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Controversy Over Satan's Resemblance To Obama In History Channel's 'Bible' Series...

by Tambay A. Obenson
March 18, 2013 12:43 PM
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UPDATE: Just a few minutes ago, producers Mark Burnett and Roma Downey released a statement in response to the controversy:

"This is utter nonsense. The actor who played Satan, Mehdi Ouzaani, is a highly acclaimed Moroccan actor. He has previously played parts in several Biblical epics – including Satanic characters long before Barack Obama was elected as our President. [We] have nothing but respect and love our President, who is a fellow Christian. False statements such as these are just designed as a foolish distraction to try and discredit the beauty of the story of The Bible."

And the History Channel also added its own statement:

"History Channel has the highest respect for President Obama. The series was produced with an international and diverse cast of respected actors. It's unfortunate that anyone made this false connection. History'sThe Bible is meant to enlighten people on its rich stories and deep history."

And here's the original post on the matter:


Bah Humbug!

I don't really know what to say about this, so I'm just going to throw it out to you folks, and ask for your thoughts; maybe you all can enlighten me today.

My initial reaction was, are we seeing things that really aren't there, because we're looking for them, or is there a genuine conspiracy at work (or play) here?

Here's the report courtesy of THR:

A major hit already, History Channel's 10-part miniseries The Bible is stirring up extra attention for its casting. The role of Satan, i.e. the bad guy, is played by the actor Mohamen Mehdi Ouazanni, who, thanks to makeup and other production tricks, bears a startling resemblance to President Barack Obama. The resemblance was pointed out on Twitter while the show still aired on Sunday. Glenn Beck, the Christian conservative broadcaster who has called the series "one of the most important shows in decades," sent out a tweet with a screenshot. Beck, who refuses to use Obama's name, referred to the president as "That Guy."

The photo comparison is above, obviously.

No response yet from the producers of the series (Mark Burnett and his wife, Roma Downey).

As THR notes, Burnett has given to Democratic candidates, including Obama in 2008 and the DNC in 2009, while his wife, Downey, doesn't publicly identifying with any party, but has been very puclic about being a devout Catholic.

So what do guys think? Much ado about nothing, or this was an intentional jab?

I haven't been keeping up with the series (I really have only watched the episode with Nonso Anozie as Samson), but I've read lots of commentary on Twitter and Facebook about how the *good* people within these bible stories are primarily played by fairer-skinned actors, and the *bad* characters are played by darker-skinned actors. Is this something you've noticed, if you've been following the series? Is it Hollywood business as usual, as I've read some say?

I recall last year, when HBO and the Game of Thrones producers had to apologize using a prosthetic decapitated head that looked suspiciously like President George W. Bush, in an episode, which was caught by bloggers, and caused quite a stir. Is this a similar situation?

Dig in with all your thoughts on any or everything question I've posed above, in the comments section below:

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  • African Blackman | March 22, 2013 11:47 AMReply

    African Americans are sooooooo embarrassing, it's just sad!

  • MaiThee | March 26, 2013 1:57 AM

    There is nothing embarrassing about African Americans, but sellout, brainwashed colonized Africans who have done ZERO for their continent, and believe Europeans are their saviors, are the true embarrassments. Judging from the shape Africa is - and Africans are - in, I don't think you need to criticize. Now that's sad!

  • I Love Being Beautifully Black. | March 23, 2013 5:43 PM

    It's pathetic that Africans and black Americans can argue over petty, trivial things. We are both black and come from the same tree. Why be racist to each other instead of help one another. It's sad that a 15 year old has to say this. When will we learn. You need to grow up and open your eyes brother. We are both looked at as animals and continue to fight. Why? By degrading another black man or woman does not make you white. Embarrass the fact you are black. No matter how much you deny it, in the end you will always be black.

  • ScriptTease | March 21, 2013 8:00 PMReply

    I don't know if it was done intentionally, but the guy and Obama do favor. Also, I have no interest in watching the series. A bunch of Caucasians IMO,that didn't even exist/ like cell phones during that era. But anything GOOD......................

  • Nadell | March 19, 2013 2:55 PMReply

    Just as much as Oprah and Beyonce favor one another!
    We all know why he made this comparison....

  • BluTopaz | March 18, 2013 9:26 PMReply

    Sometimes I wonder if Barack and Michelle unwind after a long day by laughing at stuff like this.

  • sagevalentine | March 18, 2013 9:04 PMReply

    When I found out Mark Burnett was involved with this I passed on it. I am not surprised that there is a whole darkness is bad, whiteness is good thing. It is hard to come to terms with the bible containing indviduals who were noble and good with darker hues to their skin.

    This dude does look like Obama. WTF

  • Miles Ellison | March 18, 2013 9:02 PMReply

    What's truly stupid is that the History Channel is doing a series about the Bible in which Jesus looks like a 1970's heavy metal guitarist.

  • Nika | March 18, 2013 2:43 PMReply

    He looks nothing like Obama, unless you force. I needed that laugh! People are ridiculous.

  • Brandon | March 18, 2013 2:37 PMReply

    Kinda looks like Frank Langella when he played Skeleton in the
    Masters of the Universe movie.

  • James | March 18, 2013 2:09 PMReply

    Looks more like Tom Selleck without a mustache, to me.

  • CareyCarey | March 18, 2013 1:30 PMReply

    Shame on you Tambay... and whomever came up with this bullsh*t. This is the lowest form of pandering and pimpin' that we've witnessed in quite some time.

    Granted, I can safely assume everyone recognized the pudrid aromas that permeate the halls of politics, religion and race, but damn-damn-damn, as Anslem said "this is just stupid".

    Look, I've watched a few of the episode. I was more concerned with Nonso Anozie sleeping with that white woman, and those fake looking sets than anything related to some character named Satan. I wanted to ask Nonso (since he's not an American) if he has read anything about a guy by the name of O J Simpson? Shiiiiiiiit, Mr. Simpson had Betty Crocker fever and look were he's at. But hey, you have to give it to ol' Sampson, he did kill a few folks on the way out the door (opps, did O J do the same?) but hell, looking at those cardboard box looking pillars, even my muscles, that are as soggy as used tea bags, could have pushed them over.

  • Maithee | March 26, 2013 2:00 AM

    Yeah, the white woman agenda (and Black single mother angle) was simply ridiculous and more pathetic propaganda against Black women.

  • Elizabeth | March 18, 2013 1:29 PMReply

    Does look like Obama in this shot, however I think we should see part of the whole series to really tell. This show may just be a quick, one of a kind.....

  • regi | March 18, 2013 1:25 PMReply

    this is a minor annoyance compared to something that purports to be "the history channel" broadcasting a miniseries of bible stories. now THAT is "stupid".

  • Bee | March 18, 2013 1:35 PM


  • jrby | March 18, 2013 1:19 PMReply

    He looks more like Martin Landau in Space 1999, to me...

  • Aaron | March 18, 2013 1:18 PMReply

    Any way they can use the media to disrespect us they will do it and will continue to do it. Nothing new under the sun in this "post racial" society, right?

  • Bee | March 18, 2013 1:38 PM

    Agreed. I'm not even a Christian or in any way religious (in fact, I can't understand how people get with this stuff), but what bothers me most is not that the man resembles Obama. What bothers me is that the found someone as close to black as possible to play Satan while the guy who plays Jesus (and all of Jesus's disciples) are about as white as they could get without getting a bunch of blondes. The message in it is quite clear, and pretty fucking messed up. But, alas, I've never understood how people get into religion anyway and believe such fairy tales.

  • Anslem | March 18, 2013 12:49 PMReply

    This is stupid.

  • ms.stone | March 18, 2013 2:19 PM


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