Controversial ‘Under The Banner Of Heaven’ Starts National LDS Conversation
'Under The Banner Of Heaven' is a new hit show on FX and Hulu starring Andrew Garfield and is based on the true story of an Idaho woman who was killed in Utah.
The show follows Detective Jeb Pyre (Garfield) as he investigates the murder of Brenda Wright Lafferty and her baby daughter in the Suburbs of Salt Lake City. While investigating, his faith is put to the test as he begins to uncover buried truths about the origins of the LDS religion.
The show is based on the nonfiction book of the same name written by Jon Krakauer and was created by Dustin Lance Black, who grew up in a Mormon household.
The show has received a lot of praise from critics. It currently has an 87% on Rotten Tomatoes. It hasn't all been positive, however. The series has received criticism from both members of the Church Of Jesus Christ Of Latter-Day Saints and non-members alike.
The show has been controversial since its release. With many mainstream Mormons feeling like the show vilified the Church. Saying, "no one involved in the show felt compelled to check the customary boxes Hollywood creators have been trained to check in this era of inclusiveness and representation...there was no flood of outrage on social media or rush by the network to control the damage."
Defenders of the show point to it being based on a true story. The story stays close to the facts of the case, with an exception being the creation of Detective Jeb Pyre, played by Andrew Garfield.
As they say, there are three sides to every story, and everyone has their own truth. The TV show has put the LDS Church in the cultural spotlight and it's a good time to open up conversation about it. What did the show get right? What did it get wrong? With such a prominent community here in Idaho and Utah, it's important to use this time to talk. There have been articles written by major publications defending the show and criticizing it. Even with it being based on a true story, with television and entertainment there's always exaggerations. Important to keep that in mind that the show was based in the 1980s and isn't reflective of every LDS family. This was just one extreme example.
Check out a trailer of the show below. Here are some photos from the show to give you a quick sense of the mood.
'Under The Banner Of Heaven' Starts National LDS Conversation
What did you think about the show? How do you think it portrayed the LDS community? Comment below.