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The Number 3 and the Balance

Updated on July 25, 2012

For a long time, we have seen the number 3 everywhere. In movies, stories, video games, and comics. There are often groups of 3 or 3 important things. For example, the elements. One of the most important uses of the number 3 are the elements: fire, water, and earth. These 3 elements are associated with and used to represent many things such as power, wisdom, and courage. But they never stand alone, they must always be together in order to have balance. Here are just a few examples where this is used.

(Also I didn't know what "subject" to put this hub under. I went with Entertainment because video games and cartoons were involved...)

The Legend of Zelda and the Triforce:

The Triforce is a golden triangle created for the game series: The Legend of Zelda. It appears in every game and is the key element in keeping the world safe. The Triforce is a relic left by the 3 goddesses who created Hyrule, Din, Farore, and Nayru. The story goes that Din (fire) created the land, Nayru (water) created laws, and Farore (forest) created races to inhabit the land and uphold the laws. When their work was done, the goddesses left, leaving behind the Triforce to keep the balance and govern the world. One person may possess the Triforce, but they must have a balance of all 3 elements: power (Din), wisdom (Nayru), and courage (Farore). If you do not have all of these aspects, the Triforce splits. The Triforce piece chooses the person who most represents it. Ganon generally has power, Princess Zelda has wisdom, and Link has courage. The Triforce is said to grant any wish of the person who wields it which is why Link and Zelda must always keep it safe from Ganon, who wishes to use it for evil.


Link is the main protagonist of the story. He is the hero in every Zelda game (though the user may change his name) and he is always chosen to be a great hero. Though the character is always named Link, he is never the same Link in every game. Generations have either passed or they have gone backwards. Either way, he's always different. Link always wears green or ends up wearing green. He is humble, dedicated, and brave. He is chosen by the Master Sword to defeat the evil that threatens the land and he bears the Triforce of courage.


Princess Zelda appears in almost every game (she was not in Link's Awakening or Major's Mask - though she was in a flashback-). She is always a decedent of Hyrule's royal bloodline whether she knows it or not. Sometimes she has magic powers and sometimes she simply aids Link in his quest in a disguise (such as Sheik) or by telepathy. Zelda is very gentle and kind. She is sensitive to the forces around her and would do anything to protect her people. She is very selfless and knows much about her land as well as the surrounding areas. Zelda is always the holder of the Triforce of wisdom.


Ganon is the main antagonist of the series. He appears in almost every game (aside from Oracle series and Four Swords) and he is either in the form of a pig character or a human. In Ocarina of Time, his human form is known as Ganondorf and he transform into the beast Ganon. Generally, Ganon is a Gerudo who wants to steal the Triforce so he may conquer Hyrule and, implied, the rest of the world. He is never granted the Triforce of power, he steals it. Then, with the power he gets from it, he sets out to kidnap Zelda and steal the remaining Triforce pieces. Ganon always holds the Triforce of power.

The Powerpuff Girls:

The Powerpuff Girls is a show about 3 girls who were “created” by Professor Utonium. He used the combination of “sugar, spice, and everything nice” in order to create the perfect little girl and instead, ended up with 3 who represent each ingredient. The Powerpuff Girls took on the responsibility of keeping the City of Townsville safe from monsters and villains.

Blossom: Everything nice.

Blossom wears the color pink. She is intelligent, outspoken, and has a bit of a superiority complex. Blossom self-appointed herself the leader and always plans the attack on the enemy. She doesn’t like when her sisters do not do as she says, or try things their way. Blossom is strategic and powerful. She also gains a powerful ability of Ice Breath, which is unique to her alone.

Bubbles: Sugar.

Bubbles wears the color blue. She is sweet, innocent, and a little naïve. Bubbles is the most child-like of the 3. She can talk to animals and sees everything as beautiful and happy, but she can still be fierce. She hates when her sisters argue and would just like for everyone to live in peace. She looks at the world differently than her sisters and though she isn’t the smartest, she has a deeper understand of kindness and love. Bubbles has the ability to produce a sonic wave when she screams.

Buttercup: Spice.

Buttercup wears the color green. She is brave, strong, and very stubborn. Buttercup is the toughest of the group. She tends to run into battle without much of a plan, but she fights with everything she has. She isn’t afraid of anything and would do anything to protect her sisters. She cares about fighting, justice and not really much else. She will fight until she physically can’t anymore; she has a strong will and sense of determination. She is the strongest out of the three.

The Powerpuff Girls represent the 3 and they need each other to maintain balance. You cannot just have one without the other, all 3 have to work together to defeat their foes. There are episodes about one Girl taking on a villain, but they never fully succeed until they receive help from their sisters.


Although there are many different types of Pokémon, the game always starts the same. You have to pick your starter from the 3 types given to you: water, fire, or grass. Water beats fire, fire beats grass, and grass beats water. The player is right away forced to pick which one they like more based on its type. We’ll use the original 3 starters’ final forms as an example.

Venusaur: Grass.

Venusaur is a grass-type and the final form of Bulbasaur. It is the third Pokémon in the pokédex. It is decently fast, decently strong, and has decent defense starting out, so it’s very well-rounded. Venusaur are considered to be loyal to their friends and trainers, they are often looked at as bodyguards. Venusaur are naturally calm and collected, they have balance.

Charizard: Fire.

Charizard is a fire-type and the final form of Charmander. It is the sixth Pokémon in the pokédex. It is powerful and fast, so its excellent for offensive strategy. Charizard loves to fight and they are very competitive. Charizard can be angered easily and this makes it difficult to control their flames. Charizard are powerful, but with power comes the responsibility to be able to control it.

Blastoise: Water.

Blastoise is a water-type and the final form of Squirtle. It is the nineth Pokémon in the pokédex. It isn’t as powerful or fast, but it has a very high defense. Blastoise are gigantic Pokémon that are known for being gentle. They make excellent allies and usually lead groups of Squirtle and Wartortle in the wild. Blastoise may not have the highest attack, but it can learn Hydro-pump, one of the most powerful moves with a high accuracy rate.

Each pokémon type represents more than just a color. People are more fond of grass over fire or water over grass for a reason. I think that they represent more than just a type too. Fire is associated with power, grass is associated with the earth and courage, and water is associated with something calm and collected. The pokémon embody that feeling not just because of their color, but because of their characteristics.

I do understand that the number 3 and the 3 elements have been used in several things. I found it interesting though, the wide range of ways that they are used and how it can be blatantly obvious, or just subtle. In Zelda, you notice it right away, but to be honest, in Pokémon and even Powerpuff Girls I didn't really notice until I started to really think about it. There are other shows that do it as well. This balance is necessary and expresses that their are pretty much 3 different types of people. You either relate to power, wisdom, or courage. But you need all 3 to be balanced.


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    • profile image

      IntegrityYes 5 years ago

      I definitely voted up,Rachel.

    • CrazedNovelist profile image

      A.E. Williams 5 years ago from Hampton, GA

      Interesting Harli. I love all the stuff you mentioned, especially Legend of Zelda! :)

    • Patty Kenyon profile image

      Patty Kenyon 5 years ago from Ledyard, Connecticut

      Interesting!! I agree with Billy Hicks, this was very creative!! Great Job!!

    • Billy Hicks profile image

      Billy Hicks 5 years ago

      I always just though that all of those three's everywhere meant that Riker was right. (Enjoy the obscure Star Trek: The Next Generation reference)

      Great hub, very creative. Voted up!