Ever since HBO announced that the 8th season of Game of Thrones will be the last one, we’ve been hearing rumors about a spin-off. Now it’s all clear.
Now, we know that our favorite fantasy series will come to an end in 2018. And, since it’s gearing to an end, HBO is trying to find a way to continue the property.
How the rumors began
Last year, HBO’s president of programming, Casey Bloys, spoke about the possibility of a spin-off. „“It’s such a big property we would be foolish not to explore it, but it’s a pretty high bar,” he said. “We’ll take some shots at it. I’m not going to do it, just to do it. It has to feel very special. I would rather have no sequel and leave it as is than have something we rushed out.”
After that statement, HBO didn’t comment further, and we were left to guess how will this spin-off look. Will it be a sequel? A prequel? Unintelligible gibberish? The show itself has a reputation for its high quality, so we are wondering will any kind of spin-off be an automatic failure, because nothing can live up to the show fans all over the world know and love.
Showrunners remained silent on the topic, but the network’s CEO Richard Plepner has recently confirmed that a spin-off seems extremely likely. „There might be some brand extension that would be exciting. It certainly has not escaped the producers. Right now we’re focused on finishing the series with the kind of energy and excitement that everyone has come to expect. We’re going to do that while at the same time parallel processing very embryonic stages of other possibilities.”
Basically, what they are trying to tell us is, we know you love Game of Thrones, and we don’t want to end one of the most popular shows on TV at the moment.
So, sequel or prequel?
Programming president of HBO Casey Bloys came to our rescue once more, when he stated that “A prequel feels like it has less pressure on it [than a spin-off]. [George R.R. Martin] gives you areas in which to say to a writer, ‘If you were going to do this, then go flesh it out,’ and we’ll see what comes back. But I don’t feel any pressure that we have to have something.“
Now that we are certain the last episode of Game of Thrones will not be our last trip to Westeros, we can start pondering over the story of the upcoming prequel.
Let the guessing games begin
One of the more popular theories is that it will revolve around The Dawn Age, The Age of Heroes and the Long Night. Considering how the ancient history of Westeros has been underlining the show, it might be a good venue for exploration, and also one that the fans might like.
The easiest path to take would be adaptation of already existing Martin’s work, taking a series of prequel novellas „The Tales of Dunk and Egg“. It would have a different tone from Game of Thrones, but it would be linked to the world we love, and it might help lighten some areas of the story. Tales of Dunk and Egg follow adventures of Ser Duncan the Tall and his squire Egg, who is secretly the future King Aemon V Targaryen, brother of Maester Aemon in Game of Thrones.
And last, but not least, Robert’s Rebellion and the era before it, including the reign of the Mad King Aerys. If HBO is going for maximum relevance to the events and characters of GoT, they should go with this era. It would be rich with conflicts and moments that are the motivation behind many of the primary players of Game of Thrones. Fans could see their favorite characters as youngsters, and explore their backstories.
We gave you enough material to ponder over. No matter what HBO decides, the fact is that Game of Thrones is a spectacle followed by millions, and it gets new fans daily. It is one of the biggest, baddest shows ever made, and it draws its plotlines from RR Martins huge novels. It has been nominated in the Golden Globes „Best TV Drama“ category, right alongside Westworld and Stranger Things. For a show that has been running for this long, to be placed with the newest and best that TV has to offer – well it’s not only a compliment, it is a proof of quality. And we can only hope that the quality will remain the key ingredient of the upcoming prequel.