Kotaku has published a guest editorial from Skip Cameron, explaining how Fallout: New Vegas is one of the few pieces of pop culture that he felt did justice to the Mormon faith. Here's a snip:
I take no offense at the story of Graham becoming Caesar's first Legate and actually thought it was exciting to have a Mormon figure so prominently in the history of one of Fallout's principal factions. One big reason for this was because his fall was precipitated by very human failings (fear of death, lust for power, pride, etc.), not a failing specific to his religion. Consequently, Graham becoming a ruthless villain doesn't feel like an attack on Mormonism any more than Caesar forming the Legion feels like an attack on the Followers of the Apocalypse (which it doesn't).
But it is Graham's life after the Legion that sheds light on another reason why I appreciate Obsidian's handling of Mormonism so much.
After failing at the first battle of Hoover Dam, Caesar has Graham covered in pitch, set on fire, and thrown into the Grand Canyon. Graham, already renowned for his resilience as much as for his cruelty, survives. Stripped of power, title, and purpose, he returns to New Canaan filled with remorse for what he had become and for the shame he brought to his people.
Here again, Obsidian avoids the lazy clichÃ© of religious people being hypocritically unforgiving and intolerant and has the Mormons of New Canaan forgiving the penitent Graham, embracing him as a returning prodigal.
I'm not sure if Obsidian was touching on the general theme of sin, repentance, and redemption common in most all of Christianity or if they looked more specifically at Mormon history, but this type of story played out repeatedly in the early history of the Mormon church. There were multiple times that high-ranking Church members betrayed Church leaders by swearing false affidavits (i.e. Mormons planned to overthrow the government) which resulted in repeated imprisonments and even near execution, only to later have the traitors return seeking forgiveness and finding it extended by a magnanimous prophet and people (see W. W. Phelps, Thomas B. Marsh, Oliver Cowdery).
Regardless of what inspired the plotline, once again I appreciated that the core Christian tenet of repentance, forgiveness, and redemption figured so prominently in the story of saint-turned-sinner-turned-saint, Joshua Graham.
As a fun side-note regarding the fictional Graham and a famous real-life Mormon, Fallout: New Vegas project lead J. E. Sawyer said in an online Q&A that one interesting aspect of Mormon history is that John Browning, inventor of the M1911 pistol, BAR (Browning Automatic Rifle), and M2 .50 Cal Machine Gun, was a Mormon from Ogden, Utah. Joshua Graham, perhaps in a show of hometown pride and religious camaraderie, seems to be quite a fan of Browning's M1911 .45 Caliber pistols.