No, an ‘Arya: Coming To America’ Game of Thrones spinoff is not happening

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Spoilers for Game of Thrones.

Hopefully, everyone knows by now that Arya Stark survives everything and decides she doesn’t even want to stay in Westeros. At the end of the show, she says goodbye to Jon, Sansa and King Bran and sets sail for whatever is west of Westeros, where “all the maps end.” Basically, she’s coming to America. She’s Christopher Columbus or something. While it was a disappointing end for her character, it also felt sort of in-character for Arya and her quixotic nature. The biggest disappointment was that Arya didn’t steal anyone’s face in the last episodes, nor did she take anyone else out from her Kill List. Anyway, Arya’s “end” definitely seemed like it could be the jumping off point for a sequel spinoff, Arya In the New World, or whatever. HBO’s programming president Casey Bloys says that won’t happen. Bloys says a lot of other sh-t too – you can read the full interview here.

Bloys won’t talk about why the last two seasons were so rushed: “No, I cannot talk you through that decision. The guys have known what they’ve wanted to do for a long, long time. They’ve had a plan in their mind. I’ve been on the record saying I’d take five more seasons. But they’ve had a plan that they wanted to do and this made sense to them. They made this decision a long time ago and they’re doing it exactly how they planned to do it….They made that decision a long time ago. But no, I’m not aware of any conversations that anybody thought it was crammed or anything like that.

Whether there’s a plan for an Arya sequel spinoff: “Nope, nope, nope. No. Part of it is, I do want this show — this Game of Thrones, Dan and David’s show — to be its own thing. I don’t want to take characters from this world that they did beautifully and put them off into another world with someone else creating it. I want to let it be the artistic piece they’ve got. That’s one of the reasons why I’m not trying to do the same show over. George has a massive, massive world; there are so many ways in. That’s why we’re trying to do things that feel distinct — and to not try and redo the same show. That’s probably one of the reasons why, right now, a sequel or picking up any of the other characters doesn’t make sense for us.

[From The Hollywood Reporter]

Bloys talks about how there are three prequel shows in various stages of development, with The Long Night being the first one being filmed (this summer). I don’t understand Bloys’ argument, that we shouldn’t be able to see what Arya is up to because Arya was “Dan and David’s thing” basically. I say that if George RR Martin gave his blessing, Arya: Coming To America could totally be a thing, a stand-alone project without Weiss and Benioff’s involvement. But whatever, I’m not going to argue about it.

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27 Responses to “No, an ‘Arya: Coming To America’ Game of Thrones spinoff is not happening”

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  1. Becks1 says:

    I actually kind of agree. Let GOT be its own thing, I would hate to have an Arya spinoff that was awful and made me hate Arya or something. So often spin offs just make the whole series seem stupid. They’re usually more like Joey and less like Frasier. The Long Night prequel is different to me because it would involve a very different Westeros, very different characters, etc. I don’t want to see a prequel of the Mad King or anything.

  2. Valiantly Varnished says:

    Do we really need a whole show about Arya: The Colonizer? I think not.

    • aang says:

      We could have Arya the assimilator. She could be adopted by a tribe and make a new list of enemies to stab. Game of Thrones Tenochtitlan edition. *everything I know about this show I learned from reading Celebitchy*

      • MrsBanjo says:

        Unfortunately the result would be the same. It would rely on stereotypes and tropes of indigenous North/South American peoples and end up just as racist as a straight up coloniser story. Because the tribe adopting her and adding to her kill list automatically assumes the tribe’s culture is inherently violent. They *could* write it as she’s adopted in and they’re attacked by colonisers, leading to her expanded kill list, but there isn’t really any confidence that that kind story would be done well, because she would end up the White Saviour.

      • Diplomanatee says:

        “Arya the White Savior”? Yeah, that would be worse.

    • MrsBanjo says:

      So much this. There’s no way that story would be able to avoid that result. It would be incredibly tone deaf.

    • LadyBug says:

      Well, she may not be colonizing anything. Maybe she’s just off to explore and live a different life. That was as the idea that I had about it when I watched it, although I definitely get why people would feel cynical about it given GOT’s problematic issues with regard to race and women. For sure. I guess I just feel like Arya, of all of them in the story, is the least likely to sail off into the sunset to become monster or a colonizer.

      (Edited to add: I’m on my work computer and used a random name and email to make this comment since I don’t remember my info for my usual posting without my personal laptop. When I posted, I saw an avatar pop up. oops! I guess there is already a LadyBug and she is not me. Sorry! I’m usually TheMummy.)

  3. Eyeroll says:

    Eh. Not interested in an Arya spin-off tbh. The most interesting thing about Arya’s arc to me was how she went from the unladylike girl who witnessed horrific things done to her family and used that to pursue a journey of vengeance, with a side of friendship, while not losing what made her uniquely her. Through that journey, she reunited with what was left of her family. I knew she wouldn’t win the crown, but I also thought she’d remain with her family. It’s fine that she is choosing to explore, but without her anchors to her family or enemies, I’m not sure what else is left.

  4. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    But WHY did they not want more seasons? Just because they made some decision long ago? Doesn’t make any sense at all to me, following the enormous success of the show to chop it off like they did because they decided from the first. So sad. So stupid lol. So selfish! And yeah, even arrogant.

    • Becks1 says:

      I don’t even care about more seasons, why not make this season longer? Like I’ve said on here before, I think 2 more episodes could have made a big difference, and honestly probably would not have increased costs that much more, since they were already do so much filming etc. they could have shown us more of the stuff that happened off screen (like Jon confessing to killing Dany). I don’t necessarily think that we needed more seasons, but an 8 or 10 episode season here would have made a huge difference.

      • MrsBanjo says:

        That’s what’s so frustrating. HBO wanted to pay for 10 episodes in this season. D&D didn’t give enough of a shit to do the work. They were already out the door.

    • Turtledove says:

      “But WHY did they not want more seasons?”

      I think because they wanted to be free to go work on other big $ projects? I am not 100% sure of that, but it would make sense. I think of it this way, you are the show runner of a hugely popular series, getting paid big money AND getting an awesome budget to do awesome things. That is GREAT. But at a certain point, other projects are calling. Both because creatively you would crave that, but also because you gotta strike when the iron is hot. If they accepted the offer of creating 5 more seasons, sure, they would have 5 more years a big guaranteed paycheck………..but they would have to turn down a lot of offers because they would be tied up with GOT. And at around S5, they were probably HUGELY sought after. But there is no guarantee that they would have the same great offers at around S13. I 100% agree that things could have ended on a much happier note for fans if they just made S8 longer, 10 episodes instead of 6 could have made such a difference. The $$$ was most definitely there.

    • Mabs A'Mabbin says:

      Absolutely. Even extending the last two seasons to contain a full ten would have made a huge difference. And they had so much to work with.

      @Turtledove, I have no doubts they have their justifications. Won’t it be something if their decision ends up costing them somehow.

      • Turtledove says:

        “@Turtledove, I have no doubts they have their justifications. Won’t it be something if their decision ends up costing them somehow”

        I hope it does. Bitter of me to say and I know many people think the disappointed fans are “entitled brats”. But I really think they rushed the ending of this epic series so that they could move on and that is shitty. I think that was a shitty and unprofessional thing to do.

      • Mabs A'Mabbin says:

        It definitely was. I love the show. LOVE it lol. I’m a fantasy, sci-fi, historical nutter so most programs within these parameters are riddled with giggle moments. So I’m fine with the mental adjustments in the final two seasons, but I wish we weren’t forced to swallow the rush. A bit of bitter is apropos.

  5. CES says:

    His responses sounds like complete and utter bs, but whatever. They’re the ones who have to sleep at night realizing they destroyed a beautifully written series.

  6. TeddyPicker says:

    I had totally forgotten that ending it was their choice… Just makes this last season seem like even more of an ill-conceived hatchet job.

    Just 9 more days till the Deadwood movie!

  7. ds says:

    yeah D&D must have had a good lawyer and a contract that would honor their vision. Which is fair. Even if they didn’t I understand the point this guy is making, and in a way he’s right.

    • Turtledove says:

      “D&D must have had a good lawyer and a contract that would honor their vision.”

      Probably. But also, you gotta figure that for HBO, D&D wrote this hugely successful series.

      Fans didn’t hate D&D until this last season. And by the time the fans saw it and hated it…it was over. Sure, when HBO asked much earlier for 5 more seasons and D&D said no, they could have tried to get new showrunners to take over…but at that point, that would seem risky to HBO. Those guys were helming their most successful show. If they ditched them and kept going..they risked people not watching.

      • Peanutbuttr says:

        I actually think the real backlash only started in episode 5 when they had Daenerys become the mad queen and had Jamie and Cersei die together. Up to then, the only big complaint was the lighting for episode 3.

  8. Ainsley7 says:

    GRRM wouldn’t agree to it. He’s specifically said no to sequels because he has no intention of writing any. All of the new shows will be based on things he’s already put out there.

  9. CleaK says:

    Truthfully, I’d be interested to see what’s west of westeros but I’m okay that they’re not going that route. If there was a promise of a hot Gendry appearance or two, I’d be on board.

  10. Lucretia says:

    Did no one else notice in the final montage of scenes with Arya, Sansa, and Jon getting dressed and ready for their “next chapters” there was a shot of someone packing up a small bag of metal instruments? It was quick — looked like something between surgeon’s tools and a nail kit. I think we got a peek at how “faces” happen. She’s taking it along.

  11. JByrdKU says:

    I just don’t understand how they could develop such an amazing show, with phenomenal character development and acting, and then MEH out on the last two seasons.

  12. Jax says:

    What if the Arya spinoff was the complete inverse of what people are thinking it would be? She goes to explore the unknown world and the reason no one comes back is because Westeros were “the savages” instead of whom ever she bumps into. At first the world seems idyllic with their advanced technology and their dragon zoos for aging large dinosaurs – also everyone has a pet dragon too, but they’ve been bred to stay miniaturized and docile, easily tracked. Which of course leaves room for an Arya and Drogon team up. Arya is amazed at first, maybe even slightly used and manipulated before she figures out the new game (which is shinier but same as the old one) and then starts to see the issues and then uses her ninja assassin training to take down those in power. After awhile she’s had enough, tries to go home. There’s conflict. Final showdown, goes back to Westeros.

    Would make some interesting meta commentary.