Critical Cthulhu: How come the Elder Gods have such great PR?!
by, 12th February 2011 at 05:10 AM (1022 Views)
[Note: Critical Cthulhu is reflective look upon our favorite hobby, with an eye toward global scale topics and trends that have manifested in one way or another since before the beginning of Yog-Sothoh.com. I by no means claim what I write to be authoritative, rather the opinion of someone who has watched recurrence of these issues from time to time.
Warning: The following is full of over-the-top tongue in cheek sarcasm. You have been warned.]
Elder Gods. The proverbial "White Hats." One has to wonder how after all these years they've remained so..well, clean.
You must admit, living in a Mythos universe, they've kept themselves relatively polished. No plans to dominate the earth, bring chaos to humanity, et al. They exist somewhere, out there, removed from it all.
They are the Bane of Purists everywhere of course, as such beings have no place in a "proper" Lovecraftian tale. Oh no, too "white hat" of course, as there is no room in Lovecraft's vision for any personal divine saviors. That would get us into trouble, undermine the whole order of things, and bring down the very foundations of our hobby.
I guess i can get on board with this, perhaps they look a bit too much like the Nazarene or the Indian prince who gave up his wealth and taught Enlightenment. Just look at the charitable actions they have done already:
1.) Hypnos: Turned a sculptor into a block of carved marble and erased his existence from the minds of those who knew him except for his roommate as a warning. It his general (and of course morally justified) response to pesky Dreamers who don't know how to read a "Do Not Disturb" sign.
2.) Bast: Had a corpse-eating cult that was attempting to create a living vessel for her to inhabit. Only cares about her loyal subordinates - cats. And some humans...who worship cats.
3.) Vorvadoss: Provides cryptic clues against his nemesis, the Shining Hunter. The only means of contacting him however, lay inside his nemesis' book. Otherwise he's pretty much off golfing until called.
4.) N'tsee Kambl: Blood thirsty War Goddess who views humans as cannon fodder in the great intramural between the GOOs and the Elder Gods. Served faithfully by her fanatically yellow-skulled priests in the Dreamlands who cut down anyone suspected of GOO cooperation or stealing her Jewelry.
5.) Yu Huang: (The Jade Emperor): Source of Daoist knowledge and Lemurian mysticism. Grants immortality to the deserving( a term that really means whomever the hell he feels like) or turns prospective applicants into Jade statues for wasting his time.
6.) The Four Lokapalas: the Four Heavenly Kings, Guardians of the Four Cardinal directions who are fierce martial deities that....do whatever Yu Huang tells them to do.
7.) Orryx and all of the Above: Destroyed the Continent of Mu in order to prevent the rising of Ythogtha from his prison. As in, obliterated the whole human civilization of Mu in less than a blink of an eye to keep their enemy in check.
8.) All of the Above (per Richard Tierney): Use the emotional suffering undergone by sentient beings throughout the Mythos Universe in order to "feed" themselves.
As we can see, they display perfect love for the lesser races, perfect humanitarian concer-
ok, enough is enough. If they aren't off concerned with their own schtick, the Elder Gods in question can be generally just as uncaring and downright horrid in their interactions with humanity.
So what gives? Why does the "white hat" label remain?
Is it merely the influence of Derleth? But wait, i thought we cleared that up last time - you know "I am not a Derlethian" And if we are all not Derlethians, then why do we alll buy into his rendition of what an Elder God is (as opposed to Carter or Tierney, or any number of other authors who showed us how inhuman they can be?)
And finally -Who is the PR agent of the Elder Gods and can Cthulhu hire him too?!