Sláine (comics)

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Sláine MacRoth
Slainegn.jpg
Sláine graphic novel cover by Mike McMahon 1986; Sláine copyright Rebellion A/S 2005.
Publication information
Publisher IPC Media
First appearance 2000 AD No. 330 (1983)
Created by Pat Mills
Angela Kincaid
In-story information
Alter ego Sláine mac Roth
Team affiliations Tribes of the Earth Goddess
Abilities Warp-spasm
For other characters with the same name, see Sláine.

Sláine (Irish pronunciation: [ˈslɑnʲə]) is a comic hero from the pages of 2000 AD – one of Britain's most popular comic books.

Sláine is a barbarian fantasy adventure series based on Celtic myths and stories which first appeared in 1983, written by Pat Mills and initially drawn by his then wife, Angela Kincaid. Most of the early stories were drawn by Massimo Belardinelli and Mike McMahon. Other notable artists to have worked on the character include Glenn Fabry and Simon Bisley. The current artist is Clint Langley, whose artwork combines painting, photography and digital art.

Sláine's favourite weapon is an axe called "Brainbiter". He has the power of the "warp spasm", based on the ríastrad or body-distorting battle frenzy of the Irish hero Cú Chulainn, in which earth power "warps" through his body, turning him into a terrifying, monstrously powerful figure. He is a devotee of the earth goddess Danu.

Plot[edit]

At the start of the series Sláine was a wanderer, banished from his tribe, the Sessair. He explored the Land of the Young (Irish Tír na nÓg) in the company of an unscrupulous dwarf called Ukko (Finnish for "old man", and the name of the Finnish pagan Thunder god), fighting monsters and mercenaries in the fantasy tradition. In one early adventure he rescued a maiden, Medb (named after the Irish mythological queen Medb) from being sacrificed in a Wicker Man, only to earn her enmity – she was a devotee of Crom Cruach, the god to whom she was to be sacrificed, and was looking forward to the experience. Her master and mentor, the ancient, rotting and insane Lord Weird Slough Feg, became the series' main villain.

Following stories featured sky chariots (flying longships), dragons and prehistoric alien gods.

As the series progressed, Sláine returned to his tribe and became king (as had been foretold in the narrative of his first appearance), leading them against the Fomorians, a race of sea demons who were oppressing them. Then, in the landmark storyline The Horned God, Sláine united the tribes of the earth goddess against Slough Feg and his allies, while his personal devotion to the goddess led to him becoming a new incarnation of the Horned God Carnun (based on the Gaulish deity Cernunnos). By the end of the story the Land of the Young is no more, and Sláine is the first High King of Ireland.

Sláine in Simon Bisley's version.

Subsequent stories saw Sláine sent through time by the earth goddess to fight alongside Celtic, and other, heroes and heroines such as Boudica (with whom he fought against the Romans (and Elfric), and William Wallace), and more recently return to Ireland to defend his people against new enemies alongside his wife Niamh.

These new enemies turned out to be a full Fomorian invasion led by Balor and the sadistic Moloch, murdering, raping and eating their way through Slaine's tribe until, wracked with warp-spasm, Slaine was able to take out Balor. The tribal council forced Slaine to let Moloch go, hoping he'd fulfill his promise of keeping the Fomorians out of Ireland; instead, he deliberately returned to rape and murder Niamh. Wanting vengeance, Slaine abdicated the throne to go to Albion and kill Moloch, which he succeeded in doing. In his absence, his son Kai left the tribe to search for his father (eventually becoming a performer in an Albion carnival) and Ireland faced a second invasion – "the dread of Europe", Atlanteans whose ancestors had lived in Ireland before the tribes of Danu and who had been forcibly turned into hosts – Golamhs – for the symbiotic Sea Demons under Lord Odacon (an offshoot of the Fomorians), who easily threw the tribes' Sky Chariots into the Otherworld. Upon Slaine's return, he found the new High King Sethor, former member of the council who had granted Moloch freedom, was willing to surrender half of Ireland to Odacon in return for the gifts of science and civilisation.

Slaine was able to convince the tribal council that the demons could be killed and war was once more declared on the invaders, but it was clear that Ireland would be constantly attacked by wave after wave of Fomorian invasion. Slaine hit on the idea of having the Tribe of Danu escape to the Otherworld that their Sky Chariots had been sent to, thus freeing them from the demons and allowing the Atlanteans to settle peacefully in Ireland; both armies united against Odacon and his Sea Demons. Slaine was able to free the Atlantean leader Gael from being Odacon's Golamh by handing over Sethor to take Gael's place; and they led their armies to bolster the city of Tara. While the tribes fought a defensive battle, Slaine was sent to the Otherworld to secure the blessings of Danu for the Tribes of the Earth Goddess to settle there; this done, he returned with her power behind him and led a charge that decimated Odacon's forces. The Tribe was cast to the Otherworld in the aftermath, and Slaine assisted Gael in finally destroying Odacon and the parasitic spawn with which he had infested the outer-lying villages.

With Gael as High King of Ireland and founder of the eventual Gaelic race, Slaine left to track down his son. He found Kai at a travelling carnival, and later embarked on a quest to track down Crom Dubh.

Sources and influences[edit]

Sláine's most obvious source is Robert E. Howard's Conan the Barbarian and Cúchulainn the hero of the Ulster Cycle of Irish mythology. Mills derived much of the background to the series from Celtic mythology and European prehistory (as in part did Howard: the name Conan is Irish and is borne by a number of mythological figures).[1] Sláine himself is named after Sláine mac Dela, the legendary first High King of Ireland, and his "warp-spasm" or body-distorting battle frenzy is derived from the ríastrad of Cúchulainn. "Warp-spasm" is the term Thomas Kinsella used for ríastrad in his translation of The Táin. His barbed spear, the gae bolga, is also borrowed from Cúchulainn, although his favourite weapon, the axe, is more usually associated with the Vikings or Anglo-Saxons than the Celts.

His patronymic, Mac Roth, is the name of the steward of Ailill and Medb, king and queen of Connacht, in the same cycle. The death of Sláine's mother, Macha, while forced to run on foot in a chariot race because of her husband's boasting, is taken from the story of an Irish goddess called Macha, who was forced to run against the king's chariot while heavily pregnant for the same reason.[2]

Sláine's seduction of Niamh, the king's chosen bride who was brought up in seclusion until she was of age, is reminiscent of the Irish story of Deirdre.[3] Cathbad, the druid who foretells the evil consequences of Deirdre's birth and appears in several other tales of the Ulster Cycle, gives his name to Sláine's chief druid. Sláine's feat of crossing a raging river to visit her, weighed down by a heavy stone to prevent him from being swept away, is taken from an episode of the Táin.[4] Niamh is a popular Irish girl's name, and is also the name of a fairy queen from the Fenian Cycle. Her otherworld homeland, Tír na nÓg (the Land of the Young), provides the name of the series' setting.

Sláine's goddess, Danu, and her tribes, the Tuatha Dé Danann, come from the Irish Mythological Cycle, although the worship of a universal mother goddess of the earth is not Celtic and comes from speculations about prehistoric European culture and religion by the likes of Marija Gimbutas and Robert Graves. The Horned God, Carnun, is adapted from the Gaulish antlered deity Cernunnos. Some of the religious ideas in the series are taken from Barddas, a possibly fraudulent compilation of "bardo-druidic" beliefs by the 18th century Welsh antiquarian Iolo Morganwg.[5] Mills divides the priests of Tir na nÓg into two factions: the good Druids, the well known priestly class of Celtic Europe, and the evil Drunes, which name derives from the Galatian place-name Drunemeton ("oak-sanctuary"), used in the story "The Bride of Crom" as the name of the Drunes' capital.[6] Their leader, Slough Feg, is partly based on Cernunnos and partly on the paleolithic cave painting known as the Sorcerer in the Trois-Frères cave in Ariège, southern France.[7] His acolyte, Medb, is named after the legendary queen of Connacht from the Ulster Cycle. The Drunes' god, Crom Cruach, is an Irish deity who was reputedly propitiated with human sacrifices. The practice of mass human sacrifice by burning in a Wicker Man is mentioned as a practice of the Celts of Gaul by Strabo and Julius Caesar.

The enemies of the Tribes of the Earth Goddess, the Fomorians, and their leader Balor, are from the Irish mythological cycle.

Other elements of the series are derived from non-Celtic mythological sources. Sláine's dwarf companion is named Ukko, after the Finnish storm god. Odacon is identified in Theosophist circles[8] with a Babylonian deity named Oannes and is considered closely related to Dagon. Musarus, one of same species of Odacon, shares this origin. Grimnismal, the name of the dark god Sláine and his companions defeat in "Tomb of Terror", is the title of a poem about Odin from the Norse Elder Edda. The term Ragnarok, for the end of the world, is also borrowed from Norse mythology.

Publication [edit]

They have been collected in a number of volumes but recently Rebellion has started a new series of trade paperbacks:

  • Sláine (written by Pat Mills unless stated):
    • Warrior's Dawn (2005, ISBN 1-904265-33-2):
      • "The Time Monster" (with Angela Kincaid, in 2000 AD No. 330, 1983)
      • "The Beast in the Broch" (with Massimo Belardinelli, in 2000 AD #331–334, 1983)
      • "Warrior's Dawn" (with Mike McMahon, in 2000 AD No. 335, 1983)
      • "The Beltain Giant" (with Mike McMahon, in 2000 AD No. 336, 1983)
      • "The Bride of Crom" (with Massimo Belardinelli, in 2000 AD #337–342, 1983)
      • "The Creeping Death" (with Massimo Belardinelli, in 2000 AD No. 343, 1983)
      • "The Bull Dance" (with Massimo Belardinelli, in 2000 AD No. 344, 1983)
      • "Heroes' Blood" (with Mike McMahon, in 2000 AD #345–347, 1983)
      • "The Shoggey Beast" (with Mike McMahon, in 2000 AD #348–351, 1983–1984)
      • "Sky Chariots" (with Mike McMahon, in 2000 AD #352–360, 1984)
      • "The Origins" (two-page text article, 2000 AD No. 352, 1984)
    • Time Killer (2007, ISBN 1-905437-21-8):
      • "Dragonheist" (with Massimo Belardinelli, in 2000 AD #361–367, 1984)
      • "The Time Killer" (with Glenn Fabry, David Pugh and Bryan Talbot, in 2000 AD #411–428 and 431–434, 1985)
    • Slaine the King (2008, ISBN 1-905437-66-8):
      • "The Tomb of Terror" (with Glenn Fabry and David Pugh, in 2000 AD #447–461, December 1985 – March 1986)
      • "Spoils of Annwn" (with Mike Collins and Mark Farmer, in 2000 AD #493–499, October–December 1986)
      • "Sláine the King" (with Glenn Fabry, in 2000 AD #500–508 and 517–519, December 1986 – April 1987)
      • "The Killing Field" (written by Angela Kincaid, with Glenn Fabry, in 2000 AD No. 582, July 1988)
      • "Slaine the Mini-Series" (with Glenn Fabry, in 2000 AD #589–591, August–September 1988)
    • The Horned God (2008, ISBN 1-905437-73-0):
      • "The Horned God, Book I" (with Simon Bisley, in 2000 AD #626–635, May–July 1989)
      • "The Horned God, Book II" (with Simon Bisley, in 2000 AD #650–656 and 662–664, October 1989 – February 1990)
      • "The Horned God, Book III" (with Simon Bisley, in 2000 AD #688–698, July–September 1990)
    • Demon Killer (2010, ISBN 1-906735-41-7):
      • "The High King" (with Glenn Fabry, in 2000 AD Yearbook, September 1991)
      • "The Return of the High King" (by Dermot Power, Poster Prog Slaine 1, January 1993)
      • "Jealousy of Niamh" (with Greg Staples, in 2000 AD #850–851, August–September 1993)
      • "Demon Killer" (with Glenn Fabry and Dermot Power, in 2000 AD #852–859, September–October 1993)
      • "Queen of Witches" (with Dermot Power, in 2000 AD #889–896, May–July 1994)
    • Lord of Misrule (2011, ISBN 1-907519-85-8):
      • "Name of the Sword" (with Greg Staples, in 2000 AD #950–956, July–September 1995)
      • "Lord of Misrule" (with Clint Langley, in 2000 AD #958–963, September–October 1995, #995–998,June 1996)
      • "Bowels of Hell" (with Jim Murray, in 2000 AD #1000, July 1996)
    • "Treasures of Britain" (2012, ISBN 1-907992-97-9):
      • "Treasures of Britain" (with Dermot Power, in 2000 AD #1001–1010, July–September 1996, #1024–1031, January–February 1997)
      • "The Cloak of Fear" (with Steve Tappin, in 2000 AD #1011–1012, October 1996)
    • The Grail War (2013, ISBN 1781081123):
      • "The Demon Hitchhiker" (with Steve Tappin, in 2000 AD #1032, March 1997)
      • "King of Hearts" (with Nick Percival, in 2000 AD #1033–1039, March–April 1997)
      • "The Grail War" (with Steve Tappin, in 2000 AD #1040–1049, April–July 1997)
      • "Secret of the Grail" (with Steve Tappin, in 2000 AD #1090–1099, April–June 1998)
      • "The Battle of Clontarf" (with Massimo Belardinelli, in 2000 AD Annual, 1985)
    • Lord of the Beasts (2014):
      • "Lord of the Beasts" (with Rafael Garres, in 2000 AD #1100, June 1998)
      • "Kai" (with Paul Staples, in 2000 AD #1104–1107, July–August 1998)
      • "The Banishing" (with Wayne Reynolds, in 2000 AD #1108–1109, August 1998)
      • "The Triple Death" (with Wayne Reynolds, in 2000 AD #1111, September 1998)
      • "The Swan Children" (with Siku, in 2000 AD #1112–1114, September–October 1998)
      • "Macha" (with Paul Staples, in 2000 AD #1115–1118, October–November 1998)
      • "Beyond" (with Greg Staples, in 2000 AD Prog 2000, December 1999)
      • "The Secret Commonwealth" (with David Bircham, in 2000 AD #1183–1199, March–June 2000)
      • "The Arrow of God" (with Steve Parkhouse, in 2000 AD Annual, 1989)
    • The Books of Invasions: Moloch and Golamh (2006, ISBN 1-904265-82-0):
      • "The Books of Invasions I: Moloch" (in 2000 AD Prog 2003 and #1322–1326, December 2002 – February 2003)
      • "The Books of Invasions II: Golamh" (in 2000 AD #1350–1355, July–August 2003)
    • The Books of Invasions: Scota and Tara (2006, ISBN 1-904265-92-8):
      • "The Books of Invasions III: Scota" (in 2000 AD Prog 2004 and #1371–1376, December 2003 – February 2004)
      • "The Books of Invasions IV: Tara" (in 2000 AD Prog 2005 and #1420–1425, December 2004 – February 2005)
    • The Books of Invasions: Odacon (July 2007, ISBN 1-904265-92-8):
      • "The Books of Invasions V: Odacon" (in 2000 AD #1436–1442, April–June 2005)
      • "Carnival" (in 2000 AD Prog 2006 and #1469–1475, December 2005 – February 2006)
    • Slaine the Wanderer (2011, ISBN 978-1-907992-24-7):
      • "The Gong Beater" (with Clint Langley, in 2000 AD #1635–1638, May–June 2009)
      • "The Amber Smuggler" (with Clint Langley, in 2000 AD #1662–1665, November–December 2009)
      • "The Exorcist" (with Clint Langley, in 2000 AD, #1709–1712, November 2010)
      • "The Mercenary" (with Clint Langley, in 2000 AD, #1713–1714 and Prog 2011, November–December 2010)
    • The Book of Scars (2013):
      • "The Book of Scars" (with Clint Langley, Mike McMahon, Glenn Fabry, Simon Bisley, in 2000 AD, #1844-1849, August 2013)

Cast[edit]

Main characters[edit]

  • Slaine MacRoth – Mighty black-haired Irish warrior exiled from the Sessair tribe for having an affair with the chief's fiance Niamh. He loves fighting and often beats up Ukko. His weapon is the stone axe Brainbiter and he first experienced the Warp Spasm as a child.[9]
  • Ukko – Slaine's dwarf sidekick and chronicler, named after the Scandinavian storm-god Ukko. He is lecherous and greedy; like most fantasy dwarves he loves gold and has a business mind centuries ahead of the human characters. When Slaine becomes king Ukko is appointed his jester.[10]
  • Nest – Druidess who urges Ukko to record Slaine's deeds. Ukko argues with her all the time but it is hinted there may be some mutual attraction between them.[11]
  • Niamh – Slaine's strong-willed wife. She is very assertive even for a woman of her times and prone to anger and jealousy, often beating up Slaine's other wives and concubines[12]

Supporting characters[edit]

  • Danu – Goddess of the earth who provides Slaine with guidance. Originally earth was ruled by female goddesses but the druids suppressed them and replaced them with male counterparts[13]
  • Cathbad – Chief druid who wears a horse skull and has a strong dislike of Ukko. He is a short old man with a moustache and bald head, save for a single tuft of hair.[14]
  • Myrddin – Half-Cythron Atlantean survivor and high-level magus analogous to Merlin. His fortress is located in modern-day Wales.
  • Murdach – Time-displaced son of Brian Boru.[15]
  • Kai – Slaine's son. Slaine wanted him to be a warrior but Niamh had him train as a druid. Later Kai became a travelling acrobat.[16]
  • King Rudraige mac Dela – Ruler of the city of Gorlias and guardian of the Silver Sword of the Moon. His hand was bitten off by Avagddu and replaced with a metal prosthesis, preventing him from becoming High King. He was married to Niamh for a year but left her for a warrior resembling Arnold Schwarzenegger's Conan.[17]
  • King Gann mac Dela – Ruler of Finias and wielder of the Spear of the Flaming Sun. To celebrate the defeat of the Fomorians Gann was sacrificed and eaten by the tribe[18]
  • King Sengann mac Dela – Mad ruler of Falias, a moon-worshipping society. His people, the black-skinned Tribe of the Shadows, were responsible for exterminating the Neanderthal-like Beaver folk and stealing the Stone of Destiny.[19]
  • Mogrooth - Fearsome Atlantean dragon rider and gladiator with enlarged, sharpened fangs. Despises Ukko for his thievery.[20]
  • Tlachtga - Mogrooth's daughter and one of Myrddin's best warriors. Was badly disfigured by Cythron laser beam.[21]

Villains[edit]

  • The Lord Weird Slough Feg – Ancient, rotting leader of the Drunes and the original Horned God who refused to die when his seven-year reign was over. He ate the Time Worm's eggs to prolong his life and resides at the drune capital Carnac where he spends his time making cave paintings[22]
  • Medb/Megrim – Drune priestess saved by Slaine from human sacrifice. It is revealed she wanted to be sacrificed to the worm-god Crom to become a goddess. Her revealing dress is based on the skirt worn by the Egtved Girl.[23]
  • Catha, Fea and Nemon - Three Drune priestesses who serve as Slough Feg's lieutenants.
  • Melga - Slough Feg's general, oversaw the construction of the standing stones at Carnac.
  • Balor – Leader of the Fomorians. He only has one eye which is capable of destroying anything he stares at.[24]
  • Moloch – Balor's cruel lieutenant, who wields six swords in battle. Based on the pagan god Molech. Assumed command of the Fomorians when Balor was killed, and brutally murdered Niamh.[25]
  • Odacon – Assumed control of the Fomorians after Moloch.[26]
  • Sethor – Member of Sessair tribal council who succeeded Slaine as High King. Later betrayed the Celts to the Fomorians and became Odacon's golamh.[27]
  • Avagddu – The demon son of the earth goddess, and the foulest, stupidest demon ever to have lived. Medb summoned him to kill Niamh but he ended up eating himself.[28]
  • Elfric – Three-eyed blue skinned demon capable of time travel. He led both the Roman invasion of Britain and the Viking invasion of Ireland. He appears to be homosexual or bisexual as he refers to his relationship with Nero and was reluctant to rape Boudicca's daughters, only doing so out of spite.[29]
  • Quagslime – Fomorian tax collector who cuts off the noses of tax-dodgers.[30]
  • NuddOgre serving as assistant jailer. Slaine bashed out his brains when Nudd tried to kill him.[31]
  • Domnall – A dwarf blacksmith who murdered warriors and tempered his weapons in their blood. He is killed with his own sword by Slaine.[32]
  • Slough Throt – A drune Lord who successfully shed his rotting skin to earn the rank of Slough. He hired Slaine as a bodyguard to escape Slough Feg and deliver the plans for Ragnarok to the Druids of Glastonbury.[33]
  • Cador - An ancient Druid who built the forcefield that protects Myrddin's territory from the Cythrons. Is revealed to be Slough Feg in disguise.
  • Robym – An evil dwarf who acts as a servant to Medb[34]
  • Skuld the Demented, Hadric Hissing-blade and Thorgrim Ironjaw: Three Viking pirate captains sent by Slough Feg to attack Slough Throt's flying longship.[35]
  • Broog – Torturer employed by the Inquisition, actually a cult worshipping the Blood god Iahu.[36]
  • Gael – Leader of the tribe of wandering Atlantean refugees who ally themselves with Odacon's fomorians. Serves as Odacon's first host (golamh). Gives his name to the 'gaelic' peoples.[37]
  • Scota – Egyptian princess who eloped with Gael's Atlanteans. Gives her name to the Scottish race.[38]
  • Mordred – Son of King Arthur and Morgana, betrays and murders his father for converting to Christianity and renouncing the Goddess but is himself mortally wounded with Excalibur.[39]
  • HengwolfAnglo-Saxon warlord and worshipper of Odin allied to Mordred. Later transforms into the white dragon of the Saxons and battles Slaine[40]
  • GuledigCythron leader who orchestrated Arthur's downfall. Is worshipped by the Celts as a statue of a golden child called the Mabon, but his real form is a green disembodied head with three arms[41]

Historical and Mythical characters[edit]

  • Boudicca – Queen of the Iceni, based on the historical hero of the same name[42]
  • William Wallace – Scottish rebel fighting against the English invaders
  • St Patrick – A priest Slaine encounters in Demon Killer. He tries to convert Slaine to Christianity then threatens him with damnation when Slaine refuses. Ukko is interested in his valuable gold cross.[43]
  • Robin HoodSaxon outlaw and leader of the last pagan coven, tortured to death by the fanatical Sheriff of Nottingham. Slaine must replace Robin as the Lord of Misrule[44]
  • King Arthur – Legendary British ruler killed by Morded and his ally, the Saxon warlord Hengwolf. Slaine must take Arthur's place and break the curse over the Ancient Britons.[45]
  • Sir Lancelot – Arthur's former champion, now living as a monk to atone for his betrayal.[46]
  • Guinevere – Arthur's wife possessed by a Cythron priestess.[47]

Celts[edit]

  • Roth Bellyshaker – Slaine's father. Once a proud warrior, he became an obese braggart. He was killed by Slough Feg when attempting to avenge Slaine's apparent death[48]
  • Macha – Slaine's mother. Roth was responsible for her death as he bragged she could outrun the king's chariot and made her enter the race[49]
  • Mongan Axe-head – Slaine's foster-father who headbutts enemies with his spiked helmet[50]
  • King Ragnall – Slaine's foster-brother who tries to appease the Fomorians with tributes. When he is publicly humiliated by Balor, Ragnall commits ritual suicide with assistance from Cathbad so Slaine can replace him as king of the Sessair.[51]
  • King Grudnew – Ragnall's predecessor and husband of Niamh who ran over Slaine's mother with his chariot. He was thrown off a cliff by his own tribe for failing to prevent a famine.[52]
  • Blind Bran – An old beggar and ally of Slaine who fought alongside him during his time as a mercenary.[53]
  • Cuan – A warrior sacrificed by the druid priestesses to enable them to foretell the future. His torture and disembowelment is similar to the injuries influcted on Lindow Man.
  • Madad the Quarrelsome – A warrior who insults Slaine and questions his right to be king. His nose was chewed off in a fight.[54]
  • Gurg of the Three Fingers – Slaine's charioteer, recognisable by his three-horned helmet.[55]
  • Dundan Skullsmasher – A Sessair warrior killed in a fight for the best cuts of meat.[56]
  • Gwalchazad the Ram – The warrior who challenges Dundan Skullsmasher for the hero's portion.[57]
  • Fergus the Brave – A warrior a bored Slaine accuses of cowardice.[58]
  • Diarmid the Foul-Tempered – Slaine claims to have slept with his wife and daughter, only for Diarmid to offer his attractive sister.[59]
  • Conal the Handsome – A warrior Slaine punches in the face in an attempt to start a fight. Despite losing all his teeth, Conal is more concerned about the damage to Slaine's hand.[60]
  • Madog Stag-shanks – Village headman who sheltered Slaine in return for his mammoth.[61]
  • Caw Sheaf-hair – Madog's son. Is murdered by Slough Throt's skull-swords.[62]
  • Cullen of the wide mouth – Classmate jealous of the young Slaine's skill in battle. Tries to murder Slaine but is killed with a gae bulga.[63]
  • Conn of the Hundred BattlesRed Branch warrior and father of Cullen who tries to avenge his son's death but is also killed by Slaine.[64]

Others[edit]

  • Blathnaid – Former lover of Slaine, actually a giant serpent summoned from hel by the Drunes.[65]
  • Medrawd – Farmer who lives alone with his mother. Is actually a shape-shifting shoggey beast responsible for devouring many passing travellers.[66]
  • Mor Ronne the Dung Collector – One of the few dwarves more repulsive than Ukko. Nest has to sleep with him as part of her initiation ceremony[67]
  • White Tusk – King of the Orcs with the head of a Wild boar who presides over a court of fools. Ukko must steal his tusk for a potion to save King Arthur[68]
  • The Knucker – An ageing dragon used as aerial transport by Slaine[69]
  • Nidhug - A fierce dragon that killed Tlachtga in Grimnismal's tomb.
  • Pluke - A light El who helps Slaine rescue Nest and Myrddin from the Cythrons.

In other media[edit]

Video games[edit]

Role-playing games[edit]

Solo RPG appearances:

Novels[edit]

The first Sláine novel was released at the end of 2006:

Cultural influence[edit]

Sláine has influenced popular culture:

  • The Lord Weird Slough Feg, an American folky heavy metal band who derive their name from Sláine's foe.[71]
  • Spanish fans made their own unofficial Slaine film. It is rumoured that an official movie is planned.[72]
  • Irish-American rapper Slaine (rapper) is a fan of the comics and derived his name from the protagonist.
  • Actor Aidan Turner (Being Human, The Hobbit Trilogy) stated that Slaine is his favorite comic book hero.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Irish, Norman & Danish strains", "The Legendary Celts": articles exploring Howard's use of Nordic and Celtic material;
  2. ^ The Debility of the Ulstermen
  3. ^ The Exile of the Sons of Usnech
  4. ^ "On the morrow a valiant hero called Úalu went and took a great flagstone on his back to go across the water. But the river turned him over and he lay with his stone on his belly. His grave and his headstone are on the road beside the stream. Lia Úalann is its name." (from Táin Bó Cúailnge Recension 1, ed. & trans. Cecile O'Rahilly, p. 153
  5. ^ "Gwynfyd cannot be obtained without seeing and knowing everything, but it is not possible to see or to know everything without suffering everything." From Iolo Morganwg, Barddas, quoted in T. W. Rolleston, Myths and Legends of the Celtic Race Chapter 8. Compare with the quote of Cathbad in Horned God, vol 1, page 18: "That's all very well sire but we must look beyond this life to the higher realms... and they cannot be obtained without seing and knowing everything and, unfortunately,it's not possible to see and know everything without suffering everything". The origin of the name Cythrawl, given to the dimension of the "Dark Gods of Cythrawl", Sláine's enemies, can be found in the same passage of Barddas.
  6. ^ Strabo, Geography 12.5.1
  7. ^ "...the famous 'Sorcerer of Trois Freres' is Slough Feg." Pat Mills, "Sláine: the Origins" (introduction), The Collected Sláine, Titan Books, 1993.
  8. ^ http://www.theosophical.ca/IranianOannesNDK.html "In a letter [Theosophist, Vol −2-, page 214] written by a learned Fellow of the Theosophical Society [F.T.S.], from the monastery of Soorb Ovaness (Armenia), the writer says that the Armenians, who, until the 4th and even the 7th centuries of the Christian era, were Parsees in religion, called themselves Haiks or descendants of King Haig. In the forgotten traditions of these people, we find that they claimed to have remained true to the teachings of Zoroaster. These they had accepted ever since Musarus Oannes or Annedotus – the Heaven or Sun-sent (the first Odacon And Daphos, the man-fish) — arising daily from the sea at sunrise to plunge back into it at sunset – taught them the good doctrine, their arts and civilisation. That was during the reign of Ammenon the Chaldean, 68 Sari or 244,800 years before the deluge"
  9. ^ Slaine characters
  10. ^ Slaine characters
  11. ^ Slaine characters
  12. ^ Slaine characters
  13. ^ Slaine characters
  14. ^ Slaine characters
  15. ^ Slaine: Time Killer
  16. ^ Slaine the King
  17. ^ Slaine characters
  18. ^ Slaine characters
  19. ^ Slaine characters
  20. ^ Mogrooth
  21. ^ Tlachtga
  22. ^ Slaine characters
  23. ^ Slaine characters
  24. ^ Slaine: The Horned God
  25. ^ Slaine: The Books of Invasions
  26. ^ Slaine: The Books of Invasions
  27. ^ Slaine characters
  28. ^ Slaine characters
  29. ^ Slaine: Demon Killer
  30. ^ Slaine the King
  31. ^ Slaine: Warriors Dawn
  32. ^ Slaine: Warriors Dawn
  33. ^ Slaine: Warriors Dawn
  34. ^ Slaine the King
  35. ^ Slaine: Warriors Dawn
  36. ^ Slaine: Lord of Misrule
  37. ^ Book of Invasions
  38. ^ Book of Invasions
  39. ^ treasures of Britain
  40. ^ Treasures of Britain
  41. ^ Treasures of Britain
  42. ^ Demon Killer
  43. ^ Demon Killer
  44. ^ Lord of Misrule
  45. ^ Treasures of Britain
  46. ^ Treasures of Britain
  47. ^ Treasures of Britain
  48. ^ Slaine: Warriors Dawn
  49. ^ Slaine: Warriors Dawn
  50. ^ Slaine the King
  51. ^ Slaine the King
  52. ^ Slaine: Warriors Dawn
  53. ^ Slaine: Warriors Dawn
  54. ^ Slaine the King
  55. ^ Slaine the King
  56. ^ Slaine the King
  57. ^ Slaine the King
  58. ^ Slaine: Demon Killer
  59. ^ Demon Killer
  60. ^ Demon Killer
  61. ^ Warriors Dawn
  62. ^ Warriors Dawn
  63. ^ Warriors Dawn
  64. ^ Warriors Dawn
  65. ^ Warriors Dawn
  66. ^ Warriors Dawn
  67. ^ The Horned God
  68. ^ Treasures of Britain
  69. ^ The Horned God
  70. ^ [1]
  71. ^ < Interview with The Lord Weird Slough Feg.
  72. ^ Slaine move by Miguel Mesas

External links[edit]