[Discussion] Grand Marshal Garithos. Hero.

Moon Guard
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Grand Marshal Garithos. Many people will wonder, 'Who?' Others might recall him as 'That racist jerk that drove the elves to the Horde,' perhaps, if they are moderately well-read traitors with poor critical thinking skills. In this thread I plan to clear his good name.

Garithos was a patriot.

He was a Grand Marshal. Some people have tried to call him a self-proclaimed Grand Marshal, but there is no evidence of this. Ironforge dwarves, allies of Lordaeron, went north to serve under his command. Kael'thas sought him out. All of this suggests that Garithos was the legitimate military authority in Lordaeron after the fall of King Terenas, likely the highest ranking knight that remained. He acted for Lordaeron.

His quotes include:
"Humanity will rise again."
"Let justice fall!"
and most telling...
"In memory of Terenas!"

He fought for his country. A true loyalist to Lordaeron and the Menethil dynasty.

Garithos didn't like elves, but he didn't treat them that badly.

After Quel'thalas fell, and Anasterian died defending the Sunwell, Prince Kael came down to belatedly join the fight against the Scourge.

But first, a bit of a history lesson. The high elves abandoned the Alliance shortly after the Horde was defeated the Second War... and their reasoning was that the Alliance didn't do enough to defend Quel'thalas from the orcs and trolls in the Second War. Garithos wasn't a young man. Could that be part of the reason why he was bitter toward elves? I once read a fascinating and sympathetic fanfic where Lord Garithos lost a son defending Quel'thalas, and turned bitter afterward. Far from canon, but the point is, we don't know, and there are quite plausible reasons for his disdain. And in any case, he didn't treat them badly.

In the first mission we meet him, Garithos has retaken the ruins of Dalaran from the Scourge. That's right, he took Dalaran back. It's because of his efforts that the wizard were able to rebuild and assist in the Northrend Campaign. He assigns his new elven allies to repair the city's magical observatories to keep an eye on the Scourge. Kael is prideful and chafes. However, isn't this quite reasonable? The high elves (blood elves by this point) are noted arcanists, and Kael himself was on the Kirin Tor Council and is likely familiar with this kind of magic. It's possible--I would say almost certain--that the elves from Quel'thalas were the best suited troops he had for this important task.

Along the way, Kael is in a hurry to cross a lake, and instead of building a boat, he accepts help from Lady Vashj, an evil naga and a handmaiden to Queen Azshara. Garithos discovers this, and warns Kael not to do it again. Reasonable. The naga are enemies, and probably up to something.

Of course, the naga are up to something. In the next mission, Garithos has to deal with a Scourge attack and recalls his knights to the front lines, leaving Kael and his elves to deal with a simultaneous Scourge attack on their location. He gives the elves an important, difficult assignment... ostensibly what Kael'thas wanted. Rather than dig in his heels and wait for support, Kael elects to join with the naga again. Together, they beat the Scourge. Now, here's the important part... Garithos arrives just as they're winning, with a full battalion at his back. He won his battle, and was coming to relieve Kael'thas! However, instead, he found his subordinate doing exactly what he was ordered not to do. Working with naga. He arrests them, they escape with more naga help and play directly into Vashj's hands, etc etc. History.
Garithos acted in good faith, and Sylvanas betrayed him.

When next we see the Grand Marshal, he is in the thrall of the dreadlord Detheroc, brother of Varimathras and Balnazzar. The demon's mind control powers have claimed him and his troops.

Sylvanas attacks the camp and frees Lord Garithos. Detheroc is defeated, and after the battle, Sylvanas presents an offer to the Alliance. She claims she only cares for revenge, and is willing to give the humans Lordaeron back, then leave. Perhaps out of gratitude for saving him from Detheroc, Garithos agrees, though he's obviously reluctant.

During their work together, Garithos is quite respectful to Sylvanas, calling her 'milady.' He does have harsh words for the demon Varimathras, who later turned out to be a traitor (shock) even to Sylvanas, and tried to summon Sargeras during the battle of the Undercity.

After they defeat Balnazzar together, Garithos tells Sylvanas to leave Capital City, as agreed. She refuses--she admitted earlier she never had any intention of keeping her word--and has him murdered. This is important, because this is the first interaction between the Forsaken and the Alliance. Everything after is predicated on this first betrayal, showing that the Forsaken cannot be trusted. This interaction shows stories about oppressed undead citizens turned away by former allies to be hollow fanfiction. They weren't turned away. They actively betrayed their ally, a man guilty of nothing but keeping his word.

A few final notes...

Garithos was a badass.

His class was Dark Knight, a unique hero class that used Holy Light and Devotion aura: paladin abilities. However, he also had Shockwave from Tauren Chieftain, and Avatar from Mountain King. Essentially, he was Azeroth's first ret paladin... on a really good patch for Ret.

When Varimathras and Sylvanas turned on Lord Garithos, it could only have been the surprise of their treachery that brought him down. Because in a straight fight, he would have dominated them both. At once. I took the liberty of setting up a custom map, with all three heroes at level 10, Garithos against the other two.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PHkwZsQYTRk

The results speak for themselves.

Garithos was stylish.

Consider his glorious black and gold ensemble:

http://tinyurl.com/7ekt9uh

His even-more-glorious mustache deserves both a closeup, and mimicry:

http://tinyurl.com/7wxv7zv

Is anyone more worthy of our respect than Garithos? He is Azeroth's first and only Dark Knight. A patriotic hero slain by treachery. His name should be a clarion call for justice for Lordaeron, not cause for shamed excuses. Honor the hero Azeroth deserves.
Rather than dig in his heels and wait for support, Kael elects to join with the naga again. Together, they beat the Scourge. Now, here's the important part... Garithos arrives just as they're winning, with a full battalion at his back. He won his battle, and was coming to relieve Kael'thas!


That we actually don't know for sure. It's entirely possible that Garithos was trying to get Kael and his elves killed by assigning him a suicide mission, then intervening when his plan didn't go his way (when Kael got help from the Naga a second time). We don't know if Garithos intended to send him support or not.
He hated blood elves, which is fine. But he also hated dwarves. This is inexcusable. His death was deserved.
07/03/2012 04:57 PMPosted by Jester
Many of our own military ancestors were bigots as well, but we don't use that as an excuse to diminish their accomplishments and cast them down to be forgotten as nothing but "that guy who was kind of racist."


Andrew Jackson and such
Just another nutter from Lordaeron. They seem to have a monopoly on those Light-fearin' types.
Many of our own military ancestors were bigots as well, but we don't use that as an excuse to diminish their accomplishments and cast them down to be forgotten as nothing but "that guy who was kind of racist."


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PHkwZsQYTRk


Also I like how that peasant started randomly building a tower / farm at 0:17.


This is a good point, but that's generally because our past military leaders were in line with the zeitgeist of the day, which generally still had a fair bit of racism. You have to ask what the current zeitgeist of human society was at the time, which can probably be hard to determine.
07/03/2012 04:36 PMPosted by Wurk
That we actually don't know for sure. It's entirely possible that Garithos was trying to get Kael and his elves killed by assigning him a suicide mission, then intervening when his plan didn't go his way (when Kael got help from the Naga a second time). We don't know if Garithos intended to send him support or not.


This is Occam's Razor.

Which is the simpler solution:

A: Garithos was coming back to help the rest of his forces, after being forced to split them by a simultaneous attack

or

B: Garithos was waiting nearby all along, somehow hiding an entire battalion of Alliance forces while letting the Scourge take over and start building bases and stealing resources on land he'd already taken back. If this was the case, why not just punish Kael after the first offense?

He hated blood elves, which is fine. But he also hated dwarves. This is inexcusable. His death was deserved.

Did he, though? He called them brainless... but they DID get lost... on the road to Capital City... in the middle of a war.
B: Garithos was waiting nearby all along, somehow hiding an entire battalion of Alliance forces while letting the Scourge take over and start building bases and stealing resources on land he'd already taken back. If this was the case, why not just punish Kael after the first offense?


The Alliance battalion didn't have to be hiding, Garithos probably rushed over with it after hearing about what Kael did.

Punishing Kael right off the bat would probably have resulted in backlash. Punishing him after a warning probably made him look more justified. As I said, we don't know exactly what was going on in Garithos' head during this time. He was definitely a hero and a patriot, his life ended by a sinister betrayal. We also know he was definitely at least a little racist. We don't know the extent of this racism, though. Perhaps he just didn't like the elves, or perhaps he really was trying to get rid of them. Garithos took that knowledge to his grave.
To be fair, I don't think we should count WC3 strength as lore strength, otherwise the world would be run by Grubby's blademasters. There would be no creeps in all of Azeroth.

The Alliance battalion didn't have to be hiding, Garithos probably rushed over with it after hearing about what Kael did.


Pretty sure the dialogue between him and Kael clearly states that he didn't know what he was doing until he saw Naga slithering away. Even if it didn't, how would he have known, and why would he have removed himself from the battlefield just to reprimand his rear guard?


Just to quote.
Garithos defeated the undead in the southern front easily with the forces he had amassed. However, Kael was surely to be defeated and would have been had he not accepted another offer from Vashj and her Naga to aid in the destruction of the western Scourge forces.[6]
It was a set up from the start, the Blood Elves were hated by the dark knight Garithos. (And yes, that is what he is.) Thusly, he thought to reduce their numbers down to easier kill-able targets for the attackers that besieged the outpost Kael was ordered to defend. The matter reversed in favor for Garithos so he declared Kael an enemy, even though the Naga had not done any harm to the outpost nor to any of those that worked on it.
07/03/2012 05:26 PMPosted by Nonia
To be fair, I don't think we should count WC3 strength as lore strength, otherwise the world would be run by Grubby's blademasters. There would be no creeps in all of Azeroth.

It's certainly not 1:1, unless we want to say Daelin Proudmoore is the most powerful hero in the history of Azeroth.

The 2v1 was pretty tongue-in-cheek. But broadly, I doubt they would have made Garithos a total badass if they didn't intend him to be a total badass.

It was a set up from the start, the Blood Elves were hated by the dark knight Garithos. (And yes, that is what he is.) Thusly, he thought to reduce their numbers down to easier kill-able targets for the attackers that besieged the outpost Kael was ordered to defend. The matter reversed in favor for Garithos so he declared Kael an enemy, even though the Naga had not done any harm to the outpost nor to any of those that worked on it.

This is a wacky conspiracy theory. Why would he want to kill people who are a valuable part of his army? He turned on Kael because Kael defied his direct order. That's a much simpler solution.

Also, your quote from wowpedia is not sourced to narration, but Kael's own dialogue. He thought he would have lost without the naga. Could he have dug in and held out until Garithos got there? Quite possibly. We don't know.
I wish there were more characters like him, but sadly the fandom isn't ready for that. They need glittering examples of flawelessness - Thrall. And if they show some complexity - Garrosh - then they have to be slaughtered.


I can't agree with this more.

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