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Iran has scads of fans for us 'Game of Thrones'.

Iranian fans of the HBO show "Game of Thrones" were in a frenzy last week as the premiere of the seventh season launched July 16.

Persian-language social media pages linked to the TV program have drawn more than 100,000 followers.

Websites such as are dedicating their content to "Game of Thrones" for Iranian fans, where you can download Persian translations of the original Game of Thrones books. Meanwhile, the wider fantasy genre is represented by sites such as and, according to Al-Monitor.

There are many theories for the Iranian love for "Game of Thrones." At the center of the George R. R. Martin universe is an ancient Persian God known as Azor Ahai, a warrior who overcame darkness in a battle in which he carried a weapon blessed by R'hllor, a demigod known as the Lord of Light.

Fans see comparisons between such fantasy worlds and seminal Iranian works of literature such as the "Shahnameh." But another reason for its popularity is Iranian-German dual national Ramin Djawadi, the composer behind the show's dramatic instrumentals. Last month when weapons experts at an Iranian university unveiled a new assault rifle, it was presented to the theme music of "Game of Thrones." The instrumentals have proven so popular that Djawadi even took a live concert experience based on the show's music on a tour of the US and Canada earlier this year.

"The show has good music and is unpredictable," Iranian fan Mohammad Reza told Al-Monitor. "The fact that some parts are inspired by real history makes it much more addictive."

The show's Iranian fans love it so much that they will go to greater lengths to watch the latest episodes than their American counterparts. Fans in Iran say they mostly watch the show through illegal downloading on torrent websites, or exchanging clips on USB sticks with friends.

American and Western television shows are viewed as un-Islamic in the country and "Game of Thrones" has had frequent sex scenes and violent battles that Iran's censors do not approve of. "Game of Thrones" is an American fantasy drama television series adapted from "A Song of Ice and Fire," George R. R. Martin's series of fantasy novels, the first of which is "A Game of Thrones." It is filmed at Titanic Studios in Belfast, on location in the United Kingdom, and in Canada, Croatia, Iceland, Malta, Morocco, Spain and the United States.

The series premiered on HBO in the United States on April 17, 2011. The show is now in its seventh season and is scheduled to have just one more season.

Set on the fictional continents of Westeros and Essos, "Game of Thrones" has several plot lines and a large ensemble cast but centers on three primary story arcs.

The first centers on the Iron Throne of the Seven Kingdoms and follows a web of alliances and conflicts among dynastic noble families either vying to claim the throne or fighting for independence from the throne.

The second story arc focuses on the last descendant of the realm's deposed ruling dynasty, exiled and in hiding while plotting a return to the throne.

The third story arc centers on the longstanding brotherhood charged with defending the realm against the ancient threats of the fierce peoples and legendary creatures that lie far north, and an impending winter that threatens the realm.

"Game of Thrones" has attracted record viewer-ship on HBO and has a broad, active, international fan base. It has been acclaimed by critics, particularly for its acting, complex characters, story, scope, and production values, although its frequent use of nudity and violence (including sexual violence) has attracted criticism.

The series has received 38 Primetime Emmy Awards, more than any other primetime scripted television series.

Caption: DJAWADI
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Title Annotation:Culture: From then to now
Publication:Iran Times International (Washington, DC)
Date:Jul 21, 2017
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