Mark Reads ‘The Last Hero’: Part 8

In the eighth part of The Last Hero, everything comes crashing down. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to read Discworld. 

This section feels like the episode before a season finale, the final build before EVERYTHING HAPPENS. All the pieces are finally moved into place, and you know I couldn’t resist making that pun BECAUSE GET IT? THEY’RE PIECES IN A GAME. And I know I’ve wondered this before, but it feels prescient now: How much of what we’re seeing is free will? How much of the events of this book are the machinations of a god? Because without the scenes of the gods playing a game with the lives of these characters, I wouldn’t question this at all. But like I said the last time we had the gods involved in a story, I love the idea that even if these people are having doors and pathways opened for them, they still make choices that are theirs and theirs alone.

Of course, in the case of Evil Harry or the Horde, their decisions are influenced by their understanding of their role in life, another common Discworld theme. Evil Harry betrays the Horde (by giving the gods a heads up) because that’s what a good villain should do. And the Horde themselves adopt one ridiculous plan after another because… well, they’re heros. They have ridiculous plans! They put the heads of defeated foes on their own heads as a way of… disguising themselves… from gods… who could probably see them putting them on… I CANNOT MAKE THIS UP, THE SILVER HORDE IS SO ABSURD.

And they’re supposed to be. They’re absolutely an exaggerated send-up of fantasy stereotypes and archetypes. The wizards are as well, to an extent, but one thing I’ve liked about The Last Hero is the presence of Carrot and Leonard alongside Rincewind. It changes the dynamic of the scenes they’re in, first of all, and I do like that Rincewind isn’t alone as he usually is in his stories. Granted, I’m bringing this up in a section wherein Rincewind is effectively alone, since LEONARD WAS UNCONSCIOUS, and Rincewind had to beg for help on how to pilot the Kite. But still! He’s about to land on Cori Celesti with ACTUAL HELP. Carrot is immensely capable and preternaturally lucky, and that seems like an ideal pairing for Rincewind, right? MAYBE?

The gods seem excited for the Horde to arrive, and I admit I don’t have a single theory as to how this is going to end. Y’all, I only have one more section left!!!

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About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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