The series finale of the HBO show has had a lot of criticism – as, in fact, has the final season as a whole. But as George RR Martin gets to work on the final two books in his literary saga, one reader has argued that Game of Thrones (the TV show) was so much better, across its whole eight season run, than many fans initially expected it to be. Their reasoning has been 95% upvoted on the A Song of Ice and Fire board.
User fvertk wrote: “I know, the initial reaction is to think of the most recent season of GoT or the most recent episodes and think only negative thoughts. Like something has been ‘ruined’ or ‘spoiled’, etc.
“But think back a bit, 10 years ago. Somehow many of us found out that they were making a pilot based off these books we treasured.
“Most people you knew in real life didn’t read these books, in fact, it was considered nerdy by the majority population to read epic fantasy.”
They added: “You know what I expected from the pilot? Absolute garbage.
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George RR Martin created the entire phenomenon
“It’s a TV show! My initial thoughts were this is impossible. Too many characters, too complex of a landscape/terrain to understand, it’s just going to be watered down.
“And not only that, but are people going to be interested in fantasy? No, this show is going to sputter out and die like Firefly.
“But goddamn, each season kept coming and coming. I think by the middle of season one, I started to realize: they’re doing it. The impossible. The casting was incredible and brought them to life. There were cuts, but they were (for the most part) necessary. The music injected the emotion felt when reading perfectly.
“Friends and family watched scenes you had in your head for years: Ned’s fate, the Red Wedding, the Mountain / Red Viper, Tyrion killing his father.
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“And they were almost as good as the books… wait… no, they were maybe better. When is that ever done? Suddenly my dad is telling me about Jon Snow’s birthright to the throne of the seven kingdoms. WTF.
“We got lucky. This is a one in a million chance. We could have been fans of these books and stayed in obscurity. Or the first season could have been garbage and died out, as I expected. But they were (for the most part) brought to life on the screen.”
This, the theorist reasoned, is enough to be thankful for.
They went on: “So when people say that everything is ruined and now it’s not good/rewatchable. Man. My perspective tells me that’s NOT true.
“I don’t believe in perfection, especially in a medium like this. Especially given how difficult I knew the task at hand was going in.
“But when I step back and look at the entire thing from a high level, I feel nothing but gratitude.
“We may get the final book and we may not. If we didn’t, I’d probably read some fan fiction before I died and revel in that anyway, flawed as it would be. That’s sort of what D&D’s interpretation of the end was, so I knew it wouldn’t be GRRM quality, but if that’s all we get? I can live with that.
“If the last book does come out? And gives incredible depth and explanation to some things we didn’t like in season 8 with the true ending? It’ll be one of the most unique reading experiences I’ve ever had.”
The author has two books in the series left to finish
George RR Martin has still not given a release date for The Winds of Winter but has said on his blog that he expects it to be published by the summer of 2020.
After discussing the possibility of going to New Zealand next year, he wrote on his blog: “As for finishing my book… I fear that New Zealand would distract me entirely too much.
“Best leave me here in Westeros for the nonce.
“But I tell you this — if I don’t have THE WINDS OF WINTER in hand when I arrive in New Zealand for worldcon, you have here my formal written permission to imprison me in a small cabin on White Island, overlooking that lake of sulfuric acid, until I’m done.
“Just so long as the acrid fumes do not screw up my old DOS word processor, I’ll be fine.”