Apr 3, 2012

Game of Thrones, Season 2, Episode 1

Hey, everyone! It's been a while. Constantly busy writing for The Mary Sue. If you aren't visiting the site daily, you're missing out! That being said, we've already got a writer to recap Game of Thrones for the site and being the fan that I am, I couldn't NOT write about the new season so I figured, why not try and get back to regularly updating my blog here at least once a week with just that?

(SPOILERS OBVIOUSLY) The build up for the Season 2 premiere was almost unbearable, wasn't it? Game of Thrones blew viewers away with its first season and, like most cable network shows, it took what seemed like forever for it to start again. But arrive it did, just like a hatchling dragon. So, how was it?

I thought it was ok.

Yeah, giant GoT fan and I wasn't blown away by the premiere. That's not to say it was at all bad, just that I was expecting more. And that's certainly in part thanks to the build up but it's not the entire reason. It was mostly because it felt just like any other episode.

In Season 1 we opened on a group of men in a frozen wilderness who were attacked by mysterious, superhuman creatures. Only one of them lived to tell the tale and he got his head chopped off for it. Now that's how you start a show. In Season 2, we opened on the Hound fighting for King Joffrey's entertainment and Sansa doing everything she can not to be beaten or worse. There was nothing wrong with this scene, in fact, I rather liked it but it was a very cold open that had no oomph to it. And that was sort of how the rest of the episode went. I may be biased but couldn't we have, I don't know, started with DRAGONS? After all, that is how last season ended and you just know that's what everyone was waiting to see again. And I know they probably have to manage their effects budget accordingly but getting to see only one of Daenerys' dragons was a bummer.

The remainder of the hour was spent showing where all of our characters are at the moment with little or no reference to how they got there. And, having read the book, I can also say they definitely didn't start at the beginning of these characters stories. Nowhere is this more evident than our introduction to Dragonstone, a new locale for viewers, and the home to Stannis Baratheon. I even had difficulty figuring out who was who and what was going on. Stick with it though, their story is very interesting.

Beside the very brief (or missing introductions for new characters), I enjoyed the first episode. Performances were phenomenal as always and the actors seemed right at home with their characters. Special shout-outs to Lena Hedley and Peter Dinklage as Cersei and Tyrion Lannister respectively. It's going to be very fun watching them this season. And they may not have started the episode with a bang but they sure ended it with one. For anyone who hasn't read the books, that particular round of killings happen off-page. Seeing it actually done reminds me just how unforgiving this show can be, and why I love it.

3 comments:

DeflectorDish.com said...

I agree! My attention was rapt the entire hour and when it was over, I kind of looked confusedly at the credits, like, what? I know exposition is important for non-book readers and new viewers, but come now. Where's the hook? Seeing the new character additions on screen was exciting, Melisandre looks awesome, so that did whet my appetite a bit, but I too felt a little underwhelmed and wanted a similarly intriguing start to the new season. We'll see what episode 2 has in store!

Ultrace1 said...

Liked it a bit more than you. I've never read the books,& have only watched due to word of mouth. I watched season 1 in a few days marathon & honestly thought it was only above average with potential. The biggest trouble I have with the series is the names & some of the places are hard to remember for me. Sometime the pacing could be better & a bit more action,with a bit less talking heads. Usually I feel the opposite,but I feel this is a series that works better with simplicity(With a cast of such size.)!!!! May the Dragons be with you & protect you...ALK

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