All the hunters, warriors, now their strength is my own.skekMal
Personality and traits Edit
SkekMal was the most ferocious and bloodthirsty of the Skeksis, feared by all his comrades save for skekSo, who was rumored to be the only one capable of controlling the Hunter. As his true loyalty was only to himself, skekMal did not reside in the Castle of the Crystal, preferring instead to live in the wild. He did not share his comrades' love of political intrigue, developing instead a fanatical obsession with hunting worthy prey, taking their remains as trophies which he believed conferred him their strength.
By the late Age of Division, he had become so skilled at his profession that he had trouble finding any real challenge, to the point of finding proposals of hunting Gelfling to be insulting. While contemptuous of his more sedentary brethren, he was nevertheless quick to violence against anyone who slandered the Skeksis' good name. He was also capable of delaying killing his prey when such restraint was advantageous to his comrades, though he would make it clear that denying him his prey would have resulted in death, despite murder being a taboo among the Skeksis.
SkekMal was a highly talented fighter, being able to overpower both Ordon and Rian in a duel with all four of his arms and throw darts with enough precision to hit a victim's hand from a distance. He was agile enough to navigate through tree canopies with acrobatic grace and his skill as a tracker was unmatched, having been able to locate Rian by scent with only a rag from his uniform.
In his youth, skekMal was considered the most beautiful of the Skeksis by Aughra. He established his main hunting grounds in the Endless Forest, though he occasionally ventured into the Crystal Desert with help from Rek'yr, who later vowed to never accompany him again.
After Rian escaped with proof that the Skeksis were draining Gelflings for their essence, skekMal was summoned by skekSil, having been replaced at skekSo's side by skekVar, to hunt him down, and managed to capture him, killing his father Ordon in the process. He was later convinced by the Chamberlain to give him temporary custody of the Gelfling for his own agenda. When Rian escaped, skekMal renewed his pursuit of the Gelfling to the Crystal Desert where, at the Circle of the Suns, he injured both skekGra and urGoh, but got fatally wounded by his counterpart, urVa, while abducting Brea to bait Rian to pursue him.
skekMal managed to return to the Castle, only to collapse before his fellow Skeksis. The Emperor, unwilling to admit they were mortal, spared every drop of essence for skekMal, but even that was not enough to heal the Hunter. Faced with no alternative, skekSol planned to drain all the remaining Gelfing captured from Stone-in-the-Wood. Aughra, finding her way into the Castle, brokered a trade: her essence for the lives of the Gelfling. During the initial process of draining, Aughra became dust, and skekMal remained lifeless. He was assumed dead by his fellows, who decided to honor him by cleaning his body and raising his death-like corpse in the throne chamber so that he would still be among them even in death.
It was later revealed that he had been in a comatose state and quickly revived. After learning the whereabouts of the other Skeksis from skekTek, he rushed to join the battle.
skekMal inevitably met his end at the Second Battle of Stone-in-the-Wood when, while gloating about conquering death and that "nothing can stop the hunt," and attempting to kill Rian once more, urVa regained consciousness and took his own life to end his Skeksis counterpart for good, restoring Aughra.
Other appearances Edit
In J.M. Lee's Shadows of the Dark Crystal, skekMal is a figure of legend among the Spriton, who used the hunter's reputation to frighten children into behaving. Spriton song tellers narrated of how Jarra-Jen once encountered and escaped the Hunter, not knowing he was a Skeksis. Kylan himself was made an orphan and adopted by Maudra Mera after the hunter killed his parents.
Behind the scenes Edit
All the Skeksis are violent in their own ways, but the Hunter is just better at it. [...] He's not here to entertain you - he has work to do. Everyone is scared of him, including other Skeksis, because the Hunter is fear.Will Matthews
The character was first conceived by Halle Stanford during the pre-production of the ultimately scrapped animated series Great Conjunction in 2012, and was envisioned as a "scarier Skeksis than even the Emperor". As the character was required in intense action scenes which would highlight his athleticism, skekMal was the only Skeksis to be portrayed via a full-body puppet. In most scenes, the suit was worn by performer Nick Kellington, while Kevin Clash was in charge of its mouth movements. In fight scenes, stuntman Ian Kay took over the role in a suit sporting a head lacking animatronic components, thus reducing the puppet's weight.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Age of Resistance – "She Knows All the Secrets". Netflix. August 30, 2019
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 Lee, J. M. (2019), Heroes of the Resistance, Penguin Young Readers Licences, p. 65, ISBN 978-0.593-09539-3
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 Age of Resistance – "The First Thing I Remember Is Fire". Netflix. August 30, 2019
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 Age of Resistance – "Time to Make...My Move". Netflix. August 30, 2019
- ↑ Age of Resistance – "The Crystal Calls". Netflix. August 30, 2019
- ↑ Age of Resistance – "A Single Piece Was Lost". Netflix. August 30, 2019
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 Wallace, D. (2019), The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance - Inside the Epic Return to Thra, Titan Books, pp. 104-107, ISBN 978-1-78909-387-2.
- ↑ Wallace, D. (2019), The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance - Inside the Epic Return to Thra, Titan Books, p. 15, ISBN 978-1-78909-387-2.