The Wheel of Time, season 2, continues the epic fantasy adventure about the battle between good and evil in an ancient world full of magic and mythical creatures. The series is based on a series of novels by Robert Jordan. A third season is already in production.
The Wheel of Time, season 1, introduced us to the key characters and the basics of the elaborate world created in the series. A group of women called the Aes Sedai living in a white tower have the role of protecting the world. They possess a power called the One Power which gives them fantastic abilities. One of the women, Moraine (Rosamund Pike), is the nominal star of the series although there are many key players.
Moraine went in search of the person who represented the dragon reborn in season 1. The dragon reborn was foretold to save the world from evil. She found 4 possibles all in the same village. They were Egwene (Madeleine Madden), Rand (Josha Stradowski), Mat (Dónal Finn), and Perrin (Marcus Rutherford). Moraine, her Warder (protector) Lan (Daniel Henney), Nynaeve (Zoë Robins), and the 4 possibles all leave the village to head for the white tower. By the end of season 1, they have figured out that Rand is the dragon reborn.
In season 2, this group has scattered in various ways. They spend the entire season trying to get back together and trying to get Rand to claim his powers as the dragon reborn so he can save the world. Separating the group gave each of them their own storyline and allowed the introduction of some new characters.
Rand’s involvement with Selene (Natasha O’Keeffe) was one of the plotlines. He thought he was hiding in her inn. She wasn’t what she seemed.
Perrin was running about the countryside trying to find his mates with his friend Loial (Hammed Animashaun) and a wolf companion. The wolves looked more like dogs than wolves, but they did have some wolf in them.
Mat was going through withdrawal from his addiction to a magical dagger. The evil Ishamael (Fares Fares) used the dagger to temp Mat to join the dark side. Ishamael could appear in several places at once like a hologram and was a tempter to all the characters in his quest to turn the world evil.
There were several characters in season 2 who joined the forces of darkness. No spoilers, but you may be surprised by some of them.
Nynaeve and Egwene were together in the white tower where they were learning to control their power. Egwene befriended Elayne (Ceara Coveney), another new character who had an important part in the adventure.
Moraine has her own problems. She’d broken the bond with her Warder. She’d been stripped of the ability to use the One Power. She was just a regular person doing her best to protect Rand and alienating everyone in the process. Moraine’s secret lover and head of the Aes Sedai, Siuan (Sophie Okonedo), doesn’t appear until the final 2 episodes of the season. Moraine even manages to alienate Siuan after months of working together in secret to protect Rand.
Season 2 has plenty of exciting battles, well drawn character development, and a very satisfying conclusion. That conclusion is followed by a coda that hints at what the 3rd season will be about.
Based on what we’re learning from the actors’ strike, Amazon may have paid the actors in this peanuts, but they really went all out for the world building. The sets, the costumes, the special effects, and the locations are all stunning. It’s my hope that the actors receive fair compensation for their hard work.
In a fantasy series like this, much of the dialog the actors have to say in convincing ways is made up words and total nonsense. Kudos to them all for making it believable. There are a good many regular characters I haven’t mentioned here. They are a diverse and talented group. I loved the diversity of the cast.
Sanaa Hamri and Maja Vrvilo were the women who directed several episodes of season 2. All of season 2 is now streaming on Prime Video.