Terry Brooks' 'Shannara' Books To Become a TV Series

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Dream, Sep 18, 2012.

  1. Procutus

    Procutus Admiral Admiral

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    Point taken. Perhaps I should've phrased it as "arguably the greatest fantasy work ever written." Or viewed another way, perhaps the most well known by the general populance.


    ;)
     
  2. Mr. Adventure

    Mr. Adventure Admiral Admiral

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    Regardless of quality LOTR is definitely one of the standard bearers of fantasy fiction. I think it's inevitable that everything will be compared to it at one point (even if the result comes back negative).
     
  3. DigificWriter

    DigificWriter Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Procutus, the W&V trilogy is an excellent read, and I would highly recommend it.

    I was also responding to Silvercrest's post, BTW, as well as yours.

    Also, while we're still sort of on the subject of comparisons, I see way more comparisons - overall - between Shannara and stuff like Stephen King's The Dark Tower and the Fallout RPG video game series than I do with LotR, since, despite the impression left by the early books (Sword, Elfstones, and Wishsong specifically), the series is more 'post-apocalyptic Urban Fantasy' than it is 'Tolkien-esque High Fantasy'.
     
  4. Allyn Gibson

    Allyn Gibson Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Though Mithgar goes in different directions later, Dennis L. McKiernan's The Iron Tower and The Silver Call are very Lord of the Rings-like; the latter because it is a sequel to Lord of the Rings, the former because it was written so that The Silver Call would have backstory.
     
  5. Procutus

    Procutus Admiral Admiral

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    Well, 'Genesis of Shannara' certainly fit that description nicely. I have to admit, the connecting threads between that trilogy and 'W&V' have me curious enough to see if they're available to download onto my Sony reader, if not, then a trip to Half-Price Books for real copies. Then I could truly say that I'd read the entire Shannara saga.

    Except, of course, for the new one, 'Dark Legacy of Shannara', which I think I'll hold off on until Book II comes out in, I think March. Then I'll get them both and have only six months to wait for Book III.

    :techman:
     
  6. Ar-Pharazon

    Ar-Pharazon Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    Oh, no doubt this was closer than most in theme to Tolkien.

    My hope is SyFy doesn't have any part of this project. It could be very watchable if SyFy stays out of it.
     
  7. Procutus

    Procutus Admiral Admiral

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    Funny thing is, while SyFy's regular weekend original movies basically suck to high heaven, the various mini-series they've done (Taken, Tin-Man, The Triangle) have been fairly decent.

    Still...

    I take it there's no idea yet whether this will be a premium cable series, or if it will appear on a network?


    :confused:
     
  8. Ar-Pharazon

    Ar-Pharazon Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    ^ I liked Tin Man enough to buy the DVD, but they did that 5 years ago.
     
  9. Dream

    Dream Admiral Admiral

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    Well... at least SyFy shows TNG reruns!;)
     
  10. Ar-Pharazon

    Ar-Pharazon Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    ^ Do they? I always watch TNG reruns on BBCA. At least until the blu-rays all get released.
     
  11. Dream

    Dream Admiral Admiral

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    They still show TNG reruns in episode blocks every once in a while.
     
  12. Silvercrest

    Silvercrest Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Thanks, gentlemen. :) (DigificWriter and Procutus.)

    I don't have any problem with franchises or novels that use Tolkienesque elements. I just have a problem with anything that parallels plot and theme as closely as Sword did. I haven't read any of the works you're citing, but I'd be interested in hearing how many of my points they hit.

    Although my understanding is that Dragonlance was inspired more by the D&D game (which was in turn inspired by Tolkien). So it would be more "second-generation derivative". I think.

    The curious thing is, back in the 1980s or 1990s I remember seeing ads for a Dragonlance game. My reaction was, "They took an RPG and turned it into novels, and now they're turning it back into an RPG?! Aren't they going in circles?"

    Ugh, ugh. Bad sign already. I watched what they did to Earthsea. And was Halmi responsible for that awful adaptation of Mysterious Island with Patrick Stewart?
     
  13. Mr. Adventure

    Mr. Adventure Admiral Admiral

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    ^ There's actually two of 'em, Jr. and Sr., and at least one was involved with Mysterious Island.
     
  14. DigificWriter

    DigificWriter Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Silvercrest, the Wheel of Time, particularly the first novel The Eye of the World, is paced and structured very similarly to the bullet point outline you made, but I've never before heard of that being held up as a point against the series.
     
  15. Brendan Moody

    Brendan Moody Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Robert Jordan did consciously structure the opening of The Eye of the World to be reminiscent of Tolkien, but it's nowhere near as close to The Lord of The Rings as The Sword of Shannara is. To draw from Silvercrest's handy bulleted list (SPOILERS for The Wheel of Time follow):

    1) Moiraine is not a crotchety wizard (though she does belong to the same general type of fantasy mentor), and Rand's capacity to defeat the Big Bad, which is not linked to an artifact, is not revealed to him at this point. Basically no match.

    2) Basically a match, though again there's no artifact, and no clear understanding of why they're being attacked. Different from "Shadow of the Past"- style infodump.

    3) I guess you could point to Shadar Logoth, but that's not quite as irrelevant to the overall story due to the Mordeth/Padan Fain connection, and there's no hermit/wilderness spirit in sight.

    4) The point where they're reunited in Caemlyn is a loose equivalent here, but there's no formal council of war. Loial is as close as you get to an elf or a dwarf, and while the Ogier are in a lot of ways a combination of the stock traits of those races, it's not as straightforward a derivation as in the Shannara books. Lan is an uncrowned king, but not of an extant city in the way that Aragorn and Balinor are.

    5) [Breaking away from The Eye of the World here, since it's the only way to find even loose parallels:] The traveling companions eventually diverge as in The Lord of the Rings, but Rand is never entirely alone, and there's no Gollum/Orl Fane figure. Lews Therin's presence in Rand's mind is loosely comparable (for those not familiar with the series, Lews Therin is an earlier incarnation of the Dragon, the messianic figure Rand serves as in the series' present day, and Rand hears Lews Therin's insane voice in his head), but that's nowhere near as similar.

    6) Morgase and Gaebril/Rahvin is a somewhat close parallel here (in most other instances the agents of the Dark One, the Wheel of Time Big Bad, work by taking power directly rather than manipulating extant rulers), but no protagonist encounters Morgase until after she has, under her own steam, separated herself from the malign influence.

    7+8) These are hard to do, since the ending of The Wheel of Time is currently unknown (the last book is still four months away), but as noted above, there's no city for the uncrowned king, though the remnants of his people do gather for a final stand against impossible odds. I imagine the non-hero will indeed travel into the Big Bad's land, but there's still no artifact, and no mad guide. Edit: thinking further about it, you could see Padan Fain as a general parallel to Gollum, since he's also mad and seems likely to have some role to play in the endgame. But there's no shared connection to a central artifact like the Ring or the Sword of Shannara.

    The Wheel of Time is a pretty good example both of how contemporary fantasy is generally reminiscent of Tolkien, and of how The Sword of Shannara is blatantly derivative on a level that little else matches.
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2012
  16. Scout101

    Scout101 Admiral Admiral

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    Agree SoS is a bit too close for comfort, so probably a good call to skip over it. Still think the First King could be a good jumping on point, and they could go straight to Elfstones from there.

    Actually, First King feels like Terry recognized that SoS was a bit too close, and kinda took another stab at it later on. Better story, still uses the sword, and then just doesn't fully banish bad guy at end, because he has to survive for SoS to tackle. If you do First King, and then just beat the big bad at the end, you can lose the sword to myth/time and put it right where it needs to be for Elfstones. Just as good a setup...
     
  17. Electric Coleslaw

    Electric Coleslaw Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I always preferred David Edding's stuff like the Belgariad and the Malloreon.
     
  18. Kegg

    Kegg Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    On the other hand, Farscape.
     
  19. Silvercrest

    Silvercrest Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Attribution error! Attribution error!

     
  20. Dream

    Dream Admiral Admiral

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