The books are worse. The imaginative faculty of anyone who enjoys such prose must resemble that of a dung beetle.
Thank you thank you thank you. Why is the writing in so much genre fantasy so... unimaginative?
I was being a jerk about the TV show, but really the books are terrible. The TV show ain't bad for entertainment (it could move a little more quickly), I just can't seem to find the superlatives others do though for it. It's OK.
You, IIRC, are the English Major, but I think English language writing has toiled for too long under yoke of "realism", and fantasy in a weird manner hyper-compensates for its lack of cred and offers less of a fantasy world than an alternate overly realized tedium. Hence all the stupidities of Tolkien and I guess this TV show / book series to have "real languages", elaborate histories, etc. It's nearly as formulaic a writing as there was. Its writing by numbers, literally. Hence all the aspy hangers-on. (Sci-fi splits here and some offers a way out of the tyranny of the real, I think.)
I tend to blame everything bad about English Lit on Hemingway. But you would need a few beers first and we would need some neon and shuffling drunks around us for me to even begin with my theory.
Where's our Kafka? A Penguin book cover tells me, if I am poor or working (is there a difference in America?) it is Philip K. Dick.