Is the Game of Thrones TV show finally going off the rails?

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Rail Splitter

Quentin:

I’ve been watching Game of Thrones, and it seems like the TV show is veering a lot more from the books now. Is there a point when it’s going to go off the rails and be so different from the books it starts to suck?

Well, since you didn’t say “it seems like the TV show is veering a lot more from the books now AND IT TOTALLY SUCKS ASS,” I’m guessing you’re still enjoying the series, which is the biggest indicator that the show is firmly on its own rails, even if it’s no longer on the books’.

What you’re seeing is a few things: The culmination of small deviations from the first two seasons building up, the show getting better at streamlining GRRM’s epic for TV, and the show coming into its own as an adaptation of A Song of Ice and Fire, and not just a retelling.

These are all Good Things. Novels are not TV series, and things that work in one do not work in the other. Characters need arcs that make sense in terms of episodes and seasons, not just when GRRM had them. (Mild, vague spoilers ahead:) For instance, the Hound has been captured by the Brotherhood Without Banners much earlier than in the books, but having his character return so soon is surely a smart move for the show — one that cuts out some less essential fluff while bringing back a very popular character sooner rather than later.

Moreover, we have a storyline about Theon getting tortured — one that wasn’t in A Storm of Swords at all. While hardcore fans might be fine if Alfie Allen sat out this season and reappeared in season 4, but the massive, non-nerd audience who is enjoying the TV series would be extremely put off by the sudden disappearance of a major character. For the TV show, it is simply better storytelling to add a Theon storyline for this season.

More importantly, would you want a completely straight adaptation of A Feast for Crows and A Dance of Dragons? I liked both those books, and even I think that sounds horrible.

Is the Game of Thrones TV show finally going off the rails?

50 Shades of Grayskull

Frank M.:

What the hell was in Castle Grayskull that Skeletor wanted so bad?

The official answer is “power,” which was later clarified to “an orb containing the powers of the Council of Elders,” which is still pretty vague, when you think about it, especially when Eternia is lousy with magical, power-granting artifacts.

Personally, I prefer to think that Grayskull housed Eternia’s only known source of Girl Scout Cookies.

Myth-Adventures

Marc:

Who would be more useful for The Walking Dead’s Prison crew? Les Stroud from Survivorman or Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman from Mythbusters?

Well, this might be the nerdy nerd in me nerding out, but I’m going with the Mythbusters. Here’s my reasoning: The Prison posse don’t need much help in surviving, at least from things other than zombies. They have shelter; if we can assume the show’s refusal to bring up food means there isn’t a food issue, then there’s not really anything Survivorman brings to the table that Daryl (and others) aren’t already covering.

Meanwhile, the Mythbusters’ ability to cobble together all sorts of shit could lead to a host of improvements — more/better weapons, more/better zombie protection, and various amenities. Sure, their inventing ability would be hampered by the lack of electricity and materials, but they’re super-creative dudes, and whether you’re facing legions of the undead or a surly, one-eyed fake government official, having a Gorn cannon can’t be a bad thing.

One caveat: Were the zombie apocalypse to really hit, you’d probably want to be with Survivorman when it happens. Personally, I’d still pick the Mythbusters, because I’m completely resigned to being eaten by zombies and they’d be more fun to talk to before it happens.

Is the Game of Thrones TV show finally going off the rails?

The Trek to Trek

Paul:

It's been awhile since there was a Star Trek TV Show. I honestly believe that we need a Star Trek tv series because there really aren't any sci-fi space travel shows. I have three questions:

1. When/Will we see a new Star Trek TV Show?

a. Do you think the show will stick to the formula of having the captain be a human? (I personally would enjoying having the captain being a different species.)

2. Where would this show air?

Man, tough question (well, the first one is).

1) A new Star Trek show is possible, but not any time soon. Paramount has decided Trek is now a movie franchise, and for some reason they think that excludes a Trek TV series. That’s ridiculous, of course. Best case scenario: Paramount sees how well Marvel’s S.H.I.E.L.D. TV series works with their cinematic universe, and tries the same thing, but even then I’d say it’ll be a minimum of five years before Trek returns to TV at best (and probably a lot longer than that).

1a) Well, I’d say there a 100% chance of the main character of a Star Trek TV series being human. Chances are, that will always be the captain, because Trek shows center around the captain, because they have the most storytelling potential. Also: Racism.

2) CBS or The CW. Probably The CW, since Paramount would probably see a Trek series as a risky move, not give it much money, and then relegate it to its little sister channel so it's less embarrassing if it tanks, never realizing this sort of thing is invariably a self-fulfilling prophecy. In the best case scenario where ABC’s S.H.I.E.L.D. is a massive hit and Paramount pays attention and they see the public is hungry for good genre TV, they give it a real budget and put it on CBS, which they own outright, and Trek enters a new age of television glory unseen since The Next Generation.

So… probably The CW.

So You Think You Can Dance

MikeCheese:

Have you ever danced with the devil in the pale moonlight?

No, but I tangoed with Beelzebub in a well-lit high school gym once.

Is the Game of Thrones TV show finally going off the rails?

Elementary Elements

Caitlyn S.:

I’m a Sherlock Holmes fan and a bigger Sherlock fan, the one with Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman. I was totally set to hate Elementary, but, after watching a few episodes I kind of like it. Should I feel guilty?

I hope not, because I’m enjoying it too. I’d say it’s steering clear of Sherlock territory pretty adroitly, while simply adding the British detective to an American police procedural (which I have an extreme fondness for). It’s not adapting Holmes quite like Sherlock is doing, it’s using the characters, if that makes sense.

And, while Sherlock teaching Lucy Liu’s Joan Watson how to be a detective is a very thin theme in the original stories (mostly, Watson just picks up a few things from Sherlock during their adventures), it’s given her Watson a certain spark of life that even Martin Freeman’s interpretation doesn’t — she’s more of a partner and less of a sidekick. While I would never call it accurate to the original stories, it still makes for some highly enjoyable TV.

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