All The Game Of Thrones News

Having just finished off a solid, but divisive season (for book readers), Game of Thrones made their march to Comic-Con last week, and unlike Marvel, made some casting announcements that actually are of interest. That's the difference between the two franchises. With Marvel, people are interesting in where it is going because they are telling original stories with a largely established cast. With Game of Thrones, to know the what and where all you need to do is read the books. What we're interested in is who will be playing these characters, and thus replenishing the charter bank that gets well culled by the end of every season.

So, season four left some characters in very new, very uncertain places, and it left other characters really very dead. The show has all but thrown off the shackles of direct adaptation, and even this new fluid adaptive environment no longer conforms to any particular novel. Next season means very new things, but it also means drawing on what nearly all fans agree are the weakest books in the series. And these are the characters you'll have to learn to tolerate (or gird your growing sense of adoration for the inevitable mourning period).

Hit the jump for the new faces of Westeros (with spoilers for past seasons, but nothing from what is to come).

First and foremost, George R.R. Martin will not be writing an episode for season five. As has been traditional to this point, Martin has scripted the "turning point" episode of the season (Ned's execution, the Battle of Blackwater, Jamie's turn from villain to anti-hero, and the Purple Wedding). This year however, Martin has decided it is in everyone's best interests to finish the next novel, The Winds of Winter. I say that's a fair trade.

And now, on to the Who's Who of Westeros, season 5 edition. We'll start with those most directly related to the fall out of season 4. First up:

Who: Doran Martell

Played By Who: Alexander Siddig (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Atlantis, 24, Primeval)

And Why's He Here: Prince Doran is the Lord of Dorne, the only region of Westeros we've yet to visit, and elder brother of Prince Oberyn, who we all got to now last season. Understandably, after the events of Tryion's trial, Prince Doran is understandably upset and even more suspicious of the Lannisters. Also, he has gout.

We've known that the series was headed to Dorne for a while, as scouts for the series were vetting locations  in Spain to stand in for the arid, desert like conditions of the southern-most Kingdom (if Westeros were the maps in Super Mario Bros 3, Dorne would be World 2), the only one to have remained unflinchingly loyal to the Targaryens during the Rebellion. As for Siddig, he isn't who I would have naturally thought of for the role, but considering how handsome they cast his brother last season, I'm sure they felt that had to keep up the man-pretty quotient (and maybe his obligations to this show will keep him off that gods awful Atlantis).

Who: The Sandsnakes: Obara, Nymeria, and Tyene Sand

Played By Who: Keisha Castle-Hughes (Whale Rider), Jessica Henwick (Silk), Rosabell Laurenti Sellers (The Family)

And Why're They Here: The bastard daughters of Oberyn Martell, they'll be wanting a touch of vengeance on behalf of their father. In the novels there are eight total, but only seven appear. The last four are all too young to take part in any action, being the daughters of Ellaria Sand (who was played by Indira Varma). It appears that the series will condense the eight characters various traits and roles into these three, as Tyene is described as being a daughter of Ellaria.

Who: Trystane Martell

Played By Who: Toby Sebastian (After the Dark)

And Why's He Here: Here is where the fans are already getting a bit upset, and I feel like this is the appropriate moment for a GLARING OMISSION. The casting notes describe Trystane Martell as heir to Dorne, which is not true of the books. In the books, Trystane is the youngest child of Prince Doran and a minor character barely mentioned, except in his betrothment to Myrcella Baratheon. In the novels, he has two elder siblings, Arianne and Quentyn, both of whom are point of view characters and both of whom are various degrees of important. Arianne is a fan favourite, a strong female character that represents the antithesis of how women are treated and allowed to behave in the rest of Westeros, the personification of everything that Cersei thinks she is, and for being very much like her uncle, for whom she swear a singular vow to avenge. And Quentyn has one of my personal favourite moments in the books, for being essentially the George R.R. Martin version of Prince Charming (if you haven't figured out what that means by now, you haven't been paying attention).

Now, it is possible that Quentyn and Trystane have been merged into one character, in which case it makes very little sense why they chose to go with Trystane as the name, considering that even the most fastidious of fans probably wouldn't have been able to name him if asked a week ago. Equally possible is that Arianne has been absorbed into the Sandsnakes, thus giving those characters some longevity. It is also possible that these two superior and important characters will be introduced in later seasons. Given that the Sand Snakes and Prince Doran are being used, these two character's absences will be glaring. I suspect that at least Arianne will be included, and that she simply hasn't been cast yet. I'm hoping that is the case, anyway. She's too big a role to simply exclude or fuse int someone else. It'd have been like merging Bran and Rickon together, and keeping Rickon.

Who: Myrcella Baratheon

Played By Who: Nell Tiger Free (Broken)

And Why's He Here: Congratulations are in order, I suppose, to Jack Gleeson for being the only member of the Baratheon/Lannister siblings not to be recast during his time on the show. Yes, like her brother before her, Myrcella (last seen being put on a ship to Dorne in season two) has been recast as the series demands that she be more than just a background extra, but actually be able to spit out some words. Not to get into details, but that Myrcella is going to be, one assumes, at least as active as Tommen was last year, this will cause sever issues should Arianna not be involved.

Who: Areo Hotah

Played By Who: Deobia Oparei (Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Doom)

And Why's He Here: Captain of the Royal Guards of Dorne and personal bodyguard of Prince Doran. He's here in wield a big ass sword and look imposing while doing it. He also has a parental affection for... ARIANNE! So, I guess there goes his character arc.

And finally,

Who: The High Sparrow

Played By Who: Jonathan Pryce (Pirates of the Caribbean, G.I. Joe, Tomorrow Never Dies, Doctor Who: Curse of Fatal Death)

And Why's He Here: Every year, the show casts "a name." They manage to avoid stunt casting, but always hook a name that has enough of a prosperous career and a standard of quality behind it that fans get get excited. Actors like Charles Dance, Dame Diana Rigg, and CiarĂ¡n Hinds have filled this role before, and now the show adds Pryce to it's ranks. The High Sparrow is the new High Septon of the Faith of the Seven (the previous High Septon had his arm ripped off during the season two riots). In many ways, he's like the current pope, refusing the lavish adornments of his position in favour of being seen as a Septon of the common folk. A common folk that flock to him in numbers that distress Cersei has she attempts to fortify her position as Queen Regent.

So, there we have it. If the lack of Arianne continues to gain traction, look for either her addition or a clarification of her absence from the producers soon. Beyond that, these are who you have to look forward to getting to know before having to get over having gotten to know them.

Via Uproxx.
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About MR. Clark

Adopting the descriptor of "successfully unpublished author", MR. Clark began writing things on the internet in 2012, which he believed to be an entirely reputable and civilized place to find and deliver information. He regrets much.


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