Game of Thrones, the critically acclaimed TV series based on the critically acclaimed series of fantasy novels by George RR Martin is not a modern masterpiece of contemporary television in the purist sense.
But, what GOT is- is fantastically well made dramatic fun!
It reaches Shakespearian proportions when it comes to character building, and of course famously character demise.
The world and political intrigue created by Martin’s novels transfers to the small screen with all the grandeur of monolithic budgeted summer blockbuster at the cinemas.
And this is none the more apparent than in Season 4 of the HBO original series.
Whether we are following the epic plot of Daenerys Targaryen and her three unruly dragons, accompanied by stunning CGI effects to not only realise her dragons but also the incredible locations the young Khaleesi finds herself leading her not so merry band of Unsullied.
Or the lugubrious din of the Wall, and Jon Snow’s struggle to keep order in the Knights Watch, all the while knowing of the impending threat charging to his door.
Staying with Jon Snow, my stand out episode of the season had to be episode 9.
The sweeping battle between the Knights Watch and the rag tag legions of Wildings under the command of Mace Raider was utterly captivating and adrenaline charged that I had to question whether it truly was intended for the small screen!
Without actually timing the action, I would hazard a guess the battle rages for about 45 minutes.
In that time we see favourites fall in combat (of course it wouldn’t be Thrones if a few fan favourites didn’t meet a grizzly end) and huge set piece moments that will have you clinging to the edge of your sofa.
And these set piece moments are what have me posing the question, is Game of Thrones season 4 the greatest bit of television ever made?
Now I know a lot of you will snort with sarcastic laughter at the mere thought of it. And then point me in the direction of The Wire, Breaking Bad, The Sopranos or the recent Orange is the New Black.
And you would be right to. Those programmes are stellar, perfectly made, with flawless production. But none for me, and I have seen all of them (except Orange is the New Black) offer the same edge of your seat, unadulterated bloody good escapism.
I have never felt a bond for characters in the same way I have for all the cast on offer in season 4 of Thrones. In the same breath I have never felt such a deep underlining hatred for other characters (Cersei Lannister? The Mountain? Joffery? Am I right?).
The plot lines, the melodrama, the mise-en-scene all create a spectacle like I have never witnessed from a television series before and doubt I will for a very long time.
It was clear from the get go with this series, it was not going to be satisfied with being a great TV show and would rather be the best TV show!
Vikings ran GOT very close for me up until season 4, now I feel Vikings has some very big stops to pull out if it is to even be classed an equal in my book.
If you haven’t already started to watch Game of Thrones, I for one have to question where an earth you have been for the past 4 years when it has been taking over the world?
But I also leave you with the most sincere recommendation, start now and be prepared to be transported to a world of wonders, horrors, twisted tales that will shock you to the core….And to love every second of it!