The Wheel of Time is a six-part fantasy series available on Amazon. It is adapted from Robert Jordan’s novels of the same name.
The series is set in an expansive, epic world where only certain women are allowed to wield magic. It follows five young men and women from the small town of Two Rivers, one of whom is prophesied to be the Dragon Reborn, the reincarnation of the legendary hero who could save the world from the same apocalypse that destroyed it centuries earlier.
They are guided by Moiraine, a member of the incredibly powerful all-female organisation called the Aes Sedai who seeks to keep them from being captured by the Dark One. If the Dark One and his armies get their hands on this Dragon Reborn first, the world could be destroyed again.
The first episode opens with the mystery box as members of the Aes Sedai are on the hunt for the Dragon Reborn. Then we are taken to the idyllic mountain village, The Two Rivers where we meet our five 20-somethings.
Nynaeve (Zoë Robbins) is a Wisdom, a healer with some magic powers but nothing near as powerful as the Aes Sedai. Egwene (Madeleine Madden) has magic in her too and has decided to become an apprentice to Nynaeve.
Rand (Josha Stradowski) appears to be the most confident of the group but over the first three episodes, he is motivated by his desire to be with Egwene. I found him to be the least interesting character and hope that he is motivated by other things down the line as I’m not really interested in relationship angst at this early stage.
Mat (Barney Harris) seems a likely candidate for certain death. His cocky manner and sticky fingers are bound to get him into a great deal of trouble. Despite his love for his sisters, I found him to be quite selfish and uncaring to his friends. Perrin (Marcus Rutherford) is a gentle, soft-spoken blacksmith who could be classed as a gentle giant. Unfortunately for Perrin, he gets to spend the last two episodes racked with guilt which makes him withdrawn and yet still more caring than Mat.
The villagers are unaware of what is happening in the rest of the world as they keep themselves to themselves. It’s not long before all hell breaks loose as the village is attacked by huge savage beasts called Trollocs. I must say, I found the Trollocs to be really disturbing and gross, so well done on that front. When Moiraine (Rosamund Pike) and Lan Mondragoran (Daniel Henney) show up the real adventure begins and we are taken on a world-building journey.
The Wheel of Time has been compared to Game of Thrones and the Witcher but I got more of a Lord of The Rings vibe. However, I think LoTR did a much better job of world-building. The cinematography is great and we certainly get a sense of how expansive the world is meant to be as the group journey through beautiful landscapes and immense set pieces.
The first three episodes did a good job of introducing us to the characters. I think a better job could have been done on setting up the mythology and lore. The characters mention the wheel of time a lot. “The wheel of time keeps turning” is said often and I’m left assuming they are talking about life and the passage of time as there have been no real explanations as to what it means. Maybe I missed something.
I think I already know who I like and don’t like. I’m not sure the writers meant to set it up that way but here we are. Regardless of who the Dragon Reborn is, I am already invested in at least two of the five surviving. Even if Egwene isn’t the dragon she has power so already I’m interested to see if she becomes an Aes Sedai.
I had my suspicions of who the Dragon Reborn would be and sadly this was confirmed on social media. We are going to have the same issues with spoilers as we did with Game of Thrones and Lord of the Rings as people who have read the books are very vocal about this adaptation.
The Wheel of Time episodes 1-3 are available to watch on Prime Video, with new episodes released weekly on Fridays.