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Top 5 Reasons Why You Should Read Kentaro Miura’s Berserk

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Berserk - Guts

Berserk first premiered in 1988, as a prototype Miura wrote for a competition comic manga school. The manga started its publication the following year in Monthly Animal House Magazine. 

Berserk is arguably one of the greatest mangas ever written. Miura doesn’t hold back on scenes of violence and explicit in this work of dark fantasy. The art of the graphic novel is done in the most exquisite way carefully and detailed.

The world of Berserk is a cruel and cynical one, it shows a world that is always tainted with war, violence, and madness. A world where there are Inhumans called apostles who were once human but due to their thirst for power and their destiny, they became demonic inhuman creatures that torture mankind from shadows.

Guts - Berserk Character
Guts – Berserk Character

In this world where darkness lurks in every corner, the main protagonist of the story, the black swordsman Guts, is in pursuit of the apostate. A warrior driven by pure rage and hatred who kills apostles.This mere mortal swordsman what is his story? What is his beef with the apostles? Why does he hate these Inhumans so much? Is every reader’s first impression.

Guts (our tragic hero),a child who is born close to death is adopted by a gang of mercenaries. Guts was taught to fight from when he was a child by Gambino, his father figure who is a mercenary. Guts from his childhood days fought wars unlike other children, he was forced to fight in battlefields when he was a child.

Guts goes from battlefield to battlefield for in earlier years of his life that is when he meets Griffith, Casca, and the band of the hawks the people who were gonna change his life forever. Guts who was a lone warrior finally finds his place in the world.

Griffith - A Berserk Character
Griffith – A Berserk Character

Griffith who is the charismatic leader of the bunch takes a big interest in Guts. These characters all have their own motives and backstories. Griffith is an ambitious leader who wants his own kingdom, he is not noble by birth so it is impossible for him to make his own kingdom.

Casca who is in love with  Griffth after she was saved by him as a child. The band of the hawks goes from a small mercenary band to a royal army in course of many books. Casca develops feelings for Guts and much more character development happens.

Casca - A Potrayal
Casca – A Potrayal

Guts eventually leave the band of hawks to pursue his own dream while Griffith makes a bad move and ends up in jail. How berserk goes from a  mere meat grinder book to a story about how bonds are formed and broken is one of the things that hits hard to readers.

Griffith is attempted to be saved by the band of hawks and guts when tragedy strikes and Griffith sacrifices the whole band to become an apostle is heartbreaking. The sole survivors of the incident being Casca and Guts.

Guts’ life is changed forever as he is haunted by his past as well as demonic creatures as they are attracted to him. Guts the black swordsman starts his journey which is the quest for revenge. Most would say this got cliche at this point but no this is not your average revenge power fantasy story.

Guts is suddenly caught in between the world of “Cosmic Horror”, one that he doesn’t fully understand. Guts want to swing his way through the apostles to Griffith for his revenge. Our tragic hero is a mere helpless warrior caught between gods and destiny?

No. I quote this from the pages of Berserk “Dragons are dragons because humans can’t beat ’em.”

Berserk Armor
Berserk Armor

So what’s a man…that beats dragons…? Guts had a life where he fought every day to make it to the next he doesn’t understand these cosmic forces but he knows he can kill them. Guts is no mere warrior, he is a badass who is driven by rage and vengeance that can destroy anything in his path, Sure the demons he fights are scary but Guts is even scarier than these monsters.

The side characters play an important role is Berserk as I wrote this isn’t a cliche revenge story. Many new characters are introduced in the story, the lone swordsman gaining companions, and healing is the best part of the story.

These characters have their own motives and reasons for following Guts. Through these people Guts slowly heals. It is a story very much about “Bonds” as it is about Guts and blood. The story which has been going on 30 years is very much a journey to fans rather than a manga.

Guts is depicted as a dark, brooding anti-hero soaked in blood that is even monstrous than the monsters he fights, While Griffith the antagonist the messiah of evil who believes he is beyond good and evil is drawn as a noble and divine.

People who look at Griffith often see him as a beacon of inspiration, so divine and mighty as God himself. Everyone around Griffith sees him as a savior who liberates them and leads them into a new world which shows how delusional we humans could be.

Berserk - Kentaro Miura
Berserk – Kentaro Miura

Guts is a human with flaws he wields the berserk armor which consumes him each time he uses its power the berserk armor which can channel a human’s flaws rage, hatred, fear, and any negative emotion as a source of power. While what power Griffith wields is the power of gods.  

The “themes of Berserk” is very much about destiny and free will. Is every choice we take in life predetermined? Whatever we try to achieve in life, is it pointless if we are

not destined for greatness? Are we in control of our own destiny? Guts is a character who is constantly fighting destiny while Griffith is the one destined for greatness. The notable thing in berserk is the side characters like skull knight whose motives are not clear yet, Schierke, Serpico, etc with great arcs and their own ideology and philosophy.

Berserk leaves its readers with questions not only about the story but of life itself. The story of Berserk will continue to unfold in course of many years and end hopefully as it has been ongoing for 30 years and still going on.

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A Necroblade in the areas of Books and Literature. Has Sole Geek Knowledge in the English Language and related resources. Currently A Freelance Writer for The Tech Vamps.

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  1. Pingback: Looking Back At Zack Snyder's BATMAN V SUPERMAN Before Snyder Cut 2021

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