View Poll Results: Is Kellhus a characted to be admired or reviled?

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  • Admired

    12 31.58%
  • Reviled

    16 42.11%
  • Not sure

    10 26.32%
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  1. #1

    Angry Am I the only one who HATES Kellhus??

    Reading many of these threads, I find myself shocked that so many people can like and admire this character! I have read alot of fantasy novels, and never in my life have I reviled a protagonist as much as I do Kellhus. With his manipulations and lies, he twists everything. He is more an antagonist than protagonist to me. He is a false prophet indeed.

    Instead I find myself drawn to characters who are real! Cnaiur with his constant battle with madness, Akka with his constant battle with weakness. I also find it strangely difficult to like either Serwe or Esmenet. I liked Esmenet at the start, before Kellhus managed to manipulate her so successfully and she got too far above her station. I am all for independent, powerful female charaters, but rarely in fantasy are they likeable, e.g. Nynaeve in Robert Jordan's WoT series. Instead of coming across as strong, they come across as arrogant and self involved. Why is it so difficult to create a female character who can actually be liked?? In all the novels I have read, the only female characters I can honestly say I like, are Elena from James Clemens 'The Banned and the Banished', and Mara from Raymond E Feist and Janny Wurt's Empire series.

    But I would like other people's opinions on this. Convince me that Kellhus, or even Esement, are characters that I can like!! I love Bakker's writing, without a doubt, but I find it so difficult to read the 'Prince of Nothing' series, because I despise the main character so much!

  2. #2
    Saturn Comes Back Around Evil Agent's Avatar
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    I hated almost all the characters, especially Esmenet (but only towards the end of the trilogy) and Khellus. The only character I fully liked was Achamian, and I kind of liked Cnaiur as well, although he was a little too violent to be truly likeable in my opinion.

  3. #3
    I definitely agree with you there! But if I had to choose a favourite, strangely it would be Cnauir. While I normally shy away from such brutal characters in fantasy, there is something within his character that draws you to him. I think it is his vulnerability, but also I think it is because he is the only one who really see's Kellhus for who and what he is.

  4. #4
    I find Kellhus character really fascinating. Sure he is evil (by any sensible definition of evil), but it doesn't mean he isn't interesting. In Kellhus we see what a messiah figure would really have to be like, if he was to have any chance of success. This image isn't pretty, but it is the whole point.

  5. #5

    But why?

    Kellhus is a very powerful character in the work - we all want to be him, to know what other people are thinking, to control the movements of their souls.

    I think - if the reader fails to identify with Kellhus - one reason for potentially disliking the character is realising that Kellhus would be able to successfully manipulate the reader as easily as he does Esmenet or Achamian. (Yes, he would. Don't think you're immune.)

    It's worth noting that what Kellhus does is also, of course, what writers do (the good ones, anyway, such as Bakker and King). They seek to control the movements of our soul. I'm happy to let them continue doing so, since my soul was getting very little exercise and was quite out of shape before The Prince Of Nothing introduced the fitness program.

  6. #6

    its hate and like not love

    I think thats one of the strong points of this character one minute you root for the guy the next you root for Akka when hes against him or even Cnauir.

    Hes a complex invention and no mistake, was I the only one left waiting for the history of the No-god it rankled me when it ended like it did, I think the ending did an injustice to the readers we read three books only to find out he became aspect emperor

    is there a folllow up??

  7. #7
    MJ Dusseault Spears&Buckler's Avatar
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    The Judging Eye, the first book in the Aspect Emperor trilogy, was released recently. At the end of that book there is an appendix where you can find some very interesting tidbits about the history of the No-god and the Inchoroi in particular.

  8. #8
    Kellhus is my favorite character in all the books I have read.
    Colin is spot on in that it's all down to how much you identify with the character.
    It's unfortunate that the author has reduced Kellhus to a floating figurehead spouting fortune cookie lines in the new series. He has always been the primary reason why I continued reading the series.

    It's difficult identifying with weak and irrational characters such as Achamian, incidentally this is the reason why I never finished the Tawny Man trilogy. Of course, Fitz Farseer was written by a woman and it's easy to see how he turned out that way.

    Some people call Kellhus evil, but those people haven't been in situations that allowed them to witness and understand their true self. Kellhus, in a sense, is the most honest character in the whole series.

  9. #9
    Why is Kellhus considered evil? Does he do anything evil? He lies, manipulates, etc., but does that make him evil?

    His motives are in fact good, he is uniting everyone to fight a common enemy (Who are really evil and want to kill everyone) they don't yet recognize. His means may not be very nice, he uses and abuses people without conscious, a true sociopath. However, it's also the only way to save everyone. Akka and his group have been warning about this coming evil and they have been mocked and laughed for generations.

    Kellhus is only doing what is necessary to save the whole population (and garner more power for himself). I don't necessarily like Kellhus as a person but I do like his goals and can't help but admire the power he has over people as well as his physical and magical power/strength. He often makes me uncomfortable but that's only because I can identify with the people he is manipulating while he is incapable of having a genuine emotion or feeling towards anyone.

  10. #10
    With Kellhus, the ends justify the means on every occasion. Unlike other characters in most fantasy novels, he does not fit into a set category such as good or evil, but rather sits outside morality completely. He fights evil not because it is evil, but more because it threatens him personally, and his own people generally, because of his lineage.

    I would find it interesting to discover his reactions if he was not personally threatened - would his goals still be the same?

  11. #11
    Registered User oasis seeker's Avatar
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    I never really had a problem with Kellhus. He was what he was.

    But I basically disliked everyone else in the story.

  12. #12
    The one character that is truly dislikable is Akka. Disgusting human being. I wish he didn't play such a central role in TJE. It really made the book less enjoyable.

    Sad thing is that you can't even hate him. He is just pathetic.

  13. #13
    Frightened Anarchist Ultraboris's Avatar
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    One of the best things in "Second Apocalypse" is that there's no character which is really positive and good. They are all full of flaws and mistakes. Kellhus is negative character for me, actually he's villain. He manipulates with everyone and everything, so if he's so smart, how come that he can't realize how he should behave and that his manipulations aren't nice things to do.

  14. #14
    Frightened Anarchist Ultraboris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by carnagel View Post
    With Kellhus, the ends justify the means on every occasion. Unlike other characters in most fantasy novels, he does not fit into a set category such as good or evil, but rather sits outside morality completely. He fights evil not because it is evil, but more because it threatens him personally, and his own people generally, because of his lineage.

    I would find it interesting to discover his reactions if he was not personally threatened - would his goals still be the same?
    Interesting thoughts. I'd say that no one fits in "good" or "evil" category in Second Apocalypse. Except Aurang and Aurax, of course.

  15. #15
    I have always liked the idea of Kellhus - a totally amoral pragmatist in an epic hero role. I mean, it's rather brilliant when you think about it. During the First Apocalypse, the Consult fought valiant princes, glorious kings and wise sorcerers; just like in any high fantasy tale. This Apocalypse around, however, the have to contend with an enemy quite outside their frame of reference. A man arguably more powerful (individually) than even the mightiest of Nonmen of old, a man devoid of emotion to be manipulated, and a man very probably more crafty and intelligent than any single member of the Consult. They really have their work cut out for them, I should say.

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