Ray Harryhausen Presents: Jason and the Argonauts: Kingdom of Hades is a sequel to the classic 1963 movie in graphic novel form. This review will discuss the intricate storyline making it easier to understand.
Have you ever pondered over the fate of Jason and the Argonauts after leaving Colchis, the land where the mystical Golden Fleece was located? If you have and would like to know what happens, I highly recommend reading this relatively unknown graphic novel that often goes by the name Ray Harryhausen Presents: Jason and the Argonauts: Kingdom of Hades.
Ray Harryhausen’s name often precedes Jason and the Argonauts: Kingdom of Hades. So this story may have even been blessed by Ray Harryhausen, the genius responsible for the extraordinary special effects in the classic 1963 film, which included Talos, a giant bronze man, and the multi-headed Hydra.
I found the plot of the graphic novel Jason and the Argonauts: Kingdom of Hades to be quite complex. As a result, I must admit I did get lost on more than one occasion. So I had to re-read certain sections of the graphic novel, again and again, to make sense of what was going on.
The story picks up after Jason and the Argonauts depart from the land of Colchis with Medea and the legendary Golden Fleece aboard their ship, the Argo.
Aeetas, the ruler of the land and the keeper of the Golden Fleece wants to recover it, so he sets sail with his own crew to retrieve it.
It leads to another incredible fantasy adventure for Jason and the Argonauts. This time they enter the underworld — the domain of Hades!
Jason and the Argonauts: Kingdom of Hades (Review)
The creators of Jason and the Argonauts: Kingdom of Hades have masterfully crafted a fantasy tale that is sure to captivate fans of this famous Greek myth.
One minor issue that detracted from the overall enjoyment of the story for me was the sheer number of characters. On occasion, it was difficult to keep track of who was who.
At the end of Jason and the Argonauts (1963) movie, there is a fierce sword fight against skeleton warriors, but the movie doesn’t go much further.
How would the adventure have turned out if it had been imagined like the classic 1963 film? In this Jason and the Argonauts: Kingdom of Hades review, you will find out. It will illuminate what the creators of the Kingdom of Hades dreamed up in a fantasy sense.
You can find out what the generally accepted version of the Greek myth is all about by reading Jason and the Golden Fleece (Nel Yomtov). On the other hand, here’s what happened in Jason and the Argonauts: Kingdom of Hades.
Kingdom of Hades – Chapter 1 (Review)
Jason and Medea are seen sailing on the Argo ship when Medea sights land in the distance.
Soon after they reach the unknown land where Jason and the courageous Argonauts stumble upon bizarre, oversized boar tracks.
Jason tells Atalanta, the sole female Argonaut, to take Orpheus and Theseus on a boar hunt. Despite their valiant efforts, they fail to capture one of the formidable boars.
They were all hungry, but suddenly, a woman in a green outfit appeared out of nowhere. She introduces herself as the custodian of the island and tells them that boar hunting is not permitted.
The mysterious woman subsequently extends her hospitality to Jason and his Argonauts by offering them food and beverages. Medea initially prevents Jason and his crew from indulging until the mysterious woman assures her they are out of harm’s way.
The woman is soon revealed as Medea’s aunt, Circe. Some crew members distrust her due to rumors of Circe being a witch.
The Boar Men
When Castor and Polydeuce, also known as the Dioscuri, disappear on the island, Jason strategizes a plan to locate them, with Atalanta and Orpheus leading the quest. Despite Circe’s assurance that they can leave anytime, Jason refuses to depart without finding them first.
Ultimately, they discover that Circe holds a grudge against Jason for his supposed crimes against her brother, King Aeetes, the guardian of the Golden Fleece. Circe attacks Jason with a ball of pink lightning, prompting Medea, her niece, to step in and block the attack. Circe quickly stops the attack and demands that the Golden Fleece be returned.
Medea’s father, Aeetes, is sailing aboard his ship to reclaim the Golden Fleece. He is accompanied by Pelias, the illegitimate king who sent Jason on the quest to find the Golden Fleece in the first place. While on board the same ship, Acastus, the son of Pelias, proposes a deal between King Aeetes and his father.
By the end of Comic Book #1, we see Circe in the company of her boar men guardians, which Jason finds a big surprise.
The graphic novel, Jason and the Argonauts: Kingdom of Hades, consists of five comic books in the series.
Jason and the Argonauts: Kingdom of Hades – Chapter 2
King Aeetes and his crew approach the island where Jason is located. Having spotted the Argo, Aeetes instantly commands his archers to prepare for an attack. He also decides to ram the Argo with his mind fixed on punishing the thieves. Soon after, he is greeted by the boar men.
While Acastus met Circe to represent his father, Jason and Medea observed him from their hidden spot, astonished to see him alive after seeing him in the grip of the Hydra monster earlier.
Acastus demands Circe reveal Jason’s whereabouts, prompting Jason to fire an arrow at him, sending the group into a frenzy. Despite being tempted to toss a spear at Acastus, sending him to Hades where he belongs, Medea stops Jason from doing so. They wait until Circe falls asleep before jumping down from their hiding place.
In the meantime, the Argo crew found themselves under attack from the archers.
Later on, Jason forcefully takes Circe back to the Argo, much to her dismay.
Kingdom of Hades – Chapter 3 (Review)
While on the Argo ship, Circe transforms a couple of the Argonauts into boar men. Atalanta implores Circe to reverse the transformation. Incredibly, the affected crew members still seem to possess their own consciousness on this occasion.
Meanwhile, Jason discovers that some of his crew are missing. Upon entering a building, he finds an elderly man, chained to a wall. The old man wants Jason to free him.
Unbeknownst to Jason, the elderly man he encounters in the building is actually Hades, the God of the Underworld.
Once outside they are confronted by big bronze men. Although Jason initially believes the bronze men were made by Hephaestus, the old man believes otherwise. Although similar in appearance to Hephaestus’ creation Talos, the bronze men were more petite in size.
Not long after being set free, Hades, the ruler of the Underworld, grows hugely in size outside the building. He seizes Jason in one of his hands and vanishes with him into a mist. Medea observes what happened and doesn’t believe her eyes.
Jason and Hades reappear in the depths of the realm of the dead. That’s when Jason sees a lifeless form of Talos. Hades explains to Jason that Talos has perished, shedding light on their new location, the Underworld. Meanwhile, the boar men battle and defeat the bronze men in the land of the living.
Circe exerts her powers to transport Medea and Atalanta into the realm of Hades, leaving them bewildered and amazed. Incidentally, their arrival is greeted by a horde of skeleton warriors, putting them in immediate danger and compelling them to fight for survival.
Kingdom of Hades Review – Chapter 4
One of the main antagonists in the graphic novel Jason and the Argonauts: Kingdom of Hades is the Greek God of the dead.
Circe also transports Aeetes to another part of Hades with her.
Aeetes has magical powers like his sister Circea, blessed by Hecate. He uses his power to summon up the Harpies.
Jason and the Argonauts: Kingdom of Hades – Chapter 5
Hades, God of the underworld, appears on Mount Olympus, searching for Hecate — the Queen of Ghosts. He believes she was the one who chained him up and he wants answers.
He confronts Zeus and disrespectfully demands to be allowed to speak with Hecate. It provokes Zeus to throw a lightning bolt at Hades, resulting in a heated battle.
As the argument rages on, Hecate finally arrives and reveals that chaining Hades was a strategic move to ensure the right person would unchain him. This act was carried out to safeguard Medea’s family after Jason stole the Golden Fleece.
Meanwhile, Pelias and Aeetes journey through the underworld in pursuit of Jason.
In the underworld, when Atalanta, Medea, and Circe are together, Circe divulges that Hecate betrayed them. The trio sees a ferry on a river in Hades but refrain from boarding it, fearing they may be trapped in the underworld for eternity.
On the other side of the river, Jason finds himself with Chiron, his old teacher. Jason wants Chiron to consider leaving the underworld, but Chiron rejects the offer.
Upon glimpsing Medea on the opposite bank, Jason instructs one of the Argonauts to shoot an arrow affixed with a rope towards a tree on the other side. The women utilize the rope as a zip line to traverse the river making it to Jason’s side. Filled with emotion, Medea embraces Jason when they reunite.
Escape from Hades
Circe employs her powers to summon the Argo, reminding Jason that only she or Hades wield the ability to prevent Cerberus from ensnaring them and dragging them back to the underworld. Cerberus is seen approaching them.
Aeetes implores Pelias to aid him in obtaining the Golden Fleece from Jason. However, the two men have a falling out as Aeetes realizes that Jason cares for his daughter Medea and desires her safety above all else. In a treacherous turn of events, Pelias’ son, Acastus, stabs Aeetes in the back. Pelias then finishes Aeetes off by stabbing him in the front chest area.
Despite Aeetes now being dead and in Hades, he still seems alive and well. So Aeetes decides to make his killers stay with him in the underworld forever.
Circe, Jason, and Medea make it on the Argo and somehow can leave Hades, the underworld behind them.
Medea and Jason now have something in common as Pelias orphaned them both.
Circe is the first to be taken home by the Argo. The crew spots Pelias’ ship in the distance but no one is sure what it means.
Jason and the Argonauts: Kingdom of Hades ends by saying: And the secret is always to know when to stop.
I’ll take that advice and stop the Jason and the Argonauts: Kingdom of Hades review right here.
The Final Chorus
The Jason and the Argonauts omnibus, which you see in the feature image, also contains another graphic novel called The Final Chorus. So what is The Final Chorus all about?
The Final Chorus graphic novel follows the story of Jason and the Argonauts as they embark on a quest to find the Golden Fleece.
The story picks up after the events of Jason and the Argonauts: Kingdom of Hades, where Medea and Atalanta were transported to the realm of Hades by Circe’s powers.
The Final Chorus follows the crew of the Argo as they face numerous trials and dangers, battling against warriors, Gods, and the elements to claim the Golden Fleece.
Along the way, Jason learns important lessons about leadership, trust, and friendship, and his bond with Medea is tested.
The story culminates in an epic battle scene where the Argonauts face off against their enemies in a final chorus of heroic action, with Jason and his crew emerging victorious and securing the Golden Fleece.
Overall, The Final Chorus offers a thrilling conclusion to the Jason and the Argonauts saga, packed with action, adventure, and high stakes.
Buy Jason and the Argonauts Omnibus (Sale)
If this Jason and the Argonauts: Kingdom of Hades review has made you curious, you may want to read it yourself.
For those who wish to fully immerse themselves in this epic tale, Jason and the Argonauts Omnibus is the perfect choice. This 222-page graphic novel includes both Kingdom of Hades and The Final Chorus, presenting a complete and thrilling sequel that is sure to leave readers spellbound.
Check Availability and Pricing: Jason and the Argonauts Omnibus
Jason and the Argonauts Movie Tribute
If you crave a fresh perspective on the classic story of Jason and the Argonauts, I invite you to check out my Jason and the Argonauts Movie Myth Tribute. This imaginative retelling offers a unique and thought-provoking interpretation of the myth.
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