YMMV / The Elenium

  • Acceptable Targets: Apparently, short people, since much is made of Avin Wargunsson's height.
    • What seems to be this directed at homosexuals via the Baron Harparin ends up being a fairly clear demonization and denouncing of pedophilia, since the gay owner from Mirtai's past is depicted quite fairly, honestly, and sympathetically.
  • Big Lipped Alligator Moment: In The Shining Ones, Aphrael summoning a hydrofoil manned by a species of snake-women from another dimension to take the party to where the Bhelliom is hidden
    • The scene right after Zalasta has a conference with Scarpa and Krager Krager becomes sober, having pretended to be drunk for the conversation (to the point of dumping out a drink), and Scarpa suddenly becomes rational instead of his usual frothing-at-the-mouth batshit insane. They have an intelligent conversation, and then both return to their respective status quos. Neither behaves this way ever again in the books. In fact, the actually become worse afterwards; Scarpa begins to command non-existent armies, and Krager begins shaking violently at the thought of even putting a drink down.
  • Complete Monster:
  • Crowning Moment of Funny: See the entry, but really, the entire sequence in Cippria where Sparhawk and Kurik break into the Elenian consulate turns into a comedy act, from a random naked lady to an unnecessary bridge to Sparhawk's juvenile shenanigans once they're inside:
    After a moment, he heard Kurik's hoarse whisper coming from the kitchen door. "Is that you?"
    For an instant, he was tempted to whisper back, "No," but then he got himself under control again.
    • Ulath does this occasionally.
    Sparhawk: Ulath, I've got a question.
    Ulath: For me? Oh, Sparhawk, you shouldn't have!
  • Designated Villain / What Measure Is a Mook?: It's startlingly common for Eddings' heroes to butcher people who simply happen to be in their way. At first these are specified as being Annias' venal and bullying "church soldier" brute squad, but by the third book, soldiers in the service of totally random patriarchs are being killed just as examples. The Rendors come in for a lot of this too: considering the amount of corruption and vice the Elene Church condones in its high churchmen, treating them as subhumans comes off as a bit myopic. This may be somewhat justifiable by the main cast being comprised mostly of hardened, pragmatic soldiers with no real problems about killing anyone in their way. Sephrenia is the only one who regularly expresses disgust for their nonchalant attitudes.
  • Full-Frontal Assault: Bellina, under Azash's curse, who hangs out naked in her brother's cellar butchering and eating children alive.
    • And then inverted when the Knights run across a horde of naked revelers trying to summon Azash into a clay idol, and promptly assault them.
    • Also done by Lillias during her farewell to Sparhawk.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: During the second book the Knights are approached by a displaced Troll in the dark who starts shouting for them to hand over the child who stole from him. Everyone automatically assumes it's Talen. It's inexplicable at first, until you find out later the Troll is actually Ghwerig and he's looking for Flute, not Talen, whom everyone thinks of instantly when they hear "child" and "thief".
    Ulath: How could Talen pick a Troll's pocket? They don't even have pockets!
  • Jerkass Woobie: Avin Wargunsson. Yes, he's a Small Name, Big Ego Prince Regent, but he developed this bad attitude because of his stature; being over a foot shorter than everyone around him, he was constantly ignored (and often stepped on) by everyone else - Thalesians generally wind up somewhere in the 6-7 feet range. Upon his death, Bergsten is more concerned about if the wine that Avin was drowned in could be saved than about the Prince Regent being assassinated in his own office.
  • Magnificent Bastard: One could make a case for Martel. The man has his fingers in just about every Evil Plan in the books, and just when you think you've stopped them all, he shows up at Chyrellos with a massive army, having tricked Wargun into chasing shadows hundreds of miles away, to declare Annias Archprelate by force. Oh, and the Ehlana thing? Just a scheme he and Azash cooked up.
  • Narm: Annias' title is Primate. It makes sense if you think about the origin of the word, but it's hard to take a guy seriously when people are practically calling him "ape" left and right.
    • Scarpa. His character lose a lot of points when you know that his name means "Shoe" in Italian.
      • That might be a bit of Fridge Brilliance, since Scarpa's status as a bastard son of a prostitute caused everyone (even his own father) to kick him around all his life (and generally treat him like something you'd scrape off the bottom of one).
  • Sequelitis: One could make a case for the Elenium being some of Eddings' best stuff. But then the Tamuli comes along, which is a big step down, largely thanks to an abundance of Harmless Villains.
  • Tear Jerker: Aphrael can be a very irritating character at times, but her declaration of "They're killing my children, Sephrenia! All over Eosia! The Elenes are killing my children! I want to die!" made this troper want to cry.
    • Martel's last words: "This isn't so bad.... I get to die in the presence of the only two people I ever really loved." Both of whom are his enemies, and one of whom blesses him in his dying moment and sheds tears over it. Also, arguably supports Foe Yay.
    • No mention of when Kurik is killed? And Talen, crying over his father's body: "He's dead, Sparhawk! My father's dead!"
    • What about when it is revealed that 30,000 Knights got killed in a single battle with Klael's troops? Especially once they mention that almost all of the Cyrinic Knights were killed following their Preceptor — Abriel, arguably the most fundamentally decent character in the whole series — in a charge, meaning that an entire order of Knights has been all but eradicated.