Warning! SPOILERS for Wheel of Time episode 4
Wheel of Time episode 4 set up a major Lilandrin twist from the books. After three episodes, Wheel of Time episode 4 was an opportunity to learn some of the basics of Aes Sedai culture. It particularly shone a light on the dynamic between members of Wheel of Time's differently colored Ajahs, with Moiraine forced to seek the help of Aes Sedai from other Ajahs after she had suffered a grievous injury in battle with Trollocs. She learned they were escorting a False Dragon, Logain, to the White Tower for judgment, and helped restrain his power for a time.
Kate Fleetwood's Liandrin Guirale, a member of the Red Ajah, was a particular highlight. Fierce and imposing, she felt Logain was too great a threat and needed to be "gentled" - stripped of the One Power - before he broke free. The Aes Sedai had been commanded to take Logain to the White Tower for him to be judged by the Amyrlin Seat, because cooler and wiser heads wondered what would happen if they unwittingly gentled the Dragon Reborn before the Last Battle against the Dark One. Events took a tragic twist when Logain's followers attacked the Aes Sedai camp, and Logain attempted to break free - with fatal consequences for one senior member of the Green Ajah. Liandrin got her way, with the Aes Sedai combining their sorcerous might to strip Logain of Wheel of Time's One Power.
Wheel of Time episode 4 subtly foreshadows Liandrin's greater role in the story. In the books, Liandrin is Black Ajah - an Aes Sedai who has sworn herself over in service to the Dark One, breaking the Three Oaths that are supposed to bind an Aes Sedai's conduct. Amazon's Wheel of Time TV series is very different to the books, but subtle hints in episode 4 suggest it will take the same direction. After all, if Liandrin is indeed a servant of the Dark One, then her mission would be to gentle the Dragon Reborn so he could not fight against her master.
There's an enormous amount of misdirection in Wheel of Time episode 4, which concludes in a demonstration of the One Power that seems to hint Nynaeve is the Dragon Reborn - a dramatic twist that isn't in the books. If Liandrin is indeed Black Ajah, then no doubt Nynaeve has just earned her attention as a potential Dragon. The irony, of course, is that Liandrin will not find it quite so easy to deal with a woman who is a potential Dragon. Men who touch the One Power are gentled because the portion of the One Power they connect with has been corrupted and they are driven insane, whereas women are inducted into the Aes Sedai. Nynaeve will surely be a target nonetheless, and it's even possible Liandrin will cause the Dark One himself to focus all his attention upon her, giving the others a chance to make their way to Tar Valon.
Amazon's Wheel of Time is very different to the books, and the mystery over the Dragon Reborn's true identity is a creative addition to Robert Jordan's fantasy story. The end of episode 4 sets up further departures, with Liandrin as an early nemesis for Nynaeve. The Black Ajah is not exposed until further on in Jordan's narrative, but it's possible Wheel of Time will accelerate that in order to create identifiable enemies. Hopefully more will be revealed in episode 5.
More: Wheel Of Time: Will The Show Change The Dragon Reborn's Identity?
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