We are all in either category a) or a category b) right now.


a) You are watching the new Game of Thrones every week, usually around 6am on Mondays (“oh my that’s a lot of blood *chews porridge*). You do this to avoid spoilers and to enjoy memes.

b) You do not watch Game of Thrones. Episodes are currently on series record but are unwatched on your DVR, currently alongside unwatched highlights of the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics.

People in the second category are going to feel a bit left out, particularly when they admit to anyone in category a) that they haven’t got round to watching Game of Thrones yet. So what if there was a category

c)? People who don’t watch Game of Thrones, but want to know everything that has happened in each episode so they don’t feel left out. Essentially, blagging it.

That’s where I come in. I’ve watched every Thrones for work and I can say, hand on heart, that I understand 60% of it. Here’s the most basic guide possible, which will no doubt absolutely infuriate and alienate core fans (in which case a small message: “hello, do not @ me on Twitter”).

This post contains spoilers. I mean, that’s the point.

The basics

Game of Thrones (HBO)
Game of Thrones (HBO)

What is Game of Thrones? It is a show about a different families and alliances fighting to take control of an Iron Throne and potentially rule the Seven Kingdoms. The story is complicated, but you needn’t worry as none of that really seems to matter any more.

Why? An army of White Walkers, an army of the dead, are attacking from the North.

Why is this important? Because they they are just about invincible.

Why “just about” invincible? They can be killed by Valyrian steel, a type of metal found in some swords. These swords appear to be quite hard to come by, rarer than owning an iPhone (or seeing one on public transport) that hasn’t been dropped and cracked in several places.

What happens if nobody stops the White Walkers? Everyone who isn’t already dead in Game of Thrones will die.

Who is already dead in Game of Thrones? Oh, god. Where to start? This was only going to be an article about the first episode. I’m not writing you a bloody book.

Here's what happens in the most recent episode

Game of Thrones (HBO)

Wow, these titles are intense and epic, aren’t they? Yes! The opening titles last approximately 456 hours and are a great accompaniment whilst you are doing the ironing.

Don’t they change every time? They do. The White Walkers marching South are currently represented by parts of the map flipping white, like a death-fuelled analogue train departure screen.

Game of Thrones (HBO)

We are now in Winterfell

What is Winterfell like? Cold. There are often conversations here about inadequate heating. Food supplies are a bit like your local metro supermarket one minute before the end of Sunday trading.

Game of Thrones (HBO)

Who is she? Arya. She kills brutally everyone who wronged her and according to her Twitter page, she doesn’t like balsamic glaze.

Game of Thrones (HBO)

Who are they? Daenerys Targaryen and Jon Snow. Daenerys has two dragons (she had three). Jon was dead. They are currently in love and Jon doesn’t know yet that she is technically his aunt.

What?!!!??!!! Remember, you’re trying to blag being a fan of this. We don’t have time for this.

Game of Thrones (HBO)

And there are dragons? This is a fantasy show. This isn’t Call the Midwife.

Don’t patronise me. What happened to the third dragon? Two things. 1) The dragon was killed in a battle in season seven but then joined the evil White Walker army. 2) Just a reminder Scott, that you are interviewing yourself in this article, so you are only hurting yourself.

Game of Thrones (HBO)

Who is he? Bran. It’s a bit complicated, but let’s just say that he isn’t the life and soul of the party at the moment. Think of him as being a bit like Oren from Parks and Recreation.

Game of Thrones (HBO)

There’s now a meeting going on. What is it about? Jon Snow was in charge, but he needed allies so he went away for a bit and now everyone hates him.

And he joined up with the Targaryens so they have adequate defence against the White Walkers! Yes, that’s right. Sansa [below] is not happy about how risky this all might be.

Game of Thrones (HBO)

What do dragons eat? Certainly not what is available from your local metro supermarket one minute before the end of Sunday trading.

We are now in Kings Landing

Game of Thrones (HBO)

Who is that? It’s Cersei. She is currently on the Iron Throne.

Do we like Cersei? [Scott Bryan has logged out of the chat]

Why is she talking about elephants? She was promised an elephant.

Why did everyone obsess about her talking about elephants on Twitter? We didn’t know until now that elephants actually existed in the Game of Thrones universe.

But this show has dragons, so of course they have elephants. Our universe has YouTubers. Do you want the Game of Thrones universe to have YouTubers?

Jon and Daenerys are now flying on two dragons

This is a bit like Harry Potter. We know.

Where’s Sean Bean in this? I’ve heard that he’s good. Very funny.

Game of Thrones (HBO)

Do the dragons know that Jon is technically kissing his aunt? It’s that or they just hate public signs of affection to be honest.

They would hate the Night Tube. They would absolutely hate the Night Tube.

Game of Thrones (HBO)

Why does that really tall man not like Arya? He’s The Hound.

What happened between them? She robbed him and left him for dead.

He must be really annoyed at her about this. In fact, he’s really rather proud of her.

Why? It’s Game of Thrones.

There’s not much blood in this episode? It’s as much a surprise to us as it is to you.

Sam is telling Jon that he is heir to the Seven Kingdoms

What is going on? Jon always thought that he was an illegitimate son, a “bastard”, but now he’s finding out from Sam that he is actually a Targaryen and the heir to the Iron Throne.

We knew that already, didn’t we? He didn’t.

Game of Thrones (HBO)

Is this a thing? It very much is a thing.

Why do the White Walkers leave messages in human limbs in a spiral formation? They don’t have FaceTime.

Game of Thrones (HBO)

Why are these people staring at each other? Oh, it’s because the guy in the second picture (Jaime) pushed Bran out of a window in the very first episode.

Game of Thrones (HBO)
Game of Thrones (HBO)

That’s not nice. It isn’t. If you watch the very first episode of Game of Thrones you will understand what happened as they haven’t seen each other since.

Why? They’ve been a bit busy.

I’ll get round to watching the first episode straightaway. You won’t watch it.

I will.

You won’t.

You won’t.

Bran knows you’re not going to watch the first episode of Game of Thrones today.


Trust me on this.


And that’s the entire first episode? It’s shorter than the other ones.

Why is there so much hype about this? Because we don’t know what is going to happen yet.

So there might be a huge battle scene? Or Cersei talking about elephants.

Ok. Do you understand Game of Thrones now?


Kinda. Then my work here is done.