Difference between revisions of "Jacqueline Natla"

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==See also==
==See also==
* [[The “Eric Lindström” posts]]
* [[The “Eric Lindström” posts]]
* [[Introducing Natla]]

Revision as of 16:04, 31 August 2009

Jacqueline Natla, as seen in Tomb Raider 1 and Tomb Raider Anniversary
Jacqueline Natla is a character from the original Tomb Raider (and its remake Tomb Raider Anniversary), making her return in Tomb Raider Underworld.

Jacqueline Natla's background

Natla was one of the three legendary Rulers of Atlantis, along with Tihocan and Qualopec. Together they created the Scion, a device of immeasurable power. This device was split into three parts, one for each of the rulers, representing the ruling structure that Atlantis was governed by.

Natla abused this power, however, using the Scion to experiment in genetic engineering and create a new, improved race of Atlanteans. When they learned of this, Tihocan and Qualopec sentenced Natla to eternal imprisonment, freezing her and then burying her in present day New Mexico.

During World War II, the U.S. began testing nuclear weapons in Los Alamos, New Mexico. One of these tests happened to detonate very near to Natla's prison, freeing her from her eternal punishment.

Natla adopted the guise of Jacqueline Natla and founded Natla Technologies, a very successful company which gave her considerable financial backing. With the rest of her people long dead, there was no one to stand in the way of her experiments, and she began to research the whereabouts of the Scion.

Natla's powers, at least in Continuity 2 (Crystal Dynamics, TRA), seem to include superstrength, supernatural firepower, the ability to fly and the ability to teleport. She can also apparently shapeshift and is able to change from human to Atlantean form.

In the original game (TR1, Continuity 1) it is suggested that her wings are a mutant that she wears on her shoulders, and that her ability to shoot fireballs is due to a mutant attached or grafted to her forearm. There is no hint in TR1 that she has the ability to shapeshift or teleport, or that she has superstrength or is immortal. It is arguable that the conversion of Natla from human to superhuman in the style of a DC or Marvel Comics or Disney villianness, demonstrates the move from a British (Core Design) to an American (Crystal Dynamics) aesthetic.

Tomb Raider & Tomb Raider Anniversary

In the Tomb Raider / Anniversary storyline she hired Lara Croft to travel to Peru to uncover Qualopec's third of an artefact called the Scion, but underestimated both Lara's ability and her moral solidarity. When Larson, one of Natla's employees, revealed to Lara that there was more going on than she originally thought, Lara took up the trail of the Scion, unwilling to blindly hand over such a powerful artefact.

Lara travelled from Peru to Greece, and then to an ancient city in Egypt collecting the three pieces of the Scion before Natla could. However, Natla caught up with Lara on a cliff side in Egypt and stole the completed Scion from her. Natla travelled to the great pyramid, an ancient Atlantean construction, to finally complete her experimentation.

Lara infiltrates the great pyramid and finds the control room at the top of an enormous chasm. With Natla's experiments almost complete, Lara shoots the Scion to prevent the ability to create Natla's hideous monsters. Natla jumps on Lara, in an attempt to prevent her from shooting the Scion, but apparently falling to her death far below.

Natla's Atlantean form

However, Natla is not defeated, she reappears in a final showdown with Lara, this time revealing her true Atlantean heritage. She sports red wings and blasts fire balls at Lara. When she is sufficiently injured she plays dead, lulling Lara into a false sense of security, but will then keep fighting until she is finally killed.

She is an unlockable character in Tomb Raider Anniversary.

Unlockable biography

Collect 41 artifacts in Anniversary and the following biography is unlocked:

  • Jacqueline Natla is the owner and CEO of Natla Technologies, one of the world's largest electronics companies. She is the holder of several key computer hardware patents, and her research and development is one of the industry's most secretive and prolific innovators. Little is known about Miss Natla's private life other than she never gives interviews and rarely makes public appearances. Colleagues and business rivals alike say she is intimidatingly intelligent and a demanding perfectionist.

Tomb Raider Legend

Natla Industries crates

During the final level of Tomb Raider Legend, Bolivia - The Looking Glass crates can be seen with the Natla Industries logo. The boxes were thought to be an Easter egg. However, in Tomb Raider Underworld it is revealed that Amanda has a corporal relationship with Natla.

Tomb Raider Underworld

Natla's appearance in Underworld, considerably taller and prettier than in Anniversary, which was made by a different design team [2].

Jacqueline Natla returns in Tomb Raider Underworld, held prisoner on Amanda's boat in a stasis capsule. Early in the game she tells Lara about Helheim and Avalon being one and the same and informs Lara that she needs Thor's relics to gain access. After visiting Jan Mayen Island to retrieve Thor's Hammer, she sets off to the Andaman Sea on the coast of Thailand to find Amanda's ship again. Lara confronts and threatens to kill Natla, but is stopped when Natla explains that a ritual is also needed to open the gates of Helheim; a ritual that only Natla knows. Realising she has no choice if she wants to enter Helheim/Avalon, Lara then smashes the capsule open, allowing Natla to escape. After arriving at Avalon, Natla reveals that she was manipulating Lara to reach an ancient device called the Midgard Serpent to bring about the 'Seventh Age.' She also claims that she killed Lara's father in Thailand after he betrayed her. Lara manages to destroy the Jörmungandr Mechanism, and then knocks Natla into the Eitr surrounding the device by throwing Thor's Hammer at her.

Beneath the Ashes & Lara's Shadow

Natla is not a character in Beneath the Ashes; however, it is suggested that she is still alive. In the final scene of Beneath the Ashes, Lara has learned to control both the Thralls and the Doppelganger[1]. After Lara establishes that the Doppelganger has to obey her, the camera shifts and it is not possible to hear what mission or instructions Lara gives the Doppelganger. However when the camera returns Lara is saying "Make sure Natla suffers". As the Doppelganger leaves the room Zip says "You're letting her go? She killed Alister!", and Lara replies "And now, she is an instrument of his vengeance".

In the second cutscene of Lara's Shadow, the Doppelganger comes across Natla in Helheim; Natla has suffered severe injuries, presumably from Thor's Hammer and from immersion in the Eitr. Using the words "Ohk Ehsivar" Natla orders the Doppelganger to help her back to the pod device that the Doppelganger was created in. Natla then instructs her to reactivate the pod and waits slumped inside, presumably waiting for some regeneration process to begin. She gives the Doppelganger some final orders, namely to kill Lara and then to commit suicide, the latter appearing to disconcert the Doppelganger somewhat. Four days later beneath the Croft Manor (see Beneath the Ashes) Lara somehow frees the Doppelganger from the control of the magic words "Ohk Ehsivar" and suggests that the newly independent Doppelganger should "make Natla suffer". The Doppelganger returns to Helheim and turns Natla's pod device off. Natla falls to the ground, gets crushed underneath some rocks and finally is left lying in a pool of Eitr. When the Doppelganger approaches, Natla again orders her to help. However the Doppelganger thinks back to what Lara has told her - "You are no longer a slave" (we see a flashback) - and does not obey. Natla realizes she is in trouble and calls for the Thralls to save her, but they don't show up. Natla screams and presumably dies. We see a close-up of the Doppelganger's face: she smiles.


Miscellaneous facts

  • A "scorched Natla" outfit is unlockable in Anniversary.
  • Natla has featured in a number of Tomb Raider fan fiction stories, including "GM" and "The Dead" by Ostercy and "An Eye For An Eye" by Dr. Amazing, the latter being the winning entry in a Natla story writing competition, The Second Village of Tokakeriby TR Story Competition, 2002 [4]
  • The Aramaic word "natla" (נטלא) means "the vessel used for washing hands". Another possible etymology of "natla" says it derives from "נטל " and should be viewed literally as "that which is lifted" or "that which is taken". (S. Fränkel, "Aramäische Fremdwörter im Arabischen," p. 65, and On Semitic Words in Greek and Latin W. Muss-Arnolt Transactions of the American Philological Association Vol. 23, (1892), pp. 35-156)
  • There are some similarities between Natla and Ayesha, immortal anti-heroine of Rider Haggard's novel She [5]. To quote Wikipedia; In the original novel, Ayesha is to a great extent selfish and amoral, caring very little for the feelings or even the lives of others so long as she gets what she wants. However, it is evident that, in the course of writing the novel, Haggard moved away from a purer conception of feminine evil. Indeed, one sees the process of transition fossilized in this sentence from the chapter entitled “Ayesha Unveils” - "I have heard of the beauty of celestial beings, now I saw it; only this beauty, with all its awful loveliness and purity, was evil — at least, at the time, it struck me as evil."
  • Jacqueline Natla of Natla Technologies seems to be an early example of a character type popular in recent science fiction, a sinister female CEO of a sinister research multinational. Other examples include Catherine Weaver, the co-founder and current CEO of ZeiraCorp in Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles [6] and Nina Sharp, the shady co-owner of Massive Dynamic, a science and technology research organisation, in Fringe [7].
  • Even if not intended, there are similarities between the Anniversary version of Natla and the Egyptian god Seth from the game The Last Revelation. Both of them have wings (which both of them are able to hide, as shown when Natla is wearing a business suit and when Seth is imprisoned), are able to cast fireballs, are immortal and have power over the dead.

See also



Tomb Raider/Anniversary Enemies
Main: Bats · Wolves · Bear · Velociraptors · Tyrannosaurus Rex · Larson · Lions · Pierre DuPont · Gorillas · Crocodiles · Rats · Centaurs · Black Panthers · Cat Mummies · Winged Atlanteans · Cowboy · Skater Boy / Kid · Bald Guy / Kold · Crawling Atlanteans · Doppelgänger · Legless Mutant · Natla ·
Anniversary: Centaur Bosses

  1. Tomb Raider Underworld, Beneath the Ashes for Xbox 360