Monday, January 7, 2013

the glam reaper

Once upon a half-century, in a land of black & white TV, there lived a series called the Twilight Zone, the product of Rod Serling , a man adept at teasing out our deepest fears for our own enjoyment.

That now famous 1962 episode staring an unknown and impossibly young Robert Redford as Death, in the guise of a wounded police officer come to coax a terrified old woman out of her basement hovel and into the “light,” began a trend—that of the “Glam Reaper.”

Decades later, the trend continued with John Dye, cast as Andrew, AN (not THE) Angel of Death, on the long-running Touched by An Angel series.  An actor of the same almost glacial good looks as Redford, Dye would arrive in time to gently escort the latest character “home.” Interestingly, Andrew often did so with obvious regret. (It must be noted here the irony of both his last name and the fact that he died too young and with a bit of mystery.)

Enter the ultimate Glam Reaper in the form of Brad Pitt as Joe Black in the 1998 film Meet Joe Black. Pitt’s Death hijacks the body of a human for the experience, falling in love in the process. Hey, if you’re gonna take human form, Pitt’s ain’t a bad choice.
As we all know, the tellie or movie character is always more attractive than its real-life counterpart so I do wonder, especially now that so many of those I know and care for have taken that walk. The personification of our universal fear widely regarded as the ultimate enemy to be fought to the “death’ into a young, lovely caring soul does provide succor.

Yet, in all the Near Death Experiences recorded, not one to my knowledge has reported seeing said Angel. NDEs—whether they are body or brain “deaths”—speak of seeing the now infamous “light”, loved ones, religious figures and the overwhelming feeling of unconditional love.

And that’s fine with me. When my time comes, I’ll take unconditional love over a stroll with a Glam Reaper of any description.