The Wheel of Time Season 1, Episode 7 “The Dark Along the Ways” Review

The Wheel of Time is one of the biggest fantasy blockbusters of all time, and I have read and loved the fantasy novels for decades. I was beyond thrilled to see that an adaptation was coming to Prime TV, and now that it’s here, it’s time to offer weekly reviews!

The Dark Along the Ways

Best cold open in the series so far. I can’t describe how awesome it was to see our first Aiel in action, and to unite that with the birth of the Dragon Reborn was a great move. It’s a fantastic scene that set the stage nicely for more epic-ness with the Aiel. Can’t wait.

I appreciated the abbreviated stay in the Ways. Readers of the books know they were in there for a while, but it could easily have felt like a depressing, too-long stretch of time. I almost think it was too easy getting out, but as we’ve seen in the series so far, the writers are not slowing down for anything. Take it or leave it. The scenes we did get in there were good, and I’ll be interested to know if they incorporate it more.

I loved basically all of Fal Dara. The feel of it, the look as a desert fortress. I loved Uno and the others at Fal Dara as well. It had the right feel. I hope we get to see it again. The look of the Blight surprised me, but it’s been quite a while since I’ve read its description in the books. I’m not sure what I expected, to be honest, but I know that the look I saw wasn’t it. I’m not saying it felt wrong or anything–just different.

Min was interesting, too. I always imagined her as very slight and probably younger, but that could be a disconnect between my own vision and the actual descriptions in the books. I did enjoy the very brief glimpses we got of her visions, though it makes me want more badly.

Also, it looks like we may know who the Dragon Reborn is, as far as the show is concerned now! I can’t wait for the final episode of Season 1. I’ll be eagerly anticipating Season 2.

Spoiler-y discussion for speculating RE books

It’s becoming clear that they’re going to be changing a lot. I mean, we all knew that going in. There’s no real way to turn 14 massive books into a 6-8 season TV show and not lose anything. Frankly, I’m impressed with the decisions they’ve made so far. Accelerating the Nynaeve/Lan romance is one that definitely makes sense for the sake of viewers, and they’ve dropped enough hints at this point that it didn’t feel abrupt.

I am wondering if they’re just going to cut entire huge things out of the story. I’m not saying this with trepidation. There are some pretty big things in the books that could fairly easily be cut without losing much. The Great Hunt for the horn, for example, feels at times like it gets completely dropped from importance after the fact. I’ll be interested to see what things we miss.

I also wonder if Mat is missing at this point because he left the show or something happened. I haven’t been able to find any official story of why his actor is gone, but obviously he’s re-cast. You can’t drop Mat as a character. He might actually be my favorite of them all in the books by the end. I’m bummed they had to re-cast him here because I thought he was played quite well.

Links

Fantasy Hub– I have a post collecting all of my fantasy-related posts into one place!

The Wheel of Time– Read all my posts on the series from a Christian worldview perspective, both the books and the TV show.

Be sure to follow me on Twitter for discussion of posts, links to other pages of interest, random talk about theology/philosophy/apologetics/movies/scifi/sports and more!

SDG.

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