Kefka Palazzo is one of the most recognizable antagonists/villains in the Final Fantasy universe. First appearing in Final Fantasy VI, Kefka is a nihilistic and deranged clown that terrorizes the main cast whenever he can. He was first introduced as Emperor Gestahl’s court mage and right-hand but eventually became the main villain and final boss of the game.
One-liners and clever quips always escape the lips of this jester. Naturally, he is bound to spew some memorable quotes. Since it is the year of the clowns, here are some of Kefka’s most memorable and maniacal quotes throughout his franchise history.
10 “TORCH EVERYTHING!”
Kefka recites this quote when he is continuing his campaign of terror following the poisoning of Doma Kingdom. The mad jester orders the troops from General Leo’s battalion to set fire to the town they are in, saying:
“This little hamlet has too much boring and not enough burning... TORCH EVERYTHING!”
This also serves as a great precursor to his future goals and malicious actions: the destruction of everything. If existence is meaningless, why have it go on? Fire is also a recurring symbol and metaphor for destruction.
9 “I’m A GOD!”
When the party arrives in the Magitek Research Facility, they discover Kefka torturing Ifrit and Shiva. At that point, he already drained them of their magic. The party, called Returners, discover Kefka’s true intentions:
“I'm a god! I'm all-powerful! Uwee-hee-hee... I'll collect more espers! I'll extract their magic... And then... I'll revive the Warring Triad!
What makes this more devious is the fact that Kefka is more willing to strip the power and magic of more Espers to become even more powerful. Espers… the god-like entities that can crush mortals. Who’s to say he won’t go farther than reviving the Warring Triad?
8 “Read My Lips”
Any iconic villain will have a laundry list of memorable quotes at their disposal. Many articles referencing Kefka or providing information on him uses this quote:
“Read my lips - mercy is for wimps! There's a reason ‘oppose’ rhymes with ‘dispose’... If they get in your way, kill them!”
It really embodies Kefka’s method for handling situations. Is the enemy is not following your demands? Burn the castle. Is the kingdom in the way of your plans? Poison the river. Are these people constantly getting in your way? Just kill them. He has no hesitation and never skips a beat.
7 HATE HATE HATE
Kefka’s personality can be described as comical, lawless and arrogant. He is pretty powerful and resourceful, and he knows it. When the party reaches the top of the Floating Continent, Emperor Gestahl was about to revive the Warring Triad.
The other party members besides Celes are injured heavily, and Celes is given a sword to finish them off. Celes refuses and stabs Kefka instead. Kefka's sprite begins to freak out, groaning and grunting. He then says to Celes:
I hate hate hate hate hate hate... hate hate hate hate hate hate hate hate hate hate HATE YOU!
Yes, that is the full quote. Someone as esteemed as him subjected to the ultimate betrayal? Yikes.
6 You Sound Like A Self-Help Book!
So many memorable lines came from Kefka during the last cutscene of Final Fantasy 6. Before the player’s party enters the final boss battle against Kefka, there are treated to a long and heartwarming cutscene. Kefka is desperately trying to beat down the Returner’s resolve to love, dreams, and hope. The clown responds with:
“Bleh! You people make me sick! You sound like lines from a self-help book! If that's how it's going to be... I'll snuff them all out! Every last one of your sickening, happy little reasons for living!”
The line is very true to Kefka’s jokey nature, but also reinforces his frustration with the cast’s “fleeting” emotions.
5 A Monument To Non-existence
Because Kefka truly believes that existence is useless, he is committed to destroying the world. To do so, he needs to ascend past mortality and into godhood. During the last major cutscene in the game, Kefka demonstrates his might by destroying areas and morphing the landscape. He then elevates himself with on a blazing spire, stating:
"I will destroy everything! I will create a monument to non-existence!
So many fans have created remixes, arranges and interpretations of Kefka’s boss theme “Dancing Mad” and renamed it “Monument to Non-existence.” It’s safe to say that this line really struck a chord with the fanbase.
4 Precious Lives Lost
This quote also originated during the final cutscene of Final Fantasy 6. It’s no secret that Kefka revels in the deaths of others, as demonstrated in the Doma Kingdom. He becomes more and more annoyed at the Returners’ persistence to life and happiness despite loss and sacrifice.
While Kefka continues debating with them, he states this:
"Hee, hee, hee!! But what fun is destruction if no 'precious' lives are lost!"
3 “Hundreds Of Voices Screaming”
Because Kefka is so nihilistic about life and reality, he has no qualms about killing people to meet his ends. He feels that life is transient and without meaning. Naturally, that would lead him to butt heads with his co-workers, particularly General Leo.
Leo comes to the Doma Kingdom with a battalion and Kefka. While Leo wants minimal casualties during the campaign, Kefka opted to poison the entire river of the Doma Kingdom while Leo was called away. He then utters this line, solidifying his propensity for death:
"Nothing can beat the music of hundreds of voices screaming in unison!"
Everyone in the Doma Kingdom dies except the Sentry and Cyan Garamonde. Cyan lost his family in the process. Utterly horrible.
2 Transience Of Life
At this point, Kefka has attained godhood and destroyed the world. When the Returners confront Kefka before the final boss battle, one of them claims that people will just rebuild the things he destroyed. Kefka delivers this lengthy dialogue in response:
“And time will destroy all of those as well. Why do people insist on creating things that will inevitably be destroyed? Why do people cling to life, knowing that they must someday die? ...Knowing that none of it will have meant anything once they do?”
Celes retorts this by stating her discovery of love, despite being slung around by Kefka. The rest of the Returners give their statements before the party is plunged into the final battle.
1 “Life... Dreams... Hope...”
When the team enters Kefka’s final boss battle, he reveals his new God form. Stripped of his clown costume and dominating most of the screen, Kefka sports multiple wings, both angelic and demonic. His skin is purple, hair is longer, and appearance is reminiscent of the fallen angel Lucifer, according to the Final Fantasy Wiki.
Before the battle begins, Kefka offers this last piece of nihilistic and pensive dialogue:
“Life... dreams... hope... Where do they come from? And where do they go...? Such meaningless things... I'll destroy them all!”
Apparently, the Final Fantasy team still remembers this quote since it was featured in the 2011 Final Fantasy XIV Halloween event: "Life...Dreams...Imps... Where do they come from? And where do they go?"