Conservative commentator Ross Douthat (author of Grand New Party: How Republicans Can Win the Working Class and Save the American Dream) sees a sinister theology behind the popular novels of Dan Brown. In a NY Times op ed piece, Douthat suggests that The Da Vinci Code, Angels and Demons, and the soon to be released The Lost Symbol are more than wildly popular pulp fiction. “He’s writing thrillers, but he’s selling a theology,” says Douthat.
The “secret” history of Christendom that unspools in “The Da Vinci Code” is false from start to finish. The lost gospels are real enough, but they neither confirm the portrait of Christ that Brown is peddling — they’re far, far weirder than that — nor provide a persuasive alternative to the New Testament account. The Jesus of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John — jealous, demanding, apocalyptic — may not be congenial to contemporary sensibilities, but he’s the only historically-plausible Jesus there is.