The Atlantic

Fantasy on TV: How Game of Thrones Succeeds Where True Blood Fails

The two HBO shows illustrate the perils and opportunities of adapting books for the screen
Source: HBO

The two HBO shows illustrate the perils and opportunities of adapting books for the screen

alyssa_thronesblood_post.jpg

HBO


After a summer when HBO garnered critical acclaim and new audiences with its epic fantasy series , it's been fascinating to watch , the show that introduced HBO to the genre, go dramatically off the rails in its fourth season. Both shows face the challenges of mustering very large casts in the service of complex storylines that are not always obviously related to each other, along with detailed magical mythologies and histories. But while hewed closely to the original plotlines and, Alan Ball and his writing staff have diverged wildly from as they've moved deeper into . Taken together, the two shows represent the perils and opportunities of adapting an existing fantasy franchise.

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from The Atlantic

The Atlantic4 min read
A Documentary That Shows Another Side of Toni Morrison
One of my white teachers in high school insisted that Toni Morrison would be confusing to me as a reader. So I approached the author’s work with that notion in mind, and quickly realized how wrong my teacher’s assessment was. Morrison’s prose is lush
The Atlantic2 min readSociety
What the U.S. Medical System Can Learn From Estonia
Americans waste time and money filling out paperwork and repeating tests in the doctor’s office. A small Baltic nation has found a better way.
The Atlantic3 min readPsychology
Can Neurodiversity Defeat Doublethink?
Masha Gessen suggests there was a connection between Asperger’s and social activism in the Soviet era.