Alatriste (marketed as The Adventures of Captain Alatriste) is a Spanish TV series, based on the homonymous book series by Arturo Pérez-Reverte. It takes the books's character and events and shows them in a more classical swashbuckle light, narrating as always the exploits of Spanish soldier-turned-mercenary Diego Alatriste y Tenorio, here played by Aitor Luna.
This long anticipated series was produced by Mediaset España and shot in Budapest along with German producer Beta Film. It aired in Telecinco from January to April 2015. Despite its significant share (and the blessings from Pérez-Reverte himself - something which even the film of the books with Viggo Mortensen lacked!), the series's infamously Troubled Production and overwhelmingly negative reaction from critics and fans impeded any future endeavour for the franchise, to the point the very producers disowned the series before it hit TV. Reasons for the bad reviews ranged from shooting to acting, including a freakton of changes and deviations from the books which made it almost an adaptation In Name Only.
Tropes in Alatriste:
- Adaptational Badass:
- While Alatriste was already a badass in the books, this version of him is downright at the level of Neo. He's just so good that he can face swordfighters while barehanded, indulge in artistic twirling, and even throw some spin kicks here and there.
- María de Castro dressing as a man and fighting with a sword is something that never happens in the books.
- Adaptation Expansion:
- Sebastián Copons is a very secondary character in the books (if a rather memorable one), while in the series he is upgraded to official Big Guy of the main cast.
- Teresa de Alquézar, Luiss wife and Angélicas aunt, is briefly mentioned in the books, but here she is a full fledged character.
- Adaptational Intelligence: In this series, Angélica is shown to be the (only) brain of the Alquézar family, something which is never implied in the books.
- Adaptation Personality Change:
- The Íñigo from this series has almost zero loyalty to Alatriste, diverging from the characteristic Undying Loyalty of his book counterpart, and his only reason to stay with him is to use him to get a military career.
- Alatriste himself is a heart-breaker and tricky Lovable Rogue, instead of the bitter, quiet mercenary from the books.
- The quiet but reliable Sebastián Copons is turned into a grumpy, somewhat unpleasant snarker. His biggest change, however, is his physical size: in the books, he is a very short and petite guy, while his TV series homologue is huge and fat and towers effectively over most characters.
- Angélica also gets hit hard. In the books, it's difficult to profile her personality, as she is both naturally quiet and deliberately seductive when interacting with narrator Íñigo. However, her TV series version is much more extroverted and classically evil, perhaps even a sadist, and it's shown to be an overt Spoiled Brat, something which was only mildly implied on the books.
- Adaptational Wimp:
- In the books, Quevedo is one of the best swordfighters around, to the point people are afraid of dueling him even whenever he's drunk. In the series, while he retains some brawling skills, he usually loses every time he goes against a serious opponent, and is visibly much less influential and confident in the Court. He notably gets defeated in mere seconds by Malatesta, something that doesn't happen in the books and seems farfetched for what we read about their level of ability (Alatriste himself, who is Malatesta's superior, fully trusts Quevedo as a fighter - even if Malatesta could best a drunk Quevedo, it would absolutely not be in a couple moves).
- The Alquézar family. In the book series, both of their shown members were criminal masterminds, Luis being a full-fledged rival to the Count-Duke of Olivares and Angélica a Fille Fatale who rolled people around her little finger. In the TV series, both of them are degraded to comic relief, the former to an incompetent villain and Henpecked Husband (who is even implied to be a puppet of his wife and niece all the time) and the latter to a parody of herself that gets outsmarted even by Íñigo of all people. The only Alquézar who is not portrayed as incompetent is Teresa, who ironically doesn't even appear in the books.
- Canon Foreigner: Asunta, Dorotea and other characters are created for the series.
- Composite Character: This series's version of Juan Vicuña has elements of the graduate Calzas, another friend to Alatriste who gets Adapted Out.
- Fat Bastard: Asunta.
- Hell-Bent for Leather: Alatriste's anachronistic leather jacket, which also cramps Red Is Heroic.
- Lighter and Softer: The series has a ton of comedic relief and lacks the blood and cynism of the books.
- Wrestler in All of Us: Quevedo busts out a good ol' chokeslam to throw a mook from a staircase.