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Offline Walter

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Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 54
« on: November 03, 2014, 01:31:34 AM »

Episode 54 (11/2/14): Mortal Combat [Vol. 11] (1hr 58 min)

Continuing our re-read with Volume 11, covering Guts' fight with Wyald. We explore the possibilities of Wyald's life as a human, what's revealed about how apostles choose to use their evil powers, the continuing evolution of Griffith before the Eclipse, and the future for Guts and Casca.

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Offline Grail

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Re: Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 54
« Reply #1 on: November 04, 2014, 08:01:20 AM »
Had a chance to listen to a little bit of this before bed. Another awesome episode so far! I'm really excited that the Patreon is nearing its next milestone - I noticed one or two Tumblr people appear to be pitching in. I knew that word was getting around, but I think it's really encouraging to see Berserk fans from different communities helping out, because it's clear how everyone stands to benefit. I'm especially excited about getting Miura's comments translated. :guts:

For the volume discussion, I've really enjoyed your speculations about Wyald's origins. I think I'd always assumed that he let himself be arrested, just for the variety. :ganishka: Looking forward to finishing this tomorrow!

Offline ApostleBob

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Re: Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 54
« Reply #2 on: November 04, 2014, 03:26:19 PM »
Great episode!  Wyald is an under represented character, and this whole volume is so well paced.  Loved the discussion!

Offline m

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Re: Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 54
« Reply #3 on: November 04, 2014, 07:54:48 PM »

Thank you for another great episode!  :serpico:

One bit that stood out to me was the discussion that started with Walter saying that Wyald was possibly the worst example of what an apostle is capable of, which is something similar to what I thought when I first read that volume. Regarding that discussion, I also agree with Aazealh in that my reaction at the time might have been influenced by how Wyald's behavior was presented to us: it's right there in the pages for the reader to see. I distinctly remember having a hard time getting through some of the pages in the volume, due both to the graphic nature of some of the images and, as Walter said, the horror of what Wyald and the Black Dog Knights did. Up until that point in the series I had been shocked a few times by the world of Berserk, but this volume took the cake. I guess what I'm trying to say is that I know all apostles are up to no good, but the way Wyald was presented made him stand out to me.

Offline Rhombaad

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Re: Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 54
« Reply #4 on: November 04, 2014, 08:27:14 PM »
I enjoyed your discussion of Vol. 11 very much. As someone who was introduced to Berserk through the '97 anime, I missed out on a ton of material in the manga, so Vol. 11 always stood out to me, and has remained one of my favorites for that very reason.

Offline Aazealh

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Re: Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 54
« Reply #5 on: November 04, 2014, 09:21:29 PM »
Up until that point in the series I had been shocked a few times by the world of Berserk, but this volume took the cake. I guess what I'm trying to say is that I know all apostles are up to no good, but the way Wyald was presented made him stand out to me.

I think it's very deliberate too. We talked about it a bit on the podcast, but my thoughts for Wyald were always that Miura made it so that you have this horrifying moment with this terrifying monster (who's basically proudly displaying his monstrous nature), and it shows that even at his skill level, Guts can't really cope. But somehow, like it always does in stories, all's well that ends well. Guts might have thought he could die, but the reader knew he wouldn't. That he'd rise up and save the girl, like all heroes do. Even the final scare, Wyald's desperate last shot, gets resolved in the nick of time.

And then you have this time of reflexion for the characters, in volume 12. Things have calmed down, there are no pursuers left, and they're looking at their future (or lack thereof). In many ways I believe it is the dusk of the Band of the Falcon. In any case, there's kind of a false sense of safety. But very quickly, things veer into a truly hellish situation, one that makes what came before seem almost benign by comparison. And this time, the hero does not triumph, and he does not save the girl. I believe the way these events follow each other (including the aftermath) serves to greatly reinforce the general takeaway from this arc. It informs the reader about how Guts must have felt at that time in an almost visceral way.

Offline Salem

Re: Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 54
« Reply #6 on: November 05, 2014, 12:35:58 AM »
This is my first podcast I've listened to and want to say you guys have done an excellent job.  Its easy to feel the depth and gravity of the story as you read, but you've put it into words in such a way that everything sounds fleshed out and epic.

Offline Walter

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Re: Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 54
« Reply #7 on: November 05, 2014, 03:05:21 PM »
This is my first podcast I've listened to and want to say you guys have done an excellent job.  Its easy to feel the depth and gravity of the story as you read, but you've put it into words in such a way that everything sounds fleshed out and epic.

Thanks! If you liked this one, please check out some of the others. We've been smoother than this...  :void:
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Offline Delta Phi

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Re: Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 54
« Reply #8 on: November 07, 2014, 07:37:06 PM »
I've been eagerly awaiting coverage of this volume the closer we approached it. Wyald is such an interesting foil to the previous apostles we've seen so far in the series (a ruthless degenerate vs. honorable or part of some nobility), and has one of my favorite designs to boot. Great discussion all around on this volume, and it only whets my appetite for the approaching Eclipse!

Offline DragonSlayer24

Re: Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 54
« Reply #9 on: November 10, 2014, 12:51:25 AM »
I really been enjoying all of the re-reads; I love hearing other perspectives of the story. I can't wait until you guys cover the eclipse!

Offline Handmade

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Re: Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 54
« Reply #10 on: November 25, 2014, 12:00:23 PM »
Whew! I'm officially all caught up now!

Over the past few weeks I've been enjoying the podcast at work, listening to a couple of them a day during my 12 hour shifts, and it's been a delightful journey going through all the character analyses, hypotheticals, re-reads (which DEFINITELY need to continue), and video game discussions. I have heard some great conversation throughout my listen, and laughed plenty of times! All of your Bane impressions from the Dark Knight Rises episode as an example had me chuckling aloud and earning strange looks from my co-workers that day, and Gobs rendition of Kiss From a Rose will always stand out in my mind as one of those legendary improvised moments of comedy, returning with less and less welcome each time he resumed the song (which of course only made it more hilarious and legendary). I also laughed incredibly hard at the Berserk movie II(?) discussion, also with Gobs and Grail. When it was brought up that maybe they got a sex expert to help them with the Guts/Casca sex scene like they did a swordsman for all the fighting scenes, I absolutely lost it; Aaz adding that it was the anime director, and his own sex experience. Hahaha.

Guests on the Skullkast have all been wonderful, and I definitely think you should continue having them on the show. I also don't think there needs to be any particularly special conditions (although that certainly can't hurt the program) for the guests to be on, because I look at it like each time a guest IS on, that's one more member of our community we're getting a deeper look into and getting their interpretation from, and it helps us all get to know the people we interact with every day on these boards that much better. There's also that great adventurous unknown aspect where you might not be entirely sure how it is going to go down, the four or so of your personalities mingling! But I think this is a very enticing angle to explore. Never predictable, just how a good podcast should be! :serpico:
I loved the first episode of the Floracast as well, providing us a very fresh look at Berserk through a different and largely unexplored lens! It hadn't occurred to me to consider Casca's position in a number of situations like Grail proposed, the most compelling of all being her not celebrating with the rest of her comrades after a victory. That blew my mind. I hadn't even thought so far ahead that the potential for something compromising to happen between her and her soldiers--just because she was a woman and because alcohol was involved--was very real, and that might be one reason why she wasn't celebrating. It was also very cool to put a voice to Lithrael, same as IncantatioN, Johnstantine, DirectDK, Nomad, and Rhombaad who were all very cool dudes. If I missed anyone, I'm sorry!

Speaking of IncantatioN, you sound like such a nice guy! Like way, way nicer than I already assumed you were (which was pretty damn nice in its own right!). But it was so cool hearing you talk and give your opinion on the series and moments in it. No doubt, you are an invaluable member of the SK.Net community.

All the guests have been so incredibly respectful, kind, and insightful into just what kind of community/family we have here at Skullknight.net, and I'm proud to consider myself a part of it (in all my hidden status glory).

Lastly, I have a few comments after having gone through the complete podcast recently and it being very fresh in my memory as a result. The quality of the program has only improved with each subsequent episode. It shows that at least you, Walter, great showrunner, have learned over these few years (or have gotten more comfortable) on how to run a show. All of you, Walter, Griff, and Aaz, being Zelda fans I'm sure can appreciate the analogy when I say you do make up the sacred golden relic known as the Triforce for us here on the site: the Triforce of Knowledge, the Triforce of Comedy, and the Triforce of Balance. (Sorry I couldn't think up a better one for you, Walter  :???:)

Walter you bring exceptional moderation to the show (even if it sometimes paints you the villain for discouraging rambling and tangents - we know how enjoyable those are). I have noticed this as I moved through episodes that you seem to always bring a decently to well-prepared agenda to most of the shows, and your efforts to keep it on-subject and interesting for listeners is always apparent. You ask questions, proposing new or different ideas that lend themselves to thought-provoking discussion, and you shepherd the often times difficult to herd Griffith and Aazealh. :serpico: Your vocabulary (actually, ALL of your vocabularies) never cease to impress me, and I try to remember and add some of the big words you often use to my own collection! Your gems in the comedic department also shine through quite regularly.
My ONLY criticisms are that you seem to be bothered pointing out the obvious from scenes during the re-reads. You seem to assume that your company and even your listeners already know (or should know anyway, and I'm sure most of them do) what to take away from a particular scene. I understand this, and even if it should be obvious to most fans, I will still suggest that you go through the motions anyway. Here's why: not all listeners might understand a particular scene, sure, even if it is one perhaps they should; but another reason is it being similar to a radio sportscast, for me at least. At work or in the car listening to the show, I won't have the volume in-front of me or accessible to me, so having the scene painted out before me best it can helps with imagining it and going right along with you guys during your look backs; and lastly, these might be the last or only times you will all be able to record sessions together studying the volumes so officially, so why not be as thorough as possible, you know. I know you can't go through every page, but I think it is okay to say why Guts is feeling a certain way or doing this goofy thing, or why a scene plays out a certain way or commenting on a less-important scene, because it helps (at least me) further illustrate the world of Berserk in my mind, and it may also validate some listeners' interpretations of those scenes as well. But overall, I adore the re-reads! They are my favorite thing I have taken away from the podcast. :)

Griffith, like Aaz, you bring your wealth of Berserk knowledge to the table and supply the awesome comedy to the podcast! Not to say that either Aaz or Walter are boring in the least, but I definitely look forward to your often times bizarre proposals in the Berserk and gaming worlds before I load up one of the podcasts. You and Aaz also make a powerful and distinct team when Walter has to go off or has left you to your own management of the show (this has happened once or twice, hasn't it?), complementing one another very naturally. On a Zelda note, Ocarina of Time is also my favorite Zelda (you did say Ocarina was your favorite?), which I am sure might not be very surprising. It is a lot of people's favorite Zelda. But I remark on it because I am currently playing it on my phone at work, and about to tackle the notorious Water Temple after having beaten the Forest and Fire Temple--NOT only on a touchscreen, but only during my breaks as well--so hearing your Zelda discussions has always been of particular interest to me, and hearing everyone's list of favorites and quick reviews of later titles in the series in case I might be looking to purchase one. All of your opinions on Skyward Sword and Windwaker in particular helped me from a consumer standpoint because they had been games I was interested in buying, but I wouldn't want to make the plunge if they weren't exceptional like a Zelda game "should" be. I took it as though they were good but not a must play. Do keep up the comedy and absurdities, Griff, they are very welcome, and I am sure Walter will do his job well and interrupt you when it is time to move on.

I have saved the best for last with Aazealh! What can I say to the man, who despite my absurd and offensive skype name (and ludicrous proposal that we might see Skull Knight turn heel at some point), has kept me on his friend's list and remained so kind and helpful to me on the forums over the years? Nothing but good things, of course. Aazealh has shown to be the kind of person to be helpful at every turn when someone is there earnestly asking for assistance, be it tattoo advice or a question from the manga or ordering something Berserk-related from Japan or what have you,to dispelling inaccuracies very dutifully when related to Berserk, and that is one of the more important things I've taken away from this forum. When something false about Berserk gets posted as fact, it is important to call it out if it is not, or else it may as well be true since it was left alone and never contested. Aaz, you have been good about this even on the podcast, starting out "Actually... the reason Miura drew that," and then correcting the information, not just for your friends but for the benefit of the listeners. It helps us as we go out and may talk to others about Berserk and promote the most accurate information possible! It's beyond amazing how you know all you know about Berserk, ranging from your memory of exactly how certain scenes were portrayed on almost every page to even Berserk knowledge outside of the pages from statements from Miura himself. It really is as Walter said, that you are as close to anyone he knows having a photographic memory.  :serpico: Your contributions to the comedy of the Skullkast aren't without mention, either!

All in all, friends, keep it up. You probably have plans to continue recording, but perhaps you did not or were at the very least getting burnt out on the re-reads, so I would like to ping in and try and reinvigorate your interest in continuing with them. Even if it is the most plainly told story elements from Miura that you expect every Berserk fan to have picked up on, I say again, don't feel it isn't worth talking about, because it is still a part of this story that we all love, and you three are three Berserk fans that I, and many others, adore just hearing talk about it. :)

Can't wait for the next episode! See you on the boards.

Offline Aazealh

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Re: Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 54
« Reply #11 on: November 25, 2014, 01:22:27 PM »
Well thank you for your praise man! I think I speak for all of us when I say that it is much appreciated. And most of all I'm just glad you're enjoying the show. :guts:

There's one part that I want to address though, to explain why things are the way they are:

Quote
My ONLY criticisms are that you seem to be bothered pointing out the obvious from scenes during the re-reads. You seem to assume that your company and even your listeners already know (or should know anyway, and I'm sure most of them do) what to take away from a particular scene. I understand this, and even if it should be obvious to most fans, I will still suggest that you go through the motions anyway. [...] I know you can't go through every page, but I think it is okay to say why Guts is feeling a certain way or doing this goofy thing, or why a scene plays out a certain way or commenting on a less-important scene, because it helps (at least me) further illustrate the world of Berserk in my mind, and it may also validate some listeners' interpretations of those scenes as well.

I've been pushing for longer and more detailed coverage ever since the beginning of the podcast, and I think we have moved in that direction over time. But we're not just limited by our willingness to be scrutinous. We live in very different time zones, and we have certain obligations that can severely limit the time we have at our disposal for recording the podcasts. These days Griffith works on the weekends, and Walter has to hire a babysitter everytime we record. Even taken alone (without other considerations such as the listeners' interest), that makes it difficult for us to go beyond two hours on a regular basis. We just don't have the time.

Offline Walter

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Re: Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 54
« Reply #12 on: November 25, 2014, 02:35:47 PM »
Over the past few weeks I've been enjoying the podcast at work, listening to a couple of them a day during my 12 hour shifts, and it's been a delightful journey

Sheesh, so much praise, I was blushing while reading it. I'm not used to our little show getting this kind of attention  :farnese: Thank you so much for spending time reviewing the whole show in such a detailed manner. It definitely makes me want to keep going, and keep making it better despite the challenges.

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Guests on the Skullkast have all been wonderful, and I definitely think you should continue having them on the show.

There will be more guests, particularly now that a handful have earned guest spots through the translation fundraiser.  Those will be happening soon.

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I also don't think there needs to be any particularly special conditions (although that certainly can't hurt the program) for the guests to be on, because I look at it like each time a guest IS on, that's one more member of our community we're getting a deeper look into and getting their interpretation from, and it helps us all get to know the people we interact with every day on these boards that much better.

It's true, but like Aazealh said in his reply, it's really a matter of getting through the show in under 3 hours keeping it focused. I'm happy to have guests on, but there's an acclimatization process that I'd rather leave out of the volume reviews. Episode discussions, open character or theme discussions, those are what I intend for the guest spots.

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All the guests have been so incredibly respectful, kind, and insightful into just what kind of community/family we have here at Skullknight.net, and I'm proud to consider myself a part of it (in all my hidden status glory).

Truly, we haven't had a single troll on, yet! Maybe we could invite Nightcrawler for a post-mortem on Interstellar vs. Prometheus?  :void:

Quote
the Triforce of Knowledge, the Triforce of Comedy, and the Triforce of Balance. (Sorry I couldn't think up a better one for you, Walter  :???:)

I'm totally pleased with being "balance," actually.

Quote
My ONLY criticisms are that you seem to be bothered pointing out the obvious from scenes during the re-reads. You seem to assume that your company and even your listeners already know (or should know anyway, and I'm sure most of them do) what to take away from a particular scene.

As you've touched on, it's the biggest thing I've struggled with during these re-reads, but I've been shedding this hesitation as we've moved forward. The struggle stemmed from us only loosely defining what our mission was in these re-reads at the outset. When we started, we moved at a very quick clip, discussing only the surprising or revealing scenes. I left out the connective tissue often because most readers can intuit these things, and at a certain point, you can begin blurring the line between a dramatic reading and a critique, and obviously, Miura can tell his story better than we can. But for the past 5-6 volumes or so, I've made a conscious effort to focus on every little detail, particularly in regards to interpreting why Miura chose to depict things a certain way.

Quote
But overall, I adore the re-reads! They are my favorite thing I have taken away from the podcast. :)

Thank you, that's encouraging to hear. My opinion on them has changed as we've spent more time on them. I now realize they're a pretty damned important part of the show, and for the site.

Quote
All in all, friends, keep it up. You probably have plans to continue recording, but perhaps you did not or were at the very least getting burnt out on the re-reads, so I would like to ping in and try and reinvigorate your interest in continuing with them. Even if it is the most plainly told story elements from Miura that you expect every Berserk fan to have picked up on, I say again, don't feel it isn't worth talking about, because it is still a part of this story that we all love, and you three are three Berserk fans that I, and many others, adore just hearing talk about it. :)

Can't wait for the next episode! See you on the boards.

We were scheduled to record last Sunday, but I didn't have time to prepare last week. And Vol 12 is a doozy. So, we delayed. If all goes well, should have one this weekend. The podcast schedule by nature will fluctuate with our real-life schedules, and recently I've been incredibly busy.
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