A Principled Stand
Update: I forgot to tell you! The girl appearing in the first panel is our recent contest winner, Judy. She figured out that Ellie’s first speech bubble ever contained Geno’s name from Super Mario RPG, something I wasn’t even aware of until Ryan told me. There will be other opportunities to appear in a comic, so keep following us on Facebook and Twitter for and you might get another shot.
If you know anything about Game of Thrones, or as those who read call it, A Song of Ice and Fire, you probably know that Jon Snow knows nothing. His sexy, sort of girlfriend Ygritte reminds him of this so often that it has turned into a meme, not that it takes a lot for that to happen.
And then there was the love-cave scene. You don’t even have to see it, thanks to this steamy and SUPER NSFW (you’ve been warned) GIF portraying the basic idea. A quick search for episode reviews will reveal even more graphic, less side-boob-ish images, but I’ll let you hunt for those at your own leisure. I won’t be held responsible if your company’s HR department decides to pay you a visit.
This isn’t the first sex scene that made it into the Game of Thrones TV show, and it certainly won’t be the last. And I’m also not saying that any of the books mentioned in the comic were ruined by live action adaptations. I enjoyed the Harry Potter movies for the most part and Hunger Games was…okay that movie sucked, but the books weren’t particularly genius story-telling or well written in the first place. That movies are bad or incomplete adaptations of books is not what causes them to tarnish the memory of their source material. It is their effect on the imaginary world we establish while reading.
Just by putting the written story that is rendered by our imagination so vividly (or not in the case of Hunger Games) onto an image on a screen does it injustice. Now they are replacing a very unique viewpoint that the reader established with a product of a director’s imagination and physical elements of the movie industry. This image is no longer unique, and more or less the same to everyone who views it. If you can compartmentalize these experiences, then its fine, but for me the movie very often imposes itself on my vision of the events in the book.
A very basic example of this is the voice of the hero. When you read a book, that voice belongs to you. It is very easy to feel connected to someone like Harry Potter when reading his story, because the book is written mostly from his point of view. It’s not written in first person (like Hunger Games…ugh), but the narrator generally provides Harry’s perspective over that of other characters. The movie, on the other hand, is just a series of events happening to some guy on the screen. It is capable of evoking emotion, and I definitely got choked up a few times in the last Harry Potter movie, but not to the same extent as when reading the books. Watching the movie, you don’t know what the hero is thinking, and it’s much harder to step into his shoes.
One final key part is the voice of the hero. Screen Harry speaks with a different voice from your own, and that voice will intrude upon your perspective the next time you pick up the book. And the same will happen with Tyrion, and Katniss, and Bran, and any character with or without a British accent (but especially those with). It makes the reading experience much less personal. And yes, it really bothers me when the characters in my imagination suddenly develop British accents. It suddenly becomes an entirely different story.