Game of Thrones: my unqualified review
My only credentials for authoring a review of Game of Thrones is that I have binge watched it. All of it. Over one weekend.
The marathon just completed this is my slowdown, from a gallop to a trot.
Game of Thrones is excellent. Every component works together and makes the show remarkable. Acting, direction, storytelling, its episodic structure, cinematography, casting, clothing, lighting, all of it excellent. It has gotten progressively better, its mythology more complete and complex from season to season, compressed from my Friday start to Sunday night finish.
It is superb. Without any subtractions, garnishments, liens or remittances, that is my review in its gross.
But, payment in full would deprive this paymaster, being miserly and cruel in that way, of making the numerous deductions and enjoying my station and its sadistic benefits.
I concede that I am unfamiliar with the genre of fantasy, so I don’t know what is expected of me as a viewer, and apparent faults might simply be explained as my ignorance of the form. It is possible that I may have missed some key scenes, blinks might have lingered and therefore my criticism may be misinformed.
Now then, is my itemization of each toll. Even with this lesser payment, Game of Thrones is excellent and entertaining.
a) Game of Thrones is derivative from so many sources, like flipping quickly through a family photo album and being reacquainted with long forgotten side trips and old friends. One program that comes to mind is I Claudius, the historical narrative of the early Caesars, but it lacks that bitter cleverness, brutishness and its poignancy. Are these the Knights who say Ni.
b) Is Game of Thrones a Downton Abbey prequel or perhaps some way off future? How and why do the characters speak in the accent of ‘American actor doing do a horrible British/English/Welsh/Irish/Liverpool/Sussex (whatever) by raising their vocal pitch at syllables and sounding haughty.
c) Innovation is lacking. It is Planet of the Apes, but without the apes. They are all human.
Game of Thrones seems stuck in a prolonged condition of the medieval ages. It repeatbably refers to its own genesis and biblical type events several hundred years ago but doesn’t show any technological improvement having occurred from the time that dragons destroyed the land to now. Commerce, weaponry, navigation, political systems, military tactics, philosophy, sciences, medicine, agriculture all are as they were. No aqueducts, sewers or sanitation infrastructure. Dosteth ye not poopeth or peeeth?
There is advanced architecture that is not possible given their knowledge deficiencies and that too is a bit aggravating. It reveals the product of forced labor without allowing a glimpse of the engineering, management and maintenance required for its upkeep.
Is inquisitiveness a human trait, and these are not humans? The only technological improvement that is demonstrated is when the young king Joffrey shows that his cross-bow has a new mechanism to draw the bow in to its chamber.
If I lived there I would have invented the Internet and then created Facebook and I would rule.
d) There is little differentiation in speaking styles, in grammar or education. All of it is done with the same flourish.
e) Can all the old guys please wear name tags
f) Game of Thrones sex is gratuitous and homosexuality is the abnormal. So many rituals that allude to a religiosity without any explanation of what it is, how it is practiced or socialized. Conquest was an essential element of distributing religion, but here it is unencumbered by a means of propagation. Is Game of Thrones a Christian fable? Is this the mythological origins of Western Europe?
g) Lastly, there is a nagging feeling I get that the show might one day conclude as a tribute to Monty Python and the Holy Grail and we learn that they have all escaped from a mental institution. If ever we meet The Black Knight this premonition might cometh to pass
Game of Thrones: my unqualified review