Tag Archive: George RR Martin

Following post will container spoilers for non-book readers.


Been a while since I said anything about the fast approaching S3 of HBOs Game Of Thrones (March 31st USA/April 1st UK). Unless you’ve been in a cave the past week you will no doubt already have seen the trailer.

Yesterday HBO released a list of episode titles…

1: Valar Dohaeris
2: Dark Wings, Dark Words
3: Walk of Punishment
4: And Now His Watch is Ended
5: Kissed by Fire
6: tbc
7: The Bear and the Maiden Fair
8: tbc
9: The Rains of Castamere
10: Mhysa

Some interesting titles there and follows some speculation as to what they may relate to.





Ep.1 – Valar Dohaeris (translated = all men must serve) is the traditional reply in High Valerian to Valar Morghulis (translated = all men must die and the title of S2/ep10), so we may get some Ayra action, possibly involving the Brotherhood Without Banners?

Ep.2 – Dark Wings, Dark Words – Ravens have dark wings and carry messages around the kingdoms. Does this possibly allude to Robb and/or Catylin receiving news of the “death” of Bran and Rickon?

Ep.3 – Walk Of Punishment – not sure about this, some link to what the Brotherhood is about maybe, or Theon’s fate?

Ep.4 – And Now His Watch Is Ended – obviously relates to the Nights Watch, could allude to the battle/aftermath of the battle at the Fist of the First Men. Or it could allude to events at Crasters Keep.

Ep. 5 – Kissed By Fire – obvious choice is Yrgitte, so could involve what Jon is up to with Mance’s army. But I wonder if it might be a reference to Sandor Clegane (his burn scar is him being “kissed by fire”) and his duel with Ser Beric (and his flaming sword).

Ep. 7 – The Bear And The Maiden Fair – this is a song in the books and is sung several times, it could also allude to Ser Jamie, Brienne and a certain bear pit.

Ep. 9 – The Rains Of Castermere – any book fan will know what this points towards, its a massive event. Not saying anymore than that.

Ep. 10 – Mhysa – Myhsa is the Ghiscari word for “mother” and is what the freed slaves cal Daenerys.

It’s all shaping up to be another great season, possibly one of the best considering the ground it will travel.




Over on his Not A Blog! George RR Martin has posted a second chapter from the sixth book in the A Song Of Ice And Fire series. This one is titled Arianne.


Few bits of catch-up news and some of the things that interest me in the coming months…


Game Of  Thrones

HBO have signed a deal with UK based Blinkboxto stream S1 and 2 –http://www.blinkbox.com/TV/Series/1024/Game-of-Thrones?icn=GameOfThrones&ici=DHB_homepage – both are now available – £1.89 per episode or £17.99 for the series. Blinkbox are part of Tesco and looking through their site have quite a lot to offer. There is no monthly subscription, you pay-per-view.  As part of the deal with HBO shows like Boardwalk Empire and True Blood are also available. Whilst this is good news to non-Sky customers I do worry if it will have a knock on effect. If viewers can now what the show without signing up to Sky will it affect their viewing figures, and also with S2 now available to view 7 months before the proposed release date for the DVD/BluRay boxset, will this affect those sales as well?

Staying with GoT, Irish actor Ciaran Hinds has been cast as Mance Rayder.


Mance is the King-Beyond-The-Wall, he’s been mentioned numerous times during S1 & 2, and the last time we saw Jon Snow he was being taken to see him. Mance has amassed a Wildling army and is heading for the Wall.

Ciaran is a well known actor appearing in films such as Munich, John Carter, Tinker Taylor Soldier Spy. He’s probably most well known for his portrayal of Julius Ceaser in Rome.



The official trailer for Dredd was released a few weeks ago.

I’ve been a fan of Judge Dredd and 2000AD since the comic first came out in 1977, whilst I am looking forward to this film, I have some reservations. But those reservations are dwindling as the release date draws ever nearer and more information about what we can expect are made known.


Red Country

Publisher Gollancz have released a new trailer for Joe Abercrombie’s next book Red Country.

And a newish blurb.

They burned her home.

They stole her brother and sister.

But vengeance is following.

Shy South hoped to bury her bloody past and ride away smiling, but she’ll have to sharpen up some bad old ways to get her family back, and she’s not a woman to flinch from what needs doing. She sets off in pursuit with only a pair of oxen and her cowardly old stepfather Lamb for company. But it turns out Lamb’s buried a bloody past of his own, and out in the lawless Far Country, the past never stays buried.

Their journey will take them across the barren plains to a frontier town gripped by gold fever, through feud, duel and massacre, high into the unmapped mountains to a reckoning with the Ghosts. Even worse, it will force them into alliance with Nicomo Cosca, infamous soldier of fortune, and his feckless lawyer Temple, two men no one should ever have to trust. . .

The past never stays buried . . .

Red Country is out September 3rd in the UK.


Gypsys Kiss and more…

I mentioned a while ago that my current WIP – Gypsys Kiss – now has the first part completed and edited, I’m doing some research for parts 2 and 3 before continuing with the writing. In the mean time I’ve begun work on an as yet untitled project that I aim to have completed in time to submit for the Abaddon Books open submission month in September – http://abaddonbooks.blogspot.com/2012/07/write-for-abaddon.html – I’ve got about 3.1/2 chapters done (approx 9,000 words) and hope to have a first draft early in next month. This will hopefully give me time to re-read, edit and get it submitted.

I’ve also re-visited a 60 minute pilot script I started about 18 months ago (I had 20 minutes written and the rest notes). The aim on this one is to get it finished and an outline of the other six episodes in time for the next submission window for the BBC Writers Room in the Autumn.

Busy, busy, busy…


HBO confirmed at the end of last week that former Misfits star Iwan Rheon has been cast to appear in S3 of Game Of Thrones.

His role has only been revealed as “the boy”, though insiders who have seen a scene involving him and one other major character have said it points to him playing the part of Ramsay Snow, the Bastard of the Dreadfort. Ramsay was name-checked in a couple of episodes at the end of S2, mainly by his father Lord Roose Bolton, but not actually seen. He was sent by his father to deal with Theon Greyjoy and his Iron Born who had taken Winterfell.

In the books Ramsay Snow was introduced much earlier, though as a character known only as Reek. He is a favorite of fans but a nasty piece of work and every inch his fathers son. For any wondering why it is Ramsay has the same surname as Jon Snow – the bastard son of Ned Stark – it is because it is tradition in Westeros to name bastard children with the same surname depending on what part of the country they come from. All northern bastards are called Snow.

Iwan is best known in the UK as Simon from the series Misfits.




San Diego Comic-Con 2012

For the past few days San Diego Comic-Con has been host to thousands of SF & Fantasy fans eager for the latest news on their top shows and movies. I collated some of the news here for shows and films I’m interested in.

First up…

Marvel – Phase Two

With Marvel Avengers Assemble the studio announced the end of their Phase One releases. Phase Two would contain Iron Man III, Thor II and Captain America II. The plan is the second phase will lead up to the second Avengers film. Over the course of Comic-Con more information has been released.

Thor: The Dark World is the title for the God of Thunder’s second outing and has a release date of November 8th 2013. As yet no further details are known regarding plot and casting, Chris Helmsworth will be reprising the role of Thor.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier is the title for Steve Rogers second outing and has a release date of April 4th 2014. No further details are known, but in the comics The Winter Soldier storyline was about “Bucky” Barnes who was Steve Rogers sidekick during WWII. It was a Cold War tale with “Bucky” revived without his memory and brainwashed by the Russians as an assassin. I’m not sure if they will use the same storyline or update it maybe with “Bucky” being radicalised.

Ant-Man was announced but no release date yet. He is a superhero who was at one time a member of The Avengers,  in the comics various characters have assumed the name, the original was Henry Pym, a brilliant scientist who invented a formula to alter his size.

Iron Man III is filming now, and footage shown confirms that Sir Ben Kingsley is playing The Mandarin, a long time enemy of Tony Stark.

Guardians of the Galaxy are another superhero group like The Avengers, except they are from the far future alternative time-line. Marvel have announced this film as a bridge between the three sequels and Ant-Man film and the second Avengers outing. In the after credits clip of the Avengers we saw the main adversary behind the attacks on Earth, this was a character called Thannos, it is believed both superhero teams maybe involved in battling him.

The Walking Dead S3

The trailer for season 3 of AMC’s The Walking Dead was shown. This series covers events in the town of Woodbury and introduces a character known as the Governor.

Game Of Thrones S3

Season 3 of HBO’s Game Of Thrones began filming last week. Unlike the first two seasons casting announcements have been scarce as it seems the producers have saved them all for Comic-Con. Season 3 will air on March 31st 2013.

A brief breakdown as to who is who.

Mackenzie Crook has been cast as Orell, a wildling who is a close advisor to the King-Beyond-The-Wall Mance Rayder. Crook is probably best known to UK viewers as Gareth from The Office, he also stared as one-eyed Ragetti in the first three Pirates of the Caribbean films.

Paul Kaye has been cast as Thoros of Myr, Thoros is a Red Priest like Melisandre. But unlike her Thoros likes to drink and fight. He is a one-time drinking partner of Robert Baratheon. In the books he went with Lord Benric Dondarrion to bring Ser Gregor Clegane to justice on Ned Stark’s orders (S1). Kaye shot to fame in the UK as “Dennis Pennis” a “shock-interviewer” who insulted celebrities whilst interviewing them. He stared in many shows throughout the early 2000s.

Richard Dormer has been cast as Lord Beric Dondarrion of Blackraven. The character did appear briefly in S1 when he was despatched by Ned Stark to bring Ser Gregor Clegane to justice, the producers decided to recast for S3. Dormer is an actor and playwright.

Clive Russell has been cast as Brynden “the Blackfish” Tully, the uncle of Catelyn , Lysa and Edmure. In the books Brynden was introduced in The Game Of Thrones, but because of the trimming down of the Riverrun/Tully storyline it has been delayed until S3. Russell is a well known actor and has appeared in countless films and TV shows.

Tobias Menzies has been cast as Edmure Tully, he is the younger brother of Catelyn and Lysa, and nephew of Brynden. Edmure is not a great warrior and lacks Catelyn’s political skills. Menzies played Brutus in Rome.

Tara Fitzgerald has been cast as Selyse Baratheon, the wife of Stannis Baratheon. She is a devotee of the Red God had staunch supporter of Melisandre. Fitzgerald is a star of stage, screen and TV, most recently as Dr. Eve Lockhart in BBCs Waking The Dead.

Ellie Kendrick has been cast as Meera Reed.

And Thomas Brodie-Sangster has been cast as Jojen Reed. Meera and Jojen are the children of Lord Howland Reed, a staunch ally of Ned Stark and one of his closest friends. In the books they are sent to Winterfell to pledge allegence to Robb Stark after Ned’s death, they are there when Theon and the Ironborn take the fortress, then they escape North with Bran Stark. Brodie-Sangster is most famous for staring alongside Liam Neeson in Love Actually, Kendrick recently stared in BBCs Upstairs Downstairs.

The Hobbit

With principle photography complete on both Hobbit films, some of the cast and director Peter Jackson were at Comic-Con promoting the first release. During an interview with TheOneRing.net Jackson admitted the posibility that there could be a third film in the offing.



An interesting year or three ahead, and come this time next year we’ll have Comic-con 2013.


Game Of Thrones – The Complete Season One

Showrunners – David Benioff & DB Weiss

Staring – Sean Bean, Mark Addy, Lena Headey, Michelle Fairley, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Peter Dinklage, Emilia Clarke, Harry Lloyd, Jason Momoa, Aiden Gillen, Maisie Williams, Sophie Turner, Richard Madden, Isaac Hempstead-Wright, Kit Harrington, Jack Gleeson, Rory McCann and many many more…

Summers span decades, winters can last a lifetime, the great houses of Westeros like nothing better than playing their games. And the biggest game of the all has begun, the battle for the Iron Throne itself. From the south where the heat breeds plots and can cook a man alive, to the far north where a 800 foot wall protects the Seven Kingdoms from the dark that lies beyond.

 Kings, Queens, Knights and Lords, liars, renegades and honest men, all have a  part to play in the game of thrones.

I’d read the books by the time the first episode of season one of Game Of Thrones aired. It’s an ambitious undertaking, turning a series of – so far – five books into a series for TV. It would be ambitious turning what many view as the modern generations Lord Of The Rings into a film series, but TV, and only ten episodes per season?

Whatever David Benioff and DB Weiss are taking I hope they never run out. They’ve managed to condense an epic book into a ten, sixty minute episodes, and not only have they managed it but they managed to do it so it appeals to fans and newcomers alike.

With a main cast that would swamp most films, brilliantly backed up by a supporting cast that seemed at some stages to employ every notable character actor in England, the series unfolds excellently, introducing the viewer to Westeros and its people without missing a beat.

Wit a cast this size it could be easy to overdo things meaning the actors become swamped and disappear into the scenery. But they don’t, everyone has their moment to shine. Characters jump full blown and expertly visualised from the page.

Joffrey Baratheon (Jack Gleeson) is suitably slimy, Sandor Clegane (Rory McCann) is the Hound, King Robert Baratheon (Mark Addy) is larger than life and twice as loud, Lord Eddard Stark (Sean Bean) is as cold as the North and loyal to the end.

Added to these there was standout performances from Maisie Williams as feisty Arya Stark and Peter Dinklage as the Imp, Tyrion Lannister.

As a fantasy series it delivers, there are mysteries, legends and dragons. As a serious piece of drama it excels on multiple levels, drawing in people who would not normally go anywhere near anything with fantasy in the description.

Season 1 was the best drama on TV in 2011, adapting the first book to perfection.


The full list of titles for S2 of HBO’s Game Of Thrones has been posted online.

1: The North Remembers
Already aired: 1 April 2012 (US) – 2nd April (UK)

2: The Night Lands
Already aired: 8 April 2012 (US) & 9th April (UK)

3: What is Dead May Never Die
Airdate: 15 April 2012 (US) & 16th April (UK)

4: Garden of Bones
Airdate: 22 April 2012 (US) & 23rd April (UK)

5: The Ghost of Harrenhal
Airdate: 29 April 2012 (US) & 30th April (UK)

6: The Old Gods and the New
Airdate: 6 May 2012 (US) & 7th May (UK)

7: A Man Without Honor
Airdate: 13 May 2012 (US) & 14th May (US)

8: The Prince of Winterfell
Airdate: 20 May 2012 (US) & 21st May (UK)

9: Blackwater
Airdate: 27 May 2012 (US) & 28th May (UK)

10: Valar Morghulis
Airdate: 3 June 2012 (US) & 4th June (UK)

HBO have already renewed the show for a third season – not as some had hoped third & fourth – with filming no doubt due to start again in the Autumn and run through to the end of the year. No confirmation on when it will air, but it’s expected April 2013. Already confirmed – by George RR Martin himself – episode seven will be penned by Martin himself and has the running title of Autumn Storms, though this may not be the actual title of the episode.

It is expected that S3 will cover the first half of the third book in A Song Of Ice And Fire, A storm Of Swords. ASoS is half as long again as A Game Of Thrones so it was always expected they would have to split it over two seasons. Where the split will happen is anyone’s guess, there are several major events in  the third book, any which would make an excellent season cliffhanger.

And anyone interested why – considering the amount of posts I make about the series – I’ve not posted any reviews, I will be, but will do them in batches.

With a week to go (in the UK, the US would have seen it last night) until S2 of Game Of Thrones premiers on Sky Atlantic, HBO have released two new videos featuring the new characters and new locations coming up in the next ten weeks.

Stannis Baratheon, Mellisandre, Davos Seaworth, Lord Balon Greyjoy, Maergery Tyrell, Qhorin Halfhand…

And we go beyond the Wall, to Qarth, the Riverlands and points between

It’s war. Many lay claim to the Iron Throne of Westeros, across the Seven Kingdoms the banners have been called and men are marching.

But who do you support, where does your sword stand.

House Baratheon? But King Stannis or King Renly?

Or does your heart belong to the North and you bend the knee to King Robb Stark?

What about the Lannister’s? They always pay their debts, but is King Joffrey worthy of your loyalty?

Or does your heart answer to the call of the sea and you’re one of the Ironborn and follow King Balon Greyjoy?

Or do you follow the path of the dragon and bend the knee to Queen Danearys Targaryan?



HBO have released another trailer for S2 of Game Of Thornes.

This one concentrates on the relationships within the series and features some of the fantastic female characters.