Wholesale Game of Thrones First Season on Poputrade

As a long-time fan of George R. R. Martin’s epic book series, I was immediately skeptical when HBO announced that they were going to adapt the saga for television viewers; I had been reading ASoIaF for the past tens years now (started when I was 13) and was aware of the liberty some adaptations take from its source. But since HBO has had a history of producing excellent, ground-breaking shows, I watched Game of Thrones First Season the day it aired and was immediately blown away. Let me tell you why.

Stunning visualization: I love that HBO was able to capture the medieval, historic feel of Game of Thrones First Season.
Despite being a fantasy series, Martin loosely based A Song of Ice and Fire on the War of the Roses, England’s civil war in the late 1400s. Filming locations were fantastic, and HBO did not shy away from the gritty, sexual, and violent nature of the books. It stays faithful to the blend of realism and fantasy that earned ASoIaF its legions of adoring fans. Everything from the sets, the costumes, the weapons, etc. are dazzling.

Casting: Aces to David Benioff, Dan Weiss, and the casting team at HBO for gathering a talented, well-suited cast, especially for gems like: Peter Dinklage (whose Emmy and Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor was well-deserved), Jason Momoa, Sean Bean, Lena Headey, Maisie Williams, Kit Harington, and Emilia Clarke. Special mention for Jack Gleeson, who is exceptionally and hatefully evil in his role as psychopathic prince/King Joffrey. I can wax poetic about Peter Dinklage’s impeccable Tyrion Lannister all day, and recently, Gwendolyn Christie has surprised me as Brienne of Tarth in Game of Thrones Season 2. As a huge fan and an ASoIaF nerd, I am also pleased that the producers have acknowledged that it was, in part, due to fan suggestions that certain actors were cast.

Staying true to the books: The big reason I was skeptical of the show at first was the tendency of writers and producers to take liberties with some of the plots and characters, but Game of Thrones First Season has stayed true to the novels so far. I also applaud HBO for bringing in and consulting George R. R. Martin himself in creating the series. Martin is never one to be predictable, as fans know, and his ability to create a fantastic plot with so many gray characters, all masterfully wrapped up in such politically intriguing schemes is nothing short of genius.

Music: White Noise Lab’s rock version of Game of Thrones First Season‘s opening theme has been playing on loop on my iPod. Just sayin’.

Finally, Game of Thrones First Season is an raw, sophisticated, and intelligently done show that compels you to read the books. I have friends who love the TV series and are devouring the books even as I type this review. For a TV show to compel its audience to READ is something that I find absolutely inspirational. As emotionally invested as I am in the books, I find myself looking forward to HBO every Sunday with the same eagerness. For a college senior, it’s a great time to just forget about classes, toss back a cold one, and enjoy something I’m passionate about coming alive onscreen. HBO has gone above and beyond my expectations, and *SPOILERS*, the first couple episodes of Game of Thrones Season 2 (A Clash of Kings) continue to impress.

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