This is my rant on the TV Series and Book, The Last Ship.
********* This contains spoilers. *************
In essence my rant is this:
The story in the program has no relationship to the book at all.
Now that is a little too cut and dried you might say.
I do understand that everything in a book may not make it to a film or series. Somethings are just not directly translatable from one medium to another. I get that and I usually do not mind this if the basic integrity of the book is kept.
However, this adaption is totally different.
Okay, okay, to the ship has the same name, but a different propulsion method. Different plot lines based on this fact and different worries for the crew.
The captains name is the same, but everyones relationships are different. As in family make up of the crew (e.g. the captain in the book is single the other is married with two children). People’s relationships to each other and people on the land differ. There are NO civilians onboard and so no story line that the TV series has round these points.
Sure it is the same that there was a world crises but the nature of the crisis is different. The ships crew therefore have a totally different set of problems and adventures they face. The TV series has a virulent plague and the book a nuclear war with most places on the globe radioactive, most supplies shore radioactive and so the cannot scavenge like the TV series guys do.
And while we are on the TV series scavenging. I really, in my heart of hearts think that the navy would be a lot better at scavenging than they show. That there would be a system and discipline. They are instead sending in a small crew with a grocery bag and have them scramble round, and believe me they scramble worse than people in a grocery grab do. They thrust their hands into shelves make a fist and whatever is in their hand they pull out scattering the rest of the shelf on the floor. So yeah that annoys me. Anybody let alone Navy folks would be more thorough.
Anyhow, back to my main gripe.
The book vs the series.
In the book they sail places. In the TV series they sail places. Only there is not one place in the book that the series sails to or from. Mind I have not watched the whole series so they may in future.
Less overt but telling I think is the fact that the themes of the book are not displayed in the series. It is way less natural and of course for TV more confrontational. It is less about big ideas than of drama and conflict. Not that the book does not have drama and conflict. It maybe even has a little too many introspective musings of the captain. But for the core fibre of the book not to appear in the series is galling to me. I don’t know how the author (William Brinkley) feels about it RIP Bill (September 10, 1917 – November 22, 1993). I hope no one in the afterlife has bought it to his attention.
So that is my rant, I am trying to give there series and break. I repeat as a mantra its not the same story, let it go, its just a series with the same name as a book you just read. I am trying not to repeatedly say to my husband, that’s not how it was in the book.. oh and that, that was not either. However I think I am failing in the attempts.
in conclusion the TV series is nothing like the book, and it would be useful if they had had some navy consultants to get things ship shape and more like naval officers.