The phrase ‘unfilmable’ gets tossed around a lot when people are talking about adaptations; The Lord of the Rings was seen as unfilmable until it got filmed, for instance. Watchmen as well. It usually means ‘Too complicated, dense or utterly uncinematic.” In this article I am declaring The Wheel of Time series unfilmable, but what I mean by that is “Far too shitty to ever make a movie out of and should never even have been a series of books in the first place.”
The Wheel of Time has a number of distinctions: It’s for retarded people*, it’s boring, it has the same pacing as the expansion of the universe, it’s like the generic epitome of post-Tolkein generic sword and sorcery fantasy, it’s insanely long for no reason and it’s unfinished. Author Robert Jordan died while working on the latest book, which was going to 1100 pages long, get the main characters 75 feet up a road and have Egwene tug on her braid six thousand times (that’s a joke only the poor bastards who have read this shit will get). Obviously Jordan died 10 books too late.
Here’s the funny thing about The Wheel of Time series: while it’s 12 books long and thousands upon thousands of pages in length, it’s likely the whole thing could be done in a (very shitty, would make Kull the Conqueror or Dungeons & Dragons look brilliant) trilogy. Jordan spent the last eight or nine books just jerking himself off, taking his narrative nowhere interesting, building to nothing and stretching his story out to insane lengths so that he could keep getting Renn Faire junkies to shell out for a new one every couple of years.
I’m curious to see what Universal thinks it’s going to do with this property. It was previously optioned for an NBC miniseries, but those executives kicked the drugs.
* I made it throughthe first four or five books, qualifying me as at least learning disabled.
Behind every great book adaptation is a forgettable first try. — By Ryan Covey