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Death Gods (死神, Shinigami; FUNimation "Grim Reaper"), also called a Bringer of Death, are true gods who presides over balance.[1]

Overview

Characteristics

A death god can have an appearance both that appears human[2] and inhuman[3] though they all have a regular face like that of a human.[citation needed] Perhaps the most known attribute of the Death God is the Lines Of Sanzu, which seem to be the source of their power.[4][5] Depending on the age, a Death God may or may not have complete lines in the case of Death the Kid. In the case for Asura, however, the Sanzu Lines may also appear differently. 

Though they reproduce through a process in which they fragments parts of themselves, they also possess groins.[6]

Fragment

A method in which a Death God can reproduce is to "fragment" themselves and create a being.[7] The "parent" is able to either make them "complete" or "incomplete." It's also shown that the fragment carries some of the parent's traits, such as Death the Kid's inheriting of the Madness of Order and being born without fear due to Asura harboring Death's former fears within him.[8]

While a fragment will have the Soul Wavelength of their parent within their soul, after two connections of the Lines of Sanzu, a Death God can forfeit their own parent's Soul Wavelength with their soul. When this is performed by Death the Kid, in order to power his own attack, he did so because he didn't want to "ride" on his "father's coattails".[9]

Role and Significance

As true gods in the world, the role of a Death God is the maintaining of balance and equilibrium between good and evil.[10] As such, they're often perceived to have surpassed human understanding[11] as well as being the very symbol of order itself.[12] In addition, Death Gods are also authorities over souls.[13] Despite their purpose, however, they're mistakenly often thought of to preside over people's lives and death as well as being absolute authorities of order itself.[14]

As gods too, they're also even worshiped; examples include the Flying Dutchman, who worships Asura as the Kishin[15] or Justin Law, whom once worshiped Death himself until his defection.[16]

Types of Death Gods

There are several types of Death Gods:

  • Immature: An "immature" Death God refers to a Death God who was born with incomplete Lines of Sanzu, which is something decided by the parent.[17] Because of this, as a Death God grows, their control of the Lines of Sanzu and power expands dependent on age.[18]
  • Mature: A mature Death God refers to a Death God who is born with complete Lines of Sanzu. Not much is known about this beyond the fact that a mature Death God, unlike their immature counterparts, is born with all their Lines of Sanzu complete and have two indications surrounding their head.[17] These Death Gods can co-exist with even a True Death God.[17]
  • True: A True Death God is an individual who possesses all three connected Lines of Sanzu, making them extremely powerful and allowing them to utilize the Madness of Order. True Death Gods can also create fragments to later be their successor, even having control over the "maturity" their fragment initially are. However, only one true Death God can exist at a time and when one becomes a true Death God, the other dies as a result. According to Excalibur, the reason behind the existence of one True Death God at a time is because it is unnecessary to have a numerous number of them.[19]
  • Kishin (鬼神, Kishin; FUNimation "Afreet"): Even Death Gods can become known as Kishins and embody a powerful type of Madness. However, doing so requires the Death God to consume a Demon Weapon in it's weapon form. As witnessed by Asura, a Death God can strangely merge it's body with a Demon Weapon in it's weaponized form.[20]
  • Great Old Ones (旧支配者, Guratto Orrudo Wan): Per being Gods, Death Gods can qualifty to become Great Old Ones by even birth, as evident with Asura being a fragment of Death. However, this can be controlled by a true Death God, as Death the Kid was not considered a Great Old One despite being a fragment himself. Great Old Ones can embody a unique variant of a Madness Wavelength.[17]

Special Abilities

As Death Gods, these beings are perhaps the most powerful type of race in the world, possessing a high amount of raw power as well as special advantages over normal beings within the world. Although each Death God has their own, unique abilities, most of them display the same abilities such as:

  • Magic (魔法, Mahō): Death Gods are capable of utilzing magic at will.[21]
  • Immortality (不死, Fushi): A fully realized Death God is capable of being immortal, unable to be killed by almost any means. This is due to them being an embodiment of a particular concept (such as fear).[22] This also allows them to be capable of living for long amounts of times (over eight centuries) while retaining a youthful appearance and suffering no consequence of old age.[23][24]
  • Regeneration (再生, Saisei):They're also capable of powerful regeneration and depending on the Death God, can reattaching their body parts[25]
  • Unique Physiology: As Death Gods, their skin are immune to sunburns , extreme temperatures, and repels everything such as poisons and cosmetics such as hair dye.[26] It's also speculated that the effects of Demonic Energy from those such as the Magnetic Field doesn't affect them as much.[27]

Common Magic

  • Shinigami Powers (死神の力, Shinigami no chikara): Originating from the Lines of Sanzu are special, divine magical powers capable of being performed by a Death God. Like other abilities, it follows a Death God's particular theme/motif.[28][29]

Specialized Fighting Styles

  • Death God Taijutsu (死神体術, Shishin Taijutsu): A unique fighting style used by certain death gods that allows them to change attack style with a stance.[30]

List of Death Gods

Name Death God Type Status
Death True Deceased
Death the Kid True (formerly Immature) Active
Asura Mature Active

Trivia

  • Though Death Gods are known to reproduce via "fragmentation", it seems that they also possess groins, indicated by Kid's fear at Angela Leon's impending attack upon his testicles.[31] It is unknown if this is a conscious decision made by the true Death God when "fragmenting," as Kid states that he was "made like a human" with intention.[32]
  • According to Excalibur, the limited number of Death Gods is due to the fact that the world itself doesn't require more than one, true Death God.[33]

References

  1. Soul Eater Chapter 77 — Kid:"We're about balance right?"
  2. Soul Eater Chapter 0.3 — Introduces Death the Kid, who's a shinigami.
  3. Soul Eater Chapter 0.3 — Death the Kid and his father interact, a contrasting difference in appearance.
  4. Soul Eater Chapter 63 — Kid acesses one of his father's powers after a Sanzu Lines: Death Claw
  5. Soul Eater Chapter 108 — Kid accesses the Shinigami Jets item.
  6. Soul Eater Manga: Chapter 47
  7. Soul Eater Volume 19 page 92 — The Great Old One of Power: "When the Shinigami cut a piece of himself to create you....."
  8. Soul Eater Chapter 108
  9. Soul Eater Manga: Chapter 81
  10. Soul Eater Volume 19; Chapter 77, page 14
  11. Soul Eater Volume 19;Chapter 81, page 158
  12. Soul Eater Volume 21; Chapter 89, page 45
  13. Soul Eater Volume 4; Chapter 13, page 138 - Kid:What is he trying to accomplish collecting the souls of so many good people...? As an authority over souls, I cannot allow this..
  14. Soul Eater Volume 19; Chapter 78, page 65; Chapter 77, page 14
  15. Soul Eater Volume 11; Chapter 41, page 63
  16. Soul Eater Volume 7; Chapter 23, page 8
  17. 17.0 17.1 17.2 17.3 Soul Eater Manga: Chapter 108
  18. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named Chapter_52
  19. (Yen Press) Soul Eater Manga: Chapter 113 — Excalibur:Joke? Do you think we need a dozen Death Gods? You have the full, proper power of a Shinigami, so your father disappeared.
  20. Soul Eater Manga: Chapter 16
  21. Soul Eater Manga: Prologue #3
  22. Soul Eater Manga: Chapter 108, 112
  23. Soul Eater Manga: Chapter 16
  24. Soul Eater Manga: Chapter 108
  25. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named Chapter_53
  26. Soul Eater Volume 11; Chapter 30, page 121
  27. Soul Eater Volume 9; Chapter 34, page 144
  28. Soul Eater Manga: Prologue 3
  29. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named Chapter_22
  30. Soul Eater Manga: Chapter `15
  31. Soul Eater Manga: Chapter 47
  32. Soul Eater Manga: Chapter 110, page 22
  33. Soul Eater Manga: Chapter 113

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