Thank the merciful bloodstained gods!
Not everyone is aware, but American novelist George R.R. Martin, probably best known for the wonderful vampire vehicle, Fevre Dream, wrote another series of books, which were made into an HBO series.
Shot in Ireland over eight seasons, with effects produced around the globe, the series gathered unto itself a  reasonably wide audience, and gave careers to many young aspiring thespians.
I’ll not waste time discussing the series, as most people are probably at least tangentially aware of multi-tiered interrelationships found within. And of course, there be dragons!
Bottom line, sitting down and watching the entire series, and I know several people who have done so several times, leads me to what I consider to be the finest presentation available – and that would be in 4k.
There are two physical variants. And neither is less than glorious.
The lessor is a boxed set of eight seasons, with beautiful graphics. But the one closest to my heart is the special edition available as a Best Buy release, and it’s perfection for any perfectionists and / or lovers of steel books.
As steel book aficionados well know, they have a tendency to damage easily. Nicks, scratches, dents – it’s not pretty, when desires to place them on display.
What’s special in the Best Buy variant is that the eight steelbooks are protected within a steel surrounding case, with each season protected from the next by spaces within a hard foam. No scratches or dents to be found.
Is it worth the additional $35 for the set? You’d better believe it if you’re a GOT / Steelbook fan.
Lest anyone have concerns about the quality of the programming, HBO has been upgrading for several years now.
Initially in beautifully packaged annual releases. Then the first season arrived in a steelbook, upgraded to 4k, and with the most delicately produced Dolby Atmos track that one might image. GOT nirvana.
Seasons two through seven never arrived in 4k, but season eight did, also with a wonderfully produced room filling Dolby Atmos track.
Now, the best for last. 4k/Dolby Atmos/ Steelbook within a Steel surround.
As Crassus would say…
“Thank the merciful bloodstained gods!”
And to go along with “Ever been bit by a dead bee?”
Ever heard a dragon in Dolby Atmos?

Image – 5

Audio – 5 (Dolby Atmos)

Pass / Fail – Pass

Upgrade from Blu-ray – Absolutely

Very Highly Recommended

RAH

 

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Adam Gregorich

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Adam Gregorich

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I have season 8 in UHD, and 1-4 in the Atmos re-releases, so while I would love to have and rewatch in 4K, I think I will wait for a price reduction.
 

dpippel

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I'd love to have the entire series in 4K as well but I'm with you, Adam. I have the HD streaming series, and it'll do until this comes down in price a bit. Would spring for those beautiful steelbooks Robert, but I'm trying to be a little frugal this year. :)
 
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Billy Batson

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An amazing series. I had all the seasons in various cases, there's one I couldn't find, & I lent out two seasons to a couple of married friends that have since separated, & I'm not going to step into that situation! So I bought the complete box set, if I had a 4K TV I'd have bought the 4K version, but the standard Blu-rays look fantastic. I still haven't seen season eight yet, & I'm prepared to be a bit disappointed, but I want to re-watch the whole thing again first.
 

Robert Harris

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An amazing series. I had all the seasons in various cases, there's one I couldn't find, & I lent out two seasons to a couple of married friends that have since separated, & I'm not going to step into that situation! So I bought the complete box set, if I had a 4K TV I'd have bought the 4K version, but the standard Blu-rays look fantastic. I still haven't seen season eight yet, & I'm prepared to be a bit disappointed, but I want to re-watch the whole thing again first.
You lend discs?
 

Robert Harris

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Aeons ago, when laser discs were in flower, I was away for a long period on a project. A ncouple of months after my return, I went to pull a disc from the shelf, and amazingly, it was nowhere to be found.

Doing a quick inventory, 2001 Criterion - missing. Many more, probably 15-20 titles - missing.

No one knew anything. I repurchased them.

Probably five years later, dinner at a friend‘s home.

Sitting in a large box by the door, my missing discs.

”We‘re not sure, are these yours?” “We must have borrowed them.”

I don’t loan discs. House and company rule.

If I have a spare, I gift them. On occasion I’ll purchase for someone.

But loan. Never.

And don’t even ask about award screeners. It’s the kind of thing over which one can lose friends.

”What do you mean, you can’t loan me x?” You don’t trust me”

No. I signed a contract.
 

Jeff Cooper

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While it's very nice that they had the thoughtfulness to protect the individual steelbooks within a larger steelbook, I'm very concerned there is no protection given for that larger steelbook.
 

Jeffrey D

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A good policy to not lend discs or money to anyone- chances are you’ll never see your possessions again. I learned the hard way.
:huh:
 

Robert Harris

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While it's very nice that they had the thoughtfulness to protect the individual steelbooks within a larger steelbook, I'm very concerned there is no protection given for that larger steelbook.
Announced only yesterday, that the new electric Hummer, will have a specially protected holding area for up to two Game of Thrones steelbook steel containers.
 

Billy Batson

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I bought one season in a Steelbook, just because it was a good price, but I couldn't get the discs out! I had to get the toolbox out & destroy the case in the end (that Steelbook wasn't so tough!). I kept the discs in some spare CD cases. So no more Steelbook's for me.
 

jayembee

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I bought one season in a Steelbook, just because it was a good price, but I couldn't get the discs out! I had to get the toolbox out & destroy the case in the end (that Steelbook wasn't so tough!). I kept the discs in some spare CD cases. So no more Steelbook's for me.
The Season 8 SteelBook was a pain in the ass. Six discs in a two-hub case, 3 discs per hub. Getting them out was like pulling out a well-hammered nail in a 2x4. However, I discovered that once you get them out, and put them back in, they don't seem nearly as hard to get out again the next time.

The copy in the BB SB Complete Collection set is the same way. Which is weird, since all of the other seasons are four discs with two of them in a 2-sided swing holder. At the very least, they could've included a swing holder in the S8 case and had only 2-disc hubs for the other four discs.

But that said, while I haven't watched the entire series (again) all the way through, I did my usual chapter-skip check of all the discs to see if any froze up. And I confess that I still ended up watching whole scenes in several episodes, most of them toward the end of the series (I've seen the earlier seasons more often than the later ones).

The A/V quality of the episodes was superb. And I was just as amazed by the quality of the supplementary material, which don't tend to be of the same level as the "feature".

I was waffling about spending the money on the BB SB UHD edition, but I'm really, really glad I did.