A1 Journal article (refereed)
Game of Thrones -pelin Let's Play -videot ja populaarikulttuurin vastaanotto esityksenä (2019)
Game of Thrones Let’s Play Videos and the Reception of Popular Culture as Performance

Koskimaa, R. (2019). Game of Thrones -pelin Let's Play -videot ja populaarikulttuurin vastaanotto esityksenä. Lähikuva, 32(3), 7-25. https://doi.org/10.23994/lk.87955

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editors: Koskimaa, Raine

Journal or series: Lähikuva

ISSN: 2343-399X

eISSN: 2343-399X

Publication year: 2019

Volume: 32

Issue number: 3

Pages range: 7-25

Publisher: Lähikuva-yhdistys

Publication country: Finland

Publication language: Finnish

DOI: https://doi.org/10.23994/lk.87955

Publication open access: Openly available

Publication channel open access: Open Access channel

Publication is parallel published (JYX): https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/66933


The highly popular TV series Game of Thrones has made the transmedia universe originally based on George R. R. Martin’s novel cycle The Song of Ice and Fire into a phenomenon, which has gained fans from much wider audience than fantasy fandom. In this article, I look at the ways how people experience the world, characters, and events of the Game of Thrones, and how they interpret these and relate them to their own lives. I take it as my hypothesis that Let’s Play videos provide fruitful material for scrutinizing the experiences evoked by video games, and more generally, by popular culture productions. My research method consists of analyzing Let’s Play videos based on the Game of Thrones videogame (Telltale 2014–15), focusing especially on the performance of the player-narrators.

The data set of this research was sampled from two online video publication platforms (Twitch, Youtube). On the audio track the player-narrators mainly verbalize things happening on the screen while playing Game of Thrones, and they also extensively dwell in the reflections and explanations regarding moral choices prompted by the game. Showing off emotional responses of the player-narrators plays an important role, too, which emphasizes the performative aspect of Let’s Play videos.

Let’s Play videos provide a way to show and increase one’s fancultural capital. Through publishing Let’s Play videos the player-narrators participate in the immaterial exchange economy of fandom, by contributing their share into the Game of Thrones universe. In the Game of Thrones Let’s Play videos the reflection focuses on moral choices. These videos open up views to private reception processes of the player-narrators, and to the flexible shifts and overlaps between various moral codes during these processes. Let’s Play videos seem to offer a new kind of platform to perform one’s fan activities, in which the intimate moment of reception may be opened up to a communal experience.

Keywords: popular culture; television series; video games; reception (comprehension); fandom; online communities; communality

Free keywords: Game of Thrones; Let’s Play -videot

Contributing organizations

Related projects

Ministry reporting: Yes

Reporting Year: 2019

JUFO rating: 1

Last updated on 2022-20-09 at 14:27