TV Adaptation / Shadowhunters
In October 2014 was announced a television series ADAPTATION of The Mortal Instruments novel series by Cassandra Clare. The said adaptation called Shadowhunters still produced by Constantin Film and distributed by Disney–ABC Domestic Television is currently in production in Toronto, Ontario and is set to be released in January 2016 on ABC Family.
n. a. The act or process of adapting.
b. Something, such as a device or mechanism, that is changed or changes so as to become suitable to a new or special application or situation.
You can’t read a TV series nor can you watch a book. Books and TV series are extremely different platforms. But as different as they are, their primary purpose is to tell a story.
Before digging into what makes a good book-to-tv adaptation, it’s necessary to remember that the audience will always be split into two: readers and non-readers.
To answer our main question, a good book-to-tv adaptation is not defined by its faithfulness but by the way the producers handle the transition on screen. What is really important are the choices they make (what to cut, revise, emphasize or change) while still separating the adaptation from the novels as books and TV shows have to exist independently. Like Kass Morgan (author of The 100) said “It’s kind of like sending your kids off to college. You have to give them the freedom to become their own people.”
However, all changes are not acceptable, of course not. As producers and artists, they have the duty to maintain what we would call the “soul” of the novels, what makes the story what it is. But changes will be made and in no way does it mean that they have no respect for the source material.
Many would disagree with the following /rhethorical/ questions but what is the point of making a television series identical in every way to the books they are based on? Where is the element of surprise when you know everything about the plot and characters?
So yes, Shadowhunters will divert from the books. The cast is, to begin with, different, diversified, talented, incredibly passionate. They might not be what you expected but it is humanly impossible to reach each and every fan’s expectations. There is nothing that could possibly reassure you or confirm your doubts other than watching the show.
But while rumors and sides wander around scaring fans away, the only people who know exactly what is going to happen are the cast and crew. You needn’t to blindly trust them of course but out of 13 episodes, 9 are already wrapped so I would say it is too late to protest. After 3 months of filming, the amount of behind-the-scenes pictures is wide enough to give us a proper idea of how the show is going to be. Not the plot, not the characters development, just a general idea. And aren’t we all satisfied with what we see? I believe we are.
So I ask you, for once, to stop relying on informations that are not confirmed. To stop setting up your opinions based on sides, rumors and theories provided by other people. Be your own judge. Watch the show.
And be certain that if you go into the television series expecting that everything in The Mortal Instruments will be represented as you imagined it, you’re going to be awfully disappointed.
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