For century upon eon upon epoch, mankind has heaped scorn upon the despicable wizard Gargamel.
Yes, that Gargamel! The very one who pursues those elusive smurfs into jungles deep and caves dark. The one who seeks only one or two smurfs at first, but who is eventually, inevitably driven to madness by the smurfs irksome gumption.
But who are we to judge this man who wishes to use the essence of another to enhance himself? Are we not all in some way or another seeking to better ourselves, ultimately at the cost of others, in only in some small way? Could there be a smaller way than by hurting a 3-inch tall immortal blue monster?
Before we discuss whether the infamy of Gargamel be earned or not, we must discuss the man himself.
First appearing in the seminal 1959 publication Le Voleur de schtroumpf (The Smurfnapper), Gargamel has been populating our shit-lists ever since. Originally he sought but a single smurf to complete the act of alchemy; infinite gold would be his. Over the years his goals evolved as he progressed and grew as a human being; who can claim a singular lifelong goal after all? From the quest for gold he moved on and became a gourmand; endeavoring to capture a smurf for culinary purposes. Ultimately after repeatedly failing to procure the desired smurf course, Gargamel abandoned all constructive pursuits to focus solely on destroying the smurfs who had besmirched his good name in the wizarding community while also destroying his self-confidence, leaving only the hollow shell of a bitch of a man behind.
However the story of Gargamel is not merely one of ends, but also of means. Time after time he demonstrates extraordinary creativity and skill. Gargamel creates a magnet which can attract ANYTHING THE COLOR BLUE. That would be the single most outstanding advancement in most areas, but not when speaking of Gargamel, as he’s been written off early and often. In another instance, Gargamel created Smurfette in an attempt to infiltrate the smurf society. HE BROUGHT LIFE TO A SENTIENT BEING. Not only did he create a living creature; he endowed that creature with intelligence and made her of a gender which had heretofore never existed in smurf society. He not only added a smurf, but gave them the means by which to propagate and continue to multiply an immortal community.
Should we judge Gargamel for his goals? His lust for gold? His want of food? His vengeful rage? It occurs to me that we fondly remember the folksy 49’ers who rushed west for gold, although murders, treachery, and venereal diseases were their most immediate accomplishments at the time. Surely wanting to eat another creature must be evil though, and yet we as humans don’t judge cannibal societies to be evil for consuming sentient creatures, just different. Finally, it truly boggles the mind that we as a society would condemn Gargamel for a vengeful rage against those who prevented him from accumulation of wealth. THE UNITED STATES WAS LITERALLY FOUNDED BY RICH PEOPLE WHO WERE JUST MAD THAT THEY WEREN’T AS RICH AS THE PEOPLE ACROSS THE OCEAN.
Beyond a doubt I have proven that Gargamel was a genius inventor who sought nothing out of the ordinary. So why do we judge him? Why does Wikipedia hatefully describe him as, “an abject coward”. Why does Wikipedia go on to describe him as, “an eternal bungler”? Most importantly, and I cannot emphasize this enough, why did a Wikipedia editor find it important to specify that Gargamel resides in, “a run-down, though solidly built hovel”? Were people were about the hovel’s structural integrity? Was Wikipedia overrun with inquiries as to Gargamel’s safety, or the competence of his hovel’s architect? I digress.
If you love the mythology of the gold rush; if you believe in cultural relativism; if you LOVE AMERICA; CEASE THE PROSECUTION AND PERSECUTION OF GARGAMEL. Thank you.