After years of attempted developments—including one very strange late-night broadcast that Amazon would probably prefer everyone on the planet promptly forget about entirely—the first look at the retail giant’s adaptation of Robert Jordan’s Wheel Of Time books is finally here. Amazon’s big, expensive fantasy adaptation (which isn’t its other, bigger, expensive-er fantasy adaptation) stars Rosamund Pike as Moraine, a powerful witch who’s hunting for the young Chosen One who’s destined to save the world from darkness—or maybe just blow the whole thing up. (The prophecies remain annoyingly unclear.) Will she find him? Will the Dark One (evil) get shoved back into the prison he’s peeking his big, dark head out of? Will someone tug their braid, smooth their skirts, or put fists on hips? (We have to assume we’re in for a pretty hefty amount of braid-tugging here.)
Suffused with a heady mixture of global-scale politicking and war, cut with plenty of romance and interpersonal arguing, the Wheel Of Time books were started by Jordan way back in 1990, and finished 23 years later (outliving their creator by a full six years). The series takes place in a world in which only women can use magic, because any man who does so turns into an insane murder machine. This, understandably, makes for some pretty complicated power dynamics—especially given that Moraine is seeking out The Dragon Reborn, the reincarnation of a male channeler who came very close to destroying the world in the setting’s past.
The first three episodes of Wheel Of Time—which also co-stars Josha Stradowski, Marcus Rutherford, Zoë Robins, Barney Harris, and Madeleine Madden as the five rural youths who get swept up in Moraine’s potentially apocalyptic quest, and Daniel Henney as her loyal bodyguard—will air on Amazon on Friday, November 19; the season will wrap up on December 24, and has already received its Christmas present (a second season) early, with Amazon announcing the news back in May.