When it comes to important parts of American popular culture, Samuel L. Jackson is everywhere. He’s been in Star Wars movies, as Mace Windu. He’s been in Marvel movies, as Nick Fury. In fact, he’s been in over 100 movies since the early ‘70s and among other accomplishments, he’s been eaten by a shark (in Deep Blue Sea), he’s delivered the nastiest, most vicious monologue in history (in The Hateful Eight), and he’s gotten those snakes off the mother-f--kin’ plane (in Snakes on a Plane).
Jackson is currently second on the all-time box office list, behind only Harrison Ford, and with a couple more hits could overtake him. A big part of Jackson’s strength as an actor has always been his strong, distinctive, speaking voice. And now, Jackson has taken that voice to somewhere he’s never been in any of those more than 100 credits: Westeros.
HBO released a video on its YouTube channel titled Game of Thrones Beginner’s Guide: Uncensored, in which Jackson, in eight minutes, narrates highlights from all six seasons to date. It’s a trope familiar to many TV watchers, as fans used to frequently narrate whole seasons of Lost highlights in a similar manner and post the videos to YouTube, but never before has it been done in Jackson’s inimitable style.
The video, in true SLJ style, is full of f-bombs, right from its first few seconds. It eventually settles into a more general narration of the series. His description of the War of Five Kings goes “All hell has broken loose due to some things I can’t explain… just know that in all seven kingdoms of Westerns, peacetime is done! Finito! Everybody thinks they should sit on the Iron Throne - this guy, this guy and this guy, too!” The Red Wedding? “Let’s just say, some wedding invitations, you should decline.” The Unsullied? In a nod to Beyonce, Jackson exclaims, “that’s formation!” And wait until you hear what he says about dragons…
The video is described as a beginners guide, but viewers actually unfamiliar with Game of Thrones may be better off watching the TV series. But the Jackson video might make a useful refresher course, prior to the start of the next season.
Even so, the video has earned 100,000 views on YouTube just in its first few hours. It might be the best unorthodox use of Jackson's voice talents since he read the book-on-tape version of Go the F--k to Sleep. Might there be room for a role for Jackson on the show’s final two seasons?
Game of Thrones returns for its seventh season in 2017; the six seasons to date are available to stream on HBO Go and HBO Now