My BTMA | BTTA feature is all about taking a look at the movies and tv shows that have been adapted from the books that we love so much! This post will share with you my first impressions, if I would recommend it, and my overall forecast for the future of the show or movie series. In a nutshell, if I thought it was it a hit or miss.
Those of us who went to see the Mortal Instruments movie, had the general consensus that it sucked. Badly. Personally, I felt that the actors didn't match the books characters and the plot was held together by a thread. Very disappointing. On the plus side, it wasn't nearly as dreadful as The Vampire Academy or the Beautiful Creatures movie adaptations, but let's save those for another conversation. Lucky for Cassandra Clare, her books were once again picked up and given another chance to redeem themselves, this time on the small screen. As Aaliyah's song lyrics of "Try Again" say, "If at first you don't succeed, dust yourself off and try again..."
As far as the TV show itself, yes it's a little bit cheesy. But aren't all ABC Family shows a little cheesy? They are, and I'll watch it anyway. While I enjoyed the first two episodes, I also feel that they were going at a tremendous speed to get through everything that happened in the first book. Being that is a television show, 13 episodes to be exact, I expected a much slower pace. For people that have not read the books I'm concerned that they could be a tad lost without the proper foundation. The writers and producers clearly thought the same thing because to help combat that, they did include a fair amount of dialog of explaining things in a matter of fact, here's the dictionary meaning of things sort of way. Not that the series has to cover every single thing that happened in the first book, but they made a lot of changes and they are definitely leaving out some important things.
On the downside, the show feels a little young on the onset. I'm sure that it will start to transform and the characters will mentally get to where I think the books are. While they are all pretty much 18 year olds, they'll soon be acting more like adults instead of 16 year old kids. As Clary and Simon's characters get deeper into the rabbit hole, I'm sure they'll mature quickly. I hope so anyway. I feel that the more dark and mature the show can get, the better. Especially if they get renewed for more seasons and are able to reach the even darker and very adult storylines ahead in the book series.
As you expect with all adaptations the producers and writers take liberties and change things that they see fit. Sometimes it's for the better and sometimes it's for the worse. Only time will tell in this case. So far I feel positive about it. I've already spotted a couple character changes, and/or character merges. That means they've taken two characters in the book and merged them into one or they've taken one character in the book and split he or she into two new characters. They've even changed a few of the characters personality traits a tad. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing, it'll surely add more drama.
After only two episodes, I'm hopeful that the show will get a second season. I predict that the die hard fans will be split 50/50 on the TV show, but they'll like it more than the movie. The thing about making adaptations is that you're not going to please everyone. The thing I try to remember is that they can and will try to make the plot more appealing to the audience at large to reach both the fans of the books and those that haven't read them. It's true that no two people have read the same book. Each person interprets the story and characters differently and that transforms what we're seeing on screen. So with that said, try not to be ultra critical and you'll enjoy it more. It also helps if it's been years since you've read the books (which it has been for me). Thus far, the TV adaptation is a hit for me.
Did you get a chance to watch Freeform's Shadowhunters? If so, please share what you thought! Will you keep watching? I will. If you haven't read the books yet, where have you been?! At the very least, make time to read City of Bones. I suspect you'll be hooked.