In Review: The Wheel of Time (S1 – EPs 1,2 & 3) Leavetaking, Shadow’s Waiting & A Place of Safety

A strange noblewoman arrives in a remote mountain village, claiming one of five youths is the reincarnation of an ancient power...
Wheel

Synopsis: The Wheel of Time begins when a strange noblewoman arrives in a remote mountain village, claiming one of five youths is the reincarnation of an ancient power who once destroyed the world – and will do so again, if she’s not able to discover which of them it is. But they all have less time than they think.

 

The Story

Based on the book series from Robert Jordan. Amazon’s adaptation of The Wheel of Time slowly got underway premiering three episodes. The story starts when Moiraine Damodred visits a small village by the two rivers, which comes under attack by an army of trollocs. Just about surviving the encounter. Moiraine who is a sorcerer known as an Aes Sedai rescues five people who are barely out of their teens. So, Moiraine and her Warder Lan Mondragoran are joined by Egwene Al’Vere, Rand al’Thor, Mat Cauthon, Perrin Aybara, and Nynaeve al’Meara. Moiraine believes that one of them is The Dragon, who is a powerful sorcerer that can bring about the end of things and break the wheel.

While racing to get away from the Trollac’s who have just ransacked their village. Egwene, Rand, Mat and Perrin are hesitant to trust Moiraine but don’t really have many options. By the close of the episode, two things take a turn for the worst when the youngsters get separated and wind up trying to find their way back to each other. Meanwhile, Moiraine’s injury from the Trollac attack has worsened and is weakening her. Thankfully for Lan Mondragoran help is on hand from a reluctant and angry Nynaeve who has escaped from a Trolloc and wants information from Moiraine. Eventually, Moiraine and her party reconnect with a group of Aes Sedai. While the other two groups find relative safety for what remains of their travels. Egwene and Perrin hook up with a nomadic group of travelers while Rand and Mat head East with a traveling singer. 

 

The Acting

Rosamund Pike seems perfectly cast as Moiraine Damodred and channels that mysterious aura of wisdom and control. The relationship between Moiraine and Lan Mondragoran (Daniel Henney) is established pretty well and they get some great action beats in the opening episode as we see them try to defend a village against a horde of trollocs. Madeleine Madden does pretty well at establishing her character of Egwene who we first meet while she is undergoing an initiation. Also, much of Moiraine’s focus over the course of the first three episodes seems to fall on Egwene. 

 

Overall

Although we saw a little bit of action and magic in these first three episodes. There seemed to be so much backstory and mythological stuff to get through that it slowed down the plot at times. I think the first and third episodes are the worst offenders for this. So, hopefully, the storyline and overall narrative of what this show is setting out to do will speed up a little in the weeks ahead. The characters are sort of a mixed bag. As I haven’t particularly fallen in love with anyone of them as yet. As am still trying to figure out who is who because the world seems to be rather dense.

Now, much of the press blurb for this show were hailing it as the next Game of Thrones. Truthfully, that doesn’t feel like the case. I’d say it has a little more in common with Lord of the Rings in terms of magic and so forth as it is a little less grounded.

Overall. I’m a bit undecided on where I am with this show at present. I’m not especially hooked, but I remain curious enough to see where it goes in the next week or so.

 

You can check out the first three episodes of The Wheel of Time now on Amazon Prime.

9.2
The Wheel of Time (S1 - EPs 1,2 & 3) Leavetaking, Shadow's Waiting & A Place of Safety
  • Story
    8.0
  • Acting
    9.2
  • CGI & Stunts
    9.8
  • Incidental Music
    9.6

Ian Cullen is the founder of scifipulse.net and has been a fan of science fiction and fantasy from birth. In the past few years he has written for 'Star Trek' Magazine as well as interviewed numerous comics writers, television producers and actors for the SFP-NOW podcast at: www.scifipulseradio.com When he is not writing for scifipulse.net Ian enjoys playing his guitar, studying music, watching movies and reading his comics. Ian is both the founder and owner of scifipulse.net You can contact ian at: [email protected]
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