Game of Thrones is officially delving into spinoff territory, with an untitled prequel series. Even though HBO has released details regarding the plot, timeline, and showrunner, speculation still abounds, including the eventual name of the show.
Whereas Game of Thrones is concerned with the political goings on of The Known World, the upcoming prequel spinoff will be set thousands of year earlier, focusing on the events that led to everything from the Night's Watch to the Iron Throne. It will delve into the relationship between Westeros' native Children of the Forest and the invading First Men, their Pact that led to the Age of Heroes, and ultimately the creation/infestation of White Walkers. According to HBO's relatively vague synopsis, the prequel spinoff will reveal the origins of many unanswered mysteries thread throughout George R.R. Martin's epic series.
The time period in which this spinoff takes place is mostly just alluded to in Martin's series, and further explored in his Untold History of Westeros companion book, but there are still some standout title options based on his writing. So, until HBO confirms a title, let the educated guessing begin...
The Long Night
Considering one of the most standout events that takes place in the spinoff's timeline was the Long Night, it would make perfect sense for HBO to go this route for a title. An early period of Westeros when winter lasted an entire generation and played host to a war pitting the White Walkers against the First Men and Children of the Forest, Long Night is not only relevant, but ominous enough to continue the franchise into a new, but decidedly darker direction.
Martin even revealed recently that the name he would choose for the show would be "The Long Night," adding that the title "says it all." However, he explained that he wouldn't expect HBO to go this route.
The Golden Age
If HBO wants to embrace Game of Thrones' epic foundation, they might prefer a title that feels distinguished. So, in extracting a term used to describe the era in which the prequel will be set, they might also settle on the title: Golden Age. It refers to the period of time after the First Men invaded Westeros, when they and the Children of the Forest create the Pact, a four-thousand-year-old peace agreement that ultimately set the foundation for the Seven Kingdoms. It represents a more ambitious depiction of Westeros' formative years, and referring to the age in which the series is set maintains the epic nature of the Game of Thrones universe.
Ice and Fire
Even with something as lauded as Game of Thrones, spinoffs can be tricky. With the changes comes the risk of confusing viewers, so to guarantee success, HBO needs to maintain familiarity. One way to do so is borrowing a title from the original series (similarly to how the Twilight and Hunger Games franchises worked their original titles into sequels; just not as explicitly). And since the spinoff is based on Martin's Song of Ice and Fire series, it could benefit from being titled the slightly more condensed: Ice and Fire.
Far less specific than the previous titles, this title represents the Long Night, war, and the use of Dragonglass to destroy White Walkers, which Valyrians referred to as "frozen fire."
Seeing as the spinoff will delve into the earliest roots of Westoros' semi-recorded history, the title ought to convey the general sense of "beginnings." And considering that the earliest humans that resided in Westeros were referred to as the First Men, that name seems especially fitting.
The First Men spawned what would eventually become the Seven Kingdoms, thus creating the foundation for the Song of Ice and Fire series. This title denotes the "invader" qualities of the First Men conquering a new world, but also encapsulates the idea of this prequel being an origin story for the individuals who would eventually create the Great Houses of Westeros.
HBO undoubtedly wants to convey a sense of mystery and magnitude with their first Game of Thrones spinoff. Luckily, there is one title that could convey the entire scope of the series in a single word: Dawn.
Not to be confused with Ser Arthur Dayne's sword, this title has several meanings in connection with the upcoming spinoff: some literal and some more emblematic of the title's context within the series. The literal inspiration stems from the fact that this series is set in or around the Dawn Age, as well as referring to the War for the Dawn - the war that brings an end to the Long Night. Adding to that the fact that this series not only represents the "dawn" of men and the White Walkers, but the entire Song of Ice and Fire series in general, this title suits it well.
- Game of Thrones release date: Oct 19, 2018