Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Catch Up TV... Missed the TV Moment Everyone's Talking about? Alastair McKay Is Bemused by Ed Sheeran's Cameo in Game of Thrones but Enthralled by Ozark

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Catch Up TV... Missed the TV Moment Everyone's Talking about? Alastair McKay Is Bemused by Ed Sheeran's Cameo in Game of Thrones but Enthralled by Ozark

Article excerpt

SO GAME of Thrones (Sky On Demand/ Now TV), the heavy-metal fantasy about sexy power and schematic violence, is back, and approaching the winter of its discount tents. There are those who think Thrones is all about breasts and dragons, and some even suggest that this is a bad thing, as if a camp drama with the design sense of a teenage gamer could feature too many pneumatic chests or flying lizards, when it is evident that there is no end to the ways in which these things can add to the gaiety of the plot. Machiavelli would surely have hatched a few pterodactyls to spice up The Prince if he'd had access to CGI.

How ironic, then, that much of the chat about the first episode of the seventh series focused on the guest appearance by poor Ed Sheeran, a singer who seems to have acquired from Phil Collins the status of being incredibly popular and also terminally unhip.

Ed wrote the songs that made the whole world sing, and for this he is despised. Why, then, should he not appear in Game of Thrones looking faintly bemused, as if secretly pondering the campfire scene from Blazing Saddles? In truth, Ed did the little that was asked of him perfectly competently, though his Glastonbury gawking did upstage Thomas Turgoose, the babyfaced star of This is England, who is now, unaccountably, 25 years old. According to the Grimsby Telegraph (food-related spoiler alert) Sheeran and Turgoose were "part of a group of men sharing some blackberry wine and roasted meat".

Otherwise, there were apocalyptic horsemen, tolling bells, giant zombies, poisoned wine, fur coats, vomiting and fratricide. Most of this was a preamble to the reappearance of lovely, lovely Daenerys (Emilia Clarke), chasing the apocalypse in a fetching off-theshoulder tweed cape and kinky boots.

Comparisons between Ozark (Netflix) and Breaking Bad are irresistible but wrong, even if both shows share the premise of a middle-class salary man who finds himself submerged in criminality. …

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