You may have noticed we’ve gotten a bit of promo material from HBO for the next season of Game of Thrones over the past month or so. Just a little bit. That’s the problem: we were all hoping for more stuff than this. A lot of us Throners have been talking about how disappointed we are with the material. Especially the teaser video we got on Sunday night; we were hoping to get some footage from Season 6, and we got nothing of the sort.
I remarked earlier on Twitter that those three House-specific teasers looked like fan edits, and I really think they do. For a moment there I was kind of wondering if they were really HBO-sanctioned content, because so little went into making them. I thought, and I still think, anyone with some good software and decent video-editing skills could make those. The hard part would be getting the voice talent for reading those lines.
Which is not to say I was uninterested in the teasers. I wrote a fairly ambitious article for Fansided with my analysis of the House-specific videos taken as a whole, I blogged up a blue streak over here with the early-season photo set, and I wrote some more about the House of Black and White teaser we got last night. It doesn’t take much to get me excited.
At this point, I honestly don’t expect HBO to give us any more than this, and I think that the seeming inadequacy of this year’s promotion is not a result of incompetence, it is a deliberate decision on the part of the PR team. I think they’ve decided to give us so little because they know we already have so much.
You may have noticed that I’ve spent much of the past year blogging almost entirely about Game of Thrones, and less about stuff happening in the real world. That I’ve pulled away from everything else is due to a confluence of factors which I won’t share now because you all don’t need my therapy sessions in your lives, but I was able to do as much talking about Game of Thrones as I’ve done largely because we got a metric ton of filming leaks this year.
The amount of information that was leaked to us from the filming season is really quite staggering. If most of the actors are telling the truth about how clueless they are—“Oh, I only get my own scenes, I have no idea about anything else!”—then I probably know more about what’s happening in S6 than they do. Granted, it’s in their interest to appear to be more ignorant than they are, what with a certain Northern bastard having met a highly controversial death last June, but with all the news we’ve gotten from Winter and Watchers, the next season is offering to be less of a surprise to a lot of us Watchers of the Twitter List than to some of the cast members.
And it doesn’t take a lot of market research to figure out that we know more than we should? Like, anyone working for HBO’s marketing departments (somehow I suspect they have several) could do a little Googling and find out within minutes that we’ve already been told way too much. With that understanding in mind, it’s in their interest to keep the new content as thin as possible. The problem isn’t just a matter of simple addition of new footage to our mass of filming leaks. It’s that, when compared against our pre-established knowledge, a little bit of new footage could end up being a lot more revealing than it should be. If I were anyone but me, I wouldn’t trust me with any new content on Littlefinger, for instance. I would enjoy it far too much. Practically anything shown in the Riverlands, for another example, would basically set off an atomic bomb.
I think that’s why they’re giving us so little promo material. It’s not even because the show sells itself without any help—although that is also a fair point—it’s because every image they give us is a new piece in a puzzle that we’ve mostly assembled already.
Also: when we get the DVD set for Season 5, I will milk those audio commentaries for all they’re worth. I am the Shield that Guards the Realms of Hype.