Kevin Smith, best-known for directing the cult movie Clerks and starring in the reality show Comic Book Men, is recovering from suffering a massive heart-attack. The 47-year-old filmmaker tweeted a photo of himself in the hospital and explained just how close he was to possibly dying:
After the first show this evening, I had a massive heart attack. The Doctor who saved my life told me I had 100% blockage of my LAD artery (aka “the Widow-Maker”). If I hadn’t canceled show 2 to go to the hospital, I would’ve died tonight. But for now, I’m still above ground!
Smith had been feeling ill right before a stand-up gig in Glendale, CA.
Among the well-wishers for Smith was Guardians Of The Galaxy star Chris Pratt, who tweeted that he would be praying for the director. This apparently sparked off controversy.
A number of people took offense at Pratt for offering prayers; some connecting it to the “thoughts and prayers” wishes some pro-gun people use after school shootings. Others reacted negatively simply to the very fact that Pratt is openly religious to some degree; upset that he is, in the words of one disappointed fan, a “god botherer.”
As if these movies themselves like Guardians Of The Galaxy aren’t chock full of tropes and symbolism taken from Christianity and other religions (FFS, Pratt plays a character called STAR-LORD!!!)…and as if these fans act like their fandom isn’t just another form of religion.
So of course then this brought Guardians Of The Galaxy director James Gunn into the fray, who defended Pratt:
If you’re offering Parkland shooting survivors prayers, but are unwilling to deal with the problems of gun violence in this country in a practical way, those prayers are empty. But no one expects Chris Pratt to shoulder doctors out of the way and perform heart surgery on Kevin Smith. Nor does Kevin need Chris to pay his medical bills. So I think his prayers are appreciated, and about all he can do.
Anyway, to reiterate: Any hardcore fan of anything who pats themselves on the back for not being “religious” has no idea what the fuck is going on. Geek culture by its very nature—with its shrines and shibboleths and icons and continual fights over “dogma” by “sects”—is religious.