Welcome back to Film Adaptation Friday, a series where I write about my ideal adaptations for some of my favourite books. Last time we talked about The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo and today we’re talking The Raven Cycle.
Now, you may or may not know this series has always been picked up for adaptation and Maggie Stiefvater tweeted a picture of the pilot screenplay earlier this week so it is all happening! That is why I’m getting in NOW before casting and things are announced! Time is running short! (and hey maybe Ms Stiefvater will see this and incorporate my ideas and create my ideal adaptation). Lets get into it folks.
standard disclaimer: This series is just for fun and I obviously have no involvement in a film or anything like that. The casting will be totally just a dream cast situation and therefore not everything I wish will / could possibly happen. Just !! This isn’t gonna be That Deep okay. ALSO, A SPOILER WARNING FOR RAVEN CYCLE SERIES. Though I do try to keep spoils to a minimum.
Format: TV Series. This is confirmed as a TV series already and I think that is best. Though, I do think a mini series with limited episodes could work well for this. Each book could be a few episodes. As it stands now, I think each season will be a book and that isn’t too bad a format. I just hope they don’t do the thing where they randomly expand out the season by adding new storylines and lose the flow of the plot.
Director & Distributor: Syfy is producing this and I actually think that is a really good home for this series. They’ve done some pretty cool fantasy based shows before and generally production quality is really good. But I do know some shows on this platform are a bit cringey so I hope they avoid that because The Raven Cycle actually has a more serious feel than lighthearted and corny.
Catherine Hardwick is directing the pilot which I think is kind of exciting. She is of course the director behind Twilight. I’m interested to see what she does with this but nervous because Twilight is the exact corny, tropey take on supernatural I don’t
wanna see. The Raven Cycle is more edgy and dark than anything. But I like that a woman is directing the show.
Poster: I looked at Syfy posters and lots of them use kind of abstract imagery on plain backgrounds so thats what I tried to go with here. I also tried to make the title bit similar to whats on the front of the Raven Boys hardcover. I actually quite like this poster, it conveys the ominous and soft edgy aesthetic The Raven Cycle has. Lots of the series focusses on destabilising the security of the environment and the loss of security for liminal spaces. Essentially, the nightmarish invading the psyche and other assumed secure spaces. That is why I thought this image resonated with The Raven Cycle. It suggest that invasion of nightmares in personal spaces.
Blue Sargent → Tashi Rodriquez
I have always loved this concept. Tashi just looks so much like I imagined Blue and all her photoshoots have this kind of mischievous energy I think really suits Blue.
Richard Campbell Gansey II → Blake Steven
For years this boy has floated around on Pinterest and has looked like the perfect Gansey but I searched for his name with no success. AND THEN I GOT TOLD IT’S BLAKE STEVN AND LIFE IS COMPLETE. He reminds me so Gansey soo much, from the glasses and the air and just his demeanour in his pictures. Ride or DIE.
Adam Parrish → Billy Vandendooren
Adam is really hard to cast how I imagie him shifts all the time. I think this is because how he’s typically fancasted doesn’t actually match his physical description. This is the only fancast I’ve ever felt good about sticking with, though I do like Froy for Adam as well.
Ronan Lynch → Dudley O’Shaughnessy
First of all he’s literally Irish did I nail this or what. This is a really popular fancast but I’ve always seen it, probably because I get the edge. Also, Dudley has actually said that he would audition for Ronan if given the chance!
Noah Czerny → Paul Craddock
Listen, Paul Craddock actually kinda looks smudgy since his hair is so white and isn’t that pretty much the only way Noah is described? I always felt like Noah kind of had that look I imagine for Noah? I don’t know how to explain it (also spoilers) but I see it.
THINGS I’D LIKE TO SEE
- A solid mix of whimsy and edge: The aesthetic is one of the most important parts of this series. It’s all about the vibe. And the vibe is partly magical, party dangerous. There’s always a sense of dread mixed with a sense of wonder throughout this series. That’s because all of them a pretty much human disasters but Gansey makes them see the magic in the everyday and capturing that kind of wonder that Gansey and the whole gang brings to eachother is so important.
- Drama at all the right points: I don’t want this series to be cliche and cringy but I also think it has such a good oppurtunity to play with suspense and drama. I mean this series IS dramatic and there’s lots of cliffhangers and twists and suspenseful moments. I think playing with cutting and scene transitions could really add to the suspense. Flicking between narrative point of view and intercutting the shots in clever moments could create all that mystery and intrigue that was a huge highlight of the book for me
- Good production: Capturing the aesthetic is so important and one part of that is good production. Finding the perfect setting location is so important, especially for Cabeswater. I also think making sure the costuming is good, with Blue’s wild wardrobe and taking attention to how Ronan/Gansey dress in comparison to Blue/Adam is so important!
- A bomb soundtrack: This series lends itself to a badass soundtrack. I can just PICTURE scenes of them exploring overlayed with the perfect musical track. I think music can bring so much dimension and it’s such a fun medium to play with since it can’t be accessed textually.
- Attention to character: Lets face it. The best thing about this series is the characters. They are all our children and we love them. I really don’t want a show to sacrifice character work for action. Keeping the characters the focus and looking at their relationships in depth is going to be so important to me and if they don’t pay attention to character arcs then I don’t think I’ll like the series that much.
- Actually include the parents: Shows have this bad and annoying habit of removing the adults probably because there isn’t time but I LOVE the women of Fox Way and they must be included as much as possible.
That is it for this edition of Film Adaptation Friday! As usual, let me know your thoughts & suggestions for books to do next. I can’t believe this show is coming out for real, that is so wild to me. It’s definitely going to be interesting to see what the creators do with this, and I just hope it lives up to my expectations.
until next time!