HBO no longer releasing overnight ratings

By Ani Bundel on

hbo

Starting January 1st, HBO will no longer release overnight ratings for any of their programs. This change for 2015 will cover all programs, including Game of Thrones this spring. The premium channel will instead only provide media outlets with what are known as “Live + same day ratings” (which are issued by Nielsen), as well as VOD and HBO Go viewership numbers.

This move follows FX, which did the same a few months back, and adds to a growing trend of attempting to de-emphasize the instant snapshot ratings from the “live” airing of a show. Game of Thrones is a perfect example of the swing away from this trend, with typical overnight numbers usually showing a viewership of 6 million or so (8 million for the higher watched episodes.) But once Video on Demand viewership, DVR numbers and a week’s worth of reruns got added in, the average viewership numbers per episode often, tripled to close to 20 million.

WiCNet Awards: And the winner of Best Actor in Season 4 is…

By Cameron White on

littlefinger2

…Aidan Gillen as Petyr “Littlefinger” Baelish! This is Gillen’s second WiCNet Award for this season, as he previously won for Best Performance as a Politician. Gillen joins Alfie Allen and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau in winning the award. Congrats Aidan!

I wrote on behalf of Gillen in that bloodbath of a poll:

Aidan Gillen gets his fair share of criticism for his ever-changing Petyr Baelish accent, but there’s no denying he understand the character he’s playing. Season 4 is a banner year for Littlefinger, too, as he slowly reveals himself to be a mastermind seemingly without equal. Gillen doesn’t even need the character’s mustache–his tone of voice, the movement of his eyes, and the way he carries himself as a quiet threat throughout the season do all the work necessary to turn Littlefinger into the mustache-twirling force of chaos he quickly proves himself to be.

After the jump, some more thoughts on Mr. Gillen…

Maisie Williams talks CyberBully, Season 5 of Game of Thrones

By Ani Bundel on

williams Antibullying

“I do think of 12-and-over as being ‘when I became an adult’,” Maisie Williams told told The Guardian in a recent interview. “It’s strange when people say they don’t feel like they’ve grown up yet… I’ve had to learn a lot.”

Williams is spending her time this month promoting her Channel 4 movie “CyberBully,” a topic she feels connected to, having found fame at such an early age.

“One thing we didn’t want it to be was patronising,” she says. “I just wanted it to be real. When I’m watching Hollyoaks and texts come up on the screen, with all the LOLs, it’s like: people don’t say that any more.” She is dismissive of those who don’t take cyberbullying as seriously as other forms of bullying. “I think it hurts even more,” she says. “Kids are killing themselves. It’s very serious.”

George R.R. Martin’s 12 Westerosi Days of Christmas

By Ani Bundel on

With the holidays rapidly approaching and more powerful authors causing an enormous stir with their Christmas Countdowns, George R.R. Martin’s twitter feed, GRRMSpeaking, has been having a little fun with the 12 Days of Christmas countdown of their own. Of course, they didn’t take into account fans and their ability read too much into minor clues, so what started as a cute Christmas countdown, suddenly became ” ZOMG A Countdown to The Winds of Winter Release!” Yeah, that’s not something his publishers would keep under wraps like that. If Winds of Winter were hitting the shelves four days before Christmas, we’d have known that a little bit before Thanksgiving.

(If you’re wondering then why his Christmas countdown ends 0n December 21st instead of running all the way up to Christmas Day properly, it’s the same reason J.K. Rowling’s ends on the 23rd–no one is online on Christmas Eve/Christmas Day. It’s one of the deadest times of the year, trafficwise.) Poor GRRM had to take to his LiveJournal and tell everyone to calm down….

“Explain to me why it is more noble to kill 10,000 men in battle than a dozen at dinner?”: On Consequentialism in Game of Thrones

By WiC Staff on

tywin

Yi Li is a London student studying public policy. She previously wrote on teenagers in Game of Thrones, and is a member of our Small Council.

When Tywin Lannister asked this in “Mhysa” I couldn’t have been the only one who thought, hey…that sort of makes sense. It’s an appealing notion: If we can do a relatively small evil now to prevent a much greater evil later, why shouldn’t we?

That’s why, when Jaime Lannister reveals the reason he killed his king in the oft-quoted bath scene from “Kissed By Fire”, we’re sympathetic. Here, we had been slandering this man for going against his oath when doing so was the only surefire way of preventing a great horror. Surely, if we had been there, sword in hand, making the choice between killing a single despicable man and putting hundreds of thousands of lives at risk, we’d make the same choice Jaime did, even if it meant breaking our oath. I’d bet that’s just what Brienne was thinking.

We’re sympathetic, too, when Mirri Maz Duur reveals her motives for killing Khal Drogo and Rhaego….

HBO’s Three-Eyed Raven unveils new teaser…probably

By Rowan Kaiser on

threeeyedraven

If you signed up for HBO’s Three-Eyed Raven service, they’ve started sending Twitter DMs with links to their latest teaser today. It has to be viewed on a mobile device and, when we’ve tried it, it hasn’t actually worked. According to our Twitter feed, we’re not alone, either.

A few people have gotten through to view it, and they say it’s a Jaime-related teaser much like the Arya one from the web page’s release. Commenter Joe says Sansa and Cersei are included as well, though. If anyone can manage to take screenshots or even better, record the video for embedding, let us know in the comments!

UPDATE (4:22p PST): Three Eyed Raven now says the “The vision has come and gone.” Hope somebody nabbed it–or HBO is getting it working.

This is a fairly inauspicious beginning for HBO’s service. With the drama behind-the-scenes reported for their streaming services, it’s clear that the network is keen on fixing perception that their online video services aren’t up to par. That may take some time.

UPDATE 2 (12:25a PST: Commenter Joe has pointed us at a YouTube of the video. Thanks Joe! Check it out after the jump…

A Game of Thrones Gift Guide: Odds and Ends

By Ani Bundel on

matchingmugs

It’s time for our final installment of the Game of Thrones gift guide. Last week we looked at clothing and accessories, and before that, throwing a holiday party. Today we’re looking at those items that are the odds and ends of gift giving. To me, these are the best kind of gifts–the sort of thing a GoT fan might not buy for themselves but would love to have, and use with pride.

Let’s start with the above mug set from LoveToastShop, perfect for the couple who both love the show. For a single person, there’s a Khaleesi’s command, or if you’re a little less respectful, you might go for the Crows Before Hoes mug. And if you know any knitters/crocheters, you won’t go wrong with the reminder that Winter Is Coming.

The Small Council: Who’s your pick for Best Actor in Season 4?

By WiC Staff on

thelawsofgodsandmen3

It’s the penultimate category of the 2014 WiCnet Awards! This week, we’re making our picks for Best Actor.

Ani Bundel: The caliber of its cast is one of Game of Thrones’ greatest strengths. There’s been more than one casting choice where I felt like Benioff and Weiss simply went to the Shakespearean-trained pool of British actors and picked the best. So it was when Charles Dance strode onto the screen in “You Win Or You Die” in Season 1. From that moment on, he never disappointed me.

Tywin is a difficult character to take from page to screen. In the books, we never see things from his point of view. In a world where every “bad” character is shown to have shades of a good person, driven by lust, greed, or madness to make bad decisions, Tywin is one of the few whose unbending rigidity puts him uncomfortably close to the “wholly evil” category. In lesser hands, his was a character who could have gone to cardboard, as critics have accused another rigid character, Stannis, of being. But Dance was too smart for that. From the beginning, his has always been a nuanced performance….

New podcast! Critics on the Throne episode 1: Todd VanDerWerff

By Rowan Kaiser on

Daenerys in Qarth

Here at WiC, we’re looking to have a good stable of podcasts up and running in anticipation of the fifth season of Game of Thrones. Some of them, like this one, we’re putting together ourselves, but we’re also interested in hosting high-quality Thrones-based podcasts. (If you have any recommendations, let us know in the comments or send us an email.)

In Critics on the Throne, I’ll be interviewing different TV critics about various aspects of Game of Thrones. First up, Vox.com’s Culture Editor, Todd VanDerWerff. Todd is also my former boss at The A.V. Club, and the Experts reviewer for the first four seasons there.

We discuss the strengths and weaknesses of Season 4, why critics weren’t so high on it as they had been previously, what the science fiction Game of Thrones might be, and why the show doesn’t get enough credit for its casting successes. We also think King Robert was fantastic. Todd also describes how “Unless you’re really into how TV episodes are structured, there isn’t going to be the ‘next Game of Thrones.'”

Check it out after the jump! We’ll also get it onto iTunes as soon as possible….

Game of Thrones Season 5 wraps!

By Ani Bundel on

Shireen S 5 wrap

As filming has wound down the last few weeks, and actor after actor admitted they were finished with the season, the final scenes being filming in Ireland all seemed to revolve around the remaining Baratheon. By last week, the only actor regularly tweeting about filming with the adorable Kerry Ingram. Thursday, she let the world know they were done. Season 5 is complete.

Below, a couple more notes from Shireen and her best pal Davos.

WiC Weekly: December 7th-13th

By Rowan Kaiser on

Sansa Stark inS4E5

In case you missed anything, here’s our collection of the best and most popular posts of the week, as end-of-year award season rumbles forward….

 

Game of Thrones year-end list roundup: highs and lows

By Rowan Kaiser on

Joffrey Crown

December means list season! All across the web, publications are putting together their Best TV of 2014 lists, and Game of Thrones, is a regular onmany of them, as it has been since it started airing. Let’s take a look at some of the big ones!

The jewel in the crown is Hitfix’s TV Critic’s Poll, which has a collection of a few dozen critics from both online and print publications. Game of Thrones placed a clear third in their rankings, behind only Fargo and The Good Wife. Placing so highly on a universal list suggests that most critics are watching Thrones–and liking it.

Things were a little more chaotic, both in the year of television and in terms of Game of Thrones itself. We sort through it after the jump….



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