The Young Pope on Sky TV

Sky TV have been screening a series called The Young Pope. It’s filmed in a quirky style and follows an intriguing plotline. A handsome Jude Law plays a young man elected to the papacy. Unusually, he forbids all photographs and publicity. He tries to turn back the clock, reviving a medieval papacy: he buys back the papal tiara, he has himself carried around on a throne bedecked with gold cloth and jewels, and demands the Italian prime minister all but submits to papal authority.

Although tempted by a young woman, he shies of fornicating with her (which is a most un-medieval papal characteristic), he appears to confess to atheism. Other times, he really seems to talk to God; once he describes himself as God. He even apparently prays a sterile woman into conceiving, leading some to consider him a saint.

The series is not particularly anti-Catholic, though the ultra-conservative Pius XIII certainly comes across as a sinister character at times. It does seem to chime, however, with those of us expecting a wolfish religious leader in the final days, a false prophet.

Revelation 13:11 Then I saw another beast rising out of the earth. It had two horns like a lamb and it spoke like a dragon. 12 It exercises all the authority of the first beast in its presence, and makes the earth and its inhabitants worship the first beast, whose mortal wound was healed. 13 It performs great signs, even making fire come down from heaven to earth in front of people, 14 and by the signs that it is allowed to work in the presence of the beast it deceives those who dwell on earth, telling them to make an image for the beast that was wounded by the sword and yet lived. 15 And it was allowed to give breath to the image of the beast, so that the image of the beast might even speak and might cause those who would not worship the image of the beast to be slain.