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Topics - Walter

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Podcast / Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 29
« on: January 28, 2013, 02:17:58 AM »

Episode 29 (01/27/2013): Azan / Serpico / Farnese

The origin and future of the former Holy Iron Chain Knight commanders are discussed at length. Also, we poke fun at a recent clip from Movie III involving a certain Bone Knight, and share our new hopes for J.J. Abrams' Star Wars Episode VII.

I really enjoyed our Farnese talk, which is sort of interspersed between all three characters. By the end, I think we touched on some really interesting stuff.

Podcast Notes:
0:00:19 Bone Knight
0:13:30 Azan, Serpico and Farnese
1:02:54 Video Games (Fire Emblem, 999, Diablo)
1:17:17 Star Wars: Ep. 7
1:36:24 Windwaker HD

Character Cove / POLL: Vote for Your 2 Favorite Characters
« on: January 23, 2013, 03:36:25 AM »
It's been a while since we made one of these character polls, and people's allegiances may have changed over time. We've also picked up a bunch of newer members since the last one. I imagine the #1 spot is pretty predictable (maybe not though?), but that #2 spot could go a number of ways, I think.

It's not an exhaustive list, for obvious reasons (is anyone going to choose Zepec for anything other than a joke?). I merely selected characters I felt could realistically be picked as favorites, but if there's someone you genuinely feel should be added, don't hesitate to nominate them, and I will add them to the list post-haste.

My two picks were  :guts: and  :badbone: .

Podcast / Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 28
« on: January 14, 2013, 02:05:54 AM »

Episode 28 (01/03/2013): Casca

We dive into Casca's development as a character and what the future may hold for her and Guts. And despite no planning or research, we pull this episode off with panache. Walter complains about his awesome PC, and we talk about PC vs Consoles. That's all that I remember. Jump in for the rest!

Podcast Notes:
0:00:19 Casca
0:52:56 Video Games/Movies
1:43:57 Outtakes

Podcast / Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 27
« on: December 31, 2012, 02:22:33 AM »

Episode 27 (12/30/2012): Paradise

Booze is imbibed as we pore over Berserk episode 333 in detail, including what the future may hold for Rickert, Raban and Silat in this new world. Aaz unveils an interesting theory about the nature of the world spiral tree.

Podcast Notes:
0:00:19 Booze
0:08:00 Episode 333
1:01:45 Video Games
1:32:00 Member Questions, sans Walter
1:48:00 Outtakes

Current Episodes / Episode 333
« on: December 26, 2012, 01:01:52 PM »
Title: 楽土 - Paradise

Rickert gets a ride from the Falcons, and shows Raban(?) that he was once a member himself.

Video Games / Your #1 Game of this Console Generation
« on: December 20, 2012, 04:48:47 PM »
It's no secret that Microsoft and Sony are both finalizing their next generation of consoles, likely to be unveiled at the next E3. That would finally signal an end to this long, storied generation that began in 2005 with the XBOX360.

I never owned either a 360 or a PS3, but felt like I experienced many of the best games through hearing stories from friends and listening to hundreds of hours of podcasts. I owned a Wii, DS, 3DS and most importantly, a PC, which is where I played most of my games this decade.

As for my pick, I tried to think of it like this: If you could squeeze out all the enjoyment you got from these games into a bucket, which one would fill it the most? That includes both the volume of the experience and the length over which you were absorbed by it.

For me the answer comes pretty easily: Dark Souls. I needed two buckets for that one. Close runners up are Mass Effect 1 and Infinite Space. All of them are actually games that Aazealh played first then recommended to me, and all of them have been pretty big hits among SKnet members. I've played dozens and dozens of games since 2005, but no other game absorbed me like Dark Souls.

So what's yours?

Podcast / Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 26
« on: December 17, 2012, 12:30:17 AM »

Episode 26 (12/16/2012): Golden Age II Movie Review

Guests Gobolatula and Grail join the admins for a discussion of Movie II's merits and downfalls. We also discuss our individual picks for the game of the generation.

Podcast Notes:
00:00:19 Movie II Discussion
01:01:44 Favorite Game of the Generation
01:32:24 Outtakes

Anime Asylum / Berserk Golden Age Arc II: Capture of Doldrey [Review]
« on: December 04, 2012, 03:46:49 AM »
For those who have seen the second Berserk movie, please post your reviews here, and leave a vote in the poll.

Thanks in advance!  :void:

Podcast / Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 25
« on: December 02, 2012, 10:10:52 PM »

Episode 25 (12/2/2012): Griffith (3)

We finally spend time wrapping up our discussion of Griffith and what his legacy will be once the series is over. We also discuss Sonia's powers and her role in the story, and why Zodd intervened at Doldrey and with Wyald. Tons of video game talk, Walter's Steam Vault, and more than an hour of Skyfall spoilers at the back end.

Podcast Notes:
0:01:00 Griffith
0:37:15 Sonia
0:53:00 Zodd's intentions
1:15:25 Video Games (Diablo 3, Darksiders, Assassin's Creed 3, Paper Mario, Cargo Commander)
1:50:45 Member questions
2:03:30 Bond: Skyfall [SPOILERS]


Podcast / Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 24
« on: November 19, 2012, 05:20:15 AM »

Episode 24 (11/18/2012): Babycast

Walter reviews the big news in his life, and we chat about the new Berserk movie trailer and Skyfall. 

I haven't updated the RSS file yet, so look for that sometime tomorrow! For now you can download the MP3.

Shootin' the Breeze / Walter's Son
« on: November 16, 2012, 03:40:32 AM »
What a wild ride the last week has been for me... My wife and I have returned after being (living) in the hospital since last Thursday, Nov. 8. My wife was in a car accident, T-Boned by another driver while turning left.

Being 37 weeks pregnant and complaining of a dislocated hip, she was transported to a hospital. She and my son survived, but she was diagnosed with five fractured pelvic bones--the same bones the baby's head would be touching down on in the moments before birth. They monitored her for several days, after which they decided to induce labor, 3 weeks before her due date. Being a midwife, this was pretty shattering news to her, since she wanted to deliver as naturally as possible.

Fast forward three days to Monday, my birthday, and the birth of my son, Kagan. He's 6 lb 11 oz., and 18.7 in. tall. All fingers and toes (no sixth Void finger, oh well). Speaking as objectively as possible, he's a cool little guy, with a very calm temperament. The perfect baby.

Those cheeks!

Since we just arrived home, everything is still settling in. I kept telling my wife that this is when reality began. Everything at the hospital happens in a surreal manner. Strangers constantly coming in to check on you, you don't get any sleep (I would estimate that I got about 8 hours over the course of the 7 days we were at the hospital), compounded by the fact that traumatic, life-changing experiences often don't take their toll until days later.

Our cats are still learning about him, realizing what this truly means for them (the jig is up).

As awesome an experience as it was, it of course comes with consequences. Without going into too many details, there was a moment when my wife truly could have died right there in front of me. She was bleeding out, and then had to have an emergency c-section.  On top of the injuries from the wreck, my wife's recovery period is about 6-8 weeks or more, during which she will need a walker, and isn't advised to use stairs, drive, etc. So she will need constant attention. I'm taking the next 6 weeks off of work.

Podcast / Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 23
« on: October 28, 2012, 10:27:49 PM »

Episode 23 (10/28/2012): Griffith (2)

We dive into Berserk Episode 332, the return of Rickert and where he's headed, and also continue our Griffith discussion with his downfall and ultimate rise as Femto. Also, Walter hates Subway with a passion and has no teddy bears.

Podcast Notes:
0:00:00óPancakes, Episode 332
0:19:00óGriffith (Part 2)
1:12:26óVideo Games (Streets of Rage 2, Double Dragon 2, Hotline Miami, Diablo 3)
1:24:00óMember questions

Current Episodes / Episode 332
« on: October 24, 2012, 04:53:37 AM »
Title: 幌馬車 - Covered wagon

Story transitions to the main continent. What do you get when you cross Rickert and Erica with the new Band of the Falcon?

As expected, the Falcons seem to be serving as magical creature exterminators. I wonder if they were sent specifically to find Rickert, or this is just a coincidence.

No date was given for next episode.

With the help of a forum member who is helping me with some coding, I am beginning the process of revising the Berserk Encyclopedia's Character Guide. This involves rewriting all of the entries and rescanning all of the character portraits.

Aaz and I talked about it, and I agree that moving forward it makes more sense to use black and white portraits for characters, unless there's a colored version directly from Miura.

There are two good reasons for this:
1) I was always lazy about updating this section because I would put off coloring a new character...
2) Black and white would make it uniform. There was always artistic inconsistency due to different artists helping with the colorizations.

So, since I'm going to rescan all of the images, what are the DEFINITIVE images of these characters? This was always a part of the Character Guide I spent a lot of time thinking about. What's THE Guts image? What captures his character? Ideally it wouldn't be one of him screaming. And the same for Casca, Griffith, etc.

It's a heavy task, but try to think of what images come to mind when you think of a character. Post your ideas in this thread and I'll go through and scan them for the project.

Thanks in advance!

Podcast / Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 22
« on: October 14, 2012, 10:46:30 PM »

Episode 22 (10/14/2012): Griffith (1)

SKNet's admins discuss Berserk episode 331 and what makes Griffith such an intriguing character. Also, learn the qualities of a buffalo, choose between Dr. Grant or a raptor, scare your coworkers with squirt guns and jam with Memo.

Podcast Notes:
0:01:00—Episode 331
0:31:14—Griffith (Part 1)
1:19:16—Video Games: Cave Story, Diablo 3, Dark Souls, Resident Evil 6, Smite
1:49:27—Member questions
Total time—2:07:54

On the next episode of the show, we'll review the presumed Berserk Episode 332 and dive into the second part of our Griffith conversation. If you have questions for the next show, toss them in the official Podcast Q&A Thread!

Subscribe to our show through iTunes or any other Podcast program by linking to . Here are some visual instructions on how to do it in iTunes manually: CLICK

I recently sorted out some problems with Apple on the podcast RSS feed. So if you were having issues with it before, they are now resolved. Apple's standards didn't like me spelling September like this: "Sept." They wanted "Sep." ...  Yeah.

Site & Forum News / Official Skullknight NET Twitter
« on: September 30, 2012, 07:26:45 PM »

I started this tonight as a quick way to spread information about Berserk and Skullknight.NET happenings, since I don't think there's a great source for that kind of stuff other than checking the forums constantly (which is fine, too!)

It's also a way for me to promote the podcast when a new episode rolls along. So for anyone out there using Twitter, go ahead and add me. Thanks in advance.  :badbone:

Podcast / Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 21
« on: September 24, 2012, 12:47:45 AM »

Episode 21 (9/23/2012): Guts' Band

With no Aaz to steer our ship, we spin out of control with two special guests (Johnstantine and IncantatioN) to talk about Guts' Band and what makes the group dynamic work. Rocky IV slips in, and we discuss The Hobbit trailers and vietnamese dog sandwiches. Oh yeah, and Breaking Bad and Vagabond. And One Piece. Also ghosts. That's all I can remember, but it's pretty crazy, guys!

Podcast Notes:
0:21:40 Guts' group dynamics
0:52:40 Movies (The Hobbit), Titanic's extended ending
1:20:40 *Breaking Bad SPOILERS* (ends at 1:32:40)
1:33:11 Vagabond
2:20:11 Member questions

PS: Our longest episode everóagain

If you have questions for the next show, toss them in the official Podcast Q&A Thread!

Podcast / Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 20
« on: September 03, 2012, 02:59:35 AM »

Episode 20 (9/2/2012): Villains

Griffith gets attacked by a giant rat. Also, Nomad joins us for a chat from the comfort of his automobile.  In this episode, we talk about less prominent characters in the series, including Zepek, Zondark, Boscone, and Mozgus' crew of outcasts. We also conduct a "live" viewing of the new Berserk movie dub trailer, and talk about the third movie trailer, and what that means for the end of this movie trilogy. Walter rants about Dark Souls and why you should be playing it instead of listening to this, and what our favorite console controllers are.

Podcast Notes:
0:17:45 Berserk Villains
0:47:48 Movie Trailer 3 Discussion
0:59:38 "Live Dub Trailer Listening
1:30:20 Video Games
2:05:00 Member Questions
2:22:10 Outtakes

PS: Our longest episode ever.

If you have questions for the next show, toss them in the official Podcast Q&A Thread!

Shootin' the Breeze / It Came From The Internet
« on: August 30, 2012, 12:40:57 PM »
In this thread we post horrible things we find on the Internet. Funny, disturbing, world-shatteringly stupid? As long as it's work-safe material, please share your pain with us all!

This list of available bachelors and their special skills comes from a black list of Ok Cupid (an online dating site).

Podcast / Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 19
« on: August 19, 2012, 07:59:59 PM »

Episode 19:

We discuss the biggest battles in the series, and how Miura mixes things up by playing with realistic and fantastical elements. We also talk about the best weapons in video game history and what protects Aaz while he's sleeping.

Podcast Notes:
0:07:30 Berserk Battles
0:50:51 Movies/TV/Games
1:30:56 Questions
1:55:17 Outtakes

If you have questions for the next show, toss them in the official Podcast Q&A Thread!

Podcast / Podcast Q&A
« on: August 17, 2012, 05:22:52 PM »
If you have any questions for the admins, or special guests, leave them here. Just be sure to bold the question!

Questions can be about pretty much any subjectónot just Berserkóbut please be respectful.

Podcast / Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 18
« on: August 05, 2012, 09:30:28 PM »

Episode 18:

It's our longest episode ever. Thanks, Bats. We talk about the mysteries of the Idea of Evil and The Dark Knight Rises. We also go through a TON of member questions.

Podcast Notes:
0:00:19 Intro/Olympics anyone?
0:04:40 The Idea of Evil
0:57:30 The Dark Knight Rises
1:48:10 Member questions
2:12:16 Outtakes

Character Cove / Understanding Gambino
« on: July 17, 2012, 02:31:50 PM »
This was a post I'd written back in January, but never got around to finishing. Now that Gambino has risen in popularity again, I figured I'd revive it and post it for others to read through and respond to. It's still only what I'd consider half-finished. But it has room for growth, and I'm curious about what others have to say about the character.

Raise your hand if youíve noticed Miura setting up parallels between Gambino and Guts as father figures. For those who didnít raise your hands, how many of you sympathized with Gambino?

The way Miura humanizes his antagonists is among the reasons I love and respect him as a writer. But for every Griffith fanboy there are a thousand who disregard lesser characters like Carcus or Gambino who are also portrayed with a balance of realistic personalities and traits, not all of them agreeable.

I 've encountered many readers who are too quick to write Gambino off as a monster for trying to kill Guts. Is he a villain? Maybe. But his motivations are grounded, and his portrayal as an abusive father is nuanced just enough that we get glimpses of the man beneath the abrasive persona he's cultivated as a mercenary.

I believe Miura embeds enough humanity in him to leave astute readers with, at worst, conflicted feelings about his life and death. Not hatred.  So, bear with me a moment as we take a fresh look at Gambinoís scenes, and try to understand who he was.

What kind of man was Gambino?
He puts on a macho, sarcastic air as leader of a band of ruthless mercenaries. The kind of gang he runs is fundamentally different from the Hawks. When Guts joins the Hawks, he comments that heís surprised by how friendly and open they are with each other. It's markedly different from the mercenary camps he'd grown up around. Those were filled with the kind of people who are comfortable spending their entire lives chasing killing fields for money. If there was a dream, it was to survive the next day. Thatís the kind of environment that produced Gambino.

In this kind of mercenary camp, there's no place for children. But Gambino was thrust into fatherhood because of his feelings for Shisu. The couple's first child was miscarried, but as chance would have it, the two found and adopted Guts shortly afterward. Shisu clearly transferred her motherly feelings onto Guts. Gambino appears wary, but willing, to adopt Guts. But we donít get a scene between the two before Shisu died from plague, three years later. And that event forever tarnished Gambino's relationship with Guts.

After Shisuís death, any fatherly feelings Gambino may have harbored were scoured away. Gutsí existence was reduced to a living memory of that tragedy. Combined with the superstitious circumstances that they found Guts in, he becomes an easy excuse for Gambino to blame for how his life ended in such turmoil. Itís why heís able to rationalize selling Guts to Donovan, and why he ultimately tries to murder him.

More Human than Monster
Thereís something peculiar about the way Miura chose to handle Gambino. As an author, he certainly doesnít take the easiest path. Miura seems to go out of his way to humanize Gambino on three separate occasions, and Iíll lay out each example separately.

  • The distinctive scar Guts has across the bridge of his nose came from a moment of rage in Gambino, during training. He lashed out at Guts, who surprised him by being able to get past his defenses. Initially Gambino plays it off like what he did wasnít a big deal. But days later, he seeks Guts out, and delivers an ointment for his face. The narrator points out that this may have been merely to soothe his guilty conscience. But that notation in and of itself implies there may have been more to this act than mere guilt. Of course, itís never elaborated on beyond this.
  • Despite his behavior, Gambino is shown to genuinely care for Shisu.  In her dying moments, he was away in battle. A nurse chides him for not being by her side. Three years later, delirious after having his leg amputated, Gambino calls out for Shisu, remembering that night when he was away. He says, "Wait ... Shisu. Don't die. I'm on my way back," as he reaches out for Guts' hand.

    Conveying that sense of loss is a small, but significant moment for our understanding of this otherwise emotionless character. In his line of work, there must have been other women. But six years after Shisu's death, it continues to haunt him, and she's still who he goes to in his mind for comfort. Fevered or not, he reaches out for his one link to her: Guts.

    For a character destined to try to kill the protagonist, a scene like this is not necessary. So why include it, and why portray it in this manner?  Functionally, it serves two purposes. The first being that it shows Guts responding to the impending death of his father-figure, drawing closer to him despite his treatment. But itís also the lone emotional moment we get from Gambino.
  • When Gambino enters Gutsí tent with the intent to kill him, he does so while drunk. Miura could have chosen to simply have this man driven by rage, finally pushed over the brink after reflecting on his shitty life. But no, Miura humanizes Gambino, and somewhat distances him from the monstrous act, by making him drunk in the scene.

    These moments of compassion bind Gambino to Guts. Despite his rough treatment, and the murderous intent he ends his life on, Guts genuinely regrets what happened. Heís not able to cast his death aside, or feel remorseless like so many of the other deaths heís caused. The death of the man he considers to be his father is the most significant in his life, until he loses his friends.

Sins of the Father
The differences between who Gambino was and who Guts ultimately became is something Miura has touched on a few times in the series. Furthermore, I think Miura bolsters the circumstantial similarities between the characters with direct visual parallels.

In volume 3, when Shisu first finds Guts, she is draped in a robe and appears to be mentally challenged, at the very least she's not all there. She draws Guts close to her breast, but Gambino pulls her away. She screams, and clings for it.

In volume 14, when Casca gives birth to the demon child, she is wearing a small, thin sheet, and has become mentally challenged. She draws it close to her breast, but Guts pulls it away. She screams, and clings for it.

Mercenaries chide Guts for trying to use a long sword at the age of 6. Guts insists. Gambino agrees, holding his own long sword draped over his shoulder. He says that there arenít childrenís toys around here.

Fast forward to volume 18. Isidro finds Guts sleeping, and tries to take the Dragon Slayer. Guts wakes, picks up the sword and stows it away behind him. His arm is still over his shoulder when he tells him that itís not a childrenís toy.

These aren't concrete, but they visually imply things that readers should already have noticed narratively about the connection between these two characters.

Podcast / Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 17
« on: July 15, 2012, 07:45:45 PM »

Episode 17:

Episode 330 is reviewed and we discuss where things might go now that the flashback is wrapped up. We also discuss what we've been playing, Walter's favorite video game of all time, the  best Zelda and Mario game, and also answer a few member questions.

Podcast Notes:
0:00:19 Intro/Berserk Episode 330
0:44:50 Predictions about the next few episodes
1:04:00 Member questions
1:25:25 Outtakes (minus Griffith)

Podcast / Skullknight.NET Podcast: Episode 16
« on: June 24, 2012, 08:01:22 PM »

Episode 16:

We talk about Berserk Episode 329 and how this flashback may tie into the big picture ahead for the series. Then we dive into the bad reviews Berserk's second movie has been getting. Topping things off, we give our impressions on Prometheusóthe good, the bad and the ugly.

Podcast Notes:
0:00:19 Intro/Berserk Episode 329
0:29:00 Movie 2 Discussion
0:42:33 Prometheus Discussion
1:22:39 Outtakes 1 (from after the recording)
1:47:40 Outtakes 2 (cut from very beginning)

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