Halo co-creator Marcus Lehto shares thoughts on divisive TV adaptation
After one hell of a long wait, the live-action Halo TV adaptation finally arrived earlier this year, and the response has been…mixed. And now Marcus Lehto, co-creator of the videogame series that started all, has shared his own thoughts on the adaptation, saying that while he doesn’t “hate” it, he was ultimately “confused by many of the choices that were made”.
Paramount+’s Halo adaptation finally launched for US audiences this March – a mere nine years after it was originally announced – and while changes were expected (fans were forewarned that the TV show takes place in the so-called Silver Timeline, separate from the core Halo canon), the end result has certainly proven divisive.
While it was Master Chief’s amusing loss of inhibitions that drew the most headlines over the series’ run – just episodes after he’d stunned audiences by showing his face for the first time, he’d got his bum out, then ended the series having sex in front of his mum – there’s been plenty of criticism around the show’s writing, inconsistent tone, uneven plotting, and pacing.
Halo-focused YouTube channel LateNightGaming posted its own critique of the adaptation following its season finale, and it’s in a resulting Twitter thread that Lehto (now at EA) shared his thoughts on the show’s direction compared the legendary gaming series he helped create.
Having already admitted to “lots of mixed emotions and opinions” around the adaptation in an earlier tweet, Lehto joined the discussion saying, “I’m not sure where the inspiration for the show comes from now,” before adding, “Not the Halo I made.” While that initially might sound like a rather damning appraisal, Lehto later clarified, “I never said I didn’t like it. It’s just so different than the Halo I helped make – like it’s a different universe.” He also had praise for some elements of the show, saying, “I actually like some of the battle scenes. Cool action and some great VFX. In particular, the plasma hit effects in ep1 are spot on.”
“I didn’t say I hate the show,” Lehto later reiterated in a separate tweet. “Some parts are interesting. Just confused by many of the choices that were made which feel pretty far outside the core fiction I helped create.”
Despite its mixed reception, the Halo TV adaptation seems to have done the numbers for Paramount+ at least. Shortly after its debut, Deadline reported it had “set a new record as the service’s most-watched series premiere globally in its first 24 hours”. It’s unclear how much of that initial audience stuck around for the full nine episodes of the Halo series’ initial run – and how many will return for its already announced second season – but UK audiences will finally get a chance to see what all the fuss is about when it airs here this “summer”.