Was HBO’s Game of Thrones playing head games with President George W. Bush?
In the audio commentary track for the Season 1, Episode 10 DVD of the hit series, showrunners Daving Benioff and D.B. Weiss call attention to a brief sequence that depicts the 43rd president’s prosthetic head on a spike.
The last head on the left is George Bush. George Bush’s head appears in a couple of beheading scenes. It’s not a choice, it’s not a political statement. We just had to use whatever head we had around.
The decapitated head appears at about the 1:09 mark:
When HBO got the heads up, it wasn’t pleased, according to the 109.com website:
We were deeply dismayed to see this and find it unacceptable, disrespectful and in very bad taste. We made this clear to the executive producers of the series who apologized immediately for this inadvertent careless mistake. We are sorry this happened and will have it removed from any future DVD production.
In a subsequent statement, Benioff and Weiss apparently admit that maybe they may have lost their heads:
…After the scene was already shot, someone pointed out that one of the heads looked like George W. Bush… We meant no disrespect to the former President and apologize if anything we said or did suggested otherwise.
Game of Thrones, based on George R.R. Martin’s fantasy novels, has been picked up for a third season by HBO.
Given HBO’s left-leaning tilt in at least some of its other content, do you buy the explanation that the George W. Bush lookalike head was just lying around the prop room and that it wasn’t a political statement? Do you think that the head of a liberal Democrat such as Bill Clinton or the incumbent president would ever have appeared in an episode of Game ofThrones in a similar circumstance?
Update: According to The Hollywood Reporter, HBO “has pulled the 10th episode of the drama from rotation on digital platforms — including HBO Go and iTunes — and halted all future shipments of its best-selling Season 1 DVD set…HBO confirms the crucial episode will be returned to digital platforms after the scene is edited out.”
(image credit: The Daily Caller)