Episode 362

I've been wondering whether she might have lost her right eye...
So far I don't see the purpose of it. Sure, it'd be parallel to Guts but a visual one only. Guts had a horrible last vision with his right eye and isn't only always reminded of that scene but is also massively handicapped due to the injury (at least in theory, he's still probably one of the strongest human fighters even without the Berserk's (thanks for the info up top) armour). I think it also intensifies the image of him being a struggler, keeping on fighting despite the circumstances. She died a short time later anyway, maybe even due to that injury if it went further inside than Guts', but doesn't enhance the parallel much further. For it to be later on revealed there'd have to be a reason.
There's definitely more blood under her right eye compared to her left side of the face and her neck, her right shoulder and to her left breast, too, though so I'm not saying this isn't a possibility.
I don't think it's too farfetched to say that Void could have been a decent human being or at least more decent than Gaiseric back then.
I could definitely see a turn of events that first show how bad ("foolish") of a person Gaiseric was and Void being shown as the victim, he got tortured in the end after all. I would, however, see Miura showing us some bad sides of Void before the sacrifice, just as we saw with Griffith. Griffith's likeable scenes are those when we see him in these moments together with Guts, his only friend, but there were plenty of other scenes that showed us the monster Griffith could be, too. Scenes of Gaiseric with the woman could show his most decent, human sides.
Nonetheless, Void is probably the biggest bad guy in the series, so the overall image of him we'll get won't be too decent I reckon. But it could serve as a first impression we'll get of him. I expect at least 2 more episodes of flashback content in which the first could give us that false image with some hints of his real personality and the second showing us how it came to the end after all.
Jan's fanfiction, the end.:guts:
 
No, because we see those scenes from the perspective of Gaiseric (literally through his eyes), we don't see much of his body. I'm just assuming he was because I think it makes sense.

Both of those things make sense, I didn't know if I was missing anything.

I don't know if it makes sense to have other memories be told through the armor, since this was specifically about Gaiseric's death.

Do you mean that it is likely that this memory is the only one in the armor due to Gaiseric dying? I was thinking that there might be earlier times in Gaiseric's history where he was wearing the armor that might be shown directly to Guts, like a Golden Age 2 (Silver Age idk....). Although, I could see how doing this would take away from the shock of Skull Knight showing Guts how he died as a consequence of using the Berserk's Armor.
 

Aazealh

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I could definitely see a turn of events that first show how bad ("foolish") of a person Gaiseric was and Void being shown as the victim, he got tortured in the end after all.

The word Miura uses for "foolish" doesn't mean "bad". I think you guys should be careful not to put too much stock into the old oral tales from a thousand years ago that aren't particularly reliable. Instead you should probably give more consideration to what we've actually seen the Skull Knight do even after becoming a dead spirit, think about who were his friends (Flora, Hanaar) and who are his enemies (the God Hand).

Do you mean that it is likely that this memory is the only one in the armor due to Gaiseric dying? I was thinking that there might be earlier times in Gaiseric's history where he was wearing the armor that might be shown directly to Guts, like a Golden Age 2 (Silver Age idk....). Although, I could see how doing this would take away from the shock of Skull Knight showing Guts how he died as a consequence of using the Berserk's Armor.

Yeah that's what I mean. The way it's explained by Hanaar is that he's showing Guts memories embedded in the blood that has deeply stained the armor. So it doesn't sound like you can just relive anything a former wearer did. It's only possible because of the intensity of the event (Gaiseric's death).
 
The word Miura uses for "foolish" doesn't mean "bad". I think you guys should be careful not to put too much stock into the old oral tales from a thousand years ago that aren't particularly reliable. Instead you should probably give more consideration to what we've actually seen the Skull Knight do even after becoming a dead spirit, think about who were his friends (Flora, Hanaar) and who are his enemies (the God Hand).

There is a possibility that Gaiseric was a ruthless, unforgiving warrior-emperor, who was also just and kind to people close to him, there is a personality type like this. There's also a factor that after a traumatic event (especially on a scale like this) people tend to change considerably, so after losing a whole empire, his loved ones and such, Gaiseric could have recognized that his old patterns were not the best, thus getting the collected, wiser and supporting character we have now. I don't think he was ever evil but no one can say for sure that he didn't have a big ego for example (yet). In my eyes Skull Knight is very different from Gaiseric on the account of not having those raw emotions he used to have as a conqueror. For example we can't really imagine Skull Knight torturing anyone, especially to Void's degree... yet we can imagine angry Gaiseric making sure human Void won't ever feel happiness in his life again.
 
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Aazealh

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There is a possibility that Gaiseric was a ruthless, unforgiving warrior-emperor, who was also just and kind to people close to him, there is a personality type like this. There's also a factor that after a traumatic event (especially on scale like this) people tend to change considerably, so after losing a whole empire, his loved ones and such, Gaiseric could have recognize that his old patterns were not the best, thus getting the collected, wiser and supporting character we have now.

Sure, in theory everything's possible. But I don't believe that's what happened.
 

Matteo Metallo

"Your mom goes to college"
With nowhere else to go, they take refuge in Elfhelm.
I just did a re-read of Volume 24 and believe there is evidence to support this, as well as, the other scenarios presented in the original post. In the episode titled "Magic Stone" Flora surmised from Guts that, "To protect that girl you are all headed for Elfhelm..." After Guts confirms her suspicion her response is simply, "How ironic..."

Mind you that is the Dark Horse translation, but I'm hopeful that the same sentiment is portrayed in the original text.
 

Aazealh

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In the episode titled "Magic Stone" Flora surmised from Guts that, "To protect that girl you are all headed for Elfhelm..." After Guts confirms her suspicion her response is simply, "How ironic..."

Haha no, actually that line is just the beginning of what she says on the next page.
 

Matteo Metallo

"Your mom goes to college"
Haha no, actually that line is just the beginning of what she says on the next page.
Damn... I see. :ganishka: I must pay more attention to those ellipsis I suppose. Really thought you nailed it again with a prediction.

My follow up was gonna be to ask what the original text was because I made the supposedley common mistake of attributing irony to coincidence, and figured the translation did the same.
 
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If it is true, that the 4 other beings flanking Void are previous members of the God Hand... do you think it is possible that Skull Knight actually killed them? If so it would make Femto extra-special if he was the one member of the God Hand that he could not kill. Not sure if its been touched on yet.... wanted to see what you guys thought
 

Walter

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If it is true, that the 4 other beings flanking Void are previous members of the God Hand... do you think it is possible that Skull Knight actually killed them? If so it would make Femto extra-special if he was the one member of the God Hand that he could not kill. Not sure if its been touched on yet.... wanted to see what you guys thought
Yeah it's been one of the big topics since the ep dropped last week. Personally, I don't think it's likely that Skull Knight did it himself, no. He didn't land a hit on either Void or Femto, so outright killing 4 God Hand members sounds like a bit of a lift.

I think one possible clue about SK's history of dealing with the God Hand could be in the development of his Beherit Sword technique. He said in Vol 26 that he intends to use it to entomb them [GH] in the vortex. Perhaps he's simply referring to their ultimate destination, but I wondered if this could imply that he had witnessed the Vortex being used in such a way that the GH couldn't escape it. Maybe the sword technique is a way of emulating what he once saw as effective against them. The other thing about how he refers to the technique is that it sounds like he's hoping it will work that way—and later we saw that it didn't work. Femto could manipulate the slice.
 

Aazealh

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I think one possible clue about SK's history of dealing with the God Hand could be in the development of his Beherit Sword technique. He said in Vol 26 that he intends to use it to entomb them [GH] in the vortex. Perhaps he's simply referring to their ultimate destination, but I wondered if this could imply that he had witnessed the Vortex being used in such a way that the GH couldn't escape it. Maybe the sword technique is a way of emulating what he once saw as effective against them. The other thing about how he refers to the technique is that it sounds like he's hoping it will work that way—and later we saw that it didn't work. Femto could manipulate the slice.

This brings up an interesting question about the God Hand's relation to the Vortex of Souls. As far as we know, it's where their power comes from. We see in episode 83 that the Idea of Evil concentrates some of the flow of souls on Femto and transforms him that way. Then he flies back up. That episode is not canon anymore, but from what we've seen in the series so far, the God Hand appears to be pretty relaxed around the Vortex. They gather nearby it to anoint new apostles and don't seem fazed when parts of it come close to them. One would also assume that the evil power apostles receive from the God Hand (a procedure we've never seen) comes from there.

All of this makes me wonder whether they'd really be vulnerable if plunged into it, and under what conditions. Would they just be unable to escape if thrown deep into the flow, then melt down or something? Either way, I've always expected, if SK ever manages to cut one of them down with the beherit sword, that the Vortex would burst out of the wound.
 

Walter

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This brings up an interesting question about the God Hand's relation to the Vortex of Souls. As far as we know, it's where their power comes from. We see in episode 83 that the Idea of Evil concentrates some of the flow of souls on Femto and transforms him that way. Then he flies back up. That episode is not canon anymore, but from what we've seen in the series so far, the God Hand appears to be pretty relaxed around the Vortex. They gather nearby it to anoint new apostles and don't seem fazed when parts of it come close to them. One would also assume that the evil power apostles receive from the God Hand (a procedure we've never seen) comes from there.

They do seem to be comfortable around it, which makes sense because the Vortex is basically their power engine. They use it almost as a threatening weapon with the Count. But the question is ... what if they got closer?

All of this makes me wonder whether they'd really be vulnerable if plunged into it, and under what conditions. Would they just be unable to escape if thrown deep into the flow, then melt down or something? Either way, I've always expected, if SK ever manages to cut one of them down with the beherit sword, that the Vortex would burst out of the wound.

I think we agree that "evil power" is sourced from the Vortex. We know that when apostles die, the evil power that transformed their souls is reclaimed by the Vortex, leaving the human husk behind. So if the God Hand are created as we see them in 83, then they are essentially composed OF evil power. Thus, I think if they came into physical contact with the Vortex, they would lose their form like everyone else, like water into water.

 

Griffith

My posts are better.
Better late than never...

It does however feel like an appropriately eldritch equivalent to the sea of faces that serves as the scenery for Griffith's ceremony.

One might remark that it's a lot less expansive, looking more like a ballroom or a large hallway, with the tentacles even forming the beginning of a ceiling. An explanation for this might be the place the event began in and who it was about. In Griffith's case, the beherit was activated in a lake surrounded by plains and hills. The faces on the ground and in the sky can be seen as a reflection of the "mountain of corpses" he has had to pile to get to that point, although this is merely an interpretation and not explicitly stated. In the slithering hellscape's case, maybe the event started in Gaiseric's throne room, hence why it holds that shape. And maybe the tentacles are thematically relevant to some detail we don't know yet...​

Following the idea of the ceremony environment reflecting the participant(s), the slithering tentacles, particularly if this were a throne room, could represent the ceaseless expansion of Empire and evil, Gaiseric's and/or the God Hand's.



Throughout the story, the Skull Knight has given Guts cryptic warnings about what would come. About the Eclipse, about the Incarnation, about the fact he would not be able to both protect his lover and fight his enemies. How he has known these things is another great mystery of the series. Can he feel the flow of causality? Does he have access to an oracle? These may yet be true, but there is another, simpler explanation: he once lived through similar events. We know that there is a pattern of events repeating themselves in Berserk, what with the Eclipse ceremonies, or how Femto's incarnation mirrored the ceremony of his birth.

This brings me back to the large flaming brand we see in Gaiseric's memory that's similar to the one from Femto's incarnation. We don't know that it's exclusively tied to incarnations of course, it is literally their brand and they might like it to appear as such at mass sacrifices, or the one at Femto's incarnation could have been reflecting this one, etc. But that's all speculatory too, and the presence of that brand coupled with Skull Knight's knowledge of incarnation ceremonies is objectively suggestive. Or, at least begs the question of why exactly Miura was making that specific call back if it wasn't merely to show the scale of the event? I just don't know how to make sense of it in the context of an incarnation with this seemingly different ceremony we're seeing, and because we don't know what use an incarnation would be at this juncture, making it easier to dismiss in favor of the other possibilities, but we should explore the idea further since it's still a possible implication, at least as much as we assume other specific characteristics correlate to certain events or ceremonies, and could reveal something we've not yet considered. I just wonder if we aren't adding 2+2 together while missing eight other numbers here (to be fair Aaz is performing advanced calculus regardless =).

All of this makes me wonder whether they'd really be vulnerable if plunged into it, and under what conditions. Would they just be unable to escape if thrown deep into the flow, then melt down or something? Either way, I've always expected, if SK ever manages to cut one of them down with the beherit sword, that the Vortex would burst out of the wound.
I think we agree that "evil power" is sourced from the Vortex. We know that when apostles die, the evil power that transformed their souls is reclaimed by the Vortex, leaving the human husk behind. So if the God Hand are created as we see them in 83, then they are essentially composed OF evil power. Thus, I think if they came into physical contact with the Vortex, they would lose their form like everyone else, like water into water.

It's easy to imagine them sort of opening up and melting outward into themselves, sort of imploding, if struck by the vortex blade (something like the latter half of this =). Like whatever bounds the evil inside their body being undone. I don't know that they wouldn't be able to move freely within the vortex otherwise; after all, like Femto they were already theoretically there and had to leave, and I wonder if they, particularly Void, ever occupy it outside of ceremonies or even confer with the Idea of Evil, which could also be protecting them as long as they live and maintain their pact (the Count wasn't sucked in until he died failing to re-up).
 
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Aazealh

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This brings me back to the large flaming brand we see in Gaiseric's memory that's similar to the one from Femto's incarnation. We don't know that it's exclusively tied to incarnations of course, it is literally their brand and they might like it to appear as such at mass sacrifices, or the one at Femto's incarnation could have been reflecting this one, etc. But that's all speculatory too, and the presence of that brand coupled with Skull Knight's knowledge of incarnation ceremonies is objectively suggestive. Or, at least begs the question of why exactly Miura was making that specific call back if it wasn't merely to show the scale of the event? I just don't know how to make sense of it in the context of an incarnation with this seemingly different ceremony we're seeing, and because we don't know what use an incarnation would be at this juncture, making it easier to dismiss in favor of the other possibilities, but we should explore the idea further since it's still a possible implication, at least as much as we assume other specific characteristics correlate to certain events or ceremonies, and could reveal something we've not yet considered. I just wonder if we aren't adding 2+2 together while missing eight other numbers here (to be fair Aaz is performing advanced calculus regardless =).

Yeah the possibility of an incarnation is definitely not off the board or anything, it's more that I don't think it makes sense in that context for them to merely be trying to incarnate an usurper to the throne. I think there are other ways that they might have "come down to earth" that could fit with the events. But like you said, we're missing a lot of key details and that makes the whole exercise of trying to figure things out very hazardous.

One of the things I was thinking about this morning is the dream of the Falcon of Light and the fact people yearned desperately for his appearance when Femto was incarnated. Did something similar occur a thousand years ago? And if so, what were people wishing for? An easy possibility is Gaiseric's fall, if he had become despised as a ruler (whether that was justified or not). Could have also been a lot of other things though.

I wonder if they, particularly Void ever occupy it outside of ceremonies or even confer with the Idea of Evil, which could also be protecting them as long as they live and maintain their pact

That's a good point to bring up, I've also wondered over the years whether they directly communicate with the Idea of Evil from time to time, or if even they can only go that deep during their rebirth ceremony.
 

Walter

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With all the parallel circumstances being discussed, it makes me wonder how Miura will signal some of them in a way readers would instantly recognize. Gaiseric wearing the Berserk Armor in this episode was very cool to see "in action" but it was an already established parallel. You know what's missing right now? The beherit. What if Gaiseric once wore a beherit on his conquests, just as Griffith did? But like the one Guts carries now, it ultimately ended up in the hands of who it ultimately belonged to (Void).

I've also wondered over the years whether they directly communicate with the Idea of Evil from time to time, or if even they can only go that deep during their rebirth ceremony.
I think it would dilute the overall idea of "Do as you will" if they have to check in with the boss.
 
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I think it would dilute the overall idea of "Do as you will" if they have to check in with the boss.

I don't really get this part. If they are somehow allowed to "do as they will", why would they be united like that? It's obvious they are carrying out a plan imposed by a higher being, even Griffith who just wanted his own kingdom has it only because it serves IoE.

When we look at the concept of evil itself, it only works in unison if there's one bigger thing orchestrating everything, otherwise it tears itself apart with betrayal, malice and all those bad traits. Both Apostles and God Hand are ruled by the intrinsic source of their power, they are limited by design. I am not sure if I am supposed to interpret "do as you will" line as dishonest because it would seem dishonest, at least on a superficial level.
 

Matteo Metallo

"Your mom goes to college"
The goal of the God Hand would be a healthy advantage right now, but as I ponder that it made me realize the goal of the Idea of Evil is more important.

I am assuming in order to keep the IOE alive you would have to perpetuate evil and suffering amongst humans. In the current setting of Berserk it looks as if this is being obtained by creating an empire of sheep that blindly serve their savior and would spill their blood if asked to fulfill his vision. Couple this with a capitalists heathens paradise of a kingdom and you have the perfect environment for an all powerful group of demons to manipulate and exploit the nature of man.

Flashback to the time of Gaiseric when for sake of argument the worlds were merged. As it's been said before on this forum, a very gifted and powerful magician tapped into an evil realm or force that could secure dominion forever but was met with hostility from a warrior king who was uniting the people and ending conflict, all the while resisting the dark arts and perhaps believed in the goodness of man, which made him a foolish king.

To perpetuate the IOE you have to keep humanity blind as they give into their natural desires, that which Slan summed up nicely during the eclipse. Now this is a stretch, but suppose this magician made contact with God and after being freed from his prison by 4 angels who had forms within the merged world, sacrificed his existence within the corporeal world during a unique ceremony which triggered the separation of the astral world for 1000 years. The separation triggers the destruction of the ancient kingdom and all those that belong to it, and banishes all those that realm within the astral world away from humanity. During this time humanity is groomed within the laws of Causality to reject the world of magic and succumb to human nature as they give into fear, greed, lust, sadness, etc., all the while being primed for the moment when a valiant savior or 5th angel can release them from this void of existence, thus making them subservient to agents of evil and ushering in an age of darkness or new void.

Sorry for the rant, but Episode 362 really got my mind racing... If we could get 2 more eps before 2020 ends I will be forever grateful.
 

Oburi

All praise Grail
I don't really get this part. If they are somehow allowed to "do as they will", why would they be united like that? It's obvious they are carrying out a plan imposed by a higher being, even Griffith who just wanted his own kingdom has it only because it serves IoE.
They are free to do as they will. It just so happens that their will coincides with that of the Idea of Evil. Similar to how the Apostles united under incarnated Griffith (except for Ganishka of course, but even that was preordained). Other than Femto, we don't know the will of the others. The recent speculation on Void possibly orchestrating the structure of the current God Hand and it's ceremonies, as well as the Apostles and maybe even the Beherits too gives him an added layer of sinister authority.

I am assuming in order to keep the IOE alive you would have to perpetuate evil and suffering amongst humans.
Not necessarily. We don't yet know enough about what we're dealing with to make any kind of intelligent judgment.
 

Griffith

My posts are better.
"Do as you will" is just a much smoother line than, "Do as I've bred you to do." :idea:

This is actually an issue where Griffith is concerned because before his fall he was seingly leading this romantic outsider insurgence by a commoners into the power structure of society based on his charisma, wherewithal and one way or another, ability or merit. But since then he's been revealed as either the ultimate privileged insider, a literal chosen one, and/or a tool, to be used for other's desires, precisely what he was trying to overcome.

That's why I find the idea of him being ultimately unfulfilled with this arrangement appealing; not because it reveals a conscience or redeems him, but because it would be a fitting consequence and interesting if he's so well created for his role as a disruptor and usurper that even being essentially right hand to god is unsatisfactory. So far though no indication he's had such thoughts or self-awareness, because why would he given his true nature (no sign he was overly concerned with castles when he spoke to Skully last =)? He needs another slap though and for Guts and Casca to unequivocally tell him his dream failed all those years back and he's just a fraud and puppet figurehead, "Monsters shouldn't pretend to be conquerors." :guts: :femto:
 
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Aazealh

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With all the parallel circumstances being discussed, it makes me wonder how Miura will signal some of them in a way readers would instantly recognize. Gaiseric wearing the Berserk Armor in this episode was very cool to see "in action" but it was an already established parallel. You know what's missing right now? The beherit. What if Gaiseric once wore a beherit on his conquests, just as Griffith did? But like the one Guts carries now, it ultimately ended up in the hands of who it ultimately belonged to (Void).

Yeah it's one of the things I've sort of just been assuming over the years given its name. It just seems to make sense that there would be that kind of reversal. I've also been thinking, with Daiba and Ganishka in mind, that human Void may have been the one who gifted it to him, and yet it returned to him in the end.

I think it would dilute the overall idea of "Do as you will" if they have to check in with the boss.

Not really check in as if to hand monthly reports, more like be able to receive its counsel or something. I don't think it's necessary for the story, and therefore it's probably not the case, but I wonder if it's possible at all. They're the ones closest to it... Can they reach it? Or is it impossible even for them after they go back up?

I don't really get this part. If they are somehow allowed to "do as they will", why would they be united like that? It's obvious they are carrying out a plan imposed by a higher being, even Griffith who just wanted his own kingdom has it only because it serves IoE.

Like @Oburi & @Griffith said, their interests just happen to coincide. :slan: What a wonderful coincidence, isn't it? Unless it's not a coincidence. Episode 83, while not canon, informs us further on the matter when the Idea of Evil basically tells Griffith he has been very precisely created to be who he was, and his life was orchestrated so that it would lead exactly where it did. Just like Ganishka's entire life was meant for him to end up the way he did, or how the Beherit Apostle realizes at the end that he was always meant to die atop that tower. That is the power of the Idea of Evil.

I am assuming in order to keep the IOE alive you would have to perpetuate evil and suffering amongst humans.

Wrong reasoning. Void calls it "the God created by Man" because it came to be naturally from mankind's collective consciousness. We have no reason to assume it needs to achieve a particular goal in order to keep existing. While we don't know what its ultimate objective is, I assume it's about control over the world. Maybe absolute, unyielding control over every facet of it.

Now this is a stretch, but suppose this magician made contact with God and after being freed from his prison by 4 angels who had forms within the merged world, sacrificed his existence within the corporeal world during a unique ceremony which triggered the separation of the astral world for 1000 years. The separation triggers the destruction of the ancient kingdom and all those that belong to it, and banishes all those that realm within the astral world away from humanity. During this time humanity is groomed within the laws of Causality to reject the world of magic and succumb to human nature as they give into fear, greed, lust, sadness, etc., all the while being primed for the moment when a valiant savior or 5th angel can release them from this void of existence, thus making them subservient to agents of evil and ushering in an age of darkness or new void.

I think what you're laying out here is somewhat similar to a scenario I speculated about a while back. However your starting point is fuzzy. The magician is freed by the God Hand in this case? By what means? And he sacrifices himself? Then how come do we see other people branded (plus the landscape itself). Lastly, the separation of the worlds is something that was done by magic users, as far as we understand. People who were on Gaiseric's side (like Flora), or who at least weren't his enemies. So I think we should assume that went against the God Hand's plans, and not in the same direction.
 
Oh, so it means IoE designed Griffith and other God Hand members (as people) to be exactly this way and even if they are allowed "to do as they will", they would never do anything outside of IoE's design, they wouldn't go against their nature, which was established by some higher power, correct? But if that's so, why is Guts "allowed" to be outside of it, even if slightly? Or is he? Is there a possibility that Guts' actions are beneficial to IoE in the grand scheme of things and he's just a puppet in the end? Things like Casca being allowed to survive Eclipse and giving a birth to her child, which then serves as a vessel for Griffith only cements the idea that they are useful. Even Skull Knight's attack on Griffith was ultimately a big help to God Hand, it would seem that a lot of events are preordained that way, if not almost all. In that sense the "good guys" would have to look for a way to cause a shift of some sort, clearly IoE is steering the wheel in a very specific direction, therefore there has to be involved a power outside of your good ol' casuality, what that power would be? I assume we are yet to see it, at this point there's nothing that would indicate current God Hand can be defeated.
 
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Aazealh

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Oh, so it means IoE designed Griffith and other God Hand members (as people) to be exactly this way and even if they are allowed "to do as they will", they would never do anything outside of IoE's design, they wouldn't go against their nature, which was established by some higher power, correct?

Yeah that's the idea. They were engineered so that what they desires fits with the wider goal. Besides, they were reborn using immense amounts of evil power, which we see involves the Vortex in episode 83. In that way they are almost extensions of the Idea of Evil.

But if that's so, why is Guts "allowed" to be outside of it, even if slightly? Or is he? Is there a possibility that Guts' actions are beneficial to IoE in the grand scheme of things and he's just a puppet in the end?

Well Guts was an essential part of Griffith's path to becoming Femto. Arguably more than any other member of the Band of the Falcon. So he absolutely fit into the design in that regard. However his continued survival thereafter is less certain. He is still within the flow of causality, like the Skull Knight has told him, but being branded makes it so that at specific junctions in time he is able to nudge things off the rails a little bit. Like the Skull Knight himself.

Note that things may be a bit different now in Fantasia. We don't know yet if the worlds having merged has loosened the grip of causality over the corporeal world.

Things like Casca being allowed to survive Eclipse and giving a birth to her child, which then serves as a vessel for Griffith only cements the idea that they are useful.

I've gone back and forth on the child. I'm not so sure anymore that he was essential to Griffith's incarnation. His existence, survival, and "accidental" fusion with Femto's vessel seems to be what will eventually bring the God Hand's plan crashing down (along with his parents' – and especially Casca's – survival).

Even Skull Knight's attack on Griffith was ultimately a big help to God Hand, it would seem that a lot of events are preordained that way, if not almost all.

Indeed! They're fighting against an overwhelming force... and it has almost won already. But not all hope is lost yet.

In that sense the "good guys" would have to look for a way to cause a shift of some sort, clearly IoE is steering the wheel in a very specific direction, therefore there has to be involved a power outside of your good ol' casuality, what that power would be? I assume we are yet to see it, at this point there's nothing that would indicate current God Hand can be defeated.

Well the boy has been established to be a huge weakness for Griffith in volume 22, and his ability to "take over" their shared body during full moons further reinforces that fact. This puts his parents, Guts and Casca, in a unique position to be able to stop Griffith. Of course it also dramatically raises the stakes for them, because killing Griffith, if it can be done, could also mean killing their son.

About a possible counterforce to the Idea of Evil, I've recently written on the topic: Causality's countercurrent.
 

Aazealh

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Just wanted to come in here and post about how amazing it is that Miura is constantly able to portray SK w/ varying emotions despite the skull helmet/face, especially the sense of pathos in that last panel. I could just feel the regret, anguish and sadness just from that one look alone.

Hey man, long time no see! Yeah I think the side shot with that slightly downward head tilt does wonders for giving him kind of a wistful look.
 
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