You might not know it, but Americans living in the United States actually have a lot in common with “Game of Thrones” characters living in the fictional Westeros. These facts can be comical, disappointing, and surprisingly accurate! If you love “Game of Thrones” and want to understand the U.S. in terminology that make sense to you, look no further. Here are some fun and surprising things Americans can appreciate about “Game of Thrones.”
Kings Landing, Otherwise Known as Washington, DC
Besides the obvious comparison that both are capital cities, you have to dig a bit deeper to unearth the real similarities. Kings Landing is full of deceptive and corrupt people who are trying to gain more power, and if that isn’t enough to connect the dots then we don’t know what is! Both governments were built on the backs of the less fortunate, and while we know to root for the Targaryens and Starks in “Game of Thrones,” we have no idea who to root for in reality.
Walls Figure Prominently In The Conversation
Recently, a presidential candidate by the name of Donald Trump has been telling anyone who will listen about his plans to build a wall to keep Mexicans out. In Westeros, they already have a wall designed to keep people out. While it’s mainly intended to keep out evil forces of the north, like monsters and zombies, it also keeps out the Wildlings who simply are of a different background and culture.
Winter Is Coming
These words are echoed often in Westeros and especially in the North, but many Americans feel that these words could have another meaning for them. With the Winter comes feelings of impending doom and hardship, and many feel that America could be soon facing hard times itself. Fortunately, our hard times won’t consist of White Walkers and zombies!
References To The New York Giants In A Dance With Dragons
George R. R. Martin is a huge football fan, and he couldn’t resist slipping some references to the New York Giants into A Dance With Dragons. Martin wrote, “The galley was also where the ship’s books were kept … the fourth and final volume of The Life of the Triarch Belicho, a famous Volantene patriot whose unbroken succession of conquests and triumphs ended rather abruptly when he was eaten by giants.” If you’re familiar with the New York Giants at all, then you’re likely aware that this is a clear reference to their Super Bowl victory over the New England Patriots, who were previously undefeated.
Racial Inequality Runs Rampant
While technically there aren’t any issues specifically stemming from racial inequality in Westeros, there seems to be a lot of borrowing from modern society in Daenerys Targaryen’s liberation of black and brown slaves during her conquests. Unfortunately, the show has at times limited people of color to specific roles, a tendency among much of Hollywood.
Beyond The Wall = Northern Canada
This comparison really didn’t require much of a leap. The frigid temperatures are the first similarity, closely followed by the immense size and sometimes terrifying creatures residing in both. Once you get to know the locals, aka Wildlings, though, they’re actually quite friendly and more than willing to help you overthrow a city or buy you a cup of Tim Horton’s coffee.
The Three Stooges Wannabes Were In Game Of Thrones
Bet you didn’t know that the first book, A Game of Thrones, had some Three Stooges references. Catelyn Stark arrests Tyrion Lannister with help from three knights of the House Bracken: Lharys, Mohor, and Kurleket. Sound familiar? Clearly, Martin put a Westerosi spin on Larry, Moe, and Curly. Who would’ve thought “Game of Thrones” had so many lighthearted references!
Only The Upper Crust Of Society Can Play The Game
In both modern times in the States and in “Game of Thrones,” there really is no middle class. 99% of Westeros is made up of farmers, innkeepers, and peasants, and their fates are dictated by a small group of the wealthiest families in the country. For the most part, the wealthy treat the poor with disinterest — and even cruelty.
Travelling the I-95 Is Like Travelling The Kingsroad
The Kingsroad and I-95 both experience tons of traffic, and along the way there are more than a few comely inns and merchants to sidetrack you. Beside that, there are also a lot of heinous types who live alongside it in towns like New Haven, Baltimore, and Newark to prey on the unfortunate. Traveling the I-95 might be slightly faster, though.
Donald Trump Finds Inspiration In Tywin Lannister
When put to the test, people are hard-pressed to tell the difference between lines from “Game of Thrones” and things that Donald Trump has said. This leads to only one conclusion: Donald Trump is a less well-spoken, much more crass version of Tywin Lannister, or at least he tries to be. The truth is, a lot of Trump’s quotes sound vaguely similar to “Game of Thrones” lines. Clearly, he stays up to date with the latest episodes.
Castle Black Can Be Compared To Canadian Border Crossing
All that separates Americans from the Great White North is the Canadian border. Similar to the men at Castle Black, these guys take their jobs very seriously and appear miserable at all times. We’re not sure how likely they are to perform mutiny, but otherwise this connection makes complete sense.
George Bush Got Beheaded On The Show
Not literally, but because the show famously reuses props, a George W. Bush head has been used for multiple beheading scenes. If you pay close attention in the 10th episode of Season One, you can actually see Bush’s head held up on a pike in King’s Landing. Show producers swear this wasn’t a political statement in any kind of way, but more an issue of convenience. HBO was displeased, to say the least, and they issued a formal apology along with a guarantee to remove it from all future DVDs.
The World Is Dominated By Men
Although this fact might be changing on both the show and in modern society, for the most part both realms have been dominated primarily by men. No one’s pushing for gender equality in “Game of Thrones” except for a handful of strong women, much like in the U.S. today. Perhaps there will be another similarity in the form of a female President of the U.S. and a female Queen of Westeros.
Boston Is The Spitting Image Of Winterfell
While it might not look exactly like fantastical city of Winterfell, Boston does resemble it in some other key features. It’s beautiful and lovable in the summer, and it’s horribly miserable in the winter. People who live there seem to think their city is the center of the universe, but in truth it’s just the only decent city in the area. Both cities are inhabited with honorable people who entertain themselves primarily with sports.
The U.S. And Westeros Both Live Well Beyond Their Means
Remember The Iron Bank of Braavos? It’s that powerful bank that is owed a lot of money by the rulers of Westeros. Just like in America, the rulers try to keep their people in the dark, with regards to how much is actually owed. One truth rings true from the show, though, and that is that eventually, the banks “will have their due.”
Americans Love Their Celebrities, And Game Of Thrones Does Too
Besides veiled references and inside jokes, “Game of Thrones” has even gone so far as to include famous musicians. Americans love celebs, so no doubt you’re wondering which famous people have appeared! Coldplay’s drummer Will Champion made an appearance in the Red Wedding episode, and a couple members of the band Mastodon played Wildlings (it didn’t require much makeup) on the episode “Hardhome.”
Pittsburgh Moonlights As The Iron Islands In Game Of Thrones
It’s not much of a stretch to see the similarities. Both are wet, overcast, and cold places that have established their reputations on metal/steel. Both once had more prominent economies but fell upon tough times and are mainly populated by pirates and the working class. The pirates are also the worst at what they do, and have been for years.
Both Political Environments Are Frozen In Paralysis
Much like with the American Senate and the political environment in general, Westeros tends to take things rather slowly. While both the U.S. and Westeros governments are prone to the occasional sudden blow-up, for the most part they’re both subject to being frozen by rules and regulations that cripple progress from taking place.
The Dothraki And Texans Are Virtually The Same People
Everyone thinks they’re an independent country simply because they all have weapons. Armed people sometimes vastly overestimate their importance while most people in the mainland are actually totally unaware of their existence. Not to mention that they both settle disputes with rather fatal solutions, i.e. Viserys and the golden crown and the death penalty.
The Weirwood Trees Are Named After The Grateful Dead
George Martin and his wife are huge fans of the band The Grateful Dead, and he once claimed to have their lyrics rattling around almost constantly in his head. Is it any surprise, then, that the magical Weirwood trees are named after Bob Weir, the lead guitarist in the band?
Killings Of Guards – AKA Police – Is Common
The American police force can be easily compared to the guards serving in King’s Landing. The guards have lost many men through the “Game of Thrones” seasons, and often it’s simply for who they serve. Police in the U.S. have also been facing the consequences for what some of their fellow officers have done. Both jobs come with some seriously life-threatening risks.