5 fantastic books that would make a great witcher-style series (& 5 that would be impossible to translate on TV)
Proclaim The witcher like the new Game Of Thrones seems to have become a shorthand to describe it as the most popular premium fantasy TV show around. That’s not exactly an accurate description though, while they both involve Dragons and Badassery with a medieval backdrop, the way the two shows are structured and the way they focus on their characters couldn’t. be more different, regardless of the gender shared.
The witcherThe first season of seems to confuse those who aren’t careful due to its non-linear time-skipping structure, caused by the inclusion of the two. short story and novel adaptation in progress. It’s a unique translation of the fantasy novel to the TV season that some just shouldn’t try, so here are a few novels that most likely could (and couldn’t) do the same.
ten Would – The Wold Newton Series by Philip José Farmer
A science fiction fantasy series that began life in the 1970s and began with novels Tarzan Alive: A Definitive Biography of Lord Greystroke and Doc Savage: his apocalyptic life, the series revolves around a meteorite that crashes to Earth near Yorkshire, England. The meteorite irradiated two passing cars and the descendants of the resulting occupants were given supernatural powers and motivation for good or evil.
The novels are all interconnected and use the meteorite as an explanation for the most gifted characters in fiction, not only Tarzan and Doc Savage, but also Sherlock Holmes, Solomon Kane, The Time Traveler and even James Bond. A weaving timeline would be the way to go and that would certainly make for an interesting viewing.
9 Wouldn’t – Into the Mountains of Madness by HP Lovecraft
Or anything from HP Lovecraft for that matter. A writer well known for existential horror, many times the terror and themes that HP Lovecraft tackles are as effective as they are because they are so incomprehensible and care so little for the existence of the human race.
Television is a very visual medium that allows and encourages in-depth exploration of characters and settings, which would likely work to the detriment of Lovecraftian horror. It’s most effective in the form of a book where ideas can creep into readers’ minds, leave them that way, or just use the stories for inspiration.
8 Would – Skulduggery Pleasant By Derek Landy
The adventures of a millennial intelligent skeleton detective named Skulduggery Pleasant he chose for himself, as he confronts supernatural mysteries with his assistant, Valkyrie Cain, all with a little Irish flair. It’s a weird world full of elemental magic, random powers, and necromancy and it would work wonderfully as a TV series.
Each novel introduces fantastic new characters and villains, working towards the inevitable return of the all-powerful and all-consuming old gods, The Faceless Ones. The books are full of humor, danger, and truly heartbreaking moments, all ripe for a TV adaptation. Think CSI but with magical and Irish accents.
7 Wouldn’t – House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski
Mark Z. Danielewski’s debut novel revolves around a (possibly fake) documentary about a family home that is much larger on the inside than on the outside. It just wouldn’t work outside of written fiction. Its literature is ergodic through and through, which means that it is not read in a traditional or passive way.
The book contains footnotes contained within larger footnotes and often changes the text size, color, and spacing for effect. Any adaptation would likely come across as a show about a strange house unless some serious tweaking took place.
6 Would – The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson
The Mistborn series comes out of a fairly simple idea, and if the Dark Lord of a fantasy series beat the Chosen One. It turns out that he would force the world to adopt a distribution system, make any descendant of the Chosen his slaves, and ashes would constantly fall from the sky.
An epic on the scale of the Lord of the Rings, books have a mass of material that would work brilliantly. Allomancy, a magic fueled by the use of different metals, is a brilliant concept that would give brilliant visuals on screen, and with more rebellions, sweeping chase sequences, and conflict between characters to shake a stick at. , Born of the Mists would make a good TV.
5 Wouldn’t – The Silmarillion by JRR Tolkien
Simply put The Silmarillion is more of an encyclopedic collection of myths and tales from the universe of Eä, in which is found Middle-earth, the setting of The the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. For a while there were rumors that this would be the basis of an Amazon Prime series, however, the rights just weren’t there.
May be The Silmarillion would work as an anthology series, but honestly, it works a lot better as additional material for voracious fans. Extracting a plot from the many characters and myths that take place inside and outside of Middle-earth would likely not do it justice and seem too obscure.
4 Would – The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch
Locke Lamora’s lies is the first book of what is called the gentleman bastard series. Set in a town similar to medieval Venice, it follows a group of elite thieves known as, you guessed it, the Gentleman Bastards as they rob the upper classes of the town of Camorr.
The reader’s attention is divided chapter by chapter as they see the ongoing struggle of the Gentleman Bastards to stop the mysterious Gray King from taking over the criminal world and Camorr’s story as it relates to protagonist Locke Lamora. Interweaving of timelines and a grainy fantasy setting? Something smells like a Netflix Original waiting to happen.
3 Wouldn’t – Terry Pratchet’s Discworld Series
This has been attempted, but never on a large enough scale. For those unfamiliar with him, the vast majority of Terry Pratchett’s work takes place in a world known as Disc world. It is a flat planet balanced on the backs of four elephants which themselves are located on the backs of a giant tortoise flying in space.
It’s not even as weird as the show gets. Often satirical tropes of the fantasy genre, most of the charm of the book comes from Pratchett’s writing style, something that couldn’t be replicated in other mediums. The books would just be better.
2 Would – La Belle Sauvage By Philip Pullman
The first part of a still unfinished trilogy entitled The book of dust, this series is a prequel to Pullman’s Its dark materials series. Set 12 years before and after the events leading up to Lyra Belaqua’s arrival in Oxford. The final tome in the trilogy is yet to be released but the first two tomes have been well received, so audiences are definitely here for a TV adaptation.
Interestingly, the original series, Its dark materials, received both a movie and a TV adaptation, both of which haven’t impressed fans or set up an ongoing franchise. Maybe directing with the prequels and building to the originals is the way to go?
1 Wouldn’t – Earthsea By Ursula K. La Guin
The books of Earthsea follow Ged, a boy who begins his life as a goatherd on the Isle of Gont and is soon discovered by a mage and sent to learn the ways of witchcraft at the wizarding school on Roke. Although it may sound very Harry Potter, this is only the first book and with 5 of them to adapt the story and the incomprehensible magical concepts inside would likely be lost or diluted in an adaptation.
Ursula K. La Guin’s handwriting has already been described by Neil Gaiman, saying “His words are written on my soul.” With that in mind, it’s pretty obvious that the greatest appeal of the fantasy epics of Earthsea is actually La Guin’s writing style, which means the upcoming adaptation might be lacking in something.
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