HBO scraps one ‘Game of Thrones’ prequel for a much dragon-ier ‘Game of Thrones’ prequel

Big Game of Thrones news today, kids. So, the GoT prequel that had been known during filming as “Bloodmoon” and took place thousands of years before the events in Game of Thrones, it’s been scrapped. Apparently, the pilot episode was re-edited after not being well-received the first time around, and there were issues with production. But unlike its predecessor, HBO decided to just trash it altogether rather than reshoot.

Its demise is probably (definitely) related to the other big Game of Thrones news from HBO that broke yesterday: the other prequel series that had moved forward, the one based on the Targaryens, it has been given a full series order. Not a pilot order — they’re going straight-to-series with House of the Dragon, ordering 10 episodes. The series, interestingly, will be on HBO Max, not HBO, and will take place some 300 years before the events of Game of Thrones.

Here’s what I think happened: after filming the pilot of the show that is supposed to take place some 5,000 years before the events of their most popular series ever, and which features no characters related to any of the audience’s favorites, HBO realized that OOPS, they went too far back. But, then they have this script with Targaryens and Starks and Lannisters — albeit, Targaryens and Starks and Lannisters that most people don’t know, but, hey! they’re still Targaryens, Starks and Lannisters — and they’re like, “well, shit, if we’re going to do a spinoff, it better be a spinoff that folks will recognize as a spinoff.” Also, I suspect that the plot of “Bloodmoon” — that the White Walkers are descending from the north and a great hero steps up to stop them — it just felt a little too familiar.

Personally, I was hyped for “Bloodmoon” and that origin story as I think it would have been rich in mythology and symbolism. But I recognize that it only makes sense for HBO to choose the series that has characters that audiences are already familiar with. Also, House of the Dragon? It will have 100% more dragons than “Bloodmoon.” So there’s that.

The news about House of Dragon came at a presentation for HBO’s upcoming streaming service, HBO Max. I’ve listed a number of the new shows announced at this presentation below in “In Development,” but the other things that we learned from the presentation is that it will launch in May 2020, episodes will be released weekly rather than all at once, and it will cost $14.99 a month. HBO subscribers through AT&T will receive HBO Max for free for one year.

Kurt Sutter is pretty sure he was fired by Fox/Disney thanks to this “joke” in Mayans MC.

And while we’re talking about jokes, about that chicken in the Succession finale

You’re going to have to wait another year for The Haunting of Bly Manor. Which is not surprising but uuuughhh…

Yesterday, on The View, Meghan McCain interrupted Whoopi Goldberg while Whoopi Goldberg WAS LECTURING EVERYONE TO NOT INTERRUPT. It was truly amazing.

NCAA will now allow student-athletes profit on their name, image, and likeness. Finally.

Impeachment Corner!

Yesterday, Purple Heart-awarded, Harvard-educated Lt. Col. Alexander S. Vindman testified before Congress, and though we won’t have his testimony anytime soon, we do know one very intriguing bit of information: the transcript of The Phone Call is not an entirely accurate transcript of The Phone Call. 

Now, we already sorta kinda knew that: when the White House released the transcript of The Phone Call, many people questioned its veracity. Some noticed that while The Phone Call was supposedly roughly 30 minutes long, but that when the transcript is read out loud, it only lasts about 10-15 minutes. Also, there are fewer words per minute than previous transcripts between President America First and other world leaders. But most troubling, there are ellipses in the transcript that suggested that portions of the conversation were not included.

Lt. Col. Vindman, he sat in on the call, and yesterday he explained that there were key details of the call that were not included in the transcript that he tried to demand be included: “The omissions, Colonel Vindman said, included Mr. Trump’s assertion that there were recordings of former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. discussing Ukraine corruption, and an explicit mention by Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelensky, of Burisma Holdings, the energy company whose board employed Mr. Biden’s son Hunter.”

Now, these details, they don’t actually change anything: the transcript itself shows that President What’s In It For Me? asks Ukraine for a “favor though,” — which in the context of everything is understood to mean “you give me an investigation into my political rivals and I’ll give you the military aid that Congress already promised you but that I’m holding up for my own gains.” You know, the impeachable thing.

Vindman also revealed that he had been excluded from debriefing President Putin’s Bitch about President Zelensky’s inauguration for fear that he might say something to piss off President Toddler. A few days ago, I mentioned a guy named Kashyap Patel,  who apparently is the guy in the White House who has been feeding our idiot President crazy conspiracy theories about Ukraine. Welp, President Nutjob thought Patel was the White House’s Ukraine expert, not Vindman, and Vindman testified that “he was told Patel had been circumventing normal NSC process to get negative material about Ukraine in front of the president, feeding Trump’s belief that Ukraine was brimming with corruption and had interfered in the 2016 election on behalf of Democrats.”

Today, two State Department officials, Catherine Croft and Christopher Anderson, are testifying before Congress, where they will say that President Compromised took a dark view of Ukraine which was out of step with the National Security Council and State Department’s policy towards the country. They’ll also have plenty to say about Rudy Giuliani being dragged into the middle of things, and both appear to bring Special Envoy Kurt Volker back into the conversation. And Croft will discuss how former Republican congressman/now-lobbyist Ron Livingston used to harass her with phone calls demanding that Ukrainian ambassador Marie Yovanovitch should be fired because of Republican boogeyman George Soros. Or something. Their opening statements are at those links above.

Other things happening this week: the House will vote on a resolution that will set the parameters of the public part of the inquiry, and the Republicans are SO MAD because it will be run by the House Intelligence Committee, and therefore, Adam Schiff. The Republicans will be able to request their own testimony and witnesses, but as happened during the Clinton impeachment, those requests can be overruled by the Democratic majority, LOL. Also, it sounds like the Democrats are not going to do that bullshit grandstanding thing where every Congressperson gets to question the witness for five minutes and make a mess of things. Instead, they’ll bring in a staff lawyer to do the questioning, and allow the narrative to be coherent, THANK CHRIST.

President Doesn’t Know What the Fuck He’s Talking About is tweeting that the GOP needs to focus on “substance.” I think what is happening here is that he’s hearing people laughing that the only thing the Republicans can push back on is how the Democrats are running this inquiry, not the actual substance of the inquiry because the substance is SO BAD.

OK! Good luck with THAT, Chuckles!


  • Another Life has been given another season on Netflix.

  • Pennyworth has been renewed for a second season at Epix.
  • Creepshow has been renewed for a second season at Shudder.


  • Lodge 49 has been canceled after two seasons on AMC. It’s being shopped around.

In Development

HBO Max had a big event yesterday and announced a BUNCH of new stuff in addition to several projects I’ve mentioned previously. Here’s a full list of what’s coming.


Casting News

Mark Your Calendars

  • The End of the Fucking World will return on November 5 and it looks like a bummer. Hmm.


John Witherspoon, Comedian and actor in a million bajillion things


Stumptown: Hoffman brings Dex in on a case. 9 p.m., ABC

World Biggest Ghost Hunt: Investigators are locked inside an asylum for two weeks. This is what they found. 7 p.m., A&E

Flavorful Origins: I’ve never heard of this Chinese documentary series, but it apparently explores Chinese food and it looks gorgeous. By the way, I’m obsessed with Chinese food. Netflix

Ghost Hunters: Season finale. 9 p.m., A&E

They Live: I urge you to watch this cult classic if you’ve never seen it. It feels more relevant than ever. 8:45 p.m., Showtime Beyond

World Series Game 7: COME ON ‘STROS. 6:30 p.m., Fox

Late Night:

  • Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon: Emilia Clarke, Bobby Cannavale, Booker T. Jones, FKA Twigs
  • Late Night with Seth Meyers: John Krasinski, Joel Kim Booster, Amy McGrath
  • The Late Show with Stephen Colbert: Norman Reedus, Cynthia Erivo, Miranda Lambert
  • The Late Late Show with James Corden: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Linda Hamilton
  • Jimmy Kimmel Live: Rob Lowe, Mackenzie Davis, Grace Potter
  • The Daily Show: Sen. Amy Klobuchar
  • Conan: Deon Cole
  • Lights Out with David Spade: Louis Anderson, Joey Diaz, Sarah Tiana
  • Watch What Happens Live: Kary Brittingham, Stephanie Hollman


WEDS. 7:00 7:30 8:00 8:30 9:00 9:30
ABC The Goldbergs
Modern Family
Single Parents
CBS Survivor
CW Riverdale
Nancy Drew
FOX The Masked Singer
Almost Family
NBC Chicago Med
Chicago Fire
Chicago P.D.

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