Sláine MacRoth is the eponymous hero of the long-running 2000 AD strip Sláine. His mother, Macha, was a deadly warrior who gave Sláine his first solid food on the tip of a sword blade. The first significant event in Sláine's life occurred when he was seven and Macha's drunkard husband Roth Bellyshaker boasted that she could outrun the king's chariot in a race. The king forced her to run and she was trampled to death by the horses as Sláine watched. Roth may have made his boast deliberately as a way of getting rid of his wife, because she had been unfaithful to him many times and Roth suspected that she was lying when she said that Sláine was his. The normally obtuse and unperceptive Roth was correct about this. Sláine's true father was Duban, a druid who taught Macha magical secrets and had liaisons with her in subterranean tombs.
When he was sixteen Sláine was cast out by his tribe, the Sessair, for an unauthorized liaison with the King's bride-to-be, Niamh. He spent years exploring Tír na nÓg in the company of his unscrupulous servant, the dwarf Ukko, and occasionally aided by the druidess Nest.
He eventually became embroiled in a war between earthly mystics, led by Myrddin, and the aliens called Cythrons who were harvesting humanity's negative emotions. To strike a decisive blow in the conflict Sláine and his companions (including Calgacus, Mogrooth, Oeahoo, Murdach, Giya, Tlachtga and Pluke) had to venture into the tomb of the dark god Grimnismal. Despite most of them dying, Grimnismal was eventually killed, to the chagrin of the Cythrons' abhorrent leader the Guledig.
After completing this mission Sláine finally returned to his people to become their king, leading them against the demonic Fomorians. Blessed by the Earth Goddess, he became a living incarnation of her consort, the Horned God, and eventually the first High King of Ireland.
He later gave up his title (after a number of adventures in other time periods as the servant of the Goddess) to Gael, founder of the Gaelic race. Having lost his wife, Niamh, murdered by the evil Moloch, Sláine eventually left his homeland in order to find his missing son, Kai, eventually encountering him in a travelling circus run by Ukko. He is currently fighting the evil Drune Lords (a metaphor for the Catholic church and/or the British Conservative Party, depending on how Pat Mills feels this week) with the help of his new companion Sinead.
Slough Gododin, the son of Sláine's dead foe the Lord Weird Slough Feg taunted Sláine by saying that he was a "bastard," as Roth had not been his real father, which made him "Sláine Mac Nobody." Sláine responded by using magic to let Sinead possess the ghost of his dead mother, Macha, so he could ask her who his true father was. He was briefly horrified when he thought that Macha might have been raped by an El Lord (a supernatural monster from another dimension), which would make him only half human. However, further questioning revealed that Macha and her lover Duban the druid had fought off the El Lord together before fathering Sláine, who was pleased to discover that he was the son of a priest of the Earth Goddess who had shared forbidden knowledge with the laity.
Powers and abilities
PowersSláine can cause his body to warp into a monstrous, superhumanly-strong form. He had his first 'warp-spasm' when he was 12.
AbilitiesMaking mincemeat of his enemies; composing impromptu verses celebrating his victories.
Strength levelStrong enough to uproot a tree single-handed (when human); or even stronger (when warped).
Overbearing, crude and arrogant (according to Nest – see quotes).
EquipmentThrowing thong (for throwing his axe at people).
TransportationHas been known to use a horse; a European bison; a mammoth; a dragon called The Knucker; another dragon belonging to his enemy Medb; and a super-dimensional cosmic being or 'macrobe' called Pluke that could only fly if Sláine had altered the cosmic balance by performing a good deed. Plus he sometimes has wings.
The axe Brainbiter (which once received an unexpected mention in Nikolai Dante); the sword Bloodprow; Gáe Bolga (a spear).
- The correct pronunciation of Sláine's name has been a subject of debate for decades. Prog 589 said that it should be pronounced 'Shlawnye'; prog 626 claimed that either 'Slawnye' or 'Slain' is correct.
- Among the artists to have worked on Sláine are Massimo Belardinelli, Clint Langley, Mike McMahon, Nick Percival, Dermot Power, David Pugh, Siku, Simon Bisley and Paul Staples.
- Appearances of Sláine MacRoth
- Character Gallery: Sláine MacRoth
- Images that feature Sláine MacRoth
- Fan-Art Gallery: Sláine MacRoth
- Sláine MacRoth quotations
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