Tuesday, 17 January 2012
Excuse my absence for the last few days but I have been on a journey into Geekdom and back through Nerdistan. As you know I've been complaining about the throttling of my internet speed over the last few weeks and I have to own up that it was totally my fault for downloading 'Game of Thrones' right at the start of my billing time and during peak hours instead of in the darkness of off-peak early morning (I'm a newbie at this sort of thing). I'd been given a copy of it from a friend but as in all good illegal trades the bloody thing wouldn't play so I opted for the 'way of the pay'. So having been annoyed by the throttling I let it sit there for a couple of weeks until late of Saturday night I decided to drag it out and watch it. Of course I would have to watch it on my computer so I dragged up the rocking armchair to the desk and propped my feet up on the desk stool (surprisingly comfortable as I have now worked out how to sit in this chair, it involves a footstool) and started it up.
Now the first few episodes led to a flurry of texting the next morning to Miss Beck (me propped up in bed in the Roy and her making pancakes off in sunny Cote)- and the cheeky bugger nicked my argument!
Growing up a right book reading nerd I've always loved a bit of fantasy, although I've always been very picky about bad cover artwork on a fantasy novel stopping me dead in my tracks from ever opening and reading. I spent high school reading my way through the Andre Nortons and Ursula le Guins and have the librarians to thank for letting me get away with slipping fiction out on my non-fiction lending card (they let me know they knew what I was up to but never stopped me) and long hot Summers devouring the Dragonriders of Pern series. So to say, I was quite looking forward to G of T.
It has all the makings of a great ripping 10 hours of TV including some totally fabulous production values, a cast of brilliant British actors, stunning locations, a nice bit of mud, a bit of blood and gore, handsome wolves, well trained message crows and the best title sequence is ages, a kind of clockwork Google Earth.
And some of the world's seriously worst script writing ever.
Oh my god.
And the hilarious cliched characters, everything from the drunken king, the mad widow breastfeeding her 8 year old son, the incestuous twins, the murdered mad king's weirdly blonde children, the muscle bound leader of the Barbarian Horde. I don't quite understand that whilst they seem to have gone all out on the great levels of production they couldn't spring for the computer programme that would have made the Barbarian Horde more convincing, it's a bit hard to make believe 12 horses and 30 people are actually an army of 30,000 in this case. Oh and let's not forget the absolutely appalling geekboy wet dream sex. I think I may have sniggered once to often.
So being a nerd, as I've said, I just had to do a bit of research (thank you Wikipedia) and discovered that one of the writers/developers wrote the script for that great clunker 'Troy' and the other one writes storylines for on-line games. Explains a great deal. This script is really dreadful, some of the worst exposition I've every had the painful delight of sitting through. I really don't understand TV World and its awkward use of books. Why when a book carries a good template to follow (see Sookie) does it totally stuff it up and why when a storyline could actually do with a scrub and polish do they stick to it and not improve it?
I know I probably lost your attention five paragraphs back but as much as I love the production values in this case, I was secretly longing for a BBC wobbly set and an explosion in a quarry. I was bought up on aliens dressed in a terrarium and a pinch pleat curtain, a medieval princess with a zip down the back of her dress, I'm not afraid to suspend belief!
And poor Peter Dinklage got a Golden Globe yesterday. I'm sure it was in apology for the frightfully weird accent he carries through all his scenes and having to sprout some truly dreadful speeches .
Three episodes to go. As they are well on the way to killing off every character I'm vaguely compelled by, I don't know whether I will be back next season.
Anyway I better get off to the studio. I've had a late morning after being kept awake by drunks out in the back alley. Ah Summertime in the city. It means a hot Monday night is perfect for going out with your teenage mates, getting plastered and peeing over your passed out friend who's stretched out on the cobbles- or was I just hallucinating a scene from 'Game of Thrones'?