Unfortunately, Amazon seems to have not learned its lesson and shows no signs of doing so. The Wheel of Time, whose first season was a disaster, has returned as a second season due to the company’s financial resources, but not much has changed. The second season, much like the first, fails to rise above mediocrity. There are numerous reasons behind this. Amazon is also gearing up for the second season of The Rings of Power, but both series faced the same criticisms in their first seasons. Seeing that The Wheel of Time hasn’t improved, I fear a lack of improvement in the ringed series as well.
Adapted from the renowned novel series by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson, The Wheel of Time boasts a world with millions of fans. Naturally, viewers were excited about a TV adaptation, only to be left disappointed by the outcome. I haven’t read the novels, and although there are many novels I haven’t read, I am somewhat familiar with the universes of some. However, The Wheel of Time is one of the rare universes about which I know nothing. Absolutely nothing. Adaptation series like this should have the power to direct those like me who know nothing about the original material toward it. After watching, I should feel compelled to say, “Let me take a look at the books,” or at least, I should be willing to purchase and let them gather dust. At the very least, I should derive some enjoyment from witnessing this colossal world about which I know nothing. Unfortunately, it is impossible to say these things about Amazon’s The Wheel of Time series.
One of the fundamental criticisms of the series is that it has been altered too much. Particularly, one glaring issue is the excessive influence of woke perspectives, a problem prevalent in many contemporary productions, which significantly affected The Wheel of Time. Fans rightly criticized the series, saying that the world was diverse enough, and there was no need for change. On the other hand, I, who knows nothing about the world, had trouble connecting with the series. I couldn’t focus on the series due to factors such as the overly fast-paced story development, the artificiality of character designs, and even the poor quality of effects, although I didn’t mind them much. What’s worse: I can’t tell if the problem lies within the world or with Amazon anymore.
In particular, the second season, despite featuring plenty of action in the story, overwhelmed me with difficulties while watching. Despite having many characters and different storylines, none of them are convincing and exciting. The second season, which includes numerous action scenes, feels monotonous, as if it doesn’t have any action at all. Even though the final episode is action-packed due to a city invasion, the path leading up to the climax lacks excitement. The main issue is the series’ lack of excitement. As someone who is entirely unfamiliar with the story but open to learning and enjoyment, the series failed to captivate me with its narrative. The ups and downs are weak, character developments are poor, and perhaps the worst of all, the world itself looks quite fake.
What I particularly want to discuss about the second season is this, actually. The world feels entirely like a theater play. On one hand, I look at the set designs of Game of Thrones, and on the other hand, I look at The Wheel of Time; there’s a significant difference in quality. Everything, from sets to magic, from character identities to the dynamics of the world, looks cheap. Overly lit scenes create an impression that everything takes place in a studio. In TV shows and movies, especially in fantasy genres, the viewer should forget that what they’re watching is a film. They should immerse themselves in the story and detach from reality, even if just for a few hours. The Wheel of Time, however, cannot detach you from your reality, not even for a single second.
In summary… The second season of The Wheel of Time is so bad that it surpasses the first season, which was the focus of criticism, and, even worse, despite all the action, it’s a boring season. It possesses a blandness that would repel someone like me who knows nothing about the world. The first season contained a remedy within a bad story, but the second season is fake in every sense, or worse, it makes it clear that it’s shot in a studio. Considering the unimpressive final scenes of the final episode and the ratings, the series shouldn’t continue. In fact, the second season shouldn’t even have happened. However, due to Amazon’s involvement, there’s a lot of money that can be wasted.
Cast & Crew
creator: Rafe Judkins
starring: Rosamund Pike, Daniel Henney, Madeleine Madden, Zoë Robins, Josha Stradowski, Marcus Rutherford
USA | 2021 | 8 EPISODES |