Yesterday, Amazon Prime Video dropped the first teaser trailer for The Wheel of Time, its adaptation of Robert Jordan’s 14-book strong epic fantasy series. This show has been a long time coming, and it looks like the wait just might be worth it:
Shortly after the trailer dropped, the official Wheel of Time Twitter account published a Q&A session with showrunner Rafe Judkins and star Rosamund Pike, who plays the Aes Sedai sorceress Moiraine. Some of their responses were pretty interesting, including this one about how much the first season of the show will cover:
"Season One will cover Book One, plus some of Book Two and even Book Three. But also not all of Book One, as some of it is in Season Two. Cryptic enough?"
That is indeed plenty cryptic. The first book in the series, The Eye of the World, introduces us to a group of young people living in a sleepy fantasy backwater known as the Two Rivers; think of it as this story’s version of the Shire. Eventually, the Two Rivers are attacked by servants of the Dark One, but Moiraine and her Warder Lan come to town just in time to help. It ends up that one of these young people may be the Dragon Reborn, a mythical figure destined to either save the world or destroy it. And so their adventure begins.
The second and third books, The Great Hunt and The Dragon Reborn, take the story in some pretty different directions, and it’s hard to imagine how the first season could squeeze them in. And yet we do know, for instance, that we’ll see the Aes Sedai city of Tar Valon in the first season, even though our characters don’t make it there in the first novel. Pike admits to getting to act in Tar Valon in one of her answers:
So what does this mean? I can imagine the first season getting far enough along in the story to at least reach the beginning of Book 2, but it’s hard to see it getting all the way to Book 3 — I’m better Judkins and crew have taken some conversations from that book and transplanted them into season 1 to give us a better understanding of the complicated mythology and vast cast of characters.
People can watch The Wheel of Time “with their teenagers”
Another interesting question was about how age-appropriate the show is. HBO’s Game of Thrones, the last huge fantasy smash, was very much an adults-only affair. What about The Wheel of Time?
So The Wheel of Time is appropriate to watch with teenagers. That makes sense; the book series doesn’t involve as much sex and violence as Game of Thrones, but it’s not quite as chaste as The Lord of the Rings, either.
The special effects in The Wheel of Time are as “practical as we could manage”
Finally, Judkins and Pike fielded a lot of questions about the special effects on the show, which are apparently being kept as practical as possible.
That said, this is still a show where women tap into the One Power to shoot fireballs from their fingertips, so special effects are involved. It sounds like the team is being careful to keep things looking plausible and exciting:
Judkins also revealed that Scottish composer Lorne Balfe is behind the score for the show, and Pike enthused that the fan base has been “warm and welcoming.”
The Wheel of Time premieres on Amazon Prime Video on November 19. And before that, Judkins tells us we can expect another trailer. “And longer!”
To stay up to date on everything fantasy, science fiction, and WiC, follow our all-encompassing Facebook page and sign up for our exclusive newsletter.