Westeros has the scoop on a foreign network executive who attended the recent screening of the first two episodes of Game of Thrones in London. Göran Danasten, an executive from Swedish broadcaster SVT, was there and shared his thoughts on the show.
His remarks begin with high-praise for the cinematography and production values of the show, saying that its looks incredibly good and that viewers will love the visual quality. However, the skeptical side of him notes that of course, there has been a veritable parade of “grandiose” genre shows, many of them very good looking as well, and a show needs something more than just great looks to distinguish itself.
He admires HBO’s push to offer “accessible fantasy”, especially one that adds an extra layer of complexity beyond the usual clichés that genre fans may have come to expect. On the other hand, while the first two episodes are “fantastic”, there are a lot of characters, and a rather complex setting, introduced in a short time span which will be pretty demanding for viewers unfamiliar with the books and the genre. He’s also unsure that the first two episodes really reveal a lot about the greater depth of the series (presumably in comparison to similar genre shows in the past). Ultimately, he feels that the show will be one that needs time to grow its audience, to give them time to adjust themselves to its and realize all those additional complexities that set it apart.
He had high praise for the actors, suggesting that all-around it’s very well cast. He especially cites some of the newer ones, whom he described as “magically good”. Maise Williams (Arya Stark), he says, was born for this, and indicates she’s spectacular. He was also impressed with Richard Madden (Robb Stark). Among the veteran actors, he also feels that Dinklage is unforgettable as Tyrion. In response to a query about how fantastical the show is, he did feel that perhaps it was toned down a little compared to the novel.
In addition, the rumored screening for cast and crew last week apparently did happen and John Bradley West (Samwell) tweeted his thoughts on what he saw:
Utterly utterly breathtakingly brilliant. Uncompromising and sumptuous photography and mesmerising performances. Goosebumps all round. Cinematic in its visuals and effects. Brilliant direction and dialogue.
Winter Is Coming: More positive thoughts are always a plus. Especially good to hear the positivity from an outsider. Including more praise for Maisie. Looks like she is going to be quite the little star.