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This evil must be destroyed.

—Ra to the Emperor

Ra was a powerful god, in Egyptian mythology, who made his first appearance in Episode XXXI: Jack in Egypt.

Character Outline

Ra, otherwise known as Re, was one of the most prominent deities in Egyptian Mythology and the god of the sun, specifically the midday or noonday. His form changed during the course of the day: he began as the scarab Khepri (an amulet of whom was used to summon him), Ra in midday and Amun-Ra at dusk.

Background

Episode XXXVII: The Birth of Evil, Part 1

Ra, Odin, and Rama battled The Black Mass in space.

Amun Ra

Ra in his Amun Ra form

Unfortunately, a small fragment of the Black Mass escaped from the scene and went unnoticed by the gods. For countless eons, the fragment floated in space until it crashed into the prehistoric Earth and caused the Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event. The fragment then became a pool of black tar-like substance and a black forest soon appeared around it.

For untold numbers of periods, the black forest devoured any living creatures by drowning them into the tar or impaled them from the ground. The forest grew at an alarming rate that it started to destroy settlements and its people. The Emperor, Samurai Jack's father, decided to destroy the evil at its source. With a magical elixir that was given by a Buddhist Monk, The Emperor and his cavalry charged into the forest, only to have his entire army slain by trees that suddenly sprang out from the ground and impaled them. Continuing his journey to the black pool, The Emperor recited a sutra, dipped his arrow into the elixir, and then fired it towards the Sun to ignite it. When the arrow plunged into the pool, it seemed that the elixir had worked when the trees that grew from the pool withdrew to the pool's depth and then re-merged, only gave it a humanoid form. Thus, Aku came into existence, and declared that he was the new master.

The Emperor attempted to slay Aku with his arrows and his katana, only to find them useless. Aku then had The Emperor tied to a gargantuan tree from the pool and proceeded to destroy his kingdom, much to his horror. The gods then sent Sleipnir to rescue The Emperor and brought him to a temple on a mountaintop. From the purity of his spirit, the gods crafted a Katana for him to destroy Aku. After he successfully defeated Aku, The Emperor sealed the demon into the Earth and an evil-looking tree then emerged from the ground. After he knew that Aku would return one day, The Emperor then told his wife, The Empress, that he would have a plan to prepare for that.

Ra-0

Episode XXXI: Jack in Egypt

When Jack was threatened by the Minions of Set, he found himself outmatched and managed to summon Ra, who used his eye beams and vaporized them. Jack attempted to persuade Ra to tell him of any time portals that the god might be aware of. Enigmatically, Ra ascended into the sky without answering and left Jack to suppose that he did not.

Episode XCVIII

Ra made his return in this episode along with Rama and Odin to help Jack be reunited with his katana after he had vanquished the angry consciousness that was inside of himself, Mad Jack.

Appearance

Ra had the body of a man, but the head of falcon and wore a sun disk. He was seen riding on a crocodile, a sacred animal in ancient Egyptian mythology. Like Odin, Ra had a predominantly gold color scheme. Ra also carried an ankh, the Egyptian symbol for life and a crook (heka), symbol of kingship in ancient Egyptian royalty.

In his first appearance in Episode XXXI: Jack in Egypt, Ra had a mostly golden-brown body and green eyes.

Powers and Equipment

Ra

Ra, with his crook (heka).

Ra was an incredibly powerful deity. His power was so great that he could actually injure the Black Mass which he did so through the use of his crook.

  • Crook (heka): Similarly to how Odin used Gungnir and Rama used his Sharanga, respectively. Ra channeled his power in the form of ancient Egyptian hieratic verses via his crook.
  • Eye Beams: Ra had the power to fire intense beams of light from his eyes. Those beams were powerful enough to destroy the Minions of Set that not even Jack's katana could permanently destroy (which only inflicted temporary damage). Ra, along with Odin and Rama used that ability to extract the strength and purity of the Emperor's spirit in order to forge his katana. They also extracted purity and strength of Jack's own spirit and then infused it to his katana, which made it more powerful than before.
  • Shape-Shifting: As a God, Ra was able to change his form and appearance at will, e.g. a Buddhist Monk.
  • Omniscience: Ra was aware of Aku's rise on Earth. He assumed the form of a Buddhist Monk and forged the Emperor's virtues into a katana, which showed his knowledge of Japanese culture and Buddhism, and also his respect of them. Another possible reason was that the benevolent teachings of Buddhism was in harmony with Maat.
  • Immortality: As a god, Ra was immortal.
  • Astral projection: During the forging scene, Ra was capable of projecting his spirit as the form of a buddhist Monk in order to forge the katana, while his main body was seen behind and glowed in blue.
  • Transmutation: Ra and his fellow gods transmuted the Emperor's virtues into a katana.
  • Precognition: As a god, it was likely that Ra possessed that power that allowed him to see future events.

Quotes

  • "This evil must be destroyed." (The Emperor)
  • "It possesses the power to destroy this evil force." (The Emperor)
  • "To stop a force of Ultimate Evil." (Samurai Jack)

Trivia

  • Given that Ra was the sun god, and the ancient Egyptians believed that the sun was Ra, so Ra appeared in every episode in which the sun was visible.
  • Ra rode a crocodile during the battle against the Black Mass. In Mythology, he rode on two solar barques, Mandjet (the Boat of Millions of Years) or morning boat and the Mesektet or evening boat.
    • Crocodiles were mostly associated with Sobek than Ra. However, Sobek has been periodically syncretized with Ra as Sobek-Ra and was even depicted with a solar disc.