The North Remembers: Always Support the Bottom

Raven LogoLoyal bottom supporters, it is time to look at what was going on in the community in August 2011, three years ago. Like this year, the show was between seasons and so we were getting casting news concerning new characters for season two (a veritable myriad thereof!), while filming was in full swing.

  • Gemma Whelan was confirmed as Yara Greyjoy, and Kerr Logan as Matthos Seaworth. Nonso Anozie was cast as Xaro Xhoan Daxos. Tom Wlaschiha joined as fan favourite Jaqen H’ghar (who may return this year!), Roy Dotrice was cast as Pyromancer Hallyne, and we found out Hannah Murray joined in the role of Gilly. We got Robert Pugh as Craster. We also figured out that Michael McElhatton was cast as Roose Bolton, and that Ben Crompton was to play Dolorous Edd – he has had great one-liners, that guy! Later that month we got Patrick Malahide as Balon Greyjoy, Daniel Portman as Podrick Payne, Ian Hanmore as Pyat Pree, Ralph Ineson as Dagmer Cleftjaw, Lucian Msamati as Salladhor Saan, and Andy Beckwith as Rorge. We also found out Laura Pradelska was to play Quaithe (when will we see her again?) and Forbes KB got the role of Black Lorren, one of the Ironborn.

  • Filming was taking place at Clandeboye Estate (Craster’s Keep), at Ballintoy Harbour and other places along the coast such as Murlough Bay (Theon’s storyline, including his baptism).
  • What was originally an April’s Fool joke yours truly came up with (to tease as certain Rabbit and other Croatian readers) became a reality, as shooting in Croatia was first strongly rumoured and then confirmed. Dubrovnik and several surrounding locations were chosen to feature in S2. Iceland was likewise added as a new country that season.
  • David and Dan revelaed for the first time that A Storm of Swords would not be adapted into a single season (which they stayed true to, as we know).
  • Lastly, the Always Support the Bottom shirts were offered to the community! Are you still in the dark about the origin of the phrase? Sound off in the comments, and the old guard will tell you the cool story behind it. We will include it in our FAQ one day soon 😉

41 responses

Jump to (and Always Support) the Bottom

    1. Just out of curiosity, since I had not found my way to Old Nan back in those days… what was the fan reaction to the Xaro Xhoan Daxos casting? To me that is the only real controversial one up there…

      These are always a fun read and put a good perspective on things…

      Always Support the Bottom!!!

        Quote  Reply

    2. Canis Dirus,

      The XXD casting was kind of a nightmare in terms of fandom BS, if I remember correctly. Mostly I just remember Linda from Westeros.org up in arms about it, as she’s wont to do, because of the purity of worldbuilding or whatever. It got nasty on tumblr (she had a tumblr and wasn’t afraid to call people all sorts of pretty vile things for suggesting that XXD being black wasn’t automatically the worst thing ever and, unrelatedly, that people are gonna write fanfic no matter what she says). I think she deleted the worst of her posts, but someone out there probably has screencaps.

        Quote  Reply

    3. Ok, I’ll admit, I don’t know the origin of “always support the bottom!” and I want to know! Just didn’t want to be one of those annoying forum noobs who demand explanation of every in-joke and story. I’m polite, damn it!

        Quote  Reply

    4. I have no idea whats behind the phrase “Always support the bottom” so please, can someone tell me about it? I joined the community after i finished the books (between season 2 and 3)..

        Quote  Reply

    5. I don’t remember the full story. Some kind of pre-show buzz campaign and one of the kits was sent to Phil (I believe). He went into examination mode and someone filtered an image of a map or something that had “always support the bottom” on it. Turned into a meme.

      You can find a full explanation somewhere on the old site which I won’t link to here as I don’t wish to give them traffic 🙂

        Quote  Reply

    6. Kit,

      Ha! I assumed it got pretty heated, and could have guessed that Linda was part of that. I’ll have to go back and check some of that out.

        Quote  Reply

    7. Howland Reed:
      I don’t remember the full story. Some kind of pre-show buzz campaign and one of the kits was sent to Phil (I believe).He went into examination mode and someone filtered an image of a map or something that had “always support the bottom” on it.Turned into a meme.

      You can find a full explanation somewhere on the old site which I won’t link to here as I don’t wish to give them traffic

      That’s basically it. There was some very faint (what at first appeared to be) printing on the map that turned out to be an artifact from a photographers developing tray that had raised letters in it something to the effect of: “be sure to always support the bottom of the tray” or near enough as makes no difference. They thought they were onto some cool easter egg, lol.

        Quote  Reply

    8. Boy I really miss Laura Pradelska’s Quaithe. I really hope we run into her again, but I doubt it happens.

        Quote  Reply

    9. ProfessorArtNerd,

      So let me tell you the story of “Always Support the Bottom”. It’s a story full of mystic and misunderstanding. I will make it quick, because winter is coming and the dark is waiting for all of us.

      Long ago when the fandom was still young and the show was still to air HBO used to make riddles and puzzles for us to solve so the time may past faster. We used to analyze these things with obsession, looking for every little bit of information about the soon to air show.
      One of the things HBO gave us (to my shame I don’t remember what it was) had barely readably letters on the back. After a fairly long time of racking our brains and some Photoshop wizardry we made out the words “Always Support the Bottom”.
      What could it mean? Was it a reference to Flearbottom? It had to mean something, right? – As it turned out it meant nothing at all. The document had been treated to look older, and what ever substance they used for it, had been stored in a barrel with the words “Always Support the Bottom” at, well, the bottom, as a warning for the sipping company and such.
      Since than “Always Support the Bottom” has become a symbol for the dedication of the fandom. When you say “Always Support the Bottom” you mean “Lets stand together on this. We have been though much and will stay loyal to each other.”

        Quote  Reply

    10. Canis Dirus,

      IIRC, there was some commentary about Gemma not being beautiful enough as well. I think she’s done a great job with what she’s been given (the horse scene with Alfie, the scene begging him to give up Winterfell and come home with her).

      Greatjon of Slumber,

      ME TOO! We need some mysterious Quaithe and her mask.

        Quote  Reply

    11. Ashara D,

      Yes I remember that. It was completely ridiculous, as even if you think Gemma Whelan isn’t a beautiful women, there was no suggestion in the books that Asha Yara was actually meant to be.

        Quote  Reply

    12. One of the coolest thing was that Campfire, the company that came up with the GoT promo campaign, and sent out the scent box with the accidental ASTB imprint, later used the phrase as part of a later puzzle some weeks later, as a tribute to our community 🙂

        Quote  Reply

    13. The Always Support the Bottom thread really was the greatest craze in my online existence – we were all mad(wo)men trying to solve “the puzzle” first. The puzzle that turned out not to be one… 🙂

      Here’s my most substantial entry from that post – a comparison of my postprocessed version and the photo made by Phill of the piece of parchment he found in his scent box:
      http://m0.i.pbase.com/g4/23/58723/2/132796690.WWQOHs5P.jpg

      Someone should take a screencap from the original thread and post it as an image… Always support the bottom!

      (PS: in case you ever want, Marko and co, feel free to use it as an image on the website – I can also give it in a larger size)

        Quote  Reply

    14. Oh what the heck, why should we not link to the original thread? It’s an important part of our history as a community. Here goes! (as a real Watcher, you should read, or re-read, the entire post… but be sure to read Purplejilly’s story at the bottom, it’s absolutely sublime!)

        Quote  Reply

    15. Nice that you continue this series Marko!
      Hear Marko Roar,

      Yeah… in general those people did an exceptional job with their promotional campaign (though mostly for already-fans, i.e. book-readers), but that shout-out was definitely a highlight.

        Quote  Reply

    16. Abyss:
      ProfessorArtNerd,

      So let me tell you the story of “Always Support the Bottom”. It’s a story full of mystic and misunderstanding. I will make it quick, because winter is coming and the dark is waiting for all of us.

      Long ago when the fandom was still young and the show was still to air HBO used to make riddles and puzzles for us to solve so the time may past faster. We used toanalyze these things with obsession, looking for every little bit of information about the soon to air show.
      One of the things HBO gave us (to my shame I don’t remember what it was) had barely readablyletters on the back. After a fairly long time of racking our brains and some Photoshop wizardry we made out the words “Always Support the Bottom”.
      What could it mean? Was it a reference to Fleabottom? It had to mean something, right? – As it turned out it meant nothing at all. The document had been treated to look older, and what ever substance they used for it, had been stored in abarrel with the words “Always Support the Bottom” at, well, the bottom, as a warning for the sipping company and such.
      Since than “Always Support the Bottom”has become a symbol for the dedication of the fandom. When you say “Always Support the Bottom” you mean “Lets stand together on this. We have been though much and will stay loyal to each other.”

      Well thanks for that! I didn’t know the origin but definitely pieced together the connotations of supporting the bottom.

        Quote  Reply

    17. Thanks, HMR! Just yesterday I was wondering if these would continue.

      The Gemma Whelan controversy is what I remember the most. I even understand it to a certain extent – viewers of any kind of visual media get used to characters who are required to be attractive being played by drop-dead gorgeous actresses. It’s no wonder it was jarring that a ‘merely’ attractive (partly for her fantastic swagger in the role) actress played an attractive character.

        Quote  Reply

    18. My favourite thing about the t-shirt (which I still proudly wear!) is that it sounds like a t-shirt for some kind of kink group.

        Quote  Reply

    19. Dame Pasty,

      Just off the top of my head, don’t know if all of them, or any, deserve an entry.

      Gate (as in scandal) = Not really crated by this community obviously, but back in the day we used as in:
      House Gatewatch = Referring to the site as the watcher and creator of all “gates”. The house had coat of arms, but I can’t find the artwork…

      Lord/Lady Gatewatch = Referring to the main force behind the site, meaning Winter in that case. Don’t know if we have that now, the closest thing would probably be Fury.

      Chair = The first gate we had was one about a chair, so some coined “Chair” as a bastard name for House Gatewatch.

      Non of this is really used any more in the community, so maybe it isn’t relevant, but I like nostalgic stuff like that. 🙂

        Quote  Reply

    20. Dame Pasty,

      I would add one to those of Abyss: Indigo.
      It is quite specific to Axechucker and now that Aimee ‘Indigo Is the Way To Go’ Richardson is not in GoT anymore it will probably slowly disappear but it used to pop up in interviews and only this community ever heard of it.

        Quote  Reply

    21. Ser who says Ni:
      Ashara D,

      Yes I remember that. It was completely ridiculous, as even if you think Gemma Whelan isn’t a beautiful women, there was no suggestion in the books that Asha Yara was actually meant to be.

      I agree. As a (relative) Jeannie come lately to the original site (a little over a year ago) I missed all that kerfuffle obviously. There still seems to be a lack of warmth for Gemma Whelan among some people. I have no problem with her. I wondered if some people had built up an idea of Asha’s appearance by looking at fan art or graphic novels. On another site (not one that anybody here formerly contributed to) a lady had posted that she thought that the show-runners had taken away a lot of book Asha’s charm the way the character was written. I’ve seen some interviews of Gemma Whelan where she actually looks attractive though not in a Hollywood type of way – they seem to rough her up rather for the show, though I suppose a pirate woman would be rough – at least while she was at sea.

        Quote  Reply

    Jump to the Top

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *