Odysseus believes that his words are final and his actions are always right and just, but he often lets his ego take over his rational thinking, causing harm to his crew and tampering with the gods’s plans. His team could have returned home safely for it is the wish of Athena and the other heavenly gods who sit next to her in Mount Olympus, but Odysseus takes it to himself to anger and blind Polyphemus, the monstrous son of Poseidon, loved by his father but hated by the people, thus sabotaging their entire plan. After being blinded by the heroine, Polyphemus throws giant pieces of rocks at Odysseus's ship, almost destroying them all at once. But instead of retreating for safety, Odysseus continues to taunt Polyphemus and “[calls] out to the cyclopes again, with [his] men hanging all over [him] begging him not to”(Book 9, 491-492). His sense of pride and arrogance makes him neglect the pleas of his men even in these dire situations.
In Homer’s The Odyssey we are presented with a interesting and quite controversial protagonist, odysseus. There are many different types of heroes which mostly include superheroes and regular heros. Odysseus most certainly does not fall into the category of super hero mostly because of his blatant disregard of his men's lives and his unloyalty to his wife but he does fit into the simple hero category mostly because of his physical and spirituality. He provides everything a hero needs physically looking the part and he also runs into danger instead of away from it which also is a key characteristic of a hero. He also provides the leadership characteristic with making men follow his every move and really questioning him.
The decisions Odysseus made during the long trip to Ithaca made positive differences in the story’s result. Odysseus tricked the Cyclops by giving him false information about his identity which opened up the opportunity to escape. Another wise decision made by Odysseus was the fact that he took the path past Scylla recommended by Circe to get home which killed six of his men compared to them all. During the Siren’s song, Odysseus had the men plug their ears and tie him to a post so he would be able to hear the song but keep everyone safe. It may sound wrong for Odysseus not to inform the others of the dangers the crew would face, but if he did the crew would have messed up the plans to get home and chickened out during the
Odysseus had lots of pride in himself and his crew. Although Odysseus got him and his crew out of the cyclops's cave, he could not hold his pride in as he told the cyclops his name. "Cyclops- if any man on the face of the Earth should ask you who blinded, shamed you so- say Odysseus, raider of cities, he gouged out your eye, Laertes' son who makes his home in Ithaca!" (9.558-562). If he had not done this, life would be much easier for him, because Poseidon would not have had a reason to go after him.
He fights to the best of his abilities against many monsters such as Polyphemus, Circe, and the sea monster Scylla. There has been many claims that Odysseus isn’t hero because he lets his crew die. Just because his crew didn’t survive, it certainly does not mean he isn’t a hero. He tries his very best and even test his limits in order to get him and his crew back home. An example of this is in Homer’s ‘The Odyssey” where Odysseus tries to persuade his crew to bypass Thrinacia, the island of the sun god Helios, but they were too stubborn and insisted on landing.
“Quietly, Telemachus goes home and again bears the mockery of the suitors.” (Epic Visit to Nestor, page 727). He did not prove to be courageous to stand in public and make his complaints, until Athena came along and gave Telemachus a needed nudge to store enough confidence within him. Furthermore, before Atehna’s presence by his side, a weakness Telemachus held was that he allowed the suitors to mock and mistreat him, however, though Telemachus holds many inescapable and severe imperfections, he is a man of much strength as well. He is loyal, honest, brave, and devoted. Telemachus, through his actions and doings, proved to be beyond determined and devoted to hold on to his father’s belongings and kingdom and to save his mother from marrying one of the arrogant suitors with harmfully egocentric intentions.
Usually, epic heroes share common character traits such as bravery,courage,loyalty,. In Homer’s Odyssey, it is my belief that Odysseus is not heroic mostly because he was loyal when he was gone and left his wife. For example, when he went where Hades was all his men went and they ended up dieing.Even though some people may argue he is a hero because he had a good idea on how to win the war,also when Cyclops tried killing them Odysseus didn't say his name and stabbed him so they escaped. I maintain that he is not a hero because he wasn't loyal because he slept with Calypso and his men died.
Once again, Eurylochus displays a juxtaposition. He did not follow the others into Circe's home because he knew there was trouble and potentially death awaiting. However, he willingly killed the cattle knowing full-well he and the other crewmen could be punished. His reason was clouded by temptation and
Odysseus, who knew the wine would make the Cyclops sleepy, offered him “liquor to wash down your scraps of men” (256). This creative use of the wine made the Cyclops sleepy, and it gave Odysseus’ crew a chance to blind the Cyclops. Another demonstration of his guile is when he tricked the Cyclops who “stroked each ram” by belting himself onto the underside of the ram. If it wasn’t for Odysseus’ quick thinking, the men would’ve been eaten by the blind Cyclops, who checked every animate before letting it exit the cave. When I was younger, I always let my dog sleep on my bed at night; therefore, I would always blame the dog when I wet the bed.
Once again, readers how witful he is. Moreover, Ulysses devises the plan to make the Cyclops drunk. He does this by making the giant think he is begging for mercy by giving him wine. However, when the Cyclops finally falls into a drunken sleep, Ulysses and his men blind it. This proves the protagonists wit because, in the story, the Cyclops barred Ulysses and his men in a cave with a giant boulder, therefore, had the men killed him, they would have never left the cave.