Game of Thrones stretching television’s story telling ability.

Television critics have discussed how cable shows like The Wire and The Sopranos showed how television could be like books in the storytelling and character development. Scott Meslow joins Alyssa Rosenberg to discuss how Game of Thrones might be pushing the envelope on the novelization of television, or how, at least, Game of Thrones might be too much book to effectively transfer to television. I just finished book 3 and 4 of the GoT series, and… There are a lot of new characters and stories. Where as the story of the Starks and Lannisters might be enough to fill several seasons of television on their own, the GoT series actually contains at least 6 or 8 other stories going on by the end of book 4. I really liked this thought: “Sprawl, for good and ill, is a characteristic of books in a way that it never can be of television.”

Now, obviously Martin’s books have been released on a cycle that by the standards of television look leisurely. But they’re also able to give much more space to each character—sometimes for good, sometimes for ill—unconstrained by the production budgets, writing, production, and editing cycles, and standard length of a television episode that inevitably provide structure to the show. That means he writes a fair amount of digression and worldbuilding into the books, but also that he’s not bound by anything except how many pages his publishers can bind into a single volume, and even then, if he’s got to spill over into more volumes, they’re going to be nothing but happy. And those digressions, and the amount of time it takes to read the books, just give readers more hooks into the stories, the characters, and the settings. Sprawl, for good and ill, is a characteristic of books in a way that it never can be of television. I’m not saying that means the books are better than the show. But I do think that they expose some of the irreducible differences between reading and watching television once you reach a certain scope.

Via @tcarmody

Game of Thrones stretching television’s story telling ability.

Treme Trailer

“Treme”, David Simon’s latest premiers Aprill 11 on HBO. The show and Simon got the
New York Times Magazine treatment on Sunday…

The story lines in “Treme” begin three months after Katrina, and they follow a diverse group of characters as they rebuild their lives in a city torn apart, a city in which tens of thousands of houses are abandoned, in which only 50 percent of the population remains, in which neighborhoods are still without power. The main characters in “Treme” aren’t the overburdened cops, spiraling addicts, ruthless dealers, struggling dockworkers, corrupt politicians or compromised journalists of “The Wire.” In their place, for the most part, are musicians.

http://www.hbo.com/bin/hboPlayer.swf?vid=1085428

Treme Trailer

The Real Avon Barksdale

The Avon Barksdale Story- Legends Of The Unwired…won Best Docudrama at this year’s NY International Independent Film & Video Festival…In The Avon Barksdale Story, the real Nathan Avon “Bodie” Barksdale tells all to actor Wood Harris, who played his on screen character in HBO’s critically acclaimed series The Wire.

Via Nah Right

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The Real Avon Barksdale

5 The Wire Links for Monday Morning

What better way to start Monday morning than 5 links about The Wire, 2 of which come from TVTattle.

In this article, David Simon talks about an idea for a new project about the CIA. Yes, please. Also discussed is his project on the fight for desegregation in Yonkers’ public housing and what happened after Abraham Lincoln was assassinated.

Also, I must have known about the Treme (pronounced trah-may) pilot, but can’t remember hearing about it. It’s about New Orleans post-Katrina and is heavy in the music.

Here are 12 interviews between stars of the show and Hobo Trashcan.

While this where are they now is a bit depressing. Would expect some of these folks to get more than guest roles on police procedurals.

Finally, this last link from The Daily Record has a headline saying “Cops use skills from TV show The Wire to trap drug dealers”, but then goes on to describe what sounds like a normal police bust. Unless, of course, cops in Scotland spent preceding years using different techniques like “just ask the bad guys to come in” and “pretend there’s no crime.”

Bonus link: Of course, the above link might stem from the fact that the UK is supposedly going through The Wire fever since it just started airing terrestrially on BBC2 at the end of March.

5 The Wire Links for Monday Morning