This semester I ventured into a new way of thinking by exploring the connections between two seemingly unrelated topics – Christianity and Dr Who. Since I’ve been a Dr Who fan for over 30 years, “Bigger on the Inside: Christianity and Dr Who” seemed the perfect seminary class for me. In our first class we watched “Blink” (season 3, episode 10; originally aired 6/9/2007). Widely considered one of the best episodes, it introduced the Weeping Angels. Inspired by an angel statue in a cemetery, writer David Moffat created an alien that could move incredibly quickly and silently when it was not observed, but then turned to stone when seen. Thus the tenth Doctor, played by David Tennant, warns Sally Sparrow, “Don’t blink. Don’t even blink. Blink and you’re dead. They’re fast, faster than you can believe. Don’t turn your back, don’t look away, and don’t blink!”
Although loved by many, “Blink” was not a favorite of mine. As I watched “Blink” in our first class, I had to ask myself, “Why don’t you like this one?” My first response was that it was too scary. Certainly Weeping Angels were purposely designed to be scary monsters. However, as I watched, I found “Blink” no scarier than other episodes. I concluded that it was the angels.
The portrayal of angels as evil alien monsters bothered me. When I look at angel statues they seem peaceful, serene, even comforting. I have one in my backyard flower garden. Never would I associate them with danger. Yet, in “Blink,” look away, and angel statues suddenly move, become demonic, and attack with outstretched arms, bared fangs and expressions of pure evil.
Angels. Why angels? As a Christian I think of angels as the “good guys.” God’s mighty messengers sent to bring important announcements to earth. They are described as “ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation” (Heb. 1:14). But in “Blink” they are the “bad guys.”
But have I forgotten, the Bible teaches of two types of angels – those who remained loyal to God and those who rebelled against Him. Those who remained loyal are the “good guys,” but those who rebelled are not. They are fallen angels, demons, spiritual beings that work against God and His people.
“Blink” gives a glimpse of how deceptive evil can be. The Weeping Angels appeared as harmless statues but in reality were dangerous predators. Likewise, Scripture teaches that Satan masquerades as an angel of light (II Cor. 11:14) but in reality is our enemy seeking to devour us (I Pet. 5:8).
Evil is real. Evil is destructive. But sometimes it is not easy to identify. Evil can look good. What is truly destructive can appear to be harmless. “Blink” can be a reminder to keep our spiritual eyes wide open and see evil for what it is. Heed the warning and don’t blink!