In the wake of the first episode, we have seen several people take issue with—on Twitter as well as on various forums—the show’s portrayal of certain issues relating to race and gender. There has also been some lively discussion on our own forum, such as here and here. Please note that both topics are ones that allow spoilers from the books to be posted.
A commentary of our own can be found in our newest article, a brief consideration of the criticism directed towards the show and the books on these matters.
All the great press around the show has started to overshadow some of the interviews, but we thought that these two interviews with Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Jaime Lannister) were worth noting. First, this “tease” from TV.com which includes his musing question, “The one thing I don’t understand is that sex [in this show] has to be from behind. Why is that?” Don’t worry, Nikolaj, sometimes the ladies are on top!
And then we have Den of Geek with an excellent interview. Note, though, that at one point Coster-Waldau speculates about what his character might be up to in the fifth volume of the series. He is, I reiterate, speculating, and simply emphasizing something about the way GRRM writes his characters. It is not a spoiler!
James Hibberd on EW had a chat about the renewal with HBO executives Michael Lombardo and Richard Plepler, in which they discuss their happiness with the viewership. They note that its numbers are stronger than True Blood‘s were in its first season, and they predict it’s a “slow build” show that will win over more viewers as more episodes air and they decide that it’s worth watching even if they don’t consider themselves a fan of the genre.
On the other hand, they note that Benioff and Weiss are largely writing this on their own, without help of staff (except the odd free-lanced episode), and they think 10 episodes would be best to keep quality high. Which is, one supposes, an imminently reasonable reason to stick to 10 episodes. But the next season, if we are so lucky (*knock on wood*)? This may be why Benioff and Weiss have suggested that they wouldn’t mind splitting the third book into two seasons.
Via Variety (and, actually, a recent interview or two), George R.R. Martin has revealed what section of the second series he’ll be writing. A bit of spoiler protection is in order…
Apologies for the down time ... but surely it mitigates a bit to know…
... that Game of Thrones has been renewed! GRRM has posted the press release, which we’ll copy below. He is, obviously, very excited! A minimum of ten new episodes seems sure, but George expresses his hopes (and ours, we may add) that HBO will order up 12 episodes. Fingers crossed!
This comes after news that while the initial airing had a modest number of viewers—2.2 million as opposed to Boardwalk Empire‘s sensational 4.8m—it had much more competition in terms of the NBA playoffs and baseball. When the two repeats afterward are added to the mix, total viewership on Sunday reached 4.2 million. No numbers are yet available on the Monday airings across six HBO channels, or DVR figures and the like, but we expect we’ll hear more about those soon.
Here’s the release below:
Explosions of tweeting, post-episode recaps, and more followed yesterday’s premiere of Game of Thrones. We’ve contributed a bit to that, with a recap and review for Suvudu, and a audio podcast with Tom and Daniel of MTV Geek in which we discuss the show.
And, on top of that, we do a star turn *cough* on Sky’s post-episode Thronecast, where we discuss Westeros a bit, and just some quick views on the episode just seen. Uhm ... just ignore the fact that I look like an idiot, glancing down at the monitor rather than looking at the camera. I’ll attempt to do better next time! On the bright side, Linda’s much, much better than I am.
Finally, HBO has joined in the fun, not only releasing an “Inside the Episode” video, but by popular demand they’ve placed the title sequence on Youtube in glorious 720p, exactly as it was meant to be watched! See the embed below:
So… how was your night last night? Was it everything you wanted? Almost? Not at all? Join the discussion and discuss the series with fellow fans! And while you’re at it, feel free to check out our extensive episode guide! Or ... how about going inside the episode with executive producers David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, or a preview of episode 2, The Kingsroad?
Now that the first episode, “Winter is Coming”, is up, we provide a lengthy recap plus a detailed analysis in our episode guide. More content to come tomorrow, including a look at the changes from book to screen.
In the mean time, after reading up, why not join the discussion?
Today is the day! Today, the Game of Thrones begins. For those who haven’t followed the anxious wait ever since the pilot was announced, an introduction to what we offer in terms of Game of Thrones coverage here at Westeros is in order.
So, for the last several days I’d been compiling links to every review, for one great big review post… but, forget it, check out Metacritic instead, it’ll have some of the highlights (however, listen to Myles McNutt when he tells you to ignore the arbitrary metascore). Of particular note are this long review from James Poniewozik, a fan of the novels, and this one from Alan Sepinwall, who hasn’t read the novels.
On the other hand, we should probably highlight the controversy that Game of Thrones sparked, when two critics spent far more time complaining about the genre and its fans (including implying that there can’t possibly be many women interested in watching or reading something like the series) than they did actually reviewing the series itself. Tony Patterson at Slate and Ginia Bellafante New York Times win plaudits for stirring up controversy, if nothing else. Ms. Bellafante’s sexist attitude was especially enraging to most “geek girls”, and I can attest to Twitter being absolutely filled with dialog about it. Geek Femme and Geek Mom gave two excellent responses to Ms. Bellanfate, while today we have Daniel Abraham at Orbit and Matt Zoeller Seitz remarking on both reviewers in terms of their allowing genre bias to get in the way of their job as rviewers.
So, we’ll leave that for reviews, except that we must absolutely plug Todd VanDerWerff and Libby Hill’s podcast, “Television on the Internet”. The last half hour of Episode 59 is dedicated to Game of Thrones. It’s very good, with a nice casual style and some excellent back-and-forth. Both like it, and both have worthwhile things to say about it.
Below are links to interviews and some interesting articles related to the series, which premieres tomorrow:
With all the buzz and excitement—HBO’s Game of Thrones just two days away, A Dance with Dragons due on July 12—there’s a great deal of writing and analysis devoted to A Song of Ice and Fire, and we’ve been asked by Suvudu.com (the official portal for SF/F/H of all kinds for Random House) to start posting post-episode reviews and commentaries on various facets of the novels in relation to the TV show.
We’ve introduced ourselves and the project, but you’ll have to wait for until Monday for our first episode analysis.
HBO has unveiled a Visual Guide to the new Game of Thrones. Featuring interactive maps—including an excellent look at the coast of Essos and the placement of most (but not all) of the Free Cities, apparently based on GRRM’s own maps—and details on various characters, organization, and history, it’s a great guide to the TV show’s version of the novels. There are little changes, here and there, and it’ll be fun spotting some of the departures from the setting’s history in particular.
Ever wondered what an arakh is? Or a weirwood? Game of Thrones will introduce those new to the series to more than a few new words. In the Citadel we have extensive resources for A Song of Ice and Fire but some of it is too extensive to serve as handy guides for newcomers and others contain spoilers. Because of this we are planning to add some resourced geared specifically towards TV-show viewers to the Features section of our Game of Thrones site. The first such resource is A Lexicon of Ice and Fire, covering some of the words you might want to look up. Enjoy, and let us know about any additions you want to see to the Lexicon or any ideas you have for other Features in this vein.
Ah-ha, this is the last Artisans featurette before the premiere on the 17th. Graphic artist Jim Stanes discusses a subject near and dear to our hearts: Heraldry and Maps. This video’s full of some of the heraldic images I had a sneak peek at when I visited the production in Belfast, and now everyone else can see them too!
Bryan Cogman has a new post at Making Game of Thrones, describing a bit of post-production life, his visit to the food trucks in Los Angeles, and an update on what he’s currently doing (extras for the season 1 Blu-rays [and, presumably, DVDs, though really, you’ll want this show in Blu-ray we suspect…])
But, as it happens, that’s not all that features Bryan out there. As he mentioned in our interview with him, he’s a trained actor. A trained actor with a focus on Shakespeare. Yes, ladies and gentleman… he’s a Shakespeare guy. As he proves in this short webisode of Tiny Apartment, a comedy created by some friends of his: