Alright, first of all, after single one episode I'm sold, this show alone is worth ordering HBO for. Then we have season two of Treme
starting up in a couple days. Season two of Boardwalk Empire
, season four of True Blood
, and season one of David Milch's Luck
are all on their way.
Second, I generally don't like fantasy stories. But I love history, and it looks like Benioff and Weiss are completely capturing the spirit of Martin's loose adaptation of the "war of the roses/different families competing with each other for power" sort of story. So this is going to be a story of political intrigue, back stabbing, and matching wits on the part of the different factions who all want the throne. Sean Bean easily plays the part of the honest medieval lord through the first half of the episode (this seems like old hat to him), but sometimes you forget he's actually a good actor. I remembered as soon as he's told in secret that his "father" figure was actually murdered - at that moment Bean suddenly becomes Ned Stark for me. There's an internal power there that looks like it could be a dangerous force - a power that he doesn't even bother to draw from when he's taunted a little by Lannister.
Third, following another HBO tradition, the opening credits are mesmerizing. Check 'em out.
.. a little military and political strategy hinted at there, a little suggestion of the depth of detail that Martin has given to this fantasy world, and a suggestion of clockwork.
Fourth, as far as the nudity goes, remember that there's usually always more of it in the first episode of two of any HBO show. I almost think it must be one of the ways they market it to the HBO executives.
Fifth, the Stark kids are looking like they're going to be good. Don't think I've ever seen the actors before, but I especially found Maisie Williams (Arya) and Isaac Hempstead-Wright (Bran) to make themselves so personable that I could have been happy if the episode had just focused on their characters entirely.
Sixth, it's been a while let me get this straight, Mark Addy's Baratheon is now King, but isn't interested in actually running
his kingdom. "The Hand" of the king is given the power to run the kingdom. This a job most people would probably be happy to have. This is job where the last guy who had it was murdered. This is a job Stark  does not want,  was going to turn down, and  decided to accept the moment he finds out that the last one was murdered.
Seventh, Kit Harington's Jon Snow looks like he's going to be fun to watch. I couldn't quite tell as much about Richard Madden's Robb Stark yet, but I'm guessing he'll get more of his required character development soon.
This could be a great show, and from the first episode, it looks like it looks like it will be.