Game of Thrones. . . I consider myself something of a fan: willing to struggle every week against my slow internet connection and resulting low quality video to get my fix, and the mere mention of a favorite character or scene sends me into a flurry of joyous aspirations and recollective ramblings. Alas, despite my enthusiasm, I am so far naught but a TV-version junkie.
I am one of those fans which George R.R. Martin describes in his interview with HBO that loves the show, but considers lifting even one of the currently five existing books a daunting ordeal. I am sure they are wonderful and I do love a good read, but Mr. Martin himself admits that ‘prose and film have different techniques and weapons that they use.’
This is a point I feel, and he mentions, may occasionally be forgotten by fans of the book series, who might be looking more for an exact visual representation of the written version, rather than a complimentary recreation of the characters, storylines, and themes. Mr. Martin is involved in the production process to an appropriate extent, having written an episode himself, and I have faith that what is going on in each episode is an accurate representation of the key points of the books.
Given the degree of ‘niggling,’ thoughtful character development and progression Mr. Martin talks of employing in his writing process, the adaptation I watch weekly is bound to be good. I have come to love his characters almost as much as he obviously does. Despite (or perhaps owing to) his tragic, but necessary, willingness to write cruel things to happen to some of them, he does a great job of making a captivating story evolve through and around them, which translates beautifully onto screen without each episode taking months to shoot and costing an exorbitant amount.
In the end book fans will be book fans and TV fans will be TV fans. I consider myself one of the lucky few, those who are, or will be, fans of both versions. I am certain that someday I will begin the book series, and I know I’ll love it once I do. I just really want to maintain the excitement I feel over being surprised by the events of a new episode.
So Mr. Martin, if I can offer one piece of advice it is this: take your time on the books. The one thing all of us fans want is a good story, and if you disappoint us. . . let me put it this way. . . that ‘giant locomotive’ bearing down on you hath no fury like a fandom scorned.
Click here to see George R. R. Martin’s full HBO interview.
If you read the book/s, watched the show, or are you lucky enough to have done both, which do you prefer?
How do you feel about the writing/extra material/show balance?
Leave your answers in the comments!