Game of Thrones

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Name: Game of Thrones
Abbreviation(s): GOT
Creator: David Benioff and Dan Weiss, based on the novels by George R. R. Martin
Date(s): April 17, 2011 - May 19, 2019
Medium: Television
Country of Origin: USA
External Links: Official HBO site
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Game of Thrones is a television series produced for HBO based on George R. R. Martin's novels in the A Song of Ice and Fire series. The first season aired in 2011, and seven seasons have aired to date, with 10 episodes in the first six and 8 episodes in Season 7. The eighth and final season, confirmed to contain 6 episodes,[1] began airing in April 2019.


The series is set on the fictional continents of Westeros and Essos and interweaves several plot lines with a large ensemble cast. The series centers on three primary story arcs. The first story arc centers on the Great Houses and the conflicts that arise between those seeking control of the Iron Throne, or seperation from it. The second story arc focuses on, Daenarys, the last descendant of the Targaryen dynasty, exiled in Essos and plotting her return to Westeros. The third story arc centers on the Night's Watch, a brotherhood charged with defending the realm against the forces beyond The Wall, an ancient barrier created to defend Westeros' northern border. The Night's Watch is the only group that knows about the greatest threat to the Seven Kingdoms, the White Walkers.

Although taking its source material from A Song of Ice and Fire, there are many significant differences between the books and the TV series, including character changes such as Asha Greyjoy being renamed "Yara" in the TV series to avoid confusion with pre-existing character Osha[2]. Additionally, there are many points of divergence between the plot of the TV series and the books, with more dramatic and numerous divergences as the TV series progressed. Whereas Season 1 closely followed the first book ("A Game of Thrones") and the first few seasons stick roughly to their parallel book, Season 7 takes place beyond the timeline of the books and the plot is mostly speculatory. Several events in Season 7 have confirmed long-standing fan theories, such as "R + L = J"[3].


Since it first aired, Game of Thrones has been under fire for excessive portrayal of violence, explicit sexual content, and particularly violence of a sexual nature targeted against women. It has been noted that this is typical of shows on HBO[4]. This has been defended as historical accuracy, a claim which has been the subject of research[5] and widely disputed in fandom[6].

Critical Essays

Reaction to Season 8

See Fan Response to Game of Thrones Finale for more information..

There was an overwhelmingly negative reaction to the ending of Game of Thrones. Season 8 received a MetaCritic user score of 4.1/10[7], compared to previous seasons, which have averaged roughly 9/10. One fan created a petition, "Remake Game of Thrones Season 8 with competent writers,"[8] which has over 1.6 million signatures as of June 2019. Season 8 has also inspired a wide variety of unfavourable memes, and critical essays, including the notable Scientific American article, "The Real Reason Fans Hate the Last Season of Game of Thrones."[9]



Fandom started buzzing about the series when initial casting was announced and some familiar faces were in the mix—Sean Bean (LOTR, Sharpe), Lena Headey (Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles) and Jason Momoa (Stargate Atlantis). Many members of the cast have appeared in Doctor Who.[10] Even before the first episode aired meta was being written[11] about the show, which only increased after airing. Popular topics include the faithfulness (or not) of the adaptation, aging up of the children, misogyny in the show compared with the books, and why Tyrion (played by Peter Dinklage) is so awesome.[12]

The show itself picked up a significant proportion of male viewers, as well as the female-dominated transformative works fandom areas. There are large amounts of overlap between fans of the TV series and fans of the books.

Separating Canon

Because Game of Thrones has surpassed book canon, and has also made changes to characters and storylines, some fans treat the books series and television adaptation as separate or alternative universes, and will emphasize whether their fanworks fall within the showverse, the bookverse or both. The tag valyrianscrolls was proposed by joannalannister in 2019[13] to highlight bookverse fanworks and was adopted by several users, primarily on Tumblr.


  • In 2015, Game of Thrones was ranked eighth in the Top 20 "most reblogged" live-action television show on Tumblr.[14]
  • In 2016, Game of Thrones was ranked number three in the Top 20 "most reblogged" live-action television show on Tumblr, gaining five ranks in popularity from the previous year[15].
  • A Song of Ice and Fire & Related Fandoms (which includes Game of Thrones) was the 23rd most popular fandom on Archive of Our Own in 2017[16]
  • In 2017 Game of Thrones moved up to number two in the Top 30 "most reblogged" live-action television show on Tumblr.[17]
  • In 2018 Game of Thrones dropped ten places to number 12 on Tumblr's Top 30 "most reblogged" live-action television shows, but still managed to remain within the top thirty despite no season airing that year.[18]


Some of the more popular ships are

See also: List of Game of Thrones Pairing Names



  • A + J = T: fan theory holding that Tyrion Lannister is actually the bastard son of Aerys Targaryen
  • A + J = C & J: similar fan theory regarding the parentage of twins Cersei Lannister and Jaime Lannister
  • Bastardbowl or Snowball: fan nickname for the Battle of the Bastards, the epic showdown between Jon Snow and Ramsay Bolton
  • Cleganebowl: name given to the showdown between Sandor Clegane and Gregor Clegane
  • D & D: fan acronym for showrunners David Benioff and D. B. Weiss
  • GRRM: fan acronym for A Song of Ice and Fire author George R. R. Martin
  • Pink Letter: the letter sent to Jon Snow by Ramsay Bolton, so named for its pinkish hue
  • The Purple Wedding: the wedding of King Joffrey Baratheon and Margaery Tyrell, so named for the poisoning that takes place during it (the poison is hidden within a purple jewel and is slipped into a cup of red wine and turns the victim's face purple)
  • R + L = J: fan theory about the true parentage of Jon Snow, confirmed in Season 6
  • R + L = J + M: fan theory that Jon Snow has a twin
  • Ser Twenty of House Goodmen or Ser Ten of House Goodmen: characters jokingly created by fans after Ramsay Bolton said he only needed "twenty good men" to infiltrate Stannis' camp
  • Sexposition: the use of sexual scenes to provide information about backstory and character motivations
  • Team Dragonstone: a name originally given to Stannis Baratheon and his supporters, but it changed when Daenerys Targaryen made Dragonstone her base in Westeros
  • Throners or Thronies: nicknames for fans of the show, though it is unclear if these terms have ever been used by fans themselves, or rather if they are used primarily by people outside the fandom

Challenges and Activities

For the full list of challenges on Fanlore, see Category:Game of Thrones Challenges or List of ASOIAF/Game of Thrones Challenges


Fan Art






Dreamwidth Communities

LiveJournal Communities




Related Links
People George R. R. MartinSean Bean
characters: Daenerys TargaryenJon SnowNed StarkCatelyn StarkRobb StarkSansa StarkArya StarkBran StarkTyrion LannisterJaime LannisterTheon GreyjoyJorah MormontMargaery TyrellBrienne of TarthRobert BaratheonStannis BaratheonRenly Baratheon
Things A Song of Ice and Fire