Happy St. Patrick's Day, my FGC brothers & sisters! I hope you all enjoyed the day safely and responsibly. I enjoyed myself last night, which is why I'm late, but fret not, for I have returned to induct another warrior onto the Malloy List... and yes, he's a son of the Emerald Isle.
As I mentioned earlier, I was fortunate enough to spend a little time at one of my favorite local bars that night. While I'm sure a great many people were out & about just plain going overboard with their drinking, I kept my consumption to a respectable three drink minimum. I wanted to enjoy myself, true, but I knew I needed to be up extra early the next day to commute to work. Some Killian's Red, little Jameson on the rocks and (of course) a pint of Guinness & I was going to casually be on my way. However, there was a performer there whose music was somewhat drowned out by the chatter of all the patrons. As I was buttoning up my jacket, he began a solo acoustic rendition of a particular Irish folk song that always makes me take pause. His performance was moving and, before I left for the evening, I shared a shot of Fireball with him as thanks. During my walk home, I knew exactly whose name was being etched on the List this month...
If you've never heard the name of "Priest" Vallon, then you're missing out. There aren't many fictional warriors who demand the same level of respect & had the type of impact as this man. (Honestly, if you've lived this long without seeing "Gangs of New York", then you haven't been living.) As leader of the Dead Rabbits, he alone managed to unite the various Irish immigrant gangs of the Five Points. He helped craft this alliance to counter his people's persecution at the hands of those who followed his greatest rival, Bill "the Butcher" Cutting (who was actually inspired by William Poole). Don't let their positions on either side of this conflict fool you, though, because these two shared a deep bond of mutual respect. The kind of respect only true warriors can share between each other.
So where does one go about placing somebody who cuts such a dominant & powerful figure? Simple, you place him in the company of -other- dominant & powerful figures. Although he would be displaced by a little over a century or so, I'd care to see him in Samurai Shodown V. Considering his rivalry with Bill (who was based on an actual person), him crossing blades & cudgels with the likes of Haohmaru (Musashi Miyamoto), Ukyo (Sasaki Kojiro) & Yoshitora (Ienari Tokugawa) makes more sense than anything. Furthermore, the Samurai Shodown series has a long history of including ethnically & geographically diverse fighters over its storied history. Finally, when you realize that this game takes place during the Tenmei famine in Japan, a strong leader like Priest could make an invaluable difference. He'd fit right in.
Until next time... keep fighting the good fight, my friends.