Discworld in non book media

Due to the vagaries of what lovefilm send me next from my list, I and the missus have just had to slog through Wyrd Sisters & Soul Music in DVD format. We thought they were pretty awful.

For background - we both love the books. I was also underwhelmed with the live versions of Hogfather & CoM/LF shown on Sky One. Are the plays any good or do the stories just not lend themselves to other media?

The Atlanta Radio Theatre Company did this version of Guards! Guards!

I was so excited to see Hogfather & Color of Magic on Netflix’s “watch instantly” service, and I sat my husband down telling him about how much he was going to love it, how it was a bit of absurd humor in the vein of Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. I put it on; half an hour later he was asleep, and I was envying him. It is truly bizarre to me how such a funny, interesting, engaging story could make for such a terrible film.

Not exactly the same, but I’ve listened to a couple of Pterry’s books from Audible (“The Wee Free Men” and “A Hat Full of Sky” specifically) and really enjoyed them. The narrator is very good, especially with the voices of the Pictsies - they actually each have distinctive voices, not just one generic Scottish-ish accent.

I love the plays that I’ve seen - Wyrd Sisters and Maskerade, so far.

I wonder if it’s the same thing as with Doug Adams’ work, and how dire the movie of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy turned out. Individual elements are fine - the woman playing Susan was fine, but then Martin Freeman seemed perfectly cast in HGttG.

I’ve seen all the movies. Wyrd Sisters and Soul Music were not my favorite books anyway. The live Hogfather was rather ponderous, and they blew the humor in the Death as Santa bit, which was my favorite part. CoM/LF was the best - not perfect by any means, but at least they tried, and Death worked well. I wouldn’t want to use any of them to introduce someone to Discworld.

I briefly played a PS2 Discworld game, which involved Rincewind looking around Ankh-Moorpork for something or other. I never got very far on it, and it didn’t make me want to search for a copy to buy.

That reminds me of last fall, when I ordered “G!G!” through an inter-library loan and I was disappointed to find out that they hadn’t ordered the original book, but a graphic novel adaptation. I decided to give it a chance anyway, but I gave up on it about 5 or 6 pages in. Much of the glory of PTerry’s writing is in the wordplay and witty narration, most of which had been cut to fit the graphic novel format.

I’ve been similarly underwhelmed by the TV movie adaptations, although I keep hoping that someday, somebody will get it right. I’d love to see Discworld done properly on the big screen.

The Mrs. and I have watched “Wyrd sisters” (it’s okay, if you know the book fairly well, but damn it’s long), and “Color of Magic” (how can you so slavishly follow the books and have it be not funny? And damn, it’s long).

IMHO, it just doesn’t translate from the written word very well. Or at least it needs a very different approach.

Death was Okay in CoM, though.