Tony Grist (poliphilo) wrote,
Tony Grist

Greeks and Trojans

Everyone says Troy is a big disappointment. On the BBC's Friday Review Programme last night they were all against it with the exception of Germaine Greer who pointed out that Brad Pitt "has the most kissable lips of the millennium."

I tried reading the Iliad a few years back and got stuck half way through. I think its the most truthful thing ever written about war- and because of that truth its almost insufferably boring. All these beef-eating hardmen whom I couldn't give a toss about kept squaring off against one another and beating their brazen chests and then one or other of them would get skewered or hacked to bits and go down to Hades in a puff of testosterone and dust and jolly good riddance to bad rubbish (as we used to say in school.)

And all the while the poor bloody helots are getting slaughtered in their hundreds without a whiff of lamentation.

Just like the western front.

As a kid I got my Greeks by way of the Victorians and Steve Reeves- with all the repetitive bronze age realism edited out. I picked my team. I picked Troy- and reading Homer I realised I'd picked well. Agamemnon, Achilles, Ajax- they're all horrible, psychopathic, disgusting, stupid, whereas the Trojans are haloed in the glamour of their ultimate defeat.

And Hector has a wife and little son.
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