WARNING: There are some spoilers ahead. You might want to watch all episodes before reading this. Both, because you won’t hate me, and because Season 4 was simply spectacular.
As I’ve mentioned before, I’m not a fantasy fan, and my investment in the Game of Thrones story has been based on the enormous amount of gratuitous nudity remarkably well-written storyline and strong, dark, emotional moments.
The only other big show I can think of with as many characters to remember, to root for or against, is The Wire. And while that other HBO hit is much more up my alley, I’ve noticed some Game of Thrones sub-stories are a lot less interesting to me.
Several of these characters – while they can have their moments – occupy an amount of time in the story that I’m not comfortable with. I don’t really care what happens to Theon. I can’t stand Jon Snow’s pouty face. Stannis couldn’t be more of a cold fish. Bran’s character is getting too old to be carried around by a giant man towards an elf-populated tree.
And speaking of that last thing, while this has probably been the best season so far, there were several elements on the finale that are getting into a dangerous science fiction and fantasy territory. The appeal of the show for me is more about the personal stuff, and while I’ve learned to accept the mystical situations when used sparingly, the fifth season points to a lot of magical shit I might not be down with, folks.
King’s Landing, usually the most interesting place on this show, is suddenly without the colorfully lovable and hatable crew that made it all possible. The Lannisters storyline has changed drastically after the last episode, and with that, most of the appeal of the capital’s events.
But this is not exclusive to the Lannisters. I feel most of our time has been spent in Westeros, and the percentage of Eastern action has been mostly about Daenerys; but that geographic time distribution is about to change. The attachment that both Tyrion and Arya had with the land they came from is gone. Any new pasture looks amazing at the moment.
Now, while I will most certainly be watching all of season five when it comes out – and whine about any magical stuff – here are four different spin-offs that would be kind of awesome, and I would watch over an hour dedicated to a lot of characters I’m not feeling. So, in order of preference:
– Tyrion and Varys start an Essos buddy-detective team, whose only aggressiveness comes out of witty retorts. I frankly don’t even care if I ever see any other GoT character again. If we can just follow these two around Essos, we got a winner in our hands.
– Arya gets her real training down at Braavos, then goes Kill Bill on everyone’s ass. Flashbacks may allow a well-rounded show, too, not to mention some fans would get to have a little peek at some Starks before their death.
– Maybe I’m alone here, but I think a Tywin Lannister prequel would be a pretty exciting political drama, and would further humanize the character so that we could finally feel bad about him dying on the toilet. We also get to see his kids grow into the massively fucked up adults they became; plus we’re treated to a creepy, yet tender, teenage romance by Jaime and Cersei.
– Daenerys does a Bachelorette-styled show where all her suitors have a final shot at removing themselves out of the friend/subject zone. Foreseeing a drop in the ratings after her dragons “accidentally” burn most candidates to death, Ser Jorah could come back as a late-minute participant, only to be sent home after his first date. Another spin-off with Ser Jorah as the bachelor could then be a thing, but it will probably be cancelled during its first season, because, well… that man can’t catch a break, and certain Game of Thrones lessons will always stick.