Author George R. R. Martin shared his opinion concerning the Internet on Friday. Martin, most famously known for writing the A Song of Ice and Fire book series on which Game of Thrones was based, explored the ways in which fans are now able to share their opinions. On Leonard Maltin’s “Maltin on Movies” podcast, Martin also claimed that such openness can be “toxic.”
Both Martin and Maltin began their careers by writing something known as “fanzines” before the time of the Internet. These were, as the name implies, magazines written by fans for fans. On the podcast, they addressed how through the Internet, fans have been given a larger podium, which can sometimes lead to “madness.”
After the last episode of Game of Thrones aired, fans were incensed by the conclusion of the series, going so far as to start a petition to have the final season re-written. However, according to Casey Bloys, HBO’s President of Programming, D.B. Weiss and David Benioff had thought out the ending from the start.
“The Internet is toxic in a way that the old fanzine culture and fandoms — comics fans, science fiction fans in those days – was not,” Martin stated on the podcast, adding that, “There were disagreements. There were feuds, but nothing like the madness that you see on the Internet.”
Despite fan reactions to the final season, several Game of Thrones spinoffs are in the works, in addition to a prequel. However, Martin doubted that any of these variations will be as big as the original Game of Thrones series. “The scale of Game of Thrones’ success has — reaching all over the world and invading the culture to [such an extent] — it’s not something anyone could ever anticipate, not something I expect to ever experience again,” Martin stated, adding that the fanbase for the original series was “a little surreal.”
Little has been revealed as to when and where fans will be able to see the upcoming Game of Thrones prequel. However, it has been announced that Josh Whitehouse and Naomi Watts will play prominent roles in the series, and Martin will serve as co-creator alongside Jane Goldman.