Sure, a childhood of Hebrew School assignments, special guest speakers at my parents’ synagogue, and an annual summer-camp screening of Europa Europa (what the fuck, right?) was enough to instill in me a healthy appreciation for the horrors of the Holocaust. But, for what made me (and I’m guessing plenty of others around my age) personally terrified of actual Nazis themselves, look no further than Indiana Jones and the Raiders Of The Lost Ark.
It’s not that the aforementioned Hebrew school/Synagogue/Summer camp lessons weren’t any good, per say, as much as I wasn’t ready for them. When it comes to teaching ten year olds about evil, it’s broad, cartoonish caricatures which are much more likely to leave lasting impressions on the minds of kids more interested in playing with action figures than learning about history. Which is all to say that, yeah, I’ve got some lingering pathological issues with the Steven Spielberg’s Gestapo goons. Specifically, a one Major Arnold Ernst Toht.
You know – this guy:
As a kid, he scared the hell out of me. As an adult, he still creeps me the fuck out. Major Toht was, for me, the perfect embodiment of Nazi evil sheathed in menacing charm. An implacable, seemingly unstoppable maniac who my comic book-riddled ten year old brain could comprehend as being “VERY BAD.” His climactic death at the hands of the ancient Israelite ghosts (uh, spoiler alert, i guess?) remains one of my all-time favorite movie scenes, both in terms of its sheer gruesomeness, as well as it being one of the earliest moments I can remember when a cinematic villain gets exactly what they deserve, and we get to watch it happen.
Imagine, then, my delight at learning that I can have the pleasure of not only watching Toht get what’s coming to him, but being the one to inflict his just desserts myself. Thanks to online ephemera retailers Firebox, “Melting Toht Candles” are a reality, and boy do they look perfect:
They’ll run you about 30 bucks apiece, which is a bit pricy, sure. But can you really put a price on buying eight of these bad boys and filling your menorah with melting Nazis? After all, as the Rabbis (probably, almost certainly) said:
“The oil was but for a single day, but lo, the Maccabees melted a friggin’ Nazi instead, and he burned for eight days, and that is the true miracle of Hanukkah”
[via io9, h/t Russ]