Lombardo talks up Thrones in Vanity Fair
By Winter Is Coming on in Press.

HBO co-president Michael Lombardo was interviewed recently for an article over at Vanity Fair discussing HBO’s ability to garner so many Emmy nominations and wins. While he touches on many aspects of HBO’s formula for success, above all, Lombardo credits the great writing. It is in this context that he brings up Game of Thrones.

Lombardo, for example, mentioned the upcoming adaptation of the fantasy-novel series Game of Thrones, a genre in which he’d candidly mentioned not being the world’s leading expert: “The fact that it was genre, i.e. a little bit of magic, in a world that is not in fact real was irrelevant to the storytelling. The human drama that I read in the page, the characters as scripted by David [Benioff] and Dan [Weiss]—I was hooked on the pilot after reading it, and I’ve done this enough now to know that doesn’t happen all the time and when it happens you need to pay attention to it. Because to have a great show, I got to tell you, what you have to start with is a great script. It was a great script.”

Winter Is Coming: More of the same from HBO. Not that I’m getting tired of hearing it, mind you. It is great to hear that this story has resonated with the HBO execs in much the same way it has with thousands millions of readers across the globe. And kudos to David and Dan for being able to boil down GRRM’s sprawling narrative into a successful screenplay.


127 Comments

  1. Zack
    Posted August 23, 2010 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

    Love the enthusiasm! It’s a good omen that though he seems rather dismissive of ‘fantasy’ as a genre, he was still drawn to it by the strong writing. Hopefully the same happens when the show is put out there for a general audience, because my #1 fear is that people will dismiss it on the basis of genre alone. I’ll feel good with myself if I am able to convince 20 people who normally wouldn’t read fantasy to at least check the pilot episode. It should convert the skeptics.

  2. Knurk
    Posted August 23, 2010 at 6:20 pm | Permalink

    Nice. I’m wondering though if he’s giving D&D too much credit. A mention of GRRM would be fair, after all he did all the hard word for them. In my mind I always thought that the script wouldn’t be the problem for this show, it almost writes itself.

  3. Tysnow
    Posted August 23, 2010 at 6:39 pm | Permalink

    WiC, whats with the resonating with thousands of readers across the globe in your postscript, you need to revise thousands to millions, afterall with ASoIaF selling like 20 million copies worldwide, thousands is a slap in the face.

  4. Josh Parker
    Posted August 23, 2010 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

    Okay, the next time someone from HBO talks about this project, it better be to release a full cast list or give us some pictures.

  5. Sarita
    Posted August 23, 2010 at 6:42 pm | Permalink

    I am happy to hear how excited Lombardo is about this show, particularly the story. As I wait for Game of Thrones, I’ve watched Spartacus (Starz), started Pillars of the Earth (book first then TV show on Starz), and watched the first season of Rome to see how pay cable has handled this genre so far. (I know, these are all historical fiction, but they do share some elements, such as battles and medieval-type setting with GOT). I hated Spartacus at first, but it soon grew on me—granted, as more of a guilty pleasure than anything else. But one thing that bothered me about Spartacus and Rome was the excessive violence, nudity, and sex particularly in the first 2 episodes of Spartacus and throughout season 1 of Rome. I’m not bothered by these elements when they have a purpose (character/plot development) but I get annoyed when its there just to be “edgy”. I am happy to hear that HBO considers story/character first, and then if those other elements are there, then they allow it if it works in the bigger scheme of things.

  6. Tyler
    Posted August 23, 2010 at 6:55 pm | Permalink

    Knurk,

    I get what you’re saying, but he’s talking here specifically about his experience reading the SCRIPT, not the books themselves. D&D wrote the pilot script, not George. GRRM will get plenty of credit, plus more of what he really cares about, publicity and new readership for his books.

  7. Ryan E
    Posted August 23, 2010 at 7:03 pm | Permalink

    Sarita: I am happy to hear how excited Lombardo is about this show, particularly the story.As I wait for Game of Thrones,I’ve watched Spartacus (Starz), started Pillars of the Earth (book first then TV show on Starz), and watched the first season of Rome to see how pay cable has handled this genre so far.(I know, these are all historical fiction, but they do share some elements, such as battles and medieval-type settingwith GOT).I hated Spartacus at first, but it soon grew on me—granted, as more of a guilty pleasure than anything else.But one thing that bothered me about Spartacus and Rome was the excessive violence, nudity,and sex particularly in the first 2 episodes of Spartacus and throughout season 1 of Rome.I’m not bothered by these elements when they have a purpose (character/plot development) but I get annoyed when its there just to be “edgy”.I am happy to hear that HBO considers story/character first, and then if those other elements are there, then they allow it if it works in the bigger scheme of things.    

    Sounds like A Song of Ice and Fire to me!

    It all serves a great purpose and is vital to the entire story… but thinking about, I bet most first time viewers who watch GOT on HBO will think it has more than its share of sex and violence. Thankfully!

  8. alan777
    Posted August 23, 2010 at 7:11 pm | Permalink

    Seriously, this show cannot come out fast enough. I know I want them to take their time and do it right, but damn I want them to hurry up so I can see it ! O.O AHHHHHHH!!!! This show is going to OWN TV by the throat. :D

  9. alan777
    Posted August 23, 2010 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

    Ryan E,

    I agree. I loved that Rome was so adult in nature. It really showed how brutal the time was in real life and did not hold back any punches, yet all of the violence and sex filled a purpose in the stories function. This will be well respected by HBO in A Game of Thrones.

  10. Knurk
    Posted August 23, 2010 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

    Tyler,

    Yeah, reading my post I sound like a whiner, that wasn’t my intention. BTW, I believe I’ve read somewhere that Lombardo has read the books?

    The point I tried to make is that in my opinion the script could only go wrong if someone really, really screwed up his sourcematerial (maybe a painful comparison, but a perfect example of really screwing up great sourcematerial is Troy, sorry Benioff). I never read the script because I want to go blank into the show, but I can imagine that the script was really easy to write because of how the books are written. The only way to go wrong here is going off-plot. I know that television is way different than writing books, but my expectations of a decent hollywood writer is that when given a good outline of the story, they can fill in the details necessarily for a tv-show.

  11. Grinbomb
    Posted August 23, 2010 at 11:52 pm | Permalink

    I really think that the success of True Blood helped the HBO execs to deiced to give GOT the green light. True blood has had their highest series since the Sopranos, which is evidences that there is an audience for a show with magic and mythology in it if done right.

    I also think that viewers that enjoyed Rome will also love GOT. Rome also had good ratings but was canceled because of its high production costs. But I think that if HBO does a good advertising campaign GOT will be able to build up enough of a fan base to get a second season.

  12. Maester_Tcost
    Posted August 23, 2010 at 11:58 pm | Permalink

    There are many people who would love the TV series if only it did -not- contain the levels of sex and nudity it will; there were people who felt this way about Rome, and who have put down the Ice and Fire books because there was too much crude language and sex in them. This will be a fairly small number, but it is a loss nonetheless.

    In literature, this is a struggle that was decided long ago, largely by people like Henry Miller. HBO has been the trailblazer in making (frankly) somewhat pornographic television accessible and acceptable to most of the audience. Spartacus carries both the sex and especially the gore to extremes, and it has gotten away with it.

    I think that the reason this is even much of a consideration for the HBO series A Game of Thrones, despite Martin’s clearly intended inclusion of the subject matter in his books, is that there is still a bit of an association of fantasy with children’s literature. One result of the series airing might be a greater dissolution of that connection in the public mind, which is mostly a good thing for lovers of adult fantasy. I’d be curious to see what Lin Carter had to say about this sunject; he was the editor of the Ballantine Adult Fantasy books back in the late sixties and early seventies.

  13. Kristin Lindsley
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 12:30 am | Permalink

    Sarita,

    Glad to see you’re reading Pillars of the Earth before tackling the miniseries. I’m watching the miniseries on Netflix as the episodes come out, and enjoying it, but you’ll find it much easier to understand if you have read the books. I’m finding the editing a bit choppy in the miniseries, making it hard to follow at times unless you already know the plot.

    However, they clearly spent money on the adaptation, and it has a nice look and some good casting. I hope Game of Thrones is better, though. :D

  14. nsk
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 3:13 am | Permalink

    Knurk,
    Of course kudos to GRRM for source material, but HBO didn’t greenlight a series based on a GRRM’s books, the script made their decision. If someone is weak writer and as a source material he’ll have good book it will turn into crap anyway.

    Sarita,
    It’s called “taking care of details + boost for ratings”. Let’s face it they weren’t prudes, they were day fuckers. Some people watch adult shows for sex which is sad.

    Knurk,
    Knurk, welcome to Hollywood where 80% of scripts are being butchered.
    Everyone who saw original David’s script praised it and then studio came to…
    Same with Wolverine. Read his novels and watch 25th Hours, Brothers and Stay.

  15. Straphe
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 3:51 am | Permalink

    Don’t know, I kinda was glad that the books contain a moderate level of nudity and violence, because, well, it felt real. I read somewhere in the comments that some people don’t like the books because there’s a rape happening on almost every page. Well, first of all, that’s kind of a stretch, and second, if it feel authentic, then why not? People, especially men during wartime are brutes.

    It all falls apart if it feels like a fairytale, and thankfully it feels real, partly because of the nudity and the violence. And I’m not saying that getting the actresses out of their clothes should be the first priority, but let’s respect the Qartheen fashion. :D

  16. Tywin's Bastard
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 4:45 am | Permalink

    I’m not one to salute unmotivated nudity, violence etc but in a series like Rome it’s necessary to give the proper image of how many noble people behaved. Making a series like this and putting it through the tinted glasses of modern morality would just make it pathetic since it would not feel real, it would feel like it’s been somewhat “Disneyfied”. It’s most important when it comes to sexuality since in some countries there’s an absolutely horrible double standard when it comes to sex compared to violence.

  17. grain of sand
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 5:55 am | Permalink

    Sarita: …But one thing that bothered me about Spartacus and Rome was the excessive violence, nudity,and sex particularly in the first 2 episodes of Spartacus and throughout season 1 of Rome.I’m not bothered by these elements when they have a purpose (character/plot development) but I get annoyed when its there just to be “edgy”.I am happy to hear that HBO considers story/character first, and then if those other elements are there, then they allow it if it works in the bigger scheme of things.    

    I agree. I’ve been somewhat worried about the same thing, especially after watching HBO’s True Blood. The Southern Vampire Mysteries books which True Blood is based on certainly contain their share of sex and grit, but the TV adaptation takes it to a whole another level. The TV series has totally unnecessary, overlong sex scenes, which often end up being simply boring.

    In the end I guess it is all about balance, and I trust and hope that the people behind GoT adaptation will be able to pull it off and that they don’t go down the “this episode does not have enough sex yet, let’s add a scene” road. So far things look pretty good.

  18. Jackie MacPherson
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 6:07 am | Permalink

    grain of sand,

    I agree re True Blood. Season two was getting boring for me. Not sure whether I’ll bother with season 3, might try the first few eps.

  19. Jackie MacPherson
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 6:08 am | Permalink

    Joe is back! :)

    Genius!

  20. Dennai
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 6:54 am | Permalink

    Jackie MacPherson,

    Joe is a riot.

    I think the casting people should pull a Garret Dellahunt and multicast Joe in several small roles.

  21. Crystal Sky
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 8:00 am | Permalink

    Knurk,

    I’m not sure why everyone thinks it’s really easy to adapt this to TV. To me it seems difficult (of course I have no idea about the process of adapting a book to the visual medium). GoT reads like a book, not a movie – there is a lot of emphasis on PoVs and inner thoughts which will all be lost (alas). I’m still wondering how they will cut the scenes, since there are some chapters where if you take the memories and dreams of the PoV character there’s very little action left. I can also see how balancing actors can be tricky. The whole GoT is mostly from the PoV of Starks, particularly of Stark children, but I think that the series must probably focus more on the ‘adults’ e.g. Ned, Robert, Cersei, Jaime to be successful. That’s because you get the big actors for those roles and also because it may be a bit tricky to sell a gritty sex-and-guts show that focusses on children. Perhaps it can be done with the right writing, who knows.

    Still, I think the main issue is that HBO will pay rather hefty salaries to actors like Coster-Waldau and Headey to headline the show, and that viewers will expect to see them rather than 10-year olds. I’m still a bit unclear how that will work – you barely see Jaime and Cersei for 2/3 of the GoT book since there is very little interaction between the Starks and the Lannisters, but somehow HBO can’t afford to leave them out for several TV episodes in order to show Arya and Bran. It just seems the series will have to deviate from the book in that respect, and I wonder how it will work (e.g. if you show Jaime and Cersei more, how are you going not to reveal what they are up to in order to keep the surprise to the end?). I’m really curious what other people think about this.

  22. Winter Is Coming
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 8:46 am | Permalink

    Crystal Sky, I agree with you. Adapting a book to screen is always a challenge just because they are two different mediums with differing strengths and weaknesses. You have to find the essence of the story and tell it in a way that works on screen. You can’t just “film the book,” it never works. I just watched New Moon last night, and it is the perfect example of how just “filming the book” does NOT work.

    The main issue that you have highlighted is a valid one and one that David & Dan seemed to be aware of, from well before they even began casting. The leaked pilot script contained added scenes with Cersei and Jaime, including more interaction between Jaime and Ned. Cersei’s casting sides also included a new scene between her and Catelyn that would likely fall into episode two. So it seems very likely that we will get a lot more Jaime and Cersei than we got in the book. I can’t wait to see what other new scenes they will add.

  23. Crotalidian
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 9:01 am | Permalink

    This is very good news and nice to hear people advocating the “who cares where it’s set the story is amazing” to try and stop people dismissing it as nerd culture and ignoring it.

    I was disheartened slightly this weekend after attempting to watch the Sky adaptation of Terry Pratchett’s Going Postal by the time I switched off they had changed the motivations of the lead character, altered the demeanour of the ‘love interest’ and thouroughly cocked up the entire story. Glad to hear the script is of a high quality for this as I would hate to see it get the Postal Treatment

  24. Knurk
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 9:02 am | Permalink

    Crystal Sky,

    Your first half of the post: because it doesn’t read like a movie I always read it as a tv-series. All the action, all the cliffhangers scream for a 10 to 15 episode season. When I read the books for the first time I always thought: wow this would be a major cliffhanger on tv. The problems you state with innerthoughts and dreamsequences should definately not be a problem for a writer, there is enough drama and action to fill the episodes. I think a lot of dreamsequences can be cut by the way, because in my opinion all that foreboding doesn’t work so well on tv (but I guess that’s pretty personal).
    As for the balancing of characters I think they should go for the adult drama with a bunch of kids as their lead actors, that’s what makes it so unique. My guess is HBO is willing to take that risk. No cheesy loving family storylines for kids on this show, but blood, death and abuse.

    Your second half of the post: actors get paid per episode, so therefore it’ll be easier to remove Jaime and Cersei from a few episodes, would only save them a few bucks. I really think we won’t see them as much as people think. If HBO is doing a twin-sexscene every episode I would be glad as a horny male, but utterly dissapointed as a fan of the books.

  25. GameofThronesJoe
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 9:52 am | Permalink

    I don’t think it’ll be easy, but I think they’ll do a good job of adapting it.

    In saying that, they really do have to look at it as an entirely different beast altogether. The writers have an amazing and epic story laid out for them, so its already got a head start over most projects, but it will not and can’t look or feel anything like the books. The books are brilliant, and the series has to be brilliant in its own right.

    What we really all love about GRRM’s writing is the personal relationships. That’s what this show has going for it. And its what every successful HBO show has.

    Fear not! I think its going to be around for a long, long time.

    GameofThronesJoe

  26. Zack
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    ASoIaF without the sex and language wouldn’t even require HBO. One of the main reasons of going to HBO versus, say, AMC or FX is that there’s much more leeway to depict brutality and crudeness.

    Nothing against those other channels (Breaking Bad is one of the top 3 shows on TV). Clearly, strong & dramatic storytelling doesn’t require high levels of sex and violence. But, at least in this particular case, to ignore or tone them down to avoid offending the delicate sensibilities of certain viewers for ratings would have felt like cheapening the books. Graphic sex and language permeates them all. If you’re offended by either the TV series or the books, it’s safe to say you’ll be offended by the other as well. And I wouldn’t want it any other way. I’d hate for someone to pick up the books after watching and falling in love with a sanitized GoT, and feel like they were duped into buying “filth”, you know…

  27. Jackie MacPherson
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 10:32 am | Permalink

    Zack,

    Don’t get me wrong, it’s not that I want GoT toned down. Not at all. I just don’t want the sex and violence to become excessive (more than in the books) and over shadow the story, which IMO it did in True Blood (season2). I think George found a good balance in the books and I’d like that echoed on the screen.

    As discussed above there will no doubt be extra scenes between characters and no doubt some of those will be sex scenes (Jaime and Cersei spring to mind) but I’d rather fans of the show were talking about the great characters not the kinky sex ;)

  28. grain of sand
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 10:35 am | Permalink

    Zack,

    I don’t think anyone is arguing that the GoT adaptation should be sanitized or that the sex and violence should be played down. Certainly not! But it shouldn’t be overtly played up either at the expense of other aspects. It’s just been pointed out that there are examples out there of TV shows that seem to concentrate on little else besides teh steamy sexiness, and some of those shows are HBO.

    But of course the people producing GoT are a different bunch, so let’s wait and see.

  29. GameofThronesJoe
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 10:48 am | Permalink

    BTW Thanks JacMac and Dennai! I’m sending virtual hugs.

    Jackie MacPherson: Joe is back!
    Genius!    

    Dennai: Jackie MacPherson,
    Joe is a riot.I think the casting people should pull a Garret Dellahunt and multicast Joe in several small roles.    

  30. Straphe
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 11:35 am | Permalink

    Jackie MacPherson: [...] and no doubt some of those will be sex scenes (Jaime and Cersei spring to mind) [...]

    Hmm, I always found it strange that there wasn’t more mention of the Jaime vs Cersei relationship. I know that this is because Jaime became a POV character in aSoS, and he hadn’t returned to Cersei ’till the end of the book, and Cersei’s chapters were introduced in aFfC, but by then the twins got “separated” by GRRM, but still, I would’ve loved to read more about them, because there was incredible dynamic between those characters. So I’d be thrilled if they were to add more sex scenes. :D

  31. Jackie MacPherson
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 11:40 am | Permalink

    Straphe,

    Oops! I keep forgetting spoiler tags sorry! WiC can you fix again? :)

  32. world_dancer
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 11:55 am | Permalink

    Nice comments by Lombardo. But mostly, it sounds like he’s trying to reach the drama crowd who might turn up their noses as ASOIAF because it’s fantasy.

    Here’s hoping he’s successful. I think fans of Rome and similar really would like it if they give it a chance. The trick is getting them to give it a chance.

  33. OldGran
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 12:15 pm | Permalink

    Jackie MacPherson,

    I agree. HBO has done some great stuff in the adult area, but sometimes they get carried away thinking that sex or overly-graphic violence is the only reason people watch! I think sex/violence/blood/language needs to be in context. It can be overdone. True Blood is a good example. The first couple of seasons were good, it was a new take on a theme that was (to me) growing old. Now they are going way overboard on the violence end of it. It’s a turn off.
    Deadwood, (one of my favorites) over used the F word, until it became laughable. I know, I know, they were trying to let us know that these people were not “nice”, but really, it begins to look like lazy writing.

  34. dizzy_34
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

    GameofThronesJoe: I don’t think it’ll be easy, but I think they’ll do a good job of adapting it. In saying that, they really do have to look at it as an entirely different beast altogether. The writers have an amazing and epic story laid out for them, so its already got a head start over most projects, but it will not and can’t look or feel anything like the books. The books are brilliant, and the series has to be brilliant in its own right.What we really all love about GRRM’s writing is the personal relationships. That’s what this show has going for it. And its what every successful HBO show has.Fear not! I think its going to be around for a long, long time.GameofThronesJoe  Quote  Reply

    I’ll share the wisdom of Ron Pearlman who I heard in a recent radio interview in my home town (shilling for Sons of Anarchy). He’s been part of lots of projects that he thought would be a sure fire hit and they either did just o.k. or flopped (not sure what he was refering to, probably Hellboy I assume). So he’s learned to temper his expectation on how his projects are going to do until they’re out there because you never know how the general audience will receive it.
    So I’m hoping you’re right Joe, not just for your sake but everyone else who reads this site.

  35. nsk
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

    Because Lombard said the script was great, that doesn’t mean its true.
    Man has to advertise it.

    I don’t see GoT anywhere than HBO. Showtime is also premium and for example one episode of Tudorst cost $3.5 mln, but I don’t think it is enough plus they would have to cut off 3/4 of cast. AMC maybe, but it its basic cable and they didn’t do anything to that scale.

  36. Straphe
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 12:26 pm | Permalink

    OldGran,

    Regarding the language thing, I don’t know how many of you watch Dexter, but there’s this character Deb, who like swears non-stop. She had this to say regarding children: “A baby? A motherf**king rolly-poly, chubby cheeked s**t machine? Are you kidding me?” So it can definitely work. :)

  37. Brude
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

    OldGran,

    Deadwood “lazy writing?” I could never say that about David Milch’s dialogue. I think he may well be the greatest living dramatist in terms of use of language. He managed to use the word “fuck” poetically, which is something you don’t come across too often. The guy is a genius.

  38. Gnube
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

    Jackie MacPherson: I agree re True Blood. Season two was getting boring for me. Not sure whether I’ll bother with season 3, might try the first few eps.

    I think you might be pleasantly surprised by season 3. I wasn’t a huge fan of season 2 either, but season 3 has a lot more romantic tension and surprises, much less wanton debauchery, and zero maenads. My girlfriend is loving it.

  39. Zack
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

    Brude,

    Deadwood had some of the best writing I’ve ever heard on a TV show. Who knew cursing could sound so Shakespearean?

    I kept hearing remarks like, “I’m not sure ‘c**ksucker’ would have been a term tossed around in the late 19th century…” but to me it was pretty obvious that Milch wasn’t going for period-accurate dialogue so much as ‘mood and tone accurate dialogue.” They would have had different, equally offensive (for their era) ways to hurl insults around, but to use the ‘correct’ period terms would have made them…quaint to modern English speakers in ways the real Deadwood people would never have intended. The change was necessary as far as I’m concerned.

  40. nsk
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 1:40 pm | Permalink

    David Milch and lazy writing… Please, Old Gran…
    Milch is genius, one of the best screenwriters living today.
    I recommend to you to read his books, guy has some interesting background and past.

  41. OldGran
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 1:50 pm | Permalink

    Brude,

    Don’t get me wrong I loved Deadwood and there was some of the best writing for TV ever on that show. I loved the way E.B. Farnum spoke in an elaborate shakespearean language. There was a lot about that show that was beyond great. I even talked one of my co-workers to get HBO so he could watch it.
    However, I think they overused the F word to the point that it lost it’s punch. I never saw it as “poetic”. In RL I don’t know anyone who uses the F word 24/7. I’m not sure it was used that way in the 1800′s.
    We did have a secretary of ancillary services who would put a “drunken sailor” to shame (no offense to drunken sailors). Even people who do use that word a lot can control themselves when necessary (like on a blog.) I don’t want HBO to tone it down or “clean-up” GRRM’s work in any way, just don’t drown the story in unrealistic profanity.

  42. Nymeria
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 1:59 pm | Permalink

    testing

  43. Brude
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

    Zack,

    Actually, all of the language (in so far as the profanity that was used) was period accurate. No, people did not go around speaking in iambic pentameter, but the words used were all researched and were in very heavy use in that time and place.

  44. Nymeria
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

    The beauty of aSoIaF is that it is so rich and complex that even though the reader is confined to a certain POV, he is always aware that other events are occurring elsewhere at the same time. Sometimes, GRRM overlaps the chapters to let us witness more than one simultaneous event. But in a lot of instances, we learn about those events later. It makes for great surprises, but it also creates a lot of room for the TV show to follow other characters and show scenes that occur “off-screen” in the book. Especially since the POV structure doesn’t really work for the adaptation.

    I for one am looking forward to seeing the added scenes and hope they will serve to flesh out the story line of characters according to what we know they go through in the book even if there is no POV to let us witness it.

    For example, we don’t see much of Robb in aCoK. However, we know he is fighting great battles and learn in aSoS that he got injured at the Crag and was recovering in bed when he learned about Bran and Rickon, that Jeyne comforted him that night and he married her the next day. Now, let’s say Richard Madden turns out to be the biggest star in GoT. And that they cast a big name for the Blackfish. They could chose to show us these events as they occur in CoK in order to give more screen time to Robb and the Blackfish. Also, another reason to go that route is that having Robb relate these events later to his mother may not work as well on TV as it did in the book, unless you use a flashback but even that isn’t always desirable.

    What I mean is I hope they don’t add scenes for the sake of adding sex or screen time for the big name actors, but rather that they use them to show more of what is already in the book and thus help the flow and comprehension of events, like Gregor’s raids, Jaime’s siege of Riverrun and Tywin declaring war when he learns of Tyrion’s capture.

    Such changes would actually be a bonus to me as a fan even more so if GRRM is properly consulted.

  45. Lex
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 3:10 pm | Permalink

    Some good points. I have often wondered about how they will handle the fact that the books are largely centred around children. Makes you think that Maisie and Sophie must be pretty damn impressive actors, to land such central roles! However, I think that the story will still follow them (especially in later seasons when people are split up), but may often focus more on the adult characters around them.

    Another very good point is the question of internal monologues. I’ve wondered about this as well, because some of the best writing and best lines in the books are the internal thoughts. My own hunch is that some of these inner thoughts will be translated into real dialogue. For example, some of Tyrion’s thoughts are way too good to pass up; instead of thinking them, he may mutter them to himself (or, say, to Bronn).

    Lastly, I’m about to watch the rest of Joe’s 3rd audition video, but I just had to say… I made it about 3 seconds in (“Hello my little birds!”) and had to pause the video because I was laughing so hard (in a good way!). The forest setting, the blood on his face, dropping to the ground from somewhere above… 3 seconds in and I’m already loving it!

  46. Crystal Sky
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

    Knurk: Crystal Sky,
    Your second half of the post: actors get paid per episode, so therefore it’ll be easier to remove Jaime and Cersei from a few episodes, would only save them a few bucks. I really think we won’t see them as much as people think. If HBO is doing a twin-sexscene every episode I would be glad as a horny male, but utterly dissapointed as a fan of the books.    

    I’m really curious how HBO will do it. Obviously they have to stay true to the story, but they also have to build a following to the series (outside of the ASOIAF readership), which to me implies (a) big name actors (b) good-looking young males and females (c) sex and gore (d) action, preferably with interspersed gore. This at least is the recipe of TV success nowadays. Going for children-lead actors would be true to the books but a real gamble for HBO, and no matter how much people heap praise on them for taking chances, they are into the TV business and I would bet they do care about their audience (if they didn’t, I don’t know why they would have put True Blood on air in the first place). So I would think we will get more sex than in the books and a lot more participation by adult actors at the expense of the children. I’m also betting we will see more Jon than Bran because he is someone that young teenage girls might respond to :)

    In any case I must say that from all the interviews of HBO I read it seems to come pretty clear that their choice of ASOIAF was influenced by True Blood’s success, and that they think GoT could offer something similar: sex and gore and fantasy (but not too much). So I would expect a lot of kinky bed scenes. I just hope they will link this to the plot, otherwise seeing Jamie and Cersei having random sex every week will become silly.

    PS – Winter is Coming, I’m just wondering what Cersei and Catelyn have to say to each other in the second episode! I hope they will not start pulling their hairs out!!

  47. Nymeria
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

    GameofThronesJoe,

    Great video once again! LOL Love the commercial, the blood on the nose, the radiating blue eyes and the song :)

    I think no matter what character you audition for, you have the beard right at least.. :)

    Also, I like the quality of your voice (and I don’t mean the signing here.) An actor’s voice is very important IMO. For exemple, Viggo Mortensen is a very good actor, but his nasal voice irritated me ’cause it didn’t fit Aragorn.

    So where would I want to visit… hmmm… the spa at Winterfell and maybe Tarth, the sapphire island for an all inclusive :)

    I can’t wait for the next 4 installments!

  48. Crystal Sky
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

    Lex,

    Well, I am one for hoping Tyrion will not start talking to himself. That reminds me too much of silly fantasy where heroes say clever things to themselves. Schizophrenia anyone? Ugh. I agree that some of the internal thoughts could be captured, but sometimes I think good intense acting could compensate for that.

    I just have a feeling that the children will get to ‘hang around’ in the background more so then in the books. They will be there, but the camera will focus on the adult action more. For instance, for the tourney or the Winterfell feast at the beginning of GoT – it is told through PoV of Sansa but I bet she will not get as much screen time.

    I’m still pondering about the effect of eliminating PoVs – it will cause a bit of an ‘estrangement’ from the Stark family for sure. It’s interesting how PoVs make people sympathetic where their sheer action might not. PoVs makes you see the world through their eyes so you naturally root for them (that’s why I think GRRM avoided Jamie/Cersei PoVs in GoT – a bit of clever manipulation!) The camera, on the other hand, will create a new sort of ‘objectivity’ that might attract interesting and perhaps unexpected responses in the audience.

  49. Lex
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

    Crystal Sky,

    I don’t think the child-centred POVs really become an issue until the later books.

    I’m thinking specifically about Arya in Books 2 and 3, when she’s on the road. I think that will be trickier than Sansa, who remains in King’s Landing and is still at the centre of the action.

  50. Steve B
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 4:02 pm | Permalink

    That’ s interesting, because that’s not really what I would boil True Blood down to. That shows a lot more than gore, sex, and fantasy to me. Sure, it’s got all that, but it also has some pretty damn good writing when it wants to, and it’s that that brings me back. Also, the TV version of True Blood is also obviously meant to be partly tongue in cheek– everything is clearly a bit over the top, and the humor is really rather broad at times.

    I just don’t see a direct correlation between the two, beyond the fantasy elements. I see a much greater correlation to something like Sopranos or Rome. Now, Rome clearly has its share of sex, but I never felt it was overboard on gore. And I never felt like Sopranos was overboard on either. It’s got them, but they always fit in to the story. I didn’t personally feel like it was gratuitous.

    For True Blood, I feel like its gratuitous at times, but that’s because the take on that show is that it’s a guilt pleasure, in large part.

    I think that mostly comes from the fact that the True Blood books are pretty thin on the plot, etc. They really _need_ a bit filling in.

  51. GameofThronesJoe
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 4:08 pm | Permalink

    Nymeria,

    Thanks, Nymeria! Spa at Winterfell and a stroll around the Godswood would definitely work for me… I wouldn’t even mind getting in a game of lord of the crossing.

    You may not see me again for a little while, because the next video will be the one. And there’s no half assing that one.

    In the meantime, please share these three with everyone! And if you haven’t seen number 3, here it is.

    GameofThronesJoe

  52. Winter Is Coming
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 4:27 pm | Permalink

    A really great discussion going on, it’s been a while since we’ve talked about this kinda stuff, so I’m stoked.

    Nymeria, agree 100% regarding Robb. There is definitely plenty of opportunity there for David & Dan to show a bunch of great scenes that we didn’t get to see in the book. I think Madden just might be one of the breakout stars of the show, so I can definitely see them exploring his storyline much more than we get to in the books.

    Crystal Sky, we had a post about this at the time the info came out, but basically Cersei goes to comfort Catelyn at Bran’s bedside. In the ensuing conversation, she reveals that she at one point lost a baby that looked exactly like Robert due to a fever. Certainly a departure from the books, although not one that would alter the main plot in any way. I’m hoping the scene is in the show, as it could be an interesting bit of character development to see where they take that.

    And I agree with your assessment of the action taking place primarily between the adults and/or the children’s interaction with the adults. The leaked pilot script supports this speculation as the action at the Winterfell feast scene revolves primarily around dialogue between Ned, Catelyn, Cersei, Jaime and Tyrion. Robb, Sansa, Arya and Bran are present but don’t have any lines. Jon does get some lines in his exchange with Benjen and his ensuing conversation with Tyrion (both play out much as they did in the book).

    The more adult-oriented focus will work fine for the first season, as all of the children characters are surrounded by adult main characters. As Lex says though, things will get more interesting in subsequent seasons as Isaac and Maisie have to start carrying entire plot lines all by themselves.

  53. dizzy_34
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 5:08 pm | Permalink

    I thought at the time that Cersi side was revealed that I wouldn’t like it in the show. I still feel that way because it goes against everything we learn about her in Feast. Especially the “eating of Roberts heirs”. She absolutely hated Robert and showing that she had compassion for one of his real children I think really goes against the character. Now if they can explain away that maybe she thought it was Jamie’s and/or that she killed it then maybe that would work.

  54. Lex
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 5:22 pm | Permalink

    GameofThronesJoe,

    That was the best video yet. Keep ‘em coming!

  55. DH87
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 5:38 pm | Permalink

    Jackie MacPherson,

    There are many reasons why we should not want the True Blood experience repeated with AGOT. The TB show runner has completely eviscerated the original ten-book series, jerry-rigged himself a new hero, marginalized the central character, reassigned roles and character traits willy-nilly and turned it into a boring freak show with none of the subtlety and genuine sexiness of the books.

  56. Maxwell James
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 5:49 pm | Permalink

    Winter Is Coming,

    Nymeria, agree 100% regarding Robb. There is definitely plenty of opportunity there for David & Dan to show a bunch of great scenes that we didn’t get to see in the book. I think Madden just might be one of the breakout stars of the show, so I can definitely see them exploring his storyline much more than we get to in the books.

    That’s why I think it might make sense for them to delay the entrance of Walder Frey until season 2. Even the best TV writers tend to think in terms of seasonal arcs for characters and plots, but in aCoK Robb’s “arc” is rather truncated. Having his engagement to one of Frey’s daughters take place at the beginning of the season, with him breaking that engagement at the end would give his character a much more cohesive storyline.

    For those concerned that this might screw up events taking place in the first season, I would argue that geography is far more important in books than it is in TV and film.

  57. Tysnow
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 6:03 pm | Permalink

    dizzy_34,

    I actually liked the leaked script scene between Cersei and Catlyn, to me it will give the casual viewers pause, making them think is she being sincere, or is she just playing Catelyn. Cersei having feelings and compassion would not be out of place as even Hitler, Napolean and others of their make could have sympathy for those around them and their families, I have seen films of Hitler playing and embracing children, and you could tell he actually did have feelings or emotions at those particular moments, so even the worst of humans can early on have moments of humanity shine through, albeit rarely and as they fall deeper into the abyss any traits of that humanity gets forever lost. If they went this route giving some humanity to Cersei early on it would make for an interesting twist and will make her eventual fall even more powerful.

  58. Lex
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 6:09 pm | Permalink

    I actually don’t like the sound of that added Cersei scene, because it specifically contradicts what she says in Book 4.

    Cersei mentions that she did everything she could to avoid giving Robert a true heir, including finishing him off by hand, or swallowing his seed (her words were “eating his heirs”!) and, I think, even taking Tansy tea to force an abortion the one time he got her pregnant.

    To me, that’s significantly important to Cersei’s character.

  59. Steve B
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 6:11 pm | Permalink

    DH87: Jackie MacPherson,
    There are many reasons why weshould not want the True Blood experience repeated with AGOT. The TB show runner has completely eviscerated the original ten-book series, jerry-rigged himself a new hero, marginalized the central character, reassigned roles and character traits willy-nilly and turned it into a boring freak show with none of the subtlety and genuine sexiness of the books.    

    Of course, my wife read those books as well, and she much prefers the show, so there’s always differences of opinion. I find True Blood rather fun as well.

    Still, there’s no disagreeing that the show is very much it’s own beast, very different from the books in many ways- there is a great deal more sex and violence, switching around of plot threads, etc.. My only experience of the books is through my wife, but by her standards they were really simply fun, quick reads. In her eyes, they needed some sort of change to really make them good TV. She’s got much greater respect for the plotting and character development in Asoiaf.

    I don’t think True Blood is cr*p by any stretch, but I also don’t want Game of Thrones to get the same “treatment.” Obviously, I’m not a big fan of the Sookie novels, so perhaps I don’t feel the pain of those fans, who would hate to see things changed.

  60. Dan
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 6:15 pm | Permalink

    Josh Parker: Okay, the next time someone from HBO talks about this project, it better be to release a full cast list or give us some pictures.  Quote  Reply

    Has this series really sold 20 million copies? I saw one article putting the number at approx 7 million which is a pretty small number compared to many other fantasy epics. Anyone actually know the answer to this?

    Here is the article I am referencing:
    http://www.thestar.com/entertainment/books/article/784607–do-yourself-a-favour-don-t-read-this-book

  61. Dan
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 6:18 pm | Permalink

    “WiC, whats with the resonating with thousands of readers across the globe in your postscript, you need to revise thousands to millions, afterall with ASoIaF selling like 20 million copies worldwide, thousands is a slap in the face. ”

    This is the entry I was trying to quote. Sorry. Newbie here.

  62. Steve B
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 6:22 pm | Permalink

    Lex,

    Yeah, but we don’t know how any of it’s going to play out with Cersei. Perhaps that new bit (if it’s even added) will be explained as part of what made her who she is– thus leading to all the little “details” you describe in AFFC. Speaking of which, incidentally, we don’t even know if that little bit from AFFC will even be included– it’s revealing for sure, but not essential knowledge.

    Either way, we just don’t know any details yet– it seems to soon to worry about it. Besides, of course the show is going to be its own beast.

  63. Tysnow
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 6:59 pm | Permalink

    Dan,

    I believe that 7 million figure is for Games worldwide, from what I have read there has been no clear figures given since its hard to calculate foreign markets, some have put the total sales for all ASoIaF books worldwide at 10.5 million and others as much as 25-30 million, I have read numerous articles placing it at the 18-20 million figure but like all the others it has an asterick by it, so go figure.

  64. Adam Whitehead
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 7:07 pm | Permalink

    Dan,

    The series has sold 3.5 million copies in the United States. I’ve got a feeling that the Toronto article simply doubled it it to get the 7 million worldwide figure, but that’s probably lowballing it given that ASoIaF has a remarkably high profile outside the USA and particularly in non-English territories (as shown by the enthusiasm of the Russian and French fansites, for example). The series has also sold so well in Japan, China and South Korea that GRRM had to turn down some very enthusiastic requests to go and do publicity tours there in 2007 which would have taken months.

    So I’d say 7 million at the lower end of the worldwide sales spectrum, but I doubt it would be more than 10 million. Once you hit credible 10 million figures the publishers start screaming it from the rooftops.

    Also note that ASoIaF is only four books long so far. The series that have sold noticeably more, such as RA Salvatore, Goodkind, Jordan, etc, have tended to have a lot more books. In fact, sales-per-book in the series would seem to be higher than the likes of Salvatore, Feist, Brooks and Eddings and on a par with Goodkind, although some way behind Jordan.

  65. Herr Fick
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 7:09 pm | Permalink

    Brude,

    Of course the profanity used in Deadwood is not historically accurate – not even slightly.

    “From its debut, Deadwood has drawn attention for its use of extremely explicit, modern profanity, especially among the more coarse characters. It is a deliberate anachronism on the part of the creator with a twofold intent. Milch has explained in several interviews and on the DVD commentary tracks that the characters were originally intended to use period slang and swear words. Such words, however, were based heavily on the era’s deep religious roots and tended to be more blasphemous than scatological. Instead of being shockingly crude (in keeping with the tone of a frontier mining camp), the results sounded downright comical.”
    [Quoted from "Deadwood (TV series)" in English Wikipedia]

  66. Crystal Sky
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 7:26 pm | Permalink

    Winter Is Coming,

    I for one would enjoy this scene. Coming right after Bran’s mishap, it would have an interesting effect on viewers. It would definitely make Cersei more ambiguous and also make you wonder would she kill her living son just because he’s Robert’s? Or would she actually love him because he is after all her son? She does mention having abortions but that’s different than actually bearing a son. That being said, it could complicate things a bit in the long run…

    In any case I would like the one-dimensional characters of Cersei and Jaime in the first book to be more fleshed out. It seems particularly necessary if one loses the PoVs, because in this case the portrayal of their characters has to be more ‘objective’ and more in-depth.

  67. Tysnow
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 7:43 pm | Permalink

    Adam Whitehead,

    You also have to realize that many hard core fantasy readers who buy Salvatore, Eddings, Williams, Goodkind, Rowling, Jordan were turned off by Games, because it reads like historical fiction not high fantasy. I gave a copy of my Games years ago to a several people in the office who read fantasy and sci-fi, two stopped reading because they felt it wasn’t true fantasy, even though I tried to convince them the fantasy elements start popping up as the series progresses, the third enjoyed it mainly for it’s realistic elements. The funny part was one of the wives loved Games and she preferred romance and mystery novels. So I would place ASoIaF sales more in line with writers of historical fiction, since apparently more intelligent and serious minded readers prefer it than lovers of Shannara, Drizzit, Star Wars and that Wizard kid.

  68. Tysnow
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 8:54 pm | Permalink

    GameofThronesJoe,

    Way to go Joe!, well you know what they say, third time’s the charm and “The Dornishman’s Wife” was the perfect addition that iced my vote for Mance, who afterall loves to sing a good tune.
    As for the place in Westeros I would most like to visit, well not counting Chataya’s I would say Braavos, I have an affinity for Canals and Cultures and it more than likely has the greatest number of both in all of Essos and Westeros.

  69. Victoria Cole
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 8:57 pm | Permalink

    ‘I’m not one to salute unmotivated nudity, violence etc but in a series like Rome it’s necessary to give the proper image of how many noble people behaved. ‘

    –I thought the sex in the first season of Rome was way overdone. I mean how many times did we have to see Pulo screwing every woman in sight? And saying ‘She’s wet as October?” And don’t get me started on TB, I stopped watching after the first episode it was just stupid. I don’t mind sex in films and movies. But much of it can be implied instead of shown. When I want to see people copulating I’ll just stick to watching porn.

    Tywin’s Bastard,

  70. Sarita
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

    Kristin Lindsley,

    Actually, I’ve already read Pillars of the Earth; I watched the first 2 eps of the TV series and was not impressed with the Starz adaptation. I felt like they soared through the story because they were limited to 8 episodes. 8 hours is not enough time to cover the 30+ years of the book. However, I was happy that they attempted to stay true to the book and did not try to make it into an edgy show just b/c it’s on the network that brought us Spartacus.

  71. Lex
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 9:09 pm | Permalink

    Tysnow,

    I also said Braavos. It sounds like a mixture of Venice, Amsterdam, and Copenhagen, all three of which I’ve visited and loved.

  72. Dennai
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 9:24 pm | Permalink

    Tysnow,

    Do you realise how snob and self-entitled your post is? So, if people doesn’t share your reading preferences that qualifies them automatically as “less intelligent”, right?

    Go figure.

  73. Sarita
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 9:29 pm | Permalink

    Victoria Cole,

    I agree. With Rome and True Blood, I think they were trying so hard to shock (i.e., attract) viewers with all the dirty talk and sex scenes that it took me out of the story and had me focusing on the language and sex instead.

    Also, with Rome, I found the battle scenes to be very amateur (like those made for TV documentaries you see on the History channel or PBS with reenactments of battle scenes). Hope this is not an issue with GoT; I’m not expecting the type of sequences we see in movies, but hopefully something a less cheesy.

    Deadwood, Carnivale, The Wire, The Sopranos, Six Feet Under—all of these shows had very strong stories, characters, and such a unique style that despite the heavy dose of violence and sex, it didn’t detract from the bigger story. It all boils down to what Lombardo said. You have to first start with good source material; it should be able to interest viewers on its own, without the sex, violence, and foul language. Those elements should be used sparingly or only when stylistically it is appropriate.

    Speaking of True Blood, I don’t mind Alan Ball straying from the books because it makes the show more interesting having read the first few books. I think the show would be awful if it was all about Sookie, because honestly she’s a really annoying character. I feel like he’s done the best he can with what he was given to work with. I stopped reading around book 4 because the world became too crowded with characters and supernaturals; I think it would work better to focus on one or two per season.

  74. Tysnow
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 9:54 pm | Permalink

    Dennai,

    I am not being a snob, I love the Drizzit books, and I enjoyed Shannara as a teenager along with many Star Wars books, I am just trying to make a statement that there are those out there that won’t read anything but true high fantasy or light sci-fi/fantasy and if the book is too realistic or to much of a hard read that requries effort, they won’t touch them or if they read the first book they won’t bother with the rest in a series because it wasn’t high fantasy.
    I myself read many books across a broad spectrum and don’t just stay within a certain niche, I consider that to be intelligent decision making. Those who won’t touch Games because they read articles descibing it as medieval fiction set in a fictional world where magic has become myth or something along that line, to me are making not an intelligent informed decision but a biased one based on the fact there are no elves, dwarves, orcs or battling wizards and thus are robbing themselves of an opportunity to read a very enjoyable, and entertaining story set in a well thought out and constructed fictional world.
    My hope is that the HBO series will open the minds of this group of individual to the book series and also that many other demographics such as romance, mystery, horror and historical readers will try the genre and aslo buy the book series, afterall there are whole new worlds and places to be discovered within the pages of a book.

  75. Dennai
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 10:52 pm | Permalink

    Tysnow,

    I am not being a snob

    Actually, I don’t think you are a snob, but the way you wrote some of your post was snobberish, probably not really intended, more of a consequence of how frustrated you were with your workmates not giving it a try. But, come on, don’t tell me that there’s not some derogativeness in writing “and that wizard kid” .

    I enjoyed Shannara as a teenager

    Then you were a much more forgiving teenager than I ever was. I read “The sword of Shannara” in 1999. At that time, my only experience with fantasy literature was Tolkien’s works and the first two trilogies of Dragonlance. I was looking for some more fantasy and I founf a deal with the first two books of Shannara for the price of one, so I got them. I was enraged when I finished the first one. I coudn’t believe I just paid money for such a poor carbon copy of Lord of the Rings. Probably, a big reason of my anger was that I was an aspiring writer (I am still) and I just coudn’t accept that while I was struggling for ideas and plots, a guy out there was getting published and paid for passing other ideas as his.

    I consider that to be intelligent decision making

    And it is, but that don’t mean that other people going for other decisions are less intelligent. Reading preferences and tastes, like movies preferences and any other artistic expression likes and dislikes are not to be seen as measures of intelligence. That was my whole point. I understand your frustration when your intents of introducing something you think is good to someone are dismissed. I’ve felt the same frustration myself, but we can’t simply judge the preferences of others or think we know better. It’s such a subjective matter that we just have to accept that to each his own.

    My hope is that the HBO series will open the minds of this group of individual to the book series

    That’s my hope too. What it brings another more interesting question: Are we evil people? Why would we otherwise trying to lure blissful inocents to this magic world only to leave them hanging in a limbo of years wondering what freaking word Brienne said and if it made any difference at all?

  76. Hodor
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 11:23 pm | Permalink

    Canon Nazi,…
    Didn’t a certain prophecy spell out the exact number of children she will have, a baby alive outside the womb should count I think. So baby + fever is a no-no, or they gonna have her lying this early in the game? With only the readers of the bookS to ‘catch it’?

  77. Mosh
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 11:50 pm | Permalink

    Hodor,

    Game of Thrones is not A Song of Ice and Fire. If they even include that prophecy in season 4 (gods willing), the fix is as easy as adding one to her number of children.

  78. Damryn of Dorne
    Posted August 24, 2010 at 11:54 pm | Permalink

    Snob fight! haha

  79. Steve B
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 12:08 am | Permalink

    Hodor,

    I agree with Mosh. You’re being too literal in your expectations of the TV series. Of course Cersei in the books won’t be the Cersei in the series.

  80. Kathrina Martinsen
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 12:27 am | Permalink

    Dennai: I just coudn’t accept that while I was struggling for ideas and plots, a guy out there was getting published and paid for passing other ideas as his.

    Better not go anywhere near Paolini’s Eragon, then! Just sayin’.

  81. Dan
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 1:50 am | Permalink

    Adam Whitehead,

    Thanks for the info Adam. I can’t wait for this series. Hopefully a Dance with Dragons will beat the release of the first season. GRRM is pretty much gone a good portion of the rest of the year so I won’t hold my breath. It is a shame that he had to go to this convention since it seemed like he was really rolling…

  82. silverjaime
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 3:25 am | Permalink

    Zack: because my #1 fear is that people will dismiss it on the basis of genre alone.

    I’ve been a fan of Joss Whedon’s writing for years, but Buffy and Angel and Firefly suffered in the ratings except for a huge cult following, because of the genre. The only Emmy they ever achieved was for makeup, despite fantastic writing and acting throughout. However I think GOT is dark enough, with enough sex and gory violence, that it’ll appeal despite its genre!

  83. Molda
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 4:09 am | Permalink

    Well I agree with those who say, that True Blood has “crossed the line”. I am not some kind of puritan, i like realism and thus even sex and reasonable amount of violence, but it’s completely freak-ish how almost every movie or TV show these days have huge amount of sex and brutal gore and the more weird and psychopatic it is, the better. (And shame is, that people actually love it)

    So I think that it’s necessary to include sex and violence in GoT, but not in the way, that it would be almost just about it. GRRM included sex and violence to give ASOIAF realism and it is one of the wheels of greatly working machine. But i dont want HBO to fill GoT with tons of sex and gore just to attract freaks and ruin the story for normal viewers

  84. silverjaime
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 5:00 am | Permalink

    Molda,

    The amount of sex in GOT doesn’t alarm me – it’s the TYPE of sex that does. It’s mostly rape or with whores. I get the impression to be a normal woman in those times was actually unusual – you were either exploited and abused by your own father/husband, or you were a whore in or out of a brothel. And most ‘common’ men were brutes who raped everything within sight at the slightest excuse. While reading the books, it did leave a bad taste in the mouth (no pun intended!) numerous times.

  85. About Yea High
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 5:38 am | Permalink

    silverjaime,

    Interestingly, I’ve always seen GRRM’s depiction of love in A Song of Ice and Fire as one of his few failings. Don’t get me wrong, he’s brilliant–literally my favorite author, if that’s not clear–but I have yet to see him accurately portray anything that comes close to real, pulse-racing, romantic love.

    Now understand, this could be to serve a purpose. We’ve been shown, time and again, that this is a world of cruelty and desperation, where honor and politics play a much stronger role than anything the heart could bring to the table. Frivolous things like love take a back seat when the lives of one’s entire family are at stake. And there’s also a chance we haven’t seen it because he’s going to hit us with a doozy (some have suggested Jon and Daenerys may be that endgame).

    But thus far I’ve found it hard to see any real joy in his sexual unions. Ned and Caitlin seemed to maintain a rather strict attraction. Dany and Drogo may have been in love, but clearly early on that was a forced issue. (And who really knows how Drogo felt?) Jon and Ygritte was one big pile of regret, the twincest was … well, it was twincest. Aerys Oakheart’s desperate couplings with Arianne Martel were guilt-laden and filled with self-loathing …

    The closest I ever saw was Tyrion’s remembrances of Tysha, and those were not of-the-moment; we don’t get to experience the love–only the loss. And Shae was Shae–a guilty replacement for the one true love Tyrion had lost.

    Thus far, sex has been at best a guilty pleasure.

  86. nsk
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 5:44 am | Permalink

    True Blood is too popular and creators are killing this show (quality) in my opinion. S1 was the best for me, nothing GREAT about writing except that episode with Sookie’s grandmother death. It was very beautiful episode. The show is guilty pleasure for me and I don’t expect some awesome writing for ir.

    S2 was ok, I liked the maenad storyline and she was great villain.

    In s3 there is too much going on. They add new creatures like crazy plus I don’t really know what is the theme of that season. Learning about Sookie’s past or Russell? They jump from one storyline to another.

  87. Dennai
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 6:57 am | Permalink

    Kathrina Martinsen,

    Better not go anywhere near Paolini’s Eragon, then! Just sayin’.

    Lol!

    I haven’t read “Eragon”, but I saw the film and basically was an very faithful adaptation of the original Star Wars film (Episode IV in the canon) to a Middle-Earthish environment. It was outrageous, but I was older and more jaded then and didn’t get under my skin too much. I guess that if i’d happen to read it just right after I finished “The sword of Shannara” I would have burnt down the bookstore.

  88. wind_singer
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 7:10 am | Permalink

    RE Cersei:

    I’ll admit straight up I was never a fan of Cersei in the books. It always felt like a bit of a missed opportunity to me, to be honest. So many great female-characters-in-power have been written and when Cersei was first introduced I was sure there would be something more to her, but nope. She actually became shallower and more pointless the more we learned about her; something I’ve never understood given the complexity of virtually every other character in the series.

    That aside, I think changing Cersei’s character is a good idea if only because of the casting. I love Lena Headey and I think she’s a great actress but hmm… Cersei… I don’t know. LH has too much depth. Cersei comes off as nothing more than a stupid bitch, pardon the phrasing. LH is good at hurt/wounded/angsty, but Cersei only ever gets hysterical. Maybe I’ll be pleasantly surprised but I just can’t imagine LH being hysterical, especially not in the way Cersei is. Giving Cersei a softer and/or more genuine side would be the best thing for her IMO.

  89. About Yea High
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 7:30 am | Permalink

    wind_singer,

    You wanted a softer, more genuine side of Cersei?

    Sorry, I can’t give you that.

  90. blood
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 7:57 am | Permalink

    wind_singer,

    Cersei has some great scenes, it’s not all being “hysterical”. Meeting Ned in the Godswood and talking with Sansa during the Battle of the Blackwater come to mind.

  91. wind_singer
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 8:02 am | Permalink

    About Yea High,

    Yeah I’ve seen that video before :) but now that I watch it again I guess I see your point. Still it’s comedy so it’s a little bit different. Playing a hysterical female character in a sitcom is easy; playing it dramatically is a whole other ball game. You have to really get inside the character’s head to pull it off, and the problem is there’s not much going on in Cersei’s head aside from “mueheheh me wants teh power *twirls non-existent moustache*”. I guess that is sort of the point of her character, but I still think it would be nice if they added some layers in. Maybe not “soft” so much but more like vulnerable or fragile, you know just so she would be more of a person as opposed to a cardboard cut-out.

  92. wind_singer
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 8:14 am | Permalink

    blood,

    Gosh I wish I could delete my comments, I feel like an idiot now. But yeah thanks for reminding me, I forgot about the Godswood scene; that was pretty epic and exactly the sort of thing I kind of wish there was more of. The Sansa talk not so much though, wasn’t that just her being manipulative as usual?

  93. Crystal Sky
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 8:16 am | Permalink

    About Yea High,

    I always thought GRRM’s intention was to subvert our stereotypes of the Middle Ages, which tend to be coloured by romances like Tristan and Isolde, Arthur and the like. We could see how much he insists on ridiculing Sansa’s dream of romantic love with Joffrey. The whole point I think is that the ideal of courtly love was just that – an ideal. The real world was fierce and brutal. In that sense GRRM’s work is an anti-fantasy fantasy :) So I’m not surprised many high-fantasy lovers would not like it – it’s not escapist and often it makes one feel ridiculous for entertaining vague romantic love ideals (I mean, Rom-Coms are our washed-up versions of medieval romance).

    wind_surfer,

    I must say I’ve been suspecting GRRM of hidden misogynism. How come Jaime could be at least partially redeemed and Cersei simply descends into madness? How come she cannot transcend the status of a ‘power-hungry crazy bitch’ and cannot display any statesmanship? Mind you, I have not read AFFC yet, but it seems there could have been so many more complex ways of dealing with her character. Villains can be very interesting if you flesh them out, smarten them up and make us understand their motives – it’s always a matter of what makes people do evil things and how much that can be justified. I would have enjoyed an evil-mastermind Cersei.

    As for the series, I am crossing my fingers they would choose to fleshen up the Cersei character. I think it could really add to the series, not to say give some acting opportunity to LH. Obviously, the show would be missing out on Headey’s acting skills if it doesn’t.

  94. Crystal Sky
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 8:29 am | Permalink

    wind_singer,

    the godswood scene was excellent, the best in the GoT book IMO. I must say I mourned the lack of more interaction between Cersei and Ned in the book. Too people so different – and yet a bit similar in being overly proud and single-minded, there could have been some interesting love-hate relationship. Which made me wonder – if she had been so scared of Ned’s actions why didn’t she just try to seduce him from the start and just made a desperate attempt when it was too late? I think it would have made for an interesting dynamic in the book if she had tried to manipulate him all along rather than just keeping aloof. Also could have justified Ned’s strange passivity in her regard toward the end.

  95. Mike
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 8:30 am | Permalink

    I think Crystal Sky is on the right track with this one. For the show, they may have changed the ‘Cersei had an abortion’ story, to a ‘Cersei murdered her child when it was born with a little bit of black hair’ story. It’s plausible that she would have carried on with the pregnancy if she thought the baby could be Jaime’s. Doesn’t change the story all that much, maybe makes Cersei even more brutal and cruel. And then she uses the ‘fever’ story to sympathize with Cat. Sounds like an interesting scene.

  96. Ninepenny
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 8:30 am | Permalink

    http://www.wired.com/geekdad/2010/08/a-game-of-thrones-david-j-peterson/ Interview: Creating Language for HBO’s Game Of Thrones

  97. persephone88
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 8:47 am | Permalink

    Hodor,

    I also figured that statement would be a case Cersei’s lies/deception which would later be caught out in the series. Really cannot imagine what she reportedly says in the leaked scene jiving with her character at all…

  98. wind_singer
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 9:20 am | Permalink

    Crystal Sky,

    Exactly. But I can’t even put Cersei’s lack of character down to misogynism because GRRM has so many other great female characters: Arya, Dany, Catelyn, hell even Sansa. It might just be a personal thing but I always felt that Cersei was a bit of a missed opportunity. She (along with Lysa Arryn) must be one of the only characters in the entire series who I have virtually no sympathy for– which is saying something because even Viserys made me feel a little bit sorry for him in the end. Theon, Lord Tywin, that bastard Walder Frey, all of them have some sort of redeemable quality, but Cersei? Not really. Even more confounding is that on several occasions it’s hinted that she does have something more to her, but it’s usually negated later. Why?

  99. Gregory Kelton
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 9:24 am | Permalink

    Maxwell James: Winter Is Coming,
    Nymeria, agree 100% regarding Robb. There is definitely plenty of opportunity there for David & Dan to show a bunch of great scenes that we didn’t get to see in the book. I think Madden just might be one of the breakout stars of the show, so I can definitely see them exploring his storyline much more than we get to in the books.That’s why I think it might make sense for them to delay the entrance of Walder Frey until season 2. Even the best TV writers tend to think in terms of seasonal arcs for characters and plots, but in aCoK Robb’s “arc” is rather truncated. Having his engagement to one of Frey’s daughters take place at the beginning of the season, with him breaking that engagement at the end would give his character a much more cohesive storyline.For those concerned that this might screw up events taking place in the first season, I would argue that geography is far more important in books than it is in TV and film.    

    I don’t think we even need to worry about geography. Since we know they are delaying the Riverrun people (Blackfish, Edmure, etc) until season 2, then he doesn’t need to be past the Twins by the end of season 1. I think what they should do is have Robb call his banners when Ned is arrested, but still be in Winterfell. Then after Ned’s death, have the Northern lords crown him King in the North in Winterfell’s great hall, and have him say something along the lines of “And now we go to war”. I think the image of Robb sitting in Winterfell’s great hall with his banner men kneeling before him while Catelyn looks on, her face a mix of pride and forboding terror, will be AWESOME. It would be a great cliff hanger for them to end the season with, and it allows them to delay Walder Frey’s entrance until season 2 and keep the story pretty much intact.

  100. silverjaime
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 9:32 am | Permalink

    wind_singer,

    I’ve often thought that Cersei was based on an actual person that GRRM knew that he hated, and so couldn’t find a redeeming trait in the character!

  101. Nymeria
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 9:44 am | Permalink

    Gregory Kelton,

    and what about Jaime?

  102. dizzy_34
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 9:52 am | Permalink

    About Yea High,

    You left out Rhaegar and Lyanna. Probably not the best example of romantic love in the books because it’s not fully explained yet but it’s an important one.

  103. Steve B
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 9:53 am | Permalink

    Re: Cersei-
    I think the problem is that people are thinking that the Cersei in AGOT and AFFC are the same person. But she’s not. She’s much more sane, and perhaps would have been a very interesting POV in AGOT. Conniving but masterful.

    By the time she reaches AFFC, she’s lost a son, and her father (who was obviously a pillar of strength to her) has died in his own chambers by Tyrion’s hands, outright war has ruined the land, her lover has lost his hand and returned a different man, etc. She’s in a position of power, but completely unable to deal with it anymore. I actually found her character fascinating in AFFC as a portrayal of a person slipping into paranoid delusional madness.

    And to say GRRM is sexist blows my mind– I mean, Daenerys, Brienne, Catelyn, Sansa, etc. etc. The list of well written women is very long.

  104. dizzy_34
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 9:58 am | Permalink

    Gregory Kelton,

    I think we will see the Whispering Woods in season one (and the Green Fork for that matter) otherwise that’s a ton of battles to fit into season two.

  105. Steve B
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 10:26 am | Permalink

    Re: Sex and Romance in Asoiaf–

    You know, it’s funny, but I’ve often thought the opposite– that’s there’s actually quite a lot of romance in Asoiaf, but that it’s always complicated, sometimes emotionally (Ned and Catelyn), sometimes through plot (Brienne, say). But I feel like he actually spends a great deal of time exploring many of his characters’ desire for love. The thing that differentiates him from romance novels is that the story is never about _love_. Love is always secondary to the main story, which often gets in the way of love’s fulfillment. Also, we’re only half way through the story, so we don’t really know how things are going to develop with certain people (Brienne and Jaime, Sansa and Sandor, for example).

    As for sex, I think it goes two ways. Clearly, on one level, he spends a pretty reasonable amount of time describing people enjoying sex with those they love (Jon and Ygritte, Daenerys and Drogo, Daenerys and one of her handmaids, Samwell and …..that girl from beyond the wall, Ned and Catelyn, etc), so I never have felt like he detests sex, or portrays it simply with negative connotations. And yet, clearly, his depiction of the cavalier way that women are raped during and after battle is pretty straightforward.

    Still, I’d be hardpressed to think of a very many (any?) examples where people were raped outside of where they’re being pillaged. Clearly, Martin associates the two things, but then… that’s not a very uncommon thing historically.

  106. OldGran
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 10:38 am | Permalink

    About Yea High,

    I think Tysha is still alive.

  107. Gregory Kelton
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 10:48 am | Permalink

    wind_singer: Crystal Sky,
    Exactly. But I can’t even put Cersei’s lack of character down to misogynism because GRRM has so many other great female characters: Arya, Dany, Catelyn, hell even Sansa. It might just be a personal thing but I always felt that Cersei was a bit of a missed opportunity. She (along with Lysa Arryn) must be one of the only characters in the entire series who I have virtually no sympathy for– which is saying something because even Viserys made me feel a little bit sorry for him in the end. Theon, Lord Tywin, that bastard Walder Frey, all of them have some sort of redeemable quality, but Cersei? Not really. Even more confounding is that on several occasions it’s hinted that she does have something more to her, but it’s usually negated later. Why?    

    I have sympathy for her. Incoming AFFC Spoiler: She’s clearly insane. I mean, by the end of AFFC it is clear to anyone paying attention to her POV that she has a mental illness. Her paranoia, megalomania, and cruel disregard for the feelings of others are all indicative of deep, deep mental illness. She isn’t evil, she’s sick.

  108. Gregory Kelton
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 10:50 am | Permalink

    Nymeria,

    LOL! I did leave out Jamie. You are right, there is no way he can still be in the north.

    Sigh…

  109. OldGran
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 10:59 am | Permalink

    wind_singer,

    We need to remember that Cersei lost her mother at a very young age and had no motherly roll-model growing up. We’ve been told that Lady Joanna “ran Tywin”, so she too had a strong personality. Cersei “ran” Jamie and the whole household from a very early age. Her only parental roll model was her Dad! She is her fathers daughter in that she has an abundance of ambition and no one to tell her “no” or temper her behavior. They very well could show her in a more vulnerable aspect without changing her driving self-centerness.

  110. Jodan
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 11:32 am | Permalink

    dizzy_34: Gregory Kelton,
    I think we will see the Whispering Woods in season one (and the Green Fork for that matter) otherwise that’s a ton of battles to fit into season two.    

    It’s the battles that are my biggest fear for GoT, there’s nothing worse to watch in my mind than a cheap battle scene on TV. I honestly can’t watch History Channel shows as they’re always bad, even Rome had awful battle scenes IMO.

    The other thing is if they do the Green Fork off scene like in the book it’s going to piss off alot casual viewers/people who have never read the book. As they’ll no doubt, ironically, criticise the show for being cheap by skipping the battle.
    If by some miracle the battles are even half as good as those in Braveheart it’ll be an achievement though at the same time underwhelming.

  111. blood
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    wind_singer: blood,
    The Sansa talk not so much though, wasn’t that just her being manipulative as usual?    

    During the Battle of the Blackwater Cersei believes Stannis is going to win and has ordered Ilyn Payne to stay with them so he can kill them rather than risk being captured and raped by Stannis’ men. It’s a great scene where we for example see how bitter Cersei is that she can’t go out and fight for her life and hast to sit and wait. She is no less honest there than in the Godswood with Ned. Certainly not trying to manipulate Sansa.

  112. dizzy_34
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 11:57 am | Permalink

    Jodan,

    Well Whispering Woods is a night sneak attack that was decribed through other witnesses accounts. The Green Fork, told through Tyrion’s POV, was all out confusion (which I assume battle would be like). I think the Green Fork may be the only fully relized battle we’ll see in season one. However there are all sorts of clever techniques and editing they can do to keep costs down and still make it a thrilling sequence.

  113. winterqueen
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

    Steve B,

    I agree with you about there being a lot of romance in ASOIAF. GRRM does not put pretty ribbons and bows on his love affairs, that’s for sure. One theme I have picked up on in ASOIAF is the consuming power of First Love. Certain character simply can’t let go of their first love and are in truth haunted by them. Here’s some examples that come to mind: Lysa to Petyr, Petyr to Catelyn, Robert to Lyanna , Brienne to Renley and Cersei to Prince Rhaegar. In the case of Lysa, Petyr and Robert, GRRM paints those characters as deeply wounded and a bit unstable in regards to their lost first love. They simply can’t let go and move on. I should also note the one-sided nature of the listed loves. In certain cases, I think the person loves the idea of the other person (Robert to Lyanna, Petyr to Catelyn and Cersei to Prince Rhaegar). Love is a crazy, powerful unpredictable thing. Lysa Arryn was driven mad by her love for Petyr. It takes over her life and her “love” kills her in the end. As Cersei tells Sansa (this is just off the top of my head btw), love is poison, a sweet poison but it will kill you all the same.

  114. Brad Shelton
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 12:41 pm | Permalink

    wind_singer: It might just be a personal thing but I always felt that Cersei was a bit of a missed opportunity. She (along with Lysa Arryn) must be one of the only characters in the entire series who I have virtually no sympathy for– which is saying something because even Viserys made me feel a little bit sorry for him in the end. Theon, Lord Tywin, that bastard Walder Frey, all of them have some sort of redeemable quality, but Cersei? Not really.

    For me it would be a bit uninteresting if every character had a ‘redemption’ element to their story.

    wind_singer: Even more confounding is that on several occasions it’s hinted that she does have something more to her, but it’s usually negated later. Why?

    You write a great summary of Cersei’s vapid character, but I see it as a good thing, and I think that is exactly what GRRM intended to portray. To me it is fascinating and true-to-life.

    Haven’t you ever known someone that was just “skin deep”? Someone that was emotionally incapable of registering care or compassion for the people around them? Or someone who degraded in a downward spiral, choosing self-serving paths, even though they had chances to make better choices? I’ve certainly seen those things. I’ve lived those things at times, and I think we all have.

    Cersei’s story arc to me is kind of “flat” and anticlimactic (so far). I think it contrasts wonderfully with some of the more redemptive and thoughtful characters. And at the same time, all this said, I do have a kind of compassion for her, just as any malice or hateful person is in need of it. All part of the tapestry..

  115. Hear Me Roar
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 1:40 pm | Permalink

    That’s one great in-depth discussion, love it. A rare thing, which makes the WiC community so great. Keep it up!

  116. ManBearSquid
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 2:51 pm | Permalink

    I agree with those saying that the series has quite a bit to do with love. Of course, just like everything else in the series, it doesn’t conform to High Fantasy standards. Despite SoIaF being a fantasy series, everything in it is as realistic as possible. Here in the USA where I live a happy life, free of war and where class distinctions are not quite so pronounced, I don’t know anyone who’s life would fit the version of romance often offered up in literature.

    I know a lot of people who’s love lives are more in line with Martin’s world than Tolkien’s. I know high-school sweethearts who married and are still together, and people who have given up opportunities to be with the one they love, but I certainly wouldn’t put that on the same scale as giving up elven immortality and life in paradise to be with your human lover.

    One of the things to keep in mind is that unless there’s something extraordinary about a love/sex relationship, there isn’t much reason for a writer to dwell on it. Ned and Catelyn obviously love each other and have a healthy sexual relationship. It wouldn’t be a good use of page space to spend much time talking about it though, except in how it pertains to the story (ie: that their marriage was a marriage of duty; the result of the murder of Ned’s brother, to whom Cat was engaged) and to show it in passing, as a normal thing. There seem to be quite a lot of happily married people in the story, in all walks of life. What point is there to make a big deal of that, though? The things worth mentioning are worth mentioning because they are different, rare, special, and they directly impact the course of the story.

  117. Crystal Sky
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

    Brad Shelton,

    I see a difference between being ‘skin deep’ and being ‘self-serving’. The first denotes superficiality, the other selfishness. Superficial people may tend to be selfish because they don’t see past their nose (though not always!), but smart people can be selfish too.

    The other thing about ‘skin deep’ is that it is a matter of perception: we often tend to catalogue people like that when we don’t know them. Yes, I’ve met people thatseem skin deep, but I realise I don’t know their stories and try my best not to judge. If I knew their story, it may be different.

    In any case, from what I have read, Cersei does not strike me as ‘skin deep’ . She seems selfish (or perhaps selfish for her children?), but she appears to me as someone potentially very complex, except not analysed enough. Her reactions, like in the godswood & Blackwater, are very interesting and do not come across as superficial. I also think she should have a chance at redemption – even if she ultimately refused that chance.

    Maybe I should start the ‘Redeem Cersei’ campaign for the next book.

  118. Scott
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 3:22 pm | Permalink

    This is a great discussion! I’m scared to read some of it cause I haven’t finished AFfC yet. Thanks for the spoiler tags!

    This is going to be a weird comparison but I think the children’s PoVs could be handled similarly to Star Wars. The PoV of star wars is through that of C3P0 and R2D2, but the other characters still shine through. The relationships between Luke Leia and Han are very largely expounded upon despite the fact that each movie is told through the point of view of the droids. Also I could see C3P0 saying a lot of the things he says to R2 to be something that would be inner monologue in a book. I think bouncing things off other characters will work just as well.

    I could be making a poor analogy here but basically what I’m saying is, just cause the kids are the main PoVs for a lot of scenes doesn’t mean the rest of the characters won’t be able to be brought to the forefront of scenes pretty easily.

  119. Brad Shelton
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

    Crystal Sky,

    I see a difference between being ‘skin deep’ and being ‘self-serving.

    Yeah, me too. :-) I just think Cersei is both. She’s not unintelligent of course; but as for how deep her ambitions and cares go, I think they are shallow, in the same way that Tyrion is a “giant” of a man. A lack of vision. She will stop at nothing to attain some very limited, self-serving goals.

    The other thing about ‘skin deep’ is that it is a matter of perception: we often tend to catalogue people like that when we don’t know them.

    Very true. And other times, we all be shallow in truth. I like the fact that Cersei is being portrayed that way. I’ve always liked characters & plot elements that “peter out” or are anticlimactic. Very true to life, and can add a rich texture when seen alongside other, more conventional plot arcs.

    Cheers

  120. Steve B
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 3:52 pm | Permalink

    The thing about Cersei is that, to me, she’s obviously quite complex. Selfish too of course, but complex too. She’s not just a villain. She’s so obviously feels hurt, angry, alone, and used. And for pretty good reason. The more I learn about her past the more I pity her.

    Now, by the time we see her in AFFC she’s obviously a but mad, but before then I think she always made a great deal of sense.

  121. Crystal Sky
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 4:05 pm | Permalink

    This is going to be a weird comparison but I think the children’s PoVs could be handled similarly to Star Wars. The PoV of star wars is through that of C3P0 and R2D2, but the other characters still shine through. The relationships between Luke Leia and Han are very largely expounded upon despite the fact that each movie is told through the point of view of the droids.

    This is really off topic, but I always thought the Star Wars books were written after the movies? and I don’t recall PoVs in them?

  122. Tyler
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 5:35 pm | Permalink

    Cersei’s issue in the books is the same issue most spoiled jerks have: She never in her life had anyone to tell her she was full of shit. She was never accountable to anybody at all. She is very close to her brother (in more ways than one) but he never called her on her nonsense until it was too late for her.

    Not so coincidentally, the two people who do tell her that she is full of shit are the two people she tries hardest to ruin- Tyrion and Margaery.

    Viserys had this problem too. If Illyrio had sat him down and said “Kid, your family isn’t on the throne anymore. Your brother was killed in single combat, so he wasn’t all that great. It’s over.” Then Viserys probably wouldn’t have been such a douchebag. Since that didn’t suit Illyrio’s desires, that didn’t happen and Viserys was basically a male Cersei.

  123. Phoenix_torn
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 5:54 pm | Permalink

    Another off topic

    GRRM’s Doorways comic was solicited in this month’s (September) previews catalogue. Clearly it’s already on my pull list. :)

  124. Critical Geek
    Posted August 25, 2010 at 11:00 pm | Permalink

    Re: Cercei with Sansa in Blackwater
    That’s just one of the most unsettling scenes Cercei has, calmly describing how Ilne Payne wasn’t there to protect them from the mob, but rather to prevent another “Lolys incident” by killing the potential victims first.

    Jodan:
    It’s the battles that are my biggest fear for GoT, there’s nothing worse to watch in my mind than a cheap battle scene on TV. I honestly can’t watch History Channel shows as they’re always bad, even Rome had awful battle scenes IMO.The other thing is if they do the Green Fork off scene like in the book it’s going to piss off alot casual viewers/people who have never read the book. As they’ll no doubt, ironically, criticise the show for being cheap by skipping the battle.
    If by some miracle the battles are even half as good as those in Braveheart it’ll be an achievement though at the same time underwhelming.    

    I’m not sure I’m following you. Let me see if i’m getting this right. Cheap battles are lame. As written in the book, green fork will look like a cheap battle. If it doesn’t look lame, it will be underwhelming anyway.

    So basically, you are saying you don’t like TV war scenes.

    My advice: go check out the John Addams SFX footage again on youtube. Pay attention to the naval battles. Since that guy is part of the GOT SFX team, I’d say Blackwater will look at least as good as that. Note also that John Addams also didn’t actually show battle scenes (a la The Patriot or some such), and yet you saw the effects of war all the same, and somehow, it didn’t seem cheap at all. That’s how I see Whispering Woods playing out. And Green Fork? about the same as John Addams in John Paul Jones’s ship. Going personal rather than epic is a tried and true method for TV war scenes

  125. Scott
    Posted August 26, 2010 at 9:30 am | Permalink

    Crystal Sky,

    They were, but the movies were from the POV of the droids, even though they were somewhat lesser characters. That’s what I think will happen in the show. The scenes will be in the pov of the kids, even though they may get slightly minimized in the show in favor of the bigger named actors and adult characters.

  126. Miss
    Posted August 28, 2010 at 3:47 am | Permalink

    On Martin and love: he is very much a romantic author and romanticism is everywhere in his books (check out his short stories too, OH MY GOD sometimes it’s like the man tells the same story over and over). But he favors doomed tragic love over happy love. That’s just his gig.

    On sex: here I can criticize a tiny smidgen. Take Ned/Cat, Renly/Loras, and Jaime/Brienne, three fairly mainstream relationships of the series. There’s no sex in the books for them though, the closest is a post-sex scene with Ned and Cat (which was cut out of the pilot script, right?), and then Renly and Loras refer to praying together, and Jaime and Brienne check each other out. But we do get a good close look at Cersei/Jaime sex, and we have Dany/handmaidens explained in nice detail, and what feels like countless Tyrion/Shae sex scenes.

    Ned/Cat vs Cersei/Jaime: Sex is evil*.
    Renly/Loras vs Dany/handmaidens: girl-on-girl is hot! guy-on-guy is ickypoo!
    Jaime/Brienne vs Tyrion/Shae: hot girl + ugly guy standard, with the reciprocal being absent.

    * We get Jon/Ygritte and Arys/Arianne, but wouldn’t you know, they’re examples of oh so doomed love.

  1. [...] HBO co-president Michael Lombardo was interviewed in an article of Vanity Fair in it he talks about A Game of Thrones. Liotta is off to Wizards World! [...]


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