Author Topic: Lavos as a Lovecraftian-style eldritch abomination  (Read 337 times)

Scintillating_Void

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Lavos as a Lovecraftian-style eldritch abomination
« on: February 15, 2017, 04:09:20 pm »
I know everyone has a Lavos theory here, so I want to share my own.

Lavos is obviously heavily inspired by Cthulhu, there's a thread on it in the real world influences.  However does Lavos work as a "Great Old One"? 

I think Lavos is just one out of a species of "parasites" as implied by the release of spawn.  So it might still fit with being some kind of eldritch abomination species.

I am very familiar with Lovecraft's works and the Cthulhu mythos, and as a huge fan of that I do see Lavos as a Cthulhu-esque being.  I wish more people made the connection and made "Ia ia Lavos fhtagn" jokes. 

Something to note before I elaborate further, to those of you not that familiar with the Cthulhu mythos:  H.P Lovecraft started the Cthulhu mythos in 1920s, but encouraged his friends and other authors to expand upon the "shared mythology", and to continue to do so even after his death.  Lovecraft himself also alluded to his friend's works and works that influenced him into the shared mythology. 

I will use the term "Great Old One" to refer specifically to god-like beings in the mythos that seem to inhabit planets and such.  "Outer Gods" are more like "true gods" and their presence and being expands or supersedes the universe. 

Examples of established Great Old Ones include Cthulhu, Hastur, Bokrug, Dagon, Yig, Cthuga, Rhan-Tegoth, Chaugnar Faugn, Ithaqua, and Tsathoggua. 

Examples of established Outer Gods include Nyarlathotep, Azathoth, and Yog-Sothoth.

Shubb-Niggurath is dubious, but later established to be an Outer God.

It should be noted the distinction between the two is something established later in the mythos, especially by the "Call of Cthulhu" rpg.

Plenty of other beings in various media have been inspired by the "Cthulhu mythos" beings and have similar properties and share many of these themes-such as the Great Ones from Bloodborne, the Horrorterrors from Homestuck, and Kyuubey(actually Kyuubey reminds me of Lavos in terms of tampering with humanity and dreams). 

Here are some features of Lavos that stand out to me as being very "Lovecraftian":

-Lavos is a magic alien from space that is seen as a god.  The people from Zeal refer to Lavos as a god, which of course was cut from the NA version, and Schala in the original was said to "pray" to the Mammon Machine.  Many of Lovecraft's monsters such as Cthulhu are often said to be tremendously powerful aliens that could be seen as, or pass as gods.  Cthulhu himself in "Call of Cthulhu" is actually said to be a high priest of an even greater power. 

-Lavos lies dreaming.  The "Great Old Ones" in the Cthulhu mythos are said to come from elsewhere in the cosmos, they brought their idols with them, and because somehow the "stars aren't right", they lie in the deep places of the Earth, dead and dreaming, waiting to awaken and reclaim their dominion over Earth and in the process destroy or enslave humanity.  Lavos is also said to be sleeping within the core of the planet, and Queen Zeal often refers to Lavos as "dreaming", when Magus tries to summon Lavos in 600 A.D, he mentions Lavos being asleep.

Dreams in general are a huge motif in the Cthulhu mythos as well as Lovecraft's general body of work.  In the Chrono series dreams are a motif as well.  Dreams can even create beings like Masa and Mune.  You also have dreamstone and "Radical Dreamers" and a lot of talk about dreams on the Omen and Zeal.

-Lavos touches the minds of humans, often resulting in insanity. The Great Old Ones are known for this, and this is how they gather worshippers.  In "Call of Cthulhu", Cthulhu's mind touches various people around the world, making them dream of Cthulhu and his sunken city tomb R'lyeh.  People touched by these dreams are often afflicted by madness, which sometimes leads to worshipping Cthulhu.  Other Great Old Ones touch the minds of followers in similar ways.  In Chrono Trigger, this is kinda what happens to Queen Zeal, some NPCs noted that she had changed over night upon having Lavos touch her mind.  In Chrono Cross, human evolution and mental development are altered by having their minds touched by Lavos. 
Lavos tampered with human genes.  In the Cthulhu mythos, Yog-Sothoth interbreeds with humans, and the Deep Ones are a race of fish people who serve Cthulhu and Dagon who interbreed with humans.  Although this comparison is a stretch I admit.  Though in the Cthulhu mythos, life on Earth was seeded by a race of super-advanced aliens that later in the mythos are dubbed "Elder Things", and where said to possibly breed, create, or influence human evolution "just because" or as a joke.   

-Lavos warps time and space. Lavos is shown to have some manipulation over time and space, every time the party encounters it in its own surrounding pocket dimension, or what seems like some surrounding distortion of reality.  Lavos also appears to distort time in the final battle, and may have created some of the gates that affected the Gurus and Janus at the Ocean Palace incident.  In the Cthulhu mythos, many beings of different levels of power are said to exist beyond three dimensions, the fourth dimension of course being time.  The Great Old Ones and Outer Gods are even said to beyond life and death.  The Outer God Yog-Sothoth exists beyond the bounds of time and space, and is described by Lovecraft in "The Dunwich Horror" in an excerpt from the Necronomicon:

"Yog-Sothoth knows the gate. Yog-Sothoth is the gate. Yog-Sothoth is the key and guardian of the gate. Past, present, future, all are one in Yog-Sothoth. He knows where the Old Ones broke through of old, and where They shall break through again. He knows where They have trod earth's fields, and where They still tread them, and why no one can behold Them as They tread."

-Lavos holds dangerous knowledge.  Lavos is the reason humans know magic, or are gifted with magic.  In Zeal it seems that confidence in magic and power creates an air of arrogance with them that makes them think they can rely on something as dangerous as Lavos and abandon the power of the Sun Stone.  Zeal's society is also cleaved along one having magical ability, as on of the Earthbound Ones remarks that only Schala among the Enlightened Ones treated them as equals.  Magic is dangerous, and in the Cthulhu mythos, most magic involves pacts with entities like Nyarlathotep, or spells from the dreaded Necronomicon.  Worshippers of Great Old Ones and Outer Gods often posses magic skills, but this magic is the variety of "evil ritual involving sacrificing humans and dancing like a madman during the full moon while people in creepy robes chant things and there is a magic sigil on the floor" kind.

Which reminds me, often Lovecraftian entities, especially later in the mythos are spoken as being "summoned" or worshippers are said to try to summon such entities to give a passage way for them to wreak havoc on the world.

The imagery when Magus tries to summon Lavos in 600 A.D is very reminiscent of this.  There is a magic circle on the floor(or maybe just a carpet that looks like one), candles, chanting, what seems to be a magic or esoteric language, and a demonic idol.  Magus's words during the ritual also imply sacrifice:

"Be spun, betwixt heaven and earth....."

"In exchange for this earth's life.......!"


In the Cthulhu mythos, forbidden knowledge includes not just magic, but knowledge of entities, the secret past of the world and the universe, the doom to come to humanity, other worlds and dimensions, lost civilizations, and horrid truths that make human life a speck of dust in an enormously vast scale of things.

Lavos evolving humans, and being the reason humans even had magic fits there.  Imagine learning that humans became sapient because of a magic alien god monster parasite who will doom humanity wanted so for its own purposes? 

There are three entities in the Cthulhu mythos that Lavos reminds me of:

Glaaki

Glaaki is a Great Old One created by Frank Belkamp Long in his 1964 story "The Inhabitant of the Lake".

Lavos even looks like him!

Glaaki arrived to Earth from a meteor and then crashed into a crater which became a lake where he resides in.  He psychically contacts people with dreams and "revelations".  These become part of a "holy book" known as the "Revelations of Glaaki" and tell about secret and forbidden knowledge.  Followers of Glaaki eventually make their pilgrimage to Glaaki wherin they impale themselves upon his spines in hope for eternal life and then he turns then into mindless indead zombies that serve him.

Cthuga

Cthuga first appears in August Derelith's "The House on Curwen Street" in 1944.

Cthuga is a fire elemental Great Old One imprisoned on the star Fomalhaut and seeks revenge.  The whole meteor/fireball theme here could have been an influence on Lavos.

The Color out of Space.

This one was made by H.P Lovecraft himself in his 1927 story "The Colour out of Space"(despite being an American author he liked to spell things the British way).

This story is about a mysterious entity marked by a hue that has never seen by humans before.  It first appears as a meteor that lands on a farm, inside the meteor are tiny iridescent bubbles of the unknown color that pops after the meteor gradually shrinks and leaves said bubbles behind.   Samples are taken from the meteor but then dissolve into nothing, and what is examined shows to be a substance completely unknown to science or even on the periodic table of elements.

Nothing appears to happen for some time, but then the crops on the farm begin to show a strange iridescence of the alien color.  Strange things began happening on the farm such as trees that sway even when there is no wind. The crops become inedible, the animals become sick, and members of the farm family go insane.  Then the crops begin to wither into a gray dust, the animals waste away, and the rest of the family also goes insane and withers to death.  A group of scientists and a neighbor examine what remains, then finds a shimmering being of the same alien color rise from the well, and depart the Earth, but also leaves behind it's seed back in the well.

Lavos reminds me of this because of the whole "parasitic alien from a meteor" thing.

Within the Cthulhu mythos, some Great Old Ones like Cthulhu later seem to have "star spawn" which look like smaller( but still formidable) versions of themselves which they spawn somehow.   

Whew!  You made it to the bottom of this post.  Congrats!

Now consider this:  If Lavos is meant to be similar to a "Great Old One" , and it and it's kind are merely one out of many horrid beings and magic god aliens out there, what else would this say about Lavos?

Some have thought that Lavos isn't sapient, but considering this it's more that Lavos does not communicate with humans because its mind, motives, and nature are vastly incomprehensible.  Its intelligence is actually far greater than a humans and sees humans as mere livestock.  It exists in a way that transcends into four dimensions.

As for it's origin, it could simply be an extremely advanced alien, but to this extent of reality-breaking and planet-eating, maybe cultivated by even more horrid beings.  Maybe something even from a completely different universe or reality.  Could also be some other being's attempt to reshape and terraform the universe. 

Perhaps after the destruction of Lavos, it may invite the attention of eyes that one would hope never set on the world.
 
« Last Edit: February 15, 2017, 04:21:41 pm by Scintillating_Void »

EgyLynx

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Re: Lavos as a Lovecraftian-style eldritch abomination
« Reply #1 on: February 17, 2017, 07:48:34 am »
 :shock:
Thinks what i donīt even think, thanks!

ZeaLitY

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Re: Lavos as a Lovecraftian-style eldritch abomination
« Reply #2 on: April 24, 2018, 11:51:19 pm »
Seems to be the most exhaustive write-up on this topic yet. I'll turn it into a Feature. Shame Scintillating_Void isn't around to see it.

Kodokami

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Re: Lavos as a Lovecraftian-style eldritch abomination
« Reply #3 on: April 26, 2018, 11:58:58 pm »
This is a great read. Surprised I didn't see it before.