When you first see my father, you wouldn't peg him as a fanboy. As a middle-aged truck driver, you are more likely to catch him complaining about feed lines or telling a story that's only a little embellished. But, if you get him on the right topic, all of a sudden he takes off. Throughout my years, there have been a few things that have caught my father's attention. There was Green Day's "American Idiot" album during my middle school days. He goes through bouts of watching conspiracy shows or Bigfoot hunts. He has certain authors that he can not read enough of (John Grisham, Stuart Woods, and Michael Connelly to name a few). However, for the last few years, my father has had one particular fandom that he is completely immersed in, and that is "Game of Thrones."
At first, it surprised me when my dad told me that he had started reading "Game of Thrones". As far as I had known, my father was not really into fantasy, and usually, his go-to books were under three hundred pages. Still, something about this book had caught his attention. Within a year, HBO had announced that they were going to make a show. At this point, I had not realized just how much my dad had come to love this franchise.
After a few seasons, even I had begun to notice that my dad had developed a strong liking for George R. R. Martin's universe. He had started introducing the book series to everyone he knew and talked about the show with anyone that would listen. So when it came to deciding what to buy him for Christmas that year, I chose "The World of Ice and Fire," a companion book that came with detail maps of the Known World in the series. Boy did that make his day. In fact, that very night he had to lay out all of the maps on our old pool table. When I went down to see what he was doing, I happened to notice that the maps had trails showing the paths that many of the main characters had taken up to that point in the book series. So, curious, I asked my father about a few of the names, thinking that he would just give me a quick summary of characters. Instead, I was in for an entire night of learning about what had happened to each of the characters throughout both the book and television series.
Since Martin had not released a main book in the series for five years, my dad has focused most of his attention on the television show. For me, this means that I get to have a weekly summary meeting with my dad where he explains what has happened to some of our favorite characters. Even now that I am not always home right when he watches the show, I will get texts updating me on what is happening.
For me having my dad be a "fanboy" over Martin's world has been rather interesting. Although I'm not quite as into the series as he is, it is impossible not to be affected my his infectious love for the series. He shows me the side of him that is still giddy as a schoolboy, and in return, I get to share with him parts of the fandom he might not have been able to reach before. I let him know which characters are fan favorites, who the fandom thinks will be killed off next, and what the latest theories are on who will end up winning the "Game of Thrones" in the end.