Why I Won't Be Watching Game Of Thrones
By Ezekiel McAdams
July 19 2017
Yes, you heard that right. I won't be watching Game Of Thrones.
Now, before any insults dripping with venom are thrown my way, may I please explain?
Game of Thrones is a good show, but is it a great one?
From the very beginning of its television adaptation, Game Of Thrones, became a wildfire on social media, mostly because there were unexpected twists, It's motto became, expect the unexpected.
Fans would invade social media before the season premieres, finales or throughout the season and year to discuss and obsess over their favorite show.
Personally, I don't know if it's just that I don't like Medieval fantasy but the show never resonated with me. And before you start, I admit, I'm weird. Proud weirdo but weirdo nonetheless. Yes, I don't really like Lord of the Rings and no, I've never played World of Warcraft or League of Legends, For Game of Thrones, I just felt underwhelmed mostly. I liked the actors and some of the story, but the sprawling narrative and multiple characters seemed overwhelming at times. I stuck with it, mainly to be part of the conversation.
While, the show was not my jam, I appreciated that others enjoyed it and would usually leave it at that. It wasn't until the episode "The Rains Of Casatamere" from Season Three, where an event, fans would dub "The Red Wedding" permeated my social media. My Facebook timeline alone bled from spoilers that were impossible to mentally erase. It seemed to be around that time, that Game Of Thrones stopped being one of the shows to being THE show you had to watch. There seemed to be no exceptions. To many, this show not only was their favourite TV show, but the best show EVER. Period.
It wasn't until an event in the Season Six episode "Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken" that I stopped watching. The particular scene trigged me, and also seemed to hit a nerve in the fandom as well. The Mary Sue, for example, stopped covering the show, because of it. https://www.themarysue.com/we-will-no-longer-be-promoting-hbos-game-of-thrones/
At the time, I needed a break, mainly because sexual violence, especially towards women, is rampant in media and upsets me. It seems to be mainly shock value and takes away the agency of the female character. Instead placing the trauma on a male one instead. During my sojourn away from the series, I found that I didn't really miss it, I went back to series that gave me the same frenzy and excitement, Game Of Thrones, did for them. However, something unexpected happened. Friends and family seemed upset that I would stop watching this show and would repeat "Don't you know, that it's the best show on TV! C'mon, you have to watch it!" I would be bombarded on social media, again being told that I need to be watching this and if I'm not, there must be something wrong with me.
The hype started to anger me, it seemed bombastic in scope. I think people liked the feeling of being part of a communal event and experience, more than the show itself. For me, I felt like that kid in high school, people bully because he won't fit in and play football.
The same people that would tell me "That it was the greatest show ever!" would also ignore other series, or just brush it off and say "Well, it's not as good as Game Of Thrones" without even watching it, it made me think, is the show really the greatest, or is it just another experience, people want to be part of?
Will Game of Thrones be relevant in 2028, ten years after its finale? Will those same swarms of people still say that no other show compares? Or, will they like most things, find another show, or experience to gravitate to?
Television series have been broadcast in the United States, since 1947. And while art is always subjective, will Game Of Thrones, eventually fill the shoes of pantheons such as The Prisoner, MASH, Seinfeld, The Sopranos, The Wire, or more recently, Mad Men and Breaking Bad?
In 2017 alone, we've had Big Little Lies, Legion, The Handmaid's Tale, American Gods, GLOW and social media favourite, Riverdale. As well as subsequent and final seasons of series like The Americans, Fargo, The Leftovers. One thing is true however, if hype was an actual measuring tool, Game Of Thrones is still the king. The series just logged its biggest ratings yet with 10.6 Million for the Season 7 Premiere. That's not accounting all devices yet either. http://deadline.com/2017/07/game-of-thrones-ratings-season-7-return-hbo-1202130304/
So, I have a plan, since I can't seem to be objective towards this show and the hype is an added tick that burrows deep inside me, I'm going to watch Game Of Thrones ten years to the day of its finale next year. That will be the only way, I can experience this show sans hype, and see if it holds up as truly the greatest show ever, or a social media Dallas, with multiple "Who Shot J.R.'s?"
Fun fact, I wasn't even born when that episode aired, but my dad told me about it.
See you in 2028!