Netflix shows are getting trendy in recent times and due to an easy entrance, people from Bangladesh are also getting along with these shows. One of the most talked-about shows is ‘Blood of Zeus’ which includes Greek mythology and some new perspectives.
Bangla literature has a wide spectrum of mythology and it engages the Bengali audience with shows with mythological aspects.
Whenever these mythological gods were portrayed in pop culture in the past, they were shown as perfect and omnipotent one-dimensional beings who serve their purposes with absolute magnificence. They don’t directly meddle with human beings even though they are ruling over humans from their heavenly domains.
But this show takes a different turn from that conventional scenario of the old gods. The showrunners Charley and Vlas Parlapanides have tried to show the gods as flawed as human beings and as characters of a drama full of bloodshed, violence, and infidelity. They are just characters trying to fulfill their agenda.
The story of this show follows a bastard-born son of Zeus, named Heron. He used to live with her mother and they were ostracised from their society for Heron’s being bastard-born. But suddenly their way of life changes when they face a huge threat posed by an ancient evil force that had been awakened recently.
Humans were getting killed and converted by demonic creatures that got their powers from ancient giants who were once beaten by the gods. And in the fight against them, Heron became one of the centerpieces alongside Alexia, the grand archon. In the meantime, Heron got to know his true identity, and he got into a mental fight of his own. His whole arc is depicted beautifully in the show, from his birth to the present timeline of the show.
The Blood of Zeus has explored a part of the Greek myth, the side that often gets ignored or looked over, which is the adulterous behaviours of the King of Olympus, Zeus. Pop culture has given Zeus’s adulterous nature a free pass for a long time, but this show specifically focused most of its spotlight on this matter. However, he wasn’t shown as the ‘bad guy’ for this nature, instead, the goddess Hera, wife of Zeus and Queen of Olympus, was shown as an antagonist in the show for showing her hatred towards Zeus’s adultery and acting on it.
The main message of the show is not about the gods being infallible, instead of how flawed they are just like humans. Like Zeus, even with all his might and omnipotence, is prone to infidelity and is always bringing home his bastard children, who were not born of Hera.
But one thing that can’t be ignored is, Greek mythology has expanded this much due to these acts of Zeus. And as discussed earlier, even the protagonist of this show is the result of this. The show features how Heron is destined to stop the evil which has newly risen, with him there are several characters with the same goal.
Seraphim, the person who sits at the head of the cult of demonic creatures, has one of the most interesting arcs in the show, might even be a bit more than the protagonist. One underwhelming thing about the show is the lack of a role for goddesses other than Hera, considering the number of amazing goddesses Greek mythology possesses.
Tanjia Tasneem Adeeba, a final year economics student at the University of Dhaka, who takes great interest in Greek mythology said, “The show disappointed me in its lack of screentime for the goddesses of the Greek pantheon. The fact that they didn’t even show Athena, the goddess of warfare strategies, on a show that’s heavily about war, did not make much sense to me.”
All the things the show features include the scheming and drama that keep going on between the gods of Olympus. But the most fascinating part of the show is the epic action sequences, the battles that take place between the Gods, Demons, and others. There are appearances of big monsters, an ample amount of bloodshed, violence, and brutality, and whatnot.
Most importantly, all these have been illustrated very beautifully with powerful animation work. Also not to mention, the amazing background scores have taken the show to new heights. Especially the action sequences are complemented by great theatric orchestral scores that fit very appropriately. Heron’s whole journey will feel more magical with these background scores.
The ‘Powerhouse Animation’ was at the centre of creating all the beautiful animations featured by the show. The character designs, details in the show are depicted marvelously. All the characters look like they have come straight out of Olympus. And they have shown an admirable diversity in the skin tone of the characters including the gods, which represents ancient Greece well, as ancient Greece was vast and included people from many different backgrounds.
With all the great characters, enjoyable drama, exciting twists, and turns, the “Blood of Zeus” has been able to keep its audiences glued to the screen. Also, astounding lore has been told which was lost to time from Greek mythology.
Besides all its components, the show is good enough to make it to your watchlist. And with this show, Netflix has achieved a new height for animated shows or American animes. Netflix must keep up this good work, and also renew this show for a second season.
Nafis Almas Siam is a BSS student in Mass Communication and Journalism at the University of Dhaka.