You may have heard, or maybe not, of the latest grand epic fantasy series on Amazon. We all know how much Game of Thrones implanted in our culture, with a very sad and somewhat comical fizzling out. The Wheel of Time show is the latest fantasy show that may yet become another cultural staple in modern society.
Starring Rosamund Pike, Madeleine Madden, and Josha Stradowski among many others, the series is based on a book series by Robert Jordan from the 1990’s. From what I’ve seen, they are faithful to the series so far, making changes when necessary and visually realizing the fictional world that Robert Jordan created.
I started the book series a few years ago, but I didn’t finish it. Now I don’t have to (thanks Amazon).
The sets and the fictional world are unique, easily its own world (possibly supposed to be Earth but it’s still a fictional setting). Parts of the world may not be as beautiful or iconic as the Shire, but it is still a grand and picturesque world.
Is it moving too fast? The lore is a little bit hard to follow during the series. When introducing an audience to a fantasy world, it’s important to know the history. We learn some history in episode two specifically, but we also want to put ourselves in the characters shoes. It’s difficult to do that, so to relate to them is almost impossible. That’s not to say we don’t care. However, they introduce more characters with each episode, leaving not that much time to bond with the main characters.
Rosamund Pike has an extreme presence. She is the voice of strength, confidence and reason in the series so far, sort of like the “Gandfalf,” as a steady character. However, there is not a bond between her and the main leads in the beginning.
In the series, the “Dark One,” has been reincarnated from what I understand. In case you didn’t get this implication…the “Dark One,” is a bad guy. The Dragon, however, has been reborn. Rosamund’s character, Moiraine, is looking for the person the Dragon has been reborn as (gives me Skyrim vibes). Moiraine is an Aes Sedai, a woman capable of powerful magic. There are other women Aes Sedai who all have different powers. Even though mostly women seem to have this power, I guess the Dragon can be reborn as a man because there are three men that Moiraine suspects as being the Dragon. There is also the Dark One’s army, composed of some creepy looking creatures that are almost as scary as the Boogie-Men from March of the Wooden Soldiers from the 1930’s. I really wish they would use a lot more make-up and costumes instead of CGI, but they are there to serve a purpose, which is to get the journey going.
Small matters aside, I am optimistic about this show. It doesn’t have the sex-crazed objectification tone that Game of Thrones pushed, and so far it doesn’t have seventy-five different story-lines we are supposed to follow, all taking place all over the Kingdom then suddenly meeting up as if the characters have teleportation devices. I’m hopeful, I’m enjoying the show, and I’m going to keep watching.
New episodes premier every Friday on Amazon Prime.