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Review of "The Flame of Tar Valon"


Eqwina
  • Crystal Fritz reviews "The Flame of Tar Valon," Season 1, Episode 6 of Amazon Prime Video's The Wheel of Time television series.


I know many avid book readers do not share my opinion, but nothing has thrilled me more about this adaptation of The Wheel of Time by Amazon Prime Video than the changes. It is a chance for me to experience a thrill again related to the world Robert Jordan created. When he died, and then again when the series was finished, I curled myself up with Crossroads of Twilight, my favorite of the series (don’t at me), and cried. I cried because there would never be new words to sweep me away into the world I had grown to love. Now, thanks to Rafe Judkins and his entire time I am being allowed to fall back into the world over again. Even if every change is not one that I would choose, I am fully enchanted by this turning of the Wheel.  

 

Siuan Sanche (Sophie Okonedo), the Watcher of the Seals, the Flame of Tar Valon, the Amyrlin Seat, daughter of the river, clever as a pike, and strong as the tides, shows us her tenacity and fortitude in Episode 6. We are introduced to her humble beginnings, which makes the power she grows to possess so delightfully shocking. After being shown her life as the fish mongers’ daughter, them living alone on the banks of the river, that they fish every day. All within site of the Stone of Tear.  I feel as if I have more insight into her needs for a companion, a confidant, and lover. Her life appeared to have always been more solitary, a great preparation for a position of power that leaves you completely alone and from a young age she had to keep the secret of her ability to channel. Yet another great preparation for the life she would live training to be an Aes Sedai, in a place where it is well known each woman who calls herself Aes Sedai has her own ideals and goals. Lastly, the loss she suffered at having to leave her father and her only home, created within her a space for Moiraine. Greif and loss tend to make people love more fiercely and tie the bonds you have found in your life even tighter. 

 

Siuan and Moiraine grew up together, ensconced in the Tower politics, as Novices and Accepted. Readers of the novels will know that Siuan and Moiraine’s romantic relationship is more than implied. I believe what we are seeing is two woman who were brought together by an innate shared ability, bound together by their quest to find and guide the Dragon Reborn and sewn together as lovers by the very human need to find someone to share your life. Who better for an Aes Sedai than someone of nearly equal power with whom who share a secret that could destroy the entire world? I am interested to see the ripple effect that their relationship has on the rest of the series. 

 

One of the major changes of these series that has absolutely delighted me is the expansion of Logain’s (Alvaro Morte) storyline and the changes to Liandrin Sedai (Kate Fleetwood). I need more of Liandrin’s pursed lips and haughty stare in my life. I love to loathe her every time she is on screen. Kate Fleetwood and Abdul Salis who played Eamon Valda are tied in my mind for favorite “bad guy” so far in the series. Kate may not look like I had imagined Liandrin in my mind, but she nails her demeanor and adds a depth to the character that was somewhat lacking in the books. I am here for ALL of her evil moments. Based on off handed comments it is clear that Liandrin and Moiraine have a history together. I hope as the see their past continue to unfold. My mind is wondering about jilted lovers? Though Moiraine mentions a man that Liandrin is seeing, so my feelings could be off. 

 

I enjoyed a deeper look inside the politics of the Tower. They used the Sitter Maigan to explain what it meant for a Green and Blue Ajah to speak up in favor of a Red in the Hall of the Tower. Outlining the divides that exist within the White Tower among the women who call themselves sisters. Tar Valon was looked on as a place of safety for the folks from the Two Rivers, but this episode makes it abundantly clear that they are not much safer. The danger has only shifted from Trollocs to women that channel who would use them for their own gain, or harm them for simply being who they were born to be. 

 

Which brings me to an interesting revelation. The possibility of a many headed Dragon. The idea that not just one man or one woman was born to save or destroy the world. As we learn from Siuan and Moiraine’s post coital discussion, “The Dragon will defeat the Dark One or join him.” The fear at the Dragon’s power suddenly hit home when you realize that he, she or possibly they chance joining the wrong side of history. I think it makes the importance of Moiraine’s mission more apparent. We still have not heard the full prophecies of the Dragon, but we know that the Dragon must defeat the Dark One at the Last Battle to save the world. 

 

This episode brings to us the reunion of the Two Rivers folk, who have been separated since they fled Shadar Logoth. The joy of their reunion is short lived as they are faced with a trip through the Ways to reach the Eye of the World. Their mission once they arrive is vague at best and none of their lives are guaranteed. Siuan and Moiraine seem to believe that the Dragon’s presence at the Eye of the World could circumvent the last battle and prevent the Dark One’s escape. The notion seems slightly foolish for two women who have read and studied the prophies and have been engaged in a singular hunt for the Dragon for two decades. With Moiraine certain that one of the youths she brought from the Two Rivers is the one they have sought, it feels as if they are giving in to fear and the unknown. They risk being stilled, cut off from the One Power, and perhaps death. 

 

Watching the series with people who do not know the Wheel of Time, I feel as if this episode is somewhat dialogue heavy and yet fails to give full explanation of what the travelers will face and their purpose. The Ways are a place outside of time and space. They can allow people to travel quickly between one waygate and another in a much shorter amount of time if they know the correct path. It is for this reason that Moiraine needs Loial. The Ogier can read the guideposts in the Ways. In spite of the highly amusing conversation that Egwene and Nynaeve have with Siuan, the Two Rivers five are once again swept off on a journey of unknown outcome with nothing more than a few words to convince them. They travel on the faith of the words of Aes Sedai, for whom the truth you hear is not always the truth they mean. We are led to believe that the prophesies surrounding the Last Battle are so widely known that even their mere mention is enough to sway the lives of Rand, Mat, Perrin, Nynaeve and Egwene. Though as the closing moments of this episode reveal, Mat’s mind was not so easily swayed. It was an interesting way to handle Barney Harris’ departure from the series; a fact that was widely known before the first season aired. 

 

With only two more episodes remaining this season, The Flame of Tar Valon, serves to propel our cast of characters forward into the unknown and a presumed confrontation with who or what waits for them at the Eye of the World. I can only assume we are being set up for a reveal of the Dragon Reborn and a cliffhanger that is meant to draw us forward into season two. There are still a few questions that I hope are answered this season. What is Liandrin’s true purpose? Is Thom Merrilin dead? And what does it mean that Moiraine swore fealty to Siuan on the Oath Rod? With all the changes to the story thus far, I have a feeling that the answers to some of my questions may surprise me. In fact, I hope that they do. For someone who cried as the book series drew to an end, I am enjoying every minute of this retelling.   

 

What was your favorite moment of Episode 6? Let us know in the comments below.




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Caution! Spoiler's below if you've not read the books!

----------------------------------------------------

 

In the books, Cadsuane does mention how the Dragon losing his humanity would be akin to the Dark One winning the final battle. In a way I always thought it meant that the Dark One would win by proxy if Rand became a selfish uncaring demigod. Also, I could be remembering wrong, but I think Lanfear at one point suggests to Rand/Lews can join the Dark One. Then there is the circle of 13 that can turn a channeler...

 

I really like Nynaeve in the TV Series. In the books she was always a bit annoying even though you understood she was the most selfless character. The actress and writers of the TV show are making her much cooler. 

 

I am missing a lot of the intrigue that went on in the books. I'm hoping Padan Fain gets to follow the group into the ways because he's the secret guy Liandrin is meeting by the docks. Otherwise, it didn't make sense why they removed the 'keys' into the Ways and allowed only channelers to operate them. If this does turn out to be a clue about Liandrin and Fain's relationship, then the scene where Moiraine verbally cuts down Liandrin and the opening of the ways is the best part of episode 6.

 

I haven't read the books in over ten years, so I think it has been fun trying to remember all the secrets from the series. It's also interesting if they will rewrite the story entirely and create a new ending. I just hope the writers incorporate more clues so it won't end up like a Sherlock Homes type of mystery (the audience never gets a chance to interpret the clues). If the Portal Stones are any indication, maybe we could end up with an even better retelling? The best parts of the books in my opinion were uncovering the all the secrets. 

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Guest Wolfbrother31

Posted

I would agree that Liandrin & Logain's expanded roles is a wonderful adaptation choice & that both actors are awesome! Logain's scene was near the top of the best part of the episode for me.

 

But I would say that my favorite moment was Maigdan's comment about ships disappearing & Aiel crossing the Dragonwall because…...... ***spoilers*** 

 

 

 

 

We're going to get Seanchan & Aiel (next season?)!!!!

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Still trying to stay optimistic and enjoy this TV adaptation, but this episode left me sad and depressed. My two favorite characters left at the Waygate and now gone for the season?  Moiraine and Siuan now a couple?  Thom and Gareth will surely be disappointed with this.  I realize that the Dark One and those who follow him have a lot of power in our current turn of the wheel, but really?   As a fan from the publication of book one, I am hanging in there, but it is getting hard.

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In general, I loved the episode.

 

Liandrin is a fantastic foil for Moiraine, but I'm curious to see if she ends up overshadowing Elaida as a result? I always felt that Liandrin was more Nynaeve and Elayne's foil more than Moiraine (and truthfully Elaida is more against Siuan). So not really sure how I feel about Liandrin's bigger presence here but the actress who plays her is fantastic.

Costuming remains fantastic (and I'm retracting some of my earlier reservations that, particularly amongst the reds, I wasn't seeing much variation and that felt off).

The fact that the hall doesn't wear stoles and neither does Siuan rubs me wrong. It's a minor detail but it feels important because it helps set the amyrlin as being of all ajahs.. particularly with how into formality Leane is.

With all the focus the books have on Aes Sedai not interfering with each others' business, it feels REALLY weird that it was such a plot point that Moiraine was in trouble for not sharing what she's up to. Particularly when she says she "can't" reveal - that has some pretty heavy implications that there's either a very strong oath or Oath Rod involvement. Either way, that should have appeased Siuan and the Hall (I realized Siuan was already in on the secret, but even publicly it should have blown over).

I don't really like the Oath Rod being used for that. It's supposed to be used for Aes Sedai Oaths only, and it was shocking when Pevara's group used it in the books (trying to phrase obliquely for anti-spoiler purposes). 

Similarly disappointed that The Ways channel open - How would myrdrall lead trollocs through if they can't open the doors? That's also going to make them harder to seal later.

Haven't really decided how I feel about Siuan and Moiraine having their frisky frolic MOSTLY because I didn't like literally how it happened. The ter'angreal used is either replicating traveling or doing something involving world of dreams (theoretically they could have been in T'A'R and we wouldn't know the difference) but EITHER WAY has some implications toward trivializing future reveals. T'A'R is a Big Freaking Deal, so is Traveling, so the ter'angreal existing either way is a bad move. I feel like something sufficiently clandestine but more mundane (meet up in a secret corner or something) would have been better. Their hookup itself is... well, the books all but came out and said it. So yeah. I got more impression in the books that they "were" lovers and now just close friends but this isn't bad. It does pose some challenges for their future storylines BUT there's some easy workarounds there.

I think it's slightly odd that the Hall found it OK that the punishment for Moiraine spending too much time out of the Tower doing her own thing is to... expel her from the Tower where she can permanently do her own thing. If anything I'd have liked to see a bit of Sitter opposition (would have been interesting to see a Red Sitter argue it?)... It's making things really look like Siuan is "sole leader/queen" instead of "first among equals". I think the show has done a good job of showing that the Aes Sedai aren't exactly perfectly united. Liandrin and Moiraine clearly have history (I don't remember that existing in the books *BUT* I'm liking it) but also when the chips were down during Logain's fight Moiraine jumped into the link with no hesitation even though Liandrin led it. That... feels right.

Disappointed (although I 100% get it because of the CGI budgets it would require) that the Tar Valon buildings weren't as fantastical. When I heard the show was being made I was REALLY looking forward to seeing how the city would play out. Also the fact that the Tower is clearly bricks and stuff, in the books it's always addressed as being one giant piece so it's weird to see mortar lines.

I wish there was 10 episodes. I'm sad we didn't get to see Baerlon, Domon and the boat run (which would have been able to foreshadow Genjei) or Caemlyn and Rand climbing the wall (which kinda sets up him climbing The Stone later) but we'll live I guess. Honestly 12 eps would have been just about perfect, OR spending less time with logain and in the tower (none of which was in the books) so that the time could have gone elsewhere.

Although I'm calling a lot of things out, I'm enjoying the show so far. I feel like they're doing a nice job of capturing the overall story, the characters feel "right". I wanted the diminutive Moiraine and Pike is anything but... but she's got the other aspects of the character down. I pictured Lan as the Hulking Brute that's on the tEotW cover so the thinner asian guy is a bit odd... but given that the borderlanders have clearly been based on asian looks and styles I think it makes a lot of sense and he's REALLY awesome at capturing Lan's presence. The Emond's Field actors are doing great. I found it funny that you called out Liandrin as "not how I pictured her" because she's the ONE character that's almost EXACTLY how I pictured her (I pictured more brown in her hair and braids that hang down instead of being pulled back, but her face is almost exactly what was in my head).

 

I'm torn on "doing things different". On the one hand I like it because it gives me a chance to experience a different story and be surprised sometimes... but some of the changes feel like they'll wreck things later (like the travel ter'angreal) and I'm less enthusiastic there. 


Two hours left doesn't feel like enough to do everything left for tEotW but we'll see how they do.

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"I know many avid book readers do not share my opinion, but nothing has thrilled me more about this adaptation of The Wheel of Time by Amazon Prime Video than the changes. "

 

I would say I am firmly in the camp of not appreciating the changes...at least so far. TO me, every time there is a major change, all I can see is the ripple effect down the road and further changes or issues it will create that that the series further from what I know and love. 

The logical part of me says it is just like when a band covers a song and puts their own spin on it, but I enjoyed the original series so much that when i see major points either glossed over or changed entirely, it really sours me. I'm almost at the point where I am watching it just to see how many other changes they make, kind of like slowing down to gawk at a bad car crash.

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Overall, I liked it.  

 

The one part I liked the best - surprisingly for me - was what is apparently known as Siuraine, because the whole "Pillow Friends" thing in the books was so prudish.  I remember thinking when I read the book way back when that it was like the obituaries which the British press used to run, "He was survived by his longtime friend James" or something.

 

The part that left me worried was the Power Rangers Unite possibility.  Though it might make for an engrossing TV series, it would need very extensive rewriting of too many storylines.

 

I wonder if TV Moiraine will subsume 

Spoiler

Cadsuane?

 

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I loved this latest episode, I really thought it was fantastic. I'm firmly in the camp of people who has no real problem with the changes; in fact I'd say they keep things fresh and it's more interesting not being able to assume I already know exactly how things will play out. I'm just loving being in this world and getting to see a new side of it. I thought the reveal of Moiraine and Siuan's relationship was brilliantly executed because it shows us the disconnect between their public personas and their private lives, and demonstrates to viewers with no knowledge of the books that sometimes the job of the Amyrlin requires sacrifices in the name of neutrality. It added a new dimension to all of their interactions in the hall, upping the emotional stakes and giving us more of an insight into the very human characteristics of the seemingly otherworldly Aes Sedai of the White Tower. It also helped to demonstrate what the expectations are within that institution when it comes to inter-Ajah politics. It brings to mind party politics at Westminster in the UK or the Congress in the USA -  the way that Maigan was shocked by the bipartisanship of a blue speaking on behalf of a red, and the way that there is an expectation of 'party loyalty' from the blues towards Siuan because she was a blue herself. I thought the whole thing was fascinating and really well done - especially for non-readers like my partner who is learning about this world for the first time. Overall it was one of my favourite episodes so far.

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Let me guess, no comments saying anything negative about all the erotic bologna get a pass…it sucks that they took something so innocent and beautiful as the friendship between moraine and suan, and moraine and lan, Rand and egwaine and made it sexual. The books let the sexual tensions exist without pointing to it and ruining the mystery. So typical and expected I’m just surprised Jordan’s wife let it fly. Hate to see something awesome go to hell.  

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The big casualty so far this season is Thom, and this episode potentially did still more damage. We only got him an episode and a half, and Rand and Mat developed no loyalty to him. He never so much as met Moiraine, and the lack of Andor this season weakens even more of his backstory. 

 

Siuan and Moiraine felt like drama for the sake of drama. Do the two ever meet again in person after Fal Dara in the books? My memory is fuzzy.

 

If so, in this case as in so many others, the show runners have to decide whether to double down on changes, which will annoy people who dislike them, or not fully pursue them, which will annoy the people who do like them. Ripples either way.

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There are two paths to take:

High trail; steep ascent, the TV series really messed up RJ’s vision and endgame, the view is spectacular. 

Low trail; many switchbacks, let the book readers perseverate on who took the high trail and the keep the interested non readers wondering if Am-Prime will green light S3, still in the trees...

=>Light willing, cast, crew, execs and true believers loaded-up for signing the summit log regardless...

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15 hours ago, Mcmaddy said:

Let me guess, no comments saying anything negative about all the erotic bologna get a pass…it sucks that they took something so innocent and beautiful as the friendship between moraine and suan, and moraine and lan, Rand and egwaine and made it sexual. The books let the sexual tensions exist without pointing to it and ruining the mystery. So typical and expected I’m just surprised Jordan’s wife let it fly. Hate to see something awesome go to hell.  


Umm... Did you *read* the books?

Moiraine and Siuan being "pillow friends" was mentioned multiple times over the course of the books, with RJ himself saying that pillow friends is exactly what they did here. When they encountered each other in their first "on camera" meeting (I'm trying to recall the exact spot but it was either very end of tEotW or beginning of tDH, and I'm pretty sure it was Fal Dara) Moiraine kissed her. Moiraine and Siuan are canonically lovers, sorry if that bugs you.

I didn't read anything sexual into Moiraine and Lan's 'bathtime' - again, there's a lot of book precedent. Public/communal bathing is a thing across the borderlands (where Lan is from) and in several other countries... when Rand balks at it in the books even Agelmar is like "lol, no big deal kid...". There's quite a few male/female bathtimes across the books and I don't recall ANY of them actually being sexual (there may have been one with Rand later in the series?) Intimate? Yes. Moiraine and Lan have an incredibly deep relationship, there's affection and more than a little sexual tension (New Spring pretty much reads like flirting to me) but nothing outright sexual. The show is doing a lot more to show the Warder Bond and how these women who have to maintain this great facade to the point of not being able to be themselves get to let their guard down a bit around their warders (similar kinds of conversations between Karene and her warder). These are two people that are 100% comfortable with each other to the point that a non-sexy bathtime is further quashing the notion there's any romantic relationship between the two, and later when we see them supporting each other in their crisis/grief/stress moments (moiraine being at the warder funeral, Lan offering to visit the hall where even warders seldom tread) indicates even more depth to their friendship. These two would go to hell and back for each other. It provides even more depth to the future relationship with Nynaeve (that's about the only thing that ever puts strain on the Mo/Lan relationship, moreso because it creates a conflict of priority with him as opposed to any jealousy, and Nyn is ALWAYS jealous of the warder bond and the fact that Moiraine is closer to Lan in many ways than she can ever be.. it's an interesting spin on the love triangle since the "established couple" isn't a couple)

The entire first book was Rand and Egwene coming to grips with the fact that they probably weren't going to end up together after all, and it got referenced multiple times as well over the course of the series. I dunno how much I agree with Perrin being married and Rand having premaritals with Egwene (his views on premarital sex were a plot point later in the books) but considering they've aged-up all the two rivers folk for the series (very similar to what they did with GoT) I don't see it as out of line. It also makes Perrin less unusual for having a wife (THAT'S a call I didn't agree with, the fridging was an unnecessary addition) since now you have Rand in a sexual relationship, Perrin married and there's at least dialogue supporting the notion that Mat's been around a bit.

I don't think this is "something awesome going to hell". I think that Jordan originally wrote the chapters in question back in an age where gay/lesbian relationships were super taboo (and premarital sex was something you ought to be ashamed of) so 'just hinting at it' was largely how you avoided conservative handwringing and boycotts.

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9 hours ago, Dafyd said:

The big casualty so far this season is Thom, and this episode potentially did still more damage. We only got him an episode and a half, and Rand and Mat developed no loyalty to him. He never so much as met Moiraine, and the lack of Andor this season weakens even more of his backstory. 

Agree. Rand and Mat taking Thom's stuff and surviving across the countryside (which also ripples later) is a big deal.

Thom's cloak is an even bigger casualty. WTF MATES?!?!

They should have introduced him in Emond's field and I'm pretty upset about that.

 

9 hours ago, Dafyd said:

 

Siuan and Moiraine felt like drama for the sake of drama. Do the two ever meet again in person after Fal Dara in the books? My memory is fuzzy.

 

I *THINK* they meet at either the end of tGH or early in tDR when they do the ritual to separate mat from the dagger (I THINK mo was there.. I feel like she brought an angreal to the party? I remember for sure Siuan led the circle but not 100% on mo's presence) and then I'd *assume* they bump into each other at the Field of Merrilor but it wasn't 'on camera'.

 

9 hours ago, Dafyd said:

 

If so, in this case as in so many others, the show runners have to decide whether to double down on changes, which will annoy people who dislike them, or not fully pursue them, which will annoy the people who do like them. Ripples either way.

 

Trying to be oblique to not spoil, but... although there's some workarounds, Thom and Moiraine not building up their relationship here (although it could easily happen in Tear later?) affects The Letter and Ghenjei (not to mention the aftermath of that). There's a few workarounds in place (and I thought The Aftermath was both unnecessary and out-of-character for both?) so they might choose to abandon that part. I always felt like the aftermath was just a pretext for Ghenjei to happen, and not necessary for that.

I'm kinda in the same boat as you - while I'm applauding some of the changes because it gives me something *new* to see (Moiraine being involved with Logain's capture, for instance), a lot of the changes (perrin's wife, Thom being introduced so late AND so briefly, Rand not climbing the wall, etc) have me scratching my head a bit.

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On 12/12/2021 at 10:43 AM, Dicedagger said:

Moiraine and Siuan now a couple?  Thom and Gareth will surely be disappointed with this.  I realize that the Dark One and those who follow him have a lot of power in our current turn of the wheel, but really?


Umm.. they kissed in the books and there were more references to them being "pillow friends" than any three or four accepted/novice pairings put together.

This might come as a shocker, but them shagging doesn't mean they can't also get jiggy with other people later. Ask Rand about that sometime.

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On 12/13/2021 at 1:10 AM, feliasgrimm said:

 

Haven't really decided how I feel about Siuan and Moiraine having their frisky frolic MOSTLY because I didn't like literally how it happened. The ter'angreal used is either replicating traveling or doing something involving world of dreams (theoretically they could have been in T'A'R and we wouldn't know the difference) but EITHER WAY has some implications toward trivializing future reveals. T'A'R is a Big Freaking Deal, so is Traveling, so the ter'angreal existing either way is a bad move. I feel like something sufficiently clandestine but more mundane (meet up in a secret corner or something) would have been better. 

 

This was exactly what I thought.  It is about the one thing in the first 6 episodes that jumped out at me as “Huh?”.  I still don’t understand how Moiraine did that or why they would have her do that knowing how big both of those reveals are in the books (traveling and the dreamworld). Really really odd to me.   I too am enjoying the retelling though.  Seeing the world on the screen has been amazing and I am purposely trying not to shout “that’s not the way the books are” on every scene. Lol.  I felt like that one with Moiraine going to Suiane was a big one though. 

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19 hours ago, Dafyd said:

The big casualty so far this season is Thom, and this episode potentially did still more damage. We only got him an episode and a half, and Rand and Mat developed no loyalty to him. He never so much as met Moiraine, and the lack of Andor this season weakens even more of his backstory. 

 

Siuan and Moiraine felt like drama for the sake of drama. Do the two ever meet again in person after Fal Dara in the books? My memory is fuzzy.

 

If so, in this case as in so many others, the show runners have to decide whether to double down on changes, which will annoy people who dislike them, or not fully pursue them, which will annoy the people who do like them. Ripples either way.

The books are so action packed and the dialogue is ripe for the pickens, whereas the show is full of long consternated facial expression shots and mediocre dialogue. They need to pick up the pace and quit cutting out interesting plot points to prolong scenes with the main characters just staring like they are on the toilet

Edited by Mcmaddy

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7 hours ago, Mcmaddy said:

The books are so action packed and the dialogue is ripe for the pickens, whereas the show is full of long consternated facial expression shots and mediocre dialogue. They need to pick up the pace and quit cutting out interesting plot points to prolong scenes with the main characters just staring like they are on the toilet

 

I have to fend off the cynical voice in my head that says nearly episode, "I'm sure glad we cut this important scene in the book to spend twenty minutes on something that isn't in the book." 

 

Much of that boils down to the decision to make this the Moiraine and Lan Show, in much the same way that the Hobbit trilogy was really "The Dwarf King, with Special Guest Star Bilbo Baggins." That decision informs them tipping their hands early on all sorts of details, especially Aes Sedai. Instead of getting a slow drip that makes the reader crave more, we get it all at once, right up front. And, again, sooner or later they're going to have to either double down on that choice to an absurd degree or back off and make the show feel like a bait and switch.

 

Part of what makes Moiraine such a fascinating and endearing character, in my opinion, is the lack of transparency and gradual revelation about who she is and what she's about, with a lot implied and left to the imagination rather than directly stated. (See: her letters, whose contents we spend forever wondering about.) In this regard, the show is making a similar move to what The Witcher has done with Yennefer. It takes every bit of every book in hints and scraps to piece together what the show just lays out like a platter in the first season. 

 

They're inexplicably making Rand al'Thor the mysterious character. Granted, a lot about him *is* mysterious in the books, but we're in his head more than literally any other character, and he's just as surprised as we are as things happen to him. 

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SPOILER!!!

Is it possible with the changes they have made that Liandrin will expand and become a combo of her and Elaida's character in the books?  Then Elaida will just not be a part of the series?  Will she be  the one that takes over the A Seat and leads the tower?  She has been mentioned several times in the episodes as making a grab for power.

Personally this would be fine for me and add another aspect with where her true loyalty lies.  Elaida in the books seemed to be a weaker less intelligent character to me with only her fortelling being interesting and we have lost that with not going to Caemlyn

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4 hours ago, SBroc said:

SPOILER!!!

Is it possible with the changes they have made that Liandrin will expand and become a combo of her and Elaida's character in the books?  Then Elaida will just not be a part of the series?  Will she be  the one that takes over the A Seat and leads the tower?  She has been mentioned several times in the episodes as making a grab for power.

Personally this would be fine for me and add another aspect with where her true loyalty lies.  Elaida in the books seemed to be a weaker less intelligent character to me with only her fortelling being interesting and we have lost that with not going to Caemlyn


I would be REALLY surprised if they do that.

Liandrin and her rogues are basically the primary foils for the girls - whereas once the tower split happens Elaida can't really GO anywhere.

There's definitely some merging that can (has, and probably will) happen between characters, but Elaidrin is imho not reasonable.

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Re: "The big casualty so far this season is Thom..."  I'm not 100% sure I agree?  He told Rand and Mat to run, while he fought the Fade.  We know from the prior episode that he's pretty handy with those knives.  And, more to the point, we did not see the death on-screen.  

Just idle speculation, but... if I were betting, I'd bet he turns up again.
 

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On 12/14/2021 at 8:56 AM, feliasgrimm said:

Moiraine kissed her. Moiraine and Siuan are canonically lovers, sorry if that bugs you.

Just checked it - the quote is "a warm hug between old friends" not a kiss.  However the change does not bug me (although if later relationships with males occur as in the books it could cause some controversy).

 

On 12/14/2021 at 8:56 AM, feliasgrimm said:

Rand having premaritals with Egwene (his views on premarital sex were a plot point later in the books)

They also made Egwene's explanation to Aviendar of the actual two rivers customs (which were for pre-marital sex under strict conditions and controlled by the female partner - and very reasonable since checking the virility of the male partner is a wise precaution before marriage) a plot point later in the book.  Belonging to possibly the only all male household in the area gave Rand a very sheltered view. 

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I was so excited to finally have WoT on the screen until I saw it. Opening scene, I was stoked. Two Rivers looking very two rivery, then Perrin with a wife....pause.....WTF??? Paden Fain, I'm like ok, no Thom......pause....WTF??? Ok escaping Shadar Logarth with no Thom, no Rand and Mat learning the flute or juggling going village to village AND no Camelyn in sight.....pause....WTF is going on??? NO ELYAS MACHERA???? oh HELL NO!! how can Perrin become a wolf brother without Elyas?? Shall I go on? The inconsistencies keep building up. Loial not meeting the Green Man and singing his tree so the blight wouldn't over take him, Moiraine taking only Rand to the eye of the world..Rand not fighting Aginor at the gap, but 5 ladies linked fighting in the gap.

I've been waiting 30 yrs for this show, I would rather wait a few more just so they can get it right. I could easily see 9 seasons at 12 episodes a piece so why the rush? 

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6 hours ago, Anthony Hooks said:

 

I've been waiting 30 yrs for this show, I would rather wait a few more just so they can get it right. I could easily see 9 seasons at 12 episodes a piece so why the rush

I tend to agree that the cut-corners and mostly cheap story rewrites have taken their toll on me watching S1 WoT TV series.  It seems like Rafe somehow talked Harriet and Brandon into a swampy mess and I’m just not sure this sulfurous stench is ever gonna wash off any of us who followed them in. Wish they had Peter Jackson to clean it up now before it all turns to putrescine & cadaverine. Sorry to be so negative but the show desperately needs help.

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