Game of Thrones Director Defends Super-Fast Ravens & Other ‘Time Issues’ in ‘Beyond The Wall’

How quickly did Gendry travel back to Eastwatch? How much time did it take for a raven to reach Dragonstone? And finally, how long it took for Daenerys and her dragons to arrive beyond the wall? These are the questions plaguing Game of Thrones fans, who think that this was a massive plot hole in episode 6 (Beyond the Wall) of season 7. Episode director Alan Taylor talked to New York Times about these time issues and gave an explanation to ‘lay the timing concerns to rest’:

“I’ve only looked at one review online, and it was very much concerned with the speed of the ravens. I thought, that’s funny — you don’t seem troubled by the lizard as big as a 747, but you’re really concerned about the speed of a raven. It is true there are time issues, and I’m not exactly sure how many kilometers there are between Eastwatch and Dragonstone. But it was a bit dreary to hear somebody who said, ‘I cannot enjoy this episode because, you know, that speed of that raven … ‘ There’s was a lot of wonderful stuff going on here and if it really gets that much in your way, that’s not good to hear. But that said, Gendry’s a really great runner. [Laughs.] Ravens go super fast. And who’s to say how much time passes on that island, since it’s always sort of an eternal twilight north of the Wall? With those three ideas in mind, I think we can lay the timing concerns to rest.”

In another interview with Variety, Taylor admitted that ‘there was some effort to fudge the timeline a little bit’:

“We were aware that timing was getting a little hazy. We’ve got Gendry running back, ravens flying a certain distance, dragons having to fly back a certain distance…In terms of the emotional experience, [Jon and company] sort of spent one dark night on the island in terms of storytelling moments. We tried to hedge it a little bit with the eternal twilight up there north of The Wall. I think there was some effort to fudge the timeline a little bit by not declaring exactly how long we were there. I think that worked for some people, for other people it didn’t. They seemed to be very concerned about how fast a raven can fly but there’s a thing called plausible impossibilities, which is what you try to achieve, rather than impossible plausibilities. So I think we were straining plausibility a little bit, but I hope the story’s momentum carries over some of that stuff. It’s cool that the show is so important to so many people that it’s being scrutinized so thoroughly. If the show was struggling, I’d be worried about those concerns, but the show seems to be doing pretty well so it’s OK to have people with those concerns.”


  1. Bla, bla, bla…
    So… they don’t care about the timeline so we can see Jon Snow to be saved by miracle.
    Another one of that and the show collapses.
    It’s obvious that George R.R. Martin don’t participate in the show anymore 🙁

    1. The show has already changed beyond recognition. I miss the days of softcore porn and slow, meandering plot lines.

  2. They should be careful about not ruining the show with time skips and teleports. Also, doing stuff like white walkers and zombies having giant chains and attaching them to dragons below water.

    1. well there was a ship near the sight. The chains came from there. What I was concerned with was – why the wights were unable to get out from the water? It is not like they could drown there………..

  3. The guy who directed this episode hasn’t directed an episode for ages. This entire episode was full of plot holes. Worse than when that giant childs story swing thing fell from the wall.

  4. See, for me the time issues were secondary. I was bothered by the lazy screenwriting that saw no less than FOUR Deus ex Machinas in one episode, plus about 3 more unlikely coincidences that were almost as bad.

      1. The first one was when Thoros was being mauled by the bear with the Hound cowering from the flame, All seemed lost until Beric suddenly appears out of nowhere and kills the bear with one stroke.

        The second was when Tormund Giantsbane was being pulled down into the water by the wights. He had quit fighting and it was clear he was a goner. If this were season 1-3, he would’ve been. Instead, the Hound suddenly appears out of nowhere and saves his bacon.

        Third of course was the Dragons appearing at just the last moment when our heroes were being overrun on the rock and all seemed lost.

        Lastly, and probably the most egregious since it was the one everyone saw coming a mile away, was BenJen Stark appearing out of nowhere to save LittleJon’s ass as he’s about to be overrun by wights.

        Combine these with the unlikely coincidences of Gendry falling from exhaustion in the perfect position for a camera pan to reveal the gate, Dany turning to give up on Jon just as his horse emerges from the woods and a few other ‘happy coincidences’.

        You might as well have titled this episode ‘Tropes on Parade’. I hate to say it but ever since the showrunners passed GRRM’s source material and had to start making shit up for themselves, they have butchered it.

      2. So a group of men go into the cold to fight monsters. When one of them is attacked, others save. How is that a deus ex-machina. It would be deus ex-machina if the hound was not in the group and appeared out of no-where and saved Tormund. They have sent raven for the dragon. Gendry falling was for dramatic effect. It’s funny how can you compare the real deus ex-machinas(Ben Stark) with others. They should have given the dragons a proper entrance like in ep 4.

      3. Because of the way the scene was set up. Take the scene where Tormund is getting dragged under the water. They show the scene in such a way that it’s clear there in nobody close to him. He is on his own and he is done for. Then suddenly, out of nowhere, The Hound is there, seemingly as if by magic. That’s Deus ex Machina.

        They had 4 of them in 20 minutes, and that’s after Jamie was saved by a Deus ex machina in the form of Bronn suddenly appearing out of nowhere and saving him from the Dragon the episode before.

        They are getting soft and going with standard movie tropes instead of sticking to a GRRM style of killing people who are in a position to be killed, regardless of their importance.

      4. It was all bit too convenient, right? You forgot the advanced patrol of wights coming to them as conveniently as pizza delivery and all but one (because they only need one, right?) – practically self destructing. The huge chains ready out of blue in middle of nowhere, crazy right?

        But you missed one thing. The whole thing was a trap set by Night King and the purpose was to get the dragons. Jon and company were merely the bait for Daenerys and dragons. Night King hoped for three, but one dragon will do, he has a nice ride and importantly the beast that will melt The Wall.

        My only major issue is raven flying time. Maths certainly do not add up and when Sam asked the lords of the seven kingdoms, including Stannis, to send help it took about a month from Castle Black to Dragonstone.

        For me overall the previous seasons felt more like reading books and the last one more like reading comics. I do however enjoy both.

  5. lol, it is funny to say we are not concerned about the dragons, taht are establish, but we worry about the speed of the ravens….that is established as well….. “I dont know how many kilometers it is from EW to DS”….ah, so THAT is the problem. Well, let me shed some light here – Dragonstone is just as far from EW, as is Kingslanding…. To raven it would take at least 2 weeks, and than te flight up north would take just as long. They would have been cought on that rock for at least a month…..

    1. “you don’t seem troubled by the lizard as big as a 747, but you’re really concerned about the speed of a raven.”
      This is the herald of the show’s downfall. 🙁

  6. I asked about all of what I read on hear while I was watching. My brother who was watching with me said your not supose to notice these things lol. It’s a bit disappointing to see the show fall apart at the end though. ☹

  7. UM, note to all those who are critics: This is sifi, not a true story by any standards. Just the fact that the White Walkers have a dragon that can’t be killed because its already dead, and is moving south like a hurricane, you’ll worried about fast ravens??? Foolishness!

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