How to Watch Game of Thrones like an Amateur


Confession:  The first time I watched Game of Thrones, I hated it.

Like, had no interest in watching it ever again.  My friends were appalled.  In their words, how could I hate something so amazing?!  Because of all the peer pressure, I decided to sit down and watch it again.  In the process, I discovered why I hated it in the first place.  I had no idea what the heck was going on!  With that in mind, below are 10 tips on how to watch Game of Thrones for the first time and enjoy it.

1.  Study the Houses

There are a lot of characters in this show and they all have some important relationship to someone else.  The best thing I can tell you to do is to study the family trees, learn who’s related to who, and who is married to who.  It’ll help you keep everyone straight in the pilot.

Here’s who you need to know for the first episode:

  1. House Stark
  2. House Baratheon
  3. House Lannister
  4. House Targaryen


2.  Learn the back story

While studying the family trees, read up on the history of Westeros.  If you look at the broad timeline of these characters, the pilot starts right in the middle.  Unless you’re paying really close attention the dialogue, you miss what’s going on and what happened before.  Having a heads-up will make the viewing experience a bit more enjoyable.

3.  But don’t read spoilers

STOP! Don’t ruin it for yourself.  Believe me I’m the world’s worst.  I read spoilers for shows I don’t even watch because I’m so impatient.  Just try to contain your curiosity.

4.  Glance at a map or keep one handy

Along with having a lot of characters, this show is all over the place.  A map will help you keep track of what’s going on and who lives where.

5.  Make friends with people that read the books (if you don’t want to invest months of your life reading them)

That way, when you have questions someone can help.  Trust me, you’ll have questions.

6.  Don’t get attached to the characters

They die, get used to it.

7.  Choose your favorite eye candy

The great part about Game of Thrones is there are a lot of good looking gentleman in a lot of naughty scenes.  Choose your favorite and enjoy!  I am seriously crushing on Robb Stark.  Hubba hubba!


8.  Don’t eat and watch at the same time

Seriously, its kind of gory.  Some scenes are tough to watch.  Be prepared.

9.  Learn how to pronounce the names

It makes it easier to follow the storyline.  I’m not going to lie, I still struggle keeping Tyroin and Tywin straight but it’s a work in progress.  Also, it makes it easier to discuss among friends when the conversation isn’t “That blonde girl used to be the royal family but now its that puny guy who is related to the short guy who is the brother of whats-his-name and whats-her-name.”  Do you know what I’m talking about?  No?  Exactly.

10. Pick your sigil

Here’s the fun part!  Are you a dragon?  A direwolf?  A stag?  A lion?  Not sure?  Luckily, there is a quiz to help you out.

The third season premieres March 31, 2013 on HBO.  Happy watching!

Author: elizbond

Creative Project Manager at the CFPB, Appalachian State alumni, Emerson College IMC graduate. Lover of movies, television, junk food, her dog Dexter, James Dean, and all things southern. North Carolina native, DC resident.

3 thoughts on “How to Watch Game of Thrones like an Amateur

  1. Pingback: Countdown to GOT Season 3 – #3 | ROCK PAPER WATCH

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  3. Pingback: A Non-Book Readers Guide to Game of Thrones, Season 4 Premiere | ROCK PAPER WATCH

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