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

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Doctor Scratch
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Re: Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

Post by Doctor Scratch »

I see that Dr. Peterson is now comparing the show to Leni Riefenstahl's Nazi Propaganda film, Triumph of the Will. Didn't DCP say that he hadn't even watched Under the Banner of Heaven? Once again, he quotes from somebody named Jim Bennett, who calls the show a "turd" and repeatedly misspells the Native American detective's name. Bennett also ridicules Taba's culture:
Sic et Non wrote:Pyre has a pleasant chat with Talba, who does some Paiute chanting that he thinks his meaningless, but it makes him feel better.
That's quite a mischaracterization of what happens in the show. I gather that Bro. Bennett is rather like some of the Latter-day Saints depicted in the show, who constantly dismiss Taba (note the spelling) as a "Lamanite"? In any case, Dr. Peterson predictably reposts this material approvingly.

Later, Bennett wraps up his review by chastising fans of the show for enjoying it at the expense of Brenda Lafferty and her family:
Look, I get it that people who have left the Church feel very protective of this show, and I have no problem with anyone who wants to find value or resonance here. If you’re one of those people, more power to you. Just know that that validation comes at the expense of Brenda Lafferty and her surviving family, whose wounds have been torn open afresh to give you something fun to watch.
Thank Heavenly Father there will be no season 2.
Quite an intriguing reaction.

In any case: I note that "SeN" conveniently skipped over the episode where Pyre loses his faith due to thumbing through a copy of the Tanners' book. I also note that it's a stretch to describe Under the Banner of Heaven propaganda. What is it "propaganda" for? "Propaganda" is a much more appropriate label for something like Witnesses. Incidentally, since I know Dr. Peterson has reading comprehension problems--*that* is the reason why we've said he's angry/jealous over the show (which he hasn't even seen). It has been more successful and has gotten a better reception than Witnesses which was a box office bomb.
"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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Re: Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

Post by drumdude »

Has anyone counted the number of blog posts Dan has made about the “turd” tv series?


It’s been about half of his posts over the last several weeks. He’s not particularly interested in it, of course! :lol:
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Re: Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

Post by Philo Sofee »

The "turd" tv series is based entirely on the "turd" theology of Mormonism. I wonder if Dan and Lou have the capacity to comprehend that... The Lafferty's were entirely obedient to the Holy Ghost as it led them to murder exactly as it led Nephi. I wonder if Dan and Lou have the capacity to grasp that very essential fact.
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Re: Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

Post by Dwight »

BlueFunk96 wrote:
Mon May 23, 2022 10:59 pm
Yeah, and also I've not yet heard anyone yet start a prayer with, "Our Dear, Kind, Gracious Heavenly Father"! That's how I remember most prayers starting in church.

The "Brother" and "Sister" thing is a bit exaggerated, especially in the secular settings. For instance, I had a teacher in high school who was in our ward. At school, we referred to him as "Mister". But absolutely, everywhere else, it was "Brother."

I think the "Brother/Sister" and "Heavenly Father" thing is far less subtle in the show than in real life, but it kind of has to be, as the show is only a small snapshot of time. To get the flavor of how much Mormon culture penetrates Utah, I think they had to exaggerate a bit.

And to be fair, the concept of God as "Heavenly Father" is central to Mormon beliefs and culture, and maybe the term isn't used as frequently as it is in the show, but again, it's just a bit of an exaggeration, not the "caricature" some seem to see.
I feel much the same, there is some cringe dialog to me as a BIC Mormon that was only a few years old when the murders happened, but I really feel like it works to help give a lot of context to people who didn't grow up in the context of Mormonism. I don't think it is necessary that everything be completely accurate to these people, the show is giving a view of Mormonism and trying to give that context in seven episodes. There are a million ways to Mormon, and while I know people have pointed out different things as being totally wrong, I can point to specific people in the ward and stake I grew up in that it this wrong thing was dead on accurate.

Within my ward as a teenager we had a bishop that would give mini-sermons on the importance of the brother and sister title. The young men's leaders were the ones that most wanted us to just call us by their first names. There was one family that the father really took this to heart. I saw some cringe moments when he was around and his kids knowing they better say brother or sister X in a setting like at school, cause the embarrassment was better than the punishment waiting at home if they didn't.

Pyre seemed a bit much, but I also had a bishop that seriously I would not be surprised if I found out that Andrew Garfield just hung out with Parley for a week or two. Even as a teenager there were times I couldn't quite swallow that this guy seemed so naïve as my bishop.

Taba had some wonderful lines in the finale especially calling Mormons "sporadically compassionate people".
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Re: Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

Post by sock puppet »

Philo Sofee wrote:
Wed Jun 08, 2022 11:40 pm
The "turd" tv series is based entirely on the "turd" theology of Mormonism. I wonder if Dan and Lou have the capacity to comprehend that... The Lafferty's were entirely obedient to the Holy Ghost as it led them to murder exactly as it led Nephi. I wonder if Dan and Lou have the capacity to grasp that very essential fact.
LDS Inc has invested decades in carefully Reinventing Joseph Smith to be palatable. UTBOH shows the whackiness of a set of brothers that were peeling back the layers added since 1844, attempting to Rediscover the Real Joseph Smith. That LDS Inc cannot swallow. Brigham Young was a character full of problems for the modern LDS Inc, but don't lose sight of the fact that the real Joseph Smith is just as problematic if not more so.
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Re: Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

Post by Dr Exiled »

I found the dialogue tough to handle in Under the Banner of Heaven. I also cringed at the portrayals of our culture. I don't remember anyone behaving and acting like Pyre or his family. However, I didn't get down to Utah County much in those days. Even so, I also had a hard time with DCP's flop Witnesses. I only made it through 20 minutes or so before the link was severed, but talk about propaganda. That thing was so full of the sugar coated portrayals of what happened that it took me 3 hours to watch the 20 minutes. Sorry DCP, I won't be buying/renting the video.
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Re: Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

Post by Vēritās »

My understanding is that Andrew Garfield plays a fictional character as detective. But surely there had to have been a real detective involved in this case. What do we know about him? Was he LDS?
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Re: Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

Post by Philo Sofee »

Dr Exiled wrote:
Thu Jun 09, 2022 2:53 pm
I found the dialogue tough to handle in Under the Banner of Heaven. I also cringed at the portrayals of our culture. I don't remember anyone behaving and acting like Pyre or his family. However, I didn't get down to Utah County much in those days. Even so, I also had a hard time with DCP's flop Witnesses. I only made it through 20 minutes or so before the link was severed, but talk about propaganda. That thing was so full of the sugar coated portrayals of what happened that it took me 3 hours to watch the 20 minutes. Sorry DCP, I won't be buying/renting the video.
I knew a few who did act and behave like Pyre in my growing up years, and, amazingly enough, for a few years after my divorce I knew a family who was more Molly Mormon than the Pyre's. They do exist, astoundingly enough.
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Re: Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

Post by Morley »

There's an interesting review of Under the Banner of Heaven in The Atlantic by McKay Coppins, who (in my experience) writes for the magazine when something that is Mormon has to be translated for secular liberals.

https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archi ... m/661279/


I thought the last two paragraphs summed up the problem of being a Mormon in the 21st Century:

When The Book of Mormon musical became a phenomenon in 2011, the Church took out playful ads in the playbill: “You’ve seen the play. Now read the book.” As I wrote last year, I was initially thrilled by this response—until a theater critic explained to me the real reason Mormons had to be good sports about such things: “Your people have absolutely no cultural cachet.”

One thing the success of Banner makes quite clear is that American Mormons have made virtually no progress on that front in the past decade. If anything, it feels like we might be moving backwards.
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Re: Which Is More Accurate, Witnesses or Under The Banner Of Heaven?

Post by Doctor Scratch »

Thanks for posting that link, Morley: I saw it over at “SeN” and found it interesting that the blog proprietor gave it a strong endorsement. I certainly agree with the final sentiment, but totally disagree with his take on the show. Perhaps the two are related? (I.e., the lack of “cultural cachet” is related to the reason why he took such issue with the show?)

Maybe more “Napoleon Dynamite” is the solution? Vote for Pedro?
"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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