Follow TV Tropes


Fridge / Mortal Kombat 9

Go To

Fridge Logic is found at the main Headscratchers page.

Fridge Brilliance

  • Shinnok has cemented himself as a Magnificent Bastard/Dumbass No More here. The Cosmic Retcon seemingly changes several details that it shouldn't, since Raiden's warning from the future should only have changed minor details during and after the first tournament. This seems like an example of not caring.... until you realize that these changes in particular benefited Shinnok in the end, leaving the Netherrealm in control of several dead, enslaved fighters it didn't have before and having a firmer hold on both Noob Saibot and Scorpion, not to mention Shinnok taking credit for getting Shao Kahn killed (and, very nearly, Raiden). All this which suggests that, like Raiden, Shinnok (the only other survivor of Armageddon besides Shao Kahn and Liu Kang's spirit) has also messed with time and worked to change the outcome of past events—in his case, much more successfully.
  • From the forums:
    "Just realized something else, though. The events of the tournament were changed immediately after Raiden received the message. Things like Nightwolf and Kitana being there can be Hand Waved for practicality's sake (if they weren't there, they'd show up out of nowhere when the story gets around to the game they were introduced) but that's not what I'm talking about. The very first fight of the tournament is against Reptile. In the original timeline, I'm pretty sure none of them even knew Reptile was there, since he was a secret character."
    • Related to this, it may take a second to realize why characters like Kitana and Nightwolf are present at all during the events of the first game other than "why not". The tournament itself was vastly different in the first game to how we know it as now, as it was just any fighting tournament hijacked by Shang Tsung. Most of the characters from the first game are Earthrealm warriors as a result, since the Earthrealm vs. Outworld plot didn't exist until after the first film. It's not just adding in characters for the sake of it, they're RetConning some of the fighters present to balance the teams out!
  • Many X-Ray attacks look like they qualify as fatalities, and some should certainly blind the victim. However, this explains perfectly why no one has previously died in the series, and in so many ways, gives the team a perfect excuse to revive everyone Sindel killed for the sequel, should it come to pass.
  • Advertisement:
  • When Cyber Sub-Zero's classic costume was announced, some fans cried foul because Ed Boon had stated that new characters wouldn't get classic costumes. But Cyber Sub-Zero isn't a new character - it's the first time he's playable in this form, but he's still the same Kuai Liang.
  • The inclusion of Freddy Krueger had a few wondering how he has his powers when the the other Kombatants aren't dreaming. However you may recall that in Mortal Kombat: Deception it was revealed that the MK universe exists only as the dream of the One Being, and would cease should he ever wake. The MK universe is a dream, in a sleeping mind, Freddy loses no power.
  • Why did the heroes get slaughtered so easily by Sindel? Because they were holding back in the beginning because she was Kitana's mother and Raiden had likely filled them in on the nature of her death and resurrection. They were trying to contain her so Kitana could break the spell controlling her but, Sindel hit them too hard too fast for them to recover.
    • Which she'd be more then capable of since she was jacked up on Shang's soul. But why does Shang's soul buff her up significantly while he himself doesn't come close to being that strong? Remember Shang steals the majority of the souls to keep himself alive and his body functioning, Sindel has none of Shang's longevity issues and thus can use all the power Shang had stored up in him at full blast.
  • Why was Rain a DLC instead of involved in the actual story like he should have been? Because he would have derailed the storyline. He's too powerful a player to have actually included, no matter how they used him. Either Kitana convinces him to pull a Heel–Face Turn like in the original timeline, in which case they have someone with enough firepower to hold off or even defeat Sindel, not like he'd care if she lived or was being controlled. Or he'd remain a villain and help Sindel, in which case there would be no survivors, possibly even Raiden would be killed as well.
    • That, and, in a meta sense, Rain wasn't even in the original MK3, but rather in the console versions of its Updated Re-release, Ultimate MK3. As for Ermac, he was a rumored glitched character who didn't made it until UMK3.
    • One could also theorize Kenshi and Skarlet's lack of use in the Story Mode was also due to to either one of them derailing the story. In Kenshi's case providing Earthrealm's defender with another powerful warrior who could have made a difference when the time came (such as when Sindel went on her killing spree). In Skarlet's case letting Outworld's army have a woman who could make things even worse for Earthrealm than in the current story.
  • Stryker shows a bit of savvy when he immediately recognizes Mileena is a bad guy. In the Armageddon intro, Stryker shows it again by being the first to run up the pyramid, but only after punching the lights out of Mileena who was distracted at the time.
  • When Raiden sends his message to himself, mixed in with the scenes are very faint images of character other scenes faces. One of the last of these is Quan Chi. It may be possible Quan Chi witnessed some of this and tied it into his scheme, or twisted what Raiden received to aid himself.
    • Quan Chi seems to be smiling when Liu Kang defeats Shao Kahn, which seems to be planned.
  • Mortal Kombat is a fighting game series with multiple branching outcomes in each game with no clear way to tell which endings are canon. Some are obviously non-canon (like Raiden's ending in the first game), but we really don't have a guide to the true events of the series. With few major instances (the Smoke/Sub-Zero switch and Kung Lao's death), we don't know what's supposed to actually happen anymore than Raiden does. So, it's entirely possible that until Raiden saves Smoke, we're just being treated to the actual events of the first two games.
  • Given his hidden agenda it seems strange that Quan Chi would use his magic to help Shao Kahn. However, after giving it some thought it makes sense, in the original timeline there was a gap between the events of the Outworld tournament and the invasion of Earth, a gap many of the heroes used to prepare from the invasion (Jax upgrading his arms, Johnny Cage seemed to assume 3 was going to happen in his ending, Nightwolf had visions and used his magic to shield his people, etc.). Quan Chi healing Kahn sped up the invasion, as did raising Sindel himself, robbing the heroes of the time they needed to prepare and maximizing casualties while still ensuring Shao Kahn's death! Between the healing and raising Sindel he also managed to completely remove Shang Tsung from the Emperor's favor, eliminating his biggest rival as well as earning the Emperor's favor!
  • When you look at the three cyborg's damaged modes, Cyrax and Sektor show mechanical parts that are metallic. When Cyber Sub-Zero takes damage, you can see red fibers and his brain. Seems kinda weird (as it makes him look like a skinned human in armor rather than a cyborg) until you realize that those fibers are not his muscles, but coolant pipes running through his body.
  • Raiden did the right thing in the first third of the game. Sure it didn't change the future (his amulet cracked) but at that stage it was too early to fulfill his future self's word as standing down at that stage would have just legalized Shao Kahn's invasion. He couldn't "win" until the second third and onwards (and even that is up for debate since Raiden accepting Shang Tsung's offer for an Outworld tournament is acknowledged by the Elder Gods, possibly validating the claim against Earthrealm if Outworld won their tournament; only when Shao Kahn crossed into Earthrealm without proper claim was he absolutely out of accord with the Elder Gods rules).
  • Mileena has what is probably the most stripperific outfit in the entire Mortal Kombat series. Her behavior in Mortal Kombat X (and 9, to an extent) provides insight as to why exactly she would choose to show so much skin; she's portrayed as being very insecure and self-conscious about her looks. After winning a round in X, she sometimes taunts the opponent with "I saw you staring" (which seems to be her trying to convince herself that this is the case). It also appears that she had some type of surgery to give her human lips, she flips out when Johnny Cage accuses her of having sex with Baraka (and also when he calls her a butterface), and she outright flirts with Liu Kang, Kung Jin, and Sub-Zero. Her choice to wear such a revealing outfit is possibly her way of getting attention— she definitely comes off somewhat often as a woman child.
    • This explanation doesn't really work at face value, since most of the other girls in MK9 (and throughout the franchise) wear similar outfits yet don't have the same personality issues. However, they also don't have elongated razor sharp teeth that force their lips open at all times despite being cloned from a standard humanoid with a far more beautiful face. Prior to the Netherrealm timeline shift, this same issue was portrayed by Mileena's outfits being deliberately more provocative and revealing than Kitana's.
  • The new x-ray attacks inflict rather horrible damage to the victim, broken bones, destroyed organs, etc. And yet, characters can still keep fighting through injuries that would be fatal to normal human beings; presumably, everyone has sufficient superhuman stamina, durability, or regeneration to survive things like exploded spleens and smashed skulls. Suddenly, those end of fight fatalities make sense- they aren't gratuitous overkill, they are the only way to actually make your opponent *stay* down.
    • The fourth game had the ability to break bones as a standard move. These moves didn't actually cause any more permanent harm than any other move, even though a normal person would be left unable to fight, several characters could even do neck breaks. Tanya's breaker move was to wrap her thighs around her opponent's head and spin 180 to break their neck, and one of her fatalities was an enhanced version, where she spins around three times, because simply breaking their neck once will not kill them.

  • Kabal is revealed to be Stryker's partner in the police force in the Mortal Kombat reboot. All of a sudden, it becomes a lot clearer why Rain captured them together in Mortal Kombat Annihilation, doesn't it?
    • That's more like Hilarious in Hindsight than actual Fridge Brilliance. In the original trilogy, there were no hints whatsoever that Stryker and Kabal were buddies.
      • Also, the fact that their Animalities (a skeletal, possibly prehistoric rhino and a tyrannosaurus, respectively) can possibly count.
  • It bugged me that Quan Chi was in MK9, considering it's a retelling of the original trilogy & Quan Chi didn't appear in the core games until MK4, so he didn't really fit in with the roster. But then I realised - Quan Chi is from that era, he was introduced in Mortal Kombat: Defenders of the Realm which was set during the events of MK3.
    • Well, technically speaking, he's a Canon Immigrant from DotR. However, in the actual canon of the games, Quan Chi had been present before the events of the first game, as seen in Mortal Kombat Mythologies: Sub-Zero.
      • I wasn't actually talking about the canon of the games, though. If we're going from the continuity, then Ensemble Darkhorse characters like Kenshi & Sareena should have been included on the disc too, as their back stories place them as being active in the canon at the time of the original trilogy, despite not making their first appearances until later games.
    • Something that has been on my mind since I got the game is that no one should be surprised to see these characters. At first I was with you on seeing Quan Chi. Especially jarring was seeing Cyrax at the first tournament but while it takes place chronologically (sort of) before the games in which they were introduced, think about this: what kind of tournament only has 7 contestants? The original Mortal Kombat Tournament which we saw in the first game focused on the main cast, but we should assume that there WERE others there, just like in the movie. We just didn't see them because video games had small amounts of memory back then. And Kenshi and Sareena ARE there.
  • I was wondering how Kung Lao beat The Deadly Alliance in MK9 but got killed by Shang Tsung alone in the original timeline. Then it hit me Shang Tsung had Liu Kang's soul which means he either got on hell of a power boost or used Liu Kang's memories against him making sure he never had a chance.
  • Raiden's attack babble has always been a feature of the games, always assumed to be random gibberish. But in MK9, when Shao Kahn is defeating him in the Battle of Armageddon, we see him pick up his broken medallion and begin to chant in what we can assume to be an ancient language. That's most likely what he was always shouting.
    • Also, lots of fans started complaining about Raiden's severe case of holding the Idiot Ball in this game, particularly when it came to "He Must Win". If Raiden had sent himself the message, "Shao Kahn must win," then Kahn would have won the first (tenth, whatever) tournament fairly, legally allowing him to merge Earthrealm. So it actually did help that Raiden misinterpreted the message until the last minute.
    • Well Raiden didn't exactly have much time to compose his message before Shao Kahn Splattered his head. Otherwise you'd think that he'd say something like "Beat Shao Khan in the Tournements, but let him win when he invades, so the Elder Gods will actually do something."
  • While likely unintentional by the creators, just take a look at Shao Kahn's name. If you remove the "ao" in "Shao", replace it with "ere" and then switch the "a" and "h" in Kahn, you would get Shere Khan, the Big Bad tiger from The Jungle Book. Seems like nothing at first, but then take a look at Kahn's [1] and bodyguard Kintaro, who is a tiger-like Shokan, and then in MK9 in which he has a creature known as a "TaiGore" for a pet in his throne room.
  • With the new Reboot/Soft Reset to the series, it makes sense that the characters would take paths divergent than their earlier counterparts. What did make it confusing, though, is how they went from the somewhat punny-naming serial numbers LK-9T9(Ninety-Nine), LK-4D4(Forty-Four), and LK-7T2(Seventy-Two) to the unusual LK-52O(Five Two-Oh). Ends up, they were still being punny as all get out, just a bit more subtly so. 52O sounds structurally similar to Sub-Zero, but there's a possible deeper meaning (possibly overthinking.) 52O could also be a semi-numerical alteration of SZO, or Sub-ZerO.
  • This came to me doing the challenge tower in Mortal Kombat 9. One of the challenges is Johnny Cage vs his stunt double. That means anytime we see a mirror match (where the player's character fights themselves) with Johnny, he's fighting his stunt double.
  • Do you remember the Mortal Kombat 9 scene featuring Sindel killing all of the heroes, only for Nightwolf to off her as well? I'm sure you do! It seems like a pure shock value scene, but maybe there could be more to this. Recall that Armageddon was a last-ditch attempt to neutralize all of the Kombatants before they became a threat to existence (ignore the fact that it failed miserably). But if powerful heroes like Liu Kang and Kung Lao die early in the timeline, the chances of Armageddon will surely go down, right? What's more, many of the dead characters were connected to future ones, and their absence/zombification may rule those characters out for future involvement, further reducing the stress on the realms. For instance, if Shang Tsung is dead, there will be no Deadly Alliance, meaning that several Kombatants will stay out of the conflict for the realms.
  • Unintentional, but In MK9's story mode, Smoke has a part where he wanders through the Living Forest. He's peeking out from behind a tree when he sees Shang Tsung and Kano making an arms deal. This could be seen as a nod to the second game, when he was peeking out from behind a tree in the Living Forest as a Secret Character.

Fridge Horror

  • Liu Kang's dying words to Raiden was "You killed us all." You can easily deduce this from the fact that Raiden's actions have led to dire consequences that made things increasingly worse for the heroes, but the Fridge Horror kicks in that this can also apply to the things Raiden didn't do. For example, he could have saved Sub-Zero from getting captured had he zapped the cyborgs similarly to when he saved Smoke. He could have zapped Shao Kahn before he came close enough to snap Kung Lao's neck. If he had merely teleported and knocked out Liu Kang instead of frying him to a crisp, Liu Kang would still be alive. At this point, him calling out the Elder Gods for standing by and doing nothing is particularly hypocritical in light of the previous two examples.
    • In the first example has Raiden stating that if he interferes there's a good possibility that the Lin Kuei would retaliate and take Smoke (a bit weak but at least there is a reason). The second, remember Raiden said that he was weakened in Outworld, and we see how powerful Shao Kahn is compared to him in the beginning and (especially) in the ending of the story, so it's possible that he wouldn't be able to stop Kahn in time. Finally the incident with Kang was an accident no one could see coming.
    • Additionally, in the original timeline, the Cyborgs, after capturing Smoke, were only interested in capturing Sub-Zero as well; but because Raiden stopped them from catching Smoke, they instead caught Sub-Zero in front of Shao Kahn, and offered their services in exchange for Kahn letting them take Sub-Zero.
  • Armageddon is prevented once and for all at the end of the game, but it's probably not just due to Shao Kahn's death. If you paid close attention to the storyline of the previous game, it indicates that Armageddon came about because of too many warriors emerging with supernatural powers. When you consider that nearly all of the Forces of Light (and therefore a huge number of superpowered beings) die at the end, it almost makes perfect sense that this timeline ran that course to prevent Armageddon!
    • Going by that train of thought, it might imply that even if Raiden had figured out what "he must win" means, the Elder Gods probably wouldn't have bothered to step in after Kahn's attempt to merge the realms was allowed to succeed unless a number of fighers on one side or the other had been killed, just to be on the safe side. Granted, they probably are smarter than that and might have intervened anyway, but chances are that holding back would have allowed them to kill two birds with one stone.
    • It should noted however, that the majority of the characters who died over the course of MK9 had their souls given to Quan Chi. And several combatants in the Battle of Armageddon were all killed and later revived or otherwise able to take part in the battle (such as Mileena). Unless the character was killed in a way that prevents any sort of return then I wouldn't be sure death would prevent a character from being part of what triggers Armageddon.
  • Kahn is defeated, but are the realms still merged?
    • It's likely that the Elder Gods intervened before he could actually merge Earthrealm and Outworld; everything before that was a mere troop invasion. As for other realms tied to Outworld, they're likely still bound. According to recollection, the only reason Edenia got split off in the old timeline was because Sindel broke free of Shao Kahn's control and used her own powers to liberate it. She didn't get free this time around, so this hasn't happened.
  • Not exactly a horror, but still a late thought: Reptile's still alive, so could the return of Onaga still occur in this timeline?
    • It definitely could. And considering how thinned the ranks of Earthrealm's warriors were during the events of the game, it's quite possible Raiden will go on a recruitment drive for the next game. It makes sense that the new warriors will be those from the following games. We already know Kenshi's around.
  • It is stated that Skarlet is so dangerous that Shao Kahn has to keep her chained up when he doesn't need her in order to prevent unnecessary accidents. So, just who exactly did she kill for a guy like him to decide he needed to do that??
  • Some Fridge Horror can be interpreted from, of all things, the Babality. Those babies won't have long to live due to that harshness of the battle environments (as well as the fact that there's an overhanging question of who will take care of them, if anyone will come at all.)
    • On top of that, performing a Babality on a cyborg. Cyborgs won't mature in those robotic shells, so you're basically sentencing them to be trapped in miniature form with the intellect of a baby FOREVER. And if some Babalities are an indication, the victims retain some memory of their adult forms, meaning that it's entirely possible that they're aware of their predicament, and can do nothing about it.
    • Stryker's Babality, in which he plays with his gun, becomes a lot less funny when you consider that you have a baby holding a loaded gun. Or funnier, depending upon your sense of humor.
    • Speaking of Babalities, imagine the horror of new DLC character Freddy Krueger performing a Babality on someone. For those who don't get it, Freddy is known in canon as a child molester...
      • You think that's bad? What do you think Mileena's going to do to those babies? "Tasty!"
      • Well, it's been confirmed that Babalities only last 1 hour, and some kombatants actually retain their mental mind, which may explain why baby Shang Tsung sits contently, as if he's thinking about evil plans.
  • Shao Kahn's death may have resulted in a victory for Earthrealm, but there's a power vacuum in Outworld because of it. Here's hoping Edenia, Vaeternus, Zaterra and any other realm that was merged with Outworld finds some way to separate from it, because between the Tarkata, Shokan and Centaurs, things are gonna get ugly in a hurry. And that's not even counting whatever the hell Shinnok's planning if part of his plan involves Outworld somehow.
    • We do see the Outworld warriors discussing Kahn's succession when they presume Liu Kang killed him. Mileena's name comes up quickly as Kahn's appointed heir and, as we would see in the following game, she did indeed succeed Shao Kahn as Empress of Outworld (a position for which "Kahn/Kahnum" is established to be the corresponding title, rather than a surname, but that's beside the point). But her rule was so reviled by the population, she was overthrown by Kotal Kahn in short order. So, for better or worse, the highest position of power in Outworld wasn't vacated for too long. And, if Tanya and Rain's alliance with Mileena to retake the throne is any indication, it's quite likely that none of the realms Shao Kahn had annexed before had achieved independence. From Mileena's side it's easy to understand, since she would want to maintain her "father"'s status quo, but in Kotal's case it seems more likely that he would need their forces to bolster his defenses from inconvenient extra-realm invasions like the one Havik tried to lead between Shinnok's first (in this timeline) attack to the realms and the game's main timeframe.note 
  • If you thought Shao Kahn emerging as the Grand Champion of Armageddon was bad, it was going to get a lot worse. According to Shang Tsung's bio from the same game, the sole reason he came back from then dead was due to his pact with Kahn- as a matter of fact, all warriors who pledge loyalty to Kahn will do this, in order to keep serving him. So, with that said, it stands to reason that all of the villains who served under Shao Kahn will return, meaning that the Forces of Darkness will be free to run wild on every single plane of existence without resistance since the Forces of Light are dead.
    • A parallel example lies in Mortal Kombat 9 as well. It's hinted that if Shao Kahn dies, so will everyone who entered the pact with him. So when he is Killed Off for Real at the end of Story Mode, that means.....
    • Oh, Crap!, that means Shinnok will have less resistance with his invasion!
      • This pact explains why Shang didn't join Sindel in the Netherrealm after she was killed by Nightwolf even though his soul was used to empower her.
    • The Pact actually goes a long way to justifying Mortal Kombat's thusfar pretty pathetic deathtoll, the fact that its supposed to be a bunch of fights to the death yet hardly any characters seem to die. This means they did die- Liu Kang could have killed Shang Tsung, Goro and anyone else in the Outworld team in the original tournament, but they would have still returned for future games.
      • Would Mileena count as she is next for the throne though? Wouldn't Shao Kahn leave her some of his warriors?
  • Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance was stated on this wiki to be the series turning point, as it marks the moment the that the villains start winning. Consider exactly what happened in that game: Liu Kang and Shao Kahn (not really) were killed off right at the beginning. Now what has happened in Mortal Kombat 9? Oh sure, it's seems clear that dark times are ahead with Shinnok and Quan Chi getting ready to launch their own attacks on Earthrealm and Outworld, but when you consider that Kahn might really be dead this time...
    • In Mortal Kombat X, it is implied that Shao Kahn is officially dead, given that some pre-fight matches while using Ermac has implied that Kahn's soul is currently inside Ermac's body.
  • Shao Kahn being the last one standing in Armageddon seems as though he killed Taven and took Blaze's power (or whichever came first). However, what if Taven actually won as the canon ending to Armageddon dictated (until it was supposedly retconned by 9) and that after empowering the fighters and disappearing off to Edenia for a solution to fix the new mess, Shao Kahn ended up using that power boost over Onaga and came back for Raiden at the pyramid? Considering how stupid strong Shao Kahn was and how unlikely anyone else was to survive the battle of Armageddon, one can start to see how Taven beating blaze and Shao Kahn winning over Raiden with his newfound apocalyptic powers can still fit in the storyline.

How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: