The Passion, a television event hosted by Tyler Perry, attempts to tell the story of Jesus of Nazareth from the last supper to his resurrection. The program puts a new twist on the story by inserting “popular” music into the narrative. However, most of these songs are incredibly outdated and make little sense in the context of the story. Rather than bringing the story of Jesus into the present day, the special succeeds in bringing the story to the year 2012.
The event is a jumble of both live singing and narration, paired with a pre-recorded segment telling the actual story. The live segments serve as merely a church service with a live Trisha Yearwood (playing Mary) singing hymns while Tyler Perry gives a sermon discussing the story. Meanwhile, the program follows a procession of a giant cross as it makes its way through New Orleans. The coverage of the procession is strange and unfitting with the rest of the program, as it is presented as a pseudo news report, interviewing citizens as they join movement.
The pre-recorded segments are no better than the live segments, verging on painful to watch. The acting is far too cheesy and awkward while the songs make little to no sense in context. The writing itself seems to be intentionally clunky and awkward, often times inciting laughter from those watching it. There is also little work put into telling the actual story in these pre-recorded segments, but rather it depends upon Tyler Perry’s sermon telling of the story.
The Passion is a painful rendition of a well-known story, using songs that make little sense with an obvious intent to pander to younger viewers. There was little thought put into cohesion, as each piece of the program is painfully different. The program felt as though it was an intentional farce, as this would be the only redemption of The Passion.