The Simpsons Character, Ned Flanders

Discussion in '2004 Archive' started by AF Guy N Paradise, Oct 24, 2003.

  1. AF Guy N Paradise

    AF Guy N Paradise
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    In my walk and continued growth in the Lord, it has become obvious to those I work with that I don't do or say certain things. They decided to name our entire branch as a Simpsons character and they stuck me with Ned Flanders from the Simpsons show. I have never even watched an entire Simpsons episode, so is this character some wacky Christian?

    It doesn't even bother me that they labelled me as they know where I stand. And as my pastor from church said, it is better for a non-believer to label and mock me versus a supposed Christian from church.
     
  2. rsr

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    It may or may not be complimentary, but it's a whole lot better than a lot of things you could be called. There are no unflawed characters on The Simpsons; they're comic figures, after all. But I think it's fair to say that if you wandered into the mythical town of Springfield, Ned would be one of the few people you wouldn't be afraid to turn your back to.

    CHRISTIANITY TODAY ESSAY ON NED FLANDERS
     
  3. Jim1999

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    Some chap, I didn't catch his name, has written a book titled The Gospel According to the Simpsons. I understand it is very good. It is much like the Gospel According to Peanuts, written by a Presbyterian minister some 40 years ago.

    It seems to me, if we want to overlook the obvious, it is interesting how much of Christianity is reflected in offhand literature.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  4. Brett

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    Just like every single other Simpson's character, they poke fun at Ned more than a few times. But jokes at his fundamentalism are tempered by his portrayal as a sincere, successul, God-fearing, and moral person. Anyone who watches the show would know that Ned truly shows Jesus's love. I'd say that it definitely is *not* an insult to be labelled Ned Flanders.
     
  5. rsr

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    He certainly comes off better as an authentic Christian than the minister — much better to be called Ned than the Rev. Lovejoy.

    Jim, the book was written by Mark Pinsky. An excerpt:

     
  6. Jim1999

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    Thanks Stephen,

    As soon as wife sets me free, with a few dollars in pocket, I hope to get a copy. I am always interested in comedies....find more in them than I bargain for.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  7. Gina B

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  8. superdave

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    Brett, I agree,

    If there is one Simpson's Character you want to get labelled as, Ned is the guy.

    They do mock him quite a bit, but who doesn't get mocked that lives such a peculiar lifestyle, if you aren't getting mocked like Ned, at least a little bit, maybe there is something wrong. The portrayal is one of consistency and almost naive christianity. Plus, a heart of compassion, if you really analyze the show, Ned is probably the most complimentary portrayal of a Christian in Prime Time, much more accurate than "reality TV"
     
  9. Bob Farnaby

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    Take it as a compliment ... evidence that your Christian witness is being noticed.

    My eldest son gained the nickname "Flanders" amongst his non-christian friends as a reflection of this ... for many it's the nearest they get to seeing a christian ... It does give him opertunity to talk about his faith, to put words with his actions. God works in wonderful ways.

    If you have to be a Simpson character ... he's the pick of the bunch ...

    Regards
    Bob
     
  10. David Mark

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    Quotes taken from: Flander's quotes
     
  11. joshknighton

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    If you watch The Simpsons At all, it's not hard to see that the characters look at Ned Flanders the way that most people look at Christians today.

    There can be many observations made from the show if you look carefully. Notice that Homer is a devout alcohollic, yet he allways goes to church.

    You have inspired me to watch the show more often. [​IMG]
     
  12. post-it

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    The Charater you don't want to called is "Homer". DOOOOH.

    Go Ned!
     
  13. Ben W

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    Yeah, Ned's a Legend. [​IMG]
     
  14. Wisdom Seeker

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  15. Mike McK

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    I'm a huge Simpsons fan and I have the book. I've honestly never looked at the show the same way since I read it. One of the interesting things you learn in the book is that the people behind it take religion, Christianity included, very seriously.

    The family prays, they attend church regularly, Marge reads her Bible faithfully and tries her best to live out her faith.

    Flanders is a hero. He's charitable, walks what he talks, even if he does take it to extremes, and always returns Homer's ridicule with forgiveness.

    If you watch the show regularly, one of the things you realize is that Ned isn't a buffoon, as most people assume, he's the most normal one on the show.

    People say that the show ridicules Christianity, but that's not quite true. They take shots at the silly, man made traditions of all religions, but they always take the religion, itself, very seriously. For instance, it may surprise some people to know that when God is drawn, you never see his face and he's never drawn "cartoony" like the other characters. He's always drawn with five fingers, instead of the usual four, as the other characters on the show have.

    The show won awards from all sorts of Jewish groups for the research and sensitivity, for lack of a better word, in the episode, "Like Father, Like Clown", which was a loose parody of the classic film, "The Jazz Singer".

    The truth is, atheists, evolutionists, Unitarians and Scientologists take it a lot worse than Christians do.

    Anyway, back to the book. If your a fan, it's a good read for the insight on the hidden religious imagery. If you're not, it's a good read because it contains a lot of illustrations and discussion of Christianity in pop culture.
     
  16. Mike McK

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    </font>[/QUOTE]Remember though, that Pinski also illustrates that when Lovejoy first came to the church, he was young and idealistic and full of zeal.

    It was only after he was beaten down by the pressures of the church and the loneliness of the pastorate that he disolved into the Lovejoy we know today.

    That tracks pretty accurately with the problem of burnout among real life pastors.
     
  17. rsr

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    Ah, a true Simpson's scholar.

    I was turned off by the show in the beginning (I'd heard terrible things, and I had small children, so we skipped it.) It was only later that I came to enjoy it's depth. Now there are episodes (new and reruns) that make me laugh so hard I hurt.

    I don't recall Lovejoy's early career; what I best remember is when the cult invades Springfield and he witnesses the flying saucer and says something like "Good God, it's the Real Deal!" and rips off his collar; when the saucer crashes and reveals a purely human contraption, he starts digging around on the ground for his collar.
     
  18. David Mark

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    The evidence of how delightful this thread has been came to light yesterday.

    While at work I was a little perplexed and I comically uttered the phrase "What the gumdrops is going on". No one really seemed to be phased by it, but it tickled me.

    I quit watching show a while ago. Nevertheless, Mr. Flanders is endearing.

    Dave.
     
  19. Pete

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    Ned has his problems...

     
  20. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    Can't see any excuse for watching it - at all. I have never seen an entire episode. The other night I saw the last 2-3 minutes of an episode and was disgusted at the mockery of God. A family (I assume it was the Flanders) was carried away into heaven (the rapture?) The Simpson's little girl started to get taken but Homer grabbed her leg and stopped her. Then the steps to hell opened up - after an initial shock Homer said "I smell barbecue!" and gleefully rushed down the steps to the tune of "Highway to Hell."

    Can there be ANY merit to Simpson Theology? I CANNOT see it at all. That 2-3 minutes was more than enough for me!
     

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