If there’s anything that I’ve learned from Berserk,
it’s that anything is possible: the good and the bad.
Just in general, the mystery of Guts’ paternity is a pecking question, since in the tradition of Campbell’s monomyth, atonement with the father normally always comes up; it’s suppose to be the point where everything in the story leads to, because the father/father-figure is suppose represent ultimate power that keeps the hero back, and by overcoming that obstacle, the hero can reach a new realization and go on with his journey.
Guts’ atonement with his adoptive father is sort of inconclusive. You can kind of say that he reached atonement back in volume 9 when Casca helped to soothe his emotional wounds from his abusive childhood. But it’s sort of vague, since Guts never really outright says that he forgave Gambino or that he wouldn’t forgive him for the things that he had done to him, and until the Boyhood Arc, Gambino and Guts’ childhood aren’t really mentioned after that. And of course, everything involving Guts’ trauma comes crumbling down during the Eclipse and he more or less relapsed.
So in that respect, there are really two opportunities for this stage in Guts’ narrative: atonement with his adoptive father and atonement with his real father. To be honest, I find the former possibility more plausible than the latter, simply because Guts doesn’t really seem all that interested in finding out his real paternity, or even finding out more about his birth mother. Maybe it’ll come up later in the story, but despite his hard childhood, Guts always seemed content with viewing Gambino and Sys as his real parents.
Of course, that doesn’t mean I’ve never had my own speculations about Guts’ ancestry. :) I hope that my headcanon doesn’t confuse, but this is what I’ve got:
Guts comes from a race whose apical ancestor is an apostle. Unless this was just something from Miura’s artistic past that he just decided to make unique to Guts’ design, this could explain why Guts and some other people have pointy ears. Also, to counter the artistic theory, an explanation as to why we don’t see people with pointy ears anymore is because the story has moved out of that race’s territory. You can see them as a nation, a group of people who share a common history and culture, but they aren’t bound by any borders and are nomadic (hence, most of them are mercenaries). You can even go further by speculating that because of their supposed ancestry, they are persecuted in many states and may even be the subject of ethnic cleansing. Perhaps Guts’ birth mother was an unfortunate victim of such an act.
(Funny thing is about this hypothesis is that that would probably make Guts and Griffith kin.)
Anyway, these people didn’t really inherit a lot of physical traits aside from the ears, so they look like normal humans other than for that part. However, what they did inherit from their apostle ancestor was something within - something dark.
Okay it gets a little weird from here so I’m just going to copy and paste something that I wrote on a wiki page:
… what if we were to say that the Beast was always with Guts and is an integral part of his pre-story (by pre-story, I mean birth)? If Guts is part of some demonic [Apostle] lineage, then it would mean that the Beast is in his blood. In fact, what if there actually is a berserkr race and everyone in this group has some sort of anima that unleashes their fury (or at least aides to unleash) and reaches its “prime” when the individual experiences their Darkest Hour? I guess the story is just named after Guts’ extraordinary drive and endurance, or quite possibly the Berserker armor, but it would be interesting if there was a real clan of berserkers that Guts was genetically linked to.
… I’ve always surmounted that behelits, apostles, and the whole sacrificial rite are suppose to represent the darkest recesses of the human heart… the anima (I’m not a wiz on Jungian theory, mind you). So with this in mind, if we are to believe that Guts is part apostle, he merely inherited this potential for dark recourse, not necessarily an apostle’s physical strength.
To further add some moral complexity to it, this could be anotherNature Versus Nurturething, since if one never has to unleash their inner beast, they will never have to depend on it and have it eat away at them. Surely not everyone born with this wants to become a fighter, and just because they might doesn’t mean that they won’t have a heart. Guts started his life as an innocent baby and sweet little kid but was forced into a life of violence, and although he retained a compassionate side, he still had a battle-thirsty side to him that almost went to straight up bloodlust after the Eclipse, Guts’ darkest hour.
This is when the Beast actually starts to make a physical appearance, since Guts has reached his peak and is a true berserker. But now that Guts has resolved to fight more or less for love, he’s trying to suppress that crazed berserker side of him, his anima. And since the Beast is just his anima anthropomorphized and not an independent entity, it’s really is Guts clashing with himself.
Thus, Guts (the protagonist) is the Beast…
In conclusion, I guess an individual berserker’s potential is dependant on how they are raised and how willing they are to embrace it, since I bet some individuals would have no problem with becoming vicious, heartless warriors if they’re willing to go over the edge.
So, I hope that made a little bit of sense. There are probably a shit ton of holes in this headcanon, but it’s still in development on my part.
Holy shit wow, that just added to my thoughts like 10 fold, thanks!
I don’t have many head cannons or things like that for anything but Zodd being Guts’ father is a big one for me, for a couple different reasons. Prior to reading what you wrote though my thoughts were along the lines of this.
- Zodd’s human form looks veeery similar to Guts and given that they are both pretty much the only ones with pointy ears it seems too coincidental…
- Guts is strong, like really strong, too strong for any ‘pure blood human’ also his body type is kind of unique compared to other strong characters like Samson or Bosconge who are all just big
- Even without the Elf healing dust he has an unnatural ability to heal, to get up and keep fighting, will power aside.
- The main point that runs through my head though is; why was Guts’ mother hanging from a tree in the first place, in comparison to the other hung bodies are they from all at the same time or is it just sort of the tree where you go to hang shit…
cause depending on what the case may be, was his mother intimate with Zodd or was it just one of those apostle orgy parties and she got knocked up. Did some people like the Holy Iron Chain Knights find out and kill everyone who participated but she managed to avoid them for 9 months?
Many questions about that part… but it would add to the reason why Gambino wanted to keep walking cause of the curse. Best not to fuck around with people who’ve interacted with apostles.
But I’m happy that it seems like it could be a legit thing.
Your headcannon may be in development, mine is just poorly explained :P
sorry as always!
Oh stop apologizin’. I think anything is probable with Guts’ mother. I have thought that maybe Guts’ mama was a witch or something, and that she and Zodd could have been lovers; she might have conceived Guts through love or some other purpose…
And that led me to the thought that perhaps there was a prophecy saying that someone would give birth to a Messiah, and then a conflicting group decided to kill said baby so a Messiah wouldn’t happen (perhaps his purpose was to defeat the Godhand/Idea of Evil); or, there was a prophecy that Guts was going to be the anti-Christ (the guy who was going to kill the real anti-Christ who looks like the Messiah a.k.a Griffith), and so that group decided to kill said baby.
All in all, this would only further prove the point that the universe wanted Guts dead even before he was born. :P