Wide eyed focused, neck stretched forward,the mouth is slightly open,sometimes the tongue is touching the upper lips, the head is following the target meanwhile all the senses are involved, the body is moving silently. What’s that? It’s a hunter chasing a prey.
It could be a tiger, it could be a wolf,it could be a cat…it could be even a human in front of a screen watching a thrilling movie, or a game-player completely involved on a game.
It’s the HUNT’s rule.
The Hunt is one of the most powerful instincts we have as living beings. It is part of the main instinct of Self Survival,more important than the Socialization. Probably is more important than the Reproductive ones, because still related to the survival of the single living being.
That’s why it’s so involving.
As living being, until the last days that my DNA code will be able to survive,there are the possibilities to re-product myself. To do that I need to live, choosing and following my prey until I catch it. (that can be simply growing patiently enough carrots to not die,too!)
The Hunt is one of the most involving aspect of a narration, probably because it creates those “ancient and far echoes”inside our soul and brain. As already I wrote, it involves us. It create Involvement. This is fundamental for anything we want to create successfully.
It involves our experiences,our curiosity,our patience, our understanding and prediction of other’s behaviors. And when we reach what we wanted,it gave us an incredible satisfaction.
The Hunt is a social aspect. Because like most of the predators, we need the help of the others to reach the prey. we need a prey,sometimes,to survive in our society,too, and not becoming prey too.
But as social aspect it creates a weird rule. To Hunt, we need a Beast. Something paradoxically opposite to us. Because this is what our body and brain need to live in reality.
As we eat animals,or vegetables, we can’t eat humans. If we do it we become crazy,for ourselves,but especially for the Society that surround us. We can’t hunt and kill our similar. We can’t kill someone of our group. it is one of the worst shame that our soul can tolerate.
But.. there is a trick that allows our brain to forget this rule: make the other different from us.(..like Zombies, Enemies of a State..) And the Hunt will start again.
Forgetting all the social development about this topic,this rule is really important to understand how to create the proper antagonist of the Hunter, the Prey, or..the Beast.
The Beast is an important aspect of the play because actually it can turn the situation on its vantage, changing our position to Hunters in Hunted. Or…we can create the Hero of a story proper using this aspect in the other way around..the Beast from Hunter becomes Hunted. A classic sample is the movie “Predator”. But even Alien is that! ..or Stars Wars is that when at the beginning the space dogfight is dominated by the Imperial Troupes( that are following and striking someone), but at the last battle we (the good ones) are following and striking and destroying the enemies fighters and the Death Star too.
But this is something that we have to remember: to create a good narrative reason to kill someone or something, we have to put him clearly on a different and almost far plane and position. It can be socially,it can be naturally, it can be physically,it can be graphically, but it has to be different from the hero and from us (that we personify in him). If not,the public, the consumers, the audience will regret the idea that we are proposing to them. No special effects can help enough in this if we don’t solve properly the rule of the Hunt.
This is fundamental in any kind of narrative and media, from Cinema,passing trough the Rhetoric Daily News, to Video-games.