Trivia / Berserk

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/guts_and_griffith_selling_fast_food.jpg
Eatin' burgers and takin' names.

  • Big Name Fan:
  • Cash Cow Franchise: Berserk has made it a long way for what many used to consider a niche Dark Fantasy seinen franchise, with a manga that's been ongoing since 1990 with 38+ volumes and finally hit 40 million volumes in circulation in February 2016. Adaptations include Berserk (1997) by OLM Incorporated; two videogame adaptations by Yuke's, Sword of the Berserk: Guts' Rage (Dreamcast, 1999) and Berserk: Millennium Falcon Hen Seima Senki no Shō (PS2, 2004); The Berserk: The Golden Age Arc theatrical anime film trilogy (2012-2013) by Studio 4°C, which produced this amusing fast food cross-promotion; Berserk (2016), a TV anime by GEMBA and Millepensee which picks up after the movies; and the videogame Berserk and the Band of the Hawk (Fall 2016) developed by Omega Force. Fans are invited to buy $200 limited edition figurines of Guts, Griffith, or Casca, and all the animated versions are available in deluxe Blu-ray box sets. Japanese fans can also buy Berserk keychains, pillows, and even underwear!
  • Celebrity Voice Actor: In Berserk: The Golden Age Arc, Berserk (2016), and Berserk and the Band of the Hawk, Guts is played by actor and model Hiroaki Iwanaga who gained recognition from his roles in Toku shows.
  • Colbert Bump: Some shows with more of a mainstream Western fanbase have helped Berserk to get noticed:
  • Fan Community Nicknames: Berserkers; also occasionally used are Apostle Spawn, The Godfans and The Fans Of The Hawk (the latter two in reference to, respectively, the Godhand and the Band of the Hawk.)
  • Fan Nickname:
    • Guts and Casca's child isn't yet named in the story and is usually called simply "The Child" or "The Moonchild" since he only appears in human form when the moon is full. Others call him "Gusca" since he looks like a perfect cross between them.
    • The Beast of Darkness is also called the "Hellhound" for its appearance.
    • "Skully" and "Skull Bro" are popular nicknames for the Skull Knight.
    • Farnese is known as "Farnie" to some fans. This is also what Puck usually calls her.
    • Serpico is also affectionately known as "Serp" or "Serpie".
    • "Rape Horse" for the demonically powered horse that tries to rape Farnese. It's often used as a symbol for how excessively bleak the story is.
    • "Schnoz" is the nickname fans have bestowed upon a strange creature from Qliphoth that's basically a Gag Nose with legs.
    • Roderick is called "Broderick" for being a "bro", i.e. a chill and selfless wingman for Guts in the vein of Good Guy Greg.
    • Judeau is "Jubro" for the same reason.
  • God Never Said That:
    • There are pervasive rumors that writing Berserk has given Miura repeated Creator Breakdowns which require him to take long hiatuses to recover, but there is no official evidence that this is true.
    • Tying into the above, many people are under the impression that Miura has been putting off working on Berserk due to him becoming addicted to The iDOLM@STER. This is a very large extrapolation of comments made by Miura commenting on him playing the games a few times and commenting about internet videos of it with friends, propagated by a few websites pushing the angle of him being some addict who can barely work on the series anymore due to this. It's become a Fandom Berserk Button for more dedicated communities of fans, who resent that what might have been a tongue-in-cheek joke at one point has since been taken seriously by many people.
    • Actually involving another series, but which is so frequently cited by Berserk fans that it deserves mention: Many fans of both Berserk and Dark Souls overinflated the importance of a certain interview where Souls series creator creator Hidetaka Miyazaki mentioned having Berserk on his shelf, ignoring the fact that in the same interview he mostly attributes inspiration to his collection of Western Tabletop RPGs and Fantasy Literature, significantly basing the Souls series on the earlier FromSoftware game series King's Field and the Fighting Fantasy game books. He does say in the interview that when Art Designer Masanori Waragai showed him his Catarina armor design, he felt reminded of Bazuso from Berserk and thought that old design was appropriate for Siegmeyer's character concept, but that's it. Despite Fanon being that so many characters, monsters, settings, and props are obvious Berserk references, the only one Miyazaki has actually talked about is more a case of coincidence than inspiration.
  • The Other Darrin: See Berserk: The Golden Age Arc Trivia for how Berserk (2016) got new voice actors for all of the characters who had been in Berserk (2016).
  • Fountain of Expies: Berserk has been extremely influential in Japanese fiction, to the point where almost any hardcore brooding badass owes his dues to the original hundred-man slayer (excluding the personality aspect; you won't find that very often in general).
    • Caim from Drakengard, Artorias from Dark Souls, and Arngrim from Valkyrie Profile are just some of the most blatant examples.
    • Final Fantasy VII's main hero, Cloud, was clearly inspired by Guts' character. Both men are lonely mercenaries hell-bent on exacting revenge against a silver-haired villain who not only ruined their lives, but also took away their respective love interests. Griffith was responsible for raping Casca to the point of insanity, whereas Sephiroth murdered Aerith. In both cases, the hero is even forced to witness these traumatic events occur right in front of their eyes. What separates Cloud from Guts is the fact that he doesn't indulge in the carnage and has a more upbeat personality. Lesser examples in the Final Fantasy brand include FF7's prequel hero Zack (who, apart from sharing a familiar BFS, bears no similarity to Guts in terms of life circumstances and personality) and Auron (who looks like an older, samurai version of the infamous Black Swordsman).
    • Even females aren't safe: Cattleya is a good example of this.note 
    • Dragon's Dogma's Mercedes Marten: expert swordswoman, leader among her men, badass attitude, dusky complexion...almost sounds like Casca.
      • Dragon's Dogma expies don't stop at Mercedes and Casca. There's also a Schierke-expy in Selene, a girl-witch who lives in the enchanted woods under the tutelage of an old grandmother figure whose hut is also guarded by rock monsters, and a Zodd-expy in Daimon, a powerful winged demon.
  • Image Source: Berserk provides images for the following pages:
  • Mean Character, Nice Actor: Kevin T. Collins, Griffith's English voice actor, is quite honestly a gem when you hear how fun-loving he is in the Berserk (1997) Hilarious Outtakes. It's astonishing how the guy who drops the script in order to sing improvised musical scores is the same person who is playing the voice of Griffith and his much more horrendous alter ego Femto (which is really saying something since Femto technically has no speaking role during the Eclipse: it's the principle really).
  • Missing Episode: One chapter of the manga (where during his transformation into a Godhand, Griffith meets the Idea of Evil (A.K.A God) who explains its origins and its goals) that should have been in volume 13 was supposedly pulled by Miura because he felt that it revealed too much about the setting at the time; it was later released as supplemental material.
  • Referenced by...: See the Referenced By page.
  • Schedule Slip: When Miura is on a roll, chapters come out once a month and new tankobon volumes once or twice a year, but he is notorious for frequently putting the manga on hiatus, which delays the release schedule by months. Most egregiously, he ended one hiatus to start another one just two months later. These breaks are likely necessary to stave off breakdowns. Still, just look at this chart for how much his releases have slowed down since 2000.
  • Series Hiatus: Kentaro Miura is about as infamous as Yoshihiro Togashi for his long breaks in the publishing of Berserk (so much that the fact that Guts and his companions were on a boat for years in real time became a meme). There are all sorts of rumors as to why, but no one really knows the reason.
  • Similarly Named Works: This manga coincidentally shares its title with numerous unrelated works, such as a zombie novel by Tim Lebbon, a 1967 B horror movie with Joan Crawford, and a classic arcade game (spelled Berzerk).
  • What Could Have Been:
    • Before he made the Prototype, Miura considered giving Guts a katana instead of his trademark BFS.
    • As mentioned on previous pages, Berserk could have ended up being a Shōnen manga where Guts is a more light-hearted vagabond on a quest to avenge the death of his mother and possibly fight the not-so-ambiguous Ultimate Evil, Varna, had Miura stuck to his plans in The Prototype. For more info, go to the The Prototype stub here.
  • Word of God: Miura gives interviews in which he sometimes reveals his intention behind events that fans found to be open to interpretation:
    • On the symbolism of Guts' BFS: "I think the big sword of Guts,the main character could be some kind of consequence to make readers feel extreme reality."
    • On the significance of the Demon Child: "I made the one-eyed child show up to Guts in vol. 1 as a symbol of the 'weakness' which Guts hates. But I also think the child is connected to the image of Griffith(vol. 10-12) in my subconciousness who lost the freedom of his body because of the horrilbe torture when he was still young. For this reason, I think I made a setup which the child played a role to accept his spirit when Griffith as a demon king got his new body(vol.21). The story gets much bigger because of this."
    • On whether it's supposed to be the Band of the Hawk or Band of the Falcon: "“Falcon” or “Hawk”, both mean [鷹] in Japanese. In some dictionaries, “Falcon ” is translated as [隼(はやぶさ)] but there’s almost no difference. I used "Falcon" from the great name of the “Millennium Falcon" ship in Star Wars."
    • On how much time had passed from the end of the Golden Age Arc to where the story was in 2009: "I’d say it’s been 3-4 years, though it’s not been clearly decided."
    • Some of Miura's translated interviews include:
      • A December 1996 Interview published in the Berserk Illustrations File.
      • A September 2000 interview with Yukari Fujimoto, a writer/professor of gender studies and shojo manga, shortly before volume 20 came out.
      • An interview Miura did when he won the 2nd Osamu Tezuka Prize in 2002.
      • An interview he gave to Davide Castellazzzi, originally published in the Italian magazine Jappamondo n. 3 and reprinted in the issue n. 8 on "Scuola di Fumetto" February 2003.
      • A 2009 letter responding to questions from the members of SkullKnight.net.
      • Appearing here in Nico Nicholson's Challenging the Manga Dojos.
  • Word of Saint Paul: Miura once quoted Susumu Hirasawa as saying "I think Guts' sword represents a penis and the monster's destroyed by it represent women's genetalia."note 
  • Writing by the Seat of Your Pants: Miura said he hadn't even come up with the Band of the Hawk when he drew Guts' confrontation with the God Hand in volume 3, and there were a lot of details that he made up as he went along but which fell into place later. In fact, it fits together so well that it's surprising to learn he didn't plan everything ahead in great detail. A prime example is that the creepy fetus Guts sees in the first three volumes wasn't originally supposed to be Guts and Casca's child, but Miura later realized that this would work really well and made it into an important Recurring Character. Another is that Casca and Guts getting together wasn't predetermined.note 
  • Write Who You Know: The author partly based the core group of characters in the Band of the Hawk on five of his friends in college, except for Casca since they didn't have a girl in the group. There was one friend, Mori Kouji (Suicide Island), with whom he had a really complicated relationship, but rather than one of them being Guts and the other Griffith, it was like their roles were always switching back and forth.note 


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