Wheel of Time: The Eye of the World   Show Only 
December 24, 2021 11:33 AM - Season 1, Episode 8 - Subscribe

The season one finale of The Wheel of Time.

It’s a wonderful life, Dragon Reborn 🐉.
posted by WedgedPiano (12 comments total)
How about that ceremonial(?) armour worn by the brother and sister leaders of shienar?
And the sister's glorious overdose on magic that saved the city?
And the blockier but still ornate woodwork for the doors and windows?
posted by Acari at 11:28 AM on December 25, 2021

I felt like the battle at helm’s deep / whatever pass really showed the limits of the budget - muddy shots, and some PlayStation 3 style graphics.

That and they threw a lot Of plot at the end that made me bewildered (hey, it’s some guy from episode one and he’s stealing a horn, cut to random ships off random coastline causing a tsunami from channelers).
posted by WedgedPiano at 1:03 PM on December 25, 2021 [8 favorites]

But that tsunami really... Uh... Got that one fisher child?
The guy from episode one was in lots of episodes, but sneakily. He was in the shadowy city with the cursed dagger, in tar valon, etc. I'm not sure how he followed them through the ways, since Mat would have seen him sneak in, but ???

If this show were way more popular, I bet we'd see some q-types calling themselves darkfriends with varying degrees of irony. (Like we get anti-antifa now.)
posted by Acari at 1:52 PM on December 25, 2021 [2 favorites]

To quote my wife, "Who were the people on the ships with the golden pacifiers and why should we care?"
posted by Catblack at 6:34 PM on December 25, 2021 [2 favorites]

What was the point in having the people speak in whatever language that was at the beginning? It's not like I think all the other characters are speaking English. The woman, in particular, was having a tough time make it sound like anything other than something she'd learned phonetically.
posted by The corpse in the library at 7:33 AM on December 26, 2021

Old Tongue, it was the past when it wasn't old tongue but just the language. Old tongue shows up occasionally in the books, and oddly enough is something of a fan favorite
posted by Jacen at 2:41 AM on December 27, 2021

I did a double take when I noticed the woman in the intro was wearing a modern-style jacket. A reminder that the "fantasy" setting is a fall. Gives the whole world a final fantasy vibe, and I am here for that!
posted by rebent at 7:31 PM on December 27, 2021 [2 favorites]

Rand, approaching massive horrible black stone pit from which the Blight crawls in every direction: “This is it, isn’t it?”

Well… YEAH
posted by showbiz_liz at 4:57 PM on December 28, 2021 [2 favorites]

Watching this now, but come on, what is up with the casting? I like the diversity but the Dark One has stereotypical Jewish features? Padan Fain and the Children of the Light big bad are both dark skinned black men. Meanwhile all the good characters of color are light skinned or asiatic? I could be reading into things a bit, and representation is great but come on.
posted by natteringnabob at 8:17 AM on January 2, 2022 [1 favorite]

Oh, it's not just you, natteringnabob. They're not making the slightest attempt to get away from dark = evil, light = good.
posted by The corpse in the library at 8:58 AM on January 2, 2022

After watching the whole episode, here are some random thoughts (about the whole series).

I really enjoyed reading some of the pearl clutching reviews on Amazon (oh noes they put gay people and people of color into my lily white imagination and ruined it!). Screw those people, for reasons that have been well explored elsewhere. I mean come on. The books are a mishmash of stuff from different cultures just pasted together with no real rhyme or reason. If it's ok to use a Chinese symbol as a core part of your magic system, and vaguely Arabic or Chinese/Japanese sounding names for stuff, does it really matter what people look like?

That said I can maybe understand where people might not like some of the narrative choices. I certainly was surprised by the relationship between Moiraine and the Amyrlin Seat. Maybe I just didn't read enough of the books. I started reading them back when the first book came out. I loved it at the time, some of the early scenes were terrifying to me and grabbed my imagination. But the longer it went on, the more my interest waned, and I gave up sometime between the first and third book.

So when I started watching the show I didn't have any preconceived notions other than a vague memory of the plot. And I loved it! Some of it was a little jarring (Samurai style clothing and weapons alongside medieval European style peasants? Warders having sex with other warders? Warders having sex with their Aes Sedai?!!!!) but I was here for it, heck yeah let's modernize this shit! And as long as the cool costumes and love stories and sexiness make it more entertaining, I'm good with it.

I guess that's why I was disappointed with the casting choices I noted above. I'm 100% down with representation and making viewers question their own assumptions about what heroic fantasy should be, so it was surprising and sad that they failed so hard.

Some of the special effects were blah... Shadar Logoth was pretty much not scary or interesting in any way. The Trollocs at the last battle there at the end were not particularly scary, and the fades just looked like dudes in latex masks that weren't even painted or anything.

But there are some real moments of beauty in the show, and some really moving scenes, thanks to some solid acting. I was even inspired to get The Wheel of Time on audiobook and start listening. Didn't make it very far before I got bored with the excruciating description of every little thought and feeling. Robert Jordan needed an editor, badly.

This episode didn't quite meet my expectations. When Nynaeve saves Lan (and everyone else) after Logain almost escaped, that was amazing. I felt her rage and sadness at losing him, and I was shocked at his death, and it was beautiful and effecting, I guess because of all that emotional subtext.

Then when Nynaeve saves Egwene at the end of this episode, well that was pretty awesome, heroic self sacrifice is always good shit. But then Egwene just heals her completely. Kind of cheapens the sacrifice, and drops the narrative suspense quite a bit. Now I'm assuming all of the main characters have some epic plot armor, which makes me care a little bit less about it all.

And yeah... all that channeling to generate a tidal wave to wipe out a little girl and maybe do a little extra erosion on those cliffs? Why waste your budget on that when you could have some... you know, like dialogue? Drama? Something other than a CGI tidal wave?

Regardless, looking forward to the second season.
posted by natteringnabob at 11:35 AM on January 2, 2022 [1 favorite]

Just watching this now. The big boss battle was incredibly underwhelming! 8 episodes to lead up to the huge nothingburger.
posted by the webmistress at 2:44 PM on February 5

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