Shoggy Evolution. The Shoggoths are ten years old this autumn. They burst into my life at the end of a particularly interesting October in 2008, evolved from a Japanese frog that then became my third Cthulhu. But the Great Old Dreamer subsequently acquired a more traditional shape, with tentacles and claws and wings and all things properly Cthulhian.
The Shoggies were in them very brief early days cast in the role of minions of the catnapper of R’lyeh, but almost immediately became self-regulating and took a life of their own, which event delighted me no end. Mind you, it helped that I had re-read At the Mountains of Madness again and finally made up my mind that the Shoggoths had had such a bad press, up to that moment, because H.P. Lovecraft was barking up the wrong tree, the silly old xenophobic bugger.
To cut a long story short, the Shoggoths were re-cast in the part of heroes. My kind of heroes: freedom fighters, rebel slaves, free radicals; a regular bunch of protoplasmic Maroons one and all.
They’ve come a long way since then. They have established their uniquely personal world and taken over mine. They have made art and music, written poetry, developed the Shoggy Brotherhood Tango and invented their own highly unorthodox version of Sumo wrestling. They have morphed into ill-behaved sub-atomic particles, starred in remakes and alternative versions of several movies, including Battleship Potemkin and Spartacus and posed for famous paintings like Velazquez’s Las Meninas and Goya’s Los fusilamientos del 3 de Mayo. Rosie has even written a sequel to Lenin’s What Is to Be Done?
They also triggered a stampede of Lovecraftian spoofy pastiches (collectively renamed Myffos), so that not only Shoggies emerged but also Cthulhus, Shub-Nigguraths, Old Ones, Deep Ones, Yithians, a Mother Hydra, a GorgoMormo and a Yog-Sothoth or two. They have been the best compost my mind’s garden has ever known. They continue to grow and multiply, with no signs of exhaustion in sight.
Happy birthday, my rubbery darlings.
Scribe’s Note. As well as the customary birthday card, I break my own rule of never posting anything longer than the mini rants that often attend my doodles and I’m posting a link to the rejuvenated version of an uplifting, stirring account of how the beloved monsters came into my life, all those ages ago, in another time and another place and when the wench I then was is now not exactly dead but certainly closer to the grave that she’s ever been. Sic transit gloria Gorgon. 🙂
The story so far.
The full graphic version.