Friday, January 1, 2016

What is best in life? The sword fighting in Game of Thrones!

Game Of Thrones is one of the great television of the modern age, partly due to its blend of labyrinthine plotting, sharp characterisation, insane plot twists and enormous set pieces, but mainly because it is full of kickass swordplay.

The sword fights are beautifully choreographed and incredibly intense, while also pushing plot and character further - non-verbal storytelling can say so much that a thousand lines of dialogue couldn't. Look at the way Khal Drogo threw away his weapons to show how incredibly tough he was, or how Jaime and Brienne's relationship is growing through the way they try to stab the shit out of each other.

Sometimes the fights were epic, with monstrously large stakes, like the battle between Red Viper and the Mountain or the face-off between Ned Stark and Jaime Lannister (a fight that notably never happens in the books, but is worth seeing just for the glee on Jaime's face when he realises he finally has a true opponent to fight).

Some of them showed how different styles worked in different ways - look at the way Bronn wears down a man in armour during his first proper fight, while Jorah Mormont's armour saves his arse in a fight against a horselord.

Sometimes the swordfights were the last noble effort of great men like Syrio Forel and Ser Barristan Selmy and sometimes they were just just brutal, like Brienne's victory over the Hound. And sometimes they were just beautifully choreographed, as seen early on in the final movement of the jousting field fight between the Hound and the Mountain - the way the Hound instantly drops to his knee as his king's command, just avoiding a viscous decapitation.

The future of the show is unwritten, as it overtakes the books, and there are some signs that some of the fighting is getting a bit lacklustre, such as the regrettable Sand Snakes malarkey in the most recent season, but any future swordplay will be something to look forward to. Especially when some of it is already FUCKING CONFIRMED:

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