Secret Plot of "Signs"

Signs trailer

A movie released in 2002, Signs, starred Mel Gibson as Graham Hess, an Episcopal priest who has lost his faith. Then Hess discovers “crop circles” in his cornfield and is faced with a challenge of the extra-terrestrials. [1]

An enjoyable movie, but did you know about the hidden meanings in Signs? In yesterday’s blog entry, Horror Merges With Reality, a “Professor Pipe” was imagined. He had been conceived when “Paranoia, Theory and White Male Crisis” had been stumbled upon by Ersjdamoo. Now, as it turns out, the “Professor Pipe” has a name: He is Martin Fradley, Ph. D.

“Paranoia, Theory and White Male Crisis” had been the mere chapter two of Fradley’s doctoral thesis. The full title of same is, Boys in Trouble? White Masculinity and Paranoia in Contemporary Hollywood Cinema (Scholars Press, 2013). I needed a good laugh and luckily found the entire thesis available online.

I had started out to laugh, but reading Fradley’s Introduction has gotten me to pondering. He relies heavily on ideas from Sigmund Freud and Jacques Lacan, the latter called “the most controversial psycho-analyst since Freud.” [2] As for Freud, Immanuel Velikovsky proved, in Oedipus and Akhnaton (Doubleday, 1960), that Freud’s cherished myth had really been Amenhotep IV, who actually did marry his mother and murder his father. This involved ancient Egyptian dynastical considerations which Freud erroneously conflated into a psychological theory. In this regard, it is ironic that Freud’s final book, Moses and Monotheism, deals largely with Amenhotep IV (aka Akhnaton) and Freud came closer than he knew to the true story of Oedipus, later transplanted to Greece and mythologized.

In what follows, wherein is “revealed” the secret plot of Signs, I have tried to respect the copyright on Fradley’s doctoral thesis. This means I have used limited quotes and especially I have had to paraphrase Fradley’s obtuse academic lingo. In so doing I may have erred in deciphering Fradley’s foliage of phonetics. To this possible criticism I say, I am a plain American and expect plain talk. Put your cards on the table, man, and skip the Fancy Dan verbiage. I neither necessarily agree nor disagree with what follows.

“Gendered paranoia” is evident in “the cultural discourse of white male crisis,” begins Fradley. As an illustration of what he means, Fradley starts by scrutinizing the movie, Signs, starring Mel Gibson as Graham Hess. It is a “proto-propagandist allegorisation of post-9/11 America” and sinister forces in Hollywood, connected themselves with the Pentagon, are clearly pulling the strings. More than anything else, Signs is about remasculinization, and this word is italicized for emphasis by Fradley. The whole narrative of Signs is headed in the direction of “the gendered recuperation” of “traumatised patriarchal figure” Graham Hess. Hess in general represents “masochistic trials” endured by Mel’s character in order to re-align “the metonymic white ‘father.'” When this is achieved, the ideological patriarchal system is restored.

Fradley sees much significance in how, in Signs, Graham Hess had lost his baseball talent in connection with a baseball bat which is “inevitably phallic.” In Signs, they (extraterrestrials) attack the nuclear family and “the white men who must defend it.” So Gibson takes the “phallic bat” from the wall and attacks an extraterrestrial. The happy ending in Signs is restored faith in the Almighty and a victory for “white male protectionism.”

The extraterrestrials are like “the terrorists” – why do they hate us? why do they “harvest” the earthlings? Why? Because that is what they do.

Summing up his Introduction, Fradley wishes to show three things: (1) there is a noisy “white male crisis” which is paranoid; (2) Hollywood movies are a “litmus test” for “white male crisis”; and (3) the narratives of “victimised white masculinity” aim for recuperation.

Involved with the “white male crisis” is the “post-national United States” where New World Order has eliminated nationhood. There is nostalgia for the disappearing time of “the white, heterosexual, middle-class male.” A “political castration anxiety” dominates the Hollywood narratives. Or so says Fradley.

And you thought Signs was just an entertaining movie. Now you may know the secret plot of Signs.

——- Sources ——-
[1] “Signs (film)”, Wikipedia, June 22, 2015.
[2] “Jacques Lacan”, Wikipedia, June 22, 2015.


About ersjdamoo

Editor of Conspiracy Nation, later renamed Melchizedek Communique. Close associate of the late Sherman H. Skolnick. Jack of all trades, master of none. Sagittarius, with Sagittarius rising. I'm not a bum, I'm a philosopher.
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