The Tale of Kid Icarus

26 November 2008 at 20:13 (Kid Icarus, Random Randomness) (, )

From the Kid Icarus – Angel Land Story manual

Let us go back to the distant past to an age when the gods and Man lived together in harmony. There was once a kingdom called “Angel Land.” This kingdom was ruled by two beautiful goddesses, Palutena who administered light and Medusa who ruled darkness. Palutena lived in the Palace in the Sky and administered light so that man could live in happiness. And bathed in this light man grew food and lived in peace.
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However, Medusa the goddess of darkness was different. Medusa hated mankind. She took great pleasure in drying up the crops that man took great pains to grow and in turning people into stone statues.
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In her anger Palutena changed Medusa into an ugly monster and banished her to the deep, dark Underworld. For being changed into this ugly monster and forced to live in the Underworld, Medusa promised to take over the Palace in the Sky where Palutena lived.
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So great was Medusa’s anger that she joined forces with the monsters and evil spirits of the Underworld and Medusa’s army soon began to surpass Palutena’s army in strength.

Soon a war between Palutena and Medusa began. Medusa led a surprise attack on Palutena’s army which could barely fend off the attack. Palutena’s army suffered major losses and was heavily defeated in the final battle.
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What’s more, Medusa’s army took the Three Sacred Treasures – the Mirror Shield, the Arrow of Light, and the Wings of Pegasus – away from them.
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Almost all of the warriors in Palutena’s army were turned into stone statues and Palutena herself was imprisoned deep in the Palace in the Sky. The peaceful realm of Angel Land came to be inhabited by foul and terrible monsters and was turned into a land of darkness ruled by the wicked Medusa. Locked in the depths of the Palace in the Sky, Palutena’s strength was drained to its last.
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As a last resort, she sought the help of the angel youth Pit who was being held prisoner locked in a deep dungeon in the Underworld.

Pit was a valiant warrior who used to be in charge of Palutena’s personal bodyguards. Armed with a bow and arrow brought to him through Palutena’s magical strength, Pit attempted an escape from the Underworld.
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The guard at this time was low in number as Medusa’s army had advanced to the Palace in the Sky. Pit succeeded in his escape and set out on his long adventure to rescue Palutena. Yet to defeat Medusa he had to get the Three Sacred Treasures. Will Pit be able to restore Palutena’s light and return it to Angel Land?

Copyright and credit to Nintendo etc etc etc

The story of Kid Icarus is based on Perseus’s battle with Medusa. Perseus is given the mirror shield by Athene and a sword by Hermes. There are also three special gifts he needs to get from nymphs to help him in his quest, a bit like Pit’s power items given to him by Zeus. There doesn’t seem to be any mention of why Pit is called Pit – is there some significance to his name or was it just arbitrarily chosen? I would probably incline to the latter. Palutena doesn’t sound particularly Greek either, however I have noticed that Palutena resembles Athene in some ways in terms of being armed and owning a mirror shield.
kidtale-palutenaCould Palutena’s name be a corruption of Pallas Athena?

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1 Comment

  1. Nintendo’s Mythtakes | VoVatia said,

    […] Athena really is the goddess who turned Medusa into a monster, which fits with the story from the instruction manual (although the mythological Medusa wasn’t a goddess herself). And while you’d think […]

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