Thad wrote:Atheists in fantasy settings where gods clearly and unambiguously exist.
The other day I watched an episode of SHIELD. Somebody asked if Ghost Rider was an Inhuman; somebody else responded that he says he isn't, he got his powers by making a deal with the devil. Fitz scoffs and says that's impossible; Coulson says he's inclined to agree.
These are guys who, between the two of them, have met no fewer than three literal Norse gods, and last season fought an ancient demon that could reanimate and possess corpses. But they roll their eyes at the guy whose head turns into a flaming skull when he claims he got his powers from a figure from Abrahamic mythology.
Now, the show did address how you can be an atheist in the MCU early on; Fitz/Simmons had a conversation where they said Thor and Loki aren't really gods, they're aliens who the Norse mistook for gods. And that's fine! "Magic is just science we don't understand" is a time-honored trope for dealing with rationalism in a fantasy setting.
But even allowing for that, their response to Ghost Rider's "deal with the devil" claim shouldn't be to dismiss it out of hand. The conversation should be something like, "Well, he could be lying, or he could be wrong about where his powers came from. But it could also be that the 'devil' he's referring to is Loki. Or possibly there's another alien who knows science we don't understand and has a penchant for making ironic deals with people."
They're still doing this fucking shit.
I'm a week behind on SHIELD; I just watched the episode where Coulson explains to Hale that he's been to the future, and she dismisses him out of hand, saying he's either delusional or messing with her.
This is in the context of a conversation where Hale is trying to convince Coulson (a character who died and then was resurrected) to contact Daisy (one of many characters who are descended from people who were subjected to alien experimentation and who gain superpowers after being exposed to a mist that puts them into stone cocoons) to put her into a device which will amplify her powers, using an element called Gravitonium to try and duplicate the effects of the injection that granted super-strength to a kid from the Bronx, who defeated a Nazi scientist with an alien artifact and then was frozen for 70 years and revived in the present day. Hale believes Daisy is necessary to fend off an impending alien invasion, and that Daisy is a better candidate than her own daughter, who was genetically engineered by a secret society created to worship an alien intelligence that possessed people's bodies until said alien intelligence was shot into space. (Hale is also aware that humanoid robots exist, and that the major cast of the show spent the back half of last season inside the Matrix.)
But time travel? Do you have any idea how ridiculous
that sounds?Just once
I would like to have a character on SHIELD faced with some farfetched scenario say "You know what? That sounds pretty implausible, but I remember that time a Norse god led an alien invasion into midtown Manhattan, so what the hell, I'm listening."