So, okay. Rick Riordan didn’t really put an XOXO on his open letter to teachers everywhere, but that’s not really the point.
Just to make it clear, although I am a huge fan of Riordan’s, I am not in any way being biased in regards to my opinion throughout this post. It may sound like it, but I am honestly not.
And just another memo before reading this post: I made this mainly because I saw a post from an entertainment page pop up in my news feed in Facebook. I read the whole article and then later on, the comments. There were mixed opinions, but most of them contains words like “dick move of Rick Riordan”, “a big FU to the crew”, “makes him sound super pretentious”, and ” For the movies to be good, don’t the books have to be good first?”..
First of all, the book really IS better than the movie. The person who left that last comment must have not read it before, since he/she obviously had no clue as to how different they were from each other. And second, he had been honest from the start that he did not like the adaptation, mainly because he prefers having his characters appear the way his mind made them, and third, he’s not having to do with the films doesn’t have to stop him from having his say, like how those people could leave those comments about Rick, and yet he has no right to stop them.
Now I know this is their own opinions and I have no right to tell them otherwise, but I felt like the people were focused on the fact that Riordan did not like the adaptations compared to what the open letter was really meant for. I tried to re-read the letter again, because maybe I’m the one missing the point here, but came out with the same understanding. So that’s why I thought I’d make this post because I think Rick is being judged for the wrong reason, or maybe in a wrong way.
I don’t know the whole story as I just read the open letter a few minutes before writing this blog post. But from what I understood, Rick responded to a teacher that had a film viewing of the movie adaptation of the second book from the Percy Jackson and the Olympian series, The Sea of Monsters, in order to introduce or teach the children about Greek Mythology.
And just in case I still didn’t make it clear from the beginning, and you’re still not familiar with the book series, or Rick Riordan, or the movie adaptation of the first 2 books, then let me summarize it for you… As I mentioned, the first two books were adapted into films and the author, Rick Riordan, WAS.NOT.PLEASED.
Yes,he sold the rights for the books and he did not have any hold on how the productions would use it, and if in any case, have any changes in mind when they planned to adapt it into a movie, but that doesn’t stop the author from voicing his opinions regarding how good/bad the adaptation is. And he made it painfully obvious to everyone that he did not like it. And how much he did not have anything to do with it. He doesn’t even want to acknowledge it. Or maybe he does. Just not in any way related to him.
But in my opinion with regards to the movie, IT WAS AWESOME. The story was pretty cool and the actors did so well with the characters. And it was my favorite movie at the time. Until I read the book. In other words, I saw the movie before I had the chance to read the book. And I won’t lie, I still like the movie despite how big of a difference it had from the book. Especially since it has Logan and Alex in its casts. But I also have to be honest that after reading the book, I want to stab anyone who tried to tell me the movie is better than the book. To keep it short, I don’t like it when people compare the movie from its origin. Because the book was OBVIOUSLY better. The movies are good in its own way and yes, i did and still do love them, but for crying out loud, never compare it to the book series. You’ll just hurt yourself.
In regards to Rick’s open letter to teachers that is teaching Greek Mythology to children, I would like to side with him on this one. (Read his letter here)
I know his words might sound harsh to some, probably most of you, and his readers might be the only one who would understand what he means, which in any case I think are the people who have the right to voice their opinions since they’d understand the issues being compared here better. And being one of those people who’ve seen the best of both worlds, meaning I’ve read the whole series, have seen the movies and loved both of them, I’d like to agree with Rick that the showing of the film adaptations is not highly recommended for teaching children about Greek Mythology. The films did not, in any way, showcase the facts about the Greek Mythology, and I’m afraid they might get confused with what’s supposed to be real and what’s supposed to be fictional. There are already a lot of other confusing facts everywhere about the Greek Mythology that there is no need to have the children be more confused, whereas later in their life they’ll have questions like “WHO THE HECK IS THE REAL PERSEUS?!” or some other questions along that line.
And based on my understanding of Rick’s letter, the film viewing of the film adaptation was a good example of HOW NOT TO TEACH YOUR CHILDREN GREEK MYTHOLOGY.
All I’m trying to say is (and what Rick probably meant as well), there are better movies or activities out there that would intrigue the children to learn Greek mythology or any other history lessons in class. The film adaptations of The Lightning Thief and The Sea of Monsters are not in any way educational but rather made more for entertainment purposes. And not that reading the book series will be in any way better, but reading would be good for them. Probably not the Percy Jackson series, but something related. If I’m not mistaken, there are tons of interesting history books specifically designed and made for children. I remember in my elementary class, we had these pop-up books for Greek mythology in our English class (I think we read about Aphrodite. I’m not sure.), but ever since then I got attached to learning more about the Greek gods, its history, and especially its architecture. (And look where that got me, tehehe! 😛 )
And so I hope more people would rather take Rick’s letter in a more positive way! I think people just missed the entire point of what exactly the letter was meant for and as to why exactly the film adaptations are not ideal for teaching the kids about Greek mythology.
I just thought I should put it out there!
Thanks for reading!
xo, Darla Mae.