Archived blog post

His fiction contradicts ours - get him!

Posted by Ben on Wednesday, May 17, 2006 | Permalink

Right, now that Field* has reduced people to calling for a change in subject, what about that Da Vinci code malarky, eh? Here's my brief summary:

The book: shit writing, shit characters, reasonably interesting plot. Not as much fun as Angels and Demons though, which is bonkers and proud of it.
The film: apparently shit.
The devotees who think it's all real: twats.
The religious bods getting all shirty about it: wankers.

Violent protest. Fasts "unto death". About a work of fiction.

For a moment I wondered: has the world always been this insane? And then the answer came: yup, for the last few thousand years at the very least. Opinions then please, on the Da Vinci Code and mentalists in general getting worked up over books they either love or hate.

(Language Log links via Backword Dave)

* JGJ: "I see no point in even talking to him"
Pinchbeck: " I was going to say something, but my brain percieved it to be a waste of time"
Ben: "the internet version of the pub bore"
Tim: "[he's] starting to sound like an arrogant shit"

Comments [ hide comments ]
"His fiction contradicts ours - get him!"

I think that says it all right there.

I've been driving through my community in shock at all the signs on the front lawns of every church in town. It's always something to the effect of...

"This weeks sermon: how to refute The Da Vinci Code."

First of all, why is it suddenly so important to refute it because it finally made its way to Hollywood? The book's been out for several years now and I've seldom seen the zealots get so damned worked up about it. That's actually a great example of the fact that we, as Americans, watch too much fucking TV. The book doesn't matter because nobody reads anymore? If you see it on a screen it must be a real issue?

Second, although the film has a reliigous subject, it's still based on a fictional novel. If they're going to refute that, they may as well refute "The Exorcism of Emily Rose," "Star Wars," "Rent," and "Top Gun." It's FICTION. The book wasn't even all that good, in fact it reads just like all of Dan Brown's work. I saw "The Passion of the Christ" but I didn't see a need to hold weekly meetings on how to combat it. It's fucking absurd and EXTREMELY irritating.

A friend of mine said her pastor calls the book (and film) misleading. Anyone tried to read the bible lately?
theAntiBush, 18.05.2006, 12:08am #
On a church sign near me -
"The Da Vinci Code: Fact, fiction or faith".
Err, fiction isn't it?

As for groups wanting a disclaimer in the film - don't most films have that anyway?

A disclaimer in the bible would be a good idea, or at least having classed as fiction!
Tim, 18.05.2006, 12:44am #
am i the only one here who liked the dA Vinci Code? i saw several truths in there from previous books i've read, and over all, i thought it was a well thought out bit of imagination.

it's fiction people. don't cry about it.
Shaggy, 18.05.2006, 1:47am #
I've read the other one...
"Holy Blood & Holy Grail"

You mean people believe this crap?

Oh, wait a minute, this is religion we're talking about here, isn't it?
Erm ......
G. Tingey, 18.05.2006, 8:37am #
At last consensus!!

Yes - it's shit.

By the way that code is unreadable but I ahve it saved on my machine. Thought you'd liek to know.
field, 18.05.2006, 8:58am #
A PS -

I think ad hominem attacks are discounted as irrelevant by most people committed to rational debate. When you can put up a quote that demonstrates with good proofs that the mind is located in the brain, then you might be making progress. Until then it's a case of sticks and stones...What did you expect me to do - agree with you when you're uttering nonsense???
field, 18.05.2006, 12:57pm #
Field, I'd respond but I haven't a clue what you're on about. Unreadable code? Is this some sort of Dan Brownesque plot twist become terrifyingly real? Try holding it under water and reading it backwards.

Shaggy, I didn't actually dislike the book overall, I'm a sucker for plot no matter how bad the writing (with the exception of writers who for some reason feel that saying "he said, she said" is beneath them, and insist on "he grated, she gasped, he regurgitated etc") and it's not bad in that respect. Angels and Demons now, that reads like Robert Langdon is actually a pseudonym for Jack Bauer, not a page goes by without another shamelessly gratuitous twist followed by something blowing up.
Ben, 18.05.2006, 5:25pm #
The Da Vinci Code is a novel and therefore a work of fiction. While the book's characters and their actions are obviously not real, the artwork, architecture, documents, and secret rituals depicted in this novel all exist (for example, Leonardo Da Vinci's paintings, the Gnostic Gospels, Hieros Gamos, etc.). These real elements are interpreted and debated by fictional characters. While it is my belief that some of the theories discussed by these characters may have merit, each individual reader must explore these characters' viewpoints and come to his or her own interpretations. My hope in writing this novel was that the story would serve as a catalyst and a springboard for people to discuss the important topics of faith, religion, and history.

If you read the "FACT" page, you will see it clearly states that the documents, rituals, organization, artwork, and architecture in the novel all exist. The "FACT" page makes no statement whatsoever about any of the ancient theories discussed by fictional characters. Interpreting those ideas is left to the reader."
Dan Brown

I think people who take fiction seriously are severely disturbed. It's a work of historical fiction no more true than the series I'm reading by Conn Iggulden or one I read several years ago by Ken Folliet. Personally, I haven't read the book, don't plan on it, and might see the movie when it comes out on DVD. I don't really get into religious thrillers. I ignored the Left Behind series as well.
JGJ, 19.05.2006, 6:24am #
Ben -

Spam protection variety - not the
Da vinci one! It's OK now.
field, 19.05.2006, 8:28am #
Wohoo! RHF!
Dude, it's been a while! Have they let you out? Or does the 'hospital' have an internet connection?

Poor Field, don't be too nasty to him/her, after all, he/she sticks to his/her guns and usually comes up with some interesting material to support his/her hypothesis. This place would get boring if we only had the likes of RHF. There'd be no decent discussions it would be like poking a caged animal with a pointy stick. Fun, but the novelty would wear off pretty quick.
pinchbeck, 19.05.2006, 12:09pm #
Aaaanyway, DVC.
I've also not read it, but have read The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail. The theory is interesting, and I think the fact that it gives a far more plausable conclusion to the life of Jesus than the daft crap peddled by the Church for 1500 years is what A. makes it convincing for people, and B. winds up the Church and other botherers of gods who don't like having their silly fairytale shown up for what it is- a silly fairytale.
I must say, though, that the other theory-that Jesus, if he existed, was killed during the siege of Masada while an old man, far more likely.

Here's an interesting fact (A biblical fact? No shit?!)- Pontius Pilate was Welsh.
pinchbeck, 19.05.2006, 12:18pm #
Indeed - Matthew 27:24: "I am innocent of this man's blood, look you," Pilate said.
Ben, 20.05.2006, 10:49am #

"Interesting material" = points that the atheists can't answer, so that eventually they resort to name calling.
field, 20.05.2006, 1:55pm #
Ben, 20.05.2006, 3:07pm #
Nope. I find ufology interesting,too. Doesn't mean I think it's all really aliens.
pinchbeck, 20.05.2006, 3:49pm #
Hang on! Wasn't there a topic here? I'm sure I saw one somewhere hereabouts...
pinchbeck, 20.05.2006, 3:52pm #

Got to agree with you on the left behind series. I couldn't ignore it because it's out there and i try to stay abreast of what's around. But it is absolute crap.

The problem with most religious thrillers is that they always end with some poor lost soul struggling to recapture his faith. Notice how they always come back around by the end of the movie. Where's the real story? You know....the one about the perfectly content soul who left religion far behind and has been happy and successful ever since? Guess that's a pretty hard script to sell.
theAntiBush, 20.05.2006, 5:04pm #
Ben -

Thanks for proving my thesis.
field, 21.05.2006, 1:41am #
Ooooh, handbags at dawn...
pinchbeck, 21.05.2006, 8:51am #
You're very welcome field *blows kiss*

Not really, Pinchbeck, I've just done more than my fair share of attempting to seriously debate him, and concluded long ago that it's an exercise in frustration for reasons recently mentioned by JGJ. The remaining options are a) ignore him (my choice 95% of the time) or b) abuse him.
Ben, 21.05.2006, 10:32am #
[Field ducks and avoids blown kiss which lands on JGJ's arse, probably a more appropriate resting place for it - so everybody's happy.]
field, 21.05.2006, 1:59pm #
[EDIT: Antibush, don't feed the trolls please mate RHF gets deleted whenever he posts]

The fact that radical islamists misinterpret their own sacred text and commit acts of violence is not something to glorify. It's just another reason that we should stay clear of all religion.

I have many muslim friends and they are just as appalled at the violence and bombings as we are. We non-arabs need to get something straight...islam and radical islam are two completely different things. Arab does not mean terrorist, except probably in the internal memos circulated by our current president.

This site is not...christanity is bullshit, it's RELIGION. That means everybody, including the muslims.

Enjoy yourself
theAntiBush, 22.05.2006, 7:13am #
All religion is bullshit,but Once Islam reaches a critical number in any population it will attempt to impose its values on the society around it,just like every other religion. (quote B.Amiel)
Peter Durham, 24.05.2006, 10:23pm #
There's a fine line isn't there between 'getting shirty about it' and 'dealing with the issues it raises?' Many churches have tried to do the latter, if only to be talking about the same things everyone else is talking about for a change. We saw our congregation increase in size over a three sermon series on the matter so maybe we got our scratching closer to the itch for a change.
St, 30.05.2006, 2:57pm #
I raelly tried to let the characters be themselves in this book, and they were strong enough to pull it off. I'm not going to say anything, just laugh (you know guffaw laugh). Other than this, well, need anyone ask why this man is such a brilliant writer? I raelly tried to let the characters be themselves in this book, and they were strong enough to pull it off. They're not fictional to the writer, they are real. I hope, someday, to be able to write like him. Wow!
Johann, 29.02.2012, 5:27am #

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