Previous Installments: Olympians #1-#5
In volume six of Olympians, graphic novel author/artist George O’Connor turns the spotlight on Aphrodite, the goddess of love. Look for the same thoroughly researched and wonderfully accessible comics storytelling as O’Connor tackles the story of the Aphrodite from her dramatic birth (emerging from sea-foam) to her role in the Trojan War.
I’ve decided that I like the Olympians volumes that showcase one single story and its impact on the god or goddess featured in its pages more than I like the ones that jump all over and show various myths dealing with that particular god/goddess. Hands down, my favorite of this series is Hades: Lord of the Dead because it took one single story – that of Persephone – and used that story to outline Hades and who he was and what he did. Aphrodite: Goddess of Love is similar in that it mostly focuses on the ill-fated Judgment of Paris and the fallout from Paris’ decision. However, unlike Hades, who narrates his own tale, Aphrodite’s story is told via the viewpoint of her Graces, which didn’t give it as much of a personal feel.
One thing I do really like about this series is that George O’Connor focuses on some myths that the readers may not be as familiar with. With Aphrodite, it was the inclusion of Eris – the goddess of chaos, strife and discord – and the fact that it was her who threw the golden apple on the table and caused the issue between Hera, Athena and Aphrodite. I also love the humor, which is decidedly tongue in cheek, and something that teens may not necessarily catch but that adults will love. It just shows how multi-generational this series can be. I especially loved the fact that the book kept pointing out that Zeus wasn’t an idiot, which is why he made Hermes determine who was the prettiest (and Hermes likewise passed the task on to Paris). The inclusion of Cupid/Eros was funny as well, particularly when his mischief was aimed at the gods. However, adding in Cupid did give the story a bit of a meandering feel, but was still fun to read about so I’m willing to forgive it.
All in all, Aphrodite’s story is a good continuation of the Olympians series. I am very much looking forward to whichever god or goddess’ story he decides to tell next.