It was the middle of 2002 and I was in my final year of secondary education here in Australia. The previous Christmas had been spent anticipating the release of the highly popular ‘Fellowship of the Ring’ and that August I bought the DVD. Later that same year I bought the extended edition, and while watching the movie again with extra scenes was wonderful fun, I probably received more enjoyment watching the two discs worth of behind-the-scenes documentaries.
Fast forward ten years and we arrive in a time when George R. R. Martin’s beloved novels ‘A Song of Ice and Fire’ are being made, one year at a time, into the popular HBO series ‘Game of Thrones’.
And then comes along ‘Inside HBO’s Game of Thrones’ by Bryan Cogman, who was been involved in the production of the hit series since the beginning. This book is what you would have gotten if you’d turned those Lord of the Rings special feature DVDs into books.
The book’s cover is a debossed padded one, and it makes the book simply stunning to look at. Opening the pages does not halt the quality, either. Prefaced by George R. R. Martin and with a Foreword by show creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, the book takes you on a journey through the world of Westeros as seen on HBO.
Each of the major families is featured, with interviews from all of the actors fleshing out the history of the families and characters. Costuming secrets, design insights, and construction ethos all combine with beautiful photos – often double page spreads – from the set and the show.
The history of the lands and the mythology also fill out an understanding of the show as a whole.
If you have seen even a single episode of Game of Thrones and wondered how they had constructed even a small portion of what you saw, this book is simply a must-have. As a coffee table book, or to be browsed time and time again in understanding the mechanics behind making an award winning visual masterpiece, Inside HBO’s Game of Thrones is a killer read.
Review by Joshua S Hill
1 positive reader review(s) for Inside HBO's Game of Thrones
Thaina from UK
Before I say anything else, let me state this. I love the show. I am obeesssd with it. Okay, on to my issues. I think at this point, my biggest complaint with the show is their handling of Daenerys. She is NOTHING like in the books. Every definitive scene that we experience her in show how she grows, how her relationship with Drogo develops, how she begins to believe and know she is Khaleesi, have been completely destroyed. Where she is in the show right now, by this point in the books, we know Dany is a force to be reckoned with, and her growth and development make sense. In the show, she is still this unsure little girl who is victimized at every turn. This is not Daenerys. Like the scene in this week's episode for example. In the books this is the first time we see her stand up to Viserys. There were two instances in that scene that were changed that drastically it changed the tone of the scene, and their relevance to Dany's development. Why the writers are choosing to do this, only they know but I sure hope that we start seeing Dany come into her own because she is one of the main characters of these books, and she just doesn't feel that important to me in the TV show, even though she is getting the screen time. Another big beef I have is Drogo. In the TV show he is nothing more than a rapist barbarian, and in the books, he is so much more. He is actually one of my favorite characters, and it makes me very sad that he is not getting the treatment he deserves. The lack of importance given to the relationship between the Stark children and the direwolves is also bothering me a lot, but I understand that there is only so much you can do here. Now - this week's episode. For a third episode I thought it did it's job. It wasn't as fast paced or intense as the first two, but we were introduced to some of the major players at King's Landing. I think one of my favorite scenes was Arya and Syrio. It felt very authentic though I disliked the fact that the scene with Ned and Arya that eventually leads up to Arya and Syrio was completely changed. Maybe I'm being overly critical but for me, it is these nuances that the TV show seems to be skipping, that make these books so fantastic. Catelyn s arrival to King s Landing comes to mind. One scene that I loved but again, had issues with (I'm such a complainer lol) was Tyrion and Jon Snow when the boys are putting their swords away. It wasn't a big deal to me that they removed the blacksmith all together, and gave Tyrion the lines instead, but this scene was important because it made Jon realize that though he is a bastard, he still has it better than most, if not all of the boys at the Wall and this was not as potent in the speech that Tyrion gives Jon. I have so much more to say, but I will keep the rest simple. The casting for Petyr Baelish is perfect. Renly left me a bit unsatisfied, Varys is perfect and I will leave off with the question I have been asking myself in each episode - WHERE IS GHOST??? (sorry if this is all over the place, wrote this at work. don't tell on me)
9.5/10 from 2 reviews