Are you still a fan of Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time fantasy novels? If so, god help you. You have nothing but my sympathy, and my prayers that you get the assistance you need. Because while you may be excited by the news that Universal has optioned the late Jordan’s still-unfinished billion page “epic” (fantasy author Brandon Sanderson is writing the last volume from Jordan’s notes, due late 2009), I’m telling you not to be.
Now, I’m not pissing on the ta’veren parade for no reason. I read the first six books of the Wheel of Time (thanks to Jordan’s glacially slow pace, this was entirely during my extra-nerdy high school days?well over a decade ago, and the damn series still isn’t done), and while I thought the first book was great, it got exponentially worse, so much so that the sixth volume, Lord of Chaos, is the only book I have ever burned (well, besides my 8th-grade algebra book. My teacher was a total bitch).
So I know the problems of the series?an accumulation of unoriginal ideas that starts off fine, gets weird, then preposterous, then hilarious, then incredibly irritating. The fact that the main character, Rand, has infinite power after book 3, meaning there is zero conflict in the remaining 8000 pages. That nothing actually happens in the sixth book?if you skipped its 800+ pages, absolutely nothing would have changed between books 5 and 7. And worst of all, Jordan’s female characters are either total bitches or subservient sluts, no in-between, although their personalities often change between novels. It’s terrible. Fun story: Robert Jordan was speaking and signing in my hometown, and someone asked him about his female character’s two types (in a nicer way than I just did). Jordan replied, “Because that’s the two ways women are.” I’m glad you’re dead, you fat bastard. (Via Variety)