'The Witcher' Reviews Make 'Kingkiller Chronicle' Showrunner Glad TV Series Hasn't Released

Updates on The Kingkiller Chronicle, an adaptation of the Patrick Rothfuss fantasy trilogy opened by 2007's The Name of the Wind, have been sporadic to nonexistent since Showtime passed on the series in September. But showrunner John Rogers (Leverage, The Librarians) suggested the lengthy road to TV—Lionsgate Television is currently shopping the project—may end up benefiting the series by taking The Kingkiller Chronicle out from the shadow of Game of Thrones and the mostly distasteful views on its conclusion.

On Friday, Rogers tweeted a reaction to the generally negative reviews for the new Netflix fantasy series The Witcher, based on short stories and novels by Polish author Andrzej Sapkowski and previously adapted into a critically acclaimed video game series (The Witcher: Wild Hunt, most recently).

I'd add that I'm rather glad KINGKILLER will not be in the first generation of post GAME OF THRONES shows, because most critics are not genre fans, and that will be, for many bad reasons, their only reference for quite a while. https://t.co/04ci3AJOfN

— John Rogers (@jonrog1) December 20, 2019

Responding to a critic's tweet rejecting the negative consensus around The Witcher, Rogers tweeted, "I'd add that I'm rather glad Kingkiller will not be in the first generation of post-Game of Thrones show[s], because most critics are not genre fans, and that will be, for many bad reasons, their only reference for quite a while."

In a subsequent tweet, Rogers provided additional context, calling for people not to worry too much about critics reactions to shows like The Witcher, and sharing advice attributed to his first film agent: "People use reviews to choose restaurants, not entertainment."

While Rogers alluded to The Kingkiller Chronicle, he's typically careful not to share much about the show's progress on social media. The last update regarding the series was shared in November by co-executive producer Lin-Manuel Miranda (Moana, Mary Poppins Returns), who is also writing music for The Kingkiller Chronicle series. Responding to questions during a Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything), Miranda said, of the show's musical development, "We haven't cracked it."

"As you know, it's an incredibly rich story and complex world," Miranda said. "When we crack it, there'll be news. But not before it's absolutely right."

While Miranda is still plugging away at music for the series, Rogers has had drafts of the first season since May, suggesting scripts are likely at or near a state of completion. Earlier in December he shared his enthusiasm for a return to another long-term passion project of his, a series currently titled Shanghai. In the same Twitter thread, he also shared a photo of a key component in his screenwriting process: project journals used during writing on various series, including the spine of his Kingkiller notebook.

Not all of them - some are at the office, comics go in a different notebook, and for a while I was doing daily journals in Evernote, but most with NDA’d and still unannounced turned spine back. But it WEIGHS like a career. pic.twitter.com/JAH6MHzTPo

— John Rogers (@jonrog1) December 17, 2019

Rothfuss' The Kingkiller Chronicle book series follows the lute-playing adventurer Kvothe, who grows up an impoverished orphan but eventually changes the fate of nations after his enrollment in a magical university. Music has been an essential part of the two novels so far released—The Name of the Wind and The Wise Man's Fear—and the series is on track to be similarly musically focused.

The cover art for the French edition of "The Name of the Wind," the first book in Patrick Rothfuss' trilogy "The Kingkiller Chronicle." Marc Simonetti / Bragelonne

But The Kingkiller Chronicle series doesn't follow Kvothe's adventures, instead serving as a prequel to the novels by emphasizing Kvothe's parents—members of a culture of travelling entertainers known as the Edema Ruh.

With the scripts still out and The Kingkiller Chronicle in search of a home, it's likely to be a while before the series makes it to TV screens. If Rogers is right, by the time it does, people may finally have something to say about it other than how it relates to Game of Thrones.