It’s been a while since my last TV Thursday post, and though my last post a few weeks ago was an introductory post about a new series- about my opinion on international shows and whether they are superior in quality to U.S. shows, I thought I would write a short special blog (combining it with Futuristic Fridays as well) as I delve into the concept of humans wanting to live forever- a theme that has been interwoven time and time again on TV, and more so this year on plenty of shows!
Ever since the dawn of time, we all have craved to live longer and longer, probably longer than our bodies would like. Cavemen lived til probably 30 years old, and now humans can live up to 120 years old or maybe longer. What is the cause for the lengthening of our lifespan? Good medicine most likely, and advances in scientific technology. However TV has blurred the edges of reality a bit, and with plenty of science fiction series and fantastical concept about living beyond our capabilities, now more than ever we crave to live more and more years, with less and less effects of aging.
Specifically during this year of TV shows, there have been a few that have addressed the concept of trying to play God with our lives, and deciding how long we can and shall live. In the superhero TV series Agents Of Shield, we are met with many characters who have defied the odds and have lived a very long time. Captain America (aka Steve Rogers), who was from the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies, was cryogenically frozen, and thawed many years later, and still a well functioning human being, and in the first episode of season 2 of Agents Of Shield, there is another character (Kraken- a villain) who is introduced, and he’s also cryogenically frozen, being able to not age over the years. This begs the question as to how people can try to beat death. Though it can’t be done, theoretically prolonging your life like Captain America and Kraken is possible, yet is it feasible, practical and worth it?
The spy series Matador, on El Rey Network, focuses on a young man who joins the CIA, and is a soccer player as his cover, while investigating the seemingly corrupt owner of the club. In one of the episodes, a plot is discovered and a ruthless businessman is uncovered to have radical plans of population control. The businessman is obsessed with living forever, and in essence wants to rid the world of the ‘useless’ people so that the rich, intelligent free thinkers, like himself, can live forever through a drug, with a manmade virus wiping out those he deems to be unfit. It’s a pretty out-there claim, which to me isn’t based in any science or reason or logic; but a topic like this makes us think.
There is also a new TV show called Forever, which debuted this year, focussing on a 200 year old man who doesn’t seem to die (when he does, he wakes up in water, the very spot where he died), who is helping the police solve crimes. Now all of these three shows, as well as other TV series and movies such as The 6th Day, Multiplicity and Orphan Black (which delve into the topic of cloning) have some element of fantasy in them, however I’m left thinking- is there a reason why we are bombarded with a few shows dealing with spending more and more years on this earth, or our desire to?
As Christians, we know that Jesus is coming back and with Him we will live forever. Yet still when someone is sick, we pray for healing, and we long for our family and friends to spend as much time on Earth with us as possible, when they are near the end of our lives. But why do we crave more time, even when we know that Heaven is the greatest place on earth and we all are going to be with Jesus and live forever someday? Well I think as humans it’s our curiosity and our inner longing to be part of a community, also mixed in with the devil’s whispers of us wanting to be better than everyone else, fuelling our desire to try to attain what Adam and Eve were designed to do. After all we are supposed to live forever right?
Because of sin, God capped the years on our life, as a punishment of sorts, when Adam and Eve disobeyed God, and while I don’t have all the answers as to why we it is physically impossible for us to live forever in this life, I believe that the shows about living longer are on TV at a similar time because this is an issue we all need to dwell upon and think about. It’s no coincidence that right when economic and political turmoil is occurring right now with terrorists groups and the such, these shows about us playing God are on TV, as well as a movie about the end times (Left Behind) releasing soon at the cinemas too. Now I don’t know what you believe, but if you’re a Christian like myself, then you will realise that there is no such thing as coincidence, and everything is like so, for a reason.
So, what is the reason for these futuristic TV shows about living longer? Does this mean we should all strive to be like God and try to live on earth as long as we can? No, I don’t think it does. For me, the message is simple, that we need to look at our own mortality, and think to ourselves ‘what would happen if we died today?’. A simple yet necessary question, that will dredge up all sorts of answers that we may not want to hear; it is in this time that I believe God is speaking to us, questioning us, seeing if our values and beliefs are based on the rock or the sand.
So, as we finish today, let me ask you something. How long do you want to live on this Earth? When you die, where do you think you will go? Sound off in the comments and let me know what you think of these revealing shows?