So I’ve seen a lot of hate directed towards two new television series which have come out the past week — the live action remake of COWBOY BEBOP, and the adaptation of THE WHEEL OF TIME. Having seen both, I have opinions (not that anyone cares… well, one of my most visited posts ever on here was the Aang vs Korra debate, so…).
Let’s start with some of the beef people seem to have. One group of people (let’s call them FANDOM) have decried the Hollywood adaptation of Robert Jordan’s THE WHEEL OF TIME series. Vocal individuals have gone on and on about how they have changed the story, the characters, and even “Hollywood’d it” (true story). Now, since most of us know how utterly slo-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-ow the book series gets (what’s that famous quote? “72 pages for a fucking harvest, Bob? Really?!“), we sort of expected the television series to start off at a much faster pace. Hoped, in fact. So far, through 3 episodes? It’s been middling pacing at best. I know it’s TV, so they want to save the good stuff for the 9th episode (Game of Thrones ruined that for the rest of us… thanks, jerks), but you can do more. Outside of the Trolloc attack in the first episode, it’s been “and we’re running, we’re running, we’re resting, we’re running…”. After awhile it gets, well, tiresome (not just for the viewers but the characters as well).
Speaking of characters, I totally get why the producers made the characters older than in the books. Casting 25 year old actors and actresses to play 16 and 14 year olds is not a good look. Bumping up the age to 20, on the other hand, is actually feasible. No issues with that. I don’t even really care how they made Perrin married. But for the most part so far, the characters all seem to have the same “wet bag” method of acting. Maybe they develop their personalities later but right now, it feels like they’re following the Star Wars method of acting — fixing it with CGI in post-production.
Please, not again…
But still, I can’t pass judgement on the first season until I’ve watched it. Right now, however, it seems like it’s going to be somewhere between copying Game of Thrones and trying for a TV adaptation of The Maze Runner, but with more magic. I’m not overly optimistic.
Meanwhile, COWBOY BEBOP (a show I am very invested in due to my love of the anime) surprised the hell out of me with it’s slick storytelling and visuals. Another vocal group of detractors (let’s call them FANDOM) are complaining that all the live-action remake contains is rehashed stories from the anime and there’s nothing original in them–
–wait a sec. **scrolls up and rereads what I typed moments before** Wait a second… are you trying to tell me there is no pleasing these two groups known as FANDOM at all?! You need to copy the story exactly but come up with your own story so as to create something fresh and original, but you can’t change the characters because they’re so beloved but you need to have new characters and original storytelling?? Next thing you know, they’re going to tell me that water is wet.
Please. Everyone knows water isn’t wet. **scoffs**
In all seriousness, you just can’t please everybody. I personally enjoyed the crap out of the live action COWBOY BEBOP. I was originally nervous about John Cho being cast (always pictured Spike being younger) but he plays the part well. Loved Mustafa Shakir as Jet. He absolutely rocked it and, quite frankly, pairs well with Cho on screen. I know a lot of people hated the idea of Daniella Pineda being Faye Valentine, and I was initially skeptical as well, but she freaking rocks as Faye. Straddling the borderline “is she crazy or just weird?” method of acting takes talent.
So in the end, what I’m really seeing is a lot of unnecessary hate. I know those two groups of FANDOM are very protective of their original properties. The TV renditions aren’t going to be for everyone. Thing of it as a way to introduce people who might never have even bothered to go out and buy the books (or DVD anime version, in the case of COWBOY BEBOP).
Besides, I’m still ready to go to war with Amazon over their “Games of Throning” the new Middle Earth TV series. We have plenty of time to work ourselves up into a frenzy over it.
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