If you haven’t heard of or seen an episode of “Game of Thrones” yet, you have GoT to try it out. Not only is it the buzz of television right now, it is arguably the best TV show ever produced, for various different reasons.
GoT owns the numbers. At the Emmys in 2016, the TV series, based on George R.R. Martin’s “A Song of Ice and Fire” novels, broke the all-time mark previously set by Frasier with its 38th win. Out of the 24 nominations last year, ‘Game of Thrones’ collected 12 wins, tying its own 2015 mark. The viewership is off the charts as well. Averaging over 23 million views globally per episode, the popular series surpasses all competition by a long shot. For comparison, The Walking Dead netted 15.2 million views for its Season 6 finale. The popularity throne belongs to GoT.
The series is unparalleled in terms of quality and uniqueness; nothing like GoT is or has ever been on air. Contrary to popular belief, the series, albeit quite intense for casual viewers, isn’t all about magic, dragons, and bloodshed. Rather, a dynamic mix of explicit romance, irony, gore, schemes, and plot twists has something for all types of TV buffs.
Corey Koehler(11), a junior at LCHS, commented that “Game of Thrones”can be considered one of the greatest tales of adventure ever illustrated, because it creates a world that almost every child and adult wants to be a part of, and constructs morally complex characters who we learn to love and hate, often simultaneously. It is a depiction of what makes humans human, [and shows that] we aren’t perfect and all of us have flaws”.
The show isn’t your typical “good guy wins, bad guy loses” entertainment. In fact, it’s safe to say more heroes die than villains, but then again, GoT viewers will know that it’s hard to label a character as “good” or “bad”. Even those who are perceived as evil will win your sympathy occasionally.
With a cast featuring A-list stars including Peter Dinklage, Lena Headey, and Emilia Clarke, the acting is on par with the production. The HBO series’ immense budget (stars like Dinklage are paid about $1.1million per episode) allows for production and special effects that resemble the expensive and spectacular features of super-budget movies. As a result, boredom is non-existent in the episodes of GoT.
As Mr. Beaty eloquently described, “Game of thrones mixes history, politics, entertainment, and social concerns, all in this great big mix of fun. With it’s historical and political context, all of world history is crammed into this small place called Westeros, and it’s just great. It’s Shakespearian, it’s modern, it’s throwback, it’s perfect entertainment.”
Like its characters, however, the phenomenon that is ‘Game of Thrones’ has its flaws. First, the TV series is exclusively available only on HBO, which is a subscriber-only channel. The monthly fee can be a nuisance, although fans will convince you that the show is worth the cost. Additionally, certain aspects of the series can make some viewers uncomfortable, with its depictions of nudity, profanity, and violence. With that said, mature viewers should experience the show for themselves in full stride.
So is ‘Game of Thrones’ the best television series of all time? The numbers and avid fans will tell you(scream at you) yes. Although we’re all busy with school and work, we should all take time to answer that question for ourselves. Winter is still coming, but Seasons 1 through 7 are here.