Last night, Game of Thrones began its eighth and final season on HBO, leading up to the series finale in mid-May. According to George R.R. Martin, the show's final episode will surprisingly give closure for both fans of the show and the books.
"I don't think Dan and Dave's ending is going to be that different from my ending because of the conversations we did have," Martin said during a chat with Anderson Cooper for a special 60 Minutes spotlight on Game of Thrones, which aired before the season premiere.
The "Dan and Dave" to which he refers are series creators/showrunners D.B. Weiss and David Benioff, to whom he revealed the official ending of the high fantasy series. The author also added that the show is 97 percent faithful to his source material. That being said, there's always changes that have to be made and certain things must be left at the wayside.
Martin is still in the middle of the penultimate novel in the Song of Ice and Fire series, The Winds of Winter. He's been writing it for so long, that the book's progress has become a viral Internet meme you can often see on Twitter. The final installment in the series will be called A Song of Spring. In a recent chat with Entertainment Weekly, the writer voiced his disappointment at letting the show get ahead of him, a sentiment he also shared in the 60 Minutes interview.
"I was completely confident that I would have the entire series finished and Winds of Winter and A Dream of Spring would be out before they got to them," he said. "It was a blow when the series caught up, I didn't think it would happen.
Despite the fact that the show and books will pretty much have the same ending, Martin strongly believes that there will still be some discourse (and maybe even some in-fighting) among fans. His "dark" prediction is surprisingly very much in line with what we've come to expect from the franchise as a whole.
"There will be a debate, I'm sure," he finished. "I think a lot of people who say, 'Oh, Dan and Dave's ending is better than the one George gave us. It's a good thing they changed it.' And [there'll] be a lot of people who say, 'No, Dan and Dave got it wrong, George's ending is better.' And they will all fight on the Internet ... that's fine."
Our recap of the Season 8 premiere (titled "Winterfell") can be found here.