SLIDER

Legend of the Seeker, Season One: “Prophecy” and “Destiny” (2008)

Legend of the Seeker
 
Fantasy shows and I aren’t always on the best of terms. They’ve usually got a great “hook” that tugs us into their world. Beyond that, they lack the same “complete” status as other genres enjoy. This short-lived (two season's) series opens with two sisters racing to escape their pursuers. One dies, the other, Kahlan (Bridget Regan) pushes forward. Hoping to honor her sister’s sacrifice, her journey is meant to end when she finds the Seeker and into his hands, place the book they were protecting. When she’s chased to the boundary by the evil forces of Darken Rahl – a place no one dare cross, Kahlan uses a magical device to cross past it and the portal she walks through allows the soldiers to give chase. In the next world, she meets young Richard Cypher (Craig Horner) when he aids her in escaping the soldiers.


Meanwhile, Richard’s brother is confronted by evil in the form of Darken Rahl’s soldiers’. The men still seeking Kahlan – whom they call a witch, under the orders of their master, a man seeking to destroy the this Seeker  no one can find. To protect him, Richard's father sends a confused Richard off to the Wizard (Bruce Spence), the man who will explain everything. When he gets to the Wizard's, it’s to  see a familiar face – Kahlan is with Zed. Her search for the Seeker led her to Zed’s door, the man who was supposed to be training their seeker. Turns out Zed has a surprise for both of his visitors: Richard is the Seeker.

I’m just going to say this about Legend of the Seeker: it begins brilliantly. The filmmaking, scene and staging of those first 10 minutes were really, exquisite. The women’s costumes, the angles, everything was wonderful. Right off the bat, it sets pulses racing though we know nothing about what’s happening (or we’re clueless if we’ve not read the book), it matters not. We’re totally invested. Without knowing anything about the show, those opening scenes convinced me to at least give this one a fair shot and with exception to rudimentary flaws, this is a fun ride. The 90-minute pilot (or that’s how it’s showing now) sets a distinct good vs. evil plot. In fact, it’s almost Biblical in its history of a child being saved after an edict ordering every firstborn son murdered in order to protect Darken Rahl (played by Craig Parker) and his legacy. Judging this by its pilot alone, the story is really quite fascinating if you don’t mind forms of magic and fantasy holding up plots. Sadly, the production does not keep pace with the story.

Countless times to my untrained eye, there were painfully bad special effects, not unlike some that Once Upon a Time often employs. I freely admit that aside from what special features on DVD’s reveal or knowing productions use green screens, I don’t know much about special effects. (But, since this is merely an opinion on what I liked or how I see things, it seems okay to rant a bit.) That being said, there are scenes where it’s that obvious the effects team didn’t have an unlimited budget. In spite of that, the mix of sassy characters, underplayed humor and adventurous battles kept things hopping and its viewer engaged. It doesn’t take long to like the young hero, Richard. An unsuspecting one at that, but nonetheless, he rises to the occasion. It’s a role I’ve no doubt he’ll have to fight being thrust into periodically during the series. Kahlan is a feisty warrior and I confess the pilot was enough for me to fully support the will-they-or-won’t-they romance between these two. They were great together though to be honest, Kahlan has mystery surrounding her. She’s kind of Morgana before she went all 180° during the latter seasons of Merlin. Kahlan is “dark,” but is fighting on the side of the good, a place I hope she remains.

Fans looking for substitutes during seasonal breaks of things like Once Upon a Time or if you’re still suffering withdrawals from BBC’s Merlin, might want to look into this. Like I said, I was intrigued by the pilot. Enough so that I’ll likely watch the rest of the season – when I do not know (I mean, guys, the amount of shows I’ve watched the pilot for and loved, but got no further with is insane), but I’d like to think I will watch it at some point. What future quests this will send our heroes on is a mystery. But as Richard says when asked what’s comes next; they can only go forward, not back. That sounds like as good a place as any to begin a fulfilling journey of a lifetime.  

Have you seen Legend of the Seeker? What did you think of it? Good, bad and ugly, sound off below. 
 
(Content: the show varies between a TVPG and TV14 rating depending on the episode. The pilot is relatively clean. There are two or three battles that become intense (fire, swordplay). Multiple men die as a result. A woman dies after she is shot in the back with an arrow. Various situations involve magic (Kahlen implements it) and a dragon-like creature threatens two characters. There may be an innuendo or two.)

18 comments

  1. Okay I was rather confused by this... It sounds like it could be good, but your review made me have to think twice and read IMDb's plotline to better understand it haha Just constructive criticism here - pay attention to grammar and punctuation;)
    Oh and you and I share that 'not always on the best of terms' with fantasy shows haha Also, Craig Horner is rather attractive.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My apologies for the confusion. That's never a writer's intention. We all interpret things differently, and this was how the (more detailed) story unfolded in my eyes. I only watched the (2-hour) pilot - which I said above. Much of the IMDB plot is more of an "overview" or for example it's plotline doesn't happen in that order. Kahlan and Richard meet PRIOR to Richard's father's death. Also, again I am just giving the plot for the first episode, not beyond that.

      I made some changes to the plot. Hopefully it reads better. :)

      I'm more into fantasy than I once was (plus I adore Narnia), but it's still an off and on thing.

      Craig was quite good! I too thought he made a good-looking hero and he "looks" the part. Richard is sort of a naïve, unsuspecting hero. So, yeah... he does nicely. :)

      Delete
    2. No worries!! I totally understand:)
      Yes, it reads much better now...

      Oh Narnia is the greatest exception because I love love love those books <3

      Love your blog, Rissi! Keep up the great work.

      Delete
    3. Good thing we all see things differently too. Makes things interesting. :D

      I hope so. I randomly switched some of the plot and deleted a few things too.

      Those Narnia books are AWESOME! I haven't read them all yet because I was reading them in time with the film releases. Hope to get more read soon.

      Thanks for visiting, Raquel. I noticed that you switched your blog URL recently (which reminds me to get caught up on your fun blog)! That's something I'd like to do in the near future... I just have to get up the nerve. ;)

      Delete
  2. Yay! So glad you wrote this. I've been so curious about this show for a while (it looks so pretty...haha), but didn't really know much about it. I'm also iffy with fantasy--I love Narnia, OUAT, and fairytales but HATED Game of Thrones and Lord of the Rings. But from what you said, it sounds really interesting. Though I won't expect too much after the pilot. ;) I also really want to try Merlin! I'll have to check them both out next time I'm in the mood for something like this. Love this post, Rissi--you always write the best reviews! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've looked at this one off and on before, Bekah, but aside from a friend watching it when it aired, I didn't know much about it. Fantasy TV is a love-hate relationship with me. I like fairytale fantasy (if that makes any sense), and because of that adored OUAT. For example, I suspect I've have a similar reaction to yours about Lord of the Rings or Game of Thrones. Maybe I prefer "lighter" fantasy?

      I'm sort of nit-picky about fantasy coming off as "visibly fake." Weird, I know. ;) Especially since I let other things pass that are similarly annoying. Merlin is fun especially in season one before it grows darker. That being said, I want to finish the series out sometime. I think I've watched 2 and 1/2 seasons of that one.

      Thanks for chatting about this one! Always great to know your thoughts. :)

      Delete
  3. Very random comment on my part but if I recall correctly, I think the first two episodes were the closest to the book (Wizard's First Rule by Terry Goodkind), haha (err, wouldn't recommend the book though unless you like dark fantasy; this tv show might've coloured my impression/approach on the book too) xD

    I watched most of this show when I was in grad school and for the most part enjoyed it; sometimes it's a bit, err, campy (for lack of a better word? It does get serious/a lot darker in season 2 though), and the special effects are a bit obvious, but it's good fun and the production really makes the most of the New Zealand landscape. And OMG the chemistry between Craig Horner and Bridget Regan (Richard and Kahlan) is insane; they were pretty much the reason why I ended up sticking around with this show, lol. And Kahlan has gorgeous, perfect hair. I had some serious hair envy whenever I was watching this show xD

    I admit, I'm still a bit sore that this was cancelled after two seasons. It wasn't like my most favourite tv show ever or anything, but I really enjoyed watching it (and it's nice to see more fantasy on the television line-up). Hope you enjoy the rest of the show Rissi! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's cool to know. I didn't realize it was based off a book when I started watching the pilot - or if I did, I'd forgotten. Thanks for letting me know your thoughts on the book. Given how many books I have to read right now, it's probably a good thing I wouldn't like it. ;P

      Campy is the perfect word! I did love the pilot though am skeptical about where the plot goes. Why, I don't know. Maybe because as you say, it grows darker and so much fantasy tends to go that direction. Must be a "thing" that goes hand-in-hand with the genre.

      I love Craig and Bridget together. They were really cute and even five minutes after meeting, there were sparks. That earns big points, especially if the viewer is a romantic, which *cough* I am. ;) Plus it was cool to see Bridget in something so different. She was in CW's Beauty and the Best and White Collar.

      I know what you mean. It is nice to have some of these more obscure shows in the line up. I'm still saddened that Pushing Daisies was cut short. That show was SO cute.

      Thanks, Lianne! I'm glad you dropped by. Always great to chat with you. :D

      Delete
    2. Campy is the perfect word! I did love the pilot though am skeptical about where the plot goes. Why, I don't know. Maybe because as you say, it grows darker and so much fantasy tends to go that direction. Must be a "thing" that goes hand-in-hand with the genre.

      Going dark as the story progresses isn't a necessary requirement in the genre, I think (then again I can't really think of an example from the high fantasy/epic fantasy genre where it doesn't go dark), but I can see how/why it goes hand-in-hand especially when it comes to setting out the character's journey, making him or her go through a lot of hardship before coming out stronger and succeeding at the end :) But in the case of this show, I guess it's interesting when you can't figure out where the plot will go because of the many directions it can go/work out...

      Given how many books I have to read right now, it's probably a good thing I wouldn't like it. ;P

      I totally hear you; life's too short to dwell on books you don't like =P On a related, I think the end of season 1 was also a bit close to the book...but it's been so long now, I don't remember xD

      I'm so happy Bridget got roles after LotS (though I haven't seen Beauty and the Beast or White Collar) :) It's so cute that she and Craig are still friends too xD

      I love Craig and Bridget together. They were really cute and even five minutes after meeting, there were sparks. That earns big points, especially if the viewer is a romantic, which *cough* I am. ;)

      Haha, same! I didn't even need to turn on the shipper radar, it was off the walls within the first few minutes =P

      I, err, been meaning to watch Pushing Daises :3 I saw the first episode, thought it was cute and quirky, and then yeah, never got around to the rest of the series =/ But yeah, it sucks when TV shows get cut off prematurely (and then you have the TV shows that go on forever long past when the stories seemed interesting =S)

      Delete
    3. I'm like you, I cannot think of an example where fantasy doesn't get "darker." Merlin goes that way in a drastic fashion; Narnia has its darker tendencies and even OUAT suffers that fate. Maybe, it's just because most of the fantasy stuff I've seen veers in that direction, so that's what I associate "darkness" with the genre. :D So long as the hero/heroine win in the end, I don't mind. But I think Merlin's journey gets pretty messy and, well, that makes me sad.

      EXACTLY! Who needs to read books we're "sure" aren't for us!? There's too many other wonderful stories to be discovered. That's cool S1 brings in portions or plots via the book! I'm guessing the series doesn't end solidly... or maybe they were aware of the cancellation?

      Aw, that's fun that Craig and Bridget are friends. It'd be cool to see them star together again. :)

      Definitely! I suspect those sparks continue to grow the longer the story unfolds. I *have* to watch more!

      Aw, Pushing Daisies was darling. It's definitely quirky and not everyone will like it. But the characters, spontaneous burst of song (because of Kristin Chenoweth) and great plotting made it stand out. Shows that end before they should is a bummer. Many of mine are concluding this year (Covert Affairs, White Collar), which means I can find new ones. ;)

      Delete
  4. I AM TOTALLY SUFFERING WITHDRAWALS FROM MERLIN.

    Haha, probably not actually . . . I just think that they performed the ending really badly and that it deserves a resurrection. They practically left it on a cliffhanger note and I didn't like that at all. Apparently there's even a Facebook page lobbying for Merlin's return to the screen.

    I'll think about checking this show out . . . I actually liked Morgana a lot before she turned evil so I think I'd like Kahlan. Katie McGrath did a good job turning her into someone to hate, that's for sure :)

    walking in the air.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well then... this might be something you want to try, Hannah! It really was fun.

      I haven't seen the ending of Merlin yet (I think I watched 'til mid season 3, maybe?), but do really want to finish the series. I have however read about the finale and like you, am mad BBC went that direction. They did the same with Robin Hood which makes me nervous for the fate of their current hit, The Musketeers. Hope they learn from their first two endeavors! :)

      I did too. Morgana was one of my very favorite characters and yes, Katie helped in that transformation be believable. She was fierce... and creepy! Guess that's why I liked seeing Katie in A Princess for Christmas. Such a different role. :)

      Delete
  5. I've seen bits and pieces of this show around the web and been very intrigued! Some day I may just take a chance and watch it. Was reading the comments above and not sure I realized it was based on a book (or series?). But may seek that out as well. What little I have seen of it looks quite good and everything you said just reiterated that for me. So thanks, Rissi! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I did like the pilot - quite a lot. The more I've thought about it, the more I'd like to keep watching it. But, of course, I'm keeping up with two other (current) shows not to mention the DVD sets I'm binge-watching. ;) Needless to say, I have a problem.

      Yes, I do believe this was based on a book series. Hope you enjoy if/when you see it, Kara! Let me know what you think. :)

      Delete
  6. I must confess to indulging in a massive tug-of-war with myself over whether or not to buy Season One of this series. And although the pilot did come across as rather over-the-top and cliché to me, by the end of the third episode, I was completely hooked. There is just something about the story, scripts, characterizations, and actors that gelled together wonderfully, and left me wanting more.

    Nevertheless, it is definitely the achingly bittersweet, magnetic connection shared between the Seeker and his Confessor which caused my heart to almost stop once or twice for the sheer romance of it all. I’ve also grown quite fond of Zedd for his humour, wisdom, and the almost parental relationship he has with both Kahlan and Richard. The gorgeous cinematography does not hurt anything either, evoking a wonderful fairy-tale feel. Although I haven’t seen many fantasy productions, it is one of my favourite genres (maybe because they always seem to be set in the Middle Ages!), and this series is an excellent example of why. I would definitely recommend watching the rest of season one as soon as possible!

    God Bless
    Eleanor Rose

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I do own the first season, Eleanor, but well, I've not gone back to finish it. Ooops! Guess I became distracted by ALL THE OTHER SHOWS. ;) It's nice to hear E3 is the "hook." That's where I need to pick up again, and I always say, a TV show (unless it's THAT bad) deserves 3-5 episodes before we decide for sure whether or not it's for us. That's my rule anyway, and it's held true from experience. :)

      I've heard the romance is what's really pulling. And since I often am in need of romantic moments to feature (for Silver Petticoat), I should continue watching this in the hopes of finding one!

      Fairytales are some of my most favorite genres, and coupled with your enthusiastic endorsement, yes, I do believe continuing this TV show journey is a must. Thanks so much, Eleanor. :)

      Delete
    2. There really are just too many amazing shows out there, right?! How ever will we find the time to watch them all ;).

      I actually also follow the same principle, of waiting until I've seen at least the first three episodes before deciding whether to continue with it or not, and you're right, it is a good rule!

      If you're looking for romantic moments, season one certainly has quite a few; I'll be excited to see one on Silver Petticoat one of these days!

      Just before I close, the main reason I held back on buying it for so long was because I was apprehensive about the supernatural elements, and while they are fairly prevalent, I don't think it's any worse than what's featured in Merlin.

      God Bless
      Eleanor Rose

      Delete
    3. *High Five* Such truth to that opening sentence, Eleanor!

      I've experienced this with TV shows before so I like to give them more than one chance and if after that, I'm not hooked on the premise, I figure I've given it a very fair opportunity, and it's not worth the time (because again, we have TOO many others to be addicted to).

      THANKS! I appreciate knowing that. I'll *have* to jump back in and get swept up into this romance. :) (The actors who play the leading couple are really great in these roles if I remember right.)

      I understand that apprehension, and agree. I'd say this is on par with Merlin; I think I bought S1 in a relatively inexpensive set on Amazon, and felt like it was a good buy. Plus, this way I don't have to store the episodes on my computer because I bought them via iTunes as I do for several other shows. :)

      Delete

Have a thought? Don't be shy, go ahead and leave one... or two... or three! I reply to every comment. If you're new to the blog, please don't hesitate to introduce yourself and your blog - we love chatting around here!

Feedback and every comment is appreciated and read - I always leave a response; your opinions are respected and I ask that you show mine the same courtesy.

(If you post under “anonymous,” please leave a name. If you don't have a Google account, you can type your name into the Name/URL and if you have no site, just leave "URL" blank.)

If you are still reading my ramblings, thank you for following this little blog and for being one of its supporters. I’ve enjoyed getting to know each of you, friends!

© Finding Wonderland | Where Stories Begin • Theme by Maira G.