Winter is still here for most of us, which is probably mother nature’s nod to Game of Thrones, and not anything to do with meteorology, or I don’t know, weather patterns. With the Season 6 premiere lurking in the distance, and the new season’s trailers airing before and after practically everything on HBO, the Game of Thrones fever is setting in. One of the hottest debates in the Game of Thrones adaptations, is all of the Game of Thrones characters that look different in the books than they do in the show. For the most part, the characters you know and love are slightly better looking on the show than they’re written in the books - which is usually a side effect of Hollywood, and a side effect that not even the cast of Game of Thrones can escape.
I’m not complaining, because I’m a fan of the show regardless of how far they may steer from the books, be it looks, storylines, or characters. But not everyone is blessed with the ability to treat books and their cinematic counterparts as separate entities the way I am. Not everyone can forgive HBO for the fact that Tyrion still has a nose. Yeah, that’s right. Tyrion’s supposed to be noseless at this point…
1. Tyrion Lannister
Oh, Tyrion. Everyone's favorite Lannister. After the Battle of Blackwater, Tyrion comes away with a scar or two across his face, but not much more than that. The books maimed him a little more than the show did.
“Tyrion’s fingers went to the great gash that ran from above one eye down to his jaw, across what remained of his nose. The proud flesh was still raw and warm to the touch.” —A Storm of Swords
Rose Leslie (the actress who plays Ygritte) is beautiful, and rubbing a little dirt on her face and making her a rough talking wildling doesn't do much to change that. In the books, Ygritte is a bit more plain.
“Ygritte’s hair was such a tangle that Jon was tempted to ask her if she only brushed it at the changing of the seasons. [...] She had a round peasant face, a pug nose, and slightly crooked teeth, and her eyes were too far apart.” —A Storm of Swords
3. Ser Jorah Mormont
If you watch the show, you know that Ser Jorah is kind of a babe. With his rugged good looks, the smoldering flame he holds for Dany, he's basically a medieval dream. George R.R. Martin, however, had different ideas about Mormont.
“Ser Jorah was not a handsome man. He had a neck and shoulders like a bull, and coarse black hair covered his arms are chest so thickly that there was none left for his head.” —A Game of Thrones
4. Sandor Clegane/The Hound
The Hound is an enormous, scary guy. The left side of his face is covered in scars from an incident with his brother, but in the books? He's much more gruesome.
“The left side of his face was a ruin. His ear had been burned away; there was nothing but a hole. His eye was still good, but all around it was a twisted mass of scar, slick black flesh hard as leather, pocked with craters and fissured by deep cracks that gleamed red and wet when he moved." - A Game of Thrones
5. Daenaerys Targaryen
While Dany is every bit as stunning in the show as she's described in the books, there's one detail that HBO missed. Violet eyes.
“They dressed her in the wisps that Magister Illyrio had sent up, and then the gown, a deep plum silk to bring out the violet in her eyes.” —A Game of Thrones
6. Tywin Lannister
While Tywin is handsome in his own, mildly terrifying, way, he doesn't quite have the same look.
"Stiff blond whiskers covered his cheeks, framing a stern face, a bald head, a hard mouth." - A Storm of Swords
Stern face? Check. Hard mouth? Double check. But imagine the Lannister patriarch without any of the hair on his head, and with his beard only making an appearance on his cheeks. Slightly less terrifying, no?
7. Daario Naharis
Even before they pulled a switcheroo on casting for this role, Daario was much more toned down on the show than he's described in the books. From Tyroshi, a province known for it's flamboyant and colorful way of dressing, Daario in the show lacks any of the following descriptors.
"His beard was cut into three prongs and dyed blue, the same color as his eyes and the curly hair that fell to his collar. His pointed mustachios were painted gold. His clothes were all shades of yellow." - A Storm of Swords