There is a fine line you have to traverse when you are adapting a work from one medium to another. Especially when that transition involves going from print to screen. Adapting a work for film or TV can be a monumental undertaking. The producers for HBO’s A Game of Thrones, David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, have certainly walked that fine path on their journey to bring life to the world and people who George R.R. Martin has created.
Changing up existing canon can be essential in pushing out a successful adaptation, but can also bring the ire of the fanbase for the original work. This can be a sticky issue, especially when the fanbase in question is the passionate and attention oriented fans of George R.R. Martin’s work. Thus any musings from Mr. Martin, or the show producers, tend to set the hype trains rolling.
This happened just yesterday when Showbiz411 reported George saying;
“People are going to die who don’t die in the books, so even the book readers will be unhappy. So everybody better be on their toes. David [Benioff] and D.B. [Weiss] are even bloodier than I am.”
Even if you are ancillary connected to the geek realm, I am sure you are waking up to wild speculation and rumbles today. I think that the show producers have chosen wisely thus far when making choices that diverge from the books timeline, and that is where I place my opinion for this upcoming season.
It is also not the first time the show runners have chosen to kill off characters earlier than the books series, or slay characters still alive in the books universe.
An astute reader on Scifi.StackExchange points out:
In order of deaths, here are the people who have died on the show but are still alive in the books.
- Willas Wode (killed by hill tribes)
- Khal Mago (killed by Khal Drogo in a duel)
- Dany’s bloodrider Rakharo (beheaded on the Red Waste)
- Qarth’s Council of Thirteen (murdered by Pyat Pree and Xaro)
- Pyat Pree (killed by dragonfire)
- Xaro Xhoan Daxos (left to die in an impenetrable vault)
- Dany’s handmaiden Irri (killed when Dany’s dragons are stolen)
- Walder Frey’s wife Joyeuse (killed by Catelyn)
- Grenn (killed fighting Mag the Mighty)
- Pyp (killed by Ygritte)
- Styr, Magnar of Thenn (killed by Jon)
- Jojen Reed (killed by spooooky skeletons)
So we have been here before, and the show’s producers have offed some notable characters already. Should we assume Martin speaking out indicates that some higher profile deaths are to be expected this season? Or are the showrunners going to be cleaning up extraneous characters to focus more on core story threads? Let me know what you think!
I know who I would like to see go by the wayside in a fitting way. Here’s to Ramsay Bolton’s (hopeful) demise.