Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Game of Thrones: A comparison of book and television

Since Game of Thrones is currently on hiatus I thought it might be fun to compare the books versus the television show, mainly because I keep seeing the trailers for Conan the Barbarian with lots of stunning images of Jason Momoa, which then reminds me of Drogo, which then makes me wish I didn't have to wait so long for season 2 to premiere. Did ya follow all that? Cool. The only hitch was that I am not caught up on my reading for the series yet, haven't had a chance to crack the book at all, so I asked my father-in-law, Tom, a big fan of both formats, what he thought and asked if he'd be interested in typing up a little something for the blog. Surprisingly, he agreed. He's nice like that. So without further ado...

 Until HBO started advertising the commencement of 'Game of Thrones' a couple of
months ago, I have to admit I had never heard of the books of George R.R.
Martin.  I am an avid reader, but more along the lines of contemporary
adventure, a bit of science fiction here and there, considerable amounts of
historical novels, and heavy doses of thrillers of the Brad Thor ilk as well
as the occasional John Grisham, etc.

Never have I been a fan of 'fantasy.'

Until HBO began airing episodes of 'Game of Thrones' that is.  After the first
episode I was completely and utterly confused with the cast of characters.  It
was then I realized I should probably seek out the book upon which the series is
based.  The reading of the book along with the watching of the series is an
excellent adventure!

The book clarifies the characters--there are many, and often the names are
slightly foreign (Eddard vs. Edward for example, although one of my best friends
in high school was Edward and we called him Eddard!).  There are also far more
characters in the book than in the series!  In fact, the book has far more of
everything (except the blatant sex and nudity) than the series.  I find the book
very engaging. Now as I read the book, I see the faces as portrayed by the main
characters in the series and this has been a wonderful effect.

Far more happens in the book than the HBO series which makes reading the book
just as worthwhile as watching the action on television.  Yet, the series does a
great job of representing the primary, most important scenes depicted in the
book.  In fact, I am amazed at how faithful the series has been to the speed,
scope, drama, and settings of the book.  In my opinion HBO has done a far better
job of lifting the story of 'Game of Thrones' directly from the pages of the
original than any dramatization I have ever seen that was based on a book I have

When episode Number Nine aired I had not caught up that far in the book.  The
demise of Eddard took me completely by surprise!  I thought: Holy Cow, they
killed off the main character!  But, ah, turns out Eddard was one of many main

If I had to point out a minor flaw in the series it would be the ages of the
characters.  The actors in the series are considerably older than the folks they
portray from the book.  But then HBO really could not legally depict Princess
Daenerys in her bath and remain true to the book, since she is only fourteen in
the original story.

Tomorrow I'm off to find a copy of 'A Clash of Kings', the second book in the 'A
Song of Fire and Ice' series by George R.R. Martin.  While I'm at it, maybe I'll
pick up a copy of 'The Hunger Game,' since they are filming the movie not far
from where I live and I just might be turning into a fantasy fan.

*Anna here~ Thanks Tom! I really appreciate you writing up a little something for the blog. You rock!

Interesting Game of Thrones content I discovered:

Here's an interview link I found from HBO that has a couple of tidbits about season 2.

Also from HBO, here's a viewer's guide that you can download that includes maps and family tree information.

Reading order for the Song of Ice and Fire series:

A Game of Thrones: A Song of Ice and Fire: Book One 

A Clash of Kings (A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 2) 

A Storm of Swords (A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 3)

A Feast for Crows (A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 4)

5. And for those of you that are caught up on reading the series and aren't total slackers like I am, book 5, A Dance With Dragons, just came out in July.

A Dance with Dragons: A Song of Ice and Fire: Book Five

And since I brought up Conan, here's a few pics that should brighten your day. If that doesn't work then I don't know what will.

1 comment:

Rain Maiden said...

Thanks Tom and Anna, I have watched bits and pieces of the show on HBO. I did grab a copy of book one and was wondering the comparison between TV and book. I hope to read the book soon.