On Sunday night, Lucien Greaves, co-founder of the Satanic Temple announced via Twitter that his group was taking legal action against Netflix and its new series ‘Chilling Adventures of Sabrina’ because he alleges that the series appropriated the design of the deity Baphomet used by the Temple. He stated:
Yes, we are taking legal action regarding #TheChillingAdventuresofSabrina appropriating our copyrighted monument design to promote their asinine Satanic Panic fiction.
— Lucien Greaves (@LucienGreaves) October 29, 2018
He confirmed to the San Francisco-based SFGate, that a lawyer from the group had sent a letter to Netflix regarding the depiction of the statue of Baphomet, an icon frequently used in occult rituals.
On ‘Chilling Adventures of Sabrina’, which premiered on Friday, the statue is a centerpiece at the Academy of Unseen Arts, the school for witches run by the show’s sinister baddie Father Blackwood (Richard Coyle). Sabrina (Kiernan Shipka) must divide her time between attending the ordinary mortal Baxter High School and this Academy.
Even though the name “Baphomet” can be traced back to the 12th century, the popular image of the goat-headed being didn’t become common until the 1800s. But since that time, thousands, if not millions of items have been created using this being’s visage.
But as Greaves said, the particular statue created by the Satanic Temple is copyrighted and that like their icon, the one on ‘Sabrina’ includes two children looking up at Baphomet.
“It’s deeply problematic to us. (But) even if that wasn’t the case we’d be obligated to make a copyright claim because that’s how copyright works.
“It’s distressing on the grounds that you have to worry about that association being made where people will see your monument and not know which preceded the other, and thinking that you arbitrarily decided to go with the Sabrina design for your Baphomet monument, which rather cheapens our central icon.”
He states that if they did not take action against ‘Sabrina’ and Netflix, it would weaken their ability to do so in the future. But in other words, they created this particular statue and don’t want people thinking they stole the design from ‘Sabrina’.
He also states that the Satanic Temple is worried that ‘Sabrina’ will incite a “Satanic Panic” by depicting Baphomet as evil.
“I feel that the use of our particular image that is recognized as our own central icon (being) displayed fictionally as central to some cannibalistic cult has real world damaging effects for us.”
Well, it’s not as though the general public has a great opinion of Satan worshipers to begin with. But to be fair to ‘Sabrina’, one of the most surprising elements of the show is that the witches, including the good ones, are all Satanists and they don’t shy away from that, or from referring to the Judeo Christian God as “The False God.” Technically, this could be the best free publicity the Satanic Temple could ever ask for.
But you can’t tell that to Greaves.
“I want them to take it out. It looks like it’s a CGI facsimile to begin with. I don’t know how much work that takes, but I simply refuse to have our monument used in this way in perpetuity. I don’t want our monument to be associated with this.”
Well… no one would have likely made an association if he hadn’t raised a stink over it. It sounds like this is just a publicity ploy– I mean why tweet about it? Mission accomplished, Satanists.
If anything comes of this, we’ll update you.