If you missed my article on Vamana, it can be found here.

I am back again with a group of divine and heroic. I do this every so often when there isn’t enough information that I can find to flesh out an entire article on one god or hero. I did it with Rataosker, Artio, and Awilix, also with the kappa, tanuki, and the kitsune. In this article, we will cover Mulan, a hero from China, Arachne from Greece, and Bakasura, a Hindu demon. Let’s go…

Mulan, also known as Hua Mulan, is a Chinese folk heroine. Chinese Mulan means magnolia flower. Her story was written during the Northern Wei dynasty and has been popular since the Tang dynasty. The original story is called The Ballad of Mulan, and if my understanding is correct, I read the whole English version in roughly two minutes. Surprisingly, Disney kept the base story pretty well. They, of course, added to it, but the base story is there. Also, the original story was short, so it seems to be an easy story to add fantastical elements to.

Source YouTube

For those that don’t know Mulan’s story, in the original one, war was ongoing, and there was a need for men from all families. Mulan’s father was called to service because he did not have a son that could answer the call. Mulan decided to go in her father’s steed. She trained and fought as a man, and none of the men surrounding her knew of her decpetion for the entire 12 years she fought beside them. At the end of the war, Mulan declined titles and rewards, she just wanted a horse to return home with. Once home, she changed her clothes, and it was then her fellow warriors found out she was a woman. So obviously, the ending was a little different between the source and the Disney movie.

Moving on to Arachne, it is a classic case of her mouth writing a check her ass can’t cash. I haven’t been able to find information on her lineage or anything other than versions of the same myth. In all versions, Arachne brags about her skill as a weaver. She boasts of being an even better weaver than Athena. Athena did not take this well and challenged Arachne to a weaving contest. This is where it changes.

In one version, Athena weaves the story of the contest between her and Poseidon over Athens. Arachne weaved about Zeus creeping on mortal women so he could sleep with them. Athena acknowledges Arachne’s skill but wants to teach her humility. When Athena touches Arachne’s head and shows her, Arachne is so distraught with shame she kills herself. Athena brings her back as a spider, allowing her to weave for eternity. The second, Athena, weaves scenes that show humans getting their comeuppance for hubris and disrespect towards the gods. Arachne, on the other hand, weaved scenes about the gods abusing people. Athena was enraged when Athena saw the content and that Arachne was more skilled than she. She threw a potion of Hecate’s on her, and she was turned into a spider to weave for eternity. In the final version, Arachne lost. However, the wager was made so that whoever lost could not touch a spindle again. She was devastated that she would never weave again, and it touched Athena. Athena took pity on Arachne and turned her into a spider, allowing her to weave for eternity without betraying her vow.

Source YouTube

Last, we have Bakasura, a Hindu demon. Bakasura protected the town of Ekachakrapura from the outside. In return, they gave him a weekly cartload of food delivered by one of the townspeople. Unfortunately, he ate the delivery person as well as the food sent to him. Kunti learned of this from a Brahmin family. She and her son Bhima decided that Bhima would kill Bakasura. Bakasura put up a fight but was ultimately killed by Bhima. When Bakasura’s family came upon Bhima killing Bakasura, they were terrified. Bhima told them as long as they gave up eating human flesh, they had nothing to fear from him. After what they had witnessed, they agreed quickly. Maybe Bhima should be in Smite as opposed to Bakasura.

Source YouTube

So what did you think of these three? Arachne is my least favorite, as I am scared of spiders. I have no idea why I torture myself with spiders. I write about Arachne, watch Eight Legged Freaks (2002), Arachnophobia (1990), and such while getting the heebie-jeebies. Let me know your thoughts on these heroes. Until next time, have fun storming the castle!