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Berserker Fate/Stay Night Anime Trivia

Wednesday, November 06, 2013
Illyasviel von Einzbern, berserker, anime, fate / stay night
Berserker is one of the characters from the anime Fate/Stay Night and this trivia post is all about him.

He is the Servant of Illyasviel von Einzbern and is of the Berserker-class. Do you know who he really is or what his true identity is?

Berserker may not win a bishounen (pretty boy) award anytime soon due to his looks, but, when it comes to strength and power, he is definitely one of the very top contenders.

He is highly powerful and strong, which isn't surprising in the least if you know his true identity.

His real identity is that of Heracles. Those who know about or are interested in Greek Mythology will have no problems recognizing the name. In Roman Mythology, he is known as Hercules and this might be the more recognizable name considering the well-known Disney movie with the same title.

In Greek Mythology, Heracles is the son of the god Zeus and the mortal Alcmene, making him a demigod. He is a very well-known hero, having a lot of adventures and interactions with a whole lot of people, which might seem strange to be comparing him to Berserker from Fate / Stay Night who isn't exactly sane.

Okay, scratch that. Berserker is definitely insane thanks to the class skill known as Mad Enhancement. This particular skill enhances all of Berserker's attributes, which is part of why he is so powerful and strong.

The cost of doing this though is his sanity. This explains why he hardly says anything during the anime and he has the appearance of being crazy and mad, not just in looks, but even in his actions.

Berserker's insanity due to Mad Enhancement can actually be related to Heracles in Greek Mythology. Before being able to adequately explain that though, it is necessary to note that Heracles' very existence was hated by the goddess Hera (from Greek Mythology. Her Roman counterpart is Juno).

berserker, fate / stay night, anime
She is the wife of Zeus (his Roman counterpart is Jupiter), and, thus, the queen of the gods and goddesses.

To say that she wasn't exactly pleased with the birth of Heracles would be an understatement as she really tried to give him a hard time and make his life miserable practically even before he was born.

Of course, just as to be expected, she didn't stop tormenting him even after he'd been born. If anything, it seemed that Hera was even more determined to make Heracles' life as worse as possible.

As Heracles grew older, he soon married this woman named Megara and they had some children. However, he was unfortunately not able to get a happily ever after as, thanks to Hera who drove him mad or induced him with insanity, he ended up killing his own wife and children due to this bout of madness.

archer, berserker, fate / stay night, anime
Now it makes more sense that Mad Enhancement is one of Berserker's skills.

Since Heracles is also known to have a lot of strength as well as being extremely powerful, the huge appearance of Berserker also makes sense including the fact that he is vastly powerful with or without a weapon.

He can easily defeat anyone or hold his own in a fight even with just his bare hands. Speaking of power, Berserker's Noble Phantasm is truly exceptional indeed and can also be related to his identity as Heracles. His Noble Phantasm is known as God Hand: Twelve Labors, which is no doubt in reference to The Twelve Labors of Heracles.

The Twelve Labors brings us back to Mad Enhancement because the reason Heracles even had these labors in the first place was because of how he killed Megara and their children due to his bout of insanity.

hercules, heracles, berserker, saber, arturia pendragon, Illyasviel von Einzbern, anime, fate / stay night
Heracles managed to accomplish all of these labors, showcasing even more of his strength and power, considering all of the feats and things that he did such as killing the Hydra and the Nemean Lion.

So how does this relate to Berserker's Noble Phantasm? Well, actually, it doesn't, at least, not directly.

To be more precise, God Hand: Twelve Labors gives Berserker 11 extra lives, meaning he has a total of 12 lives. This means that he has to be killed 12 times before he can truly be defeated.

If he is killed once, he still has 11 lives so he can be resurrected, so to speak. The 12 lives are obviously in reference to the Twelve Labors of Hercules. But, it can be said that it is much more than that because it was said that, after Heracles had finished the 12 labors, he was granted immortality by the gods.

heracles, hercules, zeus, jupiter, demigod, hero, demi-god, roman mythology, greek mythology
And, indeed, after Heracles died (though it wasn't actually right after he finished with the 12 labors), he was brought up to Mount Olympus where the gods and goddesses resided and he then married the goddess Hebe.

Of course, there's more to his story than that and it's all quite interesting. So what do you think of Berserker and of Heracles from Greek Mythology? Aren't they both such fascinating characters?

It's also really interesting how Berserker's Noble Phantasm, his appearance and pretty much everything about him could be related and compared to the Greek hero Heracles. What do you think?

*Notes:
- Berserker appears in other Fate media. However, this particular post merely focuses on the Fate / Stay Night anime
- Image with added text was modified by Freya Yuki based on the image by Fadly Romdhani (CC:BY) from deviantArt
- Said image was chosen because of how the figure could pass off as Berserker what with looking huge, powerful and even scary
- The rest of the pics are enlarged product images from Amazon.com; links shown above via Amazon's Native Shopping Ads widget

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