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The Outsider

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Dishonored-Outsider
"The Outsider is a figure of myth, neither good nor evil."
―Description of the Outsider in Dishonored.

The Outsider is a mysterious supernatural being said to be part-devil, part-angel, and entirely ambiguous. He appears to Corvo Attano and Daud as a plain-looking young man with short brown hair and black eyes, wearing a brown coat, blue pants and black boots.

Though many people worship him, such is considered heresy by the Abbey of the Everyman and punishable by extreme measures, up to and including death. Spawned by the Void as a representational figure,[1] he appears to be the source of all magic in the world of Dishonored, and his shrines can be found across the Isles.

Biography

"[The Outsider] is not classically a 'trickster god,' but he's done a few things that probably remind people of other trickster examples, like granting man some kind of forbidden boon. You could say he has 'Chthonic' or 'Underworld' god qualities which represent the unconscious, mystery, secret or repressed desires, creativity, etc. The 'Shadow Self' from Jungian archetypes. This aspect, in my opinion, is much stronger than the trickster qualities."
―Ricardo Bare[2]

Born a human outcast[3] over 4,000 years before the events of Dishonored, at 15 years old the "powerless and abused"[4] boy "merged in part with the Void"[5][6] to become a "being of insatiable curiosity about what people do when given power over others."[1] As a "godlike entity" who represents the current time period,[7] the Outsider appears to people he finds "interesting,"[8] and can make contact with them both through dreams, and in the physical world at his shrines. Those known to have been in direct contact with the Outsider include Corvo Attano, Piero Joplin, Granny Rags, Daud, Delilah Copperspoon, and the "Lonely Rat Boy". It is believed that the Outsider has also appeared to Emily Kaldwin, based on a description of a figure seen in her dreams.

Dishonored-The Mark

Corvo receiving the Outsider's mark.

The Outsider remains neutral in regard to events that transpire in the mortal world. He does not place conditions on those he gifts with supernatural abilities, and does not factor hierarchy or effort into their selection; Corvo, for instance, is granted the Mark without seeking it, while Anton Sokolov is never given an audience despite numerous summoning rituals and sacrifices.

Other individuals marked by the Outsider, such as Daud and Granny Rags, can be killed in Dishonored if Corvo so chooses. This does not change the Outsider's disposition toward him.

While the Outsider behaves in a largely neutral manner toward Corvo, he is more hostile toward Daud in The Knife of Dunwall, reminding Daud of his guilt in the murder of the Empress and noting the assassin's approaching demise. Harvey Smith also notes that "some of [The Outsider's] lines are sarcastic," but his tone can go unnoticed.[4] The Outsider is also revealed to have "human emotion, but inhuman perception," making him "almost alien," or as Harvey Smith interprets him, possessing "two parts - human faculty and something primal and chthonic."[4]

The Outsider is a unique being and will at some point be destroyed in a catastrophic event.[7]

Trivia

  • The Outsider is voiced by Billy Lush.
  • The Outsider is closely associated with whales.
    • A book titled Spirit of the Deep equates the Outsider with "a leviathan".
    • Both runes and bone charms, which channel supernatural powers, are made from whale bone.
    • During the final confrontation with Granny Rags, she shouts, "Bones of the great leviathan! Protect me!"
    • A frozen whale is seen in the center of Void, standing out from the rest of the objects there.
  • According to Harvey Smith, the Outsider cannot change form and  "appears almost as he [did] in life."[9]
  • Despite never seeing the Outsider himself, Sokolov paints a portrait of the Outsider that greatly resembles how he appears to Corvo and Daud.
  • During the events of The Knife of Dunwall, the Outsider reveals to Daud that there are only eight people in the entire world who possess his Mark.

Gallery

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Developer Commentary - Dishonored Mythos, part 2
  2. Developer Commentary - The Outsider as a trickster god
  3. Developer Commentary - The Outsider, part 1
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Developer Commentary - The Outsider
  5. Developer Commentary - The Outsider, part 2
  6. Developer Commentary - Religion, part 3
  7. 7.0 7.1 Developer Commentary - Dishonored Mythos, part 1
  8. "...if he really wants to meet me, he could start by being a bit more interesting."
  9. Developer Commentary - Whales and the Outsider


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