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Social Networks in Pop Culture – Game of Thrones

Last week was the season finale of one of the most popular shows to ever grace our television screens –  Game of Thrones. The show’s mesmerizing visuals and incredible plot has kept its audience captivated since 2011, and the shocking season finale of Season 7 surely has left the audience to highly anticipate season 8. Anyone who is a fan of the show knows of the complex relationships and connections between the characters. This article illustrates the extensive social network of the characters in Game of Thrones in a detailed interactive network. Each House in the show’s universe is represented by a specific color, and each character can be individually selected to view their personal connections. The size of the character circles represents the amount of screen time said character received – the larger the circle the more screen time. The social network is available for every season, so one can view how the it has evolved since the beginning of the show.

This resource is a prime example of the idea of social networks and their various characteristics. This Game of Thrones social network displays the connections between the characters, despite the relationship being good or bad. Each character represents a node in the network and the characters are linked by edges to show that they are connected/have interacted in the show. This network displays the strong and weak ties between the characters- the thicker the edge, the strong the tie and the thinner the edge, the weaker the tie. The strength of these ties are determined by how much screen time the characters had together. Other aspects of ideas we learned in class are also displayed in this graph, such as how there were two distinct components of the network in season 1 of the show; this is a result of the central characters in these components living in different parts of the Game of Thrones world. As the show progressed the 2 components eventually merged and became one large network, as seen in season 7. The Strong Triadic Closure property can also be easily visualized and seen by this graph – the 2 central leaders in season 7, Jon Snow and Daenerys Targaryen, each had strong ties to their trusted advisors who had to work together to support their leader, even if they did not know each other.

The Game of Thrones social network is so interesting to visualize, especially season by season. The characters mostly started off separated and focused in their own niches, however as the seasons progress and the social network is analyzed each season, one can see how the interaction of certain characters brings these separate groups together, to eventually lead to a connected network. While some character’s connections increased and grew stronger as the seasons progressed, such as Jon Snow, other characters, like Cersei Lannister, grew reclusive and their personal connections decreased. Why is this social network so complex and ever-changing? Well, you’re just going to have to watch the show and find out for yourself!



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