Game of Thrones, HBO’s adaptation of American writer George RR Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series of books is arguably the most popular TV show right now. Everybody seems to be talking about it. People discuss characters, plot, fan theories and even sex scenes while sitting in cafes, restaurants, workplace, dates – they discuss it everywhere. This medieval mish-mash of violence, sex and magic is clearly the in thing. Fans get shocked when you tell them you do not watch it, or God forbid, ditched it after watching a couple of seasons.
You are cool if you watch it. If you don’t, well, this is the very definition sacrilege in the Game of Thrones cult. Fans cannot grasp that there are a few mortals who dare to hold a different opinion about the show. Meanwhile, the seventh season is coming soon. The pandemonium and hype surrounding the premiere is already unbearable. If you have seen this HBO cash-cow till now, should you continue? Well, here are five reasons we think you should not.
You don’t want to be miserable
Game of Thrones fans are almost certainly masochists. They seem to love pain. To inject a dose of reality in the show GoT creators like to kill of a bunch of characters every season. Often those characters happen to be major ones and likable and fan-favourites. Their favourite characters keep dying, fans whine, and they keep on watching. Some wise person once said that if George RR Martin had written Harry Potter series, he would have killed Harry Potter, Ron Weasely and Hermione Granger at the end of the first book in a wedding gone wrong. Well, the lovely Ramsay Bolton said it perfectly, “If you think this has a happy ending, you haven’t been paying attention.” See what became of him, guys. Learn!
Okay, if you have come this far, you have seen a lot of onscreen violence on the show. But take it from us, it does not stop. Violence is a strong element in the world of Game of Thrones, and to hammer the point that medieval era was an especially brutal era, we will be presented with gory visuals this season too – probably more as the series nears its end.
Sex and rape
We all love sex, but Game of Thrones – again to absolutely drill the point as to how brutal medieval era was into your brain – has simply too much sex. Even HBO’s own Rome and Starz’s Spartacus come nowhere near Game of Thrones. So if we ever wanted to make our parents watch this show, well keep dreaming! To make matters worse, there isn’t just consensual sex. There is rape, and a good deal of it. We get it, HBO. Medieval Europe was clearly very rapey and women were treated as objects to be used, but no need to remind us every now and then!
For those who have already read the books, the TV series does not present much of a problem as it itself is a dumbed down version. But the rest of us have a really hard time getting the hang of all the characters, places, gods, religions, plots, and subplots and whatnot. If that was not enough, there are fan theories. They are so tantalising that we can’t avoid taking a look at one of the many forums in which jobless Game of Thrones fans surmise how this character is actually the offspring of these two and not these two as we were told before. We like to think we could predict what is going to happen next and impress our friends. But the creators, wily as they are, manage to shock us once again and we go gaga over how unexpected the shock was.
In India, the show airs after a couple of days it has aired in many other countries. A whole episode of Game of Thrones can be spoiled by one line of spoiler. Game of Thrones is so immensely popular because of its cliffhangers, and a single spoiler might force a dedicated fan to undergo brainwashing. It is simple. If you watch Game of Thrones and if you use social media, there is no chance in hell of you avoiding spoilers if you have not seen the latest episode. Every news outlet and every user posts what they or she or he thinks about the BIG SHOCK in the latest Game of Thrones episode almost instantly. So you either have to watch the show as soon as it airs (in India you can’t, at least not legally), or you cannot use Facebook and Twitter until you have seen it.
There are better shows out there
HBO’s PR machinery would have you believe otherwise, but there actually exist shows that are better than Game of Thrones. Of course Breaking Bad is the first one that comes to mind, but chances are you have already seen it. If you haven’t, please do. And then there’s Lost – an amazing ABC show which is often called the greatest TV series of all time and which started the idea of discussing a TV show on online forums with its dozens of fan theories long before the first episode of Game of Thrones aired on that fateful Sunday night in 2011. Among those that air currently, there is Fargo, a sedate small town drama which puts Game of Thrones to shame at acting, humour and character development.