The Fates are three Greek goddesses that control the lives of all mortals.
A legion of demons led by the Lord of the Stench attacked the Fates and tried to steal their thread and the Shears of Fate to control the life of mortals. They sent the shears through space and time to get rid of the demons. They later tracked it to the Manhattan Garment District in the 1980s but were unable to take them back. The Fates later appeared to the Ghostbusters and recruited them to go to the Netherworld to extract the shears. Due to the nature of their powers, the Ghostbusters had only an hour and needed to return to the exact spot they were teleported to. Once the Ghostbusters returned to the physical plane, the Fates took the shears and vanished.
The Fates are very friendly, as they trusted the Ghostbusters to help them. That being said, they are some ghosts on the show that are friendly, such as the Party Animal Troll, the Ghosts of Christmas (Past, Present, and Future), the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man, Good's Baseball Team, Agatha Grisley, Morganon, Uncle Horace, Drool, Simon Quegg, and Casey Jones.
Based on Mythology
While not individually named in the episode, in Greek mythology their names are Clortho, Lachesis, and Atropos. Clortho weaves the thread of life when a mortal is born and Lachesis measures the thread to determine how long the mortal will live. When a mortal dies, Atropos cuts the thread with her shears. If the person is immortal, then the thread isn't cut.
- On page 15 of Ghostbusters: Get Real Issue #1, Ananke's design is partly inspired by the Fates.
- In classic Greek mythology, Ananke is the mother of the Fates
- ↑ Marsha Goodman (1986). Episode Call Sheet and SAG Report - "Hanging By a Thread" (1986).
- ↑ Lord of the Stench (2009). The Real Ghostbusters- Hanging By a Thread (1987) (DVD ts. 1:56-1:59). Time Life Entertainment. Lord of the Stench says: "The three Fates are within that cave."