The opening of Blood of Zeus claims that the saga of its hero Heron is a misplaced, untranscribed chapter of historical Greek mythology. The information dump provides the present full freedom to shapeshift legendary materials for its personal motion use. Created by Charles and Vlas Parlapanides (Immortals), this gore-spurting Blood of Zeus is the newest hard-R animated sequence from Netflix and Powerhouse Animation, the makers of the Castlevania online game adaptation. Disney’s Hercules this isn’t.
Blood of Zeus takes benefit of the malleability of myths by borrowing from the traditional tales whereas spinning its personal story. Inside eight episodes, this primary season weaves a tapestry of remixed familiarity for many who have consumed — or devoured — Greek mythology.
[Ed. note: This story contains spoilers for the first season of Blood of Zeus.]
Gods vs. giants
The story that incites the plot is the Gigantomachy, the legendary battle between Mount Olympus gods and the Giants. Hesiod’s 700 BC poem Theogony describes the Giants as born from the blood of Uranus, the primordial Sky god, when one in every of his godly sons castrated him throughout intercourse with the primordial Earth goddess (sure, actually). Much less graphically, Blood of Zeus depicts the Giants as rising from a fallen Titans’ blood. The present throws an additional creation-story spin by exhibiting the ruler god Zeus introducing cause and compromise into the Earth by persuading two of the Giants to ally with the gods.
Heron, the composited demigod
The idea of Zeus shapeshifting into numerous entities on Earth to evade his jealous spouse Hera and seduce mortal girls is current in lots of Greek heroes’ origin tales, and Heron’s background hits each trope. Zeus notices a reasonably lady from the heavens? Examine. He descends to the Earth in disguise to seduce lady, and in kid-friendlier texts, makes his transfer with consent? Examine. A demigod is conceived? Examine. Not in contrast to some tales, Zeus even assumes the function of husband.
You probably have seen the 1981 Conflict of the Titans, you realize the story of Perseus, the slayer of Medusa, whose royal mom was pushed to exile since she gave delivery to Zeus’ illegitimate son. Like Perseus and his mom, Heron and Electra reside in hiding. A petty Hera devising the torment — typically homicide — of Zeus’s lovers and mortal kids can also be nothing new. Heron loses his mom to Hera’s machinations, not in contrast to Dionysus. And Hera coldly drives Seraphim, Heron’s long-lost half-brother, to homicide Electra. The thought of Hera driving a son to unknowingly slaughter his personal mom echoes the parable of Callisto: A fantasy Hera transforms one in every of Zeus’s lover right into a bear as punishment, resulting in an occasion the place Callisto’s son practically kills her in a hunt.
Happily, not in contrast to Hercules, Heron is rewarded a spot on Mount Olympus to hitch his godly half-siblings.
So many gods
Whereas the ruling Olympian gods Hera and Zeus get the highlight with their marital disputes, the sun-shining Apollo together with his golden chariot, the Sonic-agile messenger Hermes in his winged boots, Hephaestus the weapons-forger, and the warrior Ares have supporting roles. For Greek mythology followers, you would possibly spend your time figuring out the background gods like Aphrodite, the pink-glowing goddess of affection. Apollo’s twin sister Artemis, the blue-clad goddess of the moon, is seen greeting Heron.
It’s not Greek mythology worldbuilding with out the stock-but-stunning locales: Mount Olympus, the Underworld, and the area of the Fates. The present peeks into the realms of the Underworld throughout the River Styx, together with the divine Area of Elysium. A shocking sequence entails the Fates, whose Threads of Life enable Heron a glimpse into his previous and his crossroads.
The ancients dreamed of automations
The looks of the bronze Talos automaton is the grandest reminder that the traditional Greeks dreamed of (proto-)robotics. The legendary Talos guarded the island of Crete and hurled stones on the ships of undesirable guests, whereas its animated counterpart guards an enchanted cauldron. Sadly, the Talos has its personal literal Achilles’s Heel which is exploited within the sequence: It certainly bleeds “the ichor… [that] ran out like molten lead” as illuminated within the epic poem, Argonautica.
So the story goes, the god of blacksmith Hephaestus designed bronze automations as his help, and the animators multiply their presence as coaching bots and guardians of Mount Olympics. Lastly, there’s a shout out to Conflict of the Titans’ character Bubo within the type of Hephaestus’s mechanical clockwork owl.