After seven breathtaking seasons, Game of Thrones will finally conclude its breathtakingly complex, heartbreaking story when its final episodes arrive in 2019. However, this won't be the last we see of Westeros and Essos. Back in May 2017, plans for a spinoff show were revealed, with HBO eventually confirming that five spinoff scripts are currently being looked at for development-- all of them prequels.
We know George R.R. Martin will be involved with the development of these shows in some capacity, which is important for the success of whichever show HBO decides to move into production. However, it's uncertain just how involved he'll be (he has been in talks with at least four writers), which may be worrying for fans of the show.
To see how important George R.R. Martin is to the success of any spinoff, you need only look at Game of Thrones in recent years.
When the series began, George R.R. Martin had already completed and published five novels, detailing each character and kingdom. There was a clear, meticulously planned path for each character... and there were a lot of characters. Adapting that to television rather than film was a wise choice because each important twist and turn could be thoroughly explored. And with Martin on board, he was able to oversee the major creative decisions and ensure the show was true to his vision and the story novel fans had been familiar with for years.
The quality of writing in the show was exceptionally high from the first to the fifth season, in which we saw the events of the novels "A Game of Thrones" to "A Dance of Dragons" unfold. Characters we thought we'd hate forever grew into characters we couldn't help but admire, and victories we thought would surely come to pass turned into tragic failures. Time and time again, the show kept us guessing, which is a rare quality in television today, it's also what made the show's last two seasons feel slightly inferior.