I was pretty excited when I first heard that author Rod Bennett was going to be doing a weekly podcast called The Popcorn Cathedral.
I was already a big fan of his from his books regarding early Church history [Four Witnesses: The Early Church in Her Own Words] and The Apostasy That Wasn’t: The Extraordinary Story of the Unbreakable Early Church. Became an even bigger fan with his intelligent time travel novel The Christus Experiment. Later I read his books of essays The Popcorn Cathedral: Essays at the Junction of Film, Faith, and Fantasy and found we had many overlapping interests. Just loved his essays and his storytelling.
Like the book of essays, the podcast also explores film, faith and fantasy. As a movie buff he has done a lot of background reading along with thinking much about what it means to be a Christian geek.
The first series in this podcast involved Raiders of the Lost Ark with theme “Why Indy Won’t Convert”. The relays the whole genesis of how the movie came to be made and the influences that drove the writers. Really fascinating as the character of Indy could have been a lot different than how it turned out. As this is one of my all-time favorite movies – I enjoyed all the details.
The latest series is on “King Kong Died for Your Sins” and of course explores the movie King Kong, but also a look into Christ figures and the distinctions between symbol, allegory, and reiteration. It is always interesting what makes it into a story whether book or film and how unattended influences make their way in. Writes are often surprised by their own characters and how their muses inspire them.
He does this podcast with his son Jack, who shares his interest and enthusiasm. The shows range from a more scripted style to a more free-ranging style. While Rod is Catholic, the podcast is intended for a general audience.
The Facebook page for the podcast is very active with posts giving more background about what is discussed.