When the first trailers for season one of Game of Thrones started showing up, I was so not interested. Not only has there only been one successful (as in, both a commercial success and something that I enjoyed) fantasy movie in the history of cinema*, the jokers at HBO were reminding me of the worst trilogy ever by prominently promoting Sean Bean as the star. As if that asshole Peter Jackson hadn’t done enough with him already.
But since I enjoy torturing myself with bad TV, I decided to give the first episode a try. I was thinking it was decidedly average, with some decent set design and a few intriguing characters, until the bit at the end with the incest and murder**. I was like, “What the fuck just happened?” That was enough to watch episode two, and halfway through season one, I was hooked in a major way. Sure it’s cheesy, but it’s the right kind of cheesy.
So without further adieu, here’s a list of why I LOVE Game of Thrones:
1. Lots of midget sex.
2. One of the central relationships involves incest.
3. Peter Dinklage is the best (especially when he’s sexing it up).
4. It’s got King Joffrey, one of the WORST television villains of all time.
5. Plenty of strong female characters. This is a far cry from your typical fantasy story, in which a damsel in distress and an evil queen are the only two female characters. Without doing any actual math, I’m guessing the cast is 50% female, with heroes and villains and everything in between. Sure there’s lots of gratuitous nudity and sex, but it’s okay because there’s also Cat and Cersei and Sansa and Arya. Oh, and don’t forget Daenerys. And in the latest episode, Brienne just bested Jaime Lannister in a sword fight. Yay women!
6. It’s chock full of fantastic supporting characters. This is the real magic of the show (besides item number one). Because there are so many great characters, you never get enough of any them. You’re always left wanting more.
7. Consistency. With other shows that have started off strong (Battlestar Galactica), or that have reached tremendous peaks (The Walking Dead), great shows have been derailed because the characters keep changing every half season when the writers decide to push the show in a new direction. In large part because it’s based on a series of novels, Game of Thrones features characters that are laid out on a clear path. The show can afford to take its time, introducing seeds that don’t bear fruit until much later. Even when episodes deviate from the books in a minor way, the larger story arcs are still in place and guiding the momentum of the show overall.
8. I know it’s been said before, but by killing off Sean Bean, the ostensible star of the whole series, at the end of season one**, you never know who’s going to die. Every Sunday I wake up dreading that today’s the day Tyrion Lannister is going to die. Please just let him hang on one more week! Please!!!
9. It’s on HBO, instead of NBC or AMC, so there’s no holding back. This show is majorly gratuitous, in all the perfect ways. (Not like Girls, which is gratuitous in all the wrong ways).
10. Dire wolves
12. Even when they aren’t having sex, the midgets are pretty awesome.
So what I’m saying is, if you are the type of person who enjoys midget sex, gratuitous violence, over-the-top plot lines that make no apologies, and Dungeons and Dragons on crack cocaine, then you need to be watching Game of Thrones.
10 minutes of Bonus Footage: