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  • Maloker

    So yeah. We finally met the demon responsible for creating vampires. What do you folks think?

    I think he's okay I guess. I like that Jeanty made him look-bat like. Kind of a nice call-back to all the old stories about vampires turning into bats. The Master always had his face described as bat-like, maybe his face was devolving to resemble Maloker's.

    My personal fanon had always been that the demon that created vamps was the Van-Tal. That always made sense to me that in Pylea, Angel would resemble the original demon when he went into gameface. I guess not. I don't really know what the Van-Tal is now.

    I think Maloker should have hooves for feet. He's an Old One demon, and it would be a nice reference to Satan who is often depicted with hooves for feet. It would also explain Kakistos, who still doesn't seem to fit into the vampire mythology anywhere with his weird hooves.

    What powers do you folks think Maloker has? Not that I think we'll get to see much exploration of him in the finale, but it's fun to speculate. I'm guessing he's got the standard vampire powers, probably none of the weaknesses though. He should be weak against the scythe though since it's an ancient mystical object and if I recall correctly, the scythe was used to kill Old Ones originally. I once read an awesome fanfic where Illyria couldn't even hold the scythe because it was like Old One kryptonite, I really like that idea.

    I think Maloker should have a healing factor. He's been stabbed multiple times and doesn't seem bothered. In the questionable-canon IDW comics, Illyria states that vampires back in her day could regenerate limbs. So I think Maloker should have that ability I guess.

    I think he should have the thrall ability that the Master, Drusilla and Dracula had.

    It would be cool if he had some other unique powers too. In the very first non-canon Buffy comic to be published by Dark Horse we met the very first vampire Lilith. She could control the weather and create storms if I recall correctly. I like the idea that older vampires could develop unique skills and powers, I'd like it if Maloker had a few tricks like this.

    Thematically, he's kind of boring. It seems like he's nothing more than Simone's Dragon. Really, the demon that created the first vamp should be a big deal. I'm kind of disappointed that Maloker's role is to show up, be scary and eat a few people and then get presumably killed by Buffy. Maloker is the reason vampires exist. He's the reason Buffy never got to live a normal life. I think that he should be more interesting on a thematic level to what he is in this book.

    Apologies that my thoughts aren't very organized in this post, I'm a little tired. But yeah, after nine seasons we've finally met the demon that created the vampire race. I think that's worth a bit of discussion?

  • #2
    Maloker is coming across as just a grrrr demon to slay. I can't remember if we know what Illyria really looked like and whether her speech/language was gained through her vessel choice. It seems disappointing to have Maloker come and be presented as just a mindless monster because that would seem odd, like vampires cognitively operate above him. He could just be a big monster with a biting fetish! It will be somewhat disappointing if he is only portrayed as grrr, arrrg and then killed off but they don't have space/time to do otherwise I don't think unless he isn't killed.

    Perhaps Maloker has an ability to sense the strength and personality of people so it isn't indiscriminate biteage but exactly the opposite and he is very selective. He also obviously has instantgrow in his blood, all you need for immediate siring!! It is hard to imagine him with thrall or anything cerebral when he is just shown operating on bash/crash mode as a huge monster. Physically I would say that he could be free of vampire weaknesses, sunlight/stake and that would have vampires as minion to him. But why create a group of followers that can't step outside half the time so the weather manipulating ability would make good logical sense.

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    • #3
      Maloker is coming across as just a grrrr demon to slay. I can't remember if we know what Illyria really looked like and whether her speech/language was gained through her vessel choice.
      You see a picture of her tentacled form in "A Hole in the World" and it also is referenced in AtF comics.

      He should be weak against the scythe though since it's an ancient mystical object and if I recall correctly, the scythe was used to kill Old Ones originally.
      I may be remembering wrong but doesn't Eve say Old Ones don't die like "we" do? The "dead" Old Ones were in the Deeper Well and the ones that were still alive were driven out, I think? So the Scythe shouldn't be able to actually kill him, maybe just help reseal him in the coffin, but outright death shouldn't be possible.

      As for powers, I don't know if they'll really go into this at all. Maloker escaping the Well would literally be a huge crisis and he would immediately cause chaos so the Scoobies would have to chase after him, and I can't see them ending the season on "follow the big bat road". So he'll probably be resealed or maybe killed in the finale if they ignore Eve.

      I don't think Buffy will do it though, she's too busy with Simone. Maloker may be taken down by some Willow/Seed/Severin power combo. Or maybe Koh will have some use and somehow bring Maloker down by tripping him or something.
      Last edited by DanSlayer; 23-08-13, 04:07 PM.

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      • #4
        Just did a re-read of issue #21, you can see Illyria's true form when Willow is explaining the Deeper Well.

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        • #5
          Here are the times I recall seeing Illyria's true form:

          In AtS season 5 we see a picture of her true form in a book. We also see a statue of her true form in Vahla ha'nesh.

          In Spike: After the Fall there is a flash-forward to a possible future where we see her true form.

          Towards the end of Angel: After the Fall, she reverts to her true form.

          We see a version of her true form in the non-canon book Fallen Angel: Reborn.

          Angel: Only Human has a flashback to her Old One days.

          The Angel Yearbook has a story where reality is shifting. In some of those realities Illyria is in her true form.

          BtVS season 9 issue #21 shows a panel of Illyria's true form from her Old One days, if I remember correctly Willow was talking about something that was in the Vampyr book?


          Going back to Maloker, I noticed in the latest preview that he has wings. Perhaps he can fly? Seems kinda weird that something that large can fly, but I guess we've seen stranger things in the Buffyverse. The wings don't look very big, maybe they can fold out?

          Originally posted by Stoney
          I can't remember if we know what Illyria really looked like and whether her speech/language was gained through her vessel choice.
          I don't think they ever said it explicitly, but I always assumed that Illyria's speech and laguage came from her vessel choice. If a Chinese person touched the gem on Illyria's sarcophagus, Illyria would be speaking Chinese IMO. If a Fyarl demon touched the sarcophagus Illyria would be speaking Fyral. Or at least that's my personal canon. To me it just makes sense that when Illyria took over Fred she gained use of the English language as well as all Fred's memories.

          So I do find it to be pretty silly when the scoobies or fang gang go to a demon dimension like Pylea or Quor'Toth and everyone is speaking English. I also find it silly that an Old One like Maloker is speaking English. But... I've got a creative fanwank for that. In a lot of other vampire stories, vampires often have telepathic abilities. Sometimes vampires can get information from drinking somebodies blood. Even in the Buffyverse, vampires seem to be able to tell somebodies sexual history through the taste of blood, virgin blood apparently tastes different. I think in the AtS pilot Angel was originally going to find out how long a corpse had been dead for by tasting the blood. Fear apparently makes blood taste differently too. Some of this stuff can be explained with a pseudo-scientific explanation, like maybe the adrenaline from somebody fighting for their life is what "flavours" the blood. But some things don't really have a pseudo-scientific explanation, for instance why should virgin blood taste any different to non-virgin blood? Under a microscope, it's the same substance. Having sex for the first time doesn't change your blood (unless you contract a disease but that's a different story). Maybe the vampire is tasting information that is mystical and can't be explained or examined by science. And maybe Maloker, being the grand-daddy of all vampires, has taste buds that are so enhanced, feeding from Simone gave him access to her understanding of the English language. That's where I'm guessing Maloker learned English from -Simone's blood. It would also explain why he sired her rather than just kill her outright. Maybe when feeding from her, he was able to get a vision of what Simone's plan was and he approved of it.

          He also obviously has instantgrow in his blood, all you need for immediate siring!!
          Yeah, this is the only explanation that really works in regards to Simone and her instant siring.

          Originally posted by DanSlayer
          I may be remembering wrong but doesn't Eve say Old Ones don't die like "we" do? The "dead" Old Ones were in the Deeper Well and the ones that were still alive were driven out, I think? So the Scythe shouldn't be able to actually kill him, maybe just help reseal him in the coffin, but outright death shouldn't be possible.
          The mythology behind the Old Ones is really poorly explained. I mean, who makes these coffins? Who seals the Old Ones inside them? Why are the coffins human sized when the Old Ones are gigantic? Is Illyria's original corpse still inside her coffin?

          Again, I came up with my own personal canon. I'm guessing that when an Old One is "killed" they go into a sort of hibernation and they can in theory be woken up again. Olvikan, the Old One that Mayor Wilkins wanted to turn into was "killed" by a volcano. But still being technically alive, the Mayor was able to merge with Olvikan to become one being. He was "killed" again when Sunnydale High exploded. I guess in theory, Olvikan could be resurrected again if somebody wanted to take his form. But that would be difficult since his form is buried inside the collapsed school inside the Sunnydale crater. I'm guessing that Olvikan's body would need some sort of sustenance before it could wake up again.

          On the other hand, if you wanted to perma-kill an Old One, the way to do so would be to lock it up inside the sarcophagus. I'm guessing that's the closest the Old Ones can get to true death. And I guess they must somehow magically shrink down to human size when they are killed. The Old Ones can be released from the sarcophagus by either opening it somehow and releasing the Old One in it's true form (like Arsgomor from IDW or Maloker from Dark Horse), or by a "host" touching the gem and absorbing the Old One's essence like what happened with Fred and Illyria.

          Originally posted by Stoney
          It will be somewhat disappointing if he is only portrayed as grrr, arrrg and then killed off but they don't have space/time to do otherwise
          Agreed. I think another factor that prevents Maloker from being really developed as a character is the fact that he's so damn big. It's hard to have someone as huge as Maloker interacting with characters so much smaller than him. Even Illyria in After the Fall became a bit of a grr arrgh monster when she was in her true form.

          I think one way to develop Maloker would be to give him the Illyria treatment. Have Buffy "kill" him with the scythe or whatever, then seal him back up in his stone sarcophagus. Maybe the next person to stumble across the sarcophagus won't release him in his own form, but will instead touch the gemstone like Fred did and become a human "shell" for the Old One. Imagine Maloker in human form like Illyria. I think he may not necessarily look like Illyria, maybe the person would have vamp bumps on the forehead, fangs and shaggy black hair with bat ears. Maybe a Slayer could even mistake Maloker-in-human-form for a regular vampire and get a rude awakening when her stake just crumbles against Maloker's chest. I think that would be a pretty cool way to develop him as a villain.

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          • #6
            Yeah I realised after I asked the question about Illyria's true form the answer was 'a lot', ha.

            They shouldn't be able to just kill an old one like they are just a really big monster I don't think. Illyria was incredibly tough in Fred's form when she had only just taken it over so they should be more so in their true form I think. Although they have made him seem a little grr arrg just saying 'slayer blood' on picking up Buffy but that could just be restriction in language through not taking on a vessel to connect with/gain from rather than reflective of cognitive function. Perhaps he gained some through biting Simone like you suggest to be able to communicate on a basic level.

            I agree a huge old one stomping around would be difficult to deal with from a writing point of view. He would probably need containing to not just be bumped off. Perhaps he will grab Simone and somehow be able to infuse himself into her to get away and thus we will avoid having to go forward into S10 with a gung-ho villain who can just shoot our protagonist. He could take over getting slayer's turned and somehow be able to give them more cognitive function than the average zompire with whatever abilities he retains. Having an old one as the villain would be cool, although a shame if they kill Illyria off to not be included in that storyline (which I'm not convinced they will at the moment anyway so maybe she could be).

            They have made his patagium look more like that of a sugar glider or flying squirrel which is quite funny.

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            • #7
              See I use to think that the Shadow Demon was the Demon that was responsible for both the Slayers and the vampires

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              • #8
                He must be pretty powerful if Illyria fears him... Right?

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                • #9
                  Well to be fair, Illyria is pretty much human right now so if she fears him, its for pretty good reasons. Also, I don't recall any dialogue off the top of my head where she fears him explicidly. I think in the latest issue she dismissed him as the least of their concerns when Severin was about to explode.

                  In After the Fall, true form Illyria was far more dangerous than Maloker. I imagine if she knew him back in the day she'd consider him to be pretty beneath her. She may even be disgusted at him for creating vampires.

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                  • #10
                    Could Maloker transfer its essence into one of the characters? Since this creature is so "meh"..in terms of danger and threats to the Scoobies...would one of the consequences of restoring the Seed be that Maloker could use its power to transfer itself into a vulnerable character...say Dawn?

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                    • #11
                      As far as we know, an Old One can transfer its essence into a human "shell" if the human touches the gemstone on the coffin. That's not going to happen while Maloker is up and about in his own body. I think the gemstone would count as a magical object and would therefore not rely on the Seed to work.

                      As for Dawn... She's not even there. She's in another country. I don't see why she'd travel to England to get infected by Maloker's essence in the last issue.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Vampire in Rug View Post
                        As far as we know, an Old One can transfer its essence into a human "shell" if the human touches the gemstone on the coffin. That's not going to happen while Maloker is up and about in his own body. I think the gemstone would count as a magical object and would therefore not rely on the Seed to work.

                        As for Dawn... She's not even there. She's in another country. I don't see why she'd travel to England to get infected by Maloker's essence in the last issue.
                        Xander is there...could it be him? Did Buffy touch it? As for Maloker not being able to transfer while he's in his own body...how exactly does this stop him? He's an Old One. Recall that The First briefly transferred itself into Willow and we didn't get any brownie points for knowing how this wasn't possible. I think *someone* is getting Maloker's essence. And I'm doubtful we're going to know who it is until maybe the very last panel.
                        Last edited by DorothyFan1; 09-09-13, 02:30 AM.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by DorothyFan1 View Post
                          Xander is there...could it be him? Did Buffy touch it?
                          Spike (and possibly Angel) told Buffy and probably the rest of the scoobies about Illyria offscreen. Presumably the scoobies would have been told about how Illyria is wearing Fred as a shell and how that came about.

                          When Fred touched Illyria's gemstone it was unknown what would happen to her. Fred at the time didn't have the knowledge that she would be killed. The scoobies most likely do have that knowledge because they would have been told about what happened to Fred and Illyria.

                          So no, Buffy has not gone around touching the gemstones of Old Ones and neither has Xander. Why would they do that after what happened to Fred?

                          As for Maloker not being able to transfer while he's in his own body...how exactly does this stop him? He's an Old One.
                          As far as we know, the Old Ones can only inhabit one body at a time. Illyria is currently inhabiting Fred's body. Maloker is currently inhabiting his own body. There is zero evidence to suggest that they can Agent Smith their way into multiple bodies.

                          Recall that The First briefly transferred itself into Willow and we didn't get any brownie points for knowing how this wasn't possible.
                          The First Evil has been textually established as being able to be in multiple places at once. That is completely different.

                          I think *someone* is getting Maloker's essence. And I'm doubtful we're going to know who it is until maybe the very last panel.
                          What makes you think someone is getting Maloker's essence? Is there any evidence to suggest that's where the story is going, or is this just baseless speculation?

                          I think it's far more likely that Maloker is going to be dispatched and then never heard from again, much like the majority of monsters Buffy kills.

                          I think it would be interesting to see Maloker again as an actual character in a human body, but I don't think this is the direction that the story is going to go.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Vampire in Rug View Post
                            Spike (and possibly Angel) told Buffy and probably the rest of the scoobies about Illyria offscreen. Presumably the scoobies would have been told about how Illyria is wearing Fred as a shell and how that came about.
                            And there we go again - depending on the Hail Mary pass of offscreen discussions that should be onscreen instead. This is the part that really annoys me about the writing. It falls to the fans to forgive the writers if they "forget" certain details that only long timers would know about. But it's possible crucial details can fall through the cracks and one of them ends up becoming a storyline twist that should never happen.

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                            • #15
                              Not everything has to be explained onscreen. Sometimes the story works better and runs more smoothly if some details are explained offscreen.

                              Spike's soul for instance. Do we really need to know where he learned about the cave in Africa? No, that's not an important detail in the story. The details of how Spike learned about the cave that could restore a vampire soul are unimportant to season 6 and 7. So the writers chose not to explain it and left it up to our imaginations. There's nothing wrong with that.

                              When the time came in the story for Buffy to learn about Spike's soul, that was a *hugely* important moment. Buffy was a huge part of the reason why he got the soul, and the soul completely changed the dynamics of the Buffy/Spike. Seeing Buffy's reaction as she learned about Spike's soul was something that *needed* to happen.

                              As for the rest of the scoobies? Buffy explained to them about Spike's soul offscreen. We didn't *need* to see Xander's reaction, Willow's reaction, Dawn's reaction and Giles' reaction individually. Their individual reactions weren't important to the plot of season 7 so the writers decided to devote the screentime to other things. It might have been *interesting* to see Xander's reaction when he first heard that Spike got a soul, but it wasn't *necessary.*

                              With Illyria in season 9, the writers didn't want to waste pages showing Spike giving Buffy the exposition about Illyria. Especially because Illyria's origin story is something that the audience already knows about, it would be completely unnecessary to rehash that story just for the sake of letting Buffy know about something the audience has known about for years. Spike explained about Illyria to Buffy offscreen because that way it doesn't waste time and panel space.

                              For the writers to push the story in the direction they wanted it to go, they needed Buffy to be familiar with Illyria. They can show the meeting for the first time, and bog down the pages with pointless exposition, or they can establish that someone explained to Buffy about Illyria at some point offscreen.

                              Each issue only has 22 pages to tell it's story. Sometimes they *need* to just hand-wave stuff that happened offscreen. Not every little detail needs to be spoon-fed to the audience. It might be nice to see how and where Buffy first learned about Illyria, but is it really necessary for us to know these kinds of superfluous details?

                              I assume Buffy goes to the bathroom sometimes too. For nine seasons, she's gone to the bathroom off-screen. Do the writers really need to tell us when this happens?

                              Some details of a story are best left to the audience's imagination because they are unnecessary. This is not just true of BtVS, every single story in the history of fiction serves a narrative purpose.

                              Often it's not beneficial for the story to slow down the pace just so that the audience can be spoon-fed some unimportant detail or backstory. This is especially true if it's just a rehash of something the audience already knows.

                              Why do you need to actually *see* Spike explain to Buffy about Illyria? As an audience member, what are you actually getting out of that and how does it serve the story? Why is it not enough to know that Spike and Buffy had that conversation offscreen?

                              Do you think anything should happen offscreen ever?

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