Jan 26, 2014

Character Analysis: Clarisse!

Warning! Contains major spoilers for books up to Son of Neptune, and (very) minor spoilers for House of Hades!

 Clarisse La Rue, daughter of Ares, is a pretty amazing demigod. When she is introduced in The Lightning Thief, she is nothing but a bully toward Percy. However, throughout the course of the books, she slowly softens up and becomes his ally and sort-of friend, although they still tend to clash. Clarisse is a character who seems rough around the edges, but has many layers which we get to see throughout the course of the book.

The Lightning Thief

In this book, the only layer of Clarisse that we really get to see is her exterior: a malicious daughter of Ares, the war god. She likes to pick on the other campers, and Percy seems to be one of her main targets. When she tries to put Percy's head in the toilet as his "initiation", Clarisse and her cabinmates get doused with a ginormous wave of toilet water. Percy also manages to break Clarisse's spear during Capture the Flag, which infuriates her. These two events show a key point of her personality: how she reacts to losing a fight. If you ever beat Clarisse at anything, she will storm off and conceal her humiliation with angry threats.

The Sea of Monsters

The Sea of Monsters displays a different side of Clarisse. The first direct glimpse of her relationship with her father, Ares, takes place on the C.S.S. Birmingham during her Quest for the Golden Fleece. Clarisse is intimidated by her dad. She strives to live up to her father's expectations, and Ares doesn't believe she is doing well enough. This scene is important, because it reveals the motivation for many of Clarisse's actions. Why was Clarisse always so set on winning and being victorious? That's why. Not just for personal glory, but also to live up to the expectations of dear old dad.

The Titan's Curse

Clarisse is absent from Titan's Curse because she is on a top-secret scouting mission, which we later discover is her journey into the Labyrinth.

The Battle of the Labyrinth

Can I just say how much I love the side of Clarisse that we got to see in this book? 

She and Annabeth are actually getting along really well. She comforts Juniper at Grover's trial at the beginning of the book. Then, we find out that Clarisse found Chris Rodriguez after he had gotten out of the Labyrinth, and he had gone crazy. Clarisse tries to nurse him back to health. She calls the Labyrinth evil, and tells Percy to kill Daedalus when he finds him because anyone who could create something so terrible must be evil. It's apparent that Clarisse has strong feelings about both Chris's and her experiences in the Labyrinth, and those feelings influence her vulnerable side to show.

(Note: Thankfully, at the end, Chris is cured by Mr. D.)

The Last Olympian

The Last Olympian shows several layers of Clarisse's personality. The spat between the Ares and Apollo cabin and her reluctance to compromise show that she is very stubborn and proud. We also see her comfort and stand up for Silena after Charles Beckendorf's death, which reveals her caring and protective side (which we also saw with her relationship with Chris in BotL). Later in the novel, she avenges Silena's death by violently slaying the drakon that killed her (while wearing NO ARMOR AT ALL). So in other words... don't mess with Clarisse or her friends because she will tear you apart.

The Heroes of Olympus

 After Percy Jackson & the Olympians, we don't really see Clarisse. She makes brief appearances in The Lost Hero and The House of Hades, but not anything beyond that and a few mentions of her in passing.

How will she get along with Frank, her Roman brother?

I've thought about this a lot, actually. Hazel and Nico are on a friendly basis (or at least as friendly that Nico can get with anyone), and Jason and Thalia grew up together for a year or two, then reunited in The Lost Hero. But what about Frank and Clarisse? They are two very different characters. I honestly can't see them clashing with each other; it just doesn't work in my mind. I can see them respecting each other and working really well together in battle.

What role will she play in The Blood of Olympus?

Clarisse almost definitely won't be a main character. I think her time as a main character has passed. However, I'm fairly confident that she'll make at least a brief appearance. In The House of Hades, she was leading demigods in preparation for the Roman attack, so she should be there. I really hope to see her interact somehow with Frank, Percy, and Annabeth. Fingers crossed!

Clarisse by Irencia on deviantART

That's all for now. Have a good week, demigods! :)

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