Who wants to be a superhero? Come on, don’t all raise your hands at once. I know, we all feel self-important. It’s human nature. Myself, I always liked the idea of being something more along the lines of Xena. A kick @$$ warrior princess. Of course, that was before I read Lisa Wilson’s post on the true Amazon warriors. That picture doesn’t look as bright to me anymore. But if you had an element from the world of the immortals, say the Epirus Bow, you could be a pretty cool superhero now couldn’t you? Something along the lines of a Green Arrow, maybe? Only your arrow would glow all shiny and bright!
Today on Immortal Monday I thought I’d address the multiple search engines that have lead many people to this blog in search of the mighty Immortal object and place made famous in the 2011 movie Immortals. Countless people have wandered here looking for information on Mount Tartarus and the Epirus Bow. After all, they made a pretty spectacular splash on the big cinematic screen! But let me tell you, Hollywood used their artistic license on this big budget Greek mythological tale and they told a not-so-true tale. Sorry. This might be why all your internet searches have been so fruitless.
First, in the movie they made it easy for their character’s journey in that everyone got to stay above sea level. By adding the word Mount in front of the location, the Titans were suddenly held in a mountain instead of the underworld, their true location according to myth. So, if we were to believe mythology, the Titans were actually held in the deep dark, gloomy pit beneath the abyss of the underworld. It was a dungeon used for torment, a place where souls received punishment and judgment. It was not Mount Tartarus, but simply Tartarus. Think miserably pit even farther down than hell and you’d have a pretty good idea of what we’re talking about. That’s right, lower than Hades‘ rule.
So what of the Eprius Bow? Well, it sure came in pretty handy in the movie and it looked super cool too. But according to the myths, Theseus never found a bow in any rock. He did, however, find his father’s sword under a rock. And he was an excellent fighter. His skills were actually a thing of legend. The closest thing to the Epius Bow that can be found in Greek mythology would be the Bow of Hercules. The bow would later be used in the Trojan War for which it is most famous. Hercules had died before this point, passing the bow and arrows to Prince Philoctetes who had been with him at his death and had been his companion through many of his labours – a task Hercules undertook in penance for his many errors, one of which resulted in the destruction of his own family. I should note that Hercules, although associated with the gods, is not a god himself, but a demigod. His father was a full god (Zeus) and his mother was mortal. He was a man of immeasurable strength, but immortal he was not.
As for his archery set – the bow shot arrows like no other. They would surely deliver death as the wounds they left couldn’t be healed. Each arrow was individually dipped in the blood of the great dragon of Lerna, making it a mighty weapon indeed.
Where Hollywood got it right in the creation of this film:
- Theseus is well documented in mythology and he did fight the Minotaur as well as slay him both in mythology and the movie.
- He did fall in love with Phaedra, in fact he married her, and she bore his son, Acamus.
- The gods and Titans also fought a ten year war and it would be called the Titanomachy.
Where Hollywood strayed and may have taken liberties, according to mythology:
- Theseus was known to have all his strength because he was the son of Poseidon.
- The gods never stepped in and helped Theseus in his endeavors.
- Theseus never fought Hyperion or his army. In fact, the only army it’s documented in mythology that he fought is the Amazons (go Xena!).
- Theseus’ mother was not recorded as being a peasant, but the daughter of a king rather.
- There were only 12 Titans, rather than the 20 seen in the movie and as we already established, were held in the underworld – not in a mountain.
So as you can see, there is no point in trying to locate Mount Tartarus since it did not exist. I hope this has curried the curiosity of the many wanderers searching endlessly for the answer regarding these make believe items. Hollywood has a powerful way of captivating the minds and interest of its fans. If these kinds of things interest you, might I suggest a further study into the Bow of Hercules and the true Tartarus.
What do you think of the liberties Hollywood takes with history and mythology? Do you feel they have a responsibility to hold closely to the truth or should they be allowed as much freedom as they see fit? Sadly, many people today believe what they see on the big screen. What does that say for our society and educational system?
As always, thank you for joining us for Immortal Monday. If you have a topic you think fits the theme and you would like it covered, feel free to whisper it in my ear and I’ll consider it for a future post.
What? What’s that you say? You want the usual Immortal Monday eye candy. Well, I wouldn’t want to disappoint. I give you a splattering of the delish we have mentioned here today. A little something for everyone. Happy Monday everyone.
(Above- Kevin McKidd) This one is winning the poll in the Poseidon post – so far.
(Above – Kellan Lutz) Because Some of you just want to see Kellan.
Let me pick my chin up off the floor…
And for those interested in something of a different flavor –
Now that I feel a serious need to work out for a month straight, I hope you enjoyed this installment of Immortal Monday and its gratuitous eye candy. 😀 ~ BTW, this is Immortal Monday’s 13th post. That has to be lucky. Right? 😉
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