David Nutter reflects upon the fan reaction to the Red Wedding

Caption

During a recent webinar with other television directors, David Nutter discussed his sense of professional pride for the Red Wedding and his “amazing” experience watching fans react to it.

Last Tuesday, the Special Projects Committee of the Directors Guild of America (DGA) hosted a webinar called A Conversation with Episodic Television Directors – How Inspiration Fuels the Art of Directing. Former DGA President, Paris Barclay, moderated the conversation, which featured Game of Thrones‘ own David Nutter as well as Michelle MacLaren (The Deuce, The Morning Show), Ken Whittingham (Atypical, Grace and Frankie) and Jessica Yu (Fosse/Verdon, Hollywood).

The guests covered a range of topics over the course of the webinar, from the stamina it takes to keep going in their competitive industry, to which directors they admired early on in their careers, to (perhaps inevitably), how they are maintaining their creative drives during the Covid 19 pandemic. While discussing their proudest professional achievements, Nutter talked about the Red Wedding and its extraordinary fan reception … which was fitting since June 2 was the 7th anniversary of “The Rains of Castamere”‘s airing.

“Directors in television don’t often get reviews because you’re directing television,” Nutter said. “But we worked very hard on the episode and thought it had turned out well, but what came after that I didn’t expect. What came after that was YouTube exploded and people who had read the books were shooting their friends watching the episode. It was amazing to see people’s reactions to what I had done. That was something that mattered to me quite a bit because I realized I could get the audience to care about something. And if they do that, they’ll jump into the show all the way. With Game of Thrones, we’d spent three long years building that background and that relationship with the audience, and I think we hit a home run and that was a real joyful moment.”

I imagine that was the first time anything relating to the Red Wedding has been described as “joyful.”

It really is extraordinary, though, to reflect upon the impact that the climactic scene of “The Rains of Castamere” had on the fandom, on the show and on the television industry itself just over seven years ago.

Unfortunately, no clips from the webinar are available at the moment. However, DGA promises to add video highlights to the webinar’s gallery in the near future.

342 responses

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    1. Having not yet read anything from the books, The Red Wedding was the moment when I now knew Game of Thrones was most definitely *not* your Daddy Tolkien’s fantasy epic. Up until that point, I had believed Robb was going to avenge his father’s death, and continue being a typical fantasy hero. David Bradley’s perfect reading of Walder Frey’s snidely mocking death sentence, “The King in the North arises,” just drove the point home perfectly. (It was the classic story twist: surprising in the moment, but inevitable in retrospect. Every time I re-watch Robb, Cat, and Talisa partaking of bread and salt in The Twins’ musty throne room, I shiver anew.)

      After that moment, I gave up any remaining preconceptions of where the story was going, and just buckled up to enjoy the ride.

      I consider The Rains of Castamere as the paradigmatic moment in all of Game of Thrones. Thanks to GRRM, D&D, and David Nutter for making it such a beautifully horrific viewing experience.

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    2. Arg!!!!
      The Red Wedding was too horrific for me to rewatch, despite the well-deserved praise for the episode, “The Rains of Castamere” (S3e9).

      I’ll be the first to concur that it “really is extraordinary, though, to reflect upon the impact that the climactic scene of “The Rains of Castamere” had on the fandom, on the show and on the television industry itself just over seven years ago.” It was a watershed moment in TV history, especially for non-book readers like me who had no idea what was coming.

      Me to TV: “WTF is going on??? 😫 Family Patriarch Ned Stark got beheaded already. Now the matriarch? And their son Robb’s wife, … and unborn Eddard Jr. too? And Robb himself as well?
      Oh no! Not Greywind! 🐺😖….All the defenseless Stark soldiers inside and outside getting gutted and burned?
      Wait… No! No! That’s Greywind’s head on Robb’s torso being paraded around by those doofuses with the stupid hats! And poor little Arya’s got to see that???”
      … That’s it? Nobody’s coming to save the day? Nobody to even fight back. Surely someone’s going to come along and take out that pompous windbag Walder Frey…or at least kill his goofball son who plunged his knife into pregnant Talisa’s belly and the other jackass son who sliced Catelyn’s throat. No? Anybody? That’s… it?”

      [* Future TB squeals with delight 3+ years later when “little Arya” single-handedly exterminates f*ckwad Walder Frey, his damn moron sons, and all the other f*ckit Frey doofuses who slaughtered the Starks at the Red Wedding.*]

      The only parts of that episode I’ve rewatched are Sandor & Arya’s scenes before they reached the Twins:

      S3e9, Sandor and Arya encounter pork merchant with broken-down cart….followed by another Hound-Arya insult-fest:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ll8hB7ywcYI

      (Classic moments at 1:10 – 1:14, at 1:36 – 1:41, and at 1:44 – 1:45.)

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    3. Tensor the Mage, Still Loving the Ending,

      ”Having not yet read anything from the books, The Red Wedding was the moment when I now knew Game of Thrones was most definitely *not* your Daddy Tolkien’s fantasy epic. Up until that point, I had believed Robb was going to avenge his father’s death…”

      You and me both, Tensor, you and me both.

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    4. Farimer123,

      Yeah, I looked into that. For some reason even the softcover versions of the first three books are ridiculously overpriced on Amazon. I would’ve figured by now that the prices would have come down.

      I may try the audiobooks. Although I know they’re cheaper, in general I shy away from “Kindle” downloads and audiobooks because I just like to hold a real book in my hands. However, since I’m a long-time fan of Roy Dotrice (ASOIAF book narrator) I may make an exception if I can’t find the first three books at a reasonable price.

      The consensus among book readers is that the first three are tightly written and are excellent reads. (I know there’s a difference of opinion on the later books; some readers say they are meandering or bloated. I wouldn’t know one way or the other.)

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    5. Ten Bears,

      I’ve seen some of the ASOIAF books at second-hand book shops and fairs. Next time I’m in that area, I can take a look for you if you like?

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    6. Adrianacandle,

      Thanks! I should probably search places other than Amazon. It’d be the socially responsible thing to do anyway. I should take the time to support independent book stores rather than succumb to my inner sloth and order things from Amazon.

      Amazon’s Free Shipping sucks me in. I always wind up ordering additional stuff I don’t really need anyway. It’d be worth a few more minutes and a few extra dollars to buy books from real bookstores. It’d be unfortunate if they’re all driven out of business by the Big Behemoth. (Hey… Wasn’t that the plot of “You’ve Got Mail” with Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks?)

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    7. And so he spoke, and so he spoke, that Lord of Castamere!
      And now the rains weep o’er his halls, with not a soul to hear…

      Ten Bears,

      The Red Wedding was too horrific for me to rewatch, despite the well-deserved praise for the episode, “The Rains of Castamere” (S3e9).

      It’s well worth a re-watch, especially for the smaller moments. For example, when Cat sees that Roose Bolton has returned and is now wearing chainmail under his clothes, she merely reacts angrily to him. She does not raise a hue and cry to the Starks to save themselves. Her subsequent pathetically useless pleading for her life to the indifferent Walder, and her pointless murder of his helpless child bride, make for a fitting coda to her lifetime of ineffectual fretting. She’s really the Hamlet of the story.

      (That episode also has a commentary by B&W which is well worth watching. They talk about how long they let the image of the murdered Cat, standing with her throat slit, remain on the screen. They wanted it to be uncomfortable for the viewer. It’s a subtle foreshadowing to the mass slaughter of King’s Landing in The Bells: challenging the viewer with the question, is this what you really wanted?)

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    8. Ten Bears: Thanks! I should probably search places other than Amazon. It’d be the socially responsible thing to do anyway. I should take the time to support independent book stores rather than succumb to my inner sloth and order things from Amazon.

      Amazon’s Free Shipping sucks me in. I always wind up ordering additional stuff I don’t really need anyway. It’d be worth a few more minutes and a few extra dollars to buy books from real bookstores. It’d be unfortunate if they’re all driven out of business by the Big Behemoth. (Hey… Wasn’t that the plot of “You’ve Got Mail” with Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks?)

      I think ‘inner sloth’ is a great way to describe my Amazon ordering habits too. The free (and fast) shipping also sucks me in — and that I don’t have to go out into the sunshine. I don’t even have to move (well, except making my way downstairs to get the package).

      But I like your idea of supporting bookstores (and I think I recall this was the plot of ‘You’ve Got Mail’ — it’s been eons since I’ve watched that movie. I should give it another go!)

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    9. Tensor the Mage, Still Loving the Ending,

      ” It’s well worth a re-watch, especially for the smaller moments. For example, when Cat sees that Roose Bolton has returned and is now wearing chainmail under his clothes, she merely reacts angrily to him. She does not raise a hue and cry to the Starks to save themselves…”

      Huh. I didn’t catch that. I thought Catelyn peeked under Roose’s sleeve and saw the chain mail, and didn’t have enough time to figure out what to make of it before the sh*t hit the fan a few seconds later.

      I did not realize that Roose had left to change his clothes and then came back wearing the chainmail.

      Should Catelyn have quickly put two and two together and immediately alerted everyone that… that what? Roose had donned chainmail because…? Something was amiss… but what? I’m not sure how she could’ve concluded within a few seconds that a treasonfest was underway. I thought the band striking up the Lannister theme song was the big red flag – and by then the carnage was about to begin.

      Meanwhile, in hindsight, if Sandor had not stopped the hijacked wagon to chow down on pig parts, Arya would’ve been inside the slaughterhouse when the doors were locked for the butchering of the Stark family inside.

      Watching Arya’s face when Robb’s mutilated corpse was paraded by was harrowing enough for me. I did not need to (re-)watch Catelyn with her throat sliced open. If Benioff and Weiss ”talk[ed] about how long they let the image of the murdered Cat, standing with her throat slit, remain on the screen” because they “wanted it to be uncomfortable for the viewer,” that lingering shot wasn’t necessary to freak me out. Call me squeamish. I was more than “uncomfortable” when that jackass went to town on Talisa’s stomach.

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    10. Adrianacandle: I’ve seen some of the ASOIAF books at second-hand book shops and fairs.

      Yes, and charity shops. Here in England they will be allowed to re-open in a couple of weeks (although not all will be able to). Quite common to see a ASOIAF book on sale for a £ or two.
      I usually run a used book stall at our local fete (cancelled this year of course – it would have been today!) Books are donated by local people and last year we had copies of AGOT and ACOK.
      Worth looking on Ebay too.

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    11. Grandmaester Flash: Yes, and charity shops. Here in England they will be allowed to re-open in a couple of weeks (although not all will be able to). Quite common to see a ASOIAF book on sale for a £ or two.
      I usually run a used book stall at our local fete (cancelled this year of course – it would have been today!) Books are donated by local people and last year we had copies of AGOT and ACOK.
      Worth looking on Ebay too.

      Those are great ideas! (As is your running a book stall at your local fete!)

      There are two brick-and-mortar stores here (for any Calgary and area residents) that buy second-hand books from people to sell in their stores. Often, the books are in pretty good condition and you can get them for pretty low costs. I saw ACOK, ASOS, and ADWD on display shelves last time I went in February! 🙂

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    12. Ten Bears,

      Ten Bears, there is a version of an audio reading on YouTube – not Roy Dotrice. Whether it’s legally there I haven’t a clue. The voice of the reader isn’t to my personal taste (when I first came across it, it was billed as being an ‘amazing voice’ and I’m of the school of ‘Self praise is no recommendation’ might have influenced me). She says ‘rag’d’ for ‘ragged’ which should be a two syllable word. But you might like it better than I – it would be a way of dipping a toe in the water without spending out any money. I will say that it doesn’t have the prologue from the book in this reading. https://youtu.be/XcA7hzCVt2Q

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    13. The Red Wedding was the moment that turned Game of Thrones into a global cultural phenomenon. “Rains of Castamere” is the GoT episode that appears more often in the lists of best TV episodes ever. The RW sequence was well directed, beautifullly lit and superbly performed. The scene is also gruesome in the books, even if there’s no Talisa.

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    14. The Red Wedding was the episode that lifted Game of Thrones into the stratosphere in terms of it’s popularity however despite it’s huge shock and awe it’s an episode that I rarely want to re-watch, most likely for how tragic it is.

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    15. It’s funny, even before I started watching Thrones, I heard about the Red Wedding. I didn’t know exactly who it involved other than a character played by David Bradley, as I watched an interview with him mainly for Doctor Who stuff but they also talked about the Red Wedding episode. I saw some spoilers in publicity for Series 5 and it was 2015 when I started watching the show. I had a job interview the day of watching that episode, even though I sort of knew what was coming (and started to work it out from Walder in S1 and Talisa in S2), the sequence is still so shocking it seared itself into my mind and I think it was the moment that the hype and publicity about GoT just went stratospheric. I knew a things about Seasons 1-4 before watching them so it was only mid-Season 5 onwards where I was watching with everyone else.

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    16. ‘…the first time anything relating to the Red Wedding has been described as “joyful.”’

      In the immortal words of Sansa Stark: “It had its moments.”

      😉

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    17. So funny. My son in law is in this collage (On the left with the blue shirt). I’ll never forget when he watched it. Afterwards he went out and just sat alone on the porch for an hour. Just looking down.

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    18. The slaughter of the Starks and many of their bannermen ended our illusions of this being a standard fantasy epic, but in looking back upon their journey that ended at The Twins, my big question is — why?

      After Ned’s imprisonment, Robb called his House’s banners and rode South to release his father. That’s a proper enough feudal response, but Ned’s execution should have ended their mission. Instead of returning to their North with his men for the final harvest, newly-crowned King Robb dragged them hither and yon across the Riverlands, in pursuit of — um, what, exactly? He repeatedly bloodied the Lannister forces, captured Jaime, and was finally heading west to Casterly Rock when Tywin, having tired of the Young Wolf defeating the overpriced Lannister Army, conspired with Walder Frey and Roose Bolton to end the problem treacherously. That most prized of all possible hostages, Jaime Lannister, had already been released by Robb’s idiot mother. Meanwhile, Robb’s ‘royal justice’ of the eldest Karstark was to continue causing House Stark problems well past the onset of Winter.

      It was all a Royal Charlie-Foxtrot, and no one in the story or audience really questioned it. If nothing else, it illustrated nicely how completely unfit the Starks were to rule a dinner table, let alone a kingdom.

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    19. Tensor the Mage, Still Loving the Ending:
      The slaughter of the Starks and many of their bannermen ended our illusions of this being a standard fantasy epic, but in looking back upon their journey that ended at The Twins, my big question is — why?

      After Ned’s imprisonment, Robb called his House’s banners and rode South to release his father. That’s a proper enough feudal response, but Ned’s execution should have ended their mission. Instead of returning to their North with his men for the final harvest, newly-crowned King Robb dragged them hither and yon across the Riverlands, in pursuit of — um, what, exactly? He repeatedly bloodied the Lannister forces, captured Jaime, and was finally heading west to Casterly Rock when Tywin, having tired of the Young Wolf defeating the overpriced Lannister Army, conspired with Walder Frey and Roose Bolton to end the problem treacherously. That most prized of all possible hostages, Jaime Lannister, had already been released by Robb’s idiot mother. Meanwhile, Robb’s ‘royal justice’ of the eldest Karstark was to continue causing House Stark problems well past the onset of Winter.

      It was all a Royal Charlie-Foxtrot, and no one in the story or audience really questioned it. If nothing else, it illustrated nicely how completely unfit the Starks were to rule a dinner table, let alone a kingdom.

      Thank you for your analysis. I agree it would have been best to go home. I can’t believe that Robb’s goal was to overthrow King’s Landing. He was working to get his father’s release and take some revenge. Once Ned was killed, only revenge was left. The obvious response would have been to execute Jaime as justice for Ned’s execution. But mom let Jaime free. As you said there wasn’t much left to be done unless Robb thought there was a realistic way to overthrow King’s Landing.

      Robb found out that a king can’t just do what he likes. King Robert spoke of this life lesson when on the King’s Road with Ned. Getting married and breaking his vow was unforgivable and ultimately the major mistake of Robb’s rule.
      Swinging the sword against the Kastarks may have seemed like justice for betrayal, but he would have been better served to send him to the wall or just to pardon him understanding that Lannisters were the enemy, not the Kastarks (and actually Little Finger was the real enemy)

      Also Tyrion had one of his best strategic moments in the series when he set his sites on influencing Cat in hopes she would be willing to betray Robb for her daughters’ freedom. .

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    20. Jonathan:
      It’s funny, even before I started watching Thrones, I heard about the Red Wedding. I didn’t know exactly who it involved other than a character played by David Bradley, as I watched an interview with him mainly for Doctor Who stuff but they also talked about the Red Wedding episode. I saw some spoilers in publicity for Series 5 and it was 2015 when I started watching the show. I had a job interview the day of watching that episode, even though I sort of knew what was coming (and started to work it out from Walder in S1 and Talisa in S2), the sequence is still so shocking it seared itself into my mind and I think it was the moment that the hype and publicity about GoT just went stratospheric. I knew a things about Seasons 1-4 before watching them so it was only mid-Season 5 onwards where I was watching with everyone else.

      You mentioned Dr. Who, so I had to include this short Maisie promo video from BBC. This is a great 1 minute video showing again how the camera loves Maisie. I just watched it and it had lots of great shots of her Dr. Who role in this 1 minute..She was outstanding in Dr. Who, and maybe one day we will get that Maisie and Clara spinoff..

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    21. Tron79,

      ”…You mentioned Dr. Who, so I had to include this short Maisie promo video from BBC. This is a great 1 minute video showing again how the camera loves Maisie. I just watched it and it had lots of great shots of her Dr. Who role in this 1 minute..She was outstanding in Dr. Who, and maybe one day we will get that Maisie and Clara spinoff.”

      Oh yes, she was outstanding in Dr. Who!

      And coincidentally, I was about to reply to a comment in a sub thread (under another post?) about conclusions that leave loose threads and unanswered questions vs. deliberately constructing an open-ended conclusion to allow for possible future spinoffs and sequels.

      I was – and may still – post this link to the final scene of Ashildr (Maisie Williams) and Clara (Jenna Coleman) in the Dr. Who episode “Hell Bent” as a perfect example of a satisfying ending that still leaves the door open for a spin-off.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p2znUOjfwFE

      As I’m sure you’ve heard or read, Dr. Who fans have been clamoring for an Ashildr + Clara spin-off ever since that episode aired, especially after Clara’s tantalizing comments about taking “the long way around” and “stuff happening” – not to mention my favorite little exchange between the two young ladies: “Wiggle room… Yeah, wiggle room.”

      Also….

      (to be cont)

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    22. The Red Wedding was absolute perfection, but strangely, the episode itself doesn’t quite make it into my top ten episodes. I felt like the other plots within the episode dragged it down and wished they had focused the episode entirely on the Red Wedding.

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    23. I loved the Red Wedding episode. It subverted expectations much in the same way that Ned’s death did, but part of me feels like it set the expectations a little too high for the show moving forward and the ending suffered as a result.

      After the Red Wedding a lot of fans were expecting constant subversions and twists at every turn, which, IMO, was a big reason why Dany broke bad at the end. Don’t get me wrong, I assume Dany was going to go this route the entire time regardless of the fan response, but I think this is where GRRM/D&D felt like they needed to come up with an even bigger twist at the end to one-up the Red Wedding. Hence, we have Dany torching KL.

      I think the show tried to set up Dany’s downfall in the best way they thought they could, and the ending worked for some viewers, but it also didn’t work for some people too. I think the show could’ve done a better job with Dany’s heel turn, and articulated it much better, but I think they wanted to make it a big surprise in the same vein as the Red Wedding, and I think that was a problem.

      For these reasons, I think the Red Wedding has a complicated legacy within the GoT fandom.

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    24. Tron79,

      Before your last paragraph, I would have assumed you forgot Sansa, and supposedly Arya, were prisoners in King’s Landing. Once Ned was executed, Robb was not only fighting for revenge. He was fighting to save his sisters. Executing Jaime as justice for Ned would have resulted in their deaths as well. And Robb was king of the Riverlands as well. He and the northmen would have been relatively safe returning to the North, but the Riverlands would surely have suffered.

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    25. Young Dragon:
      Tron79,

      Before your last paragraph, I would have assumed you forgot Sansa, and supposedly Arya, were prisoners in King’s Landing. Once Ned was executed, Robb was not only fighting for revenge. He was fighting to save his sisters. Executing Jaime as justice for Ned would have resulted in their deaths as well. And Robb was king of the Riverlands as well. He and the northmen would have been relatively safe returning to the North, but the Riverlands would surely have suffered.

      Well, Cat was thinking about her daughters but I never thought Robb was as concerned with the girls. I could be wrong there. In that society less importance was put on the women hostages. Sansa was more valuable as a potential bride with her ties to the North. She was less valuable as a hostage to trade.

      If it were Jon as king I would agree with you. He was very concerned about his sisters (on the show and in the books)

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    26. Tron79,

      I think both you and Young Dragon make good points. I think Robb was concerned about his sisters, I think that was one of his goals (the safe return of his sisters was included as one of his terms for peace) but I don’t think they were his top priority. As king, I think he felt he had to appease his lords’ interests as well (or they could get rid of him) and he didn’t feel like he was in a place where he could trade Jaime for them:

      “Cersei Lannister will never consent to trade your sisters for a pair of cousins. It’s her brother she’ll want, as you know full well.” She had told him as much before, but Catelyn was finding that kings do not listen half so attentively as sons.

      “I can’t release the Kingslayer, not even if I wanted to. My lords would never abide it.”

      “Your lords made you their king.”

      “And can unmake me just as easy.”

      “If your crown is the price we must pay to have Arya and Sansa returned safe, we should pay it willingly. Half your lords would like to murder Lannister in his cell. If he should die while he’s your prisoner, men will say—”

      “—that he well deserved it,” Robb finished.

      “And your sisters?” Catelyn asked sharply. “Will they deserve their deaths as well? I promise you, if any harm comes to her brother, Cersei will pay us back blood for blood—”

      “Lannister won’t die,” Robb said. “No one so much as speaks to him without my warrant. He has food, water, clean straw, more comfort than he has any right to. But I won’t free him, not even for Arya and Sansa.”

      Catelyn addresses the point you make:

      [Robb] pushed a fall of hair out of his eyes and gave a shake of the head. “I might have been able to trade the Kingslayer for Father, but . . .”

      “. . . but not for the girls?” Her voice was icy quiet. “Girls are not important enough, are they?”

      Robb made no answer, but there was hurt in his eyes. Blue eyes, Tully eyes, eyes she had given him. She had wounded him, but he was too much his father’s son to admit it.

      That was unworthy of me, she told herself. Gods be good, what is to become of me? He is doing his best, trying so hard, I know it, I see it, and yet . . . I have lost my Ned, the rock my life was built on, I could not bear to lose the girls as well . . .

      “I’ll do all I can for my sisters,” Robb said. “If the queen has any sense, she’ll accept my terms. If not, I’ll make her rue the day she refused me.”

      With Jon, he is concerned about his sisters in the first book but ultimately, stays loyal to the Watch and is unable to do anything for them. When Jon does face a situation somewhat similar to Robb’s during his tenure as Lord Commander, he tries to stay neutral and put his blood ties aside. However, when Melisandre offers him something akin to an apple on a silver platter — allowing her to save his sister (Arya) while he works to prepare the realm’s defense — it’s an offer Jon ultimately can’t resist and a choice that ultimately leads to disaster.

      I find it’s sort of a tricky balance that’s being explored from both sides.

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    27. Ten Bears:
      Tron79,

      ”…You mentioned Dr. Who, so I had to include this short Maisie promo video from BBC. This is a great 1 minute video showing again how the camera loves Maisie. I just watched it and it had lots of great shots of her Dr. Who role in this 1 minute..She was outstanding in Dr. Who, and maybe one day we will get that Maisie and Clara spinoff.”

      Oh yes, she was outstanding in Dr. Who!

      And coincidentally, I was about to reply to a comment in a sub thread (under another post?)about conclusions that leave loose threads and unanswered questions vs. deliberately constructing an open-ended conclusion to allow for possible future spinoffs and sequels.

      I was – and may still – post this link to the final scene of Ashildr (Maisie Williams) and Clara (Jenna Coleman) in the Dr. Who episode “Hell Bent” as a perfect example of a satisfying ending that still leaves the door open for a spin-off.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p2znUOjfwFE

      As I’m sure you’ve heard or read, Dr. Who fans have been clamoring for an Ashildr + Clara spin-off ever since that episode aired, especially after Clara’s tantalizing comments about taking “the long way around” and “stuff happening” – not to mention my favorite little exchange between the two young ladies: “Wiggle room… Yeah, wiggle room.”

      Also….

      (to be cont)

      I would love to see the spinoff. With time travel there is always wiggle room. And they did have chemistry as you have posted before.

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    28. Adrianacandle:
      Tron79,

      I think both you and Young Dragon make good points. I think Robb was concerned about his sisters, I think that was one of his goals (the safe return of his sisters was included as one of his terms for peace) but I don’t think they were his top priority. As king, I think he felt he had to appease his lords’ interests as well (or they could get rid of him) and he didn’t feel like he was in a place where he could trade Jaime for them:

      Catelyn addresses the point you make:

      With Jon, he is concerned about his sisters in the first book but ultimately, stays loyal to the Watch and is unable to do anything for them. When Jon does face a situation somewhat similar to Robb’s during his tenure as Lord Commander, he tries to stay neutral and put his blood ties aside. However, when Melisandre offers him something akin to an apple on a silver platter — allowing her to save his sister (Arya) while he works to prepare the realm’s defense — it’s an offer Jon ultimately can’t resist and a choice that ultimately leads to disaster.

      I find it’s sort of a tricky balance that’s being explored from both sides.

      I love how you have these excerpts so handy!! and right on point.
      I agree that the girls aren’t Robb’s priority. He does want to have them returned, but not at the price of giving up Jaime in an even trade. That does lead to Cat taking matters into her own hands since she knows Robb won’t do it.

      Also in regards to book Jon

      His fatal flaw was caring too much for Arya and forgetting about his vow to the Watch.
      The pink letter was too much for him to think of Arya being forced to marry. And ironically he’s worried about Fake Arya. Deciding to attack Winterfell does lead to horrible consequences for Jon. His friends couldn’t rescue him from himself this time like they did in the show when he attempted to go rescue Ned and they met him in the woods. By this time in the book, he didn’t have many friends left at Castle Black (I don’t think… parts are starting to fade from my memory… I may need to do some strategic re-reads of certain characters. Hey, that’s a fun idea. I could just read Arya’s chapters. And then just read Jon’s (for example).) (this is becoming a bit like math and programming with embedded parenthesis and I have to make sure I have the right number of closing parentheses or I will get an error…I digress).

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    29. Tron79,

      I love how you have these excerpts so handy!! and right on point.

      It’s all because iBooks has a nice search feature! I don’t think I’d be so handy with excerpts if I had to rely on hardcopies T_T

      I agree that the girls aren’t Robb’s priority. He does want to have them returned, but not at the price of giving up Jaime in an even trade. That does lead to Cat taking matters into her own hands since she knows Robb won’t do it.

      I agree.

      His fatal flaw was caring too much for Arya and forgetting about his vow to the Watch.

      I think that’s definitely part of it, yes. If Jon didn’t love Arya so much, he would not have accepted Melisandre’s offer.

      But I don’t think Jon forgot his vows or his neutrality. Initially, despite how much it pained him and his internal struggle over it, Jon was preparing himself to put Arya aside for the sake of his neutrality until Melisandre made him her offer:

      “Lord Snow?” Clydas peered at him closely with his dim pink eyes. “Are you… unwell? You seem…”

      “He’s to marry Arya Stark. My little sister.” Jon could almost see her in that moment, long-faced and gawky, all knobby knees and sharp elbows, with her dirty face and tangled hair. They would wash the one and comb the other, he did not doubt, but he could not imagine Arya in a wedding gown, nor Ramsay Bolton’s bed. No matter how afraid she is, she will not show it. If he tries to lay a hand on her, she’ll fight him. 

      “Your sister,” Iron Emmett said, “how old is…”

      By now she’d be eleven, Jon thought. Still a child. “I have no sister. Only brothers. Only you.” Lady Catelyn would have rejoiced to hear those words, he knew. That did not make them easier to say. His fingers closed around the parchment. Would that they could crush Ramsay Bolton’s throat as easily. 

      Clydas cleared his throat. “Will there be an answer?”

      Jon shook his head and walked away.

      [Melisandre] “The heart is all that matters. Do not despair, Lord Snow. Despair is a weapon of the enemy, whose name may not be spoken. Your sister is not lost to you.”

      [Jon] “I have no sister.” The words were knives. What do you know of my heart, priestess? What do you know of my sister? 

      Jon felt as stiff as a man of sixty years. Dark dreams, he thought, and guilt. His thoughts kept returning to Arya. There is no way I can help her. I put all kin aside when I said my words. If one of my men told me his sister was in peril, I would tell him that was no concern of his. Once a man had said the words his blood was black. Black as a bastard’s heart. He’d had Mikken make a sword for Arya once, a bravo’s blade, made small to fit her hand. Needle. He wondered if she still had it. Stick them with the pointy end, he’d told her, but if she tried to stick the Bastard, it could mean her life.

      “You have not asked about your sister,” Melisandre said, as they climbed the spiral steps of the King’s Tower.
      “I told you. I have no sister. We put aside our kin when we say our words. I cannot help Arya, much as I—”

      But then Melisandre makes him this offer:

      “I told you that the Lord of Light would hear your prayers. You wanted a way to save your little sister and still hold fast to the honor that means so much to you, to the vows you swore before your wooden god.” She pointed with a pale finger. “There he stands, Lord Snow. Arya’s deliverance. A gift from the Lord of Light… and me.”

      An offer Jon seems to accept — but he still acknowledges men of the Night’s Watch are not supposed to have sisters:

      “A grey girl on a dying horse, fleeing from her marriage. On the strength of those words he had loosed Mance Rayder and six spearwives on the north. “Young ones, and pretty,” Mance had said. The unburnt king supplied some names, and Dolorous Edd had done the rest, smuggling them from Mole’s Town. It seemed like madness now. He might have done better to strike down Mance the moment he revealed himself. Jon had a certain grudging admiration for the late King-Beyond-the-Wall, but the man was an oathbreaker and a turncloak. He had even less trust in Melisandre. Yet somehow here he was, pinning his hopes on them. All to save my sister. But the men of the Night’s Watch have no sisters.

      _____

      The pink letter was too much for him to think of Arya being forced to marry. And ironically he’s worried about Fake Arya. Deciding to attack Winterfell does lead to horrible consequences for Jon. His friends couldn’t rescue him from himself this time like they did in the show when he attempted to go rescue Ned and they met him in the woods.

      Oh yes, believing Ramsay had Arya caused Jon a great deal of pain and it’s true Jon’s friends can’t save him from himself this time (and ironically, Jon sent them all away to other posts in order to more effectively do his job as LC).

      However, when the Pink Letter arrives, Ramsay is demanding Jon send Arya back. So I think Jon would have to know Ramsay no longer has Arya? I don’t think Jon marching on Winterfell was to rescue Arya but I think Jon’s efforts to save Arya definitely led to the Pink Letter, to which Jon had no good choices in response: it was either confront the monster himself or wait for the monster’s attack.

      On that note, Adam Feldman thinks that Jon’s decision to march on Ramsay was more about his repulsion at Ramsay’s clear moral depravity and wanting to take out a monster himself. Because of the situation Jon brought on himself by allowing Melisandre to send Mance to rescue (f)Arya, it has invited Ramsay’s wrath against Castle Black whereby Jon either abide by the atrocious terms Ramsay has set or Ramsay is going to attack.

      By this time in the book, he didn’t have many friends left at Castle Black (I don’t think… parts are starting to fade from my memory… I may need to do some strategic re-reads of certain characters. Hey, that’s a fun idea. I could just read Arya’s chapters. And then just read Jon’s (for example).)

      That’s true, Jon is surrounded by mainly those who oppose all of his plans because he’s sent his friends away to do other job.

      (this is becoming a bit like math and programming with embedded parenthesis and I have to make sure I have the right number of closing parentheses or I will get an error…I digress).

      Omg, this was one of the things I struggled with the most when I was trying to code T_T I ALWAYS sucked at it. I’m terrible.

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    30. Tron79,

      (cont. from 11:23 am)

      I was also amazed how much “Clashildr shipping” I saw while those Dr. Who episodes aired, and the barrage of fanfic that followed: not just “The Continuing Adventures of Ashildr and Clara in Outer Space,” but elaborate romance stories. Part of that may have been attributable to some offhanded comments between the characters onscreen, e.g., complimenting each other’s attractiveness; the hints of Clara’s sexual fluidity (she mentioned she had kissed Jane Austen); the perception of double entendres in the dialogue, particularly in that final scene; and the chemistry between the actresses. Then of course there was simply what was onscreen in the finale: two attractive, adventurous young women, flying off together in their very own Tardis.

      https://66.media.tumblr.com/98b567f4491b78533ba5a3766a0927e0/tumblr_nyx4y607A21sg9p55o1_400.png

      It was a nice touch on the part of the Dr. Who showrunner (Stephen Moffet?) that Ashildr finally got what she wanted after the Doctor had refused her request (in the second of her four episodes, “The Woman Who Lived”) to take her with him; and that Clara’s “death” was postponed indefinitely. That makes it easier for them to return – in their own spin-off or in guest appearances – without the usual cliched artifices and retcons shows use to bring back dead or departed characters.

      P.S. I have not watched Dr. Who after the season 9 finale. I understand that Jodi Whittaker replaced Peter Capaldi as the next regenerated Doctor, with a new companion or companions. There may be a new showrunner as well.
      I’m not sure how the show’s ratings have been.
      If they need a ratings boost, well, they know where to turn. 👸🏻 👩🏻‍🚀

        Quote  Reply

    31. Mr Derp,

      ”I loved the Red Wedding episode. It subverted expectations much in the same way that Ned’s death did, but part of me feels like it set the expectations a little too high for the show moving forward and the ending suffered as a result.

      After the Red Wedding a lot of fans were expecting constant subversions and twists at every turn…”

      ——-
      From comments I’ve read, there was a logic in the subverted expectations: Do stupid sh*t, suffer consequences.

      That may be where the latter seasons felt out of whack. (I’m looking at you, Tyrion.)

        Quote  Reply

    32. Young Dragon,

      ”Before your last paragraph, I would have assumed you forgot Sansa, and supposedly Arya, were prisoners in King’s Landing. Once Ned was executed, Robb was not only fighting for revenge. He was fighting to save his sisters.”

      He was? Maybe in the books. In the show, I don’t recall Robb continuing his crusade in order to rescue his sisters. If that were an objective, wouldn’t he have agreed to the hostage exchange? He didn’t know that the Jaime-for-Arya & Sansa proposal was a hoax. He rejected the proposal – paving the way for Catelyn to get bamboozled by LF and release the Kingslayer.

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    33. Mr Derp,

      I liked the wildling part of the episode fine, I just would have preferred if they placed it in another episode. I agree about Yunkai. Not a fan of how three people took on a contingent of soldiers by themselves. I also didn’t like them cutting from them being surrounded to them having successfully captured the city. Still, I hold Rains of Castamere in high regard, it just barely missed out in being in my top ten.

        Quote  Reply

    34. Tron79,

      He was definitely concerned about them, it’s just his hands were tied. He couldn’t trade Jaime for them because his lords wouldn’t stand for it. In fact, his lords wanted Jaime dead, but Robb couldn’t because he knew there would be nothing to stop the Lannisters from harming Sansa and Arya. Why else would he keep him alive?

        Quote  Reply

    35. Mr Derp:
      Young Dragon,

      I didn’t really care for the Yunkai part of the episode along with the Fabio version of Daario, but I enjoyed the Jon Snow/Wildings/Ygritte part of the episode.

      I enjoyed the Sandor & Arya part of the episode. At least before they got to the Twins.
      Their scene with the pork merchant with the broken cart is one of my all-time favorites.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ll8hB7ywcYI

      And for those who relish their insult-fests, their followup scene was pretty harsh, i.e.:
      Sandor being a real callous a-hole, reminding Arya that Ilyn Payne “snipped your daddy’s neck,” and telling her he knows fear and can see it on her face; and Arya coming right back at Sandor, telling him she saw fear on his face when Beric came at him with a flaming sword, and she knew why: his brother had pressed his face to a fire like a juicy mutton chop. Then she capped it off with: “Someday, I’m going to put a sword through your eye and out the back of your skull.” 😋

      God, I miss those two. 😢

        Quote  Reply

    36. Ten Bears,

      “Doing stupid shit and suffering the consequences” is a gross oversimplification. And watching the queen he loved, the queen he believed in, turn out to be a bigger monster than his sister was a punishment for Tyrion. Nothing in the latter seasons “felt out of whack.”

        Quote  Reply

    37. Ten Bears,

      I never said revenge wasn’t a motivator, but he cared about Arya and Sansa as well. That’s why he kept Jaime alive. Tron was suggesting that the northerners should have executed Jaime, then pack up and go home, leaving Arya and Sansa to rot. I’m merely contesting this idea.

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    38. Young Dragon,

      It’s been a while since I’ve done an episode ranking. I find that my top 10 is always in flux depending on my mood.

      I think my top 10 would be something like this:

      1. Hardhome – (Season 5, Episode 8)
      2. The Lion and the Rose – (Season 4, Episode 2)
      3. The Winds of Winter – (Season 6, Episode 10)
      4. Blackwater – (Season 2, Episode 9)
      5. And Now His Watch is Ended – (Season 3, Episode 4)
      6. The Children – (Season 4, Episode 10)
      7. A Golden Crown – (Season 1, Episode 6)
      8. The Rains of Castamere – (Season 3, Episode 9)
      9. Valar Morghulis – (Season 2, Episode 10)
      10. The Door – (Season 5, Episode 5)

      Below is my second tier of episodes in no particular order:

      Two Swords – (Season 4, Episode 1)
      Battle of the Bastards – (Season 6, Episode 9)
      The Spoils of War – (Season 7, Episode 4)
      The Dragon and the Wolf – (Season 7, Episode 7)
      The Long Night – (Season 8, Episode 3)
      Baelor – (Season 1, Episode 9)
      Fire and Blood – (Season 1, Episode 10)
      The Old Gods and the New – (Season 2, Episode 6)
      Kissed By Fire – (Season 3, Episode 5)
      The Climb – (Season 3, Episode 6)
      The Watchers on the Wall – (Season 4, Episode 9)
      Mother’s Mercy – (Season 5, Episode 10)
      Home – (Season 6, Episode 2)
      The Bells – (Season 8, Episode 5)

        Quote  Reply

    39. Ten Bears,

      I haven’t watched a GoT episode in at least a year. HBO had a season 8 marathon on a little while back and couldn’t bring myself to watch it. I’ve made my peace with the ending, but I don’t know if I’m ready yet to go back and relive season 8.

      Having said that, I think I’m just about ready to start watching some older episodes again. I do miss GoT, despite how our relationship ended.

        Quote  Reply

    40. Adrianacandle,

      Thank you for all of these book excerpts revealing how much Jon thought about Arya.
      I was a bit disappointed that show! Jon never really expressed any concern for Arya’s well-being or whereabouts. And I still don’t buy his assertion in S7e5 after reading Bran’s ravengram, “I thought Arya was dead.”

      While this is NOT intended as D&D-bashing, I just felt that the show expanded upon the Jon & Sansa relationship, at the expense of Jon & Arya.
      (I absolutely loved the show-only Sansa & Jon reunion scene in S6. By comparison, the Arya & Jon reunion was underwhelming.)

      I’m not whinging though. I figure that with finite screen time, the showrunners decided to focus on Arya’s complex relationship with Sandor. For that, as my friend Jack might say: “I’ll always be grateful.”

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    41. Mr Derp:
      Young Dragon,

      It’s been a while since I’ve done an episode ranking.I find that my top 10 is always in flux depending on my mood.

      I think my top 10 would be something like this:

      1. Hardhome – (Season 5, Episode 8)
      2. The Lion and the Rose – (Season 4, Episode 2)
      3. The Winds of Winter – (Season 6, Episode 10)
      4. Blackwater – (Season 2, Episode 9)
      5. And Now His Watch is Ended – (Season 3, Episode 4)
      6. The Children – (Season 4, Episode 10)
      7. A Golden Crown – (Season 1, Episode 6)
      8. The Rains of Castamere – (Season 3, Episode 9)
      9. Valar Morghulis – (Season 2, Episode 10)
      10. The Door – (Season 5, Episode 5)

      Below is my second tier of episodes in no particular order:

      Two Swords – (Season 4, Episode 1)
      Battle of the Bastards – (Season 6, Episode 9)
      The Spoils of War – (Season 7, Episode 4)
      The Dragon and the Wolf – (Season 7, Episode 7)
      The Long Night – (Season 8, Episode 3)
      Baelor – (Season 1, Episode 9)
      Fire and Blood – (Season 1, Episode 10)
      The Old Gods and the New – (Season 2, Episode 6)
      Kissed By Fire – (Season 3, Episode 5)
      The Climb – (Season 3, Episode 6)
      The Watchers on the Wall – (Season 4, Episode 9)
      Mother’s Mercy – (Season 5, Episode 10)
      Home – (Season 6, Episode 2)
      The Bells – (Season 8, Episode 5)

      Oh no… this tells me I should get back to programming my http://www.73chickens.com site. I am keeping up with GRRM with procrastinating.
      The idea was to have a system to rank all 73 episodes based on various factors, but I got bogged down with writing pilots for prequels… (or something like that). Actually I got bogged down with figuring out how I really wanted it to work….

        Quote  Reply

    42. Young Dragon:
      Tron79,

      He was definitely concerned about them, it’s just his hands were tied. He couldn’t trade Jaime for them because his lords wouldn’t stand for it. In fact, his lords wanted Jaime dead, but Robb couldn’t because he knew there would be nothing to stop the Lannisters from harming Sansa and Arya. Why else would he keep him alive?

      Humm… good point about why else he would keep him alive. Maybe Adrianacandle has the text handy. Perhaps Robb does say he’s doing it for Arya and Sansa. I seem to think he thinks Jaime is a still the best chip he has for something else down the road he may need. He argues with his mom that he’s not going to trade Jaime for his sisters, so I’m not sure what would be the point then of keeping them alive for his sisters if he’s not going to trade him.

        Quote  Reply

    43. Ten Bears,

      Thank you for all of these book excerpts revealing how much Jon thought about Arya.
      I was a bit disappointed that show! Jon never really expressed any concern for Arya’s well-being or whereabouts. And I still don’t buy his assertion in S7e5 after reading Bran’s ravengram, “I thought Arya was dead.”

      You’re welcome! I was hoping you’d see those! (I was wondering, for future posts, if I include Arya related quotes, should I cc your username?)

      I do think we lose out on something special with the translation from book (in which we have access to the character’s mind and thoughts) to screen (where it’s more visual and we don’t get a thought narration VO ala Outlander),

        Quote  Reply

    44. Tron79,
      CC: Young Dragon,

      Humm… good point about why else he would keep him alive. Maybe Adrianacandle has the text handy.

      I think Robb wanted Jaime as a hostage to ensure Tywin’s good behavior and Jaime was their only bargaining chip to get the terms of their peace met. It seems to me Robb was concerned about keeping Jaime alive to his end but some of the Northern lords wanted Jaime for their vengeance.

      Robb’s terms:

      Robb unrolled it. “First, the queen must release my sisters and provide them with transport by sea from King’s Landing to White Harbor. It is to be understood that Sansa’s betrothal to Joffrey Baratheon is at an end. When I receive word from my castellan that my sisters have returned unharmed to Winterfell, I will release the queen’s cousins, the squire Willem Lannister and your brother Tion Frey, and give them safe escort to Casterly Rock or wheresoever she desires them delivered.”

      Catelyn Stark wished she could read the thoughts that hid behind each face, each furrowed brow and pair of tightened lips.

      “Secondly, my lord father’s bones will be returned to us, so he may rest beside his brother and sister in the crypts beneath Winterfell, as he would have wished. The remains of the men of his household guard who died in his service at King’s Landing must also be returned.”

      Living men had gone south, and cold bones would return. Ned had the truth of it, she thought. His place was at Winterfell, he said as much, but would I hear him? No. Go, I told him, you must be Robert’s Hand, for the good of our House, for the sake of our children . . . my doing, mine, no other . . .

      “Third, my father’s greatsword Ice will be delivered to my hand, here at Riverrun.”

      She watched her brother Ser Edmure Tully as he stood with his thumbs hooked over his swordbelt, his face as still as stone.

      “Fourth, the queen will command her father Lord Tywin to release those knights and lords bannermen of mine that he took captive in the battle on the Green Fork of the Trident. Once he does so, I shall release my own captives taken in the Whispering Wood and the Battle of the Camps, save Jaime Lannister alone, who will remain my hostage for his father’s good behavior.

      She studied Theon Greyjoy’s sly smile, wondering what it meant. That young man had a way of looking as though he knew some secret jest that only he was privy to; Catelyn had never liked it.

      “Lastly, King Joffrey and the Queen Regent must renounce all claims to dominion over the north. Henceforth we are no part of their realm, but a free and independent kingdom, as of old. Our domain shall include all the Stark lands north of the Neck, and in addition the lands watered by the River Trident and its vassal streams, bounded by the Golden Tooth to the west and the Mountains of the Moon in the east.”

      “THE KING IN THE NORTH!” boomed Greatjon Umber, a ham-sized fist hammering at the air as he shouted. “Stark! Stark! The King in the North!”

      The reaction Catelyn received from Rickard Karstark for releasing Jaime:

      I had five children. Now I have three.”

      “Aye, my lady.” Lord Rickard Karstark pushed past the Greatjon, like some grim specter with his black mail and long ragged grey beard, his narrow face pinched and cold. “And I have one son, who once had three. You have robbed me of my vengeance.

      Catelyn faced him calmly. “Lord Rickard, the Kingslayer’s dying would not have bought life for your children. His living may buy life for mine.” The lord was unappeased. “Jaime Lannister has played you for a fool. You’ve bought a bag of empty words, no more. My Torrhen and my Eddard deserved better of you.”

        Quote  Reply

    45. Mr Derp,

      ”It’s been a while since I’ve done an episode ranking. I find that my top 10 is always in flux depending on my mood.”

      • It’s hard to argue with your top ten, or the next ten in your second-tier.

      Everybody’s sensibilities are different. “Rankings” are subjective, and as you observed, can vary with one’s mood.

      However, I couldn’t help but notice that my wire-to-wire, All-Time # 1 favorite episode didn’t make it into your Top 20:

      S4e7, “Mockingbird.”
      Chock full of high-thread count, dialogue-rich interpersonal scenes.

      I’m not trying to incite an argument. I’ve just found that for me, the scenes in S4e7 are inherently “rewatchable” and can still evoke an emotional response.

      • Instead of episode rankings, I’ve been playing around with Character Scene Rankings, i.e., determining each character’s best scene(s).
      (Sometimes what I thought was a character’s all-time best scene is buried in a middle-of-the pack episode. With roughly 73 hours and 73 episodes to choose from, I often forget that a character had a great scene in an earlier season.)

      Example: Pre-lobotomy Tyrion in S1 – S4 had so many memorable scenes: with Jon, with Bronn, with Lysa & Co. at the Vale, with Varys, with Cersei, with Janos Slynt, with Shagga, with Joffrey, with Pycelle, with Oberyn, with Pod, and on and on.
      Yet, after rewatching all of Tyrion’s scenes, the one that stood out the most for me was his scene in S2 when he ensnares pompous Lancel, and turns him into a pliant double-agent.

        Quote  Reply

    46. Mr Derp,

      Quick note, The Door is Season 6, Episode 5. Nice list! I have a top 20, but that’s as far as I’ve gotten. I can’t sort the rest. My top 20 are:

      1. The Winds of Winter
      2. The Long Night
      3. The Battle of the Bastards
      4. Hardhome
      5. Mockingbird
      6. The Bells
      7. The Children
      8. Watchers on the Wall
      9. The Door
      10. The Laws of Gods and Men
      11. Blackwater
      12. The Rains of Castamere
      13. And Now His Watch Is Ended
      14. The Spoils of War
      15. The Iron Throne
      16. Baelor
      17. Two Swords
      18. Fire and Blood
      19. The Dance of Dragons
      20. A Golden Crown

      I also have my top 3 least favorite episodes:

      1. The Bear and the Maiden Fair
      2. Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken
      3. Eastwatch

        Quote  Reply

    47. Adrianacandle,

      ”I do think we lose out on something special with the translation from book (in which we have access to the character’s mind and thoughts) to screen (where it’s more visual and we don’t get a thought narration VO ala Outlander)…”

      Undoubtedly it’s a challenge to adapt text consisting of internal monologues. (Though I’ve often raved about Maisie Williams wordlessly portraying the “Needle was Jon Snow’s smile” internal monologue with just her facial expressions…)

      As you pointed out, some shows resort to gimmicks like “thought narration” voiceovers. It’s my understanding that (thankfully) GoT’s showrunners wanted to avoid doing that. Other shows have a character talk to himself in a mirror or just launch into a soliloquy when he’s by himself – those often come off as cheesy.

      I thought GoT could have had Jon confide his thoughts (about Arya) to Sam. As a show-only fan, Jon’s silence about Arya’s welfare or whereabouts made it seem like he didn’t care or “kind of forgot about” her. From the books’ passages you quoted, that obviously wasn’t the case.

      I know it must be extraordinarily challenging for a screenwriter to translate a book character’s often-conflicting thoughts into spoken dialogue and have it sound like normal speech. The show did use “exposition” scenes with a tertiary character as a sounding board (e.g., LF with his whores; Viserys with his bathtub companion). The show was also able to sprinkle in references to Jon in many of Arya’s scenes (with Sandor, Hot Pie, Waif, Braavos ship captain, etc.) so I’m not sure why Jon couldn’t have mentioned Arya in his scenes – either with his confidante Sam, or especially later when Jon and Sansa were together from S6 to early S7. (Sure, reminiscing about Old Nan’s soup was nice – but how about your MIA little sister???)

      After that beautiful, heartfelt farewell scene in S1e2 when Jon looked into little Arya’s eyes and said “I’m going to miss you,” it almost seemed like he did not miss her at all. 🤢

        Quote  Reply

    48. Tron79,

      When Robb took Jaime prisoner, he said to his bannermen, “One victory does not make us conquerors. Have we freed my father? Have we saved my sisters from the queen? Have we freed the North from those who want us on our knees?” Saving his sisters was one of his goals. Robb knows that the Lannisters wouldn’t hurt the girls so long as Jaime lives. Even though he refuses to trade Jaime, keeping him alive buys him time to figure out a way to rescue them.

        Quote  Reply

    49. Ten Bears: I thought GoT could have had Jon confide his thoughts (about Arya) to Sam. As a show-only fan, Jon’s silence about Arya’s welfare or whereabouts made it seem like he didn’t care or “kind of forgot about” her. From the books’ passages you quoted, that obviously wasn’t the case.

      I know it must be extraordinarily challenging for a screenwriter to translate a book character’s often-conflicting thoughts into spoken dialogue and have it sound like normal speech. The show did use “exposition” scenes with a tertiary character as a sounding board (e.g., LF with his whores; Viserys with his bathtub companion). The show was also able to sprinkle in references to Jon in many of Arya’s scenes (with Sandor, Hot Pie, Waif, Braavos ship captain, etc.) so I’m not sure why Jon couldn’t have mentioned Arya in his scenes – either with his confidante Sam, or especially later when Jon and Sansa were together from S6 to early S7. (Sure, reminiscing about Old Nan’s soup was nice – but how about your MIA little sister???)

      Per our discussions about this before, I don’t know if Jon’s the kind of character to confide these thoughts to others (but it is a shame we missed that conversation between Jon and Sansa in season 6 — another off-screen convo x_x). He’s quite an internal guy. In the books, Jon rarely says his siblings’ names aloud — we only get this stuff through his thoughts. He doesn’t typically confide this type of stuff in others or introduce the topic with others (the only time I can think of is when Jon talks about Robb to Sam in 4×01 after he finds out Robb has been killed).

      Jon mentions his sisters in season 1 when he hears news about his father’s arrest. He mentions Osha attacking Bran when he argues with Ygritte and he talks about Bran when Sam reveals that he saw him passing beyond the Wall. However, something instigates this topic.

      However, something could have been done with the reunion conversation between Sansa and Jon whereupon Sansa could have brought up Arya. But that was something we didn’t get to see.

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    50. Young Dragon,

      Good list! I see you’ve got “Mockingbird” at #5. 🤗

      I also noticed that “The Bear and the Maiden Fair” is in your bottom 3, i.e., your least favorites. I’m not knocking it. I’m just curious why you didn’t like it. I ask because I think that episode has one of my favorite Ygritte & Jon scenes. (“Oh! A spider! Save me Jon Snow. My dress is made of the purest silk from Tralalaeeday.”

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    51. Tron79,

      I remember we briefly talked about how to rank episodes. It’s really difficult to come up with a completely objective, error-free system. For me, there’s just too many variables such as mood, what’s on my mind, and certain scenes can carry more weight than the episode as a whole. For example, I love the scene of Ned’s beheading in Baelor, but I’m really not that big a fan of the episode as a whole, so I have a hard time ranking that one.

      For my system, I go by season first and then do an overall ranking. I’ll rank season 1 episodes by favorite to least favorite, then the same with season 2, 3, etc…until I’m done with all of the seasons.

      Then, I look at all of my favorite episodes of each season at the top of my list, decide which ones I prefer to start an overall list.

      I hope your system ends up working out well for you!

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    52. Ten Bears:
      Mr Derp,

      ”It’s been a while since I’ve done an episode ranking. I find that my top 10 is always in flux depending on my mood.”

      •It’s hard to argue with your top ten, or the next ten in your second-tier.

      Everybody’s sensibilities are different. “Rankings” are subjective, and as you observed, can vary with one’s mood.

      However, I couldn’t help but notice that my wire-to-wire, All-Time # 1 favorite episode didn’t make it into your Top 20:

      S4e7, “Mockingbird.”
      Chock full of high-thread count, dialogue-rich interpersonal scenes.

      I’m not trying to incite an argument. I’ve just found that for me, the scenes in S4e7 are inherently “rewatchable” and can still evoke an emotional response.

      • Instead of episode rankings, I’ve been playing around with Character Scene Rankings, i.e., determining each character’s best scene(s).
      (Sometimes what I thought was a character’s all-time best scene is buried in a middle-of-the pack episode. With roughly 73 hours and 73 episodes to choose from, I often forget that a character had a great scene in an earlier season.)

      Example: Pre-lobotomy Tyrion in S1 – S4 had so many memorable scenes: with Jon, with Bronn, with Lysa & Co. at the Vale, with Varys, with Cersei, with Janos Slynt, with Shagga, with Joffrey, with Pycelle, with Oberyn, with Pod, and on and on.Yet, after rewatching all of Tyrion’s scenes, the one that stood out the most for me was his scene in S2 when he ensnares pompous Lancel, and turns him into a pliant double-agent.

      Oh, I know Mockingbird is your favorite! I really enjoy that one too. I suppose I could’ve included it in my second tier list, but it’s a slippery slope. If I include Mockingbird, then I gotta include so many others that I left out like “The Mountain and the Viper”. The end scene with Oberyn and the Mountain was great, but I don’t really care for the rest of that episode. I gotta draw the line somewhere!

      Mockingbird would probably be my favorite “quiet” episode, if there is such a thing.

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    53. Ten Bears,

      Here are two more about Arya from ADWD 🙂

      May those deaths be long in coming. Jon Snow sank to one knee in the snow. Gods of my fathers, protect these men. And Arya too, my little sister, wherever she might be. I pray you, let Mance find her and bring her safe to me. 

      Jon walked to the edge of the Wall and gazed down upon the killing ground where Mance Rayder’s host had died. He wondered where Mance was now. Did he ever find you, little sister? Or were you just a ploy he used so I would set him free? 

      It had been so long since he had last seen Arya. What would she look like now? Would he even know her? Arya Underfoot. Her face was always dirty. Would she still have that little sword he’d had Mikken forge for her? Stick them with the pointy end, he’d told her. Wisdom for her wedding night if half of what he heard of Ramsay Snow was true. Bring her home, Mance. I saved your son from Melisandre, and now I am about to save four thousand of your free folk. You owe me this one little girl.

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    54. Adrianacandle,

      ”Per our discussions about this before, I don’t know if Jon’s the kind of character to confide these thoughts to others (but it is a shame we missed that conversation between Jon and Sansa in season 6 — another off-screen convo x_x).”

      • (Sorry. My scroll back feature is sluggish.)
      Which off-screen conversation between Jon and Sansa are you referring to?

      • I thought that when Sansa launched into her “let’s take back WF” spiel with Jon, she mentioned that it’s their home – including Arya wherever she might be. Also, I have to assume there was an offscreen conversation with Jon in which Sansa relayed Brienne’s report (from S6e2) that Brienne had seen Arya alive and well (in S4e10). That’s why I found Jon’s assertion in S7e5 “I thought Arya was dead” to be confounding.

      • I’ll whinge another time – again – about Bran having “seen” Arya at the Crossroads Inn (where she’d been in S7e2), but not bothering to tell anyone until S7e4 after she’d already returned to WF. (Good job Bran. WF guards almost turned her away as an imposter because, as they declared, “Arya Stark’s dead,” when you knew she was alive.)

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    55. Adrianacandle,

      “Jon Snow sank to one knee in the snow. Gods of my fathers, protect these men. And Arya too, my little sister, wherever she might be. I pray you, let Mance find her and bring her safe to me. ….

      … It had been so long since he had last seen Arya. What would she look like now? Would he even know her? Arya Underfoot. Her face was always dirty. Would she still have that little sword he’d had Mikken forge for her? Stick them with the pointy end, he’d told her. Wisdom for her wedding night if half of what he heard of Ramsay Snow was true. Bring her home, Mance. I saved your son from Melisandre, and now I am about to save four thousand of your free folk. You owe me this one little girl.”

      🥵😥😥😥😥😓🤧

      Awww….

        Quote  Reply

    56. Ten Bears: Also, I have to assume there was an offscreen conversation with Jon in which Sansa relayed Brienne’s report (from S6e2) that Brienne had seen Arya alive and well (in S4e10).

      Yes, that’s the off-screen conversation I’m referring to. I, too, assumed they did some sort of a catch-up that we didn’t get to see. I don’t know what Sansa shared with Jon about Arya (I think the last time Brienne saw Arya, it was about a year prior with no word of her since). However, we know — at some point — Sansa told Jon that Littlefinger sold her to the Boltons because Jon references this in 6×10. I assumed that was shared during an off-screen 6×04 catch-up session or during another off-screen conversation so there must have been one.

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    57. Mr Derp:
      Young Dragon,

      These may not all be critically the best, but they had the scenes that jumped into my mind first when I started thinking back to remember the episodes. Here are the first 10 I thought of…

      In the order that the pictures popped in my head:
      1) Hardhome (the last part when the Whights come rolling down the hill)
      2) The Long Night (All of Arya’s scenes)
      3) The Door (poor hodor and poor Meera for all that time waiting in the tree cave and having to pull Bran on that sled and not even a proper thank you from Bran later…)
      4) The Mountain and the Viper (obvious scene that is hard to forget)
      5) Winds of Winter (mostly for the music and the choreography between the music and the actors)
      6) Battle of the Bastards (Jon facing the stampede of horses…the bodies piled up, almost suffocating… the three of them running after Ramsey…Jon’s shield catching…Sansa’s smile…
      7) Winter is Coming (episode 1… I have a ton of pictures in my brain from the first episode. Arya making that shot! Bran climbing, the white walkers…So much..)
      8) The Bells (Arya’s trek through the ashes and finally escaping on the pale mare) (The Hound’s falling into the flames with the mountain…ugg..
      9) Rains of Castamere (Arya wanting to run in to help and getting knocked on the head… The obvious red wedding scenes… Cat’s throat cutting and the baby stabbing are hard to forget. The baby stabbing btw was not in the books. The show was worse than the books.
      10) Stormborn (not for Dany, but for Arya’s scenes. She meets up again with Nymeria and makes a vital decision at the crossroads, and Hot Pie makes an appearance!)

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    58. Mr Derp,

      For what it’s worth, “rewatchability” is a superfactor in my rankings. I liked “Battle of the Bastards” – the Dragons vs. Masters’ Armada in the first half better than the WF battle – and yet I haven’t felt the urge to watch that episode again after rewatching the first half a few times to marvel at the screensaver-worthy visuals and technical wizardry.

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    59. Mr Derp:
      Tron79,

      I remember we briefly talked about how to rank episodes.It’s really difficult to come up with a completely objective, error-free system.For me, there’s just too many variables such as mood, what’s on my mind, and certain scenes can carry more weight than the episode as a whole.For example, I love the scene of Ned’s beheading in Baelor, but I’m really not that big a fan of the episode as a whole, so I have a hard time ranking that one.

      For my system, I go by season first and then do an overall ranking.I’ll rank season 1 episodes by favorite to least favorite, then the same with season 2, 3, etc…until I’m done with all of the seasons.

      Then, I look at all of my favorite episodes of each season at the top of my list, decide which ones I prefer to start an overall list.

      I hope your system ends up working out well for you!

      That’s pretty good. It’s a bit of a pool play method like they do in big tournaments. You have to whittle things down to the best of the divisions and then let those best fight it out… I’ll revisit my system of having a sliding scale of various aspects of each episode. I had it worked out pretty well until I tried to actually use it as I begun my re-watch. I needed a better way to tally my feelings through the whole episode while it was happening… Anyway, I may revisit it soon…. I still have hope of finishing before GRRM comes out with TWOW, but I’m hoping he beats me!

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    60. Young Dragon:
      Mr Derp,

      Quick note, The Door is Season 6, Episode 5. Nice list! I have a top 20, but that’s as far as I’ve gotten. I can’t sort the rest. My top 20 are:

      1. The Winds of Winter
      2. The Long Night
      3. The Battle of the Bastards
      4. Hardhome
      5. Mockingbird
      6. The Bells
      7. The Children
      8. Watchers on the Wall
      9. The Door
      10. The Laws of Gods and Men
      11. Blackwater
      12. The Rains of Castamere
      13. And Now His Watch Is Ended
      14. The Spoils of War
      15. The Iron Throne
      16. Baelor
      17. Two Swords
      18. Fire and Blood
      19. The Dance of Dragons
      20. A Golden Crown

      I also have my top 3 least favorite episodes:

      1. The Bear and the Maiden Fair
      2. Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken
      3. Eastwatch

      You’re right. I was typing quickly and missed that one.

      Stray observations…

      Sometimes I put “The Winds of Winter” at the top of my list, but when I really think about it, if it wasn’t for the first 15-20 minutes, the episode wouldn’t be quite as good to me.

      Hardhome overtakes it because every single scene in that episode was “brilliant” (barfs a little bit) from start to finish. Theon FINALLY told Sansa her brothers were alive, Dany and Tyrion spoke for the first time, the actual Hardhome battle which completely took me by surprise, and don’t forget “oysters, clams, and cockles”.

      I can’t put Battle of the Bastards in my top ten specifically because of the Sansa/Jon argument about Ramsey. That entire scene was brutally stupid and almost ruined the episode for me.

      The Laws of Gods and Men could make my top ten just for Tyrion’s trial alone, but the rest of the episode is pretty mediocre for me. I’d probably put that one somewhere in the middle of my list. Maybe #30 or so?

      Hard to disagree with your bottom 3. I’ll have to think about mine.

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    61. Tron79: That’s pretty good. It’s a bit of a pool play method like they do in big tournaments. You have to whittle things down to the best of the divisions and then let those best fight it out…

      Yup, that’s pretty much it. For example, Hardhome is my favorite episode of season 5, so once I select that episode as my overall favorite, the 2nd best episode of season 5 moves up and is now in competition with the other season favorites. You just keep replacing the top as you eliminate until you’ve got nothing left, if that makes sense.

      Once you’re done, review the list and ask yourself, “Would I really prefer to watch the episode that I put in the #8 slot over the one I put at #9, #10, etc…?” If the answer is “yes” then that usually solidifies my list as much as possible once I’m done. However, if the answer is “no” then it’s time to fine tune.

      I tried ratings my favorite “Simpsons” episodes for so long and had such a hard time with it until I developed this system. Even still, it’s hard to decide. Like I said previously, sometimes my mood at the time changes things.

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    62. Mr Derp: Yup, that’s pretty much it.For example, Hardhome is my favorite episode of season 5, so once I select that episode as my overall favorite, the 2nd best episode of season 5 moves up and is now in competition with the other season favorites.You just keep replacing the top as you eliminate until you’ve got nothing left, if that makes sense.

      Once you’re done, review the list and ask yourself, “Would I really prefer to watch the episode that I put in the #8 slot over the one I put at #9, #10, etc…?”If the answer is “yes” then that usually solidifies my list as much as possible once I’m done.However, if the answer is “no” then it’s time to fine tune.

      I tried ratings my favorite “Simpsons” episodes for so long and had such a hard time with it until I developed this system.Even still, it’s hard to decide.Like I said previously, sometimes my mood at the time changes things.

      Yeah, I like your system. It’s easy to understand and should generate satisfying results.

      I was thinking just now about a real-time rating system. I would have to write a phone app to jot down reactions as you go.. Like… “That was an awesome directorial choice he just made!” Push the director kudos button in the app. “I can’t believe that just happened!” and push the “SHOCKING MOMENT” button in the app. And it would record the data and spit out your rankings at the end… Anyway, it’s beyond my programming abilities at the moment, but doesn’t hurt to dream… I did come up with more of an after the fact ranking system based on elements in each episode with a sliding scale, which is what I originally had in mind…

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    63. Adrianacandle,

      How did those thoughts about Arya not make it into the show in some form or another????

      – I’ll have to double check the divergent show! chronology: Wasn’t Brienne at WF at the same time Jon was there? If so, a one-minute conversation between them could’ve established he was still concerned about his little sister.

      – I still say it was unrealistic that nobody asked about or mentioned Arya during the wight hunters’ idle chit chat at the beginning of S7e6, or their encounter in the Eastwatch cells at the end of S7e5. Gendry, Beric, Thoros, and Sandor had all spent considerable time with Arya and had become close with her at various times throughout S1 through S4. That nobody mentioned her to Jon or asked Jon about her was mystifying.

      – Another thing – about the presumed off-screen conversation between Sansa and Jon (relaying Brienne’s report of her encounter with Arya in S4e10): When Jon saw Sandor in the Eastwatch cells in S7e5, I thought he’d be shocked: “WTF! How can you be alive? I heard you were thrown off a cliff to your death!” Instead, Jon made some lame remark like: “I saw you at WF once.

      And I thought Sandor would come back with, “Whatever happened to that crazy little sister of yours? She almost got me killed, chasing after that stupid little sword you gave her… Needle.”. Or, “ I was watching over her – until that big b*tch came along and tried to take her.” .
      But nope. Nothing. No curiosity by either one of them.

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    64. Ten Bears:
      Adrianacandle,

      How did those thoughts about Arya not make it into the show in some form or another????

      –I’ll have to double check the divergent show! chronology: Wasn’t Brienne at WF at the same time Jon was there? If so, a one-minute conversation between them could’ve established he was still concerned about his little sister.

      – I still say it was unrealistic that nobody asked about or mentioned Arya during the wight hunters’ idle chit chat at the beginning of S7e6, or their encounter in the Eastwatch cells at the end of S7e5.Gendry, Beric, Thoros, and Sandor had all spent considerable time with Arya and had become close with her at various times throughout S1 through S4. That nobody mentioned her to Jon or asked Jon about her was mystifying.

      – Another thing – about the presumed off-screen conversation between Sansa and Jon (relaying Brienne’s report of her encounter with Arya in S4e10): When Jon saw Sandor in the Eastwatch cells in S7e5, I thought he’d be shocked: “WTF! How can you be alive? I heard you were thrown off a cliff to your death!” Instead, Jon made some lame remark like: “I saw you at WF once.

      And I thought Sandor would come back with, “Whatever happened to that crazy little sister of yours? She almost got me killed, chasing after that stupid little sword you gave her… Needle.”. Or, “ I was watching over her – until that big b*tch came along and tried to take her.” .But nope. Nothing. No curiosity by either one of them.

      Great notes for the writers — all of this :/ I do think that, aside from their first scene in season 1, Arya being Jon’s most beloved sibling wasn’t really conveyed on the show. I think Robb comes in second but Jon and Arya have an incredibly special bond in the books owing to them both being outsiders in the Stark clan.

      He missed his true brothers: little Rickon, bright eyes shining as he begged for a sweet; Robb, his rival and best friend and constant companion; Bran, stubborn and curious, always wanting to follow and join in whatever Jon and Robb were doing. He missed the girls too, even Sansa, who never called him anything but “my half brother” since she was old enough to understand what bastard meant. And Arya … he missed her even more than Robb, skinny little thing that she was, all scraped knees and tangled hair and torn clothes, so fierce and willful. Arya never seemed to fit, no more than he had … yet she could always make Jon smile. He would give anything to be with her now, to muss up her hair once more and watch her make a face, to hear her finish a sentence with him.

      PS: Brienne arrived with Sansa at Castle Black in 6×04 so yes, I think she was there!

        Quote  Reply

    65. Young Dragon,

      I haven’t really done this list yet, but here’s my least favorite episodes by season…

      Season 1
      • “The Kingsroad” – (Episode 2)
      • “Cripples, Bastards, and Broken Things” – (Episode 4)

      Season 2
      • “The Night Lands” – (Episode 2)
      • “What is Dead May Never Die” – (Episode 3)
      • “Garden of Bones” – (Episode 4)

      Season 3
      • “Dark Wings, Dark Words” – (Episode 2)
      • “Walk of Punishment” – (Episode 3)
      • “The Bear and the Maiden Fair” – (Episode 7)
      • “Second Sons” – (Episode 8)

      Season 4
      • “Breaker of Chains” – (Episode 3)
      • “Oathkeeper” – (Episode 4)

      Season 5
      • “The Wars to Come” – (Episode 1)
      • “The House of Black and White” – (Episode 2)
      • “The High Sparrow” – (Episode 3)
      • “Sons of the Harpy – (Episode 4)
      • “Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken” – (Episode 6)
      • “The Gift” – (Episode 7)

      Season 6
      • No One (Episode 8)

      Season 7
      • “Eastwatch” – (Episode 5)

      Season 8
      • “The Last of the Starks” – (Episode 4)
      • “The Iron Throne” – (Episode 6)

      I’ll have to narrow them down to 10 at some point. Even though these are my least favorites, they’re still pretty good episodes, for the most part.

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    66. Ten Bears,

      Yeah, Mockingbird has my favorite dialogue scene, Oberyn becoming Tyrion’s champion. It’s probably the scene I rewatch the most on YouTube. I also loved the Hound opening up to Arya and Lysa being pushed through the Moon Door.

      I just found the Bear and the Maiden Fair to be highly mediocre, by GOT standards. It has one of my least favorite scenes, Theon being seduced by two of Ramsay’s women. Other than that, the only other scene I could remember, until you reminded me of the Ygritte scene, was Jaime rescuing Brienne, which I thought was meh. The Jon/Ygritte scene wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t enough to lift up the episode.

        Quote  Reply

    67. Mr Derp,

      I chose Winds of Winter as my number one for the same reason you chose Hardhome. I loved every second of it. The first fifteen minutes was probably the best sequence of the episode, but I also highly enjoyed Jon being crowned King in the North, Cersei being crowned Queen of the Seven Kingdoms, Cersei getting revenge on Septa Unella, Jaime and Walder Frey, Tyrion becoming Hand, and Danerys setting sail for Westeros.

      I don’t really have an opinion one way or the other about Sansa telling Jon about Ramsay. It wasn’t good and it wasn’t terrible. Danerys taking down the Masters was a nice surprise and was a great opening and the battle between Jon and Ramsay exceeded my expectation. Truly artful stunts and directing work. Sansa feeding Ramsay to his dogs was a great scene as well.

      Laws of Gods and Men actually used to be higher on my list, but then I came to the same conclusion you did. Besides the trial, not much was going on. Still, the trial was excellent, and I also enjoyed Stannis traveling to the Iron Bank, allowing the episode to just squeeze into my top 10.

        Quote  Reply

    68. Mr Derp,

      Interestingly enough, I never thought to list my least favorite episodes by season before. The reason I was able to make a top 3 list of my least favorite episodes was because I felt the quality of those episodes were significantly weaker than the rest. Even so, like you, I still enjoy them. I hear that some people skip scenes or episodes they don’t like on rewatches, but I never do that.

        Quote  Reply

    69. Adrianacandle,

      Additional pseudo-whinging:

      When Clovis aka Gendry first met Jon on Dragonstone and revealed his true identity, he sought to “bond” with Jon by talking about meeting Jon’s “father” (Ned) once for a few minutes, and remarking that Jon was shorter* than Ned.

      Gendry had spent close to two years with Jon’s sister (from S1e10 to mid-S3 when Melisandre took custody of him). They had become very close. (Arya: “I can be your family.)
      Arya saved his life with her courage and quick thinking when the NW recruits were attacked by (Lorch or Gregor’s?) militants seeking to execute the royal warrant for the bastard boy named Gendry. She obtained Gendry’s freedom from the Harenhal prison camp – and possible torture or death – by parlaying the third kill owed by Jaqen into a get out of jail free card for herself and her friends, again using her wits. She tried to intercede and stop Melisandre from taking him away, correctly surmising: “You’re a witch. You’re going to hurt him!” She had also (correctly) tried to warn Gendry not to join the BwoB to begin with. Early on, she had revealed to him that her name wasn’t “Arry” – she was really Arya of House Stark, daughter of Ned Stark. After freeing him from slave labor (or worse), she sought to take him to Riverrun where they’d be protected by her maternal grandfather.

      My point is that from the time Gendry was seized without warning and taken away by Melisandre and her soldiers in S3 and taken to Camp Stannis, he had no idea what became of Arya Stark.
      He did know she had stuck her neck out and saved his life more than once. (And he surely must have realized in retrospect that he should have listened to her and stayed with her instead of joining the Brotherhood.) He knew she was a loyal friend. He must have appreciated that he would’ve been executed, tortured or remained enslaved were it not for Arya. And unlike the perfunctory five minute encounter with Ned Stark at Tobho Mott’s shop in S1, Gendry had a long personal history with Arya Stark, forged over shared experiences.

      Now bear with me…
      Logically speaking, upon meeting Arya’s brother nka King in the North and seeking to ingratiate himself with Jon, in addition to the natural desire to inquire about the fate of his dear friend, wouldn’t Gendry immediately name-drop Arya Stark and mention his abiding friendship with her, instead of making some cornball comment about Ned Stark and Robert Baratheon, and their supposed friendship?

      It felt “off” that Gendry showed zero curiosity and zero interest in the Stark girl who had saved his life and who he presumably cared about.

      This too could have provided an opportunity for the show to “translate” some of book! Jon’s curiosity and emotions about Arya into dialogue on the screen – such as those you excepted above:

      It had been so long since he had last seen Arya. What would she look like now? Would he even know her? Arya Underfoot. Her face was always dirty. Would she still have that little sword he’d had Mikken forge for her? Stick them with the pointy end, he’d told her.”

      (Gee whiz. If nothing else, a little call-back to Arya by Gendry in S7e5 – showing he had some interest in what had happened to her – would have fit in seamlessly with their eventual reunion (and flirtation) in S8e1 and their liaison in S8e2.)

      – End Pseudo-Whinge –

      * P.S. Those redundant “jokes” in the script about Kit Harington’s height got really tiresome. (Even Daenerys got into the act during her conversation with Sansa.) I guess the showrunners thought it was funny.

        Quote  Reply

    70. Young Dragon,

      ”Yeah, Mockingbird has my favorite dialogue scene, Oberyn becoming Tyrion’s champion. It’s probably the scene I rewatch the most on YouTube. I also loved the Hound opening up to Arya and Lysa being pushed through the Moon Door.”

      Oh man! Oberyn’s “that’s just a baby” speech still
      gets to me, capped off with “I will be your champion.” Tyrion could barely hold back his tears. I had the same reaction.

      And Sandor’s whole speech was epic: Rory McCann’s best acting, in my view. First ragging on Arya wishing he’d never laid eyes on her – then letting down his guard, recounting the physical pain and emotional betrayal he’d suffered at the hands of his brother and his father, and then finally looking over at Arya with empathy and asking: “You think you’re on your own?”
      (That scene has aged even better when rewatched along with the final Sandor speech to Arya in S8e5).

        Quote  Reply

    71. Mr Derp,

      ”… Hardhome overtakes it because every single scene in that episode was “brilliant” (barfs a little bit) from start to finish. Theon FINALLY told Sansa her brothers were alive, Dany and Tyrion spoke for the first time, the actual Hardhome battle which completely took me by surprise, and don’t forget “oysters, clams, and cockles”.

      You’ve probably already seen Ozzy Man Reviews “Hardhome”
      (7 1/2 total minutes)

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MRKFD0rbZBQ

      For me, watching Ozzy Man’s video recap of “Hardhome” is almost as enjoyable as watching the episode itself.

        Quote  Reply

    72. Mr Derp,

      ok, it’s fun to think about ranking them by season… so here it goes… I need a March Madness bracket to find the final four!

      (I’m picking my favorite two from each season for now…)
      Season 1:
      Winter is Coming
      Baelor

      Season 2:
      The Ghost of Harrenhal
      Valar Morghulis
      Ugg I like Blackwater too

      Season 3
      Ugg…Season 3 is tough.. More jump out as my favorites..
      The Bear and the Maiden Fair
      Kissed by Fire
      The Climb
      The Rains of Castamere

      Season 4 is tougher…
      The Two Swords (of chicken fame)
      The Mountain and the Viper
      Mockingbird (in honor of Ten Bears)
      The Watcher’s on the Wall
      The Children

      I’m going to have to stop there for now… It would be pretty tough to narrow these down by season since some seasons have alot more I liked than other seasons… It’s like being in a better conference.. You may throw out some winners because they aren’t as good as the others that season, but then they would have been better than any episode in one of the other seasons…

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    73. Ten Bears,

      And I thought Sandor would come back with, “Whatever happened to that crazy little sister of yours? She almost got me killed, chasing after that stupid little sword you gave her… Needle.”. Or, “ I was watching over her – until that big b*tch came along and tried to take her.” .
      But nope. Nothing. No curiosity by either one of them.

      When we meet Sandor Clegane, he’s already a living legend — one you want to avoid meeting personally, if only you’d be so lucky. He’s tasked with protecting the Crown Prince of The Seven Kingdoms, and damned serious about killing anyone who might so much as sneeze anywhere near Joffrey.

      His memories of Arya consist entirely of frustration and failure, ending with him getting the Seven Hells beaten out of him by a woman, and then having Arya herself snub his plea for a mercy-killing — suicide being a coward’s death in that macho world. Sandor F’n Clegane would rather have transcribed a twelve-hour septons vs. maesters debate on how many gods could dance on the head of a pin than talk about Arya (or any topic connected to her) with any fellow sword-swinger.

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    74. Adrianacandle,

      Thank you! Yet another Jon book! passage that never got translated into the show:

      ”….And Arya … he missed her even more than Robb, skinny little thing that she was, all scraped knees and tangled hair and torn clothes, so fierce and willful. Arya never seemed to fit, no more than he had … yet she could always make Jon smile. He would give anything to be with her now, to muss up her hair once more and watch her make a face, to hear her finish a sentence with him.“

      I wonder why they did such a great job portraying the Arya & Jon scene in S1e2, establishing their close relationship, and then …. never really followed through on it. It’s not as if there wasn’t source material they could convert to dialogue.

      Could the answer be as simple as they made a creative decision to develop Sansa & Jon in place of Arya & Jon? I’ve heard that the showrunners really liked Sansa and Sophie Turner. The show’s big divergence from the books brought Sansa north to WF and to CB. From book readers’ comments, I believe that in the books Sansa is still hanging around the Vale getting tummy flutters or something.

      I have to say I was a bit let down that we didn’t get some high thread count Jon & Arya scenes in S8, or at least a scenes of them fighting side-by-side in S8e3. I say this in part because the pre-S8 WF Crypts teaser got me psyched to see them in team up in battle. That beautifully shot teaser showed Jon and Arya turning around together, weapons drawn, to face an offscreen enemy.

      Okay, I admit the fanboy in me really wanted to see Jon gobsmacked over how skilled Arya had become. Sansa got to witness it during Arya’s sparring match with Brienne in S7e4. In S8e3, it was Davos, not Jon, who got to see Arya slice and dice wights with her custom-made weapon. And even if Arya struck the final blow that pulverized NK, it still would have been fun if Jon and Arya had teamed up for that climactic encounter.

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    75. Tensor the Mage, Still Loving the Ending,

      ”….Sandor F’n Clegane would rather have transcribed a twelve-hour septons vs. maesters debate on how many gods could dance on the head of a pin than talk about Arya (or any topic connected to her) with any fellow sword-swinger.”

      Yet that’s precisely what (who) he talked about with fellow sword swinger Brienne on their walk to the dragonpit in S7e7.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PUv_-w7VFWc

      ————

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    76. Ten Bears,

      I wonder why they did such a great job portraying the Arya & Jon scene in S1e2, establishing their close relationship, and then …. never really followed through on it. It’s not as if there wasn’t source material they could convert to dialogue.

      I think that’s because the Arya & Jon scene in episode 2 happened in real-time in the books as well, not via the characters’ thoughts :/ It’s like one of the few interactions we get to see of them actually together rather than in memory or thinking about the other.

      Could the answer be as simple as they made a creative decision to develop Sansa & Jon in place of Arya & Jon? I’ve heard that the showrunners really liked Sansa and Sophie Turner. The show’s big divergence from the books brought Sansa north to WF and to CB. From book readers’ comments, I believe that in the books Sansa is still hanging around the Vale getting tummy flutters or something.

      I don’t think it was meant to replace Jon and Arya’s since Jon and Arya’s relationship is developed through us seeing their thoughts of one another throughout the book (even though they share minimal page-time in book 1) and their relationship in the books is quite different than the one Jon shares with Sansa on the show (Arya and Jon also relate to each other much differently than Jon and Sansa do, who were often at odds. In contrast, Jon and Arya seem bonded at their core, able to understand each other when nobody else possibly could while they were growing up).

      Meanwhile, Jon mentions Sansa once (when he asks about his sisters in season 1 upon hearing about Ned’s arrest) before he’s reunited with her in season 6 and their relationship develops through real-time interactions onscreen. So it feels like a different thing and serves a different purpose from that of Jon and Arya’s relationship (especially in the books).

      I think Jon and Sansa’s relationship got that development thanks to Sansa taking over Jeyne Poole’s storyline and D&D reuniting her with Jon in season 6 rather than at a time when there was only 6 episodes to go (when Jon and Arya reunited in season 8).

      This article explains why D&D did change Sansa’s storyline from her story in the books:

      “We really wanted Sansa to play a major part this season,” Benioff said. “If we were going to stay absolutely faithful to the book, it was going to be very hard to do that. There was a subplot we loved from the books, but it used a character that’s not in the show.”

      Personally, I think Sansa will return to Winterfell at some point but not as early or the way it was done in the show. Yes, Sansa’s still in the Vale charming Harry the Heir while Jon Arryn’s heir, Robin, is slowly (and unknowingly) being poisoned to death by LF. Should Robin die, Harry becomes the heir.

      I have to say I was a bit let down that we didn’t get some high thread count Jon & Arya scenes in S8, or at least a scenes of them fighting side-by-side in S8e3. I say this in part because the pre-S8 WF Crypts teaser got me psyched to see them in team up in battle. That beautifully shot teaser showed Jon and Arya turning around together, weapons drawn, to face an offscreen enemy.
      Okay, I admit the fanboy in me really wanted to see Jon gobsmacked over how skilled Arya had become. Sansa got to witness it during Arya’s sparring match with Brienne in S7e4. In S8e3, it was Davos, not Jon, who got to see Arya slice and dice wights with her custom-made weapon. And even if Arya struck the final blow that pulverized NK, it still would have been fun if Jon and Arya had teamed up for that climactic encounter.

      100% agree :/

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    77. Adrianacandle: Arya and Jon also relate to each other much differently than Jon and Sansa do, who were often at odds. In contrast, Jon and Arya seem bonded at their core, able to understand each other when nobody else possibly could while they were growing up

      I should clarify — when I say “often at odds” (re: Jon and Sansa), I’m referring to their show relationship. In the books, it doesn’t seem they were at odds, they just didn’t share much with each other the way the others did (likely due to Catelyn’s influence and Sansa being ultra aware of the status and class differences between herself and Jon, creating that distance).

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    78. Ten Bears,

      Context means everything here. You were referring to (Boys’ Night Out Great Big Macho Adventure) Beyond The Wall, where admitting (a) he’d failed repeatedly, (b) then gotten so severely beaten by a woman (c) that he’d made an ignored plea for a mercy-killing (!) would probably not have done much for him. By contrast, his brief chat with Brienne obviously did not require him to start by admitting she’d beaten him, and they were both happy Arya was presumed safe.

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    79. My view/belief is Sansa is coming north with the Army of the Vale in Winds of Winter but I strongly suggest will be very different than in the show, certainly no last minute cavalry save. They may even come after the battle of the bastards or they win it first and elect Jon king in teh North later.

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    80. Ten Bears,

      There’s so many discrepancies between seasons it often seems that they didn’t remember their own script. It doesn’t speak well for the show with regard to the in-world character and plot building. It seems as if they didn’t pay any attention to these details that the viewers picked up. Sadly, these things tend to accumulate. But it’s over and done now, there’s nothing anybody can do about it.

      If that’s any solace to you, Jon thinks of his siblings often and doubts that they’re dead. Especially with Bran he senses that he’s alive because he’s seen Summer. He remembers Arya with every little detail. Even after he finds out that WF Arya is in reality Jeyne Poole, Brienne will inform him that Arya was alive until the Saltpans, so he will still hope. And they’ll all suspect that it’s Nymeria wrecking havoc in the Riverlands, so he’ll know that she’s alive despite everything because of the analogy with Bran.

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    81. Efi: If that’s any solace to you, Jon thinks of his siblings often and doubts that they’re dead.

      I don’t think Jon doubts his siblings are dead. It seems he really believes they’re gone. This from his second-to-last chapter in ASOS:

      I loved Robb, loved all of them… I never wanted any harm to come to any of them, but it did. And now there’s only me.

      From ADWD, when he gets learns Ramsay is to marry Arya:

      Jon saw no reason not to tell him. “Moat Cailin is taken. The flayed corpses of the ironmen have been nailed to posts along the kingsroad. Roose Bolton summons all leal lords to Barrowton, to affirm their loyalty to the Iron Throne and celebrate his son’s wedding to…” His heart seemed to stop for a moment. No, that is not possible. She died in King’s Landing, with Father. 

      Earlier in ASOS, when Jon is told Theon killed Bran and Rickon, it doesn’t seem that Jon so much senses that Bran is alive because he’s seen Summer but wonders if part of him lives on through his wolf:

      “No more?” Jon stared at Aemon’s white eyes and wrinkled face. “My brothers are at Winterfell. Bran and Rickon…”

      The maester touched his brow. “I am so very sorry, Jon. Your brothers died at the command of Theon Greyjoy, after he took Winterfell in his father’s name. When your father’s bannermen threatened to retake it, he put the castle to the torch.”

      “Your brothers were avenged,” Grenn said. “Bolton’s son killed all the ironmen, and it’s said he’s flaying Theon Greyjoy inch by inch for what he did.”

      “I’m sorry, Jon.” Pyp squeezed his shoulder. “We are all.”

      Jon had never liked Theon Greyjoy, but he had been their father’s ward. Another spasm of pain twisted up his leg, and the next he knew he was flat on his back again. “There’s some mistake,” he insisted. “At Queenscrown I saw a direwolf, a grey direwolf… grey… it knew me.” If Bran was dead, could some part of him live on in his wolf, as Orell lived within his eagle?

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    82. Ten Bears,

      “Gee whiz. If nothing else, a little call-back to Arya by Gendry in S7e5 – showing he had some interest in what had happened to her – would have fit in seamlessly with their eventual reunion (and flirtation) in S8e1 and their liaison in S8e2”

      It’s disappointing and underwhelming, but the reason might have been they meant to conceal the big revelation of their “flirtation”, as if no one ever saw it coming. (tbh I don’t think they had planned for an affair before starting the writing of season 8).
      At the same time, hinting at the relationship between Ned and Robert might have been planted as a hint to a future political alliance between WF and Storms End, because their relationship had determined the fate of a war. This is the reason why, in my humble opinion, Daenerys suddenly proclaiming Gentry a legitimate Baratheon and making him lord of Storms End felt off. Storms End didn’t have any reason to support Daenerys in the show, and the rise to lordship of Gentry had absolutely no payoff.

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    83. Adrianacandle,

      Jon is intuitive. He senses that if the wolf is alive, then Bran is alive too. Just like Catelyn knows the significance of the wolves. In addition, I don’t think he’d get into a discussion with anyone questioning the facts. He’s very sparing with words.

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    84. Efi: Jon is intuitive. He senses that if the wolf is alive, then Bran is alive too. Just like Catelyn knows the significance of the wolves. In addition, I don’t think he’d get into a discussion with anyone questioning the facts. He’s very sparing with words.

      I don’t think Jon believes Bran is alive. At most, Jon hopes that (per the below quote) “some part of his dead brothers lived on inside their wolves” but it seems Jon believes them to be deceased, not alive. This from ADWD:

      Robb had died at the Twins, betrayed by men he’d believed his friends, and his wolf had perished with him. Bran and Rickon had been murdered too, beheaded at the behest of Theon Greyjoy, who had once been their lord father’s ward … but if dreams did not lie, their direwolves had escaped. At Queenscrown, one had come out of the darkness to save Jon’s life. Summer, it had to be. His fur was grey, and Shaggydog is black. He wondered if some part of his dead brothers lived on inside their wolves.

      “At Winterfell, Tommen fought my brother Bran with wooden swords,” Jon said, remembering. “He wore so much padding he looked like a stuffed goose. Bran knocked him to the ground.” He went to the window and threw the shutters open. The air outside was cold and bracing, though the sky was a dull grey. “Yet Bran’s dead, and pudgy pink-faced Tommen is sitting on the Iron Throne, with a crown nestled amongst his golden curls.”

      He isn’t questioning this in his mind so I don’t think it’s matter of discussing the truth of these words with anyone else. We have access to Jon’s mind so we can see what he believes vs what he doubts.

      From all of these quotes, Jon seems to really believe Bran and the rest have died (until he learns news otherwise re: getting news Arya is to be married to Ramsay, learning about the Purple Wedding off-page during the interim of ASOS and ADWD).

      Jon knows he killed Orell — but he also learns that a part of Orell (the part that hates) transferred to his eagle but that’s not the same as being alive.

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    85. Ten Bears,

      “Could the answer be as simple as they made a creative decision to develop Sansa & Jon in place of Arya & Jon? I’ve heard that the showrunners really liked Sansa and Sophie Turner. The show’s big divergence from the books brought Sansa north to WF and to CB. From book readers’ comments, I believe that in the books Sansa is still hanging around the Vale getting tummy flutters or something.”

      Imo the answer to this question is no. The Jon-Sansa relationship is important because it drives the plot from season 6 onwards.
      You’re right to wonder though, because you haven’t read the books. Their relationship is a little more than a closely guarded secret. In the books it’s meant to overturn the situation in favor of the Starks; Jon with the Freefolk and Sansa with the Vale will take back WF and kill LF.
      In the show it was like this:
      – they reunite and Sansa convinces him to march against Ramsay
      – after the BotB she proclaims him a Stark (show only-in the books it will be Robb’s will)
      – she prepares WF for winter (and war?) while Jon goes to summon Daenerys’ aid
      – holds WF in his absence
      – she speaks for the North’s independence against Jon’s wishes
      – she spills the beans regarding Jon’s parentage to Tyrion
      – Daenerys goes mad over her
      – her non-acceptance of Daenerys as a queen leads to Daenerys’ murder

      So you see, this relationship is very important for the plot. I think the only reason for not developing the Jon-Arya relationship was dictated first by lack of time (needless to show sth that the viewers might imagine that happens off screen) and second because they were trapped in the ninja warrior faceless assassin persona they created for Arya.
      Arya might be a bit cold when she returns, but her arc involves lots of magic which in the show stopped in her killing of the Freys. Wearing a face is magical (Adriana can retrieve the extract), but it didn’t really translate on screen. This doesn’t mean that she’ll lose her humanity, her emotion and her compassion. On the contrary half of her arc is compassion and emotion and she will have to fight side by side with Jon. That is pretty clear from the books too.
      So we just have to wait for the books (hmmmm 🙄)

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    86. Ten Bears,

      Season 4 was definitely the Hound’s best season for me. His chicken dialogue and fight at the end, his opening up to Arya about the circumstances behind his burn, his fight with Brienne, and finally his begging Arya to kill him. Rory McCann deserved at least an Emmy nomination, but from what I remember, his name wasn’t even submitted for consideration.

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    87. Aside from maybe S6E10 (“The Winds of Winter”), I don’t think this episode was ever really topped for me. It managed to pull off the impossible and make me feel shocked by something that I 100% knew was coming. The cinematography was top-notch and the acting still stands as some of the best the show had in all 8 seasons, which is saying a lot. Bravo to David Nutter. He deserves it.

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    88. Efi,

      This is the reason why, in my humble opinion, Daenerys suddenly proclaiming Gentry a legitimate Baratheon and making him lord of Storms End felt off. Storms End didn’t have any reason to support Daenerys in the show, and the rise to lordship of Gentry had absolutely no payoff.

      All of that was intentional. It demonstrated how Dany was a terrible ruler even when she wasn’t killing innocents.

      At that moment, the greatest battle in all of history had just been won completely. Through her leadership up to that point, Dany had cemented her claim to be Queen of the Seven Kingdoms, by leading the team — and providing much of the firepower — which had saved those Seven Kingdoms. That was exactly the time she should have locked in her regal power by appointing new leaders for the Kingdoms. Her legitimization of Gendry, and his elevation to Lord of Storm’s End, was exactly what a monarch should do immediately after coming to power. She should have repeated that, over and over, especially by appointing Sam to be Lord of Horn Hill — which would have ended, completely, the rebellion against her which Lord Randyll ‘Turncloak’ Tarly had started.

      Instead, she sat there and did … nothing. No new titles, no investitures, nothing an actual Dark Age monarch would have done, and done again, and done some more, to reward victory, ensure loyalty, and give everyone in the realms a clear choice. Proclaiming a new order, and letting Cersei stew as a helpless (and self-made!) prisoner in King’s Landing, would have been the perfect way for Dany to start her reign in earnest. Let everyone in Westeros see the difference between the winning, protective, fully-in-charge Queen, and her do-nothing, hard-drinking, parasitic pretender.

      That was, intentionally, the exact moment the audience was supposed to start feeling sickening doubts about Dany’s ability to rule. I clearly recall how I did just that.

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    89. Tensor the Mage, Still Loving the Ending: Her legitimization of Gendry, and his elevation to Lord of Storm’s End, was exactly what a monarch should do immediately after coming to power. She should have repeated that, over and over, especially by appointing Sam to be Lord of Horn Hill — which would have ended, completely, the rebellion against her which Lord Randyll ‘Turncloak’ Tarly had started.

      This was the reason Dany legitimizing Gendry didn’t feel off to me — I thought she had done so in an attempt to ensure loyalty by elevating Gendry herself? (But I agree she should have continued this course of action with others).

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    90. Efi,

      Their relationship is a little more than a closely guarded secret.

      I’m sorry to step in here again Efi but what do you mean by this?

      It doesn’t seem that GRRM has imbued any mystery with Jon and Sansa’s relationship. Like many siblings, Jon and Sansa simply weren’t close and for these characters in particular, they weren’t for reasons that are evident in the books: Sansa followed Catelyn’s influence and the influence of Westeros as a whole: looking down on Jon’s bastardy. She was a highborn girl, hit all the right notes of being a highborn girl (enjoyed and excelled traditionally feminine activities, conventionally beautiful, trueborn, had the right name, etc.) and highborn girls weren’t supposed to associate themselves with bastards, thus viewing Jon as “only [her] half-brother.”

      Additionally, GRRM said that he came up with the character of Sansa because everyone in the Stark family was getting along too well, didn’t feel this was reflective of real families, and he needed Sansa to bring in some conflict:

      Arya was one of the first characters created. Sansa came about as a total opposite b/c too many of the Stark family members were getting along and familes aren’t like that. Thus, Sansa was created; he ended by saying they have deep issues to work out.

      And I think this explains Sansa’s lack of closeness with Jon nicely. Where Jon and Arya have a deep bond rooted in them both feeling like outsiders among their family and in society, Sansa is Arya’s opposite: she does fit into society in every way, she’s not an outsider. Jon’s bastardy divides Sansa and Jon.

      In the books it’s meant to overturn the situation in favor of the Starks; Jon with the Freefolk and Sansa with the Vale will take back WF and kill LF.

      I don’t know about this. In the show, Sansa took over Jeyne’s storyline because there is no Jeyne in the adaptation. In the books, it’s Jeyne who is on her way to the Wall.

      Sansa taking over Jeyne’s storyline and being in the North, with LF having arranged for Sansa to marry Ramsay (instead of Harry the Heir as in the books) is why she’s in Winterfell circa season 5 and why she and Jon reunited in season 6.

      By their own admission, D&D liked Jeyne’s storyline and wanted to expand Sansa’s role because they didn’t feel they could do that with her book storyline, leading to the plot points you outlined, because D&D had Sansa take on Jeyne’s storyline.

      As of AFFC, Sansa is in the Vale — quite a ways away from the North and the Wall. Neither Sansa (or anyone else) has currently entertained plans to get her north in the foreseeable future. She is embroiled in LF’s plot and the Harry the Heir plot (while Sweetrobin is poisoned). LF is setting her up to marry somebody — but it’s Harry in the Vale rather than Ramsay in the North.

      Additionally, there is quite a bit of chaos at the Wall that needs to be sorted out (between the wildlings, queen’s men, and Night’s Watchmen) because Jon is… currently dead. And who knows how he’ll be revived, brought back, or how long that will take. Meanwhile, Stannis is still alive and working on taking Winterfell while Jeyne is riding for the Wall, Davos is looking for Rickon, Bran’s becoming a tree, Hardhome is still an issue, etc.

      It doesn’t look to me that Sansa and Jon will be reuniting… soon. I think they will eventually! But in a different way than how it happened in the show. I think the Jon/Sansa retake Winterfell storyline happened as a result of Sansa taking over Jeyne’s storyline, the early removal of Stannis, and because D&D wanted to increase Sansa’s role in the show story.

      So you see, this relationship is very important for the plot.

      In the show… but I think it remains to be seen how Jon and Sansa’s relationship will evolve in the books and if they do start to have a newfound appreciation for each other based on their time apart. I think they will. I don’t know when they’ll reunite.

      I think the only reason for not developing the Jon-Arya relationship was dictated first by lack of time (needless to show sth that the viewers might imagine that happens off screen) and second because they were trapped in the ninja warrior faceless assassin persona they created for Arya.

      I agree with the first but not the second. Arya still had humanity while she was in assassin mode (ie. Lady Crane).

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    91. Efi,

      [I replied to the first part of your post but it’s in moderation. Here is the extract I think you’re referencing though? 🙂 If this post doesn’t go into moderation! The excerpt is quite long…]

      Wearing a face is magical (Adriana can retrieve the extract), but it didn’t really translate on screen.

      I think this is the extact that reveals how a face (skin) is bonded with the wearer’s? 🙂

      “Sit,” the priest commanded. She sat. “Now close your eyes, child.” She closed her eyes. “This will hurt,” he warned her, “but pain is the price of power. Do not move.”

      Still as stone, she thought. She sat unmoving. The cut was quick, the blade sharp. By rights the metal should have been cold against her flesh, but it felt warm instead. She could feel the blood washing down her face, a rippling red curtain falling across her brow and cheeks and chin, and she understood why the priest had made her close her eyes. When it reached her lips the taste was salt and copper. She licked at it and shivered.

      “Bring me the face,” said the kindly man. The waif made no answer, but she could hear her slippers whispering over the stone floor. To the girl he said, “Drink this,” and pressed a cup into her hand. She drank it down at once. It was very tart, like biting into a lemon. A thousand years ago, she had known a girl who loved lemon cakes. No, that was not me, that was only Arya. 

      “Mummers change their faces with artifice,” the kindly man was saying, “and sorcerers use glamors, weaving light and shadow and desire to make illusions that trick the eye. These arts you shall learn, but what we do here goes deeper. Wise men can see through artifice, and glamors dissolve before sharp eyes, but the face you are about to don will be as true and solid as that face you were born with. Keep your eyes closed.” She felt his fingers brushing back her hair. “Stay still. This will feel queer. You may be dizzy, but you must not move.”

      Then came a tug and a soft rustling as the new face was pulled down over the old. The leather scraped across her brow, dry and stiff, but as her blood soaked into it, it softened and turned supple. Her cheeks grew warm, flushed. She could feel her heart fluttering beneath her breast, and for one long moment she could not catch her breath. Hands closed around her throat, hard as stone, choking her. Her own hands shot up to claw at the arms of her attacker, but there was no one there. A terrible sense of fear filled her, and she heard a noise, a hideous crunching noise, accompanied by blinding pain. A face floated in front of her, fat, bearded, brutal, his mouth twisted with rage. She heard the priest say, “Breathe, child. Breathe out the fear. Shake off the shadows. He is dead. She is dead. Her pain is gone. Breathe.”

      The girl took a deep shuddering breath, and realized it was true. No one was choking her, no one was hitting her. Even so, her hand was shaking as she raised it to her face. Flakes of dried blood crumbled at the touch of her fingertips, black in the lantern light. She felt her cheeks, touched her eyes, traced the line of her jaw. “My face is still the same.”

      “Is it? Are you certain?”

      Was she certain? She had not felt any change, but maybe it was not something you could feel. She swept a hand down across her face from top to bottom, as she had once seen Jaqen H’ghar do, back at Harrenhal. When he did it, his whole face had rippled and changed. When she did it, nothing happened. “It feels the same.”

      “To you,” said the priest. “It does not look the same.”

      “To other eyes, your nose and jaw are broken,” said the waif. “One side of your face is caved in where your cheekbone shattered, and half your teeth are missing.”

      She probed around inside her mouth with her tongue, but found no holes or broken teeth. Sorcery, she thought. I have a new face. An ugly, broken face.

      ___

      So we just have to wait for the books (hmmmm )

      Yep!

      I hope there’s an opportunity for Jon and Arya to have real-time interactions in which they re-learn each other, talk about what they’ve each been through, where Jon can see Arya’s skills but.. I don’t know when they’re going to reunite either or how it’ll happen. GRRM doesn’t exactly focus on giving fans what they want — rather, I think he’ll tell the story he thinks is best to tell, even if it’s not what we want :/ So I don’t know that we’ll be seeing Jon and Arya fighting alongside each other… but maybe Jon will see Arya fight.

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    92. Efi,

      Argggg! I’ve been typing out (another) reply to Tensor’s reply to my comment about Sandor’s and Jon’s inexplicable failure to ask about Arya’s well-being and whereabouts at any time during the Eastwatch cell encounter in S7e5 or the walk beyond the wall in S7e6, and I went off on another tangent about Gendry’s conspicuous lack of curiosity about his loyal friend’s fate.

      I’ll cut and paste that (unedited) additional Gendry tangent here instead…

      ………
      … Another thing: Although Gendry had been rather sanguine about being duped and assaulted by Melisandre in the aftermath of that incident in S3 (when talking with Davos), years later he kept “whinging” about it, from the moment he saw the Brotherhood in the Eastwatch cells, and throughout the idle chit chat beyond the Wall when blasting Thoros and Beric for selling him to the Red Witch. I am not minimizing the assault.

      Yet, as far as Gendry knew, when he last saw Arya, she had been in the custody of the Brotherhood, who planned to escort “Ned Stark’s daughter” back to her family.

      Throughout Gendry’s diatribes against Beric and Thoros, not once did he take a moment to demand that they tell him what became of his loyal friend – the one who’d saved his skin on multiple occasions.

      That made little sense. Shouldn’t “What did you do with Arya Stark!” have been included in his grievances? No?

      Not even a brief question or expression of concern to her brother Jon? (Or, hypothetically, let’s say Gendry drank the “I thought Arya was dead” Kool-Aid: not even an expression of his condolences, accompanied by a token of his appreciation for Arya saving his life multiple times during their journeys from S1e10 to mid-S3?)

      It all just seemed like… unnatural human behavior.

      Shoot, if my dog had gone missing I’d show more concern, and I don’t even have a dog.
      ———
      End excerpt. … Now back to thumb-typing my surreply to Tensor the Mage…

        Quote  Reply

    93. Adrianacandle,

      And here’s part of my problem: Because of the show’s divergence from the books, Jon has proof (via Sansa & Brienne) that Arya did NOT die in KL, and in fact had last been seen alive and well as of Brienne’s (show-only) encounter with Arya and Sandor.

      That’s why Jon’s declaration in S7e5 “I thought Arya was dead” left me befuddled. That statement might have been appropriate for book! Jon, but not show! Jon.

      For similar reasons, the WF gate guard in S7e4 accusing Arya of being an imposter because “Arya Stark’s dead” was confusing – not to mention that Bran the Broken Modem “saw” Arya, alive and well, at the Crossroads Inn (where she was in S7e2) but didn’t tell anyone until after she’d already arrived home in S7e4. Bran didn’t think to tell Sansa, the Lady of WF? Or fire off a ravengram to KitN Jon?

      All I can surmise is that either: (a) the script writer premised Jon’s false assumption on the books [i.e., no intel conveyed by Hot Pie to Brienne that Arya had made it out of KL alive;
      no sighting of Arya by Brienne, and therefore no report to Sansa]; or (b) Jon’s S7e5 declaration was scripted as a way to excuse his apparent lack of interest in Arya’s whereabouts; or (c) different scriptwriters didn’t harmonize their understandings of show! canon with each other; or (d) I can’t explain it.

        Quote  Reply

    94. Efi,

      ”…they were trapped in the ninja warrior faceless assassin persona they created for Arya.”

      Fair enough. I can live with that.

      #ASNAWP. 👸🏻

      ”This doesn’t mean that she’ll lose her humanity, her emotion and her compassion. On the contrary half of her arc is compassion and emotion and she will have to fight side by side with Jon. That is pretty clear from the books…”

      Well damn it! That’s what I wanted to see on the show! Some Jon + Arya fighting side-by-side! Was that too much to ask???

      [Again, I blame the WF Crypts pre-S8 teaser for getting me psyched for Dynamic Duo battle scenes. “I can be quick enough. Watch….” or “Poke em full of holes? Nah. I can hack a wight’s head off…”]

        Quote  Reply

    95. Ten Bears,

      And here’s part of my problem: Because of the show’s divergence from the books, Jon has proof (via Sansa & Brienne) that Arya did NOT die in KL, and in fact had last been seen alive and well as of Brienne’s (show-only) encounter with Arya and Sandor.

      That’s why Jon’s declaration in S7e5 “I thought Arya was dead” left me befuddled. That statement might have been appropriate for book! Jon, but not show! Jon.

      You’ve done a good job articulating your problem with this. Like in our prior conversations about this, I’m afraid I don’t have anything new to offer other than the below.

      I wish I could tell you the writers’ rationale but I can’t. Assuming Sansa told Jon everything Brienne shared with her, the last Brienne saw Arya was over a year prior with no word of her since. Quite a bit of time has passed and that’s the best reasoning I can come up with as to why some, including Jon, believed she was dead.

      As to Bran’s characterization, I think that’s a puzzle in and of itself over why he says the things he says, how he seems to know what’s going to happen at some points (‘Why do you think I came all this way?’ re:becoming king) but not at others (doesn’t know if dragonfire will work on the Night King).

      I’d call these contrivances to expedite the plot and attempts to cover up some holes… while introducing an inconsistency or two at the same time (in 7×03, Dany notes that Jon has lost two brothers — Robb and Rickon — while two episodes later, Jon declares to Dany and co. that he thought Bran and Arya were both dead as well.)

      I wonder if these were errors in script proofing. Or things that were just overlooked.

        Quote  Reply

    96. Tensor the Mage, Still Loving the Ending,

      Dropping the political plot was one of the biggest disappointments of season 8. Not addressing huge political entanglements was a major let-down of the fans on their part. (at least of fans like me who were in for the political plot and not for dragons)

      I have watched the dialog of Daenerys and Jon in 7.3 multiple times. I think it was one of the best moments of the series in general. It was about hereditary monarchy vs elective monarchy, and the right of the people for self-determination.
      I never had any illusions about Daenerys. Dracarys was her response to the most complicated problems she ever faced and the show downplayed the complicated political problems of Meereen while at the same time tried to elevate Tyrion to the role of savior. In the end of course it was dracarys again.

      But seeing Daenerys in the great hall of the Starks accusing Jamie for killing her father! The hall that belonged to those her father burned alive was a major WTF moment.

      She was insensitive to the needs of others and that showed pretty well in her encounter with the Northerners.
      In 7.3, she asked for forgiveness for her own father burning Jon’s grandfather and uncle alive -twenty years ago; she asked not to be held accountable for that, but she still held Jon responsible for an oath given to Aegon the Conqueror 300 years ago. She accused him of being in open rebellion while all the time forgetting that she wasn’t queen of Westeros yet, so, who did the North rebel against?
      The arrogance was paramount!
      But the thing is, no one confronted her about it (well, apart from Sansa) and it didn’t have any follow-up. Perhaps that extra moment where the Northerners spit on her in 8.1. would have demonstrated how she lacked respect at least until the battle. That the dialog could have been more eloquent relating to the political troubles underneath the surface is perhaps even an understatement.

      But the showrunners went with the mental instability thread; hence the panic in Jon’s and Davos’ faces when she called Gentry.

      Thoughts of Jon: F*ck, what will she do now? Will she burn him alive?
      Thoughts of Davos: Not him too! I’ve already lost my son in a fire!

      Well, that’s just nonsense.
      A Baratheon and Storms End didn’t have any reason to support Daenerys. Twenty years ago they rebelled to kick Aerys out, why would they now accept his daughter?
      Sam didn’t have any reason to support Daenerys; although the Reach was always pro-Targ, in the show she burned his father and his brother alive.

      Daenerys was politically incompetent and insensitive; her self-righteousness wasn’t allowing her to see beyond herself and what she wanted.
      So, ok with Gentry. But instead of that, I’d like to see him refuse the position; I’d like to see Sam questioning Daenerys and withholding the Reach’s alliance.
      Show Daenerys losing her mind for failing politically, not just because she’s losing people.

      But that’s just me; others were happy with what they saw.

        Quote  Reply

    97. Efi,

      But seeing Daenerys in the great hall of the Starks accusing Jamie for killing her father! The hall that belonged to those her father burned alive was a major WTF moment.

      Well, they were trying Jaime and deciding whether or not they could trust him. All over Westeros (and beyond), Jaime is known as a man who was a member of Aerys’s kingsguard but stabbed him in the back. Nobody (save for Brienne and Jaime) knew why Jaime killed Aerys. They assumed the worst of reasons and kingslaying is one of the most serious and grievous crimes you can commit in Westeros (alongside kinslaying and breaking sacred guest right). Everyone scorned Jaime for this, even Ned.

      Sansa, too, says this:

      Sansa [to Dany]: You’re right. We can’t trust him. He attacked my father in the streets. He tried to destroy my house and my family, the same as he did yours.

      ___

      But the showrunners went with the mental instability thread; hence the panic in Jon’s and Davos’ faces when she called Gentry.
      Thoughts of Jon: F*ck, what will she do now? Will she burn him alive?
      Thoughts of Davos: Not him too! I’ve already lost my son in a fire!

      That was a tense moment to be sure — Dany had called up the son of a man who had hunted Dany and her brother for their entire lives, who was the reason why they were in exile — but I don’t think their concerns were that extreme, that Dany was going to retaliate against Gendry for his father’s crimes by deciding to burn him alive then and there. I’m not sure why they would jump to this conclusion? Dany doesn’t typically burn people for the actions of their fathers or Jon would be history the moment he stepped foot on Dragonstone, ditto Jaime when he came to Winterfell, Tyrion when he came to Meereen — none of whom she decided to burn alive on the spot so I don’t know why they’d think she’d do the same to Gendry.

      I mean, when the issue of the Karstarks and Umbers came up, Sansa wanted to take action against the children of these families because they fought for the Boltons against House Stark while giving their to those who fought for the Starks as a reward. That’s not nearly as extreme as a death sentence — those children weren’t at fault — but Sansa wanted to punish treason.

      Sansa: We should give the Last Hearth and Karhold to new families, loyal families who supported us against Ramsay.

      Lords: Aye!

      Jon: The Umbers and the Karstarks have fought beside the Starks for centuries. They’ve kept faith for generation after generation.

      Sansa: And then they broke faith.

      Jon: I’m not going to strip these families of their ancestral homes because of the crimes of a few reckless sons.

      Sansa: So there’s no punishment for treason and no reward for loyalty?

      Jon: The punishment for treason is death. Smalljon Umber died on the field of battle. Harald Karstark died on the field of battle.

      Sansa: They died fighting for Ramsay. Give the castles to the families of the men who died fighting for you.

      Dany could have still taken action against Gendry if he were a faction she decided she couldn’t trust and/or needs to be punished for his father’s crimes… without declaring to burning him alive for it, ie. imposing conditions on him if he is to live in Westeros.

      A Baratheon and Storms End didn’t have any reason to support Daenerys. Twenty years ago they rebelled to kick Aerys out, why would they now accept his daughter?
      Sam didn’t have any reason to support Daenerys; although the Reach was always pro-Targ, in the show she burned his father and his brother alive.

      I believe the idea is that by Dany giving these individuals positions, titles, and lands, it’s an attempt to provide them with a reason to support her. I don’t think it’d change Sam’s feelings about Dany or smooth everything over… but if he did act against her, it’d be treason in that system.

      However, with Gendry, they have no personal history. Gendry doesn’t even have a personal history with his natural father’s family. Robert didn’t acknowledge him, Gendry grew up in poverty as a bastard son without even the bastard’s name. However, here, it’s Dany who was elevating Gendry from a bastard with no claim to a lord with titles and lands.

      I don’t know why Gendry would refuse this position? He didn’t really have any personal feeling or loyalty to Robert or that family. His only interaction with a Baratheon was with Stannis, who planned to sacrifice him for blood magic.

        Quote  Reply

    98. Missing word correction:

      *when the issue of the Karstarks and Umbers came up, Sansa wanted to take action against the children of these families because they fought for the Boltons against House Stark *by taking their castles away while giving *these castles to those who fought for the Starks as a reward.

        Quote  Reply

    99. Efi: Dracarys was her response to the most complicated problems she ever faced and the show downplayed the complicated political problems of Meereen while at the same time tried to elevate Tyrion to the role of savior.

      Without trying to get into the debate over whether or not Dany’s decision to burn a surrendered King’s Landing was justified or not and acknowledging violence is an impulse (the instinct for war) that Dany finds herself fighting against (which is articulated in the books via her thoughts) when faced with problems, it’s not a solution she always utilizes to solve complicated problems as a first resort — the Meereen arc being a big example of this.

      Dany first tries to deal with these tangled problems via negotiation and compromise with her opposers, with marriage to Hizdahr, and decides to stay in Meereen for a while in an effort to make things work even when she has the option of going to Westeros right away. She didn’t respond to these problems with ‘dracarys’ — she locked her dragons up. It’s when she returned to Meereen and saw the masters attacking her city that she decided on war against them via fire while in the books, Dany ultimately views her efforts for peace as failures.

        Quote  Reply

    100. Efi,

      ”…hence the panic in Jon’s and Davos’ faces when she called Gendry.

      Thoughts of Jon: “F*ck, what will she do now? Will she burn him alive?”
      Thoughts of Davos: “Not him too! I’ve already lost my son in a fire!”

      Thoughts of Gendry: “Aw, please, not now! I’m lookin’ for my hot little gf. To light my fire, if you catch my drift.”

      🎶[Cue background music] 🎼

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jKU74Uns9_0

      Thoughts of Sandor: “You can still smell the burning bodies and that’s where your head is at.”

        Quote  Reply

    101. Fireandblood87: There not errors Dany just didn’t know about Arya

      Sure but… how would she know about Bran being alive since she thought Jon had two dead brothers, not three? Or why didn’t Jon say, “I have another dead brother too,” instead of sadly nodding when just two episodes later, he was all, “I thought Bran was dead,” to Dany and co.? Just for some plot consistency 🙂

      That inspires me to think this was an error…

      I actually did think Sansa and Jon assumed Bran had died since he doesn’t come up as a topic of discussion and Jon never found him at Craster’s Keep — one of the reasons Jon went to Craster’s Keep.

        Quote  Reply

    102. Young Dragon: No, it’s not an error in the slightest. Robb and Rickon were confirmed dead. Bran was only presumed dead. There is a very distinct difference.

      Still, I would have though since Bran was presumed dead, Bran would be among the dead brothers count in episode 703. And Jon says he thought Bran was dead.

      But I don’t know, that’s just me. Presumed dead, confirmed dead, I’d say that warrants an include. But again, that’s just me and who I would include in a deceased siblings tally.

        Quote  Reply

    103. Tron79,

      Tensor the Mage, Tron

      The slaughter of the Starks and many of their bannermen ended our illusions of this being a standard fantasy epic, but in looking back upon their journey that ended at The Twins, my big question is — why?

      Both your comments are valid. I agree with Tron that “Littlefinger was the real enemy”. I’m rewatching the series and am near the end of series 2 (RW on the way..) I just saw the part where Arya with Gendry and others are captives at the dire Harrenhall. Arya becomes Tywin’s cupbearer and overhears the Lannister’s war council. At one moment Baelish shows up and talks with Tywin. It’s about the time when the red wedding must have been planned and the clear implication is that Littlefinger suggested the red wedding to Tywin who agreed.

      Watching the series for the first time was traumatic for viewers – deliberately by the authors – since there was no early gratification or justice given. The very first episode and Bran’s fall burned Jaime and Cersei as villains but they frustratingly evaded justice time and again. Likewise heroes whom one invested in met with defeat and death such as Ned Stark, Renly and Khal Drogo. With the Red Wedding it became clearer than ever that in GOT the wait for justice and resolution would be a long one. Of course, in rewatchings where the element of surprise is gone, one can more dispassionately admire the structure and symmetries.

      And over the whole arc of GOT there were profound symmetries. Yes the arch mover of evil was Littlefinger – he got the Lannisters and Starks into a war that neither side wanted. Littlefinger then set up the Red Wedding. At the moment of Ned Stark’s betrayal Baelish holds a knife to Ned’s throat. And it is Arya Stark at the end whose Valyrian dagger cuts Littlefinger’s own throat and kills him. And the treacherous Frey meets with his own red wedding of sorts at the hands of the Stark that got away.

      Lannister versus Stark is a war between cynicism and devious cunning on one hand and simplistic jaw-jutting righteous honour on the other. The jaw-jutters win the battles but the cynics win the war. But all of this turns out to be only subservient to two bigger stories. That’s the genius of GRR Martin and his intricately weaved tale. The clue is in the name – a song of ice and fire. From the icy north the threat grows from the white walkers and the Night King. And from the east Danaerys and the dragons loom on the horizon. Those are the true mortal threats that houses Stark and Lannister will ultimately face. And in that regard, the jaw-jutters fare better than the cynics. The Stark’s (led by Jon) alliance with Danaerys and Arya’s special skills allow them to defeat the Night King despite more cynical betrayal from the Lannisters with the exception of a reformed Jaime. (Jaime almost becomes an honour-bound Stark – how ironic is that or predictable in S1??) And when the vengeful Danaerys descends on Kings Landing, nothing can save them from Drogon. Their wily cynicism left them defenceless.

      Yes the Starks were naïve and apparently slow-witted, but they end up ruling both KL (Bran) and the north (Sansa). The meek did inherit the earth. But we had to wait a while to get there.

        Quote  Reply

    104. Adrianacandle,

      Why would Danerys add Bran when it wasn’t known for sure that he was dead? Danerys mentioned the two brothers whose deaths were confirmed. It’s especially appropriate considering Danerys has two dead brothers of her own, causing a parallel between them, something they could both relate to.

        Quote  Reply

    105. Young Dragon: Why would Danerys add Bran when it wasn’t known for sure that he was dead? Danerys mentioned the two brothers whose deaths were confirmed. It’s especially appropriate considering Danerys has two dead brothers of her own, causing a parallel between them, something they could both relate to.

      Because he was presumed dead. That’s what Jon seemed to think and this same Jon nods at Dany’s statement when two episodes later, he declared he thought Bran was dead too.

      Yes, I appreciated that they were trying to draw a parallel with this and utilized this as one of the things they could find commonality with, I caught onto that, but that doesn’t really change my issue since it still feels like an inconsistency. I think two people can relate to one another even if the dead brother count isn’t exactly the same.

        Quote  Reply

    106. Adrianacandle,

      It’s not an inconsistency. Danerys said Jon had two dead brothers, and Jon had two dead brothers. That’s as far from an inconsistency as you can get. You seem to be confusing thinking and knowing. Jon had two dead brothers. That was what Danerys knows. He might have a third dead brother, but that is not known. So, to Danerys, until Bran’s fate is known, Jon has two dead brothers. It’s not that complicated.

        Quote  Reply

    107. Young Dragon: It’s not an inconsistency. Danerys said Jon had two dead brothers, and Jon had two dead brothers. That’s as far from an inconsistency as you can get. You seem to be confusing thinking and knowing. Jon had two dead brothers. That was what Danerys knows. He might have a third dead brother, but that is not known. So, to Danerys, until Bran’s fate is known, Jon has two dead brothers. It’s not that complicated.

      But Jon nods at Dany’s statement that he has two dead brothers… and then two episodes later, he himself says, “I thought Bran was dead.”

      I’m not saying it’s complicated, I’m saying it feels like an inconsistency to me.

      Are you’re saying it’s still technically true that Jon has two dead brothers since two dead brothers is less than three brothers? And of those three dead brothers are Robb and Rickon?

        Quote  Reply

    108. Adrianacandle,

      Because Bran’s fate wasn’t known, same as Arya’s. They were both alive and dead. Jon didn’t dare hope that they were alive for fear of being crushed, but he didn’t know either way. It’s not inconsistent. Danerys said Jon had two dead brothers, and there were two dead brothers confirmed.

        Quote  Reply

    109. Young Dragon: Because Bran’s fate wasn’t known, same as Arya’s. They were both alive and dead. Jon didn’t dare hope that they were alive for fear of being crushed, but he didn’t know either way. It’s not inconsistent. Danerys said Jon had two dead brothers, and there were two dead brothers confirmed.

      Okay…

      I mean, I don’t know if Jon is treating Arya and Bran’s fates like Schrodinger’s cat since he says word-for-word, “I thought Arya was dead. I though Bran was dead,” but yeah….

        Quote  Reply

    110. Adrianacandle,

      Did Jon ever receive confirmation that Bran was dead? No. Last he heard years ago, Bran was with Hodor and a few others heading north of the Wall, an increasingly inhospitable land swarming with wildlings, dangerous animals, wights, and Walkers. Jon may have never received confirmation, but it would be super naive to expect Bran to turn up alive after all that.

      Ergo, Jon knew he lost two brothers, and probably a third. He didn’t feel like mentioning that to Dany, whom he initially had a very rocky relationship with. If he had brought it up (needlessly in that context), what would she have said? “Uh, sorry to hear about your brother’s possible death? Best of luck finding him?”

        Quote  Reply

    111. Farimer123,

      Jon may have never received confirmation, but it would be super naive to expect Bran to turn up alive after all that.

      My issue was never that it seems unbelievable that Jon would think Bran was dead. I think it is believable for the reasons you described. That’s a reasonable conclusion to come to.

      Ergo, Jon knew he lost two brothers, and probably a third. He didn’t feel like mentioning that to Dany, whom he initially had a very rocky relationship with. If he had brought it up (needlessly in that context), what would she have said? “Uh, sorry to hear about your brother’s possible death? Best of luck finding him?”

      Or (since per episode 705, Jon tells Dany and the rest, “I thought Bran was dead”) just something simple like this:

      Jon: Amazing thing to see.

      Dany: I named them for my brothers, Viserys and Rhaegar. They’re both gone now. You lost two brothers as well.

      Jon: And another.

      That’s really it. Dany can offer her formal condolences (“I’m sorry”) and they can continue the conversation from there.

      This doesn’t seem like super personal information to share at the outset of their relationship when they’re starting to find things in common (as Young Dragon mentioned) after a rocky start — since the topic of dead brothers has already come up and Dany named her dragons for them.

      But maybe it is like you said, Jon just didn’t want to bring it up at that time. I just think this would have helped me for the sake of consistency — establishing Jon thought all three brothers were dead.

      But this isn’t a major thing for me, just a minor detail I noticed.

        Quote  Reply

    112. Dire guineapig,

      ”…Arya becomes Tywin’s cupbearer and overhears the Lannister’s war council. At one moment Baelish shows up and talks with Tywin. It’s about the time when the red wedding must have been planned and the clear implication is that Littlefinger suggested the red wedding to Tywin who agreed.”

      I thought Arya overheard parts of LF relaying to Tywin the bogus hostage exchange scheme cooked up by Tyrion – not the Red Wedding.

      From Tyrion’s post-Red Wedding conversation with Tywin it seemed clear that Tywin engineered the Red Wedding. I’d have to go back to see if FecalFlinger had any involvement.

      (Q: Would LF consider Catelyn disposable once he got his hooks into Cat 2.0?)

        Quote  Reply

    113. Adrianacandle,

      ”… I don’t know if Jon is treating Arya and Bran’s fates like Schrodinger’s cat since he says word-for-word, “I thought Arya was dead. I though Bran was dead,” but yeah….”

      I just saw your earlier reply referencing Schrödinger’s cat before I posted my reply a few minutes ago.
      (What’s that old saying about minds that think alike? 🧐)

        Quote  Reply

    114. Ten Bears: I just saw your earlier reply referencing Schrödinger’s cat before I posted my reply a few minutes ago.
      (What’s that old saying about minds that think alike? 🧐)

      But I think you worded it better (Schrödinger’s siblings)! 😉

      (I was happy that somebody else came to the Schrödinger place with me!)

        Quote  Reply

    115. Ten Bears: This could’ve been massaged with conditional statements by Jon about the unknown fates of his siblings, like Arya did….

      (from S6e3?)
      (After the Waif asks “a girl” about Arya Stark’s siblings)

      Waif: “And where are they now?”
      Arya: “They may be dead for all a girl knows.

      That’s true, that could have helped out a bit, I think. And nice spot! 🙂

        Quote  Reply

    116. Dire guineapig,

      Thank you for the validation, but I’m afraid I must respectfully disagree with your speculation:

      At one moment Baelish shows up and talks with Tywin. It’s about the time when the red wedding must have been planned and the clear implication is that Littlefinger suggested the red wedding to Tywin who agreed.

      I can’t see Baelish conspiring with anyone to kill Cat unless he had absolute assurance of great gain. At that moment, Cat and Robb are worth far more to Baelish alive than dead. With Ned out of the way, she has become an eminently marriageable widow, and the King in the North could make a worse match for her than a wealthy and powerful courtier at King’s Landing. As the secret instigator of our fictional edition of The War of The Roses, being married to Cat in KL would give Baelish excellent opportunities to exacerbate the conflict for his own personal gain. Also, Baelish would be throwing away all of his influence over Cat, and his obsessive love for her, and what would he get in return? No, Baelish had no reason to propose the Red Wedding, and every reason to oppose it.

      I believe a better speculation would have Roose Bolton, the Starks’ treacherous bannerman, helping to plan and execute the Red Wedding, acting as liaison between Tywin and Walder. Roose was there, and prepared for the slaughter, by changing into a shirt of mail right before the crossbow bolts started flying. Roose’s personal involvement and on-site oversight would have helped assure Tywin that the famously-unreliable Walder would actually execute their evil plan.

        Quote  Reply

    117. Adrianacandle,

      Shroedinger entanglement implies reciprocity – if one lives the other dies. This was not necessarily the meaning. But I guess the entangled particles could have been near the event horizon of a black hole and become Hawking radiation. Then they could cheat the system and both share the same fate. So Shroedinger can work as an analogy.

        Quote  Reply

    118. Tensor the Mage, Still Loving the Ending,

      You and Ten Bears are probably right and I wrong about Baelish being the instigator of the red wedding. I had overlooked the Cat-Baelish factor. And Roose Bolton is indeed a better candidate. You see some tension developing between Rob and Roose Bolton prior to RW, as Robb rejects some of Bolton’s brutal suggestions e.g. flaying prisoners.

      However I’m not sure how how desirable an outcome it is for Littlefinger for the Starks to be victorious and conquer KL. It would threaten his brothel trade at least – although if he got to be monarch that would prove only a stepping stone.

        Quote  Reply

    119. Ten Bears:
      Efi,

      ”…hence the panic in Jon’s and Davos’ faces when she called Gendry.


      Thoughts of Jon: “F*ck, what will she do now? Will she burn him alive?”
      Thoughts of Davos: “Not him too! I’ve already lost my son in a fire!”

      Thoughts of Gendry: “Aw, please, not now! I’m lookin’ for my hot little gf. To light my fire, if you catch my drift.”

      🎶[Cue background music] 🎼

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jKU74Uns9_0

      Thoughts of Sandor: “You can still smell the burning bodies and that’s where your head is at.”

      Along the same lines…

      Coming up: Today’s Musical Interlude,
      Courtesy of The One True King

        Quote  Reply

    120. Today’s Musical Interlude
      by The One True King

      🎶”Lord Almighty,
      I feel my temperature rising 🤒
      Higher, higher 🚀
      It’s burning through to my soul🕯
      Girl, girl, girl 👸🏻
      You’re gonna set me on fire 🔥
      My brain is flaming 🥵
      I don’t know which way to go.🤷🏻‍♂️🎼

      ***
      🎶Ooh, ooh, ooh,
      I feel my temperature rising 🌡
      Help me, I’m flaming ☄️
      I must be a hundred and nine ♨️
      Burning, burning, burning 🔥
      And nothing can cool me🧯🚿
      I just might turn into smoke🌋💭
      But I feel fine,
      ‘Cause your kisses lift me higher,
      Like a sweet song of a choir,
      And you light my morning sky 🌅
      With burning love.”
      🎵🔥❤️

      ———-
      🔥 “Burning Love”
      Elvis Presley, Live from Hawaii (1973) 2:47 long

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0SUC8sdP5eI

      ——-
      🔥“Burning Love” (1972), Elvis Presley
      Official Audio (2:58)

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zf2VYAtqRe0

      [*Excuse the emoji illustrations*]

        Quote  Reply

    121. As far as I can tell, there is zero evidence that Baelish had a hand in planning the Red Wedding. The plan probably wasn’t even conceived until Robb started to make new overtures to the Freys, or at least before that, around the time Robb lost half his army because of the Karstarks marching home. Certainly not before Blackwater, because it wasn’t until after then that Tywin began to get an idea for how to handle Robb.

      Also, the perpetrators of the Red Wedding – Tywin, Roose, and Walder – met their demises in the same way Robb and Cat did. Tywin died by crossbow, which contributed to both Robb’s and Cat’s deaths. Roose stabbed Robb in the heart, then he was himself stabbed in the heart. Catelyn had a Frey son come up behind her and slice her throat, then Walder was killed by someone coming up behind him and slicing his throat. Littlefinger’s death was different from all of those.

        Quote  Reply

    122. Farimer123,

      Also, the perpetrators of the Red Wedding – Tywin, Roose, and Walder – met their demises in the same way Robb and Cat did. Tywin died by crossbow, which contributed to both Robb’s and Cat’s deaths. Roose stabbed Robb in the heart, then he was himself stabbed in the heart. Catelyn had a Frey son come up behind her and slice her throat, then Walder was killed by someone coming up behind him and slicing his throat. Littlefinger’s death was different from all of those.

        Quote  Reply

    123. Farimer123,

      ”…Catelyn had a Frey son come up behind her and slice her throat, then Walder was killed by someone coming up behind him and slicing his throat. Littlefinger’s death was different from all of those.”

      1. I guess we’ll never know how the two damn moron Frey sons were killed. Presumably a knife was involved at some point, though it’s unclear if that was pre- or post-morten. All we know is that they weren’t easy to carve. Especially Black Walder. 👸🏻🔪

      2. Hmm. Walder Frey didn’t exactly have someone come up behind him and slice his throat. That “someone” announced her presence and her name to a seated Walder before turning him into a Pez Dispenser. But yeah, she did neatly slice his throat. (Couldn’t make too much of a mess though. Had to recycle his face.)

      3. Littlefinger’s death? The only loose parallel I can see is that like Ned (who came into the throne room expecting to remove Cersei and Joffrey, only to have the tables turned on him and wind up with LF pressing a knife to his neck), LF came into the WF great hall expecting to watch Sansa get rid of Arya, only to have the tables turned on him and wind up with Arya pressing a knife to his neck – for a millisecond before it severed his carotid artery. (“Where’s the punishment in that? All over in an instant.” -S.C.)

      Too bad Sansa didn’t get to kill Roose.

        Quote  Reply

    124. Adrianacandle: But I think you worded it better (Schrödinger’s siblings)! 😉

      (I was happy that somebody else came to the Schrödinger place with me!)

      And now my inner head canon has subtitled this snippet from S6e3 as “Schrödinger’s Cat of the Canals”:

      Waif: “Tell me about The Hound.”

      Arya: “Also dead. Arya Stark left him to die. He was on her list…
      [Thwack! Waif hits her for lying.]
      …He was not on her list anymore. She’d taken him off it.”

      Waif: “Why? Didn’t she want him dead any longer?”

      Arya: “She did and she did not.”

        Quote  Reply

    125. Ten Bears: And now my inner head canon has subtitled this snippet from S6e3 as “Schrödinger’s Cat of the Canals”:

      Waif: “Tell me about The Hound.”

      Arya: “Also dead. Arya Stark left him to die. He was on her list…
      [Thwack! Waif hits her for lying.]
      …He was not on her list anymore. She’d taken him off it.”

      Waif: “Why? Didn’t she want him dead any longer?”

      Arya: “She did and she did not.”

      Another good one!

      I also remember, pre-season 6 and post-season 5 finale, Jon was both dead and not dead.

      Turns out he was only briefly dead — but he got better.

      (I wanted to say ‘mostly dead’ per Princess Bride but Jon was dead-dead).

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xbE8E1ez97M

      (About to listen to today’s musical interlude!)

        Quote  Reply

    126. Ten Bears,

      Ned and Baelish had complementary arcs. Each confidently left his home environment, ignored at least one strong warning about being completely out of his depth in his new environment, and was killed there after ignoring the warning. One rode South and never returned alive; the other rode North and never returned at all. Each, of course, loved Cat.

        Quote  Reply

    127. Young Dragon,

      Good catch. But didn’t Sam tell Jon about Bran in the show? In the books, he doesn’t tell, because it was Bran’s secret and there was magic involved which Sam witnessed with Coldhands and all. But if my memory doesn’t deceive me, it was different in the show. Or it was assumed to be be (off screen)? So if Jon knew that Bran was beyond the Wall, he might assume that he wouldn’t survive, but he’d never be 100% certain that he was dead. [wheras in the book he only has prior information].

        Quote  Reply

    128. Ten Bears,

      LF wouldn’t want Catelyn to die, and her death wasn’t planned in the RW (they meant to keep her alive). But it went awry as she fought back, killed one of Frey’s grandsons (named Aegon Jinglebells) and then they slit her throat. (at least in the books)

        Quote  Reply

    129. Farimer123,

      My speculation that Littlefinger (LF) was behind the red wedding is only that – speculation. His love of Catelyn would argue against this. However – as Tensor suggested above – by this time maybe his focus had turned to Sansa?

      By his strategy of “chaos is a ladder” LF had started the Stark-Lannister war but maybe Robb was doing too well and he wanted to even things up a little. Anyway the evidence for and against is circumstantial only. He did show up in Tywin’s war council (in Arya’s presence) at just the right time to have sowed the thought in Tywin’s mind.

        Quote  Reply

    130. Young Dragon,

      Book Tyrion and Book Varys weren’t BFFs, were they? Where Book Varys popped up to cause mayhem near the end of ADWD certainly wasn’t Mereen (I won’t say where he was as I don’t want to spoil the books for folk who might read them). Although I found the characters of Young Griff and Old Griff irritating I presume if and when the as yet unwritten/unprinted books see light of day book Varys will not be trying to be BFFs with Dany because he supports FAegon (unless that turns out to be one of GRRM’s red herrings). I know Conleth Hill said something fairly mild like he felt his character had been somewhat sidelined towards the end of GoT the show and some of the detractors were making he had absolutely loathed season 8 which wasn’t what he said at all. The excision of the Mummer’s Dragon plot (if YG is indeed the Mummer’s Dragon which seems quite likely) could have led to a lack of smoothness (in some folks’ opinions anyway) at the end of Varys’s character arc. Book Tyrion was at a low spot in ADWD from what I remember; I read/listened to the books once, I haven’t re-read them multiple times. I presume book T will meet book Dany at some time.

      Efi,

      I think you are right – I’m not sure where show Sam told show Jon, but I do seem to remember book Bran urged Sam to keep things under his hat.

        Quote  Reply

    131. Dame of Mercia: Efi,

      I think you are right – I’m not sure where show Sam told show Jon, but I do seem to remember book Bran urged Sam to keep things under his hat.

      It seems Sam told Jon off-screen because in 4×04:

      Sam: I should go back for Gilly.

      Jon: We have orders. No one’s to leave the castle.

      Sam: I remember when you disobeyed orders and rode south to help Robb.

      Jon: And I remember who came after me and brought me home. I know how hard it is, Sam, believe me. When you told me about Bran going beyond the Wall, all I could think about was getting my strength back so I could go and find him.

      Sam: I wish I could have convinced him to come back with me. I tried. Really, I did.

      Jon: How fast could they travel? A crippled boy being pulled on a sledge by a simpleton?

      Sam: I don’t know. They’d pass wildling villages. They could try to find shelter at one of them.

      Jon: The wildlings have joined up with Mance. Every village or sheltered place will be deserted. Except…

      Sam: Craster’s? You think Bran might have found…

      Locke: Snow. I don’t mean to interrupt. Thorne wants to see you.

      However, I don’t think Bran is mentioned again by Jon until 7×05 when he says he thought Bran was dead.

      In the books, Sam wants to tell Jon but he keeps his word to Bran not to tell.

      From ASOS, Sam IV:

      The living have no place at the feasts of the dead. It tore the heart from Sam to hold his silence then. Bran’s not dead, Jon, he wanted to stay. He’s with friends, and they’re going north on a giant elk to find a three-eyed crow in the depths of the haunted forest. It sounded so mad that there were times Sam Tarly thought he must have dreamt it all, conjured it whole from fever and fear and hunger . . . but he would have blurted it out anyway, if he had not given his word.

        Quote  Reply

    132. Dire guineapig: Adrianacandle,

      Shroedinger entanglement implies reciprocity – if one lives the other dies. This was not necessarily the meaning. But I guess the entangled particles could have been near the event horizon of a black hole and become Hawking radiation. Then they could cheat the system and both share the same fate. So Shroedinger can work as an analogy.

      Thank-you for this explanation! 🙂

        Quote  Reply

    133. Farimer123,

      “As far as I can tell, there is zero evidence that Baelish had a hand in planning the Red Wedding.”

      There was motive, however. I think it’s not clear yet, but Sansa diciphered the puzzle. In her last (I think) chapter of ACoK she thinks that it’s not possible for Baelish to become lord of Harrenhall; that for this to happen, her brother and her uncle and whoever must die, because the North was holding Harrenhall at the time and because it belonged to the Riverlands which had seceded and followed Robb. Robb was recognized as king of the Riverlands, so how could they give something that wasn’t theirs in the first place?
      The answer is, they were planning it already, and they were dividing the pie.

      Harrenhall was a stepping stone for Baelish; it was this lordship (although nominal) which allowed him to marry Lysa Arryn. Tyrion thinks correctly that his father was wrong in rewarding Baelish, because he was in reality much more dangerous than Tywin thought in all his arrogance.
      So Baelish had motive to participate in the conspiracy, and Sansa has recognized it.

      That a betrayal was being planned is suggested by the role of the Westerlings. They were Lannister loyals and it makes absolutely no sense that they’d support Robb all of the sudden. They participated in the destruction of the Reynes and in the destruction of KL by Tywin’s forces. Jamie finds out about their role and he is disgusted. That they were never true to Robb is proven by the fact that Jeyne’s mother was giving her something that prevented a pregnancy, while all the time she was telling her it would help her conceive.
      It seems that the Westerlings purposefully sent their daughter to Robb with the hope that she’d seduce him. I don’t remember the exact reward they’d get, but wedding was certainly involved, and that wedding would push them once again up the social ladder. It didn’t end up that way, because Tywin wouldn’t allow a Lannister to marry an offspring of a spice merchant. Rolph Spicer, Sybell’s brother, was also named lord of Castamere.
      So the Westerling parents were planted traitors in Robb’s camp, but they were not informed about the Red Wedding.

      I also find it quite a concidence that LF was master of coin and House Westerling is a fallen house that has allied with a merchant of spices -meaning stinkingly rich, for making up for their losses. Catelyn is right to point this out.

      I also disagree with the view expressed above that LF would have something to gain if Catelyn was alive. It wasn’t the plan to kill Catelyn and her death was an “accident” in the midst of the fray. In fact I think that the Freys wanted her alive because they meant to marry her to a Frey -for getting a firmer grip on the Riverlands (if my memory doesn’t deceive me). Her fate was sealed either way.
      Catelyn couldn’t offer the North to anyone by herself, because she’s from the Riverlands and she has children. So LF wouldn’t want to marry her at this point. He’d do better with her daughter and in fact he sends Dontos to Sansa, beginning his plan to spirit her away from KL.

      Harrenhall and the Vale; planning to take the North; wow, suddenly LF is a major, major player in the grand scheme of things.

      I also think that LF visiting Tywin in Harrenhall in the show-only scene (Tywin was never in Harrenhall) was meant as a red flag. Perhaps it was created that way because they meant to hint at LF’s involvement in the RW. [that too, was forgotten along with other such details].

      I don’t think, however, that Sansa will forget in the books.

        Quote  Reply

    134. Efi: It wasn’t the plan to kill Catelyn and her death was an “accident” in the midst of the fray.

      I think this is right but I can’t remember the reason for why they wanted Catelyn captive (nor could I find the passage but my eyes might have jumped over something):

      ASOS, Tyrion VI (post Red Wedding):

      [Tywin]”It was to be an arrow, at Edmure Tully’s wedding feast. The boy was too wary in the field. He kept his men in good order, and surrounded himself with outriders and bodyguards.”

      [Tyrion] “So Lord Walder slew him under his own roof, at his own table?” Tyrion made a fist. “What of Lady Cately?”

      [Tywin] “Slain as well, I’d say. A pair of wolfskins. Frey had intended to keep her captive, but perhaps something went awry.

        Quote  Reply

    135. Adrianacandle: Thank-you for this explanation! 🙂

      Cat lovers have an adverse reaction to the name
      Shroedinger.

      Quantum theory always makes me laugh when I think of the invisible boy in the classic movie Mystery Men. Invisible Boy says he’s only invisible if no on looks at him 😂

        Quote  Reply

    136. Tron79,

      Cat lovers have an adverse reaction to the name
      Shroedinger.

      Speaking as one with a cat, I’d say this is true! Conversely, my dad loves it 😉

      Quantum theory always makes me laugh when I think of the invisible boy in the classic movie Mystery Men. Invisible Boy says he’s only invisible if no on looks at him 😂

      LOL (I’m keeping this one!)

        Quote  Reply

    137. Tron79,

      I toyed with giving my cat (the one I have now, not the one I lost last October) the name ‘Lady Whiskas’ after one of Book Tommen’s kittens. I ended up leaving her name the same as it was before she was rescued. (She’s an older cat). She’s tabby though so not the same colour as Book Tommen’s kitten.

        Quote  Reply

    138. Adrianacandle,

      I’m not really much of a physicist, more a biologist who likes watching PBS Spacetime YouTube videos. However it’s paradoxical that Schroedinger’s name has become attached to the quantum idea that an entity exists in two alternative states simultaneously, and only experiences a “collapse of its wave function” to one or other state upon being observed. This “both A and B until observed” idea had actually been proposed previously by Niels Bohr and Werner Heisenberg, and came to be known as the “Copenhagen interpretation”. The paradoxical part is that when Shroedinger later made his cat-in-a-box thought experiment, this was actually an argument against the Copenhagen interpretation. He was trying to disprove it and show how absurd it was. Einstein actually agreed with Schroedinger in opposing the Copenhagen interpretation. In a rare case Einstein was probably wrong on this. Absurd is no problem at all in quantum physics. (Early 20th century quantum physics is not entirely unlike GOT!) How does the story end? Well to this day there are many physicists who hold to the “both A and B until observed” Copenhagen interpretation. It has been orthodox physics for the last century. However it now has a rival – the “many worlds” view. In this paradigm, instead of two particles simultaneously having different states, it goes further and proposes that it exists in different parallel worlds, in the different states. So in this view, Arya’s unknowing about whether Bran was alive or dead meant that there were two worlds in which Bran was alive and dead respectively. I guess that if many-worlds is true then a parallel world exists for everyone’s preferred storyline and ending of GOT.

        Quote  Reply

    139. Adrianacandle:
      Tron79,

      Speaking as one with a cat, I’d say this is true! Conversely, my dad loves it 😉

      LOL (I’m keeping this one!)

      oohh.. I noticed I made a typo… Should have been No One (not no on), but I figured you got it… But I guess that could mean Arya!

      On a totally other topic, I’ve been obsessing over my new two monitor setup with my GOT screen saver slide show filled with Arya shots, and I had to throw in some Jaime and Ygritte, Ghost, and a few others…but mostly Arya… The screen saver utility I found lets you have different photos on different monitors and it also does panoramas if you have really large photos that scroll from one monitor to the other…those are cool… My screen on the left is tall (portrait mode), so I have a number of 1080 X 1920 shots that look awesome. Maybe I’ll make a youtube video showing what it looks like, but I’m sure some of you have your own. If you have two monitors and want to do a cool GOT slide show screen saver, I recommend this utility: gPhotoShowPro 8. And I was surprised how many great Helen Sloan shots are available in 1920 X 1080 (and some at 1080 X 1920) just by doing a google images search…. I chose a few fan art shots too if they were 1920 X 1080. Anyway, I set my screen saver on one minute, so I could just sit and watch lol. I won’t do anything else on this computer except wait for the screen saver!

      oh, Ten Bears, I did find a number of great Arya and Hound shots at 1920 X 1080, but beware, one of the sites had malware, but luckily my virus protection stopped it!

        Quote  Reply

    140. I don’t know if this will be of any interest but I mentioned ‘The Heart of Midlothian’ on the Carice van Houten thread. I’ve found an (audio only – it comes from a radio adaptation) of THOM with David Tennant playing the part of Walter Scott, the narrator. It is a somewhat abridged version but reading a Walter Scott novel can feel like being on a long and winding road sometimes – a good basic idea but going hither and thither a lot between points A and B. https://youtu.be/HPl3R0-CN9M

      I found a version of the first instalment of ‘The Luminaries’ which has Ten Bears’s poster girl as one of the female leads on YouTube last night. I can’t find it again now. I watched it last night but wasn’t really struck on the going back and forwards in time style of telling the story to my taste (though funnily enough I didn’t mind when ‘The Witcher’ played with timelines). Poster Girl’s version of an English accent is still like nails on a blackboard to me (I thought she sounded American in this show); I know it’s not her fault I find it annoying. The show starts a week on Sunday on the Beeb – no idea about in the USA though it’s on HBO there I think.

        Quote  Reply

    141. Efi,

      There was motive, however. I think it’s not clear yet, but Sansa diciphered the puzzle.

      Wow – that’s a great argument about LF, Harrenhall, the Westerlings, the Vale and the North! Detailed circumstantial evidence possibly linking LF with the RW. Does it come from the books or the series – or both?

        Quote  Reply

    142. Dire guineapig:
      Adrianacandle,

      I’m not really much of a physicist, more a biologist who likes watching PBS Spacetime YouTube videos. However it’s paradoxical that Schroedinger’s name has become attached to the quantum idea that an entity exists in two alternative states simultaneously, and only experiences a “collapse of its wave function” to one or other state upon being observed. This “both A and B until observed” idea had actually been proposed previously by Niels Bohr and Werner Heisenberg, and came to be known as the “Copenhagen interpretation”. The paradoxical part is that when Shroedinger later made his cat-in-a-box thought experiment, this was actually an argument against the Copenhagen interpretation. He was trying to disprove it and show how absurd it was. Einstein actually agreed with Schroedinger in opposing the Copenhagen interpretation. In a rare case Einstein was probably wrong on this. Absurd is no problem at all in quantum physics. (Early 20th century quantum physics is not entirely unlike GOT!) How does the story end? Well to this day there are many physicists who hold to the “both A and B until observed” Copenhagen interpretation. It has been orthodox physics for the last century. However it now has a rival – the “many worlds” view. In this paradigm, instead of two particles simultaneously having different states, it goes further and proposes that it exists in different parallel worlds, in the different states. So in this view, Arya’s unknowing about whether Bran was alive or dead meant that there were two worlds in which Bran was alive and dead respectively. I guess that if many-worlds is true then a parallel world exists for everyone’s preferred storyline and ending of GOT.

      I’m amazed with how much we don’t know. It seems that what we think is logical is just not the way the world works. Most engineers don’t even try to figure out the “why it works”, and just do the calculations. For those following His Dark Materials, much of the plot stems from the Many Worlds Theory from Quantum Physics. And for those who wanted a different ending to season 8, you got one! You just didn’t see it in your world, but you did see it! You just didn’t know it!

        Quote  Reply

    143. Dire guineapig,

      Thanks for all this background information!! I didn’t know much of this! I think it was the Big Bang Theory that popularized the Copenhagen interpretation:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HCOE__N6v4o

      My dad had referenced it prior this 2007 episode (he is a computational quantum chemist PhD and I believe he does subscribe to string theory. I think that’s the basis for him believing time travel is possible but that we can’t travel back and forth in the presently occupied timeline but must jump to a different timeline — however, I could be getting a lot of this wrong. I don’t have a science background at all) but when this episode of Big Bang Theory aired, I noticed Schroedinger’s cat was being mentioned much more by the general population.

        Quote  Reply

    144. Tron79,

      oohh.. I noticed I made a typo… Should have been No One (not no on), but I figured you got it… But I guess that could mean Arya!

      Oh, that makes it even better!!! XD

      On a totally other topic, I’ve been obsessing over my new two monitor setup with my GOT screen saver slide show filled with Arya shots, and I had to throw in some Jaime and Ygritte, Ghost, and a few others…but mostly Arya… The screen saver utility I found lets you have different photos on different monitors and it also does panoramas if you have really large photos that scroll from one monitor to the other…those are cool… My screen on the left is tall (portrait mode), so I have a number of 1080 X 1920 shots that look awesome. Maybe I’ll make a youtube video showing what it looks like, but I’m sure some of you have your own. If you have two monitors and want to do a cool GOT slide show screen saver, I recommend this utility: gPhotoShowPro 8. And I was surprised how many great Helen Sloan shots are available in 1920 X 1080 (and some at 1080 X 1920) just by doing a google images search…. I chose a few fan art shots too if they were 1920 X 1080. Anyway, I set my screen saver on one minute, so I could just sit and watch lol. I won’t do anything else on this computer except wait for the screen saver!

      Yes, if you can, please make a YouTube video of your set-up! I have a dual monitor set-up in my basement studio and I really like it for being able to watch something while working in one of my programs but I never thought to do a screensaver XD My current screensaver is just the name ‘Aurora’ bouncing around (Dad had this rule in his house that every computer and digital device under his roof must have a Disney name. I believe his first computer ever was named ‘Mickey’, a 1979 laptop he built himself but weighed a ton and the tradition continued from thereon. The first computer he built for me as a kid was named ‘Ariel’ — not for any love of The Little Mermaid, he was sick of it by that point with four kids watching it on repeat, but it was a Disney name… Now, my phone, backup computer, and externals are now named after Ariel and her sisters XD;;).

        Quote  Reply

    145. Dire guineapig,

      From the books, but I think the show tried to follow. The scene in Harrenhall with Tywin was entirely made up. It wasn’t Tywin in Harrenhall -it was the Brave Monsters, and then it was taken by Roose Bolton. I guess that scene was not only invented as a shortcut in the adaptation of the original material, but was also meant to indicate something.
      Also, the show tended to downplay how smart and sassy Sansa is. She finds out lots of things, but it’s all internalised, she never talks, she thinks. So what Sansa knew had to come on screen somehow, so they used others (also to give them much more to do, e.g. to Tywin).

        Quote  Reply

    146. Adrianacandle:
      Tron79,

      Oh, that makes it even better!!! XD

      Yes, if you can, please make a YouTube video of your set-up! I have a dual monitor set-up in my basement studio and I really like it for being able to watch something while working in one of my programs but I never thought to do a screensaver XD My current screensaver is just the name ‘Aurora’ bouncing around (Dad had this rule in his house that every computer and digital device under his roof must have a Disney name. I believe his first computer ever was named ‘Mickey’, a 1979 laptop he built himself but weighed a ton and the tradition continued from thereon. The first computer he built for me as a kid was named ‘Ariel’ — not for any love of The Little Mermaid, he was sick of it by that point with four kids watching it on repeat, but it was a Disney name… Now, my phone, backup computer, and externals are now named after Ariel and her sisters XD;;).

      Ok. I will make a video and share. I’m sure many others here have cool fan stuff so I know that I’m not really special here but it did give me a boost and lots of joy. Maybe others will enjoy it. Btw. Your dad is similar to Apple. I’m old enough to remember the Apple Lisa! It was the precursor to the Mac. I do like Disney names. At least he didn’t name your computer Goofy.

        Quote  Reply

    147. Tron79,

      Ok. I will make a video and share. I’m sure many others here have cool fan stuff so I know that I’m not really special here but it did give me a boost and lots of joy.

      Then I really want to see! 😀 I look forward to it!

      Your dad is similar to Apple. I’m old enough to remember the Apple Lisa! It was the precursor to the Mac.

      Yes! A few months ago, I read the autobiography of Lisa Brennan-Jobs (‘Small Fry’), the eldest daughter of Steve Jobs, and at first, Jobs denied it was named after her and then later he was like, “Yeah, I named it after her.”

      At least he didn’t name your computer Goofy.

      That name was already taken — it was the server’s name 😩😩😩😩

        Quote  Reply

    148. Efi:
      Dire guineapig,

      From the books, but I think the show tried to follow. The scene in Harrenhall with Tywin was entirely made up. It wasn’t Tywin in Harrenhall -it was the Brave Monsters, and then it was taken by Roose Bolton. I guess that scene was not only invented as a shortcut in the adaptation of the original material, but was also meant to indicate something.
      Also, the show tended to downplay how smart and sassy Sansa is. She finds out lots of things, but it’s all internalised, she never talks, she thinks. So what Sansa knew had to come on screen somehow, so they used others (also to give them much more to do, e.g. to Tywin).

      Scenes with Tywin and Arya were my scenes that veered from the books. They had great chemistry. As you know Sansa is very different in the books and her path is quite different. She is more of a minor character so far in the number of chapters she receives. The show decided to go a different way with her. I doubt the books will have the same ending for Sansa as the show if we get to see the book ending one day. I do love the image I have with Sophie in her queen gown and crown. She looked absolutely amazing. She had the most satisfying ending in the show for me. She may end up back in a major role in the north in the books but I doubt she will be QOTN

        Quote  Reply

    149. Tron79: Scenes with Tywin and Arya were my scenes that veered from the books. They had great chemistry. As you know Sansa is very different in the books and her path is quite different. She is more of a minor character so far in the number of chapters she receives. The show decided to go a different way with her. I doubt the books will have the same ending for Sansa as the show if we get to see the book ending one day. I do love the image I have with Sophie in her queen gown and crown. She looked absolutely amazing. She had the most satisfying ending in the show for me. She may end up back in a major role in the north in the books but I doubt she will be QOTN

      This is my feeling too. I wouldn’t at all mind Sansa as QiTN and I don’t feel particularly strongly about Northern independence so if things go that way, it’d be okay with me. However, I do think her destiny is returning home to Winterfell and I think she may take on a major role in the North by the end (sort of like what happened in the show).

      Per D&D, Sansa’s storyline deviated so strongly from the books post season 4 because they wanted to expand her role from that in the books and take on a storyline they liked from the books (that of Jeyne Poole’s but Jeyne Poole wasn’t really a character in the show beyond being Sansa’s friend at the Winterfell 1×01 feast).

      Because of this, the show has LF arranging Sansa to marry Ramsay (instead of Harry the Heir), which brings Sansa north into Ramsay’s WF storyline and into Jeyne Poole’s role. She even makes for the Wall in the show, which Jeyne is doing now in the books. But I think Sansa will be spending quite a bit of time in the Vale, really learning the skills she needs and how to sharpen her intellect.

      GRRM on Sansa:

      Up to now, Sansa has been a piece that other people have moved about the board to achieve their own goals, using her, discarding her, using her for a different purpose, you know, ‘You’re gonna marry Joffrey.’ ‘No, you’re gonna marry Loras.’ ‘You’re gonna marry Tyrion.’ She is beginning to at least try to understand how she can play the game of thrones and be, not a piece, but a player with her own goals and moving other pieces around. And she’s not a warrior like Robb, Jon Snow. She’s not even a wild child like Arya. She can’t fight with swords, axes. She can’t raise armies. But she has her wits, the same as Littlefinger has.

      At this time (as of AFFC), I think Sansa is still quite a bit naive and stuck a little in fantasy but I think she’s definitely learning and starting to see.

      (I also agree about how great Tywin and Arya’s scenes were!)

        Quote  Reply

    150. Adrianacandle,

      I wonder what GRRM was saying with both sisters having an identity crisis in the books? Show Arya goes on her No One journey of self discovery but in the books Sansa also loses her self and isn’t sure who she is anymore. GRRM even names a chapter after the person Sansa is pretending to be. I found that incredible that Sansa must have been confused about her own identity and she was taking on her pretend persona so fully that her POV had to be from her alter ego. What are your thoughts about GRRM’s message about having to come to terms with yourself. It’s a similar scene for Dany in the books. By the end she seems to come to find herself and she’s finally ready to move forward.

        Quote  Reply

    151. Tron79,

      Thank-you for wanting my thoughts!! I think it might have a lot to due with trauma and fractured identity. Both Sansa and Arya were pretty brutally torn apart from their families at early ages and suffer significant hardship (and Dany too — when she was a baby upon which she was forced into an unstable, hard life on the run from assassins with only Viserys to look after her). They’re being thrust into roles they were not prepared for (Arya as an assassin surviving on the run, Sansa as a faux bastard who has been held hostage by her ex-fiance’s family and hidden in the Vale. Even Dany grew up with the expectation Viserys would take back the 7K, didn’t plan on becoming a queen or conquerer herself, and never had an education to prepare her for queenship and/or conquering. There are also those theories questioning if the house with the red door, Dany’s happiest memory and what she longs for, is how she remembers it but I take those with a grain of salt — as interesting as they are 🙂 ).

      Arya goes through a period where she must reject being Arya and I think Sansa now is going through some version of that too herself. Meanwhile, Dany is fighting with the conflicting parts of her nature and, exhausted by the problems and peace efforts she faced in Meereen, gives into the war-side of her nature at the end of ADWD — but I don’t think these identity journeys or conflicts are quite done at this time with so much story left to go and what I imagine to be will be some difficult choices left.

      With Sansa, I think part of her confusion is that she is so often at the mercy of others, having to rely on others and in AFFC, she can’t even depend on the identity she’s always had as an anchor (even though it is her identity, she’s having to play this part at all times while everything has been taken from her, even this — a little like Arya when she was making her way through war-torn Westeros and having to hide under false identities) .

      I have a feeling some of that confusion will clear up once she acquires some skills and tools of her own to take back some control. Right now, it sort of feels like she’s in a really in-between stage. It feels like some part of her wants to fit her life to a romanticized fantasy (the unkiss with Sandor that never happened, briefly losing herself to memory when she’s building a snow Winterfell) but she’s finding herself waking up more and more to the truth of things.

        Quote  Reply

    152. Ten Bears:
      Tron79,

      ”Maybe I’ll make a youtube video showing what it looks like…”

      Oh! Please do!

      OK, Since you asked!! I just made a new YouTube channel!!
      Here it is:
      https://youtu.be/XmfG4NSPCoY

      There are a few random space shots in there…sorry for the interruption, but I’m really getting into the Artemis project as we go back to the moon and get ready to go to Mars one day….

      Sorry for a couple times when I turn my camera sideways thinking the video would flip too!!!

      I’m sure alot of you have cooler fan stuff than me… I would love to see them…

        Quote  Reply

    153. Adrianacandle:
      Tron79,

      Thank-you for wanting my thoughts!! I think it might have a lot to due with trauma and fractured identity. Both Sansa and Arya were pretty brutally torn apart from their families at early ages and suffer significant hardship (and Dany too — when she was a baby upon which she was forced into an unstable, hard life on the run from assassins with only Viserys to look after her). They’re being thrust into roles they were not prepared for (Arya as an assassin surviving on the run, Sansa as a faux bastard who has been held hostage by her ex-fiance’s family and hidden in the Vale. Even Dany grew up with the expectation Viserys would take back the 7K, didn’t plan on becoming a queen or conquerer herself, and never had an education to prepare her for queenship and/or conquering. There are also those theories questioning if the house with the red door, Dany’s happiest memory and what she longs for, is how she remembers it but I take those with a grain of salt — as interesting as they are 🙂 ).

      Arya goes through a period where she must reject being Arya and I think Sansa now is going through some version of that too herself. Meanwhile, Dany is fighting with the conflicting parts of her nature and, exhausted by the problems and peace efforts she faced in Meereen, gives into the war-side of her nature at the end of ADWD — but I don’t think these identity journeys or conflicts are quite done at this time with so much story left to go and what I imagine to be will be some difficult choices left.

      With Sansa, I think part of her confusion is that she is so often at the mercy of others, having to rely on others and in AFFC, she can’t even depend on the identity she’s always had as an anchor (even though it is her identity, she’s having to play this part at all times while everything has been taken from her, even this — a little like Arya when she was making her way through war-torn Westeros and having to hide under false identities) .

      I have a feeling some of that confusion will clear up once she acquires some skills and tools of her own to take back some control. Right now, it sort of feels like she’s in a really in-between stage. It feels like some part of her wants to fit her life to a romanticized fantasy (the unkiss with Sandor that never happened, briefly losing herself to memory when she’s building a snow Winterfell) but she’s finding herself waking up more and more to the truth of things.

      I think you’re right about the trauma. All of these ladies are in survival mode with things happening to them beyond their control. Book Arya is shown to struggle even more than show Arya with losing herself. She rattles off 5 or 6 names wondering which one is her now. You are better equipped to find those book quotes than me! I was struck in the books about how much she struggles with not knowing who she is anymore. Since we’re talking about physics alot today, it’s a bit like trying to figure out how fast you are going with only black space around you. You can’t figure it out! You may not even be aware that you are moving with no frame of reference. Arya and Sansa are both thrown into strange situations where everything they used to understand was taken from them. They are plotting out new courses using their best instincts to survive. I think you are right about Sansa that once she gets more control over her situation and doesn’t have to depend on others, she will have a chance to figure out who she is again. Dany unfortunately is figuring out that her true self is to be full fire and blood in the books. She did come to that conclusion in the show didn’t she. I mentioned Alice and Wonderland many times, because Alice goes through the same coming of age journey where people don’t recognize her as the “real Alice” until she finds it in herself. I wonder if GRRM was a fan of Lewis Carroll

      The guys go through some identity struggles as well with following their hearts to be happy or doing their duty. Jaime and Jon come to mind in particular. Unfortunately, things don’t turn out well for the guys. Both guys lose the battle of finding their better selves IMHO. Jon does in the end choose duty and kills Dany for the sake of his sisters and possibly the rest of the world. Jaime is the sad case where he finds his better self with Brienne, but he can never see himself as that person. He still ends up seeing himself belonging with with Cersei. He doesn’t see himself deserving of Brienne’s love. He’s never able to take that step to improve his self image. He sees himself as a man who has done many horrible things and isn’t worthy of more. And he feels a duty to protect Cersei, even if it’s not possible.

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    154. Tron79,

      Ooooooh!!! Is that a curved monitor? And you also seem to have a monitor you can rotate!! Great GoT/ASOIAF memorabilia, great slideshow, and really nice set-up!!

      To your question before, I think I misread part of your statement — “What are your thoughts about GRRM’s message about having to come to terms with yourself.” If you’d allow me a second try? ^^;;;

      For me, I think all of these different aspects are these characters and perhaps characters are having to resolve (or try to resolve) all these different parts of themselves. Their thoughts, their feelings, their wants, their desires are still genuine and part of them — even when they must deny their true names or are rejecting other parts of themselves to focus on these other parts (the former with Sansa and Arya, the latter with Dany).

      I think this also applies when Sansa and Arya are operating under false identities, even when their false identity starts becoming adopted into their reality and starts encroaching on their true identity. What they feel, what they want, what they’re doing — those parts are still parts of them and when they are living in these circumstances, it brings out other parts of them, they learn they have these parts of themselve, and I’d say these parts are just as much themselves as the rest. It’s still from the same source and it’s helping them to survive and cope with these extraordinary circumstances. It’s still coming from themselves.

      With Dany, I think this is true too. She seems to be bouncing from one extreme (peace, no war) to the other (war) in ADWD — and both these sides are genuine parts of her. Her desires for peace, her longing for a home, the horror she feels over her dark impulses, her compassion and urge to right injustices (as she sees them) are part of her as are her darker aspects – the impulse for war and violence, her anger, her hatred. Throughout ADWD, she completely rejects her darker impulses and utilizes her better qualities — but it comes at a cost. She has to endure and accept injustices, compromise her ideals for peace, and ignore her urge to right what she views as wrong. This prompts a bubbling anger in her that ramps up toward the people of Meereen until she is fed up with the city as a whole, rejecting them, and in the end, she decides to give into her war-side. However, I don’t think this side is who Dany truly is either because (like the side of her that truly wanted peace) it’s only one part.

      I guess it goes to GRRM’s “human heart in conflict with itself” and how we’re not just one thing, we’re all these different things — the good, the bad, the in-between, and the surprising — and how we try to reconcile these disparate parts to find our whole identity and what we do with that.

        Quote  Reply

    155. Tron79,

      😁😁😆😁❤️😁

      LOVED the guided tour!

      And both times as I squealed when my favorite photos* appeared — I heard you name drop TB. 🤗

      I love space and rockets too 🚀

      * S8e4 Arya riding away from WF = Pretty Maisie
      + S8e5 Arya looking up at Sandor with puppy dog eyes.

        Quote  Reply

    156. Tron79,

      I made a new post answering your statement because I think I misread part of it!

      Dany unfortunately is figuring out that her true self is to be full fire and blood in the books. She did come to that conclusion in the show didn’t she.

      I think this is one side of Dany (and an important, significant side!) — but I don’t think it’s all of Dany because I think her better parts are still genuine parts of her too. Still, the worst version of herself won out over the better, absolutely yep. It’s for this reason that I’d hesitate to call this Dany’s “true self” because I don’t think it’s her whole self — it’s the side she succumbed to. In my view, it felt like she was unable to fight her worst impulses — kind of like Jaime. I think this is another (very extreme) instance of Dany giving into one side of herself over the other parts, like what she did earlier in ADWD.

      The guys go through some identity struggles as well with following their hearts to be happy or doing their duty. Jaime and Jon come to mind in particular. Unfortunately, things don’t turn out well for the guys. Both guys lose the battle of finding their better selves IMHO. Jon does in the end choose duty and kills Dany for the sake of his sisters and possibly the rest of the world.

      Yes. And I think everybody is struggling with identity, inner conflicts, and different parts of themselves — and the choices they make and how those choices evolve are revealing.

      Alt Shift X once made a point with Jon, “We can only be brave when we’re afraid, we can only be honorable when we’re troubled, it’s only meaningful that we do the right thing, it’s only heroic when we find it hard to be heroic and there were better, more tempting options.” And sometimes, Jon balks and even fails here and often, that’s due to personal feeling (in both the books and show). Sometimes it’s due to giving into less admirable impulses (war against Ramsay in the books, who Jon absolutely hates on a personal, visceral level but by giving into this desire, he risks everything he’s done to prepare the defense of the realm).

      He has some dark impulses, he has some deep anger and bitterness — and those are still parts of him, as are his admirable qualities. But when he puts aside these impulses and/or what he desires and makes the choice that is agonizing for him (for example, staying loyal to the Watch and not helping his family, leaving Ygritte, giving up Winterfell, accepting his bastard status, risking his life and reputation to save others, killing Dany to stop her destruction[show]), I think that’s what makes his choice meaningful. Otherwise, it’s not giving anything up. And while I think his sisters were ultimately the factor that pushed him over into a decision he was absolutely resisting and did not want to make, one he’ll have to live with forever, there were other factors too and even if she decided to spare them, Jon would have to make that choice sooner or later.

      Jaime is the sad case where he finds his better self with Brienne, but he can never see himself as that person. He still ends up seeing himself belonging with with Cersei. He doesn’t see himself deserving of Brienne’s love. He’s never able to take that step to improve his self image. He sees himself as a man who has done many horrible things and isn’t worthy of more. And he feels a duty to protect Cersei, even if it’s not possible.

      Yeah, I agree with this. And I think a lot of what I said with Jon applies to Jaime too — making the hard choices for the good of others at cost to himself. But with Jaime, the scorn he received for killing Aerys, that led to a darkening of his character in which he gave up any desire to be good… until Brienne. But I think with Jaime, it turned out (in the show) he couldn’t reconcile the good and less-good parts of himself and resigned himself to his “hateful” side — which I think is meant to be represented by Cersei? Well, that’s the impression I got from the show at least 😉 Yes, Jaime felt he had to go to Cersei once Sansa told Jaime that Cersei was going to be executed, he was unable to get away the ever-present connection and unhealthy love for Cersei, sort of turning his back on his better self.

      Or none of this makes sense and I just spent a half hour typing this ramble…. 🙁

        Quote  Reply

    157. Ten Bears:
      Tron79,

      😁😁😆😁❤️😁

      LOVED the guided tour!

      And both times as I squealed when my favorite photos* appeared — I heard you name drop TB. 🤗

      I love space and rockets too 🚀

      * S8e4 Arya riding away from WF = Pretty Maisie
      + S8e5 Arya looking up at Sandor with puppy dog eyes.

      Yeah. I love those shots. It’s not always easy to find them in full 1920 X 1080. I finally found the one with Sandor holding Arya’s head. You mainly see Arya in the one on my screen saver. I still haven’t found a 1920 x 1080 shot of both of them. I found a smaller one. Anyway it gave me boost finding all the photos. I may not get much done at my computer. I will just be waiting for the screen saver.

        Quote  Reply

    158. Adrianacandle:
      Tron79,

      I made a new post answering your statement because I think I misread part of it!

      I think this is one side of Dany (and an important, significant side!) — but I don’t think it’s all of Dany because I think her better parts are still genuine parts of her too. Still, the worst version of herself won out over the better, absolutely yep. It’s for this reason that I’d hesitate to call this Dany’s “true self” because I don’t think it’s her whole self — it’s the side she succumbed to. In my view, it felt like she was unable to fight her worst impulses — kind of like Jaime. I think this is another (very extreme) instance of Dany giving into one side of herself over the other parts, like what she did earlier in ADWD.

      Yes. And I think everybody is struggling with identity, inner conflicts, and different parts of themselves — and the choices they make and how those choices evolve are revealing.

      Alt Shift X once made a point with Jon, “We can only be brave when we’re afraid, we can only be honorable when we’re troubled, it’s only meaningful that we do the right thing, it’s only heroic when we find it hard to be heroic and there were better, more tempting options.” And sometimes, Jon balks and even fails here and often, that’s due to personal feeling (in both the books and show). Sometimes it’s due to giving into less admirable impulses (war against Ramsay in the books, who Jon absolutely hates on a personal, visceral level but by giving into this desire, he risks everything he’s done to prepare the defense of the realm).

      He has some dark impulses, he has some deep anger and bitterness — and those are still parts of him, as are his admirable qualities. But when he puts aside these impulses and/or what he desires and makes the choice that is agonizing for him (for example, staying loyal to the Watch and not helping his family, sullying his honor and reputation, leaving Ygritte, giving up Winterfell, accepting his bastard status, risking his life and reputation to save others, killing Dany to stop her destruction[show]), I think that’s what makes doing the right thing meaningful. And while I think his sisters were ultimately the factor that pushed him over into a decision he was absolutely resisting and did not want to make, one he’ll have to live with forever, there were other factors too and even if she decided to spare them, Jon would have to make that choice sooner or later.

      Yeah, I agree with this. And I think a lot of what I said with Jon applies to Jaime too — making the hard choices for the good of others at cost to himself. But with Jaime, the scorn he received for killing Aerys, that led to a darkening of his character in which he gave up any desire to be good… until Brienne. But I think with Jaime, it turned out (in the show) he couldn’t reconcile the good and less-good parts of himself and resigned himself to his “hateful” side — which I think is meant to be represented by Cersei? Well, that’s the impression I got from the show at least 😉 Yes, Jaime felt he had to go to Cersei once Sansa told Jaime that Cersei was going to be executed, he was unable to get away the ever-present connection and unhealthy love for Cersei, sort of turning his back on his better self.

      Or none of this makes sense and I just spent a half hour typing this ramble…. 🙁

      I can’t do justice to your comments by replying on my phone. I will respond later when I’m back at the computer. Yes I do have a curved monitor. The main one is curved and the other one is just a regular one. I keep the second monitor in portrait. It has an arm thing so you can rotate it. I keep it in portrait to see programming code other stuff.

        Quote  Reply

    159. Tron79: OK, Since you asked!!I just made a new YouTube channel!!
      Here it is:
      https://youtu.be/XmfG4NSPCoY

      There are a few random space shots in there…sorry for the interruption, but I’m really getting into the Artemis project as we go back to the moon and get ready to go to Mars one day….

      Sorry for a couple times when I turn my camera sideways thinking the video would flip too!!!

      I’m sure alot of you have cooler fan stuff than me… I would love to see them…

      To add, the panoramas are my favourite — how they glide from right to left through your screens!

      What a great looking workspace! Mine is just… well, it’s not tidy and full of wood pieces, a beat-up light table, globs of wood glue cover most surfaces (and omg, I looked down at my keys the other day to see all that remains of my Funko pop Jon Snow keychain is his head ;;; Where did his body go?! Is there a headless Jon Snow on the floors of Safeway, Shopper’s, Tim Horton’s, or somewhere?? I’m so sorry, Jon… 🙁 He lost the battle against my keys… and my purse)

        Quote  Reply

    160. Tron79: I can’t do justice to your comments by replying on my phone. I will respond later when I’m back at the computer. Yes I do have a curved monitor. The main one is curved and the other one is just a regular one. I keep the second monitor in portrait. It has an arm thing so you can rotate it. I keep it in portrait to see programming code other stuff.

      Take your time! I wrote a lot and I’m a bit sedated so I’m not sure if my train of thought was at its most cohesive…

      Oh, I love your monitors… ;;! (And I loved the Artemis/Mars shots too as well as the great GoT photos!)

        Quote  Reply

    161. Adrianacandle: Take your time! I wrote a lot and I’m a bit sedated so I’m not sure if my train of thought was at its most cohesive…

      Oh, I love your monitors… ;;! (And I loved the Artemis/Mars shots too as well as the great GoT photos!)

      Yep those panorama shots are cool. You have to search for panoramas and find very wide hi res photos. They are out there. The screen saver utility can detect if it’s a panorama shot and you can also assign a folder to them. You can also tell it which direction to go and more! I like how your workspace sounds! Mine is cleaner than usual but I also don’t have to have papers everywhere anymore since I got the second monitor. I used to have to print out everything. It’s funny I love Arya but my favorite shot may have been Ygritte with her bow on the left and the fan art of her in the middle. It was awesome. I am by far an Arya fan boy but I do have some other favs as well so I got a few of them in there.

        Quote  Reply

    162. Adrianacandle,

      I re-read your replies and they didn’t sound like rambling!! Mine might!
      You made sense. I’m finding my problem is that certain parts of the book are beginning to fade. I have to get motivated to do a re-read, and I think the way to do it is to pick a POV and read all of those chapters. Arya is the obvious choice for me, but it would be interesting to go through Jon’s journey or Dany’s journey. With Dany, I mostly remember how she ends because I kept thinking it was about time!!

      When she has the miscarriage at the end (I think it was a miscarriage) she is covered with blood. I figured she finally was embracing her true fire and blood and she was going to say f’k the strategy. She’s also with Drogon at the time, so you have fire and blood staring you right in the face. Earlier in her journey she was trying to be all queenly and make the smart political decision about marriage, but that didn’t work out. It was the same in the show with relying on Tyrion to do her strategy (of course in the book, Tyrion hasn’t really met Dany yet!) Eventually she figures out the same thing in the show that she needs to embrace her fire and blood. In the show it seemed like it was more Tyrion’s idea to make the place a better world instead of having her be queen of the ashes. I never got that idea in the show that Dany cared that much about not being queen of the ashes. She just wanted the Iron Throne. She thought freeing the slaves would help her build a powerful army who wanted to follow her. I never got the idea she had the “better world” idea in mind. From your memory of the book, do you think she was struggling with the idea of making it a better world without slavery? I’m trying to recall her dialogue from the books, but I’m having a hard time. I do remember clearly her queenly decision of taking a husband, but I don’t recall that she was an activist in the book trying to wipe out slavery. I thought it was a means to an end with those free slaves joining her army.

        Quote  Reply

    163. Tron79,

      [Part 1 — I’ve included a lot of quotes!]

      I recommend the Meereenese Blot essays — the author does one for Dany, Jon, Tyrion, and Dorne. They are concisely written and it’s reported that GRRM read the Dany essays and said this author got it right. Plus, I think those will answer some of your questions in this post.

      And for my own answers, I’ll be drawing on the essays because they helped streamline the themes of ADWD for me and the struggles each character faces:

      Eerlier in her journey she was trying to be all queenly and make the smart political decision about marriage, but that didn’t work out.

      It seems the peace was real but it was a fragile peace — Dany’s efforts were working, they had achieved a tenuous peace and there was a period in which no bloodshed occurred, but she was required to go back on her some of her own anti-slavery reforms, allow slave owners she hates to have a share of power through Hizdahr, and tolerate what she thinks is wrong (like the idea of the fighting pits, continued slave trade) to appease the factions with whom she was making peace.

      And it’s these sacrifices and compromises that increasingly gnaw at Dany (as demonstrated by some of the passages included later in this post) because it’s one thing after another: feeling powerless to ultimately help Astapori, having to allow the Yunkai to slave trade if she wants peace, knowing she’s responsible for the Astapori’s plight, having to suppress her urge to destroy the Yunkai for their injustices against the Astapori, compromising on the fighting pits which she views as abhorrent, chaining the dragons she can manage to wrangle to prevent more deaths, etc.

      To Feldman, the author the linked essays above, he views Dany as facing these tests throughout her arc:

      Each test is designed to ask — how far will Dany go to make peace and protect innocent life? With nearly every new chapter, Dany is asked to give up something else she wants or desires, for the good of the Meereenese people. The use of her dragons. A share of power in Meereen. Some of her anti-slavery reforms. Her desire for vengeance. Her desire to right every wrong she sees. Her distaste for cultural practices she finds abhorrent. Her sexual autonomy. Her happiness. Her pride. Her chance at Westeros.

      Dany tried to abolish slavery in two places but via different methods and both failed because she tried to do it overnight — she killed the ruling class in Astapor and implemented a council of slaves. In Yunkai, when she conquers and eliminates forbids slaving practices there, she allowed the ruling class to live but with conditions. However, as soon as Dany left, Yunaki returned to slavery, attacked Astapor, killed the slave council, and it went downhill from there.

      Dany is haunted by Astapor:

      “I know. I know. It is Eroeh all over again.”

      Brown Ben Plumm was puzzled. “Who is Eroeh?”

      “A girl I thought I’d saved from rape and torment. All I did was make it worse for her in the end. And all I did in Astapor was make ten thousand Eroehs.”

      “Your Grace could not have known—” “I am the queen. It was my place to know.”

      Dany also fears herself (“Am I mad? Do I have the taint?”) and doesn’t want to give into her darker impulses, she doesn’t want Meereen to end up the way Astapor did (“I will not let this city go the way of Astapor. I will not let the harpy of Yunkai chain up those I’ve freed all over again.”).

      Dany marries Hizdahr for the sake of peace and to prevent more bloodshed:

      “A highborn king of pure Ghiscari blood could reconcile the city to your rule. Elsewise, I fear, your reign must end as it began, in blood and fire.”…

      …Daenerys Targaryen had other children, tens of thousands who had hailed her as their mother when she broke their chains. She thought of Stalwart Shield, of Missandei’s brother, of the woman Rylona Rhee, who had played the harp so beautifully. No marriage would ever bring them back to life, but if a husband could help end the slaughter, then she owed it to her dead to marry.

      And though Barristan tells Dany she should go to Westeros, Dany feels she must stay in Meereen to “heal it”.

      Feldman explains,

      It was the same in the show with relying on Tyrion to do her strategy, but eventually she figures out the same thing that she needs to embrace her fire and blood. In the show it seemed like it was more Tyrion’s idea to make the place a better world instead of having her be queen of the ashes. I never got that idea in the show that Dany cared that much about not being queen of the ashes. She just wanted the Iron Throne. She thought freeing the slaves would help her build a powerful army who wanted to follow her. I never got the idea she had the “better world” idea in mind.

      I don’t know, it seems Dany did want to help the oppressed — or those she viewed as the oppressed. She seemed to have a genuine compassion and empathy for those she saw this way (like the 163 crucified slave children) and tried different strategies in Meereen — before even meeting Tyrion. She heard out complaints, engaged in negotiation with those she hated, compromised on the fighting pits, chained up her dragons when she hears of Drogon killing a little girl. She put Westeros on hold for the sake of ensuring the people she freed did not become enslaved again:

      Dany: How can I rule seven kingdoms if I can’t control Slaver’s Bay? Why should anyone trust me? Why should anyone follow me?

      Jorah: You’re a Targaryen. You’re the Mother of Dragons.

      Dany: I need to be more than that. I will not let those I have freed slide back into chains. I will not sail for Westeros.

      And I think Dany does see her mission as more than just taking the Iron Throne. Per 5×08:

      I fought so that no child born into Slaver’s Bay would ever know what it meant to be bought or sold.

      D&D say of Dany in 4×05:

      Weiss: She’s driven by a kind of a deep empathy — a much deeper empathy than probably anybody else on the show. It’s something that makes her as charismatic as she is to people because they can sense the sincerity of it. Her empathy allows her to look at the people of Westeros and say ‘Why the hell would they ever follow me if I haven’t proven myself through my actions to be somebody worth following? Why would they let me rule if I hadn’t proven myself to be someone who has ruled well somewhere else?’

      The problem is, and this is what AnnOther pointed out to me last year, is who she sees as the oppressed and who she sees as having turned on her.

      I don’t think Dany merely saw the slaves as a means to an end and all she cares about was the Iron Throne. I think she did view herself as a means for liberation (for better or worse). And she opted for Tyrion’s long-way-around plans, even after devastating losses, when reminded of the cost to the people if she did a direct attack on the Red Keep where Cersei was when she could gone against his advice and opted for a direct assault.

      However, while I think Dany’s desire to make a better world was genuine, how she wants to make a better world and to what lengths she’s willing to go to make that happen may be the issue.

      She tells Jon in 7×03:

      We both want to help people. We can only help them from a position of strength. Sometimes strength is terrible.

      And I think this position of strength was the Iron Throne, something she also had a real desire for.

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    164. Tron79,

      (Part 2!)

      From your memory of the book, do you think she was struggling with the idea of making it a better world without slavery? I’m trying to recall her dialogue from the books, but I’m having a hard time. I do remember clearly her queenly decision of taking a husband, but I don’t recall that she was an activist in the book trying to wipe out slavery. I thought it was a means to an end with those free slaves joining her army.

      I think the desire to wipe out slavery was real (per some of the above quotes). Her failures in Astapor are one of the driving motivations for why she turns to peaceful methods in Meereen and it’s something she feels immense guilt over, blaming herself for how she tried to abolish slavery there because it resulted in making things even worse for the city. And the people of Astapor continue to haunt Dany — when they come to Meereen for her help, Dany arranges food and humanitarian aid for them. She wants to let them in but she cannot because of the bloody flux they have been infected with.

      “It shall be done, Magnificence,” said Reznak mo Reznak. “What of these Astapori?”

      My children. “They are coming here for help. For succor and protection. We cannot turn our backs on them.”

      Ser Barristan frowned. “Your Grace, I have known the bloody flux to destroy whole armies when left to spread unchecked. The seneschal is right. We cannot have the Astapori in Meereen.”

      Dany looked at him helplessly. It was good that dragons did not cry. “As you say, then. We will keep them outside the walls until this… this curse has run its course. Set up a camp for them beside the river, west of the city. We will send them what food we can. Perhaps we can separate the healthy from the sick.” All of them were looking at her. “Will you make me say it twice? Go and do as I’ve commanded you.”

      Supplies and food run low and still, Dany tries to feed them, visiting the camps every day and against advice to stop feeding them, still insists on caring for them.

      “If there must be a battle, I would sooner fight it from behind the walls of Meereen. Let the Yunkai’i try and storm my battlements.” The queen surveyed the scene around her. “If we were to share our food equally …”

      “… the Astapori would eat through their portion in days, and we would have that much less for the siege.”

      Dany gazed across the camp, to the many-colored brick walls of Meereen. The air was thick with flies and cries. “The gods have sent this pestilence to humble me. So many dead … I will not have them eating corpses.” She beckoned Aggo closer. “Ride to the gates and bring me Grey Worm and fifty of his Unsullied.”

      Ser Barristan watched with ill-concealed apprehension. “You should not linger here overlong, Your Grace. The Astapori are being fed, as you commanded. There’s no more we can do for the poor wretches. We should repair back to the city.”

      “Go if you wish, ser. I will not detain you. I will not detain any of you.” Dany vaulted down from the horse. “I cannot heal them, but I can show them that their Mother cares.”

      However, when slavers are on the march to attack Meereen, one of Dany’s boiling points comes when she is forced to close the gates on the Astapori to protect the Meereenese since she cannot let them into the city.

      She also puts her quest for Westeros on hold for the sake of Meereen’s people — despite being advised otherwise by Barristan, who warns her that marrying Hizdahr could hurt her in Westeros and advises her to make for Westeros now that she has the opportunity.

      “If that is your command, Your Grace.”

      “Hizdahr is not the husband you would have chosen for me.”

      “It is not my place to choose your husband.”

      “It is not,” she agreed, “but it is important to me that you should understand. My people are bleeding. Dying. A queen belongs not to herself, but to the realm. Marriage or carnage, those are my choices. A wedding or a war.”

      “Your Grace, may I speak frankly?”

      “Always.”

      “There is a third choice.”

      “Westeros?”

      He nodded. “I am sworn to serve Your Grace, and to keep you safe from harm wherever you may go. My place is by your side, whether here or in King’s Landing… but your place is back in Westeros, upon the Iron Throne that was your father’s. The Seven Kingdoms will never accept Hizdahr zo Loraq as king.”

      “No more than Meereen will accept Daenerys Targaryen as queen. The Green Grace has the right of that. I need a king beside me, a king of old Ghiscari blood. Elsewise they will always see me as the uncouth barbarian who smashed through their gates, impaled their kin on spikes, and stole their wealth.”

      “In Westeros you will be the lost child who returns to gladden her father’s heart. Your people will cheer when you ride by, and all good men will love you.”

      “Westeros is far away.”

      “Lingering here will never bring it any closer. The sooner we take our leave of this place—”

      “I know. I do.” Dany did not know how to make him see. She wanted Westeros as much as he did, but first she must heal Meereen.

      And she struggles with the anti-slavery reforms she must make to appease Yunkai for her peace efforts:

      “Let them come. In me they shall find a sterner foe than Cleon. I would sooner perish fighting than return my children to bondage.”

      “There may be another choice. The Yunkai’i can be persuaded to allow all your freedmen to remain free, I believe, if Your Worship will agree that the Yellow City may trade and train slaves unmolested from this day forth. No more blood need flow.”

      “Save for the blood of those slaves that the Yunkai’i will trade and train,” Dany said, but she recognized the truth in his words even so. It may be that is the best end we can hope for.

      “When they are gone,” Dany repeated. “And when will they be gone? Riders have been seen beyond the Skahazadhan. Dothraki scouts, Rakharo says, with a khalasar behind them. They will have captives. Men, women, and children, gifts for the slavers.” Dothraki did not buy or sell, but they gave gifts and received them. “That is why the Yunkai’i have thrown up this market. They will leave here with thousands of new slaves.”

      Hizdahr zo Loraq shrugged. “But they will leave. That is the important part, my love. Yunkai will trade in slaves, Meereen will not, this is what we have agreed. Endure this for a little while longer, and it shall pass.”

      So Daenerys sat silent through the meal, wrapped in a vermilion tokar and black thoughts, speaking only when spoken to, brooding on the men and women being bought and sold outside her walls, even as they feasted here within the city.

      “They have opened a slave market within sight of my walls!”

      “Outside our walls, sweet queen. That was a condition of the peace, that Yunkai would be free to trade in slaves as before, unmolested.”

      …Yunkai will trade in slaves, Meereen will not, this is what we have agreed. Endure this for a little while longer, and it shall pass.”

      …All of the entertainers were slaves. That had been part of the peace, that slaveowners be allowed the right to bring their chattels into Meereen without fear of having them freed. In return the Yunkai’i had promised to respect the rights and liberties of the former slaves that Dany had freed. A fair bargain, Hizdahr said, but the taste it left in the queen’s mouth was foul. She drank another cup of wine to wash it out.

      Hard by the bay was the abomination, the slave market at her door. She could not see it now, with the sun set, but she knew that it was there. That just made her angrier.

      When the fighting pits reopen and the slave masters praise her:

      Ten thousand throats roared out their thanks; then twenty thousand; then all. They did not call her name, which few of them could pronounce. “Mother!” they cried instead; in the old dead tongue of Ghis, the word was Mhysa! They stamped their feet and slapped their bellies and shouted, “Mhysa, Mhysa, Mhysa,” until the whole pit seemed to tremble. Dany let the sound wash over her. I am not your mother, she might have shouted, back, I am the mother of your slaves, of every boy who ever died upon these sands whilst you gorged on honeyed locusts. Behind her, Reznak leaned in to whisper in her ear, “Magnificence, hear how they love you!”

      When she crucifies the slavers in retribution for the crucifixion of the slave children, she struggles with the part that wants to see justice… and the reality of it afterward:

      “How many?” one old woman had asked, sobbing. “How many must you have to spare us?”

      “One hundred and sixty-three,” she answered.

      She had them nailed to wooden posts around the plaza, each man pointing at the next. The anger was fierce and hot inside her when she gave the command; it made her feel like an avenging dragon. But later, when she passed the men dying on the posts, when she heard their moans and smelled their bowels and blood…

      Dany put the glass aside, frowning. It was just. It was. I did it for the children.

      Her outrage at slavery seems genuine to me and I think some of that has to do with her own experiences:

      “We curse the rain when it falls upon our heads, yet without it we should starve. The world needs rain … and slaves. You make a face, but it is true. Consider Qarth. In art, music, magic, trade, all that makes us more than beasts, Qarth sits above the rest of mankind as you sit at the summit of this pyramid … but below, in place of bricks, the magnificence that is the Queen of Cities rests upon the backs of slaves. Ask yourself, if all men must grub in the dirt for food, how shall any man lift his eyes to contemplate the stars? If each of us must break his back to build a hovel, who shall raise the temples to glorify the gods? For some men to be great, others must be enslaved.”

      He was too eloquent for her. Dany had no answer for him, only the raw feeling in her belly. “Slavery is not the same as rain,” she insisted. “I have been rained on and I have been sold. It is not the same. No man wants to be owned.”

      In some ways, I think the Dany of the books has softer aspects than the Dany in the show — perhaps because we can see her thoughts. Without her inner dialogue, I think she’d look very different. However, this is only one side of Dany. The other side involves darker impulses and a desire for vengeance, violence, and war.

      There are probably more pertinent quotes that I’m missing but I’ll find later but I really recommend you take a gander at those essays! They seem to be GRRM-approved! But I think what I’m trying to say has been covered far more thoroughly the Dany essays included in the link above.

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    165. Tron79,

      Typo!!

      There’s a line in the first part of my response to you (“Feldman explains,”) that’s not supposed to be there. I was rearranging text and that line got misplaced just before a section I quoted from your post 🙁

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    166. Adrianacandle:
      Tron79,

      [Part 1 — I’ve included a lot of quotes!]

      I recommend the Meereenese Blot essays — the author does one for Dany, Jon, Tyrion, and Dorne. They are concisely written and it’s reported that GRRM read the Dany essays and said this author got it right. Plus, I think those will answer some of your questions in this post.

      So where to start? Wow. Thanks for the detailed discussion. I took your advice and I just read all of the Dany related essays by Adam Feldman. He would have been a great detective or an expert in logic puzzles (or maybe both). I think he’s probably right on about who was behind the Locust poisoning (for example).

      I do see now that Dany was very interested in being a “mother” to her people. She wanted to end slavery as well as the barbaric fighting pits. I do agree now that in the books, she was focused on much more than just her quest for the Iron Throne. I think my comments were clouded by my “show” images of Dany as she worked to build her army. I’ve had countless re-watches of the show, and I’ve only read the books once, so the images from the show often pop up first in my brain. I got the feeling in the show that she was much more interested in building her army than ending slavery. In the show, ending slavery was a bonus. D&D seemed to portray her freeing the slaves as a means to build her army and build a loyal following. In the books, it’s really much more complex as you pointed out (and as I just read in the essays).

      As you said in one of your comments, GRRM is most interested in presenting his characters with difficult choices. This brings us back full circle to my comments from yesterday talking about so many of GRRM’s characters who go through a journey to find themselves, including Arya, Sansa, Jon, Dany, Sam, Theon, and probably just about everyone! Many characters lose themselves along the way. Of course I think of Arya first, but so many others including Dany struggle with self identity and inner conflict with their choices. Here’s GRRM’s quote related to this. I think you referred to it, and it was also quoted in the essays…..

      ““The human heart in conflict with itself is the only thing worth writing about.” –George R. R. Martin”

      Here’s a nice quote from the essays that shows how GRRM throws everything at Dany in the books.

      Feldman writes, “….the cruel god George R.R. Martin puts her through the wringer by throwing three general types of plot elements at her: (1) Unpleasant concessions she’ll have to make for the peace, (2) New temptations to break the peace, (3) Wrenching reminders about what breaking the peace would mean for innocent life. These events are all quite unpleasant for Dany — some especially unpleasant. As she becomes more and more unhappy, it becomes clear that the drama of this part of her arc is all about whether she’ll be able to force herself to stick to the peace deal.”

      “So Dany quickly learned that violently overturning the status quo, without staying behind to build a new status quo, left only new horrors behind in Astapor.”

      Here are quotes that shows Dany isn’t just focused on the Iron Throne in the books……“One day I shall return to Westeros to claim my father’s throne, and look to Dorne for help. But on this day the Yunkai’i have my city ringed in steel. I may die before I see my Seven Kingdoms. Hizdahr may die. Westeros may be swallowed by the waves.” Dany kissed his cheek. “Come. It’s time I wed.” (DANY VII)
      ….
      More conflicts that GRRM threw at Dany in the books…
      “The horrors of Astapor and Hazzea weighed heavily on her mind. So, difficultly and amazingly, she achieved that peace for Meereen.

      And as Dany removes her tokar “costume” and realizes that the way she was being a queen in Meereen was like putting on an act trying to please everyone, here’s a quote from the books mentioned in the essay…

      “The boar buried his snout in Barsena’s belly and began rooting out her entrails. The smell was more than the queen could stand. The heat, the flies, the shouts from the crowd … I cannot breathe. She lifted her veil and let it flutter away. She took her tokar off as well. The pearls rattled softly against one another as she unwound the silk.

      “Khaleesi?” Irri asked. “What are you doing?”

      “Taking off my floppy ears.” (DANY IX)”

      Feldman writes, “And just then — at the moment of Dany’s highest dissatisfaction with the both the peace and the Meereenese themselves — Drogon returns. Whether this timing is purely symbolic or whether it’s magical in some way, it’s surely not an accident on Martin’s part”

      I’m going to stop there and maybe wait a minute to watch the slide show again before heading off to sleeping quarters. Thanks so much for the discussion and the recommendations to ready the essays. Others have told me about the essays, but this is the first I really dug into them. I have alot more to read now (about Jon and others).
      ADWD may seem to get bogged down in Meereen, but reading the essays puts a whole new light on what really went on through all those pages!!!

        Quote  Reply

    167. Tron79,

      So where to start? Wow. Thanks for the detailed discussion. I took your advice and I just read all of the Dany related essays by Adam Feldman. He would have been a great detective or an expert in logic puzzles (or maybe both). I think he’s probably right on about who was behind the Locust poisoning (for example).

      Thank-you for reading everything! And I think what Feldman did really well was highlight the tests and struggles these characters are facing and how these shape their arc, the choices they make, and how they lead to the culminations.

      This brings us back full circle to my comments from yesterday talking about so many of GRRM’s characters who go through a journey to find themselves, including Arya, Sansa, Jon, Dany, Sam, Theon, and probably just about everyone! Many characters lose themselves along the way. Of course I think of Arya first, but so many others including Dany struggle with self identity and inner conflict with their choices. Here’s GRRM’s quote related to this. I think you referred to it, and it was also quoted in the essays…..

      ““The human heart in conflict with itself is the only thing worth writing about.” –George R. R. Martin”

      I agree — and I somehow forgot about Theon (T__T) — he’s a perfect example of what you’re talking about with his Reek and Theon identities.

      Feldman writes, “….the cruel god George R.R. Martin puts her through the wringer by throwing three general types of plot elements at her: (1) Unpleasant concessions she’ll have to make for the peace, (2) New temptations to break the peace, (3) Wrenching reminders about what breaking the peace would mean for innocent life. These events are all quite unpleasant for Dany — some especially unpleasant. As she becomes more and more unhappy, it becomes clear that the drama of this part of her arc is all about whether she’ll be able to force herself to stick to the peace deal.”

      Yes and ironically, in trying to build a peace to preserve innocent life, it also requires Dany to suppress her instinct to take action against those who are harming innocent life (the Yunkai, who continue their slave trade), leading to much of Dany’s dissatisfaction because anti-slavery isn’t just a PR move/good look/Twitter trend re-tweet activism, it’s something she has personalized for herself:

      “Slavery is not the same as rain,” she insisted. “I have been rained on and I have been sold. It is not the same. No man wants to be owned.”

      ____

      And as Dany removes her tokar “costume” and realizes that the way she was being a queen in Meereen was like putting on an act trying to please everyone, here’s a quote from the books mentioned in the essay…
      “The boar buried his snout in Barsena’s belly and began rooting out her entrails. The smell was more than the queen could stand. The heat, the flies, the shouts from the crowd … I cannot breathe. She lifted her veil and let it flutter away. She took her tokar off as well. The pearls rattled softly against one another as she unwound the silk.
      “Khaleesi?” Irri asked. “What are you doing?”
      “Taking off my floppy ears.” (DANY IX)”
      Feldman writes, “And just then — at the moment of Dany’s highest dissatisfaction with the both the peace and the Meereenese themselves — Drogon returns. Whether this timing is purely symbolic or whether it’s magical in some way, it’s surely not an accident on Martin’s part”

      Yeah, and I interpreted Dany taking off her ‘floppy ears’ here as being done with the concessions she must make for her peace, which I think is mirrored her thoughts here as the nobles, the people Dany is not fighting for, are calling her ‘Mhysa’ now too:

      I am not your mother, she might have shouted, back, I am the mother of your slaves, of every boy who ever died upon these sands whilst you gorged on honeyed locusts. Behind her, Reznak leaned in to whisper in her ear, “Magnificence, hear how they love you!”

      This is something (as pointed out to me by AnnOther last year) I think that goes back to the question of who Dany views as the vulnerable and oppressed, who Dany wants to fight for, and who Dany wants to punish for what she views as injustices (and I think some of these are injustices as slavery is an injustice).

      The nobles are giving her praise, Reznak notes that they love her, but it’s not their love that she wants.

      As queen, she needed to work with people who exacted injustices upon those she views as the vulnerable and compromise her own moral ideals for the sake of peace, to prevent more bloodshed, for the good of the people — but it took everything in her to stick to this. She feels defeated, powerless, experiences growing anger at the continued slave trade outside of Meereen’s walls, frustration over concessions she must make to her own personal ideals, and I think at this juncture (the end of ADWD), she’s done appeasing her enemies and is now willing to give into war to achieve what she wants (in a way, Jon makes a similar choice in deciding to go to war against Ramsay, compromising the fragile peace he’s built, giving Bowen Marsh & co. cause to act against him, and everything he’s done to prepare the defense against the Others. However, Jon rejected the floppy ears and didn’t do much to appease his own men. The negotiations and efforts he made were with the wildlings who — in some ways — he seems to feel more for than his officers, with whom he disagrees with at just about every point).

      I’m going to stop there and maybe wait a minute to watch the slide show again before heading off to sleeping quarters. Thanks so much for the discussion and the recommendations to ready the essays. Others have told me about the essays, but this is the first I really dug into them. I have alot more to read now (about Jon and others).
      ADWD may seem to get bogged down in Meereen, but reading the essays puts a whole new light on what really went on through all those pages!!!

      I think you’ll enjoy them — they’re good food for thought 🙂 I got lost in ADWD and I also felt bogged down but I think these writings did a lot to tie things together and highlight the tests and struggles these characters are facing and what their choices reveal about their values.

        Quote  Reply

    168. Tron79: Yep those panorama shots are cool. You have to search for panoramas and find very wide hi res photos. They are out there. The screen saver utility can detect if it’s a panorama shot and you can also assign a folder to them. You can also tell it which direction to go and more! I like how your workspace sounds! Mine is cleaner than usual but I also don’t have to have papers everywhere anymore since I got the second monitor. I used to have to print out everything. It’s funny I love Arya but my favorite shot may have been Ygritte with her bow on the left and the fan art of her in the middle. It was awesome. I am by far an Arya fan boy but I do have some other favs as well so I got a few of them in there.

      I missed this post! T__T

      Thanks for the tips! And yes, I really liked the Ygritte illustration especially (I think there is such great ASOIAF artwork — I have a lot of favourite illustrations which are often featured on the asoiaf westeros.org wiki). This is probably my favourite illustration (featuring Jon and Arya, illustrated by Magali Villeneuve for A Game of Thrones : The Illustrated Edition 20th Anniversary.)

      But oooh, I think one day I will take a picture of my workspace but it’s an absolute mess right now T__T And I really, really envy your monitors (and a rotating one! Another thing I must save up for….)

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    169. Tron said “I was struck in the books about how much she struggles with not knowing who she is anymore” about Arya. There is somewhere in the books where she wishes she could just go back to being “a little girl” again I think (probably paraphrasing). Mr Martin’s writing style is (to me) like the little girl who had a little curl right in the middle of her forehead in the kids’ rhyme – when it’s good it’s very, very good but when it’s bad it’s horrid.

      Unfortunately, I hold no influence over any radio companies or people who make audio media. I’ve long thought (and I’m sure I’m not the only one who has thought it) that ASOIAF might suit a radio (or maybe online audio) adaptation. If somebody playing Cersei was plus size it wouldn’t matter as long as the voice was convincing and there wouldn’t be the complaining from some about actors not being ‘hawt’ enough. The story would have to be abbreviated to some extent even in an audio-only medium but it would be like the books in that a listener could form his or her own imaginary vision of Westeros (and Essos – mustn’t forget Essos!!!!).

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    170. I haven’t seen Tron’s YouTube offering yet but will try when I have more time. When I’m on my smartphone (well alleged to be ‘smart’) I usually use Chrome when I access the internet and nearly every site I visit asks if I want to use the ap – so I’m still trying to get my head round the aps.

      For Ten Bears, the first episode of ‘The Luminaries’ that I found online. I think the show will be on HBO in the States (as stated previously starts on 21st June 2020 on the BBC). I wasn’t particularly struck on it but I didn’t totally hate it. TB’s celebrity crush appears part way through episode one and appears to be playing a morally complex character (or maybe even a villainess – to early to tell). https://youtu.be/-lnisOgb-Vs

        Quote  Reply

    171. Adrianacandle: I missed this post! T__T

      Thanks for the tips! And yes, I really liked the Ygritte illustration especially (I think there is such great ASOIAF artwork — I have a lot of favourite illustrations which are often featured on the asoiaf westeros.org wiki). This is probably my favourite illustration (featuring Jon and Arya, illustrated by Magali Villeneuve for A Game of Thrones : The Illustrated Edition 20th Anniversary.)

      But oooh, I think one day I will take a picture of my workspace but it’s an absolute mess right now T__T And I really, really envy your monitors (and a rotating one! Another thing I must save up for….)

      Thanks for the fan art! BTW, I’ve been buying computer things used lately with good results. Amazon is pretty reliable for “renewed” equipment. Of course Ebay is out there, but I think Amazon is more reliable and you can return things a bit easier. My Intel NUC enthusiast computer I show was used, but it saved me at least $800 and I got the specs I really wanted. It works fantastic with no moving parts other than the fan (and it’s tiny). The monitor I had on the left was actually a new one, but it was around $150. My better monitor was my main curved one at 144hz. I didn’t mess with 4K monitors for my needs, so that kept the cost down. Also SCEPTRE is one of the lower cost monitors out there, and they both work great. I was worried some pixels might be out (according to the reviews), but they are both fantastic for the price…
      You can rotate any monitor if you buy an arm stand or other free standing stands with a rotate option… Anyhooo…those are my computer tips for the day… Can you tell I used to sell computers? I sold computers in the 1980’s and did computer consulting for many years. Your “Ariel” computer gave me fond memories of that Apple “Lisa” that used to be on the sales floor when I first started.

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    172. Tron79,

      Thanks for all these monitor tips, Tron! So with a rotating monitor, I’d have to get one that can be detached from its base to attach to a rotating arm/base with rotating option, yeah?

      Also SCEPTRE is one of the lower cost monitors out there, and they both work great. I was worried some pixels might be out (according to the reviews), but they are both fantastic for the price…

      I’ll keep SCEPTRE in mind!

      I sold computers in the 1980’s and did computer consulting for many years. Your “Ariel” computer gave me fond memories of that Apple “Lisa” that used to be on the sales floor when I first started.

      That’s really, really cool! I don’t think I ever saw an Apple Lisa in person but some of my earliest memories are of those bulky CRT with the black screen and green type in the 90s — and Windows 3.1! 🙂

        Quote  Reply

    173. Adrianacandle:
      Tron79,

      Thanks for all these monitor tips, Tron! So with a rotating monitor, I’d have to get one that can be detached from its base to attach to a rotating arm/base with rotating option, yeah?

      I’ll keep SCEPTRE in mind!

      That’s really, really cool! I don’t think I ever saw an Apple Lisa in person but some of my earliest memories are of those bulky CRT with the black screen and green type in the 90s — and Windows 3.1! 🙂

      Thanks. Most monitors have VESA mount compatible holes on the back now. So you just don’t put on the stand it comes with. I like the arm mounts so I can push it out of the way if I want. There are a few monitors that come with their own pivot stands but those are harder to find and usually more expensive.

      It’s funny about the Lisa. It was very cool looking (And quite large in comparison to the first Mac) but the thing I remember is how everyone was talking about how Apple stole the interface from Xerox. I may still have my Apple Lisa lapel pin in a drawer somewhere.

        Quote  Reply

    174. Tron79,

      Thanks. Most monitors have VESA mount compatible holes on the back now. So you just don’t put on the stand it comes with. I like the arm mounts so I can push it out of the way if I want. There are a few monitors that come with their own pivot stands but those are harder to find and usually more expensive.

      Great! I’m going to look at the stands of my monitors and try to find the holes so I can detach the mount. Any recommendations on arms and stands? If not, totally cool! I can look on Amazon!

      It’s funny about the Lisa. It was very cool looking (And quite large in comparison to the first Mac) but the thing I remember is how everyone was talking about how Apple stole the interface from Xerox. I may still have my Apple Lisa lapel pin in a drawer somewhere.

      Now I think I need to look into the Lisa because that does sound intriguing 😀 Have photocopiers changed very much?

      (EDIT: Ooooh, I think I’m starting to see now)

      I’d love an Apple Lisa lapel pin — as a loyal (and sometimes embittered) Apple user!

        Quote  Reply

    175. Haven’t been around much though I do check in from time to time. There haven’t really been that many posts plus I’m totally done with discussing S8 and the end of the series.

      Probably will be more active when the spin off series starts ramping up, though I have to say I’m still disappointed over that. Just with the whole HBO Max thing and the show runners that were hired, it just feels like it’s going to be diluted Marvel Game of Thrones, not the dynamic innovative storytelling that took place during S1-5.5. If they hired a more renowned showrunner like Craig Mazin, Damon Lindelof, Charlie Brooker, Alex Garland or someone of similar caliber, I would be more psyched. Jane Goldman was up there with those guys so the canceling of her series had me really bummed. Really, the quality of a series is only proportional to its showrunner. Sigh, oh well.

      Speaking of Alex Garland, saw Devs on Hulu and really enjoyed it. Reminded me of Interstellar in that it was flawed and probably will be polarizing but I still love it. Watchmen was also awesome back in the Fall. Looking forward to Cobra Kai when S3 finally gets released. It looks like Youtube Red is dropping their original programming and it’s going to move to Netflix or Hulu. Really recommend Cobra Kai, especially if you enjoyed the Karate Kid movies. It might sound like a hokey concept but the writing and characters are phenomenal, very underrated series that you guys should check out, the episodes are only 30 minutes.

        Quote  Reply

    176. Adrianacandle:
      Tron79,

      Great! I’m going to look at the stands of my monitors and try to find the holes so I can detach the mount. Any recommendations on arms and stands? If not, totally cool! I can look on Amazon!

      Now I think I need to look into the Lisa because that does sound intriguing 😀 Have photocopiers changed very much?

      (EDIT: Ooooh, I think I’m starting to see now)

      I’d love an Apple Lisa lapel pin — as a loyal (and sometimes embittered) Apple user!

      Yes, that was the controversy with Xerox!! You found it.
      Here’s a picture of the lapel pin that someone else posted… I do have it. I’ll have to dig it out one day from my drawer.. This post says it’s rare!
      https://co.pinterest.com/pin/358669557795289809/?amp_client_id=CLIENT_ID(_)&mweb_unauth_id=%7B%7Bdefault.session%7D%7D&from_amp_pin_page=true

      Here’s a photo of the original Lisa
      https://www.mac-history.net/apple-history-2/apple-lisa/2007-10-12/apple-lisa

      Regarding mount arms, it’s really up to you and your deskspace. I had to pick one with a really wide bracket, because my desk was almost 4 inches (where you had to fit the bracket on). Most of them aren’t that wide…so just browse amazon… The VESA patterns are usually either 100mm or 75mm for your monitor.. Almost all of them support those two..

      OK….back to GOT!! I won’t have a chance to read the other essays today, but that’s on my list for this week.

        Quote  Reply

    177. Tron79:
      ““The human heart in conflict with itself is the only thing worth writing about.” –George R. R. Martin”

      That’s Faulkner, actually. Martin steals shit from better authors all the time. Just ask Robin Hobb.

        Quote  Reply

    178. Tron79,

      Thanks, Tron! Really enjoyed those Apple Lisa TV spots (“A clever pointing device called a mouse”/”Lady Lisa”), as well as the specs (1 MB RAM, 871 KB disc capacity).

      Regarding mount arms, it’s really up to you and your deskspace. I had to pick one with a really wide bracket, because my desk was almost 4 inches (where you had to fit the bracket on). Most of them aren’t that wide…so just browse amazon… The VESA patterns are usually either 100mm or 75mm for your monitor.. Almost all of them support those two..

      Thanks! I’ll take a look at my monitors! My dream for an external monitor would be wall-mounted extendable arm so I can bring it close to me and rotate it as needed (ie. following documentation and tutorials on a portrait-oriented monitor while working on the laptop or Ugee tablet) but it’s a dream yet to be fulfilled. But it’s the dream. And a wrap-around desk encompassing an entire room with ceiling shelves that I can remotely lower at will!

      OK….back to GOT!! I won’t have a chance to read the other essays today, but that’s on my list for this week.

      No rush! They’ll always be there when you get a chance 😀

        Quote  Reply

    179. Ten Bears,

      Have you read Assassin’s Apprentice?

      Fitz = Jon
      Chade = Varys
      Red Raiders = Ironborn
      Stone dragons = uh … Dragonstone

      There’s much and more! But it’s been a long time and the synapses aren’t firing at 100%. A lot of it is standard fantasy trope stuff (the kind Martin allegedly avoids) but it sure is curious that a lot of his tropes come from the same place.

        Quote  Reply

    180. Cumsprite,

      No, sorry, I have not read “Assassin’s Apprentice,” I assume by Robin Hobb.
      I had googled “GRRM” and “Robin Hobb” and came upon a joint interview they gave to tor.com. I did not get the impression Big G had stolen from her….

      I am familiar with William Faulkner, and (like most of us) are aware Big G filched that “human heart in conflict with itself” mantra from him.

        Quote  Reply

    181. Adrianacandle:
      Tron79,

      Thanks, Tron! Really enjoyed those Apple Lisa TV spots (“A clever pointing device called a mouse”/”Lady Lisa”), as well as the specs (1 MB RAM, 871 KB disc capacity).

      Thanks! I’ll take a look at my monitors! My dream for an external monitor would be wall-mounted extendable arm so I can bring it close to me and rotate it as needed (ie. following documentation and tutorials on a portrait-oriented monitor while working on the laptop or Ugee tablet) but it’s a dream yet to be fulfilled. But it’s the dream. And a wrap-around desk encompassing an entire room with ceiling shelves that I can remotely lower at will!

      No rush! They’ll always be there when you get a chance 😀

      😬👽Your mind controlled shelves sound great. It honestly made me think of baby yoda puttin his hand up (to Use the Force) in the Mandalorian starring GOT connection Pedro Pascal.

        Quote  Reply

    182. Tron, I thought that Arya in the fan art of Jon and Arya looked a bit like Ellie Kendrick (Meera). Of course there’s no reason that an artist’s imagination of a character should look like the TV realisations of said characters.

      Cumsprite,

      It must be difficult to think of anything totally original even if plots in books are sometimes similar albeit accidentally. I saw an interview where GRRM mentioned the author of ‘The Dragon Riders of Pern’ (which I haven’t read but somebody mentioned that it included a female dragon rider before GRRM came up with the concept). There was also the children’s books and TV show (cartoon) ‘Jane and the Dragon’. GRRM has said himself that he partially took inspiration from Maurice Druon’s ‘The Accursed Kings’. I haven’t yet been able to match characters from TAK to ASOIAF (which to be fair I don’t think was GRRM’s intent) though Artois might be akin to Littlefinger but less dislikeable. I do find myself doing eye-rolls when folk go on as if GRRM was the first person to write a grimdark fantasy. Again, I don’t know that GRRM ever claimed that.

        Quote  Reply

    183. Tron79: 😬👽Your mind controlled shelves sound great. It honestly made me think of baby yoda puttin his hand up (to Use the Force) in the Mandalorian starring GOT connection Pedro Pascal.

      Yes1 The aim is not to move vertically but only laterally — once I get my desk wrapping at least 2.75 walls of a room (leaving enough space for opening and closing a door) and remote-controlled ceiling shelves which extend downward for item collection, I will never have to get up. I can roll from work station to station on my rolling chair (which will ideally transform into a cot) as I slowly become one of those cushy humans from Wall-E 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      This is the dream. Not using my legs. Ultimately laziness (although I will have to get up for showers. Maybe food… unless I can figure out a conveyer belt system…).

      Or maybe I’m just tired ;D

      (And NICE GoT connection!)

        Quote  Reply

    184. Ten Bears: Today’s Musical Interlude

      Doobie Brothers, June 10, 2020
      “Listen to the Music” – Live in Isolation

      [link]

      ——

      Oooh, thank-you!

        Quote  Reply

    185. Dame of Mercia:
      Tron, I thought that Arya in the fan art of Jon and Arya looked a bit like Ellie Kendrick (Meera).Of course there’s no reason that an artist’s imagination of a character should look like the TVrealisations of said characters.

      Cumsprite,

      It must be difficult to think of anything totally original even if plots in books are sometimes similar albeit accidentally.I saw an interview where GRRM mentioned the author of ‘The Dragon Riders of Pern’ (which I haven’t read but somebody mentioned that it included a female dragon rider before GRRM came up with the concept). There was also the children’s books and TV show (cartoon) ‘Jane and the Dragon’.GRRM has said himself that he partially took inspiration from Maurice Druon’s ‘The Accursed Kings’.I haven’t yet been able to match characters from TAK to ASOIAF (which to be fair I don’t think was GRRM’s intent) though Artois might be akin to Littlefinger but less dislikeable. I do find myself doing eye-rolls when folk go on as if GRRM was the first person to write a grimdark fantasy.Again, I don’t know that GRRM ever claimed that.

      Re Ellie Kendrick’s Meera, I wish they would have included her in the battle of The Long Night. It made me sad that D&D decided they had to send her away after Bran’s robot goodbye scene. I could see her fighting side by side with Arya or side by side with Theon to protect Bran. It would have been cool if she turned into one of the Children of the Forest and gained some extra super power or she could have been given a lifetime supply of those fire balls to help poor Theon protect Bran. I know D&D would have never gone for the magic to change her but after hanging out with Leaf so long I could imagine some way for her to become one of them.

      Ellie has a longer face shape than Maisie so the fan art does resemble Ellie a bit. I enjoyed watching her in The Leveling. Most of the movie is all Ellie Kendrick. It could be a bit slow moving for some but I enjoyed Ellie’s one woman show performance.

        Quote  Reply

    186. Tron79,

      It made me sad that D&D decided they had to send her away after Bran’s robot goodbye scene.

      That was pretty much the kindest thing they did for that character. Otherwise, she had the thankless task of keeping Bran alive long enough for him to reach his destiny, a task which didn’t even end with the violent death of her brother before her own eyes (!). Allowing her to go home to Greywater Watch, to protect her family in case the White Walkers made it that far south, saved her from more misery in protecting Bran. As the Army of the Dead went down to defeat In The Place Where Winter Fell, she and her family were never in any danger.

      Working for the Starks has always been a sh*t job. Even by that utterly miserable standard, she’d paid her dues in full, and could go home to take care of her own family. That’s all a lord can ask of a vassal.

        Quote  Reply

    187. Tensor the Mage, Still Loving the Ending: That’s all a lord can ask of a vassal.

      Bran isn’t lord of anything, but I don’t entirely disagree. I think Tron just wanted a better send-off for Meera and I don’t disagree with that either.

      I get why Bran did what he did, but it was a rather dickish way to treat her after all she did for him. This is supposed to be the new king of Westeros. If he treats the other lords of Westeros with the same attitude he took with Meera when they work together then it’s going to be a bumpy reign.

        Quote  Reply

    188. Ten Bears:
      Mr Derp,

      Bran the Broken Modem doesn’t inspire much confidence, does he?

      Not at all. Unless you drink the kool-aid.

      Personally, I think he’d be a terrible king. There’s a lot more to being king than being psychic. You have to be good at dealing with people. Having the cheat codes isn’t the only thing that makes a king a good one.

      I assume Tyrion will be doing much of the politicking, but last I checked, Westeros considers Tyrion a demon monkey and a traitor, so I wonder how that would work out.

        Quote  Reply

    189. Mr Derp,

      I get why Bran did what he did, but it was a rather dickish way to treat her after all she did for him.

      Yep. Working for the Starks is indeed a sh*t job, all the way through to the end. (Meera Reed’s end was better than Jojen’s, though.) The best a Stark vassal can say is, “it could have been worse.”

      This is supposed to be the new king of Westeros.

      To be fair, his curt goodbye to Meera Reed happened well before he became King. In the interim, he had some time to process his access to vast knowledge, and to apply it. We’ll never know if he actually did this, let alone well, but he did have the chance.

      There’s a lot more to being king than being psychic. You have to be good at dealing with people.

      Ironically, King Robert’s reign will be remembered fondly, for the Long Summer and relative lack of strife. The latter was due, in part, to King Robert’s excellence at dealing with people, which seemed to consist entirely of (a) loudmouthed bullying, and (b) a prompt and forceful smack upside the head if (a) did not immediately solve whatever problem Robert was yelling about.

      I assume Tyrion will be doing much of the politicking, but last I checked, Westeros considers Tyrion a demon monkey and a traitor, so I wonder how that would work out.

      Looking forward to the eighth or ninth (or tenth…) book in the series, “A Meeting for the Small Councillors.” (Publisher’s Note: sales are not expected to equal those of previous installments in the series.)

        Quote  Reply

    190. Mr Derp: Bran isn’t lord of anything, but I don’t entirely disagree.I think Tron just wanted a better send-off for Meera and I don’t disagree with that either.

      I get why Bran did what he did, but it was a rather dickish way to treat her after all she did for him.This is supposed to be the new king of Westeros.If he treats the other lords of Westeros with the same attitude he took with Meera when they work together then it’s going to be a bumpy reign.

      Yes, I definitely wanted a better send off for Meera for all of her hard work and dedication. I did have a thought yesterday that since the Children of the Forest could create the Night King, maybe they could create more Children of the Forest by transforming a human. Think about this twist. Right before Leaf falls on the grenade, she sticks Meera with a twig. You think nothing of it at the time, but eventually Meera begins to transform into a COTF. Perhaps a side of her face would begin to change. What a cool twist it could have been. Then Bran and Meera could have ruled the tree world together. I would have liked that better than Bran being King! Or perhaps Meera as a COTF could have helped fight the Night King during the Long Night. Hard to say, but I do think I would have preferred anything to the way D&D used Bran (or didn’t know how to use Bran). Just making him watch Raven TV seemed really sad. Another thing that made me feel sad for Meera was that after sacrificing her brother and pulling Bran all of those miles, Bran just trips out and basically does nothing except end up as king because he had a good story.

        Quote  Reply

    191. Tron79,

      100% agreed. After everything Meera did to save Bran, all Bran ended up doing in the end was offer himself as bait to the NK, so Arya could kill him. Meera’s gotta be like, “are you f*cking kidding me?”

        Quote  Reply

    192. Mr Derp,

      Why are you acting like that’s an insignificant thing? His plan brought an end to the White Walker threat and saved humanity. Meera would have been proud of Bran and glad her brother’s sacrifice meant something.

        Quote  Reply

    193. Young Dragon,

      Agreed, and it would have meant even more to Meera, as she was one of the only humans alive with personal experience of White Walkers.

      Tron79,

      …maybe they could create more Children of the Forest by transforming a human.

      That would have destroyed the entire backstory of Westeros, negating the setting of the entire epic tale. The Children created the WW as a weapon, to eliminate the First Men from Westeros. If the Children could have simply assimilated the First Men, they would have done so, and would never have been desperate enough to create a weapon which got out of control and eliminated the Children first.

      Also, making Meera something other than human would have been even worse than everything she suffered by working for the Starks — and that’s really saying something. She loved her family, and valued her family’s allegiance to the Starks. Taking even parts of that away would have been incredibly cruel to her.

        Quote  Reply

    194. Young Dragon:
      Mr Derp,

      Why are you acting like that’s an insignificant thing? His plan brought an end to the White Walker threat and saved humanity. Meera would have been proud of Bran and gladher brother’s sacrifice meant something.

      Just so I could hear you complain about it.

      In all seriousness, my comment was mainly a joke and probably shouldn’t have been taken quite as seriously as you took it.

        Quote  Reply

    195. Mr Derp,

      People actually think this way, as you very well know. If you were trying to make a joke, it wasn’t a very good one. I’m not even sure what’s supposed to be funny about your comment in the first place.

        Quote  Reply

    196. Young Dragon:
      Mr Derp,

      People actually think this way, as you very well know. If you were trying to make a joke, it wasn’t a very good one. I’m not even sure what’s supposed to be funny about your comment in the first place.

      This is all very tired and predictable. You’ll be fighting these battles forever.

      Of course, you’re more than welcome to spend the rest of your life being the Season 8 Police, pulling other people over because their personal opinions about how a fictional tv show ended differ from yours, but that would be a shame.

      I wish you good fortune in the petty wars to come.

        Quote  Reply

    197. Mr Derp: This is all very tired and predictable.You’ll be fighting these battles forever.

      You’re the one who continues to whine about a television show a year after it’s ended. It seems like you’re the one who needs to let things go. As far as pointing out the inherent flaws in posters’ criticisms regarding season 8, I don’t mind in the slightest.

      Mr Derp:
      Of course, you’re more than welcome to spend the rest of your life being the Season 8 Police, pulling other people over because their personal opinions about how a fictional tv show ended differ from yours, but that would be a shame.

      Personal opinions? I thought you said you were joking, so which is it? And of course I’m free to argue against season 8 haters, just like you’re free to continue to post your criticisms, no matter how ridiculous. What’s your point? If it’s a shame for me, it’s an even bigger shame for you. I prefer spending my time celebrating the things I like rather than putting down the things I hate, but that’s just me.

      Mr Derp: I wish you good fortune in the petty wars to come.

      And the same to you.

        Quote  Reply

    198. Young Dragon,

      Lol, the double down!

      Not a single person here was “whining” at all about anything until you showed up. Tron and I were having a pleasant conversation until you decided to make ad hominem attacks and make a specific point to tell me that what I said wasn’t funny, even though I wasn’t talking to you in the first place.

      You specifically came on here to tell me that my joke wasn’t funny, but now you’re going to try and claim you came here to be positive and celebrate the things you like? I assume this is your version of a bad joke?

      #Defund the Season 8 Police

        Quote  Reply

    199. Ten Bears:
      Young Dragon,

      “I don’t care what they’re going to say.”

      Wow, I love her behind the scenes video so much!!
      I can’t believe how much happened since I last checked in here!
      I’m not one who has super complained about season 8. I am just being honest that I have a hard time with what happened with Meera and D&D’s take on Bran. I am hopeful that in TWOW, we might get some clue about GRRM’s intentions when it comes to Bran. Yes, perhaps he’s meant to be King, but I have to believe there’s more to it than being bait for the NK. You can yell at me for letting things linger… I’ve let most things go about season 8… I just really appreciate Meera’s dedication and how great she was at pulling that sled! In the end, I do agree that she had a good ending that she got to go home to her family. I just really liked her character and I would have liked to see her fight beside Arya or Alys Karstark.

      On another amazingly exciting note, I had a problem with my first Arya/Jon Reunion mouse pad. They stretched the picture so it looked like Arya was taller and skinnier.. It didn’t look right and it really bugged me. You are supposed to shrink a photo proportionally. Someone forgot to hold down the shift key!! I complained and they actually sent me a new one yesterday with the correct photo in the proper proportion. I guess they actually print them individually and someone did forget to hold down the shift key on the first one!!

        Quote  Reply

    200. Young Dragon:

      His plan brought an end to the White Walker threat and saved humanity. Meera would have been proud of Bran and glad her brother’s sacrifice meant something.

      To reiterate, I agree with you completely. Bran’s plan had flaws — as all human plans do — but it successfully lured the NK to exactly the spot where Bran had intended Arya to end the NK’s existence, which she duly did. Jojen may or may not have had some inkling of this, but he knew he had to sacrifice himself so Bran could become the 3ER. Meera should indeed be proud of all she and her family did and sacrificed, to help Bran become the 3ER, and thus help to save humanity.

        Quote  Reply

    201. Tron79: On another amazingly exciting note, I had a problem with my first Arya/Jon Reunion mouse pad. They stretched the picture so it looked like Arya was taller and skinnier.. It didn’t look right and it really bugged me. You are supposed to shrink a photo proportionally. Someone forgot to hold down the shift key!! I complained and they actually sent me a new one yesterday with the correct photo in the proper proportion. I guess they actually print them individually and someone did forget to hold down the shift key on the first one!!

      I wonder if the deformed mouse pad will be worth any money due it’s rarity. I mean, not like a million dollars, but maybe it could be worth something to a GoT collector?

        Quote  Reply

    202. Mr Derp: I wonder if the deformed mouse pad will be worth any money due it’s rarity.I mean, not like a million dollars, but maybe it could be worth something to a GoT collector?

      Well for me it just really bugged me and I was shocked they actually sent me a new one. I figure they mass produced them that way. But I won’t pitch it that’s for sure! It’s in a closet at the moment. Maisie would maybe like it since it makes her look a bit taller because of how the picture was stretched slightly.

        Quote  Reply

    203. Mr Derp,

      Way to rewrite history. I was jumping in on your pleasant conversation with a few points of my own, and what was your response? “Just so I could hear you complain about it.” The hostility was on your end, not mine. And really, all I did was say you weren’t funny. I had no idea that you would take such offense to this. It wasn’t meant as an insult. People tell me that I’m not funny all the time and I don’t think very much of it. It doesn’t bother me. I had no idea being funny was so important to you. I just want to know what exactly the joke is and why was it funny. Were you making fun of the critics who say Bran did nothing when in fact it was because of him the White Walkers were defeated? If you made it clear that was what you were doing, I would have enjoyed that.

      No, I didn’t come here to say you weren’t funny. I came here to become part of your conversation. Unfortunately, your hostility made that impossible.

      Mr Derp:
      Young Dragon,
      #Defund the Season 8 Police

      Ok, that’s a good one.

        Quote  Reply

    204. Mr Derp,

      Well, here was a “Musical Interlude” I was going to post a week and a half ago when it was a little more topical. Kind of a goofy song, but here goes….

      10cc, “Rubber Bullets” (1972)

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_mem_nhhUEU

      at 1:18
      🎼 ”Load up, load up, load up
      with rubber bullets
      Load up, load up, load up
      with rubber bullets
      I love to hear those convicts squeal
      It’s a shame these slugs ain’t real…

      ****
      at 3:18
      Well we don’t understand why you called in the National Guard
      When Uncle Sam is the one who belongs in the exercise yard
      We all got balls and brains
      But some’s got balls and chains…”
      🎶

        Quote  Reply

    205. Young Dragon: “Just so I could hear you complain about it.”

      I also followed that up with “in all seriousness”, which was supposed to signify that the comment preceding it wasn’t serious. I mainly said that based on our previous history where you’ve jumped all over me for certain comments on season 8. I figure you would’ve picked up on that. I could tell what was coming based on that history.

      Obviously, my jokes and attempts at sarcasm aren’t connecting, so I do honestly apologize for not being more clear earlier. We had a pleasant conversation a number of days ago and I’d like to keep things going in that direction.

        Quote  Reply

    206. Tron79,

      Wow, I love her behind the scenes video so much!!

      I do too. Every three weeks or so it’s worth a rewatch. And she’s really rocking those wonderful eyebrows in that video. And her comic timing.

      (If the world ever returns to normal, I’d love to see her on Broadway. Maybe in a revival of “My Fair Lady.”)

        Quote  Reply

    207. Kind of back on topic because Talisa (Oona Chaplin) is in the photograph at the top of the post…

      In an upcoming Showtime miniseries, “The Comey Rule,” based on James Comey’s book “A Higher Loyalty,” Oona Chaplin is going to portray former FBI lawyer Lisa Page.

      https://www.imdb.com/title/tt9174536/fullcredits

      ——-
      Irish (!) actor Brendan Gleeson is going to play Trump.

      https://ew.com/tv/first-look-brendan-gleeson-donald-trump-jeff-daniels-james-comey-showtime-miniseries/

      ——

        Quote  Reply

    208. Tron79,

      I am hopeful that in TWOW, we might get some clue about GRRM’s intentions when it comes to Bran. Yes, perhaps he’s meant to be King, but I have to believe there’s more to it than being bait for the NK.

      For all of the pages (and pages, and pages) GRRM has spent on Bran and Bran’s visions, I have yet to get any sense it all ends up with Bran being King. That’s a part of the story Martin has yet to develop properly; having run himself out of time, he just dumped Bran’s fate in D&D’s lap, and let them cobble together some path for Bran to arrive as King. Although I had no problem with the path they made, I can easily understand how Bran’s kingship seemed rushed or even nonsensical to many viewers.

      There is no character of the NK in the books, just a legend about a NK who lived (and died) a very long time ago. So we really have no idea how the Others’ storyline will end. Martin himself may not have decided yet. (Maybe Jon and Dany mount dragons, fly beyond the Wall, and hunt down the Others in a series of fiery air raids. Upon returning, Dany can’t help but notice how well this approach worked…)

        Quote  Reply

    209. Tensor the Mage, Still Loving the Ending,

      Even though there’s no Night King, Melisandre mentioned the Great Other. She refers to him as a devil like figure to the Lord of Light, but I thought he could potentially be a physical being leading the White Walkers, essentially like the Night King. I like the idea of the White Walkers having a form of leadership, anyway.

        Quote  Reply

    210. Young Dragon:
      Tensor the Mage, Still Loving the Ending,

      Even though there’s no Night King, Melisandre mentioned the Great Other. She refers to him as a devil like figure to the Lord of Light, but I thought he could potentially be a physical being leading the White Walkers, essentially like the Night King. I like the idea of the White Walkers having a form of leadership, anyway.

      Yes, you are correct that there is some mention of the “Great Other” in the books.
      She talks about a god of darkness to counter TLOL. But much like TLOL, I suspect there won’t be a personification of this god with a character we can see. Same goes for the Old gods, but the books do give a glimpse that

      Bran is listening through the tree network, and in a way, people are praying to Bran as the 3ER when they pray to the old gods.

      Watching interviews, GRRM is conscious of issues such as Climate Change and how he sees this as a real threat. “The Other” threat seems to be his way of saying there is a greater threat that needs to be addressed that could pull everyone together and away from their petty politics. The word “Other” is often associated with fearing a group of people that you don’t understand. Perhaps he just called them “The Other”, because it invokes fear. It could be an interesting twist, if the Others were just misunderstood and Bran is able to help figure out how to get along with them. Perhaps the way the wall will fall will be voluntary. People will find out that “The Other” have names and a culture, and it’s OK to let them through. I think that idea is highly doubtful, but I was following GRRM’s messaging. It’s more likely that “The Others” were just meant to scare the sh*t out of us, so we might take climate change more seriously.

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    211. I will remind everyone the first promo trailer of GoT season 1.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SQCy4rYE3ck

      It begins with a crow perching on the Iron Throne.
      0.23 is about Jon killing someone in the IT environment.
      0.24 and 0.39 is Jon sitting on the throne with Ghost.

      It is all about Bran and Jon.
      For those who have read the books, it is also evident there; they will bring down the threat of the Others and they will take the throne.
      Martin himself was all over season 1 so there is no chance this promo aired without his approval.

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    212. Tron79: She talks about a god of darkness to counter TLOL. But much like TLOL, I suspect there won’t be a personification of this god with a character we can see. Same goes for the Old gods, but the books do give a glimpse that

      Bran is listening through the tree network, and in a way, people are praying to Bran as the 3ER when they pray to the old gods.

      Watching interviews, GRRM is conscious of issues such as Climate Change and how he sees this as a real threat. “The Other” threat seems to be his way of saying there is a greater threat that needs to be addressed that could pull everyone together and away from their petty politics.

      This is my interpretation too… I’ve entertained the idea that the The Great Other Melisandre feared was The Long Night itself.

      This is who Melisandre seems to think might be The Great Other:

      A face took shape within the hearth. Stannis? she thought, for just a moment … but no, these were not his features. A wooden face, corpse white. Was this the enemy? A thousand red eyes floated in the rising flames. He sees me. Beside him, a boy with a wolf’s face threw back his head and howled.

      (It sounds like a wooden spider XD;; But people have often speculated this to be Bloodraven and Bran. I don’t think they are The Great Other but more that Mel is getting the right vision but the interpretation wrong.)

      Efi: It begins with a crow perching on the Iron Throne.
      0.23 is about Jon killing someone in the IT environment.
      0.24 and 0.39 is Jon sitting on the throne with Ghost.

      It is all about Bran and Jon.
      For those who have read the books, it is also evident there; they will bring down the threat of the Others and they will take the throne.
      Martin himself was all over season 1 so there is no chance this promo aired without his approval.

      I think the quote at 0:23 is Ned (telling Jon), “You might not have my name, but you have my blood,” which I believe points to the mystery of Jon’s parentage (and in its original context too), a pretty big question mark in the series (at the time).

      But I think there are many ways to take this trailer since so many different characters (including ones who have survived to season 8) are are seated on the throne — except any characters who were mostly kids at the time in season 1.

      I don’t know if anything is terribly evident though — how things will go with the Others. But I do think that Bran becomes king and I’m hoping it’s set up better.

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    213. Euron has crazy NK imagery in the released WoW chapter, “The Foresaken”.

      For some reason, he wants to reach Daenerys, marry her and sit on the IT.
      He also wants to become god, or god-like.
      He has a Valyrian steel armor, which answered my question as to why the NK in the show suddenly wears armor, ever more elaborate with every season.
      The narrative problem with Euron is that while he wants fire, he is described as the embodiment of the far North. He has one eye, and its warm and smiling. His other eye is pretty much a cold, cruel abyss, and in its description the PoVs who see him describe it figuratively, symbolically, as representing his icy soul within. Yet he wants a dragon.
      Hmmm! He’ll probably get one. In particular, one that is described as white dragon, literally.

      So, my tinfoil speculation is this:
      Euron will die, and will be resurrected; this may happen because the Wall will have fallen. The Wall will fall because of the Horn of Winter, not because of a dragon (since it is established in-world that dragons don’t fly behind the Wall). A horn figures on the cover of WoW.
      In other words, Euron wants to become god, and he will, just not in the way he thought.

      I cannot tell what his relation with the Others will be, because they’re not thinking or speaking creatures in the books.
      I also cannot tell if Euron will go North, and whether he’ll lead them south, but this cannot be excluded as a possibility. After he dies, who will be his natural army? The Ironborn are following him now, but they are only human while Euron will not be human for too long.

      Although the narrative reasoning of this structure is this: since a god-like figure of the God of Fire wants the IT, meaning Daenerys (doesn’t burn, practices blood magic, has strange, prophetic dreams), it’s only logical that a god-like figure of the Great Other strives for the throne too (also practices blood magic and is into any kind of magic, drinks the “shade” for having visions, etc).

      This also explains why Martin has embroidered his imaginary world under the dualistic religious theories. Ice and Fire are two poles, and everything else (the 7 gods, the old gods) come in between. Neither of the two is good; both are twisted and extreme for humans but also for the world in between, such as CotF and nature.

      We know that Bran and Jon are connected to the old gods. They are wargs, Bran is a greenseer in addition. It makes sense that they will bring Ice and Fire down. So far neither claims the throne (which again makes sense, because you can’t have a third in the dualistic perspective), and I don’t think they’ll lay any claim on the IT. It will just… happen.
      It would be nice if we had human representatives of the 7 gods too fighting against Ice and Fire.

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    214. Tron79: The word “Other” is often associated with fearing a group of people that you don’t understand. Perhaps he just called them “The Other”, because it invokes fear. It could be an interesting twist, if the Others were just misunderstood and Bran is able to help figure out how to get along with them. Perhaps the way the wall will fall will be voluntary. People will find out that “The Other” have names and a culture, and it’s OK to let them through. I think that idea is highly doubtful, but I was following GRRM’s messaging. It’s more likely that “The Others” were just meant to scare the sh*t out of us, so we might take climate change more seriously.

      I’ve always wondered if The Others can be negotiated with. Yes, they want to kill humanity but they might have a compelling motive (especially from their perspective).

      And I think I got that idea from Alt Shift X, who had one speculation that Jon negotiates a peace treaty with The Others, trading himself for this peace and becoming the new Night King. I don’t think a peace negotiation would go quite that way since I also suspect there isn’t really a personification of The Great Other but I do like this idea 🙂

      However, I do think The Others are meant to unite humanity. There’s this quote from GRRM:

      I’m not an “American First” (and maybe because I read science fiction) I’m a “Terran First”. I’m a human being first. And I have this sympathy for other human beings no matter what side of the giant ice wall they happen to be born on.

      And this reminds me of this passage from ADWD, Jon VII:

      “I am the sword in the darkness,” said the six, and it seemed to Jon as though their voices were changing, growing stronger, more certain. “I am the watcher on the walls. I am the fire that burns against the cold, the light that brings the dawn, the horn that wakes the sleepers, the shield that guards the realms of men.”

      The shield that guards the realms of men. Ghost nuzzled up against his shoulder, and Jon draped an arm around him. He could smell Horse’s unwashed breeches, the sweet scent Satin combed into his beard, the rank sharp smell of fear, the giant’s overpowering musk. He could hear the beating of his own heart. When he looked across the grove at the woman with her child, the two greybeards, the Hornfoot man with his maimed feet, all he saw was men.

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    215. Efi,

      Although the narrative reasoning of this structure is this: since a god-like figure of the God of Fire wants the IT, meaning Daenerys (doesn’t burn, practices blood magic, has strange, prophetic dreams), it’s only logical that a god-like figure of the Great Other strives for the throne too (also practices blood magic and is into any kind of magic, drinks the “shade” for having visions, etc).

      Well, Dany does burn — the incident with the dragons was, per GRRM, a one-time magical occurrence. She burns her hand wrenching a spear out of Drogon. I don’t think she’s god-like since she’s subject to the elements the same as any other person — and other characters have strange, prophetic dreams themselves.

      Plus, in regard to blood magic and drinking substances to induce visions, this also happens with the weirwood: blood sacrifice was practiced in the worship of the Old Gods and Bran has to eat a “weirwood” paste (speculated by some to be Jojen!) to have his visions.

      I do suspect Euron will be the one to take down one of Dany’s dragons though. However, I don’t think he will become a Night King where the Others all rally behind him. If the Others do have a form of leadership, I think that will have existed for a long time already. I’ve seen theories speculate the Children of the Forest are allied with the Others in the books but I don’t know.

      This also explains why Martin has embroidered his imaginary world under the dualistic religious theories. Ice and Fire are two poles, and everything else (the 7 gods, the old gods) come in between. Neither of the two is good; both are twisted and extreme for humans but also for the world in between, such as CotF and nature.

      I agree with the idea that ice and fire can represent two threats to humanity, especially vis a vis the idea of elemental factors. But in that, I also think this applies to environmental aspects as well and nature since nature also involves extremes (cold and heat). Nature is something humans must contend against. The CotF fought a long battle against the First Men when the First Men started destroying their lands until neither were to defeat the other, resulting in negotiations for peace so neither was destroyed.

      I also think fire and ice can both be good for the world depending on the context (ie. fire is a defense against the cold).

      We know that Bran and Jon are connected to the old gods. They are wargs, Bran is a greenseer in addition. It makes sense that they will bring Ice and Fire down. So far neither claims the throne (which again makes sense, because you can’t have a third in the dualistic perspective), and I don’t think they’ll lay any claim on the IT. It will just… happen.
      It would be nice if we had human representatives of the 7 gods too fighting against Ice and Fire.

      Bran and Jon are connected to the Old Gods, are wargs, and so are other characters (including some warg wildlings, the wildling bands seem to all worship the Old Gods, who are also worshipped by the CotF and there are greenseers among the CoTF) but I’m not sure how these are qualities in and of themselves to bring down ice and fire? Plus, in blood at least, Jon embodies both ice and fire. He’s a warg but he’s not just that: he also has another unknown quantity about him.

      And (if I’m understanding you right) the Seven is a different religion entirely, quite separate from the Old Gods.

      For me, I think it’d simplify things a bit too much to have two characters representing religion (the Seven) in fighting against the two ultimate threats: ice and fire. It sort of makes it seem like this one religion is right and is good (or that religion is right and good and can vanquish evil) and I don’t think that’s what GRRM is going for, particularly given GRRM’s views on religion:

      Although, I think what he says about death as a religion (from a different interview) is an intriguing way to look at it XD

      I think worship of death is an interesting basis for religion, because after all death is the one universal. It doesn’t seem to matter what gods you pray to. We all die, in the real world and in fantasy worlds, and if there was some religion where you did not die I suspect that would be, that god would become very popular. They all promise us eternal life, but whatever.

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    216. Efi: I cannot tell what his relation with the Others will be, because they’re not thinking or speaking creatures in the books.

      I think the Others are largely unknown and that’s what makes them scary. But I’m pretty sure they think and are sentient (particularly based on the below quotes in which they can create and are compared to the Sidhe people). They’re like that invisible threat lurking at night, invisible, unseen, and heard. We don’t know what they are since we don’t have that inside view but I’m hoping more information about them will be made available if the unpublished books ever become a reality…

      Shaw: Do you know what substance an Other sword is made from.

      Martin: Ice. But not like regular old ice. The Others can do things with ice that we can’t imagine and make substances of it.

      (Interview With the Dragon, 2003)

      The Others are not dead. They are strange, beautiful… think, oh… the Sidhe made of ice, something like that… a different sort of life… inhuman, elegant, dangerous.

      (A Game of Thrones: The Graphic Novel. Volume 1)

        Quote  Reply

    217. Tron79,

      I’m still trying to resolve a dilemma. If “New Mutants” is in fact released in theaters – excuse me – cinemas here on August 28, do I venture out in the pandemonium and go to the mall to see it?
      Maybe dressed in a hazmat suit + gloves? My instincts tell me to avoid indoor crowds even if seating is “physically distanced.” Yet I wanna see Maisie…

      She could solve all this by recording show tunes from home and posting them on YouTube.

        Quote  Reply

    218. Ten Bears:
      Tron79,

      I’m still trying to resolve a dilemma. If “New Mutants” is in fact released in theaters – excuse me – cinemas here on August 28, do I venture out in the pandemonium and go to the mall to see it?
      Maybe dressed in a hazmat suit + gloves? My instincts tell me to avoid indoor crowds even if seating is “physically distanced.” Yet I wanna see Maisie…

      She could solve all this by recording show tunes from home and posting them on YouTube.

      For me, I am waiting for Video. I have a feeling it won’t be too long a wait!

        Quote  Reply

    219. Adrianacandle,

      Well, the reason why I think that there might be a NK in the books is, well, the show. I don’t generally like to use the show as proof of the books, but I think that overall they did a good and meticulous job in the adaptation, trying to bring in separate elements found in the book. Of course the show differs significantly, since they cut out LSH, Dorne, Jeyne Poole, etc. But they had no reason to insert the NK if what they wanted was, as they stated, to dull down the magical elements of the book, especially if no NK or NK-like figure doesn’t exist in the book. If no NK exists, then why invent him? Yes, I know that they thought a leading figure somewhat explains things, but it would have been just as easy to leave the Others as they were, a senseless, terrible, mass threat that comes from another world. And the NK’s armor was fantastic, and I suppose they got the idea from The Foresaken.
      That said, I still hold reservations as to whether Euron will die in the books. If he doesn’t, then things will be totally different, him terrorizing Westeros, Jon-Daenerys fighting that senseless threat in the North. There’s many ways this could go.

        Quote  Reply

    220. Ten Bears,

      You just need a face mask, like the one doctors wear. You need to have it on when in a closed space with lots of people. Gloves aren’t necessary, but remember not to touch your face. And keep a disinfective with you, when you touch rails and things like that, that lots of hands have touched, it’s good to put some on.
      Here with the opening of activities we’re supposed to keep the measures. The most important one is to have a mask in closed spaces where lots of people are gathering, like supermarkets. It’s not obligatory, but it’s advised. Employees on the contrary are obliged to wear a mask when serving people.
      It would be a shame to miss New Mutants.

        Quote  Reply

    221. Efi,

      But they had no reason to insert the NK if what they wanted was, as they stated, to dull down the magical elements of the book, especially if no NK or NK-like figure doesn’t exist in the book. If no NK exists, then why invent him? Yes, I know that they thought a leading figure somewhat explains things, but it would have been just as easy to leave the Others as they were, a senseless, terrible, mass threat that comes from another world.

      I’d say there was definitely a reason for the creation of the Night King that benefited the show. It allowed the show to make this more action-based rather than horror/magic-based, which is a bit of a different genre.

      But with the Night King, the show could ascribe a face and name to a foe Jon could tangibly fight one on one and focus on in a bit of a more personal way (ala a Kill Bill arch-nemesis format: the stare-downs, the pre-occupation with this one figure, a build-up to a show-down they could later subvert: the Night King provides embodiment of the White Walkers in one form — which does work really well for television). And it gives the audience something to root for — a 1v1 fight between Jon and the Night King.

      It’s still Jon vs. the White Walkers/the Others — but in a more action-film way.

      This is quite a bit harder to do with something that is largely unseen and mysterious, unfamiliar.

      In some ways, the show is more action-based than the books because in the books, Jon has fought in only one battle so far (the battle of Castle Black) and has made four kills (the two wildlings in the ACOK ambush, including Orell, Janos Slynt, and Orell). By the time season 5 ends in the books, Jon has made many more kills and has participated in a battle at Craster’s Keep and Hardhome.

      And the Night King also allowed the show to introduce the fatal weakness of “kill the Night King, kill them all,” making the Long Night easier to resolve within a limited time span.

      Not to say that the Others won’t have their own form of leadership — they might very well be, especially if they are their own race with their own desires/motivations/thoughts values. But I don’t think it’ll manifest like it did in the show.

      That said, I’ve seen speculation that perhaps the Night King’s storyline takes aspects from Euron’s book storyline in that it may have been inspired a bit by it — but I don’t think that means Euron needs to become The Great Other/Night King. There was a Night‘s King in the books and he was largely the thrall of The Others.

      Of the Night’s King, GRRM has this to say (re: Game of Thrones Wiki re Night’s King):

      As for the Night’s King (the form I prefer), in the books he is a legendary figure, akin to Lann the Clever and Brandon the Builder, and no more likely to have survived to the present day than they have.

      However, attaining peace and maintaining peace are also two important themes in the books in that these two tasks are difficult to do and I think it’s a possibility this might play into the story with the Others and/or the CotF.

      And the NK’s armor was fantastic, and I suppose they got the idea from The Foresaken.

      It was really cool!

      That said, I still hold reservations as to whether Euron will die in the books. If he doesn’t, then things will be totally different, him terrorizing Westeros, Jon-Daenerys fighting that senseless threat in the North. There’s many ways this could go.

      Definitely, there are many ways this could go!

      It’s my current speculation that Euron might be an example another extreme — he is an extreme character and dealing deliberately with all sorts of different magic with no respect for its power, thinking of himself as subject to neither the laws of men or gods. It seems to me that in ASOIAF, magic is like a force of nature. It’s wild, unpredictable, chaotic. I think this might be Euron’s doom.

      On magic, GRRM says this:

      Fantasy needs magic in it, but I try to control the magic very strictly. You can have too much magic in fantasy very easily, and then it overwhelms everything and you lose all sense of realism. And I try to keep the magic magical — something mysterious and dark and dangerous, and something never completely understood. I don’t want to go down the route of having magic schools and classes where, if you say these six words, something will reliably happen. Magic doesn’t work that way. Magic is playing with forces you don’t completely understand. And perhaps with beings or deities you don’t completely understand. It should have a sense of peril about it.

      Like there is no good magic or bad magic, it’s just magic. Like wind, water, air — it can be channeled for human purposes and it can wipe us out too.

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    222. Typo!

      *By the time season 5 ends *in the show, Jon has made many more kills and has participated in a battle at Craster’s Keep and Hardhome.

      *Not to say that the Others won’t have their own form of leadership — they might very well *have[…]

        Quote  Reply

    223. Phrasing fix (re: Jon’s book kills, I listed Orell twice instead of mentioning the AGOT wight):

      *(Janos Slynt, a wight, and the two wildlings in the ACOK ambush, one of whom was Orell)

      I’m a mess today 🙁

        Quote  Reply

    224. Efi,

      If no NK exists, then why invent him?

      As you know, the characters of Talisa and Locke do not exist in the books. D&D created them to ease their version of the narrative. In the latter case, someone has to mutilate Jaime Lannister, and the book character of Vargo Hoat is a lisping example of an offensive gay stereotype.

      As Adrianacandle explained, having a central figure for focus helps explain the NK. (Remember, the NK could eventually exist in the as-yet-unwritten books!) This was taken to jarring lengths in Star Trek: The Next Generation. First, the viewer is told The Borg are a pure collective, without individuality amongst members; then, Patrick Stewart plays Locutius, a Borg created to give a single voice to this pure collective! It makes narrative sense, not logical sense.

        Quote  Reply

    225. I didn’t like Vargo and the Bloody Mummers though there were real life examples of man’s extreme inhumanity to man in history. Mind you some folk think I’m hopeless because I’m glad show Daario didn’t have blue hair. I can’t write anything at length on the forums because my laptop which has been wonky for some time isn’t working at all now and none of the DIY fixits I’ve tried from the internet (eg pinhole reset) have worked. I can write short things like a comment on phone but that’s about it. While I’m here can I say RIP Vera Lynn. I don’t suppose she means much to younger people and even I was born a few years after World War II. She was a singer who did much to maintain morale for the British armed forces in World War II. Her songs may sound sentimental now but in the early 1940s ‘bluebirds over the white cliffs of Dover’ (rather than bombers over said cliffs) had a poignancy about it. She died yesterday aged 103.

        Quote  Reply

    226. Efi: Lol, where does Janos Slynt fit in with Jon before ASoS?

      I was referring to Janos Slynt as one of Jon’s cumulative kills over the books: Janos Slynt (in ADWD), the two wildlings in the ambush under Qhorin in ACOK, and a wight in AGOT.

      Jamie’s hand was cut off by a Dothraki.

      Yes, but under the orders of Vargo. Zollo is the one who executed the order.

      That Dothraki was the first (?) human kill of Nymeria.

      I believe that was Iggo. Iggo is part of a group of Brave Companions who are sent to retrieve Arya, Gendry, and Hot Pie. All four, including Iggo, are killed by Nymeria and her pack.

      [I don’t remember who Locke was.]

      Locke is a man sworn to the Boltons. In the show, Roose sends him to track down and capture Jaime, who is traveling to King’s Landing with Brienne. Locke later cuts off Jaime’s hand.

      Locke is also used in a show-only plotline to infiltrate the Night’s Watch. He volunteers to be part of the group Jon leads to Craster’s Keep to kill Mormont’s mutineers who have taken up residence there (under Karl Tanner), hoping to find and kill Bran and Rickon.

      Yes, that’s what I am saying, the NK might come into being in the next books.

      I think it’s probable the Others have a form of leadership and may have a leader of their own. However, I don’t know how much he’ll resemble the show’s Night King, why it’d be Euron or why the Others would rally behind Euron. I’d imagine (without knowing for sure) that if they have a form of leadership, they’d already have an established system in place.

      Conversely, in the show, the Night King was created by the CoTF from a captured First Man as a defense against humanity thousands of years prior and was one of the first White Walkers who came into existence. The Night King had already been leading the White Walkers for quite some time.

        Quote  Reply

    227. Tensor the Mage, Still Loving the Ending:
      Efi,

      If no NK exists, then why invent him?

      As you know, the characters of Talisa and Locke do not exist in the books. D&D created them to ease their version of the narrative. In the latter case, someone has to mutilate Jaime Lannister, and the book character of Vargo Hoat is a lisping example of an offensive gay stereotype.

      As Adrianacandle explained, having a central figure for focus helps explain the NK. (Remember, the NK could eventually exist in the as-yet-unwritten books!) This was taken to jarring lengths in Star Trek: The Next Generation. First, the viewer is told The Borg are a pure collective, without individuality amongst members; then, Patrick Stewart plays Locutius, a Borg created to give a single voice to this pure collective! It makes narrative sense, not logical sense.

      I couldn’t help jump in with the Star Trek reference. The Borg queen was really the central leader, and that made alot of sense, since the Borg community was modeled after bees with drones and the queen. Locutus being a leader didn’t make much sense to me. I could see multiple Queen bees on different Borg Cubes, where each cube had their own queen, but you don’t see King bees. Here’s a nice quote from Quora
      “The drone bees are the males of the colony with the singular task of fertilizing the queen bee. They lack the structure to collect nectar or protect the hive and are usually starved during food shortage. … That’s why there is a queen but no king in a bee hive”

      So what does this have to do with the NK? Perhaps, there will be a Night Queen. But I find it doubtful. I follow Melisandre’s lead when I conjecture that we will NOT see a visible NK in the books. She talks about the Great Other. I think the NK (Great Other) will be just like TLOL. You will never see TLOL and you will never see The Great Other. We will see their “servants”. The WW’s are the servants of the GO (Great Other) and the Red Priestesses and Azor Ahai are servants of TLOL. We will see the story of the servants. As Davos says in the show… “We play his game for him, we fight his war and win, and then he f*cks off. No signs, no blessings. Who knows what he wants?” We will never see TLOL and my guess is that we will never see the GO.

      The book talks more about there being an endless night than having a central villian to defeat like a NK or GO. I’m not sure how much of these we will get in TWOW if it ever comes out. My guess is much of this would have to be resolved in ADOS.

        Quote  Reply

    228. Efi:
      Ten Bears,

      You just need a face mask, like the one doctors wear. You need to have it on when in a closed space with lots of people. Gloves aren’t necessary, but remember not to touch your face. And keep a disinfective with you, when you touch rails and things like that, that lots of hands have touched, it’s good to put some on.
      Here with the opening of activities we’re supposed to keep the measures. The most important one is to have a mask in closed spaces where lots of people are gathering, like supermarkets. It’s not obligatory, but it’s advised. Employees on the contrary are obliged to wear a mask when serving people.
      It would be a shame to miss New Mutants.

      Thank you for your concern.

      My big problem is that I’m here in Florida, aka the Epicenter of the Next Big Outbreak. Our dumbf*ck governor is ignoring the measures for “reopening,” and people aren’t taking mask-wearing seriously. New cases have already spiked over the past week, and it’s only projected to get worse. (Not to mention that the 🍊🤡 has selected Jacksonville, Florida to hold the Republican National CoronaConvention from August 24 – 27).*

      As much as I’d like to go to the multiplex at the Mall** in August to watch New Mutants when it opens on August 28, I fear I’ll be exposing myself to a super-spreader event.

      * “The Long Night is coming. And the dead come with it.”
      – Lord Commander/King Crow Jon Snow

      * ”Burn the Mall!” 🔥
      – The Mad King

        Quote  Reply

    229. Ten Bears,

      I just heard AMC wasn’t requiring people to wear masks because they didn’t want to get “too political.” I think Regal is requiring people to wear masks, though.

        Quote  Reply

    230. Tron79,

      About Captain Picard as “Locutus”: my memory is not what it used to be. I thought the Borg selected Picard/Locutus as their mouthpiece to communicate with humans, rather than to serve as their leader. I could be wrong though. I probably am. 🥴

      Nevertheless, I still remember how cool it was to see Picard transformed into a Borg, with the Borg exoskeleton + laser eye, at the end of Part 1 of that two-part episode.

      That reveal was the second-coolest on ST:TNG, for me at least. I’ll never forget when that Romulan commander stepped out of the shadow and it turned out to be

      Tasha Yar 2.0

      .

      That was comparable to GoT S6e10 when the serving girl told Walder, “But they’re already here, my Lord. Here, my Lord,” then whipped off her face to reveal it was Arya. (“My name is Arya Stark. I want you to know that. The last thing you’re ever going to see is a Stark smiling down at you 😃 as you die.”)

      #ASNAWP
      👸🏻🔪

        Quote  Reply

    231. Young Dragon:
      Ten Bears,

      I just heard AMC wasn’t requiring people to wear masks because they didn’t want to get “too political.” I think Regal is requiring people to wear masks, though.

      That’s just lovely. 🤬 All it takes is one sneezing idiot to expose the entire audience to infection. I’ve been so careful to protect myself – and others – since this crisis began. (Well, even before that. In early February I was worrying that the “new” virus would soon spread throughout the U.S. Silly me: listening to actual scientists.)

        Quote  Reply

    232. Ten Bears:
      Tron79,

      About Captain Picard as “Locutus”: my memory is not what it used to be. I thought the Borg selected Picard/Locutus as their mouthpiece to communicate with humans, rather than to serve as their leader. I could be wrong though. I probably am. 🥴

      Nevertheless, I still remember how cool it was to see Picard transformed into a Borg, with the Borg exoskeleton + laser eye, at the end of Part 1 of that two-part episode.

      That reveal was the second-coolest on ST:TNG, for me at least. I’ll never forget when that Romulan commander stepped out of the shadow and it turned out to be

      .

      That was comparable to GoT S6e10 when the serving girl told Walder,“But they’re already here, my Lord. Here, my Lord,” then whipped off her face to reveal it was Arya. (“My name is Arya Stark. I want you to know that. The last thing you’re ever going to see is a Stark smiling down at you 😃 as you die.”)

      #ASNAWP
      👸🏻🔪

      You are correct about Locutus’ main function (to speak to the humans and hopefully make it easier to assimilate them faster). But the Queen was thinking Locutus could have been her King.. .Here’s an excerpt from one of the wiki’s

      “The Borg Queen herself had been aboard the Borg cube where Picard had undergone his transformation into Locutus. Interested in overseeing this event, she had intended for Picard to become her equal counterpart. (Star Trek: First Contact)”

      I much prefer watching Arya’s reveal to watching Picard as Locutus. I have to admit I tuned out alot of the Picard/Locutus story. I was always more of a 7 of 9 fan boy when it comes to borgs, but that’s a different show! I did enjoy how he still had emotional scars from the experience during the new Picard series.

      TNG is interesting because Gene Roddenberry thought that people would have evolved to the point by then where they wouldn’t have as much interpersonal conflict between the crew as they did in TOS. Hence it became quite boring with everyone getting along! So they had to add conflict by coming up with the random spatial anomalies to get people to act in ways that would be interesting. All this getting along in space without conflict can get quite tedious if you are watching! TNG does have some great material for lessons in ethics. I used quite a few episodes for my classes in theology and ethics at the synagogue.

      In regards to masks at theaters, that just adds to another reason I wouldn’t go. The just seems logical right now that people would wear something to prevent the spread of sneezing or coughing. I don’t think masks do much to protect yourself unless you wear N95 type, but I do think they help keep the germs out of the air some. Of course, if they made GOT themed masks, maybe I would wear them all the time. It does offer more ad space to promote your “cheer”. Wasn’t “cheer” the term for all the buttons servers used to wear on their suspenders? or is that a different term…

        Quote  Reply

    233. Tron79,

      ”TNG is interesting because Gene Roddenberry thought that people would have evolved to the point by then where they wouldn’t have as much interpersonal conflict between the crew as they did in TOS. Hence it became quite boring with everyone getting along! So they had to add conflict by coming up with the random spatial anomalies to get people to act in ways that would be interesting. All this getting along in space without conflict can get quite tedious…”

      That’s why Q was such a great recurring character!

      • I LOVE your idea for GoT themed masks!
      Why not go all the way and have a double-layer full-face Walder Frey mask to peel off – with Arya underneath?

        Quote  Reply

    234. Ten Bears,

      All it takes is one sneezing idiot to expose the entire audience to infection.

      It takes far less than that. A person can be completely asymptomatic and still highly contagious. Simply being downstream (from the air-conditioning vent) of such a person — who is breathing normally! — can result in infection. Worse, if the movie is of the standard “Summer Blockbuster” type, then each audience member can be expected to have several episodes of abnormally higher respiratory rates, induced by the adrenaline ‘rushes’ intentionally precipitated by the movie.

        Quote  Reply

    235. Musical Interlude 6/19/20

      George Harrison
      🎸“What is Life” (1971)

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fiH9edd25Bc

      This official video was the winner of a contest in 2016 sponsored by George Harrison’s estate, in which filmmakers were invited to submit videos for “What is Life.” His widow and son chose the winner. The dancer in the video is a ballerina with the San Francisco Ballet.

      The B side to the 45 single of “What is Life” was “Apple Scruffs”: George Harrison’s musical love letter to die hard, dedicated fans – affectionately known as Apple Scruffs.

      🍏 “Apple Scruffs” (1971)
      (3:03 long)

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W3B60vn1ODE

      George Harrison played all the instruments (harmonica and guitar) and sang all the vocals on this song.

        Quote  Reply

    236. As an outsider what is happening right now in the US is terrifying. You are seeing exponential growth in several states yet pushing ahead with reopening. The fact that cinemas (a place where the virus could easily spread) are not mandating masks is baffling.

      In contrast here in Europe we’ve largely crushed the virus to very low levels (UK and Sweden the only exceptions but us Brits are slowly getting there too), yet we’ve moved much slower out of lockdown putting safety first. Cinemas in the UK are still not open although we’ve only made masks mandatory on public transport unlike the rest of Europe.

      Bottom line I can’t help but feel the US is heading to a very bad place.

        Quote  Reply

    237. My father’s day post…

      Best and Worst Father/Son/Daughter relationships on GOT
      Tywin -> Tyrion The winner for the absolute worst. “I am your son, I have always been your son!”

      Here’s the worst father son conversation possible!

      Wielding Joffrey’s crossbow, Tyrion confronts Tywin, disrobed in the privy in the Tower of the Hand]

      Tywin Lannisterː [surprised] Tyrion. Put down the crossbow. [Tyrion stands firm] Who released you? Ah, your brother, I expect. He always had a soft spot for you. Come, we’ll go and talk in my chambers. [Tyrion holds up the crossbow as Tywin makes to stand] This is how you want to speak to me, hmm? Shaming your father has always given you pleasure —

      Tyrion Lannisterː All my life… you’ve wanted me dead.

      Tywin Lannisterː [nodding] Yes. But you refused to die. I respect that; even admire it. You fight for what’s yours. I’d never let them execute you. Is that what you fear? I’d never let Ilyn Payne take your head. You’re a Lannister. You’re my son.

      Tyrion Lannisterː [whispers] I loved her.

      Tywin Lannisterː Who?

      Tyrion Lannisterː Shae.

      Tywin Lannisterː [disbelievingly] Oh, Tyrion… put down that crossbow.

      Tyrion Lannisterː I murdered her… with my own hands.

      Tywin Lannisterː It doesn’t matter.

      Tyrion Lannisterː “Doesn’t matter”?

      Tywin Lannisterː She was a whore.

      Tyrion Lannisterː [coldly] Say that word again…

      Tywin Lannisterː And what? You’ll kill your own father in the privy? No… you’re my son. Now, enough of this nonsense.

      Tyrion Lannisterː I am your son, and you sentenced me to die. You knew I didn’t poison Joffrey, but you sentenced me all the same. Why?

      Tywin Lannisterː Enough. We’ll go back to my chambers and speak with some dignity.

      Tyrion Lannisterː I can’t go back there. She’s in there.

      Tywin Lannisterː You’re afraid of a dead whore? [Tyrion looses the crossbow bolt into Tywin’s gut; Tywin grunts with pain as he is slammed back into the wall from the force; Tyrion calmly pulls the catch back] You shot me… [he groans in pain as he glares at Tyrion, who loads another bolt] You’re no son of mine.

      Tyrion Lannisterː I am your son. I have always been your son. [Tyrion fires another bolt into Tywin’s chest, killing him]

      Let’s jump to the best Dad/daughter
      Ned Stark and Arya
      Here’s some excellent fatherly advice:

      Ned talking to Arya:
      “Let me tell you something about wolves, child. When the snows fall and the white winds blow, the lone wolf dies, but the pack survives. Summer is the time for squabbles. In winter, we must protect one another, keep each other warm, share our strengths. So if you must hate, Arya, hate those who would truly do us harm. Septa Mordane is a good woman, and Sansa… Sansa is your sister. You may be as different as the sun and moon, but the same blood flows through both your hearts. You need her, as she needs you… and I need both of you, gods help me.”

      Oh, I changed my mind. Worst father award has to go to Stannis Baratheon for allowing his daughter Shireen to be burned at the stake. OMG. How could I rate Tywin worse that Stannis!!!

      Best Father figure/mentor… Sandor Clegane and Arya.
      Great words of advice, such as:

      “You’re very kind. Someday it will get you killed.”

      “The dead are dead. You’re not.”

      “Hate is good as any to keep a person going, better then most.”

      “You’re a cold little b*tch aren’t you? Guess that’s why you’re still alive.”

      Sandor Clegane: He’s weak. He can’t protect himself. They’ll both be dead come winter. Dead men don’t need silver.
      Arya: You’re the worst sh*t in the Seven Kingdoms.
      Sandor: There’s plenty worse than me. I just understand the way things are.

      Happy Father’s Day everyone!!

        Quote  Reply

    238. Tron79,

      Happy Father’s Day to you!

      And to add to your “Best Father figure/mentor… Sandor Clegane and Arya” here’s one of my favorite snippets… from S4e3 (Rabbit Stew Sally, her father, Arya, and Sandor):

      Arya makes excuses for her “father” (Sandor)

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3AXZi0mdAbM

      at 1:19 – “Forgive my father. He was wounded. Fighting in the war…”
      at 2:08 – After scoring meal + lodging, Arya smiles 👸🏻
      at 2:31 – At dinner table (when impatient Sandor interrupts farmer’s prayer) Arya: “Father!”

        Quote  Reply

    239. Tron79,

      Happy Father’s Day to you too, Tron! 😀

      And thanks for the musical interludes, Ten Bears! Need to catch up! For me, the end of June comes with many birthdays, a Father’s Day, and this time, two baby-showers — all requiring work (mainly wrapping, some making, some baking) T__T So the songs are welcome!

      Oh, if I never see curling ribbon again…

        Quote  Reply

    240. Ten Bears:
      Tron79,

      Happy Father’s Day to you!

      And to add to your “Best Father figure/mentor… Sandor Clegane and Arya” here’s one of my favorite snippets… from S4e3 (Rabbit Stew Sally, her father, Arya, and Sandor):

      Arya makes excuses for her “father” (Sandor)

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3AXZi0mdAbM

      at 1:19 – “Forgive my father. He was wounded. Fighting in the war…”
      at 2:08 – After scoring meal + lodging, Arya smiles 👸🏻
      at 2:31 – At dinner table (when impatient Sandor interrupts farmer’s prayer) Arya: “Father!”

      Thanks. I love the feature that I can click your YouTube link on my phone and cast it to my tv via the roku. It’s been awhile since I watched that scene. At the end I forgot to add that after Sandor says “I just know the way things are.” And then he says “how many Starks they got to behead before you figure it out. “. It was also one of the scenes when Arya thought she was a good liar and almost got caught when asked who her father fought for. Tywin also almost catches her when she makes up facts such as her father was a stone mason. She gets much better at lying when she went through her FM training and played the game of faces. I suppose Jaqen was another father figure of sorts. The saddest father moment was when she asked Beric if he could bring her father back just once.

        Quote  Reply

    241. Tron79,

      Best and Worst Father/Son/Daughter relationships on GOT
      Tywin -> Tyrion The winner for the absolute worst. “I am your son, I have always been your son!”

      I respectfully disagree. Worst Father/Daughter relationships in GOT were definitely between Craster and his daughters. (Tywin/Cersei being a close second.) There’s also no Dad performance worse than leaving your own sons to the tender care of White Walkers.

        Quote  Reply

    242. Adrianacandle,

      End of June is getting full of distractions for me too.

      Need to catch up on the musical interludes? Hmm. I’ve been trying to decide if the next one should be a tribute to Jorah Mormont, or to Jon Snow – and his preference for redheads…

        Quote  Reply

    243. Ten Bears,

      At first I read Jorah Mormont as ‘Jason Momoa’ and I was about to vote for the Momoa option just to see what you’d come up with (and because Aquaman seems like the summery choice ☀️) 😅😅😅😅

      Shows you where my head’s at 😉

        Quote  Reply

    244. Tensor the Mage, Still Loving the Ending:
      Tron79,

      Best and Worst Father/Son/Daughter relationships on GOT
      Tywin -> Tyrion The winner for the absolute worst. “I am your son, I have always been your son!”

      I respectfully disagree. Worst Father/Daughter relationships in GOT were definitely between Craster and his daughters. (Tywin/Cersei being a close second.) There’s also no Dad performance worse than leaving your own sons to the tender care of White Walkers.

      Good point! After thinking, I still vote for stannis with Craster a close second. The thing about Stannis is he seemed to care about Shireen and he had a father daughter relationship of sorts with her. He did keep her locked in the dungeon though. Did he keep her locked up because of her scars? I never fully understood why he kept her locked up most of the time. But she did grow up with him. Stannis plays on her trusting relationship and tricks her to go with him. She’s thinking she wants to help. Then he just watched her scream being burned alive. That had to be the worst scene I witnessed in all 73 episodes. So I still vote for stannis. But I have to say Craster is a very close second.

        Quote  Reply

    245. Adrianacandle:
      Ten Bears,

      At first I read Jorah Mormont as ‘Jason Momoa’ and I was about to vote for the Momoa option just to see what you’d come up with (and because Aquaman seems like the summery choice ☀️) 😅😅😅😅

      Shows you where my head’s at 😉

      I’ll have to look for a Khal Drogo/Jason Mamoa tribute song.
      In the meantime…I’m gonna post a Jon Snow “Kissed By Fire”-inspired tribute later on tonight.

        Quote  Reply

    246. That had to be the worst scene I witnessed in all 73 episodes.

      That sounds like a great topic for dialog! We’d have to define “worst,” of course, but we could have quite a series of conversations!

      For my own part, “worst” would be some combination of:

      — didn’t seem to relate to the story;
      — poorly produced;
      — was painful to watch;

      I’d nominate the scene with the “bad pussy” line. There were no primary characters in that scene, the line itself didn’t seem to have any relevance to the characters present, and it just felt like everyone from the writers onward were “trying too hard” with it.

      Second would be Arya’s blithe strolling through Braavos, followed by a maiming which should have left her either (a) dead of sepsis, or at least (b) unable to be any type of action heroine for a very long time.

        Quote  Reply

    247. Tensor the Mage, Still Loving the Ending:

      That sounds like a great topic for dialog! We’d have to define “worst,” of course, but we could have quite a series of conversations!

      For my own part, “worst” would be some combination of:

      — didn’t seem to relate to the story;
      — poorly produced;
      — was painful to watch;

      I’d nominate the scene with the “bad pussy” line. There were no primary characters in that scene, the line itself didn’t seem to have any relevance to the characters present, and it just felt like everyone from the writers onward were “trying too hard” with it.

      Second would be Arya’s blithe strolling through Braavos, followed by a maiming which should have left her either (a) dead of sepsis, or at least (b) unable to be any type of action heroine for a very long time.

      Allow me to nominate:
      Euron just happening to wash up on the same stretch of beach at the same time as Jamie is there, followed by a badly choreographed fight with silly dialogue.

      For me, that scene hit the trifecta (of the combination of three factors you identified).

        Quote  Reply

    248. Today’s Musical Interlude:
      a Tribute to Jon Snow (and his preoccupation with redheads)

      💃🏽Deee-Lite
      Groove is in the Heart” (1990)
      (music video, 4:51 long)
      w/ Lady Miss Keir on lead vocals, and Dmitry Brill with the man bun; featuring Bootsy Collins of Parliament Funkadelic on bass (and with parting message at 4:28 – 4:39); and Q-Tip of A Tribe Called Quest on the rap portion at 2:44 – 3:16

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=etviGf1uWlg

      ————-
      Live version of “Groove is in the Heart” (in Rio (January, 1991) (4:14 long)
      Caveat: Not the best audio quality.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q0RRBhf45M4

      #KissedByFire 💋🔥

        Quote  Reply

    249. Fireandblood87:
      Ten Bears,

      I actually asked a doctor if Arya could survive that and he said absolutely.

      Speaking of Maisie’s Let it Go commercial, I have had extreme difficulty letting go of my problems with Mark Mylod’s decisions for Arya in No One and a Broken Man. I was one of the people who bought in to some of the theories such as Arya was really fighting herself and the Waif wasn’t real. After so many years now I think the best solution would have been to say that when you put on a face, your body also changes. When Arya became Walder For example, it wasn’t just her face that changed. So it’s logical to me that her body could completely heal when she did a FM transformation. When she removed the face and became Arya again she would be healed since her body went through the transformation. They could have had her steal a face when she left THOBAW and put it on to heal herself. Of course it would have been an unstoppable super power of sorts so perhaps it would make her too powerful. Perhaps it could make sense if Arya was staying with Lady Crane for a month. They never really said how long she was recuperating. They made it look like it could have been one night. If she stayed with Lady Crane for a month eating the horrible soup that would have sat better with me. That’s one of the explanations I tell myself. Then we have the fight scene with the waif and the decision to do this off screen. I just about threw my TV across the room. I know others have no problem with it but after all the build up I needed to see how Arya defeated the Waif. I had to believe that all FM go through blind training. And the Waif seemed like a more accomplished fighter. I was one who thought perhaps the Waif took on Arya’s face. I’m glad that didn’t happen. Adrianacandle May have been the one who suggested we could have seen the fight through the eyes of a cat which would have been in line with book Arya. Would I call it the worst scene, no i wouldn’t. Would I call it the scenes that made me the most angry as a viewer, well it’s right up to there. But I have to say that hearing Shireen scream as she was burned alive was the hardest for me to experience, so I would still vote for that one as my hardest to watch. . If we are talking about worst directorial decisions I will go with Mylod with Arya’s story. He seemed more concerned with things like bringing some color into the Shot by zooming in on the basket of oranges.

        Quote  Reply

    250. Tron79,

      ”Speaking of Maisie’s Let it Go commercial, I have had extreme difficulty letting go of my problems with Mark Mylod’s decisions for Arya in No One and a Broken Man…”

      (a) Nice segue to the “Let It Go” commercial. 👸🏻
      (b) I fully agree that Mylod f*cked up those episodes in general and Arya’s story in particular.
      I had read and copied an interview he gave about his “decisions” to tweak the scripts. Lemme see if I can find it. It suggested (to me, at least) that he was clueless about Arya’s character, and oblivious to her storyline that preceded those two episodes.

        Quote  Reply

    251. Tensor the Mage, Still Loving the Ending,

      Just to balance things out, should we start nominating Best Ever Scene(s): a more difficult task because there were so many great scenes over the course of 73 episodes?

      Let’s see… I wish I had Tron’s rating template in front of me…

      To use the Inverse Tensor Factors, such “Best” Scene nominees should:

      – relate well to the story;
      — be br———ntly produced;
      — be enjoyable (or rewarding) to watch – and rewatch.*

      * That’s my big factor: rewatchability.

      Oh, another thing: As I’ve mentioned in the past, I’ve found it more interesting to select each actor’s/character’s best scene, e.g., Pedro Pascal/Oberyn Martell’s “I will be your champion” scene with Tyrion in S4e7.

        Quote  Reply

    252. Ten Bears,

      Worst scenes for me (off the top of my head):

      Season 1 episode 2 – Lady getting killed. Nothing wrong with the scene, I just hate seeing animals get killed.

      Season 1 episode 7 – The sexposition scene (no, not because of prudish sensibilities. Just because the scene was done so poorly it was hard to take seriously. Cringe inducing.

      Season 3 – Any episode with Theon torture porn.

      Seas 3 episode 9 – Greywind getting killed.

      Season 4 episode 3 – Jaime/Cersei sort-of-rape, sort-of-not-rape scene.

      Season 5 episode 6 – Sansa/Ramsey rape. Also the “cock merchant scene” was pretty silly.

      Season 5 episode 7? – “The Bad pooosy”. Really, any scene with the Sand Slugs would qualify.

      Season 6 episode 8 – Arya getting stabbed by the Waif and surviving because of some soup.

      Season 6 episode 9 – The Jon/Sansa argument about Ramsey. Oh my god, I swear that scene will piss me off in perpetuity. It was so unnecessary and didn’t add any drama or compelling tension at all. It was just dumb.

      Season 7-8 – Any scene involving Euron.

      Season 7 – Any episode with Arya/Sansa drama.

      Season 7 episode 6 – Viserion dying. As stated above, I hate seeing animals get killed more than people.

      Season 8 episode 4 – “Kind of forgot about the Iron Fleet”. ’nuff said.

      Season 8 episode 6 – The entire Dragonpit scene

      I have a ton of favorite scenes. I don’t know what would be my favorite, but the “dracarys” scene in season 3 episode 4 would probably be my top choice. I’ll have to think about it.

        Quote  Reply

    253. Mr Derp: Season 6 episode 9 – The Jon/Sansa argument about Ramsey. Oh my god, I swear that scene will piss me off in perpetuity. It was so unnecessary and didn’t add any drama or compelling tension at all. It was just dumb.

      This is a scene I liked a lot at the time because I found the sibling dynamic between Jon and Sansa realistic and relatable to my own relationships with my siblings. I like that part of it.

      However, I also find myself annoyed by it myself because it led to the Knights of the Vale conundrum (a debate without end — why didn’t Sansa tell Jon about the Knights of the Vale, a question never answered by the show or the showrunners or writers. I think it was done to bring about an 11th hour save moment ala Gandalf and the Riders of Rohan at Helm’s Deep but with Sansa and Littlefinger and provide Sansa with a crucial part to play in the battle in order to introduce tension over Jon being chosen as King in the North over herself. Otherwise, emotionally or logically, I can’t really suss it out other than it being down to Sansa having severe trust issues).

        Quote  Reply

    254. Mr Derp,

      Oh, Mr. D! I think you covered my list of worst scenes! (Glad I’m not alone that the S8e6 “best story” scene was one of the worst scenes. And yes: any scene with that cackling clown Euron qualifies as a “worst” scene.)

        Quote  Reply

    255. Mr Derp,

      Thank you for mentioning that scene! I completely agree with you. That was one of my favorite ‘under-rated’ scenes as well.

        Quote  Reply

    256. Adrianacandle,

      …why didn’t Sansa tell Jon about the Knights of the Vale, a question never answered by the show or the showrunners or writers…

      I thought the answer was obvious. Sansa tells Jon that Ramsay will set a trap for him. She didn’t know what form it might take, but she could guess it would (a) involve Rickon, and (b) Jon would fall for it — whether or not (a) was true. She withheld information about the Vale forces so they would *not* get caught in that same trap. This worked perfectly, allowing the Vale forces to encircle the encirclers and win the battle completely. There was no time for the suddenly-entrapped Bolton forces to break, rally, or retreat.

      I thought the Sansa vs. Jon scene was the perfect “brains over brawn” moment, nicely validated by the outcome of the battle. I’ve never cared about Sansa as a character (I rather prefer the relatively limited role the books give to her), but for fans of hers, I’m sure they were happy she was finally applying her hard-won knowledge to some good purpose.

        Quote  Reply

    257. Tensor the Mage, Still Loving the Ending,

      I don’t know… in that scene, Sansa was still angry because they were going into battle without sufficient numbers and she’s telling Jon to wait. Meanwhile, Jon believed they have all the men they can get, not knowing about the Vale army or why he should wait. This would have been Sansa’s window.

      Sansa: Listen to me, please. He wants you to make a mistake.

      Jon: Of course he does. What should I do differently?

      Sansa: I don’t know! I don’t know anything about battles. Just don’t do what he wants you to do.

      Jon: Aye, that’s good advice.

      Sansa: You think that’s obvious?

      Jon: Well, it is a bit obvious.

      Sansa: If you had asked for my advice earlier, I would have told you not to attack Winterfell until we had a larger force, or is that obvious, too?

      Jon: When will we have a larger force? We’ve pleaded with every
      house that’ll have us. The Blackfish can’t help us. We’re lucky to have this many men.

      Sansa: It’s not enough!

      Jon: No, it’s not enough. It’s what we have! Battles have been won against greater odds.

      I don’t think Sansa was trying to lure the opposition into a trap by withholding this information and using her brother as bait (?) — or I think this would have been at least mentioned off-screen in an interview or something.

        Quote  Reply

    258. I don’t know… in that scene, Sansa was still angry because they were going into battle without sufficient numbers and she’s telling Jon to wait. Meanwhile, Jon believed they have all the men they can get, not knowing about the Vale army or why he should wait.

      Our two ideas do not conflict. If anything, the Starks having a smaller force than they want makes a compelling case for Sansa to with-hold her information. She wants Ramsay to feel confident his trap has worked. (Also, she’s lived in the patriarchy of Westeros her whole life; she can have no reasonable expectation these manly military men will listen to her advice anyway.)

      Taking the idea a bit further, any Stark would have learnt the gospel truth, that a handful of defenders can hold Winterfell against any attacking force, no matter how powerful. Sansa would therefore want Ramsay to sally out for an attack, not hide where they can’t hurt him. Show him a smaller force, allow him to spring his trap, and then spring her entrapment force upon the entrapper. If that was indeed Sansa’s idea, it worked perfectly! (And, again, I am no fan of that character.)

        Quote  Reply

    259. Tensor the Mage, Still Loving the Ending,

      Our two ideas do not conflict. If anything, the Starks having a smaller force than they want makes a compelling case for Sansa to with-hold her information. She wants Ramsay to feel confident his trap has worked. (Also, she’s lived in the patriarchy of Westeros her whole life; she can have no reasonable expectation these manly military men will listen to her advice anyway.)
      Taking the idea a bit further, any Stark would have learnt the gospel truth, that a handful of defenders can hold Winterfell against any attacking force, no matter how powerful. Sansa would therefore want Ramsay to sally out for an attack, not hide where they can’t hurt him. Show him a smaller force, allow him to spring his trap, and then spring the entrapment force upon the entrapper. If that was indeed Sansa’s idea, it worked perfectly! (And, again, I am no fan of that character.)

      I think our ideas conflict in that the above plan doesn’t appear to be Sansa’s plan A. Waiting to go in with a bigger army looked to be Sansa’s preferred plan of action rather than luring Ramsay’s army out of Winterfell under the impression of having a much smaller army.

      Yet, despite Sansa wanting to go in with more men, she still wasn’t telling Jon where they could get more men or giving him a reason to wait. Jon believed they had all the recruits they could get but Sansa was saying it was not enough. If Sansa had the above plan, I think she’d be counting on these smaller numbers because that seems to be a key feature in order to lure Ramsay into a false sense of confidence and out of Winterfell. But Sansa was quite upset with Jon about going into battle with too-few men.

      However, if Sansa told Jon about the Knights of the Vale, Jon could work with that information and possibly enter the battle with the needed numbers like Sansa wanted. While he may or may not have taken this opportunity for various reasons, that’d be on him but at least in this case, Sansa will have given him the option and done everything she could have to this end. Then I could see her resorting the Vale as a backup force in anticipation of Jon falling for Ramsay’s trap in order to entrap Ramsay when Jon and his army were on the verge of defeat.

      I think the plan you’re proposing Sansa had kind of gives the impression that Sansa was using one of her few remaining family members and his armies as bait to win back Winterfell. Maybe Sansa could have had this plan but I don’t see much support for it vis a vis on-screen planning or writer commentary.

      I also think a plan like this requires expert timing/military knowledge/(I’d hope) some collaboration with the military commander (unless Sansa is using Jon and his army as a lure for Ramsay’s army?) and/or some precognition on Sansa’s part — and I don’t think Sansa has any of these qualities. She’s not trained or experienced in military tactics, she has no supernatural powers, and she didn’t collaborate with Jon about this. Instead, it seems Sansa just got really lucky that the Vale army happened to arrive at the last possible second before Jon & co. were trampled into bloody grass stains.

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    260. Adrianacandle,

      I think the plan you’re proposing Sansa had kind of gives the impression that Sansa was using one of her few remaining family members and his armies as bait to win back Winterfell.

      Almost, but not quite. She’s just using Ramsay’s demonstrated behavior against him. (Then again, considering she went on to become first The Lady of Winterfell, and then Queen In The North, maybe she was entirely that devious!)

      Instead, it seems Sansa just got really lucky that the Vale army happened to arrive at the last possible second before Jon & co. were trampled into bloody grass stains.

      Sometimes things really are as they appear, and the simplest explanation is always the preferred one! I think we can agree on the “lucky” part, at least. (One always needs some amount of luck to win a battle, methinks.)

      Anyway, thank you for giving me another great scene to reconsider in depth!

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    261. Tensor the Mage, Still Loving the Ending,

      Almost, but not quite. She’s just using Ramsay’s demonstrated behavior against him. (Then again, considering she went on to become first The Lady of Winterfell, and then Queen In The North, maybe she was entirely that devious!)

      Yeah, I think this would be the case (you know, using Ramsay’s demonstrated behavior against him!) — but I also think this demonstrated behavior comes at great risk to Jon and his armies because the plan hinges on their much smaller forces acting as a kind of bait for Ramsay’s much bigger armies and for Ramsay’s traps to get him falsely confident XD;

      Sometimes things really are as they appear, and the simplest explanation is always the preferred one!

      Very true. This reminds of that medical saying, “When you hear hoofbeats behind you, don’t expect to see a zebra.” But I don’t know if this is the simplest explanation for Sansa’s actions in 6×09 for the reasons I mentioned above and this is where I think we disagree. For me, I think the simplest explanation is Sansa and LF arriving at the 11th hour (without Jon or the audience knowing) provides a sweeping dramatic effect because that was a damn cool moment full of relief and satisfaction. I did get goosebumps, lots of goosebumps 🙂

      However, I think we can agree on the luck bit, yes.

      Anyway, thank you for giving me another great scene to reconsider in depth!

      And thanks to you too, Tensor! 🙂

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    262. Mr Derp,

      You are absolutely right. Pod’s farewell to Tyrion in S4e3 was a great scene. I just rewatched it. “Pod! There has never lived a more loyal squire.

      You know, that reminds me that there were a whole host of high thread count scenes of characters visiting Tyrion in his cell in S4.

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    263. Adrianacandle,

      I’m with you on this. (Sorry, Tensor. 🤥) Concealing KotV from the Stark army’s battle commander and fighting men was inexcusable. It was not her place to make that decision. Brave men had signed up to fight and die to oust the Bolton’s and recapture WF. She owed them candor.

      Withholding critical intel was not some stroke of genius on Sansa’s part: After the battle, she apologized to Jon for not telling him. (I think Jon responded with something like: “We have to trust each other. We can’t fight a war amongst ourselves.” A lot of good that did. See Arya vs. Sansa in S7, and Sansa breaching Jon’s trust in S8.)

      Plus, didn’t Sophie say at a Con panel that Sansa didn’t tell Jon because she wanted the credit? It wasn’t to safeguard Jon from his own impetuousness.

      You’re right. There never really was an answer “by the show, or the showrunners or writers” why Sansa didn’t tell Jon about the Knights of the Vale. We can extrapolate all we want. There was no rational reason provided.

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    264. Mr Derp,

      Re: One of your “Worst Scene” nominees:

      ”Season 7 – Any episode with Arya/Sansa drama.”

      I thumb-typed a way too long comment about this, and cannot edit or condense it. Not sure why. If I do post it as is, I apologize in advance.

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    265. Ten Bears: Plus, didn’t Sophie say at a Con panel that Sansa didn’t tell Jon because she wanted the credit? It wasn’t to safeguard Jon from his own impetuousness.

      She did (at the 2016 Comic Con):

      Panel moderator Rob McElhenny got the big question out of the way, asking Turner why Sansa opted not to tell Jon Snow about the Knights of the Vale. “That’s what I was wondering too,” Turner admitted. But she gamely speculated anyway. “Sansa didn’t tell Jon because she wanted all the credit. And it was a more dramatic moment when they showed up and it makes for really dramatic television.”

      But yeah, this has resulted in an endless debate over the motives behind Sansa’s decision by fans.

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    266. Adrianacandle: She did (at the 2016 Comic Con):

      But yeah, this has resulted in an endless debate over the motives behind Sansa’s decision by fans.

      That’s the Sophie Turner quote! Thank you.

      I remember thinking back then, and still believe, that it was kind of unfair for the showrunners to leave Sophie twisting in the wind like that, with no explanation for Sansa “opt[ing] not to tell Jon Snow about the Knights of the Vale.”

      If Sophie Turner was left admitting, “That’s what I was wondering too,” but “she gamely speculated anyway,” then we as fans can be in no better position.

      (I’m not whinging. Just observing. 🤔)

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    267. Ten Bears: I remember thinking back then, and still believe, that it was kind of unfair for the showrunners to leave Sophie twisting in the wind like that, with no explanation for Sansa “opt[ing] not to tell Jon Snow about the Knights of the Vale.”

      If Sophie Turner was left admitting, “That’s what I was wondering too,” but “she gamely speculated anyway,” then we as fans can be in no better position.

      (I’m not whinging. Just observing. 🤔)

      I agree :/

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    268. Adrianacandle,

      …I also think this demonstrated behavior comes at great risk to Jon and his armies because the plan hinges on their much smaller forces acting as a kind of bait for Ramsay’s much bigger armies and for Ramsay’s traps to get him falsely confident XD;

      Any battle plan which depends upon your enemy responding exactly as you believe he will runs a large risk of failure, yes. Then again, some of history’s biggest victories have happened this way. Purely from a military standpoint, the Western Allies could have easily won a decisive victory over Nazi Germany in 1939 or 1940. But instead, they behaved *exactly* as Hitler believed they would, and went down to one of the most humiliating and costly defeats ever.

      I think the simplest explanation is Sansa and LF arriving at the 11th hour (without Jon or the audience knowing) provides a sweeping dramatic effect because that was a damn cool moment full of relief and satisfaction. I did get goosebumps, lots of goosebumps

      The producers may indeed have gone with a classic “cavalry arriving over the hill to save the day” scene just because they had the opportunity. I agree with everything you wrote here. Most definitely including the goosebumps. 🙂

      Ten Bears:

      Concealing KotV from the Stark army’s battle commander and fighting men was inexcusable.

      Actually, it was the very thing which turned a crushing (ha!) defeat into an historic victory — the Restoration of House Stark.

      It was not her place to make that decision.

      Seven Hells, in the brutal patriarchies of Westeros, it was not her place to make *any* military decision at all, and that includes recruiting House Arryn to fight in the North in the first place.

      Also, let’s recall Sansa wasn’t sure the Vale forces would even arrive at all, let along arrive in time, and if they did somehow arrive in time, be loyal to House Stark. She may have held her tongue simply because she knew better than to promise something she might not be able to deliver. This is another very simple explanation which requires no military ability at all, just some prudent caution. All of the debate over Sansa’s (in)action may have just been the audience over-thinking. (In the Game of Thrones fandom?!? Noooooooo!!!)

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    269. Tensor the Mage, Still Loving the Ending,

      For me, I think Sansa’s actions made no sense here.

      First, she didn’t speak up during the military meeting, then got upset that she wasn’t asked her opinion even though nobody was ever asked their opinion. They just spoke up, which Sansa could’ve done at any time. Obviously, Sansa had something she wanted to say.

      So, Jon then asked her in all sincerity what he should do and she gave the most generic, vague answer humanly possible, “I don’t know anything about battles. Just don’t do what he wants you to do”. Gee, thanks Sansa.

      Sansa also told Jon during the meeting that Rickon is as good as dead, so forget about him. Yet, she used saving Rickon as a reason for Jon to help her take back Winterfell in the first place. She’s all over the place.

      Yes, Jon fell for Ramsey’s trap with Rickon, but frankly, if Jon watched his brother die without doing anything, it’s reasonable to question whether anyone would continue to fight for him. It was a lose lose situation, IMO.

      Don’t get me wrong. I understand that Sansa had her reasons for not telling Jon about the Vale, but she could’ve been a little more helpful and supportive than she actually was. She made a big stink about not being asked her opinion, and then proceeded to give a nothingburger of an opinion.

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    270. Tensor the Mage, Still Loving the Ending: Purely from a military standpoint, the Western Allies could have easily won a decisive victory over Nazi Germany in 1939 or 1940.

      I might have missed your meaning here, if so, my apologies!

      This isn’t true at all. By 1940, Hitler had control over most of the Western Allies except for Great Britain, and the United States Military was a joke until the military buildup after Pearl Harbor. That’s why the U.S. went through Northern Africa first in 1942 instead of going straight for Germany.

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    271. Mr Derp,

      That’s my error of omission. I should have specified “early 1940.” Prior to the German invasion of France, a German general had described how the French Air Force could easily stop the Panzer movements through the Ardennes, and turn all of those tanks into scrap metal. My point was that Corporal Hitler was absolutely no military strategist, and he relied on pure luck to obtain victory. The Starks did similar in their battle for their home, their victory relying entirely on forces which were completely beyond their control.

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    272. Tensor the Mage, Still Loving the Ending,

      Any battle plan which depends upon your enemy responding exactly as you believe he will runs a large risk of failure, yes.

      Still, the part I’m stuck on is that this battle plan is concealing crucial information from the battle commander and the army. They’re operating under incomplete information (that this is all the men they could get and they must fight these odds) — for a home Sansa wants back (while Jon is fighting to get Rickon back). I think that’s what separates this from most battle plans — because this plan is concealing some pretty huge information from one’s brother and armies so they also behave the way Sansa expects them to behave, putting them at great risk so the Vale to come in at the last moment and crush them.

      As a result, I think this plan sort of makes it as if Sansa is valuing Winterfell, a castle, over the lives of her brothers… which, while I know some viewers have accused Sansa of this, I don’t think is what the show was intending.

      Also, let’s recall Sansa wasn’t sure the Vale forces would even arrive at all, let along arrive in time, and if they did somehow arrive in time, be loyal to House Stark. She may have held her tongue simply because she knew better than to promise something she might not be able to deliver. This is another very simple explanation which requires no military ability at all, just some prudent caution. All of the debate over Sansa’s (in)action may have just been the audience over-thinking. (In the Game of Thrones fandom?!? Noooooooo!!!)

      Yes, Sansa may not have known for sure that the Vale was coming, that’d be both reasonable and believable on her part. Still, Sansa doesn’t need to make any promises. All she’d need to do is tell them what she knows: LF’s offer and that she’s written to request the Vale’s aid, letting Jon & co. decide what to do with this info because I still they would be privy to that information. They’re the ones who will be fighting and risking their lives on the field to win a battle Sansa, especially, wants them to fight. I think the battle commander at least (and others involved in the battle planning, like Tormund and Davos) should have a say in what to do with this information.

      What Jon, Davos, Tormund, etc. decide to do with this information would be on them. But at least, in this case, Sansa will have given him the options and all the information she ha