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thrawn527
Mar 27, 2004

Thrawn/Pellaeon
Studying the art of terrorists
To keep you safe





The Shannara Chronicles is a fantasy show airing on MTV on Tuesday nights at 10:00PM Eastern. They are based on the Shannara series by Terry Brooks, which I don't plan to go into much here, due to obvious spoiler implications. Also because I haven't read these books in around 15 years, so my memory is a bit hazy. It's also produced by Jon Favreau, if that does anything for you.

Okay, so I'll have to go into them a little, I guess. The Shannara series takes place in "The Four Lands", an Earth thousands of years into the future, after nuclear war has decimated the planet, and we've essentially returned to a middle ages style culture. Nuclear radiation and time has mutated certainly groups of humans over the centuries in different ways, turning them into the creatures of fantasy lore (one example being that some humans hid from the wars inside of mountains, causing shorter, stockier builds to survive, making them into Dwarfs). While some of the later books use this for actual plot, at the time the show is starting, this is basically just used for backdrop/setting, with ruins of our time being scattered around an otherwise Middle Earth world.

Two major exceptions to the above comment about nuclear mutations creating fantasy races are A) regular humans still exist, too, and B) Elves have always been here, in hiding until everything went to poo poo.

The first book in the series, The Sword of Shannara, was a pretty big Lord of the Rings rip off, which the author even acknowledges he used as a crutch while he learned how to write. The TV is skipping that book completely, however, and starting with the second book, The Elfstones of Shannara, which is where I, and others, feel the books started to have their own identity and style. So I'm quite happy with the decision to start where they did.

So, that all being said, this is not a prestige drama airing on HBO, so do not expect Game of Thrones. This is a LOTR fantasy show, set on MTV. Which, in the pilot, caused some serious tonal shift issues. That being said, the characters are strong, and (barring a couple of exceptions, at least in the pilot) the acting is better than I was expecting. As I said in the Gen Chat thread, it's not Game of Thrones, but it's also certainly not Legend of the Seeker. Having watched only the pilot so far, I saw plenty that I really enjoyed, and I'm definitely in.

Characters (I'm just going to include the videos from MTV describing them, because you won't really care what I have to say about them.)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SEv8BqMXxqs
Amberle, played by Poppy Drayton

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g1RCwV1lrII
Wil Ohmsford, played by Austin Butler (Wil's hinted at father was the main character of the first book we skipped)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vAyRx-I1X8Q
Eretria, played by Ivana Baquero

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wOkR6rdMuiQ
Allanon, played by Manu Bennett

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pmW0MfBbFrc
King Eventine, played by John Rhys-Davies
Also, his sons Arion and Ander, played by Daniel MacPherson and Aaron Jakubenko

Great, where can I watch this thing?
Other than MTV on Tuesday nights, the first 4 (really 3, with a 2 hour premiere) can be watched on the show's page on MTV.com. The first doesn't require any login, but episodes 3 & 4 require logging in with a cable account. (As a warning, as of this writing, I couldn't get the first episode to play in Chrome for some reason, it kept playing a different clip, but it worked in IE.)

Spoiler Policy
I'm going to ask that book spoilers are kept at a minimum. Stick to the episodes as they air, but obviously discussion of the books is inevitable, so use your best judgement, and use spoiler tags where appropriate.

That being said, I have no idea how closely the show plans on following the books, and I imagine future seasons (should they exist) will have to change at least some things, unless they plan on recasting the entire show every year or two (the books occasionally jump forward or backwards several generations). So if you accidentally see a spoiler, I wouldn't worry too much just yet.

The Shannara Chronicles, airing on MTV, Tuesday nights at 10:00PM Eastern.

thrawn527 fucked around with this message at 16:16 on Jan 6, 2016

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etalian
Mar 20, 2006



If you don't watch this show then Manu Bennett will visit you every night to keep you up with a Haka war dance.

etalian fucked around with this message at 21:05 on Jan 6, 2016

corn in the bible
Jun 5, 2004

Oh no oh god it's all true!


this show may have the worst costume design i've ever seen

Josh Lyman
May 24, 2009



This show is exactly how you imagine CW/MTV would do a LOTR ripoff so, if that appeals to you, I guess you should watch it.

KOGAHAZAN!!
Apr 29, 2013

a miserable failure as a person

an incredible success as a magical murder spider



Watching it right now. I'm not sure I can take these elf ears seriously.

Or this dialogue. It's very, uh, synthetic.

corn in the bible
Jun 5, 2004

Oh no oh god it's all true!


ok guys so the finale of your training will be to run really hard into a tree and die

Philthy
Jan 28, 2003



Pillbug

Wish this was on HBO because titties.

Other than that, I enjoyed it. I read all the books as a kid, so vaguely knowing the background of the show is pretty cool.

Gyges
Aug 4, 2004

NOW NO ONE
RECOGNIZE HULK


etalian posted:

If you don't watch this show then Manu Bennett will visit you every note to keep you up with a Haka war dance.

So you're encouraging people not to watch the show.

hollylolly
Jun 5, 2009


Manu is incredibly hot in this show. Like :drat:

I really enjoyed the pilot, I thought it laid out the story foundation pretty well, and I'm going to be watching the rest of it. You can poke fun at it for being on MTV I guess, but I thought the production values were great and the acting was good. And of course, Manu. :swoon:

Organic Lube User
Apr 15, 2005



Just finished the first two episodes, not too bad. It kept trying to feel like the Hunger Games/Maze Runner fare one would expect from MTV, but managed to not veer completely into that territory.

thrawn527
Mar 27, 2004

Thrawn/Pellaeon
Studying the art of terrorists
To keep you safe



hollylolly posted:

Manu is incredibly hot in this show. Like :drat:

I really enjoyed the pilot, I thought it laid out the story foundation pretty well, and I'm going to be watching the rest of it. You can poke fun at it for being on MTV I guess, but I thought the production values were great and the acting was good. And of course, Manu. :swoon:

Oh I completely agree with this. I was confused by MTV producing this, until I saw the first preview and how pretty it was, and said, "Welp, who cares who makes it, they're at least legit trying."

I'm not sold on the actress playing Eretria (I never saw Pan's Labyrinth), but then again I'm not sold on the acting from any of the Rovers (James Remar features heavily in the 3rd episode, and I have never liked him as an actor, outside of some of Dexter and...I guess The Warriors?), and I'm willing to see where she takes the role.

Seeing Manu in the credits list is another thing that sold me on the show.

Tenzarin
Jul 24, 2007
.

Taco Defender

I played the video game a long time ago on windows past. It was a really good adventure game with some RPG elements.


I don't remember anything about it other than this big stupid head.

etalian
Mar 20, 2006



hollylolly posted:

Manu is incredibly hot in this show. Like :drat:

I really enjoyed the pilot, I thought it laid out the story foundation pretty well, and I'm going to be watching the rest of it. You can poke fun at it for being on MTV I guess, but I thought the production values were great and the acting was good. And of course, Manu. :swoon:

It's impossible for Manu Bennett to not steal every scene

Josh Lyman
May 24, 2009



thrawn527 posted:

I'm not sold on the actress playing Eretria (I never saw Pan's Labyrinth), but then again I'm not sold on the acting from any of the Rovers (James Remar features heavily in the 3rd episode, and I have never liked him as an actor, outside of some of Dexter and...I guess The Warriors?), and I'm willing to see where she takes the role.
I'm gonna take a wild guess and say she wasn't cast for her acting chops.

etalian
Mar 20, 2006



Josh Lyman posted:

I'm gonna take a wild guess and say she wasn't cast for her acting chops.

casted for looking really awesome in tight pants?

Buller
Nov 6, 2010


I definately noticed everyone being a little too "make-upy" with the girl fleeing and then having a new hairdo every scene?

The acting is hard to tell the value of because a lot of the lines are just really silly and the pacing is very awkward.

Overall though I sorta of kind of like it I guess might give it a few episodes more to see if theres any sort of plot to it. I liked the x-men feel of the demon dudes.

etalian
Mar 20, 2006



hollylolly posted:

Manu is incredibly hot in this show. Like :drat:

Bloodyshinta1
Aug 6, 2010


I'v only read the first book, but it was incredibly loving rad. I'm saddened by the fact they are skipping it because it's not deemed suitable enough for mass consumption. Is the second book as baller as the first?

thrawn527
Mar 27, 2004

Thrawn/Pellaeon
Studying the art of terrorists
To keep you safe



Bloodyshinta1 posted:

I'v only read the first book, but it was incredibly loving rad. I'm saddened by the fact they are skipping it because it's not deemed suitable enough for mass consumption. Is the second book as baller as the first?

I like the second book a lot more than the first. And without getting into spoilers, yes.

Big Bad Beetleborg
Apr 8, 2007

Things may come to those who wait...but only the things left by those who hustle.



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XPrHybyCRzw

Eps 1 & 2 are on youtube courtesy of MTV.

Parsifal
Jan 1, 2009

wel accually u forgot Dolan


More demon make-out scenes please. Kthx.

jivjov
Sep 13, 2007

But how does it taste? Yummy!


Dinosaur Gum

Anyone know off hand at what point in the books that the whole "post apocalyptic earth" thing started showing up? It's been years since I've read them, but I feel like it wasn't until way later in the series than the book that this series is based on.

Edit: just starting watching the YouTube premiere...and holy god drat is this dialog atrocious.

jivjov fucked around with this message at 01:35 on Jan 7, 2016

Big Bad Beetleborg
Apr 8, 2007

Things may come to those who wait...but only the things left by those who hustle.



That's not what a henge is :colbert:

thrawn527
Mar 27, 2004

Thrawn/Pellaeon
Studying the art of terrorists
To keep you safe



jivjov posted:

Anyone know off hand at what point in the books that the whole "post apocalyptic earth" thing started showing up? It's been years since I've read them, but I feel like it wasn't until way later in the series than the book that this series is based on.

I'm almost positive it's brought up in the first book, near the beginning when he gives the description of where dwarves came from I used as an example in the OP. But it's been a long time.

Bloodyshinta1
Aug 6, 2010


At some point they enter some pre world ruins and a huge mechanical spider monster comes out and attacks them, its been there since the first book.

thrawn527
Mar 27, 2004

Thrawn/Pellaeon
Studying the art of terrorists
To keep you safe



Bloodyshinta1 posted:

At some point they enter some pre world ruins and a huge mechanical spider monster comes out and attacks them, its been there since the first book.

Yes, thank you. I thought that was the first book, but wasn't sure.

Gyges
Aug 4, 2004

NOW NO ONE
RECOGNIZE HULK


Since MTV released episodes 3&4 are we still waiting until they actually air before they're non-spoiler?

Because episode 4 is looking like a giant mistake is being made by making Manu Bennett volunteer to take control of the C plot. Also, Jesus Christ kill the dumb robber gang already they're just painful. Nobody cares about "daddy" rear end in a top hat and his group of dumb mooks. All they do is encourage everyone to act even more like an idiot than the script already demands.

jivjov
Sep 13, 2007

But how does it taste? Yummy!


Dinosaur Gum

Bloodyshinta1 posted:

At some point they enter some pre world ruins and a huge mechanical spider monster comes out and attacks them, its been there since the first book.

Oh man, I don't remember that at all

Gyges
Aug 4, 2004

NOW NO ONE
RECOGNIZE HULK


I want to say that in the first book they talk about how everyone but the elves are just mutated humans, but I've got all the Shannara books kind of jumbled up in my head. I do remember that I liked something about the Elf Stones the least after Song and Sword though. Is the running plot point of everyone splits up and forms a new group so that group can split up, and repeat, something inherent to the entire series or just one of the three books?

shades of eternity
Nov 9, 2013

Where kitties raise dragons in the world's largest mall.

Honestly, this is giving me the Adventures of Sinbad flashbacks.

Hell George Buza did a walk on (or failing that , uncle thick was it, sure looks very similar).

edit: Flick Ohmsford - darm if it's George, rather see that. :)

shades of eternity fucked around with this message at 02:44 on Jan 7, 2016

etalian
Mar 20, 2006



This is the best Lord of the Rings parody since Lord of the G-string.

wormil
Sep 12, 2002

Hulk will smoke you!

I can see the thread will be a shitfest which is a shame. For an MTV show based on Shannara, this blew away my expectations.

jivjov
Sep 13, 2007

But how does it taste? Yummy!


Dinosaur Gum

I can't get a read on the tone of this show...it bounces between high fantasy and snappy tween dialog.

hollylolly
Jun 5, 2009


Gyges posted:

Since MTV released episodes 3&4 are we still waiting until they actually air before they're non-spoiler?

Because episode 4 is looking like a giant mistake is being made by making Manu Bennett volunteer to take control of the C plot. Also, Jesus Christ kill the dumb robber gang already they're just painful. Nobody cares about "daddy" rear end in a top hat and his group of dumb mooks. All they do is encourage everyone to act even more like an idiot than the script already demands.

I think that the unaired episodes should stay under spoiler tags, yeah. Tagging it with what episode you're talking about is a good idea too.

Going to watch those streaming eps tonight! Are they considered 2&3 or 3&4? Was the pilot two episodes put together?

thrawn527
Mar 27, 2004

Thrawn/Pellaeon
Studying the art of terrorists
To keep you safe



hollylolly posted:

I think that the unaired episodes should stay under spoiler tags, yeah. Tagging it with what episode you're talking about is a good idea too.

Going to watch those streaming eps tonight! Are they considered 2&3 or 3&4? Was the pilot two episodes put together?

Agreed on the spoilers. And they're considered 3&4.

burnishedfume
Mar 8, 2011

You really are a louse...


wormil posted:

I can see the thread will be a shitfest which is a shame. For an MTV show based on Shannara, this blew away my expectations.

Yeah, given that I came into this show knowing nothing other than "MTV presents high fantasy" and while I'd totally agree the show's got problems, I actually thought it was unironically good or at least a lot better than I was expecting going in.

That said I've only seen episodes 1 and 2 so far so if 3 and 4 drop in quality I haven't seen it yet. Also Manu absolutely stole every scene he was in.

Choadmaster
Oct 7, 2004

I don't care how snug they fit, you're nuts!


corn in the bible posted:

this show may have the worst costume design i've ever seen

A few hundred years after The 100, humanity has split into humans, dwarves, gnomes, and trolls, with each race granted a quarter of the CW's fashion sense.

And somewhere along the way the elves raided a third-rate Panem thrift store.

Choadmaster
Oct 7, 2004

I don't care how snug they fit, you're nuts!


My biggest issue with the show (besides the acting, costumes, teen drama, and dialing the post-apocalyptica to 11) is there is no sense of distance or passage of time. Everything is one night's ride from everything else. And it's not like it's just because they barely show anyone traveling - they actually do a bit of a half-assed montage getting to Paranor, but then they have Wil flat-out state "we rode all night to get here."

One thing that was just hilariously stupid, if minor: Wil rides in to Wing Hove, a place he's never been, from the north. He hears that Amberle is "at the waterfall" and runs off southward immediately without ever asking where the gently caress the waterfall actually is. I can only assume there was a giant, run-down, post-apocalyptic freeway sign just off screen: "WATERFALL 3/4 ->"

Choadmaster fucked around with this message at 08:11 on Jan 7, 2016

Buller
Nov 6, 2010


Choadmaster posted:

My biggest issue with the show (besides the acting, costumes, teen drama, and dialing the post-apocalyptica to 11) is there is no sense of distance or passage of time. Everything is one night's ride from everything else. And it's not like it's just because they barely show anyone traveling - they actually do a bit of a half-assed montage getting to Paranor, but then they have Wil flat-out state "we rode all night to get here."

One thing that was just hilariously stupid, if minor: Wil rides in to Wing Hove, a place he's never been, from the north. He hears that Amberle is "at the waterfall" and runs off southward immediately without ever asking where the gently caress the waterfall actually is. I can only assume there was a giant, run-down, post-apocalyptic freeway sign just off screen: "WATERFALL 3/4 ->"

Waterfalls are really loud and that one was falling from a huge ledge that was prolly pretty easy to predict from a distance, have you ever encountered a waterfall IRL?

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Vitamin P
Nov 19, 2013

Truth is game rigging is more difficult than it looks pls stay ded

Choadmaster posted:

My biggest issue with the show (besides the acting, costumes, teen drama, and dialing the post-apocalyptica to 11) is there is no sense of distance or passage of time. Everything is one night's ride from everything else. And it's not like it's just because they barely show anyone traveling - they actually do a bit of a half-assed montage getting to Paranor, but then they have Wil flat-out state "we rode all night to get here."

It's so surprising to me that the 'panning shot of a landscape with tiny CGI-d people moving across it' from LOTR never caught on, it's such a good way of showing the setting and giving the sense of yes-these-people-are-travelling-a-long-way.

Like, it's a 6 second shot that is not difficult to do anymore.

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