I need a Game of Thrones fix!!

And winter is coming!

 

 

 

The Tv show is currently in season 5, and Im waiting for episode 9 of 10 to air.  There are a few days to wait, so for two reasons, I had this idea that maybe I should write about it;   To address my cravings by allowing my mind to wander back through the experience to soak in the best traits again, as I write about them. Also to perhaps convince certain people who haven’t seen the show, to drop what they are doing and watch it!  1_gif

I searched things like top ten reasons to watch Game of Thrones, and there were some excellent reads, with amazing facts I had no awareness of.  I read a few similar articles, but none of them summed it up entirely in the way I feel it needed to be portrayed to ‘Throne virgins..”   There were spoilers in some of the articles, and not enough info in others, and way too many advertisements in others.  So Ima try this, and hopefully sell it to some new viewers, and likely pacify the tingle that keeps reminding me of my minds hunger for the next episode to air, and the one after, and the 10 after that!

 

So lets start at the bottom, with a base introduction. The show is an adaptation from a series of fantasy novels written by George R.R. Martin.  I cant say much about the novels because I havent read any of them, but theyre called “A song of Ice and Fire,”  Which after watching almost 5 seasons of the tv show, seems pretty fitting.    The first episode aired on April 17th, 2011.  Every season has 10 episodes that are each 1 hour long, which is in my opinion, the most ideal way any lengthy show should be presented.  Ten episodes is a nice round number, where nothing drags on and no fillers are needed.   It leaves enough room at an hour per episode to jam in just the right amount of excitement to get everything across, while leaving the viewer breathless and scrambling for the next episode. 

 

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So, I can search wikipedia, or those sites about the top ten reasons to watch, (and I will, believe me) and copy facts to my writing to share with any readers, but I will try to do most of this in my own words, from the perspective of someone who hasnt read the books.

 

 

 

 

 

Now, you must first understand me.  I do not watch television. I dont have cable, I dont have satellite, and I dont have any interest in it.  I last had cable about 6 years ago, and I watched the discovery channel, the history channel, some shows on the learning channel, maybe some Trailer Park Boys, or Family Guy, and poker!  But I never got into small series shows, or reality shows like survivor.  I do watch hockey.   This is the full extent of my cable relationship.

 

However, a few years ago I got into “The Walking Dead.”   Someone had convinced me to watch it (somehow) and it blew my mind because it was crazy and awesome and like nothing else I had seen. I tried to convince other people to watch it, and I even did.  Now a few years later, though I dont have anything bad to say about it, the fact is that the excitement I had for that show has dwindled to the point where I do not urge to acquire new episodes at this time.  Ive watched maybe four seasons, and now fallen behind, and Im not sure where to catch up.  Unlike Game of Thrones, Walking Dead has something like 16 episodes per season (45 min each), and there is a break in the middle of each season, so when the next half starts, people are like ” Cant wait for next week man, season 5 walking dead!”  When in reality, its part two of season 4.   That just aint as clean as Id like my television experience to be.  But I am glad I watched that show, I really enjoyed it for a long time.

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Game of Thrones on the other hand, has never failed at blowing my mind.  It still has my full attention after almost 5 full seasons, and I always, Always want more!   It began about 6 months ago, I decided to give it a try.  I had season 1 on an external hard-drive that I had bought off a friend, where it, and many other shows, and hundreds of movies were already preloaded. I think I watched all the movies already and I was on a break from a bad week of poker, so I succumbed to episode one and pushed play.   It was the greatest television decision that Ive ever made.

 

Yes, I watch a lot of movies.  What movies dont I watch?  I dont watch harry potter or lord of the rings.  I dont watch the hobbits or any trending fantasy wizard stuff with magic, or any kind of children-targeted films.  So when I watched the fairly intense opening scene of Game of Thrones, I wasnt quite sold, but I was a bit confused and curious.
Speaking of curious, 14 paragraphs and I havent even touched on what the show was about, so for the completely oblivious, here it is.

 

 

Game of Thrones which I will now refer to as GoT’s, takes place in a fictional world that resembles earth in the times of Knights and Kings and swords and shields and horses and castles.  There are basically seven Kingdoms on two continents ruled by one King.  The story weaves through dozens of noble families, good and bad, each pieces of a puzzle in very unique ways that draw conflict relating to the King, and the Iron Throne, and power and riches.

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King Robert Baratheon of  house Baratheon is Married to Queen Cersei Lannister of the evil House Lannister, the most powerful and wealthy house in the land, feared by all.  Across the seas and in far off lands, others lay rightful claims to the Iron Throne and conspire to take it with armies. Secrets are whispered across seas and in the streets of Kings Landing, the city of the Royal Family, while unrelated corruption already takes place within the Royal walls itself.

 

As the show goes on, every house becomes knee deep in some insane conflict that somehow ties its way down a brilliant rope, in a plot to either protect or take the Throne. Sounds pretty legit right? I know! Its like a great European History movie, except while all this is happening, while everyone is playing the game of thrones, theres a force in the north like no one has ever seen, preparing to bring winter with their army and kill every last person alive.

 

The show is the most well written piece of work I have ever seen, or could possibly imagine.  Every single character is perfect.   Every plot is maximum brilliance.  Every twist will blow your mind.  Nothing can be predicted.  Youre just sitting there one minute and the next minute something happens out of no where and its just like BAM! Your neck loses control of the weight of your head and it falls back, usually until the wall or the couch stop it.  Your mouth will be open.  Try to remember to breathe out and maybe blink a bit. Its just your brain shutting down for a second, like a small crash or a quick malfunction as it struggles to processes what just happened.

 

 

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That was my experience.  The excellent dialogue carries the story so well, attached to the cunning, clever, and mischievous scenes.   The plots and conspiracies are deep and twisted, and everything is so intimate, and dramatic, and intense, and just when you feel great about watching the show and experiencing such excitement, that BAM! thing happens again, and youre like WTF???

 

I think people are naturally drawn to have hopes and predictions as they watch, about the outcomes and certain courses of action.  Every time I thought I had an idea about what was going to happen, I was wrong.   And there are so many possibilities on which way the show could turn, that even choosing a prediction can feel like being in a candy store when youre 7.

 

The show did something to me that I cant yet identify. It may have widened my imagination a little.   I like to think it makes me think a little differently.  Ive learned things from the show that I cannot seem to explain.   I can feel the characters much more than in any other film or television show, like the acting is just top-notch!  And to think of George R R Martin, sitting there drawing a map of a world and naming cities and countries and roads and seas.  Naming families and creating histories and drawing sigils for each of them.  That work itself is huger than I can even imagine, and the fact that he did it so well, and then the story it turned into blew the fucking world away is just incredible.

 

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To me, all the names sound like names that were used hundreds of years ago, but I really dont think they were at all.   Listen to some of these characters names!

 

Tyrion Lannister.   Daenerys Targaryen.   Jorah Mormont.   Petyr Baelish.    Sandor Clegane.    Margaery Tyrell.   Stannis Baratheon.   Ramsay Snow.   Eddard Stark.   Arya Stark.   Mance Rayder.  Roose Bolton.   Oberyn Martell.   Barristan Selmy.   And one namers like Ygritte.   Hodor.  Gendry.  Varys.  Gilly.  Bronn.   Melisandre.  

 

Fun Fact!  In 2012, 150 baby girls in The United States were named “Khalessi”  Which is not a name, but a title from the show.

 

I found that when I downloaded the video game for my phone, there were hundreds of other names of characters that I hadnt seen in the tv show, which possibly may be from the books, or may just be from hundreds of names that were invented but didnt get used.

And here are some city names to check out:   Bravos.   Meereen.   Volantis.   Vaes Dothrak.   Quarth.   Astapor.    Thats some pretty creative inventing of names and places I think.  Kings Landing,  Winterfell, The Iron Islands, Dorne, Casterly Rock, Harrenhal, Valarya.

 

Im not sure how they did it in the books, but for the tv show they actually invented 2 languages.  Yes, 2 languages, and I dont mean they whipped up a few phrases, there are verbs and vowels and past and present tenses, masculine and feminine, etc.    One’s called Valaryan, and ones called Dothraki.   And there is actually High Valaryan and Low Valaryan!  Im having trouble finding how many words there currently are, but it looks like in 2013 there was close to 700 Valaryan words and 4000 Dothraki words.

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Valyrian_languages for more Valaryan info

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dothraki_language for more Dothraki info

 

I mentioned Lord of the Rings and Hobbit movies.  Now, yes, of course I have seen a couple.  I watched Lord of the rings 1 and 2.  A couple of Harry Potters.  And you know, theyre fine.  Good story, spectacular effects, decent acting.  Magic, spells, wizzards, witches, goblins.   Any 11 year old kid can probably watch any of them and love it for ever.  Theyre fine movies, but at the end of the day, I believe theyre for kids, and Im not much into fantasy or any of that stuff.

 

Now GoT’s is not for children at all.  No no no no, absolutely not.   It is gruesome, it is vulgar, and theres is quite  a lot of sex and nudity.  Do not let this deter you, all that blood and killing and swearing only adds a spicy kick to an already unprecedented masterpiece.    But, underneath all of the politics and killing and eloquence and mischief, there is a level of fantasy.

 

This was my obstacle.  First hint of fantasy had me questioning if I could take something like this seriously, which I normally cant, because its too childish..  I wasnt looking for a witches and goblins show to take on, you know?    But GoT’s is not like that AT ALL.   The fantasy aspects are subtle and quick for a long while.   It starts to pick up later on but by then you will be standing where I stand, and realize that its not only watchable,   but too exciting to even care if a minotaur trotted by.

 

All in all its a brutally adult show that has a few things in it that do not exist in our world.   Theres no wizzards or minotaurs either.

 

But check this out :   Game of Thrones is the most pirated show on television!  Awesome right?   The average episode costs 6 million dollars to make.  The show is filmed in 6 countries over 3 continents!   Its the first show of its kind to ever reach the Imax theater.   Even the opening credits won an Emmy.  They say 42% of watchers are women.  morewine-1433865375

Ahh, the opening credits.   Going all the way back to the very first episode, it started off with a 5 minute scene before HBO introduced the opening credits.  After watching that scene I was too busy trying to figure out what I just saw to pay much attention to the credits.  Then after a minute or so the song was still playing and I remember thinking it was a bit too long, and that slightly irritated me.    But after hearing it a few times it became awesome.    Iconic, as described in one post.

 

The song plays to an animation of a map that zooms over the lands and shows the construction of castles and other buildings.  The relevant cities for each episode are identified as it flies by, and it really helps one get a better sense of what is happening and where.    Its always different.    But the song, the song  became my favorite thing to hear for a good month.  I even learned it on guitar, and I also downloaded other people covering the song with different instruments like pianos and electric guitars.  Theyre nice to listen to once in a while, but the original, done by an orchestra, will pretty much always be Epic.   And theres great music throughout the whole series.

 

Ive watched the first season like 4 times.  Lame?  Kinda, I guess.  It gets lamer:  I want to watch it all again!  I think about why that is, and in words I guess its like watching the show..   feels like home to me in a way.  Lets say Im having a long day at work, and I really feel like being at home on a couch.  Well that longing isn’t to be on a couch surrounded by a fan, a chair, a printer, a plant, a table, and a guitar.  Its a longing to be on a couch surrounded by Castle Black, the Wildlings, Winterfell.  I want to be hearing Petyr and Varys talking.  I want to be seeing the Mountain and the Hound fighting, and be watching Khaleesi do things and listening to the imp talk his way through anything.  The music and everything, it just feels so natural and relaxing to be watching it which is totally wrong because usually its chaos and havoc and seven hells!

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Plus there are a few things that you didn’t catch the first time, right?  After the first season I watched the second.  I didn’t have the third so I watched the first 2 again!  Then I just started streaming and downloading season 3 and then season 4.  When I finished 4, 5 wasn’t released yet, so I watched them all again!  and yeah, Ive caught a few things that I missed and some things make a bit more sense, like name references is season 1 that seems meaningless but now that you’ve seen season 3 youre like ohhh, that’s why he said that in season 1..    Or something.

 

Lets look at some more interesting facts.  It looks like the show almost didn’t get aired because the original pilot was horrible.   Apparently they reshot the entire episode with 5 different actors and actresses, and it was a hit!    The show boosted Northern Irelands economy by $100 million!   It saved a pig farm that was in trouble by using its animals.  And remember I told you it was the most downloaded show in the world?  Well, since then, I have now seen episode 9 and 10 of season 5, and I believe each of those episode broke its own records in downloading!  unreal eh?

 

So If youre looking for a show to watch, do watch GoT’s.   If you hate television but googled GoT’s for some reason, youre almost there.  If youre looking to fill a void in your life, the show may fill it.   If youre bored, you wont be anymore.   What kind of people would be disappointed by GoT’s?  Dull boring people who suck.  Like, imagine you never watched the Matrix?  How stupid would that have been.

 

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