GOD ONLINE: Exploring media spirituality

Web sites, TV, films, books and the search for meaning.

Fangs, but no fangs

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Vampires get organized, though satirical, opposition from Fellowship of the Sun. This self-proclaimed watchdog group gets a ton of mileage from conspiracy-theory thinking. Not to mention movies like Twilight and TV shows like HBO’s True Blood.

Like how? Place tongue firmly in cheek — or, perhaps, fangs in throat — and read on:

  • Opposing the fictional “Vampire Rights Amendment.”

  • Warning that humans can be “perverted” into becoming vampires.

  • Contrasting pictures of simpering, smiling humans with scowling, fanged vamps.

  • Using blog-style shorthand like CoD (Creatures of the Darkness).

  • Listing handy anti-vampire measures: garlic, crucifixes, lights around your porch.

  • Planting family-style fearmongering: “What will you say when YOUR daughter brings a vampire home?”

The group also mocks merchandising, with silver pendants with the triangular FoS logo, and bumper stickers with lame slogans: “Vampires? No Fangs”; “Mortal On Board”; “Vampires Suck.”

So, who is this site aimed at? Well, you think of groups against all kinds of folks: gays, Wiccans, Muslims, racial and ethnic groups. Except for the obit on the fellowship’s founder: “Reverend Theodore Newlin, tireless crusader for our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” So much for subtlety.

There is, however, a more nuanced look at vampirism and its religious-psychological facets. See Nicky Loomis’ analysis on this Web site at the University of Southern California. It’s thoughtful and measured. Something to sink your teeth into.


    Written by Jim Davis

    December 9, 2008 at 5:53 am

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