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October 13, 2015

The Sword of Truth fantasy series comes to TV

by Jason Hughes, posted Jan 29th 2008 9:41AM
Wizard's First RulePoor Robert Jordan. I was sure his The Wheel of Time series would be the first modern fantasy series to make the leap to ongoing television series. But not only did George R.R. Martin's much newer A Song of Ice and Fire get picked up by HBO last year to be made into a series (what's the status on that?), now it looks like Terry Goodkind beat him to the punch, too.

Sam Raimi (Spider-Man) is teaming with ABC/Disney on 22 hour-long episodes chronicling Goodkind's The Sword of Truth eleven volume series, though the working title of the show appears to be the title of the first novel only: Wizard's First Rule. Intended for syndication, Rule will be the first major fantasy syndicated series since the likes of Hercules and Xena ruled the airwaves in the late '90s.

It's said to be in development for a fall launch. Personally, I would have gone with The Sword of Truth as the series name as it has a more majestic feel. Perhaps they're only intending to adapt the first novel; certainly it's fat enough to fill a full season. I just hope they don't intend to cram all 11 volumes into one season (these books are easily 500+ pages on average) as there is way too much going on for that to work.

I'm sure this is going to piss off some of his fans, but I always considered The Sword of Truth a derivative of The Wheel of Time. The series shared too many similarities, especially in early volumes of Sword to be mere coincidence. But, admittedly, like Bloom County from Doonesbury before it, Sword did manage to find its own voice. Ideally, if Jordan's final volume can be compiled and published (tragically the author passed away last year before completing it himself, but he did leave extensive notes, and his official blog indicates they have found a writer to finish it), maybe Showtime or some other bigger budget studio could pick it up. I'd rather see a bigger budget on The Wheel of Time than the Hercules and Xena's of the world managed.

Hopefully, The Sword of Truth ... sorry, Wizard's First Rule will prove successful (and A Song of Ice and Fire will actually happen) and other quality fantasy series can be looked at for television treatment, just like The Lord of the Rings opened the doors for The Chronicles of Narnia and other high fantasy in the theaters. There's certainly plenty of source material to work with, but sci-fi/fantasy fans are very difficult to please, so it should be interesting to see if they embrace this alternate medium or reject it altogether. Or if it appeals to people who've never read the series and nobody cares whether the whiny fans like it or not.

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I love Terry Goodkind's work and I was so shocked when I saw how poorly the story was done on TV.
I'm a Robert Jordan fan to the end and I agree with many posters here, The Wheel of Time should not be done on TV . But HBO has been doing a great job with The Game of Thrones, I would be interested to see if they could handle RJ's stuff.

November 08 2011 at 10:13 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
kora nowak

I love all the sword of truth books and hope the series will be shown in Australia.
The only one I can see to portray Richard Cypher is British actor Richard Armitage

April 26 2008 at 1:02 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Have you ever noticed the similarities between "Lord of the Rings" and "Star Wars"?

An old Wizard, a young boy on a journey, a sword that glows blue, etc, etc, etc....

March 19 2008 at 3:37 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
jonson roth

Goodkind was so derivative that I could literally recognize fragments of text that I swear I'd seen in one book or another, years earlier. The first book was the biggest piece of crap, but I kept buying in hopes it'd improve. I gave up after the third book and then sold my copies as fast as possible.

On the other hand, I've long been dreaming of Jordan's Wheel of Time being on big or little screen, and have been trying to come up with a screenplay myself (in my head only). It's one of my goals, if no one else does it, and if I can raise enough money for the rights in 5-10 years.

February 03 2008 at 1:08 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I got about 4 books into the Sword of Truth series and just gave up on it. While I certainly agree Wizard's First Rule was like a poor-man's The Wheel of Time, Goodkind was able to develop his world just a bit in the 2nd and 3rd novels to make it more original, but after the 4th book the series just seemed to drag on forever, and not in a way that made you want to stick around like Jordan and Martin's novels (hell, even Jordan was trying my patience after the 11th book). Personally, this doesn't really interest me.

January 30 2008 at 3:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Wait... Sword of Truth and Wheel of Time are two separate series?

January 30 2008 at 12:01 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Eh, I'm a fan of Goodkind, but I doubt this'll be done right.

I really, really, really want Ice & Fire to be done - and it better be done well. It's the best epic fantasy series available, in my opinion.

January 29 2008 at 8:17 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Wheel of Time is a 1,000,000 times better than Terry Goodkind's series. Half the people who have read WoT already have it cast online anyway.

January 29 2008 at 6:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Oooh, Objectivist philosophy in broadcast form, how exciting. /Sarcasm./ Really, I enjoyed First Rule, but then found the rest of the books a bit weak. And by weak I mean strong heroic and rationally self interested!

January 29 2008 at 2:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Wow, I tried reading the first book years ago, got about 10 pages in before I hurled it across the room...

January 29 2008 at 1:47 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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