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God on the Streets of Gotham: What the Big Screen Batman Can Teach Us about God and Ourselves

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  129 ratings  ·  26 reviews
What do God and the Caped Crusader have in common? While Batman is a secular superhero patrolling the fictional streets of Gotham City, the Caped Crusader is one whose story creates multiple opportunities for believers to talk about the redemptive spiritual truths of Christianity. While the book touches on Batman's many incarnations over the last 70 years in print, on tele ...more
Paperback, 216 pages
Published June 1st 2012 by Tyndale House Publishers (first published May 18th 2012)
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Average rating 3.95  · 
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 ·  129 ratings  ·  26 reviews


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Start your review of God on the Streets of Gotham: What the Big Screen Batman Can Teach Us about God and Ourselves
Eva-Joy
Apr 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018-books
Actual rating: 4.5

SO GOOD. And deep. And just plain wonderful.
Renn Shearin
Jul 18, 2012 rated it it was ok
What do God and the Caped Crusader have in common? While Batman is a secular superhero patrolling the fictional streets of Gotham City, the Caped Crusader is one whose story creates multiple opportunities for believers to talk about the redemptive spiritual truths of Christianity. While the book touches on Batman's many incarnations over the last 70 years in print, on television, and at the local Cineplex for the enjoyment of Batman fans everywhere, it primarily focuses on Christopher Nolan's tw ...more
Adam Collings
Dec 05, 2012 rated it really liked it
In God on the Streets of Gotham, Paul Asay delves deep into the psyche of Batman, examining his motivations, strengths and weaknesses and draws spiritual lessons from everyone's favourite vigilante. The author has a good understanding of both topics.

So why would you write a book pulling Christian messages out of Batman? I say 'why not'. This book is fun as well as thought-provoking. As the subtitle suggests, this book will teach you a little something about God and yourself, and it may just insp
...more
Kathleen (Kat) Smith
In light of all the recent summer blockbusters coming to the big screen, I thought I would share with you an incredible book, I had the privileged to get to read and review. It's Paul Asay's debut book, God on the Streets of Gotham, What the Big Screen Can Teach Us About God and Ourselves. I have to say if you're a Christian and love super heroes, then you will LOVE this one.

Here's just a sample of the synopis from the rear cover:

"For more than seventy years, Batman has captured the imagination
...more
Nikole Hahn
May 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing
The caped crusader stopped thrilling me. After so many Batman movies, one wonders why movie producers aren’t utilizing the many original novels out there instead. God on the Streets of Gotham by Paul Asay gives Batman a different spin.

Batman has fascinated many since its inception in the DC Comics. Paul explores the similarities between Batman and Christ. Paul isn’t saying Batman was ever a believer, but he dissects Batman and Batman’s famous villains. The villains are a bit like us. Paul looks
...more
Seth
Oct 02, 2012 rated it really liked it
God on the Streets of Gotham What the Big Screen Batman Can Teach Us about God and Ourselves by Paul Asay

I love comics and the heroes (or villains, at times) that grace those pages. I love fantasy and seeing a whole new world brought into creation symbolically representing our everyday life. It allows you to look at yourself and the world around you in a slightly different way that helps you to understand the interactions that take place between yourself and everything else. Batman is no different as his story of fear, pain, failure, love, redemption, and so many more human characteristics take
...more
Lisa Johnson
Jul 24, 2012 rated it really liked it
Title: God on the Streets of Gotham: What the Big Screen Batman Can Teach Us about God and Ourselves
Author: Paul Asay
Year: 2012
Pages: 240
Publisher: Tyndale
Note: I received a complimentary copy for an honest review of this book. The opinions shared in this review are solely my responsibility. Other reviews can be read at http://seekingwithallyurheart.blogspo... . Also follow me on Twitter @lcjohnson1988
In the wake of recent events in Colorado, this was one of the hardest reviews to write. Not be
...more
Amanda
Jul 14, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: comics
I'm honestly not sure how I feel about this book. I think I wanted it to be something that it isn't, and I'm not sure that I am the intended audience for this book.

I was hoping this book would be more of a scholarly look at Batman in terms of religion, but what it actually is is more of a sermon about being a good Christian with some Batman examples thrown in as metaphor. I think that perhaps, if I had never given much deeper thought to anything Batman related, this would have been an exciting r
...more
Daniel
Nov 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2016
I found this book by serendipity while browsing my library's digital app for something to read over the Thanksgiving break, and let's be real, how could I not read it? I mean, it's a theological book dealing with Batman! I'm doing this book a disservice by reviewing it almost three months after finishing it, but I still want to do it because I thought it was that good, and others need to hear about it.

The first thing Asay does is tell us that he's no theologian, that he's a devout Christian and
...more
Adam Graham
Oct 13, 2012 rated it really liked it
What does Batman have to do with Christianity? To many cynical modern Batman fans, the answer is, "Nothing." Batman is a lapsed probably Episcopalian, maybe lapsed Catholic, with no religious underpinnings. For such fans, Paul Asay's God on the Streets of Gotham will seem like an absurd concept.

However, writers borrow from the culture around them, either intentionally or by accident. Of Shakespeare's thirty-six plays, thirty-five were based on some other work or story. If Shakespeare had to borr
...more
Tim
Jun 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviewed
"I'm Batman." It's a phrase that I'm not ashamed to admit, I've uttered a time or two (each month). At two years and two months the The Little One is potty-training like a champ and I'm certain his new "big boy" Batman undies are a big part of it. 

I look forward to the day that both he and his little brother (The Squeaky One) are old enough to watch Batman: The Animated Series with me. (And the movies, of course, but those would be later.) 



The Twitter² Summary: 

Batman has delighted and thri
...more
Brenten Gilbert
Whenever I write about anything that touches the world of comic book superheroes, I feel I should explain that I didn’t read a lot of comic books growing up. Certainly not Batman. If I got comic books at all, it was usually a Kool-Aid Man special or maybe even a Disney comic book. I did watch The Super Friends TV show that Asay references here and I have seen the first 2 of Nolan’s Dark Knight movies. Okay, comic book credentials aside, I do have plenty to say about finding spiritual insights in ...more
Suzanne
Jun 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing
God on the Streets of Gotham by Paul Asay was a book that I picked solely because a friend of ours wrote a review on The Dark Knight when it premiered and drew several spiritual parallels between the movie and Jesus Christ. I must say that this book did not disappoint in the least and I actually found myself underlining and folding down page corners. I never do that! The author looked at several different aspects of Batman from his armor to his code to his sacrifice and made comparisons between ...more
Rick
Feb 01, 2016 rated it really liked it
Holy good reads, Batman!

Paul Asay has written a great book for growing Christians and avid Capped Crusader fans alike. Seriously.

God on the Streets of Gotham is a page-turner for anyone who has followed Bruce Wayne for any number of years. While I have never met Paul, I can only assume he is a huge comic book fan, or is incredible at research. I suppose it could be both, but my guess is that his fanboy personality leads to the drive to be thorough.

'No honey, I must watch the movies again for th
...more
Richard
Oct 25, 2013 rated it liked it
Remember when everyone was writing about how you could find God in The Matrix movies? Remember all of those "The Philosophy/Spirituality/Meaning of The Matrix" books? It seemed that everyone was trying to mooch off of the movie's success.

Paul Asay has tried to do that with the new Batman movie.

He's taken the celebrity of Christopher Nolan's Batman trilogy and attempted to teach us a little something about God, Jesus and the Bible.

This isn't a bad book by any definition. Asay takes aspects of the
...more
Ánderson
Dec 28, 2012 rated it liked it
Nice attempt trying to connect Batman with theology. I chose to read it just because I got it for free and the topic seemed interesting; but it was not long before I found myself a little disappointed. Do not misunderstand me, the book is good and manages to offer what it promises, the problem is with me. 
As a "professional minister" and a student of theology for several years, the theological concepts presented in this book are quite simplistic for me. The author has an evident Calvinist inclin
...more
Hank
Jan 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: geek-orthodoxy
If I were to teach a class on what I call Geek Theology (that is, using popular geek culture to teach biblical themes), this would be one of my go-to textbooks. The author has very thoughtfully considered many of the themes celebrated in Christianity, such as purpose, calling, companionship, and sacrifice, and how they are presented in the Batman legendarium, concentrating mostly the Christopher Nolan films. Yet he doesn't get stay-eyed and make the mistake of claiming that Batman is a Christian ...more
Alex
Dec 13, 2012 rated it it was ok
I was hoping for more of a philosophical/ethical discussion on Batman and religion. While there are sections that cover that, the majority of the author's time is spent writing a sermon for you and using Batman to relate to the reader. He notes some interesting similarities and possible symbolism at times but he also makes some assumptions that are clearly made to fit his personal opinion. Also, of note the author clearly does not know what the word 'Darwinian' means. He also essentially claims ...more
Arthur O'dell
As a Batman fan and a Christian, I enjoyed Asay's use of the Dark Knight to explore spiritual truths and theological reflections. To be clear, the book does not claim that Batman is a Christian, or that Batman stories are Christian fiction in disguise. The book's goal is more modest: that reflecting about Batman's character, origins, nemeses, and stories can provide insight into the Christian's journey through life and struggles with sin and suffering. Yes, Asay occasionally stretches too far to ...more
Joel Jackson
Dec 30, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: spirituality
The content of this book is good as far as what it offers. I did feel that the author could have gone further into the batman mythology and offered more in regards to how batman has fit into the philosophical myths of our society as it has developed. There is certainly a pattern to how batman is presented in terms of his relationship to ideologies consistent with modernism and postmodernism. In addition, I felt that the writing was often well crafted, but at times I felt it dragged me along. Ove ...more
David Herndon
Dec 31, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Well written and thought provoking. I went into the book a bit skeptical, even though I am both a minister and a comic book collector. With Batman being my favorite hero, I was apprehensive about him being forced into some Christian role model/hero. No worries. An extremely engaging book well worth your time to read - it will even give you a lot to think about
Hardus
Aug 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing
A brilliant book, both as a Batman study and as a book on what religious lessons and inspiration we can draw from the masked hero. What Paul Asay writes is true and gripping, and how he writes it is equally so.
Jeff Schultz
Jun 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
Decent read. There were quite a few stretches mapping things in the Batman mythos (mostly the Christian Bale movies) to Christian themes; mostly because Batman is the most humanist of the superheroes. The remapping of Paul's armor of God to the Bat-suit of God was pretty cool, though. ...more
Darrin Niday
Feb 11, 2013 rated it really liked it
I thought that this was a fun way to present the gospel and comparing it to the batman movies made it a fun read. I gained a few interesting insights to both batman and Jesus.
Claire
Aug 19, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Officially joined my top 5 favorites! This is one you have to look out for!
Lala
rated it it was amazing
Feb 24, 2018
Josh Tatter
rated it it was amazing
Jun 26, 2012
Bob
rated it it was amazing
Jun 30, 2019
Aaron
rated it liked it
Jan 17, 2014
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Paul Asay is associate editor at Plugged In, a ministry that reaches more than six million people with movie reviews that help people understand popular cultural trends and how they intersect with spiritual issues. Paul is an award-winning journalist who covered religion at The (Colorado Springs) Gazette and whose work has been published by such outlets as The Washington Post, Christianity Today, ...more

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According to some historians, the month of April is actually named after Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love, by way of the Romans....
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“Forget Batman: when I really thought about what I wanted to be when I grew up, I wanted to be my dad.” 25 likes
“Like Batman, all of us hide behind our masks and use them to help define ourselves for others. We all have secret identities of a sort, hidden behind our smiling social-networking profiles or our happy church faces. They're not lies, really. They're just not the whole truth, because we know that most of the people we encounter day-to-day couldn't handle the truth (or perhaps we couldn't handle giving it to them).” 19 likes
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