With William Cross and his son – with Jack’s help, move to make Jack King of Gilboa over Silas, who is still alive, and addresses the people on the radio that indeed Silas is still King and that He will return… People start dying, left and right. Reverend Silas tells Jack that “he is not the one God wants to rise to the throne, there is another …
Cut to location with Silas and David – David agrees to help Silas, but when he sees him sit on the throne, he will leave. As Jack is moved to be crowned one of the cabinet raises the point the the king is still alive, and he is shot dead. The princess and the queen stand in opposition as well, “are you going to kill us too?” Jack has them removed and sequestered.
The King returns walking into the city – with guns pointed at him and tells the army to stand aside. David follows with a tank brigade to back up Silas as he tells them to stand aside as well.
William Cross and party are fleeing to an airplane to get away, but his son Andrew is missing. Jack decides not to flee and remains at the city. Jack’s coronation is stopped and is found … and sequestered …
Andrew remains in the city and speaks to the King and Queen, he tells them where his father is – and where his was going. And since everyone is at odds that maybe Andrew can be part of the family now??? hmm… will he???
The King gives an order that David is to be found and brought to the mansion, where they have an arguement after the King has a conversation with a stormy God – who tells him that David is destined to be the next king in Silas’s place.
The king is a very jealous man. And he starts a fist fight with David over what God has told him, he believes that God has been whispering behind his back to David, but David denies he has had any contact with God, so to speak. They beat each other up. The king believes that David has stolen God’s favor from him.
David flees the King to the chapel, where earlier we saw Reverend Samuel get shot to death. (he is still alive) Michelle brings David to the reverend and asks his for help, and the revered tells David that he must flee and the only place he can go where the king won’t find him is Gath.
David and Michelle exchange – I will always love you, and Michelle gives him a ring, and we hear the reverend say the words Husband and wife, because they have been married long before this moment. The baby secret is never shared with David.
Poor Jack is locked in a bedroom and we find next that the king wants to give Jack a living death, to brick him up in a wall. Then the kings assistant brings Jack a woman, whom he cannot stand… And by decree of the King Jack is paired with someone he cannot stand, to produce an heir for the king to raise right !!! Jack begs her not to do this, and she replies, that “Jack is no longer charming as he was, and tells him to just close his eyes and dream of someone who is dead…”Jack will be forced to have sex with a woman to produce an heir – a fate worse than death for a gay man. The king will punish him to no end with this decree…
fade out …
The queen and king are sitting in the mansion where we find that the King has decreed that Michelle is banished from the kingdom for collusion – she is stripped of her title and responsibility for one year … The queen whispers to her that “she would always take care of her.”
Michelle is taken away.
Silas is conversing with the reverend. The King wants to hunt David down and kill him because of his problem with God. The reverend tells king Silas that David and his family are safe and that he will not be able to kill David. The King is clearly at war with David…
So Jack is confined with a concubine.
David flees to Gath to be saved.
Michelle is sent away for a year – there goes the baby.
What will happen to the Kingdom now???
Season Finale …
Hubby was gracious enough to find me a download of last weeks King’s so I could catch up on the story line to better inform last night’s post. It seems that the King and Jack have one thing in mind, to get rid of David because of his rising star. What seems to be a union of minds now, will end up very differently to the end of this episode.
David is accused and put on trial for treason and Jack is the prosecutor for the court trial. But we find out that others are conspiring to fight this effort. David is whisked away one night to meet with the king’s brother in law and the reverend Samuel, trying to get him out of the country and away from prosecution. The alter-plot is unfolding. Something is going on behind the scenes. And David disagrees with fleeing – he will stand trial, because as David said, “he only serves his king.”
Jack is called to the jail to visit David, who tells him of the plot against him (A coup of sorts) and the king, and that David can be trusted with such information. The information is passed, but Jack is unmoved. For now…
Cue Michelle and the queen, after a quick doctors visit, Michelle tells her mother that she is PREGNANT with David’s child. The queen is elated for the family, and she will protect her daughter – but the king must never find out about the baby coming, because he will see the child dead first.
The trial continues – with the King speaking to David about his treason indictment and that David should fall on the mercy of the king. David protests his innocence as the trial ends. In the final five minutes of the episode Jack turns on the king and the court, voicing his displeasure with the proceedings and speaks out in defense of David, saying that he is a “Better person than he is and even the King, who is deserving of respect.” The King begins to unravel screaming that Jack and David be taken into custody – that both of them are traitors. The King spits at Jack, “you never had respect you FAGGOT!!!”
The King is loosing his love for his son – and Jack’s sexual orientation is getting in the way of the relationship between him and his father …
The gauntlet is thrown down. The King is delirious and screaming as David is taken into custody – they try to get the king out of Unity Hall – where the people are demonstrating in the streets. They are stopped in their tracks.
In the end we find Jack exiting the building and being held by the military guard and the brother in law is waiting for him. They pull their guns and Jack responds “So this is how it is – no trial?The brother in law congratulates Jack for his performance – Jack said he could not go along with the case any longer. The brother in law says that Jack now has the allegiance of the military and all the generals, and that they should act now …
fade to black …
I missed last weeks episode of Kings and I did not watch it online yet. So this weeks review is going to be rough. Jack was in hiding from King Silas. David is in prison, sentenced to die by firing squad. Michelle is not to be trusted because of what must have happened that David ended up in prison.
The queen has a conversation with Silas about her son Jack. There is no love lost there, the king does not love Jack, but for all intents and purposes – he is the next in line to succeed the throne.And as she said, there would be no Silas without the backing of the queen and entourage…
Jack returns to the Palace and we find the family together as Port Prosperity is to be given to Gath. There ceremony and pomp is about to take place. But not before Silas degrades Jack. Jack returns to beg the kings forgiveness, Silas is not himself, and he tells Jack to kneel, and to kiss the ground the king walks upon, saying “Your mouth has been in dirtier places…” Jack obeys cringing as he approaches the floor.
Now, the King’s brother in law, and his son Andrews (McCauley Culkin) are up to no good. When the King meets Gath to sign over territory they are seen up on the balcony plotting. Jack is to make some move against the king. One citizen hurls shoes at the king and calls him a murdrer. How very “ripped from the pages of politics” then a man with a gun begins to shoot the entourage on stage. Jack is shot, and King Silas is shot, as Jack tries to push his father out of the way.
Cut to prison, where David is having a conversation with the exiled king about life and then he is being taken away to the mount to be killed by guard and a firing squad. David says he only worked for peace… As the gunners are preparing their shots, they are all shot dead by some snipers in the bushes. David is saved … but by who???
The King is whisked away by ambulance, but to where? Jack takes his place at court as the next in line, but that is not to happen. With a captive audience the queens brother has alliances with the military and tries to stage a coup. For the moment Jack is kept from ascending the throne.
We come to find out that Jack is responsible for saving Davids life and they embrace in the palace and Jack tells David that he is “trustworthy.” The Queen’s brother is told that Silas has disappeared from the ambulance, and sort of goes crazy. He wants to know where Silas went and if he is still alive. Since the media is reporting that he is dead.
Michelle takes David to a secret passage to get out of the palace – nobody but the family know about this passageway. But alas, the weasel “Andrew” is within earshot of their conversation so now he knows as well. David escapes from the palace to find the king. He knows where Silas has gone on pilgrimage…
To the stables and the bed of his mistress and illigitimate son…
David walks in on the king as he lies in bed, and Silas says he is no longer king, and David looses his freak calling the king “You SOB – I trusted you and served you – you are the king and you will get up and do something…” David is clearly not himself because of the way he is talking to Silas …
So Jack is waiting in the wings. Silas is still alive, David survived his death sentance, and the brother is law is up to no good with his son Andrew. What will happen next???
Stay tuned for more Kings, next week.
I’m a few days late on this review, but I needed time to think about this episode because it was all over the place. Firstly, it was King Silas’s birthday and the party was just beginning when the power went out all over the kingdom. It seems the brother in law – his nemesis – was not invited, nor his son Andrew.
Meanwhile, the King is having flashbacks and the episode kept bouncing back and forth between the princess (Michelle) was in the hospital dying and the fact that (in real time) the princess was somewhere in the city lost (or alone) for that matter and there were assassination attempt threats on the king and company. And the King was freaking out thinking that she might be harmed or dead.
It seems that the princess (Michelle) told David that she could not be with him in earlier episodes because she was promised to someone else. Well, now we know who she was promised to … GOD !!! It seems that in the past when she was sick, the angel of death visited her and the king (in the form of Saffron Burrows) ala Boston Public and Deep Blue Sea. She, the angel of death, struck a bargain with the king for her life. When the time came, and the heir apparent made their entrance, the king would step aside, FOR the life of his daughter. The pact was signed in Silas’s blood.
Now in the dark, the king is freaking out because they can’t find the princess however hard everyone is looking for her. It turns out that she is running around the city with David, of all people. (ALONE) They end up at a house all by themselves and they get into a little porn photo shoot… David tells the princess (Michelle) that he loves her and they have the “promise” discussion yet the princess encourages him to take nude photos of her anyways…
Meanwhile, in the dark … People get to be who they really are. And we find good old Jack, running into his “friend” Joseph. Who he ends up in a kiss with on national television. They end up in bed together in the blackout. And Joseph asks Jack if the roll in the sack was real and Jack responds that
“the only real thing I touch is you” (Joseph)…
In the end, we see the brother in law trying to get his son Andrew out to dinner because they were not invited to the party. It seems the brother in law turned off all the power in spite of the king. He is such a prick… Finally at the end of the episode, the power comes back on. The King has killed an intruder in the castle, and the princess returns to the king, safe and sound with many thanks to David from the king. (Michelle tells him that David was a true gentleman)…
They must neve tell anyone of their love because of the promise to the angel.
It seems that the queen gets a phone call from Andrew, he turned on the power at the end of the episode. Trying to get into her good graces, the queen tells Andrew “that she would rather be in the dark, rather than owe Andrew anything.” what a bitch …
More to come on Kings, next weekend.
Kings was on tonight. And what a surprise that this episode was almost ripped from the pages of recent events. So here is the recap.
Plague has come to Shiloh and the king needs to find his way around it with people dying something has to be done to keep the kingdom safe from death. The signs and omens tell him that there is disease in the body and that which is diseased must be cut away. First thinking that it is his brother in law who brought about this demise, the king comes close to killing him to save the kingdom. But staying that order in the end, the king himself kills his military adviser who by his own admission had lost faith in the king.
Meanwhile Michelle finds herself in the hospital dealing with sick members of society who are in quarantine. Then placing herself in contact with the plague as those in quarantine are dying aorund her. The queen fears for the safety and life of her duaghter, who, in the end survives to see her reunion with David.
Jack and David are sent on a mission to find a traitor in the barren land of Gath and they come very close to being killed themselves at the border between Shiloh and Gath. They survive their mission and the king tells them both that he is proud of them and that they should protect each other. David has made his first kill for Jack – in saving his life, now Jack owes his tribute of his debt for his life. It seems that Jack is learning about family and those he can and should trust.
The sotry of Cain and Abel was related during the interrogation of the Gath triator, and you could sense that Jack and David were fulfilling the roles of Cain and Abel. At one point Jack attacks David throwing him to the ground and tells David that he should have let him die in Gath – he would have been a hero and that David would not have been known in the kingdom. Jack is still jealous of the attention paid to David by the king and his sister Michelle.
The sons of war return to the king, Michelle survives the plague and in the end we see David in his apartment – with a visitor who comes to visit him the princess, Michelle…
fade to black….
Stay tuned for more KINGS on NBC.
Ethan Shepherd, David’s brother is on trial for treason against the crown, and King Silas has the ability to make judgment upon him. This episode finds David fighting for his brother and the King finds himself in tough territory.
Judgment day finds ten cases that are chosen by a committee to be heard directly by the king and adjudicated by him. We also find that Jack is having issues with obscurity and jealousy. The infighting of the siblings is of great importance for this episode. Jack does not want to find himself being pushed into obscurity by a possible marriage between the princess and David. It seem that Jack has a serious case of “what about me?”
Jack tells his sister, “What good is power if one doesn’t use it?”
At eight bells, Judgment day commences. One of the cases up for review is the case of the doctor who treated Silas’s secret son, and his mistress gets up as a character for the defense. As we know, Silas has to turn his face from his relationship with his mistress [in the last episode] and King Silas judges the doctor [ who has had a hit and run drunk driving case with fatality] and sentences him to serve his full prison term, even if the doctor has saved the king’s son over the past little while. The king has turned his face from people who have been instrumental in saving a son’s life. And he has turned from his mistress who appears openly in this episode. The king’s double life is exposed in open court here.
David finds himself at odds with the princess, and is told by Jack’s office that if he wants to save his brother he has to denounce the king and say that he doesn’t have faith in him and that the king has led people astray. And we know that David is not going to speak out against his king, though try as he might, David keeps making the case for his brother, even if the king has bestowed upon his the medal for Valor.
Jack is in rare form in fighting to make sure that Ethan is made an example of and he has an agenda to push forwards. In a brief encounter Jack comes home and his personal guard speaks about watching Jack all day and jack responds with this quip “well you don’t have to stop now” as they face each other in the street. Jack goes on the say that “he has someone that he can trust on his side.” Is there more to read into this brief discussion between men?
As the episode comes to an end the king has made some movement on the case of Ethan Shepherd who has been sentanced to death on the following morning for his crimes against the crown. The episode comes to a head when David stands with Silas and is told that his brother has been moved and will serve a six month sentence and if he learns from his mistakes and keeps his mouth shut he will be ok.
David is moved beyond words and hugs the king who does not return the embrace. All of Jack manipulation has failed in the end, David wins a lighter sentence and saves his brother’s life and the king has made another judgment and saves Ethan from death.
The closing portion of the episode finds the princess facing David at his home where she tells him that He is in her heart but that nothing further can happen which leads David to ask her if she felt the same way about him as he feels about her. Obviously there is chemistry between them, and Jack sees this and the princess states quite painfully that she can’t continue this dalliance with David because she is promised to someone else.
Fade to black…
What do we have here:
- King Silas has made several judgments on the cases chosen.
- David has won his brother’s life in the end
- Jack is terribly jealous that he will be forgotten or overlooked in the future
- There is a double standard being exercised in the lives of the King’s extramarital affairs with the doctor and his mistress
- The Princess still pines over David, yet she is promised to someone else
- And there is a possibility that Jack is having extra curricular activities with his staff – one can never second guess him, he is always scheming and playing around in the dark on the down low.
- David cannot bring himself to speak against the king and that loyalty has paid off the David in the end
- We also saw the return of the Kings nephew Andrew [played by Macaulay Culkin] who is seen having a conversation with the King at table when they talk about Andrew’s banishment from the kingdom, I guess they are adding guest stars to the series now
- There is a relationship moving between the King and David in their discussion about God. David admits during the episode that he might not know about god or believe, until the king spares his brother Ethan, and David says to the king, “I wasn’t sure how God works, but God works through you [King Silas]
- The well written script is delivered quite well by the actors and brings an air of proper erudition on the part of David and King Silas. Ian McShane is in rare form as King Silas.
What happens next?
Stay tuned to Kings on NBC next Saturday night at 8 p.m.
There is a sickness that the king [Ian McShane : King Silas Benjamin ] is being called away from the ballet for and the queen does all she can to keep him there with her at any cost. But the king’s team has a plan to get him away from her so that he can return to [Serenity] the code word that his team has put in place to explain his absences from the queen and company. It is all so cloak and dagger…
It seems King Silas has a secret that he has been keeping from the queen in that a relationship with a commoner and has a son who is sick. We find him getting away to [Serenity] to be with his son. Offering up a transfusion to keep him alive. We also find Silas calling on the good reverend preacher for advice as he seems to think that God requires a sacrifice from Silas, which in the end tonight is made [ the cost] as he walks out of the hospital.
The queen [Susanna Thompson : Queen Rose Benjamin] once played the “Borg Queen” on Voyager – does not think highly of David in saying that he is “not that virtuous.” The Queen has orchestrated a night to be with the king because she feels that is what the people want, to see the royal family. And she has worked to keep out her “undesirables” ala David and his new found fame in the kingdom. She thinks that David is taking up too much of the spotlight.
David [Chris Egan : David Shepherd ]gets [dis-invited] to the the Queens ballet production and ends up spending a night with his nemesis Jack, the bad boy. But not only do we see that Jack has brought some of David’s friends from the front, Jack has immense power that he has a command of in public places.
It seems that Jack’s [Sebastian Stan : Jack Benjamin] story line is getting juicy. Their first stop at a club finds a very good looking boy who walks in upon Jack and asks him if they can get together “afterwards” because he knows the drill. This young paramour says the words “I love you Jack” which sends Jack into an emotional rage. What about this love? Who is he and will we see more of him???
Jack quickly spurns his male counterpart. In opt for keeping up “straight” appearances for David’s night out. But Jack has ulterior motives – he gets David drunk and David finds himself in the arms of another woman, [ not the princess, Allison Miller: Michelle Benjamin] whom he has been linked to in the last three episodes.
As the night progresses Jack finds himself amid a fistfight in a bar – with his boy toy following him, there are words and the boy toy finds himself being thrown out of the club where Jack has brought his crew of horny and amorous young friends. It seems the Gay Story line is not over by a long shot.
Jack continues on his “straight” track, having one of his henchmen take pictures of David in a most unflattering position, kissing on another woman, and these pictures will be leaked the following morning to the web where the princess can see them and the queen as well, “not so virtuous is he?”
Silas is having to make a sacrifice for God – David has been caught in a compromising situation and Jack has a skeleton in his closet. A very cute skeleton if I may say so myself.
So David is not so virtuous and Jack is not so straight afterall. The King has to make a sacrifice for God [ the end of serenity] and the queen is working hard to turn her daughter away from the beautiful boy David. What will happen in next week’s episode?
Stay tuned for More “Kings” on NBC at 8 p.m. Sunday night.
This article contains major plot points from Sunday night’s episode of Kings, as well as minor spoilers for the next two episodes.
The new NBC show Kings that premiered last night in a two-hour movie is supposedly a modern-day retelling of the Biblical story of David. Sure enough, the main character defeats “Goliath” – which, in the case of Kings, happens to be a tank.
And the character of Jack, the prince and “true” heir to the throne that David is destined for, is gay – just as his biblical counter-part, Jonathan, probably was.
But that’s just about the only gay element that Kings gets right.
In the Bible, Jonathan definitely loves David – and it’s literally love at first sight. “When David had finished speaking to Saul, the soul of Jonathan was bound to the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul,” says the Bible’s Book of Samuel of Jonathan and David’s first meeting.
Later, Jonathan is a strong ally of David. He’s the one who warns David that King Saul is plotting to kill him, because Jonathan “took great delight in David.” Even though he’s the actual heir to the throne, Jonathan recognizes that David is the true king, chosen by God.
But in Kings, Jack is mostly a villain – and a pretty stereotypically gay one at that: pretty and perfectly groomed, self-centered and vain, bitter and entitled, scheming, yet ultimately cowardly.
Sebastian Stan as Prince Jack
It’s familiar gay ground, in movies such as such as Cruel Intentions and in virtually every vampire movie ever made. Indeed, the actor who plays Kings’ gay prince, Sebastian Stan, even played a similar role before, in the 2006 film The Covenant.
In the first four episodes made available to AfterElton.com for preview by NBC, Jack isn’t an ally of David’s; instead he repeatedly tries to undermine him. And he does all this in his scheming, mostly cowardly way.
He’s a rich, complicated character, but he’s still a bad guy, the “dark” entitled prince up against the “light” chosen prince, competing for the affections of the current king: think Val Kilmer’s “Iceman” in Top Gun versus Tom Cruise’s “Maverick.”
Ian McShane (left) as King Silas and Christopher Egan as David
In addition, while there are several hints that Jack might be attracted to David, he seems to be motivated not by love, but by jealousy because David loves his sister, the princess, and not him.
But by far the biggest difference between Kings and its Biblical source material is the fact that in the Bible, David is probably gay or bisexual too, and he loves Jonathan back.
“David rose from beside the stone heap and prostrated himself with his face to the ground,” the Bible reads. “He bowed three times, and [he and Jonathan] kissed each other, and wept with each other. David wept the more.”
When Jonathan is killed, David mourns him, saying, “I am distressed for you, my brother Jonathan; greatly beloved were you to me; your love to me was wonderful, passing the love of women.”
Whether or not David and Jonathan were actual lovers is the subject of debate, but many scholars interpret the relationship to have been a romantic one. Indeed, unless you’re blinded by anti-gay prejudice, it’s almost impossible not to see it as such.
In short, the biblical chronicle of David and Jonathan is one of the Bible’s few gay love stories. It’s also one of very few positive gay elements in the entire notoriously homophobic Bible.
Despite Kings’ claims that it is a “retelling” of David’s story, a gay love story is clearly not the direction the show is going. In the show, Jack may yet express his open love for David, and might even assist him somehow. But it seems pretty clear that David is thoroughly heterosexual and will almost certainly never love Jack back.
In other words, Michael Green, the creator of Kings, has chosen to keep the Bible’s likely-gay aspect of the character of Jonathan, but then turned him into a scheming villain, while at the same time, completely eliminating any “gay” element to the story’s primary hero, David.
It’s part of a long history where characters based on gay figures from history or legend – people such as Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Achilles, Gilgamesh, Alexander the Great, and the ancient Spartan warriors – are “de-gayed” for movie or TV adaptations. In addition, Hollywood has a history of turning gay characters from fiction into heterosexual ones for the film versions, in projects such as Fried Green Tomatoes, and the plays of Tennessee Williams.
“I think what you might be concerned about, or what your readership might be concerned about is that we’re playing into the cliché that the straight guy is great and the gay guy is evil,” Michael Green, Kings‘ creator, tells AfterElton.com in an interview in response to this essay. “I don’t think we fall into that cliché at all. I think if you give us your time and attention, you’ll be very surprised at what both of those characters are capable of in the positive and in the negative sense. No one in our show is clearly good. No one in our show is clearly evil. They have far, far different journeys to go on.”
Green admits that the character of Jack’s homosexuality was inspired by the interpretation that the biblical character was also gay, but promises that the character is no cartoon villain.
“My goals are to take my characters and put them in the most interesting situation and then see how they behave, so I can’t give Jack any special protection because he’s gay or straight,” he says. “I think that would be the more backwards way of looking at it. There are times [Jack] does incredibly noble things. There are times he does incredibly shitty things. And he is a character, and this season perhaps more than any other, who is struggling between his better and lesser angels, or his angels and demons, if you will. And a lot of that has to do with the world he was brought up in. I am much more interested in Jack as a character who, if he had been brought up in a kinder family, might have been a kinder person. He might have been a happier person. But he was born into a family where the presumption is that power is an inherent good that you must want more of, and that colors his personality far more than his preferences.”
There’s no denying that Jack is an interesting, multi-dimensional character. But in the first four episodes at least, David is very clearly the hero, and Jack is just as clearly his adversary, and pretty vicious to boot. Meanwhile, while Jack is gay, David is not.
Kings is a great show, and these may even be great storylines. But as in so many other retellings, Kings is almost the complete opposite of its historical source, the Bible, at least when it comes to the gay parts.
As a Theology student we can take a look at scripture and read for ourselves about these things. If you are interested in these passages you can read from 1 Samuel chapters 18 onwards through Second Samuel.
First: 1 Samuel 18:1-4
After David had finished talking with Saul, Jonathan became one in spirit with David, and he loved him as himself. From that day Saul kept David with him and did not let him return to his father’s house. And Jonathan made a covenant with David because he loved him as himself. Jonathan took off the robe he was wearing and gave it to David, along with his tunic, and even his sword, his bow and his belt.
Let us look at Scripture once More: 2 Samuel 1: 17-27
David’s Lament for Saul and Jonathan
David took up this lament concerning Saul and his son Jonathan, and ordered that the men of Judah be taught this lament of the bow (it is written in the Book of Jashar):
“Your glory, O Israel, lies slain on your heights.
How the mighty have fallen!
“Tell it not in Gath,
proclaim it not in the streets of Ashkelon,
lest the daughters of the Philistines be glad,
lest the daughters of the uncircumcised rejoice.
“O mountains of Gilboa,
may you have neither dew nor rain,
nor fields that yield offerings of grain .
For there the shield of the mighty was defiled,
the shield of Saul—no longer rubbed with oil.
From the blood of the slain,
from the flesh of the mighty,
the bow of Jonathan did not turn back,
the sword of Saul did not return unsatisfied.
“Saul and Jonathan—
in life they were loved and gracious,
and in death they were not parted.
They were swifter than eagles,
they were stronger than lions.
“O daughters of Israel,
weep for Saul,
who clothed you in scarlet and finery,
who adorned your garments with ornaments of gold.
“How the mighty have fallen in battle!
Jonathan lies slain on your heights.
I grieve for you, Jonathan my brother;
you were very dear to me.
Your love for me was wonderful,
more wonderful than that of women.
“How the mighty have fallen!
The weapons of war have perished!”
Found on: Bilerico Project:
Filed by: Matt Comer
Well… at least slightly so, that is. I watched the premiere of NBC’s allegorical “Kings” over the internet last night. Work at the paper on Sunday evening kept me away from the debut and my favorite weekly viewing pleasure, “Big Love.”
“Kings,” a modern-day retelling of the classic David story of the Hebrew Bible, is set amidst the backdrop of a modern metropolis, complete with a New York City-style skyline and contemporary issues — modern warfare, healthcare issues, the paparazzi, the “free press” and, yes, homosexuality.
The David and Goliath, David and Jonathan, and David and Saul stories flow onto the TV screen from the pages of scriptural history (excuse my obvious Southern, evangelical phrasing — it’s the way I was raised). But NBC’s modern-day take doesn’t completely align with the stories (mainly from Samuel 1 and 2 and Kings). Despite the presence of a gay character (which the Bible also has, unless you’re reading it from an definitive anti-gay bias), “Kings” shifts the plot and story lines a bit, but what else is to be expected from 21st century media? (Picture above: King Silas and David Shepherd.)
In the TV drama, King Saul becomes “King Silas Benjamin” (a throwback to the fact that Saul was from the tribe of Benjamin). David becomes “David Shepherd” (how cute) and Saul’s son Jonathan becomes “Jack.”
But unlike the Biblical story, there’s only one gay or bisexual character. In Scripture, one can easily interpret David and Jonathan’s love for one another as a romantic relationship. In “Kings,” it is likely the main character won’t have any gay trysts. But that doesn’t rule out any longing Jack might develop for the young David.
Critics have called out NBC’s choice to portray Jack as a villain. That view isn’t entirely correct. First and foremost, the show, like the Biblical story and life, have no clear cut “heroes” or “villains” — each of the characters are complex.
While no one can argue that the character isn’t portrayed as a spoiled, royal brat, there are plenty of scenes in which Jack shows some humanity. He is a capable military leader who is tripped by the scheming and plotting ways of his royal father. He feels pain and loss after the death of his military comrades. He tries desperately to please his father, the only man he wants to please, despite having the respect of the entire military.
Previews from critics made privy to the first four hours of the show and those who interviewed the show’s creator say give the show time: each character will have their own unique journeys. Perhaps we can attribute Jack’s seemingly villainous ways to the forced double life he must lead. In the two-hour premiere, Silas tells Jack, in no uncertain terms, that if he is to be king, he cannot “be what God made you to be.” (Picture above: King Silas calls out his son Jack on his late-night activities with other boys, after his “shows of skirt-chasing.”)
I’m excited to see what the show holds for the future. I’ve always loved the story of David, even before I came out and heard of its obviously gay interpretation. NBC’s “Kings” has promise.
I happen to see this episode and found the show to be very compelling. It will be interesting to see where they take the characters in the future.