Once he completed the twelve labors and paid his debt to society, Hercules married Deianira. Their marriage was a happy one until he accidentally put on a poison tunic. The pain was so intense, Hercules decided that he would rather die than endure the torturous poison. But in death, he would find something he never thought he’d find.
With Vanessa Richardson
You think you know the story…But do you really? Every other Saturday, Tales presents ancient fairy tales the way they were originally told: orally, and unadulterated. Tales is part of the Parcast Network and is a Cutler Media production.
After strangling his music teacher Linos in a fit of rage, Hercules was confronted by two beautiful women, Vice and Virtue. He was to choose a path for the rest of his life. One would be a path of hardship leading to glory. The other a path of pleasure and irresponsibility. Which path would he choose?
One day, Toshiro the wood cutter wandered into a remote part of the forest to cut wood and drank from a nearby pond. In his reflection, he saw a man only 25 years old - the water had transformed him. His wife, Chizue insisted that she should drink from the same pond, to become as young as her husband - but she never returned. Toshiro returned to the pond, only to find a terrible surprise.
In this early version of the Rapunzel fairy tale, young Persinette is locked away in a tall tower away from men and told by her mother to never cut her beautiful golden hair. When a prince hears her beautiful singing and is drawn to the tower, Persinette must decide whether to heed her mother’s warning or believe the charming prince.
Thumbelina is a girl no bigger than a human thumb. Due to her small stature, she is very attractive to animals, who try to kidnap and marry her. Among her suitors: a toad, a beetle, and a mole. Yet, the one with whom she connected most was the swallow she nursed back to health. Would the swallow allow Thumbelina to be taken by another animal, or would they live happily ever after?
The Emperor requests that his kitchen maid, Mei, bring to him the nightingale whose melody is so sweet that she can make your heart dance. Mei finds the bird, and the Emperor is so impressed that he invites the bird to stay and sing forever. But when the Emperor receives a wind-up bird who sings a different and more beautiful song, he doesn't realize that the choice between them will become a matter of life and death.
Momotaro is a brave Japanese boy adopted by a childless couple, after they find him inside of a peach. Years later, Momotaro says goodbye to his family to defeat the Oni (demons or ogres) who live on a distant island. With the help of a dog, a pheasant, and a monkey, Momotaro finds their castle. Will Momotaro’s bravery be enough to defeat the black magic of the Oni?
A soldier returning from battle steals a magical Tinderbox from a witch. He uses the Tinderbox to bring himself more riches than he could have ever imagined. But what he wanted more than anything, was a chance to meet the Princess. So he used the Tinderbox to not only meet the princess, but also to become King.
After having his first revenge plot foiled, Massood, captain of the thieves, swore revenge against Ali Baba, the man who killed 37 of his men. What Massood didn’t account for was that Ali Baba was not their killer. But he would soon figure out who was.
Massood, captain of the thieves, concocts a plan to get even with Ali Baba for stealing riches from his cave. Posing as a weary oil merchant, he asks Ali Baba for a place to stay and store his 37 jars of oil. But not all the jars are full of oil...
Ali Baba, a modest wood chopper, finds a stolen fortune in a magical cave, but can't keep the secret from his greedy brother. The next time he visits the cave, he is greeted not by robbers, but by the corpse of his dead brother. Will Ali Baba be next?
A town in Germany had a serious rat infestation, and turned to a mysterious visitor to fix their problem. The piper played his magical fife to lure the rats to a certain doom, but the mayor reneged on the payment he promised for the service. Months later, when the piper returned, he used his powers to seek revenge...
The tale of Hua Mulan seems simple: she was a devoted daughter who risked her life to become a warrior in place of her father. She returned from war a hero. But an older version of this tale is dark and complex, featuring death, betrayal, and a tragic ending.
In this classic story of metamorphosis, a young duckling struggles to fit in with everyone around him. He goes off on his own, only to find his feelings of depression deepen. Will he ever find the peace he is searching for, and a place where he belongs?
A key. A forbidden locked door. And bloody secrets. A cautionary tale, Bluebeard warns of the danger of rich men with unchecked powers, and of the deadly risk to women who become disobedient.
The Beast grants Beauty a trip home, and she gladly accepts the time with her family. On the final night of her trip, she doesn’t want to return to the Beast’s castle, even if that means the death of the Beast. But a dream leads her to rethink this decision. She rushes back, in hopes of saving his life. Will she return in time?
Trapped within the Beast’s beautiful castle, Beauty grows anxious of her imminent death. In her dreams, she meets with a prince, who happens to be a fellow prisoner of the Beast. She becomes determined to save this man... before her time runs out.
The merchant Marc lost everything — his wife, his job, his home — leaving his children unsatisfied with their new, poor lifestyle. In a final attempt to please at least one of his twelve children, he goes to pick a lovely rose...and finds himself bargaining for his life with a beast.
This is the second of two prequel episodes to Beauty and the Beast. Despite different social standings, King Ernest marries a commoner, Alice. But Alice has a secret, and this secret causes her to disappear overnight, leaving the king and their daughter alone. And Alice doesn’t just disappear; her lies and secrecy get her imprisoned, and leave her poor daughter cursed.
This is the first of two prequel episodes to Beauty and the Beast. Kidnapping. Lies. Lust. Tragedy. The original story of Beauty and the Beast is quite different than the story you know today. We go back to one of the oldest recorded versions of this classic fairytale, starting with the violent, twisted events that lead up to a boy becoming a beast.