ORBzine - The Watch (2021) TV Review

The Watch (2021)

Season 1


The Watch (2021) The Watch (2021) [Season 1, Episode 1] A Near Vimes Experience
Shown 03 Jan 21

Sam Vimes (Richard Dormer - Game of Thrones ) is at the gates of the afterlife. The Grim Reaper, Death (Wendell Pierce - Twilight: ), gives Vimes (and the audience) an extended flashback that explains everything that led up to this point.

Although this is based on the works of Terry Pratchett , all he gets is a credit reading inspired by characters created by. Well, his Estate has denounced this series ... which means that the show has basically alienated its core audience of Pratchett fans and replaced creativity with cliches.

Carcer Dun has been elevated from a forgettable one-off bad-guy to Vimes' childhood friend who ran the biggest gang in the city. He was supposed to have died twenty years ago, but now he is back with a plan to take over the city.

Carcer has a bunch of goblins as his minions. The goblins' costume design seems influenced by Legend more than the classic Fantasy stories that this is mocking. In all fairness, it is probably a lot more affordable on a TV budget.

The Watch (2021) The Watch (2021) [Season 1, Episode 2] Ook
Shown 03 Jan 21

Sam Vimes (Richard Dormer - Game of Thrones ) is kidnapped by Lady Sybil Ramkin ( Lara Rossi ), who thinks he is a Thief. She intends to take revenge on the Guilds, because her parents were killed by an Assassin.

Carcer unleashes a gigantic Dragon on the city. Vetinari calls a meeting of all the surviving Guild Heads. For some reason, both Vetinari and the Head Assassin are female. Since Diskworld is a parody of medieval European fantasy, none of this makes sense. All the post-Apocalyptic stuff does is it makes the wizards and camera imps seem even more out of place. At least the Unseen University seems similar to how it was in the books, with females in the cleaning staff but not among the wizards.

The Watch (2021) The Watch (2021) [Season 1, Episode 3] The What?
Shown 10 Jan 21

Sam Vimes (Richard Dormer - Game of Thrones ) and the Watch try to find the magic sword. They must infiltrate the Assassins Guild. To do this, they go undercover and join the Musicians Guild.

Every episode of this show explores a different aspect of their bastardised take on Diskworld. This time it is the turn of the Assassin's Guild.

Lady Sybil Ramkin ( Lara Rossi ) has joined the Watch. However, her number one objective still seems to be revenge on the Assassin who carried out the contract to inhume her parents.

The Watch (2021) The Watch (2021) [Season 1, Episode 4] Twilight Canyons
Shown 17 Jan 21

Sam Vimes (Richard Dormer - Game of Thrones ) and the Watch try to find the magic sword. It is hidden at a place called Twilight Canyons. There is a magical security system that traps violent people in an impromptu disco dance. Yes, this is what passes for humour in a Diskworld adaptation.

The Watch (2021) The Watch (2021) [Season 1, Episode 5] Not on My Watch
Shown 24 Jan 21

Sam Vimes (Richard Dormer - Game of Thrones ) decides that he should stop anyone from controlling the dragon. To that end, he plans to destroy Wayne the talking sword (Matt Berry - What We Do In The Shadows ). The Archchancellor destroys his failed experiments by having them thrown into a magical lake. It turns out that they are electrical goods from Roundworld. This begs the question ... how can Diskworld have magic and not electricity if it is also a post-apocalyptic world?

Every episode of this show explores a different aspect of their bastardised take on Diskworld. This time it is the turn of the Thieves Guild.

The Watch (2021) The Watch (2021) [Season 1, Episode 6] The Dark in The Dark
Shown 31 Jan 21

Every episode of this show explores a different aspect of their bastardised take on Diskworld. This time it is the turn of the dwarven culture. Cheery the Dwarf takes Carrot and Angua to her home, the dwarven mine.

One of the problems is the fact that none of the dwarves is played by Little People. Instead they are CIS-looking male-acting persons of average height. This means that the main joke about Carrot, that he is a massive human raised by people half his height, is completely lost. Cheery the Dwarf is the same height as Carrot!

Sam Vimes (Richard Dormer - Game of Thrones ) and Lady Sybil Ramkin ( Lara Rossi ) are manning the Watch house when it is attacked by the Assassins Guild, who are intent on killing their former member who is now in a prison cell. Will Sybil help protect the man she blames for her parents' death?

A few episodes ago, the climax was an impromptu disco. Now it is a drag act dance-off.

The Watch (2021) The Watch (2021) [Season 1, Episode 7] Nowhere in the Multiverse
Shown 07 Feb 21

Carver's bosses arrange for Sam Vimes (Richard Dormer - Game of Thrones ) to switch places with his worst alternate self, from a world where Carver became a cop and Vimes stayed as a crook. Rather than let his friend die, Constable Carver saved Vimes and had him imprisoned instead. As a result, the Watch is powerful in this universe. Yes, Carver is better than the best Vimes ... just as his criminal self is more successful than the worst Vimes.

The crooked Vimes works with Carver to defeat the Watch. Meanwhile, in the parallel world the honest Vimes must lead a prison break. They must both kill that world's version of the Dutchess.

The Watch (2021) The Watch (2021) [Season 1, Episode 8] Better to Light a Candle
Shown 14 Feb 21

Finally, the Watch and Carver race to get the final McGuffin. Whoever succeeds will control the dragon, and with it the city. Unfortunately, this plan relies on the cooperation of Wayne the talking sword (Matt Berry - What We Do In The Shadows ).

Lady Sybil Ramkin ( Lara Rossi ) seems to have given up her plans for individual revenge, and instead committed to improving the city's systems. However, her final scenes indicate she might not have changed at all.

So what is wrong with the show? In retrospect, there are two small problems - the writing and the casting. The scripts were written by people who did not understand Diskworld, and made no effort to study the original source material. The casting is also terrible. While other Diskworld adaptations cast someone like Charles Dance as Vetinari, this version seems to have fired him and promoted the actress intended to play Sybil. Then Angua's actress plays Sybil, and Cheery becomes Angua, and finally someone of Carrot's height gets to play Cheery. They seem to have the correct cast, but they are playing the wrong characters.

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The Watch (2021)

The Watch (2021) The Watch (2021) [Season 1 , Episode 1 ]
Shown th October 2021

Reviewed in our special supplement The Watch (2021)

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