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A Golem, “Nazi Necromancer Dicks” And A Distinct Lack Of Destiel

930 words - 4 pages

Golems, crafted from clay and shaped on a model of human anatomy, are a mythical creature often created to protect the Jewish people from anti-Semitic threats and violence. The most well known tale of golem lore is that of The Golem of Prague, retold by Jirasek, however there have been many modern adaptation of the golem myth through film and television. Specifically a television adaptation of the tale in the eighth season of Supernatural will be under examination here. The modern Supernatural adaptation, understandably, deviates from the classical tale while still utilizing the basic structure of the myth. Similarly both depictions of the golem represent the creature as a protector of the Jewish peoples that is controlled by the word of a rabbi. However the two depictions also have many differences, most of which can be attributed to the way in which the storylines are carried out and the time in which they are produced.
In Jirasek’s tale the golem is “shaped out of clay and brought to life by a wooden plug,” it is said to have been as powerful as two servants and required no sustenance or rest. These aspects of the golem hold true in the Supernatural depiction, showing a man-like creature that easily overpowers Sam and Dean, paying little attention to wounds that he receives from mortal instruments, he merely loses small amounts of the clay from which he was formed. Specifically Aaron’s golem is said to “have been shaped from clay and brought to life by rabbis to protect the Jewish people during times of general crapiness.” The golem, created by Rabbi Loew in Jirasek’s tale, acted as a protector against religious persecution and a suspected Jewish blood libel during the reign of Rudolph II. Aaron’s golem in “Everybody Hates Hitler” is passed from generation to generation within the Bass family and was originally created in the Vitsyebek Ghetto (During the reign of Hitler). His sole purpose at the time of his conception was to destroy the Thule Society camp in Belarus and bring an end to the occult scientific experiments that were carried out there on deceased Jews and “Gypsies”. There is an interesting similarity between this magical Nazi evolvement in the episode and the mystical and occult practices that were performed by the court of Rudolph II when the Golem of Prague tale was thought to have originated. In either case the golem must fight against anti-Semitic rulers with a lover for the supernatural and lust for the Sorcerer's Stone and other occult items of power.
The two retellings vary on a few points, most importantly the ability of the golem to speak and think. In the original tale these attributes are withheld from the creature for fear that allowing man to...

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