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    • CommentAuthorRenThing
    • CommentTimeApr 26th 2011
    We're two episodes in, number of viewers is slightly up over the first weekend (which is even better when you consider this last weekend was a holiday) and HBO has already optioned a second season with double the number of episodes of this one.

    So, AGoT fans, what do you think? I think it's pretty true to the book thus far and the things that don't jive with the pictures in my head are mostly forgivable.

    The one thing I have most of an issue with was the Kal Drogo/Daenyrs wedding night scene. If I remember correctly from the book he's kinder and in some ways gentler with her considering her vast change of circumstances whereas the HBO version made it pretty much a rape.
    • CommentTimeApr 26th 2011
    Yeah, but I can go with the rape there. Drogo doesn't have that much of a story, and Dany turning him around will be her first victory. I still would have preferred the original, especially since it also would have broken much earlier with the idea of the brutal savages, but in the books, we're several chapters in (and two of Dany's, I believe) and are much more uncomfortable with the role women play there and with Dany's fears, so the gentleness of Drogo hits us harder than it would have done in the middle of the first episode.

    So far, I like the show, but of course I can bring book knowledge to the table, and I wonder what will get cut. They seem to be committed to a truthful adaptation, and I wonder how feasible that is. I mean, in the books, the first half almost is mostly setting up conflicts, but I can plow through the chapters in short time; having to wait a week for another episode that sets up the pieces - I hope the audience sticks to the show.

    So far, I'm unsurprisingly impressed with Peter Dinklage and surprisingly impressed with the actresses who play Dany and Arya. But really, almost all of the cast is pretty good. These were just the standouts so far, to me.
    • CommentAuthormunin218
    • CommentTimeApr 26th 2011
    I was also rather disappointed at the Drogo scenes. In the book he's at least rather fond of Dany, and I was surprised that after all the blatant sex that had gone on, they balked at Danys face to face sex scene being under the moonlight, in front of everyone. It was an important part of her empowerment. As was Drogos feelings for Dany.
    • CommentAuthorRenThing
    • CommentTimeApr 26th 2011
    Good points regarding Drogo but for me the second episode with Dany's riding him for a change didn't really hit me as gentle, nor do I feel like we were exposed to the Dothraki as anything but the savages Vaserys takes them for. We've seen her expose him to a new kind of sex but we've seen nothing of his character really; I mean, he's had as much screen time as Arya and he's still pretty much a one dimensional character.

    Well, they cruised through nine chapters in a single sitting without it feeling like it really lost anything, so the ambitiousness of doing the first book in eight episodes doesn't seem too impossible. They've already said they plan on doing the second book in two parts.
    • CommentAuthorRenThing
    • CommentTimeApr 26th 2011

    There was a scene flashed with her in the middle of a tent, blood on her face, on top of him, surrounded by people. Maybe they're going a more "badass warrior queen" route?
  1.  (9805.6)
    I'm not impressed with anything other than Drogo's massive pecs. I think his chest is actually bigger than any of the actresses'. It almost makes the clumsy cinematography of every scene he shows up in tolerable.

    But other Drogo's chest-steaks Game of Thrones is even more dull than Showtime's The Borgias. I can see how the story would work well as a book, where one gets to fill in the intrigue and events with one's own imagination. But this series has a generic visual presentation that could be lifted from the covers of any second-rate fantasy series. It has no style and no dynamism. And that bland world is crafted in great detail. With nothing left to the imagination the plot just become a boring stream of exposition. It reminds me of what Brett Ratner did with the Watchmen movie: very expensive fan service.

    Back to the cinematography; ugh! How did the network that gave us The Sopranos sink so low? It's just so stiff and obvious. Even with the money they saved by not hiring good concepts artists those sets and costumes still cost a fortune. So how about working some epic shots into this epic series? I can still remember a single pan of a wine rack in a bad episode of The Sopranos that had more art and grace than this entire series.

    I'll give Game of Thrones one more episode before I write it off and try catching up on The Killing.
    • CommentTimeMay 4th 2011

    I am enjoying the hell out of this series. Very true to the books in all the ways that matter. I'm a recent convert so my enthusiasm is undimmed. Oh man I cannot WAIT for the second season. Battle central!
    • CommentTimeMay 4th 2011
    I am a fan thus far. Having only seen Peter Dinklage in "Elf" (something I must remedy immediately), I was blown away by his performance as Tyrion; they could have gotten away with choosing a worse actor for his stature, but man, that motherfucker can act. I was afraid they'd make Tyrion a caricature of conniving bastard, but Dinklage brings real emotion to the role. Plus the part where he slaps the shit out of Joffrey was epic.
  2.  (9805.9)
    It's good, but I imagine it's REALLY unfriendly to people not familiar with the books.

    I've read the first book, so I have a decent idea of what's going on and who's who. My wife hasn't, and has a more difficult time keeping up. The biggest problem is the names - with so many characters, many of whom have similar sounding names, or are only referenced by last names (which many share), having the made-up names makes it hard to know who's being talked about. And, as an American in the South, these things are made even harder when everyone has an English accent ;).
    • CommentAuthorRenThing
    • CommentTimeMay 4th 2011

    Get yourself to see "Death at a Funeral" (the British version, not the American one) and "In Brouge" for more Dinklage films.

    @Doctor Pockets

    My wife and I are hosting viewings of two episodes at a time and about half the people there haven't read the books and they seem to be doing ok.
  3.  (9805.11)
    @Doctor Pockets
    Keep track of the characters isn't really a problem. The dialogue seems to have been written to wrap names with enough context to make it comprehensible. But the accents are a problem, because half these actors cannot enunciate in the accent they're using so the speech gets murky. It doesn't help that the sound mix makes environmental noises to prominent for those of us who don't have a surround sound system.
    • CommentTimeMay 4th 2011 edited
    @Doctor Pockets

    Honestly hadn't even heard of the books prior to the series hype but nothing too arduous so far. The only problem I can envisage, with having so many characters & plot-lines, is doing them all justice over the course of the whole run.
    • CommentAuthorRenThing
    • CommentTimeMay 4th 2011

    Well, without getting spoilery, the books get a touch more complex in their plot threads so hopefully they're able to keep those balls in the air, especially if they're going to keep trying to be as true to the books as possible.
  4.  (9805.14)
    The books are balls of convoluted and awesome plottyness.
    -just wishing I had HBO so I could watch it beyond the first ep I saw on vacation. oi.
    • CommentAuthorRenThing
    • CommentTimeMay 4th 2011

    You can apparently sign up for just HBO on their website now if you're that into the series/books, no need to have cable.
  5.  (9805.16)
    @RenThing -alas, I don't control the TV subscription in the house. Their online thingy is for adding HBO to your local cable/sat/whatever provider :( Family says no HBO so I have to wait. And be patient. Which ...argh. I hate being patient.
    • CommentAuthorRenThing
    • CommentTimeMay 4th 2011
    Oh, weak. I heard an advertisement for HBOGo on the way to work this morning and they made it sound like a subscription you could pay for sans cable provider.
  6.  (9805.18)
    Yeh. If you could do like internet subscriptions instead of sat/cable for streaming stuff? I'd do it.
    Like netflix. For tv channels.
  7.  (9805.19)
    If I could just get HBO and Showtime I would cancel cable. Thirty Rock and South Park are literally the only things I watch that aren't on the premium channels. Then again, if GoT is a sign of where HBO is going I could just buy the SHO DVDs and save money.
  8.  (9805.20)
    I watched the first three episodes and then read the book, so it was interesting to go from "right i remember seeing that" and "oh they changed that for the series" to "omg I wonder how they will film this bit."

    I've heard the theory that they changed Dany's scene in order to keep the squick level constant after they aged her up? Like, in the book it was as kind as it could be in the context, but the question of meaningful consent that an unwilling political marriage arranged by her brother implies was kind of foregrounded by the fact that she was thirteen. Maybe now that she's old enough to THEORETICALLY be able to consent to sex they needed to put more emphasis on it, otherwise it would have seemed naively non-terrible given the circumstances.

    Personally I didn't like it, though. And they really didn't spend enough time on anything BUT the sex, so the transition from "kind of rapey" to "lovey dovey" happened WAY too fast. In the book you can see her starting to fit in to the society in other ways as well.

    Another interesting consequence of aging up the child characters is that Viserys no longer seems to be that much older than Danaerys - he looks about as old as they said he was in the book, while she is older. I think that makes the scene with the whip much less satisfying.

    In conclusion, I love the hell out of Arya and Tyrion and can't wait to see them being awesome.