The Novelization Of TV, Ctd

by Patrick Appel

Alyssa Rosenberg and Scott Meslow contrast HBO’s Game Of Thrones with its source material:

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Alyssa further ponders the comparison over at her blog:

I absolutely agree that television shows can function like novels, in that they can tell long-arc stories, develop characters in a rich way, and play with large themes. But there are technological divides that separate what they can do. In a book, you can stay within the medium and flip back and forth if you don’t remember who a character is, or need to check back in on an event that happened previously. Increasingly, large books hold character guides and world maps. The entire universe of the story is there in a single volume. And that means you can throw an enormous amount of material at a reader. But in a television show, if the world gets big enough, you may need to venture outside of the medium to refresh yourself, whether you’re checking Wikipedia for a character name, switching disks to see an old scene, or skimming through Netflix to find the right moment. If you can’t remember something, you may have to break the spell.