This just in:
The end of “Game of Thrones” is on the horizon, but creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have already mapped out their next plan at HBO for when they officially depart Westeros.
HBO has given a series order to “Confederate,” a new drama that hails from Benioff and Weiss, Variety has learned. The show has no ties to “Game of Thrones” and is not one of the many potential prequels in development at the network.
“Confederate” chronicles the events leading to the Third American Civil War. The series takes place in an alternate timeline, where the southern states have successfully seceded from the Union, giving rise to a nation in which slavery remains legal and has evolved into a modern institution. The story follows a broad swath of characters on both sides of the Mason-Dixon Demilitarized Zone – freedom fighters, slave hunters, politicians, abolitionists, journalists, the executives of a slave-holding conglomerate and the families of people in their thrall.
Production on “Confederate” will begin after the final season of “Game of Thrones.”
One the one hand, as a big fan of alternate history literature, I would like to see a show that takes on the South winning the Civil War. It’s an issue that’s been done many times in books. Writer and historian Harry Turtledove has written an entire series of books, the “Southern Victory” series that goes from the end of a southern victory in the Civil War to the end of an alternate World War II. So it could be fascinating.
But on the other hand…
There has been an incredible backlash on social media.
Game of Thrones creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss say they were prepared for the backlash that greeted Wednesday’s announcement of their next TV project, HBO’s alternate-timeline drama Confederate, which imagines slavery as a modern-day institution.
I don’t believe that for a second. I think they were genuinely caught by surprise. Because of course, no matter how good a Social Justice Warrior you are, there is always someone further to the left who will be more than happy to institute a pogrom. After all, we live in the era of #Dunkirksowhite.
So I don’t think the same premium network that took a medieval fantasy like Game of Thrones and made it into a girl power story of breaking the dragonglass ceiling and thinks Lena Dunham nudity is empowering is going to push ahead with a show that their peers oppose as a concept. Sure, if the Duck Dynasty guys came out in opposition to this show, that might turn things around, but I think the desire to stay on the left side of the twitterverse will strangle this show in the cradle.
And that’s a shame, because this show could have, as they say, started a conversation. Not a good one maybe, but since plenty on the left want to kick the South out of the union right now, it might be interesting to see what the world would have looked like if they had gotten their wish.