As I alluded to in my previous article about the conversion of The Eye of the World to Season 1 of the Amazon Prime Wheel of Time series takes some rather broad liberties with the source material. Whole major characters are not present, characters who don’t appear for multiple books are here right away, they skip over and past huge swaths of content while adding in a number of things that were just never there. I had planned to include some kind of list in that article but it ran far too long before I even got to it, so here we are with a follow-up.
Think of it mostly as a “I’ve seen the show, but not read the book so I don’t know what was changed” primer for viewers who are thinking of either starting the books, or (terrible idea) starting with book 2 now that they’ve seen the show. Probably also gonna be a long one, so buckle in.
So it turned out that, surprise surprise, this ran dramatically longer than I expected it would in terms of word count. I got through the first episode to the tune of 2500 words, so what I’m going to do is keep this piece as a container for each episode’s summary and simply link to each of them below. As I work my way through I’ll add links to each at the bottom to move along to the next one for people who come to it later.
The summary of this subset of articles is indicated by the name of this one. The show has a pretty scant level of adherence to what happens in the book. There are whole episodes of the show where not a single thing that happens happened in the book, and most episodes don’t even make it to 20 or 30%
The basic overarching theme is here. The Dark One is getting free, the Dragon has been reborn, prophecy is unclear as to whether he will save or doom everybody. But otherwise they’ve taken extreme liberties with the content of the book.
In some cases this is good, in some cases it’s extremely perplexing, but the overall tone of the show has been “A lot more violence, a lot more sex, and for everything they skipped over, possibly for length, they’ve added in things that undo any benefit of cutting out the extraneous bits of the source material” and it really does give a sense that somebody somewhere looked over the books and said “This isn’t gritty enough to be a Game of Thrones replacer, so lets get more sex and violence, but we also don’t want any of that to be nearly as graphic as Game of Thrones. Yeah…make us PG-13 Game of Thrones” and it’s just…not really working for me.
So let’s get started taking this episode by episode:
Episode 1 – Leavetaking – Taking Liberties
Episode 2 – Shadow’s Waiting – Plot Jebaiting
Episode 3 – A Place of Safety – Misplaced Characters
Episode 4 – The Dragon Reborn – No Pain, no Logain
Episode 5 – Blood Calls Blood – Blood and Guts
Episode 6 – The Flame of Tar Valon – The Mats We Leave Behind
Episode 7 – The Dark Along The Ways – Going Way Off Course
Episode 8 – The Eye of the World – The Whyyy of Time
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