Running Press, a publisher specializing in gift books and associated collectible “kits”, has turned its attention once again to the Seven Kingdoms with its latest book:Game of Thrones: The Noble Houses of Westeros.
A small but handsome, well-made volume using heavy paper stock, the 160 pages within it are devoted to a very brief overview of eleven significant noble families that have featured in the series since its inception, from the Starks and Lannisters and Targaryens all the way to more recent notable such as the Boltons and Freys. This is not really intended as a very informative book, of course: each house section gives a glimpse at the family’s seat, a brief family tree with some remarks on the fates of members living and dead, and photographs of the performers (most of them Helen Sloan’s fine work, but also stills from Macall Polay, Paul Schiraldi, and more.)
Besides a lovely new packaging inspired by the famed opening credits of the series (the first two sets feature a Stark-themed Winterfell and a Lannister-themed King’s Landing, and the next two sets will feature the Twins and the Wall when they are released; it’s worth noting that the central sigils also double as refrigerator magnets!), the chief draw is that the set will feature a brand new audio mix utilizing Dolby’s Atmos techology. This is an evolution from things like Dolby TrueHD, taking the audio experience in some very interesting directions. Although Atmos is quite new, and it may take awhile for there to be wide use of Atmos-capable speakers (particularly upwards-firing speakers designed to bounce sound off a ceiling to help create verticality, which spare home theater enthusiasts the cost and difficulty of mounting speakers on the ceiling), it’s worth noting that the Bluray of course also works with TrueHD and will play just fine on non-Atmos 5.1 or 7.1 audio systems.
Telltale Games has announced a November 17th release date for the final episode in their Game of Thrones adventure series, and to mark the occasion Telltales has made the first episode free on the iOs platform, as well as Android, XBox, and Playstation platforms. Telltale Games notes on their official blog that this final episode, titled “The Ice Dragon”, will be the first Telltale Games episodic installment recieving a same-day release on all available platforms; previous installments tended to role out over two or three days.
Finally, Telltale has put together a video featuring some of the Game of Thrones cast members—specifically Emilia Clarke, Natalie Dormer, and Iwan Rheon—who’ve lent their voices to the game:
New York Comic Con is presently under way, and it has featured a bevy of notable Game of Thrones content—not least a panel with actors Natalie Dormer, Keisha Castle-Hughes, and Finn Jones where they dicussed their roles on their show and offered some hints of what was yet to come. Here’s a video of the proceedings, courtesy of Emergency Awesome:
The convention was also filled with Game of Thrones-licensed memorabilia, figures, and more. Our friends at Dark Horse Comics revealed a number of their upcoming releases, including a resin statue of the Night’s King, a Varys figure, and this extremely impressive limited edition depicting Daenerys and Drogon from season 4. We have a review sample of that particular piece, and the size of Drogon crouched on its base is quite remarkable!
Also featured at the convention were McFarlane Toys, who will be releasing their mini-figure sets next year. These will come in “Blind bags”, meaning that collectors will buy bags containing random figures (or, if they’re really dedicated, they can go for whole cases of figures)—not unlike the Funko blind bags of mini-Pop! figures. However, McFarlane Toys is going beyond this to also create suitabel dioramas where one can display these figures, as with the Iron Throne set, or special add-on sets like the Stark and Lannister banner construction kit. Or this upcoming “Attack on the Wall” diorama, featuring a giant:
These McFarlane sets are bananas pic.twitter.com/VzRZkHLR7I— The Robot's Voice (@TheRobotsVoice) October 9, 2015
The news ran wild last night with the report from the Television Critics’ Association summer session panel where HBO executive Michael Lombardo spoke about Game of Thrones and remarked the following:
“Seven-seasons-and-out has never been the [internal] conversation. The question is: How much beyond seven are we going to do? Obviously we’re shooting six now, hopefully discussing seven. [David & Dan] feel like there’s two more years after six. I would always love for them to change their minds, but that’s what we’re looking at right now.”
On top of that, when asked about potential prequels, Lombardo expressed strong willingness to further delve into the Game of Thrones story once the main series was done.
The latest episode of the Game of Thrones game from Telltale Games is just around the corner, with a release date of July 21st on PC, Mac, and Playstation 3-4, XBox versions on the 22nd, and iOS/Android on the 23rd.
Titled “A Nest of Vipers”, the episode looks to feature pit-fighting action with Asher, young Lady Mira visiting Tyrion Lannister in his cell, and a significant amount of Ramsay Bolton’s nastiness. And speaking of Asher, an image released by Telltale Games serves as a bit of a spoiler regarding where his story takes him…
HBO UK teamed up to invite fans, media, and more to a special screening of the final episode of season 5, “”. Sounds like a deal of fun was had by those who attended. In the video below, you’ll see and hear some of the reactions as the episode rolled and its shocking turns came onto the screen:
The season is now available for download in Digital HD in the UK, which is part of the reason for the event. Fans can download individual episodes or the entire season through retailers such as iTunes, Google Play, Amazon Instant Video, blinkbox, Wauki.tv, and XBox Video. BT TV and Talk Talk TV can also buy and watch through their set-top boxes.
With season 5 completed (see our episode guide on the final episode for some of our thoughts), there’s a lot of discussion about what the show did right or wrong this season, interviews with various members of cast and crew, and more. But Random House—publishers, through their subsidiary Bantam, of all things A Song of Ice and Fire—asked us to provide a list of 11 reasons why fans of the show might want to give the books a try if they haven’t already!
You can find the article here.
An initial update on the finale to season 5 can be found at our episode guide for “Mother’s Mercy”. As usual, we’ve run through the book-to-screen adaptation, and have included the post-episode extra videos that HBO usually releases. However, we haven’t watched them and can’t vouch for whether there may be spoilers in those videos, so view them at your own risk.
We’ll have a video review up some time tomorrow, and perhaps the written review as well.
Our friends over at Dark Horse have launched a special sweepstakes ahead of the finale of Game of Thrones, and you can read about all the details here!
A bevy of terrific Game of Thrones items - including figurines, busts, Bluray sets, and more—can be unlocked if enough fans retweet this tweet. With each unlocked level, there’s an additional chance for participants to win one of the prize packages! At present count, the contest already has 425 retweets, so well on its way to unlocking the last level.
The sweepstakes are open only to residents of the U.S., and certain other strictures apply, so bear that in mind! Full details, including all applicable rules and limitations, can be found here.
We’ve posted our episode guide for the latest episode, “The Dance of Dragons”, as quickly as we could. Lots of controversy over the depiction of Stannis Baratheon in this episode, to say the least! Our episode guide currently only contains our book-to-screen breakdown, and video extras from HBO. Suffice it to say, we’re going to try and get a review video out ASAP.
HBO has also provided its usual preview, this time for the season finale, “Mother’s Mercy”. You can see it below:
Over the five seasons of the show, the title sequence has surely become one of the most recognizable on TV, and not just because of the theme music. The visuals, too, have taken on a life of their own and several homages have been created over the years. A key feature of the visuals is the astrolabe and this summer a replica of that will be available from Insight Collectibles as part of a collector’s edition package with the popular pop-up book Game of Thrones: A Pop-Up Guide to Westeros. The astrolabe is described as follows :
“The astrolabe stands over 13 inches high and is fully articulated, with moving rings that dynamically replicate the oscillating movement of the astrolabe seen in the Game of Thrones intro sequence. The astrolabe is supported by a stand that features the sigils associated with the four Great Houses of Westeros, Stark, Lannister, Targaryen and Baratheon. Each sigil is highly detailed, from the coat of the Stark direwolf to the talons of the Targaryen dragon.”
In addition to the astrolabe and the new edition of the pop-up book, Insight Collectibles is also releasing a set of Deluxe Stationery Sets for Houses Stark, Targaryen and Lannister and a set of Hardcover Journals for Houses Baratheon, Lannister, Stark and Targaryen.
Edited to add: We don’t yet have a specific release date for any of these products beyond “this summer”. The astrolabe (with the pop-up book included) will retail for $495.00 and the stationary sets for $34.95.
We’ve gone and updated our episode guide for “Hardhome” with our book-to-screen breakdown—the analysis and video review, as well as the recap, will take a day or two more to get out. We’ve also added HBO’s videos (just two, this time around; usually it’s been four videos) for the episode in the Extras section.
Also, HBO’s released the trailer for episode 9, “The Dance of Dragons”. It’s worth watching, to say the least!
HBO has been sitting tight on releasing information on the finale of season 5, but it has now sent out a press release. See the details below, including the brief logline regarding the events of the episode:
Episode #50: “Mother’s Mercy” (season finale)
Debut: SUNDAY, JUNE 14 (9:00-10:00 p.m.)
Other HBO playdates: June 14 (11:30 p.m., 2:00 a.m.), 15 (10:30 p.m.), 16 (9:00 p.m., 1:50 a.m.), 17 (2:25 a.m.), 18 (10:00 p.m.), 19 (9:00 p.m.), 20 (10:30 p.m.) and 26 (8:00 p.m.)
HBO2 playdates: June 15 (9:00 p.m.), 19 (2:30 a.m.), 20 (2:45 p.m.) and 21 (8:00 p.m.)
Written by David Benioff & D.B. Weiss; directed by David Nutter.
Following the airing of “The Gift”, we managed to get up the book-to-screen breakdown in our episode guide.
Since then, we’ve released two other parts of the guide. First up is our video review, which you can see below:
Last night, we also provided our written analysis of the episode, which touches some points that we didn’t cover in the video. You can find that here. The primary thing left is now our complete recap, which we’ll definitely do, but that particular part of our regular episode guide raises a question.