Author Topic: Picking Griffith's brain a bit  (Read 10111 times)

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Offline KuraiDragoon

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Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« on: October 27, 2010, 06:23:13 AM »
I've been re-reading the Golden Age arc and just finished volume 8, right where Guts and Griffith dueled for Guts' freedom. I'd forgotten how hard it is to truly wrap my head around what's going on in Griffith's mind.

Guts was a powerful tool to Griffith's success on the battlefield, but the war was over. At least for the foreseeable future, they were done battling. The rest of Griffith's path was mostly meddling in political mumbo-jumbo and eventually marrying the princess. So what logical reason was there for Griffith to be so upset about Guts leaving?

I suppose for in-castle affairs Guts could come in handy, like he had when he killed the drink-poisoner and the guys who kidnapped Foss' daughter, but that couldn't be all. I don't think Guts leaving at that point really threatened Griffith's dream, not really. And of course, when Guts left, Griffith went into self-destruct mode and carelessly had sex with Charlotte(rebound sex?) and really screwed up his dream, as it was.

So Griffith obviously cared for Guts as much more than a comrade on the battlefield and a tool to obtaining his dream. But by Griffith's own words, he could never call a man his friend unless he was his equal, had his own dream. He was very clear and sincere when he spoke of that. So by seeing Guts as his underling so much that he refused to let him live his life outside of Griffith's all-consuming flame, how could he really consider Guts a friend? He would have rather killed him than let him leave. For a man so composed and level-headed, he is completely contradicting himself.

So really, what the hell was Griffith thinking? Was he actually in love with Guts or something? I suppose being in love with someone is different from friendship, in that you wouldn't want them to be seeking their own dream, but rather be part of your own. But I don't know, that doesn't seem right. But as Casca said in volume 9, "a person's heart can't be sustained by dreams and ideals alone. You made Griffith weak. Griffith's no good without you."

It's just kind of sad. All Guts really wanted was to be Griffith's friend. True friend. Equal. And that destroyed everything and turned them into mortal(ish)enemies.

Thoughts?
« Last Edit: October 27, 2010, 08:48:51 AM by DarkDragoon »
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Offline Ramen4ever

Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #1 on: October 27, 2010, 04:45:58 PM »
Bare with me, I haven't read the Golden Age or done a full read through of Berserk in quite sometime so I'm a bit rusty atm.

One could go in depth on this. But, I think it's as simple as this. Guts was the single most important trump card that Griffith possessed, aside from the Egg of the King which for this discussion does not matter. More than being a trump card, Guts was also an incredible individual that somehow found a place in Griffith's heart. Even from their first raid mission together, Griffith went back for Guts out of fear of losing him. He was always concerned for his well being during a fight. Guts was one of the only attachments Griffith had. And to lose Guts not to a fight or some incredible battle but simply to Guts wanting to leave after all that time. It's not something that anyone would be able to take easily.

Griffith also has certain psychological tendencies. He had grown dependent on Guts. Plus I think Griffith was the type of person that had a need to be in control. Guts leaving was outside of his control, his one attachment that even made him forget his dream at times, was leaving his side and there was little he could do to stop it. Especially when even force failed.

It wasn't just about Guts being useful. Even if the war ended, the attachment and dependence remains.


Offline Aazealh

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Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #2 on: October 27, 2010, 05:07:26 PM »
There are many threads already addressing this question if you care to search for them. Anyway...

Guts was a powerful tool to Griffith's success on the battlefield, but the war was over. At least for the foreseeable future, they were done battling. The rest of Griffith's path was mostly meddling in political mumbo-jumbo and eventually marrying the princess. So what logical reason was there for Griffith to be so upset about Guts leaving?

I suppose for in-castle affairs Guts could come in handy, like he had when he killed the drink-poisoner and the guys who kidnapped Foss' daughter, but that couldn't be all. I don't think Guts leaving at that point really threatened Griffith's dream, not really.

To better understand his reaction it's helpful to listen to the person who knew him best: Casca. And she explained why Griffith was so upset in no uncertain terms. Simply said, given the scope of his ambition, he needed to have at least one person he could rely on unconditionally. Someone who would always be there, unwavering when he himself wavered, loyal beyond reason, a perpetual ace up his sleeve. The famous "sword" that Casca so much desired to be. But she didn't fit the bill, she lacked some of what it took. Guts had that, but in turn he lacked her selfless devotion. Therefore the problem.

What it comes down to is that Griffith was just a man, and he had his doubts and insecurities. That Guts tried to leave without telling him was already a harsh blow, but that he easily defeated him in combat in front of his other lieutenants was a terrible humiliation. In the end, Guts was the first man to have ever defeated him at that point as far as we know (I'm not counting the encounter with Zodd for various reasons, not the least of which being that they still took the castle that day).

And of course, when Guts left, Griffith went into self-destruct mode and carelessly had sex with Charlotte and really screwed up his dream, as it was.

I wouldn't really call it a "self-destruct mode" considering that his goal wasn't to ruin his dream and his life. It was just a brash move he took to reassure himself, to regain some of his self-confidence. Bolstering his ego, really. And if that maid had kept her mouth shut, it would have actually greatly helped further his plans down the line. But that's not how it was meant to be.

For a man so composed and level-headed, he is completely contradicting himself. [...] Did his ever-growing ego just turn him a bit selfish and spoiled?

That contradiction can be easily explained by his will to be cold and detached and to solely focus on attaining his dream, and his inability to be completely emotionless despite his best efforts (he was only human, after all). He rationalized it, but it was never based on sound logic. And yeah, I don't think it's unfair to say he was selfish and egocentric.

It almost reminds me of someone taking a toy away from a young child. Regardless of whether or not the child would have played with that toy again, he'll still throw a fit if someone takes it.:griffnotevil:

That's a way to put it, though obviously it's more complicated than that.

Even from their first raid mission together, Griffith went back for Guts out of fear of losing him.

Well it made sense for him to, even from a purely strategic point of view. He was the most promising man he'd ever recruited, and he had just assigned him a very dangerous mission. It would have been stupid not to at least give him a chance to survive. Over the years, the advantages of having Guts in his army far outweighed the few risks Griffith took for him.

Offline KuraiDragoon

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Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #3 on: October 28, 2010, 06:06:45 AM »
To better understand his reaction it's helpful to listen to the person who knew him best: Casca. And she explained why Griffith was so upset in no uncertain terms. Simply said, given the scope of his ambition, he needed to have at least one person he could rely on unconditionally. Someone who would always be there, unwavering when he himself wavered, loyal beyond reason, a perpetual ace up his sleeve. The famous "sword" that Casca so much desired to be. But she didn't fit the bill, she lacked some of what it took. Guts had that, but in turn he lacked her selfless devotion. Therefore the problem.
Ya know for all the times Casca talked about Griffith's "sword," I had never actually thought about the importance of it from Griffith's point of view. That really does answer this well.

What it comes down to is that Griffith was just a man, and he had his doubts and insecurities. That Guts tried to leave without telling him was already a harsh blow, but that he easily defeated him in combat in front of his other lieutenants was a terrible humiliation. In the end, Guts was the first man to have ever defeated him at that point as far as we know (I'm not counting the encounter with Zodd for various reasons, not the least of which being that they still took the castle that day).
Well considering that Zodd isn't exactly a "man," I wouldn't consider that either. Ya know I've always wondered what would've happened if, instead of Guts trying to leave without telling Griffith, he asked him out for a drink and just explained it to him in no uncertain terms, that he had a tremendous amount of respect for him and he wanted to leave so he could be more like him and truly be his friend. That of course is not what fate intended.

I wouldn't really call it a "self-destruct mode" considering that his goal wasn't to ruin his dream and his life. It was just a brash move he took to reassure himself, to regain some of his self-confidence. Bolstering his ego, really. And if that maid had kept her mouth shut, it would have actually greatly helped further his plans down the line. But that's not how it was meant to be.
I didn't really mean a conscious or deliberate self-destruct, just a lack of his usual thoroughness and a decision based soley on his emotions, without regards to his dream. Because if he was considering his dream at all, his usual impeccable thoroughness would have never allowed for him to be caught by the maid. At least stuff a sock in the key-hole man.  

and on a side not: God damn it I can't find volume 10 wtf did I do with it?!
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Offline Aazealh

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Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #4 on: October 28, 2010, 05:52:32 PM »
Ya know I've always wondered what would've happened if, instead of Guts trying to leave without telling Griffith, he asked him out for a drink and just explained it to him in no uncertain terms, that he had a tremendous amount of respect for him and he wanted to leave so he could be more like him and truly be his friend.

Things could have certainly been different.

I didn't really mean a conscious or deliberate self-destruct, just a lack of his usual thoroughness and a decision based soley on his emotions, without regards to his dream. Because if he was considering his dream at all, his usual impeccable thoroughness would have never allowed for him to be caught by the maid. At least stuff a sock in the key-hole man.

Well I still definitely wouldn't say that he acted without consideration for his dream. In fact furthering his dream was the only reason he did it. But it was a rash decision, a risky plan, and he was unlucky (again, the hand of a higher power can be seen here). You know, even though it led to his downfall at the time, it's an error to think that Griffith's actions that night were completely foolish, thoughtless or that they did him no good. By sleeping with her then, he secured her undying loyalty throughout all of the story so far, and we've yet to see the end of it.

Offline KuraiDragoon

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Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #5 on: October 29, 2010, 08:34:13 AM »
Well I still definitely wouldn't say that he acted without consideration for his dream. In fact furthering his dream was the only reason he did it. But it was a rash decision, a risky plan, and he was unlucky (again, the hand of a higher power can be seen here). You know, even though it led to his downfall at the time, it's an error to think that Griffith's actions that night were completely foolish, thoughtless or that they did him no good. By sleeping with her then, he secured her undying loyalty throughout all of the story so far, and we've yet to see the end of it.
Well yes, in the big picture sense it was certainly beneficial. But at the time I still think it was mostly, if not completely, a decision based soley on emotion. At that point he had been back from the war campaign for months, and hadn't spent any time with Charlotte at all. So while his future intentions with her were certainly important, I imagine that his plan for said intentions were to move much, much slower than what he did. In the time he had spent in Midland there were only a handful of times he spent with her. Even the actual act of sleeping with her was an unnecessary risk; she was in love with him before that, not as intensely, but she certainly wouldn't have opposed a marriage proposal when the time came, regardless of whether he slept with her beforehand or not. Winning over the family into agreeance would've been where most of his work would have gone.

Alas, as you said, the hand of god was hovering above, so none of this really matters.
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Offline Ramen4ever

Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #6 on: October 29, 2010, 11:02:52 PM »
You need to keep in mind the King's reaction. So long as the King was alive, he would never have married Charlotte off to Griffith. And before Griffith's downfall, the king was actually in pretty decent health for his age. It was Griffith's words during his torture and Charlotte's reaction to her father after sleeping with Griffith that initiated the King's failing health. In effect, speeding up Griffith's journey to the throne. It's entirely possible that if Griffith had not slept with Charlotte and been caught, he would have had to wait an unknown amount of time till the king died.. or he would have had to help the process along. And then face whatever opposition the nobility would have had to him taking the throne and Charlotte's hand. And as we know now, the nobility and powerful houses of other countries would have also been involved. There is also the matter of the Kushan invasion, which would have come whether the Eclipse happened or not.
Griffith would have had to face all this, as just a human. A calculating and driven human, but nonetheless still just a vulnerable human. Griffith and his old Hawks would never have survived the invasion of Ganishka.

Of course... this is all what could have been, may have been.. who cares. Things happened the way they happened, and I believe that the only way Griffith would have ever achieved the throne and actually kept it, is by becoming a supreme being. And that, of course, came with a high price. Of course he couldn't have thought of all this then. But he definitely knew that the only way to achieve the thrown would have been through Charlotte. The problem is that the King would never have agreed. And if Griffith had made such an advance, the result could have been his dismissal from his title and position. If the king would have wanted to keep Griffith away from his daughter. It's even possible that the King would have made Charlotte marry in the form of a prearranged marriage. If that happened, Charlotte could have possibly forgotten about Griffith after some time. But once they had sex, that was pretty permanent.  :carcus:
« Last Edit: October 29, 2010, 11:14:27 PM by Ramen4ever »

Offline KuraiDragoon

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Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #7 on: November 03, 2010, 05:17:05 AM »
I've just finished reading 10, (sadly I had lost my original copy and had to wait for another to come in from amazon.com,) and, let me start by saying, in the couple years it's been since I've read Berserk, I really had forgotten just how magnificent a series this truly is! I'm enjoying it this time around more than the first. I feel like I have a crack addiction. I've never been so deeply enveloped into anything before, not even my girlfriend haha.

Anyway, here's another bit to pick. I'm sure this has been discussed prior, and I apologize for being redundant, but nothing beats a fresh chat. From what I've gathered from others on this board, it seems that what Griffith "mouthed" to Charlotte during the escape, was "I will come back for you." So, what do you all think Griffith's reason for saying that was? Could he possibly still have been focusing on using her for his dream at that point? Or was it something more? And when she jumped in front of the blow gun arrow for him, he gave this very obvious look that I can't quite figure out. It was like, "wow, I can't believe she just did that" which led to him sincerely gazing into her eyes and telling her he'd come back for her. I suppose it's possible that after his brief Godhand encounter in the dungeon, he could have had some hope left for his future and thus still wanted to keep her in his back pocket in case the time came for him to use her. Or did all of her proclamations of love and affection for him during the rescue, to the point of jumping in front a poison dart for him, soften his heart towards her?

It's difficult to pick the brain of a man who had kept such a strong facade over his emotions.
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Offline Rhombaad

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Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #8 on: November 03, 2010, 05:53:44 PM »
So, what do you all think Griffith's reason for saying that was? Could he possibly still have been focusing on using her for his dream at that point? Or was it something more? And when she jumped in front of the blow gun arrow for him, he gave this very obvious look that I can't quite figure out. It was like, "wow, I can't believe she just did that" which led to him sincerely gazing into her eyes and telling her he'd come back for her. I suppose it's possible that after his brief Godhand encounter in the dungeon, he could have had some hope left for his future and thus still wanted to keep her in his back pocket in case the time came for him to use her. Or did all of her proclamations of love and affection for him during the rescue, to the point of jumping in front a poison dart for him, soften his heart towards her?

I think it's a bit of both. I believe he needed her as a resource despite his physical condition (until his attempted suicide after being thrown from the wagon, I think he was still in a bit of denial about his current state), but I think he was genuinely moved when she took the dart for him. Like Aazealh said, he was still human despite his attempts at being cold and calculating. Of course, after his rebirth as Femto his feelings for her and everyone else disappeared, so it's a moot point now.

Offline Jaze1618

Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #9 on: November 03, 2010, 06:50:15 PM »
I think it's a bit of both. I believe he needed her as a resource despite his physical condition (until his attempted suicide after being thrown from the wagon, I think he was still in a bit of denial about his current state), but I think he was genuinely moved when she took the dart for him. Like Aazealh said, he was still human despite his attempts at being cold and calculating. Of course, after his rebirth as Femto his feelings for her and everyone else disappeared, so it's a moot point now.

Perhaps he was even surprised that she was still willing to do that for him despite his deteriorated physical condition

Offline Doc

Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #10 on: November 08, 2010, 10:08:27 AM »
Griffith slept with Charlotte for validation. You can look at Griffith as an asexual creature, only delving into the sexual world when it serves a particular purpose (whoring himself to Gennon, raping Casca). After losing hold of Guts, he felt desperate, castrated. He needed to reaffirm that he was the almighty Griffith again. If it was just about sex, he wouldn't be short of admirers. But sneaking into the Princess's chamber and deflowering her? Now that would be something. If Griffith had been sound of mind, he would not have resorted to such a reckless measure. He would have gradually grown closer to the Princess and probably usurped the King at one stage or another.

To say it was a stroke of genius in hindsight is silly, because Griffith had no idea who he really was and how events would transpire. He could have just as well spent the rest of his life as a cripple for his gamble.

Offline D0dole

Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #11 on: November 09, 2010, 04:24:01 AM »
Hmm I feel bad for just butting into the conversation... but I have a related question, too.

Aaz, I really like your analysis of Griffith's train of thoughts on Guts departure. There's just a little thing I can't fit in. What's up with Griffith's emotionnal state AFTER sexing up Charlotte? I mean, when he got caught. Guards surrounded him, Griff realized he had no sword, still he didn't seem to even try to defend himself, to run away or whatever. Also, how totally nonchalant he was when facing the king later.



I wouldn't really call it a "self-destruct mode" considering that his goal wasn't to ruin his dream and his life. It was just a brash move he took to reassure himself, to regain some of his self-confidence. Bolstering his ego, really. And if that maid had kept her mouth shut, it would have actually greatly helped further his plans down the line. But that's not how it was meant to be.


^ If that was the case, we're asuming he was still aiming for the crown, holding on tight to his dream at that point (although with far less planning and calculation than usual). So why did he not care anymore? Did he give up on his dream after he got caught, even showing as little emotion as he did? Or was he just too mentally numb and/or depressed to fully realise how deep in shit he was? What's the thinking? I can't find something witty and satisfying enough.

I wish we had gotten more of Griffith's views on things during the golden age. We rarely ever got glimpse of his thoughts on Guts/Casca/everything from his own eyes :s Anyone think it might still happen somehow? Or did Miura show everything he felt necessary to show on the matter?

(Forgive the spelling/grammar mistakes, it's kinda late)
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Offline Aazealh

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Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #12 on: November 09, 2010, 01:12:45 PM »
But at the time I still think it was mostly, if not completely, a decision based soley on emotion.

Yes, I said so myself, but that does contradict or even lessen the fact he did it for his dream.

At that point he had been back from the war campaign for months, and hadn't spent any time with Charlotte at all. So while his future intentions with her were certainly important, I imagine that his plan for said intentions were to move much, much slower than what he did.

That would have been the careful way, but as already mentioned, he was in need of reassurance, and so went for immediate results.

In the time he had spent in Midland there were only a handful of times he spent with her. Even the actual act of sleeping with her was an unnecessary risk; she was in love with him before that, not as intensely, but she certainly wouldn't have opposed a marriage proposal when the time came, regardless of whether he slept with her beforehand or not. Winning over the family into agreeance would've been where most of his work would have gone.

Well the problem wasn't so much of her being opposed to marrying him, but to her father not accepting it at all. And that's where it makes a difference. Having deflowered her might have given him an incredible edge (as maybe the morals of the time would have then made it a problem for her to get married to someone else), and it set their relationship in stone, whereas it was more of a wishful thinking kind of thing before that as far as she was concerned. She would have never acted towards it on her own.

I think people don't often consider the importance of that scene for Charlotte herself. It was a cornerstone for her character. She became a woman in more ways than one that night.

It was Griffith's words during his torture and Charlotte's reaction to her father after sleeping with Griffith that initiated the King's failing health.

Well that and possibly other unknown factors. In the end, what matters is that his declining health and eventual death perfectly fit the God Hand's agenda. As always, the hand of a higher power should have seen in these events.

It's entirely possible that if Griffith had not slept with Charlotte and been caught, he would have had to wait an unknown amount of time till the king died.. or he would have had to help the process along. And then face whatever opposition the nobility would have had to him taking the throne and Charlotte's hand.

In any case, that night with her would have strengthened his position.

And as we know now, the nobility and powerful houses of other countries would have also been involved.

If Midland hadn't been weakened, I doubt it. At least not nearly as much as they did in the actual story.

Of course... this is all what could have been, may have been.. who cares. Things happened the way they happened

Yeah, it's no use rewriting the story.

It's even possible that the King would have made Charlotte marry in the form of a prearranged marriage. If that happened, Charlotte could have possibly forgotten about Griffith after some time. But once they had sex, that was pretty permanent.  :carcus:

Yeah. Even if she hadn't forgotten him, she would have resigned herself, remembering it as a sweet dream that never was. That night with him gave her a determination she didn't possess before.

From what I've gathered from others on this board, it seems that what Griffith "mouthed" to Charlotte during the escape, was "I will come back for you." So, what do you all think Griffith's reason for saying that was? Could he possibly still have been focusing on using her for his dream at that point? Or was it something more?

I think he was still focused on using her for his dream, yeah. His prison escape seemed to have brought him back some of his spirit (which Wyald crushed to dust when he exposed the truth: that he would forever be a broken man). However he might also have been touched by what she did for him. She truly loved him unconditionally and was ready to make every sacrifice for him. So I think that the both played a role, even though his promise was not backed by any serious plan at the time.

I suppose it's possible that after his brief Godhand encounter in the dungeon, he could have had some hope left for his future and thus still wanted to keep her in his back pocket in case the time came for him to use her.

Nah, I don't think his brief glimpse of the God Hand gave him any such insight. It's made clear in the manga that he didn't really understand what it was about.

Griffith slept with Charlotte for validation. You can look at Griffith as an asexual creature, only delving into the sexual world when it serves a particular purpose (whoring himself to Gennon, raping Casca). After losing hold of Guts, he felt desperate, castrated. He needed to reaffirm that he was the almighty Griffith again. If it was just about sex, he wouldn't be short of admirers.

Uh yeah, it was obviously not just about sex. Nobody even suggested that, because it's so clearly not the case... I'm not sure why you're posting about it now since that point has already been addressed more eloquently in previous posts.

To say it was a stroke of genius in hindsight is silly, because Griffith had no idea who he really was and how events would transpire. He could have just as well spent the rest of his life as a cripple for his gamble.

You apparently missed something, since no one said it was a "stroke of genius". Clearly it was a rash decision that came about as the result of his defeat at Guts' hands. But it despite the risks it can't be said that it was purely to boost his ego and that it held no benefits for his dream. It did and they are very clear.

Like I told DarkDragoon, one mustn't downplay the importance of "luck" (or should I say the manipulation of causality) in what happened. Griffith's entire life can be seen as a gamble, from that night to the battle of Doldrey, his fight with Guts against Zodd, his ridiculously ambitious plot against the highest nobility of Midland, etc. He got where he did because it was part of the plan, and he failed when he did because it was part of the plan as well. Ignoring this is what is truly silly.

What's up with Griffith's emotionnal state AFTER sexing up Charlotte? I mean, when he got caught. Guards surrounded him, Griff realized he had no sword, still he didn't seem to even try to defend himself, to run away or whatever. Also, how totally nonchalant he was when facing the king later.

Elementary, my dear D0dole. :slan: What could have he done when he faced the guards? He was completely surrounded. He then noticed that he had no weapon. He was not in armor. Simply said, there was nothing that he could have done. Trying to run would have resulted in injury or death and he knew it, so it was pointless to even try. And when he faced the king, well he was defeated already. He knew it, and there was nothing he could do about it. It wasn't Griffith's personality to strain against his chains, yell and growl at his tormentor. Besides, his composure and soft-spoken truths did much more to harm the king than pleading or cursing would have achieved.

If that was the case, we're asuming he was still aiming for the crown, holding on tight to his dream at that point (although with far less planning and calculation than usual).

Of course.

Did he give up on his dream after he got caught, even showing as little emotion as he did? Or was he just too mentally numb and/or depressed to fully realise how deep in shit he was? What's the thinking? I can't find something witty and satisfying enough.

I think it was a mixed bag. First, he probably was a bit in shock. Second, being calm and emotionless was always his way to be strong. Could you imagine him breaking down, crying and pleading for his life? Come on, it would have been embarrassing. Not fitting of his character at all. He was proud if he was anything, and he despised the king and people like him. His reaction was the best anyone could have done in his situation. Keeping one's head high even in the face of torture and death. No doubt he was mortified inside, but showing it to the king or the torturer would not have been acceptable. It's not so much that he gave up on his dream, but he clearly couldn't pursue it anymore, and there was nothing he could do about it. That's all.

I wish we had gotten more of Griffith's views on things during the golden age. We rarely ever got glimpse of his thoughts on Guts/Casca/everything from his own eyes :s Anyone think it might still happen somehow? Or did Miura show everything he felt necessary to show on the matter?

I think we got just the right amount. Berserk's always been about Guts. And our later exposure to Griffith in the dungeon revealed all that needed to be anyway. How in the darkness of his jail his dream faded away little by little, while only one thing remained: Guts.

As for us getting insight into his thoughts from back then in the future, I doubt it. Keep in mind that he's not the same man anymore. As a matter of fact, he's not really a man at all.

Offline KuraiDragoon

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Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #13 on: November 09, 2010, 08:32:42 PM »
Like I told DarkDragoon, one mustn't downplay the importance of "luck" (or should I say the manipulation of causality) in what happened. Griffith's entire life can be seen as a gamble, from that night to the battle of Doldrey, his fight with Guts against Zodd, his ridiculously ambitious plot against the highest nobility of Midland, etc. He got where he did because it was part of the plan, and he failed when he did because it was part of the plan as well. Ignoring this is what is truly silly.
I don't know if I'd say his entire life has been a gamble. He was a very smart and calculating man, never leaving out the slightest detail in his plans. Most of the time he knew with 100% confidence that he could accomplish whatever it was he was going to do, especially after attaining Guts. The battle of Doldrey, for example, was not a gamble at all as far as he was concerned. He told the King he wouldn't even need a large force, that the Band of the Hawk would all that was needed. He knew without a doubt that they would win that battle. His plan was flawless. Killing the Queen and other nobiles? That was even less of a risk; that plan was so perfectly thought out there really wasn't a chance in hell of that going wrong. He knew EXACTLY what he was doing and covered every minute detail along the way. The only times he took a gamble really, was where Guts was concerned, making him lose sight of his dream.
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Offline Aazealh

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Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #14 on: November 09, 2010, 09:03:23 PM »
I don't know if I'd say his entire life has been a gamble. He was a very smart and calculating man, never leaving out the slightest detail in his plans. Most of the time he knew with 100% confidence that he could accomplish whatever it was he was going to do, especially after attaining Guts. The battle of Doldrey, for example, was not a gamble at all as far as he was concerned. He told the King he wouldn't even need a large force, that the Band of the Hawk would all that was needed. He knew without a doubt that they would win that battle. His plan was flawless.

Sorry but I can't agree with what you're saying. It relied on Gennon interfering, and Griffith had no way to be sure that Boscone would follow his orders or that it would happen the way it did. He couldn't know Zodd would throw his sword so that Guts could defeat the enemy general. Etcetera. That plan wasn't flawless at all, and there was no certainty it would work. It worked because it was supposed to.

Killing the Queen and other nobiles? That was even less of a risk; that plan was so perfectly thought out there really wasn't a chance in hell of that going wrong.

I disagree again. A ton of things could have gone wrong, including Foss not playing along, despite Griffith having his daughter held hostage. You're rationalizing the events, but you don't know more about what happened than what we're shown in the manga. Things could have gone wrong. No plan is ever absolutely perfect. It worked because that's how it was meant to be, and the maid caught Griffith and Charlotte in the act and decided to tell about it because that's how it was meant to be.

You can't rise from being no one to being the king of a country without taking risks, and Griffith didn't. He took a lot of risks.

The only times he took a gamble really, was where Guts was concerned, making him lose sight of his dream.

No, he never took more of a gamble for Guts than for the rest, except maybe that time against Zodd, and even then he didn't know what he'd find when he went in. Griffith's reference to "forgetting his dream" is born of his time in jail and what he experienced then.

Offline KuraiDragoon

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Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #15 on: November 09, 2010, 11:08:09 PM »
I disagree again. A ton of things could have gone wrong, including Foss not playing along, despite Griffith having his daughter held hostage. You're rationalizing the events, but you don't know more about what happened than what we're shown in the manga. Things could have gone wrong. No plan is ever absolutely perfect. It worked because that's how it was meant to be, and the maid caught Griffith and Charlotte in the act and decided to tell about it because that's how it was meant to be.
Well Griffith could just as easily have had a plan b, in fact I'm sure he theoretically would have. Griffith certainly wasn't leaving anything up to fate, even though fate had it's hand in everything, that is beside the point of "picking Griffith's brain."

"I will have my own kingdom," that is a statement of fact. He never intended on anything going wrong, and they probably wouldn't have had it not been for his emotional attachment to Guts eventually leading him to do something without a calculated plan, his night with Charlotte. The Maid caught them because he was doing something without thinking, an emotional reaction to Guts leaving, and despite what you may believe, I do not think he was doing that for his dream.

No, he never took more of a gamble for Guts than for the rest, except maybe that time against Zodd, and even then he didn't know what he'd find when he went in. Griffith's reference to "forgetting his dream" is born of his time in jail and what he experienced then.
Casca said herself that Guts made Griffith lose sight of his dream, referring to the many times Griffith impulsively did something for Guts' sake, risking his own life, and his dream in the process. You're right, he didn't know what he'd find when he went in against Zodd, he went in without his usual plan, right into the lion's mouth, where he knew there was possibly an immortal soldier obliterating hundreds of men. He did that for Guts. That's why Casca was so pissed off at Guts about that. In fact that's almost exactly what she said. So saying he never took more of a gamble for Guts than for anything else is absolutely wrong. The only times he ever did anything without a strong plan was for Guts, in one way or another.
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Offline Aazealh

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Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #16 on: November 09, 2010, 11:48:16 PM »
Well Griffith could just as easily have had a plan b, in fact I'm sure he theoretically would have.

You're sure of it based on what? What would that plan B have been? And who's to say it would have been fail-safe? Sorry but that's not convincing.

Griffith certainly wasn't leaving anything up to fate, even though fate had it's hand in everything, that is beside the point of "picking Griffith's brain."

It's not like Griffith had the choice to leave things up to chance or not. Nothing can ever be 100% planned, and his own actions definitely weren't. Besides, it doesn't matter that it's beside "picking his brain" because it ties to the point I was making about the overwhelming importance of the manipulation of causality (not "fate") in his eventual demise, which you're trying to refute. Griffith didn't plan to fail then, just like he hadn't planned to fail before. But he did anyway. It wasn't a choice on his part.

"I will have my own kingdom," that is a statement of fact. He never intended on anything going wrong, and they probably wouldn't have had it not been for his emotional attachment to Guts eventually leading him to do something without a calculated plan, his night with Charlotte.

He didn't intend for things to go wrong when he went to sleep with Charlotte either. And there's no basis for you to say that he hadn't calculated that move either, regardless of his emotional state. But things would have gone wrong either way because that's how things were supposed to go. Calculation has nothing to do with it. When the time came it happened. That's all. The "probably" in your sentence isn't based on anything. There's no point in trying to rewrite the story here. Griffith's entire life was arranged in that specific manner, and so were the lives of those he sacrificed. There's a reason Zodd could tell Guts about it so long before it happened: because having a successful life wouldn't have made him very willing to sacrifice what was dearest to his heart (his soldiers).

The Maid caught them because he was doing something without thinking, an emotional reaction to Guts leaving, and despite what you may believe, I do not think he was doing that for his dream.

Well then you're wrong. Sleeping with Charlotte served one single purpose: furthering his dream. That was how he could reassert himself. I don't see how you can deny something so obvious.

Casca said herself that Guts made Griffith lose sight of his dream, referring to the many times Griffith impulsively did something for Guts' sake, risking his own life, and his dream in the process.

Casca never said that, no. And all she blamed Guts for, she recognized it was either out of jealousy or anger. Also, Griffith did not risk his life for Guts "many times". And when he did come to his rescue, it served his own goals, since Guts was essential to his dream anyway.

So saying he never took more of a gamble for Guts than for anything else is absolutely wrong. The only times he ever did anything without a strong plan was for Guts, in one way or another.

No, it's not. See what I already said. You're pretty funny, really. Had he planned to chase Charlotte's horse and then planned to get shot with a poisoned bolt too? Don't pretend to have a special insight of the character when you don't.

Offline D0dole

Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #17 on: November 10, 2010, 12:53:07 AM »
His reaction was the best anyone could have done in his situation. Keeping one's head high even in the face of torture and death. No doubt he was mortified inside, but showing it to the king or the torturer would not have been acceptable. It's not so much that he gave up on his dream, but he clearly couldn't pursue it anymore, and there was nothing he could do about it. That's all.

Hey you know, that really cleared it up. He had that in common with Guts, they're both insanely stubborn.  :carcus:

I know Griffith is completely different than he once was, but I'm still hoping for some level of emotion on his part eventually. I mean, I don't think it was entirely established how different on the emotional level it is for a member of the God Hand to transcend compared to an apostle. It was possible for the count to feel emotion other than anger and such. Well I know Griffith's still by far more composed and stoic that (I think) any apostle we've seen, but I'm kinda thinking that it's the way he always was anyways, even as a human among humans, than the way becoming Femto made him. If that makes any sense.
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Offline Aazealh

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Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #18 on: November 10, 2010, 08:51:59 AM »
I know Griffith is completely different than he once was

I wouldn't say completely different. Femto retained many of Griffith's characteristics, including his physical appearance once he was incarnated.

I'm still hoping for some level of emotion on his part eventually. I mean, I don't think it was entirely established how different on the emotional level it is for a member of the God Hand to transcend compared to an apostle.

The process is completely different (:iva:). It's really hardly comparable other than on a very superficial level. For one, apostles retain their physical bodies while members of the God Hand don't. Then there's the amount of "evil" they're bestowed and the way their very being is transformed, so much that they normally can't even exist in the material world. And I'd say it's been established more than once that Femto was the realization of Griffith's old aspirations for himself: implacably cold. That's why it's so interesting that Miura made him vulnerable to the Demon Child's feelings. It's a way to inject foreign emotions into an emotionless being. And it's his biggest weakness as far as we know.

Well I know Griffith's still by far more composed and stoic that (I think) any apostle we've seen, but I'm kinda thinking that it's the way he always was anyways, even as a human among humans, than the way becoming Femto made him.

Well obviously the way Griffith was as a man is reflected in the way Femto is. But they're on another level. It's flat wrong to think that becoming Femto did not change him on an emotional level and you just have to look at any scene in which the character appears to see why.

Offline D0dole

Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #19 on: November 11, 2010, 02:13:46 AM »
Well obviously the way Griffith was as a man is reflected in the way Femto is. But they're on another level. It's flat wrong to think that becoming Femto did not change him on an emotional level and you just have to look at any scene in which the character appears to see why.

Ahhh that nullifies anything I said. Casca. :judo:

When you say "the character", I suppose you refer specifically to the moments Griffith's in his Femto appearence? I always assumed that "switching" between Griffith and Femto appearances was just a physical change. Is refering to either form as their respective name just a way of differenciating the two, or I'm missing some elements?
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Offline Aazealh

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Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #20 on: November 11, 2010, 09:19:27 AM »
When you say "the character", I suppose you refer specifically to the moments Griffith's in his Femto appearence? I always assumed that "switching" between Griffith and Femto appearances was just a physical change. Is refering to either form as their respective name just a way of differenciating the two, or I'm missing some elements?

I'm referring to when Femto shows up, like in volume 3 or 13. And you're wording this the wrong way. It's not Griffith who has a "Femto appearance", but Femto who wears a Griffith "disguise". It's an important nuance. Now, as far as the current Femto/Griffith goes, well we don't know all the details obviously, but yeah, it's likely just a physical change. Maybe he has more power when he shows his true self too, but we don't know that for certain.

Just to clarify: There was once a man named Griffith. He was human. Then he became a member of the God Hand. The man that was Griffith ceased to exist that day, and from his being was born an entity known as Femto. You can say he was deeply changed in ways we can't entirely assess if you prefer, but the result is the same.

We don't have much insight into Femto's mind, but like the other members of the God Hand he's not human anymore and was at first a purely spiritual being. A spirit of such tremendous power and evilness that he couldn't appear in the material world.

Then came the incarnation, a once in a thousand years event. It allows a member of the God Hand to receive a body of flesh, and to exist in the material world. When Femto was incarnated, his new body (hijacked from Guts & Casca's child) took on the appearance of the one he had had when he was still human. But is the old Griffith back? Is he human again? No. He's not. It's not the old Griffith. It's Femto, the member of the God Hand, who has taken on the appearance of Griffith. It's very important to understand this. Any scene featuring Griffith since volume 22 should be taken with that in mind. And his actions should be taken like that as well. Griffith/Femto serves a higher power (the Idea of Evil), and the most obvious example to that fact is the way he caused the material and astral worlds to merge, bringing his peers (Conrad, Slan, Ubik, Void) into the world. We don't know what the God Hand's true goal is yet, but you can be sure that the establishment of Falconia isn't the end of it.

Offline D0dole

Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #21 on: November 14, 2010, 03:17:38 AM »
Then came the incarnation, a once in a thousand years event. It allows a member of the God Hand to receive a body of flesh, and to exist in the material world. When Femto was incarnated, his new body (hijacked from Guts & Casca's child) took on the appearance of the one he had had when he was still human. But is the old Griffith back? Is he human again? No. He's not. It's not the old Griffith. It's Femto, the member of the God Hand, who has taken on the appearance of Griffith. It's very important to understand this. Any scene featuring Griffith since volume 22 should be taken with that in mind. And his actions should be taken like that as well. Griffith/Femto serves a higher power (the Idea of Evil), and the most obvious example to that fact is the way he caused the material and astral worlds to merge, bringing his peers (Conrad, Slan, Ubik, Void) into the world. We don't know what the God Hand's true goal is yet, but you can be sure that the establishment of Falconia isn't the end of it.

Makes lots of sense, thanks for taking the time to explain. Age of darkness, here we come  :femto:

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Offline Aphasia

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Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #22 on: November 16, 2010, 02:43:38 PM »
Wow, this thread is a fantastic read. 

Going a bit in a different direction, I was always curious why Griffith didn't try to escape the dungeon while being tortured.  The torturer was small physically, and the only one who was present to keep Griffith under control.  I know he sustained some pretty serious wounds from his initial beating, but it's like he didn't try whatsoever.  Like he didn't care about escaping.  Knowing how clever Griffith was gives me the impression he could have come up with some way to escape those cuffs with his thin hands.

But he didn't.  Maybe because his wounds were more crippling than I thought, or because he lacked motivation.  It seems the latter would be more likely given the events that transpired.  Very few things hadn't gone his way up until this point.

Offline Aazealh

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Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #23 on: November 16, 2010, 02:55:23 PM »
Going a bit in a different direction, I was always curious why Griffith didn't try to escape the dungeon while being tortured. The torturer was small physically, and the only one who was present to keep Griffith under control.

He was in irons, the dungeon was well guarded (as seen during his rescue) and he was in bad shape before the torture that permanently crippled him took place. There's really no way he could have done anything and frankly I don't think it's hard to see. I don't see why this has to be addressed again. Just check those parts of the story more carefully if you need to.

it's like he didn't try whatsoever.

We saw very little of his time in jail, and from the little we saw there's simply no ground to what you're saying here, other than the fact trying to escape would have been useless.

Knowing how clever Griffith was gives me the impression he could have come up with some way to escape those cuffs with his thin hands.

I don't know what gives you that impression from what we see of him. He was hanging by the hands right after his capture and obviously couldn't move. Then the king whipped him savagely. Then the torture began. I don't think Houdini could have gotten out of that predicament, and cleverness can't perform miracles.

To me it sounds like you're saying Guts could have gotten out of the Occultation ceremony all by himself if he'd really tried. Maybe he wasn't motivated enough?

Offline KuraiDragoon

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Re: Picking Griffith's brain a bit
« Reply #24 on: November 16, 2010, 05:19:35 PM »
Wow, this thread is a fantastic read. 

Going a bit in a different direction, I was always curious why Griffith didn't try to escape the dungeon while being tortured.  The torturer was small physically, and the only one who was present to keep Griffith under control.  I know he sustained some pretty serious wounds from his initial beating, but it's like he didn't try whatsoever.  Like he didn't care about escaping.  Knowing how clever Griffith was gives me the impression he could have come up with some way to escape those cuffs with his thin hands.

But he didn't.  Maybe because his wounds were more crippling than I thought, or because he lacked motivation.  It seems the latter would be more likely given the events that transpired.  Very few things hadn't gone his way up until this point.
I'd never really thought of that. I suppose with Griffith being the kind of man he was, it's not unreasonable to imagine him trying to escape. However, the torturer said he cut his tendons first in order to prevent him from running away, so I don't think he ever had a chance. Otherwise, yeah he very likely could've figured something out.

Quote from: Aazealh
He was in irons, the dungeon was well guarded (as seen during his rescue) and he was in bad shape before the torture that permanently crippled him took place. There's really no way he could have done anything and frankly I don't think it's hard to see. I don't see why this has to be addressed again. Just check those parts of the story more carefully if you need to.
The torturer specifically said that he cut his tendons to keep him from running away, so obviously there was a chance of that happening had he not severed them right away.
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