Avoiding ‘Game of Thrones,’ or trying to for the moment

Last season's climactic battle.

Last season’s climactic battle.

Hey, did you watch the season premiere of “Game of Thrones” last night? If so, Don’t tell me about it!

Everyone seems to be trying to do that. The newspaper apps I read each morning now include coverage of the show as though it were an actual news event. It’s a new news category: There’s local, national, world, politics, sports, business and Westeros.

At least they’re not putting spoilers into the headlines I’m seeing. Not yet, anyway.

I do want to see it, but I haven’t figured out how or when.

For the last couple of years, I watched it via HBO Now. But eventually I admitted to myself that I wasn’t using the service for anything but this one show, so after last season ended, I cancelled it — saving myself $14.99 a month.

And I’m loathe to start it up again. I mean, the season will take more than a month, and is it really worth 30 bucks for me to be up on what everybody’s talking about? I mean, $14.99 is more than I spend a month on Netflix or Amazon Prime, and I get so much more out of those services.

Here are the options, as I see it:

  • Go ahead and cough up the 30 bucks over this month and next, and watch in more or less real time, and not worry about inadvertently reading a spoiler Tweet or something.
  • Delay gratification drastically and just wait a couple of years until it’s all on Amazon Prime at no additional cost, the way other completed HBO series such as The Sopranos and Band of Brothers are.
  • Scam the system. Wait two weeks and sign up for the free trial month of HBO Now, and then cancel after the last episode on Aug. 27. If they’ll let me (I’m not sure whether former subscribers are eligible for the deal). This option seems sleazy to me. It’s like something Littlefinger would do.
  • Act like a grown man and stop letting myself be manipulated by the hype. Live the rest of my life without seeing Season 7, and have no regrets. Even though I think maybe this is the season when Winter finally comes. And I’ve got so much time invested already.

I haven’t decided.

How about you? What’s your strategy? Are you subscribing just for Game of Thrones, taking the grownup route and not caring, or something in-between? And how’s it working for you?

11 thoughts on “Avoiding ‘Game of Thrones,’ or trying to for the moment

  1. Brad Warthen Post author

    There’s another strategy I’ve used with shows I wanted to see on AMC, such as “Breaking Bad,” “Better Call Saul” and “The Night Manager”…

    I bought a “season pass” from iTunes for less than $25, far less than what that level of cable would cost me.

    Of course, I could have just waited a few months and watched it all on Netflix at no additional charge.

    Anyway, that option isn’t available here. I don’t think it’s available on iTunes yet.

    Also… I’m not as eager to see this as I was to see the last season of “Breaking Bad”…

  2. bud

    Find a friend who subscribes to HBO, get them to give you their password info and watch it on HBO GO. Voila. Problem solved.

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      See, that, too, would be cheating.

      I want to watch it legit.

      My daughter has HBO and says I can come over and watch it there. So I’m not going to be deprived. But I’m still strategizing how I might watch it at home on my own TV. Or my iPad — I’d settle for that…

      1. Brad Warthen Post author

        Used to be we didn’t have to strategize to watch TV. Life was simple. Either you sat yourself down in front of a TV at 8 p.m. Sunday and tuned it to the local CBS affiliate, or you did not see “The Ed Sullivan Show,” period.

        I was out of the country when the Beatles famously made their first appearance on the show, so I didn’t see it until my son gave me a videotape of the segments a few years ago, which I greatly appreciated…

            1. Burl Burlingame

              Whenever I asked my father if he wanted to go to the movies, he always responded with, “Is Rita Hayworth in it?”

  3. David Carlton

    Somehow or other Xfinity allowed me to stream it on my desktop, at no charge I can find on my account. I just checked my TV, and On Demand is streaming Episode 1 for free. Don’t know who your provider is, but you might want to check. I won’t spoil, but I found it a terrific opener.

  4. Scout

    I haven’t seen it yet either but will probably watch tonight. You could subscribe to HBO again and also watch John Oliver to get more of your money’s worth. There also is a news show called Vice that is good except that the narrator has the most monotonous atypical for voice over voice ever. It’s almost funny when it’s not supposed to be to listen to his odd intonations. But the stories are good and well done.


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