George W. Bush made an unintentional cameo in the season one finale of Game of Thrones; his head is seen as one of the many on spikes on the walls of King’s Landing. It’s definitely him. The series creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss confirmed it in the DVD commentary—though they say it wasn’t intended as a political statement of any kind. They just indiscriminately use whatever fake plastic heads they can find.
News about this appearance spread far and wide across the internet. As you can imagine, some people got their knickers in a twist, so HBO felt they needed to make a statement. They issued a press release stating the following:
“We were deeply dismayed to see this and find it unacceptable, disrespectful and in very bad taste,” the network said. “We made this clear to the executive producers of the series who apologized immediately for this inadvertent careless mistake. We are sorry this happened and will have it removed from any future DVD production.”
Benioff and Weiss also issued an apology:
“We use a lot of prosthetic body parts on the show: heads, arms, etc. We can’t afford to have these all made from scratch, especially in scenes where we need a lot of them, so we rent them in bulk. After the scene was already shot, someone pointed out that one of the heads looked like George W. Bush.
“In the DVD commentary, we mentioned this, though we should not have. We meant no disrespect to the former President and apologize if anything we said or did suggested otherwise.”
You can bet if any other recognizable prosthetic heads were used on the show that no one will be pointing them out on record anytime soon. Or ever.