George W. Bush's Severed Head Gets Game of Thrones Cameo

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George W. Bush's Severed Head Gets Game of Thrones Cameo

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Turns out Joffrey stuck the former President's head on a spike in season one. Whoops?

In the mythical land of Westeros, daily survival is something of an achievement. The ways in which the land can kill you are myriad, with the latest scourge to organic life being the ruthless rule of the esteemed King Joffrey. Joffrey has a thing for getting seriously annoyed with his citizens and then shoving their heads on spikes without really thinking about it - including the head of, it has now been revealed, former President of the United States George W. Bush.

This slightly spoilery season one screencap shows the final resting place of the President, lined up for show with other recent decapitatees.

The inclusion of the President was incidentally revealed in the DVD commentary of season one (as spotted by redditor SidIncognito), where show creators David Benioff and D. B. Weiss helpfully point out that that "the last head on the left" in the line of spike-mounted heads is that of "George Bush."

"George Bush's head appears in a couple of beheading scenes," they explain. "It's not a choice, it's not a political statement. We just had to use whatever head we had around."

Naturally, some onlookers were less than pleased with the unexpected cameo. In a quick response to the news that one of its flagship productions had knowingly used a President's prosthetic severed head as a prop, HBO said that, "We were deeply dismayed to see this and find it unacceptable, disrespectful and in very bad taste. We made this clear to the executive producers of the series who apologized immediately for this inadvertent careless mistake. We are sorry this happened and will have it removed from any future DVD production."

Benioff and Weiss also apologized for the head. "What happened was this: we use a lot of prosthetic body parts on the show: heads, arms, etc. We can't afford to have these all made from scratch, especially in scenes where we need a lot of them," they said in a statement. "In the DVD commentary, we mentioned this, though we should not have. We meant no disrespect to the former President and apologize if anything we said or did suggested otherwise."

By the looks of things, the producers will try to avoid including President Bush in any future episodes. As for those already filmed, I wonder if they used the head anywhere else? As the President himself might have added, "Decapitate and mount my fake head once, shame on you. Decapitate and mount my fake head twice, well..."

Source: reddit via i09

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So that's were George left it!

it made ZERO difference before then, fucking overly PC people...god dammit.

I would be thrilled/find it hilarious if my head randomly was found on a tv show for lulz (granted he was the president, so a bit different, but still)

So why exactly did they have his decapitated head lying around?

Anyway in my opinion the only real mistake was not using the prop, but revealing that it was used. No one would be insulted if no one knew.

I see no issue, it's just a face. Though wouldn't it be cool if the creators did a competition of some kind where the reward would be to have your body parts replicated and used in the show? That'd be kickass, someone get on that.

Prince Regent:
So why exactly did they have his decapitated head lying around?

Anyway in my opinion the only real mistake was not using the prop, but revealing that it was used. No one would be insulted if no one knew.

To be clear, they didn't have his decapitated head around, they had his prosthetic head around and turned it into a decapitated head. Special effects companies and television production companies have lots of random props for movies and shows going back years, including prosthetic heads that they can use interchangeably on prosthetic torsos. I would've been a little surprised if they didn't have a W head lying around somewhere, just like I'm sure they've got Clinton and Obama heads rolling around.

As far as the actual controversy... everyone needs to get over themselves.

Hmmmm... sure it was 'unintentional'

*gasps for breath laughing*

Oh my, that's fantastic! Intentional or not!

Too bad the producers are likely to get their goulies dragged over the coals for that one.

Finally the man got what he deserved.

Thistlehart:
*gasps for breath laughing*

Oh my, that's fantastic! Intentional or not!

Too bad the producers are likely to get their goulies dragged over the coals for that one.

Bunch of whiners if you ask me.

"I don't care you were on a budget and efficiently recycled old props! I'm offended!"

This is one of these cases where they really just need to suck it up, and stop blowing hot air over nothing.

Azuaron:

Prince Regent:
So why exactly did they have his decapitated head lying around?

Anyway in my opinion the only real mistake was not using the prop, but revealing that it was used. No one would be insulted if no one knew.

To be clear, they didn't have his decapitated head around, they had his prosthetic head around and turned it into a decapitated head. Special effects companies and television production companies have lots of random props for movies and shows going back years, including prosthetic heads that they can use interchangeably on prosthetic torsos. I would've been a little surprised if they didn't have a W head lying around somewhere, just like I'm sure they've got Clinton and Obama heads rolling around.

As far as the actual controversy... everyone needs to get over themselves.

Actually I kind of wish they had Clinton's head up there too. Loved him as a president but the opportunity for head jokes would be priceless.

Kargathia:

Thistlehart:
*gasps for breath laughing*

Oh my, that's fantastic! Intentional or not!

Too bad the producers are likely to get their goulies dragged over the coals for that one.

Bunch of whiners if you ask me.

"I don't care you were on a budget and efficiently recycled old props! I'm offended!"

This is one of these cases where they really just need to suck it up, and stop blowing hot air over nothing.

"But that's like threatening to kill him or saying he should die! *whinge whinge whinge*"
--Talking heads

I don't think its actually about any perceived threat. I think the complainers will complain so they can try to get their perma-stoned puppet-messiah's picture posted everywhere so people have to look at his clueless mug.

So we never would've known that the head was actually a George Bush prop from just from watching the show.....then there's outrage when they give us behind the scenes information......uuhhh....huh. No points for honesty HBO. You should've just kept it an in-house joke.

The price for this kind of crap should at least be a glimpse of a Bush with a red and rotting neck hole, but we didn't even get to see it!

I don't see what the problem is. If they'd killed him and used his actual head that i could understand.

Who precisely objected to this? NO ONE likes that man. He's a walking statement about the dangers of nepotism.

"The President who Wasn't Intellectually Qualified to be President."

Is a pretty apt title for him.

I love how the media likes to act outraged by this. But in reality no one gives a shit. Why don't we give honesty a chance for once and just admit that no one gives a flying fuck? No one would give a flying fuck even if they actually executed that idiot and used his real head.

This quite literally made me fall out of my chair with laughter, great stuff.

Azuaron:

Prince Regent:
So why exactly did they have his decapitated head lying around?

Anyway in my opinion the only real mistake was not using the prop, but revealing that it was used. No one would be insulted if no one knew.

To be clear, they didn't have his decapitated head around, they had his prosthetic head around and turned it into a decapitated head. Special effects companies and television production companies have lots of random props for movies and shows going back years, including prosthetic heads that they can use interchangeably on prosthetic torsos. I would've been a little surprised if they didn't have a W head lying around somewhere, just like I'm sure they've got Clinton and Obama heads rolling around.

As far as the actual controversy... everyone needs to get over themselves.

But the question remains, why did they have a prosthetic head of the former president in the first place ?
What was it used for initially ?
When would you need something like that ?

I think it was unintentional, they just used what heads they had. I also think they are just trying to get attention by pointing it out.

In any case, can anyone imagine what would happen if they used a spare Obama head? There would be a massive boycott of the show, NAACP and various civil rights groups attempted to get the show taken off the air and the DVDs pulled from store shelves, and don't forget the endless death threats the producers would receive.

I don't think it should be controversial. After all, it wasn't intentional. I'm just pointing out how crazy things would get all over the country if it was a spare Obama head instead.

If they used my severed head on a show as popular as Game of Thrones, I would condiser it an honor. Nothing to lose your head over, at least. But I guess this issue has 'piked' the interest of people who just don't appreciate a good joke.

All I have to say on the matter is... WOOT! My dvd box set is a collectors item now!

You can hardly tell it's him in that screencap.

Other than that, I'm failing to see exactly how this is an issue.

cthulhuspawn82:
I'm just pointing out how crazy things would get all over the country if it was a spare Obama head instead.

Yeah, considering america's stellar record with black folks, that's not a false equivalence at all!

Personally, I think if they were trying to make a "statement" or something stupid they wouldn't have stuck that big wig on it and turned it so it wasn't facing the camera. Prop recycling happens ALL THE TIME. (Though I'd like to know who originally needed a head of George Bush.)

For anyone with a month or two to kill:
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/PropRecycling
For anyone with less:
http://www.filmbizrecycling.org/shop

Are the media required to be jerks about this kind of thing? Shouldn't everyone just go "Oh, well that's kinda funny and cool." How does having a mockup of your head partially visible and undistinguishable in a couple scenes of a hit TV show warrant an apology? W should be paying HBO for keeping his likeness in the news. That's free advertising--and that's something you just can't buy.

If it were my fake head on that pike I would tell everybody I know about it. Politically Correct sucks these days.

And the moral of the story is: if you have to use an ex-president head as a prop in a ghoulish fashion, you Do Not Tell People!

In the meantime, I do believe I'll be getting a season 1 dvd set before it gets censored :)

I would think Bush should be honored to have been made a member of the Stark household in Game of Thrones!

Seriously though some Americans (no one here obviously) take these things too seriously.

Thistlehart:
"But that's like threatening to kill him or saying he should die! *whinge whinge whinge*"
--Talking heads

You know what're really good for shutting up talking heads?

Spikes.

SonicWaffle:

Thistlehart:
"But that's like threatening to kill him or saying he should die! *whinge whinge whinge*"
--Talking heads

You know what're really good for shutting up talking heads?

Spikes.

BOOM... er... um... hmmm...

SPLAT! Headspike!

Clankenbeard:
If it were my fake head on that pike I would tell everybody I know about it. Politically Correct sucks these days.

I don't get why everyone is talking about this being "politcal correctness". It isn't. Even if the stated message had been "we definitely should cut off Bush's head", objecting to that wouldn't be political correctness, it would be sanity.

This has nothing to do with anyone being politcally correct and everything to do with media outlets manufacturing sensationalism to get views.

ScruffyMcBalls:
I see no issue, it's just a face. Though wouldn't it be cool if the creators did a competition of some kind where the reward would be to have your body parts replicated and used in the show? That'd be kickass, someone get on that.

Cool, sure, but if they're already pushing the budget to the point they have to recycle old props it's unlikely. It'd be better if you could win a contest to be some random dude who gets his head hacked off in battle, because hey, free extra!

Oh for Pete's sake. Who cares?

Even if someone on the right really wants to get up in arms about this, they might consider the message that "one of theirs" would be decapitated by a spoiled, foolish, cowardly tyrant really sends.

Foolish of the creators to mention it, though- It really sounds like no one would have noticed otherwise.

I remember hearing that in the commentary.
Didn't know it was an issue. Those dvds came out months ago, why are people getting angry about it now?
Is HBO really going to edit out the head & reference from future production of Season 1 or just make sure his head doesn't pop up in other places?

Thistlehart:

SonicWaffle:

Thistlehart:
"But that's like threatening to kill him or saying he should die! *whinge whinge whinge*"
--Talking heads

You know what're really good for shutting up talking heads?

Spikes.

BOOM... er... um... hmmm...

SPLAT! Headspike!

"Off with his head!"

THWACK!

THUD.

"To the spike with him!"

SQUICh-SQUISH-CRACKLE-SQUISH.

"Oh, come now, what's the hold-up? Stop fannying about and really ram the spike in!"

SQUISH-CRUNCH.

"Ew. You know, now that it's up there, it's actually way grosser than I thought it was going to be. In hindsight, this was a mistake. OK. Sorry, everyone, sorry! We're going to go back to the painting of the dogs playing poker. Less gore, and it never used to drip on the carpet. Oh, well, you live and learn I suppose. Except for that dude, because that motherfucker is dead as hell. What a waste. Someone send the widow a ham."

-- The sound of beheading and head-mounting, as performed by the London Symphony Orchestra

Actually they say it's not a political statement, but I also want to know why this faux-head even exists and is in their prop warehouse. If it's just some off the cuff thing, why aren't there heads for numerous other presidents, and we didn't "accidently" wind up with a presidential rogues gallery on pikes.

That said, I think it's no big deal overall, I mean political humor is a long-standing tradition, and Bush is now an ex-president. I find the denials a little more disturbing than the act itself, leading me to believe it wasn't intended as a quick joke using a recent but former president (the last guy down) for some quick lulz if people were observant enough, and actually was more of a mean-spirited political statement.

That said, "Game Of Thrones" is a good show, there isn't a lot that can be done about it without wrecking the show because holding those ultimatly responsible for it seriousky accountable and firing them would wind up wrecking part of the team that made it so good to begin with, and it would suffer. At the most they need a leash keeping them away from political garbage.

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