What Do Katniss Everdeen And Odysseus Have in Common? For Starters, That Bow Tho
After spending many movies with the adventures of Katniss Everdeen, Lionsgate is returning to the tale of the original warrior: Odysseus. That's right, according to a recent Deadline report, Lionsgate is going to develop a film adaptation of Homer's Odyssey . Even though there's no shortage of Odyssey adaptations (who doesn't love O Brother, Where Out Thou?), this seems like a smart and logical move on Lionsgate's part. Because not only are The Hunger Games and The Odyssey both popular texts read in high school (albeit you remember one better than the other), but Katniss Everdeen and Odysseus are basically the same person.
OK, "same person" is more than a stretch, but there are notable commonalities between The Odyssey and The Hunger Games, if not casual observations. Certainly Katniss and Odysseus share traits of bravery and resilience, but that's not the only way their stories are similar. The two share a crucial skill set that they use to make a statement, and have a common desire to survive so they can make it back to their loved ones.
I won't make you go back to The Odyssey (or wait until the new movie) to figure this out. Instead, allow me to give you a short-hand version of why Katniss and Odyseseus are two very like-minded heroes.
Both of their stories begin at the end of a war.
That is, The Odyssey begins 10 years after the Trojan war, and the story of The Hunger Games begins after a sort of revolt against the Capitol. I mean, same difference.
Consequently, they both endure a lot of pain and death before they're able to get themselves back home.
That'll happen when you get trapped by the sea nymph Calypso for seven years, or volunteer for tribute in the nation's favorite publicized bloodbath.
Which sucks, because at the end of the day, all they want is to go home.
In fact, the premise of The Odyssey is that Odysseus is just trying to get home. Like, that's it. In the first Hunger Games movie, Katniss promises Prim that she'll return back to District 12 (or else face certain death), and longs to return to Panem's favorite poorhouse. Damn shame that the place ends up getting destroyed later on.
They have patron figures on their sides.
For Katniss, it's rough-around-the-edges, drunk-before-noon Haymitch, serving as the District 12 mentor. For Odysseus, it's Athena, his protector and probably the only reason he's able to survive his mess of a journey.
They both pissed off the wrooooong people.
Odysseus blinded Poseidon's cyclops son and as a result, Poseidon decided to delay Odysseus' trip and throw him into constant peril. Double that for President Snow after Katniss tries to pull a Romeo and Juliet and becomes the face of a rebellion.
They're both skilled archers, and aren't afraid to publicly prove it.
Nobody can forget Katniss's "Thank you for your consideration" scene, when our heroine gets an arrow right through an apple in a pig's mouth, effectively ruining a banquet held by the Capitol's bigwigs. But what you don't remember (from 10th grade English) is that Odysseus is also an exceptional archer. In fact, he enters an archery competition to win back his wife's hand, in which he succeeds in stringing a bow and shoots it through a dozen axe heads. And he's the ONLY one to do that. What up.
They're also not afraid of killing a bitch.
Granted, Katniss' kills are generally more indirect and forced upon by an unfeeling dystopia who believes children-slaughtering-children makes for a good reality show. Odysseus, rather, is more about seizing the moment and just straight up murdering his wife's suitors. I mean, his bow was already set up.
Images: Giphy (7); Lionsgate