Andrew Cunningham and Lee Hutchinson have spent many years of their lives with Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson’s Wheel of Time books, they usually’re bringing that data to bear as they recap each episode of Amazon’s new WoT TV sequence. These recaps will not cowl each factor of each episode, however they may include main spoilers for the present and the guide sequence. If you wish to keep unspoiled and have not learn the books, these recaps aren’t for you.
New episodes of The Wheel of Time can be posted to Amazon Prime subscribers each Friday.
Andrew: I would not say that the center of this Wheel of Time season slowed down, precisely, however episode seven sees the present kicking again up right into a busier register that jogged my memory extra of the bewildering early episodes of the season. In only one episode, we navigate by the darkness of The Methods; we encounter our first Borderlanders, the Blight, and the fortress metropolis of Fal Dara; we get a small information dump on Lan’s doomed homeland of Malkier; we meet a lady named Min who sees visions of the longer term; and the present resolves the thriller of Who The Dragon Reborn Is (we are going to speak concerning the how and the who momentarily, however let’s simply say guide readers will not be stunned). That is a protracted checklist of stuff—did any of it stick out to you?
However the factor that caught out most is the pre-credits intro, the place we get to see an Aiel Maiden of the Spear doing what Maidens do greatest: killing the crap out of issues. The second of compassion between Tam (sporting the Golden Bees of Illian) and the maiden throughout Rand’s beginning was so extremely highly effective—it was an occasion of pure, uncooked humanity that transcended battle, and I believed it was very nice. Alternatively, guide readers know exactly who Rand’s mom is, and with out spoiling something in any respect about that Maiden’s identification, I’m beginning to surprise if the present goes to alter up Rand’s mother from the books. I’m considerably uncertain, given how effectively the lady we see on display fights, that her identification is identical as it’s within the books. Do you assume I’m off-base right here, Andrew? Both approach, I cherished the little prologue. Simply my favourite a part of the episode, and probably my favourite sequence second up to now.
Andrew: I feel the chilly open was attempting to do a few issues—present us one thing about Rand’s beforehand hinted-at parentage, and present us how effectively Aiel characters struggle. The latter bit is endlessly mentioned within the books, and whereas Aiel solely hover on the margins of this primary season, I would anticipate the accelerated tempo of the present to convey us involved with extra of them subsequent 12 months. This scene accomplishes these issues! And as for a extra detailed depiction of who Rand’s mom is, as an individual, there’s some room for the present to fudge this, given how little we really find out about her show-character from this temporary glimpse. Whereas we’re speaking about issues that have been tailored effectively, I did assume the spookiness of the Methods was fairly pitch-perfect. And if Machin Shin (or the Black Wind, in the event you favor) would not work precisely because it did within the books, I do actually just like the depiction of it as a power that breaks you down by repeating all of the stuff that the shittiest a part of your mind tells you about your self. (Perhaps you do not know what I’m speaking about if you do not have a historical past of coping with impostor syndrome and melancholy! Nevertheless it hit uncomfortably near dwelling for me.)
I want the Methods themselves had been somewhat simpler to see on the display—they have been somewhat Battle of Winterfell-esque in how darkish they have been. (Although that will simply have been the decrease bitrate of the media screener we have been watching.) Clearly it’s onerous to depict on display a spot that’s pitch black and lit solely by torches, however I might have used somewhat extra mild to truly, you recognize, see stuff.
There may be one main grievance I’ve about Machin Shin’s whispers, and it has to do with the present not taking part in truthful with its mysteries. However lemme desk that for only a second—I’ve obtained a giant little bit of spleen-venting to do concerning the episode’s center, the place the characters relaxation in a single day in Fal Dara.