What Are The Best Television Shows Based On Books?
Posted on 31st of July, 2018


Do comic books count as books? Because if they do, then you can definitely add The Walking Dead and iZombie to the list of good shows based on books. Of course, almost everything based on the Marvel comics are also very decent, so keep an eye out for Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Daredevil, The Defenders, The Punisher and the rest. None of them are perfect, but they stay true to the spirit of the books.
I've been burned too many times to consider any television shows as equal to the books on which they are based. Just look at flops like Lipstick Jungle or how badly they butchered The Southern Vampire Mysteries series of books when it got turned into True Blood for television. My advice is to avoid disappointment and just stick to the books. Even the "best" shows based on books have to make compromises and just end up as pale imitations at best or complete abominations at worst.
With the amount of books that have been turned into television shows late, I strongly suspect that most authors are writing their books in the hopes of landing a Netflix deal. Having said that, there are some shows that actually manage to be at least as entertaining as the books. Sherlock (the one with Benedict Cumberbatch and martin Freeman) did a good job mimicking the suspense of Arthur Conan Doyle's books, while American Gods pushed new boundaries on television by using the Neil Gaiman novel as a basis.
This is the type of question where the answer would depend on what exactly you are expecting. If you are just looking for good television shows based on books there are plenty to choose from. If you are a fan of the books and want a television show that accurately follow the events portrayed in the books, then things get a little more complicated. Few shows are able to capture all the intrigue and nuances of the books that they use as source material, which inevitable upsets some fans. Even the mighty Game of Thrones, which is considered by most people to be the best television show based on books, had to leave out a lot of stuff. Shows based on books have definitely been getting better as television budgets increased, but even the best will still fall short compared to the books in my opinion.
Game of Thrones. If there is one show that exceeded all expectations and set a new benchmark for television shows, whether based on a book or not, then it is GOT. The only other shows that come close are The Handmaid's Tale and Orange is the New Black.

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