It's no secret that the first few seasons of Game of Thrones were truly amazing but things quickly went south after Season 5. Interestingly, fans were not the only ones who noticed. It has been confirmed that George R.R. Martin was worried about the direction that the show was taking and had expressed his concern to showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss.
The first four seasons of the HBO series stayed close to the source material with only some slight changes that helped move the story along. However, significant changes started coming in Season 5 like the first meeting between Tyrion Lannister and Daenerys Targaryen.
Those changes were noticed by Martin who reportedly tried to dissuade the Game of Thrones showrunners from altering his story. In the upcoming book Tinderbox: HBO’s Ruthless Pursuit of New Frontiers, Martin's representative Paul Haas confirmed that the A Song of Ice and Fire author was unhappy with these changes.
"George loves Dan and Dave, but after season 5 he did start to worry about the path they were [going down] because George knows where the story goes. He started saying, ‘You’re not following my template’. The first 5 seasons stuck to George’s roadmap. Then they went off George’s roadmap," Haas said.
There is no explanation as to why Benioff and Weiss decided to stray from the path that Martin has set out for them. However, it is disappointing to know that they were given guidelines that they refused to follow as the show progressed. Personally, I'm just upset about the way they killed Ser Barristan Selmy off (yes, that happened in Season 5).
Although Martin wasn't able to do anything about the changes in the last three seasons of Game of Thrones, we're hoping he will be able to take control of the book that everyone is still waiting for. Martin is still hard at work on the sixth ASOIAF book The Winds of Winter, which has not yet been given a release date. Stay tuned for more updates on this story.