Nothing inspires creeping, spidery, cythuloid terror like the words, “a bold re-imagining by the BBC.” Everything the BBC makes, they SJW to death. A Christmas Carol, Dracula, Top Gear, Doctor Who. The death toll from its Woke pop-culture juggernaut is staggering. It’s Star Wars on steroids. Minimal credit where it’s due at least the Rise of Skywalker was an attempt course correction. It wasn’t a good one but there was at least fig leaf of an apology being tossed to the fans. The government tax-supported BBC has no need to try and so they do not. Ravaging and remaking intellectual properties in the image of their twisted Woke fever dreams has become an obsession for the BBC.
This is made so much worse when it happens to a beloved series of stories. Terry Pratchett’s Sam Vimes stories are…
I was going to say they were all great but the truth is they weren’t. There were definitely some books that were clinkers. Although a clinker from Terry Pratchett is still worth a read.
For the most part.
The big thing about Sam Vines is that he was Pratchett’s very own Mary Sue. This is something that happens with all authors. Usually you get it out of your system early but sometimes they creep their way into your works. Tyrion is fairly obviously George R.R. Martin’s self-insert. James Bond was Ian Fleming’s. And Sam Vimes was Terry Pratchett’s.
Pratchett started off as a reporter and as such got to know some cops pretty well. Reporters that cover certain professions regularly start to see the world the same way they do. This falls somewhere between Silo Effect and Stockholm Syndrome. And Pratchett started adopting a London cop’s perspective on things.
Most of Pratchett’s Discworld stories take place in the twin city of “proud Ankh and pestilent Morpork.” I think the idea was to have a city that was clearly divided between the richest of the rich and the poorest of the poor. But let’s face it. Ankh-Morpork was ninety percent Morpork. Pratchett’s pet city started life as a blatant ripoff of Fritz Leiber’s Lankhmar. The fact that the first two people you meet are clearly and obviously Fafherd and Grey Mouse prove that. Lankhmar it was and Lankhmar it remained in spirit for a while but then it began to drift into a steampunk-fantasy version of Victorian London.
When we first meet Sam Vimes he’s a failed, alcoholic literally falling asleep in the gutter. But then he meets Carrot the six-foot-five inch dwarf and Carrot’s innocence and idealism drags Sam out of the gutter and starts him on his way. It’s no coincidence that as Pratchett came up in the world so did Vimes. When Pratchett became a Sir Terry, Vimes became the Duke of Ankh-Morpork. The City Watch went from a failed organization with four cops to a large and successful metropolitan city police force.
Along the way it gained a number of fun and interesting characters like Angua the werewolf who became Carrot’s love interest and Cheery Littlebottom a female dwarf. Female dwarves on Discworld have beards just like the males, (which now means they are fucking transexuals).
Like I said, the performance of the City Watch books is varied.
Guards! Guards! – Very Good.
Men at Arms – Okay, I guess
Feet of Clay – Good
Jingo – Weak
The Fifth Elephant – Okay, I guess
Monstrous Regiment – Not really a Vimes book
Night Watch – Excellent! Prime Pratchett and probably the best in the whole DW series
Thud! – Weak and Globalist
Where’s My Cow – If you have a little one it’s a Must Read With Daddy Sound Effects
Snuff – Very Weak*
So as you can see the City Watch books had, (so far as I’m concerned) a pretty spotty record. But that said there were always a few laughs to be had in any Terry Pratchett book.
Regardless, bringing these characters to the screen was never going to be easy. Some like Fred Colon wouldn’t be too hard to portray (just hire someone who looks like a pork butcher) others like Nobby Nobbs (the only human known to need to carry a declaration, signed by Lord Vetinari to the effect that; “following affidavits from the midwife and a doctor, I confirm that the bearer is, in all probability, human.”) will never be satisfactorily cast.
But it is clear just looking at the photos that the BBC is trying to come up with something hideous. And it’s obvious that they aren’t trying to use their brains at all when they are doing it. It’s going to be Woke garbage. If you wanted to be clever about gender-bending Cheery Littlebottom then you hire Peter Dinklage, put him a beard and lipstick, then let him ham it up. But this version of Cheery is clearly meant to be Trans and that’s only to get Woke virtue signaling points.
What else looks bad? Pretty much everything. Sam Vimes shouldn’t be too hard to cast but they blew it. In the books Sergeant Angua was sexy.
The Woke can’t do sexy.
Sexy is utterly alien to them.
When Terry Pratchett’s daughter Rhianna was asked on Twitter about this adaptation she linked to Ursula K. LeGuin’s excoriation of the adaptation of her Earthsea books.
Boris Johnson you said you were ending the television tax damn you!!!
Yeah, it’s gonna suck.
*I almost didn’t include it in the list because I’m certain that Pratchett didn’t write it. He was pretty far gone in early-onset Dementia when it was published. The book reads like Pratchett fan-fic instead of Pratchett.