Game of Thrones fans feel a certain amount of trepidation in approaching the upcoming seventh season of the show.
While many are eager to see what’s next for the many iconic characters that Game of Thrones has created, it’s difficult to escape the nagging reminder that there are only two seasons left before the show wraps up.
What, then, can a Game of Thrones fan hold onto for a glimmer of future hope?
How about the fact that HBO has greenlit the initial planning of four separate spin-off shows for when their main series wraps up.
That said, we can’t expect these to show up any time soon. According to a spokesperson for HBO:
“There is no set timetable for these projects. We’ll take as much or as little time as the writers need and, as with all our development, we will evaluate what we have when the scripts are in.”
So it doesn’t sound like the plan is to debut these various spin-offs at the same time, and it’s unlikely that all of them will make it to television.
HBO is in the comfortable position of having one of the most recognizable brands in television, and with that comes the opportunity to build something really special.
These various spin-offs are set in different time periods in Westeros’ long history, and feature very different characters. Writers from the main show are working on these projects, with assistance from A Song of Ice and Fire creator George RR Martin.
It seems that HBO want to have as many options as possible, in order to pick the best new direction for the show to take – even if that means creating three additional spin-off shows to choose from, when they’re only going to select one to nurture to full fruition.
Of course, there could be something else afoot.
It’s entirely possible that HBO is looking at their phenomenally popular fantasy television cash cow, and are wondering whether they can Marvel it up a bit.
Or, more accurately, DC it up a bit, as DC is most certainly leading the way in creating interconnected television shows within a shared universe.
In commissioning four pilots, HBO may be looking to see whether Game of Thrones can sustain a series of shows that connect somehow – whether it be through bloodline or through featuring interconnected characters.
After all, with one of the most popular shows on television to play with, there’s nothing to stop HBO from spinning Game of Thrones out into a massive extended universe of stories in different time periods and locations.
It’s the logical next step for what has already been built within George RR Martin’s fictional world.