Wheel of Time TV Series Thoughts

I did not expect to like the Wheel of Time adaptation on Amazon Prime. I think I was gun shy right from the beginning. This is a series that I have been invested in for decades, ever since I first saw Eye of the World in the library and picked it up for two basic reasons: I thought the cover looked cool (a group of travelers in fantasy garb, up against a full moon), and it was very thick. I loved it, and I was hooked for the whole journey, waiting impatiently as the books came out over the years, culminating in them being finished by a good friend.

How in the world would a TV series be able to do them justice? Getting my hopes up seemed like too much to ask, so I just sort of let the series progress in the background, and when it actually was released I went into it expecting disappointment. You can’t be really let down if you’re planning on it, right? Surely the effects would be terrible. The acting would be off. I wouldn’t like it.

Except then I watched it, and instead of disappointment, I was just flat out excited. Excited to see the opening scenes with the Trollocs attacking Two Rivers. Excited to see Shadar Logoth. Excited to meet Thom for the first time. And as all of this unfolded and unfolded well, I got even more excited. I started to think about what might lie in store if this series keeps being successful. Seeing these characters grow. Seeing more of the world. The Stone of Tear? Dumai’s Wells? Yes, please!

Is the show a carbon copy of the source material? No, but I know if it was, then it wouldn’t be successful. Film has different strengths and weaknesses compared to books. To be successful, it has to change. And I’ve really been satisfied with the changes they’ve made so far. The story clips along at a fast pace. The characters are introduced and established, and there’s a driving sense of urgency to the whole thing. The effects aren’t perfect, but they’re very well done.

Honestly, I have few gripes at all. I was initially concerned they might try to Game of Thrones it, throwing in more extreme material than the books had, but other than a random bathing scene with Lan and Moiraine, and more physical romance with the main characters than was present in the book, they haven’t. (And some of that stems just from having the main characters be 4 years older or so when the series starts.) It sticks to its TV-14 rating, and that feels like a good place for it.

I know it hasn’t been universally loved, but as far as I’m concerned, it’s been super so far, and I look forward to more of the same. What have you thought?


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