“You will never walk again. But you will fly.”
December 29, 2015 6:15 PM   Subscribe

Game of Thrones: First look at Bran Stark in season 6 . [Entertainment Weekly]
We last saw Bran meeting the cave-dwelling mystical Three-Eyed Raven (now played by Max von Sydow) in the season 4 finale as Bran sought to control his fledgling psychic powers. As you can see, the 16-year-old actor has grown plenty since we last saw him. He now has short hair and is around six feet tall (poor Hodor’s back!).

Game of Thrones season 6 to explore past and future, actor reveals. [Entertainment Weekly]
“Previously Bran’s seen tiny glimpses of future or past but never has he been very much in control in the situation,” he says. “Now we’re given looks into very important events in the past, present and future of this world and Bran is beginning to piece them together like a detective, almost as if he’s watching the show. Equally, he’s now discovering how crucial he could be in the Great War. It’s quite Inception-y.”
posted by Fizz (55 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
 
*patiently waits for Cleganebowl to happen*
posted by Fizz at 6:25 PM on December 29, 2015 [5 favorites]


I guess we shouldn't be spoilery in here, but listening to show watchers debate the meaning of your title quote as a book reader was one of the highlights of my last job. Sweet summer children, all of them.
posted by yellowbinder at 6:27 PM on December 29, 2015 [2 favorites]


threat level of psychic dragon sex: elevated
posted by thelonius at 6:29 PM on December 29, 2015 [4 favorites]


Actually the best and worst part of the rapidly approaching season has been the ever increasing rage on the asoif subreddit towards GRRM for not publishing faster and letting the show pass him. They've been trying to be patient for years, but the entitlement is leaking.
posted by yellowbinder at 6:33 PM on December 29, 2015 [8 favorites]


Not to mention the outrage over the actions of a certain Mannis on the show. And low-level panic about whether they will be reflected in the book . . .
posted by schroedinger at 6:35 PM on December 29, 2015 [4 favorites]


Wait, is Cleganebowl confirmed?
posted by The Giant Squid at 6:37 PM on December 29, 2015 [1 favorite]


the ever increasing rage on the asoif subreddit towards GRRM for not publishing faster

I read the first three books, grew more and more frustrated with GRRM and the long wait and ultimately made the decision to put my trust in HBO, David Benioff and Dan Weiss. I'm content with letting HBO and the other writers take the reigns and carve out the rest of this series/show.

I'm more than entertained and satisfied with the direction they've taken. Maybe some day in the distant future, if/when GRRM has finally finished, I'll pick the books back up.
posted by Fizz at 6:38 PM on December 29, 2015


I haven't this series at all. I really want to, it looks great, but I have a policy of not starting a series until the author has finished it.

I call it the Robert Jordan Rule.
posted by mhoye at 6:50 PM on December 29, 2015 [16 favorites]


Has there ever been another epic series like this where a derivative version (the TV show) has passed by the original text (the books)? I have to think GRRM is not going to like where that leaves him. Rolling in money still, I'm sure, but no longer the official publisher of canon.
posted by Nelson at 6:52 PM on December 29, 2015


Has there ever been another epic series like this where a derivative version (the TV show) has passed by the original text (the books)? I have to think GRRM is not going to like where that leaves him.

GRRM has already given a final road-map to HBO, David Benioff and Dan Weiss. They know what the end game is.
“Luckily, we’ve been talking about this with George for a long time, ever since we saw this could happen, and we know where things are heading. And so we’ll eventually, basically, meet up at pretty much the same place where George is going; there might be a few deviations along the route, but we’re heading towards the same destination. I kind of wish that there were some things we didn’t have to spoil, but we’re kind of stuck between a rock and a hard place. The show must go on. . .and that’s what we’re going to do.” via: [Vanity Fair]
posted by Fizz at 6:56 PM on December 29, 2015


Has there ever been another epic series like this where a derivative version (the TV show) has passed by the original text (the books)?

It happens in Japan fairly regularly, when a long-running anime series outpaces the manga. I don't think it's ever happened quite like this in the US before.
posted by Faint of Butt at 6:59 PM on December 29, 2015 [6 favorites]


hodor.
posted by schmod at 7:03 PM on December 29, 2015 [5 favorites]


I love the show, but i love the books more, so i'm sad that the show will now be spoiling the books. But not sad enough to not watch the show :P
posted by Hazelsmrf at 7:09 PM on December 29, 2015 [3 favorites]


And no I don't think that GRRM is my bitch.
posted by Hazelsmrf at 7:09 PM on December 29, 2015 [1 favorite]


threat level of psychic dragon sex: elevated

Wait.... Are you saying there's a Pern crossover?
posted by Mezentian at 7:10 PM on December 29, 2015 [14 favorites]


I've read/watched various film adaptions in many patterns. The first I remember was The World According to Garp, got about half way and just couldn't finish it, the film came out, watched the film, finished the book. I've read a couple books "between" (at intermission?) a film. So the pattern of GoT is just totally fun and cool, basically just keeping up, a bit ahead, a bit behind.

(all them those extreme closure and spoiler obsessives just need a wee bit'o medication perhaps ;-)
posted by sammyo at 8:31 PM on December 29, 2015


Wait, is Cleganebowl confirmed?

[HYPE INTENSIFIES]
posted by enjoymoreradio at 8:52 PM on December 29, 2015 [5 favorites]


It happens in Japan fairly regularly, when a long-running anime series outpaces the manga.

This, very much. Most extreme example I can come up with would be Evangelion, whose anime passed its manga in the early winter of 1995, barely a year after the manga first appeared on the scene, and wrapped everything up in two seasons and a movie by the end of July, 1997. The manga, meanwhile, puttered along until June, 2013.
posted by fifthrider at 9:55 PM on December 29, 2015 [2 favorites]


Has there ever been another epic series like this where a derivative version (the TV show) has passed by the original text (the books)?

Isn't that how Star Wars went, with all the books as a derivative version of the original text? Also, almost any television show based on a book or series of books? Little House on the Prairie (the TV show) ran for 9 seasons, that must have included a bunch of stuff not in the source books.
posted by ActingTheGoat at 10:42 PM on December 29, 2015


Has there ever been another epic series like this where a derivative version (the TV show) has passed by the original text (the books)? I have to think GRRM is not going to like where that leaves him. Rolling in money still, I'm sure, but no longer the official publisher of canon.

I say this as someone who likes Martin a lot and is in fact not at all angry with the pace that he's been writing (because the show pretty much guarantees that I'll be getting an ending to the story), but I've suspected for years that Martin has simply lost interest in writing the Song of Ice and Fire books.

He's not my bitch. He's entitled to take this victory lap (which I suspect he'll be taking for the remainder of his life). He's 67 years old, which is an age at which I certainly hope to be retired and enjoying the hard-earned fruits of my labor. If he wants to spend his remaining years watching football, writing Wild Cards and editing fantasy compilations, I'll find a way to be content with the years he's given us and the world that he's left in mostly capable hands.

But, yeah, I don't think we're ever going to see that seventh book.
posted by Parasite Unseen at 10:45 PM on December 29, 2015 [11 favorites]


See, GRRM likes world-building, side-stories. and shooting the shit about his creation. He just doesn't like the actual process of writing. I totally sympathize with that. I like going into the lab, playing with experiments, talking about my science, and coming up with little side projects. But if you ask me to put together a presentation, a paper, or a research summary--you know, actual, concrete products--I will discover that it's the perfect time to really organize all the MP3s on my computer. Because I am a big procrastinator and hate writing.

If I were GRRM the television show would be a huge weight off my back. Finally, someone else can do the heavy lifting. The only problem would be that it didn't get in all the details I liked and I was still kind of expected to write the books.

Isn't that how Star Wars went, with all the books as a derivative version of the original text?

Star Wars wasn't a book first.
posted by schroedinger at 11:07 PM on December 29, 2015 [6 favorites]


but I have a policy of not starting a series until the author has finished it.

nothing truly great is ever finished
posted by philip-random at 11:40 PM on December 29, 2015


Isn't that how Star Wars went, with all the books as a derivative version of the original text?

Star Wars wasn't a book first.


Of course it wasn't. But it was an epic series where a derivative version (the Expanded Universe books) passed by the original text (the Star Wars trilogy.)
posted by ActingTheGoat at 11:46 PM on December 29, 2015


Ah, you called the films "text" and I was confused.
posted by schroedinger at 2:49 AM on December 30, 2015 [1 favorite]


Yeah, but I bet Bran would really prefer to walk.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 2:58 AM on December 30, 2015 [1 favorite]


Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck don't speak as they drive up to the Martin compound. Franck has the key. Abraham has the chloroform. They know what they must do.

When Martin comes to a few days later, he finds a message from his publisher - "THANK YOU, GEORGE! Loved the book! Going to press immediately!"
posted by robocop is bleeding at 3:36 AM on December 30, 2015 [3 favorites]


The only problem would be that it didn't get in all the details I liked and I was still kind of expected to write the books.

How funny would it be if he decides not to? If the reception of the next few seasons of the show is positive enough, GRRM might not want to mess with (or compete with) what they (W&B) create. I certainly expect Martin to stay highly involved with the show, so they might not leave him with anything more to say. The books might end up seeming redundant.
posted by Edgewise at 3:49 AM on December 30, 2015


robocop is bleeding.... THAT IS WRONG. And lacks many details on house history and lamprey pie.
posted by Mezentian at 4:09 AM on December 30, 2015 [2 favorites]


I read the first three books, grew more and more frustrated with GRRM and the long wait and ultimately made the decision to put my trust in HBO, David Benioff and Dan Weiss. I'm content with letting HBO and the other writers take the reigns and carve out the rest of this series/show.

I see what you did there, Fizz.
posted by Thistledown at 4:10 AM on December 30, 2015 [4 favorites]


The series is dead to me. Too many deviations from the canon, too much rapey rapey. I'll wait for the books (rumors grow of a shadow in the Southwest). I can usually tolerate changes from canon when you go from books to TV/film. Hell, I even enjoyed the Hobbit movies. But by season four there were changes that were just inexplicable and intolerable. The absence of Lady Stoneheart, Jaime raping his sister, changing that crucial last dialog with Jaime/Tyrion/Tywin, etc. Now they've put Sansa in the North, raped her, and oh, I give up. I'm done with that series.
posted by Ber at 5:52 AM on December 30, 2015 [4 favorites]


Ah, you called the films "text" and I was confused.

My freshman year of college, in a nutshell.
posted by thivaia at 6:32 AM on December 30, 2015 [5 favorites]


But, yeah, I don't think we're ever going to see that seventh book.

It'd be funny if the last book came out a year after the sixth, and it was just 150 pages wrapping up every loose plot ploint bam bam bam.
posted by echocollate at 6:38 AM on December 30, 2015 [5 favorites]


Watching r/asoiaf descent into insanity over the release of TWoW has been more entertaining than the show at times.

And if GRRM doesn't get TWoW out before the end of s6, it's never happening. The only thing that was keeping him somewhat interested in finishing the show was certain big reveals and twists on the horizons.

My crazy wish is if they do decide to do a novelization of the series, they get JK Rowling to complete. It would never happen for a hundred reasons but could you imagine the howls of outrage? It would be delicious.
posted by bgal81 at 6:52 AM on December 30, 2015 [3 favorites]


Ber: "The series is dead to me. Too many deviations from the canon, too much rapey rapey."

Did you read different books than I did?
posted by schmod at 7:40 AM on December 30, 2015 [5 favorites]


The books are probably worse when it comes to sexual violence and do suffer the same problems of the show of allegedly being being based in "realism" despite the fact that it's only female characters who suffer threats of sexual violence and that y'know we're talking about a world with dragons and wizards and this is where you decide to add realism?

That said, the show can seem rapey-er because a lot of the rape in the books is only mentioned and does not happen in PoV chapters. Just like there isn't much on-page violence of any other sort, or battles, most are only mentioned as the characters eat, drink, and scheme.

Also, the show has been known to take scenes that were at least ambiguous like Dany and Drogo's first time or Jaime and Cersei in the sept, and makes them unambiguously rapey. Which could be to its credit if they handled it better but it just comes off as titillation. On top of that they just add more sexual violence to certain female characters stories - Sansa, Meera, Gilly - even though it doesn't add to the story and at times just proves how unrealistic their view of sexual violence is. Meera, Bran, and Jojen are ambushed but somehow the rebellious Night's Watchmen all only focus on Meera? Yeah, no. It's not that I want to see more rape on that show but if you're going to hide your sexual violence behind realism then you need to be actually realistic.
posted by bgal81 at 8:04 AM on December 30, 2015 [2 favorites]


Sansa was raped! And the camera focused on Theon as opposed to Sansa, so we could see her getting raped!

Evidently that was bridge too far for some people, as opposed to a season of Theon getting tortured and mutilated.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:04 AM on December 30, 2015 [3 favorites]


It was a bridge too far because we have to see violence done against women all the damn time. If that plot point was so important, they could have told it simply by having Reek close the door, cut to the next episode, Sansa bruised in the bath.

Thing is, we already know that Bolton is a monster. The scene was utterly superfluous.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 8:12 AM on December 30, 2015 [8 favorites]


I can believe them that they wanted Theon as the audience stand-in and maybe thought it was a bridge too far to linger on Sansa. Still it was after Sansa inexplicably went backwards in characterization and couldn't even figure out how to handle Fat Walda so it was just crappy all-around.

But honestly, it would have been creepier if Ramsay had dismissed Theon and the last thing we saw was Sansa removing her shawl as the door closes. We know what Ramsay is capable of. Sometimes less is more.
posted by bgal81 at 8:13 AM on December 30, 2015


But honestly, it would have been creepier if Ramsay had dismissed Theon and the last thing we saw was Sansa removing her shawl as the door closes. We know what Ramsay is capable of. Sometimes less is more.

I would agree, but at this point in the series, people should know that this isn't the series to get one's subtle creepy quota from. It's all loud, brash and in your face. Though the showerunners have taken viewer outrage over that scene into consideration for season 6.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:19 AM on December 30, 2015 [1 favorite]


He just doesn't like the actual process of writing.

Hardly anybody does. It's hard and sometimes unpleasant work. He's still managed to publish millions of words of commercial quality prose. I don't think this is likely to be a relevant issue.
posted by howfar at 8:35 AM on December 30, 2015 [1 favorite]


I think it's an even split between things the show handles better and things it...really just doesn't. Tyrion meets Dany! Fantastic. The nuking from space of Tyrion's godawful storyline from book five would be gift enough all on its own, but giving us this in its place? So good. But...Littlefinger has some disastrous brainfart and leaves Sansa with House the Hills Have Eyes? The biggest problem I have with this -- and I am 100% in sympathy with people whose biggest problem is that Sansa is raped, which I also am not at all crazy about, but -- the biggest problem I have with this is it requires Littlefinger suddenly either lose interest in Sansa's welfare or become a stone cold idiot, and the show doesn't even seem to care which it is. Characters acting out of character to make a plot work is why God created Doctor Who, not Game of Thrones!
posted by kittens for breakfast at 9:24 AM on December 30, 2015 [8 favorites]


Hardly anybody does. It's hard and sometimes unpleasant work. He's still managed to publish millions of words of commercial quality prose. I don't think this is likely to be a relevant issue.

Thanks for saying this. I have a friend who's an aspiring author and she has some great ideas, but is frequently racked with guilt because some of her story is expository in nature and she hates, hates writing it. She seems to think that all writing should be a near-ecstatic experience all of the time. I've said more than once that she needs to be less harsh on herself, but it doesn't suage her conscience.
posted by eclectist at 9:38 AM on December 30, 2015 [1 favorite]


I have with this is it requires Littlefinger suddenly either lose interest in Sansa's welfare or become a stone cold idiot,

The only way it makes sense is if Littlefinger knows what he's doing but is planning on attacking the Boltons and wants to set him self up as the hero so he can Stockholm Sansa into loving him by rescuing her and giving her the North. It's a huge gamble but at least it would show some forethought.

And the show really does do some things betters. As I'm certain GRRM intended Tyrion to be a heroic figure, I am 100% okay with the show whitewashing his behavior. I'm also okay with it because Cersei on the show is a much better character than in the books, imo. Though in her case whitewashing can be considered three-dimensional characterization. Also better? Shae (although I hate how they decided to match up with the show without giving some insight into why Shae changed her mind), Margaery, Jorah, Daario, and the entire Meeren plot.

On the flipside, the show versions of Renly, Stannis, Talisa Jeyne, and the entire Northern plot after Robb is crowned king (including the Red Wedding) were weak as hell.
posted by bgal81 at 9:38 AM on December 30, 2015 [2 favorites]


I've suspected for years that Martin has simply lost interest in writing the Song of Ice and Fire books

This has been my read for some time as well. As you say, he doesn't owe us anything, but I don't think it's somehow crazy or demanding to simply point out that the trend of the time between books for him (and the sneaking in of yet another book) basically points to the series never finishing. If he wants to spend his time pursuing other things, that's cool, but my suspicion of this being the case is why I have no interest in the books at this point.

Meanwhile, regarding Bran on the show: I was kinda surprised they didn't film a bunch of stuff last season for him, even if just to do it while he was still younger/smaller. It leaked pretty early that he and Hodor had the season off, more or less, but it feels like it would have been a good idea to use the time to film his scenes, even if they stayed under wraps till the coming season. It'll be interesting to see how they bridge it, e.g. with a global time jump, or just ignoring it, or what.
posted by tocts at 3:07 PM on December 30, 2015


I remember reading something about GRRM originally planning a 3-year time jump somewhere in the series and then abandoning it for Endless Wandering Stories. Maybe they'll do that.
posted by schroedinger at 10:18 PM on December 30, 2015


The time jump was after the first book, from memory.

I've suspected for years that Martin has simply lost interest in writing the Song of Ice and Fire books

He says this in Rretrospective. Something about loving the start and the creative process, less so with completion.
It's why he has started but never finished so many ideas.
posted by Mezentian at 10:35 PM on December 30, 2015


Wait, is Cleganebowl confirmed?

[HYPE INTENSIFIES]


CLEGANEBOWL: The Hype Awakens (Official Trailer)
posted by homunculus at 11:47 AM on January 2, 2016


I read the first three books... Maybe some day in the distant future, if/when GRRM has finally finished, I'll pick the books back up.

When you read books 4 & 5, I recommend following this chronological chapter order. I found them quite enjoyable read this way.
posted by homunculus at 11:56 AM on January 2, 2016


sooooooo GRRM announced The Winds of Winter will not be out before the show. I am not surprised, many book fans (at least in /r/asoiaf) are pitching a fit.
posted by schroedinger at 12:04 PM on January 2, 2016






I asked Has there ever been another epic series like this where a derivative version (the TV show) has passed by the original text (the books)?

GRRM himself can't think of one
The case of GAME OF THRONES and A SONG OF ICE AND FIRE is perhaps unique. I can't think of any other instance where the movie or TV show came out as the source material was still being written.
posted by Nelson at 1:33 PM on January 2, 2016


Depends how you take that quote, but the Harry Potter novel series was finished after the films started being made.

As for whether they get written now or ever? Does it matter? As he says, they've diverged. And given that GRRM has never had a clue how the novels will progress (he might have an idea of the finale, but he's clearly been purely making it up as he goes along since about a quarter of the way into the first book) there's no definitive story to worry about losing.

If it makes you feel better, adopt a Tolkienesque approach and view the different media as different historical sources for the same long past/far distant events.
posted by howfar at 4:28 PM on January 2, 2016






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