I know this connection has been made before, that the warriors involved in the Battle of Thermopylae were Spartans, but something struck me today.
I've been studying Ancient Greek history lately and things I didn't notice before, like certain names of places or people stick out a bit more. I've been watching the trailer for 300 mostly because I'm so excited about the movie itself (Frank Miller W00T). It's about the Battle of Thermopylae. If you are unfamiliar with what occured during the battle and why there is a movie being made about it (or why the heck it's called 300 for that matter), basically the Persian army vastly outnumbered the 300 Spartans and other Greek allies. In fact, the Persians(and their allies) had exponentially more units than the Spartans, but never the less they fought against the odds. The leader of the Spartan squad in the battle of Thermopylae was King Leonidas, a veritable demi-god as he was thought to be a descendant of Herakles. The high-ranking Persian infantry eventually began advancing and outflanked them, but the Spartans and Thespians stayed to fight the onslaught in a sacrificial move to allow the other allied Greek armies to retreat and survive. Leonidas and his men KNEW what they are doing and that their actions meant certain death, and supposedly, as foretold by the Oracle at Delphi, the shedding of the king's blood would save Greece. And so it happened, they stood behind and fell victim to the arrows of the Persian archers and their allies escaped to safety.
Now, Halo. As I mentioned before Greek names began to stick out at me and one place I noticed Thermopylae was on the track listing for Volume 2 of the Halo 2 Sountrack. The Finale suite has a track by the name of "Thermopylae Soon". I'm guessing this is a direct correlation to a part of the Halo storyline, which drawing from "soon" has not actually occurred yet, and I can't really fathom connecting any of the events near the end of Halo 2 to the events of the Battle of Thermopylae. So maybe you see where I'm taking this; I believe there is a strong possibility that there is a correlation with King Leonidas and the Master Chief. Yes, it is a theory of mine that Master Chief will die or at least suffer a terrible fate at the end of Halo 3 in an all out back-against-the-wall-with-a-super-weapon-pointed-in-your-face kind of battle to save humanity from certain doom. Could our favorite super soldiers find their way back together to fight side-by-side as they were meant and be led by the mighty Master Chief in a sacrificial campaign for human kind? I guess we'll have to wait and find out. Personally I hope so, I can't really think of a better way to end a story arc ;)