Saturday, June 25, 2011

Winter Has Come...And Gone

If you follow me on Twitter, you knew this blog was inevitable.

I’m not sure how many of you have watched HBO’s Game of Thrones, but if you haven’t – you are clearly missing out. Anyone who knows me knows I can be a little finicky in all things – food, friends… Well, everything to be honest. And entertainment is no exception. I think when one tells stories for a living, no matter the medium or genre, one becomes more critical. It’s just a natural occurrence and comes with the territory. “I would have done this differently.” “Hmm. I wonder why they did that?” Or “That was a poor choice.” The days of enjoying movies, books, or television purely for entertainment really are in my past.

Game of Thrones is an exception to that rule. I cannot express how much I love this series. I cannot say it loud enough. Or tell enough people. I want everyone to experience this series and I’ve sort of become an unusual missionary of sorts, converting viewers as quickly as I can. And you know why…? Because I’m dying to talk about it with others. To dissect every well-crafted scene. To speculate on this side-long glance or that beleaguered sigh. In short - to revel in the greatness that is Game of Thrones, over and over and over again.

Last Sunday night, the season finale aired on HBO and I’m all ready going through withdrawals. (It was a fantastic episode, if you had any doubt.) But how will I possibly wait until Spring 2012 for winter to come again? Well, I have deadlines, naturally. And all of the other aspects of my life to attend to. …But…Spring 2012 is sooo very far away. I will miss it dreadfully.

To tide me over, temporarily, I have decided to host a Game-of-Thrones-athon at my house for a handful of my friends next month. I do have all the episodes still loaded on my DVR, after all. So we’ll pile into my living room for a 10 hour fun-filled, nail-biting, laughing, crying, cringing, cheering, gasping fest. I can’t think of a better way to spend a Saturday. We will probably take a break for lunch and maybe dinner to discuss what has happened thus far. And I can hardly wait to share this amazing series with my dear friends.

I can also spend many joyful hours on HBO’s viewer guide – looking at maps, family crests, and family trees. I can learn more about the main characters, and not-so main ones.

I can read Game of Thrones, the first book in George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series. (But not the others in the series. Not yet, anyway. I want to see it on screen before I read the story. Don’t ask me why. I just do.)

What is the series about, you wonder? Martin has created a medieval/fantasy world based loosely on the War of the Roses with the families of Stark and Lannister standing in for the Yorks and Lancasters. It sports a huge ensemble cast where the ideas of good vs. bad can seem very gray, depending on whose eyes you’re seeing the world through. And in the north, there is a great wall made of ice that keeps those south of the structure safe from the wildlings and more frightening creatures on the other side. (For me this screamed Hadrian’s Wall, though that Roman barrier could never have attained the height of Martin’s wall. The structure is so high, it would tower over the Empire State Building.) For a history lover – this series is the most amazing thing since… Well, nothing even compares.
If you’ve wondered why I’ve peppered this blog with “winter” references, the answer is simple. In the land of Westeros where the majority of our heroes and heroines live – summer and winter aren’t just your average seasons. They can last decades or generations. So now I must confess – since there are probably some of you reading this who HAVE watched the series – I do know that winter hasn’t officially come yet as far as the show is concerned. (They’ve been enjoying years and years of summer thus far.) But Winter Is Coming – and when it finally does arrive, I’ll be there to watch every single frame.

Have you watched this series? Are you planning on watching this series? Would you enjoy watching a Game-of-Thrones-athon? If you have watched, who is your most favorite character and why? The most despicable? (I really could ask question after question.) Give me all of your Game of Thrones thoughts. I want to hear them all.

*Originally posted at Lady Scribes June 24, 2011