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Heroic Miracles

In Movies, television, and books, heroes often share common traits. Usually

heroes start out with a journey, they come in contact with dangers, and towards the end, a

guide comes to help them. Will Weaver, the main character of The Crazy Horse Electric

Game by Chris Crutcher, and Odysseus, the main character in The Odyssey by Homer,

both match this definition of a hero. Both Willie and Odysseus make heroic journeys.

Willie is a modern-day hero that travels to another part of the world to deal with his

disabilities. Odysseus is an epic hero that fights monsters and overcomes obstacles on his

way home from Troy. Although the novel, The Crazy Horse Electric Game and The

Odyssey describe separate heroic journeys, their main characters, Willie Weaver and

Odysseus, share common heroic traits.

First, Willie Weaver and Odysseus are called upon to make a journey or a quest.

Willie Weaver’s journey starts the day after when he becomes crippled from getting in a

Jet Ski crash. He gets on a greyhound bus headed for Oakland. When he gets off, a gang

follows him from the previous encounter with Willie and decides to beat him up a second

time for his money. For Example, Lacey says, “When we get to the station, I can maybe

jam the back door a few seconds. You got to cross the street, so you get out the bus and

run like hell. Station is well lit. They got cops hang aroun’ there sometimes,” (11:140).

When Willie gets off the bus, he quickly runs because he is very nervous for what the

gang members may do to him. Also, When Willie talks to Lacey after he gets back on the

bus, he has nowhere to go and asks Lacey, the bus driver, if he can stay at Lacey’s house

for only one day until Willie is able to find somewhere else to go. For Example, Willie
says, “I can’t…go home…I…don’t know where, but…I can’t go home…Just…can’t,”

(12:148). When Willie talks with Lacey, he says he just wants to go home and have a

good life. Next, Odysseus’s journey begins when he gets on his ship headed fro Troy to

fight. He gets stuck there and travels to the Aeolean Island and receives a bag of wind

from Aeolus to sail home. For Example, Aeolus says, “Hurry, let’s see what loot is in that

sack, how much gold and silver. Break it open-now” (10:231:49-50), (10:231:49-50).

When Odysseus goes to Aeolus’s Island, Aeolus tells Odysseus to open up the bag. He

helps Odysseus by filling up the bag and letting him sail back home. When Odysseus

washes up onto Circe’s Island, Circe says no one can leave her island. He asks her if he

can build a boat and she says yes. He decides to build a boat out of wood and sails on to

another place. However, as they pass Circe’s Island, they come along two big monsters,

Charybdis and Scylla. For Example, Circe says, “I cannot advice you which to take, or

lead you through it all. You must decide for yourself” (12:273:62-64). Odysseus has to

fight for himself and Circe tells him that he is a grown warrior and can fight on his own

without any help.

Next, Odysseus and Willie Weaver both encounter many dangers and bullies as

they travel through their journey. First, as Willie gets of the bus, a gang does not allow

him to get on the bus unless he pays six dollars. He carefully gets on the bus, afraid. For

Example, the leader says, “It cost you money to take the bus from here. You got

money?” (11:138). The leader tells Willie tells that he has to pay to get on the bus. In

addition, as Willie gets off the bus, ready for the transfer, the gang follows him. They ask

for his money and then beat him until he is more crippled. For Example, the leader says,

“It costs six bucks to leave, too. We have to make a living with our corner. It’s the only
one we own” (11:138). A Willie gets on and off the bus, a gang comes up to him and tells

him he has to pay to get on or leave the bus. He gets afraid and tries to run. He does not

know why the gang is only coming after him. Similarly, Odysseus passes the Sirens

Island. There are two monsters, Scylla and Charybdis. They both try to kill Odysseus

and his men. For Example, Odysseus says, “Deadly Charybdis can’t I possibly cut and

run from her and still fight Scylla strikes my men?” (12:274:122-125). Charybdis and

Scylla could kill Odysseus. He also gets stuck with Poseidon turning up the sea and

Odysseus cannot handle that. For Example, Calypso says, “Go, go, after all you’ve

suffered rove your miles of see-till you fall in the arms of people loved by Zeus. Even so

I can hardly think you’ll find your punishments too light!” (5:164:413-417). This means

that he was punished for all that he has done. In Addition, Willie Weaver and Odysseus

both have guides to help them with their problems or their obstacles. After Willies

accident with the jet skis, he began seeing a therapist, Cyril, to help him with his speech,

problems, and what to do with his life. For Example, Cyril says, “One more thing. I

know you’ve thought of suicide…then I’d really have my work cut out for me” (7:93).

Cyril tries to help Willie with all of his problems. Willie also gets a prescription for some

pills to help his speech and his attitude. For Example, Cyril says, “Most drugs have a

down side, whether you get them on the streets or from a doctor” (9:108). Willie does

not want to take pills, but he has to in order to get better. Odysseus also is helped along

the way by Athena. For Example, Athena says, “Any man…for all-round craft and guile”

(13:296:329-331). Athena tells Odysseus he has to fight and go on without his family.

He can do it. In Addition, Odysseus is also helped by Aeolus because he says in 12 days,

this bag of wind, will let you sail to Ithaca. For Example, Aeolus says, “I load you down
with treasure. Favoritism, friend to friend” (10:231:48-49). In order to help Odysseus

out with coming home, Aeolus takes Odysseus’s bag and fills it up with wind so he can

sail home in 12 days.

In conclusion, Willie Weaver and Odysseus take separate heroic journey’s, but

share common heroic traits. Odysseus and Willie Weaver both start with a journey. They

encounter dangers and towards the end, they find a guide to help them. Like other heroes

from books, television, and movies, Willie Weaver and Odysseus pose the same heroic

characteristics. They are heroes from different time periods, but prove that they are

strong, powerful and do good deeds

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