Gold... Prisoners... I don't care about such things. All I wish to see are humans within a fiery apocalypse. Trying to escape. All I wish to hear is the sound of snapping bones crushed under the hooves of horses. I don't even need an excuse. None at all...The Snake Lord[expl 1] was the apostle ruler of Koka, residing in the town castle. He demanded provisions of gold and human cattle for food from the town mayor, in exchange for not turning his malice towards the entirety of the town's residents. He was eventually hunted down, defeated, and left for dead by Guts.
– The Snake Lord
As the oppressive ruler of Koka, the Snake Lord possessed a demeanor of calmness and dominance, and was unapologetically sadistic in nature. He reveled and took pride in the fear he induced in the hearts of men, and bore a strong disdain for humanity, believing humans were nothing more than morsels for apostlekind and longing to see them die in a fiery chaos.
When in battle, he glorified himself as an all-powerful being due to his status as an apostle. He was very confident in his abilities, tending to underestimate his opponents, as shown when Guts quickly unhorsed him and sent his base form flying through a building. After assuming his true form, his confidence increased significantly and his contempt for humanity became even more expressive. However, when the Snake Lord was incapacitated and defeated by Guts, his demeanor warped to that of a pitiable beggar as he pleaded for his life and was left to burn to ashes.
Golden Age Arc Edit
Black Swordsman Arc Edit
While having a meal of human flesh, the Snake Lord is informed of the Black Swordsman's arrival in Koka and attack on his henchmen in a town tavern, leaving him to ponder who the aggressor is. The Mayor of Koka then arrives, having placed the swordsman in jail and offering more gold and human cattle for forgiveness. The Snake Lord, however, accuses the mayor of fearing for his own life more than those of the townspeople. Afterwards, he reveals that he does not truly care for gold or prisoners, and would prefer to see humans in a fiery apocalypse and listen to the snapping of their bones under the hooves of horses. As his henchmen take the mayor away, the Snake Lord dons his battle armor, having resolved to lay waste to Koka.
Soon after, the Snake Lord and his henchmen begin killing all townspeople in their path and setting Koka ablaze. Having escaped confinement prior to the onslaught, the Black Swordsman halts their slaughter and dispatches several of the Snake Lord's henchmen before facing the apostle himself. Confident in his own abilities, the Snake Lord accepts Guts' challenge, attempting to ram the swordsman through with his halberd before being shot off his steed and then into a nearby building. In retaliation, he assumes his true form and begins voicing his intent to eat Guts alive. The Snake Lord proceeds to overpower the swordsman before picking him up by his right arm to further degrade him and humanity as weaklings. Guts uses the moment to fire his cannon arm and blow off half of the Snake Lord's face, creating an opening to bisect the apostle with the Dragon Slayer. Reduced to a torso, the Snake Lord is unable to defend himself from being shot and tortured by Guts. While pleading for his life, he recognizes Guts as a survivor of the Eclipse upon noticing the swordsman's Brand of Sacrifice. When questioned about the God Hand's whereabouts, he reveals he has no idea where they are, before he is left to die, buried alive beneath the burning debris of Koka.
- The Snake Lord is the first primary antagonist in real world Berserk chronology.
- In the 1997 anime, the Snake Lord assumes the Slug Count's role as the apostle whose beherit is taken by Guts upon defeat.
- The Snake Lord does not make an appearance in the 2016 anime adaptation.
- In Berserk Musou, the Snake Lord is named the "Lord of Thieves", whereas he's referred to as a "baron" by one of his underlings in the Dark Horse manga translation. The Dark Horse Berserk Official Guidebook translation shows his name as "Snake Baron" in the interview with Kentarou Miura and as a "cobra-type apostle" in the guide itself.
- ^ Kentarou Miura dubs the Snake Lord such in an interview for the Berserk Official Guidebook, referring to the apostle as ヘビ首領, in which ヘビ means "snake" and 首領 is a generic term for "leader", "chief", "boss", etc.
- ^ a b c d e f g Berserk, Volume 1, "Black Swordsman"
- ^ Berserk, Volume 10, "Sparks from a Sword Tip"
- ^ Berserk, Volume 13, "Storm of Death (1)"
|Four Kings of the World|