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Do You Actually Hate Rachel? Or, Are You Just a Woman-Hater?

It has recently come to my attention that the most hated (that’s a strong word, perhaps, disliked) characters in the Percy Jackson series (and accompanying series) are Rachel Elizabeth Dare and Piper Mclean. Upon learning this information, this simply baffled me. There are so many more annoying characters in the Percy Jackson universe… Have you ever heard of HERA????? OR THE GRAY SISTERS???? If I ever see them, it’s on sight.

Given the genuine bounty of characters that are very easy to hate, imagine how surprised I was when I learned that Percy Jackson stans actually despise Rachel and Piper, from their appearance, to their love interests, to their actual personalities.

Some people claim that Piper Mclean comes off too much as an “I’m not like other girls” girly pop, but I must respectfully disagree. Just because Piper is a daughter of Aphrodite does not mean she needs to be into makeup. Just because Piper is not into makeup doesn’t mean she’s like other girls. Piper Mclean is typically very kind to other women, and the only instance I can think of where she isn’t particularly kind is when there was a *literal bully* leading the Aphrodite cabin. In fact, I’d go as far to argue that out of all the women in Percy Jackson, Annabeth- mf-Chase is the most “not like other girls” girl. Yes, you heard me right. And that isn’t to say that I don’t like Annabeth because of this personality quirk, in fact, I adore Annabeth, not being like other girls (I’m sorry), is just part of her personality.

On the other hand, Rachel Elizabeth Dare is kinda like other girls. Well, I mean, she’s pretty, and that’s pretty much it. To be perfectly honest, I don’t think Rick Riordan has a well-fleshed out girl character that is like other girls, but I think Rachel Elizabeth Dare is the closest. You wanna know why? Because she’s interested in Percy Jackson.

And who the heck isn’t interested in Percy Jackson?

On that note, it appears that one of the most compelling reasons why people hate Rachel Elizabeth Dare is because she is interested in Percy Jackson, and that’s just so stupid. I’m sorry, you’re mad because she was ruining your favorite ship? NEWSFLASH! They were mutually interested in each other. Did Percy like Annabeth more than Rachel? Obviously. So was your ship really ruined? 

It appears to me that the hate directed toward Piper Mclean and Rachel Elizabeth Dare has little to do with their personalities and is actually just pure ~misogyny~. You hate these women not because they are terrible people with terrible values, not because they are mindlessly annoying, but because you don’t think they fit your ideal image of what a woman should be. You don’t like Piper because she doesn’t like makeup, and apparently that makes her a woman-hater. You don’t like Rachel because she’s interested in Percy. 

Those are stupid reasons. Find better reasons to hate these characters or else I’ll be resigned to assume that you are just a woman-hater. 

My name is Ashti (she/her), I am currently an undergraduate History of Asia and the Pacific major with an Education minor at UCSC.
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