Even if you haven’t read The Wheel Of Time, the series is worth seeing, and with the second and third seasons allegedly renewed, we can expect more magic, terrifying animals, blood and gore, and, of course, battles with the Dark One. ROSAMUND PIKE’S FABULOUS PERFORMANCE TURNS THE WHEEL OF TIME.
The series is based on Robert Jordan’s 14-volume fantasy series of the same name, which began in 1990 and ended in 2013. Moiraine (Rosamund Pike) is an Aes Sedai, a strong organization of women who can wield magic, who guides four young people on a voyage to the White Tower in the East because she believes one of them might be the reincarnation of the Dragon, a powerful figure destined to rescue or destroy the world.
The program’s vastness is clear in the beautiful opening credits, which depict threads being magically woven on a loom to create a pattern of the seven Aes Sedai in as many colors as possible. The narrative begins in Two Rivers, a little rural hamlet where industrious people go about their daily lives with little fanfare.
When Moiraine and her friend and ‘warder’ Lan Mandragoran (Daniel Henney) arrive in the village in the evening, the drama begins. Even as she mulls over which of the five teenagers — Rand (Josha Stradowski), Egwene (Madeleine Madden), Nynaeve (Zoe Robins), Mat (Barney Harris), and Perrin (Marcus Rutherford) — may be the Dragon reborn, the town is besieged by Trollocs (human-beast hybrids) on behalf of the Dark One.
Moiraine persuades the other four to accompany her to the White Tower while Nynaeve is kidnapped by one of the Trollocs. Despite their reservations about her, they decide to accompany her on her adventure.
Rosamund Pike is great as Moiraine, and she captures all of her character’s nuances to perfection. She is the series’ driving force, whether she is fighting the Trollocs or being weak and strong-willed when confronted with Padan Fain of the ruthless Whitecloaks who pursue Aes Sedai.
Lan, Moraine’s warder, is played well by Daniel Henney. Marcus Rutherford, Josha Stradowski, Madeleine Madden, Zoe Robins, Barney Harris, and Josha Stradowski are all compelling.
Because the original work is a 14-volume series, the series takes its time to introduce numerous characters. Occasionally, though, the story appears dull and meandering until an occurrence or the introduction of a new character causes the plot to pick up speed.
The production qualities are outstanding, and the stunning locales of Prague and Bovec have been expertly utilized and beautifully photographed. The background score contributes to the narrative and heightens the drama.
Even if you haven’t read The Wheel Of Time, the series is worth seeing, and with the second and third seasons allegedly renewed, we can expect more magic, terrifying animals, blood and gore, and, of course, battles with the Dark One.
The evaluation is based on the first three episodes, which will be available to stream on Friday, November 19th, and the next five episodes will be available weekly through December 24th.
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