The things we learn, see and encounter as teenagers shape us into the adults we eventually become. There are a few main things that defined my transition from awkward teenager to awkward adult: Twilight (Team Edward 4 Eva), Harry Potter, and Percy Jackson.
I realise now that relying so heavily on tween franchises probably wasn’t a healthy thing, but let’s save that chat for my therapist.
The first two franchises, Twilight and Harry Potter, have carved out perfect spots in my heart.
Percy Jackson on the other hand is a little tainted. I loved the films mostly on principle: all things ancient history is my nerdy pleasure and Logan Lerman is very easy on the eyes, especially when you’re 14-years-old and go to an all girls school.
Despite all my love for the Percy Jackson films, there was always a little part of me that felt disappointed. But it wasn’t immediate.
The first film of the series, Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief (2010), delivered. The leading actors were cast well, on appearance and skill, and the plot followed the book pretty bang on. I loved seeing my favourite mythological heroes and creatures come to life on screen.
But three years later when film number two was released, Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters (2013), my initial excitement had dwindled a little which meant my expectations were higher. I wanted something just as epic, if not better, than the first film. These movies were supposed to be the next big thing in the fantasy-blockbuster genre.
This^ I feel in my soul. The Percy Jackson movies were intended for greatness but instead only achieved mediocre status. They’re the kind of films that get a lot of attention on release- mainly from their fanbase- and then fizzle out in the months following.
They’re the kind of films I happily go back and rewatch because they’re enjoyable but not necessarily because they’re good.
As a fan, it’s an upsetting reality.
But it’s part of the risk that comes with adapting a popular book series to the big screen, especially when the original author is not allowed the same amount of creative control. Rick Riordan is the mind behind the original Percy Jackson books but his involvement in the production of the movies was limited. Which is exactly why they lacked spark- because they lacked his genius.
I’m not dragging the movies just because I can. My disappointment is shared among fans far and wide.
There are five Percy Jackson books but only two movies. There was so much potential but we were robbed of it.
There’s hope though. In December 2017, The Walt Disney Company acquired 21st Century Fox, including the film rights for Percy Jackson & The Olympians. It’s unknown if Disney will continue the series or reboot it completely.
Anything Disney touches turns to gold so I have faith Percy Jackson will one day achieve god-status.