Anime Archives

Problems With The Magic System Of Ragnarok Manhwa?

Wednesday, January 29, 2014 No comments:
What reasons would make you give up on the magic system of Ragnarok: Into The Abyss? Even though the manhwa has really cool magic spells, weapons and the like, just what can be so ridiculously wrong and crazy about all this?
magic system, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
In this post, I wrote about my initial thoughts on the magic system of this comic. I mentioned that I found the magics in the graphic novel to be really cool, but it would be even more interesting and fantastic if we could get a thorough and clear explanation as to how these things really worked as well as the constraints and limits to all these stuff.

I hadn't finished reading the manhwa then, so I hoped to get the answers to all my questions as I continued reading. Well, I've finished Ragnarok now and I'm sad to say that its magic system, though still cool and interesting, still remained unexplained, so much so that, as the graphic novel progressed, things just started getting crazy to the point of being ridiculous.

Seriously, it was like the characters can do anything and everything with no problem at all. And we keep getting introduced to new abilities and the like that it seemed as if these were pulled out of thin air whenever there was a need for new magical things.

We were neither told nor shown anything in the way of the constraints and limits of all of these magic stuff. The characters just go on doing the things that they do, seemingly without caring that these things already appear to be unbelievable. To better explain all this, let's take a look at some of the times when we see the magic system in the manhwa.

loki, assassins guild, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
In Volume 4, Chapter 27, Loki is shown having a vision that the Assassins' Guild is being attacked and his comrades were all dying.

The question now is how does he have the power or the ability to be able to see these visions? Is he a seer now? How does this vision thing even work anyway? It seemed like he suddenly saw this vision, like it just came from out of nowhere.

You know what one of the more annoying things about that scene is? It's the fact that this is the only time we ever see the assassin having these visions.

Throughout the comic, we never see him have these visions ever again. It's like he only had the vision the one time because it was necessary.

In the same chapter and volume, we are also introduced to this magical item called the Crystal of Recall. Apparently, this thing can summon Loki from wherever he is. That's all well and good, but how does it work? How can that item just summon someone from so far away (since said assassin was obviously nowhere near his guild's headquarters)?

Of course, we don't get any explanations at all (unfortunately) as we move to Chapter 30 of Volume 4 wherein we see Taulin doing some sort of divination thing in order to find the place where Loki should go, so he can find the one responsible for the death of their comrades.

fenris fenrir, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
How does this divination thing work though? How did she suddenly know where her friend ought to go?

Again, our questions are left unanswered as this scene is quickly forgotten in favor of the 31st chapter of the same volume.

This is where we see Fenris Fenrir chanting some sort of spell (when she sensed that they were in danger), so that she can defend herself and her friends from Loki's attack.

Sigh. No, we don't get any explanations about this magic spell thing at all. Oh well. At least, Fenris is able to show how cool she is by doing this.

Chapter 32 reinforces the apparent fact that the magic system is and will always be crazy in this comic as we see Iris Irine and Fenrir chanting and casting some spell or other. Really, doesn't anyone wonder how those two know all of these magic things?

Did they make up the stuff that they're chanting or did they learn these from a book or is it something else entirely? It doesn't matter what the explanation is just as long as we actually get something believable instead of just having to accept all this as fact.

skurai, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
The manhwa doesn't seem to care what we think though as it continues to show us even more crazy and unbelievable things.

In Chapter 34 of Volume 4, we see that Loki can apparently heal his wounds. Seriously, how does he know how to do that? How can he just do that?

And what's the point of having him be able to do that? Is he immortal now or what? I also had to wonder if Chaos and the others can do the same or not.

Volume 5, Chapter 38 shows us that it's not just the assassin who can heal himself because Skurai can also apparently do the same thing. That's all we get though, so none of this seems believable in the least as we don't even know how and why they can easily heal themselves.

Let's just move on from this healing scene before it frustrates us further. Of course, the next incident in question doesn't really make things any better since the graphic novel brings us to Chapter 44. In this chapter, we see Sara Irine spying on the resident main characters of the comic by using some talisman thing. How this works, I suppose we'll never know. Sigh.

ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa, bijou, sara irine
Speaking of Sara, since when can she hear other people's thoughts? In Volume 6, Chapter 57, she can apparently hear Bijou's thoughts. But why?

Why is this even necessary anyway? She was never shown to be able to do this before, so why start now?

After all, she fought with Fenris in the very first volume and we saw the latter thinking and yet the Valkyrie didn't show any indication that she can hear the other's thoughts. Sigh. How frustrating, wouldn't you say?

Honestly, some of the magic stuff is really cool though like in Chapter 58 of Volume 6 wherein we see Fenrir recreating Bijou's spell that was thrown at her. In this, we can really see how awesome the former is, but that's only if we ignore questions of how she can possibly do this and what all this entails. So, what do you think of the magic system of Ragnarok: Into The Abyss?

*Notes:
- Image with added text was modified by Freya Yuki based on the image by Rusembell (CC:BY) from deviantArt
- Said image is meant to represent the magic system of Ragnarok: Into The Abyss
- The rest of the pics are enlarged product images from Amazon.com; links shown above via Amazon's Native Shopping Ads widget

What's So Special About Chaos In Ragnarok: Into The Abyss Manhwa?

Sunday, January 26, 2014 No comments:
ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa, chaos
Chaos is the main character of Ragnarok: Into The Abyss. He is the reincarnation of the god Balder. What do you think about the manhwa's resident protagonist? And what exactly is so special about him?

An alternate title for this post is, "Why is Chaos the only one capable of saving the world?" because, apparently, he is the only one capable of saving the world.

This supposed fact is told to us a lot of the time, particularly in the character handbook thing that appears in every volume of the manhwa (though, admittedly, it only starts in the third volume). Here, we are told that Chaos is the key to saving the world.
chaos, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
This is again reiterated to us in Chapter 22 of Volume 3. This is where Frigg herself (the former queen of the Norse gods and the mother of Balder) tells her son that he is apparently needed to protect this world and that this is his destiny from the very beginning. To this, the one word I can say is 'why'?

No, really, seriously, why does it have to be Chaos? Why does the fate of the world rest on his, on one person's, shoulders? Sure, he's the graphic novel's protagonist, he's the main character, the hero or whatever you want to call him. But is that enough reason to say that he's the only one who can save the world?

Can his status as the main character be enough of an explanation as to why he's so special that he's the only one who can save us all? Do you think this sounds believable? After all, there are other characters in this comic like Fenris Fenrir, for instance, or even Frigg.

To illustrate, Fenris was apparently present a thousand years ago when she and Balder fought against Freya (don't ask me for the details. Until now, the manhwa hasn't explained this properly in the least. Don't you wish we'd at least get a flashback of sorts?), so what's wrong with her also being the one capable of saving the world?

chaos, frigg, balder, norse mythology, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
Besides, she was the one who set everything into motion by looking for Balder's reincarnation and telling him about what he must do.

You know, she might have made for a better hero (or heroine, in this case). She's certainly more interesting than Chaos.

No, but, really, it doesn't matter if it's Chaos or Fenris Fenrir or some other character who's the key to saving the world.

What matters is that we get a reasonable, logical and believable explanation as to why this particular character (whoever he or she may be) is so special and amazing that the fate of the entire world rests solely on his or her shoulders and that no one else can possibly be able to save the world from all the evil and danger threatening to destroy it.

Unfortunately, we don't get anything at all. There is no explanation whatsoever about all this. I guess we'll just have to go with the 'Chaos is the main character, so of course he's the only one who can save the world' explanation (if you could even call it that).

ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa, fenris fenrir, chaos
Anyway, I've also searched around, to be sure, but there doesn't seem to be any references in Norse Mythology as to why Balder should be the main hero. In fact, the most well-known myth about this god is his death.

Yeah, he does die (it's a long story and Loki actually had something to do with it) and it was said that his death is the sign that Ragnarok (the end of the world) will soon come.

There's nothing about him fighting during Ragnarok though. It's only said that he will be reborn after the end of all the fighting into a new world.

So, what do you think of all this? Do you think it's believable that Chaos is the only one who can save the earth and that the fate of the entire universe rests solely on his shoulders? Do you think the manhwa should have provided us with more reasons and explanations as to why the main character is the world's only capable savior?

*Notes:
- Image with added text was modified by Freya Yuki based on the image by Rusembell (CC:BY) from deviantArt
- Said image is meant to represent the main character of Ragnarok since the figure looks as if he could pass off as Chaos what with the color of his hair and how messy and spiky it is, just like Chaos'
- The rest of the pics are enlarged product images from Amazon.com; links shown above via Amazon's Native Shopping Ads widget

Reasons To Like Fenris Fenrir (Ragnarok Manhwa)

Thursday, January 23, 2014 No comments:
fenris fenrir, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
Fenris Fenrir is one of the main characters of the Ragnarok: Into The Abyss manhwa. What do you think about her?

Just what are some of the cool, awesome and great things about this woman that make her such a likable person? Actually, IMHO, Fenris Fenrir is one of the coolest and most likable characters in this graphic novel.

She was the very first person that we, the readers, are introduced to, when we first read the comic, so it wasn't hard to see her or think of her as the protagonist or the main character.

I wouldn't mind that being the case at all, really, but, honestly, in the beginning when she first showed up, I didn't care much for her. This was largely because I knew nothing about her then and the beginning of the graphic novel was confusing enough as it was since we had no idea who the woman that showed up first was.
ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa, fenris fenrir
We didn't even know what she was up to, what she was doing, why she was doing whatever she was doing or where she currently is. Basically, since we knew next to nothing about her, it was hard to care about her. But, as the manhwa progressed further and we got see and know more about Fenris Fenrir, I found that I really ended up liking her character and personality.

In short, she's really very cool and awesome. She's a serious character who isn't childish at all. She's level-headed. She's never rash or reckless. She's also smart and intelligent and isn't one to make crazy or weird decisions (let's not talk about the one time she wasn't cool since this post already discusses that issue).

She never comes across as annoying or irritating as a character (definitely nothing at all like the annoying, childish and immature Iris Irine). Let's now take a look at some of the instances which can show exactly how cool and awesome this woman is.

Chapter 31 of Volume 4 is an example of a scene, which really demonstrates how perceptive and observant Fenrir is. In this particular chapter, she noted that there was something strange about Loki and she also wondered why the guy kept asking what Chaos' name was.

loki, chaos, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
This is, indeed, something to wonder about. Does Loki want to confirm if he found the right target?

That's pretty plausible except if that was the case and he wasn't sure that he'd really found his target, then why did he start attacking right away?

What if he actually got the wrong person and ended up killing said person because he didn't wait for an answer to his question, because he didn't stop to confirm if he had the right target?

In Chapter 32 of the same volume, Fenris shows how smart and intelligent she is by telling us, the readers, and the other characters (Chaos and Iris Irine) who don't know about this, that the symbol (which means rain) on the back of the main protagonist's shirt is also the sign of the ancient Dragon Knights.

Chapter 39 of Volume 5 allows us to see the woman as the voice of reason and as one who isn't wont to make rash and reckless decisions. She shows this by stopping Chaos from fighting against the guards and soldiers that had arrived to break up the fight between our resident main character, Loki and Skurai.

chaos, skurai, loki, manhwa, ragnarok: into the abyss
The 46th chapter of the fifth volume helpfully reiterates just how awesome and knowledgeable Fenris is by illustrating how she knows so much about Ymir's Heart even when the other characters were rather clueless about this topic.

She's also a very formidable and strong fighter as demonstrated by Volume 6 wherein she successfully recreated Bijou's spell that had been thrown at her (of course, this is if we ignore just how crazy the magic system is. I mean, how can she do that?).

Anyway, she was also the one who was able to figure out how to get rid of Bijou's troll in the same volume. Do you think that Fenris Fenrir is indeed awesome and cool? What can you say about her?

*Notes:
- Image with added text was modified by Freya Yuki based on the image by Rusembell (CC:BY) from deviantArt
- Said image is meant to represent Fenris Fenrir since the figure looks cool and awesome while the wolf can also symbolize Fenris who is actually the wolf god in Norse Mythology
- The rest of the pics are enlarged product images from Amazon.com; links shown above via Amazon's Native Shopping Ads widget

Frigg Trivia And Questions (Ragnarok Manhwa)

Monday, January 20, 2014 No comments:
Frigg is a character that appears in Ragnarok: Into The Abyss. What interesting trivia is there about her and what questions can we ask about her especially regarding her brief appearance in the manhwa?
frigg, norse mythology, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
Frigg is based on the goddess in Norse Mythology with the same name. They are both the queen of the Norse gods (though in manhwa Frigg's case, this isn't exactly true anymore, at least not by the comic's present timeline) and they are the mother of the god Balder. In the graphic novel, Chaos is the reincarnation of Balder, so Frigg is Chaos' mother.

One of the first mentions of the goddess Frigg in the manhwa is in Chapter 21, Volume 3, during the conversation between Chaos and Fenris Fenrir. Fenris tells Chaos that it's because of his divine mother that he was able to summon Nidhogg. The question is, of course, why? What does Frigg have to do with Nidhogg?

Unfortunately, we don't get an answer as the two continue to talk, and, as you can expect, the very person they were talking about just happens to show up (which makes you wonder just how likely such a thing can happen in reality).

Upon the goddess' entrance, she says that Sara Irine and Skurai are both still alive (because Chaos and Fenrir were just talking about these two). How does Frigg know this tidbit of information though? She wasn't there when it happened, was she?

frigg, norse mythology, goddess, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
Frigg doesn't explain her supreme knowledge of these things though. But she does give us another explanation (in chapter 22 of the same volume), specifically regarding what happened 1000 years ago.

"Great," you say. "Finally. It's about time. We'll finally be able to understand exactly what happened 1000 years ago. I can't wait to see the flashback and maybe we'll even see Odin and Freya and all the other Norse gods and goddesses. I'm going to go check it out now."

Well, I hate to break it to you, but, none of that happens. Yeah, I was also very disappointed. There was no flashback and the so-called explanation (if you could even call it that) on what happened a thousand years ago barely told us anything new at all and merely served to confuse us further.

No, there was no mention of Odin. How nice of Frigg to neglect mentioning her husband and Chaos' father. No, I don't get why Chaos didn't ask about his father. You'd think he would have, but he didn't.

Really, who knows what he was thinking? That was not a rhetorical question, by the way, because I would really like to know what the resident main character was thinking and what reasons he had for not asking his mother for more information regarding his past life. Anyone else would have been curious, right?

chaos, balder, frigg, norse mythology, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
Seriously, Frigg was right there and she clearly knew a lot of things about what happened before and about her son, so why didn't Chaos ask about all of these things?

Why didn't he ask his mom to elaborate and explain some more? Regrettably, it doesn't look like we're going to get any answers to all of the above, so let's just move on to part of what Frigg did manage to explain.

She says that when Fenris and Balder were dying 1000 years ago (cue questions about this that have yet to be answered and which our resident main character, for some unknown reason, refuses to ask about), she made a deal to save them from Hel (this could be referring to either the ruler of the Norse Underworld or Niflheim, which is what said Underworld is usually called though it's also known by the name of said ruler).

This deal apparently involved offering herself (or her soul) to Nidhogg, so that she's now tied to him. That piece of information brings a whole lot of questions in and of itself actually. For starters, what does Nidhogg have to do with any of this? Okay, admittedly, it could be said that he has a bit of a relation to Niflheim, but that doesn't really explain anything though. What does that mean exactly?

In Norse Mythology, Nidhogg is a dragon, whose sole purpose in life seems to be to forever gnaw at the roots of the World Tree (known as Yggdrasil). This dragon lived somewhere in Niflheim, so this could account for its relation to the Norse Underworld. However, the fact remains that the ruler of Niflheim is actually Hel and that she is the one in charge of the dead.

norse mythology, odin, frigg, gods, goddess
To illustrate this, let's look at one of the more well-known Norse myths. This one concerns Balder, Frigg and Hel.

When Balder died (it's a long story), his mother did all that she could to bring him back. In this regard, the manhwa character really fits her portrayal of the Norse goddess because they both care about their sons very much.

According to the myth, the queen of the gods had someone go to Niflheim to get Hel to return her son to the world of the living. Hel actually agreed to do this, but, of course, it came with a price.

She said that she will only give back Frigg's son if everyone and everything (dead, alive, animate or inanimate) would weep for the dead god. Unfortunately, all but one cried for Balder and so he was unable to return. But this myth clearly shows that it's Hel who has authority in Niflheim, which is to be expected, of course, since she is its ruler.

Since the graphic novel is only loosely based on Norse Mythology, it's understandable that it made some changes. However, it would have been so much better if it cleared these things up for us and adequately explained what Nidhogg had to do with saving Balder and Fenris. That's not the only confusing thing though.

  • How does Frigg being tied to Nidhogg work exactly?
  • So, is she dead or what?
  • Can she go wherever she wants?
  • Why did she have to disappear 1000 years ago when she so easily showed up now as if there was no problem at all? With this, she gives the impression that she can come and go as she pleases

chaos, fenris fenrir, frigg, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
Again, our questions fall on deaf ears as the trio continue talking and Frigg tells the 2 about looking for someone who is human and not.

Balder's mother then says that she wishes she can say more about this and I have to ask, well, why can't she say more? What's stopping her from saying more?

Who's stopping her? If she has more information (which she implies by her aforementioned statement), then why doesn't she tell her son and Fenris about this?

The goddess ignores all our questions and neither Chaos nor Fenris Fenrir seem to feel the need to ask on our behalf. It's like they just don't care to find out any more than what they're told. Why this is so, I guess we'll never know.

Just when you think you can't get any more frustrated or miffed than this, Frigg then says that she can't stay any longer. Maybe if we all scream and ask her why she can't stay any longer, she'll answer us because, really, why can't she stay any longer?

What's stopping her? Who's stopping her? Is there some sort of limit as to how long she can be here? What's the limit then? For that matter, why can't she go with our resident protagonists? What's stopping her from accompanying them on their journey?

More than that, in the first place, how exactly did Frigg find them? Seriously, it's like she came from out of nowhere, but how did she know where her son and Fenris were? Huge sigh. It doesn't look like we'll be getting any answers right now, which is really too bad. So, what are your thoughts on all this then?

Are you feeling frustrated about all the unanswered questions regarding this manhwa? Do you wish that Frigg had explained more and that Chaos and Fenris Fenrir had actually asked sensible, logical and useful questions that won't just benefit the readers but will also help them in their journey?

*Notes:
- Image with added text was modified by Freya Yuki (CC:BY-SA) based on the image by hayashinomura (CC:BY-SA) from deviantArt
- Said image is meant to represent Frigg because the figure looks like a queen and even appears to be able to pass herself off as the queen of the Norse gods
- The rest of the pics are enlarged product images from Amazon.com; links shown above via Amazon's Native Shopping Ads widget

The Reason For Lidia's Existence (Ragnarok Manhwa)

Friday, January 17, 2014 No comments:
lidia, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
Lidia is a thief / treasure hunter with a talking cat from the Ragnarok: Into The Abyss manhwa.

Do you like her? What do you think of her? What are some of the things that we can say about her character and her personality?

It's actually pretty easy to view the thief as an extra, a mere minor character that doesn't really have anything to do with the main story of Ragnarok.

To explain what that means exactly, let's start from the very first moment that we are introduced to this girl. This happens in Chapter 3 of Volume 1 wherein we suddenly skip scenes and move to Alberta where Lidia is. When this happened, I had to wonder as to the purpose of the scene in question because it didn't seem necessary at all.
lidia, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
We know nothing about the thief's character and we don't even know what her significance to the plot is. If you cut out this scene, it's like it wouldn't matter and we won't really miss anything. In fact, it might have been better if the scene had been cut out especially since it just brings us more questions and yet no answers.

An example is regarding Lidia's cat. We find out that it can apparently talk and I have to wonder where she met the cat and if cats normally talk in this manhwa or is it just this particular animal.

Chapter 4 of the same volume intensifies this assumption (that the scene might have been better off deleted) as we abruptly get back to the scene between Chaos, Iris Irine and the monster they're fighting. This really makes you wonder what was the point of showing us Lidia now? If she really had to be introduced to us, then couldn't she have been introduced later on?

If we had to jump scenes anyway, then why couldn't we jump from where Chaos is to where Fenris Fenrir is? We already know her, so we'd certainly be more pleased to see her plus she appears to be the more interesting character at this point in the comic (especially since she's the very first person we meet, so it's like there's a special connection to her).

lidia, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
As the graphic novel progresses, I can't help but ask what is the point of Lidia's character? Why is she a part of this story?

She seems to be nothing but an extra, someone who is there as a comic relief, to provide a few laughs to the reader and yet, overall, she doesn't appear to have any use at all.

For instance, Chapter 6 of Volume 1 shows Lidia attempting to steal a horn from Iris and Chaos. The question is why. What's the point of her trying to acquire that thing from the other two?

If you cut out that scene, what will we have missed? Do you think we'll miss anything of importance or of use to us if we've never read that incident?

The same can be said of the scene wherein Lidia attempts to steal Iris' weapon though, I suppose, it could be argued that the sole reason and purpose of said incident was to inform us, the readers, how special Iris' sword is (but the character handbook thing already tells us about this anyway, so what's the point of repeating this supposed fact yet again?).

The next time we meet Lidia is in Chapter 7 of Volume 2. We see her attempting to steal weapons yet again. Didn't she learn her lesson when she tried to steal Iris' sword back in volume 1 or did she forget about all that? I mean, wouldn't the other weapons zap her too since she's not their owner (like Iris' sword did when Lidia tried to steal it)?

lidia, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
How does she know these items wouldn't do the same? And what exactly is the point of showing us that the thief was trying to steal yet again?

Instead of showing us that, we could have seen other more important events such as a flashback explaining what exactly happened a thousand years ago (yeah, it's really annoying and aggravating how the comic refuses to tell us about this).

Sigh. Let's just move on to Chapter 29 of Volume 4 wherein we find out that Lidia is leaving, for now anyway. Why do you think she's really leaving? Is it that she doesn't have any use in the upcoming scenes?

I mean, she doesn't know where the treasure she's searching for is, right? So, why couldn't she accompany Chaos and the others on their quest? She might find something about the treasure that she's seeking if she went with them just as well as she might find something if she didn't go with them.

So, what are your thoughts on the treasure hunter's departure? For those that weren't pleased about it, know that Lidia makes a brief appearance in Chapter 39 and 40 of Volume 5. I had to wonder as to the purpose of her brief reappearance, but it's soon made apparent as she and her talking cat notice the floating fortress headed straight for Prontera where our resident main characters are currently located.

lidia, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
It was clear that she was there merely to expound about the evil force of the weird fortress and to tell us where it was going though it would have been easy to figure that out on our own.

That's the last we see of Lidia until the summary for Volume 8 tells us that she will be joining our protagonists again.

So it's no surprise at all when we soon see her. But you do have to wonder at how convenient it is that the air ship where our heroes are just happens to be where the treasure hunter is.

Anyway, Lidia and Iris Irine meet again and we get what is supposed to be a funny scene with how the former tried to bury the latter alive, but, to me, I just found this incident weird and not amusing in the least. It also didn't make sense at all.

Lidia just saw Iris again after quite some time of not having seen her and the first thing she tries to do is bury her. Why? Aren't they supposed to be friends? Moreover, isn't the thief going to ask any questions at all like what happened, where are the others and all other relevant and logical questions that one should ask when someone you know suddenly appears in front of you?

Aside from that, the question of how Iris suddenly woke up when she was unconscious mere moments before and even appeared to be injured also needs to be asked. But no one seems to care about that as the two girls joke around with each other before Loki shows up and the thief meets him for the very first time (and ends up having a crush on him at first sight).

loki, lidia, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
As the three end up traveling together for a short while before they meet up with the others, we are treated to some amusing and funny scenes between Iris and Lidia who act as pretty perfect comic reliefs.

But, anyway, getting back to the post title, the reason for Lidia's existence may well be tied to the treasure that she's searching for, which is clearly an important plot point of sorts as we soon find in Volume 9.

Lidia finds the treasure that she seeks though she also ends up getting into trouble. Thankfully, she has Loki to help her out of it (that scene where Loki shows up while holding lunch boxes with that serious expression on his face is not only amusing, but also cute, wouldn't you agree?).

So, it took us more than a few volumes to figure out the reason for Lidia's existence though she still appears to be a pretty minor character, as compared to the others anyway. It's only too bad that we never really get to find out anymore about all of this since the manhwa abruptly stops at Volume 10, so nothing ever gets resolved).

What are your thoughts on Lidia then? Do you consider her an extra, a minor character that merely serves as comic relief or do you think there's more to her than that? Do you find her amusing and funny?

*Notes:
- Image with added text was modified by Freya Yuki (CC:BY-SA) based on the image by mikanxsakura (CC:BY-SA) from deviantArt
- Said image is meant to represent Lidia since the figure is blond and looks cheerful and happy-go-lucky, pretty much like Lidia
- The rest of the pics are enlarged product images from Amazon.com; links shown above via Amazon's Native Shopping Ads widget
- Last pic is also from Amazon.com; link shown above

Questions About The Norns In Ragnarok Manhwa

Tuesday, January 14, 2014 No comments:
The Norns are characters that appear in Ragnarok: Into The Abyss manhwa. What do you think of these three women? What is so mysterious about them and what questions should we ask about Urd, Verdandi and Skuld?
norns, urd, verdandi, skuld, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
Actually, the Norns also appear in Norse Mythology though they are rather different from how they are in the manhwa. In the graphic novel, the Norns are first mentioned in Volume 1, Chapter 4 wherein we see Arkana reporting to Zenobia (not that we know who these 2 are or what their significance is to the story at that time. Come to think of it, we don't really get the answers to that even as the comic progresses).

Anyway, Arkana mentions what Skuld (one of the Norns) had predicted. Regardless of whatever Skuld predicted, the question here is how in the world does Arkana know about this?

  • Would the Norns just tell people whatever they know?
  • What's so special about Arkana that they would deign to tell her about these things?
  • What reason would they have to tell her anything at all?

Unfortunately, none of our questions are answered as the Norns don't appear again (they're never even mentioned, so you'd think they'd been forgotten or something) until Volume 4, specifically in Chapter 30. Only one of the 3 women appears though and that appearance brings forth a whole lot of new unanswered questions.

skuld, norns, chaos, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
Skuld is the Norn who shows up, in Chaos' dream no less, and she engages our resident protagonist in conversation. Let's take a look at some of the things we can ask and ponder regarding this conversation:

  • How was Skuld able to enter Chaos' dream?
  • Where are her sisters, Urd and Verdandi?
  • Why is she alone?
  • Why isn't she with her sisters?
  • It seems so odd to see her by herself since the Norns are usually seen together
  • Speaking of odd, what do you think of Skuld's outfit?
  • I find it pretty odd and weird actually and I wonder what it's supposed to mean (if it means anything)
  • Perhaps, there's something sort-of futuristic about it or something since Skuld is the Norn of the future

Here's something to really ponder about as Skuld tells Chaos that his destiny has been determined, but his future is not: do you think these two are really different? How can your destiny be determined but your future not? Sounds pretty philosophical and deep, doesn't it?

More than that though, what might be the most important question of all is this: what is the whole point of this scene? No, really, why is it necessary that Skuld show up and talk to Chaos and tell him things like this? This doesn't advance the plot at all as all we see, so far, is the Norn saying pretty pointless things that makes this particular scene appear to be useless.

Much as I like the Norns (really, it's too bad they don't appear more often), if they (or one of them, in this case) aren't here to give some important information or useful item or something, then they shouldn't be here at all and we could have been shown another scene that would help advance the plot and bring on the action (even a flashback to what happened a thousand years ago would have been very welcome indeed).

skuld, norns, chaos, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
In fact, this incident just brings us even more questions regarding the Norns. Skuld alludes to the fact that they (Urd, Verdandi and her) are apparently in hiding, but why are they in hiding?

She even implies that Freya is apparently more powerful than her and her sisters, but why?

How could some goddess be more powerful than the women who are associated with the past, present and future and who are also said to be able to decide the destinies and fates of men (they are even compared and associated with the Greek Fates, the Moirai)?

There are some myths which even suggest that the Norns hold more power than the gods and goddesses (again, this might be because of their close association to the Fates as well as how they are also said to be older than the gods).

Anyway, even if this isn't the case at all (since the manhwa is only loosely based on Norse Mythology), what exactly is Freya going to do if she finds out that Skuld is talking to our protagonist? What can the resident antagonist do to hurt these three women?

If the comic is different from how it is in mythology, it really should have said so and explained its canon better so we can easily understand these things and we won't have to wonder if there's something that we've missed or if there's something wrong about all this.

skuld, norns, loki, chaos, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
A few pages later and we finally find out that this scene does have a purpose though I can't say I'm pleased about this so-called purpose.

It appears that the only reason Skuld showed up was to be able to tell Chaos that the one he's looking for wants to kill him.

I have to wonder why our resident main character couldn't just find this out for himself when Loki (because we all know that he's the one who is human and not) confronts him.

Why does the Norn have to tell him about this? What's wrong about him finding out when he's being attacked? Don't you think this would take out any suspense the confrontation scene between Loki and Chaos might have had?

After all, we, as the readers, know the truth. We know who really killed the Assassins' Guild and we know the hero of the story isn't to blame for this. We know Loki and Chaos have this huge misunderstanding going on between them.

As such, it would have been very interesting to see how this can possibly be resolved because there are a number of options and scenarios that can play out:

  • Would Loki try to kill Chaos as soon as he sees him or would he ask the latter for explanations?
  • Will Chaos be given the chance to prove his innocence?
  • Will the two manage to hurt each other before the truth comes out?
  • How will the truth come out?
  • Will Loki believe Chaos even if he explains his side of the story?
  • Will Chaos just think that Loki is one of his enemies sent by Freya?

norse mythology, freya, goddess of love and beauty, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
Anything can happen, really, and it's interesting to think and wonder about what will happen. However, if one of the party (in this case, the hero) is told that the one he seeks wants him dead, then how can this be as interesting as it would have been had our protagonist not known this?

After all, we already know that those two are going to end up as friends (it's pretty obvious, isn't it?). so the only question now is how this can happen.

What do you think of all this? Do you think the Norns should have been given more screen time and that many more things should have been explained about them? Were you disappointed that the only reason Skuld showed up was to tell Chaos all about the one who wants to kill him when the latter could have easily figured this out by himself when he's attacked by Loki?

*Notes:
- Image with added text was modified by Freya Yuki based on the image by Ludwig Burger (Public Domain) from Wikimedia Commons
- Said image was chosen because it depicts the Norns from Norse Mythology
- The rest of the pics are enlarged product images from Amazon.com; links shown above via Amazon's Native Shopping Ads widget

Why Is Loki Looking For Chaos (Ragnarok Manhwa)?

Saturday, January 11, 2014 No comments:
loki, chaos, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
Alternate titles for this post include 'the misunderstanding that should never have been or that doesn't make sense' and 'why you should never jump to conclusions?'.

What could be so wrong about having Loki search for Chaos in the Ragnarok: Into The Abyss manhwa?

The post title question is actually easily answered, but that doesn't mean that the answer is satisfactory or that it makes sense. To explain what that means, let's take a closer look at the aforementioned question.

In volume 3 of the manhwa, Skurai is brought to the headquarters of the Assassins' Guild by Odin's Beholders where he is subsequently convinced to destroy said guild.
loki, chaos, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
The swordsman easily wins against an entire army of assassins with the help of his cursed sword (which really makes you wonder as to the purpose of the pages and pages of endless fight scenes. After all, if we already know that Skurai is going to win, then what's the point of drawing it out when the plot could have been advanced instead?).

We later find that Skurai planned to blame his crimes on Chaos (yeah, I don't know how that could possibly make sense either; I talk more about that in this post) with the help of Odin's Beholders. What happens is that the leader of the Assassins' Guild is given the name 'Chaos' when he asks for the identity of the attacking swordsman. As such, said leader writes down this name in blood before he dies.

When Loki and his other fellow assassins arrive at their headquarters in volume 4 of Ragnarok: Into The Abyss, they find everything in ruins and everyone dead. Of course, they also find the clue that had been left for them (or, to be more precise, the clue that had been left for Loki, because, really, it's obvious that he'll be the one to deal with this).

This now brings us back to the post title question as we now know that the reason Loki intends to go after Chaos is so that he could avenge his fallen comrades. That's all well and good, and, of course, the one responsible for destroying the guild should be held accountable for his crimes.

chaos, loki, assassins guild, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
The problem is with the clue that had been left for Loki. The clue is simply the word 'chaos' written in blood. Could anyone really consider that a reliable clue?

In the first place, who said that 'chaos' was the name of a person? It could be talking about something else entirely especially since 'Chaos' ins't exactly a common name (if you could even consider it as such because, really, who would name their child 'Chaos'?) .

Moreover, even if the clue was talking about a person's name, exactly how does Loki expect to find this person?

As mentioned, this isn't a common name, so how does the assassin expect to find the killer of his comrades with the only clue (the supposed clue is seeming more and more useless by the minute) he was left with?

What, is he going to go around asking people for their names? Why would people even tell him their names assuming that is Loki's plan? And, should he actually meet Chaos, why would he tell the assassin his name? Unfortunately, it doesn't look like the assassins even pondered this at all.

They seemed utterly sure that Chaos was the name of the one that had destroyed their beloved guild. I suppose it's only to be expected, especially considering how easy it was for Loki to have known where to find his target (seriously, how exactly does this divination thing work and are we really expected to believe that it's that simple? Perhaps if things were explained a bit more, then it would have been more believable).

loki, chaos, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
Regrettably, no explanations are given and it doesn't look like we'll get answers anytime soon (if at all) since we move straight to Chapter 31 of Volume 4 wherein Loki finds Chaos.

Before that though, what questions can we ask regarding said incident?

  • How will the assassin find his target?
  • What kind of cool spell or item or ritual or whatever is he going to use to find the one he's looking for?
  • He's probably going to have a hard time because his only clue is practically useless and unreliable.
  • If he's not going to ask people for their names, then what is he going to do?
  • Is he just going to wander around until he finds the right person?

Loki didn't seem to have had a hard time at all though (it might have been better if he did have a difficult time, so it would have seemed more believable and plausible) since he easily spots Chaos thanks to whatever's written on the back of the latter's shirt.

No, I don't know how that is supposed to be believable. I mean, what if there are other people who also have shirts similar to Chaos'? What if Chaos decided to change his shirt (considering how many of the characters later get an unexplained makeover, this is a valid reason for concern)?

skurai, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa, assassins guild
How does Loki know that he found the right person just by noting whatever was written on the back of that person's shirt? He seemed really sure about his assumption too since he was quick to start attacking.

We don't get an explanation about all this though. Instead, we just find out, in Chapter 32 of the same volume, that the character 'rain' is what's written on Chaos' garment.

Wouldn't you say that that makes things even more unbelievable?

It would have been much better if whatever was written on Chaos' shirt was something uncommon because, as it is, rain is so common that it's so easy to think and believe that many other people would be wearing outfits that have that symbol.

Do you think that Loki should have had a harder time in finding the resident main character? Do you think that the clues given to the assassin were pretty much useless and unreliable? Do you wish that the manhwa had better explained these things so that they would appear more believable?

*Notes:
- Image with added text was modified by Freya Yuki based on the image by Carl Emil Doepler (Public Domain) from Wikimedia Commons
- Said image was chosen because the figure depicts Loki from Norse Mythology
- The rest of the pics are enlarged product images from Amazon.com; links shown above via Amazon's Native Shopping Ads widget

1 Time Fenris Fenrir Is Not Cool (Ragnarok Manhwa)

Wednesday, January 08, 2014 No comments:
chaos, fenris fenrir, balder, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa, ooc, out of character
Alternate titles for this post include: "Chaos' moment of brilliance" and "the one time Fenris Fenrir is out of character".

Fenris, a character from the Ragnarok: Into The Abyss manhwa, is generally cool and awesome, but what is the one time in which we can say that she was uncool?

Do you like Fenris Fenrir? She's actually one of the characters that I like best in this graphic novel. There are many reasons why I like her and find her to be a great and respectable character. I talk more about that in this post.

This one focuses on the one time I didn't exactly like her and wherein I thought she was acting out of character. When did this happen and what exactly happened?
fenris fenrir, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa, ooc, out of character
In Chapter 7 of Volume 2 of the manhwa, Fenris Fenrir finally finds the reincarnation of Balder who turns out to be the character called Chaos (though, really, it seemed that everyone knew this fact already way before it had even been revealed).

Anyway, so she finds Chaos and tells him about his past life as Balder. In Chapter 8 of the same volume, she adds that they have to find Balder's true form and combine Chaos' soul to it though how exactly this works, we never find out because the guy interrupts her explanations.

I'm inclined to be a bit miffed about that actually since it would have been nice if we could get a decent explanation on what exactly is going on in this comic (like regarding the past lives of these two and what happened a thousand years ago. The sad thing is we never get satisfactory answers about that. It's all just a confusing mess), but, considering Chaos was actually being sensible, logical and smart right now, I suppose we can let this go for now.

So what exactly did the resident main character do and say, after being told that he was actually a god in his past life, that could be considered a perfectly valid and reasonable reaction?

First of all, he didn't believe any of what he just heard and I applaud him for that because, really, who would believe some girl they just met for the very first time telling them such extraordinarily unbelievable things? It was definitely right for him to ask for further explanations about this as well as proof that the woman's words were absolutely and completely true.

In this instance, Chaos is certainly a very likable character and that's saying something since I dither between liking him and not exactly liking him (like, what's so special about him anyway? And I hate how it seems like he's being paired with Iris Irine since she's not a likable character what with being immature, childish and annoying pretty much all the time. Sometimes, I really wish Fenris had been the main character instead. She would have been far more interesting).

balder, god, chaos, fenris fenrir, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
Now that the graphic novel's protagonist has just asked for evidence, what do you think Fenris did? What was the ideal and right thing that she should have done?

She should have extensively explained everything to the hero and allowed us readers to be privy to this explanation (a flashback is optional, but highly appreciated and recommended).

She should have told him stories about his past life as a god, their experiences together, what really happened a thousand years ago, etc.

As proof, she should have given him Guarding Wind, the sword that was Balder's and is now supposed to be Chaos' since he is the reincarnation of said god. It would have fit the woman's character and personality if she did these things because we've known her to be a pretty intelligent and highly capable person.

So how can anyone explain why she ended up giving such a crazy and unacceptable answer to Chaos when the latter asked her for proof? It's no wonder that the guy didn't believe her. Who would believe her if she told them something like that and didn't bother to give sufficient evidence to back up her claims?

It was like she wasn't herself at all because, really, after we've seen how Fenrir searched for Balder's reincarnation and how determined she was to find him and how she knew many different things (like that weird spell thing she used to find said god), how could she just mess up and give such a lousy answer to one easy question?

Seriously, even just handing Guarding Wind over to the main character should have helped a bit, like maybe the protagonist will feel a connection with the sword or something like that and yet she didn't do this at all. Why not (another question should probably be where did the weapon disappear to)? Don't you find it frustrating how she gave such a weird answer to Chaos?

The scene was probably meant to be amusing and even funny, but since we've known the woman to be a sensible and intelligent person, it just made me ask what could be wrong with her because she shouldn't have been saying things like that.

Well, thankfully, it doesn't look like there are other moments of Fenris Fenrir being uncool and seemingly out of character. But what do you think of this particular scene? Do you think she was being out of character here?

*Notes:
- Image with added text was modified by Freya Yuki (CC:BY-SA) based on the image by hayashinomura (CC:BY-SA) from deviantArt
- Said image is meant to symbolize something being wrong, strange or out of character by the way the figure looks
- The rest of the pics are enlarged product images from Amazon.com; links shown above via Amazon's Native Shopping Ads widget

Problems With Sara Irine And The Valkyries Of Ragnarok Manhwa

Sunday, January 05, 2014 No comments:
Sara Irine is a character from Ragnarok: Into The Abyss. She's a Valkyrie and a pretty powerful one at that. But what are some of the things that can be pretty confusing (or that doesn't seem to make sense) about her and the other Valkyries that appear in said manhwa?
sara irine, valkyries, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
Let's start with Sara since she is the first Valkyrie to be introduced in Ragnarok and she is the one that this post title specifies. When we first meet Sara in volume 1 of the manhwa and then find out that she is a Valkyrie, there's nothing that seems odd about that.

However, events that happen in volume 2 quickly change the way we know things, causing us to feel confused and even disbelieving. Volume 2 tells us that Sara Irine wants revenge on the city that abandoned her. She then shows up in Fayon, a city in Midgard. The fact that she shows up in this city seems to clearly indicate that she was born here and that's where the problem lies.

If she is from Fayon and if Fayon is a city in Midgard, then doesn't that mean that Sara is a mortal, a human? If so, how can she be a Valkyrie? In Norse Mythology, Valkyries are women that have been tasked to bring heroes and warriors to Valhalla (located in Asgard, the realm of the gods) upon the deaths of these people.

There is nothing in Norse Mythology that seems to indicate that Valkyries are mortals. In fact, they appear to reside in Asgard themselves, which seems to imply that they could be Norse goddesses of a sort.

valkyries, norse mythology, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa, comic
I understand that the Ragnarok manhwa is only loosely based on Norse Mythology, so a lot of things are bound to be different.

However, if the comic doesn't make these things clear to us, it's highly likely that many would think or assume that the Valkyries in the graphic novel are pretty much the same as the Valkyries in the stories.

We only know that Sara Irine is one of the 12 Valkyries of Valhalla and that she works for the goddess Freya. This wouldn't have been a problem at all had she not also been introduced as the daughter of Lord Irine who is a mortal.

Part of Volume 3's summary or story so far portion even tells us that, 12 years ago, Sara Irine was apparently going to be sacrificed so that a new heir to the city of Fayon could be named. The question is, of course, why? Why is this even necessary? What's wrong with Sara being the heir of Fayon? Why couldn't she be the heir?

But, more importantly, when Sara escaped from the aforementioned city, it was said that she became one of Freya's Valkyries, which thus appears to indicate that Valkyries aren't born (as in, you're not born as a Valkyrie), but made.

sara irine, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa, valkyrie
How does this work though? And how can this just happen? What is the criteria for one to become a Valkyrie?

Does this mean that any mortal could become a Valkyrie if they want to? So, how did Sara get all her powers and abilities?

If she was made into a Valkyrie, does that mean all her strength and the things that she can do weren't inherent in her and that the only reason she can do these things was because she became a Valkyrie?

*Sigh*. Yeah, I also wish it wasn't this confusing. The only thing that seems pretty clear is that the Valkyries in the manhwa are obviously different from the ones in Norse Mythology, though how exactly these things work and all the other aforementioned questions are still in dire need of answers.

Anyway, let's just move on to another Valkyrie before we get any more confused with Sara Irine. Volume 1 of Ragnarok also introduces us to another Valkyrie named Zenobia. She's apparently from the city of Daema, but what does that mean to us readers? We don't even know where Daema is. Is this city in Asgard or Midgard?

zenobia, valkyrie, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
And why is she a Valkyrie from Daema while Sara is a Valkyrie from Valhalla?

The character Arkana is also introduced, but we don't know if she's also a Valkyrie or not or if she's even human or not.

In Chapter 4 of Volume 1, Zenobia says that Sara Irine is her sister. But how can this work? They have different last names. Could they be just half-sisters then? Or could Zenobia simply mean that they are like sisters because they are both Valkyries?

What do you think of Ragnarok's Valkyries? Do they confuse you? Do you wish they were more like the Valkyries in Norse Mythology or at least that the manhwa had better been able to explain exactly how its Valkyries worked?

*Notes:
- Image with added text was modified by Freya Yuki based on the image by Rusembell (CC:BY) from deviantArt
- Said image is meant to represent Sara Irine since the figure in said image appears to be powerful and strong
- The rest of the pics are enlarged product images from Amazon.com; links shown above via Amazon's Native Shopping Ads widget

Trivia And Mystery Of Odin's Beholders (Ragnarok Manhwa)

Thursday, January 02, 2014 No comments:
Odin's Beholders are two characters named Huginn and Muninn from Ragnarok: Into The Abyss manhwa. What interesting trivia is there about these two and just what is so mysterious about them?
ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa, odin's beholders, Huginn, Muninn
Both Huginn (meaning thought) and Muninn (meaning memory) actually appear in Norse Mythology though rather (read: pretty much entirely) different from how they appear in the Ragnarok manhwa. For starters, the figures from Norse Mythology definitely do not come in human shape or form as both are actually ravens.

Odin's Beholders are usually seen in human form in the comic though the included player handbook tells us that the two can take the shape of crows. In Norse Mythology, the two ravens belong to Odin and their task is to fly all over the world, gathering all sorts of information, which they will then report to the king of the gods.

In Ragnarok: Into The Abyss, we don't know if Odin's Beholders used to do that since we know nothing about them and Odin himself hasn't made an appearance yet and is hardly ever mentioned by anyone (apparently, the goddess Freya is now the supreme ruler of the realm of the gods, though how this could have happened and where Odin is, no one knows and the manhwa doesn't seem to care enough to give us all the details about all this).

Huginn and Muninn first appeared in Volume 1 of the graphic novel as mere shadows watching Fenris Fenrir. They weren't even properly introduced then and they just came across as mysterious shadowed figures that readers knew absolutely nothing about. Unfortunately, Odin's Beholders are never properly introduced to us.

odin's beholders, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
Instead, they are listed in the player handbook and we are told that they can take the shape of crows and that they are apparently manipulating events and have mysterious plans of their own that no one knows about.

Yeah, it would have been much better if this was shown to us, but now we're expected to go through the manhwa as if this was fact already so that the next time we see these two, the comic is operating under the impression that we already know who Huginn and Muninn are.

If people didn't bother reading that player handbook, then they would likely be lost and would end up wondering who these strange figures are and where they suddenly came from especially since their appearance in volume 1 could hardly be classified as a proper introduction, considering we only saw their shadows and briefly at that.

The graphic novel apparently doesn't care about things like that though as it just keeps showing these 2 mysterious figures to us seemingly whenever it wants to. We see them in Chapter 22 of Volume 3 wherein they easily save Sara Irine and Skurai from Nidhogg. This simple act brings forth a number of questions all at once:

  • Exactly what kind of powers and abilities do these two have that they can easily save Sara and the wielder of Talatsu from the dragon?
  • How powerful are they?
  • Why did they save the swordsman and the Valkyrie?
  • What are they planning?
  • Whose side are they on?
  • Who are they working for?

skurai, assassins guild, odin's beholders, ragnarok: into the abyss, manhwa
Unfortunately, our many questions fall on deaf ears as none get answered. We just go on seeing Huginn and Muninn doing what they do best - being as frustratingly and annoyingly mysterious as possible.

The next time we see these two is in Volume 3, Chapter 23 where we find that they've transported Skurai to the headquarters of the Assassins' Guild.

Considering the two subsequently try to convince the swordsman to destroy the entire guild in the very next chapter, we can thus surmise that the reason they brought Skurai here is for this very purpose, though why they want the assassins terminated, we still don't know.

Huginn and Muninn confuse and annoy us further as they make another appearance in Chapter 27 of Volume 4 wherein they tell the leader of the assassins that Chaos is the name of the guild's destroyer before killing said leader.

Once again, it just has to be asked, what are these two planning? What in the world are they up to? What do they hope to gain by doing these things? Are they working for someone or doing all of this for their own plans?

Do you think we'll ever know the answers to all these questions about Odin's Beholders (Update: unfortunately, the comic abruptly ends in Volume 10 and we never got to find out more about these two)? What's your theory on what these two are up to and why they're doing the things that they're doing?

*Notes:
- Image with added text was modified by Freya Yuki based on the image by Arthur Rackham (Public Domain) from Wikimedia Commons
- Said image is meant to represent Huginn and Muninn because they take the form of ravens in Norse Mythology
- The rest of the pics are enlarged product images from Amazon.com; links shown above via Amazon's Native Shopping Ads widget