The Percy Jackson and the Olympians trailer brings Percy and the Greek gods’ story to life in new ways for a generation that’s waited forever.
After wildly successful book-to-screen adaptations like Harry Potter, The Hunger Games, and Divergent, it’s time for Percy Jackson to have the spotlight (and no, we don’t talk about the discontinued movie series adaptation). The long-awaited Disney+ adaptation of the book series, this time with author Rick Riordan heavily involved, dropped its series trailer last August 19 and moved its release date to December 20 of this year.
The series, as it was undergoing development, has been the subject of much media coverage and social media virality the past year. Book readers who have been there since the beginning and new fans alike have been buzzing with anticipation for an age-appropriate, faithful adaptation that will do justice to the young demigod hero’s story. Reactions to the new trailer and an earlier release date have been a mix of overjoyed excitement and emotional expressions of wish-fulfillment.
And no, as someone who’s read the books as a pre-teen and is now 22, I definitely didn’t tear up. Not at all. Nope.
FAITHFUL, DIVERSE CASTING
a high-quality percy jackson series with age-appropriate actors and leads of color ohhhh this is the only thing i’ve wanted since i was 10 years old 😭😭 https://t.co/xn0wIfBO8S— trish (@ULTRAGLOSS) August 18, 2023
Riordan and series fans have sung nothing but praises for the diverse and skills-first casting of Percy, Annabeth, and Grover. Walker Scobell of The Adam Project fame was announced as Percy Jackson last year, and Riordan referred to him as having the “perfect mix of comedic timing, sweetness, rebelliousness, snark and heroism” to embody the demigod hero.
The funny Aryan Simhadri was said to have a “mixture of sweetness, humor and internal toughness” perfect for satyr Grover Underwood. Finally, Leah Sava Jeffries is a “brilliant actor,” the embodiment of the daughter of Athena—smart, strong, and courageous. She could break hearts, make people laugh, and have people cheer on her “all in the same scene.” From the actors’ previous works, social media presence, and behind-the-scenes looks at the series, it is undoubtable they’ll do a fantastic job as the main trio.
NOTICING EASTER EGGS AND REFERENCES
IT TOOK ME SO LONG TO REALIZE THIS BUT IS THAT THALIA’S TREE pic.twitter.com/wwPxZFwVAn— no context percy jackson (@nocontextpjo) August 18, 2023
Both teaser trailers featured creatures, gods, battles, and Camp Half-Blood come to life. It was fun for fans to notice and call out the series version of something they read in the book, such as Thalia’s tree (spoiler alert: Thalia Grace is a daughter of Zeus that was turned into a tree to save her life), the orange camp t-shirts, the armor, the battle with Ares, and so much more. While book-to-screen adaptations are a mix of hits and misses overall, there is reassurance in Riordan’s involvement and the world-building we’ve seen so far. Plus, it’s always so much fun and excitement in seeing words on a page come to life right in front of you.
the way riptide is officially a percy jackson song brings me so much joy 😭 https://t.co/JlKPYEzBxi— did the percy jackson trailer come out today? (@percytrailer) August 18, 2023
In the trailer, if you listen carefully, you’ll hear a line from Vance Joy’s Riptide, making it canon as a Percy Jackson song after years of fans linking the song to the franchise. The song shares a name with Percy’s trusty sword Riptide. This detail means the series was produced with the fans in mind, and more than that, the creators truly realized what it means to fans who have been there forever, like those who made edits to the song way back in 2016. One can only wonder how those editor fans felt after watching the trailer!
PEOPLE HAVE RUN FAN ACCOUNTS FOR YEARS
ARE YOU TELLING ME THAT THE FAITHFUL ADAPTATION OF THE BOOK SERIES THAT I'VE BEEN A RUNNING A TWITTER FAN ACCOUNT FOR MORE THAN 10 YEARS IS FINALLY COMING TO US AT THE END OF 2023 😭 https://t.co/Cmmb9zMgeK— maria 🌟 (@cursedbythegods) August 18, 2023
Speaking of fans and faith, so many fans of the series who have run stan accounts for the series showed immense elation at the adaptation. I was also part of Percy Jackson Twitter in the early-to-mid 2010s, and I’ve made friends online and offline because of this series. Running a fan account and witnessing all the new releases and developments, from new novels to disappointing movie adaptations, is such a unique, rollercoaster experience. To watch the series, reliving old adventures and seeing new ones as the series goes on, will be a nostalgic, emotional journey that will get us to say, “Hello again, Percy.”
GROWING UP WITH PERCY
me on december 20th when the percy jackson tv show finally comes out pic.twitter.com/ol6zLOFjAS— cowboy like jib 🤠 | percy jackson tv show! (@ohgreekgod) August 18, 2023
The first book of the Percy Jackson & the Olympians series, The Lightning Thief (which the first season of the show is based on), was first published in 2005. It’s been almost 20 years since then, but the series has consistently been relevant over the decades, what with new series being published by Rick Riordan still featuring characters and storylines from the original 5 books.
Chalice of the Gods, a standalone sixth novel to the original 5 books, is even being released this September. All that is to say, Percy’s story has lived on for years, accompanying a generation that is now all grown-up. This new Disney+ series will definitely introduce Percy to a whole new audience, and even a whole new generation. Regardless, we’ll all be seated for this renaissance.
Hype and expectations are sky-high for the adaptation, and hopefully, it will let Percy Jackson’s story live on in a new way in longtime fans, and open up new worlds to people who will have just discovered the magic of the series.
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