Although Detritus will not be the sufferer, there may be loads of precedent for the loss of life of a Watchman within the books. Plot-wise, Detritus is kind of filling the function of the dwarf Sergeant Stronginthearm. Stronginthearm was launched in The Fifth Elephant and killed by the serial killer Carcer Dun initially of Night Watch. Carcer Dun’s character, motivations, background, time interval… nearly every little thing have been modified from the books, however he and his cronies kill Detritus right here, suggesting Detritus is broadly taking Stronginthearm’s function as a colleague killed by Carcer.
The loss of life of Detritus within the present is also in contrast with probably the most affecting loss of life of a Watchman within the Discworld sequence of novels, that of Lance Constable Cuddy (one other dwarf – Pratchett actually had it in for dwarf Watchmen) in Men At Arms. Numerous Watchmen have met their ends over the course of the novels, some earlier than the story begins, a number of in the course of the occasions of the Glorious Revolution of 25th May in Night Watch, and others, like Stronginthearm, right here and there because the plot calls for. Indeed, in Jingo, a voice from an alternate timeline informs us that your complete Watch from that different leg of the Trousers of Time have been killed, together with Detritus.
But Cuddy’s loss of life stands out as a result of he was launched, together with Angua and Detritus, as an incoming fundamental character, and his loss of life is reasonably extra surprising and surprising than most Discworld deaths. He and Detritus, after overcoming the standard Disc rivalry of trolls and dwarfs, had grow to be very agency pals. His loss of life has a profound affect on Detritus, in addition to the remainder of the Night Watch, and his loss might be the closest to the loss of life of Detritus himself right here by way of its affect.
Detritus’ loss of life, then, combines the deaths of Cuddy and Stronginthearm – a loss of life that marks Carcer Dun out as a extremely dangerous man, that has a significant affect on the Watch, and that our remaining heroes should grieve. But the query nonetheless stays – why Detritus?
Cuddy and Stronginthearm, in spite of everything, had been each dwarfs. For causes greatest identified to the writers and producers, The Watch has not included any dwarf Watchmen in any respect; each the deceased dwarf Watchmen have been written out, and Cheery Littlebottom, who was a dwarf within the books, has right here grow to be a human as an alternative. Surely, reasonably than killing off a beloved character who remained very a lot alive all through the Discworld’s 41-book run, it might have made extra sense to incorporate Cuddy or Stronginthearm and have Vimes saved by one in all them?