Last week, Netflix was slapped with a $50 million lawsuit from the Satanic Temple, a religious group that was not happy with the depiction of the humanoid goat deity, Baphomet, in Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. The god appears as a marble statue at Sabrina's magical school, the Academy of Unseen Arts.
However, it looks like the Satanic Temple is the only devil-worshipping orginization that has a problem with the statue. In a recent statement, the Church of Satan's Reverend Joel Ethan stated that it had no problem with the show's treatment of Baphomet, while also distancing itself from the Satanic Temple, describing the lawsuit as one of many "childish PR stunts."
"TST is a political activist group that has nothing to do with us, nor with the religion of Satanism which we founded over 50 years ago," reads the statement. "The Church of Satan has not filed a suit against Netflix, nor do we have a problem with their Sabrina show, which we’ve previously discussed."
According to the Church, not all depictions of Baphomet are copyrighted. The most famous one by Éliphas Lévi is actually in the public domain and may be used by anyone without paying royalties.
"TST appropriated Lévi’s image of Baphomet for their sculpture with the intention of frightening and angering Christians by threatening to place it on public property along side of Christian images, a goal we’ve previously discussed," the Church of Satan added.
The version shown in the fantasy Netflix series apparently borrows elements from the Satanic Temple's version of Baphomet, but also incorporates other characteristics found in public domain iterations as well.
"Differing details in the chest, wings, beard, and head as well as the scale of the children to the central figure and lack of a pentagram emblemize tombstone shaped background make it clear that the Netflix version is not an exact copy of the TST version, rather a situation of fair use of public domain and popular cultural imagery."
Founded by Anton Szandor LaVey in 1966, the Church of Satan revolves around the belief that more was accomplished in the world by those who defied God, rather than following his wishes. Moreover, the Church believes that Satan is much more worthy of human supplication, as he best understands humanity and its vices.