Quite possibly, the Valentinians were not only responding to the Orthodoxy & Irenaeus, but to the Neoplatonists on the other side. The latter’s Demiurge was essentially benevolent, though to varying degrees, and far from perfect. Perhaps this perspective ties in with the TriTrac’s extraordinarily ineffective rewrite of ApJohn where the Demiurge isn’t necessarily malevolent. Unfortunately for the Valentinians, they had metaphorical canons on both ends. In a sense, such conflict could provide them with a much needed “Get out of Jail Free” card.