Today, we’re celebrating Percy Jackson’s birthday by reminiscing on his most iconic scenes from the books.
I know what you’re thinking: Percy Jackson is one of the best (and most active) characters in the entire Riordan universe, so it must be nearly impossible to narrow down his best scenes! To make things easier, I’ve restricted this list to reflect a few of his most meaningful moments from Percy Jackson and the Olympians (and in the style of the book chapter titles, no less).
~ spoilers for Percy Jackson and the Olympians ~
Percy Defeats the Minotaur
Although it’s not exactly his first fight with a monster, his fight with the Minotaur in The Lightning Thief is when he really establishes himself as a capable demigod.
After his mom is seemingly crushed by the Minotaur’s hands, Percy lets go of his personal worries and jumps into battle to avenge her, despite his lack of training with a sword. Being entirely new to mythological fights, it was impressive he could kill such a large beast, especially when he was only introduced to the world of gods and monsters just minutes ago. This scene also introduces Percy’s fatal flaw (excessive personal loyalty, even when it puts his life in danger), which plays a bigger role in later parts of the story, and overall shows just how dedicated he can be.
Annabeth Tries to Swim Home
After their many disagreements in The Lightning Thief, this scene in Sea of Monsters truly cements the friendship and trust between Percy and Annabeth.
While traveling by ship, Annabeth wants to hear the Sirens and their songs which reveal one’s deepest desires, though she knows she could be putting herself in danger. Reluctantly, Percy agrees to let her do so, only because she plans on tying herself to the ship’s mast. But after hearing the song, she’s enchanted and breaks away, jumping into the water towards the Sirens. Percy jumps in to save her, and when they’re back on the boat, Annabeth shares a somber moment with Percy when she explains that her fatal flaw is hubris or deadly pride and that the song revealed her deepest desires were to fix everything she thought she had ruined in her life.
Though this moment is mostly about Annabeth, it’s important to Percy that Annabeth was comfortable enough to share her heart’s desires and flaws with him. It’s one of the first times when they get to be vulnerable together, after being so close to what could have been a foolish death, and for that, it’s iconic.
Percy Meets Nico For The First Time
When Percy first meets Nico D’Angelo, it’s the beginning of a fun (yet quite stressful) friendship.
In the beginning, Nico is a bright-eyed and curious kid. He asks Percy a few too many personal questions, but Percy has fun talking with him anyway.
Of course, their friendship is thrown in a different direction at the end of The Titan’s Curse when Nico discovers that Percy has broken an important promise. From then on, Nico becomes a semi-antagonist and someone Percy can only count on some of the time. In the end, though, Percy never gives up on trying to make it up to Nico and allowing them to become friends again.
Percy Tries To Save The World
There are many iconic moments throughout The Last Olympian, so instead of choosing just one, I’m putting a spotlight on the second half of the book.
The last book in the series is both dark and heartwarming, as the series starts to come to a close and Percy is dealing with the consequences of earlier quests. In The Last Olympian, Percy struggles with himself after learning that he must fulfill the most frightening prophecy yet, but he takes this burden and makes the best of it when he can.
In an attempt to save the world, he sacrifices his well-being in the name of everyone he loves, even if it means he’ll never be the same again. He goes into battle numerous times, and along the way, he’s put in dangerous situations some of his friends don’t return from. And during these struggles, we as the audience get some fun and heartwarming scenes with Percy’s friends. Considering the fact that Percy escapes death in nearly every scene of this book, the entire Battle of Olympus and everything surrounding it was highly memorable.
Percy And Annabeth Share An Underwater Kiss
If today is Percy’s birthday, that also means it’s the anniversary of one of the most iconic scenes in the series: the underwater kiss.
While I already covered this scene when discussing Annabeth’s most iconic moments, I just had to include the underwater kiss here as well.
After the final battle, Annabeth brings Percy a blue cupcake and reminds Percy that it’s his birthday, and he realizes August 18th will forever be a bittersweet day for him. But they laugh and try to avoid the other campers at Camp Half-Blood by jumping into the lake and sharing a sweet kiss to end their difficult summer.
Following everything the two have been through together after four years, this scene is a culmination of their friendship and what they truly mean to each other.