Newer Adaptations of Classic Works

From musical, movies, TV shows, and even social media accounts, classical info and stories are being retold everyday! The Seven Basic Plots are something many of us are familiar with, and even if you don’t know the name of the theory, it’s easy to recognize how few things feel truly original anymore. That’s because they’re not, and that’s okay!!! Building off of preexisting knowledge is one of the oldest traditions in the book. Where it redeems itself is when someone does it in such a different way, it becomes something special in its own right, even if it is a retold premise. It is always great to have reproductions, if for nothing else, then to introduce things to younger generations. Adaptations are often a way to show another perspective and possibly make the information easier to understand! Here are some of my recent favorites:

 

Greek

  • Hadestown (Musical)

    • An intertwining of the stories of Orpheus and Euridyce and also Hades and Persephone, from Greek Mythology. The Greeks in general are responsible for so many of our entertainment styles. Mythology also heavily lends itself to storytelling and sharing too. Not only are the score and lyrics fantastic, but they guide you through the story so well, that going into it with no prior knowledge doesn’t hinder your experience! I have gotten many Jeopardy questions right thanks to this show, I highly recommend checking it out! It has a very fall/winter vibe to it so there are definitely some potential playlist auditions off of the cast album.

  • Percy Jackson (Book Series/Movies)

    • Percy Jackson is something that we all know and love! I credit so much of my interest in history and mythology to this and Disney’s Hercules. Facilitating dense knowledge, such as mythology, in a fun and approachable way is how adaptations should be, and Rick Riordan is great at this! Books like this are a great tether to the past and provide a new way to keep the tales alive. I sincerely hope that it continues to please future generations as it has since its creation!

 

History 

  • The Great (Hulu Original)

    • A very recent show from Hulu, The Great, is loosely based off of the life of Catherine the Great, in the 18th century. Although almost every liberty is taken, this series is undoubtedly special and refreshing. It stars Elle Fanning as the headstrong Catherine who won’t let her eccentric Russian emperor husband get away with as much as he thinks. Nicholas Hoult, as Peter III, is the surprising standout performance for me. I’ve been a fan of his acting for so long and I’ve truly never seena performance like his in this show!

  • Art History Memes (Instagram)

    • As a lover of museums and exhibits, not being able to adventure there this summer was disappointing. Loving art is taboo in a super odd way. Young people rarely discuss art which is a shame because I think many people have opinions or favorites that others would love to hear about and potentially discuss. Nowadays, art is made more approachable thanks to online exhibits, following actual artists on instagram, or even purchasing copies on Etsy to have a little piece of it with you. Over the summer I discovered art history meme accounts and they’re so good! Not only do you get to see art that may be new to you, but the captions are spot on and very shareable! My favorite accounts are @punk_history and @stupidart1, and the other one is @classical_art_memes_official.

Fairytale

  • Cinderella (Movie)

    • My personal favorite live action Disney movie is Cinderella (2015). While there is not really an educational aspect to fairytale retellings, I do think seeing them in an un-animated format is worth considering in your rankings. Somehow they managed to fit all the magic and wonder of the original animation into this movie. The ball scene is particularly captivating and the behind the scenes they have on Disney+ show just how much work went in to making it look and feel authentic. Not to mention, the costumes are to die for! Highly recommend giving this live action, if any, a chance!

  • Once Upon A Time (TV Show)

    • If there was a G-Rated, “good for families,” version of Game of Thrones, this would be it! The weaving of traditional fairytale stories is done so seamlessly that it seems like that’s how it always has been! THe stories are so complex but each episode makes you want to keep watching to chase the ending. Fairytales are often molded into references in other forms of media that we don’t ever realize. For me, I had never heard of some of these classic characters until I watched this show. Now, there is this whole storybook reference to look back on and get sucked into! 

Hope these fun goodies can satisy some of your entertainment cravings!