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Starfish Stories

August 18th, 2021 | 14 min read

By Matthew Loftus

At the climax of the recent wannabe-blockbuster film The Suicide Squad[1], a giant mind-controlling starfish is wreaking havoc across a nondescript non-American city when the team of super-villains (who are, from a story perspective, the heroes of the movie) must make a decision. Having completed their assigned mission, they are ordered by their cold, calculating, and utterly consequentialist supervisor to walk away and leave the innocent people of this foreign land to be massacred by an interstellar invertebrate, presumably because it would be good for America. The team is warned that disobedience will result in their immediate deaths, but they turn around in an existentialist blaze of glory and decide to go kill everyone in sight who is against peace. Mostly, that’s the starfish and his mind-controlled zombie army.

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Matthew Loftus

Matthew Loftus teaches and practices Family Medicine in Baltimore and East Africa. His work has been featured in Christianity Today, Comment, & First Things and he is a regular contributor for Christ and Pop Culture. You can learn more about his work and writing at