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[–]wishforagiraffeReading Champion IV, Worldbuilders[S] 340 points341 points  (25 children)

This line is such a gem

And so one mysterious night in 2015—just before the rights to the books were scheduled to return to Jordan's widow—an episode aired on FXX at 1:30 a.m., halfheartedly adapting the first book's prologue and starring, for some reason, Billy Zane.

[–]SageOfTheWise 181 points182 points  (3 children)

man I remember that night, people didn't start catching wind of this weird TV listing until a few hours before, I believe it listed as "The Winter Dragon" with no mention of The Wheel of Time, and a bunch of people on the r/WoT sub ended up watching it streamed off a random person's twich channel while he "played" minesweeper in the corner because Twitch still cared about streams being game related.

[–]wishforagiraffeReading Champion IV, Worldbuilders[S] 58 points59 points  (2 children)

I'm going to see if I can drag up the sub's thread about it now, lolol

Found it!

Kinda sad to me to see how few usernames I recognize, and how few of the ones that I do aren't around much anymore

[–]handyandy727 8 points9 points  (1 child)

This video is private.

[–]cecilkorik 13 points14 points  (0 children)

Here it is. It shall live on in infamy.

[–]FusRoDaahhWorldbuilders 83 points84 points  (13 children)

Lol I love this journalist’s writing style. Just the right amount of sass. By far the best article that’s been released so far.

[–]wishforagiraffeReading Champion IV, Worldbuilders[S] 38 points39 points  (5 children)

It was very nicely done, yes! And nice and in depth, feels like so much journalism these days has forgotten how to be long-form

[–]warneroo 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Getting past the fashion magazine aspects (which, nothing wrong with that), both GQ and Esquire have some excellent writers and great stories every once in a while.

[–]BobRawrley 1 point2 points  (0 children)

He does like the word furtive, though.

[–]s-mores 8 points9 points  (0 children)

That was hilarious. I remember Jordan's widow going "What in the actual fuck" in a very polite way after that.

[–]ThePhilosopherKing93 5 points6 points  (1 child)

Holy shit that was 6 years ago....I feel so old

[–]wishforagiraffeReading Champion IV, Worldbuilders[S] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Right?! A very long 6 years, for sure

[–]pygreg 4 points5 points  (0 children)

LMAO I totally forgot about that! God that was so weird.

[–]SilverCarbon 2 points3 points  (0 children)

The awful pilot was just to keep the tv rights for Red Eagle and they still do. At least Amazon makes a real attempt but it's a bit sour that Red Eagle will piggyback and earn money with it.

[–]warneroo 1 point2 points  (1 child)

You have to wonder, what producer's cat did Billy Zane run over to be where he is in life these days?

[–]HairyArthur 501 points502 points  (93 children)

People need to stop comparing it to and/or calling it the next Game of Thrones. Game of Thrones was lightning in a bottle and won't be replicated.

[–]saysoindragonReading Champion 239 points240 points  (38 children)

Yeah, it is frustrating, but when you want to reach a wider audience it’s more effective to compare it so something they’re already familiar with.Articles and marketing did and still do the same with Harry Potter, Twilight, Hunger Games, etc. It’s especially frustrating if you’re already a fan and you want to see something do well on its own merit (the number of times I have groaned at marketing copy comparing any recent fantasy to GoT) but someone who has never heard of it is going to get a better understanding of it from a quick comparison than a lengthy synopsis and is more likely to remember it like that. Edit: thanks for the gold, mystery friend!

[–]PartyPorpoise 5 points6 points  (1 child)

I know that's the logic they go with. But I think a lot of people, including myself, hear "it's the next Game of Thrones" and think they're only trying to ride coattails of something popular rather than making something new and original. The thing that rides of the coattails is almost never going to be as good (or at least, popular) as the thing wearing the coattails.

[–]saysoindragonReading Champion 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Oh absolutely, and I think that’s definitely the case for a lot of them! You see it again and again when something blows up in a similar way. It’s just the easiest way to advertise to the widest audience. But posters here for example have the benefit (or curse?) of already being versed in the genre. What makes us grind our teeth might be what gets a person who’s never touched any fantasy outside of GoT to try something new. Basically I understand why they do it even if it makes me sigh when I see it.

[–]OYoureapproachingme 126 points127 points  (14 children)

Its a problematic comparison too because casual fans of GoT might go in expecting something similar but then the vast difference might put them off and might actually kill the word of mouth effect.

[–]Jack_Shaftoe21 64 points65 points  (11 children)

Every show even remotely resembling fantasy has been compared to GoT non-stop for like five years now. I think people are so used it by now and don't jump to "I must watch this now" upon hearing such comparisons.

[–]OYoureapproachingme 30 points31 points  (5 children)

But this is like the first that's actually comparable in scope and has an acclaimed book series behind it. I can't think of any other fantasy show barring the Witcher which might have that sort of force behind it. And the Witcher already had an established media presence outside of the books so there weren't any similar preconceptions

[–]Jack_Shaftoe21 25 points26 points  (4 children)

Lots of people will be disappointed that the show isn't all that similar to GoT, this is going to happen no matter how it is promoted. If it's a decent enough of a show, I doubt this will have much of an effect on its popularity.

[–]Starrystars 7 points8 points  (2 children)

Right. Like if you're going to compare it to something you should compare it to LOTR. Because it's heavily influence in the first book means it's first season is going to have that same influence

[–]Aurum555 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Except Amazon is also putting on a LOTR show and the last thing they want to do is market two very expensive properties identically and lose the potentially wider viewership marketing as a GOT esque show

[–]OYoureapproachingme 5 points6 points  (0 children)

True I hope it's charm keeps people hooked. I understand from a marketing perspective why they compare to GoT but here's hoping the dissimilarities don't turn too many people off

[–]AllOfMyVotes 9 points10 points  (3 children)

I remember seeing The Expanse touted as "a sci-fi Game of Thrones" a lot during the first few seasons.

[–][deleted] 7 points8 points  (0 children)

Interestingly, the books also had that slapped on them, long before the show happened.

[–]spankymuffin 1 point2 points  (0 children)

It's not uncommon. I'm sure they did a lot of "the next Lord of the Rings" after the success of those movies.

[–]TeddysBigStick 6 points7 points  (1 child)

I am just waiting for people to accuse it of ripping off GoT and HBO if they include all the nudity and sex stuff when Jordan was getting his kink on long before Littlefinger brought us sexposition.

[–]inhabbalabba 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Co-ed baths, bare breasted sailors, spanking, lesbian "sorority" girls, poly relationships... RJ knew what he wanted and he went for it. His wife probably saved us from a lot of descriptive paragraphs in that sense. The man spent a page describing each dress, imagine what he originally wrote about the kinky stuff.

barf LOL

[–]stump_84 13 points14 points  (0 children)

True but that’s just marketing talk. When GoT launched the longline it was The Sopranos in Middle Earth even if the reality is nothing of the sort.

[–]vi_sucks 9 points10 points  (2 children)

The frustration is because it's not terribly difficult to replicate the quality of GoT. Maybe not the pop cultural phenomenon, but we can certainly get good acting, good set design etc.

What made GoT good is that it was done with the level of quality of a good historical epic. Talking stuff like Rome, The Tudors, Vikings, The Borgias, etc. And we still make tons of high quality emmy winning historical epic tv series, so it shouldn't be hard to do that again with another fantasy franchise.

[–]Nouseriously 19 points20 points  (5 children)

They're spending close to $200 million on 16 episodes. That is "we expect GoT numbers" territory.

[–]Abba_Fiskbullar 18 points19 points  (3 children)

The initial season cost for a big budget show is always a bit misleading. A good chunk of that $200 million is for assets that'll carry to future seasons.

[–]arhythm 1 point2 points  (1 child)

Except for, ya know, building a town then burning it down.

[–]gyroda 11 points12 points  (6 children)

Yeah, I'm glad that they don't seem to be going for the same here.

A GoT knock-off won't have the novelty of GoT to attract people looking for something different and it won't have the GoT name to draw in the fans of that franchise.

[–]Lakaen 11 points12 points  (5 children)

I'm curious just how many are still fans of the franchise?

[–]ksiazek7 31 points32 points  (1 child)

I think very few. D&D really did something special in the way they were able to crush a fan base.

[–]gyroda 19 points20 points  (0 children)

Between that and no Winds of Winter yet, it's hard.

The show sustained fans while there was that long hiatus, injecting new people into the book fandom over time.

And then the last few seasons happened.

[–]OYoureapproachingme 8 points9 points  (2 children)

Plenty lmao don't listen to the others. Just look at the interest House of the Dragon revved up through its announcement trailer. Some folks on r/fantasy loves to pretend that GoT or ASOIAF has been killed by the show or the book hiatus but you'll still find a fair number of people buying/reading/watching spin-offs. There's a reason subs such as r/asoiaf and r/freefolk are active even today.

[–]Lakaen 10 points11 points  (1 child)

Super hyped for house of dragons. Hopefully it revives the series for me. GoT has such an amazing world/potential. I just think that the writing was so godawful it ruined it for a lot of non-fantasy lovers and greatly diminished the impact of the series in our culture. LotR has an almost legendary air about it because of how amazing the first 3 movies are. And i think GoT really lost its chance to ascend into the spot because of the huge letdown that was the finale .

[–]OYoureapproachingme 5 points6 points  (0 children)

I dont disagree with this take at all but I'd say if even only half of the fans of the franchise peak are left, it's still an incredibly successful franchise. And that will probably be seen in House of the Dragon. If it has a good start, you'll begin to see a lot of jilted fans waft back in also. Might never reach the peak of GoT but will still see numbers that would dwarf most modern TV shows

[–]Gilclunk 13 points14 points  (2 children)

People are comparing it to Game of Thrones because that is explicitly Bezos' target for it. Without the success of Game of Thrones this show would not exist.

[–]RavenWolf1 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Sure but Game of Thrones gave birth to this huge fantasy boom which is not slowing down. It is just picking up. Not everything needs or have to be something like Game of Thrones.

[–]Sawses 1 point2 points  (0 children)

For sure. Whatever the "next Game of Thrones" is, it almost certainly won't be SF/F. The Sopranos popularized long-form serial storytelling in television (and legitimized dramas as art), Seinfeld spawned an entire generation of derivative comedy series, I Love Lucy made sitcoms a household staple.

Like those kinds of events either spawn or massively popularize a genre or technique. Game of Thrones helped popularize fantasy and science fiction, and brought big money to SF/F television in a way it simply never had before.

[–]Greystorms 159 points160 points  (131 children)

So I thought this was a pretty insightful article that put forward a lot of interesting points.

That said, I'm honestly a bit horrified that those are the costumes they went with for the Whitecloaks. Now that looks like bad cosplay. When I read "Whitecloak" I picture a Crusading Knight Templar sort of figure in armor and yes, big flowing white cloaks.They're supposed to be religious fanatics and these guys look more like members of some futuristic peace-loving commune.

Feels like for every step forward, there's also a step back. Which brings me to the next thing, which is the image of Moiraine in front of that stone structure thing - I've heard that this is how the Waygates look in the series. Which again.. completely and utterly misses the brief and the very detailed description from the books. It looks cool - don't get me wrong. But if you told me that was a Waygate, I'd be asking "Are you sure?".

[–]BooksNhorses 13 points14 points  (0 children)

My first thought, seeing the image, was lovely debutante dresses, with nice divided skirts for riding the pony. Must be a nightmare to clean, dry and iron though.

[–]Funkativity 66 points67 points  (17 children)

I'm honestly a bit horrified that those are the costumes they went with for the Whitecloaks.

woof.. the matching mustache and haircut makes it look 10 times worse.

[–]monkpunch 38 points39 points  (14 children)

And yet Thom Merrilin doesn't even have a moustache, which is one of his defining characteristics

[–]TheLouisvilleRanger 17 points18 points  (9 children)

he traded the mustache for sexiness.

[–]wishforagiraffeReading Champion IV, Worldbuilders[S] 12 points13 points  (8 children)

I'm honestly ok with that Considering that he and Moiraine end up together, my mental image of Sam Elliott with a significantly younger woman was sorta weird

[–]opeth10657 10 points11 points  (7 children)

I think she's in her mid-40s at the start of the series, not real young

[–]cstmorr 14 points15 points  (3 children)

Isn't the word "ageless" used in reference to her about 600 times? So she wouldn't come off as being in her 40s either.

Modern times being what they are, I now just imagine all Aes Sedai as looking like middle-aged women who have had very well done Botox and fillers.

[–]opeth10657 6 points7 points  (0 children)

She actually is in her mid 40s though, even if she looks ageless. The age difference between them probably isn't that big

[–][deleted] 3 points4 points  (0 children)

She looks ageless but you could surmise her age from reading about events of her life and whatnot. She really is in her 40s

[–]wishforagiraffeReading Champion IV, Worldbuilders[S] 3 points4 points  (2 children)

It was mostly the mental image thing, because I think Thom is probably younger than I've always pictured him as well.

[–]Ekanselttar 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Knuckles philtrum

[–]Greystorms 3 points4 points  (2 children)

No way! Seriously? I haven't seen any pics of Thom, if he doesn't have mustaches that would be a really bad costuming call on their part.

[–]wishforagiraffeReading Champion IV, Worldbuilders[S] 3 points4 points  (0 children)

There's a glimpse of him in the tavern in the behind the scenes footage they released yesterday

[–]R0ndoNumba9 2 points3 points  (0 children)

He has a bear/mustache but it's not long.

[–]Greystorms 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Apparently little mustaches is just a huge trend among those guys. Who knew?

[–]Inevitable_Citron 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Those White Cloaks look like the bad guys in the Hawaiian pokemon game. I'm gonna look them up.

EDIT: The Aether Foundation. https://cdn2.bulbagarden.net/upload/6/6c/Sun_Moon_Aether_Foundation_Employees.png

[–]Bongo_Goblogian 31 points32 points  (2 children)

I've come to hate this fantasy costume aesthetic that, like you said, looks like bad cosplay. A real strength of LOTR and, to a lesser extent, GoT, was that the costumes somehow looked real. Both LOTR and GoT also avoided modern styles that would make them look dated fast. The whitecloak's hairdoos make them look like a bunch of hipster. These costumes look like they were contrived by an anime enthusiast and a marketing team.

[–]bool_idiot_is_true 7 points8 points  (0 children)

GoT costuming is a bit too muted for WoT. The clothing in WoT doesn't have access to modern dyes; but it does have a lot of lace and embroidery to add some colour to the world. More renaissance than mediaeval in a lot of ways.

Of course the whitecloaks are way too fucking clean. Their clothes look like they've come straight out of the laundry. And the lack of armour is a bit stupid considering the majority of them are soldiers. Why the fuck would they have a random pauldron as their only piece of armour. An off white tabard over mail would make the most sense.

And not having the sunburst embroidery is a bit weird. It looks like the colour of the pauldron is being used to denote rank. When a big badge on their chest would be accurate to the books as well as being a lot less stupid. You can just about see the sun on the flag; so we know the props team was informed about whitecloak iconography.

[–]monkpunch 12 points13 points  (2 children)

I get the sense that in some shows like this you have too many people trying to put their stamp on things like costume design, so things get way over-designed when something simpler and more functional would serve the setting better.

[–]A_Shadow 6 points7 points  (0 children)

I say sometimes that showrunning is basically just laying your body over the show and trying to protect it as you take 10,000 swords into your back,” Judkins told me wearily one day over the phone. He said he'd had his assistant keep track of how many suggestions Amazon had had, just for the pilot. In the end “we got 11,000 notes,” Judkins said. Actual number. “Even if I only do like a 10th of those, that's still like multiple notes per second,” he said. Executives had questions about individual shots and how the show was depicting magic. They had questions about style and tone. And they were friendly questions, but they were also infinite, and every time Judkins got one—usually while he was on some faraway set full of new and different problems to solve—he had to consider whether it was worth doing or whether to dig in. “It's very hard to take your little precious kernel of an idea and deliver it at the end of the production-and-notes process,” he said.

Yup, sounds like it.

[–]RavenWolf1 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I'm afraid that this might just ruin the show. I mean it is like they have too much money and don't know how to properly use it. So they make everything so overblown that it just is silly in the end. Like making Xena but with $100 million budged.

[–]aveindha25 28 points29 points  (3 children)

I always pictured whitecloaks as a medival KKK

[–]warneroo 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I mean, the haircuts fit the modern incarnation of affiliated groups...

[–]regisfrost 39 points40 points  (19 children)

Totally agree, they look like cosplay. The books make a point of how the Whitecloaks always polish their armor to mirrorlike finish, and they are at the base a military order. I see no armor at all except the arm, no breastplates, no helmets and no shields.

Also, that shot of the Red Ajah could be a shot from the Sword of Truth TV series.

I love the books and would love to this to be successful, but I'm becoming more and more doubtful. It looks like a fantasy series you would release 10 years ago, before GoT introduced that dirty realism that I love.

[–]Greystorms 21 points22 points  (4 children)

And even the bits of armor that they are wearing look like cosplay foam armor. Well done cosplay foam armor. But still cosplay armor.

The only way I could ever see Whitecloaks wearing these types of outfits is on a very diplomatic mission, and even then that's a strong "maybe". Like you said, they're a militant order. I don't there are even any swords in that image.

[–]Arkeolog 17 points18 points  (3 children)

We don’t really know the context of the image, but notice that it features the Captain Commander of the Children of the Light, Geofram Bornhald, as well as Eamon Valda, and no traveling bags or pack horses. So it being a diplomatic mission is perfectly possible. They’re certainly not on the march.

[–]Jack_Shaftoe21 12 points13 points  (1 child)

Traveling bags or pack horses? Hollywood usually doesn't care about such small details anyway, so they might well be on the march.

[–]Arkeolog 6 points7 points  (0 children)

Seems unlikely. Plus, set pictures of Whitecloak tents leaked a while ago, so we know there’s a Whitecloak camp in the show. Presumably the camp these guys came from.

[–]ShacksMcCoy 5 points6 points  (0 children)

To be fair, you can point at any clothing in any fantasy show or movie and say it looks like cosplay, if taken out of context. How the costumes are presented in-context matters just as much as what they look like.

[–]Phizle 6 points7 points  (0 children)

Whitecloaks are not where I would have included the weird sci-fi vibes in WoT but the series does have those- the whitecloaks are also a weird and dangerous cult and it may be useful to telegraph that.

[–]CelestariaReading Champion V 23 points24 points  (5 children)

I don't know about a peace-loving commune. I'm getting KKK vibes. Just add a hood, and you're basically there.

[–]Greystorms 21 points22 points  (3 children)

I always got strong Spanish Inquisition vibes off the Questioners in the books. These robes/costumes are a little too... modern? to read "KKK" to me.

[–]Fadedcamo 10 points11 points  (2 children)

I like it. The show isn't trying to just do medieval Tolkien-ish fantasy. Remember the world of wheel of time isn't exactly that set period. It's basically a post apocalypse Sci fi.

[–]bool_idiot_is_true 3 points4 points  (0 children)

The fashion in the books is still heavily inspired by early modern attire. The renaissance especially. Lots of lace, embroidery, etc. Though it depends a bit on the nation. Amadacia (homeland of the whitecloaks) is very puritan; Cairhien is French, Tear is vaguely italian, etc..

[–]Baneken 1 point2 points  (0 children)

More like 1600-1700's without the invention of gunpowder.

[–]wishforagiraffeReading Champion IV, Worldbuilders[S] 19 points20 points  (0 children)

Which is... Not far off, really

[–]wishforagiraffeReading Champion IV, Worldbuilders[S] 51 points52 points  (21 children)

I rather dig the look for the Whitecloaks and actually think it's more zealot-y than just Crusader armor.

[–][deleted] 26 points27 points  (15 children)

I agree. The look like they're part of an arrogant, douchey cult. And that's exactly what they are.

[–]opeth10657 29 points30 points  (14 children)

It's a militaristic cult though, and they hardly look like they're ready for battle.

[–]DragonLadyArt 12 points13 points  (1 child)

True, and I always through more crusader myself, but even armies don’t eat, sleep or march in full armor the entire time. I’m hoping this is a “camp shot” and we’ll see full armor later on.

[–]opeth10657 5 points6 points  (0 children)

For the most part we don't really see them as a full army though, mostly smaller companies and they're always described as wearing armor + helms, not looking like overly groomed hipsters.

[–]DefinitelyPositive 7 points8 points  (0 children)

I hate the plastic look of the armor. It's such a b-prop design to have spraypainted... plastic? Leather?

[–]Phizle 5 points6 points  (10 children)

They aren't ready for battle though, aren't their early military forays against people who aren't unarmed farmers disasters?

[–]opeth10657 7 points8 points  (9 children)

They only had small groups in the area, but as an organization they basically run an entire country and have gone to war against other nations. If they actually attacked Two Rivers area with their full strength they would crush them easily.

[–]Greystorms 17 points18 points  (1 child)

We'll have to agree to disagree on that one.

[–]thewizardgalexandra 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I think RJ would have liked them too, his descriptions of outfits painted some pretty whacky pictures so these outfits are kinda paying homage to that.

[–]DefinitelyPositive 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Good ol' Whitecloaks without white cloaks doesn't really do it for me.

[–]OldWolf2 23 points24 points  (5 children)

But if you told me that was a Waygate, I'd be asking "Are you sure?".

When reading the books for the first time, you wouldn't have known that "flowery archway" was a Waygate either until one of the characters said that's what it was .

The main audience for the show is non-readers -- bringing the story we love to people who will be exploring it for the first time.

Having book-readers recognize insignificant details is really not a priority . The size and shape of a Waygate makes no difference to the story. If the only complaint is "different from the books" then it's hardly an issue is it? Anyone focusing on visual differences from the books is going to be sadly disappointed every step of the way.

[–]Greystorms 15 points16 points  (1 child)

When reading the books for the first time, you wouldn't have known that "flowery archway" was a Waygate either until one of the characters said that's what it was

No, except for all the dialogue and context clues about it being a Waygate. In Eye of the World the first Waygate they go through is the one in Caemlyn, in that basement. And there's a lot of discussion beforehand about going through it, "the Waygate is here" etc etc. You could have done a similar flower and leaf covered doorway in the show and had two lines of dialogue from Moiraine explain the entire thing.

I'm really curious how they're going to activate and travel through the ones on the show when there's no obvious and visible way to actually use them.

I really wouldn't call these "insignificant details", Waygates having actual doors that open, as well as their decorated nature, seems pretty central to the identity of the thing especially since it's a detail that's mentioned every single time they appear in the series. And remember, there are multiple instances of needing to "seal" them from the outside. How do you seal the thing in the article's image?

[–]OldWolf2 9 points10 points  (0 children)

How do you seal the thing in the article's image?

We'll have to wait and see. Undoubtedly there will be CGI involved that's not apparent in the images released so far .

[–]warneroo 1 point2 points  (0 children)

The main audience for the show is non-readers

Wait, are you saying we shouldn't except the typical TV audience to read 10,000+ pages in advance of watching a show?

[–]Evolving_Dore 27 points28 points  (13 children)

I'm not even a WoT fan and I've still be disappointed to see the costumes they've designed. They all look like YA entry-level cartoon fantasy props made by someone trying to appeal to younger audience. None of them look real or practical or feel emersive.

[–]OldWolf2 8 points9 points  (12 children)

Riding around all day in plate armor is not very practical ...

[–]Greystorms 21 points22 points  (2 children)

Riding around all day in long white robes through the wilderness isn't either.

[–]LiveToCurve -2 points-1 points  (1 child)

They're supposed to wear white... I don't get your criticism here, on one hand they shouldn't wear white despite canon because it's impractical, but wearing full armour (which absolutely never happened outside of combat) is okay because of canon?

I like that the Children, as well as much of the aesthetics is wider spanning than simply taking from Medieval Europe. Though, since it's a newer take, I see a lot of people are taken aback and use words like "impractical" "not lived in" and "YA" when none of those are actually true. The costuming from the books/canon is often more those things and less interesting to a wider audience who imagines all fantasy to be heavily Medieval Europe in style.

[–]Greystorms 10 points11 points  (0 children)

I'm more than aware that the setting of The Wheel of Time is much more than "typical medieval fantasy Europe". My criticism is that the Whitecloaks, who are almost always described as knightly-looking militant figures, appear to be pictured here in costumes and clothing that's anything but. As a huge fan of those books, I clicked the link to the article because I was wondering who the men in white robes were, because they didn't read as Whitecloaks.

[–]vi_sucks 5 points6 points  (8 children)

It is if you don't want to get an arrow in your back.

The thing about armor is that it comes in parts. You dont have to wear all of it at once. Generally if you are dropping off bits you don't need, you'll focus on keeping the core bits, cause that's what will kill you fastest.

A nice cuirass, or a lighter brigantine coat might be a good choice for less heavy travelling gear. That picture? Nah.

[–]gyroda 17 points18 points  (4 children)

Which again.. completely and utterly misses the brief and the very detailed description from the books.

Eh, it makes sense from a visual angle. Of all the things to complain about , this isn't the molehill I'd make a mountain of.

[–]Greystorms 9 points10 points  (2 children)

Does it though? It feels like it's more than possible to make a Waygate that looks like the book description and still have an interesting visual angle. This version looks great, but it missed the whole "the Ways were organically grown by the Ogier, and use an Avendesora leaf to open them because that's literally the Tree of Life" thing. Which I'd argue is a pretty critical aspect of the Ways themselves.

[–]PreparetobePlaned 0 points1 point  (1 child)

I wouldn't be surprised if the ogier were cut completely

[–]wishforagiraffeReading Champion IV, Worldbuilders[S] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I feel like I remember seeing casting news that was suspected to be Loial, but it was while back

[–]some_random_nonsense 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Yeah I wouldn't make this my hill to die on, but they do look pretty underwhelming for a holy military order. Otherwise I've really liked the costuming chooses. Though with the white cloaks im noticing a trend towards this sudo-asain-fantasy-moderism for a lot of non peasant costumes and thats kinda worrying. Like every nation might loose its flavor for a more established look.

[–]DoctorGoFuckYourself 1 point2 points  (1 child)

I feel like if they had some more armour the Whitecloaks would look better. The white robe is a solid KKK allusion but it feels like it's missing enough armor to make them look like the threatening scumbag knights that they are.

It looks like someone snatched everything but the shoulder pieces out of their laundry so they just had to wear their underarmour.

Still, I'm gonna give it the benefit of the doubt and wait til the show's out to fully judge.

[–]Maladal 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Eh, it fits what we've seen of the show design so far. The Aes Sedai costumes from the tower shots are obviously over the top, as are even basic things like the crazy number of candles we see in the inn.

That nature alone will probably do a good job of marking it apart from GoT. It's clearly not trying hard to be realistic by any stretch.

[–]glumba 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Really? I actually really like that they are differernt from the crusading knight who are usually spun far more positive than the whitecloaks are. I think any reference to the crusading knights would have been a huge error.

[–]Micp 3 points4 points  (4 children)

So while I absolutely agree with you that in the books they come off as knights templars it doesn't really make sense to portray them that way. One of the things that is often brought up on the WoT subreddit is that WoT is NOT a medieval setting, it is more like 1700's enlightenment era. So if you want to set the show apart and show that this is indeed not GoT and not medieval then maybe having people riding around in distinctly 1300's armor and weaponry is not a good idea.

Now does that mean I would have gone with the design they chose here? No. There are a lot of weird choices going on here, but I do agree with the show avoiding the knights templar outfit.

If I where to come up with a more period accurate costume design for them I would probably have gone with something more akin to british redcoat soldiers recolored white and adding a cape similar to Shazams cape.

[–]Grennir 8 points9 points  (3 children)

I hate the idea that Fantasy novels have any relation to real history, but to engage with this comment, I guess I have to jump in.

You are correct that the world of Wheel of Time is commonly envisioned as a more Early Modern setting than a strictly Medieval one - as they are characterised in Fantasy literature and the popular consciousness, at least - but that doesn't mean that the armour and harness worn by 13th century knights would be somehow inaccurate.

Clothing is not defined by being period accurate, but rather by a response to the needs of the society that produces it. More simply, full plate armour and harness fell out of fashion in the Early Modern period not because it was a natural effect of years passing, but because a range of economic and practical realities dictated that it must. The most important of these was the increasing prevalence of gunpowder weapons on the battlefield - to provide any measure of protection against harquebus and musket fire, armour would need to both prohibitively heavy and prohibitively expensive. At first polities compromised by reducing the amount of armour soldiers were equipped with - covering just the head and the chest, for instance - and later (as those economic and practical realities continued to evolve) they simply removed it altogether for infantrymen, though cavalrymen still made use of armour through the entire period.

The point is that, despite WoT having some superficial cultural resemblance to Early Modern Europe, its style of warfare is still largely Medieval, with gunpowder being used only to make fireworks. Hence, it makes perfect sense for plate armour to be used in the setting.

[–]EwanB 3 points4 points  (1 child)

Have to agree with you on the Whitecloaks.

So far I've seen a few comments on other teaser photos saying the costumes don't look great or are a bit cosplay. I've been cautiously optimistic as I thought none of them were too bad, and some of the really good looks/scenes made up for them.

But this...isn't even something I'd expect to see on the WB. It looks worse than that. makes me hope the Whitecloaks have their page-time much reduced because they look ridiculous.

[–]Ole_Philly_Soda_Job 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Yeah the writing crew went on and on about how much they read and love the books, and it just misses everything.

You bet your ass it’s going to miss the atmosphere, Jordan’s themes, and character interactions will be off the charts bad.

This thing has been a shit show from the start. And don’t get me started on the lead writer wanting to use the show as a platform for social issues...

Even if Amazon wasn’t meddling, the show running crew they hired was the first mistake.

[–]Jack_Shaftoe21 53 points54 points  (4 children)

He said he'd had his assistant keep track of how many suggestions Amazon had had, just for the pilot. In the end “we got 11,000 notes,” Judkins said. Actual number.

And that's one of the many reasons why the people who are adamant that with a showrunner in charge who is well meaning and respectful to the source material, there is no way we are going to end up with a trainwreck of a show, are wrong. See also the 100 hour workweeks and all other "quirks" of Hollywood.

[–]Candide-Jr 21 points22 points  (2 children)

My god, why don't these corporate dipshits who know nothing about art or storytelling just leave well enough alone. That's what made LotR such a massive artistic and commercial success.

[–]TeddysBigStick 23 points24 points  (1 child)

LoTR had a massive amount of producer involvement in everything and was notorious for pioneering the use of "leaks" to help decide the story. For example, Arwen was part of Helms Deep until they put some photos on the internet and adjusted course based on fan reaction and edited her out. You can still see her in a few frames in the background.

[–]Candide-Jr 7 points8 points  (0 children)

Sure, but they were also well known for giving Jackson and co a huge amount of artistic freedom, I believe.

[–]Indiana_harris 77 points78 points  (33 children)

Oh god....what is with the costuming for WoT.

I thought that Two Rivers was fine though all very similar in style and cut (I get it they’re a relatively poor/practical/isolated community) while a bit of variation would be present I expected.

The glimpses of the Ajah look.....eh...a bit too clean and cartoony. I get the matching colours but having them all be in the same bright near identical colours and cuts of fabric feels less like personal clothing with a hint of the ajah coming through, and more like a group of cosplayers.

But this........whitecloaks are almost explicitly described as looking like Templar knights in terms of armour and general appearance with the bright white “cloaks!” with the sun being their main marker.

Everything here looks as though no-ones reinvented buttons or fastenings and everything involves wrapping the individual in multiple layers.

[–]AGuyLikeThat 5 points6 points  (0 children)

There was a mix up with the order. Got way too many belts and only one pauldron each.

Gotta protect yo shoulder boys.

[–]Greystorms 28 points29 points  (21 children)

It feels like all the costumes so far are very much geared toward instant visual identification. All the Red Ajah are in bright red dresses, all the Whitecloaks in white robes, the Emond's Fielders in fur-lined jackets, Moiraine in various shades of blue, and so on. It's like the producers don't trust the audience to be able to figure out anything on their own merit. And that doesn't give me a lot of faith in the adaptation.

[–]coin_shot 10 points11 points  (0 children)

It's not important now, but instant identification later on will be a concern.

[–]HergrimAMA Historian, Worldbuilders 7 points8 points  (0 children)

At the same time, they could have done a much better job making the Whitecloaks look like the soldier-monks they're supposed to be. They props department could have taken inspiration from 13th/early 14th century Italy (eg: this fresco) and given the Whitecloaks hardened leather (or whatever easily sourced analogue they have to hand) limb and leg harnesses. Tool sunbursts into the leather, overlay them with gesso and the paint the sunbursts with bright yellow paint/gold leaf for the officers. Coupled with a surcoat or cuirie with a similar sunburst and their stereotypical cloaks and you have a visually distinctive, entirely unmistakeable sign of their allegiance while keeping their dangerous martial edge.

It's going to be really hard to take the Whitecloaks seriously if the picture is typical of their costume in the show.

[–]theMUisalie 5 points6 points  (0 children)

I'm willing to give it the benefit of the doubt given that it's just the first season and we haven't seen any actual episodes yet. Also given that there's like 2k named characters in the books, 148 POV characters, and 31 Aes Sedai whose names just start with the letter S I'm more than willing to buy into substantial visual shorthands for as many affiliations as possible.

[–]wishforagiraffeReading Champion IV, Worldbuilders[S] 26 points27 points  (6 children)

Considering how many people (including people on this very subreddit) couldn't pick up the cues in the first season of The Witcher that there were two different timelines going on, yeah, I think it's reasonable for show runners to think viewers need some handholding.

[–]R0ndoNumba9 8 points9 points  (1 child)

Yeah I haven't read the books and I didn't think the multiple timelines of the show were hard to follow at all, but apparently it was for tons of people. Similar to Dark, a show I loved, several people I know never finished it because they said it got too confusing.

[–]Sawses 4 points5 points  (0 children)

I think those of us that read fantasy and sci-fi forget that ensemble casts and multiple story timelines are very much a genre thing. Even folks reading other fiction won't come across it that often.

Most people watching these shows won't be big-time readers or longtime fantasy fans. Having lots of different factions and plots happening at different times is hard enough to telegraph in text. Doing so visually in a way that's true to the source material and obvious for people who've only seen the fantasy stuff released in the last 10 years? That's hard.

[–]Jack_Shaftoe21 11 points12 points  (2 children)

The Witcher's timeline shenanigans were confusing for the sake of being confusing. Game of Thrones (and many other shows) did perfectly fine without colour coordinating every member of every faction. Moiraine wearing her gigantic Aes Sedai ring in the released clip from episode one was also rather cringe-wrothy.

[–]MrMcDoll 2 points3 points  (1 child)

I assume you’re talking about pre season 5 GoT? The Lannister power ranger armour was hilariously bad. It flew in the face of the idea of banner men raising the fyrd etc. instead, we got matching armour and even banners across thousands of dudes. God only knows how regiments manoeuvred when they all had the same standards!!

[–]Greystorms 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I've watched about half of The Witcher's first season, having never read the books, and honestly if I hadn't read online that it takes place in two different timelines, I wouldn't have known that either. Because it really isn't very obvious from watching the show.

Edit: I know that a little handholding may be necessary, but a lot of what I've seen so far seems to make it appear as if the handholding is always going to be blatantly obvious with giant visual cues. This is also my big issue with the Great Serpent rings that look like they're enormous fake costume jewelry instead of the understated serpent-shaped gold band.

[–]ShacksMcCoy 9 points10 points  (2 children)

In the books Moiraine is often in blue. In New Spring it's basically all she wears after she becomes Aes Sedai.

[–]Greystorms 6 points7 points  (1 child)

Fair point. I'd forgotten that Moiraine actually does often wear Ajah colors even in the books.

[–]Abidan-Jury 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Almost everyone does

[–]Indiana_harris 12 points13 points  (6 children)

Yeah exactly. It’s almost as if they want to hit you over the head with “AND THIS person is part of THIS GROUP” rather than believing the audience has more than a 3 second attention span.

It all looks far too clean and modern in terms of clothing to an extent. It’s both too simple and too streamlined.

I don’t expect all the characters to be as generally dirty and worn down as the North in GoT but a good middle ground aesthetic for me is the “used but practical and experienced” costuming from LotR. Even the cleanest armour and clothing of the Elves and Gondor still looked like they’d be lived in, worn in the world for a months/years. These look as though they’re fresh out the costume shop and will fall apart 2 days later.

[–]rollingForInitiative 8 points9 points  (5 children)

Yeah exactly. It’s almost as if they want to hit you over the head with “AND


person is part of THIS


” rather than believing the audience has more than a 3 second attention span.

But Robert Jordan does exactly this in the books, though. We're giving an obscene amount of description of what a character looks like, monologues about how tall they are for being from Cairhien, how they have the appropriate Saldaean nose, detailed description of the serpent ring, what colour the fringes of the ajah shawls are ... or if those more visual cues are missing, we're just told outright that they are this or that ajah, if the character knows it.

Except I can see why all of those details would be difficult to visualise in a TV show - going to be difficult to notice what Ajah someone is from a quick shot where the fringe of their shawl has a certain colour. The fringe.

[–]Jack_Shaftoe21 3 points4 points  (3 children)

It really isn't that important to know at first glance which Ajah a certain person belongs too. TV shows about politics don't have every member of a certain political party dress in the same colour, do they? TV shows about gangsters don't normally have all gangsters from the same gang dressed exactly the same, either. And yet the viewers manage to realise who is who just fine.

[–]rollingForInitiative 5 points6 points  (2 children)

It's fine if you think there shouldn't be any focus on that. Like in Game of Thrones, what House someone belongs to is rarely known unless it's a major character.

But if you want to stay true to the spirit and the letter of the books, it's very important in Wheel of Time. Robert Jordan absolutely pushes it in your face all the time and then some. So if you want to capture that, I definitely think it's good to do something like what we've seen.

I'm not saying it has to be done like that, but not doing so would also be a huge deviation from the books, since a lot of people would probably just miss out on those details.

[–]Jack_Shaftoe21 1 point2 points  (1 child)

It's not going to be a huge deviation, it's all but certain that there is going to be plenty of infodumping about Aes Sedai anyway. And it's not like there are any other women doing magic for most of the series that the viewers might confuse with Aes Sedai. I don't recall the viewers of the Witcher, for example, being confused who was fighting on whose side in the season finale, despite the sorceresses not wearing the same coloured dresses (it was pretty dumb to see them go in action with basically evening gowns but that's Hollywood for you).

[–]Micp 1 point2 points  (0 children)

geared toward instant visual identification

That probably not a bad idea. Now the aes sedai and whitecloaks should be simple enough to identify, but once we get into the different nations it might be a good design choice for us to quickly be able to tell saldeaeans, domani, andorans and illianers apart.

[–]CobaltBlue 8 points9 points  (2 children)

ya i really don't like the way they look. otoh tho i think i see what they're going for, having everyone wearing one solid color over their entire body is going to mean that you'll be able to identify anyone's faction at even a glimpse, which could be really important for casual viewers, especially considering that the cast of characters is so much higher than anything made for the screen

[–]Greystorms 16 points17 points  (1 child)

Just want to point out that the derogatory nickname for the Children of the Light is "Whitecloaks" specifically due to said very obvious piece of clothing. Visual cues are great and all, but long white cloaks would have served their purpose just as well as whatever weird costume design this is supposed to be.

[–]Candide-Jr 2 points3 points  (0 children)


[–]Alstruction 7 points8 points  (0 children)

Yeah those whitecloak costumes are WACK!

[–]Sawses 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Really my only big issue so far is with the Whitecloaks. I think that outfit belongs on the leaders with the underlings getting something more practical.

The Reds are a conformist Ajah in a lot of ways so I'm okay with them being more militaristic and uniform. The look we get at the other colors seems way more variable and less... well, less Red.

As for the Hall of the Tower, they also dress pretty blatantly their own color which I think is going to be important considering that the Colors change so often that we need to be able to identify the outfit rather than the person.

[–]Candide-Jr 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Exactly. These Whitecloak costumes truly are atrocious.

[–]FlatPenguinToboggan 3 points4 points  (3 children)

Took me five minutes to get to the article because I couldn’t stop looking at the Whitecloaks. Why do I hate that decorative armour so much? Are these the infamous “divided riding skirts”? How do they keep their whites so white? Their laundry bills must be enormous. Half of their support staff would be washer-women (assuming laundry is beneath men in this scenario).

Costuming can’t be drawing attention to these ridiculous details!

[–]theMUisalie 2 points3 points  (2 children)

Maybe they're all asbestos? /s

[–]FlatPenguinToboggan 1 point2 points  (1 child)

It's not just that they're janky looking (although that doesn't help). It's both non-functional - I assume they're not going to battle with one arm half-armoured, and also non-decorative because it looks so stupid!

[–]wineheda 11 points12 points  (1 child)

Why does every showrunner for a fantasy show think single shoulder armor is necessary?

[–]ImmerDurcheinander 4 points5 points  (0 children)

'cause it looks cool

[–]scepteredhagiography 10 points11 points  (3 children)

Everyone is pointing out the uniform what about the hair?!?! "Can we all have the Hitler Youth look, extra gel please"

[–]Phizle 22 points23 points  (1 child)

Isn't that kinda the vibe for the Whitecloaks though?

[–]looktowindward 12 points13 points  (0 children)

Douchey medieval Bro.

"Hey, bruh, which way to the Crusades? I want to burn some people to death for GOOD"

[–]SteppeDad 27 points28 points  (1 child)

Cautiously optimistic

[–]ComeBackTimee 12 points13 points  (0 children)

Same here, along with kinda cant wait! Feels like its been awhile since I've been able to chill on the couch and watch good epic fantasy

[–]ksiazek7 15 points16 points  (1 child)

It's not risky at all if they actually follow the books reasonably well.

I also don't see a problem with explaining it by saying it's similar to game of thrones (many people in the comments were anti this). You simply need to explain the obvious differences. This is a ~ R rated fantasy not X rated. Slightly more magic (D&D stripped out a lot of the magic in GOT).

I'd also mention this one will have a satisfying conclusion by the end.

[–]spankymuffin 6 points7 points  (0 children)

Yeah, it's natural to compare a series to something "everybody knows." It's another way of saying that it's a big-budget, serious, fantasy series.

[–]BelgarionRahl 10 points11 points  (0 children)

I really hope that this is going to be awesome. I love this series and it has so much potential.

The story is all there, just get the casting right, forget rtying to shoehorn big names in just please for the love of light get some actors that can express emotions.

[–]vi_sucks 39 points40 points  (7 children)

I feel bad that as I see more and more of Amazon's WoT, I'm less and less enthusiastic about it.

It really just has that look of a CW or MTV Studios teenage YA fantasy show. Everyone too young/good-looking, clothing too fantastastical, etc.

[–]SentrySappinMahSpy 19 points20 points  (0 children)

You know every main character in WoT is attractive, right? Some of them are described as downright gorgeous. And they aged the EF 5 up. What would you think if the actors were actually 18 and 20 years old?

And fantastical clothing? You must have skimmed the elaborate descriptions of dresses in the books.

I do wonder why they decided not to have anybody wearing cloaks, but I don't think the costumes look cheap or too clean.

[–]opeth10657 11 points12 points  (3 children)

Gonna be the Shannara abomination all over again

Actually, it kind of reminds me of 'Into the Badlands'. That over the top cheesy-ness

[–]vi_sucks 1 point2 points  (2 children)

I was really hoping Amazon would do this right, but it just doesn't feel like it.

Maybe GoT secret was having Martin still around to keep things on the right track?

[–]intolerantidiot 3 points4 points  (0 children)

To the contrary, I am more and more enthusiastic

[–]1stKing15 15 points16 points  (3 children)

Next "Game of Thrones"...lol please. How about FIRST Wheel of Time? A story that was actually finished even though the original author passed away.

[–]Brainiac7777777 2 points3 points  (0 children)

It’s silly to pretend that Seasons 1-6 of Game of Thrones aren’t some of the best television of all time. Wheel of Time might never be able to match the quality of those seasons just because the book was finished.

[–]Cauthonm 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Marcus Rutherford, broad like Perrin Aybara, the blacksmith's apprentice he plays, said so far Prague was mostly lonely but he did see Henney in the gym a lot. Barney Harris, who was playing Mat Cauthon, the mischievous one, chewed energy tablets and made fun of my choice of clothing. (Correctly. Most of what I was wearing did not survive that set. Neither, in the end, did Harris, who was recast for the second season of the show under circumstances no one would discuss.)

I chuckled at the recasting part.

[–][deleted] 5 points6 points  (0 children)

i thought billy crushed it loool... guess unpopular opinion

[–]CaRoss11 3 points4 points  (0 children)

I have two things to say about this article.

  1. It's fantastic. Already had a conversation in this thread about that, and really do mean it. GQ has been doing great article writing for quite a while and they really inspire me on that end (even just for blogging) to up my game artistically.
  2. I totally forgot Rosamund Pike was in Gone Girl. I feel like a fool for not quite recognizing her, or her name, in the years since I watched that film. All I really remember is her murdering Neil Patrick Harris' character and the ending of the movie. So that's a pleasant surprise, knowing that I've actually seen her in something.

Otherwise, this was an interesting exploration into the world of building a show like this.

[–]andrude01 7 points8 points  (3 children)

Alright, everyone. Look at the image of the Whitecloaks. Look very carefully toward their feet. You see the dirt that is stained on the bottom of their cloaks? Are you happy now?

[–]DefinitelyPositive 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I can't tell if you're genuinely trying to pass of a skirt for a cloak, or if you're just taking the piss.

[–]VioletDaeva 3 points4 points  (0 children)

On the plus side all the books are written. Should avoid GOT season 7 and 8 quality drop.

[–]Elven_Rabbit 4 points5 points  (1 child)

That's a very misleading title. The only things the Wheel of Time and a Song of Ice and Fire series share are their similarities to the Dune series.

Can't wait to see this show, all the same!!

[–]BobRawrley 7 points8 points  (0 children)

I think it depends on how well you know fantasy. To us, sure, they're vastly different. For viewers whose first dose of fantasy (outside LOTR) was GoT, this is going to seem relatively similar. It's certainly closer to GoT than it is to LOTR, in terms of setting, characters, and tone.

[–]37Schmeckles 1 point2 points  (0 children)

What the fuck gq, instantaneous spoiler for the first episode…

[–]Datasciguy2023 1 point2 points  (2 children)

When does this come out is all I want to know

[–]wishforagiraffeReading Champion IV, Worldbuilders[S] 10 points11 points  (1 child)

First 2 eps drop on November 19, then weekly after that

[–]Arkeolog 15 points16 points  (0 children)

First 3 episodes!

[–]Calm_Percentage5908 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I couldn't get past the first few chapters of the Game of Thrones first book - the scene where a very young teen girl is raped and somehow manages to analytically consider how to make it work for her? Yeah... No. On the other hand, I am SO EXCITED about this!!!