It was evident that last night’s opening of the traveling “Game of Thrones” Exhibition in NYC was a diehard GOT fan’s dream. So naturally, I had no choice but to play the role of a superfan.
Ok, so there was actually very little acting required. The exhibit–now free and open to the public in NYC and then on to Sao Paulo, Amsterdam and Belfast–featured a collection of more than 70 original artifacts from the show’s 1st 2 seasons. We’re talking hand-forged steel “hero” swords (bearing ominous appellations like “Longclaw” and “Ice”), intricately woven garments worn by Westeros nobility, full suits of armor, fan art submitted via the show’s tumblr, and more.
Also in play were interactive experiences. I was an archer pummeling digital ships with fire-engulfed arrows during the Battle of Blackwater Bay. I lounged on low-lying sofas draped in animal furs. I sat atop an impressive replica of the Iron Throne–and took home a photo as proof of being queen for a day. (See it on our Facebook page: http://tinyurl.com/bo8svd4).
And the libations! Specialty cocktails aptly named “Winter Is Coming” and a special GOT brew, the Ommegang Iron Throne blond ale, washed down helpings of sliders and glazed chicken lollypops–and for the truly gluttonous, giant turkey legs. (Methinks they were mostly for show). All that was missing was an impromptu attack from a White Walker. (Cheers for that, HBO and Time Warner Cable. I frighten easily.)
Hats off to both the aforementioned partners and the accompanying fans for capitalizing on an excellent way to connect with subscribers. Time Warner Cable CMO Jeff Hirsch told me the MSO has committed to 3 more event partnerships of this kind–with a “really big premiere,” a broadcast show and an animated series. Can’t say I’ll succeed at simulating superfandom on every occasion. But I’m willing to give it a shot. – Kaylee Hultgren
“Game of Thrones,” season III premiere, Sun, 9p, HBO. With “GOT’s” 3rd season, much is in the numbers: 27 main characters, shot in 5 countries and several languages, 12mln weekly viewers across HBO platforms and record DVD sales (season 2), despite being the most illegally downloaded show. For viewers who can’t tell a Targaryen from a Stark or a Lannister, the ‘Net can help. Or peruse George R.R. Martin‘s 1K-page novel, “A Storm of Swords.” There’s time. Similar to the novel, season 3 begins like a slumbering dragon. — “Ben Hur,” Sun, 8p ET, Ovation. Comparisons are inevitable when a classic is re-made. Fortunately, this “Ben Hur” has a sizzling lead ( Joseph Morgan) and a strong supporting cast. Purists may quibble with story changes vs the ’59 film, but they work. — “Orphan Black,” premiere, Sat, 9p, BBC America. As BBC A celebrates 15 years, the net bows its 2nd original scripted drama, a sci-fi thriller about a NY-based Brit with identity issues (talented newcomer Tatiana Maslany). Peabody-winner “Doctor Who” leads-in (8p). — “Carpenter’s Miracle,” Sun, 7p ET, GMC. A humble carpenter performs miracles. No, not that carpenter. Still, a good story. — “Baseball: Rangers vs Astros,” Sun, 8p ET, ESPN. While spring training was riveting–maybe not–opening day/night always is. And it’s the Stros’ 1st as ALers. – Seth Arenstein