HERACLES: *grunts softly*

I grunt whenever I can’t seem to fathom a clear opinion on something. Boybands, herbal teas, the pros and cons of hair masks – ask me my thoughts on any of these, and I’ll you’ll receive is a pig-like grunt. No wonder I’m single. Alas, Heracles is another addition to this list.

It’s like a new hairstyle. In a mirror, it looks like you could kick ass and conquer the world before 11am. In photos, it looks like you’ve dumped the mauled body of a sheep on your scalp.

I enjoyed the plot of Heracles. Lots of godly interference, lots of murder, lots of blood. In theory, it should be the action thriller we’ve all been waiting for. In reality, it was more tragic than I was expecting (yes, I know it’s supposed to be a tragedy, but I thought that Euripides would be kind and make it a little less heart-breaking), and I felt that the prose was a little clumsier than the ones I’ve read previously. I didn’t experience the fuelled-by-the-flames-of-hell passion that I should have done – when Heracles returns from the Underworld, in the nick of time, I reckoned that I would be overwhelmed by choruses of ‘Let’s go Heracles, kill the lying thieving scumbag’. Sadly, it wasn’t to be.

Admittedly, part of my lack of immersion in the prose and plot was because I was only snatching bits of it during daytime TV game shows. In the first couple of pages, I knew that this wouldn’t be my cup of tea (too many unpronounceable names, too many characters who I’d never even vaguely heard of). I trawled my way through, realised a little too late that the plot was getting to be rather decent. There’s so much going on that I don’t want to give much away, but what I will say is that there’s murder, madness, and gut-wrenching remorse.

In all, I realise that I should have given Heracles a second read. I was too distracted, and too bored to really get into it. It’s an interesting play, but I much prefer Medea/Electra/Hecabe. Maybe I’ll give it another go. After The Reading List.

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