Game of Darkness

Screen Shot 2019 05 05 at 8 02 00 PM

In the wake of the global controversy about the extreme darkness of some scenes in episode 3 of the final season of HBO’s “Game Of Thrones”, Ben Allan ACS CSI speaks to cinematographers and colorists to discuss the question that has been bothering the world… How Dark Is Too Dark?

Above you can listen to the full podcast episode.

The Long Night episode of Game of Thrones featured a battle between the White Walker army and the forces of the living.

Despite record ratings of 17.4 million viewers, many fans of the show took to social media platforms to complain about how dark the episode was (the lighting, not the storyline!) and how it affected their viewing experience.

The Game Revealed

The cinematographer for the episode Fabian Wagner who has worked on previous Game of Thrones episodes as well as other major episodic TV dramas such as Sherlock defended the episode, telling TMZ that it was supposed to be dark in order to give it a claustrophobic feel and to make the experience as disorienting for the viewer as it is for the characters.

This leads to more questions rather than answers. There is no doubt that the episode is being graded in a post house on very expensive reference monitors, but often the intended “look” of a show can get altered by simple things such as the viewers screen, the compression of the streaming service, the ambient lighting in the room, what angle to the display that person is sitting at and so on and so on.

Is it up to the creators of the show to make sure the viewer’s experience is their primary concern? Well, maybe. A show only exists if there is an audience to watch it. If the majority of the audience is unhappy then maybe something should be done, but given the fact that the ratings for the episode were so high, should we be making a big deal about this?

On the flip side, I can totally understand the push back from the cinematographer Fabian Wagner. It’s his vision along with the director and multiple other people working on Game of Thrones, and as such, shouldn’t we just respect that?

What are your thoughts on the latest Game of Thrones Episode? Let us know in the comments section below.

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