Last week the new fantasy series “The Wheel of Time” started with a bang: It is the most successful series premiere of the year for Amazon Prime. Three episodes were published directly, now there’s a new episode every week. But what can “The Wheel of Time” do – and for fans of which series does the fantasy spec catacle with Rosamund Pike (42) want to?
The authors of “The Wheel of Time” and “Game of Thrones” both cite JRR Tolkien’s “The Lord of the Rings” as their inspiration. This can be seen more clearly in the new Amazon series.
The mega series “Game of Thrones” arouses the interest of the viewers in the first episode not only with a lot of action, sex and a shocking ending. It is the numerous figures, acting in moral shades of gray, that fascinate and invite you to look further. There is a lot of space between good and bad in Westeros.
Space used by the authors for surprises, disappointments and suspense. Nobody there wears costumes that look like old H&M knitted sweaters.
Fantasy-savvy fans of “The Wheel of Time” will notice that some of the more memorable sentences were already used in Tolkien’s “The Companions”. Moiraine’s intro in “The Wheel of Time” sounds similar to Galadriel’s introduction to Tolkien’s world.
Tam Al ‘Thors (Michael McElhatton, “Roose Bolton” in “GoT”) saying about what you can do with your lifetime is borrowed from the comforting words of “Rings” magician Gandalf.
There is often only a fine line between homage and imitation.
No, “Wheel of Time” is not the new “Game of Thrones”. Not even the new (more) “The Witcher”. The equipment and narrative are more reminiscent of the Netflix series “Shadow & Bone”. Solid but not a hit.
“Game of Thrones” won an incredible 59 Emmys. It remains to be seen whether the “wheel of time” will succeed. After all, the novel comprises an impressive 14 volumes. So fans can hope.
The way of the “The Wheel of Time” heroes may be long. The path of the new Amazon series to the fantasy Olympus is further.