Friday, October 31, 2008

A few All Saint's Eve comics

What you can't see is the angry mob of torch-bearing villagers behind them! I should know. I was there. Brains in jars don't lurch--even for charity! I think that may be one of my evil creations just beyond the hunchback, though. In the very back, lagging behind the Charles Addams-esque asylum escapee, is the disembodied pair of pants from Dr Seuss' What Was I Scared Of?

Lio knows, from his reading of ancient holyday customs, that the carving of the jack-o-lantern and the distribution of candy on Halloween night was originally intended to ward off the evil spirits believed to run amok on that night. Here, the cartoonist reminds us of these age-old customs turned on their heads by the warped mind of a child. Instead of protecting from evil spirits, this lantern actually produces a creepy monster. Rather than handing out candy at the door to children disguised as malevolent ghosts to appease the real ones frolicking in the darkness, these young ones have left their peace offerings at the altar of the Lio-Beast in hopes of being spared it's wrath and likely hunger.
Another reading of the pictures brings about a quite different interpretation. Just as Lio knows that the path to Hell tends to be very pleasurable, today, the young theologian demonstrates that resurrection is still very awe-inspiring. From within his pumpkin tomb, he bursts forth, waving joyously at the three who have come to visit the orange sepulchre. And, just like the women at the end of the Gospel of Mark, they flee, frightened--at the prospect of a resurrected human. However, in their fear, they have left behind childish things (trick-or-treat candy.)

A lesson in idolatry, children. Man makes a god in his own likeness. Sadly, then, the unenlightened heart of the idol worshiper moves him to imitate his false idol. The effect is plainly demonstrated in panel three: a vacuity of mind, similar to the darkened inner void within the graven image.

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