A Game of
A ridiculously good adaptation of George R. R. Martin's epic novel series
21st June 2011
Spoilers to follow.
Normally I don't watch television dramas. Outside of 24, the telly is mostly reserved for a films and gaming and the odd comedy show. So when my friends began to rave about Game of Thrones, I was initially a little skeptical - how good could a medieval fantasy drama really be?
I'm not going to lie - the only reason I initially bothered watching it was because Sean Bean is one of my favourite actors of all time, and his role as Ned Stark sounded similar to that of Sharpe - which I never watched fully, but enjoyed the odd re-run episode that I caught. As I started watching it, however, I soon realised that it wasn't just a great actor that would make this a fantastic series. George R. R. Martin's world unraveled in front of me with the massive budget of HBO behind it, and it became clear that this man's imagination could easily rival that of Tolkien's, as Game of Thrones proved to be Lord of the Rings for grown-ups, with much more blood and nudity and a much darker, more sinister representation of what such a world would be like.
Whilst Bean was probably the glue that held the whole thing together, every single actor excelled in their roles, most notably perhaps Peter Dinklage, who plays the whoremongering, drunk dwarf Tyrion Lannister absolutely superbly. And even when Ned Stark sadly gets his head swept off by the child king Joffrey, the show doesn't deteriorate - in fact, the final episode is possibly the best, as the show's fantasy elements begin to come out, and dragons rear their scaly heads.
I'm incredibly excited for the next series, as there are so many points to be continued from this one - the war has just begun, young Arya has begun to make her way north, and the bastard son of Stark, Jon Snow, has just gone beyond the infamous "wall" - the great enigma of the series - so we can discover what secrets lie behind it. Also, DRAGONS. I'm even tempted to begin reading the "A Song of Fire and Ice" series to see what kind of writer Martin is, and see whether or not it can match up to the big-budget experience on screen. I'll miss Sean Bean in the next series, but there's plenty more there to keep me interested for hopefully many series to come.