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rashore

Casting and Race in The Wheel of Time

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rashore

I came across something a friend of mine had shared about who's being cast in the Amazon film live action version of Robert Jordan Wheel of Time book series.
 

Quote

“It’s about my story, isn’t it? That’s what this is all about. He didn’t want to publish my story. And we all know why—because my hero is a colored man.”
—Benny Russell, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, “Far Beyond the Stars”

“Momma! There’s a black lady on TV and she ain’t no maid!”
—Caryn Elaine Johnson, age 10, watching Star Trek in 1966, 16 years before becoming Whoopi Goldberg

Last week the producers of Amazon’s Wheel of Time television adaptation announced the cast for what can reasonably be called the show’s main protagonists, insofar as a 15-book series with over 2000 named characters and 147 unique point of view characters has main protagonists. In the books, the five characters announced today serve as the reader’s eyes for over 40% of the action, whether counting by words or by POVs. These characters matter—they are among the most famous characters in all of Western fantasy, with over 80 million copies of the Wheel of Time novels sold in the past thirty years.

Three of the five actors are of African ancestry or are Aboriginal Australian.

The announcement has sent shock waves across much of the fandom, and for an important reason: it serves as explicit rejection of an implicit promise made a very long time ago.

https://www.tor.com/2019/08/20/from-the-two-rivers-casting-and-race-in-the-wheel-of-time/?fbclid=IwAR0zQkWip-ea7X-3XH6SqdPoH2LF4NetXPlJ0IqB5nu6RxoEq0l5WhmznNI#

It's an interesting and thought provoking piece.

My only complaints with the casting so far is that Mat isn't swarthy/foxy enough and Perrin might not be blacksmith built enough.

 

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and then
4 minutes ago, rashore said:

My only complaints with the casting so far is that Mat isn't swarthy/foxy enough and Perrin might not be blacksmith built enough.

First, I'd like to thank whichever member here mentioned this series on the site.  I'd never heard of it and I'm making my way through it a second time.  It's one of those pieces of work that can be enjoyed anew with every reading.  My problem with the casting is that it seems to be captive to a social justice agenda and because the characters are literally nothing like I imagined, I'll just stick to the books.  I wish them success but I don't need to have the work tainted by such a disconnect.  Nothing racist about it.  The guys don't even fit the descriptions for physical stature.  It makes me appreciate Peter Jackson's work with Tolkien's imagination even more!

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Piney
17 minutes ago, rashore said:

It's an interesting and thought provoking piece.

I looked at the Gunslinger movie as a alternative universe because in the novels there are many universes with many different timelines. Hence there was a Black version of the gunslinger Roland and a timeline with that story.

35 minutes ago, rashore said:

My only complaints with the casting so far is that Mat isn't swarthy/foxy enough.

I didn't really picture his looks, just his leadership and strategic abilities. Although I think he should look a little more older and "beat up". 

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Daughter of the Nine Moons
Posted (edited)

That was an interesting read @rashore thank you for sharing.

44 minutes ago, rashore said:

My only complaints with the casting so far is that Mat isn't swarthy/foxy

He is very pretty isn't he lol

4 minutes ago, Piney said:

I didn't really picture his looks, just his leadership and strategic abilities. Although I think he should look a little more older and "beat up". 

I think he will get there, remember in the beginning they were just village kids. He didn't start getting beat up until Rhuidean

Edited by Daughter of the Nine Moons
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Piney
34 minutes ago, Daughter of the Nine Moons said:

I think he will get there, remember in the beginning they were just village kids. He didn't start getting beat up until Rhuidean

Half my scars came from learning how not to get them as a kid. :yes:

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glorybebe

I am torn.  I love this series of books.  I am excited they are being brought to life visually...BUT, there have been so many books made into tv series or movies that stray so far from the original story that I lost interest and it tainted my love of the story.  Stay true to Jordan and I will love it.  "Base" the series on his books and I will avoid it.  After reading most of True Blood and seeing what Ball did to them....keep the story the way it was loved by all it's fans.

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ExpandMyMind
5 hours ago, glorybebe said:

I am torn.  I love this series of books.  I am excited they are being brought to life visually...BUT, there have been so many books made into tv series or movies that stray so far from the original story that I lost interest and it tainted my love of the story.  Stay true to Jordan and I will love it.  "Base" the series on his books and I will avoid it.  After reading most of True Blood and seeing what Ball did to them....keep the story the way it was loved by all it's fans.

Just treat it like a new story and try to separate it from the books. That's always the best way to enjoy an adaption. If you're forever comparing a TV show to a book, it'll very rarely (almost never) live up to the original.

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ExpandMyMind
10 hours ago, and then said:

My problem with the casting is that it seems to be captive to a social justice agenda

In what way?

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