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The Satanic Temple and Sabrina settle £38m lawsuit

Netflix has made a deal with the devil

After a very public battle between the Satanic Temple and the team behind the spooky Sabrina reboot on Netflix, Satan has won.

In a decision that was reached “amicably”, Netflix has agreed to pay the church £38m ($50m) to settle the lawsuit. Taking to Twitter Lucien Greaves, a co-founder of the Satanic Temple bemusingly confirmed the news. 

“So ends one of the most overpublicized of copyright claims. Press can now stop pretending this was unique & momentous, or even interesting. So, too, hopefully, ends the parade of stupidity from online amateur legal experts,” he wrote.

Scenes in The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina featured a monument of the goat deity Baphomet stood raising his gun fingers above two adoring children. At the time Greaves posted a comparison of the figures online.

Throughout the case he used Twitter to air his grievances, particularly to highlight how distastefully the organisation’s symbol was portrayed in the show. He explained: “I’m amazed that anybody is confused as to why we would seek legal remedy over Sabrina using our monument. Would they be as understanding of a fictional show that used a real mosque as the HQ of a terrorist cell? A fictional Blood Libel tale implicating real world Jews?”

The 10-part series employed the symbol to illustrate evil, which the church considers a misappropriation – the Satanic Temple say it’s used to “encourage benevolence and empathy among all people”.

Later Greaves penned a blog post outlining his legal claims. “We are claiming copyright infringement for their use of our unique Baphomet monument design in their show as a central icon for a cannibalistic cult,” he said. “We are not laying claim to Baphomet itself, but rather our original interpretation of Baphomet that has become a central icon to our organisation, much like a corporate logo.”

Real witches have been frank in their critique of the show, Charlotte Richardson-Andrews reporting for Dazed at the time said “any IRL witch worth her salt will tell you, there’s no Devil in the Craft.” At least there’s now an end to this extremely costly case of cultural appropriation.