The Game of Thrones series, based off of George R. R. Martin’s fantasy novels of the same name, introduced the world of viewers to not only a binge-able epic series, but to a show that set the bar as to what fantasy series should be. Fans were so devoted to GOT that when the HBO series concluded in May of 2019, HBO lost HALF of its subscribers! Why such an epic loss? Because, experts say, there’s nothing to replace it. No other show, as of yet, seems to be able to provide the same obsess-worthy qualities.
Forbes magazine analyzed this very phenomena, stating that GOT’s level of world building (thanks to the genius that is George R. R. Martin), it’s character complexity and unpredictability, and, of course, its brilliant storytelling, created a show the likes of which was never seen before; and, quite threateningly, amazing enough to possibly never be seen again. This source even went so far as to explain that viewers subconsciously connect to the conflict between monarchies as:
“… a perfect metaphor for the scorched-earth style of politics in a deeply divided red state/blue state America. Westeros can stand in for a world of Fox News fans and MSNBC fans who despise each other and would accept nothing less than the complete annihilation of the other side.”
Inevitably, a series with this much pull would leave its viewers wanting greatly once it’s been concluded, regardless of how satisfying or not that conclusion was. Variety reported: “Without Game of Thrones, HBO saw more than half of its adults 18-49 linear audience disappear in 2020.”
“For a decade Game of Thrones was the most pirated show, and now it’s been replaced by The Mandalorian.”
From HBO to Disney Plus, this incredible viewership has transferred, begging the question: is fantasy given its fair due on streaming platforms? Are there enough options out there to stay loyal to a platform or are fantasy fans forced to choose between them as their favorite shows end? That’s something for these big companies to think about as they continue to bid for and create shows of varying genres.
Fantasy is back, my friends! Let’s give it its fair due and put more epic fantasy series out there (that challenges us and says something deeper about our world as well as its well-built one of lore) for everyone to enjoy!
Do you agree? Let us know in the comments.
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