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The Kingsmen

The Kingsmen

By The Kingsmen

The Kingsmen is a podcast bridging Christian ideas with pop culture and martial arts.
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S2E03 Superman

The KingsmenAug 21, 2019

S4E03 Black Panther: Wakanda Forever

S4E03 Black Panther: Wakanda Forever

The Kingsmen take on the hit film Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (2022). By watching extraordinary heroes and villains grapple with grief and the threat of destruction, we learn something about what it means to be human, to lament, to be merciful, to forgive, and to find peace.

[00:00:07] Intro 

[00:00:38] Honoring Chadwick Boseman

[00:03:12] Railing Against Death 

[00:04:52] Processing Grief Through the Characters

[00:07:03] Helpless in the Face of Death

[00:07:53] Missing the Mark

[00:10:05] The Suffering of Being Silenced

[00:11:37] Biblical Lament

[00:13:41] Why is More Important than How

[00:17:40] The Domain of Science versus Metaphysics

[00:20:29] Modern Understanding of Religion

[00:23:19] Judging Moral Superiority 

[00:26:04] Is it Moral to Sacrifice Someone Else? 

[00:28:06] Queen Ramonda as a Type of Mary

[00:32:34] Breaking the Cycle of Violence through Mercy

[00:35:48] Hopeful Intercession of the Saints

[00:38:24] Shuri's Core Identity

[00:39:38] Mother Mary, Child of God

[00:41:26] Envisioning the Enemy as Our Brother

[00:44:14] Comparing the Conflicts Between the Two Movies

[00:45:36] The Stupidity and Futility of Evil

[00:47:17] The Gift of Wise Counsel

[00:48:08] The Life-Saving Restraints of Religion

[00:49:53] Resurrection Makes Forgiveness Possible

[00:52:36] Deification as Becoming Something More Than Human

[00:54:54] Communion: Participating in God's Humility

[00:59:18] Ignoring Our Loss and Grief Through Tech 

[01:03:20] Conclusion

Mar 14, 202301:03:47
S4E02 Andor

S4E02 Andor

The Kingsmen enter into the morally gray world of Star Wars: Andor. Though it occurs in a galaxy far, far away, it is strikingly similar to our own world here. Join us as we draw out some Christian and religious insights on oppression, evil, hope, humanity, ritual, sacrifice, and love.

[00:00:13] Introduction
[00:00:28] Andor is a Stupid Show, Right?
[00:01:12] Who Cares about a Nobody?
[00:01:44] The Rebellion from the Ground
[00:02:42] Identifying with the Oppressed
[00:03:45] Everyday Evil
[00:08:50] Evil as a Manifestation of Empire
[00:10:51] Imperial Tolerance of Cultural Heritage
[00:14:31] Exterminating Germs, Not Human Beings
[00:16:40] Giving Up Freedoms for Security
[00:18:52] Comfort Stations
[00:21:19] Jesus' Temptation to Feed Himself
[00:22:17] Something Worth Living and Dying For
[00:25:23] Different Soils, Different Fruits
[00:27:09] Keeping Hope Alive
[00:28:50] True Vision is Love
[00:30:35] Conforming to the Empire's Image
[00:32:43] On Becoming Less or More Human
[00:34:05] Evil Breaks Down, Love Builds Up
[00:35:40] True Christianity is Not Abusive
[00:36:31] The Power of Rituals
[00:38:08] Andor as a Chiasm
[00:42:04] Rituals Inform Identity
[00:45:59] Models of Sacrifice
[00:47:50] Rituals of Selfishness and Selflessness
[00:51:35] Maarva's Foundation of Love
[00:52:59] Luthen's Foundation of Anger
[00:54:43] A Morally Gray Star Wars
[00:55:01] Sacrificing Out of Love vs Hate
[00:57:02] Maarva and Luthen Share Ends, But Not Means
[00:58:31] Can Evil Be Used to Defeat Evil?
[01:00:22] The Nonviolence of Jiu-Jitsu
[01:02:16] Whose Method is Superior, Maarva's or Luthen's?
[01:03:34] Conclusion

Dec 16, 202201:04:27
S4E01 Encanto

S4E01 Encanto

The Kingsmen dive into the magical miracle of Encanto (2021). Feel like you’re the only one with no gifts or talents? Feel like you can’t live up to everyone’s expectations? Ostracized for being yourself? Well, then, cry it out with us! In this episode, Simon and Joey share how this beautiful movie conveys the best parts of the Christian gospel to broken hearts today.

  1. [00:00:02] Introduction
  2. [00:06:17] Luke's Christmas Story as a Musical
  3. [00:07:43] Jesus in Gethsemane Viewed as a Musical
  4. [00:09:31] Mirabel and Miracle
  5. [00:10:26] Movies are Parables
  6. [00:10:55] Did Mirabel have Miracle?
  7. [00:12:28] Charismatic Gifts
  8. [00:15:03] Gifts and Worth
  9. [00:17:02] Burnout from Earning Worth
  10. [00:21:09] Longing to Belong
  11. [00:28:21] Misunderstanding the Gift of Prophecy
  12. [00:32:12] Prophecies are Meant to Change your Fate
  13. [00:37:00] Denial of Brokenness
  14. [00:40:09] Leading from Trauma
  15. [00:44:18] The Miracle Candle and the Sacrifice of Abuelo
  16. [00:49:21] Gentleness and Strength
  17. [00:51:34] Mirabel and her Gift of Empathy
  18. [00:56:38] Embracing the Enemy
  19. [00:59:35] God's Household is Open to All
  20. [01:00:33] Conclusion
Feb 07, 202201:01:09
S3E02 Loki

S3E02 Loki

The Kingsmen welcome Dr. Kutter Callaway to unpack the mind-bending Marvel show, Loki (2021). What makes a person? Can a person change and become better? Is a human (or a god’s) life predetermined, or do they have free will? Is self-love always narcissistic? What makes a system authoritarian? What is your glorious purpose?

  1. [00:00:19] Introduction
  2. [00:02:47] Initial Thoughts on Loki
  3. [00:05:03] Graciousness toward God
  4. [00:09:08] Letting Go of Control
  5. [00:09:56] Respect for Mystery
  6. [00:13:58] The Shape of Authoritarianism
  7. [00:21:34] Catalysts of Transformation
  8. [00:26:20] Is Self-Love Always Narcissistic?
  9. [00:32:40] To Be Human, One Requires an Other
  10. [00:42:18] Fundamental Attribution Error
  11. [00:44:44] The Punitive Time-Loop as Parable and Metaphor of Hell
  12. [00:49:13] Family, Not Enemies
  13. [00:53:07] Inspiring the Other to Be Better
  14. [00:55:52] Seeing Eternity as Eternal Growth
  15. [00:57:28] Free Will, Determinism, and Resurrection
  16. [01:09:22] The Scandalous Incarnational Embodiment of God
  17. [01:11:13] Glorious Purpose
  18. [01:12:38] Closing Remarks
Sep 12, 202101:13:14
S3E01 The Falcon and the Winter Soldier

S3E01 The Falcon and the Winter Soldier

The Kingsmen premiers its third season by delving into the thought-provoking show, The Falcon & the Winter Soldier (2021). With their esteemed guest, Jordan Acosta, they explore topics like power and privilege, conflicting interpretations of symbols, the worthiness of a successor, imagining a just future, and striving to always do better.


  • [00:00:12] Introduction
  • [00:05:19] Theme of Power and Privilege
  • [00:19:36] Sam is a Peacemaker
  • [00:25:22] The Symbolism of the Shield
  • [00:31:49] The Shield and Its Bearer as Incarnation
  • [00:38:18] Various Responses to the Ideal/Shield
  • [00:45:44] John Walker, Resentment, Idolatry
  • [00:52:18] The Difference Between Following Order and Doing What’s Right
  • [01:00:21] Characters Represent Political POVs
  • [01:03:22] The Armor and Shield from Wakanda
  • [01:11:46] Art Creates Space to Imagine Potential
  • [01:17:55] The Struggle of Democracy as a Social Practice
  • [01:19:19] Sharon Carter: Good Person Wronged and then Gave Up on the Cause of Justice
  • [01:21:47] Conclusion
May 20, 202101:22:44
S2E06 Pixar’s Inside Out

S2E06 Pixar’s Inside Out

The Kingsmen and special guest, Danny Fitelson, embark on an inward journey exploring emotions in Disney Pixar’s Inside Out (2015). What is the purpose and effect of emotions and human imagination? How do Joy AND Sadness partner together in the Christian life? Don’t be afraid to let your emotions out on this episode. You might get angry and disgusted with yourself if you miss out. Trust us, you’ll be joyful that you didn’t.

Timestamp of Contents
  1. [00:00:32] Introduction
  2. [00:02:35] What makes Inside Out such a good movie?
  3. [00:06:50] What happens to memories? Are they truly forgotten?
  4. [00:09:38] How does Bing Bong reflect Christ?
  5. [00:11:13] What is imagination, why is it so important for life, and how does it complement with Joy?
  6. [00:19:35] What is the significance of Joy as our first emotion?
  7. [00:23:12] What makes Joy unique in respect to the other emotions?
  8. [00:25:13] Why are the range of emotions equally important?
  9. [00:30:25] What exactly is Joy? In the general sense and specifically in Christian terms?
  10. [00:42:40] Why is it healthy to embrace personal and corporate sadness?
  11. [00:50:00] Are we allowed to feel anger, fear, or sadness?
  12. [00:51:42] Would relying only on emotions lead us astray?
  13. [00:55:58] How might reason and emotions work together in decision-making??
  14. [00:57:18] What is Sadness’s unique contribution that Joy could not provide?
  15. [01:02:00] How can Joy sustain us during the COVID-19 pandemic?
  16. [01:05:28] Do children have disparate feelings?
  17. [01:08:25] How might self-talk be so deceptive?
  18. [01:13:17] What is the value of going through the Pit?
  19. [01:26:50] Closing Remarks and Final Thoughts
Apr 03, 202001:33:59
S2E05 The Mandalorian

S2E05 The Mandalorian

Baby Yoda is the best! The Kingsmen unpack the hit Disney+ series The Mandalorian (Season 1). How does the Mandalorian culture and creed sync with Christianity? In what ways do Kuiil the Ugnaught and Baby Yoda reflect the figure of Jesus Christ? How can we revolutionize a world marked by betrayal? Joey and Simon go deep into these subjects. Don’t miss it. We have spoken!

  1. [00:00:21]  Introduction
  2. [00:01:08]  War of Mandalore and Peace of Christianity
  3. [00:13:50]  Kuiil: A Kenotic Christ Figure
  4. [00:17:12]  IG-11: Resurrection and Transformation
  5. [00:24:28]  Baby Yoda: Another Christ Figure
  6. [00:27:12]  Understanding the Mudhorn Pit
  7. [00:33:43]  The Powerful God Incarnated in Weak Flesh
  8. [00:41:12]  Trust Overcomes Betrayal
  9. [01:03:15]  Let Go of Prejudices and Learn to Trust
  10. [01:07:18]  The Vacuum of Fallen Empire
  11. [01:13:19]  Conclusion
Jan 27, 202001:13:46
S2E04 Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker

S2E04 Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker

The Kingsmen pay homage to the finale of the 49-year Star Wars saga, with Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker. Joey and Simon reflect on how culture re-imagines mythology, how identity is formed, and the way to defeat evil without becoming evil yourself, and how God subtly works throughout the universe to rescue every creature. The Force is strong with this one!

  • [00:00:00]  Intro
  • [00:00:42]  Kylo Ren’s Mask and the Art of Kintsugi
  • [00:05:05]  Re-Telling & Re-Imagining of the Skywalker Myth
  • [00:07:33]  Redeeming Skywalkers
  • [00:16:28]  The Impact of Our Perspective on Others and Ourselves
  • [00:25:56]  Resolving Identity Crisis and Overcoming Loneliness
  • [00:44:35]  Overcoming Cosmic Evil
  • [00:57:04]  The Pit and Coming Out from It
  • [01:02:37]  The False Security of Invulnerability and Power
  • [01:09:36]  Confronting Evil in Trinitarian Partnership
  • [01:19:02]  Acceptance: Freedom from Old and Journey to the New
  • [01:25:46]  The Universal Activity of the Holy Spirit
  • [01:33:03]  Conclusion
Dec 31, 201901:33:48
S2E03 Superman

S2E03 Superman

Superman has had a prevailing impact on popular culture, sparking the imagination of every new generation. The Kingsmen explore what makes Superman so fascinating and how the hero reflects truths about Jesus Christ.

Timestamp of Contents

  1. [00:00:00] San Diego Comic Con: Affirm or Counter Culture?
  2. [00:04:45] Superman’s Dual Identities as Same and Other
  3. [00:08:55] Superman: Analogy and Inspiration of the Incarnate Jesus 
  4. [00:13:38] Jesus and Superman’s Scandalous Compassion 
  5. [00:19:50] A Hero’s Gentleness and Self-Control
  6. [00:23:22] Superman’s Value of Free Will
  7. [00:26:37] Lex Luthor: Antithesis of Superman
  8. [00:32:50] Why Does Superman Help Other People?
  9. [00:37:00] What Makes Superman Good?
Aug 21, 201940:17
S2E02 Spider-Man: Far From Home

S2E02 Spider-Man: Far From Home

In the consequential aftermath of Thanos' destructive snap and ultimate defeat, Spiderman: Far From Home grapples with themes like grief, self-worth, following in the footsteps of heroes, the passing of the mantle, and exercising discernment of character. As always, The Kingsmen analyze these themes through a Christian worldview.


  1. 00:00:00 - Introduction
  2. 00:00:40 - Iron-Man and Spider-Man's Relationship
  3. 00:14:11 - Why is Spider-Man Worthy?
  4. 00:35:51 - Mysterio: False Hero, False Prophet
  5. 00:55:48 - The Peter Tingle and the Christian’s Spiritual Discernment
  6. 01:08:42 - The Heart of the Kingsmen Podcast
  7. 01:12:27 - Conclusion
Jul 19, 201901:12:53
S2E01 God as Parent

S2E01 God as Parent

Among all the analogies that Christians use to describe God, none has been more central than the concept of God as Parent. In the second season opener, the Kingsmen reflect on both the paternal and maternal qualities of God. As usual, the Kingsmen suggest several movie references that showcase this concept of God as Parent.
Episode Outline:

00:00:00 Introduction
00:02:44 God as Father
00:22:38 God as Mother
00:36:29 Knowing God as Parent is a Calling
00:44:42 Knowing God as Parent is a Guide
00:55:53 Conclusion
Jul 16, 201958:26
S1E10 Avengers Endgame (Part 2)

S1E10 Avengers Endgame (Part 2)

The Kingsmen conclude their two-part discussion on Avengers: Endgame in their first season finale. Focusing on the meta-theme of Resurrection Simon argues that Ant-Man's return from Thanos’ decimation snap is, in a way, a kind of resurrection. And since the capstone of the Christian faith is the historical moment when Jesus bodily rose from death to life, we explore in what ways Endgame conveys the results of resurrection and its significance. 

 Timestamps of Contents:

  1. [00:01:30] Introduction
  2. [00:05:04] Antman : Pioneer of Resurrection 
  3. [00:07:37] 3 Eyewitness Accounts of Antman’s Resurrection
  4. [00:13:48] The Results When Resurrection ACTUALLY Happens
    1. [00:15:27] Resurrection Results in Having A Different Perspective
    2. [00:21:38] Resurrection Inspires Hope 
    3. [00:28:31] Resurrection allows space for forgiveness and redemption 
    4. [00:37:58] The Radical Path of Forgiving Our Enemies
  5. [00:41:32] The Impact of Resurrection 
    1. [00:41:49] Resurrection Perfects Justice
    2. [00:52:48] Resurrection shows Justice is Also Restorative
    3. [00:56:55] Social Justice In Context of Christ 
    4. [01:01:39] Let Your Kingdom Come 
    5. [01:04:15] Where the Spirit of the Lord is, There is Freedom to…Let Go
    6. [01:05:53] Freedom From the Fear of Failures
    7. [01:12:10] Resurrection impacts the Individual 
  6. [01:16:18] Everyday Heroes Doing Everyday Things 
  7. [01:18:52] Conclusion 
May 20, 201901:19:27
S1E09 Avengers Endgame (Part 1)

S1E09 Avengers Endgame (Part 1)

The Kingsmen assemble! We discuss the cultural phenomenon that is Avengers: Endgame (2019). With talking points that range from Christlike sacrifice to the astronomical significance of just one rat, we reflect on ways that the film illuminates Christian truths. In many ways, the Marvel Cinematic Universe is the current culture and society’s mythology. And similar to how Inkling authors like C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien approached mythologies, the Kingsmen approach this the Marvel mythology with the question, “What in this story is true?”

  1. 00:00:00 - Introduction
  2. 00:03:03 - Heroes Sacrifice like Christ
  3. 00:07:43 - Avengers Themes: “We don’t trade lives” vs. “Whatever it takes”
  4. 00:12:22 - Selflessness as Taking Responsibility
  5. 00:15:35 - Fat Thor is a Nobler Hero
  6. 00:17:41 - Thor Giving up the Messiah Complex
  7. 00:20:52 - Avengers Teamwork Reflects God Invitation to Rescue
  8. 00:22:01 - Thor Giving Up the Throne
  9. 00:24:04 - One-Punch Man and Teamwork
  10. 00:26:11 - Every Field of the Battle is Important
  11. 00:29:15 - Partnering with God in Creation and Restoration
  12. 00:33:07 - Destinations and Trajectories for Iron-Man and Captain America
  13. 00:44:57 - Stark as Pre-Resurrection Era and Rogers as Post-Resurrection Era 
  14. 00:52:29 -  Forgiveness as Flexibility to Not Avenge
  15. 00:56:07 -  Gamora and Nebula’s Sibling Rivalry/Love
  16. 01:04:27 - The Call from God for the Participation of Women in His plan
  17. 01:06:07 - The Snap Back and Holding onto the Painful Memory
  18. 01:15:37 - God Who Expresses Emotions
  19. 01:20:04 - The Way Arguments Cloud Judgment (Stark vs Rogers) 
  20. 01:26:25 - The Depth of the Resurrection Event 
  21. 01:28:10 - The Prerequisite to Forgiving an Offender
  22. 01:32:53 - The Astronomical Coincidence of Perfect Rat-Dancing
  23. 01:35:00 - Conclusion
May 14, 201901:36:06
S1E08 Villainy and Devilry

S1E08 Villainy and Devilry

The Kingsmen explore the idea of villains. What makes a bad guy "bad"? By discussing some iconic villains like Darth Vader, the Joker, Thanos and Cersei, we sketch the outlines of what makes a person a villain versus a hero. Like always, we draw parallels between pop culture and the Christian perspective. In this episode, we discuss how villains share some sort of character trait with the Devil/Satan, namely, the elevation of oneself at the cost of others.

  1. 00:00 - 02:52 Introduction 
  2. 02:52 - 10:50 What is a Villain? 
  3. 10:51 - 20:02 Case Studies of Villainous Intent 
    1. 12:20 - 17: 09 Joker Portrayed by the late Heath Ledger
    2. 17:10 - 18:37 Darth Vader 
    3. 18:38 - 19:22 Thanos from Avengers: Infinity War  
  4. 20:03 - 25:12 How Does A Sovereign and Good God Respond to Pain and Suffering caused by Villainous Intent?
  5. 25:13 - 29:55 Inhumane Practices Dehumanizing Humans
  6. 29:56 - 39:35 Idolatry as a Source of Villainy
  7. 39:36 - 50:29 The Thin Line of Culpability and Breaking the Cycle of Violence
  8. 50:30 - 54:16 Naruto and the Christian Virtue of Taking the Penalty for a Criminal
  9. 54:17 - 01:12:42 Does Current Society Sympathize with Villains, and Why?
  10. 01:12:43 - 01:15:32 The Line Between Hero and Villain
  11. 01:15:33 - 01:23:06 The Biblical Narrative's Baddest Villain, Satan
  12. 01:23:07 - 01:29:39 Satan’s Flawed Authority vs. God’s True Authority
  13. 01:29:40 - 01:42:13 What is the Proper Response to Villains?
  14. 01:42:14 - 01:43:58 Conclusion
Apr 19, 201901:43:59
S1E07 Aquaman

S1E07 Aquaman

The Kingsmen return to the DCEU with a discussion on 2018's Aquaman. How might Aquaman illustrate profound Christian concepts like the Incarnation, kingship, and the divine trajectory of peace and unity? How does peace overcome violence and tyranny? And, most importantly what attributes characterize a true hero? Apparently, Aquaman does more than just talking to fish! Find out in the newest episode of the Kingsmen Podcast!

Jan 31, 201901:36:02
S1E06 Christian Vision of Art (and Daredevil) ft. Dr. Felix-Jager

S1E06 Christian Vision of Art (and Daredevil) ft. Dr. Felix-Jager

In the sixth episode of the Kingsmen, we invite Dr. Steven Felix-Jager, an expert in Christian/Pentecostal aesthetics, to describe why art is so important to human and Christian life, and what we can do to participate in the transformative power of art. As a case study, we examine how Marvel’s Daredevil, as a work of art, explores questions of justice, sacrifice, forgiveness, and heroism.
Dec 14, 201801:13:03
S1E05 The Stranger Things About Church

S1E05 The Stranger Things About Church

In the latest episode on the Kingsmen, Simon delves into the Netflix series "Stranger Things" and attempts to point out similarities that the show has with the concept of Church. How does the experience and relationships of the characters reflect the reality of what the Church should be?
Oct 31, 201852:25
S1E03 Coco and Eschatology

S1E03 Coco and Eschatology

In this episode, the Kingsmen explore Pixar's Coco reflecting on the film's parallels to Christian Eschatology. How does Miguel's journey through the land of the dead while solving his family's mystery reflect the purpose for Christ's return?

Episode 004 will analyze Black Panther (2018). Leave a comment, and we'll try to incorporate your questions, insights, and comments into our next episode.
Sep 01, 201801:02:50
S1E02 Wonder Woman & Confronting Evil

S1E02 Wonder Woman & Confronting Evil

What values does Wonder Woman (2017) parallel with the Christian faith, especially as it relates to how evil is confronted?
Jul 21, 201855:10
S1E01 The Kingsmen - Avengers: Infinity War

S1E01 The Kingsmen - Avengers: Infinity War

The pilot episode of Joey and Simon's new podcast - an intersection on pop culture, theology and Jiu Jitsu. When comparing Thanos with Jesus, how are we supposed to respond to scarcity and need?
May 26, 201801:09:05