Every Tuesday, TMI Source and Fangirlish are bringing you TMI TV Tuesdays, where we discuss different aspects regarding the upcoming television adaptation of The Mortal Instruments.
With every adaptation there is a great risk of the source material being altered to extremes. As fans of Cassandra Clare’s books, our first obligation is to the world and the characters that live and breath on the pages. And when the time comes for them to make their way from the pages to the screen, we hope with every fiber of our being that they’ll be treated with care and respect.
It’s important to note that with any adaptation there are certain liberties that the showrunner, producers or studio will take as they adapt it for the big or small screen. But there’s a huge difference between changes that are necessary and changes that are forced and will negatively affect the adaptation.
It feels sort of repetitive and you have to wonder why it even needs to be said, but The Mortal Instruments television show must stay true to the books. And, no, I don’t mean that every single thing that happens in the books must be portrayed to a tee on the small screen. But the important events and the spirit of the Shadowhunter world must remain intact. Because it’s not the Shadowhunter world without it. And it might as well be an entirely different show altogether.
One of the problems with The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones were the changes to things that were actually quite important to the story and the overall series, like Valentine not ending up with the Mortal Cup by film’s end. That was a significant change that affected the plot of the then-second-planned film. It was imperative that Valentine wind up with the Cup — that Clary had to lose something so that she was motivated to fight back, that Valentine posed an immediate threat. All of that was taken away because of the decision to have Clary come away victorious with the Cup. You don’t grow as a person because you win, you grow because you fail and then rise up and keep fighting back. That’s the spirit we all fell in love with. And that’s the spirit I hope remains intact in the show.
The simple fact is that there are going to be changes. There are going some things that are left and some things that are added as a means to move the show along. But that doesn’t mean they’re going to be bad. You might even find them needed. The important thing is to recognize the things that you can change and things that you can’t. It’s not merely because the fans want it but also because it’s important to the spirit of the series.
Speaking in regards to television, there are certain shows that have gotten it right and others that have gotten it wrong (more on that in a future TMI TV Tuesday), but the important thing to note right now is that The Mortal Instruments has the chance to redeem itself. It can be one of these shows that people talk about when they talk about great adaptations, or it can be one that people laugh about how it went horribly wrong. But I have faith that those at Constantin and Ed Decter know the importance of being faithful to the books and will deliver us a show that the fans and Cassandra Clare’s characters deserve.
Head over to FANGIRLISH on Thursday to read their thoughts on why it’s important that The Mortal Instruments staying true to the source material, and check back every Tuesday for TMI TV TUESDAYS.
What are your thoughts? How important is it to you that they stay as true to the series as possible? What would be your reaction if they took to many liberties with it? Sound off in the comments!