What Fantasy Series would you like to see on TV?

So, Game of Thrones has come and gone, and TV will never be the same again. And every network/service is now on the lookout for the next GOT. HBO’s own bet is on more GOT, though personally I suspect they’ll fail at that. Certainly, the final seasons of the show didn’t leave me excited to see more of this world. The Witcher could be good, though I’m reserving judgement until I see some reviews - the potential for it to be awful is also there.

What Fantasy series would you love to see brought to life on TV that you think could equal or surpass GoT?

I have long wished for a television adaptation of China Mieville’s Bas Lag books, starting with Perdido Street Station. Women with beetles for heads, giant mobile cactus people who live in a greenhouse, half-robot people, a sentient pile of junk, a time-traveling spider god, the Ambassador of Hell, a crime boss who is a grotesque chimera of various body parts, etc etc. It would be glorious, horrifying, exhilarating, and endlessly inventive.


Sci fi was always more my format, so I would love a Foundation show. I’d also go crazy for a show set in the Neuromancer universe.

Now if you want strictly fantasy? The Silmarillion. A season on Turin Turumbar, another on the fall of Gondolin, one exploring the expulsion from Valinor and crossing into middle earth? I could dig hat.

Of course the correct answer to this is The Malazan Book of the Fallen by Steven Erikson and Ian C Esselmont, a sprawling epic of ludicrous proportions whose vast interconnected web of places, people, and events can only be done justice by long form TV. Crazy races, insane magic, empires rising and falling, gods, demons, interdimensional travel, wars, evil puppets, and more!

Don’t forget sentient tyrannosaurs with swords for arms, or a vampire god/mage/knight who lives in a floating castle, can turn into a giant dragon, and wields a sword that sucks out people’s souls.

Ironically, according to Erikson lore, he and Esslemont tried unsuccessfully to shop Gardens as a script for a film for a decade before he buckled down to novelize it.

The Temeraire series. Napoleonic age of sail era with sentient dragons making up each country’s air force. So. Good.

High fantasy mostly bores me, but for dark urban fantasy, love to see Tim Powers’ Last Call/Expiration Date/Earthquake Weather series done for TV. If American Gods could make the transition, Last Call definitely could. Could be great in the right hands.

How do you characterize high fantasy? Different people have different definitions. For some, it’s elves, dwarves, etc. For others, it’s any fantasy that takes place in a created world.

I would love to see Zelazny’s Amber series in its full glory. It is allegedly being made by Kirkman but that was reported in 2016 and its been quite awhile since anything new has surfaced on it. I believe it was slated for Amazon but with their all in on the LOTR series, I fear Amber may have been back burnered.

Fair question. I’d say Tolkien filtered through D&D. Your basic Jordan, Eddings, Goodkind, Brooks, Anthony, Feist. Shadowy evil/dark lord must be defeated by a rag-tag band of nobodies, etc.

That’s not to poop on all high/epic fantasy. I’m sure there’s good stuff out there, as there is with most genre fiction. I just can’t be bothered anymore. It’s pretty well-gone-over terrain.

I’m with you on Bas-Lag, btw. I’m not sure that could possibly be profitably adapted, but I’d love see someone with deep pockets try.

Yeah, I get that. It has to be something pretty special for me to jump in too. I’ve looked over my reading for the last few years and there’s surprisingly little straight fantasy there anymore. I’ve read some Tim Powers, but I’ve never read Last Call or those other novels. I’ll have to put them in my queue.

Lot’s of classic series to pick from, of course, but I’ll pick a fantasy series by (mostly) a SciFi author - The World of Five Gods, by L.M.Bujold. Specifically, I’d love to see a series based around the two original novels she set in that world - The Curse of Chalion and Paladin of Souls.

I wouldn’t have though something like these books could work before seeing GoT; now, I think they’d make for some amazing viewing with the right cast. The world is well-realized (it’s a fantasy version of Medieval Spain), the Theology/Religious system is amazingly well-explored, and it has all the intrigue, complicated politics, tragedy and intrigue that GoT had in it’s best scenes. As well as magic (that religious system again) and swashbuckling action too, of course.

One of my favorite sections is when Caz (the protagonist - an ex-galley slave) negotiates with The Fox, the King of a neighboring Kingdom. They’re negotiating over an expensive chessboard, while the latter is trying to convince Caz to agree to change the terms of a marriage contract.

There’s a twist here, of course, but I won’t spoil it. Just to mention that I’ve often seen Cazaril compared to Tyrion Lannister as one of the best characters in fantasy fiction.

Paladdin of Souls is the near-perfect sequel, with one of the side-characters from the first book as its protagonist and some cameos from the first book. It would also be max 4 seasons, which IMO is the perfect length for a TV series. Very few shows stay good much beyond that point anyway.

I would love to see Malazan – just imagine the siege of Pale as the opening scene for a series, Moon’s Spawn floating over a burning city. But I think it’s far too dense and complicated for TV. A story with three dozen protagonists would be hard to follow in a condensed format.

I’m hoping that the rumored Black Company series finds a home.

Going pretty oldschool here, but a lighthearted comedy fantasy series based on Robert Lynn Asprin’s Myth Adventures series would be great fun.


I’m not much of a fantasy guy myself but I think a good choice for HBO would be Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser. It’s got a mercenary pair of protagonists with not much in the way of morals, lots of shady characters, swords and sorcery, plenty of sex and violence. You know, for kids!

Weren’t they working on a Foundation TV series? Or has that gotten canned again?

Perdido Street Station would be interesting, but I doubt it would find many viewers - I’m not sure that the world is quite ready for that story on TV yet.

Agree with @Oghier about Malazan. Considering the difficulties they had with GoT, I doubt that anyone would be able to do something that massive justice.

I think Abercrombie’s First Law Trilogy and that world would make for a good series. Excellent characters and a classic “quest” line that doesn’t play out that way.

I’ll second this

A good series that I don’t think would require a huge budget and would lean heavily on the strength of the actors: Daniel Abraham’s Long Price. It’s probably my favorite fantasy series, but it mostly about the interaction between characters and how the society works and evolves, with a few non-showy displays of magic. Also, too, he has some experience being a producer on The Expanse.

I like that idea.

Anything by Robin Hobb, but might as well start with the Assasin’s Apprentice. Still has dragons, but not omnipresent like they would be with Temeraire and less likely to break the CGI budget.