Runaway Dream

“Among thousands of comrades and tens of thousands of enemies, you're the only one. You're the only one who made me forget my dream.” Griffith, Vol. 12 Ch. 9

When Guts finally crested the summit of the God Hand altar, Griffith greeted him with a mysterious smile. His swirling thoughts have clicked into crystal clarity. They were as much a declaration of love as they were of blame. He blamed Guts for ruining his life, but he blamed himself even more for letting Guts distract him. Love does that to people. It scrambles our priorities and makes us act irrationally. Only when separated from Guts and under the sole influence of the God Hand was Griffith able to see that. And it was ultimately this realization that pushed him over the edge.

“Whether it suits them or not, people yearn for a dream. Sustained by a dream, hurt by a dream, revived by a dream, killed by a dream. And even after being abandoned by a dream, it continues to smolder from the bottom of one's heart... probably until the verge of death.” Griffith, Vol. 6 Ch. 6

Griffith’s dream validated his existence. It was the foundation upon which he built his identity. It had supported him, and he suffered for it, but without it he was nothing. If he allowed Guts to outshine it in his own heart, it would be nothing short of losing himself. He would become one of those lesser creatures that depended on the light of another to give them purpose. Indeed, he had already fallen into that trap before, when his feelings for Guts drove him to sabotage everything he accomplished. This was a weakness he could not live with. He had to choose the castle, if only to prove to himself that he still could.

“I sacrifice.” Griffith, Vol. 12 Ch. 9

Well, I hope you all know the story from here. The God Hand altar closed, the demonic blood orgy began, and Griffith emerged from his cocoon as Femto, the Wings of Darkness. Then there’s that nasty Caska-raping scene which I can only assume was Femto’s way of getting back at Guts and Caska for emotionally abandoning Griffith. Or was it just to get back at Guts for hooking up with Caska? Anyway, Femto aside, let us backtrack here for a minute... What did Griffith really do?


DISCLAIMER: Berserk and all the characters, story, and art therein is copyright Kentaro Miura. No copyright infringement is intended, and I hope that this essay inspires more people to read/watch Berserk! Translation in the text is by Dark Horse, translation in the images is by The Band of the Hawk, unless otherwise specified.