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The Comparison of Satan in the Bible to Media

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Essay title: The Comparison of Satan in the Bible to Media

The Comparison Of Satan In The Bible To Media

Date: April 8, 2006 2:06 pm

Subject: Music and Movies

Word Count: 3601

Page Count: 15

The Comparison Of Satan In The Bible To MediaTHESISWhen we think of the portrayal of Satan, the prince of darkness, in the different texts, films, and religions, there are many things that are common traits. But there are also things which differ in each medium, and that is what this paper will be exploring. Using three different sources, the movies End of Days, Devil's Advocate, and Spawn(not the most profound movie I admit, but a sharp contrast and an interesting portrayal Satan), and compare them to the Bible to show the different ways that Satan is portrayed, both visually and personality wise. The first thing that needs to be explored is the way Satan is portrayed visually within these three references. The first, both chronologically and by importance, would be the Bible. Originally, in the Garden of Eden, Satan is portrayed a serpent, though with legs. Now, nowhere in the Bible does it come right out and say that the serpent in the garden was actually Satan, but it is heavily implied throughout the book that it was he. After the serpent convinces Adam and Eve to eat the forbidden fruit, God says, So the LORD God said to the serpent, Because you have done this, Cursed are you above all the livestock and all the wild animals! You will crawl on your belly and you will eat dust all the days of your life(Genesis 3:14). This is the first time Satan (or at least what everyone is convinced is Satan) is portrayed with a visual reference in the bible. All throughout the bible, Satan is given a serpent like appearance, as in Revelations 20:2 And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil and Satan, and bound him a thousand years. So, to sum up what I've been saying for the past paragraph, Satan in the Bible is portrayed as a serpent-like creature.In the movie End of Days, you don't see Satan portrayed right off, you merely hear his voice saying, Behold the thousand years has ended, and you have failed. However, before Satan is even portrayed in the movie, there is a reference to the serpent form he is given in the bible. A child that he is destined to become betrothed too is born, and is taken down, where a snake is sliced open and some of the blood fed to her. Later in the film, the now grown up child Christine is said to have his blood in her. Which means that the snake is indeed a decedent from Satan, or at least that's what they're implying in the movie. The first time we see Satan in the film, it is for our eyes only, meaning that the characters in the movie cannot see him. He is portrayed at first as a spirit of sorts, translucent and shimmering, no real substance, as he seeks out a suitable human form. The form he finds is an unnamed human, played by Gabriel Byrne. The man is quite fit, with dark hair, slicked to one side, and impeccably dressed. After his human form is destroyed beyond repair by a man named Jericho Cane (played by Arnold, an ex police officer turned bodyguard, who has lost faith in God for losing his family), he once again becomes the translucent spirit that he was in the beginning, which only the audience can see. Than, after a rather ominous silence, Satan pops up from the floor of the church Jericho has taken refuge in, now what would be considered his true form (if beings such as God and Satan can be said to have one permanent form that they prefer.) His true form is quite hideous actually, as he now is at least 20-30 feet tall, composed mainly of what appears to be rotting flesh. He resembles a giant bat more than anything else, with large bat like wings and a face that is similar to that of a bat. He also has the customary horns, though they stick out to the sides and are more like spikes, and a barbed tail. So this is the physical portrayal of the prince of darkness in the movie.In the movie, Devil's Advocate, Satan (played by the illustrious Al Pacino) is portrayed much the same way as in End of Days for a while. He's visually given to us as a normal man throughout the whole movie, save for the very end. He seems to be a suave, sophisticated man who wears nice suits and is a rich individual. He has hair slicked to the side, a somewhat wrinkled facial appearance, and a constant smile on his face that seems to hide something more insidious, which it does. He can also assume other forms, as he turns into a reporter at the end and than shifts back into his normal guise. There's virtually no reference to the snake portrayal, nor is there much of a reference to the more classical portrayal of Satan, with the horns, wings, tail, and cloven feet. The only time the devil in this movie is not given a human form is

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