by Graham Pierrepoint
Game of Thrones continues to be a show which courts a different kind of interest – there really does seem to be active interest in keeping matters as spoiler-free as possible. The current season of the show – its landmark seventh – is considerably truncated in comparison with runs that have come before it – meaning that fans are avidly trying to keep episodes that are upcoming from being revealed. This is particularly the case as the show is set to end next season, with only a very limited number of episodes left on the slate. However, it seems that issues that befell the series two seasons ago have come around again.
Four episodes of season five were hacked from HBO and leaked only two years ago – and while no full episodes have been obtained this time around, unwanted access to HBO’s data has resulted in the script from episode four of this season being obtained before the show has even aired. The hacking is also said to have resulted in the stealth of episode content from two other shows – Room 104 and Ballers – and it is thought that approximately 1.5 terabytes of data were obtained illegally. It’s a move which HBO have responded to with concern, though their initial statement did not allude to any of the contents of the hack.
HBO has stood by its viewers in recent years in an attempt to protect them from spoilers for their biggest shows, most notably Game of Thrones. While the show is based upon the best-selling fantasy novel series A Song of Ice and Fire by George RR Martin, the TV show has largely diverted from the paths laid out by the books – altering many of the character paths and even resulting in some characters remaining alive on paper but already dead on screen. Martin is thought to be close to finishing the hugely-awaited Winds of Winter, the next book in the franchise which may go some way to catch up the TV series.
If you want to avoid spoilers for Game of Thrones, it’s easy – there are a number of ways you can filter out words and phrases on social media – or you can even download an extension for your browser that will do the hard work for you. It is a shame, however, that there continues to be people willing to spoil the fun for everybody else.