The first series was not much more than a solid distraction, the second a second opinion, and by the third I was committed. It was still a slightly uneasy commitment but by half way through series four I was properly hooked and quite unable to recognise myself anymore. Addiction turned to smitten by the fifth series and one vast scene towards the end of the sixth was better than anything I’ve seen for quite a while. I’m now about half an hour from the end of the seventh and yesterday I could barely look it was so exciting. Of course all good things much come to an end and so I am resigned to the fact in this case that there is only one more bunch left to pick from and that will be that. By all accounts that last bunch is a bit of a disappointment, but then I assumed the whole damn thing would be a big fat muddy flop for me anyway and so I can only be grateful I took the plunge. Speaking of plunges there is a lot of plunging involved, if you were wondering – plunging swords and plunging cocks – it’s all par for the course in Game Of Thrones.
It is indicative of how little I like to take advice that I waited for two years after Game Of Thrones finished to finally give it a go. The prospects of success were not high as with so many other purportedly ‘addictive’ box sets. My history with the big hitters is not a happy one: Dexter and Mad Men were ditched by series two and I didn’t do any better with Lost. The Soprano’s should have been the one but it never lit me up the way I wanted it too (if only I had written in they might have tried a bit harder) and although I did get to the very end of Breaking Bad it never quite hit the spot: if you want my opinion Better Call Saul is the better call. We did start The Crown a while back but it didn’t take off; perhaps another time. My selection to get me through Lockdown #1 was The Walking Dead but I stalled on series eight, the point at which I accepted it had completely ceased to be the programme it once was and had just turned into a prolonged, cheap looking gun battle punctuated by some pretty poor speeches (the fact I got that far at all is a shameful testament to how little else there was on at the time). And that leaves us with Game Of Thrones, which I think I may have fallen a tiny bit in love with.
Don’t worry, in case you were. You won’t find me sitting in a Games Workshop any time soon, trading Game Of Thrones character cards and tugging excitedly on my testicles. I won’t be investing in the whole lot on Blu Ray and watching them late into the night for the rest of my life. I won’t be found on assorted online forums offering my opinions on plot lines and costume inconsistencies and who has the best sword. Or indeed the best cock, arse or tits. What I’m saying is I haven’t been converted into a Thrones geek and so I won’t be adopting a newly born child just so I can call it Daenerys Hewitt or Cersei Hewitt or Ser Jorah Mormont Hewitt, Lord of Bear Island. I won’t be buying the official Game Of Thrones duvet set or subscribing to a magazine that offers you the chance to build a castle of Westeros from scratch for only £8.99 per issue (complete series with just 124 issues, first issue £0.99, we will continue to send you each weekly instalment and charge your bank balance appropriately, even when you think you cancelled it months ago, terms and conditions apply). And I definitely won’t be one of those unbearable twats who has somehow found a way to merge my life with the experiences I have seen on the show and use snippets of dialogue to guide my choices and provide commentary to everyday situations. Because that would mean me becoming someone I hate. I also won’t be reading the books: I’m too lazy and I don’t care if ‘they’re so much better’ and all that crap.
If you’ve seen Game Of Thrones then all of this will make perfect sense, and if you haven’t, well if you haven’t then you probably won’t even be reading this by now. But what I’m writing this for is to say that if you are even slightly curious as to whether it is worth the bother then you may as well give it a go. It is as violent as they say it is and there is quite a bit of nudity, rumpy pumpy, slap and tickle, how’s your father and buggery, but these come and go with the breeze (except in the battles and the brothels) and you will be able to stomach them if you can sense which way each breeze is blowing. It is undoubtedly well acted, has a fine cast, and has some fabulously nasty, darkly pantomime individuals. It has surprises and humour both subtle and sharp and while the fantasy is stretched and silly it is stuffed with ideas that easily elevates it beyond some mere Lord Of The Rings rip off. My point is that I was wrong to sniff at Game Of Thrones because it is a fine, fine spectacle of a show and (I’ll whisper this) may just be as good as the hype, and even if series eight is a let down it doesn’t really matter because I whistled through the other seven and I absolutely still want more. There you have it – an admission I was wrong, a whole hearted recommendation for you and a little bit of positivity thrown in to the mix as well. I really need to get out of this lockdown.
G B Hewitt. 06.03.2021