Time for a flashback now. In these trying times, by which I mean both the content desert as we wait to see precisely what NRS is up to and the last week of June, with both a heatwave and the World Cup meaning work is for suckers, it’s often best to delve into the back catalogue of the internet and see what turns up. Well, look no further, for I bring unto you FIVE AND A HALF HOURS of classic Netherkast retrospective on the God of Thunder and Protector of Earthrealm, Lord Raiden!
This was the first of the current, and best, wave of Netherkast retrospectives which has since included Liu Kang (link), Johnny Cage (link) and Shang Tsung (link), with @Shad and Razor steadily working their way through the entire Mortal Kombat roster one incredibly detailed discussion at a time.
Just as Johnny Cage shows the influence of Jean Claude Van Damme and Bloodsport upon the conception of Mortal Kombat, and Liu Kang and Shang Tsung Bruce Lee and Enter the Dragon, Raiden evidences probably the other most powerful influence on Mortal Kombat, Big Trouble in Little China.
An incredibly awesome piece of 80s cheese featuring God Amongst Men, Kurt Russell, this Carpenter classic had a huge influence on Shang Tsung’s character….
….but its most prescient influence on MK was in ‘Lightning’, easily the most eye catching of the warriors known as the ‘Three Storms’. I’m going to just present the following without context.
There’s a fine line between ‘inspiration and homage’ and ‘let’s just do that too’
From there, Raiden has grown and grown, originally from a cold, somewhat unfeeling God to the mentor and protector of the heroes ultimately making the final sacrifice to attempt to defeat Onaga to the borderline antagonistic Dark Raiden to the unfortunate God of Blunder in MK9 and then to his redemption in MKX. He’s become synonymous with the franchise, one of the most easily recognisable faces of Mortal Kombat and of fighting games as a whole, and is generally regarded as one of the ‘trinity’ of Mortal Kombat, alongside fellow MK1 alumni Scorpion and Sub Zero.
And there’s no better place to learn everything there is to learn about the God of Thunder than right here, in two parts for your listening pleasure!
Big thanks to the Netherkast boys and, as always, be sure to check back to TYM daily for everything NRS!
DO NOT PROVOKE A GOD! A Raiden Retrospective