Stepping into the Virtual Realities of Ready Player One and God’s Not Dead

Good Letters | 4/9/2018 | Staff
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The best way to write about the third installment of God’s Not Dead is to write first about Steven Spielberg’s Ready Player One. Their unexpected but undeniable tie is the desire to see yourself onscreen and what that representation reveals.

In Ready Player One, people spend their time in the virtual reality called the OASIS (Ontologically Anthropocentric Sensory Immersive Simulation). This story takes place in 2045 when the modern world has devolved into destruction. To escape the ugly state of things, people live in the OASIS where you can be whoever you imagine yourself to be with seemingly fewer constraints.

Love - Interests - Ready - Player - One

The love interests in Ready Player One, Wade Watts and Samantha Cook, first know each other’s avatars, Parzival and Art3mis. Parzival falls in love with the beautiful and resourceful Art3mis, and he desires to meet her in person—in “real life.” She is not so sure.

She reminds him, “You know what I want you to know. You see what I want you to see. That’s what you want.”

Moments - Spielberg - Dangers - Reality

In moments like this, Spielberg warns of the dangers of lingering too long in virtual reality.

While Ready Player One is far more entertaining and artful than God’s Not Dead: A Light in Darkness, each film shares a functional devotion to its imagined world and that world’s fandom.

Church - School - Employers - Christian - Community

I grew up attending an evangelical church, I was educated at an evangelical school, and I’ve worked for evangelical employers. I am forever tied to a Christian community associated, often fairly, with several attributes that I find unchristian.

For a while now, I’ve wanted to shout, “I’m not that sort of evangelical.” I’ve wanted to whisper, “Let me tell you what it’s really like among evangelicals.”

I am not an evangelical, yet I will always be an evangelical. Let’s just say I’m Protestant?

I’m tempted to voice this on Twitter, where I am...
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