Main Nigh Invulnerability Discussion

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06:44:50 PM Apr 19th 2015
On the one about the One Ring from Lord of the Rings, it says that the One Ring could have been destroyed with dragon fire. This is false as Gandalf explained that not even the fire of Ancalagon the Black, the greatest dragon to have ever lived, could have destroyed the One Ring.*
  • The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring, Book One, Chapter II: "The Shadow of the Past"
02:58:56 PM Sep 19th 2013
edited by
Let's discuss this one.

Edit by Wyldchyld, explanation:

"Given that characters who can be hurt are not eligible for this trope, Naraku is not an example of this trope either. Like Sesshoumaru, he banks on avoiding being hit, but when he does get hit, he gets hurt even if he can ignore it. Either both characters are this trope or neither are. "

Removed this:

  • InuYasha features a constant arms race between the heroes' attacks and their enemies' different levels of invulnerability, generally involving either impossibly tough shells/magic shields, or infinite regeneration. This applies especially to the Big Bad, Naraku, who goes through almost every form of Nigh-Invulnerability. He is initially just a Hive Mind of demon parts that could stay alive (if crippled) with only his head left. After getting his first new body, he could selectively destroy and replace the parts to get stronger, and was a Regenerator that survived being ripped into many pieces only healing slower each time, as well as having a barrier that could keep most people out. Then he made a sentient Soul Jar that moved him from Regenerator to being practically Made of Air without ever being affected by the wounds, in addition to having an even stronger shield that hardly anything could get through. Then he reabsorbs his Soul Jar to lose the Made of Air quality (going back down to regenerator) in exchange for taking its henchman's traits of being Made of Diamond (actual diamond and the even harder scales of a giant tortoise yokai). By the time they actually get around to killing Naraku, it takes the combined power of a weapon that can kill otherwise invulnerable things belonging to the next world rather than this one, another weapon that can cause huge and indefinitely spreading destruction with just one swing, and a third that shoots crescent-shaped holes to hell to cut absolutely anything, including things that can't be sent to hell. And a couple of other powerful evil-destroying attacks on the side.

I gave it as my reasoning that Sesshoumaru just usually doesn't get hit or something like that when removing him as an example. Let me elaborate on that: Naraku has all these defences mentioned here. The only defensive ability Sesshoumaru has (once being hit) is the ability not to be killed by damage as easily as a human and fast (not instantaneous) healing. Naraku has all these "made of air" and "made of diamond" kind of things; they can be overcome but only by various super weapons.

I think there's a difference there, right?
08:25:43 PM Sep 24th 2013
edited by
Besides, Naraku does in fact take hits that make him just chuckle at how being blown to bits has no effect on him or how the most powerful magic energies just bounce off. Well, I'm putting it back now.
08:35:14 PM Sep 24th 2013
edited by
As for "he gets hurt even if he can ignore it", which is true sometimes and sometimes not (see: Made of Diamond), regeneration is mentioned as a form of this trope in the trope description. But no, it doesn't describe the kind that InuYasha or Sesshoumaru has, because that's not invulnerability. It says something like "Cut off their head, they'll grow a new one." Sesshoumaru takes the whole series and some weird magic plot device just to grow a new arm and would obviously be killed if decapitated.
03:54:28 PM Nov 26th 2013
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If you wanted a response within five days, you should have PM'd me to say there was a discussion instead of leaving it for me to notice by accident weeks later.

Made of Diamond and Made of Air don't apply to Naraku in that way. His body is very vulnerable to injury until he gains legendary armour and he credits that armour several times for protecting him. He does flee from battle a couple of times by using miasma but the story doesn't say whether he turns into miasma or cloaks himself in it. Fans have debated that for years.

Naraku's regeneration is no different to many other characters until he hides his heart. Then it's made clear striking his heart will kill him, no matter where it is. At this time, his head is never destroyed so the issue of whether it can regrow never occurs (it never crops up over Sesshoumaru either). Fans can make up what they want on that front. In the story, his head always remains intact while his body is broken into pieces. To regenerate, those pieces all rejoin. Before he hid his heart he had to rely on barriers and only hid the heart because his enemies were getting better at smashing his barriers to injure him. When he took his heart back into his body, he used the legendary armour to protect him. The story also doesn't claim hiding the heart is exclusive to Naraku, and implies it's a common knowledge tactic among youkai which is why characters realise what Naraku's done. Even Kagura benefits in this way from having a missing heart.

You say you removed Sesshoumaru on the grounds that he avoids being hit and it was a plot device that gave him the natural ability to regenerate a strike to the heart. However, Naraku avoids being hit, too, and also relied on multiple plot devices to do it. When the two characters have been hit, they've both been able to regenerate their wounds. Naraku's been more vulnerable to injury than Sesshoumaru, who will mostly No-Sell an attack or tank injuries into not being life-threatening. Three times he's been in danger of life-threatening injuries, the first two he was protected by Tenseiga's magical barrier and the third time he gained the ability to regenerate his heart. Naraku is not so capable of tanking injury, hence the constant quest for protection, and never gained the ability to regenerate his heart.

I'm not saying Sesshoumaru should be readded. I'm saying that your justification applies equally to both characters: both or neither should be on the page, not one or the other.
06:25:29 AM Nov 27th 2013
You're going into so much detail I'd have to reread the series to respond properly. I'm not able to do so at present, but I will that if I had to choose, I'd rather add Sesshoumaru than remove Naraku. Because I'm not able to put the time into research at present, I have to grant your points for the time being, though I'm not convinced until I see this all really holds for myself.
02:00:52 PM Feb 1st 2014
edited by
Sorry, I forgot which Discussion page I'd responded to.

I didn't want to give detail to overwhelm you, only because I think they're a 'both or neither' example and wanted to clarify why. I originally only added Sesshoumaru in the first place because I had a similar discussion with someone else where I realised I was arguing for Sesshoumaru as well as Naraku, so added him as a consequence. If you can think of a way to separate them out though, I'll be fine with that. I just can't at current think of an argument that doesn't apply to both of them.
11:25:42 AM Mar 4th 2013
02:13:15 AM Aug 28th 2011
Shouldn't Kenny be one of this? He's not mentioned.
01:57:43 PM Dec 22nd 2012
Which "Kenny"?
02:45:35 AM Feb 26th 2013
I think s/he means Kenny from South Park, who is listed as of this writing.
07:11:16 AM Aug 24th 2011
would would bullet proof skin be under this or Made of Iron
02:28:48 PM Apr 23rd 2012
Super Toughness is also a possibility.
07:57:59 AM Oct 9th 2013
edited by
For the record, Made of Iron means you aren't supposed to be invulnerable for any reason but are implausibly tough anyway. And there's Immune to Bullets.
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