Fridge / Classical Mythology

Fridge Brilliance

  • The children of Ares (war, combat, bloodlust) and Aphrodite (beauty, sex) are: Eros (love), Anteros (requited love), Himeros (uncontrollable immediate desire), Pothos (longing desire), Harmonia (harmony), Phobos (fear), Deimos (panic/terror) and Adrestia (revenge); which are all of the emotions that can happen in a relationship between the foul-tempered abusive jock and the pretty girl. The ancient Greeks understood relationships.
    • In Latin, the word for beauty (associated with Venus/Aphrodite) is "bellus" and the word for war (associated with Mars/Ares) is "bellum". Although they have different root words, the similarities are brilliant.
    • In a similar manner, Ares himself is the son of Zeus and Hera, both stubborn, proud and with temper issues at times (no wonder their marriage never really went anywhere...), while the most well-known version of Aphrodite's origins is that she was born from the remains of the first murder, to be specific from Ouranos' penis fallen/thrown into the ocean. That explains everything...
    • Aphrodite sprung forth from the severed genitals of Ouranos. How fitting she's the goddess of sexuality.
  • Perseus is the son of Zeus. Why didn't Hera go after him or his mother? Because they're from Argos, and she's the patron of that city.
    • Or she might have thought Danae's father attempting to kill them and the king of the place they wound up at constantly pestering Danae for marriage then sending Perseus on a suicide mission to get Medusa's head was enough. Also Perseus was really protective of his mother, a trait which Hera surely appreciates.
    • There is also the fact that Perseus was prophecized to kill his mortal grandfather. Not even a god can prevent a prophecy from coming true...
  • Phaethon asks to drive Apollo's chariot, after his god-father promises to give him whatever he asks for (even swearing by the River Styx). Apollo tries to dissuade him by saying that it's a tricky job; even Zeus can't pull it off. This doesn't seem to stop Phaethon at all, and when you think about it, it makes sense why this would instead motivate him. Phaethon had originally gone to Apollo to get proof that he was Apollo's son, after the demigod Epaphus mocked his claim. Epaphus himself is a son of Zeus; by driving the sun chariot, Phaethon would not only be well known throughout the world, but in pulling off something that even Zeus couldn't do, would effectively be showing his superiority to Epaphus.
  • Why would the relatively amiable Hades kidnap Persephone to make her his bride? Well, according to some sources, he did that after asking Zeus for relationship advice. Given the fact that Zeus has raped and/or kidnapped plenty of women (and one man!) just 'cause he felt like it, it isn't surprising that his advice would involve something like that.
    • Also, as some point out, he went to her father and announce his intentions to marry her. Which is actually... pretty much a proposal. Zeus just agreed.
  • Every source and most people tend to think Hades got the worst and Zeus the best of the deal when they divided up the world, but actually it's kinda balanced because all three of the brothers' domains come with some great perks. Zeus' is obvious, but consider this: Poseidon got the element that covers about two thirds of the planet, with earthquakes to boot, and for Greeks travelling by sea was something of a necessity (remember Theseus having to kill about 10 bandits on the way to Athens? That was because he didn't take the sea route.), while Hades got all of the minerals and gemstones, and as many point out, the one biggest flaw of humanity is that the dead have always and will always outnumber the living.
  • Most stories of Andromeda mention that she was supposed to be eaten by a monster because her mother blasphemed and made Poseidon mad by claiming Andromeda was more beautiful than the Nereids. All nice and good as the Nereids were supposed to be extremely beautiful, including Amphitrite, Poseidon's wife herself, but the fridge comes in when you remember that the Nereids, daughters of Nereus, Old Man of the Sea, had a brother called Nerites, who was even more beautiful than them, and who was Poseidon's first serious relationship besides his wife. No wonder he got pissed off, she was badmouthing both his wife and his boyfriend!
  • The parallels between Herakles/Hercules and Dionysus.
    • Both demigod children of Zeus,
    • Relentlessly hated by Hera who
    • Tried to kill both of them very early on (Herc when he was an infant and Dionysus when he was 3; true Hera killing D's pregnant mother should have killed him too but the main object of wrath was the mother that time, the child dying as well was just an added bonus in Hera's eyes);
    • Both having death/near death experiences before fully ascending to godhood and by opposite elements too as Herakles had to die on the pyre before he was offered a place amongst the gods and Dionysus being chased into the sea could mean he almost drowned (remember, Dionysus takes a major level in badass after the episode, fully displaying his trademark powers of driving people insane and covering buildings in grapevines, whereas before he only really made wine with them);
    • Both being active combatants during the Gigantomachy (some say they even fought as a duo), and according to some sources, Herakles went along with Dionysus when the latter decided to take a trip to India to conquer it... I mean show them the wonderful values of wine.
  • The YMMV page points out what vast differences were between how the Greeks saw Ares and how the Romans saw Mars, and how that difference (the sheer unholy joy of war and bloodlust without regard to result and safety vs. determinators defending their homes) says everything you need to know about the respective people. But it's even exemplified in their sacred animals: Ares' sacred animal was the wild boar, notorious for being blinded by fury and fucking refusing to die, often taking you down with itself, and the carrion fowl (vultures, crows, ravens) gathering on the battlefield. Mars', by contrast, were the animals that raised his sons Romulus and Remus: wolves and woodpeckers who are known for taking care of trees by feeding on the insects that could damage them.
  • When she is not a daughter of Metis, a deity of wits and wisdom (swallowed by Zeus), Athena just pops out of Zeus' mind without any female influence previously like she was created out of thin air. No wonder she became a goddess of crafts among loads of other things!
    • Similarly, in all versions, after Athena's birth, Hera was obsessed to one-woman-up her husband by giving birth without a man. She succeeded... birthing Hephaestus, who became the god of the forge, blacksmiths and fire. With Athena, they covered pretty much every sort of activity that leads to humans creating objects.

Fridge Horror

  • Cronus ate five of his six children, with the sixth (Zeus) spending the next twenty-so years in fear that his father would do the same (and probably hearing all about how terrible his father is and how his siblings needed rescuing). Remember that Cronus' kids (and gods in general) are immortal, meaning that they spent upwards of twenty years cramped in Cronus' stomach. Ouch-no wonder they're jerks!
    • Hestia was in there the longest and turned out perfectly fine.
  • Zeus is this mixed with Paranoia Fuel, he's a Voluntary Shapeshifter (since that's part and parcel of being a god) with no respect for the word "No", for all you know he could be standing right behind you or impersonating your significant other right now.
    • In a similar vein, as Percy Jackson pointed out: Hades has a helmet that makes him invisible and according to some even intangible (meaning he can go through walls while wearing it). While he IS one of the nicer ones, that does beg the question... How does someone know that he's down where his job is and not, uh, right behind you?

Both Fridge Brilliance and Fridge Horror

  • Scylla, Charybdis and Medusa and the sisters all used to be women that were turned into monsters. While unfair, why they might have been turned into monsters is linked to Pandora. The Gods created Pandora to bring evil upon men after Prometheus returned fire to them. As a result, the monstrous forms that they were turned into represented the "evil" in their hearts, as descendants of Pandora. - saiyan5ninetail

Fridge Logic

  • Norse gods are almost always depicted as tall and Nordic looking, to the point where people actually had a fit when the movie version of Thor had a black Heimdall. So, how come the Greek gods are never depicted as short, dark, and hairy?
    • Because not all Greeks look like that. Also, the Norse gods are often described to look a certain way, as are the Greek ones, and that description usually includes "tall".
    • Plus the Greek Gods are supposed to be the ideal image and form. They were often depicted far from the truth on what the Greeks normally look like.
  • According to Hesiod, the Golden Age ended when Prometheus gave fire to mankind. Afterwards was the Silver Age, followed by the Bronze Age, which ended with The Great Flood in the time of Deucalion and Pyrrha. Considering the Deucalion was Prometheus's son, and Pyrrha was the daughter of Epimetheus and Pandora, this means that the Silver and Bronze Ages combined lasted for only one generation.
  • Both Semele and Psyche were forbidden to look upon the faces of the gods sharing their bed. When Zeus appeared to Semele, she burst into flames. When Psyche peeked at Eros, she ended up only chastised. Why did one manage to survive, but not both?
    • Semele asked Zeus to appear in front of her in his true divine form and her mortal body couldn't bear standing by such a power. Psyche looked at Eros in human form while he was sleeping.
    • Also if memory serves, Psyche was also forbidden from finding out the identity of her husband (he never told her his name), and the moment she saw his human form's face and the wings, she knew it was Eros.
  • How does anyone know about Medusa if everyone who looks at her in the eyes turn to stone?
    • Two people happen upon Medusa. One looks her in the eyes and turns to stone. The other sees her only from an angle, possibly from behind, but sees his friend turn to stone from looking her in the face. The second guy runs away before Medusa stares him in the face, and goes on to spread the story.
    • Or the person who cursed Medusa in the first place told everyone?
  • What does Charon do with the money he earns? Does he have a hobby when he's not transporting the dead, who are constantly coming in? Because that seems very irresponsible of him with all the work he's got on his plate.

Both Fridge Logic and Fridge Horror

  • The story of King Midas plays on this trope: "OK, yippee, everything you touch turns to gold. Now go try to eat your dinner."
    • He could swallow it whole. It would just require Midas to bite out the one thing in his mouth with the sense of touch: his tongue.
    • Another bit of Fridge Horror about King Midas: everything he touches turns to gold, including food and water. Imagine if he unwittingly decided to swim in water that connects to the ocean-the Greek gods were lucky Midas only had this power briefly.
      • Slightly alleviated by the fact that, in some versions of the story, he gets rid of it by either washing his hands in salt water (the sea) or in running water (a river.) Sometimes, it's both. Either way, crisis averted.