During this record-breaking, polar vortex cold, I sat down in front of a blazing fire to watch Incredibles 2 with my sister. The movie continued off from the end of the first movie and managed to keep everything similar, besides the facial features of Violet’s crush, Tony. This could be because Tony first looked like a creep or due to a different animator’s work, but either way, it was a noticeable difference. The Incredibles franchise takes place in a world where a few people have superpowers, like Frozone, but federal governments have banned the use of them after Mr. Incredible saved a man from committing suicide. In this movie, Elastigirl, who is also Bob (Mr. Incredible’s) wife, is given an Elasticycle and opportunity to work with a passionate billionaire to advocate for superheroes everywhere.
This opportunity first leads Elastigirl from saving a Hovertrain furiously speeding backwards in New Urbem. As it turns out, the operator of the train had been manipulated by the Screenslaver, the main villain of this movie. Incredibles 2 did not disappoint and kept my family and I laughing throughout the entirety of the movie. The Latin connection to all of this, of course, is New Urbem. The Latin word for city is urbs, urbis and when declined, urbem is city in the accusative case. I’ve got absolutely no idea as to why the storyline creators chose to name the city Urbem but as we have all seen before, using a Latin word for a name makes the place seem more sophisticated and futuristic.
I have recently started watching a T.V. show on Netflix. This T.V. show, called Lucifer, is about Lucifer, also known as Satan, in Los Angeles solving homicide crimes with the L.A. Police Department, specifically with a homicide detective. He ends up with this role because he is bored with being the Lord of Hell and wants to explore his morality. The show involves a Devil, therapist, and some very crude jokes. Lucifer has quickly managed to become one of my all-time favorite TV shows simply because the show manages to never become too dark. No matter what happens, Detective Decker’s young daughter, Trixie, and Lucifer’s strange reactions manage to brighten up the plot with their silly points of views. One episode involves the L.A.P.D. interviewing 93 of Lucifer’s hookups, all while Lucifer tries to prove to his partner that he wants to be romantically involved with her. God’s ex-wife also makes an appearance in the TV show and is ultimately punished by Lucifer to remain on Earth as a human.
However, no matter what happens, Lucifer always returns to his home: Lux. Lux is a popular nightclub that is built on prime real estate and is THE happening place to be at. The nightclub is paramount to Los Angeles’ nightlife and later on in the show, a crime is committed there. What many watchers don’t know, though, is that lux is Latin for light. This is very clever wordplay from the creators of the TV show, seeing how Hell, in Christianity, encompasses flames and eternal burning.
What’re your thoughts? Have you seen any Latin in TV shows (hint: you probably have)?
Photo Credits: We Got This Covered
Diem is a lifestyle brand that was created in 2013 by Phil The Mayor and Michael Nicholas. Its motto, which is Does It Even Matter, is meant to reference Carpe Diem, a phrase infamous for its mistranslation of Seize the Day. Diem promotes living for the little things, like going for a run during the sunset or doing silly things with your friends and being fully engaged in it, instead of worrying about the future. However, as Marsilio puts it, without the full phrase, the philosophical meaning behind Carpe Diem is taken away. Horace wrote “carpe diem, quam minimum credula postero”, which is translated as “pluck the day, put very little trust in tomorrow.” I found this interesting because the misconception of carpe diem is “enjoy today and tomorrow will be better”, whereas the actual denotation is meant to be to virtually get everything done today because tomorrow is uncertain.
Photo Courtesy of Diem
One of the most common stereotypes that constantly shows up throughout movies, books, and other forms of medium is the dumb jock. The dumb jock is typically both attractive and athletic but never smart. One example is Aaron Samuels from Mean Girls; Cady Heron, the main character and new girl, pretends to be bad at math, so her crush can spend time with her to help her. However, Cady notes that while helping her, Aaron consistently messes up, so she has to drop hints for him to get to the right answer. We have all seen this type of character, whether it be in a book, movie, or in other popular culture references.
However, what most people don’t know is that the dumb jock stereotype originates from Heracles. Heracles, although abnormally strong, hated sitting and learning. Because of his irrational temper, this led to young Hercules striking, and killing, his music teacher, Linus, with a lyre. After this incident, Hercules focused on using his physical strength to develop mental strength. However, by our standards today, Hercules, in no way, was a smart man.
If you make your way down to a high school on the Northeast Coast of the United States, you will stumble upon a new popular trend: Hydro Flask bottles covered with memes from The Office and cheesy quotes about persistence, all bought from RedBubble. Although aesthetic-looking, the bottles dent quite easily. This is widely disappointing because Hydro Flask bottles retail for $39.95 each. However, that is a well-known fact that most people choose to ignore. One factoid not many people know is that Hydra is Latin for water-serpent. Besides that? Hydraulus is Latin for water organ, or a pipe organ powered by water. The similarity? Both words have a prefix of hydra- and have something do with water. Hydro Flask can also be known as a flask where you carry/drink water from. Coincidence? I think not.
The majority of politicians, in Ancient Rome, have been immortalized through the skilled craft of creating sculptures. One thing most have in common is that they are all barefooted. You can look at examples of the great military commander Julius Caesar, or even the crazy ruler Nero. It is safe to assume that Ancient Romans wore shoes, but the reason behind their shoes not being sculpted was because Emperors/rulers were thought to be equal to all men while also similar to God. By constructing temples for one, or various, gods, an Emperor showed his spiritualness, and by being immortalized as barefoot, he was forever remembered as being equal to all men. Why does this factoid matter, you ask? Art showcases and preserves feelings and beliefs of a certain group of people, so later in the future, when people look back, they can literally see what was happening and infer what was going on in peoples’ minds.
During the last school year, in my freshman Latin 2 Greek 1 honors class, I read a lot of poems written by Catullus. This included his erotic poems to his male friends, or what we called his homosexual poems. Over the course of the spring term, we read several Catullus poems, but one that we did not read was poem 16. This poem is somewhat a homosexual one but more harsh than anything. The first line, which reads “Pedicabo ego vos et irrumabo” takes the reader by surprise and is shocking as well.
This led me to wondering how homosexuality was treated in Ancient Rome. Thanks to a quick conversation with my teacher, Mr. Ciraolo (buy his book here), I found out that not many people cared if a man acted on his homosexual impulses as long as he had children to success him. Although this is a very weird way of looking at a sexual orientation, I found that it was somewhat logical as well as tolerant.
According to Stanford University, there was nothing that differentiated homosexual and heterosexual behavior in both Ancient Rome and Ancient Greece. However, it was illegal for a man to be passive during sex. I found this odd yet interesting, particularly because many people in the West, America in particular, discriminate against same-sex couples merely because they are of the same sex and have sex. One example is the baker who absolutely refused to bake a cake for a gay couple. Then, in the summer of 2018, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the baker. Insane. It’s astonishing to think that Ancient Rome was arguably more tolerant of same-sex couples than we are today.