Amazon revealed today, as part of their New York Comic Con panel, a video clip from the premiere episode of their upcoming Wheel of Time TV show. Showrunner Rafe Judkins introduced the scene as an iconic moment when Moiraine Sedai (played by Rosamund Pike) first appears in the Winespring Inn. Visit our TV show section of the website for more info including a full Season 1 cast list. What did you think of the clip? Who's ready for November 19, 2021?
Amazon Prime announced today that Ceara Coveney, Natasha O'Keeffe, and Meera Syal will join the cast for season 2 of the upcoming Wheel of Time TV show. These actresses join Dónal Finn as the first people announced for season 2. Newcomer Ceara Coveney will play the iconic role of Elayne Trakand, the Daughter-Heir on Andor, and novice Aes Sedai. Ceara's official bio states: Natasha O'Keeffe is confirmed to be playing an unspecified role in season 2. According to show runner Rafe Judkins, she will play "one of the most important characters" in the series. At this point your guess is as good as ours as to who she will play! Natasha's bio: Meera Syal is also confirmed to play an unspecified role in season 2. Like Nataha O'Keeffe, Rafe Judkins describes her role as one of the most important in the series. Meera's bio: Who you you think Natasha O'Keeffe and Meera Syal will play? Are you excited for Ceara Coveney to play Elayne? Let us know in the comments!
Composer Lorne Balfe and Amazon Prime released the first single from The Wheel of Time soundtrack today. The track is called "Al'Naito" which, in the Old Tongue dictionary from the books translates roughly as "For the Flame." The music can be heard in full here: It can also be found on Apple Music here. Notably, the track includes lyrics from the Old Tongue, which shows an amazing level of artistry and research into the lore from the beeok series. The Wheel of Time TV show premieres on Amazon Prime on November 19, 2021. For more information about the show, visit our TV section of thr website.
Katy is a news contributor for Dragonmount. You can follow her as she shares her thoughts on The Wheel of Time TV Show on Instagram and Twitter @KatySedai There’s a new poster for the Wheel of Time TV show on Amazon Prime. The poster was released today after a small twitter contest. Fifty people won digital signed & personalized copies of the poster. The new poster follows up on the previous poster which had Moiraine alone, stepping through a waygate. The new poster features our first close look at shadowspawn including a myddraal and trollocs. It also features the magnificent seven, including Zoë Robins as Nynaeve, Barney Harris as Mat, Daniel Henney as Lan, Rosamund Pike as Moiraine, Madeleine Madden as Egwene, Marcus Rutherford as Perrin, and Josha Stradowski as Rand. We also got a glimpse of another version of the poster in The Wheel of Time’s twitter banner, and from the Prime Video NL, which is the prime social media account in the Netherlands.
Katy is a news contributor for Dragonmount. You can follow her as she shares her thoughts on The Wheel of Time TV Show on Instagram and Twitter @KatySedai Amazon Prime Video posted three new photos from the Wheel of Time TV show. The first is of Moiraine, looking quite calm and serenely smiling at something out of the frame. The second is of Lan, holding a sword with old tongue script. Eagle-eyed fans figured out that the script uses the known old tongue alphabet. It’s a quote from The Great Hunt when Moiraine meets Lord Agelmar and says “Your welcome warms me, Lord Agelmar.” It’s nice Easter egg for fans that they used the actual old tongue, although the actual translation leaves us a bit confused. And finally, the best (in my opinion) for last. Rand and Egwene plus their horses, which must include Bela!!! They make such a cute couple, embracing and smiling at each other. I want to really believe their relationship in the show. Finally, a little update on the New York Comic Con. It's this Friday Oct 8th at 2:30 pm Eastern. You can watch the livestream here. If you can't watch it live, you would need to buy a digital ticket and watch the panel up to 30 days after. Check out the incredible line up we can expect!
Adam Whitehead is Dragonmount's TV blogger. Adam has been writing about film and television, The Wheel of Time, and other genre fiction for over fifteen years, and was a finalist for the Hugo Award for Best Fan Writer in 2020. Be sure to check out his websites, The Wertzone and Atlas of Ice and Fire (including The Wheel of Time Atlas!) as well as his Patreon. News has broken that Barney Harris, who was cast as Mat Cauthon in The Wheel of Time, has been replaced for the show’s second season before the first even airs. The news took fans and commentators by surprise, since recasting a major role in a franchise is somewhat unusual, and worried others about what this means for the series. Amazon have, so far, not commented on the replacement other than acknowledging that it has taken place and Irish actor Dónal Finn will be playing the role from the second season onwards. The move is not entirely unprecedented, though with other shows not based on novels the writers have more flexibility in how to proceed. When Michael O’Hare withdrew from his lead role as Commander Sinclair in classic 1990s space opera Babylon 5, the writers replaced him with another character, John Sheridan, played Bruce Boxleitner and worked the change for the benefit of the story (Sinclair’s departure became a major plot point in the third season) and the show’s marketing (Boxleitner being a much better-known actor who brought his own fanbase onboard). Often replacing a lead actor happens early enough that they can reshoot all the material already completed by the original actor and the audience is none the wiser: French film actress Genevieve Bujold was cast as Captain Janeway on Star Trek: Voyager, but after two days realised she couldn’t handle the rigours of American network television and stepped down. Second choice Kate Mulgrew was available to take over immediately and general audiences didn't even know a swap had taken place. Slightly more problematic was the unaired pilot episode of Game of Thrones. Two major roles, Catelyn Stark and Daenerys Targaryen, was originally played by different actors: Jennifer Ehle and Tamzin Merchant. Both actresses gave good performances, but both had other things going on that made them reluctant to come back for the series proper: Ehle had recently become a mother and her family was based in New York. After realising the time commitment to the series for at least three years, she decided to back out. Merchant had not been excited by the script and was uncomfortable with the nude scenes in the pilot, but had been talked into doing the role because working for HBO could be good for her career. Her reluctance in the role came through in her performance and the producers agreed to let her go and recast. In both cases the replacement actors – Michelle Fairley and Emilia Clarke – became critically acclaimed in their roles and Ehle and Merchant have both gone on to success in other projects. Since HBO was deeply unhappy with the pilot and most of it had to be reshot anyway, it all worked out and casual fans were again none the wiser. Recasting after a whole season is complete is less common, since simply replacing the character with a similar one is usually an easier option. Sometimes, however, the stature and importance of the character makes recasting the only option: Darrin on Bewitched, Aunt Viv on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and Becky on Roseanne all come to mind, where replacing key family members of the main character was not really viable and killing them felt a bit off-note for a sitcom. Where the story is based on source material and the character is set up to play a major role further down the line, recasting becomes unavoidable. Game of Thrones became almost the king of recasting in this fashion. The Mountain was the most egregious example: Conan Stevens played the role on the first season, but bailed after being cast as an orc in Peter Jackson’s Hobbit trilogy, which he felt would be better for his career (in the event, he was replaced by CGI in the films, so this also didn’t work out). He was replaced at short notice by the show's resident “tall guy” Ian Whyte in the second season and then by Icelandic actor Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson from the third season onwards. More noticeable, and important for the story, was the role of Daario Naharis. He was played by British actor Ed Skrein in the third season and then Dutch actor Michiel Huisman (poaching him from Canadian SF series Orphan Black in the process) in the fourth through sixth seasons. The replacement was originally said to be down to a scheduling conflict, but Skrein later refuted this and suggested it was more down to “politics.” Skrein went on to join the Transporter franchise and play the main villain in the original Deadpool, so the move did not hurt his career. Probably the highest-profile recent recasting was in Netflix’s telepathic SF drama Sense8. The premise of the series was that eight people in different parts of the world would become mentally linked to one another, sharing feelings and thoughts. The nature of the show made recasting impossible, so it was a major headache when Aml Ameen, who played the role of Capheus “Van Damn” Onyango, left after filming the first two episodes of Season 2. Ameen had reportedly been very happy in the first season, but came into conflict with showrunner Lana Wachowski at the table read for the second season and this problem came to a head several weeks into production. Ameen was replaced by Toby Onwumere, who reshot all of Capheus’s scenes for the second season (which, given they were shooting on location in Nairobi, Kenya, was not inexpensive). Onwumere was acclaimed in the role and has since re-teamed with Lana Wachowski with a role in The Matrix Resurrections. The nature of the dispute between Ameen and Wachowski has never been revealed. The reasons for Harris’s departure are unknown and could be down to anything. Many shows have recently faced difficulties retaining cast because of the COVID19 pandemic, with delays to filming backing projects into other projects actors were already committed to. The delays have also resulted in some actors not getting paid for longer periods, or only being the paid the same for what turned out to be a twenty-month shoot as they were for a planned eight-month shoot. There are also the regular possibilities of personality clashes with other actors or crewmembers, or discomfort with the scripts, or the late-breaking realisation that staying with a project for the long haul when it's shooting overseas will mean spending effectively years away from friends and family. Further speculation, although natural, is pointless without more information, which I suspect due to NDAs and contracts will not be forthcoming. Suffice to say that we hope that the situation has resolved for the best for all parties involved, and we look forward to seeing what Dónal Finn can bring to the role of Mat Cauthon in the second season when it airs in 2022. In the meantime, we have eight episodes of Barney Harris as Mat Cauthon to enjoy, starting on 19 November this year. As usual, follow our casting and news pages, and let us know what you think of the latest developments.
Deadline Hollywood reported today that actor Dónal Finn, known for various acting roles including in The Witcher, will replace Barney Harris as Mat Cauthon for season 2 and beyond of Amazon Prime's upcoming Wheel of Time TV show. This news has been confirmed by Amazon Studios. This is a major surprise because it's almost unheard of to re-cast a main character before season 1 of the show even airs. As of this time, there's no reason given for Harris' departure. It's highly unlikely that it was due to a poor acting performance. If that were the case, then that would've likely been identified very early on during the production of Season 1 and corrected. Harris finished the entirely of season 1. The acting performances of the entire cast were highly praised by showrunner Rafe Judkins and the rest of the team. In situations like this, it would probably take a major reason for the young actor to be unavailable for season 2. We will not speculate at this time, but overall, the thoughts and well-wishes of the entire Dragonmount community go out to Barney. We hope he is healthy and well. This re-casting likely caused major headaches for the production of Season 2, which is currently being filmed in the Czech Republic and other European countries. For more thoughts on this re-casting, check out our TV blogger Adam Whitehead's article on this topic.
Katy is a news contributor for Dragonmount. You can follow her as she shares her thoughts on The Wheel of Time TV Show on Instagram and Twitter @KatySedai Deadline reports that Sanaa Hamri will be a director and executive producer for half of season two of Amazon Prime's The Wheel of Time. Hamri started her career directing music videos before moving to directing movies and television. She has recently been the executive producer and director for the series Empire from 2015-2020. Her films include Something New, Just Wright, and Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2. A 2015 Vulture article highlights Hamri's production skills coordinating the elaborate musical pieces in Empire. Season one director Ute Briesewitz also held the executive producer title for the first season. Hamri will likely be managing the creative vision for season two. The other director confirmed for season two is Thomas Napper. To catch up on the first season's directors, check out Adam’s article: Meet the WOT directors. We also recently had an update on the composer for season one. During a Q&A after the teaser trailer release, Showrunner Rafe Judkins revealed that Lorne Balfe will be the composer for the show. We heard Balfe's work during the title logo reveal a couple months ago.
Katy is a news contributor for Dragonmount. You can follow her as she shares her thoughts on The Wheel of Time TV Show on Instagram and Twitter @KatySedai Mark your calendars for more The Wheel of Time TV show content! New York City Comic Con will host a virtual exclusive Q&A with the cast and showrunner on Oct 8th at 2:30 pm ET. The Wheel of Time twitter account confirmed that this is an exclusive streaming/virtual event for the NYCC. If you are in the area, you can buy in person badges, here. For the rest of us, there are digital tickets for $20, here. The digital tickets cover 4 days of show, access to live video panels streamed during the event for most major panels, audio streams for smaller rooms, and VOD access to the recordings for 30 days after.
Adam Whitehead is Dragonmount's TV blogger. Adam has been writing about film and television, The Wheel of Time, and other genre fiction for over fifteen years, and was a finalist for the Hugo Award for Best Fan Writer in 2020. Be sure to check out his websites, The Wertzone and Atlas of Ice and Fire (including The Wheel of Time Atlas!) as well as his Patreon. The first Wheel of Time trailer has gotten a lot of people excited for our first look at the characters, the One Power and our first hints of how the sprawling, massive story will be adapted (and compressed) for live-action television. It’s also our first chance to see the world where the action takes place. Robert Jordan’s worldbuilding has been acclaimed as among the best in the genre, maybe not quite on J.R.R. Tolkien’s level (and Tolkien might have taken especial exception to Jordan’s lack of different languages) but certainly still remarkable in its detail, depth and breadth. A closer look at TV-Tar Valon. From the location of the Ogier grove, which is on the south-eastern side of the city in the books, we can be reasonably sure that this visual is looking south along the River Erinin. Aside from its physical size, the city and island adhere fairly close to the maps in the books. Striking in its absence here is Dragonmount, which is located south-west of the city in the books. At the centre of Jordan’s world – figuratively and thematically, if not quite geographically – is Tar Valon, the great city which serves as the stronghold of the Aes Sedai sisterhood. The city is located on an island in the midst of the River Erinin, roughly sixteen hundred miles north of where it flows into the Sea of Storms in the vast delta known as the Fingers of the Dragon, and acts as a meeting point between the four kingdoms of the Borderlands to the north and the great southern nations of Cairhien, Andor and Tear. The city has famously withstood siege numerous times (on four occasions in the Trolloc Wars alone) and never fallen in battle, although fighting has raged on the streets of the city during both the Trolloc Wars and the War of the Second Dragon against Guaire Amalasan, when Artur Hawkwing saved the city from the false Dragon’s followers to the humiliation of Bonwhin, the Amyrlin Seat. By comparing the two images, we can be sure that in this image we are looking more or less due east, with Dragonmount now visible in a different direction to in the books. Assuming the island has not been flipped 180 degrees, which would make this looking west instead. Tar Valon serves as some of a hub for events in the novels, with news and events flowing into the office of the Amyrlin Seat, first Siuan Sanche and later Elaida do Avriny a’Roihan, and various characters base themselves in the city at different times. For the TV show, Tar Valon’s importance seems to have been bolstered even further; all of the shots of contemporary cities in the trailer are exclusively of Tar Valon, with the other major cities from The Eye of the World – Fal Dara and Caemlyn – completely missing. Only ruined Shadar Logoth gets comparable screen time. Whether this means that Tar Valon is replacing Caemlyn as the geographic hub of the early story remains to be seen. A recreation of the book map of Tar Valon. What we can do is compare and contrast the book and TV versions of Tar Valon, and immediately we can see some major differences. Tar Valon in the books is substantial in size: the island is eight miles long and over two miles wide at its widest point, making it almost a ringer for Manhattan Island. The White Tower is located almost at the geographic centre of the island, in a position almost comparable to the Empire State Building in Manhattan. The White Tower is 600 feet tall, just under half the height of the Empire State, but given it was constructed by human and Ogier hands (with some help from the Aes Sedai) without 20th Century cranes or construction materials or techniques, that’s still very impressive. The White Tower was designed to house around 3,000 Aes Sedai with room for expansion, via the cavernous Ajah quarters making up almost the entire northern half of the Tower and the huge number of training and teaching rooms in the southern half, not to mention the extensive store rooms below ground and the two wings radiating out from the Tower itself, designed to hold many hundreds of Accepted and novices. However, with the Aes Sedai reduced to around 1,200 in number, with maybe a third of that in the Tower at any one time, the building feels largely empty when the series begins. An approximate floorplan of the White Tower, based on the descriptions provided in the novels and the Big White Book. The White Tower is surprisingly “stubby”; Robert Jordan described the Tower as 100 spans (600 feet, or 183 metres) tall and 300 feet wide at the base, narrowing to 200 feet wide at the top. The width of the Tower at the base is thus around half the total height of the Tower. Despite these descriptions, both fan and professional art from the series often depicts a much slenderer, more ornate tower. The TV version seems to get the relative dimensions of the Tower pleasingly correct. The White Tower as it appears in The World of Robert Jordan's The Wheel of Time. Although the art in the Big White Book is not great, this image seems to reflect Robert Jordan's vision of the Tower relatively well, despite the absence of the wings on either side holding the novice and Accepted quarters and more ornate windows than are described in the books. However, the TV version does seem to vary from Jordan’s description in several other respects. In the books the White Tower is described as smooth and polished, with no seams visible in the stonework thanks to the One Power being used to fuse the stone into a single structure. Clearly the TV version has visible steams and seems to have been made using more traditional techniques. The Tower in the TV show also has a much more extensive superstructure, with pipes laid over the exterior structure and various sections of the tower extending outwards with viewing areas visible. One promo image has Moiraine standing on one of these areas, looking out across the city. In the book, whilst the Tower has windows it doesn’t have a described viewing area apart from the rooftop viewing platform. Moiraine gazing out across Tar Valon from the White Tower, in a publicity image released by Amazon. The TV version of the Tower pleasingly still has the two wings extending out from the side, the home of the Accepted and novice quarters respectively. Several other buildings are shown tightly clustering around the base of the Tower, presumably including the stables, the Warder garrison and the White Tower Library. The complex is walled away from the rest of the city, as in the books. There are several very big differences here, though. In the books, Tar Valon is flat whilst in the TV show it is hilly, with the White Tower sitting on a massive hill in the middle of the island which simply doesn’t exist in the books. The White Tower grounds in the novels are much bigger, with more space around the buildings, which are spaced further apart, and a large plaza extends out from the walls on all sides, which is clearly not the case here. The immediate environs around Tar Valon. There are also some interesting changes to Tar Valon itself. The biggest one, immediately obvious, is that the TV version of Tar Valon appears to be significantly smaller than its book counterpart. A building half the size of the Empire State Building sitting on an island the size of Manhattan would still be big and clearly visible from across the city, but it would not dominate the entire skyline the same way the White Tower does here. The White Tower does appear to be around its size in the books (by counting the number of windows, around forty levels can be discerned, the same as in the novels), so its much greater dominance of the landscape can only be explained by the island and city being significantly smaller. It’s an interesting choice, and at first glance mildly disappointing: Tar Valon is a huge medieval metropolis of around half a million people, the economic heart of the northern half of the continent and the seat of Aes Sedai power. It should be huge, grand and imposing. Obviously from a budgetary point of view, the bigger the city is, the more expensive it is in terms of CGI design and render time, and in making sets that integrate with the CG backdrops well. More to the point, I expect if they did a test render based on the book scale, they decided that the White Tower looked too small and unimpressive compared to the rest of the island and that using the polished white stone look in the novels did not look appropriately awe-inspiring (the occasional complaint raised by artists doing a faithful take on the White Tower is that it can turn into a lighthouse rather easily). Rather than make the White Tower preposterously huge – if the city dimensions were kept the same and the Tower expanded, it’d be over a mile tall in the TV show! - they seem to have elected to shrink the city and make the Tower more impressive in contrast. Another interesting change is that the location of Dragonmount seems to have shifted. Dragonmount was located between twenty and thirty miles south-west of the city in the novels, but here it appears to have moved directly east instead (in the promo image the mountain lines up with the wings, rather than 45 degrees to them as would be the case in the novels). A minor change, but a curious one. Looking in detail at Tar Valon, many different kinds of buildings can be seen, including European-style towers and bastions, Arab-like minarets and ornate domes. There’s no immediate sign of skybridges, but we only see small chunks of the city in these shots. The city’s parks do seem present, including one that might be the huge Ogier grove, and the general shape of the island seems to have been retained (indicating we are looking due south in the first image). Southharbor also seems present and correct, and several of the bridges over the Erinin can be seen, with clusters of buildings on the other end which correspond to the bridge towns. Tar Valon and the White Tower may stand in miniature for the TV show’s relationship with the books as a whole: similar, familiar and impressive but differing in many small details. It’ll be interesting to see what other changes have been made. A second, apparently longer trailer will apparently hit screens before The Wheel of Time itself does on 19 November 2021, on Amazon Prime Television. As usual, follow our casting and news pages, and let us know what you think of the latest developments.
Rajiv Moté is Dragonmount’s book blogger with a lens on the craft of fiction writing. When he’s not directing software engineers, he writes fiction of his own, which can be found catalogued at his website. Amazon Prime released the much anticipated teaser trailer for its series based on The Wheel of Time, and watching it (with the Dragonmount crew!) was joyful and cathartic. And, of course, we watched it on repeat, frame by frame, to see what had changed and what had stayed the same in the adaptation to the screen. A great deal has changed. While the set locations are familiar as old boots, the trailer features many scenes that were never in the pages of The Eye of the World. The Wisdoms of Emond’s Field In the books, the women who dispensed herbal cures and “listened to the wind” to predict the weather were called Wisdoms. The cures and predictions of the best Wisdoms work uncannily well because, unknown to even them, they’ve figured out a rough, unconscious way to channel the One Power. In the adaptation, Nynaeve the Wisdom shoves her apprentice Egwene into a river (0:02), and we see Egwene calmly floating (0:33). This looks like a visceral (and visual) representation of the Aes Sedai exercise to channel the Power: imagine it as a river, but if you fight it, it becomes rapid and wild. Surrender, and you can control it. Egwene is learning to ride the currents of saidar, the female half of the One Power. This has further implications. In the books, Nynaeve blocked herself from channeling unless she was angry out of fear of the One Power, which was taboo. She eventually breaks through her block when she sinks with a damaged boat, and is forced at last to surrender to saidar. This mirrors the initiation she provides Egwene here. Nynaeve finds her power in going back to her roots. The False Dragon In the books, the false Dragon (a man who can channel the cursed male half of the One Power, doomed to go insane, who declares himself the world’s savior) Logain is captured by Aes Sedai out of scene. We only hear about it, and see him from a distance in a cage. In the adaptation, we see him, perhaps with his followers, fighting against the Aes Sedai trying to capture him and their Warders (0:49, 1:19, 1:31). Showing the taking of Logain is a good way to demonstrate to viewers the danger of a man who channels. It remains to be seen if we’ll see the disaster that Lews Therin wrought in the book’s prologue (maybe they’ll just insert Winter Dragon?), but if they save the Lews Therin flashback for later, the taking of Logain would be a good thematic prologue for the show. The Aes Sedai and the White Tower The White Tower and Aes Sedai other than Moiraine and Elaida don’t appear in The Eye of the World. But they feature prominently in this trailer. If, as the interviews suggest, the adaptation centers Moiraine, then we are probably looking at the Aes Sedai deliberating about how to solve the problem of false Dragons (0:46, 1:24), and some are also wondering about the real Dragon. The Attack on Emond’s Field In the book, we only see the aftermath of the attack on Emond’s Field. The in-scene action is at the al’Thor farm. The adaptation appears to center the action in Emond’s Field, and it looks like Rand is there too. We may lose the iconic scenes of Tam retrieving his sword, the Trollocs breaking down the door, and Narg the Talking Trolloc--not to mention Tam’s revelations in the Westwood. But the story will move faster if everyone is together, and we’ll actually get to see Moiraine and Lan mop up the Trollocs. Scene Breakdown 0:02/0:33 Nynaeve pushes Egwene into a river This is new, and a striking way to introduce us to the show. It’s familiar but different--a sign of what’s to come. The Wisdoms of Emond's Field are no strangers to using the One Power. 0:08 Emond’s Field With the exception of the tiled roofs (poor Cenn Buie!) and the lack of stone foundation around that big tree, Emond’s Field is much as I imagined it. The three ta’veren lads seem to be enjoying themselves at the Winespring Inn rather than shirking their chores, but the adaptation has aged them up. The colors are warm, people are smiling, and the atmosphere is cozy. A good status quo to be shattered by the Trolloc attack. 0:17 Crying over a ring The man crying over a Great Serpent ring is most likely a Warder grieving for his Aes Sedai. We see this man in other scenes, wielding a pair of axes, standing with a pair of Green Aes Sedai and other Warders against a volley of arrows, and leaping to attack someone who is channeling. This is most likely the taking of the false Dragon, and it suggests their effort will carry a terrible cost. 0:20 Egwene rises in a pool of colored stripes The colored stripes that cover Egwene as she rises from the pool clearly point to her fated rise to the Amyrlin Seat. But here, are we seeing Egwene’s prophetic Dream (perhaps as she floats down the river), or Min’s prophetic Viewing? 0:25 Tar Valon The city of Tar Valon, with Dragonmount in the background, is breathtaking, even if it seems Jeff Bezos’s rocket engineers designed the White Tower. Moiraine makes an entrance, pushing open the doors like Aragorn. 0:33 Floating on the river We revisit Egwene’s trip down the river with Moiraine’s voiceover saying that “all over the world there are different names for [the One Power].” This reinforces the idea that Wisdoms are aware, to some degree, that they are channeling saidar, and this initiation is to teach Egwene how to control it. 0:37 The White Tower I always pictured the Hall of the Tower to be longer, but to accommodate the Ajah Sitters and the Amyrlin Seat, it’s as big as it needs to be. Its presence in this first season suggests that we’ll be privy to the White Tower’s deliberations over Dragons, false and true, and the fact that Kerene Nagashi is among them indicates that the 20 year secret search for the Dragon Reborn may be condensed into this season’s plot. 0:39 Moiraine is Healed? Is Kerene Nagashi Healing Moiraine? And if so, is this during the taking of Logain (which didn’t involve Moiraine in the books) or the attack on Emond’s Field (which, in the books, did not involve any other Aes Sedai than Moiraine)? If Kerene makes it to Emond’s Field, that changes the tone significantly--she’d be the senior member of the secret contingent tasked with the Dragon Reborn. 0:43 Power over Emond’s Field Look at that! The One Power being wielded over Emond’s Field, where the buildings are burning. The Eye of the World only showed us the aftermath of the Trolloc attack; but the adaptation will show us the action. 0:45 The Red Ajah Elaida was the only Red Ajah sister in The Eye of the World, but these stern-faced Aes Sedai look ready for business. That business is probably the false Dragon, Logain. 0:46 The Keeper is mad Leane Sharif angrily pounds her Keeper’s staff, calling for order. There is clearly a disagreement in the Hall of the Tower, and given what we’ve seen, it likely involves how to deal with Dragons, False or otherwise. In the books, the Reds tend to act as judge, jury, and executioner, but Siuan knows that if they accidentally sever the real Dragon Reborn from the True Source, the world could be doomed. 0:49 Aes Sedai and Warders do battle A pair of Green Ajah sisters (including Alanna Mosvani) and their Warders defend against arrows from an unseen opponent. The Trolloc attack in the Two Rivers happens at night, so this looks like the fight against Logain and his followers. 0:57 Rocky hills While these rocky hills look like where I imagined Perrin, Egwene, and Elyas hid from the Whitecloaks, Tar Valon is visible in the distance. It’s a different location. This is probably the slopes of Dragonmount, though not a flashback to the birth of the Dragon Reborn, since there’s no snow on the ground. 0:59 Shadar Logoth Shadar Logoth is recognizable and creepy. 1:06 Wolfbrothers-to-be I’m glad the adaptation didn’t go with the Bearbrother idea. 1:08 Sexy times? Rand and Egwene en déshabillé? Well, the adaptation has aged the characters up, and it seems that they’ve tossed out the wide-eyed innocence of these country folk with community-governed moral codes. It changes the character of their relationship in the book, which was more of friends who cared for each other, but who, when freed from the expectations of their community to marry, pursued different dreams. 1:12 Dancing, Death, and Politics The images seem to juxtapose dancing at the Beltine festival with the aftermath of the Trolloc attack at Winternight. The overhead view of the Hall of the Tower completes the third circle, all references to the Wheel, of course. 1:15 The attack on Emond’s Field It looks like Rand will be in town during the attack. I’m a little disappointed if that means we won’t see the attack on the al’Thor farm and the lonely, frightened trek through the Westwood. But it looks intense. 1:19 Lan fights human soldiers During the sunlight, Lan fights human soldiers in the woods. This isn’t the Trolloc attack (unless there are now Darkfriend soldiers too), so it must pair with the arrows flying in 0:49, and the very next shot suggests that this is the taking of Logain, and that Moiraine and Lan were involved, another departure from the books. 1:20 Logain We never see Logain channel in The Eye of the World, but the adaptation shows him breaking his shield and doing some damage. Putting Logain “on camera” is a good strategy for illustrating how dangerous and unpredictable a man channeling can be. He radiates danger, even locked in a cage. 1:24 Moiraine in the White Tower This scene wouldn’t be out of place in the adaptation of The Great Hunt, but Kerene’s words indicate this is setting up the search for the real Dragon Reborn. 1:26/1:39 Trollocs The silhouettes of these Shadowspawn look like the Trollocs on the original book covers which, though they’re not book-accurate, are still iconic in many minds. I look forward to seeing them in detail. They do appear to be more bestial than the book covers, and true to the descriptions. 1:31 Dual Axe Guy versus a channeler This must be a Warder attacking Logain. Is he shielded, or can we see male weaves? Is that darkness oozing along the weaves? This looks to be the same Warder who was crying over a Great Serpent ring. 1:32/1:39 Lan and Moiraine versus the Trollocs In the books, we only heard about how Lan and Moiraine were a whirlwind of death for the Trollocs at Emond’s Field. Now we’ll see it. 1:33 Seven ride to the Waygate As commentary on the show’s poster image confirmed, this is a Waygate. There seem to be seven riders gathered to venture into the dark. Lan, Moiraine, Rand, Perrin, Mat, Egwene, Nynaeve, Loial… Are we missing someone, or are they just not on screen? 1:38 Fade Myrddraal are scary in the book. They’re horrifying in the show. What did you notice in this first trailer for Amazon Prime's The Wheel of Time?