Jesus and Mo

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Jesus and Mo
A sample of the comic Jesus and Mo
A sample of the comic Jesus and Mo originally published in November 2006, featuring all four of the recurring characters.
Author(s)Mohammed Jones
Websitehttp://www.jesusandmo.net
Current status/schedulePublished twice per week
Launch date24 November 2005
Genre(s)Satire

Jesus and Mo is a British webcomic created by an artist using the pseudonym Mohammed Jones. Launched in November 2005, the comic is published on its eponymous website once a week now.

Set-up[edit]

The comic is simply drawn, typically using a single image for each face, each of which is duplicated for each panel in the strip. It features two present-day religious prophets, Jesus and Mo. While Jesus is portrayed as the bona fide Christian Jesus, Mo claims to be a body double,[1] using casuistry to circumvent the Islamic restriction against pictorial depictions of Muhammad.

Jesus and Mo share a flat[2] (and a bed), and occasionally venture outside, principally to a public house, The Cock and Bull, where they drink Guinness and engage in conversation and debate with an atheist female bartender known simply as Barmaid, who is never drawn[3] but is characterised only as an out-of-frame speech bubble. The barmaid functions as the voice of reason when criticising the Abrahamic religions or religion in general. Other times, Jesus or Mo may act as the voice of reason depending on which religion a particular comic aims to criticise. Jesus will act as the author's mouthpiece if the comic aims to criticise Islam while the character Mo will be used to criticise Christianity. They also converse with each other on a park bench.[4]

The Abrahamic prophet Moses appears in some cartoons. The Hindu deity Ganesh made a one-time appearance; both Jesus and Mo mocked his depicted weight and four arms. Joseph Smith, the founder of Mormonism, has also appeared: his face hidden by a hat, a reference to Smith supposedly reading seeing stones by putting them inside a stovepipe hat and sticking his face inside.

In the comic for 24 September 2008, the author used animation (blinking eyes) in the final panel.[5] Starting with the strip released on 10 November 2009, both of the principal figures were redrawn in a somewhat cleaner style.[6]

Themes[edit]

The comic consists mainly of religious satire, often criticising arguments for religion,[7] religious texts[8] and decrees[9] and the actions of believers.[10] As the comic centres on Christian and Muslim figures, the satire is generally directed at the two religions, though some critiques apply to many forms of theism.

In print[edit]

Episodes from Jesus and Mo have been published in paperback. Strips 1–50 are published in Vol 1 "Where's the soap?" and strips 51–100 in Vol 2 "Transubstantiated". Vol 3 "Things Not Seen" contains strips 101–140, as well as 10 previously unreleased strips.[11] A fourth compendium of 140 strips '"Big Al"' was published in 2008. All print copies are published by Lulu.

The strip is published sporadically in the British magazine The Freethinker. Three strips were printed in the Danish newspaper Information[12] and one in their online version on 2007-03-22.[12][13]

Incidents[edit]

Members of the London School of Economics Atheist, Secularist and Humanist Society were ordered to cover-up their Jesus and Mo T-shirts at the LSE Students' Union Freshers' Fair in October 2013.[14][15][16] A new comic was published in response.[17] In December, the University apologised for the incident.[18]

Muslim Liberal Democrat politician Maajid Nawaz tweeted a picture of one of the Jesus and Mo T-shirts, after the cartoon came up in a discussion on a BBC programme The Big Questions. On the programme, the production team stopped participants from being shown wearing T-shirts with the cartoon, which depicted Jesus saying "Hey" and "Mo" saying "How ya doing?".[19] The BBC had feared a hostile response from some Muslims.[19] On Twitter, Nawaz later wrote that he did not find the T-shirts offensive and that he received death threats for this stance.[20]

References[edit]

  • "(Urdu blog with thumbnail of Government of Pakistan document entitled BLOCKING OF WEB SITE)" (in Urdu). BBC. 1 October 2007. Retrieved 28 October 2007.
  • "The Freethinker publishes cartoon special". mediawatchwatch.org.uk. 8 March 2006. Retrieved 28 October 2007. featuring several Mo-toon fever inspired cartoons, a couple of Jesus-on-the-cross funnies, Jesus and Mo,...
  • "Jesus and Mo published in Danish newspaper". comixtalk.com. 22 March 2007. Archived from the original on 29 October 2007. Retrieved 28 October 2007. 2007-03-22 ... the Danish daily newspaper Information has today published three strips from Jesus and Mo in its print edition: danny, good, and badge
  • Mohammad Kamran (14 March 2006). "SC seeks legal avenues to ban blasphemous cartoons worldwide". Daily Times (Pakistan). Archived from the original on 5 January 2008. Retrieved 28 October 2007. The government has blocked all websites that carry caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad
  • Xeni Jardin (20 March 2006). "Pakistan bans websites that carry Muhammad cartoons". Boing Boing. Retrieved 28 October 2007. The government has blocked all websites that carry caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad ... Jesus and Mo
  • Peter Nielsen (20 March 2006). "Mens vi venter" (in Danish). Dagbladet Information. Archived from the original on 9 August 2007. Retrieved 28 October 2007. (includes danish text below the comic strip that translates as ... More cartoons can be found on www.jesusandmo.net ...)
  • Julian Baggini (2006). "Jesus reads TFM". The Philosophers' Magazine Issue 36, page 7. Retrieved 11 October 2010. TPM has made an appearance in the popular and controversial comic strip Jesus & Mo.
  • Michael Cavna (6 January 2010). "Time to vote for your Best Webcomic of the Decade". The Washington Post Comic Riffs. Retrieved 14 October 2010. we're still stuck with a whopping 22 webcomics that are vying mightily to be crowned Best Webcomic of the Past Decade.
  • Michael Cavna (21 January 2011). "Best Comics Contest: And the winners of your 2011 Riffy Awards are..." The Washington Post Comic Riffs. Retrieved 21 January 2011. The twice-weekly cartoon by the pseudonymous Mohammed Jones won both the Best Comic and Best Webcomic categories in our nonbinding reader poll

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ Jesus and Mo 24 November 2005: body Archived 21 December 2016 at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ Jesus and Mo 23 March 2006: mess Archived 21 December 2016 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ Jesus and Mo 8 February 2006: baby Archived 21 December 2016 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ Jesus and Mo 14 July 2006: slow Archived 21 December 2016 at the Wayback Machine
  5. ^ Jesus and Mo 24 September 2008: cult Archived 21 December 2016 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ Jesus and Mo 10 November 2009: role Archived 21 December 2016 at the Wayback Machine; see in particular the author's comment on the change in style Archived 21 December 2016 at the Wayback Machine.
  7. ^ Jesus and Mo 10 August 2007: sense Archived 21 December 2016 at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ Jesus and Mo 16 May 2006: wait Archived 21 December 2016 at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ Jesus and Mo 17 July 2007: grief Archived 21 December 2016 at the Wayback Machine
  10. ^ Jesus and Mo 21 August 2007: press Archived 21 December 2016 at the Wayback Machine
  11. ^ "Jesus and Mo's Bookshop". Archived from the original on 19 September 2007. Retrieved 23 September 2007.
  12. ^ a b comixtalk[full citation needed]
  13. ^ Peter Nielsen[full citation needed]
  14. ^ "Censoring atheists at LSE is a victory for oppression | Ally Fogg | Opinion | The Guardian". Archived from the original on 21 December 2016. Retrieved 11 December 2016.
  15. ^ "LSE Students Outrage After They Are Told To Cover Up 'Offensive' Jesus And Mohammed T-Shirts". Archived from the original on 8 October 2013. Retrieved 6 October 2013.
  16. ^ "Jesus and Mohammed T-shirts banned: victory for the 'sanctimonious little prigs' of LSE's student union". The Daily Telegraph. London. 5 October 2013. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 6 October 2013.
  17. ^ Jesus and Mo 4 October 2013: anti Archived 21 December 2016 at the Wayback Machine
  18. ^ "National Secular Society - NSS welcomes LSE apology over Jesus & Mo debacle". Archived from the original on 10 January 2014. Retrieved 10 January 2014.
  19. ^ a b Nick Cohen "The Liberal Democrats face a true test of liberty" Archived 21 December 2016 at the Wayback Machine, The Observer, 25 January 2014
  20. ^ Keith Perry "Lib Dem candidate receives death threats for tweeting Prophet Mohammed cartoon" Archived 25 February 2018 at the Wayback Machine Daily Telegraph 21 January 2014

External links[edit]