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TV Review: HBO's 'Game of Thrones"

Spring is in the air, but winter is coming to HBO.

Spring is in the air, but winter is coming to HBO.

The promise of impending freeze plays a double role in the network’s new fantasy series “Game of Thrones” — as motto of the noble Stark family, guardians of the north, plus as unsubtle foreshadowing for the chaos to unfold as houses clash and kingdoms tremble in the power struggle that explodes on fictional continent Westeros.

“Thrones” — based on American novelist George R.R. Martin’s as-yet-unfinished best-selling “A Song of Ice and Fire” series — brings the fringe genre to the small screen with all the gusto and production value that one might expect from the premium channel responsible for “The Sopranos” and “The Wire.” Whereas, however, those shows were grounded in the violent realities of modern life, “Thrones” takes viewers to a fantastic realm of kings and courts, dragons and magic.

But don’t let the otherworldly details dissuade you: The building drama in this realistic retelling of Arthurian tropes — and indeed the brutal violence, often aimed at characters the audience has come to know and love — rivals that of any modern drama.

“When there’s a death,” Martin told Metro, “you want it to be something painful. Death is hard. That should be hard.”

As far as hardness goes, “Thrones” delivers.


Brayden Simms got a chance to speak with George R.R. Martin and delve into his thoughts on the new show as well as the books in general. Fans of the series don’t want to miss this in-depth interview with the author.

 
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