The Eighth Circle The Inferno Essay, Research Paper
The story line on a comic book series named Spawn by Todd McFarlane bare similar images to The Inferno by Dante Aligheri. The reason on chosen to write my paper on The Inferno was to learn the different circles of hell. By doing so I have learned that the main character in Spawn is a combination of the eight circle of hell. In Dante s journey, he saw the fates of people s that beard Spawn doom.
In the comic book series of Spawn Jason Wynn was a master of manipulation, and led Al Simmons (Spawn) into believing, at least at first, that everything they did had a purpose and was for the good of American Security. The missions became bloodier with fewer rational explanations, some even, causing civil wars. What was once a strong friendship, or so it appeared to naive Al, rapidly deteriorated as Simmons began to question his commander Wynn and his motives. This continuous butting of heads would not be tolerated by the likes of Jason Wynn, nor would it go unpunished. It was a mission just like the eight previous, where Al was going to kill in the name of his government when he was turned on by two of his fellow agents, Chapel and Priest, ironic names at best. The two agents opened fire on Al with laser weapons, burning him beyond recognition. Al had been set up by Jason Wynn because he would become a thorn in the man’s side.
Hell has had many rulers. They have all been ruthless… terrifying… powerful. Born, or rather, forged in the fires of Hell’s eighth plane, the Malebolgia the supreme master of Hell. Malebolgia has raised one particular officer who has made him more proud than the ten before him. In life, this Hellspawn was known as Lieutenant Colonel Al Simmons. At this moment of his death, he made a pact that he would later barely recall. Al had always had an Achilles’ heel, ill afforded to a killer in his position. Al loved his wife beyond bearing and the deal hinged upon this. Though he was an atheist at the time of his death, Al would do anything to see his wife again and Malebolgia took him at his word. In a split-second, or so it seemed, he was returned to earth. Al Simmons had now become an officer in training, one of Malebolgia’s handpicked Hellspawn for this century, bound to a symbiotic uniform and infused with hell-born energy. Al was able to follow orders, had killer instinct, and was willing to make the bargain all of Malebolgia s requirements.
The eigth circle was Malebolge, and was formed of ten different in which different kinds of fraud were punished. In the first, Dante saw naked sinners being whipped by demons. He recognized one of them as Venedico Caccianemico, who had sold his sister to a lustful Marquis. He also saw Jason. These were panders and seducers: people who used fraud in matters of love. In the second, flatterers were mired in a stew of human excrement. In the third, the simonists were punished by being stuck upside down in rock with their feet on fire. Notably, Dante spoke with Pope Nicholas III who predicted that the current pope would also be damned for that sin.
In the fourth enclosure, diviners, astrologers, and magicians were punished by having their heads on backwards. Dante was sad to see such a distortion of humanity, but Virgil hardened his heart. In the fifth, barrators were flung into a lake of hot pitch, and were guarded by devils, the Malebranche.
The sixth pouch of Malebolge, where hypocrites were made to wear lead robes. They included two Jovial Friars, dishonest leaders of Florence. The seventh enclosure, where thieves were bitten by serpents, and then transformed into serpents themselves. Dante saw some famous thieves change shapes in this way. One of them predicted political misfortune for Dante.
In the eighth pouch, fraudulent counselors were aflame. Dante learned the story of Ulysses’ death, and heard the bitter tale of Guido da Montefeltro, who had been tricked into advising the pope to massacre some people, thinking that his soul was protected by a papal absolution.
Dante was horrified by the gore in the ninth pouch, where sowers of scandal and schism were maimed by a devil with a sword. Among them, he saw the founder of Islam and his nephew, and the leader of a contemporary heretical order.
In the tenth pouch, there were three groups of falsifiers. The falsifiers of metals (alchemists) were plagued by a disease like leprosy. Dante spoke with two of them, who energetically scratched their scabs off. The second group was made up of those who impersonated other people, like Gianni Schicci and Myrrha. These were insane. There were also counterfeiters and liars.
The similarities in Spawn and the eight circle of The Inferno was that each enclosures were different characteristics in Al Simmons that made him the perfect destructive force Malebolgia s army. While living Al Simmons job were consisted of these many different sins. The main reason that he was chosen was that he enjoyed his job no matter what the mission, making his soul evil. The two hells are similar in that you would see people there that you thought you would not see. In a certain issue of Spawn, there was group of people who just arrived in hell. They went on a journey though one of the circles of hell. Among these people, there was a church lady. Who kept saying oh my lord where am I please have mercy on my soul and she had one of those hand fans that they have in church.
The major differences noted in Spawn and The Inferno. For example Spawn s hell, this is training grounds for Malebolgia army where there will be a Great War between Heaven and hell. In Dante depiction of hell people are tortured and tormented for there sins but does not refer to any war between heaven and hell. Although these two hells are the same in condemning people, they are portrayed in a different manner.
Spawn a very popular comic series depicts hell in a modern world. There are many similarities between the two versions of hell. I assume that Todd McFarlane took pieces of The inferno and elaborated on certain aspects of hell. Especially on the eight circle making it a collaboration of Spawn s personality. I highly recommend both the comic series and book for reading.