George R.R. Martin Didn’t Want New ‘Game of Thrones’ Spinoff Title to Sound Like ‘Beavis and Butthead’

Martin wanted to make sure "A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms: The Hedge Knight" had a title that would appeal to viewers unfamiliar with the source material.
WESTWOOD, CALIFORNIA - MAY 08: George R. R. Martin attends the LA Special Screening of Fox Searchlight Pictures' "Tolkien" at Regency Village Theatre on May 08, 2019 in Westwood, California. (Photo by Amy Sussman/Getty Images)
George R.R. Martin
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HBO reaffirmed its long-term commitment to the “Game of Thrones” franchise this week by ordering a full season of a new spinoff titled “A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms: The Hedge Knight” just days after “House of the Dragon” began production on Season 2. The new series, which follows the adventures of a knight named Ser Duncan the Tall and his squire Egg, is based on a series of novellas that Martin began publishing in 1998.

Those who have paid attention to the endless pipeline of “Game of Thrones” shows in development will recognize the project, as Martin has been open about wanting to make a show about the characters. The series has been commonly referred to as “Dunk & Egg,” as the two characters are often colloquially called. But in a new post on his personal blog, Martin explained why they ultimately had to go with a more distinguished-sounding title.

“The working title will be ‘A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms: The Hedge Knight.’ Whether that will be the final title, I can’t say for sure… beyond saying that no, it won’t be called ‘Tales of Dunk & Egg’ or ‘The Adventures of Dunk & Egg’ or ‘Dunk & Egg’ or anything along those lines,” Martin wrote. “I love Dunk and I love Egg, and I know that fans refer to my novellas as “the Dunk & Egg stories,” sure, but there are millions of people out there who do not know the stories and the title needs to intrigue them too. If you don’t know the characters, ‘Dunk & Egg’ sounds like a sitcom. ‘Laverne & Shirley.’ ‘Abbott & Costello.’ ‘Beavis & Butthead.’ So, no. We want ‘knight’ in the title. Knighthood and chivalry are central to the themes of these stories.”

In addition to clearing up any misunderstandings about the title, Martin used the opportunity to illustrate how long it takes for shows to develop and ask fans to be patient about future spin-offs.

“Way back in the summer of 2016, when HBO first started thinking about ‘Game of Thrones’ spinoffs, I pitched them two ideas: the ‘Dance of the Dragons,’ which in due time became ‘House of the Dragon’… and ‘Dunk & Egg’,” he wrote. “That was seven years ago. (I can hardly believe it myself). The lesson there is that development takes time. I see all these stories on the net about other spinoffs being killed or abandoned… no idea where they get this stuff… and it just makes me shake my head. The Nymeria show is still in development. So is the Sea Snake show. Just had a great week on that one, working with writers. And there are others, both live action and animated. How many will get the greenlight like Dunk & Egg? Impossible to say.”

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