27
Apr
18

Unique, or Part of the Horde?

Solo_Army.png

 

I spend a lot of time thinking about monsters. Kind of part of the job description, I should think. But I was mulling a few things over today while skimming Wikipedia for nuggets of lore to appropriate and hit upon this question:

“What’s scarier? A unique, solitary entity with no frame of reference, or a ‘race’ or ‘species’ of being?”

Net answer? I don’t know. It depends on a lot more than that question can easy reference; how unique are individual members of this species, for example. Does the title of “werewolf,” for example, dictate anything beyond “blend of man and wolf,” or can you start there and run with it? (Obviously, you always can do so, but I mean in the worldbuilding sense. Do werewolves in your world have a forced homogenity of any kind, and how deep does it go?)

I remember reading something in the Buffy Watcher’s Guide where they were talking about Der Kindestod, a monster that appeared in an early season of the show. I don’t recall if it was Whedon who said it, though I think it was. The gist of it was that he didn’t want to call it a “kindestod demon,”  that it was just THE Kindestod. He said he found it more frightening if it was just a solitary entity, rather than some species demon Darwinists could “collect” for study. I kind of agree with him.

I’d seen similar concepts in reference to the Antedeluvians, Malfeans, and Earthbound from White Wolf’s World of Darkness game lines; they may superficially be members of their supernatural races (vampires, wraiths/spectres, and demons, respectively) but they have gone so far beyond the “template” for their species that they can only be understood as something that has transcended that starting point, a unique entity of unknown power and quality. I think it was quote from Orpheus, but I could just be making things up, that referenced the Malfeans as each “being a nation of one, with little to no relation to its confederates.”

On the other hand, I’ve seen intstances where someone trying to go with the singular entity explanation flubs it. Being unique and alone means the creator can essentially just create the rules as they go along, which some folks take as carte blanche to delve into fanfiction levels of “nuh-uh, I win,” allowing the beastie to do anything it wants whenever it wants, instead of being subject to any kind of logic (fractured, supernatural, paranormal or otherwise) or rules.

What about you folks out there? What’s worse? An individual entity, or a horde of Samey McSamersons with an occasional unique individual? Is it still an “individual” if it springboards off a known template, or must it be completely unexplained and seperate from more general terminology? Let us know down below!

KA Spiral no signature

Advertisements

0 Responses to “Unique, or Part of the Horde?”



  1. Leave a Comment

What's your opinion?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


Show your support

Adopt an Artist

Take pity, and eternal gratitude will be yours; helps keep this site running and the words flowing.

PayPal Donate Button

Archives

Follow Insomniac Nightmares on WordPress.com
Advertisements

%d bloggers like this: