Hot out important finale by HBO Dragon’s Houseauthor George RR Martin drop by The Late Show Third night. On the surface he’s there to advertise Illustrated history of the Targaryen dynastybut in a lengthy conversation with the server—and the fanatic—Stephen Colberthe covered more ground than that.
After more than 10 minutes of their conversation, the conversation turned to the narrative of sci-fi and how dark fiction has become as it pertains to the “chaos” of the world. Martin admits that he has become more and more pessimistic in recent years, especially compared to his optimistic feelings about humanity in his youth.
“Suddenly nuclear war seemed more and more possible again,” he said ominously. “It’s back there. We could have a nuclear war.” But in science fiction, Martin explains, even after the nuclear annihilation, “there will always be some good people who will meet and they will recreate civilization, and the optimism is still there even if it doesn’t. The scene was terrible.”
“Is it still there?” he asks. “Can we be optimistic about climate change? What would we do if Putin actually used a nuclear bomb? Then, to the applause of the audience, he added, “I wish I had a dragon so I could fly to the Kremlin!”
Martin made a somewhat more optimistic note about his own job future earlier in the interview when Colbert joked that he was “legally required” to ask about his status. The winds of winterlong-delayed sequel in Game of Thrones saga. And this is after the pair opened the episode with a bit of grace about how the host had foolishly enlisted a notoriously slow writer to pen the monologue that night.
“I am making progress with Winter winds,” emphasized Martin. “I think this is going to be a very big book,” he added, revealing that at over 1500 pages, it will likely be longer than any other book in the series. With a push from Colbert, he estimates he’s already about three-quarters of the way there.
“So 10 years to go 75% of the way means…?” Colbert asked.
Martin replied: “It’s sad, it’s sad.
“So three years from now,” the presenter suggested. But his guest made no promises.