|"Now there's something you don't see everyday."|
When Perseus was on his way home with Medusa’s head, he passed through Ethiopia, where he saw a beautiful woman chained to the rocks, about to be sacrificed. He really needed to get home to prevent his mother being ravished by King Polydectes, but Perseus probably figured even the slowest ravisher on the planet could have gotten around to it by now, so what was the rush. So he stopped and saved the princess whose name was Andromeda, as you probably guessed. Somewhere around here in the Ray Harryhausen movie is when Zeus bellows, “Release the Kraken!” Only there wasn’t any Kraken, just an ordinary sea-monster, and it wasn’t Zeus who did it, it was Poseidon. Poseidon was angry because Andromeda’s mother Cassiopeia had insulted the Nereids. The Nereids were very sensitive about those things, and Poseidon was very solicitous of their feelings. It would have made more sense perhaps to sacrifice Cassiopeia but Poseidon wanted to teach her a lesson, and if you get sacrificed yourself you don’t learn a lesson, you just get sacrificed. Anyway. Unfortunately, Andromeda already had a fiancé and this just happened to be their wedding day; the guy had shown up in a fancy rented toga and everything, and the caterers had already come in. Phineus, that was the fiancé’s name, had been very understanding about calling off the wedding on account of human sacrifice, but seeing this complete stranger swoop in – literally “swoop,” Perseus was wearing flying sandals – and kill the sea monster and carry of Andromeda was just too much. He started to make a fuss about it, but Perseus popped Medusa’s head out of the bag and gave him a good look at it, which turned him into stone, fixing him pretty good.