Five reasons why you should watch Game of Thrones

Published: April 4, 2013
SHARES
Email

Game of Thrones (GOT) is among the most watched (and the most heavily pirated) TV shows in the world, based on the books of George R R Martin. PHOTO: FILE

The Middle-earth had its day on screen; it is now the story of Westeros taking the world by a storm, with the launch of season three of Game of Thrones, HBO’s flagship series.

Are you watching it yet?

For the uninitiated, Game of Thrones (GOT) is among the most watched (and the most heavily pirated) TV shows in the world, based on the books of George RR Martin.

If you aren’t following the show, here is a short explanation for what all the fuss is about:

The storylines:

Everybody loves a good story. Well, GOT has five or six brilliant stories running parallel to one another at the same time.

There’s no protagonist. Instead the stories circumabulate the majestic Iron Throne, and depict a free-for-all struggle of different characters in attaining or retaining it. The show leaps on as a series of shrewd political moves, which succeed or backfire in the most shocking and amusing ways possible.

The best part about GOT is that there is no distinctly benign party to root for. You can choose your own favourite (mine’s House Targaryen, in case you’re wondering), and hope for its endurance like it’s your sports team.

(House of  Targaryen)

A visual extravaganza:

The show is filmed at exotic sites in Morocco, Scotland, Croatia and several others. The scenes are shot all over the place, from the Tollymore forest in North Ireland to the breath taking Svínafellsjökull glacier in Iceland.

And if it’s not the scenery that you’re interested in, you’re sure to be enthralled by the beautifully choreographed battles, painstakingly designed costumes, and spell craft scenes edited to perfection.

Strong female characters:

If you liked Katniss Everdeen from The Hunger Games, and bemoan the dearth of good non-stereotypical women on TV, GOT offers an abundance of them reining the course of history in Westeros.

It’s hardly surprising that the show has a massive female following, despite the original target audience being the ‘male geeks’.

 

From the honourable, sword-yielding Brienne of Tarth to the remorselessly deceptive Lady Cersei, each one of them comes with a richly drawn personality and back-story. And they’re all portrayed through outstanding performances by the GOT‘s award-winning cast.

 

The controversies:

Both cheered and booed, but never quite ignored; GOT has a flair for shocking audiences with imagery rarely ever seen on television.

A good example of it would be George W Bush’s head on a pike in the finale of the first season. Oh boy, that raised a ruckus!

Inspiring sub-plots:

Certain characters come with sub-stories that transcend the fantasy world of Westeros and directly address our current social environment.

 

Tyrion, the fiercely witty member of House Lannister, is a ‘little person’. He is occasionally mocked for his short height with terms like ‘imp’ and ‘dwarf’, but deals with all adversity with true gravitas. He advises another genealogically disadvantaged character in the series to wear his weakness ‘like armour’, so that none may be able to bully him for it.

In an industry where little persons are usually featured for little more than degrading physical comedy, Peter Dinklage’s key role as Tyrion is a breath of fresh, politically correct air. The moral of his story can be best expressed in the words of the Master of Whispers,

“A very small man can cast a very large shadow.”

PHOTOS: https://www.facebook.com/GameOfThrones

Read more by Faraz here, or follow him on Twitter @FarazTalat

Faraz Talat

Faraz Talat

A medical doctor and bubble-wrap enthusiast from Rawalpindi, who writes mostly about science and social politics (and bubble-wrap). He tweets @FarazTalat (twitter.com/FarazTalat)

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • Namaloom Afraad

    yeah, we can actually see power of women with our eyes.Recommend

  • BlackJack

    GoT is truly brilliant; the series humanizes even those who could easily have been given rather one-dimensional negative roles (most members of house Lannister for example) – so you end up admiring or even feeling sorry (example Theon Greyjoy) for distinctly unlikable characters.Recommend

  • Asif Baloch

    Awesome TV Series MUST watch Recommend

  • Leo Straus

    Parental advisory: this show contains some nudity!

    But what a great show.Recommend

  • Mj

    Aww, you shouldn’t have used photos from unaired episodes. Takes away some element of surprise. The Song of Ice and Fire, the book series on which Game of Thrones is based, is worth reading for the fans of the show.

    I personally am a supporter of House Lannister, the perfect combo of arrogance (Cersei), cunning (Tywin), stupidity (Joeffry), brawn (Jaime), and strategy (Tyrion). The powerplay within the family makes for an interesting dynamic.Recommend

  • http://TheHague Chunky Lafanga

    You forgot to mention the nudityRecommend

  • Talat Haque

    Love it!Recommend

  • Critical

    I would give one reason :Emilia ClarkeRecommend

  • http://blogs.tribune.com.pk/author/430/faraz-talat/ Faraz Talat

    Chunky,

    I sorta did mention it. Read between the lines in “The Controversies” section. :pRecommend

  • Ali

    Beware you won’t be able to contest elections after watching GOT due to excessive nudity ;)Recommend

  • ss

    the bestest best TV show ever, don’t like the nudity part thoughRecommend

  • Ammar

    C’mon, someone give any comment regarding this is against ideology of Pakistan, religion, or anything on those lines — this is boring!!! =PRecommend

  • http://syedaabidabokhari.wordpress.com The Only Normal Person Here.

    Game of Thrones For The WinRecommend

  • pak patriot

    Though i enjoyed first season alot I dnt any one recommend to watch it. The story moves along painfully slow.Recommend

  • Asif Baloch

    In the Game of Thrones either you win or die
    i am a great fan of “KHALEESI” :DRecommend

  • Mj

    @Asif Baloch:
    “i am a great fan of “KHALEESI” :D”

    Is that you, Ser Jorah Mormont :) ?Recommend

  • Mosh

    Good show, but the thing I found repulsive in the show was the inbreeding, you know the scene between the twin brother and sister, I don’t know the characters name though.Recommend

  • I am a Khan

    Such shows just encourage violence and nudity and subtly pollute the minds of the viewers.Recommend

  • Mj

    @I am a Khan:

    The fictional show has some real world parallels too with different houses praying to, and fighting for, the old gods, the new gods, the drowned god, the lord of light, the storm god.Recommend

  • Another Pakistani

    i guess there are more clothes in this review than in GoT’s one entire episode :PRecommend

  • Naveed

    Whenever I read an article about GOT, I have an almost irresistible urge to write a huge spoiler for the coming season. :p But don’t worry, I won’t. Recommend

  • Asif Baloch

    @MJ, i wish………………….:DRecommend

  • Sajid

    The only question left unanswered is…. how to watch it without resorting to downloading?Recommend

  • Omair Nouman

    The best part was the death of Ned Stark :P
    I mean seriously! without it happening, the whole season would have turned boring.Recommend