TV Series vs. Book Series

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TV Series vs. Book Series

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Jun 27, 2007, 9:19pm

Do you have a preference? Do you like them both equally? Share your thoughts here.

I'm not a huge fan of the series. I watched all of Season 1 but am not sure if I'll watch Season 2. The only episode that I really enjoyed was the one based on Storm Front. For me its not just all the minor changes they've made to some of the characters. Its the fact that much of the humor from the books is missing. The series also seems to ignore some of the basic principles of magic/magical beings that Butcher sets down in his book.

Jun 28, 2007, 1:45am

I haven't read the books (my boyfriend is a HUGE fan of them though and feels the same way as you do about the books vs. tv thing), but I did watch the series a bit.

It was ok - I liked the guy who played Harry Dresden. Watching the show though, is kind of confusing. I feel like they never really lay down the "rules" - i.e., who is allowed to know about Harry being a real wizard, how much they are allowed to know about the magical world, etc. I also thought that Harry in the TV show was kind of a putz - he is always making mistakes and the magic is never really put to use. You find yourself yelling at the TV - "you're a wizard, do some d*mn magic!" Maybe they decided to keep it minimalist b/c they don't have a big effects budget or something. I heard that ratings were pretty bad and that it might not get renewed for a second season.

Jun 28, 2007, 9:06am

I did actually yell that at the tv at times. The magic element in the tv show is highly underused. Its easy to forget sometimes that Harry is even a wizard at all and not just a regular ol' dectective.

I knew that there would be changes going into the Harry's car and his using a hockey stick instead of a staff. But there was just always something lacking about the series. As you say Harry is much more of a putz in the series....a little whiney and doesn't seem all that bright. Which isn't how is book character at all. Yes he's not the toughest person but he goes after things all gung ho often against the odds because its the right thing to do.

Perhaps with Battlestar Gallactica ending Sci-fi can put more money into Dresden Files and make it into the great show that it has the potential to be.

Jun 28, 2007, 2:19pm

#2 & 3
Well, from what you both are saying it seems the tv series is a disappointment. I haven't watched the tv series yet but he doesn't have a staff? He uses a hockey stick?! Wtf?? lol. And he hardly uses any magic?! *sigh*

Jun 28, 2007, 2:34pm

Yup a hockey stick. I didn't know this was a departure from the books - it is creative or silly, depending on how you look at it. I still can't decide. I mean, is walking around with a hockey stick all the time any less odd than walking around with a wand?

I read an article somewhat that actually praised the use (or non-use) of magic on the television show. It talked about how the show avoids putting the hero in some impossible situation only to have him use some ridiculous, previously unseen magic spell that saves the day. I appreciate that, but you can watch the show and half the time not even realize that Harry CAN DO ANY MAGIC! I know it's not supposed to be like Harry Potter, but come on....

(What am I even doing here since I haven't read these books? - honestly, between talking to you guys and hearing my boyfriend rave about them, I think I will end up reading these books!) :)

Editado: Jun 28, 2007, 3:31pm

LOL. I think it's just silly. A hockey stick? *rolls eyes* In the books he actually has a blasting rod and a staff and a cane sword. He throws fire and flame around a lot at the bad guys. He also uses another evocation a lot to create whirlwinds to grab his staff or rod when he's in trouble or to use as a weapon against the bad guys too.

His character goes into detail about the different types of magic. Ritual magic, starts with a T but forgot what it's called, that uses names and circles and then evocation magic (the blast-your-enemies-to-hell type which he usually needs his blasting rod to focus his energy since he's better at ritual magic.

So, I've read up to book 4 and I have to say...Dresden does use his magic a lot when he's in a bind or bad situation. It's automatic. It's part of who he is (since he's a wizard after all!).

Jun 28, 2007, 3:34pm

fannyprice - the books are a definately a must read. They are entertaining and also a good mystery.

booklover - in the tv show the blasting rod gets turned into a drumstick...which is right up there with the hockey stick.

Dresden does use a lot of magic in the books...but often that's the only way to kill the beasties that are after him. Plus he's a wizard...wizard's use magic. Its part of what makes the books so good.

Jun 28, 2007, 4:50pm

#5 " It talked about how the show avoids putting the hero in some impossible situation only to have him use some ridiculous, previously unseen magic spell that saves the day"

I'm in the wrong country to see the shows and TVless anyway, but this is my one gripe with the books, the enemies are getting ridiculously unbelivably powerful and some major co-incidences are being called on to save Harry each time.

I know a series needs a sense of progression, but the scale is getting a bit silly now. However, a hockey stick is just daft.

Jun 28, 2007, 7:14pm

you make a good point reading_fox. Some of the creatures that Harry has been battling of late are getting a bit over the top...even for Harry.

I also think that there is more big big bad coming in the future. I could be wrong though.

You need to get your hands on a copy of white night! Its getting harder and harder to separate all the stories and I don't want to give anything away. *lol*

When will it be available where you are?

Jun 29, 2007, 4:17pm

A drumstick? The kind you bang on drums with?lol. (I don't know why, but the first thing I thought of was a chicken drumstick!)

I wish Harry would get a bit more of a backbone (maybe that changes in later books?). I'm reading Death Masks right now and the part where he and Ortega talk on the show he's so scared and panicked. But really, he's come up against some big, bad things in past books and survived. He's a wizard, a pretty powerful one! He needs to gain more confidence in himself and his abilities.

Jun 29, 2007, 4:35pm

I don't think the problem is one of backbone - Harry is certainly brave and committed to doing what he believes is right. I think he will always the sort of person who is plagued by self-doubt, though. And he is right to be afraid of the kinds of things he comes up against - that just proves he's smart!

Editado: Jun 29, 2007, 4:39pm

Yeah, the self-doubt. I don't think he should become arrogant or anything (that would never happen as he's too...self-sacrificing, noble, good, etc), but it'd be nice to see him at least acknowledge that he's good at what he being a wizard and saving others at his own expense. That he's more than a match to at least some of the bad guys that come against him.

Jun 29, 2007, 4:46pm

My biggest complaint about the TV show is not Harry, but Murphy. In the books, you can see why, despite the fact that Harry is always blowing sh*t up and generally causing havoc, they are friends. In the show, they don't show that part of their relationship. If I hadn't read the books, I would be thinking, why does she hire him, and why does he put up with her nagging and complaining all the time?

Jun 30, 2007, 4:23pm

The friendship of Murphy and Harry is an evolving one. Initially she hires him a little reluctantly because of past encounters they've had over various odd things that were happening on her beat. She is smart and realized that he was often the only one capable of dealing with the strange cases she had.

As the books move on and Harry actually starts to trust her enough to open up to her, that's when they become friends.

So in the show Murphy's nagging and what not is expected because she doesn't fully understand what is going on with all the magical oddities that are going on. She wants to know and knows that Harry knows and it really bugs her that he doesn't tell her. She was like that in the early books too.

Jul 1, 2007, 12:23pm

Well, having just read my first Dresden files book, I tend to agree that the books are much richer and magic-filled than the TV show. As a cat person, I like that book-Harry has a cat. I do, however, miss Bob as a "person" - the skull is a little dull.

Editado: Jul 1, 2007, 12:48pm

Bob gets better, he's a laugh. He's really not a "skull" or a person. He's a spirit of the Nevernever and uses a misty orange cloud as his physical presence in the real world.

Jul 1, 2007, 4:35pm

I love Bob the Skull. I could never get used to him in the shape of a ghost. Spirit Bob is a ton of fun. Very animated and witty.

He's also definately a lot more sarcastic in the books then in the tv show. The tv show also misses Bob's addictions...and other various quirks that just really bring his book character to life.

Jul 1, 2007, 5:44pm

LOL. Like is addiction to romance books. I find it hilarious that he loves romance books (he does have a few scattered around his skull) and is always wanting to be let out to have some "fun".=)

Set 18, 2007, 11:42am

Just a brief note - the series is now dead, the second season has been cancelled. DVD of the 12 shows is apparently available soon for those who loved it.

Set 19, 2007, 11:32am

I can't say that I am disappointed in this news. I had high expectations for the show and it just never lived up. Too many unneccessary changes from the books.

Out 2, 2007, 3:34pm

I received Season One on DVD for my birthday. I have to say I actually enjoy the television series as much as the books. I've just started reading the books as well (I'm a couple chapters into Summer Knight at the moment) and really enjoy those. I find it easy to accept the shows and the books as separate entities so the differences don't bother me too much.

I was really bummed to hear that they canceled the show. I would certainly liked to have seen it continue on.

Out 2, 2007, 10:54pm

Happy birthday, Jenine! That was a nice present to get. Somebody must really know (and love) you to make such a perfect choice! :)

Editado: Out 3, 2007, 3:58pm

It was more:

"Mom, I really want these DVDs for my birthday, can you order them for me?" LOL

I didn't leave too much to chance!

Out 5, 2007, 1:19pm

The how doesn't matter...its all about the end results. ;-)

BTW...Happy Belated Birthday

Out 5, 2007, 2:27pm

Thanks :-)

Set 17, 2008, 5:20pm

I didn't know there was a book series on which the tv series was based.
Thanks for the update and I am really behind. Will definitely try and find these books; does library have them?


Set 17, 2008, 6:12pm

I don't know if your library has them, but mine does. You will have to check your own library catalogue.

Out 7, 2008, 4:34pm

I have to admit, I love both. If it hadn't been for the tv series, I probably wouldn't have found the books for quite a while. Thanks to the show, both myself and my wife were hooked on both versions of the Dresdenverse. Having seen the show before reading the books gave me no expectations. So, I thought it rocked. We now own all the books as well as the audio books since it's getting hard to find time to read with our newborn. Currently we're hoping that James Marsters will record the rest of the series that is currently not on audio.

Our local libraries also carry the series.

Out 12, 2008, 8:19am

I must admit I saw the tv show first then learnt about the books. I think that is the key with a lot of movie/show book adaptions you need to watch the movie/show before you read the book as I rarely like watching them after I have read the books.