Heracles Opinion by Lev Lafayette

Dear Channel Ten,

"What shame, what misery! To become the murderer
Of my most dear sons! Why do I not take my own life?
Leap from some bare cliff, aim a sword at my own heart,
Become myself the avenger of my children's blood?
Or burn my flesh with fire, to avert the infamy
Which now awaits me?"

These are the words of Heracles as told by Euripedes. They are spoken after he, under the influence of Madness, slays his wife and children.

Today the words should refer to the murder of the genuine story of Heracles by Channel Ten.

In the original, Heracles is visited by Madness who, under the command of Hera, leads to his insane disposition. Madness, it should be noted isn't terribly fond of such activities ("My nature's noble, as my parents were - Heaven my father, Night my mother; and my privilege is not to take delight in slaughter ").

Of course, when faced with the moral difficulty of having the "good" character commit such an atrocity, simplifies the action to a fireball from Hera. So much for complexity.

Nominally conservative thinkers used to complain about young people reading popular culture items, such as science fiction and comics. Their silence is deafening. It's not as if we're complaining that someone has decided to screen Baywatch set in Ancient Greece. For the lowest common denominator, appealing to a priuent interest of heroic violence and sexual inneudo (absent of eroticism), this is a perfectly reasonable marketing strategy. The problem is that there already is a story called "Heracles"; quite a few in fact, and to abuse these tales simply because the story is in the public domain (i.e., wihout copyright) does not lessen the level of abuse.

"Heracles" as it stands is an offense to anyone with affinity to Hellenic culture, or to the ideal of using mythology to improve the narrative content of our own society. It should be substantially modified or scrapped as an example of false advertising. A travesty among contemporary cultural products it is yet another example why the public sphere needs to be protected by enlightenment.

Next target; Disney's version of "The Hunchback of Notre Dame". What do you really think Victor Hugo would think of this?

Lev Lafayette