Percy Jackson Show Just Set Up Luke's Devastating Twist (2024)

Warning - This article contains major spoilers for both Percy Jackson and the Olympians on Disney+ and The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan.

For many fans, Percy Jackson and the Olympians is the first time they have engaged with the Percy Jackson world since reading the books.

As such, it is those fans' first time noticing all the hints of foreshadowing sprinkled into Episode 2 that set up Luke Castellan's eventual betrayal of Camp Half-Blood and reveal of being the Lightning Thief.

But beyond that, the new Disney+ series has taken things up a notch on the emotional front by adding several new layers that make the end twist all the more brutal.

Luke's Twist & New Levels of Emotion

Percy Jackson Show Just Set Up Luke's Devastating Twist (1)

Luke Castellan's (Charlie Bushnell) older-brother-like relationship with Percy in Percy Jackson and the Olympians on Disney+ is multiplied by a thousand in the show from what it was in the books, making his eventual betrayal brutal.

In a heart-wrenching scene from the Disney+ series, Percy burns a bit of blue candy, hoping his mom can listen to what he tells her. He tells her, "I think I've made some friends here. Like, real friends ... I think they might actually like me. Imagine that."

Percy is a lonely kid. He's shown in Episode 1 not to have a ton of friends until Grover and to be insecure about a lot of himself. By this point in the story, Luke had already betrayed camp by stealing Zeus' Master Bolt and having a plan to set Percy up.

Still, Luke acts so kind and brotherly toward Percy when he is at his lowest, such as when Percy thinks he just lost his mom, or when he fears that his dad will never claim him, or when he learns that half of his life had been hidden from him for years. It is hard to believe Luke's intentions are bad.

It is worth noting, though, that Luke may genuinely consider Percy a friend. At the end of the story, he asks Percy to join him and Kronos. He only tries to kill Percy when he rejects the offer. But regardless, Luke is a traitor.

This is all by design, as was explained at the Percy Jackson and the Olympians panel at New York Comic Con — which The Direct attended. Showrunner John Steinberg said what "felt really important was to understand and feel the relationship between Luke and Percy at the outset."

"[What] felt really important was to understand and feel the relationship between Luke and Percy at the outset ... To get to that moment at the end ... and not just be surprised if you didn't know what's coming, but to really feel it. And I think that that comes from from Charlie ... and really humanizes [him], understanding what story [he] thinks [he's] in."

This is doubled down on when Luke starts talking about Annabeth. In what many fans agree is a smart move, they seem to have removed the romantic tension plotline for Luke and Annabeth from the books and are keeping it strictly a sibling-like relationship.

Luke tells Percy that he will "always" be on her side in any situation and that she's his "little sister." He is seemingly so protective over this young girl who looks up to him, and it will just make the betrayal, which it is worth noting again has already happened, all the more emotionally devastating.

How Is Luke's Plot Twist Foreshadowed in Percy Jackson?

To a longtime fan, Episode 2 of Percy Jackson and the Olympians may make it seem like Luke Castellan being the Lightning Thief and working with Kronos to manipulate Ares is obvious from the get-go.

The musical score turns sinister when Luke is first shown on screen. The darker, slower strings give off a villainous vibe that may feel unexpected for a surprise villain.

Luke immediately tells Percy that it's hopeless to try to figure out what the gods think — to try and make sense of it all. This is part of his motivation for working with Kronos. He is tired of doing the gods' bidding for no real reason, and he immediately puts that out there.

Beyond that, he feels betrayed by his father, Hermes (Lin-Manuel Miranda). This element of Luke's motivation, according to Steinberg, will be explored further in the series. This is new for The Lightning Thief story specifically as Hermes did not appear in the book:

"I think a lot of the this really became a story about parenting with me, I think for Hermes, with Luke and for Poseidon and for Sally and for Zeus even. And so I think that was something that as the more we explore it and more we play with it, that color ... felt like it was coming out a lot."

At least longtime fans will be able to mentally prepare for the devastation.

Fan Reactions to Luke on Percy Jackson Disney+ Series

Charlie Bushnell brings Luke Castellan to life with his role in Percy Jackson and the Olympians. He does it so well that he has many new viewers fooled, and several longtime fans are already angry at the eventual traitor.

Fan @iDateReyna on X said that the betrayal is "gonna HURT hurt" when it comes at the end of the series, given what Luke expressed about Annabeth:

"percy: whose side are you on anyway?
luke: hers, always. she’s my little sister

oh it’s gonna HURT hurt"

Meanwhile, @parkersrina, who seems unfamiliar with the books, was surprised because fans do not like Luke since "he’s so sweet to percy." He later added, "y’all scaring me in the quotes and replies…:"

"also y’all made luke seem like a bad guy but he’s so sweet to percy"

By the time the finale comes around, longtime fans may still manage a chuckle at the reactions from the first-timers because it was right there the whole time. They just did not know how to look.

The first two episodes of Percy Jackson and the Olympians are now streaming on Disney+, with the remaining six episodes releasing weekly.

Percy Jackson Show Just Set Up Luke's Devastating Twist (2024)


What is the plot twist of Luke in Percy Jackson? ›

The villain twist at the end of Percy Jackson season 1 reveals that Luke is the friend who betrays Percy — and the person who stole Zeus' Master Bolt and Hades' Helm of Darkness.

Is Luke bad in the new Percy Jackson series? ›

Type of Villain

Luke to Percy moments before his death, and his most famous quote. Luke Castellan is the secondary antagonist of Rick Riordan's Percy Jackson & the Olympians novel series and its film duology, and the main antagonist of its Disney+ television adaptation.

What happened to Luke in the Percy Jackson series? ›

Luke dies in The Last Olympian when he is given Annabeth's knife by Percy. He commits suicide by stabbing himself under his left arm where his mortality was still kept intact after his bath in the River Styx (known as his Achilles heel).

Why did Luke set Percy up? ›

Luke betrays Percy and the gods because he himself feels betrayed. Luke's anger is prompted by how he feels abandoned by the gods, and this prompts him to use the same manipulation tactics that the gods use.

Why did Luke betrayed Percy? ›

Percy's confrontation with Luke reveals how and why Luke has turned to darkness. Luke doesn't feel validated by his own identity; his disillusionment and loneliness turn him into a pawn to be used by the gods, who know Luke is willing to betray those around him.

Does Annabeth love Percy or Luke? ›

Nothing ever happens between Annabeth and Luke, but Percy gets jealous of the other demigod. Annabeth also outwardly admits she had a crush on Luke in The Mark of Athena, the third book in Riordan's Heroes of Olympus series.

What is Luke's fatal flaw in Percy Jackson? ›

Luke Castellan: His fatal flaw was his excessive wrath. He was unable to forgive his father Hermes for what he had been through. Luke's anger blinded him so much that he went against his closest friends. By the time he realized it, it was too late and Luke ended up sacrificing himself.

Does Luke betray Percy in Percy Jackson? ›

Upon returning to Camp Half Blood, Percy is betrayed by his friend Luke, son of Hermes, who turns out to be the human hero whom Kronos used for the theft. Luke poisons Percy, and tells him before leaving that Kronos will rise and destroy the age of the gods. Western Civilization is unraveling.

Does Luke care about Annabeth? ›

Luke explains that Annabeth is like a sister to him, and that she is always six steps ahead of everyone else. Later, he tells Percy the story about how he and Thalia were on the run five years ago, and found Annabeth. During Capture the Flag, Annabeth and Luke both appear confident that their team will win.

How did Thalia beat Luke? ›

Thalia and Luke battle each other fiercely, fierce anger on Thalia's side, desperation on Luke's. Thalia gained the upper hand in the battle. Thalia manages to disarm him, saying that he could never beat her. Luke tries to grab her weapon, and as a pure instinctive reflex, Thalia kicks him, and Luke falls off a cliff.

What happened to Luke Castellan after he died? ›

With that, Luke dies just minutes before the gods arrived after defeating Typhon. In the end he is carried away by the Fates, blessed by Hermes (who kisses his forehead), and remembered and honored as a hero by not only Percy, Annabeth and Grover, but by all.

Is Luke more powerful than Percy? ›

Luke Castellan: He was stronger than Percy at the Percy Jackson and the Olympians, but as Percy grew older and got more experienced, Luke would be outmatched if he was alive.

Who betrays Percy in Percy Jackson? ›

The Lightning Thief reveals that Luke is the one who betrays Percy by stealing the Master Bolt. Despite Medusa suggesting that Annabeth will betray Percy, it is unlikely as she remains loyal to him throughout the series.

Who is the main villain in Percy Jackson? ›

Luke Castellan is a Greek demigod son of Hermes and May Castellan. He was one of the main antagonists of the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series.

Did Luke and Annabeth date? ›

He started the war between the gods and the titans, without him kronos would have never risen and tried to take over the world. Luke was more of a brother to Annabeth anyway. She said in the last book of the series that she never loved him in a romantic way.

What is Luke Castellan fatal flaw? ›

Luke Castellan: His fatal flaw was his excessive wrath. He was unable to forgive his father Hermes for what he had been through. Luke's anger blinded him so much that he went against his closest friends. By the time he realized it, it was too late and Luke ended up sacrificing himself.

Who is Luke's love interest in Percy Jackson? ›

From the book, you get the sense that Luke liked Thalia in a romantic way. He even says he likes her, and that one look from her blue eyes can get him to do anything (ie. Using his talent for locks even though he hates it).

Why did Luke steal the bolt? ›

Percy Jackson's first book explained that Kronos had influenced Luke to steal the bolt and frame Percy in order to incite another war.

Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Jeremiah Abshire

Last Updated:

Views: 5492

Rating: 4.3 / 5 (54 voted)

Reviews: 93% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Jeremiah Abshire

Birthday: 1993-09-14

Address: Apt. 425 92748 Jannie Centers, Port Nikitaville, VT 82110

Phone: +8096210939894

Job: Lead Healthcare Manager

Hobby: Watching movies, Watching movies, Knapping, LARPing, Coffee roasting, Lacemaking, Gaming

Introduction: My name is Jeremiah Abshire, I am a outstanding, kind, clever, hilarious, curious, hilarious, outstanding person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.