Is ‘Game Of Thrones’ On Next Week? Extra Episode Isn’t What You Think

a scene from a recent episode of game of thrones
Helen Sloan / HBO

HBO viewers may have noticed that the words “Game of Thrones” appear on next Sunday’s schedule, which must be pretty shocking, considering that the show aired its series finale last Sunday. So does that mean there’s an extra episode, showing the events that take place after the events of last Sunday’s finale? Perhaps a second, alternative ending to last Sunday’s finale that left several fans disappointed?

As it turns out, neither of those things is true, although that doesn’t necessarily mean that fans are going to be disappointed with Sunday’s “bonus episode.”

What’s airing Sunday isn’t going to be a scripted episode of the show. Rather, Game of Thrones: The Last Watch is a documentary, taking a look behind-the-scenes of Season 8, the show’s final season.

The two-hour special was announced back at the end of March. As Entertainment Weekly reported at the time, HBO had “quietly” green-lighted the project, then sat on the news for a while before making an official announcement.

Game of Thrones: The Last Watch delves deep into the mud and blood to reveal the tears and triumphs involved in the challenge of bringing the fantasy world of Westeros to life in the very real studios, fields and car-parks of Northern Ireland.”

What’s more, HBO is promising that the documentary, directed by British filmmaker Jeanie Finlay, won’t just be a run-of-the-mill “making of” special. Rather, the network says that the special is itself a story, showing the audience the laughter, tears, joy, and heartbreak that go into creating a world over the course of a decade, and then having to say goodbye to it.

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Similarly, The Wrap reported at the same time that Finlay had been given “unprecedented access” to the show’s producers, essentially being “embedded” with the team in much the same way that journalists are sometimes embedded with military units in war zones.

And though the production was hardly in a war zone, it had its share of difficulties. Extreme weather, for example, dogged the production, especially in inhospitable locales such as Ireland. Then there were the deadlines, which can be difficult to meet under the best of circumstances. And of course, there were always fans, desperate for the tiniest scrap of information that could be turned into a spoiler.

Although Game of Thrones: The Last Watch serves to put an end to the famed HBO series in much the same way that an afterword wraps up a novel, the documentary is not the last time fans will see any glimpses of George R.R. Martin’s universe. At least one spinoff, a prequel tentatively titled Age of Heroes, is already in the works, and rumors persist that there may be other Game of Thrones spinoffs coming out, too.