New Chick Tract: "Set Free"

Even though this is one of Chick’s tamer tracts*, I’m putting this one in the Pit for tradition’s sake (there was some debate on whether the previous one should have been): Set Free

Just in time for Easter, the classic battle between good and evil is shown without dialogue other than Bible quotes. All of us have sinned, and Satan is ready to rope us away and toss us into Hell. But the Lord has a secret weapon- Jesus!

Although most of Chick’s tracts can be ridiculed, I think this one actually does a good job of delivering the simple message of Christianity. There are some very good pieces of art here- the pictures of Satan triumphing over Jesus’s death and horrified at his resurrection, and the final drawing, depicting Satan throwing a noose over the reader and pointing to Hell while Jesus and one of his angels are waiting for you to be set free.

*Although some of the founder’s beliefs are shown- note the Catholic priest being dragged along by Satan. (Who are the other people supposed to be, though- Groucho Marx? Sigmund Freud? The Pringles guy?)

Tattooed chicks go to hell. So do slacker indie kids. On the plus side, annoying cellphone woman is cast into the firey pit. What’s with the Superman angel, though?

Yeah, the standard “I’m going to heaven and you’re not” bit, there’s not much new.

I do like the pictogram on panel 9… “In case of sinnage, Jesus will descend from the overhead compartment. Believe in Jesus before attending to any other deities. In case of apocalypse, a superman-angel is located beneath your seat.”

I don’t actually believe in Xtian salvation theology, but that made me tear up a little. Given what he had to work with, the presentation was sort of sweet.

What I don’t get is why Jack Chick insists on casting Pete Abrams (of Sluggy Freelance fame) for the part of some cloud dude. That’s, like, straight out of left field.

Okay, that’s it! As soon as I can clear my schedule, I’m gonna send them a very nasty letter. I want a $cientology tract, dammit!

The angel with the scissors is kinda creepy, but other than that - yawn. Where’s all the bigotry and hatred? I confess, I am disappointed.

Definitely a Priest there. The woman with what I believe to be a pentagram tattooed on her arm is supposed to represent a Satan worshiper? Yeah, that one dude did look like Sigmund Freud. So, all psychiatrists go to hell? The Pringle’s/Monopoly guy though I’m not sure what ol’ Chickie’s gettin’ at with him. I’m really disappointed that none of the condemned to hell people looked gay. Does Chickie not hate us anymore?

We did have Fang in one panel. I have a real soft spot for ol’ Fang so it’s always good to see him.

Let me get this straight. I’ve a rope around my neck. If I pray at Jesus I will die and go to heaven?

I’ll wait to pray at Jesus then because I don’t want to die right now.

I’m disappointed Jesus descended to Earth like the Flying Nun rather than Superman, but that’s more than made up for by the Disco Jesus of the last few panels. Let he who is without sin be the first to…boogie down!

I’m very upset that there is a dog in the first panel. I thought all dogs went to heaven!!!

The woman behind Groucho in the first panel looks like she’s either horribly dressed or a transvestite, so maybe she’s gay.

Also, what are those things on the side of the cross supposed to be? Chains? At first I thought it was Jesus’s blood dripping from his hands, but it’s still there in the panel after that. Also, in that same panel, is the person tied to Satan’s rope behind the cross just really far away or a midget?

He reminded me more of the Creeps in Dark City

This saddens me. I don’t think Jack Chick is even trying any more.

Here’s something that calls itself a parody of Jack T. Chick. The art is better, though.

You know I’m too domestic…

In the third image the first thing I thought of was “Man, she got her figure back fast.”

The bit with everyone being tied reminds me of an old SciFi story I read, maybe it was in one of my dad’s Playboy magazines. There was no backstory to the situation in the story, but I still felt it compelling.

The whole human race was living in a gigantic valley, sort of like a wok with a hole in the center. Every person had a life-support cable attached to them and the other end of the cable went into the hole. The cable was where all the food came from and it also slowly–or quickly–pulled each person into the hole and their final demise. A woman would know she’s pregnant by seeing a little cable come shooting out of the hole and inserting itself into her to attach itself to the baby.

Anyone recognize the story?

Download this while you can. The art is from a real Chick tract, done by his associate Fred Carter. It’s only a matter of time before they get a JTC-lawyer Cease&Desist Letter.

If you analyze the people going to hell (in the latter grouping) you have-

Hook nose man in black coat- Jewish stereotype?

Bearded, bald man with a briefcase- Looks like stereotypical scientist?

Woman with star tatoo- pentagram? Wiccan?

Or is it just me…?

No kidding? Cool! I’m definitely saving this one. I’m not used to Chick presenting quality art.

It makes my day that this is actually art damage. Praise “Bob”!

Why bother cutting the rope when, not just a panel later, each saved person had slipped out of their respective noose? Seemed like a waste of angelic effort if you ask me.