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The BluePrint Online

The student news site of Hagerty High School

The BluePrint Online

The student news site of Hagerty High School

The BluePrint Online

In The Moment: Percy Jackson and the Olympians

The+poster+for+the+upcoming+Percy+Jackson+And+The+Olympians+show+was+revealed+July+22.+The+show+is+set+to+release+Dec.+20+of+this+year.+
photo by disneyplus.com
The poster for the upcoming “Percy Jackson And The Olympians” show was revealed July 22. The show is set to release Dec. 20 of this year.

“Look, I didn’t want to be a halfblood.”

As soon as I read that line, I was immediately hooked—pulled into the world of ancient, deadly monsters and powerful characters of all ages. Despite what Percy said, I had desperately wanted to be a demigod. Yes, I knew it wasn’t real, but I could dream about it for hours on end. So when I found out there was a movie, I was extremely excited, because as a child, I didn’t know the horrors of movie adaptations just yet. After all, it was Percy Jackson! How bad could it be?

Oh, how wrong I was.

Percy Jackson and the Olympians (PJO) was originally a book series by Rick Riordan that launched a plethora of different spinoffs in more recent years. The first book, “The Lightning Thief,” was released in June of 2005, and “The Chalice of the Gods” came out earlier this year in September.

 Of course, anytime a book gets popular, it is bound to get a movie adaptation, and that is exactly what happened in 2010. The movie, which “followed” the events of the first book, was directed by Chris Columbus, who had previously worked on films such as Home Alone and Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. However, instead of staying as close as possible to the plot of the book, many details were changed, and what was once a coming of age story about a young kid who has to save the world from impending doom, was now a story about an angsty teenager with zero character development and a dance sequence that didn’t fit at all in the story. Somehow, the franchise still ended up getting a second movie in 2013, which only made fans even more distraught.

It’s safe to say that over the years, fans and the media alike have torn this movie to shreds, ripping it to pieces and burying it in their minds until it could never resurface. Fans accepted that their beloved book series would never get a faithful adaptation, and that was that.

Until late 2019, when Riordan revealed that he’d pitched his idea for a TV series based on the books to Disney+, and by May 2020, it was officially announced to be in development. Fans went crazy—with Riordan working on the show, it was sure to be much more accurate, considering his lack of presence behind the scenes of the movie. This sparked many fans to return to their beloved series, and influenced newer fans to share the excitement, and read the original series. It was a blast from the past.

Since then, the cast has been released, with Walker Scobell playing the title character, and Aryan Simhadri and Leah Jeffries playing Grover Underwood and Annabeth Chase,  who are the two other main characters. Many fans were thrilled with the news, because the actors are around the same age as the characters, and they were actually familiar with the source material. However, there were some criticizing Riordan for choosing Jeffries as Annabeth, because she doesn’t look like the blonde-haired, gray eyed character from the books. However, Riordan chose her because she embodied the character he wanted to portray in the series. The TV adaptation exists somewhat separately from the book series, so slight changes such as appearances shouldn’t have a negative impact as long as the actor understands their role.

On Aug. 18 of this year, a teaser trailer was announced, as well as the show’s release date—Dec. 20. Of course, that’s still nearly a month away, but with each trailer being released, fans are growing more and more excited. What drew them in with the original series were the characters, many read the books as a child and related to the sarcastic, loyal main character that would do anything for his friends and loved ones. Percy wasn’t like other main characters in middle grade books at the time—he struggled in school, and he was often in trouble with authority figures. Fans saw themselves in Riordan’s characters, and loved seeing their growth as the series went on. The upcoming show only proves that even after the failed movie duology, fans are still willing to believe in and return to the franchise that they love, if it means they’ll get to see their favorite characters up on screen again.

Only time will tell how the show turns out, and whether fans will be satisfied with this new era of PJO content. One thing’s for sure—it’s been a dam fun time coming back to the series.

 

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About the Contributor
Ava Strzalko
Ava Strzalko, Staff Reporter
Ava Strzalko is a sophomore at Hagerty High School, and this is her first year on staff. In addition to writing, she enjoys drawing, watching movies, and listening to musicals.
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