Game of Thrones and its Clones
GoT is one of those shows that burns slow and just when you begin to get bored with the inaction, action happens to keep you in its grasp.
For years, I had resisted watching it because it just seemed like nonsense. Then, one day, I started watching Season 1 and found myself bingeing on the show. Up until this final season, the show relied on the various books published under the same name, much like the Harry Potter series movies. At the end of Season 5, the show’s producers found themselves in the strange situation where the show’s following was huge across the globe, the studio wanted another season, yet, the story line could not use any books to follow because they had been already. The author of the GoT book series, was still writing another book- the sixth in the series called, The Winds of Winter. Each episode has a cost between, $5-10 million dollars. Thus, Season 6, contains story lines from the upcoming book and parts of Feast for Crows and A Dance with Dragons. It is the same formula used in Seasons 4 and 5. As for Season 7, the last, will be only 7 episodes in 2017.
Unlike the previous five seasons, Season 6 is a bit boring. Previous seasons contained ample action sequences in most episodes. Season 6 is a slow burner and has suffered from some drop in viewers but it remains very popular with an average of 8 million viewers per episode. Season 6 is slowly building up into some sort of Armageddon finale. You can sense it as the allegiances are being formed but in the meantime, the whole series is perking, simmering to slow boil.
That crescendo will be in the last two episodes on June 19 and 26th. Episode 9- The Battle of the Bastards is the finale Jon Snow vs. Ramsay Bolton, it is a full 60 minutes long and will make up for the previous boring slow build up. Yet, the final season episode 10, it the title of the sixth book in the series, The Winds of Winter, and will no doubt be the show’s longest ever- running nearly 70 minutes.
Will Jon Snow stay dead this time if he is killed? The most popular character is the Dragon Lady for sure. The use of the flying dragons spiked viewership like a rocket into space. Plus, she is a beautiful, yet, iron-like woman leading her tribe into battle, as a recent episode shows.
If you cannot get enough of this type of fantasy show, there is the GoT brother, Beowulf: Return to the Shieldlands, which began in 2016. Everything about the show reminds one of GoT in theme, characters, and creatures. It is not a HBO production, but from ITV with 13 episodes. Some viewers love it, others feel offended thinking it is a rip-off of GoT. It is the British version of the American GoT. However, the show has been axed after it only has attracted 1.4 million viewers an episode.
I thought the show was fine, as interesting as GoT, and decent special effects. I would say definitely give it a try. I did and like GoT, got hooked for awhile as I waited for the new season of GoT.
The Shannara Chronicles from MTV has proven more successful. Season 1 was great and season 2 has been approved. This is based on the award books under the same name and a fight with the demon army to take Four Lands makes it a CGI fest. This series began in January, 2016, like Beowulf, but viewers ratings were much higher in numbers. It can be called a GoT for the 18-30 yrs. old demographics. I found it well worth watching.