is a quirky,
sometimes bitter, man dying of AIDS. He
occasionally works as a club designer or caterer and lives very
modestly but with great style. Prior is only about 30 years old, he
seems to enjoy life a lot and the fact that he has got an incurable
disease shatters him. Studying himself in a mirror during a dream he
describes himself as a "corpsette". However,
at first, he tries to cope
with his disease using dark humour. Prior constantly alludes to death,
which upsets his boyfriend,
Louis Ironson, a lot. Prior is quite aware of this and avoids
talking to Louis about his illness. Prior, too, is afraid of the
He is afraid that Louis will leave him. Prior’s fears turn out
to be true when, after four years of living together, Louis walks out
on him. Prior is crushed and gets furious, he cannot and does not want
to understand Louis and accuses him of being uncapable of loving
Prior values history and especially his own origin a lot. He often
tells Louis about his ancestors and takes pride in his old name.
Prior "names are important". When two of his ancestors visit him, Prior
learns that, ironically, both of them also died of an infection. They
died of the pestilence, the worst disease in their time while Prior
dies of AIDS, the plague of his time.
His ancestors point out that
Prior will die alone and, because he has no children, his name will die
with him. All they can do for
him is to announce that The Messenger, an Angel, has
Prior’s main objective is to come to terms with living a life that is
almost unbearable. At first, he passively dismisses his fate with
morbid remarks and incessant allusions to death. Understandably, he
loses any optimistic outlook on his future and dryly states
say ‘Fuck the truth’, but mostly, the truth fucks you". Prior doesn’t
believe Harper who sees a part in him that is left uninfected, he
"feels dirty". Hopeless and abandoned, it is only plausible that he is
desperate and therefore often complaining and questioning why he is
condemned. Nevertheless, Prior becomes the moral centre of the story.
Like all the other characters, he cannot continue his old life and has
to face an uncertain future. Despite the fact that his troubles are
especially acute, he remains strong, and demands "more life" from the
In the HBO mini series from 2003, Prior Walter was played by Justin
Oh my queen; you know
you've hit rock-bottom when even drag is a drag.
I'm a homosexual.
Oh. In my church we
don't believe in homosexuals.
In my church we don't
believe in Mormons.
I usually say, "Fuck the
truth," but mostly, the truth fucks you.
...Don't you think it's
The limitations of the
It's something you learn
after your second theme party: It's All Been Done Before.
What if I walked out on
this? Would you hate me forever?
We have reached a
verdict, your honor. This man's heart is deficient. He loves, but his
love his worth nothing.
That ludicrous spectacle
in there. Just a parody of the funeral of someone who really counted.
We don't. Faggots.
We're just a bad dream the real world is having. And the real world's
You look like Morticia
Like the Wrath of God.
That is the intended
When you cry, Louis,
it's nothing. It's just the idea of crying.
Fuck you. I'm a prophet.
Are you really bruised
I can't have this talk
Oh the lost of things
you can't do. So fragile! Answer me: Inside: Bruises?
Come back to me when
they're visible. I want to see black and blue, Louis, I want to see
Because I can't believe you haven have blood in your veins till you
show it to me. So don't come near me again,
unless you've got something to show.
I'm a prophet.
Prophet! Prophet! I
prophecy, I have sight, I see! What do you do?
I'm a clerk.
Oh, big deal, a clerk?
You, what, you file things? You better be keeping a file on the hearts
you break. That's all that counts in the end. You'll be having bills to
pay in the world to come. You and your friend, the Whore of Babylon.
Sorry, wrong room.
Don't be alarmed, it's
worse than it looks.
But still. Still.
Bless me anyway.
I want more life. I can't help myself. I do.
I've lived through such terrible times and there are people who live
through much worse. But you see them living anyway. When they're more
spirit than body, more sores than skin, when they're burned and in
agony, when flies lay eggs in the corners of the eyes of their children
- they live. Death usually has to take life away. I don't know if
that's just the animal. I don't know if it's not braver to die, but I
recognize the habit; the addiction to being alive. So we live past
hope. If I can find hope anywhere, that's it, that's the best I can do.
It's so much not enough. It's so inadequate. But still bless me anyway.
I want more life.
And if he comes back, take him to court. He walked out on us, he ought
You are fabulous
creatures, each and every one. And I bless you: More Life. The Great