) are simply agents provocateur for their respective movements. They’re all such assholes that the biggest effect they have is giving everyone associated with them a bad reputation.

    Seiber: They were definitely playing much dirtier. But with fundamentalism, the ends always justify the means. *cough*inquisition*cough*

    Katie: With regard to Satanists, when you analyze Biblical mythology, Satan really comes out seeming like far more benevolent a force than God. I’ve actually mentioned this in the past: All Lucifer really wanted to do was usurp the throne of God. Look at all the awful shit God’s depicted as doing in the Bible. He’s really much more of a “bad guy” than Satan is. Any god like that really ought to be rebelled against. Satan’s kind of the hero of the Bible in a lot of ways.

  24. Iv’e been reading that TIME issue, cover page reading “The Secret Life of Mother Teresa”, and realised how absolutely messed up her priorities were (either that, or I was a stereotypically cynical limey, lol). But these people always always always have the furthering of the Gospel as their primary message. I’ve had personal experience of this.

    Several years ago, in my last few school years, I went to a Christian School in Queensland (because I used to live in Orst-rahlia). Now, everything they did was Jesus Jesus Jesus. It wasn’t such that every subject was centered on Jebus, but their priorities were all wrong.

    Jesus came first, so you think education would come at least second (which is ridiculous enough). However, the order was: Jesus, charities, mission trips, music, sport, THEN school.

    Every action they did was Jesus motivated. They had a brilliant Music dept., which would go away on two or three large trips a year (once, it was to Sydney Opera House!). If they did so, they would gain publicity, thus spread the Lord’s testimony.

    They would have mission trips overseas for goodness’ sake. The thing was, my parents paid about A$6,000 a year to send me there (it was the only ‘decent’ school we could afford); I wouldn’t be surprised if a third or half of that went to mission trips.

    Be aware that there’s no evidence for it! I’m just guessing! Don’t tell them!!!1!

    While I don’t mind charity work and so on, this is supposed to be a school, not Amnesty International. And you don’t send the kids off to China, solely for preaching the Gospel (which they did). It would be nice if it was constructive at least. I mean, what next? Smuggling Bibles in? Great; you can have your son jailed by the CHinese Goverment, but that’s okay, becasue it’s for Jesus!

    Yet another example is their dealing with exams. In that school, the tannoy system reaches every last area. Now, if you’re in an exam room, you have to be quiet. Now, the school had a lot of charity fundraisers all the time for the school funds/trips. This is, of course, far more important than the the Grade 12 pupils doing those important exams that count toward their future.

    So, you see, it’s perfectly fucking okay for them to announce it over the tannoy – despite the future-determining maths exam taking place – in the form of an advertising jingle that lasted for a whole minute, disrupting everyone’s train of thought!.

    Not to mention that they use the cane, still. And the fact that Creationism is so important that we miss three lessons for an Intelligent Design seminar.

    Their lack of priorities influences their marking of the exams. I was tested, once, on differentials. Now, the second derivative in differentials was something we hadn’t learnt all term, but it was in the frigging Maths C paper. Now, one person – a friend of mine, who managed to get it – was the school’s Golden Boy.

    He was involved in practically all the faith based stuff the school did, including chapel band. The original idea, with the question, was to keep it but reduce the marks, all because that one person got it right.

    I had my suspicions that because he was the Golden Boy, they made him the standard by which other’s marks are judged. So, even if you do something that warrants full marks, you’ll only get partial marks because he answered the question even more extensively (really, you should just get extra credit for that). Appalling .

    This incident added real weight to the suspicions, as well as the suspicion that they were deliberately being lenient to him in marking.

    Remember, this is all unfounded.

    It shows you, doesn’t it? If you’re not as religious as they are, then yousuffer. This singled me out!

    (Technically, I might still be a Christian in the technical sense, because I never rejected Jeus, openly or in my heart).

    It’s typical of faith schools. They seem nice and professional (good Music dept.!) but it’s a cheap fucking varnish. It’s fucking sickening.

  25. Felis: Oh yeah, I know you. You left in 2001, didn’t you! I was Todd, that Year 11 kid you used to speak tO (I’m guessing it’s you because that was the name you used to call youself online – if I’m wrong, tell me).

    You used to call me Gump.

  26. the “Big Daddy” parody wrongly lists part of Bible where you can drink poison and not be harmed. It’s Mark 16:18 not 16:17

  27. This one is more interesting than most if you ask me. Sounds like Charles Bishop is little more than one more point in the Ohio-Michigan, oops, I mean angel-demon, game; he doesn’t mean anything in his own right. If anyone noticed, he was doomed to the Hellfire anyway, with the last name BISHOP he’s little more than a damned Catholic!
    The one demon quips “I could give Ethel a big kiss!” I WANT TO SEE THAT!
    Actually the rivalry between the pretty-boy angels and pizza-face demons is rather interesting, even thought out here. The Frat-Boy comparison is perfect. Love the Flat-screen TVs.
    Regards the Long-Winded Old Lady, I remember reading this in the 70s, so ease up. Actually that’s the best part of the whole thing, the expression on the poor guy’s face-POW!Anyone who’s ever had to wait for some blabbermouth to get off the phone (even with cellphones I doubt this problem will disappear) will understand. Have to admit, the smug look on the angel’s face and the “That was dirty!” demon are priceless!
    As a Christian, NOT a follower of Faceless God but a basic Xian, I believe God DOES step into people’s lives, we just don’t recognize it. Mother Teresa may have had her own views, but you can’t deny she made an effort, even if a bit skewed, when most others didn’t even do that.
    In regard to Free Will, this gameplaying for Mr. Bishop’s soul may be rather ham-handed, but in a way, I beleive each person is given the chances needed to come to God. What we do with those chances is up to each one of us. Mr. Bishop’s death could not be set back, it’s not like overtime at the Super Bowl, I think each of us has a certain span of days; but he WAS free to say yes or no.

  28. I like to think that the panel with the infinite vacuum of black despair is simply nightfall, and Sandy has been upstairs washing her hair since morning.

    Also, wouldn’t a successful insurance agent (or.. any agent, for that matter) have a cell phone? Or did the angel steal that, too?

    And what’s with Chick’s flip-flopping between demon styles? We have the melty-face pizza demons from this tract, but others have the Completely Non-Threatening Pudgy Demons. Which demons are really running the show here? Because frankly, neither one seems to be very good at their job.. the demons here only won by default, which just seems kind of unfair.

    Also, I miss seeing the angels *TOSS* people into the eternal hellfire. Always good for a chuckle.

  29. If the angels can whisper in to people’s ears and directly influence their thoughts/actions, why didn’t they just whisper right into Mr. Bishop’s ear that Jesus is The Way and cut out the middlemen?

    And if someone already said that, I apologize for not reading, but I’m tired and can’t think.

  30. Is it just me, or is that Cathey girl’s smile really really wooden? Like, she’s not really smiling, she just has the facial expression plastered all over her face?

    Kinda creepy.

  31. fdragon: She’s suffering from FFG — “Frozen Fundie Grin,” an expression very similar to that produced by a frontal lobotomy.

  32. You ever notice, in the four-foot door scene, that both Cathy andCharlie’s words are coming from Charlie? Well, I guess he’s a schiz.

    Jabberwock, I’m thinking of Photoshopping this to include all the lines of alternative text you’ve thought of. That’ll be funny.

  33. From some time, I hear that “satan is good” and “God is evil”,
    well Job(book of Job) or those who haven’t got the mark 666(Book of Revelation) whould not agree wery much with that.
    There is even an fragment of Bible(I Chron. 21:1) and an pseudepigraphal book(Jubilees) sugest that Gods wicked action where of\provoked by Mastema\Satan.
    For more informations go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mastema and
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Satan.

  34. Travis Bickle: can’t you just imagine that girl walking around with that irriating grin on her face all the freaking time? Frankly, SHE lookes like the one possessed by demons. I just kept expecting her to rotate her head 180 degrees.

  35. I have amused myself with these tracts my whole life, but never have I laughed so hard as reading them accompanied with your commentary. Beautiful stuff. I almost swallowed a cigarette.

    One poignant note:

    “If he really loved us, he wouldn’t just, y’know, outright forgive us. You know, like humans do to each other.”

    What do the Christians say to this, anyone?

    1. He can’t, because your sin (y’ know things like stealing i.e. taking a pen from your employers supplies for private use) is so incredible heinous, that it has to be washed away by BLOOD!

  36. Jaberwock-“Why would his friends ever even need to know?”

    Because according to Chick, it’s NOT just about ‘accepting Jesus’, you ALSO have to tell everyone about it to save them too, by making inane conversation like Bob in ‘It’s Coming’ talking about the ‘worst storm EVER!’.
    You have to read the fine print, ya see.
    “TO BE SAVED ONE MUST ACCEPT JESUS………….and then make one’s self look like an idiot by regurgitating illogical fallicies of logic and insulting one’s friends by telling them that they are all unworthy sinners that deserve to be tortured in Hell for all eternity.”
    Chick thinks that when you accept Jesus, demons turn your friends against you, rather than grasp that it’s the self-righteous sanctimonius ‘holier-than-thou’ actions of the ‘believer’ themselves that is turning their friends against themselves.
    It’s ironic that Jack continually spouts that we are all ‘guilty of sin’, yet his outlook is clearly that people like him aren’t to blame for anything, it’s mold-faced demons.

  37. Joe-“Also if god is watching everything I do, then I am going to sue god on jugment day for violating my privacy. Anyone know a good lawyer I could use?”

    Don’t worry. You’ll meet them all in Hell. Thats where I heard they’re all going. 😉

  38. I think Charlie believes that he is Cathy and wants to respond to her himself. Aside from answering his own question about the Bible, he never directly touches Cathy, and the only people she interacts with is that fake flank steak. She doesn’t even talk to Charlie’s daughter. Maybe she is a pre-fabricated lie.

    BTW, don’t fundamentalists believe in Predestination? if so, why the big fuss on saving this guy. They should have known he would just not pray, so what was the point of the tripping of people, the forcing of hair washing, and making Ethel eat the mirror?

  39. BTW-only hard-core Calvinists believe in Predestination, the rest of us beleive God has foreknowledge, but allows us-through Free Will, to live our lives, judging us at the end.

  40. “go on Cathy, you are getting through”

    What kinda of clunky junk was this? Keep reading, I am slowly melting any life-long opposition, life-long prejudices, hurts, etc.

    Time to fall on your knees Mr. Bishop…Bishop, a bit to, oh I don’t know, Catholic-ie or something.

  41. it’s funny how supposedly god is omnipotent but has to rely on angels to do his bidding. not only that, both angels and demons have to do dirty work, from turning wives into raging bitchy assholes who only care about their “security” (i.e credit cards, fine victoria’s secret lingerie, coach handbags) to tripping people, and at the end, both god and satan get the credit. as they say, “soldiers get the bullets, generals get the medals”.

  42. Buz Adams is a bit character in South Pacific, which proves that Jack Chick hasn’t heard about any new pop culture in decades.

  43. In panel one on page seventeen (I may have miscounted), Chick has Mr. Bishop saying Cathy’s line!

    And on page twelve, I’m disgusted that the only way the angel could think of to show Cathy what a jerk Buz is was to set up some random schmoe to get his “teeth kicked in” for no good reason.

  44. By the way, the track was NOT written in 2004. I remember reading it when I was in high school in 1974, so it’s been around awhile.

  45. This whole “eternal Hell” thing really bugs me. I think it’s the #1 reason why people have trouble accepting the fundamentalist brand of the Christian faith.

    Take, for example, the 9/11 tragedy. You mean all those people in the World Trade Center and Pentagon who like their beers, go to topless bars, hang out with buddies telling dirty jokes and maybe occasionally cheat on their taxes or indulge in illegal drugs once in awhile, are in hell because 19 bastards who really DO deserve to go to Hell rammed three planes into buildings? And for that these innocent people have to suffer for eternity? Why should they get the same punishment as the hijacking scumbags who killed them?

    I mean, why isn’t there kind of a “Hell-Lite” for people who aren’t really egregious sinners… where they don’t really suffer like suicide bombing terrorists have to, but get to have their beers and topless dances and whatever drug high they’re into forever. They just don’t get to play harps and sing with angels.

    I mean, how can a loving God….???? (and the argument continues ad infinitum).

    1. “I mean, how can a loving God….!”

      Because he loves not you, but your blind faith, i.e. your opportunity to exercise free will to make decision with no good idea, what the actual facts are. Therefore no miracles to prove his existence or tell you what he wants from you. So there’s nothing he can do, aside from making an angel make some girl wash her her.

  46. Does anybody else think it’s funky that Jack uses a 16-year old high school girl to reach an old, established, successful businessman who has decades of life experience with the Gospel? I mean, yeah, I have a whole life of beliefs, prejudices, attitudes and values that have been a part of me for 50 years, and this 16-year old kid is going to teach me a lesson about life. Right!

    Whoever said Ethel was having an affair with Tim B. Dobbs is a little confused. Ethel is Tim’s wife. Anyway, if I were having an affair with someone it wouldn’t be with that bitchy old hag with her hair in curlers, screaming hysterically that all she cares about is her money and security. Anybody’s feminist wife could be that person. Uhhhh.. maybe I’d give Cathy another 10 years to grow up. Then she’d be 26 and I wouldn’t be a perv businessman…. I’d be a normal one!

  47. “Basically, her attitude was that people need to suffer in order to come close to Jesus.”

    I’m really late to this, but I can add that I had a period then I read a lot about the European witch hunt. You know not all countries burned the so called witches alive, in many cases they were first executed with another method and later got their bodies burned. One reason for doing so was that they were afraid that being burned alive should be so painful that the “witch” should start doubting God and therefore her – or in some cases his – soul should be lost. In other words it almost seems like the witch hunters thinking was the opposite of Mother Theresa’s thinking.

  48. Will suffering cause people to come to Jesus, turn away from Jesus, or whatever? Will it even make a difference in their eternity?

    Basically the premise is that God will throw living, feeling human beings into eternal hell to suffer in a furnace forever. Whether the “furnace” is real or metaphorical is irrelevant. Does anybody besides me think this punishment is a little inhumane? We have a hard time putting our most egregious criminals in the electric chair where they might have to suffer for a few seconds. But an eternal Loving God, whose very name is synonymous with Love, is going to make people suffer in fire forever?

    What can someone do in a finite life on earth that deserves being tormented and made to suffer for eternity?

  49. This tract gives the impression that nearly all of the random things that happen in our lives are the result of angels and demons messing with us, trying to turn us this way or that. How can we possibly know if God is trying to get our attention, or if we really did just happen to trip over a rock or stub our toe? How do we know it is just chance that we encountered a traffic jam on the way to church choir practice, or if it is Satan throwing obstacles in our way? And even if we could figure this out, if we somehow knew that the lights flickering during a storm meant that God wants our attention, how do we interpret that message into anything we can actually make use of? God is trying to tell me something….okay, but what?? Come on, God, throw us a bone, here! We are not mind readers, you know!

    And Christians wonder why some of us just give up on the whole idiotic mess and say, “Fuck it! There is no God.”

  50. Great dissection, the comics only response seems to be “Because, omnipresence.”
    Before modern days, there were no rule between Angels and Demons, so shit got out of hand like God telling two brothers to go kill a bunch of rebellious priest in Moses or something, and God hitting a blasphemous king with Magic Missle [100% chance of Flesh Devouring Maggots on HIT]
    So nowadays, Angels and Demons keep it fair by only pysically inerfering. And no, they don’t give a fuck about you, they’ve been around for “6000” years. Through thousands of years they’ve worked with better people than Modern Americians. They may be a bit apathetic, but they work 24-7 shifts.

    The idea of demons talking in 50’s gangster terms makes this so much more entertaining for me. But that part next to the phone with the demon cursing at the angel is defiantly a more hip, “Daaamn dog, SHIT that was DIRTY!”, and then the demon grabs his demon buddy and they both go”Oooooh snap,” while one of them film it on his cellphone. That was some dirty shit because we all know that listening to an old lady gossip about her medical history is a thing of great suffering for anyone.

    This is why I found it easier to believe in a God watching over me; becase he’d let his angels be dicks if he needed to, that is truly a great symbol of his omipotent power

  51. I can imagine panel 9 left hand side, ethel taking out a whip….”If you say a word to mr bishop we are through! do you understand!” (whip!!!) “YES MASSA!” seriously tim, grow some balls. after all you’re the man and according to the bible YOU should be the one doing the whipping.

  52. I wonder if when the teen who was tripped dies and is watching the movie of his entire life, he’ll turn to the angel that tripped him and say “hey you asshole, that caused me years of mental and emotional anguish!” And speaking of anguish, what’s with making people re-live horrible moments over again after they die? If God is omnipotent, shouldn’t he just know their life story and not have to make everybody watch the whole damn thing?

    Also, nobody seems to be worried that Bishop’s house is perched on the edge of an infinite black void (p. 16 panel 3)

  53. So, I noticed that Mr. Bishop was talking to himself when he answered the door.

    The bubble containing “Yes Mr. Bishop, I wanted to share something with Sandy.” was pointing to him and not Cathy.

  54. Someone left this comic behind on the bus yesterday. I instantly grabbed it in the hopes that it was a funny one.

    It wasn’t quite as good as the last one I found, which involved Satan looking like Colonel Sanders.

    Maybe one day, I’ll come across the D&D one.

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