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How Game Of Thrones Influenced Star Trek: Discovery

Most wouldn’t ever compare the likes of Star Trek and Game of Thrones. In many ways, they are polar opposites of each other. One his high fantasy, the other high sci-fi. One is character-focused, one is more idea-driven. But now, with the latest entry in the series, Star Trek: Discovery, nearing its release, showrunners Aaron Harberts and Gretchen J. Berg are naming Game of Thrones as an influence for the Discovery.

Speaking with EW, Berg said:

“Game of Thrones changed television. They almost made it difficult to fall in love with people because you didn’t know if they were going to be taken away from you. That show’s had an influence on all TV dramas that have come after it.”

Of course, it’s easy to misunderstand why the deaths in Game of Thrones worked. Some may see that as an invitation for a killing spree, but Harberts wanted to make it clear that that wasn’t the case with Star Trek: Discovery. No, there won’t necessarily be needless and widespread death for the sake of it.

Harberts stated:

“Death isn’t treated gratuitously on this show. It’s not for shock value. But when it happens we want to make sure that people really feel it.”

This is something that’s pretty commonplace nowadays, but wasn’t really a think when I was growing up. Until recently, you generally had a core cast that would stick around season after season after season, no matter the dangers. Occasionally, you’d have cast members pop in and out, but that was normally due to contractual disagreements or an actor leaving for film. Nowadays, a lot of absences in TV are for legit story reasons. Now more than every before, casts tend to be pretty malleable.

We’re happy to hear that Star Trek: Discovery will be taking more risks with their storytelling, but we also hope that they manage to retain the more thoughtful aspects of the original series. While I’d never been a huge fan with the slow pacing of the original series, splitting the difference between that and the new films seems like the best way to go — and from what we’ve seen, it looks like that’s the direction they’re going. Now if only it wasn’t on CBS All Access…

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