Friday, February 14, 2014

Hercules: TVCU Legend

Yes, another full blog chronology.  Today we'll be discussing Hercules.  And Heracles.  And Hercules.  And that other Hercules.

There are many versions of Hercules (aka Heracles) in the TVCU and TVCM.  The main TVCU Hercules is the version from the Sam Raimi television series Hercules:  The Legendary Journies.  But back in the day, there were apparently many posers, some who were just really strong, others with genuine super-strength.  Over in the Looniverse, it's the same.  The real Hercules is the one from the Disney film and animated series.  But there are others.

So let's try to make something out of the multiple Hercules'.

TVCU CHRONOLOGY:


Circa 1350 B.C.--YOUNG HERCULES--Adventures of Hercules as a teenager.

Circa 1350 B.C.--THE THREE STOOGES MEET HERCULES--This tale doesn't involve the immortal trio living during this time.  Instead, the trio of 1962 travel back in time with the inventor of the time machine and his girlfriend, where they have a very bad encounter with Hercules when they try to make a profit off of stealing Hercules identity.  (Yes, I know, it's really Heracles.)  The travelers end up going back to the future.

13th Century B.C.--CABIRIA--Maciste is an Italian legend who was born of the rock and lived as a slave before becoming a hero.  He is immortal and super strong, and some of his exploits have been attributed to other heroes like Hercules and Samson.  His films take place between this period and the 1960s, and he has teamed up with other legendary heroes Hercules, Samson, and Ursus.


A darkened mountainous scene with dark clouds overhead. A lone man is standing to the left of the scene. Above the scene in golden capital letters is the title of the show.

an ambiguous time of Greek mythology--HERCULES:  THE LEGENDARY JOURNEYS (TELEVISION SERIES)--After his wife and children are killed, Hercules begins life as a wandering hero with his friend Iolis. Hercules is really screwed up historically when it comes to accuracy.  But this isn’t the real world,.  It’s the Television Crossover Universe.  And in the Television Crossover Universe, it happened as it appears on Hercules and Xena.  

Two men, the one on the left has long brown hair and is taller than the one on the right. The man on the right has long blond hair and is wearing a tunic top and leather trousers and a gauntlet on his right arm. The man on the right is wearing a waistcoat, leather trousers and a medallion around his neck.



the time of Hercules--HERCULES:  THE LEGENDARY JOURNEYS (TELEVISION SERIES)--SEASON 6 EPISODE 6 “CITY OF THE DEAD”--When Queen Nefertiti of Egypt wants to make peace with Greece, her son Ramses tries to foil things with the use of the Egyptian book of the dead, the Necronomicon. According to the Lovecraft mythos, the Necronomicon was created by an Arab, but much later than this story occurs.  But this isn’t the first story to portray the book’s earlier existence.  Additionally, the book is used in this story by using the famed words “Klaatu Barada Nikto”.  Those words actually apply to the Necronomicon ex Mortis from the Evil Dead series (and the words to shut down a giant killer robot in the Day the Earth Stood Still!)  Other stories have also conflated the two books.  It may well be that there have been many versions of this book, created by madmen possessed, and the more infamous Mad Arab was only inspired to create another copy.

1279 B.C.--HERCULES:  THE LEGENDARY JOURNEYS--Hercules meets Thor.  


Circa 1273 - 1279 B.C.--XENA, WARRIOR PRINCESS--Xena was a bandit leader who became inspired by Hercules to turn over a new leaf and become a wandering hero like him.


ancient Greece--GOD OF WAR III--Kevin Sorbo reprises his role as Hercules.


12th Century B.C.--SAMSON AND THE MIGHTY CHALLENGE--Samson, Hercules, Ursus, and Maciste team-up!!!

4th Century B.C. to 4th Century A.D. (Somewhere in this time period)--MOLE MEN AGAINST THE SON OF HERCULES--Maciste discovers a race of "mole men" ruled by a human queen.


100 B.C. to 44 B.C.--G.I. JOE # 50 & 73/YEARBOOK # 3/SERPENTOR'S FILECARD--"The Battle of Springfield/Divided We Fall/My Dinner with Serpentor"--Life of Julius Caesar, whose DNA will be used to create Serpentor.  Julius Caesar has also appeared in THE ABBOTT AND COSTELLO SHOW, ADVENTURES OF SUPERMAN, BEWITCHED, HERCULES:  THE LEGENDARY JOURNEYS, RELIC HUNTER, XENA WARRIOR PRINCESS, and CARMEN SANDIEGO'S GREAT CHASE THROUGH TIME.


1167 to 1227--G.I. JOE # 49 & 73--"Serpentor/Divided We Fall"--Life of Genghis Khan, whose DNA will be used to create Serpentor.  Genghis Khan also appeared in HERCULES AGAINST THE BARBARIANS, STAR TREK, SATURDAY THE 14TH STRIKES BACK, BILL & TED'S EXCELLENT ADVENTURE, THE SIMPSONS, and MARSHALL LAW.


12th Century--HERCULES AGAINST THE BARBARIANS--Maciste helps defend Poland against Mongol invaders.


Maciste nell'inferno di Gengis Khan (Hercules Against the Barbarians)


13th Century--HERCULES IN THE VALLEY OF WOE--Two boxing promoters from 1961 use a time machine to go back and snatch Hercules.  Even though they really mess up on their destination, they are fortunate to find him anyways since he's immortal.  They also find Maciste, and Hercules and Maciste fight before teaming up to save the time travelers from Genghis Khan.



JUNE 28, 1942--Lost issues--indiana jones meets hercules!



May 1953--THE ABBOTT AND COSTELLO SHOW--"Little Old Lady"--Hercules appears.

May 1954--THE ABBOTT AND COSTELLO SHOW--"Barber Lou"--Hercules appears again.

1962--THE THREE STOOGES MEET HERCULES--The trio are druggists who travel back to ancient Greece with the inventor of a time machine and his girlfriend.  They come back gladly.


October 1969--BEWITCHED--"Samantha's Caesar Salad"--Esmerelda accidentally pulls Julius Caesar from the past.  Julius Caesar has also appeared on THE ABBOTT AND COSTELLO SHOW, THE ADVENTURES OF SUPERMAN, HERCULES:  THE LEGENDARY JOURNEYS, RELIC HUNTER, and XENA:  WARRIOR PRINCESS.



MAY 10, 1972--lost issues--wONDER WOMAN TEAMS WITH A MARVELOUS VERSION OF HERCULES.




JANUARY 3, 1974--LOST ISSUES--SUPERMAN MEETS ANOTHER VERSION OF HERCULES.



October 1975--SHAZAM!--"Out of Focus"--Hercules appears.

September 1978 to September 1980--TARZAN AND THE SUPER 7--"The Freedom Force"--DC Comics superheroine Isis is united with former Space Sentinel Hercules, his flying horse Pegasus, and folk tale heroes Merlin and Sinbad the Sailor, along with a new original superhero character Super Samurai, to fight evil forces, especially from those of Merlin and Super Samurai's relatives; the former being Morgana

December 1994--BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER--"The Wish"--Anyaka, a wish demon, comes to Sunnydale, where she grants Cordelia Chase's wish that Buffy Summers had never come to Sunnydale.  The alternate reality seen is possibly the mirror universe.  These same events occur four years later in the TVCU2 and its Mirror Universe.  Just FYI, the mirror universe is where Buffy never came to sunnydale and where George bailey had never been born. I think there enough others (trek, hercules, charmed, g.I. Joe, super friends to name a few) that it might deserve it's own blog.


February 2002--RELIC HUNTER--"Antianeirai"--Sydney and Nigel travel to Istanbul to investigate the death of one Sydney's friends, a professor who was trying to prove Hercules did exist by finding the Belt of Hippolyte. They soon realize they're facing the Antianeirai - women who fight as men, a group of modern days "Amazons".  Hercules appears.


September 2007--ARMY OF DARKNESS AND XENA, WARRIOR PRINCESS:  WHY NOT?--Ash, who is always being pulled through time and space, goes back in time to the era of Xena, and interacts with her.  Though Win Scott Eckert says that Xena's universe can't be the same as his CU because of the really bad historical events displayed on that show, Dennis E. Power says that the show was based on stories that were told to Sam Raimi (hey, that guy) by immortals OLLU AND BUSZLA, who were there and involved, but though the events directly involving the main characters were true, the historical backdrop was all screwed up.  I actually conjecture (and since it's my world, that means it is) that Buzsla was Joxer, the clumsy would be hero who would tag along with Xena.  And Ollu was Salmoneus, the slightly sleazy but goodhearted con man that often encountered Hercules (though which Hercules I'll tackle at another time.)  Yes, that means the pair were travelling separately at the time, which wasn't uncommon.  Often they would fight and split up.


April 2008--The Immortal Iron Fist--"Orson Randell and the Green Mist of Death"--From Salvatore Cucinotta:  Okay, I found two comic crossovers that have varying levels of interesting things going on in them. First in the comic series "The Immortal Iron Fist", there was a special issue titled "Orson Randell and the Green Mist of Death". Iron Fist was already inducted into the Wold Newton Universe a while ago, but this cements the legacy nature of the hero and the other Immortal Weapons. Short version, he meets a Frankenstein. He comes in when a friend of Orson Randell (the Iron Fist at the time, the 1920/1930s) is injured and the only medical facilities available are those of Frankenstein. They apparently met during the Great War. This Frankenstein however is a child, or rather, an adult who transplanted his own brain into his descendant to survive. Orson is betrayed by this Frankenstein, but is rescued by a man who had been persuing him (or rather, primarily the coins his buddy kept around--7 pennies each from the 7 Cities of Heaven, where the Immortal Weapons are made), John Aman, the Prince of Orphans and the titular "Green Mist of Death". He's actually the golden age comic character "Amazing-Man" from Centaur Publications, with a bit of a tweak.  John apparently kills this Frankenstein, but when ever has death been an obstacle for a Frankenstein?  The other occurs during one of Marvel's many crossover events. This one is such a minor side story, we can ignore the larger event completely!  This one occurs during "Fear Itself" event, in the "Homefront" anthology series. Specifically in the 3 part story "The Chosen" (#5-7). A group of young heroes gather to stop a revived Nazi flying battleship, the "Hell Carrier" from the ocean's black depths full of shark warrior people. The hero Amadeus Cho, former traveling buddy to Hercules, 7th smartest man on earth and current head off the Olympus Group (a representation of the Greek Gods on earth) gathers a group of 'hero archetypes' of his generation: X-23 (Laura Kinney, psuedo-clone of Wolverine), Spider-Girl (Anya Corazon, another of the many women to have Spider-man like abilities), Powerman (Victor Alvarez, able to harness the "chi" around him more efficiently than most other humans) and Thunderstrike (Kevin Masterson, weilder of an iron club of Asgardian make). Shark Hybrid deep ones are nothing new, but they aren't the crossover. When Powerman, whose ability is to channel the Chi of an are into himself, tries to do so on Nazi ship, there's a bad reaction. He gets images of what's around him: a whole smackton of evil. He even gets a corruption off the famous Lovecraft couplet: "Ph'nglui mgwlw'nafh totaro samebito wgah'nagl fhtagn . . ." translating to "In their Dread House the Warriors of the King of Darkness Wait Dreaming."  A nice little shout out, but the real crossover comes near the end of the tale. The Hell Carrier is revealed to be powered by Vril. The same power source from the story "Vril, the power of the coming Race" that later was used in "Atomic Robo" among many other sources. I mention Atomic Robo because its main villain, Baron Heinrich von Helsingard, is a mad scientist who worked for the Nazis but who also destroyed Vrilya (City of the masters of Vril) and corrupted its use for the Nazi cause. It dovetails quite well with this story. Further, the powers/abilities of the gathered heroes fit into already existing paradigms to boot and the "team" Amadeus gathers dissolves almost immediately after the crisis is resolved. Mostly because Amadeus gathered them for less than altruistic purposes (IE: becoming public heroes in Hawaii for the sheer public appeal it would bring).


June2010--"Hercules: Fall of an Avenger" #2--From Salvatore Cucinotta:  In a backup story of "Hercules: Fall of an Avenger" #2, this little cameo occurs. The story features the Agents of Atlas Venus (no longer just a siren, but a true Goddess) and Namora going through Hercules various holdings. He didn't plan for much, but backed up and helped many a human being and, as it turned out, monster as well. The second issue focuses on them discovering a hospital/orphanage for injured orphaned monster/half-monster children. Among them is a cyclopes who looks a lot like Taranga Leela.




October 2010--Heroic Age: Prince of Power #4--From Salvatore Cucinotta:  I've got another little crossover for you. From the immediate followup to the excellent "Incredible Hercules" comic, "Heroic Age: Prince of Power #4" throws out a reference that made me giggle greatly. The details are pretty wild, but the thrust is this, the Amazonian Gorgon Delphyne lists of who she is to a group of mercenaries hired by a rogue Asgardian deity. "I am Delphyne Gorgon. Former Commander of the 6th Themiscyran Phalanx. Deposed Queen of the Amazons. I got 'in' by not leaving. And I am here TO SPILL YOUR BLOOD!"  Its subtle, but it's in the misspelling. "Themyscira" is the island home of Wonder Woman's Amazons. It also calls back to Delphyne's First Apperances (Incredible Hercules #121-125) is basically one giant thumbing of the nose to the rightly maligned "Amazon's Attack" storyline from DC even to the point of naming the lead villainess (created from stone by Hippolyta) is named Artume - the Pre-Roman, Etruscan goddess later made the equivalent of Atermis (the Roman "Diana"). Yeah. The Incredible Hercules series has that level of subtle reference and use thereof throughout its run, but usually to classical mythology. Here, to some degree at least, we got some kind of crossover going on. I doubt it was actually Diana of Themiscyra who got decapitated of course--Mirror Universe double; corrupted attempt to re-create it from a second amazonian tribe. Of perhaps something else. What are your thoughts?

March 2011--Special Collector's Edition: Masters del universo--Meg Foster plays Hera.  She also played Hera on Hercules:  The Legendary Journeys.


2011 to Present-ONCE UPON A TIME--TELEVISION CROSSOVER UNIVERSE/ENCHANTED FOREST--There are many alternate dimensions whose origins are unknown, but there are many things parallel. One such dimension is the Enchanted Forest, where a different version of fairy tales happened in an ambiguous once upon a time.  However, many of these characters found themselves trapped in the town of Storybrooke, in the TVCU, with amnesia,and apparently not aging, though not aware of it, which is part of a what we para-scholars call a time lock.  Here Belle's Beast was actually Rumplestitlskin, and she is currently being locked up a prisoner of Snow White's step-mother.  Cinderella has also appeared.  There is a version of Greek mythology in the Enchanted Forest dimension, which makes me ponder that the Hercules/Xena shows may actually not be our past, but have been part of this other dimension, which makes sense since this other dimension seems to take events from all over history and smoosh them together into one short period of time, as was also the case with Hercules/Xena.  Ivan Ronald Schablotski on Once Upon A Time / Disney Animated Universe:  I'm not 100% on the status of the Tooninverse / Looniverse / Toon Town / House of Mouse these days, but I can now safely state that the fairy tale characters in ONCE UPON A TIME originated in a world that parallels the Disney Princess Universe (for lack of a better name), at least geopolitically. This week's episode featured a genie from the land of Agrabah. Agrabah is the home of Disney's animated Aladdin (and Genie), and even if the metafictional House of Mouse is not considered, characters from Aladdin have appeared in-continuity on the Hercules animated series (and in parody form in Drawn Together). And, of course, Aladdin originated in 1001 Arabian Tales, rather than Grimms' Fairy Tales, as most of the characters on Once Upon A Time did. Also, just remember that they eat Apollo candy bars in Storybrook, Maine, so it should be the same reality as SCRUBS and LOST.  Another Lost / Once Upon A Time connection: Emma's car has a Geronimo Jackson bumper sticker. That's a reference to a fictional band whose hit song "Dharma Lady" was featured on LOST.  Also, Emma Swann and Mary Margaret drink MacCutcheon whisky. This is a fictional brand of scotch whisky used throughout the LOST series.  Toby O'Brien adds:  and in the first episode the town clock was stuck at 8:15......I see the numerical sequence as being a crossover since there's something universal about them of great power and significance. 


September 2011--THE GUILD--"Social Traumas"--Kevin Sorbo appears as himself.  In the TVCU, Kevin Sorbo is actually the immortal Hercules.


April 2012--30 ROCK--INNER TOOB: HERCULES AT 30 ROCK  (toobworld.blogspot.com)  




MAY 2012--DON'T TRUST THE B-- IN APARTMENT 23--"The Wedding"--From Toby O'Brien:  Tonight's episode of 'Don't Trust The B In Apt. 23' has Kevin Sorbo playing himself. As established in 'Hercules: The Legendary Journeys', Kevin Sorbo really is Hercules. In the trailer I saw, he's even referred to as Hercules, but I think that's only because everybody in the TV Universe knows he played the role on the toob.




LOONIVERSE CHRONOLOGY:




Hercules (1998 TV series).jpg


C. 1350 B.C.--HERCULES--Scar of The Lion King makes an appearance in Hercules as the skin of the Nemean Lion, worn by the titular character in one scene.


c. 1350 B.C.--HERCULES:  THE ANIMATED SERIES--"Hercules and the Arabian Night"--LOONIVERSE--Hades and Jafar each try to get rid of each other's enemies (Hades would try to defeat Aladdin while Jafar would try to defeat Hercules). 


776 B.C.--POPEYE MEETS HERCULES--An ancestor of Popeye is in the first Olympic Games.  Hercules is there.  This seems to be an imposter, who is an ancestor of Bluto.  This is clearly not the Disney version, who is the real Looniverse Hercules.  Hercules had many imposters in the Looniverse and in the TVCU.


775 B.C.--GREEK MIRTHOLOGY--The Popeye ancestor who beat "Hercules" now himself claims to be Hercules, and indeed is the first in the family line perhaps to find the secret that their gene gives them super-powers after eating spinach.


October 1995--ANIMANIACS--"Hercules Unwound"--Hercules appears, but not the main Disney version.


March 2001--HOUSE OF MOUSE--"Jiminy Cricket"--Hercules appears.


September 2002--MICKEY'S HOUSE OF VILLAINS--Features Hades, Pain and Panic.


September 2002--KINGDOM HEARTS--One of the worlds to visit is the Collisium.


September 2002--HOUSE OF MOUSE--"Suddenly Hades"--Hercules, Hades, Megara, Philoctetes, Pegasus, Zeus, Hermes, and the Fates are guests at the House of Mouse.


October 2002--HOUSE OF MOUSE--"House Ghosts"--LOONIVERSE--Mr. T is transported to the Looniverse where he visits the club called the House of Mouse.  Also appearing are Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Chernabog (FANTASIA), Pete (GOOF TROOP), Ed the Hyena (LION KING), Goofy, Pluto, Panic (HERCULES), Pain (HERCULES), Magic Mirror (SNOW WHITE), Daisy Duck, Mike (original character in this show), Pummba (LION KING), Timon (LION KING), and Minnie Mouse. 


October 31, 2002--HOUSE OF MOUSE--"Halloween with Hades"--Hercules, Hades, Megara, Philoctetes, Pain, Panic, Zeus, Hermes, and the Fates are guests at the House of Mouse.


December 2004--KINGDOM HEARTS:  CHAIN OF MEMORIES--Features Hercules and Hades.


March 2006--KINGDOM HEARTS II--There's level based on Disney's Hercules in there.


2007--KINGDOM HEARTS II:  FINAL MIX+--Features a world based on Disney's Hercules.


October 2008--DISNEY TH!NK FAST--The Muses appear for the minigame: Odd One Out.


December 2008--KINGDOM HEARTS RE:  CHAIN OF MEMORIES--Collisium is one of the worlds to visit in Castle Oblivion.


September 2009--KINGDOM HEARTS: 358/2 DAYS--Olympus Coliseum is based on Disney's Hercules.


September 2010--KINGDOM HEARTS:  BIRTH BY SLEEP--Features a world based on Disney's Hercules.


November 2010--EPIC MICKEY--Hades is a component in one of the Beetleworx enemies


January 2011--KINGDOM HEARTS RE:  CODED--Olympus Coliseum is one of the worlds in the game


November 2012--EPIC MICKEY:  POWER OF ILLUSION--Hades appears as one of Mizrabel's ego



????--KINGDOM HEARTS III--There is a battle against the Rock Titan


OTHER ALTERNATE REALITIES:


CINEMULTIVERSE--See all the 83 film appearance of Hercules here.


Earth-91119--Hercules of this universe has appeared on two episodes of Super Hero Squad Show.


TOOBWORLD--Click here to read about Hercules in Earth-Prime Time.


SKITLANDIA--Hercules has appeared on Saturday Night Live in 1987.


TOONIVERSE--Includes THE MIGHTY HERCULES (1963).

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