Seven things Americans will never understand about Game of Thrones
Game of Thrones is a big deal in the US of A, and currently there are millions in the land of the free waiting eagerly for the show finale this April. The show has undoubtedly got a deservedly loyal American fanbase, but over time there have been some lost in translation moments that have had those of us of the more English persuasion chortling. In honour of the final countdown, here are my top seven:
1. It’s all about class.
Class has never been a massive thing in America – one of the country’s best attributes. If you want to rule the world, well, work hard and one day you may well get there because why not? YOLO vibes… But in the UK it’s quite different. Almost any major successful Brit movie has got this element to, and we’re not just talking period films. Love Actually, for example, sees toff Hugh Grant having to navigate the various unknowns of ‘Wandsworth, the dodgy end’ in order to win his proletariat lady love.
2. How bloody big Westeros is supposed to be.
Can I just say as someone who neither American nor Russian just how giant the USA is? It’s unnatural. What you call one country is bigger than the whole European continent.
For a European watching the HBO series, Westeros is quite plausibly a continent. Dorne is Spain and Highgarden is France and King’s Landing is basically London and the Iron Islands is sort of Scotland and the North is kind of like Russia because it’s bloody huge and not really part of the team and the people are quite scary because they’re used to cold. It’s supposed to be big and impressively complex. Like Tolkien. And he was from South Africa and even South Africa is way bigger than the UK.
3. The first season of Game of Thrones is really just a long testament to the fact that British people really really love their dogs.
Dogs give companionship without needing too much actual touch and verbal communication. Neither are things Brits are very keen on. Have you ever tried to talk to someone on the Tube in London? You’d probably get stabbed, except that that would require some physical contact.
4. Anything that doesn’t come up to at least knee height is not a real dog.
5. When people started referring to Sandor’s possible revenge as ‘Cleganebowl’, I laughed for about a week.
And so did a lot of other non-Yanks because, well, it’s just so American. Um, sorry.
6. Nudity is not as big a deal for European actors.
I think English people get a bad rap for being frigid. That ship has long sailed (it was called The Mayflower, right?) and are a whole different breed on screen. I think it’s part of what made the show so successful in the US. More than one woman getting her knockers out is rare in America, but male junk? Unheard of. Unfortunately, it seemed to go to the show producers’ heads and then for a whole season you couldn’t get through one episode without seeing Ros nipples everywhere.
7. When Kit Harrington says he is ‘extraordinary’ about the finale, that’s supposed to mean it’s going to be bloody amazing. Or maybe not.
British people are easy to read with understatement but not so much with out and out compliments. If Kit Harrington had said the finale was ‘quite good’, well then, time to buy a seat belt. This is going to be the best show finale in the history of television. It’s going to blow Breaking Bad right out of the water. But ‘extraordinary’ could mean one of two things:
b) He feels bad that it’s lacklustre and feels a loyalty to the show as someone whose getting laughed at in British media for wanting to turn himself into a water feature.
So which one is it? Haven’t the foggiest, as they say in the UK. Stay tuned…