A History Lesson: ‘Game of Thrones’ Style
HBO’s Game of Thrones, burst onto the scene in 2011. Since then, it has garnered fans from all corners of the globe, male and female. One caveat however, is that this show is for mature viewers only, meaning 18 and up. That doesn’t deter people from watching those scenes, often violent, and often gruesome, playing out before them.
The reason Game of Thrones is such a hit, is because the storyline is utterly unique and unexpected in every way. Loosely based on the War of Roses in 15th century England, this show portrays the various kingdoms of Westeros and beyond, vying for the the most power. How they go about doing so, is what constitutes the show, and captures viewers’ attention.
In the opening credits, the entirety of Westeros is shown, panning in and out of regions of the continent.
In and of itself, Westeros is one of the four known continents of the known world within Game of Thrones. The other three are: Essos, Sothoryos, and Ulthos. Most of Westeros is ruled by a political entity known as the Seven Kingdoms. The five largest cities are as follows: King’s Landing, Oldtown, Lannisport, Gulltown, and White Harbor. The Seven Kingdoms are quite literally, seven individual kingdoms brought under one rule. These lands were united by Aegon Targaryen. This made all the lands under the Seven Kingdoms, to come under the rule of the House of Targaryen. But not for long. One of his descendants, King Rhaegar Targaryen went insane, and started wreaking a havoc on the Seven Kingdoms. Starting the infamous war to end all wars.
Season 1 (As Far as I’ve Seen)
When all was said and done, Robert of the House of Barthareon, was crowned King of the Seven Kingdoms. The House of Targaryen had fallen. The show starts off 15 years after the war.
The main conflict surrounding the first season, is the mysterious poisoning death of the hand of the king, Jon Arryn. King Robert calls upon his best friend, Eddard Stark of Winterfell, to become the next hand of the king. Because of Jon Arryn’s suspicious death, Ned Stark agrees to the role, if only to investigate what exactly happened to his dear friend. Now, King Robert is married to Cersei Lannister, of the House of Lannister. This particular House is the wealthiest in all of the Seven Kingdoms. As such, they want the most power in all the land.
In Season 1, the main focus is surrounding the death of Jon Arryn, The War of the Five Kings, and the rise of the once believed to be dead, Aegon Targaryen. As a result, Westeros is vulnerable to a brutal attack.
The Worst is Yet to Come
The Seven Kingdoms is under tumult soon after the death of King Robert. Entitled as ever, Joffrey Barthareon ascends the throne with his mother, Cersei Lannister by his side. Naturally, the people of Westeros were in opposition of this sudden decision. They did not know however, that King Robert had no legitimate heirs. Joffrey and his siblings, were illegitimate children of Cersei and her twin brother, Jamie Lannister (gross, I know). Essentially, the Lannisters were at the helm, leading The Seven Kingdoms. In a fight for power between each of these kingdoms, as its name implies, so began the game of thrones.