The Shannara Chronicles is this generation’s fantasy drama


The Shannara Chronicles finally premiered on MTV and it did not disappoint.

The fantasy drama, based on the books by Terry Brooks, tells the story of half-elfling Wil Ohmsford (Austin Butler) who finds out he is of royal Shannara blood and must unlock his powers to protect elven princess and member of the chosen Amberle Elessedil (Poppy Drayton) in order to save the world from being consumed by demons. The fate of the world rests in the hands of teenagers, but their saving grace – and the show’s saving grace – is the last Druid, Allanon (played by Manu Bennett). Allanon has been awoken by magic from the dying Ellcrys, a magical elven tree that held the demons back. Together, they must find a way to bring the tree back to life. Sounds like a lot, because it is. Although that may be, the story actually flows pretty well. There is never a time I was confused with the story or had to pause to think about things.

The fellowship consists of a love triangle: Wil, the unexpected hero who searches for his powers; Amberle, the princess who wanted to find her place in life; and Eretria, the rover who is just struggling to survive. The quest is to bring the seed of the Ellcrys into the blood fire by the chosen one (Amberle) without getting killed by the demons. The main demon, Dagda Mor, happened to be a druid who turned to the dark side, harnessing black magic and is now trying to take over the realm. Sound familiar? The story is a mixture of Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, and the love story of Twilight for millennials.

The show does have some faults in terms of dialogue and acting, but the overall storyline is intriguing. An ancient tree that holds demons is dying and slowly releasing demons is actually a pretty good story that is original. Plus, it’s great to see Jonathan Rhys-Davies and Manu Bennett back in the fantasy genre. The Lord of the Rings/The Hobbit veterans really help sell this story and prevent it from being another “teen” drama. You know what I’m talking about.

Of course, this being MTV, the entire cast consists of beautiful people. Every one of the main cast is just stunning, including the Seer, Amberle’s hot uncles, and the Elven warriors. So it’s not bad to watch for the eye candy. The only ugly people are the demons, which were meant to be ugly. Another thing that bothered me was the lack of diversity in the cast. Hopefully, as the episodes go on, we’ll be introduced to more diverse characters that aren’t just token characters.

It is refreshing to see two female leads, although they seem to be stuck in the love triangle trope. Which one will he choose? Will he choose the elven princess or the poor human? But, we can’t have a Young Adult story without a love story and conflict. Hopefully, they will not make this the main story. It can get pretty tiring.

Overall, Shannara Chronicles is a great introduction to fantasy for the new generation of MTV watchers. It’s an interesting story, three beautiful leads, great villains, and Manu Bennett.

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Laura Sirikul
Laura Sirikul 1849 posts

Trekkie. Jedi. Whovian. Sherlockian. Hobbit. Sanrio. Comics. I am Spartacus. Warrior Princess. Superhero. Nerd. Follow me @lsirikul