Why did Guts leave the Hawks?


We can pinpoint three main reasons why Guts has left the hawks, involving the following incidents:

  • Assassination of General Julius and Adonis
  • Griffith’s Fountain Speech
  • Guts and Casca falling off the Cliff

During these instances Guts has made different realizations, that – in combination – made him leave the Hawks. He reiterates the reasons during the conversation with Judeau and Corkus in the tavern. Casca played quite the role in this as well, even if you perhaps don’t expect it first. We will explore this in this post!

3 thoughts on “Why did Guts leave the Hawks?

  1. Another great article, it changed my mind a lot. In the first place I want to point out how the hell loyal Guts is, he’s loyal to the extreme. He entered the hawks against his will but once in and even wanting to leave he stays just because they need him. He waited to leave when all the work was done and apparently he wasn’t needed anymore, the Hawks were in a good situation and all was rolling so good. No one could expect Guts leaving there could cause such a disgrace or at least I’m pretty sure Guts didn’t thought that.

    I used to be one of those who think Guts leave “just” because of the fountain speech, and I’m still pretty sure Griffith was bluffing there to princess Charlotte, but now I see how Guts had his own reasons indeed.

    I think Griffith was bluffing because I believe Griffith indeed blame himself for the whole thing, his lack of empathy and egocentrism doesn’t let him see Guts’ reasons to leave the Hawks. (Now I’m not sure if Griffith was aware of Guts listening him at the fountain, I believe at least he suspects that. I ought to reread the whole manga honestly). Once Guts leave and Griffith suspects it has something to do with his speech to Charlotte he runs to rape her, he’s making her pay the price. If he didn’t try to bluff her at the fountain Guts would have not leave.

    Your text also makes me think about how Guts resembles her inner beast and if he has a Goal yet in his life or not. I think not, he still is a loyal stray mad dog and he just want to serve someone. Now he’s serving “his” own band but I put “his” because he’s just the big guy who chop the enemy into pieces, he’s not the leader of his band. In a way he still plays the same role he played in the Hawks, the role he plays the best in fact.

    I mean it’s kinda weird, the band exist because of Guts, all of them are there following him and admiring his might and that makes his ties to all his companions much more solid but it’s hard to me to say Guts it’s the leader. For instances in the battle against the trolls it was Schirke who was in command, that was magic lol.

    In the Hawks he felt also needed but not in the same fashion, the band was still Griffith’s band and all the Hawks would put Griffith above him, now his responsibility is much bigger, he can not die, he must live, not for him but for his beloved ones.

    It’s poetic, Griffith made a band to pursue his own dream, Guts it’s making a band to help others pursuing their own dreams.

    Since I believe Skull Knight was a person much like Griffith, who has his own dreams and big goals, he doesn’t understand Guts will be fine whatever Casca’s decision is.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for the insightful comment!

      Honestly Guts’ loyalty is admirable but also his greatest weakness. He gets attached to people and losing those he values affects him a lot. E.g. see the Eclipse, or see how hard he struggles to keep his current companions.

      I personally think there was some truth to what Griffith said to Charlotte during the fountain speech, but I also think it probably was also bluffing in part. I want to believe Griffith didn’t care too much about someone having a dream to be his friend in reality, because obviously, Guts was very important to him. Towards the end of the Golden Age, he actually did see him as friend (Zodd kind of implies it in his warning to Guts when they first meet: “If this man considers you a friend, death awaits you”, paraphrased)

      Griffith actually did know! Remember how he eavesdropped Guts and Casca’s conversation when he was resting in the carriage after he was rescued? Casca did mention the fountain speech there and how Guts had to leave because of this. I think knowing that it was him that made Guts leave just because he was trying to impress the Princess actually made him run away in the carriage in volume 12. He couldn’t bear it was his own fault, so he just tried to focus on his dream in despair.

      Yes, it is entirely correct that Guts flourishes most when he can serve others. He finds values in people instead and making them happy, or at the very least, giving them comfort. I think Guts is capable of leading, but his lead is different: I think it’s more like a leading on a deep, “spiritual”-level, pushing those he values closer to their true purpose in life. Through him, people find out who they really are and what truly matters to them.

      Like

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