Aristides Demetrios (Olympian)

olympianfilmNew episode of Powerless, new list of cameos and namedrops. Sinking Day mainly focuses on the new deal between Wayne Security and Atlantis, so much of the stuff is Aquaman-related, but there’s a subplot with the three stooges from the Research & Development division trying to figure the secret of Alex, the accountability employee portrayed by Matthew Atkinson. Well, despite the pretty convincing final demonstration provided during the party, all other evidence point to Alex being the new hero in town, the Olympian, a super-strong and flying guy dressed like an ancient Greek warrior. In the comics, the Olympian is another secondary superhero, who’s dressed in an even fancier way than the one we saw in the show, and his personality is… let’s say complex. Let’s take a look at Greece‘s greatest (and disgraced) superhero.

Aristides Demetrios was born in Leiváda, Greece… and he wasn’t exactly a good guy at first. With a rebellious and daring personality, he was a small-time thug, always ending up in jail for petty crimes, ruining all the jobs he could find with his behavior. Once, while he was out of prison, he found a job as a guardian in a warehouse, but he soon got tired of it, and thought of stealing some of the goods the place stored to sell it and make fast money. Instinctively chasing for what shone the most, Aristides stumbled in a very weird and shiny woolen mantle… that turned out to be the legendary Golden Fleece from ancient times, now imbued with mystical powers. Wearing the Fleece, Aristides was granted the powers of the fifty Argonauts, the mythological heroes who first retrieved it… and with their personalities as well. Feeling in himself the voices of the heroes of old times, the man was urged to do something more with his life, and instead of using his newfound powers to steal and rob as he would have olympiancomics1normally done, he used them to become a superhero. Aiding his people and his country in grave emergencies as in solving little crimes, Aristides became known as Greece’s greatest superhero, the Olympian, a formidable foe for both regular criminals and mystical creatures. He even became known in the global superhero community when he helped some “colleagues” from other countries: when Colonel Conquest hid a bomb somewhere in Greece blackmailing the entire country, Olympian helped Wonder Woman finding and disabling it, and when Echidne and other mystic-empowered villains tried to revive the evil Thaumar Dhai, the Olympian aided Superman (who was vulnerable to their magic) to stop the ceremony and prevent the sorcerer’s resurrection. With this new visibility and fame, the Olympian was among the heroes gathered by Doctor Mist to form a new team, the Global Guardians, an international super-team composed of heroes from all around the world.

The first adventures with the Global Guardians were indeed the heroic deeds the Olympian was looking for, and he even got particularly close to one of his teammates, the British heroine Godiva. When the United Nations replaced the Global Guardians with the Justice League International, however, the team was about to disband, and only a mysterious new benefactor allowed them to continue their operations… but the benefactor was Queen Bee, the dictator of Bialya. Queen Bee wanted to exploit the Guardians as her personal army so, after “testing” them in a mission in Paris (putting them against a giant robot she had built herself with alien technology), she hypnotized them to force them to do her bidding. This brainwashing process, however, had devastating effects on the Olympian’s mind: without Aristides’ will to keep them at bay, the personalities of the fifty Argonauts started competing for control, and the hero slowly descended into a serious multiple-personality disorder. The only thing that allowed Aristides not to be overwhelmed by the many voices resounding in his head (and not always managing to do it) was Queen Bee’s conditioning, but when the dictator was exposed and put down by a rival, and the Guardians were freed from the mind-control, the Olympian was left with a serious mental condition. Queen Bee’s successor, Sumaan Harjavti, had Olympian forcefully hospitalized, and when he was diagnosed with a serious schizophrenia, olympiancomics2he was locked in a mental asylum. Doctor Mist, however, didn’t want to leave anyone behind, so he insisted for Olympian to be released, and personally treated him: it was thanks to Mist’s and Godiva’s help that Aristides managed to regain control of the many personalities inhabiting his mind, albeit sometimes he struggled to do it. Back to the team, the Olympian regained his position and stayed a loyal member of the Global Guardians… and was even able to resume things with Godiva from where they had interrupted them, at least until the next planetary emergency forced them to put things on hold again.

Aristides Demetrios is a man reborn: once a lowlife and a criminal, he’s now imbued with the iron-will and the heroism of some of the greatest heroes from the past, and he lives following their selflessness and their thirst for glory. As the Olympian, he possesses all the Argonauts’ powers: Heracles‘ super-strength, Kalais‘ flight and agility, Lynkeus‘ enhanced vision, Atalanta‘s super-speed, Admetus‘ intellect, Teleus‘ resistance to psychic attacks and illusions, Hylas‘ ability to survive in every environment and without drinking, eating or even breathing, Zetes‘ teleporting powers, Poriclymenus‘ shapeshifting abilities, Kaineus‘ invulnerability, Meleager‘s healing factor, Staphylus‘ immunity to all poisons, Euryalus‘ longevity, Idmon‘s precognition, Aethalides‘ eidetic memory, Euphemus‘ ability to walk on water and many others. One of the most powerful heroes on the planet, the Olympian unfortunately struggles with a shattered psyche, with the voices of fifty boastful and glory-seeking heroes screaming in his head and battling for control over his body, resulting in quite a complicated and sometimes dangerous figure…