You’re out and about, living your life. You’re looking to post a cute and snappy status update on Facebook like “Sunday? More like Wineday, amirite ladies” when your newsfeed is suddenly inundated with updates like these:
Oh Wildlingballs! Another season of Game of Thrones has started, and once again you will have nothing to talk about at Friday’s happy hour. You don’t get HBO. You attempted the books, but the pages and pages of the various Houses were enough to make you turn to Honey Boo Boo for brain sugar.
But not all is lost. Winter isn’t coming yet. These following steps will help you carry on a Game of Thrones conversation like a Dothraki Khal with a 48-inch long braid.*
*Full disclosure: I’ve read the first two books and just started the third and have no idea what the godswood is going on half the time or who anyone is.
1. The story. I’m not going to lie to you, there are about 700 to 14,256 storylines. There are the Seven Kingdoms, and that has imploded into civil war. Everyone hates everyone and is just stabbing with knives all over the place. About six guys think they should be king and the King’s Landing king is the worst person fictional or living. There’s the Wall and the world beyond the Wall, which is creeping with zombies and giants and rotting zombie horses and wildlings who wear camouflage animal skins, and snow, just shitloads of snow. Oh, and the wildlings, et al., want to war it up with the Seven Kingdom people. And then there’s this woman–she basically birthed some dragons–who also believes she’s entitled to the throne because her crazy-ass now-dead father was king. She wants to get her war on too. Your best bet is to say something like: “War, what is it good for?” and then hold up your hand for the inevitable high-five.
2. The characters. Okay so there are a lot of characters, somewhere between 175 to 134,562. There are the Starks, the Baratheons, the Lannisters, the Targaryens, the Flintstones and the Crawleys to name a few. They all have ancestors and long involved backstories. Unless you’re an avid fan, you spend much of the time saying “Oh it’s that guy! You know, the one who was kicked out by King Rat Face? Now he’s joining up with blondie!” There are really only two crucial things to know about the characters:
You hate King Joffrey.
You love Tyrion Lannister. He is the only Lannister you like.
3. The Geography. The Seven Kingdoms is made up of seven places…I think. You need to know Winterfell, King’s Landing and maybe Harrenhal–only because there’s so much torture and killing there. You can seem really knowledgable if you say something like “Jesus, sometimes I’d rather be a cook in Harrenhal than work in this office” and hold up your hand for the inevitable high-five. It wouldn’t hurt to toast “To Winterfell!”
The Wall is an actual wall that protects the Seven Kingdoms from the “wildlings” and “the others” and “Frosty the Snowman.” When men “take the black,” they give up everything including the figurative and literal Snooki to patrol a giant block of ice. Do not confuse these men with the men in black and mention anything about loving Will Smith’s sunglasses.
The dragon lady Daenerys Targaryen is in the east in some desert lands that have various names that I can neither spell nor remember. You’ll be fine if you say something like “Wow, just wait till she shows up with those dragons, huh? High five.”
4. Catchphrases. Believe it or not, they exist. Many of the characters are very long-winded, but some are known for their brevity like Ned Stark (when he had a head). He liked to say “Winter is coming,” which loosely translates to “Shit is going down.” It might be a cool thing to say if layoffs are rumored. You will look really deep. “A Lannister always pays his debts” is good to throw out when picking up the next round.
5. King Jerkface. This may be the best subject to stick to in a Game of Thrones conversation. He is a repugnant turdball cesspooled assjerk. I feel bad for the actor because I imagine he’s a nice fellow who would seem moderately attractive, but now represents everything that is awful about humanity. Just merely saying you wish for Joffrey’s slow and agonizing death will win you a friend for life.
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