As a Harry Potter fan who grew up and realized sex and true, gruesome violence was a part of the real world I had searched for that fantasy world my inner geek needed to explore and invest all of this angst I’ve built up after 5 years of citations and reading responses. Some catharsis, if you will. But if couldn’t be something too focused, it had to be complex like every other part of our lives is slowly becoming. It had to mirror the ruthless political and social structures that I’ve been trained to analyze in media texts for as long as I can remember. A universe, not unlike ours, where you can be friends with someone forty different ways, this was the struggle I yearned for.
I found my Machiavellian fix in the HBO series Game of Thrones. I devoured the series as it came out. My little brother and I, having no access to HBO, had to scour the internet for links and websites where we could watch the episodes in extremely low-definition. Sidenote: I hope HBO doesn’t sue me. GoT was the most pirated show for 5 staright years and is poised to be so in 2016. But it’s interesting that HBO kind of wore this like a badge of honor. Interesting strategy, Big Marketing Firm Co…but I digress.
How cool that the institution I decide to pursue my Master’s degree at would offer a Media Studies seminar that’s main objective was BLOGGING THROUGH GAME OF THRONES. I know, it sounded too good to be true and I’m actually still waiting to wake up from a dream. But to my knowledge, or Leo DiCaprio’s from Inception, this is not a dream. I think? I have to wait for my top to stop spinning and I’ll get back to you.
The objective of this class? Watch 3 (or 4) episodes of the TV series each week and write a 600 word blog about them. Another major part of class was compiling academic resources written about Game of Thrones, and featuring them on a website we maintained as a class. I, in full disclosure, did not format or create the site only contributed to the content on said site. As media becomes popular, academics love to interpret it through theory and rhetorical study we employ in our own world. This is exactly what is happening to the mythical world of Westeros. So click on the owl below and immerse yourself in peer-reviewed study on the world’s most watched television series and the novels it adapts:
I blogged the first 5 season of the show and went into it pretty blindly, honestly. I had a loose idea of what I wanted to end up doing and in some ways I succeeded. Being in my 2nd semester of grad school, I was sort of on a vendetta against citations and wanted to write something in more of a conversational, light voice. Given the vastness of the characters I slowly realized I wanted to do an analysis of their happenings and their movement in and out of the spotlight. So I had fun, you should read them.
I think the difference between Game of Thrones and other fantasy shows that just couldn’t hold my interest is you feel like you are doing more than “watching the show”, you are absorbing it. Every look, every alliance create ramifications that often spiral out of control. But isn’t that what happens to people everyday? Is that what makes this show so attractive to me and record audiences around the globe?
So that is why after doing this because it was required, I want to do this because I love to write and has been searching frantically for something to type on a computer and hope people might possibly read.
For season 6, people who might possibly read will see more of a stream of consciousness accompianied with vaugely-funny pop culture and sports references, hell maybe even dashed with some legitimate and sobering communication theory. I’ll talk not about the way things are, just how I see them. I just plan to write, for the sake of it.
I think in an odd way, I don’t even care all that much if people hate it or if they love it. Just the fact that they took some time to read the ramblings of a guy like me is comforting. It you’re binging through the series, read my blogs along with it. Or don’t! It’s a free got damn country and I’m well aware there are things more enjoyable than wordpress.com.
But If you’re still reading, give yourself a high five. Did you move both hands at the same time? Or did you keep one hand stationary? THESE ARE THE IMPORTANT QUESTIONS, PEOPLE!
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