Let’s face it, most of us have an interest when it comes to a series or a movie predicting the afterlife. Humans are curious creatures in regard to the unknowns of life after death, and this is no secret to pop culture. Pop culture takes this idea by the horns and runs, using it to influence our modern world and plant counterfeit ideas. Using a spiritual truth lens, let’s take a deep dive into a new popular show airing called “Upload.”
Upload is an original show broadcast on Amazon Prime, created by the same producers as a popular hit TV show, “The Office.” Thus, obviously the show is good in a technical sense – the breathtaking views, great locations and actors, and an interesting scheme to capture the viewer’s attention. There’s no doubt about it – it is visually appealing and well put-together. However, just like anything, just because something looks nice, doesn’t mean it’s values or message is truthful. The show Upload is full of a plethora of anti-Christian ideas.
The show is set in a futuristic age where technology has advanced to let people “upload” their consciousness to an accessible VR (virtual reality) dimension after they die. The main character, Nathan, dies in a complex accident and his girlfriend uploads him into this virtual reality afterlife dimension named Lakeview. However, a viewer will notice how he slowly starts falling out of love with her and instead falls in love with his “angel,” who is really a regular day-job worker working as his assigned customer support aid, having access to his consciousness and avatar features. The plot is obviously good, but let’s explore the flaws in portraying truth. I’d like to emphasize that this is in regards to the first season of the show. There may be several interpretations, especially as the show progresses into the second season, but this is just one interpretation.
1. The whole premise of the show emphasizes technology, despite it’s glitches, as the savior – not Jesus.
2. The uploading of consciousness implies that humans are nothing more than that – mere consciousness. There is no acknowledgment of a human’s soul.
3. There is no mention of God and even no appearance of a god-like figure, ruler, or King in the perceived uploaded afterlife.
4. In order to live in luxury, a person has to essentially store up treasures on earth (money), in order to have wealth or the best upgrades in the digitized after life – which portrays the complete opposite of what scripture tells us
5. The idea of humans uploading other humans’ consciousnesses to a digital afterlife creates the doubt that there is no afterlife
In conclusion, we can see that Upload may just be the ideal afterlife for the modern anti-religious person. What’s more concerning though is what kinds of seeds pop culture is trying to plant in the minds of kids and teens who make up a large portion of viewership of the latest shows. This show essentially sends the message that heaven is not real, and our only hope is in technology to save us. Of course it is just a show, however creating these kinds of shows sets up a precedent and influence on young generations to give up on an imagination or faith in something far more greater and powerful than humanity itself.
A belief in God offers more than faith in a higher power; it allows us to believe that the confines of human achievement are only a fraction of what exists in the universe.Libby Emmons