Samurai Jack is known for having little wordage. The first entire half hour had zero dialogue. It's a pretty awesome show. So they could understand easily what's going on, but they being kids, of course, are gonna ask a ton of questions ('YEH KYA HORA HAI'). Boys tend to stare entranced and absorb it without thinking but girls especially like to ask a million questions during the process. <3 I found myself explaining the entire thing in Islamic terms and was surprised at how well it fit.
This is what I explained:
Three angels were fighting a great Djinn, as powerful as Shaitan, named Aku in space. Since this was before Islam and all that ( ), they took the forms of the various human nations. One after the Greeks, another after the Egyptians, and another after the Indians (without having to explain the whole 'god' thing... it's a cartoon... Indians can have six arms in a cartoon). They were blasting away at him, with stars and everything, but a tiny piece of it fell all the way to Earth where it was buried as the dinosaurs came and went, etc. etc. until finally humans arrived. At first the Djinn was just growing like a plant everywhere. This brings us to medievel Japan. The thing was growing all over the Kingdom, and the Emperor (consider him like Dhul-Qarnayn(as)) didn't know what to do. He took some special potion thing (I forgot what the eldest called it), and threw it at the weird growth but that only wound up giving it 'life' (human-like consciousness). Meaning magic is bad and the Djinn thrives on it. So it took it's proper form as a typical Djinn. It destroyed half the Kingdom, and trapped the Emperor. Out of nowhere, a white 'Buraq' came. A giant glowing white horse with a ton of legs, kind of like the one that took Prophet Muhammad (saw) on Isra & Miraj. Wherever it stepped or breathed, the Djinn-growth would disappear. It freed the Emperor and flew off. It reached the top of some mountain where three Sufi Pirs (I said Walis, but they didn't know what Wali or Awliyah or those words meant yet) were waiting. As he stepped in, they were transported into space, where he was just hovering about. The three Angels stood before him and told him about the evil Djinn that was plaguing his Kingdom. They then lifted him up, and took out from within his Ruh, his Taqwa (righteousness, piety... God-consciousness... the youngest doesn't have a grasp on these things yet, the oldest barely does, but is able to suspend disbelief and believe that Taqwa can become tangible in a Nur-like form). The three Pirs took out giant hammers, and as the Angels kept zapping it, they hammered it into a shape. A samurai sword. They gave it to the Emperor, and the Angels told him that the sword was forged from the Taqwa within his soul (Ruh). It is the only thing that can defeat the evil that is the Djinn, Aku. But, they warned him, the Djinn's magic is like nothing the human has ever seen before, so he must be careful. So, the Emperor, decked out in glowing white armor with the sword, gets on a flying cloud (Hazrat Suleiman (as) could travel like that) and goes back. He fights the Djinn in his various incarnations. And this part, they all got. That the Djinn, being evil, took various incarnations... was scary, but also kind of funny. He liked to make fun of and mock the humans, especially the Emperor. And was very chalaak. Meaning all these attributes are things to be wary of (as is embodied in Islamic teachings). The Emperor finally defeated Aku by capturing him in the sword and trapping him in the Earth. At that moment also, Jack was born. And the Emperor and his wife decided Jack was their backup plan.
As he grew up (the two-parter ended here, and this is another episode), he was sent around to the kings of the various human nations and trained by the best. He got back just in time, as a solar eclipse struck, and the Djinn was freed (mentioned here the Hadith about how the Prophet(saw) treated eclipses). He fought Aku, but as he was about to trap him in the sword as his father had done, the Djinn pulled out a new trick. He opened a portal many years into the future and threw Jack into it. When Jack comes through, Aku has taken over everything and the world is populated by mutants, aliens, robots, and all sorts of weird things. Then I summarized that the rest of the stories involve Jack trying to find a way to defeat Aku and go back to his time. But Aku never fights him properly, always sends his minions in various forms. He comes up with a ton of tricks, sometimes coming in the form of humans to trick Jack and foil his plans. The few times he does fight Jack, he does it hilariously, by first arguing that it has to be with no weapons (no sword), so Jack agrees... then he says it has to be a certain spot, at a certain time, etc. etc. and Jack agrees readily as long as Aku doesn't change forms. This behaviour is the kind the Qur'an repeatedly mentions of past peoples, like Bani Israil. (Jack was kicking his ass until Aku broke his word and fled).
Even though they were girls, they loved it. I dunno if they have the attention span to sit through a ton of these, but they would if it were in Urdu. I need to get the DVD sets of Voltron, Thundercats, and the other shows. I can't wait to spoil Abdullah when his parents aren't looking. :anxious:
The best part is, of course, being able to visualize all these Islamic teachings. Now when they think of what a saint/wali is like, they'll know. It's not just about fantastic tales of miracles, it's about their everyday embodiment of their beliefs. Like how Jack walks around in simple clothing, is very humble, incredibly considerate of others, protects the weak and oppressed, of few words, never lies, etc. etc. I also like how it lets them see how important being good is... it makes all the good behaviour, that increases piety or taqwa, practically important. It really does protect you from Djinns too. Boys tend to accept it all a bit more easily, girls tend to be too clever for their own good.