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MercurialCannibal

[BOOK SPOILERS] The Book Was Better

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to the TS:

As people have already said, as long as the book is good an adaptation will never reach it in quality. Even less when the book is as long and complicated as AGOT. I don't really see why your opinions required it's own thread instead of joining it with everyone else's in the already existing discussions though.

Personally I definitely disagree on acting and I do think the show looked great overall. Any individual imperfections are not worth dragging up if the vast majority is good. In general it sounds like it's a mix of that things just doesn't suit you and that you have had unrealistic expectations.

reiver:

Then you had a different view than mine. I think the show goes very far from underestimating the audience, quite the contrary. They put a ton of information in the first episode and it takes someone not too stupid to get all of that. If they prolong one thing, they will basically have to cut something out entirely. The reason things are shorter is because they have so little time.

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I accept the little time thing but then why the lingering shots of Dany's ass or the whole Brothel scene in place of a few words (and a few very quotable lines that i'd been dying to hear) that would round out the story and make things less confusing.

That's what i mean, it's very good as far as adaptations go and i think it'll be a decent show in its own right but they could have done it better.

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I accept the little time thing but then why the lingering shots of Dany's ass or the whole Brothel scene in place of a few words (and a few very quotable lines that i'd been dying to hear) that would round out the story and make things less confusing.

That's what i mean, it's very good as far as adaptations go and i think it'll be a decent show in its own right but they could have done it better.

Funnily enough I hear most voices about it being confusing from those that have already read the book. The non-readers I've heard from have mainly gotten it very well.

And of course it could be better, no work of art is perfect for everyone. The main difference is that some seem to expect perfection and therefor mainly comment on what they feel is wrong. Others seem to base their expectations on that adaptations are extremely hard to do well and therefor focus on what they did well.

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I accept the little time thing but then why the lingering shots of Dany's ass or the whole Brothel scene in place of a few words (and a few very quotable lines that i'd been dying to hear) that would round out the story and make things less confusing.

That's what i mean, it's very good as far as adaptations go and i think it'll be a decent show in its own right but they could have done it better.

Exactly. Dunno, maybe HBO watchers sign up for fan service instead of good dialogue material.

They spent quite a few minutes on booty and forgot good quotes that could be spoken on seconds.

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I have talked with people that did not read the book and they really liked the show. Part of what made reading the book so great was that you had to figure out all the mysteries. That thrill is gone when you watch the show because you know what is going to happen.

People that hadn't read the books were totally shocked by the tower scene. Much the same way i was when I first read it.

Some of the things I felt they got right: Ned and all the kids except sansa. The Lanisters are great, Robert was great.

The hounds helm was awesome.

My disapointments were Sansa, in the books she is described as being very pretty.(I am actually one of the few people that liked sansa in the books.) Cat seemed old. The other? I thought they were clear/white.

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Sansa, in the books she is described as being very pretty.

And whaddya know, Sophie Turner as Sansa is very pretty. I guess this proves once again that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. ^_^

To that point, I'm surprised no one has griped yet about how Arya isn't ugly or boyish enough. I know someone's bound to say it sooner or later.

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And whaddya know, Sophie Turner as Sansa is very pretty. I guess this proves once again that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. ^_^

To that point, I'm surprised no one has griped yet about how Arya isn't ugly or boyish enough. I know someone's bound to say it sooner or later.

Yes I guess it is. I know that was a petty thing for me to comment about but it is in the eye of the beholder.

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...

To that point, I'm surprised no one has griped yet about how Arya isn't ugly or boyish enough. I know someone's bound to say it sooner or later.

This was actually my first thought when I saw the initial photos of Maisie... at least the "not ugly" part. After seeing her in character, I no longer care.

My wife hasn't read the books and was watching with me. She was pretty lost in the Stark crypt scene, so I paused the DVR to outline the basic relationships between Ned, Robert, Lyanna, Catelyn, Lysa, and Jon Arryn. One of my wife's initial reactions that I found hilarious was when we got our first glimpse of Joffrey, and she said something to the effect of, "He looks like a smarmy little ass." She then went on to mention how much Joffrey reminded her of Draco Malfoy from Harry Potter. I told her the comparison was fairly apt. :)

I don't know why, but so far the casting choice I'm having the most trouble with is NCW as Jaime. He's doing a very good job with the part, but... something's just not jiving with my mental picture at all, and I'm having trouble getting past it.

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I don't think television can ever be as good as a book at its best. AGOT is a damned near perfect book. Nothing could compare. I think they did the story justice. They stumbled a few times when they didn't have to and glossed over things that were well beyond budget done properly. But overall, I can't wait for more.

Dude, no it isn't. There are plenty of complaints you could make about the book, particularly with the way it starts.

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The book is absolutely better. And I honestly have to say in every instance where they directly changed the novels was inferior.

The stand-out poor scenes;

The Direwolves discover. Sucked of all the emotion and intrigue from the books. None of the Jon-Ned or Bran-Jon stuff, which could have been conveyed through dialog. Bran's little "What about you" and Theon's "Ah the runt o the litter, that one's yours snow" were such a disappointment.

Dany's Wedding Rape was also.

And the changes to Cat, which make her more sympathetic but three times as annoying and frustrating.

Overall though, a lot of positives that give me hope. Pilots normally suck. Very few of my favorite shows open with incredible pilots. This one was good bordering on mediocre, but they had to rush through so much and they made really poor editing and dialog changes.

But Jamie is perfect. Arya, Bran, Sansa, and Robb are all perfect. Jon is a bit too mopey but whatever.

OH! And I think "The things I do for love" was delivered perfectly. Jamie isn't a melodramatic asshat. I would have literally thrown up on the television if he had been holding Bran and then grievously uttered "The...things...I do...for...love" while ruminating on the possible consequences and ramifications of his actions.

He's Jamie Lannister, he doesn't fear death. He doesn't fear problems. It being said so casually was perfect because Jamie's whole thing was he didn't care. He did what he had to do and he'd deal with any consequences with his sword if it came to it.

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Sorry for the long post below. I loved the pilot, it’s an immense achievement and in some ways even improves on the books. The nuances lost in translation are unavoidable. What works on the page doesn’t always work on screen. I understand that.

But I have to say that they butchered my favorite scene from the books—and not for any very good reason either. It’s not an interior monologue, it’s not a throwaway moment. Arguably it is the most important scene in the entire series, as GRRM himself explains:

Well, actually, I started back in 1991 during a lull while I was still working in Hollywood and I was working on another book, a science fiction book I had always wanted to write. So I was working on that book when suddenly the first chapter of A Games of Thrones, not the prologue but the first chapter, came to me. The scene of the dire wolves in the summer snow. I didn't know where it came from or where it needed to go, but from there the book seemed to write itself.

This scene is the reason that ASOIAF exists. It’s the heart of the story, the bleakness and the terror and the hope and the magic of it all. For D&D to apparently not get that is beyond disappointing. I mean, I realize they do show the Stark kids finding the direwolves. But it’s so incredibly rushed. They could have copied the scene from the book word-for-word and it would have been brilliant. Instead they cut everything meaningful to make room for less important things (the bloated 7 minute long prologue being the worst offender—the direwolf scene is only 3 minutes).

Maybe other people have a different view, I don’t know. Maybe they don’t care much for direwolves. All I can say is that when I heard of the HBO show the FIRST scene that popped into my head was this one:

[Bran rides with his brothers back to Winterfell]

ROBB: The deserter died bravely.

JON: No. It was not courage. This one was dead of fear. You could see it in his eyes, Stark.

ROBB: The White Walkers take his eyes. He died well. Race you to the bridge?

JON: Done.

[Ned moves up beside Bran]

NED: Are you well, Bran?

BRAN: Yes, father. Rob says the man died bravely, but Jon says he was afraid.

NED: What do you think?

BRAN: Can a man still be brave if he’s afraid?

NED: That is the only time a man can be brave. Do you understand why I did it?

BRAN: He was a deserter.

NED: But do you understand why I had to kill him?

BRAN: King Robert has a headsman.

NED: He does. As did the Targaryen kings before him. Yet our way is the older way. If you would take a man’s life, you owe it to him to look into his eyes and hear his final words. And if you cannot bear to do that, then perhaps the man does not deserve to die. A ruler who hides behind paid executioners soon forgets what death is.

BRAN: Is it true he saw the White Walkers?

NED: The White Walkers have been gone for thousands of years.

BRAN: So he lied?

NED: A mad man sees what he sees.

[Jon reappears, waving]

JON: Father, Bran, come quickly, see what Robb has found!”

JORY: Trouble, my lord?

NED: Beyond a doubt. Come, let us see what mischief my sons have rooted out now.

[They see the dead direwolf]

THEON: Gods!

JORY: Robb, get away from it!

ROBB: She can’t hurt you. She’s dead, Jory.

THEON: It’s a freak. Look at the size of it.

JON: It’s no freak. That’s a direwolf. They grow larger than the other kind.

THEON: There’s not been a direwolf sighted south of the Wall in two hundred years.

JON: I see one now.

[Bran spots the direwolf pups]

ROBB: Go on. You can touch him.

JON: Here you go. There are five of them.

JORY: Direwolves loose in the realm, after so many years... It is a sign.

NED: This is only a dead animal, Jory. Do we know what killed her?

ROBB: There’s something in the throat. There, just under the jaw.

[Ned pulls out a shattered antler. No one speaks]

NED: I’m surprised she lived long enough to whelp.

JORY: Maybe she didn’t. I’ve heard tales . . . maybe the bitch was already dead when the pups came.

THEON: No matter. They’ll be dead soon enough too. Give the beast here, Bran.

BRAN: No! It’s mine.

ROBB: Put away your sword, Greyjoy.

JORY: It’d be a mercy to kill them.

NED: Jory speaks truly, son. Better a swift death than a hard one from starvation.

BRAN: No!

NED: I’m sorry, Bran.

JON: Lord Stark. There are five pups. Three male, two female.

NED: What of it, Jon?

JON: You have five trueborn children. Three sons, two daughters. The direwolf is the sigil of your House. Your children were meant to have these pups, my lord.

NED: You want no pup for yourself, Jon?

JON: The direwolf graces the banners of House Stark. I am no Stark, Father.

ROBB: I will nurse him myself, Father. I will soak a towel with warm milk, and give him suck from that.

BRAN: Me too!

NED: Easy to say, and harder to do. You must train them well. These are not dogs to beg for treats and slink off at a kick. A direwolf will rip a man’s arm off his shoulder as easily as a dog will kill a rat. Are you sure you want this?

BRAN: Yes, Father.

ROBB: Yes.

NED: Keep them, then. Jory, gather up the other pups. It’s time we were back to Winterfell.

[They start to leave. Jon stops suddenly]

NED: What is it, Jon?

JON: Can’t you hear it? There.

[Jon goes back to where they found the direwolf and comes back holding another pup]

JON: He must have crawled away from the others.

NED: Or been driven away.

THEON: An albino. This one will die even faster than the others.

JON: I think not, Greyjoy. This one belongs to me.

It would have been astonishing and unforgettable to see these words come to life on the screen. I’m sorry to know we will probably never have the chance again.

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And I think "The things I do for love" was delivered perfectly. Jamie isn't a melodramatic asshat. I would have literally thrown up on the television if he had been holding Bran and then grievously uttered "The...things...I do...for...love" while ruminating on the possible consequences and ramifications of his actions.

He's Jamie Lannister, he doesn't fear death. He doesn't fear problems. It being said so casually was perfect because Jamie's whole thing was he didn't care. He did what he had to do and he'd deal with any consequences with his sword if it came to it.

Well said! My sentiments exactly.

This scene is the reason that ASOIAF exists. It’s the heart of the story, the bleakness and the terror and the hope and the magic of it all. For D&D to apparently not get that is beyond disappointing. I mean, I realize they do show the Stark kids finding the direwolves. But it’s so incredibly rushed. They could have copied the scene from the book word-for-word and it would have been brilliant. Instead they cut everything meaningful to make room for less important things (the bloated 7 minute long prologue being the worst offender—the direwolf scene is only 3 minutes).

I was also very disappointed in the look, feel and dialogue choices for the Direwolf scene, as well as the feeling that it was rushed and incomplete. I wasn't overly critical of the episode with the exception of that.

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Same here, i expected too much,so now i don`t like many things. I was hooked up to the series at direwolves scene,in book it had some sort of epicness,but on the screen it was just lame,i was really disappointed with that. And i hate Catelyn, too too old! And Theon,baaad cast!

Ok,i understand it can`t be perfect or as good as book,but some things could have been done better. On the other side,some things trilled me,for example Sean Bean,he IS my picture of Eddard.

All in all,i can be saticfied, I`ll keep on watching ofcourse.

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I don't want to sound like an apologist, because I am a very critical person, especially of things I love.

But this is only a pilot. And traditionally a lot of shows have weaker and rushed pilots because they aren't so much meant for the audience, they're meant to get a TV studio to decide if they want to invest in producing an entire series based on the premises laid out in the pilot.

For that reason, some of the errors are forgivable. I really think this should have been a two hour finale and that would have given them all the time they needed to not screw up a lot of the things they did. The Direwolves scene is a terrible disappointment and it isn't bad because it differs from the books but because it's inferior. It almost seems tacked on, just because. It's clear here that the mystery of Jon Arryn's death is what they are framing to be the central plot line. He's our Laura Palmer.

So stuff like the Direwolves, who are terribly important, over time, kinda have to get down played. Cause that's not the hook they want to throw, which is disappointing. And a lot of it could have been alleviated by showing all the Stark kids with their direwolves throughout the show. The fact that Lady die next episode AND Nymeria is driven off and we haven't even seen them with the kids yet is crappy. There should have been an effort to have the Direwolves around. Jon not having Ghost with him at the feast was crappy too.

So we just have to hope that going forward, with the knowledge that they have X amount of time to tell this entire story, things will be better paced and more polished.

And hopefully have a lot less of the talking down to the audience like we're morons.

Honestly, Cat pulling Bran aside and being like "Young man climbing is dangerous blah blah token emotional sentiment blah blah" telegraphs the fall so bad.

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Honestly, Cat pulling Bran aside and being like "Young man climbing is dangerous blah blah token emotional sentiment blah blah" telegraphs the fall so bad.

That bit of dialogue externalized Cat's fears regarding Bran's climbing, and cemented for the audience that Bran wasn't just climbing the towers Winterfell for the hell of it - it's something he loved to do and did often. I see that as an important setup for the fall scene and its aftermath, not merely a telegraph of the event itself.

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I loved the first episode and thought they did a good job translating what I read to the screen.

I honestly think that some people that speak of confusion on things, such as the Robert ned talk in the crypt, may not remember reading the books for the first time. I may be completly wrong here, but it seems to me that it was explained word for word about the relationships involved. I haven't reread this in a bit, but I seem to remember that the reader got a sense that the girl in question was Neds sister and how important she was to Robert, but I don't remember much else being explained in that scene. All of which I thought the show got perfect, tone wise. It clearly gets across the importants of this person to Robert and Neds greif on her death.

The one scene I was disapointed in was the direwolf scene. In the books, even when reading them the first time, I was able to pick up on all the little omens that were in that scene. With all kids getting a pup except Jon, with the stags antler killing the direwolf, with the finding of the white pup. All of the mystical and oracle properties of that scene just weren't there.

One last scene that I thought was perfectly done was the final tower scene. I thought that it perfectly conveyed the fact that neither Jaime or Cersei have a problem doing whatever they need to do. The throwing of Bran off the towere wasn't even whithin Jaimes notice, it seemed. Which IMO seems to be keeping with what I remember from the books.

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I honestly think that some people that speak of confusion on things, such as the Robert ned talk in the crypt, may not remember reading the books for the first time. I may be completly wrong here, but it seems to me that it was explained word for word about the relationships involved. I haven't reread this in a bit, but I seem to remember that the reader got a sense that the girl in question was Neds sister and how important she was to Robert, but I don't remember much else being explained in that scene. All of which I thought the show got perfect, tone wise. It clearly gets across the importants of this person to Robert and Neds greif on her death.

I was actually about to criticise the fact that they never explain about Lyanna properly in the crypt, but you may be right here, plus it would build up tension with new fans who haven't read the books wanting to know what happened.

But another part that I was really annoyed by was that near the end of the episode when Catelyn just received the letter from Lysa, she says how Ned's father and brother went south before for King Aerys, but the reason behind this is never explained. Was it the same in the book, I can't actually remember, but it still should have been explained fully I thought.

The scene at the end where Bran was thrown off the tower was spectacularly done, exactly as I imagined it.

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I've seen a lot of complaints about the direwolf scene, and their subsequent use, and to some extent, I get it; I loved the wolves, I loved that scene, and I really like their place in the story. But they've come out and said that the dogs they used to play the parts were very difficult to train, so they weren't able to include them as much as they'dve liked, and I'm willing to cut them some slack.

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