‘Game of Thrones’ Ending Will Be ‘Bittersweet,’ Says George R.R. Martin

Game of Thrones Emmy Nominations HBO
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George R.R. Martin has been breaking hearts for decades as the author of “Game of Thrones” and its subsequent sequels, but as he grows closer to the eventual ending of his “Song of Ice and Fire” novels — and as a result, the ending of HBO’s blockbuster adaptation — fans are growing ever more anxious about how his fantasy saga will end (and who will be left standing when the dust settles).

That’s a mystery to Martin as well. “I haven’t written the ending yet, so I don’t know,” he responded when asked whether the books’ ending will be particularly dark during an interview with the New York Observer. “That’s certainly not my intent. I’ve said before that the tone of the ending that I’m going for is bittersweet.”

Martin credits J.R.R. Tolkien as an inspiration, noting, “I love the way he ended ‘Lord of the Rings.’ It ends with victory, but it’s a bittersweet victory. Frodo is never whole again, and he goes away to the Undying Lands, and the other people live their lives … All I can say is that’s the kind of tone I will be aiming for. Whether I achieve it or not, that will be up to people like … my readers to judge.”

Despite not having written an ending yet, Martin clearly has a goal in mind — at least according to “Game of Thrones” showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss (though they did note that it could change at any time).

“We know what the end is, and we’re barreling toward it,” Benioff told Variety ahead of “Game of Thrones” season five. “We’ve had a lot of conversations with George, and he makes a lot of stuff up as he’s writing it. Even while we talk to him about the ending, it doesn’t mean that that ending that he has currently conceived is going to be the ending when he eventually writes it.”

“Game of Thrones” season six will premiere on HBO in 2016.