American Jesus

Dated Jan 29, 2024; last modified on Sun, 04 Feb 2024

The American Jesus Trilogy. Mark Millar; Peter Gross. . . 2019. Accessed Jan 30, 2024.


It’s a coming of age story interrogating how a hero is formed, how a villain is created, and how similar the lives of the righteous and wretched can be, how fine the fault lines of good and evil are.

JODIE. In some ways, the “water into wine” trick felt much more real and impressive than surviving the accident. I mean, surviving the accident was a million to one, but turning water into wine was reversing the laws of physics, crossing the line from unlikely to bona fide miracle. By the time we got home, of course, the story was that I’d also multiplied the loaves and the fishes and conjured a thousand little Snickers bars. By the end of the week, word around the schoolyard was that I’d ridden my chopper bike clear across the lake and hadn’t even gotten the tires wet.

JODIE. When did you stop believing, Father? When that drunk old Bishop made a pass at you in the seminary? When the cancer took your mother? When that homeless guy stuck a knife in the back of your brother’s head? Don’t you realize, even your brother’s murder is all just part of a great big plan?

BENNY. Mom, this is nuts. You’re terrified of dying. You made us sign a friggin' contract to say we’d never pull the plug no matter what the doctors ordered.
MOM. That was before I knew he was real, Benny. That was before I knew your father and my parents and that little baby I lost were waiting for me up there… Just like I’ll be up there waiting for you too, honey. Oh Benny, you should hear the way he talks about what’s after all this misery and heartache. You’ll never be scared of anything again.

JODIE. It’s really quite charming in retrospect. The notion that my mother tells me I’m a character in the apocalypse and my natural inclination is to assume that I’m the sacred lamb. The Son of God. Christ the Redeemer. It’s only natural, I suppose. No one likes to think that they’re the Grendel to someone’s Beowulf.

CATALINA. I’ve really looked into all this, and nothing they say even makes sense. Did you know the Jesus story is older than the Bible? That there were other virgin births and murdered Messiahs resurrected three days later? The Christians had Jesus and Mary, but the Egyptians had Horus and Isis. The Hindus had Krishna and Devaki and the Greeks had Dionysus and Seleme. Dionysus turned water into wine. Krishna was the son of a carpenter. Mithra was born on December twenty-fifth. Horus had twelve disciples.

DYLAN. Not really. My aunt went to church, but I never actually felt she really got the message. She liked Baby Jesus and Christ on the cross, but all the things said in-between she actively ignored. The socialism. The alternative lifestyle. The rebellion against authority. I like that side of the Jesus story, but all the biggest Christians I know prefer him silent, dying or a little baby.

HENCHMAN. Well, before we blew the old guy away, your dear daddy stepped right in front and laid down his life for him… Like we only had one bullet. What is it with you Christians and your pointless goddamn sacrifices?

HENCHMAN. Don’t make me do this– You’re supposed to be the good one– At least give me the chance to repent–

So used to seeing the protagonists take the high road. Not Catalina. Who are the protagonists in then? Jodie’s mum?

JODIE. Like all revolutions, it started as a whisper. A word in a sympathetic ear.

RICHARD. Of course we can. Your father is more powerful than God. Look at all the suffering in the world. Yahweh never answers prayers. Look what we got just for pledging our allegiance.

JODIE. I’m the fucking antichrist, Father. Don’t you get it? I’m here to fight God and I’ve never been so scared in my life.

JODIE. I see their mistakes and I realize that this is how their awareness is being elevated and I marvel how far they’ve come. The Lord was right and I was wrong. The human race really is His greatest creation, and I should have been honored to help them towards enlightenment.
CATALINA. I’m afraid I disagree. I walked the earth for thirty years and saw nothing but man’s greed and cruelty, half the world getting fat as the other half starved. I saw murder and violence over coins and land. Small betrayals and huge ones. Degeneracy so commonplace no one even notices anymore. I begged for help and everyone ignored me, all my teachings lost to history. The book I left them ridiculed and mocked.

Jodie’s and Catalina’s reversals felt too quick. Jodie was evilâ„¢ until the facedown with Catalina. At least for Catalina, her tendency towards harsh judgment had a lot of foreshadowing.

JODIE. Think about what happened when Yahweh heard about the uprising. The angel he loved most had rebelled against him and was cast out of heaven for all eternity. A perfect being never makes mistakes. He doesn’t know greed or pride and so his reaction is absolute. Lucifer and his followers were lost forever, but through you becoming flesh, Yahweh can finally understand what was going through my father’s mind. He can empathize.

Christian universalism holds that all human beings will ultimately be saved; there is no eternal damnation.


  1. American Jesus: Introduction. Leopoldo Gout.
  2. American Jesus: Chosen #2. Mark Millar; Peter Gross. 2019.
  3. American Jesus: Chosen #3. Mark Millar; Peter Gross. 2019.
  4. American Jesus: The New Messiah #2. Mark Millar; Peter Gross. 2020-01-22.
  5. American Jesus: The New Messiah #3. Mark Millar; Peter Gross. 2020-02-19.
  6. American Jesus: Revelation #1. Mark Millar; Peter Gross. 2022-10-26.
  7. American Jesus: Revelation #2. Mark Millar; Peter Gross. 2022-12-07.
  8. American Jesus: Revelation #3. Mark Millar; Peter Gross. 2023-01-25.
  9. Christian Universalism. . Accessed Jan 30, 2024.