Game of Thrones is out to pasture until its delayed seventh season next year, Westworld might not return until 2018, and they never got around to making more Firefly, so what are we supposed to watch next? Luckily, NBC has something to guide us through though long wintery months in what is being tipped as the "new" new #GameOfThrones — welcome to Emerald City.
Promising a more adult spin on L. Frank Baum's Land of Oz books, Emerald City was pitched as a "dark" version of the tale we all know. It was greenlit for a 10-episode run back in 2014, but since then it seems to have been caught up in a tornado of delays. Originally slated for 2015, we are only just heading down the daffodil paved sidewalk. Starring Adria Arjona (True Detective/Person of Interest) she is off to see Vincent D'Onofrio (Jurassic World) as the infamous Wizard. It looks like #NBC is taking more than a few hints from #HBO's Game of Thrones, but if it is even half as good, we will let it slide.
Let's look at the Thronesiest moments from the Emerald City trailer — 10 points if you spot the similarities!
1. A Snowy Village Needs Your Help
Hmmmm, half the world seems baked in sun, the other frozen in ice. It is almost like NBC is trying to write a "Song" of "Ice and Fire." Also spot the similarities between Munchkin Country and Thrones' Hardhome featured in Season 5. I don't think the cast of Emerald will be singing about The Lollipop Guild though.
2. Far Off Lands With Big Statues
What a picturesque backdrop, watched over by a giant statue to welcome you to the city. C'mon Emerald City, this is pretty much ripped directly from Game of Thrones' city of Braavos. We just hope that Dorothy doesn't go on an Arya Stark tangent to become a blind assassin.
3. Medieval Torture
Long and winding roads can be dangerous places when you are lost on your own in a strange land, let alone when you have corpses nailed up to guide the way. A tarred and "strawed" Oliver Jackson-Cohen plays Lucas, who we are guessing is Scarecrow in 2017. You have to hand it to NBC though, having the Scarecrow's backstory of being nailed to the cross is definitely a reimagined and much darker origin story. Almost Nolan-esque.
4. A Rugged/Concerned-Looking Man With Long Hair
You know nothing, mysterious stranger. This mopey looking chap goes on to swing a mighty sword in the trailer, but it is still unclear whether he fights for good or evil. The show promises that the identities won't be specifically tied to Scarecrow, Tin Man, Lion, but he looks like he would make a pretty good Lion!
5. An Evil Witch Who Only Wears Red
Florence Kasumba's East looks pretty damn ferocious, and the scarlet-clad sorceress and was immediately my favorite character from the trailer. Magic has always been a sub-sub-plot for Thrones, but with a cast of witches, it looks to be front and center of Emerald City. Maybe West has a necklace that keeps you permanently looking banging too?
6. Sprawling Battles
We don't know if NBC will be chucking a Thrones budget at Emerald (I doubt it), but don't expect them to skimp on the battles. Smaller in scale than the likes of Season 6's "Battle of the Bastards," but at least we get to see a good ol' brawl.
7. A Monstrous Creation To Fight For You
Is this how we weave the Tin Man in, a mechanical menace to wreak havoc on Oz? It looks like Ana Ularu's West is building her very own version of The Mountain to take down her enemies. Hopefully he won't also be made up from the reanimated corpse of World's Strongest Man.
8. A Capitol Rife For Blowing Up
Presumably the large castle at the center of the titular Emerald City. Taking a darker route, and with the prospect of war, we should expect that D'Onofrio's wizard will come under attack. The trailer also shows a pretty big explosion, and we know that Thrones sure loved its green — blowing up the Great Sept of Baelor at the end of Season 6.
9. Horrible Skin Afflictions
If you think Ser Jorah Mormont's outbreak of Greyscale was bad, how about growing jewels from sores on your hands. Dorothy seems to have a rather nasty case of jewel hand, but it also looks like it gives her some powers to take on the forces of evil. Maybe NBC is swapping out ruby slippers for a ruby hand?
10. This Season's Must Have Animal Accessories
Just as Game of Thrones' "The Hound" is a man behind a moniker, it looks like Emerald City is doing the same for its lion, with a snazzy wardrobe rather than being a humanized big cat. Didn't PETA teach you anything? Fur is murder! The classic tale of the Lion saw him searching for courage, he doesn't look very cowardly to me!
11. A Doe-Eyed Lead With A Mean Streak
The star of the show though looks to be Dorothy, but what else would you expect? After leaving her dusty little trailer behind, Dorothy looks like she goes from lil' girl in Kansas to Daenerys "Where are my dragons?" Targaryen. Just as Emilia Clarke (unofficially) leads Game of Thrones, Arjona is the focus of Emerald City.
The brainchild of creator Matthew Arnold, the man also responsible for the superb NBC series Siberia, so let's keep our fingers crossed for a repeat performance. We won't have long to wait though, Emerald City airs on NBC January 17, 2017. So what do you think, "Emerald Gritty" or "Emerald Sh*tty"? Don't forget our poll below where you can sound off!