Episode 364

Walter

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its clear the boy has always protected his parents as you pointed out, thats clear, what i'm more interested is the nature of the boy itself, as its been pointed out, the boy has a fairy-like aura or something, but what i dont get is why he would be like that, since the boy was corrupted by femto, shouldnt he had more of a demonic presence ?, maybe the merge with griffith elevated him to a higher being, something like a demi-god, that being the reason why he can perform astral projections between other abilities he have been shown to have.

I dont know if i make myself clear this is something that it has been on my mind for i while so maybe i need to polish this idea and make a theory out of it.
Parsing the puzzle of the Boy is going to take some time, because we'll never have all the pieces assembled in one place.

The topic of the elf-like od of the Boy, revealed in this ep, is worth its own thread of discussion. But just to briefly summarize my thoughts right now, I think the contrast between the boy's initial demon child form and when he later emerges as a "pure" entity devoid of evil may be explained by the fact that he and Griffith share a body.

As the demon child, his form had evil power thrust upon it, but in essence he was innocent. As the Boy, his body was transmuted through the incarnation ceremony. So now, perhaps the evil power is relegated to Femto, freeing the boy to become manifest in something that reflects his pure and innocent essence, hence the elf-like od.
 

Griffith

With the streak of a tear, Like morning dew
Parsing the puzzle of the Boy is going to take some time, because we'll never have all the pieces assembled in one place.

The topic of the elf-like od of the Boy, revealed in this ep, is worth its own thread of discussion.

Yeah, it could be as simple as an "elf-like od" being a less lazy way of saying, "relax, he's cool" in Berserk, or the kid could be the fucking anti-Antichrist/messianic savior/chosen one, aka "superior being", destined to bring about Griffith's downfall (maybe he's more directly critical to this than we previously thought too, like Guts and Casca will be helping him rather than vice versa). They're not mutually exclusive either, and like everyone I lean more towards the latter being true, we'll just never know to what extreme. Of course, I'm also the guy that forgot the dog was named after Pippin, so I'll defer to you and Aaz on all this.

I think the contrast between the boy's initial demon child form and when he later emerges as a "pure" entity devoid of evil may be explained by the fact that he and Griffith share a body.

As the demon child, his form had evil power thrust upon it, but in essence he was innocent. As the Boy, his body was transmuted through the incarnation ceremony. So now, perhaps the evil power is relegated to Femto, freeing the boy to become manifest in something that reflects his pure and innocent essence, hence the elf-like od.

Another interesting wrinkle to this is the evil power itself came from and was of Femto in the first place, so it makes even more sense that it would naturally reform to him in such a transmutation, even if that wasn't necessary or intended (:void:"Dude, did you suck back in your own demon seed? You're truly the vilest of all!"). Back to the boy's "elf-like," "superior being"-ness, I wonder if in addition to potentially being exposed to the same degree of power as Femto, sans evil, if he's actually even more purified than he, or anyone, could be as a normal human because of all this. This isn't necessarily just what his uncorrupted human form would have been, but like Griffith he's potentially an idealized version of himself with his own set of god-like powers. Also like Griffith, it's possible there's never been another person like him.
 
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Aazealh

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Staff member
Yeah, it could be as simple as an "elf-like od" being a less lazy way of saying, "relax, he's cool" in Berserk, or the kid could be the fucking anti-Antichrist/messianic savior/chosen one, aka "superior being", destined to bring about Griffith's downfall (maybe he's more directly critical to this than we previously thought too, like Guts and Casca will be helping him rather than vice versa). They're not mutually exclusive either, and like everyone I lean more towards the latter being true, we'll just never know to what extreme. Of course, I'm also the guy that forgot the dog was named after Pippin, so I'll defer to you and Aaz on all this.

Haha, well I think there's more to Danan's comment than just saying he's an innocent child. She clearly senses that he's not an ordinary human child. I do picture him as a key player for the "final battle" in my head, even once Femto would have been separated from him. I think it would make sense thematically if Guts didn't fight alone, and I can definitely see a scenario where the boy is the one to deliver the coup de grâce (e.g. throwing Femto into the Vortex).

This isn't necessarily just what his uncorrupted human form would have been, but like Griffith he's potentially an idealized version of himself with his own set of god-like powers. Also like Griffith, it's possible there's never been another person like him.

Yeah, I think what happened inside of the Beherit Apostle is the key. His current powers go far beyond what they were when he was just the "demon child" after being corrupted by Femto.
 

guuuuuuuuts

Excited for the next chapter!
Looking at this makes me think the next panel of 365 might be Guts swinging the sword as Femto transfers back to Falconia, just as he did for the start of the full moon.

Since Griffith is still *there* after transforming... is it safe to say he also harbors no ill intent on the island?
 
Looking at this makes me think the next panel of 365 might be Guts swinging the sword as Femto transfers back to Falconia, just as he did for the start of the full moon.
I'm not sure if Guts would've swung his sword at Griffith in the very next panel, but I don't think it'd take him too long. :guts:

I think they would've had a short conversation, before Guts eventually lost his cool. After that, who knows?

Since Griffith is still *there* after transforming... is it safe to say he also harbors no ill intent on the island?
I think Femto always harbors ill intent, but I don't think he was expecting to wake up on Elfhelm; it's just what happened. I think the presence of Guts, the Great Gurus, Danan, Skull Knight and all of the other denizens of the island would eventually have forced him to retreat, though, as others have said. Shortly after that, I believe the island would've been attacked, possibly by another member of the God Hand (my hope was for Conrad :conrad:, hehe). Hell, a GH member might've even covered Femto's escape. Who knows? Whatever would've happened would've been amazing and unexpected, given Miura's unparalleled genius at storytelling. Everytime I read this episode, I feel that horrible sense of loss again.
 

Walter

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Staff member
Since Griffith is still *there* after transforming... is it safe to say he also harbors no ill intent on the island?
No, the boy simply got him access to the island. He transformed after he was through the defenses. Based on what Danan said, there's no way Femto would have been let through otherwise.
 
As the demon child, his form had evil power thrust upon it, but in essence he was innocent. As the Boy, his body was transmuted through the incarnation ceremony. So now, perhaps the evil power is relegated to Femto, freeing the boy to become manifest in something that reflects his pure and innocent essence, hence the elf-like od.
Haha, well I think there's more to Danan's comment than just saying he's an innocent child. She clearly senses that he's not an ordinary human child. I do picture him as a key player for the "final battle" in my head, even once Femto would have been separated from him. I think it would make sense thematically if Guts didn't fight alone, and I can definitely see a scenario where the boy is the one to deliver the coup de grâce (e.g. throwing Femto into the Vortex).

Yeah, I think what happened inside of the Beherit Apostle is the key. His current powers go far beyond what they were when he was just the "demon child" after being corrupted by Femto.
Most likely the child was inteded to be special, i have been thinking this over and over and the Boy clearly reminds me the concept of the "divine child" from Jungian archetypes.
 

Walter

Administrator
Staff member
i have been thinking this over and over and the Boy clearly reminds me the concept of the "divine child" from Jungian archetypes.
Perhaps. But ... and don't take this the wrong way ... what meaning could be derived from it? Jung's archetypes have always struck me as so vague that you can squeeze virtually anything into one of several generically named boxes, and they end up pretty meaningless (a hero... rises... through ... conflict!). Elmer Fudd probably has a Jungian archetype that fits him squarely.

Maybe I'm missing something and you have something more to offer by way of comparison to these archetypes?
 

guuuuuuuuts

Excited for the next chapter!
I think they would've had a short conversation, before Guts eventually lost his cool. After that, who knows?
Interesting, because if they are still standing there talking I'd think it would actually decrease the desire to fight in Guts. He truly has changed and let go of much of that hatred + is shook by his own weakened state... that is why I figured he would need to swing right away if he still felt compelled in this moment of shock. It would be fascinating to hear Griffith continue speaking about anything besides how the old falcons are "below his notice." If there really is the ability to hash out a conversation... considering they are on the island it could even last for quite a bit if Griffith is slowing being transported back to Falconia on island time. To somehow maintain this same calmness over the next episode would have been... :isidro:
 
Reading this was like having to reopen old wounds. It made me very sad again after I thought I had moved on since hearing the terrible news last May. But I'm glad I got to. It really was a wonderful episode, nearly perfect in its execution. Who would have thought that a manga that began with a big, muscular, seemingly uncaring macho man blowing the head off a demon would end with an innocent toddler just playing? It's really mind-boggling to think about what a roller-coaster Berserk has been as a story, how it could go from being dark, horrific, and violent from one episode, to quiet, introspective, wholesome, and melancholy the next. And yet through all this mundane activity, we get all sorts of hooks and hints for future developments. I just wish we could have seen them.

Ah, Guts. The man who ruined nearly every other protagonist for me. After much bloodshed and heart-wrenching struggle, the last "battle" we see him engage in is a stick sword fight with his son. I adored this image. It will always be burned in my mind. Sure, there are worrying signs, like Guts' physical deterioration, but knowing our good old Struggler, these will be no more than another hurdle to overcome, another struggle in this timeless journey. Just one more obstacle.

"Ruined nearly every protagonist?" Ha, ain't that the Goddamn truth. The part with Guts training by the waterfall was really painful to see. With how much his body is deteriorating, it's getting harder and harder to imagine how he could ever possibly get a happy ending. He may very well slay Femto by the end, but what state will his body in by that point? Will he be an invalid not so dissimilar to Griffith towards the end of Golden Age, no longer able to stand on his two feet, or hold a sword, or a certain woman, or a specific child in his hand? That would be a miserable state to be in, unable to truly enjoy whatever victory or peace he could attain. Still, with the recent talk of Daimons, I like to think there is a glorious future awaiting Guts whenever he leaves this mortal coil.
 

Aazealh

Administrator
Staff member
Interesting, because if they are still standing there talking I'd think it would actually decrease the desire to fight in Guts. He truly has changed and let go of much of that hatred + is shook by his own weakened state... that is why I figured he would need to swing right away if he still felt compelled in this moment of shock.

I mean... Guts has changed a bit, sure. But he still hates Griffith. I can guarantee you he would have swung his sword, and likely done so without first attempting to talk to him. Griffith would have talked, sure. Casca may have intervened. But Guts certainly wouldn't have kept his cool.

It would be fascinating to hear Griffith continue speaking about anything besides how the old falcons are "below his notice." If there really is the ability to hash out a conversation... considering they are on the island it could even last for quite a bit if Griffith is slowing being transported back to Falconia on island time.

I don't think that's how it would have gone. First off, it's not like he would have slowly gone up into the branches of the World Spiral Tree, all the while talking to Guts. That makes no sense at all (and on several levels). Second, he just transformed back so we don't see the effects yet, but you can bet Griffith's presence on the island wouldn't go unnoticed. It would probably disturb the place and raise all kinds of alarm bells.

The part with Guts training by the waterfall was really painful to see. With how much his body is deteriorating, it's getting harder and harder to imagine how he could ever possibly get a happy ending.

Given what he says in the episode, I've been wondering how much of his current condition still results from the fight against the Sea God and how much is from the armor itself. It really is a vicious circle where he regularly gets wounded so he keeps wearing the armor to palliate it, which in turn aggravates things in the long run while keeping him dependent on it.

He may very well slay Femto by the end, but what state will his body in by that point? Will he be an invalid not so dissimilar to Griffith towards the end of Golden Age, no longer able to stand on his two feet, or hold a sword, or a certain woman, or a specific child in his hand? That would be a miserable state to be in, unable to truly enjoy whatever victory or peace he could attain.

Honestly, with Hanarr, the Skull Knight, Danan and the Great Gurus around, I would hope they'd be able to find a way to alleviate the effects of the armor. Otherwise, like you say, it'd make for a pretty miserable end for our hero.
 

puella

Berserk forever
Danan: A full moon night in the outside world lasts for at least a few days here. Maybe he can stay with us for a while.
This is great. So far, I had figured it was only the other way: time passes faster on the island than in the outside world. Now I think it's better because Guts and co. will have time to rest there with the help of the elves, gurus, magic users and so on.

Puck: Waaaa… I'm being sucked~ I remember something. This feeling~
This is also important. :iva: It makes it clear that Casca/the boy didn't try eating or swallowing Puck.
Since he symbolizes chestnuts, I think that line goes well with a French chestnut cream in tube which was pretty popular with kids back in the day.

clementfaugier.jpg
 
Finally received my copy, beautiful episode, so wholesome yet so heartbreaking. Such passion went into each page and it really encapsulates everything that makes Miura so great. The tribute from Koji was really heartbreaking too.
 

Truder

"I frown at Griffith's nipples" -Aazealh
As the demon child, his form had evil power thrust upon it, but in essence he was innocent. As the Boy, his body was transmuted through the incarnation ceremony. So now, perhaps the evil power is relegated to Femto, freeing the boy to become manifest in something that reflects his pure and innocent essence, hence the elf-like od.
Yes thats what i thought, basically Femto absorbed all the evil in the area so that makes perfect sense
 
I mean... Guts has changed a bit, sure. But he still hates Griffith. I can guarantee you he would have swung his sword, and likely done so without first attempting to talk to him. Griffith would have talked, sure. Casca may have intervened. But Guts certainly wouldn't have kept his cool.
Yeah, I think their conversation would’ve been very one-sided. A few more words from Griffith, maybe a “貴様!!” from Guts, then the swing. Then, like you said on the latest podcast, Casca crying out for him to stop. Oof.
 
Perhaps. But ... and don't take this the wrong way ... what meaning could be derived from it? Jung's archetypes have always struck me as so vague that you can squeeze virtually anything into one of several generically named boxes, and they end up pretty meaningless (a hero... rises... through ... conflict!). Elmer Fudd probably has a Jungian archetype that fits him squarely.

Maybe I'm missing something and you have something more to offer by way of comparison to these archetypes?
Sorry to answer so late, while i do agree that Jung's archetypes are kind of vague, they have been used as guidelines in storytelling from time to time, so it wouldnt surprise me if miura knew about them or were inspired in some degree by them, now let me explain my thoughs on what i meant with the Moonlight Boy being a Divine child.

Divine Child archetype is associated with qualities of innocence, purity and redemption.

This are aspects that the Moonlingth boy have shown, many characters have like Danan have stated that the boy have no malice, and its stated by farnese that the boy could had been the thing that could make Casca fully recover from her trauma.

The Divine Child can also be viewed as a symbol of unity which was born from the tension of opposites and as a result brings hope of a change for the better. This view of the Divine Child makes him a saviour figure, who brings hope of integration and redemption for us all.

Now this is pure speculation but in the context of the history i think the boy was meant to be used as the bridge for casca and guts to reunite, and dont forget all those panels that Miura showed us of guts party being together as a family were after they boy appeared on the island.

Some characteristic the divine child have are:

  1. The Divine Child is both helpless and all powerful at the same time.
  2. The helplessness comes from the fact that it’s youth ensures that it is still reliant on the adult or more mature influences around him, but all-powerful because that same youth and vitality makes him the centre of attention of all around.
  3. The attention has mutual benefits, both enabling the Divine Child to flourish but also bringing to the parent figure a sense of pride and achievement which benefits them too.
  4. If properly nurtured the archetype will develop into that of a manly King.
  5. The Divine Child is usually the first of the boyhood archetypes to develop and provides the source of a boy’s enthusiasm for life.
  6. The archetype creates for those who possess it a sense of peace and joy as well as an willingness to embrace life and the adventures which it offers.
  7. The Divine Child creates within an individual the sense of anticipation and excitement at the beginning of a new journey or challenge.

On this asepct i agree that the moonlight boy dont fit all but he fits the first and parts of the sixth and seventh

Also Jung proposed that these archetypes have "Shadows" something like evil or negative versions of themselves and i think this is what Miura played when he merged Femto and the boy in the incarnation ceremony.

Now the divine child has two shadows that being the: High-Chair Tyrant and the Weakling Prince.

This is again speculation, but what i think miura did was used Griffith/Femto as the literal Shadow of the boy and played around as to portrait that the boy and the "shadow" are in a constant struggle for control.

well this are some thoughs i have maybe i'm thinking to deep on the subject and i'm wrong in all, who knows maybe i'll go make thread on speculation were i go deeper into this theory.
 

Griffith

With the streak of a tear, Like morning dew
I'm not certain this wouldn't be the time Guts actually speaks before he swings, because these circumstances are so bewildering they demand explanation, and because Guts has already shown a lot of growth when it comes to waging war on Griffith (which he just reflected on again in the last episode). The boy is the X factor of course, and may ultimately be the reason he does attack, since Griffith will probably say something ominously cryptic at best, but I can definitely see Guts first being concerned with the wellbeing of the boy and/or why Griffith seemingly won't leave them alone when even Guts is trying to move on.
 

Aazealh

Administrator
Staff member
Sorry to answer so late, while i do agree that Jung's archetypes are kind of vague, they have been used as guidelines in storytelling from time to time, so it wouldnt surprise me if miura knew about them or were inspired in some degree by them

I find it rather doubtful that he'd use them to create his story. He's never mentioned anything of the sort in his many interviews when it came to character creation.

This are aspects that the Moonlingth boy have shown

All children are associated with purity and innocence by default. It's the opposite that defies convention. In this case however, the boy is specifically associated with elves, which has no relation to your archetype. Before that, as the "demon child", he was rather associated with corruption and a cruel fate, despite being good at heart. Again, unrelated to your archetype.

On this asepct i agree that the moonlight boy dont fit all but he fits the first and parts of the sixth and seventh

I can't say that I agree. You could say the boy is helpless when Femto is in power, even though it's not really true as demonstrated on the Hill of Swords when he compelled Griffith to act to save Casca. When in the form of the boy, he has power but isn't "all powerful". The sixth and seventh aspects you mention seem unrelated to me. "A willingness to embrace life? Anticipation at the beginning of a new journey?" I mean, it's good to remember here that Jung was a psychologist, and these aren't exactly relevant for a fictional character.

Also Jung proposed that these archetypes have "Shadows" something like evil or negative versions of themselves and i think this is what Miura played when he merged Femto and the boy in the incarnation ceremony.
Now the divine child has two shadows that being the: High-Chair Tyrant and the Weakling Prince.

Femto is another entity that took over the boy's corporeal body during his incarnation. He isn't a "negative version of the divine child archetype", but a completely different being. Neither a "weakling prince" nor a "high-chair tyrant", things which are clearly meant to characterize children. Furthermore, both those characters existed separately for many years before they ended up in their current situation, and it's quite clear they were not conceived in a way that allows for what you're surmising here.
 
This is also important. :iva: It makes it clear that Casca/the boy didn't try eating or swallowing Puck.
Since he symbolizes chestnuts, I think that line goes well with a French chestnut cream in tube which was pretty popular with kids back in the day.

clementfaugier.jpg
Thank you for your translations.

I was wondering if Puck was referencing something specific with that line.
 
My physical edition of the Young Animal Berserk Memorial issue arrived today, came a few days earlier than I was actually expecting. Never realized that the Young Animal magazine is bound using only a single line of staples, not a rectangular surface area spine.

E_sRTI8VUAMlGax
 
Haha, well I think there's more to Danan's comment than just saying he's an innocent child. She clearly senses that he's not an ordinary human child. I do picture him as a key player for the "final battle" in my head, even once Femto would have been separated from him. I think it would make sense thematically if Guts didn't fight alone, and I can definitely see a scenario where the boy is the one to deliver the coup de grâce (e.g. throwing Femto into the Vortex).



Yeah, I think what happened inside of the Beherit Apostle is the key. His current powers go far beyond what they were when he was just the "demon child" after being corrupted by Femto.
I think this is what I meant by MB playing in the armor as possible foreshadowing.
 
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