Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

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Everybody Wang Chung
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Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

Post by Everybody Wang Chung »

Over at a small and inconsequential blog that is largely inhabited by angry, mentally unstable and unhinged individuals, the proprietor is discussing the inaccuracies of Under the Banner of Heaven. https://www.patheos.com/blogs/danpeters ... qus_thread

I haven't seen Under the Banner of Heaven yet, but I have seen Witnesses. The numerous historical inaccuracies contained in Witnesses are pure comedic gold. From leaving out polygamy (except for a 5 second mention of Fanny Alger) to fabricating the historical record of the Kirkland Bank failure, Witnesses is nothing more than a whitewash job. Further, it seems a bit hypocritical of DCP to attack Under the Banner of Heaven for perceived inaccuracies while producing one of the most nauseatingly inaccurate pieces of pure propaganda.


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Daniel C. Peterson pictured here having just authorized the vet to put his kid's dog to sleep.


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Daniel C. Peterson pictured here describing the size of his prostrate.


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Daniel C. Peterson pictured here watching an old man who fell into the gorilla enclosure.


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Daniel C. Peterson watching a toddler who dropped his ice cream and lost his balloon at the same time.
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Re: Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

Post by Doctor Scratch »

The Mopologetic reaction to Under the Banner of Heaven has been remarkable--especially that particular blog entry you linked to. I can think of several reasons why this is so, but really, the TV show functions as a perfect barometer for taking the measure of contemporary Mopologetics. Here's why:

--For starters, Witnesses was, of course, a massive box office flop. I think the consensus is that it was a watered-down, boring snooze-fest that offers nothing to anyone who's not a hardcore Chapel Mormon. The movie, in some respects, was Dr. Peterson's attempts to atone for his various "Internet Mormon" activities--i.e., his ultimate way of "giving back" was by making the most "Chapel Mormon" movie imaginable. Still: it was a box office failure.

--What this means is that they are insanely jealous of something like Under the Banner of Heaven, which features major Hollywood stars, an Oscar-winning show runner, and so on and so forth. It's a far better-crafted show, more likely to earn back its budget, etc. (I don't see Dustin Lance Black or Andrew Garfield openly blubbering and how negative reviews will "strange it in its cradle," nor do I see them acting star-struck merely because the show exists.)

--But there is an irony here: DCP has long complained about the "milquetoast"-iness of Mormonism--i.e., that so often Mormon "art" is precisely the sort of bland and uninteresting crap that's epitomized by "Witnesses." Well, Under the Banner of Heaven actually makes Mormonism interesting: it's steeped in secrecy and strange rituals, and the whole enterprise is tainted with terrifying violence. As the old saying goes: there can be no drama without conflict, and hence the problem with something like "Witnesses," which is intended primarily as faith-promoting propaganda.

--I also get the sense that the Mopologists are resentful that the story at the heart of UtBoH is being told by an 'apostate' like Dustin Lance Black. In many ways, the side of Mormonism that the show depicts is a side that they have always cozied up to. Think of how much Will Schryver, Midgley, and others are fans of Orrin Porter Rockwell (who is actually shown firing a gun at the Gov. of Missouri in the 3rd episode). They *like* and *admire* the elements of Mormonism that are vindictive, and about dishing out pain and gloating in the face of their enemies' suffering. Think of Midgley mocking Grant Palmer and claiming that Palmer "cried" and "begged" to keep his job, or the way that DCP essentially just shrugged after assisting with an email/doxxing campaign against Infymus. And what about Midgley boasting about punching one of his classmates? Or Schryver threatening to shoot Runtu? Or DCP alluding to his "assault rifle" in reference to me? This aggressive and vitriolic stance has always been at the heart of what they do.

So, from that perspective, it makes sense that they would have no real response to the show. It's perfectly fitting that DCP leads off his blog entry with an image from The Three Stooges (Midgley, Peterson, and Gee, I gather?) since that's pretty much the level of depth they are able to handle when it comes to dealing with Under the Banner of Heaven. The show digs right into subject matter that they've been trying to spin-doctor and cover up for their entire lives (e.g., Mountain Meadows), and yet it's this same material that's at the heart of what they believe in and value about Mormonism. Too bad that these "scholars" don't have anything to offer beyond corny jokes and decrepit "Three Stooges" memes.
"If, while hoping that everybody else will be honest and so forth, I can personally prosper through unethical and immoral acts without being detected and without risk, why should I not?." --Daniel Peterson, 6/4/14
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Everybody Wang Chung
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Re: Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

Post by Everybody Wang Chung »

Excellent analysis, Dr. Scratch. Thank you!

Well, this news will be sure to have DCP wailing and gnashing his teeth. It looks like there is plenty of buzz that Under the Banner of Heaven will be getting multiple Emmy nominations:

https://variety.com/2022/awards/awards/ ... 235259886/

https://www.goldderby.com/article/2022/ ... n-trailer/


Also, Under the Banner of Heaven has been one of the most viewed series this year:

https://www.thewrap.com/top-new-shows-h ... of-heaven/
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Re: Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

Post by drumdude »

How much wider of an audience will Banner reach than Witnesses?


Peterson just poured his soul into something that reached maybe 1/1000th of the audience of this series?


The Mormon lord works in mysterious ways.
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Re: Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

Post by Philo Sofee »

drumdude wrote:
Mon May 16, 2022 5:30 am
How much wider of an audience will Banner reach than Witnesses?


Peterson just poured his soul into something that reached maybe 1/1000th of the audience of this series?


The Mormon lord works in mysterious ways.
But those 1/1000th are the cream of the crop, so there is that. The Saturday's Warriors have been fed. :roll:
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Re: Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

Post by Dr Moore »

Unlike Witnesses, Banner does not depict or promote belief in supernatural events that were attested by a very small number of unreliable people.

Banner is more accurate.
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Re: Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

Post by Tom »

Speaking of the mention of Fanny Alger in Witnesses, I want to share a clip of that scene: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ocKUzLOOfsM&t=3540s. I can only imagine the language used by O. Cowdery and J. Smith beginning at about 1:00:28.
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Re: Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

Post by Gadianton »

Dr. Scratch wrote:--But there is an irony here: DCP has long complained about the "milquetoast"-iness of Mormonism--i.e., that so often Mormon "art" is precisely the sort of bland and uninteresting crap that's epitomized by "Witnesses." Well, Under the Banner of Heaven actually makes Mormonism interesting: it's steeped in secrecy and strange rituals, and the whole enterprise is tainted with terrifying violence. As the old saying goes: there can be no drama without conflict, and hence the problem with something like "Witnesses," which is intended primarily as faith-promoting propaganda.
This is a great point. If any of the apologists have watched clips of Russian state TV floating around, how do they not see the stark similarities?

It's even to the point of "admitting losses" just so that you can say that you admitted losses.
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Re: Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

Post by Gabriel »

Tom wrote:
Tue May 17, 2022 9:32 pm
Speaking of the mention of Fanny Alger in Witnesses, I want to share a clip of that scene: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ocKUzLOOfsM&t=3540s. I can only imagine the language used by O. Cowdery and J. Smith beginning at about 1:00:28.
I wonder whose decision it was to make sure that the audio got 'accidentally' muted during that portion of Cowdery's and Smith's exchange.
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Re: Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

Post by Kishkumen »

I want to see Under the Banner of Heaven, but a lot of people who have seen it admit that the script is pretty awful.
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