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This article is about the Golden Guards. For the current Golden Guard, see Hunter.

What did you do to the other Guards? To our family? It wasn't wild magic, was it?

The Golden Guard is a title given to the artificially cloned witch-like beings made by Emperor Belos to help him bring about the Day of Unity. They are all cloned in the likeness of Belos' deceased brother, Caleb. Numerous Golden Guards have existed, with Hunter being the last of this line. Prior to the Day of Unity, the Golden Guard was retired, as Hunter abdicated the Golden Guard role after learning the truth about Belos and his plan.

Background[]

Eclipse Lake - 004

Instructions on how to create a Grimwalker.

The Golden Guards are a line of entities known as "grimwalkers". Aside from this, little is known about the exact nature of a grimwalker or the origins of the Golden Guard title. The construction of a grimwalker seems to require the use of magic, and there are several known ingredients used to construct them: a Galdorstone (functioning as the grimwalker's heart and power source), Palistrom wood (serving as keratin), the lungs of a Stonesleeper, the scales of a Selkidomus, and the bone of an ortet.[1] In the event of a grimwalker's creation, they emerge from the ground.[2][3] If they are removed from the ground too early however, they are not stable enough and fall apart.[3]

Sometime around his transition into Belos, Philip created the first Golden Guard grimwalker in the image of his deceased brother, Caleb Wittebane. And as time went on, he created a new grimwalker at the death of each previous one.[2][4] The Golden Guards' resemblance to the human they were based on varied, with Belos stating that Hunter is the one who resembles Caleb the closest.[2] While all of them initially obeyed Belos without question, they are capable of individuality and emotion. One of the previous Guards showed remorse for the pain that the original denizens inducted into the Coven System experienced,[2] and Hunter goes on to betray Belos. Based on Belos' conversation with the Collector, it is likely that many, if not all Golden Guards have betrayed him in some way.

Hollow Mind - 381

Painting of Hunter's appointment as Golden Guard.

Each Golden Guard served as Belos' right hand in his early days, all donning a golden mask and an ivory-colored hooded cloak with the Golden Guard sigil on the back of it. This sigil, resembling a bird, is identical to Gravesfield's state emblem, likely due to Belos' origin in the city. The Golden Guards helped Belos win over the denizens of the Boiling Isles into the present. Around sixteen years before the present day, Belos had completed his latest grimwalker, Hunter. Belos told Hunter that he was a nephew to Belos, and that "the Titan had big plans for him". In order to keep the truth from Hunter, Belos claimed that the previous Golden Guards were a part of their family, and their death was brought to by wild magic.[5]

To the public, the Golden Guard is a figure of authority in the Emperor's Coven.[6] Other members of the coven, notably Lilith Clawthorne and Kikimora, held contempt for the Guard's special privileges and close affiliation to Belos. Following his promotion to the head of the Emperor's Coven, Hunter became an active presence in the Boiling Isles as the Golden Guard.[6] He was loyal to Belos without question, until he met Luz, and from that moment forward, Hunter begins to question Belos and his own identity.[5]

Golden Guard Graveyard S2E16

Graveyard of past Golden Guards inside Belos' mind

One night, while investigating criminal activity for Belos, Hunter encounters Luz again when the two accidentally enter Belos' Mindscape together due to a spell gone awry. Searching Belos' memories, Hunter learns the Golden Guards actually helped Belos orchestrate tragedies to build Belos' reputation. Hunter still denies these events until they discover the memories that reveal Belos was responsible for the Golden Guards' deaths. Realizing Belos was lying to him all along, Hunter confronts Inner Belos about his predecessors, but Inner Belos only remarks about Hunter being a grimwalker and states that Hunter looked the most like Caleb, to Hunter's confusion. Later, Hunter and Luz escape from Belos' mind, but with Belos now aware of what happened, Hunter abandons his title and goes on the run.[2]

After these events, Belos orders the rest of the Emperor's Coven to search for the Golden Guard in order to deal with the loose grimwalker.[7]

Months later, Belos begins falling apart from his condition, where he starts to see visions of a disappointed Caleb with past Golden Guards. In need of a new body to survive, Belos returns to his old lair to possess one of his partially-formed grimwalkers, but the grimwalker vessel starts decomposing and turns back into Belos' monstrous form. Belos then rushes out of his lair and goes to the Archive House, where he possesses Raine Whispers as his new host before losing the grimwalker body.[2]

Gallery

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Trivia[]

  • The old sigil of the Golden Guard is the same as the one on Gravesfield's town sign, showing a connection to Philip and Caleb's hometown.
  • In Belos' memories, portraits of various Golden Guards are portrayed maimed or injured that hint at how they died:
    • What was presumably Belos' first attempt at a grimwalker dies before it fully forms.
    • A Golden Guard is petrified, likely by Belos himself.
    • Belos kills two Golden Guards with his staff.
  • The exact number of Golden Guards that were killed is unclear. Based on the number of portraits showing their deaths, there would have been at least eight, including Hunter. However, the number of broken Golden Guard masks implies at least seventeen, including Hunter. "King's Tide" later revealed that the number is much higher.
    • The fact that two or more masks are below a portrait suggest that a pair of the Golden Guards met the same fate.
  • Based on dialogue between Belos and the Collector, it is implied that every single Golden Guard chose to betray him.
    • Judging by portraits of the Golden Guard's deaths, it is implied that Belos had killed most, if not all of them, although it may be possible some met a different fate.
    • Belos doesn't appear to enjoy killing them, as the Collector asks Belos if he enjoys destroying the Guards, Belos denies it, but also was upset they "chose" to betray him.
  • The Golden Guard before Hunter was Darius' mentor.[8]
  • According to Belos' book in "Eclipse Lake", grimwalkers naturally have magenta-colored eyes, but Hunter's became brown after Flapjack's sacrifice.
  • Due to Hunter's inability to cast magic and his initial belief that he came from powerless witches, this implies that the Golden Guards, and possibly grimwalkers, don't naturally have magic, even though they are made from magical ingredients. It is also unclear if this is due to the genetics of the human the grimwalkers were made from.
    • However, Darius described his mentor in "Any Sport in a Storm" as one of the strongest witches he has ever known. It is possible that Darius' mentor used artificial magic, and he was unaware of this, or Darius said these words out of respect for his mentor.
  • In "Labyrinth Runners", it is revealed that Hunter came into the possession of several books about grimwalkers during his time in Hexside.
    • One of the books is titled The Legend of Grimwalkers, implying that the knowledge of how to create a grimwalkers has sunk into obscurity over time, to the point that their existence is nothing but a legend.
  • In "For the Future", the silhouette of the grimwalker Belos possesses matches Caleb when he was an adult, implying that all grimwalkers start out fully grown.
    • However, this may not be the case, as some of them appear to be in their teens.
    • In "Watching and Dreaming", it is shown grimwalkers can age naturally, as seen with Hunter's growth in the epilogue.
    • During the show's Q&A panel at MomoCon 2024, Dana Terrace stated that Grimwalkers can be created at any age.[9]
  • One of the ingredients for a grimwalker is selkidomus scales.[1] Since Belos put a bounty on the selkidomus and sent Hunter to oversee the capture of it, this indicates he sent Hunter to gather more scales and Hunter, therefore, was unknowingly helping Belos prepare another grimwalker.[6]
    • Another material needed to create grimwalkers is a "bone of ortet"; in botany, an "ortet" is the original plant from which the plant's clones are descended. This implies that to create the grimwalkers, Belos had to desecrate Caleb's body to extract bones from it.
      • In "Elsewhere and Elsewhen", Philip's lair has blueprints for the grimwalkers along with tagged bones, a ribcage and other body parts, possibly Caleb's or a failed grimwalker's.
  • In "Hollow Mind", Belos tells Hunter he is the grimwalker who most resembles Caleb, implying that a grimwalker's appearance most likely differs from their template.

References[]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Dana Terrace (writer) and Bridget Underwood (director) (August 7, 2021). "Eclipse Lake". The Owl House. Season 2. Episode 9. Disney Channel.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Madeleine Hernandez, John Bailey Owen (writers) and Amelia Lorenz (director) (April 23, 2022). "Hollow Mind". The Owl House. Season 2. Episode 16. Disney Channel.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Mikki Crisostomo, Madeleine Hernandez, Zach Marcus, John Bailey Owen (writers) and Amelia Lorenz, Bridget Underwood (directors) (January 21, 2023). "For the Future". The Owl House. Season 3. Episode 2. Disney Channel.
  4. Zach Marcus, Dana Terrace (writers) and Bridget Underwood (director) (May 28, 2022). "King's Tide". The Owl House. Season 2. Episode 21. Disney Channel.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Dana Terrace (writer) and Bridget Underwood (director) (July 17, 2021). "Hunting Palismen". The Owl House. Season 2. Episode 6. Disney Channel.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Zach Marcus (writer) and Amelia Lorenz (director) (June 12, 2021). "Separate Tides". The Owl House. Season 2. Episode 1. Disney Channel.
  7. Dana Terrace, Luz Batista (writers) and Bridget Underwood (director) (May 7, 2022). "Labyrinth Runners". The Owl House. Season 2. Episode 18. Disney Channel.
  8. John Bailey Owen (writer) and Amelia Lorenz (director) (April 2, 2022). "Any Sport in a Storm". The Owl House. Season 2. Episode 13. Disney Channel.
  9. Hoot Hut's Official Unofficial Q&A and Rat Eating Soiree (46:27). MomoconTV. Twitch (May 26, 2024). Archived from the original on May 28, 2024. Retrieved on May 26, 2024.
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