FANDOM


Warning
Scarfaceinthefall
This article's content is marked as Mature
The page Mature contains mature content that may include coarse language, sexual references, and/or graphic violent images which may be disturbing to some. Mature pages are recommended for those who are 18 years of age and older.

If you are 18 years or older or are comfortable with graphic material, you are free to view this page. Otherwise, you should close this page and view another page.

Villain Overview
This is not murder. This is mitzvah.
~ As Meyer, Wilhelm's most famous quote.
The Wolf forever wished to be Meyer. He learned everything there was to know about him, except the things that couldn't be taught. And because he couldn't become him, he tried to kill what made Meyer so special: his soul, his light. And in that moment I realized, The Wolf had succeeded. And so I made myself a pledge that I carry to this day, years after Meyer left me and ran off that fateful November 4th: I will find The Wolf, and I will deliver justice until he is nothing. For this is a duty of the past. This is a matter of the soul.
~ Ruth Heidelbaum writes of how The Wolf had broken Meyer.
30 years I lived as a Jew. I saw as a Jew, I thought as a Jew. You know, I finally woke from the coma of hatred, and saw the evil I had done to your grandparents... and realized that I was the villain of my own story. You don't recover from that.
~ Wilhelm explains himself to an incensed Jonah Heidelbaum.

Wilhelm Zuchs, known throughout the series as Meyer Offerman and by the moniker "The Wolf", is the anti-villainous deuteragonist and one of the overarching antagonists (alongside Adolf Hitler) of the Amazon Prime original TV series Hunters. He is a former Nazi doctor who stole the identity of a Jewish man and formed the titular Hunters team that sought to bring down the Nazis that escaped to America, and is the archenemy of The Colonel. He is presented as a flashback antagonist until he's revealed in the finale.

Throughout the series, he is believed to be Meyer Offerman, a Holocaust survivor and the grandfather of Jonah Heidelbaum. However, his identity was exposed by Jonah in the season finale, and he was killed by him as retribution for the lives he ruined, which ironically resulted in Jonah earning Wilhelm's respect since he deemed his death a necessity.

In the series' present, he was portrayed by Al Pacino, who also portrayed John Milton in The Devil's Advocate, Big Boy in Dick Tracy, Michael Corleone in The Godfather trilogy, Tony Montana in Scarface, David Fisk in Righteous Kill, Shylock in The Merchant of Venice, Richard III in Looking for Richard, Carlito Brigante in Carlito's Way, Lefty in Donnie Brasco, Willy Bank in Ocean's Thirteen, and Roy Cohn in Angels in America. He's portrayed by Christian Oliver in flashbacks, who also played Snake Oiler in Speed Racer, and Steiner Bogdanow in Sense8.

Personality

Wilhelm, unlike most other villains in Hunters, is not motivated by Nazism or evil, and can even be considered one of the least vile of the other antagonists, in spite of his crimes. According to him, he wasn't a devotee of Nazism or the master race ideology and only joined with the Nazis for the power they would give him in the Auschwitz laboratory. It was this power that would corrupt him and turn him into the monster known as The Wolf.

When speaking with Ruth, Wilhelm maintains a kind demeanor but is noticeably upset when she rejects his offer. This demeanor is not faux affability, and he genuinely is nice to others. He only gives up on being the nice guy when he is upset or angered, which he shows he easily is. He's also very determined, doing whatever he could to destroy Meyer's light, learning every detail he could about him. Even Wilhelm has his limits, however, giving up on torturing Meyer after nine hours, and even drinking while doing so, so as to alleviate the pain of inflicting pain, which indicates that he's not a sadist, but is still tenacious and would go to extreme lengths to get what he wanted.

After taking on Meyer's identity, Wilhelm would, in his words "awake from the coma of hatred", as living life as a Jew opened his eyes to his heinousness, and he came to realize that he was the bad guy. Wilhelm developed a black and white view of the world, believing the Nazis he would eventually kill, as well as himself, were truly monsters, incapable of redemption and unworthy of life. He claims to Wiesenthal that his methods of punishment are righteous, and it is actually Wiesenthal who is in the wrong because his process is not immediate and does not provide true justice. Wilhelm believed that the killing was necessary, even though it is admittedly difficult. He scolds Jonah for not doing "what is necessary", even claiming he's not fit to lead because of his inaction.

Overall, Wilhelm Zuchs is not evil. At heart, he is not totally hateful and is perhaps the only Nazi in the series portrayed as having any kind of redeeming qualities. However, he is a man with a short temper who doesn't take "no" for an answer, and his actions as a result of this behavior ensure that he's still a villain.

Victims

Quotes

I was hoping to find you here. I'm in need of a personal secretary at the clinic. I've met with a few German girls from the steno pool but needed someone... exceptional. And I thought of you. You'd get your own room. A warm bed. Proper food. Only catch is you'd have to work for a painfully disorganized doctor and make sense of all his paperwork.
~ Wilhelm extends his offer to Ruth.
You have a choice. You can choose to kill this innocent man, or... I will kill Ruth right where she stands. [...] Bring me the next one! How many? How many do you think she's worth?
~ The Wolf effectively destroys Meyer's light.
“In a world of diarrhea and constipation, it’s okay to be a normal piece of shit sometimes." Besides, Moira Schlosstein had it coming.
~ Wilhelm, now Meyer, to Jonah after the latter angrily insults Moira Schlosstein.
Your grandmother was a fighter, and I trust it courses through your veins as well as hers. But if you ever need anything - money, assistance, anything at all - you come to me. This is not charity. It's a debt I owe her.
~ Meyer extends his help to Jonah.
You know, you have an intimate relationship with death. But know it not to be a curse, but a blessing. One that will bring you closer to life. As the Talmud tells us, "Living well is the best revenge." I hope I see you again.
~ Meyer encourages Jonah to see the bright side.
This is not murder. Before Jews even existed, hatred and slaughter waited for us. For thousands of years, from Masada to Munich, we have been massacred. Pharaohs and popes and princes and popular votes calling for our blood. Now? We survive the war, we survive the greatest mass eradication in modern history, and we arrive home to find that the people who did this to us, they're our neighbors. So tell me, what should we do? Shake hands? Turn a blind eye? Forget? No, no. The greatest single gift of the Jewish people is our capacity... our capacity to remember. And it's because of our memory that we know this is survival.
~ Meyer to Jonah, explaining the reason for The Hunt.
You mistook us for pawns. When all this time, we've been kings. This is for Markus, for Chava, for Ruth.
~ Meyer to Heinz Richter as he kills the latter.
In this country, Lady Justice may be blind to all, but to many of us, she is also deaf. Do you know how many Nazis the U.S. executed at Nuremberg? 12. 12 perpetrators out of 8 million. And they're on the march again, these forever soldiers. These monsters. No wonder they thought they could come here. So we are left-- us-- to do God's work. Ruth's work, Jonah. Ruth's.
~ Meyer justifies the Hunters' actions.
The only thing you know about the Holocaust is what you read in your history books. But we lived it. We survived it. We all knew a Holstedder. What we're trying to ensure is that we don't know a Holstedder again.
~ Meyer attempts to convince Jonah that the Hunters' actions are righteous.
There's a difference between dirt and blood. (Frederic: Not if you clean it well enough.) Blood always leaves a stain, my friend, whether you can see it or not.
~ Meyer to Frederic Hauser.
Jonah, when your time comes, swear to me that you will not let what's inside you stop you from doing what is difficult. Jonah, swear to me. (Jonah: I swear.) I will hold you to that.
~ Meyer has Jonah agree to do what is necessary.
Jonah, for centuries, we've been persecuted because of these rituals. These are the very things that define us, that make us us. Retreating from that-- that's defeat. And I'm not ready to admit defeat. Are you?
~ Meyer explains the importance of Jewish tradition to Jonah.
She didn't lie to you, she lied for you. There's a difference. A lie, sometimes, is a very unselfish act.
~ Meyer to Jonah on why Ruth didn't tell him about his grandfather.
If we follow your path, Simon, they will eradicate the Jew before we ever have a chance to fight them back.
~ Meyer detests Simon Wiesenthal's methods.
The Hunt is my penance, because it gives me purpose, finally. In The Hunt, I find myself. I'd kill for The Hunt. I will die for The Hunt.
~ Meyer, now exposed as Wilhelm, tells Jonah what The Hunt meant for him.
You think I want to live? Go ahead. Only The Hunt lives. Do you understand? Only The Hunt.
~ Wilhelm provokes Jonah to kill him; to do "what is necessary".
It's you. M-Meyer.
~ Wilhelm's last words as he dies.

Trivia

  • There were several hints throughout the episodes as to Meyer's true identity as Wilhelm Zuchs, some of which Jonah recalls as he figures it out for himself.
    • Tilda Sauer calls Meyer "the biggest charlatan of them all", as well as the "great pretender". Before she can elaborate further, Meyer shoots and kills her, a move that shocks Lonny and Roxy.
    • As Meyer looks at Oskar Hauptman's prescription, the shot lingers on the bottle, which bears Friedrich Mann's name. The Ghost, similarly to Meyer, had undergone plastic surgery by Mann to not be recognized.
    • Murray tell Jonah that "you can never really know a person", and that "we wear different faces", alluding to Meyer not being who he says he his, and his literal change of face.
    • In a flashback sequence, Ruth tells Meyer that he looks different than what she remembers of him.
    • Friedrich Mann notes how the stitches on Jonah's wound are expertly done. Since Wilhelm Zuchs was a surgeon, he was an expert in mending wounds.
    • Friedrich Mann exclaims "It's you!" before Meyer kills him, recognizing him as the man he performed surgery on.
  • Al Pacino himself is not Jewish, unlike the other actors who portray Jews, which makes Meyer's reveal as a "pretender" somewhat justified.
  • Wilhelm is one of the only Nazis in the series not brought to the United States via Operation Paperclip.
  • Wilhelm taking on Meyer's identity is similar to Klaus Braun from CSI: NY taking on the identity of Abraham Klein, a Jewish Holocaust survivor.
  • Though Wilhelm claimed he didn't seek absolution, his philanthropic actions indicate otherwise, having donated to several Jewish charities.

Navigation

           HuntersLogo1 Villains

Fourth Reich
High Ranking
Adolf Hitler | The Colonel | Travis Leich | Katarina Löw | Biff Simpson | Tobias
Subordinates
Heinz Richter | Gretel Fischer | Hans Fischer | Oskar Hauptman | Moritz Ehrlich | Karl Holstedder | Dieter Zweigelt | Tilda Sauer | Nazi Administrator | Wernher von Braun

Others
Wilhelm Zuchs | Jonah Heidelbaum | Friedrich Mann | Frederic Hauser

Organizations
Schidler Corp

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.