Legend of the Seeker [2009-2010] Season 2. 22 Episodes

We ended our SEASON ONE take joking about how the Seeker & Company would save the world with the power of love.  Gag… we were right.

“Holy liability!” Again people, please. Is a railing too much to ask for?

This is the first time in in Fortress Takes history where the 599 word limit may prove insufficient.  We suspect Terry Goodkind used 599 words in one paragraph of his Sword of Truth series upon which Legend of the Seeker is too firmly based.

However our one sentence synopsis does not even need a deep breath:  The seeker brings the Stone of Tears to the Pillars of Creation to put the Keeper back in his place…

Darken Rahl is back – despite being dead! Why so intense Craig Parker? Oh, he just found out that 97% of his scenes this season are on the one underworld set.

BUT!… Everything that can possibly go wrong in their fetid and corrupt world WILL go wrong in this over-plotted roller coaster season.  It may leave you gasping for respite and not caring anymore who wins.

Everyone dies this season.  Everyone.  In fact many more than once -including the stars.  We are not kidding when you consider crazy spells, rituals of spirit returning, breath of life and alternate timelines.  Heck, Kara died at least three times!

Oh, don’t worry. He’ll be back. Death is just a one episode hindrance in Legend of the Seeker.  PS – That armor really helped…

Legend of the Seeker lost its way in the second half of season one spiraling into what we suspect are Terry Goodkind’s personal issues.  The show should have established its own television medium identity.  The cancellation may have surprised the producers causing them to embark on a final two-part budget-busting, plot-twisting, mind-numbing extravaganza.

Perhaps this compass can lead us to understanding the season finale.

Oh the factions.  The endless factions!

  • Wizard orders
  • White robed girls
  • Red robed girls
  • Leather clad girls
  • Monks with bowl cuts

You remember when the Seeker fought back-to-back with his confessor girlfriend against meanie D’Haran army hordes?  Those were simpler days long gone.   In season two someone has usually been killed, tortured in the underworld, and returned to do evil by the first commercial break.  The frustrating injustice of both good and bad people being tortured by Darken Rahl in the LofS underworld every episode got old fast and remained unexplained and unfun for far too long.

Oh yeah, we remember these guys. How quaint.

The Seeker gets killed and tortured in the underworld? Yup. He and 80% of the permanent— and guest cast take shifts going down there to chat with Darken Rahl.  Where’s your Slim Fast now?

The whole season seemed to celebrate the worst in humanity week after week!  Everyone was stealing, selfish, or somehow selling out the Seeker, their brother or all mankind for a loaf of bread.  Only a handful of episode endings leave you not reaching for the anti-depressants.

The “Mother Confessor” embarked on a darker path this season, and her costume progression during the season reflected it. Now where have we seen that before?

You may ask questions like:

  1. Why have an ensemble cast yet curtail interaction by separating them for episodes at a time?

    “Hey, I am trying to give you some plot exposition here!”

    ———————————

  2. Is that new lame facial hair supposed to make actor Craig Horner more manly looking?  (Just leave his atypical but capable look alone.)

    Wizard’s First Rule? Heroes use razors.

    ———————————

  3. How special is our Seeker Richard if he was so easily replaced by a new dufus Seeker for a few episodes?

    You remember way back when Richard was our one and only “Seeker”?  Weren’t there prophecies, bloodlines and all kinds of individual stuff like that involved?

    So wait? Who was this goofball Leo who was legitimate Seeker for like three episodes?  Apparently all it takes is lifting the sword of truth into the air during a lightning storm.

    But wait, there’s more! Zed gets into the act.  After being restored to youth he names HIMSELF Seeker! Who isn’t Seeker this season?

We like sword and fantasy adventures.  We liked Legend of the Seeker, or rather liked what it occasionally achieved.  However the squandered potential left us in the end disenchanted as the show often pandered to low-brow titillation.  LofS may not leave you with the best impression of women.  That is unless you already think them backstabbing sexually perverse harlots willing to murder for evil or any various causes.

Wasn’t Charisma Carpenter supposed to be some big casting coup this season? She had a bit part in like two episodes. *Yawn*

T’Pol -er, I mean Jolene Blalock shows that she has some kick butt Vulcan lightning powers! (That’s not fair. Come on, she has done other things aside from Star Trek.)  Sorry Jolene.  Email us!

In the end you may have thought LotS was the greatest show since sliced bread, but alas the ratings did not agree.  So every minor character there ever was (excepting Shota) including the dufus Seeker replacement appears in the mega-cast finale.  Its plot was so convoluted that the opening recaps were like a final exam for Air Force navigators.

We suppose things did work out in the end after 21 and nine tenths episodes, but one tenth comeuppance and reclamation was not enough to assuage the bitter taste left by season two’s journey.

See you back in LA Craig Horner. Now take us out with a contrived but heroic shot that only the Seeker can pull off!

Check out our take on SEASON ONE

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13 thoughts on “Legend of the Seeker [2009-2010] Season 2. 22 Episodes

  1. Maybe this means any of us could be a Seeker, given the correct sword and awesome lightning. Of course, we would hope to do good and keep your interest better than the current incumbents.

    • Ha, so true Greer. We believe the new program, “Seeker for a Day” will soon be sponsored. Network execs are confident the new format will broaden the audience. 😉

  2. I felt the second season strayed from the audience that it had built up by venturing into adult sexual themes and increased violence. The lesbian kiss was Showtime territory rather than Saturday afternoon material and to be honest unnecessary.
    If they wanted an adult cable audience they should have targeted that demography from the beginning. The producers appeared to be caught between two worlds and ended up losing viewers.

    • We very much agree PG. Your comment is a welcome bit of fresh air.

      If they wanted to do that kind of stuff, Saturday syndication was not the place. Let the show be fun sword and fantasy.

  3. I’m sorry you didn’t enjoy Legend of the Seeker more, my wife and I had a great time watching it. I’ve said many times how much I hated the book Stone of Tears and that I couldn’t finish it. The show’s main plot followed the book’s setting somewhat, but most of the episodes were new ideas entirely.
    The first half of this series was excellent. Some great sci-fi fantasy episodes. I especially liked “Fury”, and the episodes where Cara was on trial, or a baneling… great stuff. My favorite is still season 1’s “Deception”, where Richard impersonates a D’haran soldier. Just fantastic all around.
    I’ll agree that the second half of the show limped along. The Sisters of the Dark weren’t convincing enough villains to carry the antagonist role. I’m pretty sure the show realized they were going to be canceled and decided to run with what they had instead of introducing a new villain from Goodkind’s arsenal. Darken Rahl’s return to life was a great idea, and led to a hilarious episode featuring a Darken Rahl look alike.
    I’m surprised you didn’t like Cara’s addition to the team. Aside from some contrived lesbian content towards the end, her presence added quite a bit to the show. (Otherwise it’d just be “Richard & Kahlan 4-Eva!” like the book was. blah).
    Not the best show ever, but I’m sad it was canceled. I loved watching the characters winding up in these totally untenable situations every episode. I’ll miss that “epic, do or die, save the world” storyline on a weekly basis.

    • We did like the addition of Kara, but the character was not always treated well. We agree, the sisters of the dark were a little weak.

      Overall, it is just sad that those of us who like sword and fantasy outings have to put up with a lot of other crud. When it is Goodkind, maybe more than was necessary or helpful. We thought the depiction of women in general and some of the more unnecessary titillating content unfortunate.

      We are going to paste in a comment made by Ouyang Dan. It really encapsulates much of what we think and it comes from the perspective of a serious reader of the series. Read it and see what you think. We would like to know.

  4. The following is a very interesting exchange between the Fortress and Ouyang Dan:

    Fortress:
    Carpenter for all the hype was seriously underplayed.

    It was quite the experience to watch, but more so in the early first season for us.

    Ouyang Dan:

    Thanks, Fortress Guy.

    Something that I enjoy more about the show is that it was a fantasy show and not a Beat the Horse philosophy lesson. I am currently reading Chainfire, which is a refreshing break after Naked Empire, where he got his philosophy in my fantasy story, and I almost quit the series right there (and I am committed to seeing series through once I start them). He should stick to fantasy, because his philosophy lessons grate on me…

    But yes, Carpenter was played up, I think there were at least five posts about it in Whedonesque…and she was in it for five minutes in an episode that DOES NOT do Cara’s character any justice whatsoever. I have a post brewing about Mord-Sith, but beyond Goodkind’s contempt for women and his misunderstanding of BDSM, the Mord-Sith, especially Cara and Berdine, are some of the best characters ever. Carpenter’s Triana was a let down. But that was a writing issue, not a problem with her acting, by any means.

    Fortress:
    That was very well stated and especially objective for a fan of the books. We agree in so many ways.

  5. Good note.
    Goodkind’s opinion about ANYTHING is very clear in his writing. He goes out of his way to condemn communism and the dictatorship it becomes (which was a nice touch in my opinion, but odd for a fantasy story).
    His thoughts on women seem to vary. I’m 99% sure he wrote Stone of Tears after some sort of massive breakup. The level of romantic angst is intolerable.
    On one level, the Mord’Sith are excellent villains because they’re the complete opposite of the Confessors. But on other levels… blah.

  6. I thought as you did, as soon as I saw Darken Rahl in the Underworld, still machinating away like he did when he was alive. Being dead probably resulted in him getting even more screen time than in Season 1!

    And I did think at one point, where are all these new Sisters of the Dark coming from? They sure seem to be in plentiful supply!

    But I stuck with it and sure enough in the second-to-last episode Zedd pulls out the pièce de résistance, the spell of Undoing. Unfortunately for him, it turns into a bit of a backfire and that episode ends with a cliffhanger. Sure, we know that things are going to work out in the end, but as yet we don’t know how. Anything that entices the viewer to tune in next week is made of win.

    Then in the next episode Zedd uses the spell again. After all that they went through in the previous episode you’d think that’s the last thing he should be doing, but I suppose the lesson here is that reality-altering magic almost always has unintended consequences. He doesn’t know what will happen, but given what happened to Cara he can take a fair guess what will happen to the poor tied-up Mord Sith.

    The rest of the episode could have been better if it wasn’t so rushed. New prophecies just popping up on the very eve of the Keeper’s victory is a little too convenient and the way people get to the general vicinity of the Seeker, you’d think he has an inverse time dilation device or something!

    I liked that the merry band did get that one true victory though.

    • Thanks for weighing in Sam. Good points.

      When they were fighting the D’Haran army, there was no problem expecting endless hordes. However you are right regarding the Sisters of the Dark (and even the Mord Sith). There seemed no end to athletic, young, and corruptible women ready to tie themselves to various evil groups, train hard, and get killed by the seeker & company.

      Goodkind seems fond of alternate timelines. While we like them as much as the next Kryptonian, they were a key in both season finales. The undoing spell seemed a little convenient to us. Only the ultimately horrible results of the first could have encouraged Zedd to try it again.

      Oh were those last couple episodes rushed. The merry band did finally get a victory, but only 6.5 screen seconds to enjoy it.

      PS – “Inverse time dilation device”. Interesting. So that is how it happened. 😉

  7. I was Seeker for a day, once, but then I got killed by another Seeker who had stolen my sword with the help of several Mord-Sith and ninety-three Sisters of the Dark the day before. Once in the underworld, I proceeded to shriek in intolerable agony while pondering why I’m naked and that one guy is wearing robes. Fortunately, I came back to life as a baneling, got killed again, shrieked some more, got brought back to life by a Mord-Sith’s floating breathy air powers, and got Confessed three times in a row before finding a magical stone that somehow reverses the effects completely.

    All in all, it was a very agreeable experience that may be described with words such as “repetitive,” “useless,” and “so mind-numbingly dull that I want to stab myself in the face with a steak knife.”

    So, let’s save our Seeker! Perhaps in season three everyone can fly once they eat a baby, but no one wants to eat a baby because it’s wrong, but then they find out that the baby is magic and lives even after they eat the baby, so they all have the ability to fly. The following episodes could be based on their air-based exploits. The plotline for the first episode: “Richard Rahl must save Kahlan Amnell by flying around in circles swinging his sword in slow motion while drinking Slim-Fast.” The second episode: “Richard Rahl runs out of Slim-Fast, commits suicide, is revived, and drinks more Slim-Fast.”

    YAY SEEKER!

    • You said you would return for our season 2 take Alex, and you have in grand fashion. You do point out in your own way the depths to which a show with great potential sank.

      We worry that your sarcastic creativity might be seized upon by Hollywood writers starving for ideas. While Seeker might be through (yes, even his endless studio supply of Slim Fast could not save the show), we shudder to think about what other series might do if they want their cast to fly…

      Drop by whenever you feel the need.

  8. It would be a shame if the Hollywood writers ever saw my brilliant ideas. They would surely buy tights in bulk for their new superhero shows featuring Craig Horner and screaming naked people on fire, flying. This would be good in that we’d get to see naked people, but bad in that it’d also feature Craig Horner and screaming people on fire flying.

    Really, though, thank you for the excellent review. I had been looking forward to it.

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