Game of Thrones is an original HBO drama series based on the best-selling fantasy novel series, A Song of Ice and Fire, by George R.R. Martin.
Premiering in the spring of 2011, Game of Thrones (drawing its title from the first novel in the saga) has become one of HBO’s most popular shows and the most prominent high fantasy franchise this side of Middle Earth.
Set in fantasy realm of Westeros, Game of Thrones tells its epic story with several parallel narratives in different parts of the Seven Kingdoms and beyond. Westeros’ most powerful noble families vie with each other for the Iron Throne of the Kingdoms in a complex, violent web of lust, ambition, betrayal, and intrigue while barbaric raiders threaten their borders, protected by a great Wall to the north. A lost, crippled heir of a deposed dynasty grows in exile and learns to come to terms with a difficult world and a special power. And a long, deep winter approaches, throwing a shadow of foreboding over all events.
Adapted for television by David Benioff and D.B. Weiss with Martin’s blessing and even creative cooperation (the series’ author, a veteran screenwriter as well, pens at least one episode each season), Game of Thrones draws from a variety of Medieval and Early Modern historical sources to construct a coherent and convincing vision of a world of struggle and upheaval. The dynastic intrigue and civil strife referenced in the title draws from England’s protracted War of the Roses, and elements of Viking, Byzantine, Mongol, and Renaissance history are also synthesized into Westeros’ unique social and political blend.
Utilizing the multiple story lines, strong subject matter, thematic depth, and large ensemble cast (including Emmy and Golden Globe winner Peter Dinklage) that are the mainstays of HBO’s signature dramas, Game of Thrones has also employed constructed period detail and the latest in computer-generated effects to create its quasi-medieval, fantastic and spectacular realm. Cultivating a large and devoted international fanbase, Game of Thrones is consistently one of the most-discussed dramas on television, a runaway popular and critical success that heralds an exciting new era in the onscreen fantasy genre.
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