Poll Position: It’s all Greek to me …

Sorry for posting this a couple of days late, but this week your dilemma is:

{democracy:118}

Now, you're not going to actually BECOME the person in question, you're just going to have powers BASED ON them. So keep that in mind as we join the discussion after the jump.

  • Antaeus: Antaeus was the wrestler who could not be defeated as long as he was touching the ground. He was eventually beaten by Hercules, who held him overhead and strangled him to death, I believe. Now, in a normal world, this is a pretty great power. There aren't a whole lot of people strong enough to pick you up and strangle you, after all. However, you also have to be wary of getting shot while you're jumping and whatnot.
  • Apollo: Likely powers here would obviously involve some sort of flames, since Apollo's main job was driving the sun across the sky each day. He was also a great archer, however, as well as being in charge of music. There are a lot of possibilities here, as Apollo was definitely one of the big boys in the Greek pantheon.
  • Atlas: Atlas didn't do much besides carry the entire world -- literally -- on his shoulders. Of course the world was a lot smaller back then, so how impressive was that, really? Regardless, he's pretty strong, and if the power set included the ability to lift literally anything, that might be kind of interesting.
  • Artemis: The goddess of the hunt, I would think powers based on her would essentially make you the baddest archer, stalker, tracker, and ranger of all time. Which would be like being Green Arrow, but not sucking.
  • Hermes: Speed, flight, and overnight delivery guaranteed or your money back. Plus all the flowers you can stand from your FTD Florist, which is nice.
  • Medusa: If you could turn the flesh-to-stone power off, this wouldn't be that bad. If you can't ... well, let's just say you'd better avoid mirror fun houses at the carnival. Of course, Marvel had Medusa from the Inhumans, whose power was to stretch her hair like Reed Richards stretches his body. So that's an option.
  • Poseidon: One of the big boys like Apollo, this power set would deal with water. On the low end we're talking about water breathing, swimming, maybe control of fish, that sort of thing. You know, Aquaman. On the higher end we're talking the ability to literally control typhoons and water tornadoes and all kinds of scary things.
  • Zeus: The biggest of the big boys, a Zeus-like power set would have to include throwing thunderbolts. On the downside, you might be fatally attracted to swans. Or cows. Or any of the other myriad of beasts the King of the Gods took a shining to back in the day. He was not a well man, sexually speaking.

The temptation is to go with overall might, with Zeus, Apollo, or Poseidon. But I don't really like water, and Zeus' peccadilloes frighten me. Apollo is very tempting because he was so varied, you could go in a lot of directions with him.

I also really like the idea of being a Super Ranger, based on Artemis and the hunt.

At the end of the day, though, I'd go with the speed and flight of Mercury. That's not as flashy or massive as some of the other powers here, but I don't see myself as super-strong. I love the idea of flying, and I always thought the Flash (clearly based on Mercury) was cool.

Who would you pick if you could?

41 Responses to Poll Position: It’s all Greek to me …

  1. I had to choose Poseidon because his “low end” powers are awesome to me. I wouldn’t care about fighting crime I would just love to be able to swim deep in the ocean with no worries.

    I’ve always loved Greek mythology and Poseidon has been my favorite of the gods so that has something do with it as well.

  2. I choice Zeus, because of the Thunder Bolts, he could transform into anything he wanted to, he was a ladies man just look at all the children he had.

  3. Hercules killed Antaeus by strangling him? Why didn’t he kill the Hydra that way? (It just bugs me)

  4. Hm, I never thought about that Eric. Good question. Maybe strangulation takes too long, so while you’re choking one head, the others get you?

  5. Zeus! Lightning bolts, shape shifting, King of the Gods!

  6. Shapeshifting, can’t believe I didn’t mention that! Good catch fellahs.

  7. I pick Zeus for all the reasons previously mentioned. Also, Zeus would probably be stronger than Atlas because Zeus and the other gods defeated Atlas and the other Titans when the gods fought the Titans.

  8. Zeus, I’m sucker for lightning.

    BTW, greek sun god was Helios. Apollo was god of light (although later on the worship of those two began to meld).

  9. Man, mythology fail all over. Thanks for the correction Kalkin.

  10. Maybe if you had a strangling lasso or something. Cowboys vs Dragons!

  11. You know, Hermes was also the god of magic and trickery. Just thought I would mention that. And I totally want winged sandals.

  12. I’ve gotta go with Poseidon, myself. He was second only to Zeus, in terms of power, and yet he was untouchable even by Zeus, if he was in his realm of the sea. (Likewise w/Hades in the underworld)

  13. Jadebrain_Prime

    While we’re on the subject of other ways Hercules could have defeated Hydra, why didn’t he just go for the torso and get rid of all the other vital organs?

  14. Not only was Poseidon awesome for all the previous reasons mentioned but the dude created HORSES! HORSES!

  15. I know, you’d think he’d do anything BUT chop the heads off.

  16. Jeff, to expand on what Gene said, and to correct something from the article, Zeus had sex with various human women disguised AS a swan, a bull, a human man, a golden shower (seriously), and all sorts of other things people were apparently more willing to do the nasty with thousands of years ago…

  17. True, technically it was the women who were into bestiality, not Zeus. Although he did change at least one (Leto?) into a cow permanently, didn’t he?

  18. I’m no mythology expert, but from some of what I recall, Poseidon also had control over earthquakes. That ups the set a bit further from ‘Aquaman’ status. And if I recall correctly again, I second DJ’s point – Poseidon is supposed to have made the first horses, from sea foam I believe.

  19. Sorry Jeff, it was Io who was the cow. Artemis was also the goddess of the moon (although, as Kalkin pointed out, Selene was the one who actually pulled the moon) and protectoress of maidens, animals, and nymphs

  20. these seems to be similair to a movie coming out soon.

  21. He also, if I remember right, created a lot of the ‘horse like” animals like Giraffes and stuff. He was trying to make the most beautiful land animal for a women he fell in love with and it took him quite a few tries before he got it right.

  22. Man, you gotta love the Greeks. Who else accounts for the existence of all our varied, wonderful life on this planet by figuring god was trying to get laid?

  23. There’s actually two movies coming out in the next few months with the Greek gods in them, Berserker. There’s “Percy Jackson and the Olympians”, which is based on some kind of Harry Potterish book. There’s also a remake of the 80’s B-movie “Clash of the Titans” coming out two months after that…

  24. @Jeff I know, right? To me that makes more send than any other religions explanation because, honestly, don’t we do most all things just to get some?

  25. Hermes for me because he was also the god of animals I think.

  26. I mean to say that makes more sense by my severe case of Icantypitus got in the way.

  27. *insert expletive here*

    Let’s try this again.

    “I meant to say that makes more sense but my severe (and I mean SEVERE) cause of Icantypitus got in the way.”

    I suffer everyday…

  28. Hades.

    Ohh wait… he’s not in the poll.

    Artemis.

  29. Definitely up my alley. Zeus would be the man since he defeated the Titans with the help of the hundred handers; though I’ve always been a bit partial to Chronos for his emasculating-your-father-with-a-sickle powers. Nevertheless, controlling lightning, ruling Olympos, fathering a prodigious amount of children, giving birth to a fully armed Athena FROM HIS HEAD, and being the god of reason and order all seem to recommend the big cahuna as the best choice.

    BTW Hermes was also the guide of dead souls to the underworld, patron of tricksters and thieves, and in his form as Hermes trismagistos presided over the Eleusynian rites so he’d be the second choice. And he had cool winged shoes and a caduceus (though the iron hat was, I think, an addition after WW1 and based on the doughboy helmet)

  30. Nuts. that last post was me. Darn Sxipper for being overzealous.

  31. William A. Peterson

    Apollo…
    Check out the Hippocratic Oath, some time!
    {“I swear by Apollo, Physician…”}
    Of course, in D&D, I usually play the Cleric… :->

  32. MontanaPlayer

    I thought Zeus had his lightning bolts made for him by the hundred handed giants vs. being able control it like you see in comics? I still voted for him but Poseiden was close second.

  33. @MontanaPlayer: A minor correction:

    The Cyclops were actually the ones who forged the lightning bolts before the Great war of the Titans for Zeus. The Hecatonchires (Hundred-Handed) aided in bringing down the Titans- they were able to hurl one hundred stones at a time each, something that I think even old Antaeus would have been troubled by.

    All in all, I’m voting for Hermes. Flights of fancy are for me šŸ˜€ Not to mention he is the patron of poets and orators, and I’m nothing if I don’t write.

    @Jeff: You Wikipedia us superheroes, but you fail to look up the Gods before posting a poll about them? For shame, sir. Hopefully you haven’t tempted the wrath of Olympus, or else they might Wikihammer YOU!

  34. You guys seem to be forgetting that the Big Three drew lots, and Poseidon got Earth, (Zeus the Heavens and Hades the Underworld) So, Poseidon technically has ultimate power down where we is, and not just over water. Earthquakes, talking to horses, being able to surf anywhere, etc.

  35. Let’s not forget, the idea here is that you’d have powers BASED ON the god in question. You’re not actually BECOMING that god.

  36. “giving birth to a fully armed Athena FROM HIS HEAD,”

    Does that mean that Athena was the result of an early HeroMachine project?

  37. I went with Poseidon because I like water powers!

  38. I chose Apollo, but not Apollo the Sun Lord. I chose his aspect of Apollo Physician, in whose name Western doctors swore the Hippocratic Oath for many centuries.

  39. The Atomic Punk

    Zeus for shape-shifting and “powers of persuasion”. He’s more like a mafia don. You get down to it, what did he do to be king? Whacked the Big Guy. The other gods do the work and pay him tribute. Otherwise, Poseidon because he has domain over water and earth.

  40. I totally agree with Jeff. I go with mercury Any day.

  41. Hm. Of these, Zeus would be my first choice, with Poseidon a close second, and Apollo third. Too many interesting ways for me to apply their powers, and I’ve always loved the idea of controlling a full element.

    Granted, I’d definitely choose Ares first, being the God of War would have certain benefits, but still, the sheer power of Zeus is rather tempting.