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How 'Game of Thrones' Changed My Life

by Zachary Thomsen 3 years ago in tv
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Towards the end of my first semester in college as a freshman, I was very confused. I didn't care much for the university I was attending, and I felt as though everything I've heard about the "college experience," how most people say it was the best years of their lives, was a lie. To put it plainly, I hated my first semester of college. I was homesick, I didn't know what career path I wanted to pursue; I was a mess. Then one day, a few of my friends texted me, and asked if I wanted to come over to their room, and watch this new show they had just started called Game of Thrones. We had all heard of the show before, whether it be through the books the show was adapted from, family, social media, or whatnot. They had already binge-watched the first season within two days, yet they were so eager to introduce this show to me, and knew that I'd decide to give it a chance, considering I don't watch very many TV shows. Little did I know that before I sat down, and watched that first episode, I was making one of the best decisions of my life.

Without overstating anything, after finishing the first episode, I fell in love. Everything about the show to me was perfect, even only after one episode: the characters, the plot, the writing, the acting, you name it, and Game of Thrones delivered. My friends asked me what I had thought of it after we finished watching, and I replied with a very coy "It was good." I was too nervous to look like a nerd in front of my own friends, because the episode left me with a feeling I had never felt before; a wave of excitement and adrenaline pumping through my entire body. I was so eager to run back to my dorm, and continue the series. I finished the entire first season within a day, yet it had only felt like a few hours had gone by. I remember there being an unspoken competition between my friends and I, as to who could finish (at the time) all seven seasons first. Considering they had already watched the entire first season before I had even started, I had a lot of catching up to do.

Starting Game of Thrones when I did was a blessing and a curse, because it just so happened that I had started this seven-season epic right as finals began. Anyone who has attended any form of college can agree that "finals week" is one of the most stressful weeks of your life. I'm talking about the type of stress where getting four hours of sleep a night was a blessing. So, as you can probably imagine by now, Game of Thrones mixed with finals week turned out exactly how you think it did; horribly. All I wanted to do was find out where Daenerys was going next, or when Jon Snow would finally know something. What I didn't want to find was "X" in my math class. I did my best to balance schoolwork, and Game of Thrones evenly, even though I found myself allotting more of my time to Game of Thrones. In the end, finals week was over, and I was back to letting myself get lost in the world of Westeros and Essos.

One of the many things Game of Thrones does so much better than its competition is its ability to make the viewer feel emotions along with the characters on screen. I'm talking about the kind of emotions like crying during the Red Wedding, cheering when Arya avenged the Starks by killing Walder Frey, and so on. When Jon Snow was named king in the North I was chanting back "The King in the North!" I felt like I could run through a brick wall with all my pent-up excitement. Game of Thrones is able to do this to people like no other show.

I am a firm believer in the idea that the time in which you consume media, whether that be a movie, song, or in this case a TV show, heavily influences how you feel about it. When I started watching Game of Thrones, I was not happy, I was not where I wanted to be mentally, and Game of Thrones was that light in the darkness for me. Game of Thrones changed my life, because the show represents the only good thing to happen to me at a time where everything seemed to be going wrong. Game of Thrones changed my life, because it allowed me to ignore the outside world, and get absolutely lost in a fantasy show that somehow managed to make me feel as though this could exist in real life (minus the dragons of course). Game of Thrones is the best TV show I have ever watched, and I thank my friends every day for inviting me over to watch the very first episode all that time ago.

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About the author

Zachary Thomsen

Twitter: @ThomsenZachary

Instagram: @zach.thomsen

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