Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Checking In with Game of Thrones

This turned out to be a lot better than I imagined.  I had thought the show was going to be fantasy epic by the numbers, but it has turned out to be a highly complex political drama that happens to take place in a medieval fantasy world.  I'm up to the 7th episode so far and I think every episode has been an improvement on the last, with the last two episodes being especially stellar.  I usually hate medieval fantasy, but when a fantasy show is closer to The Wire in tone than anything on television save for Treme, I can deal with some overwrought dialogue and deus ex machina (of which there has actually been very little on Game of Thrones so far).  Peter Dinklage is still the best thing about the show, but thats more a complement on his acting (and the writing of his character) than a mark against the rest of the show.

I like the series so much that I've started reading the original novels.  Reading them, I remember why I usually avoid fantasy novels.  They aren't bad per se, but lets just say the deviations from the source material made by the television show are entirely justified.  The set pieces are all bigger in the novels, but the multiple narratives make it difficult to keep track of exactly what is happening.  Hopefully the series has a long, successful run.  There is plenty of source material, and it seems like the creators of the television version are becoming increasingly comfortable adapting it to fit the screen.

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