If Sean Bean got into a fight with himself, who would win? Game of Thrones‘ Ned Stark, or The Lord of the Rings’ Boromir? George R.R. Martin has the answer!

In a fun video interview with MTV, George R.R. Martin plays the “GRR vs JRR Game,” which basically means pitting various Game of Thrones characters against characters from Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings saga (which is one of Martin’s favourite works, and has served as an inspiration for Game of Thrones in a lot of ways.

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Aragorn vs Jaime Lannister

First up is King Aragorn vs Ser Jaime – both fierce warriors, although one is the epitome of all things chivalrous and moral, and one is… not. Martin’s pick?

Jaime Lannister! Are you surprised? “Aragorn’s pretty tough though,” Martin allows, “but Jaime is, fully functioning, one of the great swordsmen in the history of Westeros.”

Smaug vs Balerion

Smaug, of course, is the dragon which Bilbo Baggins encounters in The Hobbit, while Balerion was the legendary dragon of Aegon the Conqueror, said to be the largest of all the Targaryen dragons. Martin’s answer might surprise you:

Smaug! Although Martin admits that Smaug has a vulnerable point which Balerion doesn’t, Smaug also has the brains, and would therefore be able to defeat the tougher dragon with his wits.

Saruman vs Melisandre

Saruman, the original White Wizard and the keeper of the Palantir, meets Melisandre, keeper of the Fire God and mother of creepy shadow assassins. Who walks away?

Saruman! “Saruman’s a real wizard. Melisandre’s just not, so we gotta give it to the White Wizard there,” Martin nods wistfully.

Wargs vs Direwolves

The cute little pups that the Stark kids found in the woods have grown up to be huge, terrifying beasts. But can they hold their own against the ugly big warthog-looking things that almost took down Aragorn in The Two Towers? Martin declares the winner…

Wargs! Martin claims that they are both larger and cleverer, being evil wolf hybrids and all. (If we could spoil future books we’d make a counter-argument here, but we won’t!)

Ice vs Glamdring

Say that it wasn’t about the wielders of the swords but the swords themselves. Would Ned Stark’s Valyrian steel sword beat the Foe-Hammer wielded by the elf king Turgon in the First Age and later passed on to Gandalf? The winner is:

Ice! There’s just no beating that Valyrian steel. Glamdring had no particular properties except for the Ork glow, which would be useless against a human foe.

Frodo vs Tyrion

Ah, the battle of the half-men (but big damn heroes, both of them). Frodo Baggins had the heart, the valour and the determination to finish his quest, while Tyrion has his wits, his survival instinct, and his Lannister gold. The winner should come as a surprise to no one:

Tyrion! “Beyond a doubt,” Martin laughs. “I’m not sure I’d even pick Frodo over like, Sam. Either Sam.” Oh snap, Uncle Ray!

Nazgul vs White Walkers

The Nazgul the fallen kings of men, slaves to the power of the One Ring. The White Walkers are the allegedly unkillable zombie warriors from beyond the Wall. This is one epic dodgeball game in the making, and Martin predicts that the winning team will be:

Nazgul! Because once you do find a way to kill the White Walkers, they’re cut down like grass (or… glass). Plus, the Nazgul’s mounts have wings.

Cave Troll vs Mag the Mighty

The Cave Troll was like Harry Potter‘s mountain troll’s badass older brother who lived in the Mines of Moria. Mag the Mighty is… also a troll. The winning troll is:

Cave Troll! Why? “Bigger.”

Gimli vs The Mountain

Gimli will pledge you his axe, Gregor the Mountain will slam your face into the fireplace if you borrow his toys. In a surprising move, Martin reveals himself as an idealistic optimist and chooses:

Gimli! And the world feels like a better place, somehow.

Ned Stark vs Boromir

Finally, the showdown we have all been waiting for. Imagine it: Bean on Bean, one fighting for Winterfell and the other for Gondor, one a stubborn, mountain of morality, the other holding all the best intentions but finding himself easily tempted. They’ll both end up dying gruesome, heart-wrenching deaths anyway of course, but for right now, the man left standing will be… (pause while we wait for Martin’s giggling to subside…)

Boromir! Martin reckons that the son of the Steward of Gondor is “probably more of a warrior,” while, “Ned was more of a lord, a ruler, a diplomat, a general. But in simple physical one-on-one combat, Boromir probably.”

What a fun collection of versus-es! We can only hope there will be more – like, say, Brienne vs Eowyn!

Do you agree with Martin’s choices?

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child reviews from theater critics are glowing, so when the hell can Americans get a chance to see the play in New York?

With just days to go until The Cursed Child script book is released around the world, The New York Post’s theater reporter has spoken to sources who say the play will be coming to Broadway sooner rather than later. Producers are currently holding discussions to bring the play to NY as early as 2017.

They haven’t yet announced a Broadway engagement for “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child,” but New York theater people say it’s only a matter of time. Word is that Friedman and Callender are in negotiations for a Shubert theater possibly for next season. They may hit Toronto first, however.

The idea of The Cursed Child hitting Broadway so soon (“next season” could mean around May 2017) will come as a relief to American Harry Potter fans who would rather not travel overseas to see “the eighth story” (though it’s a little more affordable to do so right now thanks to #Brexit). It also speaks to this important fact: It’s important to see The Cursed Child rather than reading it.

If the show does go to Toronto first as The New York Post suggests it might, a trip to Canada would also be easier for Americans. Sorry, people who don’t live in North America.

This writer saw the play in June and absolutely loved the characters and magic happening on stage. But the story is… not the best. I’m very eager to see what fans, myself included, think of the story after reading the script book this weekend.

For her part, Rowling has promised that fans around the world will get to see the play. Only time will tell if she’s hinting at a movie or a world tour:

If ‘Cursed Child’ comes to Broadway next year, will you try to see it ASAP?

The West End production currently has dates running into May 2017, but additional dates are expected to go on sale in early August.

Barnes & Noble has announced that Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is already a gigantic hit. In fact, it’s the most pre-ordered book since Deathly Hallows.

It’s been 9 years since J.K. Rowling publsihed Deathly Hallows in the summer of 2007, but Harry Potter fans are evidently still eager for more stories from the Wizarding World. In a press release on Monday, the biggest book chain in the United States revealed that they haven’t seen pre-orders this huge since the last Harry Potter book.


“Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is Barnes & Noble’s most pre-ordered book since Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, and we expect it to be our biggest selling book of the year,” said Mary Amicucci, Chief Merchandising Officer at Barnes & Noble in a press release. “To guarantee that our customers get the new Harry Potter book as quickly as possible, Barnes & Noble is the only national retailer that’s guaranteeing delivery of the book on August 1, for both online and ship-to-home pre-orders placed by noon ET on Friday, July 29. Our booksellers are also preparing to host big crowds for our signature Midnight Magic parties on July 30.”

If you’ve passed by a brick and mortar Barnes & Noble in the past few months you’ve probably seen the heavy promotion they’ve been doing. Headers that state “HARRY POTTER IS BACK” will clearly entice people to pre-order.

HARRY POTTER IS BACK! (Spotted at a Barnes & Noble) #harrypotterforever #harrypotter

A photo posted by Hypable.com (@hypable) on

In a report from the Wall Street Journal earlier this month we learned that Scholastic was printing 4.5 million copies of “the eighth story” for the United States and Canada. This is a far cry from the 12 million printed for Deathly Hallows, but still a very large print run for a book in modern times. (Also worth noting: Many readers have switched to eBooks in the years since Deathly Hallows.)

It’s nice to see that Harry Potter fans haven’t lost their interest in the series. Perhaps the success will inspire J.K. Rowling to continue writing within Harry’s world?

The book has also been a huge success on Amazon. The Cursed Child has sat at the top of the online retailer’s bestseller list for months.

Hypable will have lots of coverage surrounding The Cursed Child once it’s released this weekend. Stay tuned! AHHHH!

Sherlock finally made it to Hall H at Comic-Con and the creative team brought a few surprises. Steven Moffatt, Sue Vertue, Mark Gatiss, Amanda Abbington, and Benedict Cumberbatch were on hand to the thrill of fans.

Benedict Cumberbatch and crew definitely know how to work a crowd. Here are the top highlights of the panel that played to a crowd of thousands.

1. Season 4

They are currently two weeks from finishing Sherlock season 4. Cumberbatch said that “a lot comes home to roost this season… it’s ballsy.”

They have 26 pages to film this Tuesday. Cumberbatch states that the monologues are very challenging and take a lot of work.

As for actors’ favorite lines this season:

Gatiss: “Sherlock.”

Abington: Not a line but a beckoning gesture.

Cumberbatch: Can’t say.

Key names for next season (change from doing key words):

  • Moffat: Smith
  • Gatiss: Thatcher
  • Vertue: Sherinford

2. Keeping the show fresh

By not making as many episodes, the creators feel they actually keep the quality. They joked that under normal standards they’ve actually made about half a season of a standard TV show, or 13 episodes.

There are no plans for any other Victorian Era shows. Moffat feels that it would be less interesting if the mind palace returned there.

3. Learning curves and drugs

Gatiss stated that with 90-minute episodes you “really have to put [Sherlock and Watson] through the ringer.” Moffat added that because of this, Watson has to evolve. Watson can’t keep being amazed by Sherlock. As for Sherlock, “he can’t be the weird scary amoral man we met in the first episode… geniuses learn… he has to learn.”

Sherlock’s drug addiction comes back when he is not working. It’s hinted that the addiction will be a bigger issue this season than in the past.

4. The coat and the hair

There is apparently a big debate every year over changing the iconic coat. Sue Vertue wants to change it, and Steven Moffat wants to keep it. Benedict Cumberbatch dove into the debate stating, “I’m quite hung up on the coat…. but sometimes it has to come off.” The audience reaction was predictable.

Cumberbatch joked that he loved playing Sherlock in the Victorian era because of the slicked back hair. In the modern era it takes forever for his hair to get done. On a serious note, he loved the more straight-laced, clipped version of Sherlock.

5. First ‘Sherlock’ season 4 trailer

The teaser trailer featured this phrase over and over: “Something’s coming. It may be Moriarity, maybe not.” Literally every character we know and love looks like they are scared, angry, or worried on an epic scale.

One of the best moments is Mrs. Hudson saying with supreme venom to Mycroft, “Get out of my house you reptile.” Watch below:

6. Improv and family

There is actually, according to Cumberbatch, very little improvisation on set. It’s about how to do what’s there, and not messing with the script. He firmly believes that what is there is what is needed for the show.

Cumberbatch genuinely loves having his mom and dad play his TV mom and dad. Every now and then he can see his mother struggle to call him “Sherlock” and not “Ben.”

7. Mary in the know

Abbington didn’t know she was an assassin until well into the last season. When she found out, she told partner Martin Freeman, “My God, [the fans] are going to hate me.” Despite this, she loves the flawed characters of the series.

8. When will the series return?

No date was given for either the BBC release date or the PBS release date. We only know that it will premiere in 2017.

9. The dog photo

According to Cumberbatch the dog (depicted above) was a nightmare. “The dog wouldn’t fucking move,” he said. The companion was supposed to drag Sherlock all over London, but the dog didn’t like people, concrete, crowds… really anything about an urban setting.

Moffat and Gatiss resorted to writing a new scene on the spot to account for the lack of the dog’s interest in roaming. According to Gatiss all it did was drool on the concrete.

10. Future seasons?

Touching on the future of the series, Moffat stated, “Why is everybody assuming they survive season 4?” Gatiss joked, “We’re skipping season 5 and doing season 6.”

Moffat clarified that — contrary to recent reports — he never said that this season would be the last one (He’s right: All he said was the schedules of Cumberbatch and Freeman are only getting more difficult to work with). Gatiss added that they want to do more seasons, and they hope that they are able to.

Sherlock will be back in 2017. What do you think of the first season 4 trailer?