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A Reflection Of Odysseus And Modern Day Heroes "The Odyssey" By Homer

1717 words - 7 pages

Written about two thousand and seven hundred years earlier, the Odyssey is still influencing modern storytelling today. Odysseus, the legendary Greek king of Ithaca and protagonist of Homer's epic poem the Odyssey was recognized as a great hero of his time. He was known for his defining qualities of superior strength and athleticism, sharp intellect, sensual ness, and a thirst for glory. These character traits are still being used to attribute modern day fictional heroes such as Neo, Captain Jack Sparrow, James Bond, and Spiderman. Accordingly, the heroic qualities of Odysseus can be still be seen in today's modern day fictional heroes.Odysseus's superior strength and athleticism resembles to modern day character of Neo in The Matrix. In the Odyssey, Penelope told the suitors that she would marry who ever was able to string Odysseus's old bow and shoot it through twelve axe heads. Many suitors attempted this task but not a single one was even strong enough to string the bow. However, "Without any strain, Odysseus strung the great bow… Taking the string and the head grooves he drew to the middle grip, and from the very chair where he sat, bending the bow before him, let the arrow fly, nor missed any axes from the first handle on, but the bronze-weighted arrow passed through all, and out the other end" (Homer, 319 - 320). Odysseus's ability to string the incredibly stiff bow and to shoot it through twelve axe heads when not a single other suitor could do it depicts his sheer strength and athleticism. This ability is also apparent with Neo from the movie The Matrix. In the movie, Neo has the ability to freely manipulate the simulated reality of the Matrix. This skill, allows him to have superhuman strength and agility, and the ability to brush off attacks that would kill or disable a normal human being with relative ease. There is a particular scene that exemplifies this where Neo fights off about thirty agents with his bare hands. As depicted in the script written by the Wachowski Brothers, "Their attack is a devastating onslaught of speed and power closing in around Neo like a vise. But Neo is a mirage, slipping and flipping around them in a deadly counter attack, heaving agents in the air" (Wachowski Brother, 18). Neo's superhuman strength and athleticism is comparable to Odysseus. Both characters are way stronger and quicker than the average warrior, which enables them to fight off exceptional opponents. Besides Brute strength, Odysseus shares many other deeper qualities with modern day heroes.Captain Jack Sparrow from Pirates of the Caribbean shares Odysseus's knack for quick thinking and cleverness. Odysseus demonstrates this trait when trying to escape from the Polyphemus's cave by tricking Polyphemus into thinking that his name is Nobody. When Odysseus finally attacks the Cyclops and blinds him, Polyphemus cries for help saying, "'Good Friends, Nobody is killing me by force or treachery.' So then the others speaking in winged words...

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