If you’re anything like me, you learned about Greek mythology from the “Percy Jackson and the Olympians” series. Not only was I introduced to the names of gods like Zeus, Poseidon and Hades, but I was able to put an almost facetious image to each due to their descriptions in the books. I quickly grew an understanding of every god’s distinctive roles and characteristics, albeit in a sort of caricature fashion. Ares, the god of war, is forever cemented in my mind as a badass motorcycle rider wearing a leather jacket and dope shades. Dionysus is an irritable camp activities director who drinks Diet Coke because he’s forbidden from wine and Apollo is an extremely handsome, Baywatch lifeguard-esque god with big muscles and golden hair. I’ll never forget how engrossed I was when reading about these characters and their shenanigans, and I still carry them in the back of my consciousness any time the topic of Greek mythology comes up.
In 2005 author Rick Riordan published the first novel in the series, “The Lightning Thief,” which chronicled the adventures of Perseus “Percy” Jackson from the moment he discovered he wasn’t just a regular kid to the countless battles he faced with mythological monsters in his quest to stop a war between the Olympian gods. Much of the action takes place at Camp Half-Blood, where demigods go to become heroes. Fantastic immortal creatures like centaurs and 100-eyed giants populate its grounds, and we even see Percy fighting the Minotaur without any prior training. As the story progresses, Percy and his companions Annabeth Chase and Grover Underwood embark on a country-wide quest to the Underworld in search of Zeus’s stolen lightning bolt, getting tied up along the way in brawls with Medusa and Procrustes, getting trapped at a casino embodying the Lotus Tree myth, and facing the treacherous beast Cerberus guarding the gates of their destination.
In subsequent novels, we are introduced to more mythical figures like the cyclops Polyphemus, the Sirens, the Oracle of Delphi and other classic Greek myths told through a modern perspective, but we are also met with enchanting storytelling and lovable characters who teach us about friendship, loyalty, destiny and heroism.
In 2010, the film adaptation, “Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief,” hit theaters. Although it wasn’t necessarily a huge flop, lots of people weren’t fans due to it being so dramatically different from the book. Disney+ is now producing a new series based off the books, which is rumored to be coming out in 2024. It has also just been announced that Lin Manuel Miranda will be casted as the messenger of the gods, Hermes. Here’s to hoping the series is done justice this time around. In light of this news, let’s take a moment to revel in some of the most grand and eye-catching Percy Jackson tattoos, and try to get one inked before the Fates cut our thread.