Mythology : Mythical Beings & Creatures

Overtime, Gothic novels and other horror tales have resulted in media tourism in the form of sightseeing in the areas of Dracula's rumored past whereabouts in Romania, as well as, historical landmarks commemorating witch trials in Northern Europe and Salem, Massachusetts. Other locations are fictional or imaginary, such as Gotham - the city of darkness in the Batman franchise.

But Gothic or not, horror fails to limit itself to landscapes, it features many paranormal entities such as ghosts, vampires, werewolves and other shape shifters – as the half-human, half-bear in Lokis by Prosper Merimee. Similar instant metamorphosis is recurrent in mythology, with Morrigan transforming into birds and animals at wish, similar to the Greco-Roman pantheon's ruler – Zeus (e.g. Europa).

Interestingly, when it comes to architecture, Gothic art is often associated with gargoyles. Tales and films about gargoyles coming alive at night are abundant, close to the likewise fictional belief that toys come alive when all are asleep…

In the contemporary media, myth can be perceived in such animations as The Smurfs, manga series Dragon Ball, video games Final Fantasy or Frozen Throne (Blizzard Entertainment: Warcraft III), to name a few. Further, computer games portray most actors of the fantasy world: dragons, elves (light and dark), dwarfs, gnomes, goblins, pixies, trolls, fairies, enchantresses, magicians and wizards. But enchantment, magic and wizardry aside, math wiz, sometimes spelled whiz, is a an expression used to describe someone particularly gifted in the area of mathematics.

Different gods and goddesses appear in diverse mythologies. For instance, Norse and Germanic: Odin, Thor and Loki, among others.  Thor the movie and sequel, as well as the Nibelung saga, relate to this collection of myths. To reiterate, other belief systems include the Greco-Roman with many deities and mythical creatures such as the Medusa Gorgon and the Minotaur. In Ancient Egypt, the focus was on Isis, Osiris and Ra manifesting as the sun. Of course, the pyramids have attracted a lot of interest, being popular in adventure, fantasy and horror stories. Clearly, the worlds of the literary genre - fantasy - have many mythological elements.

winged lion

A griffin-like creature. In Wicca themes inspired movies such as The Craft, witches are able to cast their supernatural spells with the aid of the five elements. Magic and the extraordinary have always fascinated the human psyche. As can be seen from the picture. Image: © Megan Jorgensen