SnarkNotes

SNARKNOTES: DEMON HUNTER’S “SOMEONE TO HATE”

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SNARKNOTES: DEMON HUNTER’S “SOMEONE TO HATE”

Context

Demon Hunter is a Swedish heavy metal band from Seattle. They rose to prominence in the early twenty-first century due to a substantial number of people who are both unfamiliar with the music of Gothenburg and ♥ Jesus.

Plot Overview

Jesus Christ, long famous for having endorsed love and pacifism, returns to Earth to violently and mercilessly slaughter people he doesn’t like.

Character List

Jesus Christ – The Son of God. Was once a hippie who just wanted to drink wine and chill, baby. Now back to kill his enemies.

New – More traditionally known as “Satan.” Formerly an employee of Christ’s father, with whom he parted on sour terms. Now in business for himself, he devotes his existence to the destruction of the Christ family and their disciples.

Advocates of Hell – Everyone who isn’t on Jesus’ side.

The Advocate of Heaven – Makes only a brief appearance, but is clearly a member of Christ’s entourage.

Analysis of Major Characters

Jesus H. Christ – The first and final person in recorded history to be employed as both a carpenter and a Rabbi, Jesus Christ is arguably best known for being the leader of a movement to reform Judaism. His claims that he was the Son of God were not well-received by the original Birther movement or the Romans, who were just, like, total dicks in general. Our story follows Christ some two-thousand years after he was killed, when he finally fulfills a long-standing prophecy to turn into a zombie soldier. Consequently, his new persona is that of a furious, violent psychopath. However, much like the protagonist of Shakespeare’s Hamlet, he is more akin to a professional wrestler giving an on-camera interview than an actual assassin, for while he often talks of the ways in which he will punish those that oppose him, he does not actually take action before the conclusion of the tale.

New – We do not learn very much about New during the course of the story, but most readers will doubtless infer that he is a villainous character who has done Jesus some horrible wrong, thereby incurring the fruits of The Son of God’s Charles Bronson-in-Death Wish-esque transformation.

Advocates of Hell – Not an individual character so much as a set of characters, “Advocates of Hell” is used as poetic shorthand for all those who are in favor of things generally considered to be immoral.

The Advocate of Heaven – We learn nothing about him, other than that he is very loyal to Jesus Christ.

Themes, Motifs, & Symbols

Anger and Violence

During the course of the story, Christ refers to himself as an “antagonist,” an “enemy,” and “someone to hate,” and claims to have “weapons washed in blood” — that is, which have already been used to kill a living thing.

Duty and Determination

Christ repeatedly declares that he is acting on the authority of a greater purpose, and that he will not abandon his task “to my last breath.”

Summary & Analysis

A figure for the closing of time
The Antagonist Divine

Although it is not immediately clear that this is the case, Christ is the narrator of our story. Here, he suggests that his presence means The End of Days, as foretold in The Bible. He also immediately declares his hostile intent and the nobility of his cause.

Void of vacant words
One final answer to be heard

Although Christ has long been known for being a talented orator, he now feels that the time for talking is over. In referring to them as “vacant words,” he also appears to be disowning the philosophies he espoused in the past. Based on this, we can infer that his desire to “turn the other cheek” and “do unto others as you would have others do unto you” has now dissolved.

I will carry my decree into a storm of lead
This is total war
My want for tolerance is dead

Here, Christ states explicitly that which was already implicit: shit is about to get real.

To my last breath

Christ would rather die (again) than fail at his task.

I am someone to hate
I will spit upon the idol for which you stand

It is unlikely that Christ actually believes himself to be worth hating, but, rather, that within the context of his philosophies versus those of New’s, the Advocates of Hell should dislike him, for he intends to treat their own beliefs with severe disrespect.

I will carry the weight
I will bury your deception with a wrathful hand

Heart is cold
And my weapons are washed in blood
I avow to the call on high
My resolve in The Blessed above
In this ever-consuming divide

Here, Christ indulges in what is colloquially known as “talking smack” — an act in which one attempts to verbally intimidate his enemies, thereby “getting in their head” or “psyching out” said enemy to create self-doubt, and, consequently, ensure victory for oneself. In this instance, Christ presents himself as an animalistic (“heart is cold”) and experienced warrior (his “weapons are bathed in blood” — meaning they have already been used). Christ also implies that his father, who is known to be extremely powerful, has his back, presumably hoping that New, who has a long and painful history with Christ’s father, will feel outmatched.

A figure for the closing of time
The Antagonist Divine
Threat to faith untrue
I am the enemy of New

It seems obvious here that, as if spitting on his idol weren’t rude enough, Christ is now implying that Satan is an idiot. First, Christ repeats his words from earlier in the story almost verbatim, as thous maybe Satan did not understand them the first time, and then he calls himself Satan’s “enemy,” in case Satan did not know what the word “antagonist” means.

All you Advocates of Hell
You corruptors of free will
The culling is nigh
Better get your fill
In this ever-consuming divide

Here, Christ continues his smack talking, but now directs it at the “Advocates of Hell” — in other words, Christ is now not only attempting to intimidate New, but also New’s allies. Should this method work, Christ will have an easier time defeating New.

To my last breath

I am someone to hate
I will spit upon the idol for which you stand

I will carry the weight
I will bury your deception with a wrathful hand

Heart is cold
And my weapons are washed in blood
I avow to the call on high
My resolve in The Blessed above
In this ever-consuming divide

See above re: Christ believes New to be a moron. It is also possible that Christ’s strategy of trying to psych-out New is not working, and that Christ therefore feels the need to repeat himself. However, since we never see the story through New’s eyes, there is no evidence as to whether or not this is the case.

I am the cry for the falling of time

Christ once again asserts the importance of his mission.

Born into the lust within our eyes
Taught to write The Scriptures for our lives

Here, it seems that the author mysteriously switches from speaking in the first person, as Jesus Christ, to speaking in the third person, as one of Jesus Christ’s followers — an “Advocate of Heaven” if you will. While this may seem like an odd authorial tactic, it actually reaffirms the theory that Jesus Christ finds his threatening words unable to rattle New or the Advocates of Hell, for now he needs a hype man to talk him up.

We inherit the lies

The Advocate of Heaven tells the Advocates of Hell that New’s promises are “lies,” presumably in an attempt to persuade them to switch teams.

To my last breath
To my final day

“No, seriously you guys, I’m not giving up.”

Heart is cold
And my weapons are washed in blood
I avow to the call on high
My resolve in The Blessed above
In this ever-consuming divide

As the story concludes, Christ still has yet to perform any of the actions which he has threatened throughout the story. While this is unsatisfying from a narrative perspective, it does mean that the franchise will continue to live on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on.

-AR

 

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