Return to Ulysses 31 (thing)

Another great 80's cartoon. [Ulysses 31] took the story of [Homer]'s [Odyssey] and set it in the [31st Century]. The storyline included the more famous parts of the [Odyssey] as well as other [Greek Myths].

On his way back to [Earth] from the [Troy] [space station], [Ulysses]' son [Telemachus] is captured by followers of the [Cyclops], a [behemoth]ic computer. Ulysses and crew are able to destroy the Cyclops and rescue Telemachus, but this angers the [Gods], who are every bit as mean and vindictive as their [Greek] counterparts: Ulysses' crew is placed in suspended animation and he is cursed to wander "[unknown stars]" until he finds the [Kingdom of Hades].

Ulysses companions include:

  • [Telemachus], Ulysses' [blonde] son
  • [Yumi], a blue telepathic alien rescued from the Cyclops in the first episode
  • [Numinor], Yumi's brother, also rescued, placed into suspended animation with the rest of the crew
  • [Nono], a small red robot that belongs to [Telemachus]. It featured in a [recurring nightmare] I had for a while when I was about four.

26 episodes of epic animated antics ensue, the group often being placed in grave peril by the [Gods]. Some aspects of the [Odyssey] and other [myth]s that feature in the cartoon are:

  • [Aeolus], who controls the winds
  • [Sisyphus], condemned to push a boulder up a hill (for eternity, since the boulder always rolls back down again)
  • The [Sphynx]
  • [Chronus], the father of time
  • [Theseus] and the [minotaur]
  • [Charybdis] and [Scylla], appearing in the cartoon as a trap consisting of planets of [fire and ice]
  • The [Sirens]
  • [Circe]
  • [Atlas], who in the cartoon holds up the entire [Universe](!)
  • [Lemnos], as a planet whose people are enslaved by despicable aliens
  • [Calypso], ordered by the Gods to [assassinate] Ulysses
  • [Hades] himself in the last episode.

In one episode, Ulysses is even sent back in time by [Zeus] so that he can help his namesake retain the throne of [Ithaca]! Quality stuff.

Ulysses 31 can be bought on DVD from the 11th of October, 2004; has it for £17.99.