Solving the problem of evil in the twenty-first century

Deal with the Devil Taken to Court

This Saturday Night Live Skit pokes fun at the Faustian deal with the devil trope and the stereotypical Christian view of the devil. The plaintiff a young hair dresser is suing Mephistopheles to nullify a contract and the cost of damages. The devil, played by Jon Lovitz, enters the court room in a cloud of smoke. He is horned and is wearing a red onesie and cape. The entire skit takes advantage of a widely held view of the devil as a shape shifting trickster who will make deals for your soul that prove never to be worth it.  The hair dresser, a big haired eighteen year old accompanied by her mother, claims the devil first came to her to make a deal in the form of a large dog. She made a contract with the Devil using her blood to exchange her soul for success as a hair dresser. As the judge gets testimony from the hair dresser and the Devil, it is revealed the language in the contract is not clear. The hair dresser said she wanted a successful business and the devil made her a magical hair dresser so that anyone who gets a haircut by her will never need a haircut again. Due to the devil’s manipulation of the hair dresser’s desires her business has actually lost business. The Devil argues that this is merely the nature of entering an agreement with the devil.  After hearing both sides, the judge rules in favor of the hairdresser due to her young age and the devil’s trickery. This is another example of a human‘s ability to outwit the devil. Additionally it presents a version of Satan that is accountable to a human legal system, another play on the limitations of Satan’s powers. He is even escorted out of the court house after trying to persuade the viewers to become his followers.

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2 responses

  1. I found it interesting that the devil was represented as a desperate version of himself towards the end of the video. Trying to convince viewers to follow him comes across as a last ditch effort to find followers since he can no longer garner the attention of even a lowly hairdresser.

    May 13, 2011 at 2:08 pm

  2. nbe88

    I agree with what James said. The desperate attempt makes the Devil seem like another person that just lost a court case and has to pay up.If anything, he could have tried to stood himself up as the most cruel and evil demon ever. But instead he is portrayed as the butt of a joke when outwitted by humans in the end.

    May 13, 2011 at 2:43 pm

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