Cape Town - Haven’t read the book series A Song Of Ice & Fire by George R.R Martin?
Don’t worry – you can watch the smash hit TV series based on them – Game Of Thrones (2011-current) from the very beginning. All six seasons, in total 60 episodes, are currently available on the ShowMax video-on-demand library.
Game Of Thrones is so big and epic that it’s worth checking out a second or even third time. Here’s why:
1) Killer characters
Literally and figuratively, GoT is packed full of killer characters. Episode 1 sees plenty of bloodshed, but we’re also introduced to the fan-favourite characters like outcast dwarf Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage) who loves ladies and wine and causing trouble for his ego-driven family.
There’s honest Warden Of The North, Ned Stark (Sean Bean) and his family, whose quiet lives are set on fire thanks to deadly and dark secrets. Plus, there’s Ned’s brooding bastard son Jon Snow (Kit Harington), who swears his allegiance to The Night's Watch – a sect of soldiers who swear off the finer things in life to guard an impossibly tall ice wall against attacks from the nasties north of The Wall. And then there’s Joffrey Baratheon (Jack Gleeson) – arguably the vilest, cruelest, nastiest baddie ever seen on TV. Loving and loathing these characters will become a way of life.
2) Race to be royal
The entire series is all about the fight for the Iron Throne – an infamous seat that’s made from the swords of hundreds of kings and rulers who’ve fallen before the current king.
Thing is, everyone’s got a different opinion about who should be ruling the kingdom of Westeros. From “rightful” King Robert Baratheon (Mark Addy) to the exiled “mother of dragons” Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke), there are plenty of strong contenders to the throne.
Not to mention the greedy Lannister clan, which includes vindictive warlord dad Tywin (Charles Dance) and power-hungry daughter Cersei (Lena Headey) who’s hiding a scandalous secret with her king-killing brother Jaime (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) – they all think that they should be sitting on the Iron Throne. And none of them have a problem with murdering, buying, lying, cheating or stealing their way to getting it!
3) A sight for sore eyes
Bored with so-so special effects on other shows? Game Of Thrones spends a dragon-sized chunk of its R86 million per-episode-budget on special effects. And you can tell – the series is visually stupendous. Even the dragons (yes, dragons) look real! While the show builds portions of sets, they digitally create some of the most incredible, picturesque, beautiful, fantastical landscapes. Whether it’s the wastelands of Essos where Daenerys and her three fire-breathing dragons are taking over slave cities or the frozen landscapes full of armies of zombie-like White Walkers, Game Of Thrones delivers time after time.
4) Ask the experts
So far, Game Of Thrones has won 26 Primetime Emmy awards and is nominated for 23 at this year’s Emmys, it pulls in more than 8 million viewers in the US alone each episode and holds the 2015 Guinness World Record for the most pirated TV show – some episodes are downloaded over a million times within an hour of being broadcast.
Plus, entertainment rating site RottenTomatoes.com gives it a 94% average rating, with its highest being 97%. Not too shabby for a show set in a world where electricity hasn’t been invented…
Watch Game of Thrones now on ShowMax.com. There’s a seven-day free trial for new subscribers.
(Sources: imdb.com, rottentomatoes.com)
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