Sunday, January 21, 2007

And What Is It With Magicians Named "Harry," Anyway?

I've been very much enjoying Jim Butcher's Dresden Files series of books (despite the fact that a cat tried to maim me with a collection of them once). So far, I've made it up through book 7, which I read about a month ago. I've thought pretty much from the beginning that they'd translate very well into movies, and when I heard they were actually going to be turned into a TV series, I figured, hey, that'll work, too; the premise -- basically a "wizard detective" sort of thing -- has plenty of scope to sustain a weekly format. So I was fairly optimistic about what they might do with it, and rather curious to see how it would come out.

Well, I've just finished watching the series premiere, and I'm not sure I can form a coherent opinion, because almost all I could think about, the entire way through, was how incredibly weird it is to see something so familiar done so... so... so same-but-different. The concept is exactly the same. The main character looks and acts pretty close to the one from the books, and appears to have very nearly the same backstory. The whole feel of the show seems about right. As such things go, I'd say it's actually a pretty faithful adaptation, but that fact just serves to make the differences stand out in an almost surreal kind of way. I found it disturbingly hard to concentrate on the story, because I kept going: "Wait, who is this chick?" and "OMG, is that Bob?! He's totally different! But cool! But different!" and "Wait, Harry doesn't drive a Jeep!" and "No, no, no, Murphy's supposed to be blonde!" They're not bad changes, necessarily -- except maybe for the Jeep thing, which I can't help thinking the "real" Harry Dresden would object to -- but they do have this odd double-vision effect on me. I really hope that'll go away after another episode or two, because I think I could like this show if my hindbrain will just shut up about the books...

No comments:

Post a Comment