Russia

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Russia
ロシア
Russia01.png
Character Information
Name RussiaFlag.png Russian Federation (Российская Федерация)
Human Name Ivan Braginsky (Иван Брагинский/イヴァン・ブラギンスキ/Иван Брагинский)[1]
Gender Male
Birthday December 30[2]
Hair Color Blond (manga), Beige (anime)
Eye Color Blue (early colored artwork), Violet
Height 182 cm (5' 11.6")[3]
Debut Appearances
Volume Volume 1
Strip Chapter 2: Allied Forces
Game Gakuen Hetalia Portable
Drama CD Hetalia Drama CD: Prologue
Anime Episode 01
Voice Actors
Japanese Yasuhiro Takato
Benjamin Komatsu (Flower Of Iris)
English Jerry Jewell

Russia (ロシア, Roshia) is a main character in the series Hetalia: Axis Powers. Between 2007 and 2008, Himaruya gave out human names to some of the characters and he received the name Ivan Braginsky (イヴァン・ブラギンスキ, Ivan Buraginsuki, Russian: Иван Брагинский).[1]

Contents

Attributes

A 'chibi' version of Russia. Shown in Hidekaz Himaruya's blog.

Appearance

He is the tallest of the Allies, as well as the tallest of all the nations (together with Sweden.) In WWII Russia wears a long, heavy tan coat, green pants, brown or black gloves, and a long tan or pink scarf. When not wearing his scarf, he is shown to wear bandages around his neck. He is very pale, and has a round, childish face with a prominent and distinctive nose. His hair is slightly wavy and a pale ashen blond, and his eyes are violet, though they were initially colored blue in early color artwork. Compared to the first drawings Russia's bangs fall to the left as Himaruya found that they looked better that way from the front. His expression is a calm and gentle smile almost all the time. Behind his constant smile, it's said no one knows what he's thinking.[4]

In response to a fan question asking if Russia was fat, Russia claimed to be big boned[5] and was also drawn with a shirt saying such.[6] Himaruya confirmed this in a later blog post addressing some of the nation's body types.[7] He also said that Russia was drawn with a sturdy and robust frame due to the cold weather in Russia, however he commented that weather changes there resulted in very hot summers and that "maybe this Russia will melt (haha)."[4] In W Academy Story: Advancing Very Little! W Academy Newspaper Club, Russia is described as bulky and muscular.

Personality and Interests

A large yet childlike young man. At the first impression, he seems simplistic and pure in heart. But in reality, he holds a cruelty, in the same manner as a small child.[8] Many of his things are big, like him. Quick to forgive and always looking for friends,[9] he's shy and unsociable around people he doesn't consider friends. However he considers everyone his friend,[10] and thus this side to him is rarely seen (He does, however, seem to have his doubts at times, such as when he sent a letter to France's radio show asking how to get people to love him back.[11]). He comes off as intimidating without saying a word,[12] his gentle smile and disposition only intensifying the aura of dread which seems to constantly hang over him. However, according to Lithuania, he has his calm moments at the strangest of times. Russia was also described as gentle and naive, and not malicious, just extremely scary.[10] He finds amusement in tormenting others or watching arguments, to see the reactions. According to Lithuania, he loves people who cry and laugh easily. [13] He is often pushy and manipulative to get his way. He claims that there is "no such service" as compromise in Russia. But he has also said that each one of his bosses have encouraged him to use force to make friends. Though he is capable of being incredibly cruel-minded, Russia himself is unaware of this. Whenever he thinks of how his sisters have become strange, he becomes very depressed, such depression being seen as an "absolutely awful omen" by England.[14] Russia ends many of his sentences with 'da', an informal form of 'desu' used to confirm the topic of the sentence, the ubiquitous form of 'to be,' as well as the Russian word for 'yes'.

He has been tormented since his childhood, having seen many tragedies and wars, which have cracked his mentality. General Winter haunts and attacks him every year, which has caused him to hate the snow and long for the warm Southern sea. However, in the face of war, General Winter is his best ally.[8] His childhood was tough, troubled, and full of forced servitude, bullying, and constant pursuing by other countries.[15]

When Russia greets people, he does so with a kiss on the lips. When Germany denied him the greeting, also pushing his hand on his face to ensure he didn't kiss him, Russia immediately became very sad and pouted, beginning to walk away, before Germany insisted that he greet him any way but with a kiss to the mouth. Russia then said he would blow him a kiss, instead.[16]

During the Soviet period, when Russia was upset, he would begin to chant "KolKolKol" to threaten and frighten others into submission. However, there has been speculation that there are other possible meanings for 'kol' than those involving kolkhoz:

  • Tzar Ivan The Terrible's favorite way to deal with disobedience was impaling. 'To impale', pronounced in Russian as сажать на кол (sazhat' na kol), or just на кол 'na kol' is easily understood. So, Russia is possibly trying to intimidate people by the threat of impalement, although he is saying the noun 'kol' (which means 'stake', in this context being thrust towards a person).
  • There is also the possibility that Russia could be issuing a warning to others. 'Kolokol' means 'bell' in Russian, and 'kol' is often used as an onomatopoeia in Russian for the tolling of a bell, a centuries-old designation of approaching danger.
  • Another interpretation offered by the Japanese fandom is that "kolkolkol" is "korukorukoru", which sounds similar to "korosu", the Japanese word referring to killing.

However, in the Comic Birz serialization featuring Russia, instead of the usual kolkolkol, the normal sound effect for an intimidating aura was used, and Russia stayed silent, making it possible that this was retconned.

Russia mentions that he has been "tweaking" technology as a hobby. He was able to interfere with Finland's cell phone and audio devices, causing them to ring constantly, and said this was easy for him. He did this in order to force Finland to spend the day with him. However, this was stopped by Estonia, who Russia referred to as his rival tweaker.[17] He has also been shown to enjoy knitting and cooking.[18]

He loves vodka.[12] Vodka is his fuel. Whenever he does anything, vodka is somehow involved. [8][19]What Russia also loves are sunflowers. He loves sunflowers so much, he dreams of one day living in a warm place surrounded by them.

He is fascinated by the common water faucet, a reference to water pipes being a favorite war trophy of Russian soldiers, thus he is often seen carrying one around. It's said that he'll pull the pipe out and put things that don't belong in it, such as food, only to pull them out and eat them later.[12] He has also been shown using a pipe to "settle" conflicts (that is, using it for violence), while referring to it as a "magical stick."

His heart seems to sometimes fall out of his chest. However, he simply blushes and acknowledges it as something that "just pops out of me, sometimes."[20]

In the mini-drama CD included with his character album, he mentions to Japan that his scarf is a body part and therefore he cannot take it off. This, however, may just be an excuse so he will not have to do so, seeing as how he didn't wear it as a small child before Ukraine gave it to him,[21] and that in some artwork he is actually seen with it off.[22][23][24] However, in Volume 4, he was shown to have some sort of control over it, as though it was an extra limb, using it to grab America,[25] as well as it wrapping around America's ankle and China's neck in a chibi drawing of the Allies sleeping.[26] In one instance where Russia is shown without his scarf, seeming to have just woken up, he is shown to have bandages around his neck.

Relationships

America

Main Article: America

In the first strip depicting the meeting of the allies, America tells the other allies that their role is to back him up. Russia then asks what America's role will be, and America declares that he will be the hero.

For the most part, America and Russia are shown to dislike each other. In Lithuania's Out-Sourcing, Russia is upset that Lithuania is living with America, and meets with America to negotiate this. He stays calm and voices concern for Lithuania, until he threatens to America that Lithuania is his possession. In the 7th episode of the Birz serialization, America claims that Russia is the "bad guy", because he was once friends with Germany and kisses everybody as a greeting. Russia responds by offering to make America's gums bleed, which America calmly declines. Later, England complains about America's provocative attitude, but Russia tells England that he finds it to be one of America's positive points, because it shows his youthful spirit. Then he adds that the provocative ones are also more fun to snap in half. In Reducing Your Opponent's Willpower American Style, America tries to break Russia's spirit during the Cold War by ordering 25 cm condoms from him. Russia complies, but labels the condoms "extra small". This was called back on America's birthday, where Russia gives America a huge box of "extra small" condoms as a present. America responds by boasting that the box will last him a month, which Russia jokes is lewd of him. Russia gives America another "present"; a ticket to a "vacation" in Siberia with no return ticket. America says he'll be sure to blow his nose with it when he gets a cold. Then they laugh while an intimidating aura emits from both of them. [27]

Despite their past and present tensions, Russia and America are shown to get along occasionally. For example, on Halloween, they ally with each other for plans to scare England.

Belarus

Main Article: Belarus

Russia is Belarus' older brother. While Belarus loves her brother to the point of obsession and wishes to marry him, her feelings are not returned. Russia finds Belarus beautiful, but he sees her only as a younger sibling and is frightened by her behavior. She is shown to stalk him, as well as stick by his side to intimidate others.

It's notable that, despite Russia's fear of her, when Belarus is not actively attempting to get him to marry her, they can get along peacefully and he at least values her opinion.[28] And although she easily becomes jealous when he shows attention to people besides her, she often tries to recruit other countries into becoming Russia's servants, implying she supports Russia's dream for everyone to "become one" with him. The dress that she wears is a gift from Russia, which is why she wears it so much even though it's rather old-fashioned. She tries to wear it as often as possible.

China

Main Article: China

Russia and China have had a close relationship throughout history, and they are usually shown to be on good terms, even getting along better with each other than the rest of the Allies. However, China is very suspicious and fearful of his northern neighbor, especially after the Sino-Soviet Split. In return, Russia has been shown to stalk China. When China had escaped England and France, he came home to Russia who had invited himself over. Another time, China was venting all his issues to a panda. China complained the most about Russia, shouting that Russia was going to betray him for sure, and then the "panda" was revealed to be Russia disguised in a suit who responds, "how did you find out?!"

When China is depressed and sobbing at a bar because of his turbulent relationship with Japan, Russia comes to comfort him, assuring China that he will get along with Japan again. But then Russia's mood switches; he grins and says this is because in a few years, "all will be one with Russia." At a G8 meeting, when the other members feel that someone is missing but can't figure out who it is, Russia insists that the member they are missing is China, despite China not being part of the G8. England comments that Russia just wants China to be there. In the 8th episode of the Birz serialization, China shows concern for Russia when he appears to have caught a cold, and offers him medicine. Enjoying this attention, Russia winks at China and says, "Oh, stop it, you!"

Their good relations are referenced again in the 2011 Christmas Event. Russia mopes that he has had to use force to make friends, as his bosses have encouraged him to do, but then he perks up and notes that China has been kind to him lately and he can go visit him. Later, China and India are shown fighting over which one of them is closer to Russia, to Russia's delight, though this turns out to be a dream of Lithuania's (brought about by Belarus trying to subliminally bring him to submit to Russia while he slept).

England

Main Article: England

Russia tries to invade the southern countries to get his vodka, but England gets in his way. Thus, Russia "truthfully" wants to punch England.[8]

In return, Russia gets in England's way, as well. England accidentally summoned him when trying to summon a demon to fight America with, and he broke Busby's chair when sitting in it.[19]

Lithuania

Main Article: Lithuania

After the partitions of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, Lithuania became Russia's subordinate. Lithuania was a common target of Russia's abuse, as shown from the deep scars covering his back in While You Were Gone.

After WWI, Lithuania managed to temporarily leave Russia, and he went to work at America's house. During this period, Russia visited America, claiming he was just worried. Russia described Lithuania as a kid who hardly ever complained, always held in the pain, and put others above himself, so America needed to take good care of him. But then Russia threatens that Lithuania is his possession.

During the Great Depression, America could no longer support Lithuania so Russia came to pick him up (literally.) Russia was very angry at Lithuania for leaving him, so he worked him so hard that he became heavily fatigued. Lithuania passed out onto Russia, and then woke up terrified. However, Russia became unusually calm and instead of punishing him, asked Lithuania what his dreams were. Lithuania shared his dreams of when he was young and free, and then Russia went so far as to share his own of dream of "living in a warm place with sunflowers." Soon after, Russia allowed Lithuania to fall back asleep on his shoulder, though he replaced himself with a panda when Lithuania woke up the second time.

In the present, Russia is shown to stalk Lithuania. At the Meeting of the World, Russia expressed a desire to see Lithuania helpless and confused and coming back to him in tears. One of Lithuania's profiles describes him as being "dangerously exposed to Russia's gaze."

When they first met as children, Russia was under the Tatar yoke. He told Lithuania he would become a large, powerful country one day, and when that happened, they would be friends. Lithuania asked why they couldn't be friends right then, and Russia said he couldn't allow himself to befriend anyone, because he was much too weak. But he would try his hardest to become strong. [29]

Poland

Main Article: Poland

The two have argued with each other at least since the early 1600s, when Poland succeeded in capturing Moscow. Russia's revenge for this was taking part, together with Prussia and Austria, in the partitions of Poland. In 1939, Russia decided to partition Poland again, this time in conjunction with Germany. Their relationship was further soured by the years of post-war Soviet domination.

It should be noted that Poland is not afraid of Russia; he actively defends Lithuania from Russia, despite the inherent threat. Poland was also able to bring Russia to tears just by sending him a chain letter threatening to turn his capital into Warsaw.

Ukraine

Main Article: Ukraine

Ukraine is Russia's older sister, and she acted as a mother to both him and Belarus when they were younger. She is the one who gave him his scarf. Russia finds her kind and steady, but weak, and their relationship is complicated. After the fall of the Soviet Union, she tells Russia "we're done for!" and leaves him. She becomes desperate to distance herself from Russia and make friends in the European Union. This makes Russia very depressed, and he wonders why Ukraine "hates" him. However, Ukraine still cares for Russia and will try to provide resources to him, only to be blocked by her bosses or other issues between them, such as paying for oil. Russia wonders why their relationship went sour, and tries reminiscing on a time in their childhood where they got along peacefully. He thinks of the day Ukraine gave him his scarf, on a brutal and cold day. But then he remembers she told him he had to make Kiev successful in return, which Russia finds "cruel-minded", so they never saw eye-to-eye.[12]

Appearances

Anime

Russia in Episode 09.

Russia appears at the meeting in Episode 01, stating that he only wants to see a troubled Lithuania come running back to him. His plan is quickly thwarted by Poland, who threatened to make his capital Warsaw.

In Episode 42 Russia introduces us to his family, adapting the strip Russia's Older And Younger Sisters.

Russia's design is relatively the same in the anime adaptation, though the color of his scarf was changed from tan to pink. His hair is also colored more beige than blonde.

Trivia

  • In the World War-set strips, Russia technically represents the Soviet Union, rather than the Russian Federation (as evidenced by his flag). However, Himaruya explained in liner notes that he was simply called Russia in the series due to it being cuter and the kana being simpler to write.[30] His birthday being given as December 30th also corresponds with the date that the Soviet Union was founded.[2] Although another possibility for Russia's birthday could be June 12, when that date corresponds with the day the First Congress of People's Deputies of the Russian Federation had adopted the State Sovereignty of the RSFSR on June 12, 1990. To this day, Russia Day is celebrated on June 12.
An early design of Russia.
  • While the flag used for Russia is the Soviet flag in most of the webcomic, the published version of the manga, as well as the anime and merchandise, has opted to use the standard Russian flag.
  • Russia's jacket is a stylized Red Army overcoat, with the colors reversed.
  • In response to a fan's question (circa 2007), Himaruya stated that Russia is unaware of his own cruelty.[31]
  • In chapter four of the Hetalia manga, after a heart pops out of Russia's chest, he claims it as his own, saying "it just pops out of me sometimes". Some fans see it as possibly symbolic of the heartbreak he's suffered in his time, or a representation of just how mentally damaged he is (while the other Allies are completely freaked out, Russia doesn't even seem to mind that his own heart is literally falling out.)
  • Notes in the special edition booklet for Hetalia: Axis Powers volume 3 revealed that Russia was originally intended to be dark-haired and middle-aged in appearance, and a typical large, crybaby older man who drinks. The current Russia was first introduced in the first chapter, and it's a "marvel" how he wound up the way he did.[32]
  • The instrumental part of his Marukaite Chikyuu is from "Коробейники/Korobeiniki" a Russian folk song popularized outside of Russia because of its use in Tetris.

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Himaruya, Hidekaz (May 2007). "(cache) 【ジョルジュ長岡を心の底から愛でまくるサイト】 キタユメ。 【まゆ毛がステキ】". Archived from the original on November 22, 2007. http://megalodon.jp/2007-1122-0436-47/www.geocities.jp/himaruya/5gatu.htm. Retrieved October 8, 2012. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 Himaruya, Hidekaz (2008). ヘタリア Axis Powers [Hetalia: Axis Powers]. Gentosha. p. 84. ISBN 978-4-3448-1275-8. 
  3. Himaruya, Hidekaz. "ヘタレ3 G-R Nonaggression Pact? [Hetare 3: G-R Nonaggression Pact?]". p. 8. http://www.geocities.jp/himaruya/i_i11.htm. Retrieved June 22, 2012. 
  4. 4.0 4.1 Hidekaz, Himaruya (2012). Axis Powers ヘタリア 5 特装版 [Axis Powers Hetalia 5 Specially Equipped Edition]. Gentosha. p. 18-19. ISBN 978-4-344-82563-5. 
  5. Hidekaz, Himaruya (May 27, 2008). "メタボリック俺 [Metabolic Me]". http://himaruya.blog61.fc2.com/blog-entry-58.html. Retrieved September 11, 2012. 
  6. Hidekaz, Himaruya (March 11, 2009). "2話デッドヒート中でござる [Tshirts]". http://himaruya.blog61.fc2.com/blog-entry-497.html. Retrieved September 11, 2012. 
  7. Hidekaz, Himaruya (July 30, 2007). "ベラルーシさんとウクライナさんの軍服バージョン [Belarus And Ukraine's Military Uniform Versions]". http://himaruya.blog61.fc2.com/blog-entry-1228.html. Retrieved September 11, 2012. 
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 Hidekaz, Himaruya (2008). Axis Powers ヘタリア [Axis Powers Hetalia]. Gentosha. p. 84. ISBN 978-4-3448-1275-8. 
  9. Hidekaz, Himaruya (2012). Axis Powers ヘタリア 5 [Axis Powers Hetalia 5]. Gentosha. p. 21. ISBN 978-4-344-82563-5. 
  10. 10.0 10.1 Hidekaz, Himaruya (2010). Axis Powers ヘタリア 3 [Axis Powers Hetalia 3]. Gentosha. p. 17. ISBN 978-4-3448-1938-2. 
  11. Hidekaz, Himaruya (2008). Axis Powers ヘタリア 2 [Axis Powers Hetalia 2]. Gentosha. p. 58. ISBN 978-4-3448-1514-8. 
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 Hidekaz, Himaruya (2008). Axis Powers ヘタリア 2 [Axis Powers Hetalia 2]. Gentosha. p. 15. ISBN 978-4-3448-1514-8. 
  13. http://himaruya.blog61.fc2.com/blog-entry-1411.html
  14. Hidekaz, Himaruya (2008). Axis Powers ヘタリア 2 [Axis Powers Hetalia 2]. Gentosha. p. 52. ISBN 978-4-3448-1514-8. 
  15. Hidekaz, Himaruya (2011). Axis Powers ヘタリア 4 [Axis Powers Hetalia 4]. Gentosha. p. 72. ISBN 978-4-3448-2233-7. 
  16. Himaruya, Hidekaz (January 2, 2012). "2011 Christmas Event". http://www.geocities.jp/himaruya/2011_12_10.html. Retrieved September 13, 2012. 
  17. http://www.geocities.jp/himaruya/xmas20112.html
  18. http://www.geocities.jp/himaruya/yry.html
  19. 19.0 19.1 Hidekaz, Himaruya (2008). Axis Powers ヘタリア [Axis Powers Hetalia]. Gentosha. p. 64-65. ISBN 978-4-3448-1275-8. 
  20. Hidekaz, Himaruya (2008). Axis Powers ヘタリア [Axis Powers Hetalia]. Gentosha. p. 50. ISBN 978-4-3448-1275-8. 
  21. Hidekaz, Himaruya (2008). Axis Powers ヘタリア 2 [Axis Powers Hetalia 2]. Gentosha. p. 58. ISBN 978-4-3448-1514-8. 
  22. Himaruya, Hidekaz. "今日の落書き [Today's Doodles]". http://www.geocities.jp/himaruya/rkgk2.htm. Retrieved December 10, 2010. 
  23. Himaruya, Hidekaz (May 25, 2011). "連合 [Allies]". http://himaruya.blog61.fc2.com/blog-entry-1167.html. Retrieved December 10, 2010. 
  24. Himaruya, Hidekaz (July 9, 2008). "発掘ブライアンボイターノ5 [Discovery Of Brian Boitano 5]". http://himaruya.blog61.fc2.com/blog-entry-176.html. Retrieved December 10, 2010. 
  25. Hidekaz, Himaruya (2011). Axis Powers ヘタリア 4 [Axis Powers Hetalia 4]. Gentosha. p. 6. ISBN 978-4-3448-2233-7. 
  26. Hidekaz, Himaruya (May 17, 2011). "メラニートの祭壇 [Meranito's Altar]". http://himaruya.blog61.fc2.com/blog-entry-1147.html. 
  27. http://www.geocities.jp/himaruya/indy.htm
  28. Hidekaz, Himaruya. "飛び越せ!カナダさん [G8 Again!]". http://www.geocities.jp/himaruya/cnd.html. Retrieved September 11, 2012. 
  29. Hidekaz, Himaruya (2010). Axis Powers ヘタリア 3 [Axis Powers Hetalia 3]. Gentosha. p. 90. ISBN 978-4-3448-1938-2. 
  30. Himaruys, Hidekaz. "ヘタレ2 Allied forces [Hetare 2: Allied Forces]". p. 12. http://www.geocities.jp/himaruya/a_i13.htm. Retrieved September 24, 2012. 
  31. Himaruya, Hidekaz (2007). "MoeKan scanlations + a few interesting old bits of trivia". Archived from the original on November 8, 2009. http://z15.invisionfree.com/Hetayume_Forums/index.php?showtopic=22. Retrieved September 14, 2012. 
  32. Himaruya, Hidekaz (2010). Axis Powers ヘタリア 3 特装版 [Axis Powers Hetalia 3 Specially Equipped Edition]. Gentosha. p. 26. ISBN 978-4-3448-1938-2. 
Hetalia: Axis Powers Characters
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