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HBO's Game of Thrones

Discussion in 'TV Shows' started by mattCR, Apr 10, 2011.

  1. Jeremiah

    Jeremiah Screenwriter

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    That's assuming people are really attached to that character. I liked that character but he was far from one of my favorite characters. I think GoT has a deeper set of viewers that won't jump ship when a character dies.
     
  2. Josh Dial

    Josh Dial Producer

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    Any other "calculation" by HBO would have ensured that the project never left its infancy--Martin would have surely killed it. Also remember that the novel was published way back in 1996, so it's not like they are actively pursuing the Sopranos' footsteps (not that you are implying that).


    I can distinctly remember reading this chapter in the book the first time, and I was honestly confused. "Did they really just kill him?" I asked myself. I then re-read the chapter, and quickly skimmed the table of contents to see if he popped back up. It's the point where the story "gets real," and I don't think any one, fan or otherwise, can accuse Martin of using character deaths to create false drama. I know this is a complaint I see a lot on these forums, chiefly in threads for LOST and BSG and the like. However, for me, every death in the series is earned by Martin--and the cast/crew of the show--and the story is all the better for it.


    Your description of the story as a chess game is quite apt--good analogy!


    I'm not sure how viewers will take the death--they just may be alienated as you say. I hope not, however, as the series really isn't about "lead actors." It's like if on the show "Friends," Joey was suddenly killed off, but at the same time, a new major character rotated in to take his spotlight. It's like Varys says, it's the realm that is important--everyone has their role to play.


    Also, as an aside, Bronn is pitch-perfect. Another actor who has seemingly ripped his performance from my imagination!
     
  3. Spero D

    Spero D Second Unit

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    But Josh HBO has deviated from the source materal before aka "True Blood" and that still made it to the screen.
     
  4. Josh Dial

    Josh Dial Producer

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    There's absolutely *no* way it could have been altered. Virtually nothing that follows would make any sense whatsoever.


    It would be like in Lord of the Rings:


    If Gandalf just beat the Balrog and went on his merry way, instead of dying.



    There's deviation from source material, which Game of Thrones has in spades, and there's complete and utter abandonment. The latter of which would lose more viewers, in my opinion (I'm one of them).
     
  5. mattCR

    mattCR Executive Producer
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    Yeah, it pretty well had to happen. If you don't do it, the books are permanently altered. If you look at True Blood, it is very different from the series, but the base concepts are there. If that goes any differently, then nothing from that point "works". There becomes nowhere for the story to go, because too much of everything else is based on factors like Vengeance from that event, etc.
     
  6. Tim Gerdes

    Tim Gerdes Second Unit

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    Let me be clear, I think it would have been disastrous for HBO to alter the original story, and I am not advocating for a change in plot. But I think HBO's miscalculation was in casting. For those who are not familiar with the original books, I think it was a bit manipulative to promote a series around its best known actor and give people the impression that he is its star, only to leave the ensemble without a lead less than a full season in. Either they should have selected a less famous actor for Ned's role, or perhaps tried to land some bigger names in other parts.

    Leaving aside the drama of Martin's plot for a second, which certainly has the right to kill characters in service of the story, rightly or wrongly I think the audience expects that the "hero" will survive and that the guy with top billing is the hero.



    But really would Friends have survived with the loss of any of the six? I doubt it. Will Two and A Half Men survive without Sheen? A lot of shows suffer when an actor moves on. I'm not saying that Game of Thrones will. It will be interesting to see if they attempt to bring in another well-known for Season 2 (if the second book adds any new characters that would warrant it).


    I will say this for the story, it took balls to kill Ned and it definitely feels that no one is safe. There is a sense of real stakes absent from similar fare (i.e. Lord of the Rings) which I definitely appreciate.
     
  7. PhilipG

    PhilipG Cinematographer

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    Still loving the show. I anticipated the "twist" ending early on when the A or B choice was given so plainly. Joffrey makes quite a good Nero. I wonder how long his mother will survive now...?


    Speaking as someone new to the story, my opinion is that yes, the show is strong enough without Sean Bean. It's proven that in these past couple of episodes where he was barely in it and the story was still as gripping as ever. I'm not sure there is a "hero" to this sort of story; there are those who make nobler decisions than others. I like the fact that it's not so black and white. Nobody really deserves the throne and that's the engine that drives the saga on and on because there's always something that needs avenged.


    Am glad they've provided some good material for Charles Dance (particularly last week) and Peter Vaughan; hope they can make better use of Julian Glover now. :)
     
  8. Spero D

    Spero D Second Unit

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    Totally agree with you there.

    OT: Two Half Men will be axed with Kutcher in the role. Everyone will tune in for the first ep, then ratings will dwindle from there.
     
  9. David Forbes

    David Forbes Supporting Actor

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    I know about a dozen people who are glued to this show who have never read the books who were totally shocked by last night's conclusion. That said, they all loved it, and said it was the best episode to date. Doesn't seem to be turning anyone off. What they're saying is now they can't wait for some Stark revenge on the Lannisters.

    The sounds coming out of Drogo's tent when the witch was doing her witch thing were pretty intense. I liked that they kept whatever was going on offstage, the way it was handled in the books.
     
  10. TravisR

    TravisR Studio Mogul

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    Yeah, that complaint has never made any sense to me. Killing off a major character is generally going to be part of the climax of a story and you don't have a climax in episode 3, you have it at the end.
    Eventhough I assumed that little weasel king kid was going to burn Sean Bean, I was shocked that his character was killed off. I figured that he'd get tossed back in the dungeon and then get freed in the finale.
     
  11. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    Ned won't be the only to die as it's apparent by the end of this series only a few will survive which is part of the charm of this story.
     
  12. joshEH

    joshEH Producer

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    The show really does have the most horse-damage of any show going right now.


    And thus passes, the moment I was spoiled on many years ago -- it still stung like hell though, and I feel kinda shaky. Excellent, excellent episode. Oh, Joffrey, you evil little fuck.


    I think what makes Ned's death so impactful in the book and in the TV show was how mean it was. It's not enough that Ned was killed, but his honor was also taken away, and I know some people here don't like book-vs.-TV show comparisons, but in the book it's pointed out that the sword that was used to chop his head off was his own sword. The one shot that really broke my heart was Arya clutching her sword. Such an amazing scene. One of the best in the books, and the TV series did it justice.


    Well, at least the Sean Bean Death Squad™ gets a new member:





    Also:


    Dinklage.


    Emmy.


    Wow.
     
  13. joshEH

    joshEH Producer

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    Unrelated side note: Loved the realization of the foreshadowing several episodes back, where Ser Jorah was discussing the problems Dothraki weapons would have with Westerosi armor...
     
  14. Quentin

    Quentin Cinematographer

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    Even long time fans of the books (like myself) rooted for Sean Bean to be cast as Ned. It was AWESOME casting! And, we all knew he was a goner. If you fail to cast someone of heft in that role you will never buy his path of honor blinding him and sealing his fate. It works so well BECAUSE it's Bean.


    And, they did it oh so well.


    Clearly, they are saving some budget money by not showing any fighting on the field. I'm interested to see how much of Robb's battle they show next week. If they're saving all that money, they had better use it for the final scene next week...



    Those dragons need to look AWESOME when Dany emerges from the fire with them...
     
  15. joshEH

    joshEH Producer

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    Yup. And Maureen Ryan also held the same sentiment (regarding massive onscreen battles and the show's budget) in her review of last night's episode.


    I would've loved to see some more of the book's battles too, especially Robb taking out Jaime's forces, but I think they pulled off the drama of those moments as well as they could have, given the budget restrictions. Tyrion both pre- and post-battle was especially entertaining -- some dramatic moments mixed with darkly-humorous ones.


    Even the Dothraki stuff looked great this episode, and that's something I've been unable to say all season. I just think Alan Taylor seemed to have a handle on how to shoot this kind of story that previous directors didn't. We even got some decent exterior shots of King's Landing, wide and close. That's something I had kind of given up on seeing.


    Even though I was spoiled on it years and years ago (re: Ned's death at the hands of Shithead Taintface), as a fan of ruthless narrative decisions, I can only admire Martin repeatedly challenging himself and his readership in such a way, and I appreciate HBO for sticking to that formula. Not for nothing, but whatever goes down in the finale, I'm absolutely certain that

    Drogo is still fucked.




    I feel kinda bad for Gleeson. He's great in the role of Joffrey...but he's SO great, that he might never find work as anything but an insufferable little demon-seed again. (He and Tom Felton from Harry Potter will have to form a therapy-group together.)
     
  16. Greg.K

    Greg.K Screenwriter

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    I felt cheated a bit by the lack of battles.. I think they could have done a bit more. Hopefully the finale will make up for it. But that's a minor mar on the episode.


    I pretty much expected what happened to Ned to happen, but I was kind of hoping he'd expose Joffrey at the last second.
     
  17. Josh Dial

    Josh Dial Producer

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    To be fair, Martin keeps a lot of the battles off the pages, too. More often than not, results of battles are delivered after-the-fact, in an almost summary form.


    Still, it would be nice to throw us 5 minutes of blood and gore mass slaughter, here and there :)
     
  18. Adam_S

    Adam_S Producer

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    Fixed that for you.
     
  19. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    How can it be a miscalculation when it's considered one of the greatest films ever made?
     
  20. Steve_Tk

    Steve_Tk Cinematographer

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    I understood and appreciate the lack of the huge scale battle. If it saves money and keeps the show going I'm fine with it. I've seen the huge battles before. Although I am looking forward to when someone kills Jamie Lanaster. Hopefully they show that. No idea where the Khal story line is going, now I'm utterly confused on that end.

    Are there only 10 episodes in this season, not 12? I was hoping Boromir outed the King at the end, but understand why he didn't. Obviously I haven't read the books, but I think that King may come in contact with the youngest daughters sword.
     

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