Saturday, May 26, 2012

Top 5 Sundays #4 - Books/Series I'd Rather Didn't Become a Movie/TV Show!

So, these week's Top 5 topic is books and/pr series I'd rather didn't become either a movie or a TV show. Unlike past weeks, what made these choices hard to narrow down was critically thinking about the books in terms of their potential transition onto either the big or small screens. What is it about a book that makes it suited or not for cinematic production? Is it the plot? The characters? The genre? The setting? What I came up with was that it was actually a combination of all that and more. Sometimes, no matter how much you may want to see one of your favourite books brought to life, sometimes they simply won't transition.

So, without further adieu, here are this week's Top 5 picks.

#1 - Mercedes Lackey's Five Hundred Kingdoms series

Alright, so there may be similarities to be had between these books and ABC's Once Upon a Time, but ultimately the build up to the main adventure can take awhile - in the first book, it was 210 pages before the hero was introduced - and, unlike Lord of the Rings, there's just not enough diversity in the build up to hold interest on the big screen. What's more, each book tends to contribute its own vast cast of characters while still striving to incorporate past characters. These are still some great books with a truly unique and engaging approach to fairy tales - it's just better suited to the page than the screen.

#2 - Lilith Saintcrow's Dante Valentine series

Now, I love this series - it was amazing with demons, vampires, fallen angels, necromancers, shamans and a half dozen or more other bits and pieces that all blended together to create one hell of a world. But the way this story flows - the darkness that permeates it in several forms and the ending that leaves more wreckage than happily ever after - just don't lend themselves to the sort of entertainment Hollywood and even HBO are looking for.

#3 - Gena Showalter's Lords of the Underworld series

 The thing about this series - which has a great balance of sarcasm, hilarity, romance, and adventure going for it - is that I just can't see a TV series having the patience to gradually work in each pairing or a movie franchise holding stamina that long. And unlike similar series - like Kresley Cole's Immortals After Dark series, for instance, which could possibly pull off an Avengers-like build up - with the setting for each book being based at the same location it would be tricky to separate the stories. It's fantastic as books - just not feasible on film, at least not without some severe remodeling.

#4 - Karen Chance's Cassandra Palmer series

 Okay, this one is simple: I had enough trouble keeping track of all the time jumping - especially in regards to a certain parking lot - when it was printed on the page. I do NOT want to have my mind bent, twist, rinsed and repeated on either the big or small screens, thank you very much.

#5 - Sunny's Mona Lisa series

These are the sort of books that despite appearing short have a TON of stuff happening. And just when you think it's over BAM! something flies at you from who-only-knows-where and you sit there blinking as the whole story seems to go in a completely new and unexpected direction. Each book is like a roller coaster that jumps the track to whole new line midway through and then circles back at the last minute. Not something I can see translating to the world of movies and television.

And there you have it - my Top 5. Of course, between Peter Jackson, HBO and the CW, I expect I'll be proven wrong about at least one of these some time within the next century. I mean, did anyone honestly see Game of Thrones as a TV series? Mind you, I think this is one subject where being proven wrong is half the fun.

On a random side note - has anyone seen a movie about dragons that's actually had a good CGI dragon? I was looking at books like Joanne Bertin's Dragonlords series, G.A. Aiken's Dragon Kin series, Thea Harrison's Elder Races series and Allyson James' Dragon and Stormwalker series and I realized that their translation to the screen really depends on the quality of the dragon. Which led me to realize I couldn't think of a single good CGI dragon. Huh.

Until next week!


Anonymous said...
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Unknown said...

Great points hon.... I totally agree with the picks I have also ad... i cant see a PNR series becoming a series or movies, just because series tend to not have short term HEA... And a movie for each couple would be a bit much no? LOL