Critics got a glimpse at Game of Thrones Season 5’s first four episodes. Here’s what they have to say about the show’s much-anticipated return:
Melissa Maerz, Entertainment Weekly: “So the story moves slowly, focusing less on the game-changing moments that often come early in the season…and more on long-term strategy. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, especially when it finally brings people (and story lines) together in this ever-sprawling world. Would-be kings and queens are shoring up their alliances for battle, which is smart for GoT, too.” (Read the Full Review)
Alan Sepinwall, HITFIX: “This isn’t the best four-episode stretch the series has ever had — as with most cable dramas, the ends of ‘GoT’ seasons tend to be stronger than the starts — but there’s a sense of real forward momentum to the proceedings that hasn’t always been there in the past. Again and again, my pulse quickened as I watched these four hours, at times thrilling to an event or character intersection that I’d been waiting years to see (my notes are riddled with the phrase ‘it’s about damn time’), at others cheering things that I didn’t even know I wanted to see until they happened.” (Read the Full Review)
Liz Shannon Miller, Indiewire:“It’s a weird show, laced with mysteries exotic beyond conventional understanding. Occasionally, there are dragons and zombies and giants. But in the long run it’s about its characters, both the powerful and the powerless. And that equation continues to be compelling.” (Read the Full Review)
Richard Lawson, Vanity Fair: “Game of Thrones the show has never been as good as Martin’s books are at conjuring up the past—the novels are rife with shivery old stories, recalled histories, long buried secrets—and because of that the series has always been a little less emotionally engaging or evocative than it maybe could have been…Big and propulsive as Game of Thrones has always been, I hope it continues to find the time to pause and consider all of this mad clash and swirl. Because it’s really quite something that they’ve built. I can’t wait to see what they show us next.”
(Read the Full Review)
Brian Lowry, Variety: “Benioff and Weiss have become inordinately adept at juggling an almost dizzying assortment of plots, but the manner in which those narratives intersect this time around has only enriched the show. And despite the grandness of the enterprise – from the production design to the sprawling sets to Ramin Djawadi’s unmatched score – the focus never deviates from the characters, motivated by a hunger for power as well as old staples like vengeance, loyalty and lust.” (Read the Full Review)
Game of Thrones Season 5 premieres on HBO this Sunday, April 13th. We’ll be there. Will you?