The Blog

Number 279

When Bad Things Happen to Good People

“The latte that appeared in the episode was a mistake,” HBO said. 
“Daenerys had ordered an herbal tea.”

Even if you’re not an avid Game of Thronesfan, chances are good that you heard about the co-branding event, the ultimate product placement, that occurred in last week’s episode. 

And no, I’m not giving anything away. It isn’t like Kahleesi got inspired by how delicious her Half-Caf-Half-Decaf-Mocha-Latte was, and decided to chuck the whole woe-is-me-it’s-always-so-dark-here-and-I-don’t-actually-like-drinking-mead-and-maybe-I-should-look-into-this-seasonal-depression-thing-and-open-a-Starbucks-franchise-in-say-Sarasota-Florida-where-it’s-always-82-degrees-and-sunny-and-I-could-chuck-this-animal-skin-which-totally-reeks-by-now-and-trade-it-for-a-pair-of-cut-offs-and-a-tank-top.

No, that didn’t happen.

But what did happen was someone – and it could have been anyone of the cast of thousands and crew of millions – someone left a 21st century Starbucks cup in plain sight on the set of the most expensive, most production-specific, most overly analyzed ancient world ever created. And no one noticed. Until EVERYONE noticed. Too late.

That would be an, “Oops.”

I, for one, immediately felt better about any mistake I’ve ever made in my life, because it, or should I say they, automatically paled in comparison. This was an epic mistake! Award worthy! Well done! Brilliant! 

I will never look at Game of Thrones the same. I’ll be wondering if Jon Snow actually prefers a Big Mac to a Quarter Pounder with Cheese for a pre-battle snack? I’ll be curious if Grey Worm favors Nike over Converse for his running-from-the-white-walkers shoes? And is Sansa a MAC girl or Sephora? Inquiring minds want to know.


Maybe it was intentional. Maybe it was a beyond-cerebral joke within a joke. The most extremely marketed representation of antiquity meets the most extremely marketed representation of contemporary consumption to subliminally make the point that everythingisabout the packaging and we do judge all books by their covers and the more things change the more they stay the same. Presentation is everything.

Or maybe that’s just me. 

At any rate, I know I’ll be watching the grand finale with baited breath and I have my fingers crossed that certain characters will survive and certain characters will be blown to smithereens and goodness will triumph and that maybe, just maybe, Arya will, at some point, be swigging a Diet Pepsi – after all, that sword play does make a person thirsty.

The freedom to make my own mistakes was all I ever wanted.
 – Mance Rayder, Game of Thrones

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Everyone is beautiful, each in their own way, but those who make their own way have a different spark – something in the eyes, I think.