I'm utterly sick of Game of Thrones

dscross

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stroopwafel said:
dscross said:
stroopwafel said:
I really like GoT. It's just really good drama I think but set in a setting of knights, kings and dragons which I never thought would have such mainstream appeal. I don't think this show is either too depressing or dark but ofcourse this was the medieval period in which everything was more honest and raw. Unlike the typical shows/movies with a fantasy setting that never takes itself serious GoT finally does the period some justice. Like I said I think it's the mix of drama and fantasy that makes the show so good. Espescially in the later seasons the setpieces look absolutely gorgeous as well. I always look forward to a new episode or season and I have that with pretty much no other TV show. I do agree though that some plotlines are cliche(Daenerys, Jon) but they don't bother me too much.
Why do you think it DOES have such mainstream appeal, just out of interest? The same psychological mechanisms that soaps use to keep you watching? Also what do you mean by 'does the period some justice'? What period? It's made up.
The storylines are engaging. The acting is often intense. The characters are distinct sometimes bordering on caricature but you can always tell them apart. There is a degree of unpredictability to everything with important characters being killed off. There is a rich lore but the show itself is accessible without being shallow. The setpieces are often gorgeous. There is drama and fantasy in complementary fashion. The creators of the show just did everything to make the illusion seem real. Surely the show is made up and not a homage to the real middle ages but in an esoteric sense it stays much more true to the period than, say, Blackadder or The Lord of the Rings. Usually fantasy devolves into cliche fairytales with goody two shoes and evil wizards or as a campy setting for a British parody. GoT actually adds engaging drama in a fantasy setting that is taken seriously. Whatever problems people have with it's execution don't take away from the fact that there is no real other show like it.
Well, I think there must be some psychology at play here that obviously doesn't appeal to my personality type.

1. Frustration that never ends: Throughout the show people keep getting frustrated by seeing the bad ones do many bad things without getting caught or punished. Because that frustration is hardly released people keep watching the show hoping that the bad guys will get punished.

2. The unconscious desire to be liberal : Some people , unconsciously, like the world where incest, homosexuality and all other kinds of sexual encounters are possible and allowed. While those people will hardly claim that directly still it's one of the reasons they like the show. Of course many of those who love the show get offended by those scenes.

3. Curiosity: The fact that the plot is so complicated and that guessing the next event is really hard takes curiosity to a new level. Also the fact that the events are too slow to unfold keeps people curious. (Too convoluted for me).

4. Some people enjoy the complexity: Intellectual people usually enjoy the level of complexity they see in game of thrones (even though to me it just says poor storytelling).

5. Love of violence: One of the unconscious elements behind loving war movies and violent games is the love for violence and gore. Game of the thrones has a shocking amount of violence that appeals to violence fans.

In addition to these I imagine women like how women rise to power: So many women like Game of thrones because it shows how women rise to power in a manly world. This is pretty much analogous to the difficulties women face in the real world.

The only thing that I can see that would appeal to me is seeing the power struggle between families, but that type of thing only really appeals to me when it's based in reality - there are soooo many actual REAL historical dramas do that better that I don't need it. There are too many others flaws in the show for me to buy into it. There are so many things that annoy me about the show that I think I'm blind to most of the positives. You keep mentioning the 'period' like it's based on something concrete - it's not set in a real place or a real time.
 

dscross

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Fox12 said:
Game of Thrones is a heavily flawed show. The most important problem being it's pacing.

But none of the things you listed are legitimate criticisms. It's mostly you complaining about how you don't like the setting for... reasons? Or lack thereof? Why would a medieval universe have a fast method of communication? The lack of information and travel was a major issue is medieval times. Do you expect the to have email?
I don't get what you are on about here. To say my criticisms are not legitimate is not legitimate. You put 'because reasons' as if I put no reasons when I extensively listed my reasons. I barely mentioned setting - I mentioned acting, how the scenes work in conjunction with each other (I used the setting to underline that point), bad mythology, and tone - all legitimate opinions. I agree pacing is also an issue in later seasons. I think you missed what I was saying.
 

Fox12

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dscross said:
Fox12 said:
Game of Thrones is a heavily flawed show. The most important problem being it's pacing.

But none of the things you listed are legitimate criticisms. It's mostly you complaining about how you don't like the setting for... reasons? Or lack thereof? Why would a medieval universe have a fast method of communication? The lack of information and travel was a major issue is medieval times. Do you expect the to have email?
I don't get what you are on about here. To say my criticisms are not legitimate is not legitimate. You put 'because reasons' as if I put no reasons when I extensively listed my reasons. I barely mentioned setting - I mentioned acting, how the scenes work in conjunction with each other (I used the setting to underline that point), bad mythology, and tone - all legitimate opinions. I agree pacing is also an issue in later seasons. I think you missed what I was saying.
Nah, I got it, it just wasn't legitimate.

You complain about the acting, but then proceed to describe character traits that are the result of writing, and not acting. This doesn't follow. You also claim that none of the characters are compelling. This is an opinion that you're certainly entitled to, but you never explain why you believe this.

You complain about how the scenes hang together badly, but instead of analyzing the editing, or even the writing, you complain about the setting. But your complaints about the setting don't make any sense either. You say that it takes too long for information to spread because everyone relies on ravens, horses, or first hand experience. But, in this case, you may as well complain about fantasy settings as a whole. The slow spread of information was a reality of the ancient and medieval world. Wars were lost, won, and started because of communication, and miscommunication. Just look at the battle of New Orleans, which was fought after a peace treaty had been signed. It makes sense that this universe would include that information in its universe. Lord of the Rings did the same thing. Gandalf would disappear for years at a time, gathering information. Your criticism makes little to no sense in this situation, unless your issue is simply with the setting, and with history in general.

You then complain about the mythology. There's no doubt that Tolkien understood the roots of myth far better than Martin could ever hope to. After all, it was tied to his career. But using fantasy and mythological creatures in your work is not bad in and of itself. Neither is combining different mythologies, or changing myth to fit your own culture. The Ancient Greeks did this. The Romans did this (just read the Aeneid). The Hebrews did this, borrowing from myths like the Epic of Gilgamesh. There's nothing wrong with Martin doing this. Now, you can complain that he doesn't write well, or that his work is unoriginal, and explain why you believe that. But all you really did was say that you get a vibe that he doesn't know what he's doing. This criticism is so vague as to be pointless, and is therefore illegitimate.

Finally you find this show joyless. This complain is also illegitimate. Obviously your only describing your own subjective emotional response, which helps no one, but even if you were correct, you never explain why being joyless is bad. Plenty of great things are joyless. Silent Hill 2 is Joyless. All of Lars Von Triers films are joyless. The Sound and the Fury is joyless. None of this says anything about the quality of the work, only about your reaction to it, and maybe something about its tone. Because of this fact, this criticism is also illegitimate.
 

Strazdas

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WEll i think enough people told you you can just stop watching it, so ill adress the points instead.

1. The acting.

I disagree, i think the acting is pretty well done. It is dramatic, yes, but it is supposed to be. You have to be able to look at facial expressions and it certianly helps watching it in high quality for that. There are many subtle hints that show pretty great acting if you care to look for it. For example every time Littlefinger is on screen you just feel the presence his character is supposed to give.


2. The pacing

Its intentional and as a fan of slower moving Japanese cinema i certainly appreaciate. Yes, the storylines are slow moving, but thats just following how it was in the books. It also gives more realistic pacing and avoids constant cliffhanger gotcha moments so many tv shows seems to be infested with.

3. The history

I highly suggest reading "The Untold History of Westeros [https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17345242-the-world-of-ice-fire]". The mythology and history of the world is much more consistent than you think, the show just doesnt spell everything out for you.

4. Joyless

I think thats quite a fresh breath of air in TV where almost every show good guys must win at the end of the episode. I understand that is not for everyone, and thats totally fine, but personally i enjoy the story being realistically grim where everyone looses. War is not a joyful thing, and the kingdoms are at war.
 

RunsWithBears

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What bothered me about Game of Thrones was the lack of male role models.
Sean Bean, but he got killed off before the series even started. The rest of the males were either complete tools or had something else wrong with them.

It also had a weird obsession with emasculation.

Lastly, the series relied too much on shock factor. The problem with this is that it loses it's impact after a while.
 

dscross

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Fox12 said:
I feel like you need to work on your diplomacy skills buddy. You use the word illegitimate when you could say unreasonable and the word complain when you could easily say criticism. These are words that are obviously going to annoy people and makes you look like you've never heard another opinion before.

Your opinion is as subject to bias as mine, whether you are aware of it or not and I never pretended mine were anything but opinions. i know I used words like hate, awful and misery to describe my distaste for GoT but that was clearly just a passionate argument and not directed at anything but the show I am criticising.

To use your phrasing again - the way you argue is illegitimate. I refer you to the contributor below your post who also disagrees with me but puts it in a much better way.

Right, with that out of the way....

1. Acting

I agree that it's subjective (as most OPINIONS are) but what I actually was trying to get across was that the PORTRAYAL by the actors is one dimensional. My issue is not with the characters themselves. (You clearly like the show, so I'd wager you have read the book or at least something around the characters). It's subjective so the only way to show this is to go through the actors and say what they do onscreen, which I did.

On TV, as a bad actor appears again and again, you begin to rationalise the badness, their under-, over-, or just plain wretched acting. Maybe this performance is inexpressive and uncharismatic because the character is inexpressive and uncharismatic. Some people are! Maybe it's not January Jones who can't put over emotion of any kind, it's Betty Draper who is so flat!

There's an easy test to tell (which many of the actors on GoT fail for me). Ask yourself, is it possible to imagine the inner life of this character? If no, is it possible to imagine the inner life of the characters surrounding him or her? It was all too possible to imagine the inner lives of every character on Friday Night Lights but Julie. Ditto every character on Mad Men but Betty. (Ditto every character on The OC but Marisa.)

Evaluating acting is, obviously, subjective. Some people find Kalinda on The Good Wife to be a Julie Taylor-ish cipher. I think, one can, from time to time, get a glimpse inside her mysterious head. Others feel this way about some of the girls on Girls, particularly Allison Williams- Marnie, who I think is perfectly good, and just had to contend with a lot of whiplash writing this past season. Jeremy Piven has been way over-the-top on Mr. Selfridge, but you can imagine his inner life - the problem is it's all in neon.

I'm sure you think Daenerys Targaryen is a great character because I know she's beloved by readers of the books. But imagine how much awesomer she would be if it seemed like there was someone really smart and sharp behind Emilia Clarke's very pretty eyes (which are only a little dimmer than John Snow's eyes) Clarke is functional enough to not destroy the show but if she appeared to have an inner life of any kind she would be worthy of the fan-worship she gets for her work on the TV show, not just residual book love.

2. Scenes

I feel like you are deliberately missing the point in this one because you want to talk about the specifics of writing and editing, which is a completely different criticism. My issue is HOW it's being told and HOW it's translating on screen for the reasons I described. Most tales set in that time is not done in this way. I think I've explained it somewhere in this thread but EVERY other show based on medieval times doesn't take place in this way. Most either follow fewer characters so it's easier to follow, or it takes place in a contained area (Henry VIII's court, Rome etc). This translates as difficult to follow. It is a broad point and I accept it's difficult to describe but I feel like it gets to the nub of the issue. If I picked on specifics about the writing you'd just find a way to call it illegitimate anyway.

3. Mythology

This is entirely subjective, I agree. I qualified it as much in the OP. That does not make it wrong or right. Opinions are opinions. What I will say is that, to me, it comes across like bad fan fiction, being a fan of the genre in many of its forms before GoT came along.

4. Tone

Again, I qualified this as an opinion. But it is joyless. You don't even dispute it, so it's a perfectly legitimate reason not to like something. The difference is that GoT is a long running show and to watch something like that with no respite from misery is draining. If you mean the game, Silent Hill 2 was a silly example. That's a completely different medium (and much shorter). I've not played it anyway.
 

dscross

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Strazdas said:
WEll i think enough people told you you can just stop watching it, so ill adress the points instead.

1. The acting.

I disagree, i think the acting is pretty well done. It is dramatic, yes, but it is supposed to be. You have to be able to look at facial expressions and it certianly helps watching it in high quality for that. There are many subtle hints that show pretty great acting if you care to look for it. For example every time Littlefinger is on screen you just feel the presence his character is supposed to give.


2. The pacing

Its intentional and as a fan of slower moving Japanese cinema i certainly appreaciate. Yes, the storylines are slow moving, but thats just following how it was in the books. It also gives more realistic pacing and avoids constant cliffhanger gotcha moments so many tv shows seems to be infested with.

3. The history

I highly suggest reading "The Untold History of Westeros [https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17345242-the-world-of-ice-fire]". The mythology and history of the world is much more consistent than you think, the show just doesnt spell everything out for you.

4. Joyless

I think thats quite a fresh breath of air in TV where almost every show good guys must win at the end of the episode. I understand that is not for everyone, and thats totally fine, but personally i enjoy the story being realistically grim where everyone looses. War is not a joyful thing, and the kingdoms are at war.
Thanks for your input. These are mostly fair enough and helpful criticisms. Points 2 and 4 you aren't disputing but you are saying some people like that, which I can accept. I addressed the psychology behind some of why people watch it in an earlier post so I won't retread it. What I will say is that I like Japanese cinema too and but doesn't feel the same to me somehow, for the reasons I described in the OP.

Point 3 was a helpful suggestion. I'll have a look to see if it can change my mind, but honestly, why should I have to do that? I can't dispute your claim until I've read it though.

Point 1 I disagree with but I'll have to cop out and say read my last post on this thread for why I don't think the actors pass the test for me (because the post took me a while to write). They seemed wooden to me from the very start. I am not beyond persuasion though, I just haven't been convinced by them in 5 seasons.
 

dscross

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RunsWithBears said:
What bothered me about Game of Thrones was the lack of male role models.
Sean Bean, but he got killed off before the series even started. The rest of the males were either complete tools or had something else wrong with them.

It also had a weird obsession with emasculation.

Lastly, the series relied too much on shock factor. The problem with this is that it loses it's impact after a while.
I'll tell you why I find this post so interesting. This may address one of the main psychological reasons it's become so mainstream among women - some women may subsciously like how women rise to power in GoT. This is pretty much analogous to the difficulties women face in the real world.

I mentioned some of the other psychological factors that must keep the masses hooked in another post, but I definitely think it's a factor.
 

stroopwafel

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dscross said:
I'll tell you why I find this post so interesting. This may address one of the main psychological reasons it's become so mainstream among women - some women may subsciously like how women rise to power in GoT. This is pretty much analogous to the difficulties women face in the real world.

I mentioned some of the other psychological factors that must keep the masses hooked in another post, but I definitely think it's a factor.
Fifty Shades of Grey and Bridget Jones is also massively(or rather primarily) popular among women. One could be explained as a fantasy about being submissive to an attractive millionaire while the other is an estrogen fest that is the extreme opposite. Women apparently search more for rough sex on porn sites than men but they are also the primary consumers of rom-coms ie that Hollywood dream version of traditional courtship.

I think you're drawing conclusions that aren't really based on anything. People are only honest in private when no one is looking over their shoulder. So the reason women like GoT might be different than you think.

In general women don't quite relish in power fantasies like men do. Some may do sure but I don't think that is the reason why GoT is so popular among a huge audience that transcends niche and subcultures and also gender. The reason is that GoT is just a damn good show with compelling drama, colorful characters, intense acting and the escape of a medieval fantasy world. And again, such shows don't quite come in large supply.
 

the December King

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RunsWithBears said:
What bothered me about Game of Thrones was the lack of male role models.
Sean Bean, but he got killed off before the series even started. The rest of the males were either complete tools or had something else wrong with them.

It also had a weird obsession with emasculation.
Yeah, this also bothered me- not as role models per se, but the low count of men with some degree of scruples. And not so much at first, but as the series has gone on...
 

dscross

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stroopwafel said:
dscross said:
I'll tell you why I find this post so interesting. This may address one of the main psychological reasons it's become so mainstream among women - some women may subsciously like how women rise to power in GoT. This is pretty much analogous to the difficulties women face in the real world.

I mentioned some of the other psychological factors that must keep the masses hooked in another post, but I definitely think it's a factor.
Fifty Shades of Grey and Bridget Jones is also massively(or rather primarily) popular among women. One could be explained as a fantasy about being submissive to an attractive millionaire while the other is an estrogen fest that is the extreme opposite. Women apparently search more for rough sex on porn sites than men but they are also the primary consumers of rom-coms ie that Hollywood dream version of traditional courtship.

I think you're drawing conclusions that aren't really based on anything. People are only honest in private when no one is looking over their shoulder. So the reason women like GoT might be different than you think.

In general women don't quite relish in power fantasies like men do. Some may do sure but I don't think that is the reason why GoT is so popular among a huge audience that transcends niche and subcultures and also gender. The reason is that GoT is just a damn good show with compelling drama, colorful characters, intense acting and the escape of a medieval fantasy world. And again, such shows don't quite come in large supply.
i only said it could be one factor and I was just throwing it out there as a thought rather than drawing any broad conclusions. I listed a load more reasons why I think people could like psychological more generally in an earlier post. I don't think it's true to say most women aren't interested in power struggles in any way tbh. I don't know what you are basing that assumption on. 50 shades and Bridget Jones are a different type of programme entirely.
 

Gal_mor

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Oh story of my life:) I watched several seasons, after understood that I am too "into it", quit Game of Thrones. But it doesn't mean I don't like it.
 

Adam Jensen_v1legacy

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I freakin' love it.

But I don't understand why people do what you just did. If you don't like something on the TV, just don't watch it. Why would you let something like a TV show have such a negative effect on your life? You poor tortured soul.
 

Strazdas

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dscross said:
Point 3 was a helpful suggestion. I'll have a look to see if it can change my mind, but honestly, why should I have to do that? I can't dispute your claim until I've read it though.
Well obviously noone can force you to read outside material for the show. Especially since you dont like it to begin with. Im just saying that by setting out history in orderly fashion instead of bits and pieces as pertinent to characters at hand it is much more consistent and if you are having problem seeing the consistency then the book may help.
 

dscross

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Adam Jensen said:
I freakin' love it.

But I don't understand why people do what you just did. If you don't like something on the TV, just don't watch it. Why would you let something like a TV show have such a negative effect on your life? You poor tortured soul.
Oh I have never done it with any other show because no show annoys me like this one. GoT is my biggest annoyance - it's mainly because it's so your face with everyone I know. And no it doesn't have a massive impact on my life - I can compartmentalise my life - this is just a forum where we talk about popular culture. It's criticising a show - it's fine.

This thread helps me to get a feel for everyone's feelings about it because I really don't understand it for the reasons outlined. The best way to get a reaction and to find out people's true feelings on a forum like this is to provoke a reaction. Case in point. You replied and spoke your true feelings.

I've actually learnt a lot from this thread.
 

bartholen_v1legacy

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Thaluikhain said:
However, I'm not saying this as a fan. I'm saying this as someone who was told it was good, who was told it will get better in a bit, who was told it will get better a bit after that. And then I stopped watching.
I'm curious as to who would say that. I'd say that if you don't like the first 3 or so episodes, you're not going to enjoy the series at all. I was in love within watching 30 minutes of the pilot, and the first 2 seasons are still IMO the benchmark of the series. By the third season I'd read all the books, so I knew how much was missing, and the cracks started to appear. Season 4 and 5 dropped drastically in quality because of the fractured narrative brought on by the waste of time known as Feast for Crows, resulting in an endless slog that goes nowhere, because characters A and B have to be at place C at the same time characters X, Y and Z are at location Q. Some parts of season 5 were downright groan-worthy and plain bad.

Which is why I started to enjoy the show much more in season 6 when they just threw their hands into the air and said "Fuck it, we're doing our own thing now", went full circle with the stupid, and came back to wholly entertaining again. Things actually fucking happened! The story could surprise once again.
 

bastardofmelbourne

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bartholen said:
Which is why I started to enjoy the show much more in season 6 when they just threw their hands into the air and said "Fuck it, we're doing our own thing now", went full circle with the stupid, and came back to wholly entertaining again. Things actually fucking happened! The story could surprise once again.
Season 6 is actually my favourite because it was the first time I really didn't know what was going to happen. Having read the books, all the major shock points had already been spoiled for me. But stuff like Cersei's wildfire trick? Didn't see that coming.

Plus, it came after season 5, which was atrocious and made everything else look like a masterpiece in comparison.
 

dscross

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NPC009 said:
Even if it's just in the most basic way possible, the series can trigger a lot of emotions. That's not something you find in just any random TV series.
You find that in most dramas...
 

dscross

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aegix drakan said:
dscross said:
Maybe it's just me, but this show feels almost completely devoid of joy. Every time I watched it, I found myself sitting and staring at the screen and questioning why I just subjected myself to such misery. No one ever wins in this show. Every single character is sad, either because the world they live in has made them that way or because they themselves are living the consequences of their shitty choices. The kingdom of the Iron Throne is a bleak, bitter, and hateful place where, personally, I find the people to be of commensurate character.
Ah, that's what we in the writing (or trope) biz call "Darkness induced apathy syndrome" or "Warhammer40k syndrome". Alternatively "Why the hell do I even care syndrome".

It's a pitfall that a lot of people fall into when writing dark fantasy of any kind. It's tempting to try to write a world that feels as depressing and devoid of the hope to make any difference as our own, only with dragons. But that overlooks the fact that even our own depressingly violent world has patches of joy here and there.

It's something I keep in mind whenever I work on a game my main RPG setting. While the world itself will always be a violent world where every single faction is out for themselves and is dangerously corrupt or broken in some way no matter what the heroes manage to do, they can still improve the lives of those around them, or achieve some small victory, even though it always comes with a heavy cost. Making a broken, depressing world where there's no hope or joy rarely ends up being fun for anyone.
Yeah I never thought of it this way. Thinking about it, not many Japanese RPGs fall into the trap and Tolkien / Terry Pratchett certainly didn't because they always had a uplifting message buried in there.. Maybe if you are going to watch a drama set in real life it's not as much of a problem to make it more gritty anyway but when you want some escapism into the realm of fantasy you want some elements that are uplifting.

I've never really played warhammer? Is that phrase because it's really depressing or something?
 

wizzy555

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dscross said:
I've never really played warhammer? Is that phrase because it's really depressing or something?
well playing warhammer is about painting cool models and doing strategy. But when you understand the lore you realise that their universe is so depressing that its probably morally preferable if every living being euthanized themselves. Except they can't do that because it would probably feed a cosmic evil that would just make the universe even worse.