Discovering Francesca Lia Block’s Weetzie Bat books is like discovering there’s a magic layer over the world; all you had to do was turn your head just so in order to see it. Discovering that Sera Gamble—co-creator of The Magicians—is set to transform Weetzie Bat into a series? That’s a whole new dusting of magic. According to Variety, Gamble is developing the adaptation for Peacock. She’s the perfect person to do so.
Gamble made her name on Supernatural, but both Magicians and her Netflix hit You are adaptations, and Magicians is one of the greatest examples of how an adaptation can honor the source material and be its own thing. It starts close to the page, but lets the characters grow in new directions—always with one eye on where they came from. The way the show ends lines up with Lev Grossman’s books while also being entirely unique—Gamble and her co-creator John McNamara were the minds behind that.
Weetzie Bat, published in 1989, was Block’s debut novel. It begins with a line that sings to anyone who’s felt the same way: “The reason Weetzie Bat hated high school is because no one understood.” But what they don’t understand isn’t Weetzie; it’s that they don’t see the magic of the world she lives in, where old Hollywood is close to the surface and Los Angeles is rich with the scent of jasmine and sunlit magical places. “Weetzie Bat is not a novel of teen angst but a novel of teen delight,” Frankie Thomas explained at The Paris Review. Weetzie Bat showed that your own world could be out there, and you could make it. Your world didn’t have to be everyone else’s world.
Some elements of the books are dated now, but that’s part of the beauty of an adaptation: it doesn’t have to keep everything.
I have loved #WeetzieBat for much of my life. It's like this club I'm in, where I spot the book on people's shelves and we both start gushing. I'm so grateful to get the chance to adapt it. @francescablock 🎇✨🌟 https://t.co/v4DoDLUVJW
— Sera Gamble (@serathegamble) February 28, 2022
Gamble is set to write and executive produce the series, which also has Game of Thrones producer Vince Gerardis among its executive producers. It’s only in development, and not guaranteed to make it to our screens—there have been feints toward Weetzie Bat adaptations before, and nothing has come of them. But the Weetzie-like thing to do is to hope.
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