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Kessler

[OB] Odium

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So, now that we had our first real look at Odium, what are your impressions of him? 

For me, the revelation of Odium as Shard of "Emotions" was certainly surprising and not what I expected. I think it does make sense why somebody, whom Hoid described as "loathsome" would pick this Shard. Not out of something simple like - he's evil, so he picked evil Shard. It's likely, because Odium is the only Shard that would let a person enjoy being a powerful god. Other Shards are more like elemental forces of nature, grinding down personality of their bearers, until all they care is the Shard's intent. Since Odium is about emotion, it allows it's holder to revel in it's power, retaining enough personality to be a human-god, rather then elemental force. You can see it in the way he presents himself - I've got Zeus-ish vibes, a greek god, powerful and human, at the same time. Of other gods we've seen - Ruin was more of a malevolent force, while Harmony is a god, who helps those, who help themselves. Odium, he'd wear a crown and scepter, and make himself an Olympus to look down and rule the ant-like mortals.   

As far as threats go, Odium is certainly fearsome. His ability to predict future lets him plan intricate strategies to utterly devastate his foes. Odium also proved to be able to adapt and innovate - it's clear, he is always coming up with new tricks to gain victory, so there's a bit of an magic arms race between him and his enemies. He is immortal, so his defeats are only temporary setbacks. And his power is enough to persuade others to serve him, rather then fight. I'd say there are three things, that can derail his plans - interference of other Shards, limitations of his own Shard and human choice. The majority of Odium's power is restrained by Oathpact and concern, that Cultivation would strike against him, if he overextends. I'd say Odium Shard's limitations are his human emotions. I've got an impression, that he is like Conan the Barbarian - wishing not merely to win, but to have his enemies driven before him and hear lamentations of their women. The way he set up the battle at Thaylenah was a bit theatrical, a demonstration of his power and personal touch at destroying his enemies. I think with less showmanship and more caution and restraint, Odium could have arranged more favorable odds for victory - but being who he is, he couldn't do it other way. 

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The way he set up the battle at Thaylenah was a bit theatrical, a demonstration of his power and personal touch at destroying his enemies. I think with less showmanship and more caution and restraint, Odium could have arranged more favorable odds for victory - but being who he is, he couldn't do it other way. 

I think the theatrics had a different purprose. I think he was trying to convince Dalinar his only hope of winning was through the contest of champions, so he could make Dalinar his champion. 

The only reason it didn’t succeed was because Dalinar managed to resist. 

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