Our first reaction when we heard that Nintendo and Netflix are apparently exploring a live-action TV series for The Legend of Zelda was "yeah, sure they are, what a crazy rumour!". Yet then we saw that it was an article on the respectable Wall Street Journal which, frankly, has little reason or likelihood to simply make it up. There is a trusted source in Netflix saying it's currently under consideration, albeit it's at such an early stage of development that it may never make it to our screens.
Thinking about it further it's not actually that ridiculous a concept. Nintendo's been more than happy to utilise TV (and film) with Pokémon - through the semi-autonomous Pokémon Company, of course - and there have been animated shows, series or one-offs in franchises as diverse as Kirby, Kid Icarus and most recently Pikmin. Nintendo shows may not be dominating the airwaves in prime time, but through streaming services and even the eShop there are shows based on Nintendo games that are - for their target audience - pretty respectable.
Of course, it doesn't mean there isn't some absolute dross that's come from TV and film products, though in fairness to Nintendo these often stem from the late '80s to mid '90s when the company was dominating gaming culture and seemed willing to sanction any old guff. The one-series animated show for The Legend of Zelda from the late '80s is legendarily bad - "Excuuuuuuse me, Princess!" and so on. Another example is the Super Mario Bros. movie, which is a cult hit of sorts because of its weirdness and the mess of its plot - charming, perhaps, but not actually remembered and loved due to its quality.
Overall, then, cartoons or CGI productions have been the majority and have had decent moments. The idea of a live-action Zelda series raises concerns that it could look goofy, for example, as designs that work brilliantly in video games could look bizarre if recreated in outfits or questionable CGI. If the budget and producing talent isn't right the prospective show could be a disaster for the ages, yet we'd argue there's also scope for triumph. We've seen real moments of delicate, touching story-telling in the games - this writer will argue until his dying day that The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword had some emotionally intense sequences - so in the right hands it could actually work.
In any case, we want to know what you think, below are some polls on Zelda and other franchises asking whether they should have / could work as TV shows; yes, we're being random and silly with some of these. Cast your votes!
We've undoubtedly missed some ideas - please understand - but sound off on the good, bad and mad concepts in the comments below; remember, until the world goes crazy this is just a bit of fun!