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Trivia / Chick Tracts

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  • Author Existence Failure: While he was pretty reclusive all his life, it was announced via the website that Chick passed way on October 23, 2016, at the age of 92 (ironically close to Halloween).
  • Banned in China: The tracts are, in fact, banned in China.note  Also, a couple was found guilty of deliberately mailing certain anti-Islamic tracts to Muslims in Singapore, and convicted of sedition; the bookstore which had imported the Chick tracts for distribution was also dealt with. Some of his tracts have also been banned in Canada as hate literature.
    • Poe's Law notwithstanding, the Southern Poverty Law Center has designated Chick Publications as a hate group due to their anti-Catholic, anti-Muslim, anti-gay, anti-pretty-much-everything-else views.
  • Beam Me Up, Scotty!: Karl Marx said, "Religion is the opiate of the masses", not "opium".
    • Specifically, he wasn't directly railing against religion as the quote may suggest. At the time, opiates were legitimate painkillers and not illegal narcotics. He saw religion as false, but necessary and useful for the time being. He argued not that a lack of religion would make the world perfect, but that a perfect world, once achieved, would no longer need religion. For obvious reasons, many dispute both his idea of a perfect world and whether any such utopia could ever be achieved. To a modern reader, it seems as though the quote is accusing the ruling classes of deliberately engineering religion as an "addiction" to control the working class. That was not Marx's intent.
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  • Creator Backlash: The company, as well as most likely Jack Chick himself, have banned a few Tracts over the years. The most infamous being "Lisa," for obvious reasons if you know what it's about. Another being "Wounded Children," most likely because, while it's stated in the Tract that being gay is the work of Satan, there's nothing in the Tract saying it's necessarily wrong either (unless you're Christian), as well as Satan actually being portrayed more positively than most likely intended, as he's apparently the only being who accepts David for who he is, who's not already gay himself, and actually tries to help him cope with life as a gay person in the 70s-90s, when the Tract takes place.
  • Creator Breakdown: Chick suffered a stroke after finishing "Where's Rabbi Waxman?" in 1996. He also had a heart attack circa 2004, which probably inspired this tract. In his later years his artwork seems less polished and his writing tended to be slightly Lighter and Softer.
  • Creator's Favorite Episode:
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    • Judging from the number of times that characters in other Chick tracts read and are moved by it, Chick seems to view "Somebody Loves Me" as his favorite.
    • He obviously liked "This was Your Life!", based on the number of times he subjected it to Cultural Translation.
  • Follow the Leader: Chick took a dim view of pop culture in his tracts, but he was also savvy enough to jump on a trend's bandwagon from time to time, most famously with his anti-Dungeons & Dragons tract "Dark Dungeons". "Bewitched?" opens with a Take That! to the title show (though, oddly, earlier editions had Satan watching Dark Shadows instead). "Boo!" is a Slasher Movie takeoff. "The Nervous Witch" seems to have been inspired by Charmed, with a character even saying "Charmed, I'm sure," but he also shoehorned in a couple awkward references to Harry Potter. "First Bite", with its teen vampire character, appears to be a riff on Twilight, with caricatures of characters from other places as well.
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  • He Also Did: Long before he converted and became a fundamentalist, Chick drew for a single-panel comic strip called Have Times Changed?, which was similar The Flintstones or B.C., but predated both. Ironic given latter's stint as a christian comic.
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  • Old Shame: Chick does have his limits. Many, many titles, including those written during a time when Chick was convinced Soviet Russia would start World War III by invading Israel under orders of the pope: "Ivan The Terrible" and "Macho". Others include the infamous incestuous-pedophile-forgiven-by-Jesus strip "Lisa", and the anti-homosexuality "Wounded Children", starring The Twink.
  • Outlived Its Creator: David W. Daniels has taken over the creation of the tracts after Chick's death. His work seems more theologically mainstream and aimed at younger readers.
  • Reclusive Artist: Chick courted some publicity early in his career (including appearances on Evangelical TV shows), but after 1975 stayed out of the spotlight, allegedly because of his shyness and fears for his safety (though not having to answer for the many flaws in his work was a nice side-benefit).
  • Recycled Script: The "Spellbound?" issue of Chick's full-color Crusaders comics from 1978 (dissected here) first laid out the theory that trick-or-treating is descended from a horrific door-to-door sacrifice ritual carried out by druids on Samhain. A theory that has no basis in fact. Nevertheless, Chick regurgitated it for many of his later Halloween tracts, even copying some of the artwork (including one panel of a druid carrying an Egyptian ankh for no obvious reason). You can also see the roots of classic tracts like "Angels?" (the depiction of The New Rock & Roll as being a literal invention of Satan) and "Dark Dungeons" (the hooded figures in a Candlelit Ritual around a floor pentagram, a blonde Debbie-ish teen renouncing the occult) in "Spellbound?".
  • Similarly Named Works: Chick's Dark Dungeons (about how D&D is EEEVIL) has nothing to do with Red Hook's Darkest Dungeon (a Lovecraftian horror Rougelike RPG).
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