‘Game of Thrones’ Season 4 Will Be a Lot Different Than the Books

Published 2 years ago by

This is the part when HBO’s Game of Thrones really gets interesting. Not just because of where the big traumatic turns of season 3 left us, but rather because we’re approaching that juncture where the source novels by author George R.R. Martin become a tangled knot that has frustrated more than a few of his readers over the years.

Technically speaking, the rough patch begins with book 4 of the novel series – and season 4 of the TV series is actually supposed to cover the second half of book no. 3, so one would think there’s no problem there. However, many fans have been measuring the material from book 3 and wondered if it isn’t a little too short for a full fourth season of the show. According to star Jerome Flynn (Bronn), the measurements are certainly not exact.

Jerome Flynn talks Game of Thrones Season 4 Game of Thrones Season 4 Will Be a Lot Different Than the Books

Speaking at a special panel during the 2013 New York Comic-Con, Flynn claimed that fans would be “quite surprised” by how different season 4 of the HBO show was from the books that inspired it. This was in reference to discussion of a fight scene in which Bronn engages in a battle concocted exclusively for the TV series.

Truthfully speaking, Game of Thornes has always taken liberties with its adaptation of the source material; hell, they even found a way to make the infamous “Red Wedding” even more gruesome and shocking than the books did.  And with other actors from the series claiming that season 4 will have even more death in it, one can only guess what showrunners D.B. Weiss, David Benioff and co. have in mind for big events like the “Purple Wedding” and the subsequent events that follow in this game-changing chapter of the Westeros saga.

Game of Thrones Viewers Character Season Episode Guide Game of Thrones Season 4 Will Be a Lot Different Than the Books

If the show were to take a lot of the “interquel” elements of George R.R. Martin’s 4th and 5th books (A Feast for Crows and A Dance of Dragons) and streamline them into a more cohesive, focused narrative – while starting to lay a lot of the groundwork for those chapters earlier on  (so that the development and plot progression were a lot smoother and tighter) I’d be game for it. Reading through books 4 and 5 was a lot like watching a creator sift through a mountain of ideas to find the handful of best ones to work from – no need to repeat that messy process on the TV screen when the destination is already known and the roadwork could be a lot more direct.

How about you – are you okay with the show deviating from the books, or do you like the adaptation to be more faithful?


Game of Thrones returns to HBO in spring 2014.

Source: IGN

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  1. I love how in literally ANY comment section or forum the comments divulge completely from the question to out right bickering, complaining, & name calling. The only person who has any right to be upset or happy with the show is the creator himself George R.R. Martin. Not the readers of the books or the fans of the show. It’s his property and if he’s happy the way the show is going and he is halt the direction the tv show writers take it then it’s his call. From what I understand is he is working with the crew and writers very closely to make sure they get the feel and characters down along with the main point of the story. But people who’ve followed the series from the books to the show doesn’t entitle you to anything other than your opinion.

  2. unfortunately the material has been oversimplified in the HBO production of the 4th season… and having read the five books i feel somewhat annoyed watching the cut and pasting of the plot and rearrangement of the story line and transforming of the characters… it is hard not to feel a little betrayed having invested so much time and involvement in the books to see the bastardized short circuit version on the screen that spends more time in intimate scenes purely for its appeal such as the non-existent romantic interlude between say Sam and Jenny at the wall that happens much later in the books under completely different circumstances and not in that fashion for Sam remains a timid character throughout the books and that tension makes him interesting; or over the top and numerous brothel scenes completely absent in most of the books, or the completely irrelevant red priestess naked in her bath and her sexual overtures to Stannis’s queen. it is unfortunate that it is assumed the viewing public can not handle complex plots that defy immediate resolution and instead are given titillating scenes purely for effect. i guess there is an assumption that a dumbed down population can only handle a dumbed down story. there goes the destruction of what could have been potentially a beautiful and masterful adaptation of an intricate tale. i guess everything for a mass audience has to eventually end up as s***. we as a viewing audience deserve what we get.