30 Days of TV – Day 03

Day 03 –  Your favorite new show (aired this TV-season)

No contest: Game of Thrones.

George R.R. Martin’s best-selling Song of Ice and Fire novels have spoiled me on fantasy; in terms of characters, development, pacing, and depth, they are leagues ahead of the pack.  Unlike most authors, he’s not afraid to “kill his babies;” his characters are put through things most other writers wouldn’t do to their creations, and plenty of people die miserable deaths.  He manages to make a convincing fantasy world without falling back on the overused “elfs and dwarfs” schlock.  Throughout the series, especially with the last novel (Feast for Crows), he managed to make some of the “bad guys” likeable, well-rounded characters.  Martin’s also one of the best writers in the field in terms of writing style and craft, which I can’t say for most of the other fantasy books I’ve picked up since reading Game of Thrones.

I have to think some of this is because of Martin’s history as a screenwriter; his TV projects weren’t exactly legendary (the first, 1985 revival of The Twilight Zone, and the CBS Beauty and the Beast drama), but his books have the tight pacing, developed characters, and cliffhanger twists of good TV episodes.  It’s a no-brainer to convert Song of Ice and Fire into a TV series.

So, the epic countdown until the show aired—all those “Winter is Coming” teasers that cropped up on HBO—got a lot of nerd attention.  What’s better is that it got critical attention, and better yet, is an HBO production.  I shudder to think how badly the books would be mangled if, say, ABC was pulling the strings.  (I’m not a huge fan of Terry Goodkind, between the early books’  creepy BDSM and demon-rape subplots, and the later books’ Ayn Rand soapboxing, but it didn’t deserve to be as badly abused as it was.)

At worst, fans would get a solid conversion of the books into a visual medium, thanks to HBO’s high production values.  And since the first book is a solid foundation for the rest of the series, it opens the door for four-plus seasons.  The end result has been amazing: the actors are great, the pacing follows the books’ twists and turns nicely, and it’s all come together in a tight-flowing narrative of court intrigue, treason, and civil war.  Plus, the developers (and Martin, who’s on the staff) have included a number of new scenes for the dedicated fanboy, following characters who weren’t PoV characters in the books.

Eagerly looking forward for Dance with Dragons to be published in July, and for Clash of Kings to air next season.

Spoiler/Preview/Recap:

Day 01 – A show that should have never been canceled – Jericho
Day 02 – A show that you wish more people were watching – Fringe
Day 03 – Your favorite new show (aired this TV-season) – Game of Thrones
Day 04 – Your favorite show ever
Day 05 – A show you hate
Day 06 – Favorite episode of your favorite t.v show
Day 07 – Least favorite episode of your favorite t.v show
Day 08 – A show everyone should watch
Day 09 – Best scene/episode ever
Day 10 – A show you thought you wouldn’t like but ended up loving
Day 11 – A show that disappointed you
Day 12 – A TV show you’ve watched more than 4 times
Day 13 – Favorite childhood show
Day 14 – Favorite male character
Day 15 – Favorite female character
Day 16 – Your guilty pleasure show
Day 17 – Favorite mini series
Day 18 – Favorite title sequence
Day 19 – Best t.v show cast
Day 20 – Favorite kiss
Day 21 – Favorite relationship
Day 22 – Best pilot episode
Day 23 – Most annoying character
Day 24 – Best quote
Day 25 – A show you plan on watching (old or new)
Day 26 – OMG WTF? Season finale
Day 27 – Favorite series finale
Day 28 – First t.v show obsession
Day 29 – Current t.v show obsession
Day 30 – Saddest character death


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