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‘Game of Thrones’ Author George R.R. Martin Has Another Imaginative TV Series Planned with ‘Wild Cards’

( [email protected] ) Aug 09, 2016 10:55 AM EDT
Before George R.R. Martin was writing about his world of Westros in the Song of Ice and Fire (aka the Game of Thrones books) which eventually became the basis for the Game of Thrones series, he was already a champion speculative fiction author.  He earned a lot of accolades for his short stories and books, and one series that he edited back in the late eighties was Wild Cards.  Wild Cards is a series about metahumans (a fancy word for superheroes) that has lasted three decades, and has changed hands a few times.  It has never been successfully adapted for the screen, but there are apparently plans to bring this imaginative book series to TV.
George R. R. Martin's Book Series "Wild Cards" Could Come to TV. Baen Books

Before George R.R. Martin was writing about his world of Westros in the Song of Ice and Fire (aka the Game of Thrones books) which eventually became the basis for the Game of Thrones series, he was already a champion speculative fiction author.  He earned a lot of accolades for his short stories and books, and one series that he edited back in the late eighties was Wild CardsWild Cards is a series about metahumans (a fancy word for superheroes) that has lasted three decades, and has changed hands a few times.  It has never been successfully adapted for the screen, but there are apparently plans to bring this imaginative book series to TV. 

A report from iO9 states that Universal Cable Productions has acquired the rights to adapt George R.R. Martin's Wild Cards series.  Granted, it is not his complete creation, as Wild Cards was a series of books that were essentially a series of short stories by many authors. 

Wild Cards has a pretty simple premise that is clearly inspired by comic book superheroes.  It takes place in an alternate timeline, kind of like Watchmen.  It begins when a mind-reading alien named Tachyon lands on Earth, and he has a weaponized virus. 

This weapon gets detonated above New York City, and it infects people in various supernatural ways.  Apparently, ninety percent of those infected draw the "black queen", which will kill the infected.  Of the remaining ten percent, nine will be "jokers" with physical defects and possibly super-powers.  The lucky one percent will be "aces" who will have power, yet appear human. 

The series had some very interesting stories like Croyd Crenson, also known as the Sleeper, who had the ability to change forms every time he slept.  There was also the Turtle, a man with telekinetic abilities who used his powers to fly around in an armored "shell".  Then there was Fortunato, who was a pimp with a lot of psychic powers thanks to a combination of the wild card virus and occultist powers.  One book of the series dealt with a villain named Puppetman who could take control of people's minds and make his victims do heinous things. 

The series began in 1987 from Bantam Books, with 12 books that ended in 1993.  Some of the books were stories that were unrelated, but took place over a certain period of time in this alternate world.  Some books had one storyline but penned by several authors, and some were written by one author.  The books changed publishing companies with Baen in 1993, ibooks in 2002, and Tor books in 2008.  There are 22 books in all, plus several comic books and role-playing games, taking place in this connected universe. 

The series was definitely designed for adults, as there were a lot of scenes of sex and violence in the pages.  Chances are, if Wild Cards does come to TV, it will probably targeted toward adults like how Game of Thrones was made.  Considering that the series has been around for three decades, there is a lot to pull from for a series.  It is be something that viewers can really get into.  

 

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