A few days ago at CCXP (Comic-Con Experience) in Sao Paulo, Brazil, HBO offered Game of Thrones fans the chance to see showrunners and co-creators David Benioff and D. B. Weiss, John Bradley (Samwell Tarly) and Maisie Williams (Arya Stark), talk about the show. While fans were incredibly excited to see some of the actors and creators up close, before the panel actually began, we were treated to something unexpected: an orchestra appeared on the upper left side of the stage and started playing the Game of Thrones theme song live. While all I had was my phone to record the moment, I figured some of you would still like to see it and it’s below.
As you hopefully can hear in the video, the fans loved the orchestra and the energy for the show was palpable. As the orchestra ended their performance, everyone was ready to hear the actors and showrunners talk. The panel should have been an easy layup. Instead, the energy in the room quickly died.
Let me explain.
Unlike the other panels here at CCXP, which are hosted by our friends at Omelete, the Game of Thrones panel was not moderated. Instead, each of the panelists took turns asking each other questions, which ranged from fun stuff like which character would you like to marry, to how Benioff and Weiss possibly changed the arc of a character based on the actor’s portrayal.
While I’ll admit some of the questions were humorous and mildly interesting, I know most of the fans in attendance left disappointed. That’s because all of us were interested in one thing: any sort of information about the final season of the hugely popular show. While we got a nugget when Williams said Arya would kill a few more people in the final season, the only other bit was when Benioff and Weiss said they wanted to premiere a trailer at the con but the VFX weren’t ready.
And this is where a moderator would have helped.
I’m pretty sure not having one was an HBO decision and it came from Benioff and Weiss, but this is where someone needed to pull them aside and say while they might be great writers, they should not be running a Comic-Con panel in front of thousands of people.
An easy way to have made everyone in attendance happy would have been for them to have talked about the pressure of writing the final season, or how they wanted to raise the bar with the action. Or literally any other thing about the behind-the-scenes of the making of the show and how it was different on the final season.
The fact is, they have publicly spoken about the final season with Entertainment Weekly, so some information is out there. All they had to do is repeat what they said to the Brazilian crowd and everyone would have eaten it up.
I know some of you are probably saying this is not a big deal and I should just be happy I got to attend the panel. But when people slept outside to get in, you should always make sure they walk out happy.
Hope you don’t mind the rant. Look for more CCXP coverage very soon.