If you’re still emotionally devastated from “The Rains of Castamere,” the third season episode of Game of Thrones that Friends would have titled “The One with The Red Wedding,” join the club. It was a shocking moment in TV history, even for book readers who knew what was coming (and probably spent half the sequence watching the face of anyone experiencing it for the first time), and by the end of the five-day shoot, Richard Madden (Robb Stark) was “mentally exhausted. I cried my eyes out, as did a lot of the crew and other actors.”
Entertainment Weekly has an oral history of the Red Wedding, which includes interviews with the cast, including Michelle Fairley (Catelyn Stark), who didn’t speak to co-showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss for a week after because she was “so shattered,” and author George R.R. Martin. The episode aired in 2013 and A Storm of Swords, the A Song of Ice and Fire book the wedding appears in, was published in 2000, but he still gets hate mail from fans.
“When the book came out I got a lot of emails, and I still get them, saying, ‘I hate you, how could you do that, I’m never going to read your work again.’ Others say, ‘I threw the book across the room and a week later I picked it up again and it was the greatest thing I ever read.’ What can you say to someone who says they’ll never read your book again?” Martin said:
“People read books for different reasons. I respect that. Some read for comfort. And some of my former readers have said their life is hard, their mother is sick, their dog died, and they read fiction to escape. They don’t want to get hit in the mouth with something horrible. And you read that certain kind of fiction where the guy will always get the girl and the good guys win and it reaffirms to you that life is fair. We all want that at times. There’s a certain vicarious release to that. So I’m not dismissive of people who want that. But that’s not the kind of fiction I write, in most cases. It’s certainly not what Ice and Fire is. It tries to be more realistic about what life is. It has joy, but it also had pain and fear. I think the best fiction captures life in all its light and darkness. (Via)
With the Red Wedding, Martin certainly brought the “darkness.”
(Via Entertainment Weekly)