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David Benioff Explains Why 'Game of Thrones' Benched Bran and Hodor For Season 5. Hodor?

By Jodi Smith | Industry | November 5, 2014 |

By Jodi Smith | Industry | November 5, 2014 |

Kristian Nairn (Hodor) commented that he and Isaac Hempstead-Wright (Bran) would not be appearing in the upcoming season of Game of Thrones. Entertainment Weekly, the undisputed King of Spoilers, spoke with the show’s executive producer and co-showrunner David Benioff about the absence of everyone’s favorite warg and his Hodor Hodor.

“Ideally that wouldn’t have gotten out and it’s unfortunate it did. The fact is, even though we’re making changes to the books and adapting as necessary, we’re trying to keep the various storylines the same as the books and trying to keep them roughly [chronologically] parallel. And last year we caught up to the end of Bran’s storyline [in George R.R. Martin’s most recent A Song of Ice and Fire novel, A Dance with Dragons]. So if we pushed him forward this season, then he’s way ahead of where the other characters are.”
“It made sense to stop where we did. He’s now entering a training period which is going to take quite some time, much of which isn’t particularly cinematic. So rather than being stuck in a cave for a year, we figured it would be interesting to leave him out for a little bit, so when you see him again …”

“Also,”, Benioff continued in my mind, “that shit they’re doing now is super boring and weak.”

Bran will be learning warging 101 in some underground thing or cave or Starbucks or something, and that just doesn’t make for compelling television. Especially when other characters have boobs and butts, swords and magic, blood and fire, dragons and Sand Snakes.

I don’t think Bran and Hodor’s absence will cause the uproar that leaving out, say, Tyrion or Jaime for an entire season. I am convinced that Hempstead-Wright will be two feet taller and even more adult-y by the time we see him again. That’s going to be…fun?


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Jodi Smith is a Senior Reporter, Film & Television at Pajiba. You can email her or follow her on Twitter.