This is a mostly spoiler-free review for the first season of Netflix’s Blood of Zeus, though we do discuss certain elements of the story throughout. All eight episodes of Blood of Zeus are currently available to stream.
Hop on your trusty Pegasus and get ready for an epic journey with Netflix’s gorgeous and thrilling new adult animated series, Blood of Zeus. Originally dubbed “Gods & Heroes” back in 2019, this epic Greek mythological tale centers on Heron (voiced by Derek Phillips), a young man whose life is changed forever after his village is attacked by demons. Heron’s narrative is similar to other “hero’s journey” arcs like Luke Skywalker in Star Wars or Harry Potter in, well, you know. On the surface, Heron’s story appears par for the course: a young man discovers he has great powers (probably related to someone important), learns how to use said powers, and saves the day… Heard it all before, right? However, underneath all of these heroic tropes are some fascinating storylines sprinkled throughout which elevate Blood of Zeus’ familiar premise into something memorable.
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Series creators and executive producers Charley and Vlas Parlapanides (Immortals, Death Note) do a fantastic job of world-building in the first few episodes with thrilling flashbacks, which offer insightful context for what’s happening with Heron in the “present day.” One of the most jaw-dropping sequences happens when the village hermit (think Obi-Wan Kenobi) Elias (Jason O’Mara) recounts the tale of the Titans’ defeat at the hands of the gods, and how their deaths spawned giants, who in turn spawned the demons that are terrorizing local villages. Rest assured, the backstory is less confusing than it sounds and the gorgeous animation from Austin-based Powerhouse (Castlevania) adds ample amounts of detail to the retelling. The giants look especially gnarly, as if they were pulled straight from a Godzilla film. And though it’s hard to remember all of their names, each creature has a distinct look and power set, such as the giant winged beast that can devour people with its “tractor beam wings” (that’s what I’m calling them).
Heron’s main adversary is an imposing demon named Seraphim (Elias Toufexis), who wields a deadly bident weapon that always returns to its master just like Kratos’ Leviathan Axe or Thor’s Hammer. Seraphim and Heron’s backstories are explored in such an effective way that it’s easy to feel a sense of compassion for both characters by the finale. Without going into too many details, the Parlapanides chew through a surprising amount of story in eight 30-minute episodes.
The voice acting in Blood of Zeus is also excellent, with Veterans like O’Mara (Batman: Hush) and Jennifer Hale (Mass Effect) adding a nice bit of gravitas to their respective characters. O’Mara gets to play a couple of roles here, but his portrayal of the wisened Elias is probably the most impactful. After hearing the Irish-born actor play Batman for so many years in the DC Animated Universe, it’s a welcome change to watch him portray a quieter, less aggressive character. He’s basically Obi-Wan in Greece, watching and guiding Heron from a distance. And just like the famous Jedi Knight, you get a sense that Elias knows more than he’s letting on (from a certain point of view).
Aside from the earthly matters surrounding Heron and Seraphim, there are plenty of godly conflicts up on Mount Olympus to enjoy. Zeus and Hera’s (Claudia Christian) marital situation isn’t the best, due to some adultery on the part of Zeus. Hera’s jealously causes a rift that leads to a war in the heavens. Admirably, the creators are able to balance both stories in a way that makes them feel connected. The only downside to this is that there are just too many characters to really develop fully, so you may see Poseidon in the distance looking badass, but he doesn’t say much, or Eres kicking ass on the battlefield without much character development. Thankfully, these nitpicks don’t get in the way of what is an otherwise engaging story since the primary characters all get their moments to shine.
But please, more Ares, Hades, and Poseidon if Blood of Zeus gets picked up for a second season.
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Source: IGN.com Netflix's Blood of Zeus: Season 1 Review