Winter Is Here


game of thrones nbo

I don’t often get exited about television. I do, however, get excited about great books. And sometimes, when it appears that one of my favorite novels is going to be brought to life on film by folks who appear to “get it” I do get a bit enthusiastic. Sometimes it’s a rewarding experience, sometimes not.

In the case of HBO’s adaptation of George R.R. Martin’s sublimely adult oriented series of fantasy novels, A Song of Ice and Fire, everything I have seen in previews and on the promotional website leads me to think this thing is being done right.

First off, it looks utterly gorgeous.

When lost in the mental realm of images created in one’s mind whilst reading a novel, one tends to create one’s own set of ideas about how things in a fictional world might look. This is especially true in fantasy and sci-fi. So it’s rare that another’s conception of that world will match or satisfy your own. I think of the absurd imagery in David Lynch’s Dune as an example of how turned off I could be when I perceive that someone’s done it badly (and I otherwise like David Lynch, by the way). I think of Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings as someone who did it fairly correctly. The images I’m seeing from Game of Thrones suggest the creators of the series are doing it even better than my own imagination might do. It looks dark and cold in all the right places, misty and lush in others, glaring and hard where needed. The settings and costumes seem perfect.

For once, I’m wondering if a filmed adaptation might actually enhance a written story and not pale in comparison. Perhaps I’m letting my enthusiasm get the better of me, here. I consumed Martin’s novels like they were rich, delicious meals and I was a starving man. I want to do the same this evening at 9 p.m. when the series debuts on HBO.

game of thrones hbo

Update: The opening episode met almost all of my expectations. It was beautifully done. Not only is the art design absolutely masterful but it seems they have managed to bring aboard a genuinely fantastic cast that will bring these characters to fascinating life onscreen. You can’t take your eyes off the gent playing Tyrion Lannister, Sean Bean is brilliantly cast as Ned Stark and the children have all been cast to near perfection. Jaime Lannister, Cersei and the multitude of side characters. The only question to me is whether the wide-eyed beauty playing Daenerys will ever be able to pull off the dramatic transformation required of the character as the series progresses.

Regardless is will be an unbounded pleasure to watch.


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