When the latest episode of Game of Thrones arrived this past Sunday, it was met with quite a bit of criticism from the fans watching at home. The Battle of Winterfell was as exciting as promised, but people complained that they couldn't see anything, given that the entire episode was incredibly dark. The dim lighting has been a topic of conversation on social media all week; some fans have complained while others have come to the defense of the decision. No matter which side of the argument you stand on, it's been hard to avoid the fallout. So instead of adding to the discussion, one fan tried to prove their point.
A video was posted on YouTube from an account called Hivemind, showing a side-by-side glimpse of perhaps the darkest scene from "The Long Night." On the top of the video is the sequence from the episode where all of the Dothraki torches were snuffed out by the army of the dead, and a few straggling men and horses were sent running back to formation. The bottom half of the video shows the exact same scene, but brightened up significantly. Take a look at the difference.
There are pros and cons to this approach. On one hand, it is much easier to see what's going on in the brightened version of the scene. The faces of the characters are much clearer and it's never difficult to tell where the action is heading. However, it does feel like something is lost in the shuffle.
The brightened version, done by a fan of the show, loses a good bit of clarity and contrast when it comes to the overall picture and quality of the shots. It looks a lot cheaper and significantly less professional. Yes, things are more difficult to see in the original scene, but it creates an atmosphere that's completely lost when the color was altered.
That's not to say things couldn't have been made a bit brighter, but the solution would have come in the actual shooting of the episode itself, not as much in post. Simply changing things after the fact is doing nothing more than altering an already finished product, and that never turns out too well.
Did you thing the Battle of Winterfell was too dark? Let us know in the comments!
New episodes of Game of Thrones air on Sunday nights at 9 pm ET on HBO.
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