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|Current status/schedule||Updates every Sunday|
|Launch date||March 4, 2018|
|Rating(s)||9.79 Stars on WEBTOON|
Search Lore Olympus on Amazon.
Lore Olympus is a third-generation webcomic or webtoon created by Rachel Smythe., slated as a modern retelling of the abduction of Greek goddess Persephone. It began publishing weekly on WEBTOON on March 4th, 2018. Lore Olympus is currently the most popular webcomic on the platform with over 299 million views and 3.5 million subscribers as of March 28, 2020.
Lore Olympus is set in a modern version of ancient Greek mythology, adopting technology and modern ideologies as a central set piece for the comic. Hades attends a party, intending to propose to his girlfriend, Minthe. After Minthe stands him up, Hades takes notice of Persephone who is new to the scene on Mount Olympus, where the gods and goddesses live. Hades makes a comment to his brothers, Zeus and Poseidon that Persephone's beauty rivals that of Aphrodite. Out of jealousy, Aphrodite calls on her son, Eros, to get Persephone extremely intoxicated and dump her in the back seat of Hades' car in an attempt to have her embarrass herself in front of Hades. After their initial encounter from this incident, Hades and Persephone both express an interest in each other. Through the meddling of other gods, their story continues to unfold, with near immediate foreshadowing that Persephone will someday become Hades' wife and the Queen of the Underworld..
The story continues to follow Persephone and Hades' interactions as Persephone explores her relationship with the gods and goddesses of Mount Olympus and the Underworld. Hera assigns Persephone an internship with Hades, causing them become close which results in problems in both of their interpersonal relationships. The comic also deals with strong themes of depression, sexual violence, trauma, vengeance, and PTSD as well as self-healing and reconciliation.
The following characters are central to plot lines in the comic and make regular appearances.
- Persephone is the goddess of Spring, depicted as a pink young woman. Persephone is stated to be 19 years old. She has prehensile hair which responds to her emotions in varying levels, sometimes by growing or sprouting flowers. She strives to become self-sufficient and maintain a positive, hard-working attitude. Persephone is a member of The Goddesses of Eternal Maidenhood (TGOEM), a group which upon joining swears an oath of virginity for all eternity. She is also an intern at Underworld Corp working as a Shade Coordinator as stated on her business card.
- Hades is the god of the Underworld and brother to Zeus and Poseidon, depicted as a blue businessman. His serious exterior and long-suffering demeanor mask his sensitive soul and weakness for dogs. Hades is also a member of the Six Traitors Dynasty.
- Minthe is a red river nymph that lives in the Underworld. She is Hades' personal assistant and on-again off-again girlfriend.
- Eros/Cupid is the god of love and son of Aphrodite. He is depicted as a tall, muscular pink man who enthusiastically creates and supports relationships. Eros has seven younger siblings from his mother, and has a relationship with Psyche.
- Apollo is the god of music and prophecy, depicted as a purple, burly playboy who is interested in Persephone. He is Artemis' brother. He is the owner of the golden lyre.
- Hera is the goddess of marriage and family, Queen of the gods, and Zeus' wife, depicted as a petite and golden woman with long, perfectly coiffed hair. She is constantly seen drinking or smoking and is unhappy in her marriage to Zeus. Hera is also a member of the Six Traitors Dynasty.
- Hecate is the goddess of magic. She is depicted as a dark blue woman with black hair and neon green cat eyes. She is Hades' assistant and friend, and often serves as a protector to Persephone in the Underworld.
- Demeter is the goddess of the harvest and agriculture in the Mortal Realm, depicted as a tall, green woman. Nineteen years prior to the comic, Demeter shaped Persephone out of clay and became her mother. Demeter is also a member of the Six Traitors Dynasty.
- Ares is the god of war and is one of the sons of Zeus and Hera as well as brother to Hebe. He is also dating Aphrodite and appears to have a history with Persephone. He has the ability to make people become enraged against their will.
- Hestia is the goddess of the hearth and home. Hestia is the founder and leader of The Goddesses of Eternal Maidenhood and is a member of the Six Traitors Dynasty.
- Aphrodite is the goddess of love and mother of Eros. She is depicted as a purple woman with a keen fashion sense. Ares and Aphrodite have an open relationship.
- Zeus is the King of the gods and Hades' and Poseidon's brother, depicted as a purple businessman with long straight hair. Zeus is shown to exhibit constant promiscuous and adulterous behavior. Zeus is also a member of the Six Traitors Dynasty.
- Artemis is the goddess of the hunt and a member of The Goddesses of Eternal Maidenhood. She is Persephone's best friend and roommate, as well as Apollo's sister. Artemis is depicted as a feisty, purple tomboy who looks out for Persephone and is generally ignorant of her brother's bad personality traits.
- Psyche is a human from the Mortal Realm. She was originally a princess who was to be wed to a wealthy merchant before Eros abducted her. She currently lives in Olympus, disguised as a purple nymph serving Aphrodite.
As the comic expands, Smythe is including many gods and goddesses, giving some their own plot lines while others may receive a brief mention.
- Thetis is a sea nymph and is the personal secretary for Zeus. Thetis is friends with Minthe and has been known to have affairs with Zeus.
- Poseidon is the god of the sea and is Hades' and Zeus' brother. He is known as a party animal and is the most relaxed of the three brothers. He is also a member of the Six Traitors Dynasty.
- Athena is the goddess of wisdom and war. She has a pet silver owl and is one of the few members of The Goddesses of Eternal Maidenhood.
- Hermes is the god of trade, commerce, and travel, as well as being a guide for souls down to the Underworld. Hermes spends a great deal of time transporting messages between beings in Olympus, the Mortal Realm, and the Underworld.
- Cerberus is one of Hades' many dogs and is the first being that Persephone encounters in the Underworld after waking up there for the first time.
- Hebe is the goddess of youth and is the younger sister to Ares.
- Amphitrite is Poseidon's wife and is the Queen and goddess of the sea.
- Thanatos is the god of death, who works directly underneath Hades at Underworld Corp.
- The Erinyes or The Furies are three sisters that serve Hades in specific missions, punishing crimes of those who come to the Underworld.
- The Fates are assumed to be the three sisters in charge of the flow of time and fates of those in the Mortal Realm.
- Charon is the ferryman to the river Styx.
- Styx is the embodiment of the river Styx, who carries souls across the realm to the Underworld.
- Aphrodite's younger children, Ludus, Storge, Mania, Pragma, Philautia, Philia, and Agape. Each child is the god or goddess of a kind of love associated with the meaning of their name, although each child appears to be too young to take on their godly duties yet. All of the younger children are siblings to Eros.
- The Titans are gods and goddesses that preceded the current pantheon, known as Olympians. The oldest gods in Mount Olympus are children of these gods, specifically the Six Traitors Dynasty. They are called as such for their transgressions committed against the Titans.
In 2019, WEBTOON announced that Lore Olympus had been viewed over 299 million times, becoming the most viewed comic on the platform      . As of March of 2020, Lore Olympus is the most popular webcomic on the platform and has over 3.5 million subscribers.
Lore Olympus has received both positive and negative feedback regarding its themes of sexual violence. Some critics feel that the characters who commit these crimes are not the appropriate vessels for the discussion, given their designation in Greek mythology. Others feel as though Smythe is using the webcomic to give a voice to survivors of sexual violence through media, focusing especially on the importance of female-written webcomics telling these stories . Another argument against the comic centers around the topic of incest, which many Greek myths involve. On her Lore Olympus FAQ website, Smythe states that in her telling of the story Persephone is not related to Hades specifically to avoid incestual contexts.
In 2019, Lore Olympus was nominated for the Will Eisner Award in the Best Webcomic category but lost to The Contradictions, written by Sophie Yanow. Smythe's work on Lore Olympus was also nominated for the 2019 Ringo Award for Best Colorist.
Jim Henson Animation
According to DEADLINE, the Jim Henson Company has entered into a partnership with WEBTOON to create a Lore Olympus animated series.      At this time, only DEADLINE has reported on this and the statements cannot be found from either company direction, but as of March 2020, Smythe's Twitter header image has the Jim Henson Company logo, alluding to the animation deal.
On her website dedicated to Lore Olympus, Smythe cites several sources that she uses for the comic
- Heroes, Gods and Monsters of the Greek Myths by Bernard Evslin and Jacky Gleich
- Classical Mythology: The Greeks: The Modern Scholar by Professor Peter Meineck
- Classical Mythology by Professor Elizabeth Vandiver
- The Metamorphoses by Ovid
- The Greek Myths by Robert Graves
- The Works and Days by Hesiod
- The Illiad by Homer
- The Odyssey by Homer
- The Homeric Hymns by Homer, specifically the Hymn to Demeter
- "Why You Should Drop Everything And Start Reading 'Lore Olympus'". The Daily Dot. 2020-02-21. Retrieved 2020-03-24.
- MODERN RETELLING OF GREEK MYTHOLOGY • Lore Olympus • WEBTOON, retrieved 2020-03-28
- Olympus, Rachel @ Lore [@used_bandaid] (2018-08-04). "Chapter 24 is up! (Warning: this episode of LO contains themes of sexual trauma that may be upsetting for some people.) Hosted @LINEWebtoon Edited by @BekahCaden (thanks as always) pic.twitter.com/QVRysk19H0" (Tweet). Retrieved 2020-03-28 – via Twitter.
- "THE LYRE OF APOLLO - www.HellenicGods.org". www.hellenicgods.org. Retrieved 2020-03-29.
- "Story FAQ". Masterlist. Retrieved 2020-03-28.
- "My Only Problem With Lore Olympus". 🎨A Spicy Cinnamon Roll That Draws🎨. Retrieved 2020-03-28.
- "r/osp - Wanted to know how y'all feel about Lore Olympus". reddit. Retrieved 2020-03-28.
- "Women Are Using Animation and Comics to Tell Stories of Assault". Critical Darlings. Retrieved 2020-03-28.
- "Why Lore Olympus shouldn't exist, let alone be getting an animated series". its a lovely morning and you are a horrible goose. Retrieved 2020-03-28.
- "2019 Will Eisner Comic Industry Award Nominees". Newsarama. Retrieved 2020-03-28.
- "Eisner Awards: The Complete Winners List". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2020-03-28.
- "List of Eisner Award winners", Wikipedia, 2020-02-25, retrieved 2020-03-28
- "Webtoon Celebrates 12 Creators on Ringo Award Nominations". Good Nerd, Bad Nerd. 2019-08-22. Retrieved 2020-03-28.
- "2019 RINGO AWARD Winners". Newsarama. Retrieved 2020-03-28.
- "Rachel @ Lore Olympus (@used_bandaid)". Twitter. Retrieved 2020-03-28.
- "Basic FAQ". Masterlist. Retrieved 2020-03-28.
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