Splinter is coming! The Game of Thrones spin-offs the world deserves – The Guardian

Splinter is coming! The Game of Thrones spin-offs the world deserves – The Guardian


Game of Thrones will definitely end with its eighth season in 2018 but worry not, because splinter is coming. HBO have announced audacious plans to extend their flagship franchise, commissioning four different writers to develop spin-off projects that will “explore different time periods of George RR Martin’s vast and rich universe”. In other words, they’re going to throw lots of ideas at the Wall to see what sticks. Here are some suggestions to ensure these continuations are more Frasier than Fear the Walking Dead.

Keeping Up with the Lannisters

George RR Martin hasn’t actually finished writing The Winds of Winter, the long-gestating sixth book in the A Song of Fire and Ice saga that Game of Thrones is based on. But cut him some slack. Over two decades, five hefty tomes and various short stories, the fantasy titan has sketched out a plausible, broad-strokes history of Westeros, from the First Men invading and colonising the continent many millennia ago to the dread Long Winter that necessitated the raising of the Wall a mere 7,000 years or so later. There’s no need to go back that far to find a promising setting for a juicy spin-off, though: who wouldn’t want to watch the formative years of suspiciously close twins Cersei and Jaime, honing their statecraft and swordplay on the family seat of Casterly Rock while their tetchy dad Tywin struggles with being a single dad. Imagine the OC with added OMG.

Our Fiend in the North

How did the Night King so completely lose his moral compass in a place where pretty much everywhere is north?



How did the Night King so completely lose his moral compass in a place where pretty much everywhere is north? Photograph: HBO

He may be cold as ice and willing to sacrifice but we don’t actually know that much about Game of Thrones’s implacable big baddie the Night King except that he can raise the newly dead with a mere “come at me bro” gesture and, judging by his Darth-Maul-meets-Groot complexion, is in dire need of some winter skincare tips. So how did this former Night’s Watch commander so completely lose his moral compass in a place where pretty much everywhere is north? The full tragic, operatic backstory could unfold in flashbacks while the nascent Night King begins the preparations that will lead to his big push south, allowing us to glimpse what everyday life is like for those who scratch out a life on the wrong side of the Wall. Like: what do wights do when they’re not on murder duty? Throw in some subplots about passionate wildlings and those mysterious children of the forest faerie folk and whammo: it’s Breaking Bad meets Vikings meets Once Upon a Time.



Game of Thrones season seven teaser trailer

Better Khal Soll

The Dothraki are essentially the Klingons of Westeros: a muscled mass of beard-knots and tribal tats, cruising around the deserts of Essos on their mighty stallions like a rambunctious biker gang. Khal Drogo, son of Khal Bharbo, was such a legend he remained undefeated in battle – well, until he was blood-poisoned by a vengeful witch-slave – but what would happen if a more non-traditional Dothraki male found himself unexpectedly elevated, through a series of mishaps, to the hallowed position of Khal? Enter Soll, who might not have a bulging sword arm but has enough cunning to keep his wandering band of lethal meatheads in line, with a little help from his eye-rolling khaleesi Kimmawexler. Sure, his name might be in the title but she’s the real star, helping Soll become a different kind of Khal, a better Khal. Again, this would be a chance to spend some time in the corners of Essos that haven’t been explored in the mothership series but here’s a tip for any potential showrunner: don’t have Soll and Kimmawexler go to Meereen. No one’s interested in going back to Meereen.

To the Manor Bronn

Let’s do a fresh-faced prequel – though it will be tricky to find a young actor capable of matching both the easy charm and Desperate Dan chin of Jerome Flynn.



Let’s do a fresh-faced Bronn prequel – though it will be hard to find a young actor with both the easy charm and Desperate Dan chin of Jerome Flynn. Photograph: Sky TV

How did everyone’s favourite sellsword, brigand and wench-grabber become such an insolent rogue? What inspired his cheerful contempt for the feudal barons who tussle over the Iron Throne while their serfs starve in the muck? Where did he learn all those impressively bawdy ballads? All these burning questions could be answered in fresh-faced prequel To the Manor Bronn, even if it might be tricky to find a young actor capable of matching both the easy charm and Desperate Dan chin of Jerome Flynn. Actually, this would be yet another male-centric spin-off, so even though it would be fun to watch Young Bronn butt heads with the bumptious Clegane brothers and learn the art of a good pike-drop from man-at-arms Syrio Forel, scratch all that. Let’s do a spin-off about the lethal Sand Sisters – the eight-strong, glorious bastard sisterhood from the very far south of Westeros. Imagine something like Girls but with even more wine: To the Manor Dorne.

The seventh season of Game of Thrones launches on 16 July



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