- Note: This essay is a response to Essay:Asmodeus' Neutrality
Asmodeus is by no means a neutral character in the Redwall saga, an innocent victim by which the woodlanders project their thoughts and fears. If "neutral" is to suggest that he neither sides with the Redwallers or Cluny the Scourge, than this is accurate, however to suggest that Asmodeus is neutral in the sense that he is neither good nor evil is patently false.
With the first introduction of the snake, Jacques describes him as "the most evil-looking adder that had ever been born".
"Tis the dreaded name of the divvil himself."
And Killconey is correct - the name comes directly from the Bible, in which Asmodeus is a vengeful, slaughtering demon. Naming a seemingly evil character after another is certainly not a coincidence, especially given Jacques' well-known naming conventions.
Later, Asmodeus is referred to as the "slivering evil", and having "evil poisoned fangs".
But let's discuss the traits of Asmodeus:
- Indiscriminate killing of vermin and goodbeasts by devouring or hypnotizing
- Collection of trinkets from victims
- Accumulation of attractive objects that are not his property
Matthias did not kill Asmodeus in order to retrieve the Sword of Martin, nor did he kill Asmodeus because he was somehow interfering in the battle against Cluny. Matthias slew the adder purely because his own life was at stake, plain and simple.
On Medieval Dragons
The comparison of Asmodeus to medieval dragons is quite accurate - however not in the sense that they were neutral.
The theft and hoarding of treasure, residency in an underground lair, and forced captivity and slaughter of innocents are all applicable aspects.
Thus, Asmodeus can certainly be ascertained to be a villainous character, and not some sort of neutral bystander.