George R.R. Martin has been quite open with his opinions regarding Game of Thrones, both positive and critical. Recently, James Hibberd released a snippet from his upcoming book, Fire Cannot Kill a Dragon, in which Martin expresses disappointment at Lady Stoneheart’s omission, for example. Now Hibberd has published another interview excerpt for Entertainment Weekly, in which Martin discusses which scene from Game of Thrones he considers his least favorite.
Surprisingly (or maybe not), it’s a scene from quite early on in the show’s run in which Robert Baratheon goes hunting with Barristan Selmy, Renly Baratheon and Lancel Lannister.
Though Robert’s rant about “the good ol’ days” and verbal sparring match with his younger brother aren’t depicted in Martin’s books, the hunting subplot and character beats are all in keeping with the source material.
However, Martin says his issue has less to do with the content of the scene itself and more with the budgetary restrictions surrounding it. Sometimes it’s hard to believe that Game of Thrones was ever strapped for cash but back in season 1, the show just didn’t have the budget to allow Robert and co. to hunt in authentic, kingly splendor.
″Where we really fell down in terms of budget was my least favorite scene in the entire show, in all eight seasons: King Robert goes hunting. Four guys walking on foot through the woods carrying spears and Robert is giving Renly s—. In the books, Robert goes off hunting, we get word he was gored by a boar, and they bring him back and he dies. So I never did [a hunting scene]. But I knew what a royal hunting party was like. There would have been a hundred guys. There would have been pavilions. There would have been huntsmen. There would have been dogs. There would have been horns blowing — that’s how a king goes hunting! He wouldn’t have just been walking through the woods with three of his friends holding spears hoping to meet a boar. But at that point, we couldn’t afford horses or dogs or pavilions.”
Fire Cannot Kill a Dragon: Game of Thrones and the Untold Story of the Epic Series will be released on October 6 and is available for preorder on Amazon now.