Game of Thrones Season 6 Episode 3– Oathbreaker – Recap

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In tonight’s episode of Game of Thrones, we welcome Jon Snow back to the land of living and watch Bran dip into the past, in the aptly named “Oathbreaker.” The episode catalogs an assortment of broken promises, cast-aside vows, and old lies that will shape the characters’ paths in season 6.

Spoiler Note: This post is for those who have read the A Song of Ice and Fire series. The post and the comments section will contain spoilers from the novels! Because no, we are not all Unsullied now. If you haven’t read the books yet, please check out our non-book-reader recap. Thanks!

“Oathbreaker” starts off by bringing us right to where we want to be- with a shaken Jon Snow understanding quickly that he’s come back to life after being murdered by his own men. Wide-eyed Davos watches him rise and you know the Onion Knight has found a new god to serve. (Seven save the lot of us who were very distracted by someone’s nudity in this scene.) Melisandre pops in, looking healthier and happier than ever, and intriguingly refers to Jon as the Prince Who Was Promised. Luckily, Davos doesn’t give Jon time to dwell, pushing him back out into the world, and I have to say that if I’m ever brought back from the dead by a red priestess, I want someone as blunt and practical as Davos Seaworth supporting me. No wonder Stannis kept him around for so many years.

The people of Castle Black are in awe of Jon now (except for Tormund, who as usual bases his world view on cocks). “Are you sure that’s still you in there?” Dolorous Edd asks, and that is a damned good question. Though Jon is managing as well as one could expect, under the circumstances, no one can remain the same after that experience. He’s not a wight and he has his basic personality, but as another character has said, ‘only death can pay for life.’ What will the cost be for Jon Snow?

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We finally catch up with Sam and Gilly for the first time in season 6, as the pair journey (with baby Sam) on a storm-tossed ship. In between upchuckings (surprising no one, he’s no sailor), Sam is forced to admit he isn’t bringing her to the Citadel in Oldtown with him. They don’t allow women to remain there, so he’s dropping her off at his family’s home in Horn Hill.

Gilly reminds Sam of the promise he made that wherever she went, he’d go too. Now, they’ll be parted despite his words.

It was rather low of Sam to take Gilly away from the Wall under false pretenses, actually. Though he had good intentions, making decisions about her future without considering her input and then lying to her is wrong, and he knows it. She was sheltered from the outside world a great deal, living with Craster, but as Gilly becomes more independent, you have to wonder if she’ll begin to resent Sam making decisions for her.

Whatever happens, I’m very much looking forward to seeing this duo take on the Tarlys in the near future.

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I’m not even going to pretend to be cool about this, okay. It’s the Tower of Joy.

It’s the TOWER OF JOY.

Now, being a longtime reader of the A Song of Ice and Fire series, I made it a point to not re-read the sections dealing with this scene before this season, so I wouldn’t be inclined to nitpick. And I have to say, I’m glad I did that. I don’t care about Ser Arthur Dayne (played here by Luke Roberts) dual-wielding swords instead of having one legendary sword. I don’t care that there are two Kingsguard instead of three. And heading into this scene, I suspected they would cut out before Ned went upstairs into the Tower so that’s not a disappointment for me. I know some people were hoping Game of Thrones would confirm the R+L=J theory tonight but I think it’s too soon for that. I do think this scene even being included is one more major clue; we’re a step closer to confirming the theory a bit further down the road.

As for the scene itself, the show cleverly uses the framework of Bran and the Three-Eyed Raven witnessing the events at the Tower of Joy. Through their eyes, we see young Ned Stark (Robert Aramayo) ride in to save his kidnapped teenage sister Lyanna who is being held in the tower. Ned and his five friends take on the two knights guarding the tower in a spectacular swordfight.

Dayne

Ser Arthur Dayne is a legend known throughout Westeros; Bran knows who he is instantly and has heard stories all his life of how Ned defeated Dayne during this fight. But as Bran sees, that’s not exactly how it played out. Toward the end of the battle, only two men are standing- Ned and Dayne, with the knight having killed many men on his own after his fellow Kingsguard was slain. Ned is clearly outclassed and Bran sees it, so how could his father have beaten him?

He didn’t, not really. With young Ned on the verge of defeat and death, injured Howland Reed rises to stab Dayne in the back. It’s only then that Ned is able to cut him down. Not an honorable kill, but it’s the choice Ned makes while his sister is waiting up in the tower, her cries carrying from the window.

Bran calls for his father and for a moment, Ned seems to hear Bran’s voice through the years, but then he turns away, and the Three-Eyed Raven pulls Bran from the vision.

And we all curse out that old man for again depriving us of the glory of these beautifully rendered flashbacks that leave us aching for more.

Bran does too, more or less, when he’s back in his body, but the Three-Eyed Raven is adamant that Bran must limit his time in the visions and he must continue to learn.

Dosh Khaleen

In Essos, the khalasar has arrived in Vaes Dothrak, delivering Daenerys to the Dosh Khaleen, the widows of many khals.

The khaleesi’s welcome isn’t quite as warm as she might hope since Dany didn’t turn up at Vaes Dothrak back she should have, right after Khal Drogo died. That’s the standard protocol for khals’ widows, but she violated it. As the head Dosh Khaleen lady explain, the khals are meeting soon and they’ll have to decide whether or not Daenerys will be staying with the Dosh Khaleen after all. So Dany’s Great Dothraki Road Trip may not be at an end after all.

Tyrion

In Meereen, Varys is getting closer to answering the question of who is behind the Sons of the Harpy attacks. He brings in for questioning the Meereenese woman we saw last season laying with White Rat of the Unsullied as he was murdered by the Sons. The woman (played by Meena Rayann) has a young son, and Varys seizes on this to manipulate and frighten her into informing on the Sons of the Harpy.

Varys bring the info to a meeting with Tyrion, Grey Worm and Missandei. Apparently, the masters of Astapor and Yunkai, with assistance from the slave city of Volantis, are responsible for funding the terrorists. After hashing it out, the council decides on Tyrion’s advice to send a message to the masters.

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In King’s Landing, Qyburn is binding Varys’ little birds closer to him with sweets, but something tells me the little birds may still have loyalty to their old master.

As the children enjoy their candy, Cersei pays a visit with Jaime and Ser Gregor (as she plainly calls him now) in tow, asking for information, and stating she plans to use the Mountain in the trial by combat that’s to come.

Afterward, Cersei stops by the Small Council to find Kevan Lannister (the current Hand of the King) meeting with Olenna and Mace Tyrell and Grand Maester Pycelle. Pycelle puts his foot in his mouth royally when it comes to Ser Gregor, and I’m guessing the old maester is going to get the Gregor-SMASH headspecial before the season is out.

Kevan once again proves he is great at ditching meetings in style, and refuses to talk with Cersei present. He and his company depart, leaving Cersei and Jaime to stew in the slight.

Elsewhere in the city, Tommen is attempting to assert himself with the Faith and not doing the best job. He approaches the High Sparrow at the sept about his mother, but the High Sparrow stills insists Cersei needs more atonement.

Tommen is way out of his league when dealing with the High Sparrow, that much is certain. The old man dances around him with gentle and subtle manipulations, understanding the king is a confused young boy in over his head. He defers taking ownership of any of his actions, claiming it’s not what he wants, its what the gods want, and Tommen buys it.

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Arya’s kung-fu-training movie-montage takes us through her return to the House of Black and White. The Waif is a harsh mentor, laying into Arya with the big stick as they fight, and the little stick for the Game of Faces. Though still blind, Arya is more adept at fighting, and is becoming No One more and more, it seems. It also looks like the Waif is becoming resentful of her presence.

It’s not clear to me why though. If her negativity were just a teaching technique, she’d be pleased when Arya succeeded in blocking her strike. But the Waif does not like Arya, and that story will undoubtedly come to a head.

Now that Arya has made progress, Jaqen checks in with her once more. She denies her name and he invites her to drink from the pool. After she finally she does so, she opens her eyes and sees clearly, no longer blind. She’s reached a new level of Facelessness, and losing more of herself every day.

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At Winterfell, Ramsay has a visitor this week. The Umbers (last seen absolutely ages ago in season 1 since Greatjon Umber’s actor had a scheduling conflict for season 2 and never returned) are making a comeback in the form of Greatjon’s son Smalljon (Dean Jagger).

Smalljon is aware Ramsay killed his father, but he doesn’t care. He doesn’t even care about his own father, who the show has apparently decided to kill off-screen. (Unfortunate, since Clive Mantle was a wonderful Greatjon. Must’ve been one hell of a scheduling issue.) Either way, the formerly very loyal House Umber, the people who declared the Starks the King in the North, are now asking for the Boltons’ help in holding off the wildlings who are headed south thanks to Jon Snow.

Ramsay is wary, especially since Smalljon refuses to kneel, but as Umber astutely observes, Roose Bolton once knelt and called Robb Stark king. Those gestures don’t mean a thing. Smalljon has something better- he has a gift, and it’s exactly what people were afraid it would be, based on “Oathbreaker”‘s previews.

Lovely to see Osha and Rickon again! I just wish the circumstances were better.

And we know Rickon would never be taken easily, not with Shaggydog protecting him. His direwolf would never let this happen. Which is why it was almost not a surprise to see Umber produce the direwolf’s severed head as proof of Rickon Stark’s identity.

Be worried for Rickon and Osha. Be very worried.

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At the Wall, with the resurrection of Jon Snow, the fate of his murderers is sealed.

Bowen Marsh, Othell Yarwyck, Ser Alliser Thorne and the boy Olly are set to die by hanging.

Jon accepts their final words. Marsh and Yarwyck are frightened and insipid. True to his character, Thorne stands his ground; as far as he’s concerned he may have betrayed Jon but he didn’t betray the Night’s Watch, and he’d make that choice again. For all that Thorne is a murderer and a hard, unlikeable man, he tried to obey his vows in his way.

“You’ll be fighting their battles forever,” he tells Jon, and I have to wonder if that’s an accidental prophecy on Thorne’s part.

His eyes defiant, Olly doesn’t speak a word when Jon comes to  him. Jon looks as though his heart breaks once more, the way it did when Olly stabbed him. Was he hoping for an excuse to cut the boy down from there, or at least an apology? He won’t get it.

Around the yard, it’s grim and silent. Melisandre watches from above- like always.

Jon Snow swings his sword, cutting the rope tied to the gallows. With his action, the men drop and dangle from their ropes, faces purpling, dead.

His last task accomplished, Jon sheathes his sword and tells Edd to burn the bodies. Passing his cloak to Edd, he also gives him Castle Black.

Jon is done. He did his best, and died for it. But with his murder, his obligations were fulfilled and finished and he’s no oathbreaker.

“My Watch is ended.”

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After last week’s jam-packed “Home,” “Oathbreaker” was a slower episode with more breathing room to take in the enormity of what occurred. It’s hard to top a resurrection- you can’t, so this feels like more of a transitional episode, with characters journeying and quite a lot of setup for storylines across the board. Jon is shifting from the Night’s Watch to his after-death life, Sam and Gilly and Daenerys are looking for that right place to land, and Arya’s journey is inward, moving between her true self and No One. Nothing is certain, which means it will only get more exciting from here.

A few thoughts…

Tower of Joy: Don’t ask me how many times I’ve already rewatched that segment. It’s an embarrassing number. That was cool as hell and I want more.

Kit Harington: Jon has returned darker, angrier, and with a slightly trimmed haircut. Give it up for our Acting VIP of the week!

Olly the mute: Brenock O’Connor had no normally spoken lines of dialogue in three episodes. He had that line in the last episode when he was shouting as he attacked, but that’s it. So I’m guessing O’Connor’s voice got super low between seasons and the show is trying to hide it?

The KL is OK: The King’s Landing story isn’t drawing me in much this season, so far. Lena Headey and Jonathan Pryce in particular are wonderful but the story just isn’t cutting it, and I’m finding myself wishing we were back up north somewhere during some KL scenes.

RIP Night’s Watch dudes and Shaggydog:; I betcha people will be more incensed by GoT killing a dog than they will be by them graphically hanging a teenager. Seriously though, kudos to all the departed. I’ve been a fan of Owen Teale’s for about twenty years and seeing him get the attention he deserves on Thrones has been great. What a glorious jerk he can play.

536 responses

Jump to (and Always Support) the Bottom

    1. Pretty great episode!

      -NOT SHAGGYDOG. I was soooo upset… I am still in denial. The head looked a little small for a direwolf… RIGHT GUYS?!?

      -Hahahahahaha die Olly!

      -Tower of Joy was pretty good. I had low expectations. Didn’t like Young Ned’s face, but his acting was good.

      -I felt like R+L=J and Cleganebowl were almost confirmed…

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    2. It was an ok episode, I thought the Arya stuff was good and it was cool to see the Tower of Joy and the return of Rickon.

      Mereen isn’t really working for me, I feel like it turned into Tyrion’s Weekly Joke Hour (five minutes). They need to move stuff or not show it for an episode or two.

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    3. Thought it was an excellent episode … the best of the season for me

      TOJ – amazing, everything I would have hoped from it. AD was great. Refuse to get into arguments regarding dialogue and sword. It more than lived up to my expectations. Inside the Episode gave great comments on transmitted versus actual history. Although I wonder if any discrepencies were not so much as what Ned said but what others assumed. Not going back to the books to read the exact language, but I recall he essentially said that if not for HR, he would not be alive. So HR was involved in killing AD, we just found out exactly why.

      And I wasn’t disappointed in the split TOJ. It was too early for the great reveal to occur.

      CB – excellent. I thought better than last episode. We knew the resurrection would occur, now it is dealing with the aftermath. Jon has changed (as D&D said, you’ve been murdered, died, experienced nothing, came back to life – you’re going to be changed). How much is the question. And yes Mel said TPTWP. As Sean C said, Jon’s her new personal Jesus

      Arya – finally, a great episode for Arya – Maisie is amazing. I agree with others that the Waif and Arya will lock horns down the road

      Dany – good, better than last episode … setting up the big showdown

      Varys – good scene, maybe a bit long, if only he’d returned to the council meeting a few minutes earlier 🙂

      Tyrion, GW, and Missandei – okay so now I get that the scene was purposefully excruciating, but it still sounded to me like nails on a chalk board … whether on purpose or not …

      KL – lots of set up … Qyburn vs. Varys on the little birds, HS manipulation of Tommen, Kevan’s and Pychelle’s days numbered, Cersei – I choose violence, let’s get even at any cost, burn a few cities – Lannister hitting her stride?

      Oh, and I left out WF – I tend to read this straight and that Shaggy is actually dead … loved Smalljon … while I initially hoped for a GNC, I’m somewhat dubious regarding the Umbers, but I’m often wrong so …

      And it’s bedtime

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    4. One moment I really loved about ToJ was Bran’s slow realization that the story he heard as a child wasn’t entirely true, and the reality was less heroic. It’s that famous line from “The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance”: When fact becomes legend, print the legend.

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    5. Note that this is the second episode in which we got Arya’s abbreviated list. She used to include folks like Ilyn Payne and “the Red Woman”. However, in Episode 5×02, when she was stuck outside the House of Black and White, she kept repeating her list over and over again, and it was this abbreviated list:

      Cersei
      Walder Frey
      The Mountain
      Meryn Trant

      Now that Meryn Trant is dead, she only includes the other three names. I don’t think it’s an accident that the writers decided to trim the list to these names. I’m assuming that the writers decided to retcon her list to match up with their plan for the endgame of the show. When Arya returns to Westeros, she’s going to try to kill those remaining people one by one. She already got Meryn Trant, and I’m assuming that Walder Frey will be next (maybe at the end of this season).

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    6. Man… I love Natalia Tena… and now Osha’s most likely gonna die. She’d better at least do something to cripple Ramsay’s forces before she does…

      Maybe she’ll kill Karstark, so Ramsay loses that part of his army… Please?

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    7. Loved everything. So many cool moments and great bosses in this episode. Jon, Smalljon, Olenna, Kevan, Arthur Dayne, High Sparrow (for how he manipulated the shit out of Tommen), Arya, Tormund, Varys. even Alliser Thorne.

      Olenna and Kevan could have melted the White Walkers with their burns. They walked out of the room leaving Cersei and Jaime sitting there like they were some petulant kids. That was hilarious.

      It was a beautifly filmed and cut episode, especially Arya’s training.

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    8. One other thing: While I think Dany continues to be stuck in park, I like the Dothraki portrayal now better than S1 where I thought they seemed too campy. I think Joe Nauhau is doing a more nuanced job than Mamoa.

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    9. I have a feeling Shaggydog was a) killed by someone else (Smalljon’s gift is a trap to strike from the inside) or b) not really dead and it’s all part of the plan /denial

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    10. SmallJon Umber didn’t bend the knee, or swear fealty to Ramsay. He flat out refused, and made it stick. Despite delivering Rickon, Osha, and Shaggy Dog’s head (is it??) to Ramsay, I’m so not convinced the Umbers are traitors to House Stark. Or the Manderlys by extension. I think they’re playing the long game with Lord Bolton. And I’ll keep believing it til they prove me wrong.

      I think Roose’s near last words will come true: Ramsay will be put down like a mad dog; slaughtered for pig feed.

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    11. So, I have a question …

      Now that Lady, Grey Wind and Shaggy Dog are known to be gone, that leaves us with Nymeria (who’s been MIA since Sn1), Ghost and Summer. Where is Summer while Bran is training with the Three-Eyed Raven? We haven’t seen him since they all got to the tree.

      I’m really hoping that Nymeria comes back to Arya. I think she needs her wolf more than she realizes.

      And pardon me while I join Melisandre in staring at Jon’s naked butt. Some things are just too good to pass up.

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    12. I don’t know why, but I expected Ned to chop off Dayne’s head when he delivered the coup de grace.

      I’m still processing all of it, but this episode (and season, thus far) has left me with a smile on my face.

      Happy viewing and commenting (and Mother’s Day, where applicable) all, and good night.

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    13. And yeah, that was a pretty perfect ending for Thorne, but I’m really gonna miss Owen Teale in this show…
      He’d better get one hell of a Curtain Call.

      Brennock was very good too, for such a young actor. He didn’t even need to talk to convey what he was feeling. That kid is going places (assuming he decides to continue acting).
      Brian Fortune impressed me as well, for having such a small part. That scene in season 4 episode 7, where you can tell he’s concerned by Jon’s words, but is too scared to go against Thorne, was some impressive acting.
      Unfortunately, Michael Condron didn’t get much opportunity to show his skills. Though, his fear in this final scene was well-played.

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    14. Miles,

      Leave him where? Jon wasn’t actually leaving Castle Black in that last scene, it was cut that way to add dramatic tension. He was going inside one of the buildings.

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    15. Pfft..They were perfect with the TOJ; young Ned ,Arthur Dayne 🙂 and the whole choreography…and to think that after all that moaning and whining they WERE wearing the damned white cloaks

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    16. Great recap!

      My thoughts now that I’ve see it twice.

      Jon starts out this episode and he’s honestly fantastic. So vulnerable and freaked out and haunted. As he should be.
      I love how Davos lets Mel in there and then scoots her out of the room as soon as she starts talking about Jon taking on the Azor Ahai role. “Not the right time, woman. He was dead five minutes ago.”
      I love Davos. Have I mentioned that?
      But Jon’s reunion with Tormund and Edd is what got me. Made me laugh and tear up, both of them. Tormund let Jon know they were still good in his usual way, and Edd has really been allowed to step up. He’s gone from digging latrine pits and complaining to true leadership. Perfect. Too bad he has to deal with having 10 men and an evil undead army on the way.
      Because the wildlings will now follow Jon. King Crow.

      Sam and Gilly. It was nice to see the baby growing and Gilly enjoying her trip but that—along with Tyrion’s chat with Missandei and Greyworm were just…well, I’m not sure exactly. “I always thought the sea was the see as far as you could see the sea…you see?” and “Tough room, let’s play a drinking game. Oops Slaver’s Bay doesn’t have fun drinking games.” feel like not the right notes for this season, if that makes sense. Still, I love Sam, poor guy. I hope he knocks his father down a peg.
      And I adore Tyrion too. I just expected him to still be in dragon-hangover. What he did last episode was so epic. You wouldn’t think there’d be awkward comic silences with those super models…I mean Missy and Greyworm, after something like that. I would also like to know if they left that door open.

      Arya’s training montage was great. The conversation was important too I think. Every bit of it. I feel like we’re getting to an exciting point in her story. Also-she was sitting in front of the Weirwood face in the Hall. So despite the “drink this poison and get your sight back” test—Arya is still in there.

      While I do not approve of the puppy act Jaime is going for, KL was interesting. Those birds are totally going to kill some “people” (hopefully one of them is Qyburn because you know they love Varys more) and Cersei is obviously going to mess shit up. She had some crazy eyes going on in that scene.
      Hide the wildfire.
      Tommen, just as obviously, is easily swayed by whoever happens to be talking to him. High Sparrow knows how to play everyone.
      Kevan, I noticed, is not his brother. He has no idea what he’s doing. He’s letting Pycelle go on and on about Qyburn and the mountain and Cersei when—hello-the 7 kingdoms are in shambles, Queen Margery and her brother are still in prison, The Martell line has ended and Dorne is a mess… And they’re just a bunch of old farts sitting around complaining about things. (see what I did there? Old farts?) Also, Kevan’s answer to every Cersei challenge is to run away. Seriously every time Cersei comes into a room, he says, “I’m not talking to you and you can’t make me” and storms off. I won’t be sorry when he dies.

      I recognized the lady from the heart eating episode in Dany’s scene. Now we know that every single Dothraki will be gathering in that one place. This visit might be good for her. Maybe she’ll stop introducing herself with that never ending name and being so arrogant about it. But maybe not. Because Drogon and Daario are coming. And then she’ll have the biggest army ever-not counting that zombie army she doesn’t know about yet. She should leave a few khals and their followers behind in the slave cities to make sure the masters can’t screw things up again. It’s not a perfect idea, but it’s something. I’ll mention that the next time she asks my opinion. *G*

      Now for the ToJ scene. I loved the poetic words from the books so much, BUT I understood exactly why they said what they did. “Our prince wanted us here” and “Where’s my sister?” etc. were to set the scene for people who had no clue what was going on and what it had to do with Ned. But Dayne didn’t answer. He just said-Bring it-basically-which did seem kind of abrupt.
      I also understand why he was two sword fighting. It visually showed people who haven’t been told enough how awesome Dayne is…that he is awesome and fought off like four guys with his two twirling swords. Also best casting ever-he was gorgeous. So I get it-and I loved it because it was Tower of Joy. Beautiful location, great sword play, and TOWER OF F-ING JOY. (PS I genuinely thought the guy who played Ned was going to play Howland because in his headshot he looked like Jojen to me-but the Ned wig helps a lot.) And we heard a woman screaming up in the tower. Woohoo!
      Ned hearing Bran was just as huge, and now all Isaac’s interviews about hubris are scaring me even more. A teenager with that kind of power? Uh-oh.
      Sydow is a god-and every time he speaks I’m in awe. Very clear about Bran not being an old man in a tree. Guess they aren’t going to go into BR’s relation to Targs or anything right? Because he mentioned being there 1000 yrs and in the books…well I can never do spoiler tags so I’ll stop there.
      PS Where is Summer?
      Anyway I LOVE it. They could do the whole show with Bran visions, Jon and Davos and the North and I would be happy.

      PS-Bran has to learn EVERYTHING. Where is that Matrix hook up when you need it? “I know kung fu…and the entire history of Westeros”

      Speaking of the North. Umber was great. I hate that I liked how much he reminded me of Great Jon, UNLESS he is planning something. It was hard to get a good look at the size of the dog head, but the first thing my husband said was—GreyWind’s head on Robb-that was huge. Shaggy’s head is too small. So maybe it is a ruse. Also, Osha had her scheming face on imo, not her holy hell I need to get out of here look. And both of them were strangely quiet. I’m hoping hard for a Northern Conspiracy—but maybe not from Karstark, cause he’s just a jerk. Also Rickon practically has a beard. Those kids are growing like weeds.

      Then it closes the way it opened, again with Jon, and he was still amazing. Alliser wasn’t even sorry, and that made sense. I was surprised he took the whole resurrection thing so easily. I’d be freaking out myself, maybe have a few second thoughts…but no. I did grumble as Olly got yet another overly long close up, but this time he was dead so I can let it go. I don’t know if it was because of his voice, but it was upsetting that he didn’t use his last words to say anything meaningful. He just glared. So he killed Ygritte and Jon and glared a lot for the camera, and he wasn’t a secret warlock or anything. Just a douche-y little tween…who yes, watched his parents die, I know, I know.

      “My watch has ended”

      Best mic drop ever.

      Can’t wait for episode 5…or whenever we see the rest of ToJ.

      Interesting note:

      When Beric got cleaved in half by the Hound, he instantly scarred up and seemed fine after Thoros said the words. I remember because he showed Arya all his scars.
      Jon’s wounds are still open. Not bleeding, but not scarred up either.
      Does this mean there’s a chance it wasn’t Mel after all? I mean how hard would a little snippet of CGI healing have been after giants and dragons? Food for tinfoil-hatted-thought.

      I’m kind of in love with this season

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    17. Great episode, slower but some great dialogue scenes

      ToJ was fine, Arthur Dayne is clearly sharpening and plunging into the dirt his main sword quite conspicuously, the dual-wielding is a visual cue to the fact to those uneducated to the finer art of swordsmanship he is so much better than everyone else and I’m fine with it in a visual medium

      For TV it was perfect, eg the observing Bran and Bloodraven can point out to the viewer who the various people are, eg Ned, Howland Reed, Arthur Dayne etc

      Loved Bloodraven, can tell from the “he is better” he is privately supporting the Targ Kingsguard

      Have to consider the placing of the scene in context of both Jon and Dany scenes, as it is as much a homage to the once greatness of Royal House Targaryen

      The shortened version is fine, the screaming could be torture, or it could be childbirth, the truth will be appropriately revealed when the narrative of the over-arching story

      Between the “kidnapped” narrative and the “he stabbed him in the back” narrative, there’s a clear theme that things aren’t always what they are made out to be, this of course includes Mel in regards to Stannis etc

      I expected something along those lines for HR saving Ned. Tbf though Ned it the type who would have gone round bragging, he wouldn’t have said anything as with Lyanna and HR wouldn’t say anything either. The issue is people have inferred

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    18. As I suspected, The show Umbers handing over Rickon has been controversial in the fandom to say the least. Pretty solid episode for me though, especially Arya’s training and the TOJ

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    19. Dialogue wise

      Conleth Hill was brilliant as Varys once again, he does those room to room talk scenes so well (in particular the Throne room, of course it is a different Throne room now)

      And does the threaten but offer a way out brilliantly, like a man who has manipulated people for information for a lifetime

      Note the “point of view” theme and how it relates to Smalljon Umber and Alliser Thorne scenes

      Notice Sam has name-dropped his father (and family) in the same episode we had that great Small Council meeting, if Ser Gregor is considered to be something of a power behind Cersei, then Randyll Tarly is the power behind the Tyrells

      That was a great scene and it relates to the Lannisters/Tyrells etc, we can see Pycelle bad-mouthing Qyburn – eg the Maestar family, but there is also the Ser Kevan vs Cersei (maybe Jaimie) dynamic – of course he’s a Lannister but his son is now of the Sparrows, and if it wasn’t for the fact Mace is such an oaf I would wonder if there was set to be an Olenna vs Mace dynamic where Mace and Jaimie team up for Plumebowl

      What was great is that Cersei clearly still thinks of herself as the Queen and “entitled” as such but as Olenna points out she isn’t. She is still Lady of Casterly Rock of course which needs to be pointed out as it has a lot of power

      Jaimie is right, they may object to Cersei presence but LC of the Kingsguard still has a place on the council

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    20. Will miss Owen Teale. We’re losing so many great middle-aged actors/characters, it hurts! STAY ALIVE, DAVOS!!!!

      Solid episode. I am, like many, in denial of Shaggydog truly being dead (lalalalalalalalala). I feel nothing for Olly, except relief that I don’t have to see that stupid sneer again. Very good young actor.

      TOJ….not awful. I know Ned was young, but he looked….really damn young. Can’t explain it. Good fight scenes.

      MY eyes felt better when Arya got her sight back. And Kit Harington just gets better every episode. You could feel his panic and confusion.

      2nd favourite episode of 3 so far.

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    21. Amazing episode all around. Glad that they’re pacing the ToJ stuff and Arthur Dayne totally lived up to his legend. And we finally officially met Howland Reed! I’ll never give up that he’s the High Sparrow, it would make perfect sense.

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    22. RG,

      Tbf I thought Olly just staring was OK, unlike the others no last words, no attempted justification, no apology,

      just utter hatred and contempt

      From the very person he was grooming as a kind of son or younger brother (Ned and Benjen last week…)

      Which would have wounded Jon in the heart all over again and helped him make his decision if he hadn’t already done so at that point

      Of course Rickon being captured will act as a replacement

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    23. I hate Umbers. I fear for Edd coz we all know “winter is coming, and the dead come with it”. I hate Umbers. Jon seems dangerous now, its like he no longer cares what anyone thinks. I hate Umbers. Cersei just needs to quit playing around and start killing people and I think cleganbowl is confirmed. I hate umbers. Arya’s story is about to get interesting. So is Katark now best buddies with Ramsey? what a cunt. I hate umbers.

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    24. Maceless Fan:
      Amazing episode all around. Glad that they’re pacing the ToJ stuff and Arthur Dayne totally lived up to his legend. And we finally officially met Howland Reed! I’ll never give up that he’s the High Sparrow, it would make perfect sense.

      I don’t buy it personally but there is something to be said for his character being introduced in the very episode we get a great speech about envy re Mother from HS

      That said Howland Reed was same age as Ned in the flashback and so Neds age now the HS would be too old

      Great thing about Howland Reed being introduced as he was is that it is a setup for further involvement down the line, ala Stannis talking about Randyll Tarly last season, he is someone in the lore and not merely “Sams Dad”

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    25. Of course as far as Smalljon Umber making a big song and dance about not kneeling or giving oaths was quite something given it was Greatjon Umber who did the kneeling and declaring of Robb as King in the North

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    26. Ghosts Lunch: I don’t buy it personally but there is something to be said for his character being introduced in the very episode we get a great speech about envy re Mother from HS

      That said Howland Reed was same age as Ned in the flashback and so Neds age now the HS would be too old

      Great thing about Howland Reed being introduced as he was is that it is a setup for further involvement down the line, ala Stannis talking about Randyll Tarly last season, he is someone in the lore and not merely “Sams Dad”

      Maybe it was me but Howland did look quite a bit older than Ned to me, but perhaps not old enough to be the High Sparrow.

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    27. Just for the record, Dayne did have Dawn, it just changed sword type for convenience.

      If you notice when he plunges one of his swords into the ground before the fight, it clearly has a rising sun pommel on it; as well, you can see it has red runes/markings on it when he is stabbing one of Ned’s dudes.

      You have to pause, but it is visible.

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    28. Good, solid episode. LOVED the ToJ fight scene, although poor Eddie Eyre had only about three seconds of screen time. Choreographed beautifully though and thanks the Gods there was no pale sword. And I loved the reveal that Bran can indeed communicate with (and perhaps even alter) the past.

      I still have a gripe with the script though- the standard of writing is simply not as high as the other elements of the show now that we’ve veered off book canon. Did we really need Bran to explain to us that AD had been stabbed in the back when we just witnessed the damn thing?

      Still a very good episode though!

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    29. Ghosts Lunch,

      Only after Robb’s direwolf ate a few of his fingers and Robb showed himself as a leader.
      The Boltons never had a lot of respect in the North and everyone knows what kind of guy Ramsay is.

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    30. A step down from last week but better than the premier.

      At the Wall – Good stuff, rather predictable though.
      Braavos – Great stuff, I’ve been keen to see more of Arya. The first two episodes were slow for her.
      Meereen – Varys was great. Vaes Dothrak – Boring.
      KL – Good but not great. Not a whole lot happened really if you think about it. Pycelle always good for some comic relief. Good to see QoT back.
      Winterfell – Predictable. Neither good nor bad really. Such a short scene.
      Dorne – NOTHING Thank the Gods.
      Bran flashback to ToJ – Twas good but was a massive cocktease.

      Pet peeves:
      – Only 4 men of the Nights Watch were hung, I’m pretty sure their were more people at Jon’s stabbing. I suppose they were the officers. But Olly as well? I know everyone hates the kid and I’m no exception. But the others got to go free and Olly, a child, didn’t.
      – Little birds talking (it’s a small nitpick but yeah)
      – Dany continuing to fill up her time sheet with reciting her titles over and over.
      – Taking the high road, skipping over the Robert Strong alias.

      Frankly I was wondering why they called this episode “Oathbreaker”. The only oath breakers were the Night’s Watch mutineers. Jon broke no oath because he died. Dany broke no oath, nor did Varys, etc. I find it a rather odd title. Maybe they could have gone with “Whispers”. Simple, elegant, and more in line with the episode theme, fact vs fiction, truth vs lies. Varys was trying to learn the truth of the Sons of the Harpy. Bran sees the truth, Bloodraven tells Bran that stories aren’t always true. Jon is searching for metaphorical truth in his new life. Qyburn has taken over the little birds (rather easily I might add), in search of truth. Anyone with me on this?

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    31. A amazing episode!!!

      I loved every single scene. Perhaps Gilly’s scene with Sam was a bit out of place with the feeling of the episode but we needed and it didn’t bother me.

      TOJ was pure brilliance. I loved how Bran kept saying the ”official” story and Bloodraven kept destroying that myth.

      And holy crap Ned heard Bran!!! Seriously this is one of the best episodes I have watched. It only fills me with hope for the remaining season.

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    32. RG,

      Not to mention the Smalljon isn’t his father.

      Loyalty has to be earned, Robb earned the Greatjon’s loyalty he didn’t just get it.

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    33. I need to add this.

      I love that everyone knows about Gregor.
      Qyburn’s scene with the ”little birds” was very good. Of course the show needs them to talk, it’s just the differences in the medium.

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    34. Ravyn,

      I’m so happy someone feels that way, with so many things happening on screen right now, the Dothraki are a bit glossed over at the moment. Yet still, I also do believe they are actually more interesting than the ones from season 1. In Season 1, it was hard to see them as something more than a bunch of savages Dany was thrown into to impress, but now they are a explored as people that still has a brutal culture, but with much more nuances and a certain set of values.

      This is mostly based on two things, I would say: firstly, we have already met some Dothraki so that now we can delve deeper into the nuances without spending too much time on exposition. This way, the characters are left with some space to bicker and banter, giving them more character than the relatively bland minions under Drogo. Secondly, and closely relatef to the first point: we already know Dany, her character and motives. As exotic as the Dothraki may have seemed in Season 1, essentially they were not much more than the background-actors and exposition for our first time meeting Dany more in depth. They could not be explored much simply because Dany was way more crucial to focus on. Besides Jorah, Drogo, and Mirri, there just isn’t any other Person from the S1-horde that was elevated from minor appearances.

      So, as a conclusion, even though I’ve never been a Fan or the Dothraki, it feels good that they are now becoming more of a fleshed out people with culture instead of Dany’s Essos-preschool.

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    35. I usually read reactions before I watch an episode and considering the mixed reaction to this one I was surprised how much I liked it. I thought it was a good episode, not as good as last week but certainly better than the premiere.

      One nitpick, I still hate what they’ve done to the Children of the Forest. I much prefer the childlike one from season 4 than this lizard creature woman.

      Also, there needs to be a petition to get the show to stop cutting the male characters hair. Jaime, Bran, and Jon all look better with longer hair though I know some may disagree with this.

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    36. Have to add that I love Tyrion’s scenes.

      The man clearly gives no fucks any longer. Why should he? Last time he did, he saved the city and all the people there, and they hated him for it.

      He is still as bright but he really no longer gives a damn and just tries to have fun while doing it.

      Not to mention he’s probally a alcoholic at this point!!

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    37. RG,

      Ned hearing Bran was just as huge, and now all Isaac’s interviews about hubris are scaring me even more. A teenager with that kind of power? Uh-oh.
      Sydow is a god-and every time he speaks I’m in awe. Very clear about Bran not being an old man in a tree. Guess they aren’t going to go into BR’s relation to Targs or anything right? Because he mentioned being there 1000 yrs and in the books…well I can never do spoiler tags so I’ll stop there.

      I believe that in the books Bran has a vision of Ned sitting in the Godswood and says something to him and Ned turns as if he heard something … wind … leaves rustling … but then you have the scene with Reek where he hears (or thinks he hears Theon) which, in the books, is the beginning of his redemption arc.

      I noted that same thing you did re BR and posted in an earlier thread. A comment back was that the 1,000 years was more poetic license as in it seemed that I’ve been in this tree for a thousand years waiting for you … but the actual language was “you think I wanted to sit here for a 1,000 years watching the world from a distance while the roots grew through me?” Now he said in Season 4 Episode 10 that he’d been watching all of them with a thousand eyes and one … which would appear to be BR … but BR is around 125 not 1000 … it is not likely to matter any for the end game of the story so to economize they may have dropped that thread … although if Mel and the 3-Eyed Raven are both a 1,000, then they may have known each other as kids … kidding …

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    38. Ghosts Lunch,

      Exactly! The whole reason the High Sparrow was speaking to Tommen so specifically about a mother’s love is referring to Lyanna at the ToJ. What he’s doing as the High Sparrow is nothing but a long con. Our friend Varys said it best: power resides where men believe it resides. It’s a trick. A shadow on the wall. Howland knows who Jon is and as the High Sparrow, he can take down the Lannisters as a loyal Stark bannerman and secure the throne for the rightful king.

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    39. Another fantastic episode I felt. Hats off to D&D, I’m absolutely loving Season 6, having felt Season 5 was a bit of a let down compared to earlier seasons.

      I’ve rewatched the opening scenes at Castle Black three times already. Great acting by Kit, perfectly portraying his confusion, and hurt at his betrayal. Olly’s part in his murder really upset him but yet he hanged him too, and that told me that fundamentally Jon is still exactly the same Jon, but now has the edge he actually needs to make difference.

      I still thought when he looked one last time at Olly, he hoped to hear Olly say something which would tell him, that he was wrong to execute him, but instead, all he saw was hatred and he then cut the rope knowing it was the only way.

      The reunion with Tormund and Edd was spot on. Typical Tormund response lol. To end the scene with Edd and Jon smiling seemed very appropriate. LOVED it!! About time we had something to smile about amidst all the death and disaster.

      RG….I wondered about his wounds too. He winced both times when hugged by Tormund and then Edd, so his wounds are painful, and as we have seen, not healed. I’m not sure how significant it is or whether they will just heal as any living person’s wound would heal, over time. I guess we will see.

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    40. Halfman,

      This is the exact way I wanted to see Jon.
      Not a ruthless man, who was changed just because he died but a conflicted man who was changed because he was betrayed and so on. It isn’t dying that changed him but the events around his death.

      Of course death did change him, he is perhaps a bit more cynical and doesn’t believe in ”fairy tales” any longer.

      But he didn’t become like LSH he just ”killed the boy and let the men be born”.

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    41. And is that another Chekhov’s gun? Is Bran gonna get lost in time? I mean what if he can change the past? And if he can, what influence does he possibly have on the current history? In ADWD, Theon sees Bran’s face in the heart tree for a second when Bran calls out to him. Bran is like the most powerful warg ever so who knows what he could really do. Like Meera mentioned in last episode, how exactly is this war being fought from in that cave? Ghhhaa my head’s gonna explode, it’s just too much!

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    42. Mihnea,

      Great point. I do hope that Qyburn’s candied plum cart is overturned sooner rather than later … I cannot figure out if they are indeed loyal to Q now or are they still loyal to V … or if they will change allegience at some point if V returns to Westeros … probably loyal to Q for now … which does set up

      Kevan and/or Pycelle

      if that is to happen

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    43. Great recap, Sue. I found myself nodding my head along with much of it as always.

      I’ve just rewatched it, and ToJ is indeed very effective. The fight was perfectly executed, and I loved the bit with Ned hearing Bran. I didn’t enjoy the score, and I think in my head it took place at night, hence my initial disenchantment with it. Very excited to see the rest of it soon!

      I’m pretty biased as I’ve always liked him, but agree about Kit this week in particular. He hit all the right notes portraying Jon’s fear and grief. It’s a bonus that he, Liam, Carice and Kristofer all play extremely well off one another, and I suspect that’s part of the reason the CB storyline has been so strong since S5. And Owen too, of course! Man, I’ll miss him. His was a very compelling portrayal of a complex character. I was sadder to see Thorne go than I was Olly – apart from the fact that killing Olly clearly devastated Jon. That was pretty heartwrenching to watch.

      For some reason, neither Essos nor KL are entertaining me this season, despite many of the characters being eminently watchable. I can’t put my finger on what’s missing right now. Although perhaps I’m just so wrapped up in the northern storyline at the moment, I resent being away from it.

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    44. We see Mel talk about Prince that was promised

      Look at Tower of Joy closely

      “The Prince wants us here”, this is Prince Rhaegar but it would apply to Prince Jon Stark-Targaryen (in AGoT he makes a point to Arya about Joffrey honouring his mothers house as much as his father when observing he has dual Lion-Stag coat of arms, so I expect the same of Jon – dual Wolf/Dragon)

      This scene was important for Dany and her Targaryen themed arc as it was for Jon as it relates to the glory of House Targaryen and this is a theme coming up where the Dosh Khaleen are telling Dany what her fate is,

      It is quite fitting Bloodraven was there too, Bran is cheeing on his Dad but I loved the “he is better” line and you could tell Bloodraven was quietly supporting the Targ Kingsguard

      People are whingeing about the sword, they don’t do glowing swords in the show, people need to look at the theme of the hilts, Dayne puts his main sword into the dirt, looking at the hilt there is a Sun/Star on the bottom of the handle so for mine it is Dawn.

      Consider this a twin to the end when Jon is walking off having hung up his NW cloak, the Wolfs head hilt is highly conspicuous and a reflection of the path he is choosing, eg his family (Sansa/Rickon)

      I personally expect Jon to take up Dawn later in the series, eg S7 as a reflection of him more fully walking the path of the Prince that was promised.

      Indeed a real out there theory coming to mind, remember he mentioned the need to be able to dual-wield and how the Wildlings fight with two swords etc in CB training yard, I actually wonder if Arthur Dayne dual-wielding swords is a hint that Jon will dual wield Longclaw and Dawn

      People may be whingeing but for mine the more I think about it, the more I consider that show ToJ may be one of the most perfectly done scenes in the show

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    45. Looking forward to Owen Teale curtain call, but will say that Thorne speech at the end was once again a fantastic performance

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    46. Um, I can’t be the only one who thinks that David and D.B. were totally high when writing tonight’s episode, right? I mean, come on, the dialogue was awful and some scenes were trying too hard to be funny and ended up being useless fillers.

      When Jon rises from the table and speaks to Davos, they mention that he was dead and came back to life again at least three times. We know. He was dead. Now he isn’t. Either make that moment truly beautiful by minimize the dialogue or move on. In my head, I imagined the first two scenes of Jon rising and everyone in awe that he’s alive to be really bad ass and impactful. But they were just, well, meh. He gets his hugs and WHAM we’re on a boat.

      This episode really just didn’t do it for me. Not enough power or tension like “Home.” But TBH definitely want a screenshot of Olly being hung to be my phone background image… is that weird? F**k Olly!

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    47. Maceless Fan,

      That is an interesting point on the repeated warnings …

      I would prefer that Bran not be able to alter the past … otherwise what is the point of the last 5 years and 5 books … oops, “Ned … Robert will marry Cersei and she and Jamie will have three kids and set Robert up to be killed so you need to act now if you want Robert to live …” or at the most have a very limited ability to communicate … such as someone (Bran or BR) did with Reek … don’t know if that was real time or not

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    48. Man I hope that the Umbers and Rickon are setting a trap, and that was some other wolf’s head… That was the only thing that was disappointing in regaurds to story advancement. Oh and where the fuck does Jon think he is going on his own? I mean couldn’t he be like “I’m going to take back winterfell and the north! Who’s coming with me?!” Yeah that’s what I would have said… I have been a great fan of the Umbers for a long time, if they are not tricking Ramsey then I have suffered a loss. Though the great Jon not swearing allegiance or kneeling makes me think there is still hope. 3 down, 7 to go… A lot can happen.

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    49. Maceless Fan:
      Ghosts Lunch,

      Exactly! The whole reason the High Sparrow was speaking to Tommen so specifically about a mother’s love is referring to Lyanna at the ToJ. What he’s doing as the High Sparrow is nothing but a long con. Our friend Varys said it best: power resides where men believe it resides. It’s a trick. A shadow on the wall. Howland knows who Jon is and as the High Sparrow, he can take down the Lannisters as a loyal Stark bannerman and secure the throne for the rightful king.

      Watching his dialogue about Mothers with Tommen, and then ToJ again (is she screaming from torture or from something else!?!?!)

      I actually think the High Sparrow backstory may involve his mother having died during child birth

      We’ll probably hear some more discussion on the topic, eg Mothers, the will of the gods which of course works great with Mels arc with Jon Snow

      the more I reflect on this episode the more I realise how great it is

      It’s a transition episode but so far it’s shaping up to be one of my favourites, probably because as a thinking man I love the underlying intelligence underneath it all

      Eg consider the theme of we see the epic Ser Arthur Dayne in this episode, and then the abomination of Ser Robert Strong is featured so prominently, a great thematic nod to just how much the institution of the Kingsguard has been despoiled

      Also, there’s Qyburn, the actor is fantastic, on the one hand he fits the book description of a kind Grandfather handing out sweets to his children/little birds and seemingly discussing protecting one of them from an abusive father, then in the same scene when Ser Robert enters we see the perverseness behind it all, and he is more like a creepy pedophile or something handing out sweets who should be nowhere near children

      It is a great scene and great writing when you as a reader or viewer are able to observe your opinion changing

      fantastic episode

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    50. Mihnea,

      Oh completely. I’m really pleased that they have brought back the Jon I hoped for. Makes it far more believable to me and doesn’t destroy the character he was before. As you say, he killed the boy and let the man be born.

      I also loved the look on Mel’s face. Amazement and almost disbelief but then the intent look she had always had before returned when she spoke of the Prince who was promised. She achieved what she didn’t believe she could and brought him back, so her faith in the Lord of Light is back as well. Jon will have his work cut out with her and Davos both on his team! However, she did exactly as Davos asked, and left the room. Perhaps she sees the wisdom in the Onion Knight too now. He was right when she was wrong and their relationship is on a very different footing. How it will pan out once Davos discovers what happened to Shireen is another matter though.

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    51. Darkrobin:
      Mihnea,

      Great point.I do hope that Qyburn’s candied plum cart is overturned sooner rather than later …I cannot figure out if they are indeed loyal to Q now or are they still loyal to V … or if they will change allegience at some point if V returns to Westeros …probably loyal to Q for now … which does set up

      if that is to happen

      Yeah it’s quite great, Varys goes on about their loyalty, I personally wonder if they are there to spy on him and..

      Killed along with Pycelle and Ser Kevan, we see in the trailer there are children seemingly stabbing someone

      This may occur right at the end of the season, eg I suspect the Lannisters start clawing some of their power back, eg take Riverrun back but then crash catastrophically at seasons end and have to go to Casterly Rock, Qyburn along with Franken-Mountain plus Red Wedding Mk3 may make sense

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    52. Ghosts Lunch,

      Varys’s dialogue and Umber’s speech to Ramsey where also great in my opinion.

      Varys explained nicely the ”different point of view” idea/perception/concept, can’t think of a good word, and then we see Umber actually doing it.

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    53. Strong episode, definitely enjoying the chance to slow down after the fast paced start to the season!

      ToJ was great, as expected I feel like it’s a hard scene to stuff up and D&D did it justice! Also enjoyed Arya’s little training montage, usually find her storyline a bit boring, but was good to see some actual progression in her training!

      Mixed feelings about Meereen, loved the scene with Varys but felt like Tyrion is just getting screen time for being a fan favourite. Love Peter Dinklage, but if there’s not plot there then I don’t think they need to chuck him in to please the masses!

      Castle Black was fantastic, played out as expected and Kit’s really showing some good form in terms of his acting!

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    54. I understand some of the changes they do. But didn’t you have the money for a frog spear HBO? Only a few bucks left for a dagger? Kinda lame.

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    55. Just re-watched the TOJ fight. Still a amazing scene.

      When Dayne puts the sword into the ground, on the hilt there is a rising sun! Great little nod.

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    56. I enjoyed the episode. I’m looking forward to what will come off Dany’s, Sansa’s and the KL stories, though! I hope that, now that this resurrection stuff is done, something will move in them, too.

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    57. Team Hodor,

      Not even Meera has a spear.

      Seriously I’m glad they didn’t portray them like in the books. It fits much better with the visuals the show has used thus far.

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    58. House Applebee:
      Pet peeves:
      – Only 4 men of the Nights Watch were hung, I’m pretty sure their were more people at Jon’s stabbing. I suppose they were the officers. But Olly as well? I know everyone hates the kid and I’m no exception. But the others got to go free and Olly, a child, didn’t.
      – Little birds talking (it’s a small nitpick but yeah)
      – Dany continuing to fill up her time sheet with reciting her titles over and over.
      – Taking the high road, skipping over the Robert Strong alias.

      Remember two night’s watch guys died last week (one by Wun Wun and one by Tormund), let’s assume that these were part of the group that murdered Jon since they were the only ones to obey Thorne and it becomes more believable in terms of numbers.

      I agree with the two next nitpicks, especially Dany, that really becomes so boring. If anything they are setting Dany up to be the biggest anti-climax of the show, from growing towards becoming a strong, just leader towards being confused on where to go and relying on strength in name only.

      As for Robert Strong, I personally don’t mind since it is probably already too confusing for the average viewer who Ser Gregor is. Too many names (Clegane, Mountain, Robert Strong) won’t help.

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    59. Decent episode, though not really as good as the last one.

      Loved ToJ, Varys interrogating the whore, and the hanging of the mutineers. Favorite scene has got to be Arya’s training scene, though my argument that Jaqen is making this way too easy for her still stands.

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    60. Ghosts Lunch,

      I totally agree with you about the decline in the kingsguard. The books highlighted that well with characters like the Kettleblacks and fucking Boros Blount lol. And looking at what the Mountain has become…jeez. This episode totally set up CleganeBowl, though.

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    61. But god, that Tower of Joy dialogue was bad. And I don’t blame the actors, I don’t think anyone who isn’t Sean Bean could’ve pulled off a proper “Now it ends.” See people, this is what happens when you copy a page word for word. It looks great on paper, but sounds like shit on screen.

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    62. After last week s kind of sparkling episode topped with Resurrection scene – these episode looked at me pretty much solid.
      Of course, there is TOJ scene – and as I has been pumping my self for it for six months now – I was a bit afraid of the outcome.
      But it was great. Even surpassed my exepctations (have not expectedd any of dialogue from the books except for “begins/ends” I was pleasently surpirsed.

      The rest of the episode was good too: Especially CB – great acting all around.
      KL – a slight improvement from first two episodes: I really enjoyed Pycelle vs. Gregor lol

      And yes, I am scared to death about Rickon. That won t end well.

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    63. TOJ seemed too abrupt in terms of the exchange – I think the line “the kingsguard does not flee…” should have been included.

      Some of the dialogue throughout the episode was very weak and I’m a bit underwhelmed with the treatment of Jon’s return. Still enjoying it overall though.

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    64. RG,

      I totaly agree with you about Kevan. Hate them or not, Cersei and Jaime were making some valid points to him. Leaving the room is not an answer to these problems.

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    65. Completely unrelated, but I can’t help but wonder about the flaws in Littlefinger’s machinations based on lack of information. Sure, he pretty quick on his feet and very good at adapting his plans based on constantly fluctuating circumstances, but there are some things that he couldn’t possibly forsee. Like Bran and Rickon still being alive or Dany and her dragons. The point being is that I feel like we need to figure out some part of his grand scheme pretty soon. And no, it’s not him just becoming a king or something like that because that would just be boring. He’s the only character (even in the books) who I’ve always had trouble pinning down his true motives.

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    66. dragonmcmx,

      Exactly. Books and TV are 2 very different mediums.
      What works well in one can be horrible in the other.

      I am delighted they kept the dialogue at the minimum during that scene.
      Seeing them speak for 4 mins and then fight, when they know from the begining they will kill one another, just doesn’t work on TV.

      My favourite part was seeing the ”myth” of the fight being slowly dismantled.

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    67. dragonmcmx,

      They have to move Arya’s story, they can’t show her training for 9 episodes.

      I think the montage was meant to show that quite a lot of time has passed and for me it worked.

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    68. I loved this episode…But after my third watch of the TOJ scene I am wondering if they are cutting Howland Reed. I know Bran wouldn’t recognize him, but the show passed up an easy way to name drop him when Bran says “he stabbed him in the back” not mentioning Howland by name.

      Just my thoughts

        Quote  Reply

    69. Great episode. ToJ was epic. Dual Wielding Dayne was amazing and Ned “hearing” Bran was done so well. Then it ended…UGH I need more!

      Best part of the episode though? Specifically calling Robert Strong “Gregor” and saying he’ll only have beat one in a trial by combat soon followed by a mention of the Hound. CLEGANEBOWL fucking confirmed. Get Hype.

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    70. So Team Cirsei’s team is coming together and Team Dany is there but dany is missing. Now for team Sansa to be built and then game on!

        Quote  Reply

    71. I got the opposite feeling, because they so blatantly name dropped him at the start of the scene! Have to wait and see I guess.

        Quote  Reply

    72. The Bull,

      The Bull:
      I loved this episode…But after my third watch of the TOJ scene I am wondering if they are cutting Howland Reed. I know Bran wouldn’t recognize him, but the show passed up an easy way to name drop him when Bran says “he stabbed him in the back” not mentioning Howland by name.

      Just my thoughts

      You didn’t pay any attention, did you? Bloodraven even introduces him to Bran as beeing Meera’s father.

        Quote  Reply

    73. Very good episode, further cementing my believe this season is going to be amazing. The quick pace at which everything rolled had me worried (though episode 2 was great) that most of this season would feel a bit rushed. This episode gave us a breather and set up a shitload of the story to come.

      – little birds: great set-up scene, combine this with what we know from the trailer and Varys is going to have his fun (probably including Qyburn). Jaime/Cersei/UnGregor were just there to distract a bit from the kids for now (for those not in the know).
      – Smalljon. I truly loved this scene (great actor, real Umber spirit!!!), whether it is a ruse or genuine betrayal (love that it is murky and there are cases to be made for both).
      – the Wall has been great again this season. The hanging scene was perfectly horrible. Olly really had a shitty life at the end. Family brutally murdered (and eaten), killed several people out of revenge and, even though it was justified for him personally, got hanged in the end for it.
      – I love King’s Landing slow burn. How the High Sparrow expands his influence, how Cersei’s anger is growing (leading to what I suspect to be a rather big pyre) and how Tommen is way out of his league.
      – Nice answer to who the Harpies are. Makes a lot of sense from a socio-economical perspective. Glad GRRM and the show both acknowledge that fighting against slavery is a battle that’ll take at least a century.
      – Sam’s scene was basically to set-up everything this season has in store for him (Horn Hill and Oldtown)
      – Tower of Joy. Well, I never really was that into it, even when reading the books. I am slightly annoyed why they split it, but if the final scene is worth it, I can forgive that. Fight was well done, and without that backstabbing moment would have been basically a show that they can choreograph fights for kingsguards better than Selmy’s mediocre fighting scene. Interesting to note that, like in the books, Bran can be heard in some way by past characters.

      What I am hoping for will happen:
      – some form of Northern conspiracy!!!
      – Qyburn/Kevan/Pycelle and daggers in the dark
      – complete collapse of Daenerys’ conquests in Essos, forcing her to leave for Westeros.
      – Cersei goes Mad King
      – High Sparrow … I have no clue how he will die…

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    74. Mr. Morden,

      Arya deliberately didn’t list Trant as she killed him and the Faceless Men know it, if she had admitted Trant was on her list they’d know she was still Arya Stark instead of “no-one”, Waif suspected something was up because she asked her again if that was the complete list. I expect we’ll get back to that later this season.

        Quote  Reply

    75. Now i am sure episode 4 will be good, but episode 5 is gonna be great. Kingsmoot and Jon Targaryen yass. The season is on upward momentum.

        Quote  Reply

    76. Tatters,

      Theon on pyke next week!!!

      Can’t wait to see the KM. I’m curious if both Yara and Theon will put themselves foward or they will try to unite against Euron.

        Quote  Reply

    77. to be absolutely honest ……I loved this episode more than I did the second one ……

      first scene was awesome and I really liked it when edd asked that question … Sam and Gilly were nice …I find Gilly really beautiful I have crush on her …..but I’m not messing up with Sam the slayer …
      I find kingslanding very intersting …..I like the actors I like the whole story …I like how what’s happening there …..and Jamie is awesome even when he isn’t doing much ….
      ooo I missed varys in season 5 …now he is back ….not like varys is on screen back ,,but varys is varys again …..I really really enjoyed that …..
      tyrion was a little awkward. ..but it made sense to me …
      it was like me talking to my friends about game of thrones ….I’m like hey you know game of thrones ….and friends are like ,,,,what is that ,and I say a few things about it and they are like nope I’m not watching it and I’m like really ,,,,,,,reminded me so much of my college years and me talking to my friends in class

      that dosh khaleen lady was good. I liked dany …I’m inconstant about liking dany ..but this episode I liked her

      and smalljon. ..I don’t know if he is playing double agent …I’m 90% sure he isn’t ….but I liked the actor ,,,and the character ….no nonsense guy …..

      final scene ……was alrite …I know where Jon wanna go now …..but Davos would want him to go with an army ……This is going to epic …….

      TOWER OF JOY ……..

      I wasn’t happy last week about the big moment where Jon is ressurected …….it didn’t felt epic enough to me ….it know …

      but TOWER OF JOY fight was awesome ……when lyanna screamed I thought wait was it my inner self that screamed coz …it was freaking awesome ….count the awesomes coz I will repeat it many many time….it was awesome ,,,how awesome was dayne ….ned wasn’t as awesome as I thought he would be …its coz Sean bean set the bar so high …….

      for me best episode so far …i know most people loved second one ,,but for me ,,this one is the best so far ……..EPIC ……..

        Quote  Reply

    78. Solid episode. Not as good as E2. Maybe better than E1.

      I think they should have put ToJ before Jon’s last scene. That scene made almost everything that came after look less exciting.

      Strangely, I liked Tyrion’s scene, I didn’t expect that that scene would be considered bad. But on the other hand, I liked Jon’s first scene, but not everything. I didn’t like that he said I did what was right and they murdered me, or or something like that. It felt so unnatural.

      Sam’s scene was ok, they are boring as always but I am excited for Sam’s family.

      Scene with Varys was great. He was really scary. For the first time after S3. I really hope that that stupid theory that Daario is Harpy can finally die.

      Ramsay’s scene was good. KL was good. Nothing really important happened, but the actors iare really good, so every scene there is enjoyable.

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    79. Two comments (for now):

      Looks like my query regarding whether “Ser Robert Strong” was show canon or not was explicitly answered in this episode. I kept on seeing a lot of references to Strong and I was wondering whether I had missed anything because he was never called that on the show. Looks like I was right.

      Also, it’s amusing that in Seasons 2-4 the King’s Landing parts were the ones I enjoyed the most, while I found the Castle Black parts dull. Now it’s flipped around. Castle Black is exciting while King’s Landing is dull. Kit Harington has improved tremendously as an actor. His scenes last night, and especially his final line, were excellent.

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    80. Darkrobin:
      Thought it was an excellent episode … the best of the season for me

      TOJ – amazing, everything I would have hoped from it.AD was great.Refuse to get into arguments regarding dialogue and sword.It more than lived up to my expectations.Inside the Episode gave great comments on transmitted versus actual history.Although I wonder if any discrepencies were not so much as what Ned said but what others assumed.Not going back to the books to read the exact language, but I recall he essentially said that if not for HR, he would not be alive.So HR was involved in killing AD, we just found out exactly why.

      And I wasn’t disappointed in the split TOJ.It was too early for the great reveal to occur.

      I’m not getting some of the TOJ criticism about the acting or the action?

      I thought it was the best action scene the show has done since season 4; and I though the acting from the actors playing Young Ned and Arthur Dayne was very good, in fact. I appreciated that they used the “now it begins”, “no, now it ends” from the book and I even found the dialogue changes intriguing? Arthur’s answer to Ned’s question “where is my sister?” was a rue smile and an enigmatic “I wish you good luck in the Wars to come.” Hmm…(remember, in the books all we’ve seen are fragments of Ned’s feverish dreams, not the “full” scene.) And, was it just my imagination or did Arthur Dayne, just prior to the fight, stuck a big grayish/whitish sword with a white hilt on the ground and THEN pulled two different swords to fight with? Oh, and to the question of why he is still fighting Ned even after the Mad King and Rheagar are dead? Well, presumably he knows that Ned will protect his sister, but what guarantees does he have of Ned not killing Rheagar’s child? (since obviously Dayne knows Lyanna is pregnant with a potential Targeryen heir) None, In fact probably figures that “The Usurper” ie Robert will kill any of Rheagar’s children after they are born, Ned or no Ned. Presumably Lyanna figures the same and that’s why she extracts the “promises” from Ned before she dies.

      Oh and I liked that they included the “sword of the morning” book reference; that was a nice touch.

      I also liked that Ned seemed to have “heard” Bran in the vision? Maybe the “ink” of the past isn’t as “dry” as Bloodraven thinks?

      I enjoyed pretty much the whole episode; they only scene that was weak was the Tyrion/ Grey Worm and Missandei bit…that was painful.

      And just one quibble: The “I’ve been stuck in this tree for 1,000 years” thing from Blood Raven…yea, that’s not accurate, unless he was speaking metaphorically…

      I though Small Jon Umber’s motivation for his Oathbreaking was laid out plainly and in a coherent fashion. I also liked how upfront he is about not giving a damn about the Boltons and this being an allegiance of convenience, not loyalty.

      Loved Jon’s “My watch is ended”. It’s pretty clear why George wrote those “it shall not end until my death” and “and now his Watch is ended” bits; I expect a similar beat in the books (IF they ever come out, that is.)

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    81. Though I like the High Sparrow, specifically the acting, I continue not to buy the idea that some religious zealots with clubs couldn’t be dealt with quite swiftly by trained guards/ troops equipped with armour and the best weapons. If Tommen is too weak to have given the order while his mother was detained then surely the Hand would have firmly steered him.

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    82. Josh L,

      He has been called Sir Robert Strong in the show, I believe by Jaime in the 2nd episode. Qyburn calls him Gregor because he knows what he is, they can’t really call him Gregor outside of that dungeon.

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    83. caligula,

      I don’t think it is the Faith Militant that gives the authorities pause (though they complicate the matter), it is the support of the poor people. They might be able to deal with the Faith Militant, but an uprising is a different matter.

        Quote  Reply

    84. koempel:
      Josh L,

      He has been called Sir Robert Strong in the show, I believe by Jaime in the 2nd episode. Qyburn calls him Gregor because he knows what he is, they can’t really call him Gregor outside of that dungeon.

      I think everyone knows?
      Mace Tyrell straight up calls him Gregor Clegane in the Small Council meeting.

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    85. Well, that was amazing, wasn’t it?

      I was expecting Rickon to be handed over, but not Shaggydog to be dead!

      As for the Tower of Joy, that was pretty amazing. The conversation was, as one would expect, abridged, which I’m sure will anger some folks, but I think it was perfect. And these angry folk got Dawn, after all!

      I’m a bit sad that it seems we won’t get Arya’s wolfdreams / warging of Nymeria, as her blind period was the perfect opportunity for it.

      As I suspected, the Harpies do have a leader, but it’s not something ridiculous like Daario or something: it’s the masters of the other cities.

      I expected Jon to wrestle with his oathbreaking for a few episodes, and I’m still pretty sure he will, but it’s interesting he DOES definitely leave the Watch by the end of the episode. The execution of the mutineers was perfect, too. By hanging, yet he does swing the sword, at the same time.

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    86. koempel: He has been called Sir Robert Strong in the show, I believe by Jaime in the 2nd episode. Qyburn calls him Gregor because he knows what he is, they can’t really call him Gregor outside of that dungeon.

      No, he hasn’t been called that at all.

        Quote  Reply

    87. koempel,

      I do appreciate that’s what the show is presenting – “Every one of us is poor and powerless. And yet together… we can overthrow an empire” etc – yet it remains implausible to me that imprisonment of the Queen and king’s mother would not prompt immediate military intervention and heavy presence on the streets if necessary. With leaders removed the poor unwashed are less inspired.

        Quote  Reply

    88. Seriously disappointed this episode didn’t have Brienne, while being callled Oathbreaker. I was expecting it to mirror a certain episode. Lady Stoneheart, I still have hopes.

      Just a crackpot theory: will Arya take her mother’s face and take revenge in Westeros?

        Quote  Reply

    89. Ghosts Lunch,

      Although if you plunge your sword into the dirt it was probably a waste of time sharpening it – while sticking swords in the ground looks good for the camera, it’s a terrible way to treat a blade.
      But I quibble.

        Quote  Reply

    90. Kevin Daly,

      It wasn’t Dayne who sharpened his sword but the other guy.

      I’m not sure but that is how I saw it the first time.

      EDIT: Watched the scene again. Yup I was right, it was the other guy who was sharpening the sword, not Dayne.

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    91. I can’t remember now from last episode of season 5. How many actually stabbed Jon Snow. I figured he would have hanged at least 7

      And I hope it won’t be another missed Stark reunion next week 🙁

        Quote  Reply

    92. The episodes fly by and I am not disappointed. I like the setup for the bigger story. Tower of Joy did not leave me feeling like it was lacking. It was perfect and when I heard that baby cry I sat here and said, “Jon.” I didn’t mind that they cut away, poor Bran he just hasn’t the understanding yet that he can stay too long. I hope he gets it soon or it might not bode well for him. I loved that it showed the young Ned turning back after he called to him. Perfect scene.
      Melisandre has done such a great job this season and hearing her say, “TPTWP”, just left me giddy.
      Liam Cunningham is the MAN! He is doing a terrific job and I must say the more episodes with him in them, the better. He is so cut and dried and spot on.
      Kit Harrington has grown so much as an actor and Jon Snow’s character is growing with him. His watch has ended and when he said the words it seemed much more complete than having anyone else say it.
      So much to process and I will watch it again.
      As to the sneak peek, Sansa at CB next week, will we get the pink letter? I so hope so! How will she react to Jon having been dead?
      KL could move along a bit better IMO, I think maybe next week we might see it start to get more interesting. Really tired of the HS and his followers. Loved that people were right and Qyburn is turning (trying?) Vary’s little birds. I agree that it may not get him what he wants.
      Another week with no Dorne, thankfully.
      Vaes Dothrak looked amazing and I can’t wait to see the return of Drogon. Should be interesting to see how he makes his appearance.
      Mereen seems a bit lacking in dialogue, but then what does Tyrion really have in common with his counterparts at the table? At least he tried…love Varys..as always.
      7 days until another episode seems like forever. Great episode and great recap. Glad it slowed down a bit so I could start processing…lol.

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    93. Grumpkins: Mixed feelings about Meereen, loved the scene with Varys but felt like Tyrion is just getting screen time for being a fan favourite. Love Peter Dinklage, but if there’s not plot there then I don’t think they need to chuck him in to please the masses!

      It’s interesting. Peter Dinkagle has had some of the most awesome monologues of the series (his entire “I demand a trail by combat” monologue in S4 is probably the best one in the entire series, not to mention his inspiring battle speech at Blackwater), yet he’s also had two of the biggest clunkers in the series (the beetle-smashing monologue and this most recent one, which just fell flat).

      Right now that’s probably the worst scene of S6 so far. (The Dorne scenes at least had some surprise and action in their favor, even if they were illogical and stretched credibility.)

      Right now I feel like the Meereen plot is sorta running in place and just waiting for Danys to finish her great Dorthrak adventure. The only worthwhile thing that has happened so far in 3 episodes there is Tyrion freeing the dragons, and that wasn’t even touched upon this episode.

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    94. The Bull: I loved this episode…But after my third watch of the TOJ scene I am wondering if they are cutting Howland Reed. I know Bran wouldn’t recognize him, but the show passed up an easy way to name drop him when Bran says “he stabbed him in the back” not mentioning Howland by name.

      They did mention Howland Reed by name. It was right at the beginning, when Ned’s group was riding up to the Tower of Joy. After Bran says “that’s my father,” TER says, “And the man next to your father is Howland Reed, Meera’s father.”

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    95. What’s with the fucking backstabbing these days? Jon vs Karl, Jorah vs the Braavosi dude, Pod vs Bolton dude, Ned vs Dayne. They were all on the ground and/or disarmed, and then the opponent took their sweet time to kill em, allowing someone else to kill them from behind.

      I find it fucking stupid. It’s a cheap and cliche attempt at making us worry for a character.

      I just hope that Jon vs Ramsay doesn’t do that :/

        Quote  Reply

    96. dragonmcmx,

      You couldn’t really worry in this scene. You know Ned will win.

      I thought it was good because it removed this myth. The legendary Arthur Dayne killed by a stab in the back.

      I usually agree with you on this subject. I didn’t really like the way Karl died for example. But I thought this time it worked very well and was a nice way to destroy the entire myth around the fight.

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    97. hodor: Arya deliberately didn’t list Trant as she killed him and the Faceless Men know it, if she had admitted Trant was on her list they’d know she was still Arya Stark instead of “no-one”, Waif suspected something was up because she asked her again if that was the complete list. I expect we’ll get back to that later this season.

      I had a different interpretation of that scene. Arya didn’t list Trant because Trant is dead now. Remember the list used to include Joffrey as well, until she found out that he died.

      I figured the “fourth name” on that list was the Waif. But Arya couldn’t add the Waif’s name on her list because she doesn’t know the Waif’s real name. And the Waif strongly suspects she’s on Arya’s list.

      That’s why Arya’s last line in that scene was “what name do you want a girl to say?”

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    98. This episode was a mixed bag for me. I think the most noticeable thing is how the quality of the writing is decreasing.

      Castle Black: By far the best scenes were here. Jonny is going to have to carry another season on his back. Kit’s acting was really great and Jon was seriously giving me some Cregan Stark vibes, which I appreciated. I hope he doesn’t drink Mel’s Kool-Aid. I only wish the scenes were longer. I didn’t want to leave lmao.

      Beyond-the-Wall: I expected they would cut the ToJ scene. Bloodraven is the HBO exec CONFIRMED lol. The dialogue and acting was kind of atrocious and I was annoyed by how they recycled that line with “the wars to come”. It sounded like a fan film. However, I liked how dishonorably Ned killed Dayne and I’m glad we finally got to see Bloodraven show his acting chops right after the flashback. I hope they keep up the mystery fresh in viewers’ minds, so the reveal doesn’t lose its impact.

      Winterfell: I’ve already said how giving Rickon as a gift makes no sense in the Forum, so I won’t bother here.

      King’s Landing: I wish we could fast forward to the Mountain killing everyone. The Small Council scene was nice.

      Sam/Gilly: filler ZZZZZZZZzzzzzz

      Arya: I really enjoyed the montage. It’s the best-directed scene of the episode. It got a lot done and I’m looking forward to seeing her out and about the city.

      Meereen: filler… also, Dany killed all the masters in Astapor, so how did they magically reappear?

      VD: I actually forgot this was on the show until I got here. I’m getting annoyed with the repetition of all those titles. She’s really not learning anything and evolving as a character. zzzz

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    99. koempel: He has been called Sir Robert Strong in the show, I believe by Jaime in the 2nd episode. Qyburn calls him Gregor because he knows what he is, they can’t really call him Gregor outside of that dungeon.

      Nope. The name “Ser Robert Strong” has never been said once on the show. It’s purely a book thing.

      And on that note, I’m seeing the same thing with “Bloodraven.” I’m pretty sure he’s never been called that on the show or in any official HBO material. He’s always called “Three-Eyed Raven.” Yeah I get that he said the “thousand-eyes-and-one” line that’s Bloodraven’s signature motif in the books, but he’s never called that on the show.

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    100. It may be denial but i have a few doubts about the Umber scenes
      – a couple of ‘keep quiet’ looks from Osha to Rickon
      – why did they not say anything
      – these lords know what happened to the Cerwyns, now they pop up at around the same time telling Ramsay it is time for change and it is suggested that Karstark was in on Roose’s murder.
      It could be what it seems at face value but if not it wouldn’t be a surprise.

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    101. Mihnea,

      I agree, but in that case, why pause to have this moment of tension? They could at least have shown Howland getting up and drawing his knife or something. Right now it looks like we’re supposed to worry about Ned.

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    102. Tim of House Deddings:
      I can’t remember now from last episode of season 5.How many actually stabbed Jon Snow.I figured he would have hanged at least 7

      And I hope it won’t be another missed Stark reunion next week

      Six, I believe, so with the two guys who died to Wun Wun and Tormund this could be it.

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    103. stoneboy: Seriously disappointed this episode didn’t have Brienne, while being callled Oathbreaker. I was expecting it to mirror a certain episode. Lady Stoneheart, I still have hopes.

      As others have said, LSH ain’t happening. There’s so many evidence she’s been completely cut. (Changing the Red Wedding line from “Jamie Lannister sends his regards” to “the Lannisters send their regards,” lack of Arya wolf dreams and warging, and the fact that LSH has not shown up at all.)

      While the “Frey Revenge” aspect of her story is probably staying, LSH’s role is going to be taken over by other characters (most likely the Blackfish).

      Let it go. If you think LSH is in this show, you’re just setting yourself up for disappointment. The book is the book and the show is the show.

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    104. Flayed Potatoes: Meereen: filler… also, Dany killed all the masters in Astapor, so how did they magically reappear?

      Dany only killed the masters that were out at that moment in Astapor. Presumably there were plenty of masters who were either out of town on business, or not in that courtyard. I didn’t see any of the Unsullied going into buildings to root out masters.

      So Dany killed a whole bunch of masters but not all of them.

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    105. Pretty good episode, just a couple of bits fell a bit flat for me but nothing too irksome.

      Glad they made Dual-wielding Dayne look rather damn good with the blades and not like something out of Xena. Just wonder why so many of the fighters who use a one handed blade don’t use a shield or buckler. That is as much of an offensive as defensive piece of kit – not that it spoils believability or anything, just curious.

      Would have like a little mention about needing a replacement Kingsguard!

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    106. JoopStroop: Six, I believe, so with the two guys who died to Wun Wun and Tormund this could be it

      Didn’t somebody count all of Jon’s stab wounds and counted 7? (Thematically appropriate … 7 kingdoms, 7 wounds.)

      If so, there’s an unaccounted for mutinieer out there that needs some justice.

      But ultimately, those four held the most responsibility for the murder. The three officers had leadership roles, and Ollie is the one who actually stuck the knife into Jon’s heart.

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    107. Josh L: Didn’t somebody count all of Jon’s stab wounds and counted 7?(Thematically appropriate … 7 kingdoms, 7 wounds.)

      If so, there’s an unaccounted for mutinieer out there that needs some justice.

      But ultimately, those four held the most responsibility for the murder. The three officers had leadership roles, and Ollie is the one who actually stuck the knife into Jon’s heart.

      One of them is the one that charged last week that Tormund killed
      The other one is who Wun Wun rag-dolled
      The other one died in the cell

      — ok fine I am just making it up

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    108. dragonmcmx:
      What’s with the fucking backstabbing these days? Jon vs Karl, Jorah vs the Braavosi dude, Pod vs Bolton dude, Ned vs Dayne.

      You got a point here, allthough I think it was okay and made some sense in the ToJ scene, but was annoyed by another similar scene in Ep1 of this season, when Obara stabbed Trystane in the back. This is not in your list, maybe because Trystane was still armed and the fight hadn’t started yet.

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    109. Josh L,

      I just rewatched the scene from last season’s finale, and definitely only 6 people who stab, but perhaps one of them was fast enough to do a double 🙂

        Quote  Reply

    110. Angeala95,

      Agree. I liked it better then the first 2.

      If I where to make a list it would be this:
      EP3
      EP2
      EP1

      I read the spoilers for EP1 so Mel’s reveal didn’t do much for me sadly.
      But this far the season started very well. I absolutly love it.

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    111. Flayed Potatoes:

      VD: I actually forgot this was on the show until I got here. I’m getting annoyed with the repetition of all those titles. She’s really not learning anything and evolving as a character. zzzz

      Yeah, it’s two straight episodes now that she has tried to impress her titles upon her captors. It’s just coming across as immature. Surely, after her time with the Dothraki, she would know that it would not make much of an impression on them. I really hope

      during or after her big moment next episode, she does not again start rattling off her titles.

      One nice tidbit for me in this episode was just as Ramsey says “welcome back, Lord Stark” the camera shifts to Jon. 🙂

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    112. Didn’t think Jon would kill a child. Jon is definitely no longer Snow White, he’s now in the grey territory with so many other characters.

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    113. ghost of winterfell,

      Who knows though. If I didn’t read the spoilers perhaps I would have liked EP1 better.
      I still liked it but knowing the ending and reveal really hurt a bit…

      Damn me and my weak resolve!!

      But I did avoid spoilers for EP3 and before EP2 I only found out about Bran’s flashback. Trying to avoid them from now on!

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    114. Josh L,

      I stand corrected, crazy that I had it in my head it was said though 🙂 . Not that it matters, I am rather happy the UnGregor is not as cheesy as I expected.

      dragonmcmx,

      Arya’s blindness passed rather quickly, but seeing as it is not that fun to let her be blind for a season, I am rather glad with the training montage video. I also thought it was too easy until she had to drink the poison from the pond (we have seen it being deadly before). If she truly didn’t believe she was no one she would have died I assume.

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    115. If Jon’s watch has ended, and he sees his death as the reason for that (‘cos of the wording in the oath), I find it interesting that he still kills the traitors in a Lord Commander sort of role. How does he rationalise that to himself, exactly?

      I’m not criticising it as a mistake, I’m saying it’s an interesting bit of character development. I think this new Jon will be motivated by revenge more than honour.

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    116. Rat Kook,

      I feel Jon is mulling this decision over in his quarters. When he sees the dead mutineers, coupled with his newfound knowledge that there is no afterlife, he probably decides right there and then, that he needs to do what he wants in this life, since there is no other.

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    117. Brilliant episode, it played exactly the way i wanted. I had no problem with Sansa sitting this one out if they would deal with Jon’s resurrection properly and have everything ready for their reunion and guess what? That’s what they did, now everything is so ripe for the stellar moment to happen next week. I do not remember being this much excited in my time with the show. Please D&D, please give me what i want next week and please let it happen as epic as possible (and for the love of god not another near miss kind of thing as some people are saying).

      Here i thought i couldn’t be more excited for Sansa and Jon’s combined storyline this season, god i need to contain my excitement for this somehow throughout the week, otherwise i’m afraid i’ll have a heart attack.

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    118. So… Is that wolf head too small to be shaggy’s and smallJon is totally playing Ramsay or is the Nile not just a river in Egypt?

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    119. ghost of winterfell: Yeah, it’s two straight episodes now that she has tried to impress her titles upon her captors. It’s just coming across as immature. Surely, after her time with the Dothraki, she would know that it would not make much of an impression on them.

      Yeah, this annoyed me too. It reminded me of Season 2 Dany who I also found quite annoying and petulant, but in this case it was even more annoying because she should know better. I also find it a bit weird that the topic of her joining the Dosh Khaleen has never come up in the show until now: surely someone ought to have mentioned it, even if she were going to just dismiss the idea?

      Regardless, this was another very strong episode. It felt more like the first than the second in terms of pieces being moved in place to set up the next sequences, but almost everything was very well done. I really enjoyed the ToJ scene, even though it was split. The whole episode felt very grim and dark indeed – and I was heartbroken over poor Shaggydog 🙁

      I feel that Ramsay will keep Rickon alive, possibly even

      sending Jon a variant of the Pink Letter to goad him into attack Winterfell by letting him know he has Rickon

      – but I dread to think what horrible things will be visited upon Osha, who I’ve actually come to really like as a character 🙁

      Loved everything at the Wall – Jon really didn’t want to have to execute the mutineers, but at the same time there’s definitely a darkness to his character that wasn’t there before. The hanging scene, with the long, slow lingering on Olly’s face is up there with the most harrowing scenes in all of GoT. Awful. I’m in the UK so I stayed up until 2am, and having to go to bed straight after that wasn’t very nice I can tell you 😛

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    120. Stargaryen,

      I don’t think his playing him. It is just as it looks like.

      though. EP9 spoilers. Don’t read if you don’t want to.

      There is information that a house will switch sides during the battle. A lord will have a ”stirring speech” before. He will appear in 1 episode. My guess is that Umber and Karstark are with Ramsey and that Mandarly will switch sides

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    121. Same here with spoilers.I’ve read them for Ep 2 and even if it was still an episode that I liked very much it was not that great to know everything that will happen.Haven’t read anything at all about Ep 3,don’t even know if there where spoilers out there for this one,and it was much more enjoyable.

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    122. By the way, am I the only one who totally loved the little nods that were woven into this episode?

      First of all, not having Gerold Hightower present at the Tower, but namedropping him in another scene.

      Secondly, the Waif commenting on the fact that Arya’s list has become rather short. I read this as the show acknowledging that people such as Melisandre were previously on the list, but since they were relatively less awful to her than the people still on it, she removed them. I could be wrong, this could also simply imply that there’s someone else on the list we still have to learn about, but I’m doubtful the Waif’s behavior, as annoying as it is, results her on being on the list.

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    123. House Applebee,

      It was called oathbreaker because while nobody broke any oaths here it was an underlying theme of each story.
      -Dany was supposed to return to Vaes Dothrak instantly, she did her own thing.
      -UMBERS.
      -Nights Watch mutineers.
      -UMBERS.
      -Sam promised he would stay with Gilly and the baby but he lied.
      -UMBERS.
      -Jon Snow isn’t technically breaking any oaths but thats a technicality. Nights Watch is for life and he currently has life.
      -UMBERS.
      -Arya is breaking her oath to herself – she won’t avenge her family and complete her kill list as noone.
      -UMBERS.
      -Arthur Dayne got stabbed in the back – this is dishonour if not oathbreaking.
      But yea Umbers.

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    124. ghost of winterfell,

      She’ll be handed everything on a silver platter because of Drogon ex-machina. If only the Starks had this type of plot device to get them out of trouble every time.

      I didn’t notice that camera shift. Very interesting. Jon is more of a Stark than any of his siblings, despite not having the name. It’s ironic.

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    125. From a newspaper review here in the UK

      …the dawning recognition on Bran’s face that there are the stories you learn from your family and then there is the bleak, brutish reality.

      Amen to this, how much better storytelling is this deconstruction, than the fight ending with Ned besting Dayne one on one in noble combat?

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    126. I’m really pissed off – great episode, ToJ, Jon, Arya – but I’ve got a horrible feeling about Rickon. I can’t see Ramsey dying in the next couple of episodes, that gives him why too much time with Rickon. People seem to be optimistic, but we already lucked out with Jon. Don’t blame the flayer, blame the game is going to ruin the Stark recovery. Please let me be wrong

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    127. I am definitely grasping at straws here, but doesn’t the head look a bit small for a grown direwolf? I mean if you consider the size of Ghost as he is now, and assume that Shaggydog is about the same size, that head looks far too small.

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    128. Stargaryen,
      The latter. A lot of people are in denial.

      That said, does anyone else think that Sansa may not get to Castle Black next episode? I do think so, for four reasons:
      – I don’t see her meeting Jon just yet;
      – as soon as she gets there, her story will become subordinate to his;
      – the presence of Brienne, with the Valyrian Oathkeeper and/or near Davos and Mel, may raise questions;
      – the Castle Black gate was bashed out by Wun Wun.

      It’s reasons 1 and 2 that concern me the most. I see Sansa getting to Bear Island, or maybe Last Hearth to recruit the part of the Umbers whom we know will fight on the Stark side. But not to Castle Black. I see Jon sitting this one out, and returning in E5, together with the rest of Bran’s ToJ vision.

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    129. Kit Hairyton:
      Redxgod,

      Conflicted about the more modern dialogue, though. Then again, it’s not too far from the first Hobbit movie and that funny, “And that’s how the game of golf was invented” line, which I just know was a Guillermo Del Toro contribution to the script.

      While I agree with your sentiment on disliking the inclusion of modern dialogue and conventions (i.e., crowd surfing) in period entertainment in order to foster a further connection with the audience, that line actually is in The Hobbit.

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    130. Maceless Fan,

      Did you notice if Howland was stabbed in the knee that took him out of the fight? The High Septon mentions that he needs to sit because of his knees. I just wondered if you caught a connection.

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    131. About the “bad pussy” line,I never understood why some people are so up in arms against it.It’s all about context,and the context is that she poisoned him,revealed herself to him to make the effects of the poison kick in,let him in agony with a view like that and eventually just saved the guy just because.Even flirted with the guy.Ok,I understand it can be considered a little bit out of place in a period drama but if you put it in context she really was the “bad pussy”.So out of place yes,it could be,but bad writing no,not in my opinion.It fits the context of their encounter.

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    132. Yeah overall I found this episode just… boring. No themes or cohesion were evident. Unlike past episodes the humor fell flat. I have ceased caring about anyone in KL, even Jaime (where did the character I love go snap out of it man!) If Cersei doesn’t start killing (more) things soon I’m going to start FFWDing. Mereen = really boring (really we are going to do the SB war?), Dothraki = fine whatever, Sam/Gilly = fine whatever. Dany = fine/whatever. ToJ was fine but since no conclusion just whatever. Also distracted by neil patrick harris Ned.

      At least the Wall was interesting but I was thinking there’d be a bit more awe and etc. They jumped a bit quick to dick jokes for my taste (not that this wasn’t 100% Tormond!).

      And no Pod-rienn-sa… butbutbut… I <3 them. They got me all excited in ep 1 and then a little teast in ep 2… and now nothing. 🙁 Plus they teased us with II last epi and didn't follow through. The Kingsmoot in this episode would have given us something interesting to watch. At least.

      Well cant' win 'em all. I felt like the writers were saying… well shit we need somewhere to put all these boring scenes… lets' just make 1 crappy episode and the rest will be more awesome. :p

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    133. LordDavos:
      It may be denial but i have a few doubts about the Umber scenes
      – a couple of ‘keep quiet’ looks from Osha to Rickon
      – why did they not say anything
      – these lords know what happened to the Cerwyns, now they pop up at around the same time telling Ramsay it is time for change and it is suggested that Karstark was in on Roose’s murder.
      It could be what it seems at face value but if not it wouldn’t be a surprise.

      I thought similarly. Why deliver Osha to Ramsey? An unknown wilding who has no value. If they killed Shaggydog, why not kill her? Ramsey has no use for her, other than maybe as dog meat. So why is she even alive if the Umbers are really betraying the Starks.
      I noticed the conspiratorial looks Osha gave as well and that wolf’s head was exactly that…..a wolf’s. Far too small to be a direwolf’s.
      Direwolves don’t live south of the wall, so Ramsey won’t have seen one before to know.

      Also as has been mentioned earlier, there was a report of one house switching sides during the battle to come

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    134. My Unsullied husband thought the Targaryen sigil was the Greyjoy one! I hope not too many people made that mistake.

      I will miss Owen Teale. This should be an epic Curtain Call.

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    135. Howland knows who Jon is and as the High Sparrow, he can take down the Lannisters as a loyal Stark bannerman and secure the throne for the rightful king.

      So far, Jon is still a bastard, no rightful king of anything.

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    136. House Applebee,

      Well, there were the Umbers. Which ties back to Greatjon and the episode Robb called him an oathbreaker and Grey Wind ate his fingers and he turned into an incredibly loyal liegeman. And here is his son handing over the only known surviving Stark male to the son of the nan who betrayed Robb.

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    137. RG,

      Bloodraven said he didn’t want to sit there for a 1000 years. He is just saying that, he hasn’t been sitting their for 1000 years. It was an expression. I guess they could, but if he is the same guy from the books then he was only using the words 1000 for expression. He hasn’t even been there 75 years.

      I don’t think we ever see Beric’s scars from the hound. he shows scars but never that one, if I remember correctly once he is resurrected he gets to one knee and it looks like his arm slides loose, like it was falling off. lol

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    138. Has anyone else noticed some of the dialogue in Bran’s visions are lines that other characters said in previous episodes?

      In the Winterfell flashback, Ned has the same “I’ll ring your head like a bell” line that Jon tells Olly in S5.

      Then in the TOJ, Arthur Dayne has the “best of luck in the wars to come” line that Mance Rayder said to Stannis. I wonder if that’s going to be something that persists in future flashbacks.

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    139. Lex,

      I totally agree with you. The direwolf’s head is quite small, They could be preparing a trap or something (the Umbers) at least that D&D want to give more importance to Ramsay but, it could be an amazing thing that one of the goods can prepare a revenge, could be a justice!

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    140. El-Bobbie,

      People go on about Olly being a child but I don’t see him as that young. Does anyone know how old he’s supposed to be now? I think he’s a teenager.

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    141. Dolorous Yaga (the 999th Lady Commander): That said, does anyone else think that Sansa may not get to Castle Black next episode? I do think so, for four reasons:

      Next episode’s previews would seem to indicate otherwise. You can see Sansa, Brienne, and Pod standing in front of the Castle Black gate as it opens.

      Sansa is definitely reaching Castle Black. The question is, will Jon Snow be there when Sansa shows up?

      I am of two minds on this. On one hand, it would be just like this show to give us yet another near-meeting between the Starks, only to snatch it away from us (Bran / Jon Snow twice, Arya / Sansa at the gates of the Vale). And if this is supposed to be Jon Snow’s biggest season ever, then he needs to do things on his own separate from Sansa. They would meet either right before Bastard Bowl, or right after Bastard Bowl.

      My problem is, I have no idea what this “other stuff” could possibly be. Jon Snow can’t really rally the Northern houses on his own.

      On the other hand, it makes more sense for Jon Snow and Sansa to meet at Castle Black, receive the “Pink Letter,” then head off to rally the minor North houses for the upcoming Bastard Bowl. Sansa can handle the political aspects, and Jon Snow can handle the army training. And with Sansa by his side, it’d be easier for Snow to overcome all of the obstacles set up his way (he’s a bastard, he let the Wildings go through, and he’s apparently a Night’s Watch traitor and so should be executed upon sight — most people won’t believe he died and his watch ended).

      In any case, I can see it going either way.

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    142. Apollo,

      Apollo, I guarantee you a lot of people watching the show wouldn’t think what HR did being a bad thing when it really is amongst knights. Look the dialogue is going to be simpler. The writers no longer have exact words from GRRM. Something we have to get use to. It isn’t terrible though and this episode def. didn’t have any holes like the first two did. The director means a lot and this episode’s director was different from the first two episodes.

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    143. Vaes Dothrak (B+): Looking much more expensive than the last time we were there. I liked the Dosh Khaleen leader’s attitude that ambitions of conquering the world are something everybody there has to get over.

      Sam & Gilly (B): When Jon raised the issue of the Citadel’s no-women policy in 510, Sam blew it off completely; seems like a pretty major shift in attitude between episodes with no obvious prompt. Anyway, cute scene, necessary to re-establish the characters. Baby Sam is finally showing some signs of growth, even if he’s still younger than he should be.

      Castle Black (A): I would prefer if they had cut down Tyrion’s interminable dialogue in favour of giving us more time with Mel in this episode, seeing as her perspective is dealt with only briefly before being shunted out of the door. But what’s here is quite good, and Kit Harington is delivering (the writing and filming conditions in seasons 2-3 really did him a disservice). Thorne’s final moments were nicely written.

      King’s Landing (B+): The Spanish spoilers for this plotline didn’t sound all that appealing, but I generally liked the actual scenes, other than Jaime continuing to be nothing more than Cersei’s lapdog. Kevan is one of my favourite minor characters in the novels, so I’m always game for him appearing, and his refusing to give into Cersei’s BS was awesome. The High Sparrow’s scene with Tommen was also well-done (Pryce is really the acting standout in KL at this point).

      Meereen (B): In a show where there’s very little superfluous dialogue at this point, Tyrion’s scene went on way too long; it’s okay if Dinklage appears in an episode and doesn’t say much. Varys’ interrogation was effective, though the mention of Astapor is weird, since Dany broke the power of the Good Masters pretty decisively and last we heard the city was being ruled by Cleon the Butcher.

      Braavos (A-): Hey, a montage! This show is generally so minimalist in its approach to conceptualizing scenes, that it’s always really noticeable when they depart from it. They should do more of this; this really felt like some movement in Arya’s plot.

      Winterfell (B): Another plot gift for Ramsay.

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    144. Flayed Potatoes,

      If there is one thing more irritating than dany and her titles is the whining of people about plot armor and starks not having it ..
      its just silly to have the discussion when one of them brought back from dead ..

      Do i really have to go listing all the things stark kids and jon were handed and saved by their wolves and others by how many countless times ..

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    145. Josh L:
      I am of two minds on this.On one hand, it would be just like this show to give us yet another near-meeting between the Starks, only to snatch it away from us (Bran / Jon Snow twice, Arya / Sansa at the gates of the Vale).

      I see a major difference between those situations and this one, namely, that in the past all of those near-misses were used because the characters were heading off on different story trajectories and thus could not meet. But in this season both Sansa and Jon are going to be fighting the Boltons, from the trailers, etc., so I don’t see any real benefit to keeping them apart. Indeed, it’s contrary to the writers’ clear preference for putting characters together.

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    146. You missed some really interesting bits of storytelling information: Cersei talking about how she will ask for a trial by combat, where nobody can defeat the mountain, and hoy Arya talked specifically about how he left the Hound to die. This kind of reminder is not done for no reason.

      Get Hyped!

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    147. Josh L,

      Same. King’s landing is what kept me hooked the first couple seasons. But since S5 the Wall/Jon is the only part I truly care about tbh. Of course, I am interested in how all the other characters end up at the end, but it hasn’t been as interesting to watch their journeys since Sansa went to Vale and Arya to Bravos for example. And yes, the dialogue so far is not as good. I thought when Emilia Clarke said it’s just go, go go and not much set up this season that we wouldn’t be getting pointless scenes like that of Tyrion talking with Dany’s boring as frack sidekicks about finding something to converse about.

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    148. Ghosts Lunch,

      Cool theory and all. Not sure if Kit can actually wield two swords affectively. The guy who played Dayne was one of the best swordsman in Europe. Second, if Dawn was important in the show I do believe Bran would have mentioned the name or something would have been said – Hey Ned where is Ice hey Dayne where is Dawn. I like the theory for the books but the show they didn’t even set it up. I also don’t think Dawn is important to the actual story of Ice and Fire. Just world building, Also Dawn is not a Targ sword. It is given to the best sword of House Dayne which is in Dorne. Loyal to Targaryen’s but not their lord. it just so happen that a Targ kingsguard happened to be the best sword of House Dayne at the time. But that sword stays with a Dayne from Dorne – not a targ.

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    149. Sean C.,

      I am getting somewhat irritated with Jaime spending all this time in Cersei’s shadow. Her character is overpowering his. I want to see them separated soon.

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    150. Modiglian: Well, and no Khaleesi tits, meh, gtfo Emilia Clarke, just put another generic cutie and be done with her.

      Wow. You are a classy fellow!! Emilia Clarke has been killing it so far this season. GTFO yourself.

      Speaking of only slightly less gratuitous nudity, do we actually know that was Kit’s backside? I more or less assumed it would be a body double just as it was in his Kissed by Fire buttshot (and was for EC backside this episode).

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    151. Josh L,

      Mel is in CB till Ep 5. That means Jon is there till Ep 5.

      There is no way she would ride out with anybody else.

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    152. ghost of winterfell:
      Sean C.,
      I am getting somewhat irritated with Jaime spending all this time in Cersei’s shadow. Her character is overpowering his. I want to see them separated soon.

      So much this. Surely, they will have Cersei do something so unforgivable (or many somethings) that Jaime will turn away from her and towards honor… surely…..?

      Either that or they will just both die. 🙁

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    153. Dolorous Yaga (the 999th Lady Commander),

      Umbers will fight with Boltons. Simple as that but it doesn’t look Castle Black from second viewing. Bear Island would be illogical as it was never mentioned. Castle Black was mentioned few times. Sansa’s story could be on her own with Davos, while Jon is preparing for battle but his role is supposed to be big according to Kit.

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    154. QueenofThrones,

      Kit broke his ankle and he would’ve done that. In fact he’s not against nudity, even full frontal if they want him to do it and it serves the story. He was fairly naked while doing Dr. Faustus.

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    155. Henry Gordon: End of 0510-Qyburn introduces Robert Strong to Cersei

      Already commented on this in another thread. No he doesn’t say the name “Robert Strong” once. He tells Cersei, “Let me introduce you to the newest member of the Kingsguard” then we get a shot of Frankenmountain, then Qyburn continues, “He has taken a vow of silence until all of your enemies are dead.” He never once says “Robert Strong.”

      That name is a book-only device. Ser Robert Strong doesn’t exist in the show (and all of the official HBO material does not refer to any Ser Robert Strong either). Ser Gregor, on the other hand, does.

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    156. Maceless Fan,

      I don’t know his actual end game. he did become lord of the lands he grew up in. Becoming King perhaps? However, we do know something he has to do – he was dispatched by Cersei to take care of the winner between the Boltons and Stannis. Well the Boltons won and still no sign of the Vale. I have an inkling that the Vale will save Jon and the Wildlings in the big battle

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    157. hodor,

      I understand all that. My point was a different one: It’s not just that Trant got dropped (for understandable reasons…he’s dead) but that, for the second time in a row we’re given a version of Arya’s list that omits some of the names that were on it earlier (like Ilyn Payne and Melisandre). It’s a retcon by the show, because (IMHO) the writers have decided that, for the endgame for Arya’s story arc, they want the remaining list to just be Walder Frey, the Mountain, and Cersei. I think that what’ll happen is that when she returns to Westeros (possibly at the end of this season), she’ll attempt to kill off those three people one by one.

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    158. Tatjana,

      On rewatch it was pretty obvious the Waif was reacting to Arya getting back up during their bout, the dialogue was a voiceover where they were seated, and ended with “What name would you like a girl to say?”

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    159. ghost of winterfell: I am getting somewhat irritated with Jaime spending all this time in Cersei’s shadow. Her character is overpowering his. I want to see them separated soon.

      At some point Jaime has to find out that Cersei’s liaison with Lancel Lannister is not something that the Faith Militant made up. Then Jaime will feel betrayed that he’s been lied to for so long, especially since he’s been utterly faithful to Cersei and she wasn’t to him.

      Based on filming spoilers, we know that Jaime will

      be involved with the Tyrell army in getting Margaret out of prison, then head to the Riverlands to deal with the seige of Riverrun. So Jamie has to cut ties with Cersei at some point. Presumably this will be done in person, instead of via Jaime burning a letter via the books.

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    160. Kit Hairyton,

      Haha! Yeah, there was a goblin that had “golf” in his name somewhere – I read it in 1970, so it’s a little hazy! 😉 – and according to hobbit legend his head gets knocked off in battle by one of the badass from the old days hobbits and goes down a rabbit hole or something like that.

      No problem with your confliction instead of dislike, maybe “dislike” is too strong a word, annoyed is probably better. And after all you couldn’t really have realistic medieval dialogue throughout the show, we wouldn’t understand half of it nowadays! But I just think when they use modern “hip” references it to get a cheap connection with the the audience, instead of earning an emotional connection with good dialogue or good acting, or compelling plot, I find it somewhat lazy, and you see it all the time in movies and television these days. GoT is by far not the worst offender, and done once or twice for the sake of sharing an inside joke is not so bad, but I did cringe a bit at Dany’s crowd surfing scene. I did the same at Legolas riding a “skateboard” down a castle stair rail in TLotR, while shooting arrows at everyone. It’s done to connect with the young, I get it, but it’s too easy.

      As a book reader, and someone who has become, over many years, very used to seeing beloved books made into movies and such, I always have been happy to cut some slack to those that have a difficult task of adaptation, and I am very much enjoying this one. I think D&D, and all the writers, actors and staff, are doing an excellent job with a very difficult task indeed. My complaint is quite small and nitpicky I will agree! 🙂

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    161. I bet Osha and Rickon are 2 of the burning, flayed bodies on the crosses in the fields of Winterfell before the battle. Bumming me out big time. I hope I’m wrong.

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    162. Mr. Morden,

      The actor who plays Payne got cancer and they said very firmly they won’t recast him.

      That’s why he isn’t on Arya’s list, because most likely we won’t see Ilyn Payne again in the show.

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    163. Henry Gordon:
      Josh L,

      End of 0510-Qyburn introduces Robert Strong to Cersei

      You are confusing the show and the books. In the show, after the walk of atonement Qyburn doesn’t give a name to the big dude, who is obviously the mountain. This is what he says:

      May I have the honor of presenting the newest member of the Kingsguard? If it please Your Grace, he has taken a holy vow of silence. He has sworn that he will not speak until all His Grace’s enemies are dead and evil has been driven from the realm.

      Ser Gregor Clegane remains Ser Gregor in the show. There is no Ser Robert Strong.

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    164. jumpin4smoke,

      Yes!! I mentioned it to Mrs. Gordon and our 15 year-old (who got us into the books when he was 11), and they looked at me as though I was drunk. Which, to be fair, I was.

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    165. A Faceless Man,

      Rickon isn’t.

      Josh L,

      I don’t think Jaime will break from Cersei the way he does in the books.

      My guess is

      they want to make it more dramatic when he finally kills her. That’s why they omited the Valonqar part from Maggy’s prophecy. There will be a break and a conflict but I suspect that it will be shortly before he kills her.

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    166. This season is hitting it out of the park.

      – Jon Snow’s reaction to no afterlife was great. For atheists out there…. this is why we sometimes view life a little differently then the religious folks.

      – I’m 50/50 on whether the Umber are using Rick on as a Trojan horse.

      – Like others, I am totally invested in Jon Snow’s story arc. The rest sort of feels less important.

      – Arya’s fight sequence felt out of a movie.

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    167. Yes Olly is a child, etc etc etc
      But a child that can stab someone in the heart? Sorry I have no sympathy.

      He should have thrown a temper tantrum and that’s it lol.

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    168. I have said many times but most of the complaints against dany actually stems from the show..especially entitled and acting as viserys …
      This started way back in season 2 and I believe it has impacted the view on the books storyline as well …if you compare ACoK and ADWD it will be complete opposite of what we got in show..

      Am not even bothering with her reciting titles which she never does in the books by the way …am talking about simple lines like ” am a wife of great khal ” to dosh khaleen which is stupid and something dany won’t tell ..

      They spend what 3 to 4 mins of screentime on her I hope they spend more time writing her ..

      And hopefully she takes centerstage again in later episodes and coming seasons ..

      The preview for next episode looks promising and looks like they are giving her something to do herself and get out of this situation by her own actions and not just be damsel in distress and get saved by drogon or darrio .

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    169. The Bastard,

      I agree. Everything feels less important after you saw the real enemy.
      Politics look like meaningless games now that we saw the real threat.

      I’m glad they introduced it this late. Imagine seeing the WW at the beggining of S3 or end of S2 and then……nothing for 2 seasons.

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    170. Not got time to post my full thoughts yet, but the people who are criticising the ToJ because of no Dawn are the epitome of book purists. Why would the audience care about a sword they’ve never seen before? The sword would therefore need some (most likely) clunky exposition. You would then need to explain where the sword goes (yes I know what happens in the books), but then you would have to find some way of bringing in back in a future episode (since last season showed the power of Valyrian steel; you couldn’t just forget about it).

      Sounds pretty convoluted to me so I can see why it was dropped, and they certainly pulled off the two swords. It was awesome!

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    171. Josh L,

      Huh. It’s quite possible my mind filled in the blank there, to the point where I was sure enough to post. If they’re not giving him an alias in the show, seems a pretty brazen FU by Cersei to the world-not even trying to fig leaf it.

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    172. I give major props to Liam, Kit and Clarice for the post rez scene. It wasn’t hyperbolic, flashy or overdone in any way, and it came off true to character for each of them.

      “Stannis wasn’t the Prince who was Promised; but someone needs to be.” Jon looked like he was about to cry, I could hear the character thinking How in the Hell am I supposed to unite and lead anyone against the coming of the long night? I couldn’t even keep the Night’s Watch cohesive enough to avoid getting murdered.

      There is no one else who can create an effective alliance. The Northern lords might rise for Sansa, but she’s not trained in military matters. Jon is the only member of the nobility who has martial prowess, experience as a leader, ties to the free folk & credibility as a member of the Stark clan, and full awareness of the real threat that lies beyond the Wall. I don’t think he wants to take up the mantle of leadership at all, but will for the sake of family & honor. I’m worried that Arya might be his Nissa Nissa though.

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    173. Dee,

      What will Jon do on his own, with no one to interact with? It’s not happening, the only reason we did not see Jon in the preview is because they want us to keep wondering about this 🙂

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    174. I bet if Steph Curry played basketball during Game of Thrones, he would have signed a deal with Umber Armor.

      Sorry, had to.

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    175. Josh L,

      Yeah I am hoping that

      Jaime playing an active role in freeing Margaery will make Cersei see red and that will cause the break. But I am doubtful if this is happening as I feel that line we saw in the trailer, Cersei saying show them what the Lannisters army can do, or something to that effect, might be to Jaime and they do not really break before he leaves for the riverlands.

      I am okay with that. He does not really have to break with her now, that can come later if required. He only needs to get away on his own, so that his character gets the attention which he is not getting now.

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    176. Josh L,

      You can hear Cersei giving a speech in the trailers about “lead[ing] our armies”, which means that his going to the Riverlands is probably at her behest.

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    177. dragonmcmx:
      What’s with the fucking backstabbing these days? Jon vs Karl, Jorah vs the Braavosi dude, Pod vs Bolton dude, Ned vs Dayne. They were all on the ground and/or disarmed, and then the opponent took their sweet time to kill em, allowing someone else to kill them from behind.

      I find it fucking stupid. It’s a cheap and cliche attempt at making us worry for a character.

      Actually in this instance this is a perfect denouement. Ned is very evasive about what happens except that Howland Reed saves him from certain death, and the Crannogmen are despised (probably wrongly, but still) for being cowards who hide and use poison weapons rather than face their enemies ( ACoK, Bran III ) so a sneak attack seems very appropriate here.

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    178. Mihnea,

      Right. What I’m saying is that this suggests that the endgame of Arya’s character arc on the series is that she’s going to go after all three of the people left on her list. If that wasn’t the case, then why would the writers bother to remove Payne from the list, just because we don’t see him on the show anymore? And why remove Melisandre’s name, as well as the Brotherhood’s (I think she had both Beric and Thoros on it at one point)? It’s because the writers intend for her to go after Walder Frey, the Mountain, and Cersei, and don’t intend to have her go after the others. They’ve retconned out those other people from the list, now that they’ve worked out how the rest of Arya’s arc will play out.

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    179. May have been mentioned already, but I felt compelled to point out that Lyanna is not a teenager at this point. In the first vision we saw, she was a teenager, and ned stark was played by a younger actor. In this episode, Ned is aged up, and clearly not the same actor, therefore, unless in the time warp, Lyanna is even older.

      Carry on.

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    180. So I guess Bronn has been released from duty by Jaime and has wandered back to the Stokeworth estate to serve as Lord Protector and create little bastard “Tyrions” with Lollys. Will he be recalled to duty when Jaime exits KL?

      I wonder why Tyrion was more concerned about silly games with Missandei and GW rather than creating a strategy to bond with and train R&V for maximum effect (dragon flyovers would be effective!)? That dragon releasing moment during the last episode would have changed/redirected him tremendously. Except for the Varys bit, they took an odd step back, imho.

      I quite enjoyed the episode though.

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    181. It’s a couple or three years since I read ADWD (and I had it on library loan so I can’t just go and look it up) but wasn’t there some hint in the book that one of the Umbers (don’t know if it was the Smalljon) was getting on side with Ramsay? I’m sure I’ll be told if my memory is playing me false. I share the worries about Rickon and Osha – last year I kept hoping Shireen wouldn’t end up as a sacrifice and well, we know how that finished. I know GRRM has said the ending of the ASOIAF story (when it’s eventually written will be bittersweet rather than conventionally happy) so I’ve learned with GoT not to get my hopes up too high but I would like to see some sort of justice for the Starks. Whether I will or not is anyone’s guess I suppose.

      ghost of winterfell,

      Does show Jaime know about Cersei’s dalliance with Lancel while he (Jaime) was a prisoner? Maybe if he acquires that knowledge (in the show) there will be a rift.

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    182. Dame of Mercia:
      It’s a couple or three years since I read ADWD (and I had it on library loan so I can’t just go and look it up) but wasn’t there some hint in the book that one of the Umbers (don’t know if it was the Smalljon) was getting on side with Ramsay?

      In the books, the Smalljon was killed at the Red Wedding trying to defend Robb. The Greatjon was taken hostage, and is then used against House Umber.

      In the North subsequently, there are two Umber factions, seemingly. Mors Umber leads a band of active Stark loyalists; Hother Umber leads some men to Winterfell to pledge fealty to the Boltons, though Lady Dustin claims Hother would murder the Boltons if not for the Greatjon being a hostage.

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    183. ghost of winterfell,

      He doesn’t need to break from her at all. But he will eventually.

      My guess is.

      they want to make it more dramatic when he finally kills her. That’s why they omited the Valonqar part from Maggy’s prophecy. There will be a break and a conflict but I suspect that it will be shortly before he kills her.

      I don’t believe will have a long break but rather one that happens shortly before the big moment.

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    184. Hodors Bastard,

      Bronn is spending some quality time on a cruise ship with the Sand Snakes until he is needed again.

      The Tyrion/Grey Worm/Missandei scene was a little awkward and maybe a tad too long, but it was meant to be. I thought we were getting a Bubba Gump Shrimp moment was Grey Worm started talking about patrols…what we did on patrol…what we saw on patrol…

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    185. I am beside myself with joy (no pun intended, okay maybe a little). The ToJ was so very well executed. It’s one of my favorite bits of the story; book and now show. Ser Arthur Dayne absolutely shined. Even with his few lines you could see what a genuinely good and devoted character he was.

      Really disliked the cut off before the Lyanna reveal. I get it, but I’m selfish and wanted it all in one go.

      I have a burning question now, however: Did Ned hear Bran? Judging by the 3ER’s reaction I’m speculating he did. Bran is being set up as one of the most powerful protagonists in ASoIaF and if he is somehow able to affect the past… the biggest twists in this story may be yet unimagined by any of us.

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    186. Miles,

      I think him walking off was symbolic. Obviously he isn’t going to walk to…wherever without warm clothes, supplies and his best friend Ghost.
      -i’m guessing he was just walking out of the castle and going to the Wildlings camp; ghost will follow.

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    187. Sullied by Knight: I thought we were getting a Bubba Gump Shrimp moment was Grey Worm started talking about patrols…what we did on patrol…what we saw on patrol…

      That is hilarious. Thx. I just thought that they would still be reeling and discussing that amazing “dragon communication” moment from Ep2. It’s like that scene (before Varys entered) was filmed for Ep1 and moved to Ep3 for some reason.

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    188. Can someone that knows a thing or two about cinematography tell me if they noticed in the ToJ scene that it seemed to be shot with a different type of film (maybe to depict the past?). Or were my eyes deceiving me?

      Only complaint with this episode was that it was way too short!

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    189. A girl said Jon Snow was his half brother. A girl did not get beaten.
      Doesn’t it tells anything about Jon Snow = Rhaegar + Lyanna theory?

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    190. Mihnea,

      I think Valonqar could be Arya. Valonqar is Valyrian, but we don’t know if it’s actually “little brother” or “little sister”. In Valyrian, there is no distinction between Prince and Princess, as Aemon points out. Which is why he says no one looked for a girl to fulfill TPTWP prophesy, because they forgot there was no distinction in Valyrian. And with the re-iteration this ep about Cersei being on Arya’s list, I think it’s a possibility.

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    191. Ok,so if the gates that open before Sansa in the preview are from CB does that mean Brienne will meet Davos and Mel?That’s awkward,how would she react to that?

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    192. Mr. Morden,

      I think she just started to realize that the waif knows she’s still Arya when she keeps naming names…even though she’s talking about Arya in the 3rd person.

      She shouldn’t know what Arya wants anymore. It’s great that the waif has a grudge against Arya…which means she still has personality – that she shouldn’t have as no one.

      Maybe the waif is still there because she’s stuck in her training…and she’s pissed that Arya might surpass her.

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    193. Side note- I’m positive that baby Sam is the same actor that played “blue-eyed ice baby Craster.” Either more attention to detail from casting, or HBO exec’s grandkid. Somebody check his IMDb page to verify.

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    194. caligula:
      TOJ seemed too abrupt in terms of the exchange – I think the line “the kingsguard does not flee…” should have been included.

      Some of the dialogue throughout the episode was very weak and I’m a bit underwhelmed with the treatment of Jon’s return. Still enjoying it overall though.

      I was happy with the ToJ scene, but I agree that they underplayed the KG by cutting their dialogues. Worse, they used the time saved to put Tyrion’s awkward drinking games.

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    195. The more and more I watch of this season, the less and less I feel TWOW is being spoiled. Sure, there are some plot points being spoiled, but all the detail I love about the books is what will be great to read. For example, I think the Jon Snow arc is going to be completely different in the books. Rickon’s storyline is different as well, although, I still think this is all a plot by the Umbers in the TV show. That wolf’s head wasn’t big enough to be Shaggydog’s, plus, I really doubt the Umbers are going to fully jump in bed with the Boltons. They HATE the Boltons.

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    196. Ser Gerold Dayne,

      Davos/Brienne don’t know she killed Stannis. She doesn’t know Mel helped killing Renly.

      For starters things should be ”fine”. But the more they stay together the more chances they find out and things could go nuts.

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    197. Cersei’s Brain:
      Can someone that knows a thing or two about cinematography tell me if they noticed in the ToJ scene that it seemed to be shot with a different type of film (maybe to depict the past?). Or were my eyes deceiving me?

      I though it had a slight sepia tone to it, perhaps a little more grainy but it’s harder to tell from a streamed service.

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    198. A lot of people are cheering Olly’s death, but I found it sad and tragic. Very good but melancholy episode, in my opinion.

      The Tower of Joy fight was well done, but I don’t really like the actor they had playing young Ned. He looks small and slight, not like a young warrior.

      They also whitewashed Varys a bit by having the little birds able to talk. In the books Varys cuts out their tongues.

      All in all a great episode of a great show.

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    199. I’m less worried about Rickon qua Rickon than I am about the fact that this sort of moots the whole point of the Manderly plot in the books in that he sends someone to get Rickon (now, maybe Winds of Winter had Manderly’s efforts thwarted by other northerners more willing to cut a deal with Bolton, and here we have the end result, but we can safely dispense with the whole White Harbor business)

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    200. rhymeswithweak: She shouldn’t know what Arya wants anymore. It’s great that the waif has a grudge against Arya…which means she still has personality – that she shouldn’t have as no one.

      Maybe the waif is still there because she’s stuck in her training…and she’s pissed that Arya might surpass her.

      Yeah. The waif is pissed that she’s stuck in the HoB&W training others when she could be on some cool mission out in the world. You gotta wonder why the waif is only there to abuse the newbies!

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    201. aabe,

      How do you know they used that time on Tyrion?

      I still find it silly when people think they cut from one scene to add to another. Of course it’s always from the scenes they liked and to the scenes they dislike.

      I think it could be just as true that they had a bit more time to film and decided to do the Tyrion scene.

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    202. Both Jon and Beric have said that there is no afterlife, no heaven or hell, just nothing. My theory is that there is an unwritten rule that whoever dies and is brought back to life must have no recollection of what he saw. Especially in the GoT universe, maybe the gods make the ones who are resurrected forget their after death experiences because these are either extremely bad or extremely good. It’s not important but I love theorising 😛 Also the phrase ‘You know nothing’ can be interpreted in a whole new way after this ep.

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    203. Mihnea,

      Yes,but I mean Mel is a red priestess and Brienne always says how it was magic that killed Renly so i guess she would be angry to meet someone like Mel even without any proof of anything.

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    204. Red Nightmare,

      It’s not ”withe-washing” as much as it simply works better on TV.

      It’s much better ”seeing” little kids ”whispering” then having them write letters.

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    205. Noob Takes the Black,

      If Rickon ends up dying then I assume he will die to in the books…..or run around on Skagos never to be seen again.

      Anyway if the show kills him I think it’s safe to say he will never be Lord of WF in the books.

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    206. Ser Gerold Dayne,

      She knows it’s magic, anyone could realize that much but she doesn’t have any evidence that it was Mel’s doing.

      That’s why I said ”at first” things could go nicely. But the longer they are together the bigger the chances they find about what each has done.

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    207. TPTWP: I really doubt the Umbers are going to fully jump in bed with the Boltons. They HATE the Boltons.

      They indeed detest the Boltons (as detected by the wonderful exchange between Ramsay and LittleJon) but I bet they are more worried about the Gift being infiltrated by murderous wildlings. I like the thoughts from many others regarding how this season may focus on how attitudes toward wildlings, giants and Starks may discreetly change for various houses. Davos may be the key communicator for this info.

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    208. 1) I agree with most, that something isn’t as it appears with the Umbers. Rickon’s existance makes the Bolton’s claim of Winterfell etc basically worthless. Being book readers, we know there were issues of succession/power with House Karstark too.. so this could all get a little crazy soon.

      2) Howland Reed will segway into the story soon. House Reed’s loyalty to the Starks will come into play soon. I believe we established that the Riverlands show up at some level this season-

      3) Good to see the Arya plot advance, now we can put her on pause for awhile, and give more screen time to plots that need to catch up (Dorne and more so Iron Islands)

      4) Something is gonna happen to old uncle Kev… we assume it’s important to the plot lines since it was such an element in the book. (maybe Qyburns sparrows… instead of Vary’s sparrows?)

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    209. Kit Harington: Jon has returned darker, angrier, and with a slightly trimmed haircut. Give it up for our Acting VIP of the week!

      RIP Night’s Watch dudes and Shaggydog: I betcha people will be more incensed by GoT killing a dog than they will be by them graphically hanging a teenager.

      Darker? Perhaps. Sadder? Certainly. He has lost all hope in things eternal. Angrier? I didn’t think so. He was laughing, after all, and that was so uncharacteristic that Edd questioned if it was really Jon. Anger didn’t cause him to hang the four mutineers: duty did. He looked saddest in that scene, for all four of them.

      If Olly had been as loyal as a dog, his death would have been as devastating as Shireen’s, which was far more than Shaggydog’s. As it is, though, we tend to route for those who don’t kill our heroes. Even so, Olly’s was a tragic but necessary death.

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    210. Red Nightmare:
      A lot of people are cheering Olly’s death, but I found it sad and tragic.Very good but melancholy episode, in my opinion.

      It was.Many of us would be just like Olly considering the circumstances.All his family,friends,the entire village murdered in front of his eyes.All he knew to do was get his hands on a sword and a bow and get his revenge on the wildlings.Hating them he was also easily influenced by men like Thorne.Olly’s story it’a a tragic one.

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    211. Stargaryen:
      Ghosts Lunch,

      Cool theory and all.Not sure if Kit can actually wield two swords affectively.The guy who played Dayne was one of the best swordsman in Europe.Second, if Dawn was important in the show I do believe Bran would have mentioned the name or something would have been said – Hey Ned where is Ice hey Dayne where is Dawn.I like the theory for the books but the show they didn’t even set it up.I also don’t think Dawn is important to the actual story of Ice and Fire.Just world building, Also Dawn is not a Targ sword.It is given to the best sword of House Dayne which is in Dorne.Loyal to Targaryen’s but not their lord.it just so happen that a Targ kingsguard happened to be the best sword of House Dayne at the time.But that sword stays with a Dayne from Dorne – not a targ.

      Yeah fair points

      It could go either way

      I’ve watched it again paying special attention to the sword (lol).

      Anyway as soon as they approach he lays it smack bang in the middle of the camera so the Sun/Star symbol can be seen when he sheathes it into the earth but this can also be seen as a “thou shalt not pass” body language

      One thing I missed on first viewing, Ned is disarmed of non-Ice when Howland knifes Dayne in the back of the kneck (very sneaky Crannogman lol) but intriguingly he drops “Dawn” forward, so Ned actually picks up this “Star” sword and this is the sword that he kills Dayne with, indeed it’s also the sword he is running upstairs with when he hears Bran on the wind of whatever when he is off to Lyanna

      So two points,

      1. Dayne gets killed with his own sword, whether or not this is Dawn or not it is still fascinating
      2. Could explain Ice non-appearance, whether or not it is formally Dawn or not it is still the Sword of the scene lol
      3. Quite fascinating Ned is running up to behold the theoretically newly born Jon Snow with “Dawn” in hand, does nothing to diminish my sneaking suspicion that it may be a sword Jon ends up wielding

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    212. Hodors Bastard,

      Another theme I found interesting.

      The new generation is very different then the last one.

      Loyalty has to be earned. Hell the Greatjon threatened Robb before GW eat his fingers. Only after that was he loyal.

      The Smalljon has no such loyalty to the Starks, he may have no love also. He may also see this as a chance to gain more power, like, I think, Karstark does it.

      It’s a new generation, different then the old one and they might not want to support a loosing side, as far as they see it, as far as they know the Boltons still have the support of the crown. Why not try to work with Ramsey, perhaps even manipulate/kiss his ass into gaining more power. They may also not perceive Ramsey as such a dangerous as Roose and think they can handle him.

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    213. All of you “There more to what the Umbers did” people need to wake up, D&D don’t have the writing chops to pull something like that off. They always go for the most cliched and easy way to write.
      Talisa is the cliched sassy nurse to talks back to a king, not a Lannister honeypot spy. And Smalljon Umber is the cliched backstabbing asshole, not part of some GNC.

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    214. rhymeswithweak,

      No, you guys don’t seem to get what I’m talking about. I’ll try again. 🙂

      I understand why she recited the list in this episode. That’s not important. That’s not what I’m trying to draw people’s attention to.

      What I’m talking about is the fact that the names on the list in Seasons 5 and 6 are different from the names on the list in Season 4. Some of the names dropped off because the characters died (e.g., Tywin). But other names dropped off because (IMHO) as of Season 4 the writers hadn’t yet sorted out the details of Arya’s character arc for the rest of the series, and now they have. The current list still includes Cersei, The Mountain, and Walder Frey, but not (for example) Melisandre or the BwB.

      What I’m suggesting is that the fact that it’s down to Cersei, The Mountain, and Walder Frey is a clue that those are the characters she’s going to target when she returns to Westeros. Whereas she’s not going to target the BwB or Mel. If it was just a one time thing, then I wouldn’t think much of it, but because the same abbreviated list (plus Meryn Trant, now dead) was used in Episode 5×02, I think there’s something to it.

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    215. DC,

      There won’t be any fighting among the Karstarks, there isn’t time for such a minor house getting more screen-time.

      This Karstark, as he says it himself, is the son of the guy Rob beheaded, there is no reason for conflict inside the house.

      It is simply a too small plot-point to justify the screen-time in would need.

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    216. caligula,

      I agree, but Cersei is not going to want that and unless tommen gives the word, they all will be listening to her.

      I was really disappointed how they handled the reaction to Jon. I was expecting something very different, of the NW starting to realize what had happened. It was like a gap of several days took place, and it didn’t have the same impact I did like the last words (and of course Thorne would be great – and I agreed with his reasoning, and true to form he felt it was the right thing to do). I agree that Jon looked at Olly, hoping for some sort of sign that he was sorry and that he didn’t have to kill him. Nope, nada. the last part was great with the hanging, and Jon with his mic drop.

      Tommen and Sparrow was more of the same; Tommen is a child, easily manipulated. Then again, Cersie doesn’t want Tommen to give the order so of course she’s not going to do anything – Margery can just rot as far as she’s concerned

      Arya and Dany’s moments were excellent, loved TOJ (esp how they used Bran and Raven to tell the audience who was who) Loved bran saying ‘he stabbed him in the back!’ So different from the legend of his father that he had been taught to believe

      I am also hoping that Umber has something up his sleeve. I can’t imagine after all that time with Rickon he’d just give him up.

      Varys was great, Tyrion much less so.

      ah well, it wasn’t horrible, but not as good as the other two (that being said, a GOT episode that is ‘not as good’ still runs circles around any other program!

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    217. Ser Gerold Dayne: It was.Many of us would be just like Olly considering the circumstances.All his family,friends,the entire village murdered in front of his eyes.All he knew to do was get his hands on a sword and a bow and get his revenge on the wildlings.Hating them he was also easily influenced by men like Thorne.Olly’s story it’a a tragic one.

      Yeah I’ve never quite been on the “Fuck Olly” bandwagon, I’ve saw him differently

      If Thorne is the legitimate side of the Night’s Watch critique of Jon, Olly is the legitimate Northern civilian side of North/Westeros critique of Jon, something which has once again come up with Smalljon Umbers perspective (Once again a great episode concerning POV)

      What’s fascinating is that he beholds Jon with utter contempt to the very end, even when Jon is no longer looking at him about to swing the sword to cut the rope,

      A bit like Shireen, Karsi’s kids representing the future thematically, Olly also symbolically represented the future of the NW (he was being groomed for future LC as the steward) and rather tragically his death points to the fact that the Night’s Watch has no future

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    218. ash,

      The Umber guy said he would ”have killed him(his father) myself, had he not died by himself before”

      The guy kept Rickon, most likely because he thought he could profit from it. Now he probaly thinks he can get the bigger profit by siding with the Boltons.

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    219. Couldn’t it simply be that the Umber’s treason is legit, but upon discovering that Rickon is alive, the Manderly’s begin plotting to betray Ramsay from this point forward? That would track closer to the books, as part of the Umbers are with Ramsay and the Manderly’s are the real leaders of the Northern Conspiracy.

      D&D do seem to attempt to simplify the story as much as possible for the TV audience, so rather than have the Umber’s pulling a double-agent deal with a fake wolf head, wouldn’t it make more TV-writing-sense to have the Umbers be legit bad guys and have the Manderly’s be the leaders of a streamlined Northern Conspiracy, that in the show simply boils down to them springing Rickon before the big battle? Maybe Manderly and Osha are captured after freeing Rickon, leading to them being the 2 flayed characters prior to Bastardbowl?

      I think the Manderlys springing Rickon is more likely than Rickon being brought back just to be flayed. D&D are overzealous in their Stark torture-porn, but that just seems a bridge too far. I mean how many times does Ramsay’s super villain status need to be underscored?

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    220. Mihnea:
      Hodors Bastard,

      Another theme I found interesting.

      It’s a new generation, different then the old one and they might not want to support a loosing side, as far as they see it, as far as they know the Boltons still have the support of the crown. Why not try to work with Ramsey, perhaps even manipulate/kiss his ass into gaining more power. They may also not perceive Ramsey as such a dangerous as Roose and think they can handle him.

      Good points.I’ve seen the Karstark guy in the last two episodes as a huge opportunist.He was there as soon as Roose died so he has the chance to be one of the first on this new Ramsay train and seize as much power for himself and his house as possible.

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    221. Fahmi Hassan: A girl said Jon Snow was his half brother. A girl did not get beaten.
      Doesn’t it tells anything about Jon Snow = Rhaegar + Lyanna theory?

      It’s the truth from Arya’s perspective. Arya doesn’t know about R+L=J, so as far as she’s concerned Jon is her half-brother.

      Arya got beaten when she said she had four brothers, because Jon Snow is not her full brother. It wasn’t the full truth, and the Game of Lies is all about telling the complete, unvarnished truth (as far as that person understands the truth to be).

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    222. Josh L,

      I figured the “fourth name” on that list was the Waif. But Arya couldn’t add the Waif’s name on her list because she doesn’t know the Waif’s real name. And the Waif strongly suspects she’s on Arya’s list.

      That’s why Arya’s last line in that scene was “what name do you want a girl to say?”

      Heh, yeah, loved that.

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    223. Syrio:
      All of you “There more to what the Umbers did” people need to wake up, D&D don’t have the writing chops to pull something like that off. They always go for the most cliched and easy way to write.
      Talisa is the cliched sassy nurse to talks back to a king, not a Lannister honeypot spy.And Smalljon Umber is the cliched backstabbing asshole, not part of some GNC.

      have to say I agree, people are clutching at straws thinking that isn’t supposed to be Shaggydogs head and he hasn’t knifed the Starks

      If they don’t have time for intra-Dorne politics and illegitimate women can inexplicably take control of Dorne then they don’t have time for intra-house politics of Houses unsullied show watchers have a hard time contextualising

      I think I can see a theme, they are playing across 3 major backers, Karstarks, Umbers and Manderly’s

      Karstarks hate Starks with a passion and are fully in with Ramsay

      Umbers out for himself, won’t go fully into Ramsay/Boltons because of RW or give formal allegiance. That said Jon letting Wildlings through with a Giant as a battering ram and have just taken control of CB means he practically sees his best bet at this time to work with Boltons

      White Harbour mentioned a week after the Manderly’s (this week by Bowen Marsh asking Jon to write to his mother). So I reckon WH may feature in an upcoming Sansa/Jon/Davos tour of duty to rally support (with Brienne sent to RR).

      I reckon it is the Manderly’s who will play the Ramsay insider to switch sides ala Umbers in the books, so the dynamic plays across 3 distinctive Houses, not within the Umbers. Easier to do with easily distinguishable leaders with different symbols

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    224. Stargaryen:
      dragonmcmx,

      What were they suppose to do?Say it just like the books so non-book readers have zero clue who and what they watching?

      Not use the book dialogue at all. This is why they change stuff, some things that look great on page simply don’t work on screen. This scene is a prime example of that.

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    225. I don’t have time to read all of the comments, but here are my opinions:
      – Sam & Gilly scene was good. I’m excited to see the interactions between Sam and his family, particularly Randyll.
      – Meereen – Varys scene was good. Tyrion’s scene was terrible. Such a waste of screentime for such a talented actor. The writer of this scene should take a pay cut. Whomever is responsible for approving the scene’s addition should be ashamed.
      – King’s Landing – I’m not so impressed with the storyline right now. I guess since the Martell’s are extinguished, Robert Strong can be Gregor Clegane again, so I’ll let that go. I don’t want Kevan & Pycelle’s deaths to be the work of Cersei and Qyburn. I really liked how the books handled it. Let’s get on with Clegane-bowl already. that’ll bring my interest back quickly.
      – Braavos – I’m ready for Arya’s story to start moving along. She can beat the waif while blinded, that’s actually quite impressive. Her warging ability in the books was how she stopped the kindly man. I’d like to have seen her use this ability, but I can see how they don’t feel like it is essential for the storyline.
      – Winterfell – I was disappointed that shaggydog died off-screen. I would rather have seen him rip out some throats before his demise. Actually, I’d rather the Smalljon didn’t completely betray the Starks and hand over Rickon, Osha, and Shaggydog. But we’ll see where this storyline is headed soon enough.
      – TOJ – I thought it was really well done. I thought Dayne was great with 2 swords. He cut through most of them like butter (as a good Kingsgaurd should!) and would have finished them all off if Howland Reed hadn’t been there to save Ned. Oh, how the Kingsgaurd knights have fallen since this moment in Westerosi history. Bran calling out to Ned was a nice call back to his vision in the book of Ned & the heart tree. I fully expected Bran’s visions to occur more piecemeal, so I don’t care that it’ll be split over a couple of episodes.
      – Castle Black – This went more or less as I’d expect it to go. I’m pleased with the storyline. I’d rather Jon have experienced a bit of wolf in his death, but it shouldn’t impact the story too much at this point. I’m excited to see how this continues to play out.

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    226. Luka Nieto:
      As I suspected, the Harpies do have a leader, but it’s not something ridiculous like Daario or something: it’s the masters of the other cities.

      We have a funding source for the Harpies, but I’m not sure the masters from other cities would be the leader of the Harpies. Usually a leader is a single person. Yes, there could be a council of masters making all of the decisions, but it would be more efficient to have just one leader appointed by the council of masters. However, we may never get that much detail in the show or the books. And it might not matter since, if you assassinated the leader, the masters would just appoint another.

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    227. it’s the choice Ned makes while his sister is waiting up in the tower, her cries carrying from the window.

      Ah, but was that really a “choice” or a reaction in the heat of battle? Humans do not really think in those situations.

      AerynsunX: Despite delivering Rickon, Osha, and Shaggy Dog’s head (is it??) to Ramsay, I’m so not convinced the Umbers are traitors to House Stark.

      Again, people keep overlooking one huge thing: a scion of House Stark has just horribly betrayed the North. The young Umber is very clear: he does not like the Boltons particularly, and he’s not going swear fealty to them. However, there is a huge army of Wildlings south of the Wall, and if the Hearth falls to them, then Winterfell is next.

      The Umbers are not betraying the Starks for selfish ends: they are punishing the Starks for betraying them and endangering the Umbers’ existence.

      Syrio: They always go for the most cliched and easy way to write.

      Actually, it is the opposite here. What too many fans wanted was the fantasy cliche of “good” people who are “loyal” to their leaders through thick and thin. Everybody loves the Starks and would do anything for them! However, the Starks have screwed up badly: they’ve dragged the North into two wars in recent memory, one of which ended disastrously and which included Robb Stark executing a notable northern Lord for exacting just vengeance (in their cultural mind) on Lannisters and selfishly putting Stark daughters above Karstark sons.

      And now Jon has just let the enemy in the gate. The Umbers might not like the Boltons very much – they probably even hate them – but they hate Wildlings a lot more than that. Jon himself got murdered for doing what he thought was right. Well, doing what he thought was right also got Shaggy Dog killed and Rickon given to the enemy.

      Indeed, I now suspect that we are being set up for a great irony: the side effects of what Jon is doing to protect the realm from a threat that the realm does not know exists (White Walkers) is probably going to contribute greatly to how the White Walkers get into the realm.

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    228. Mihnea: Why not try to work with Ramsey, perhaps even manipulate/kiss his ass into gaining more power. They may also not perceive Ramsey as such a dangerous as Roose and think they can handle him.

      Yeah…I wonder about that. As Sean C pointed out last night, the Umbers are behaving eerily similar to LF from last season. Let’s give up a Stark in hope of a future benefit! It makes me think that LF is hedging his risky bet even further and may be manipulating things from afar. But I’m sure the “Jon and wildling factor” (with Davos, the great communicator, in the mix) will be a thorn in his plans as well. Fun!

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    229. Mr. Morden,

      I understand you that there’s some inconsistency in the list back from when she would whisper names going to sleep.

      I just made a logical point as to why she wouldn’t keep naming names.

      As for killing Cersei, The Mountain, and Walder Frey…I definitely doubt she’ll kill them all…no chance really.

      If she kills one of them which do you think it will be?

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    230. rhymeswithweak,

      Osha is tough, she can take it. But I love her 🙁 I don’t want her to die.

      Rickon, well yeah, his name, but that didn’t matter with Sansa and Theon. Imagine Ramsay or who ever are going to hurt him, mildly, for now.

      Please I hope they don’t die. Cant handle that

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    231. Mihnea:
      Kevin Daly,

      It wasn’t Dayne who sharpened his sword but the other guy.

      I’m not sure but that is how I saw it the first time.

      EDIT: Watched the scene again. Yup I was right, it was the other guy who was sharpening the sword, not Dayne.

      Yeah same on first watch I thought it was Dayne sharpening the sword but it was actually who I will call Oswell Whent (even though it could have easily been the other guy..) sharpening his regular sword

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    232. Wimsey,

      1) Jon is not a Stark. He’s LC of the NW.
      2) Why is Smalljon willing to give up a valuable hostage (he could marry Rickon to an Umber or any number of things) instead of just kneeling? My point why is kneeling so much more difficult than killing a direwolf and turning over a prince of winterfell? Could he not have gotten the same “deal” from Ramsay by simply kneeling?
      3) Why include Osha? She’s nobody (to ramsay).

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    233. Ghosts Lunch: Yeah I’ve never quite been on the “Fuck Olly” bandwagon, I’ve saw him differently

      I agree. And Olly is basically the Umbers in microcosm.

      I think that our judgement is clouded by one big thing: we know that White Walkers exist and we know what an incredible threat they are. And too many of us forget that nobody south of the Wall knows any of this.

      So, it is a reflexive mistake by viewers to think that Olly, the Umbers, etc., should look past their past grudges with the Wildlings and look at the real threat. That is tough to do when you genuinely do not think that there is a real threat. Yes, the show has emphasized over and over just how much damage the Wildlings have done to the north, and whenever it gets a chance, it makes it clear that nobody believes in White Walkers anymore: but because I know, then it should be obvious to everyone, gosh darnnit.

      Indeed, this episode shows us the paradox involved. Bran learns a cruel lesson at the Tower: the fairy tales are full of lies. But for people to understand why Jon is doing what he is, they would have to realize that there actually are some truths in the fairy tales. (Of course, I will bet that the “truth” about what happened long ago is as inconsistent with the story as what Bran thought happened at the Tower is with what really happened.)

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    234. Ghosts Lunch,

      Also, there’s Qyburn, the actor is fantastic, on the one hand he fits the book description of a kind Grandfather handing out sweets to his children/little birds and seemingly discussing protecting one of them from an abusive father, then in the same scene when Ser Robert enters we see the perverseness behind it all

      Completely missed this, but now I remember him talking to the bruised kid about his healing, asking how his mother is improving and that the father has gone missing. Interesting!

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    235. Dee:
      rhymeswithweak,

      Osha is tough, she can take it. But I love her I don’t want her to die.

      Rickon, well yeah, his name, but that didn’t matter with Sansa and Theon. Imagine Ramsay or who ever are going to hurt him, mildly, for now.

      Please I hope they don’t die. Cant handle that

      While I think Rickon may die, I think Osha will be “hunted” but she’ll escape and then get to Jon etc and advance the story, think she has more to come with Bran, eg I actually think she’ll go in with Tormunds little clan and also fight at Bastardbowl as a Spearwife etc

      The actress who plays Osha has done a fantastic job so I think there is more to come from her

      While he could torture Theon, I am worried for Rickon, but given he is attempting to rally support torturing Rickon may make other northern Lords uneasy about backing him, after all that could be them later on.

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    236. “Oathbreaker” was a quieter episode than “Home”, but I loved it. Everything at the Wall was gold. I loved Davos’s pep talk when Jon was dealing with the trauma of his resurrection, telling him to go on and not be afraid to “fail again”. What else can anyone do? I also loved how Edd and Tormund were able to break up Jon’s solemn procession through the awestruck wildlings and Night’s Watch members and get Jon to crack a smile. “That’s funny. You sure it’s still you in there?” Edd’s been fantastic this season. All hail the (presumptive) new Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch.

      I appreciated that Alliser Thorne got to keep his dignity in his final moments. As harsh and despicable as he could be at times, he was a great character (for those of you who haven’t read James Hibberd’s interview with Owen Teale, go check it out. It’s superb). And Jon’s final line of the episode is going to be iconic. Perfect note to end on.

      I thought Dean S. Jagger was fantastic as Smalljon Umber. Of course, the character goes on the shit list for handing over Rickon and Osha, and for killing Shaggydog (that moment when he dropped the direwolf’s head on the table was rough). But he had a strong charisma and swagger to him – brash, irreverent, powerful. Everything a Northern Lord should be. I wish this guy was fighting for the Starks, but he’s going to be a memorable adversary (I’ve seen some speculation that he’s planning to betray Ramsay, but I don’t buy it. If any Northern house double-crosses the Boltons, it will be the Manderlys). I’m already hoping that the casting call claiming that the Smalljon is only going to appear in two episodes is inaccurate. I want to see more of this guy!

      (Also, RIP Greatjon Umber. I figured that he was probably dead, and that Bryan Cogman’s old Twitter explanation that he was alive in the Riverlands – which was never established in the show itself – was likely to no longer be true. But it’s a shame that Clive Mantle became one of the very few actors that the show couldn’t get to return).

      And I thought the Tower of Joy sequence was excellent. The choreography was superb – Arthur Dayne was every bit the legendary warrior he was reported to be (props to Luke Robertts). However, The point that the Three-Eyed Raven made about the differences between reported history and actual history is an important one. Inevitably, some people are going to complain about the changes or lament that it didn’t meet their sky-high expectations. I’m not really keen on engaging with them on that front. Chalk me up as very pleased with what I saw. I don’t mind that we didn’t get to go inside the Tower this week. It’s coming, probably in two weeks.

      I particularly love the moment when Bran called out to his father and Ned heard his voice on the wind. The look on the Three-Eyed Raven’s face suggests that he didn’t believe such things were possible. To me, that beat was strong foreshadowing for the idea that Bran may try to influence the past and the future that he sees in his visions. The show has made it a priority to establish that he’s growing increasingly reckless, and will likely to venture out into those visions without the safety net provided by his mentor. That’s going to get him in to trouble when he encounters the Night’s King later …

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    237. Tycho Nestoris:
      Syrio,

      I’m impressed that you discounted D&D and those who think the Umbers are playing games in a single sentence.

      I’ve watched D&D write this show for 5+ seasons, they are what they are.

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    238. Red Nightmare,

      A lot of people are cheering Olly’s death, but I found it sad and tragic.

      I thought so too. Its understandable why Olly would feel this way, but it didn’t help that he had people like Thorne feeding that hate from his own well.

      Meereen: filler… also, Dany killed all the masters in Astapor, so how did they magically reappear?

      I suspect new masters were at the ready to take charge once the old were gone.

      Rhaenys Stark,

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    239. Tycho Nestoris: 1) Jon is not a Stark in the eyes of the Umbers.

      Bastards might be lesser members of houses, but Jon is a member of that household. Households are accountable for the actions of their members, including the bastards. The Starks therefore are accountable for Jon’s crimes (and letting the Wildlings into Westeros is a crime in their minds).

      The Umber is not kneeling because he is saying: “screw the old system.” He is offering alliance to the Boltons because they both need it: but he’s making it clear that this is to be an alliance of equals.

      As for including Osha, well, why not? At this point, it is possible that Ramsay’s fondness for playing with women has become know.

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    240. The KL is OK: The King’s Landing story isn’t drawing me in much this season, so far. Lena Headey and Jonathan Pryce in particular are wonderful but the story just isn’t cutting it, and I’m finding myself wishing we were back up north somewhere during some KL scenes.

      I’ve been feeling the same way. I understand they’re working towards something but the time spent until then is rather bland. Like so many, I watch each episode several times during the week after airing. I watched most of it four times last night already. On subsequent viewings I can always tell which scenes I care the least for by my willingness to flip the channel for a couple minutes or fast forward. So far this season nearly all of those scenes are in KL and it includes nearly all the KL scenes.

      The High Sparrow’s rhetoric has gotten old but we have to keep listening to him until they figure out a bunch of dudes in robes carrying clubs aren’t a match for armored soldiers. The HS preaching to Margaery, the HS preaching to Jaime, the HS preaching to Tommen, the characters complaining about what the HS is preaching/doing but doing nothing about it in return. It’s weighing down the episodes for me… So I just skip them and make the episodes great! 😛

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    241. Ghosts Lunch: I think Osha will be “hunted” but she’ll escape and then get to Jon etc

      Yeah, Ramsay would be getting a lot more than for what he is bargaining in a Wildling woman like Osha. That certainly seems like a plausible turn of events.

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    242. Clob: The HS preaching to Margaery, the HS preaching to Jaime, the HS preaching to Tommen, the characters complaining about what the HS is preaching/doing but doing nothing about it in return. It’s weighing down the episodes for me… So I just skip them and make the episodes great!

      Well, the High Sparrow is a great reminder of why religion sucks!

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    243. Mr. Morden: What I’m talking about is the fact that the names on the list in Seasons 5 and 6 are different from the names on the list in Season 4. Some of the names dropped off because the characters died (e.g., Tywin). But other names dropped off because (IMHO) as of Season 4 the writers hadn’t yet sorted out the details of Arya’s character arc for the rest of the series, and now they have. The current list still includes Cersei, The Mountain, and Walder Frey, but not (for example) Melisandre or the BwB.

      You’re right, Arya’s list definitely got trimmed down between S4 and S5, and not just because people on that list died.

      It’s probably a retcon (like you said, after S4 they probably got together to discuss the big picture and wanted to reframe Arya’s future plot) so they decided to get rid of the extraneous names (Ily Payne, Red Witch, Thoros, etc.) and decided to focus on the big targets on her list (Trant, Cersei, Mountain, and Walder Frey). Actually, Walder Frey wasn’t on her list in S4, was it?

      But on the other hand, it can probably be hand waved away as part of Arya’s growth as she hung out with the Hound in S4, then eventually took his name off her list without killing him. Maybe she realized that The List should be reserved only for the truly horrendous and the people truly worthy of killing, and not because she had a petty grudge against them, so she took off the BwB members’ names. And she took off Payne’s name because she realized Payne was merely a tool of the Crown, and that Joffrey and Cersei were the ones truly to blame.

      It’s a stretch, I know. But I do agree, Arya’s new abbreviated List is definitely the writers’ way of letting us know whom she’ll be focusing on when she’s done with the HoBaW. I suspect she’ll cross off Walder Frey herself, but Cersei and the Mountain will get taken out by other people. (CleangeValonqarBowl CONFIRMED! GET HYPE!)

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    244. Josh L,

      Let it go?? You don’t read well. I’m saying Arya will become a Faceless Man, thereby being able to use the faces. Have you not seen every episode and all the teasers this year.

      Funny that i’m just having a theory and that you seem to know everything. Very scary. Are you one of the writers?

      Regarding Stoneheart, she could show up, but there’s a bigger chance she isn’t. But theres also evidence she does, since ALL the characters in her storylines are cast except her. Think about that…

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    245. Wimsey,

      Yes, but Jon swore an oath that removed him from lands, houses etc.

      Screw the old system, fine. But why sweeten the deal for Ramsay just to screw yourself?

      Osha, so give him ten women. Give him other wildling women. Why give him someone Rickon is familiar with?

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    246. Dee,

      Yeah, I’m hoping Rickon somehow hangs on. He’s the only legitimate Stark left able to carry on the actual stark name and not just the blood.

      …well, I guess Benjen could be holed up somewhere…

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    247. Mihnea:
      Red Nightmare,

      It’s not ”withe-washing” as much as it simply works better on TV.

      It’s much better ”seeing” little kids ”whispering” then having them write letters.

      On the show Varys is very much a “good guy”. In the books he is a more sinister, grey character. I’m not complaining about the change, and maybe it does work better on TV. Just noting the change. I think it can be considered “white-washing”.

      Tyrion is also a nicer guy on the show than he is in the books. But I accept that each is telling the same story in its own way. Love them both.

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    248. Tycho Nestoris:
      Wimsey,

      1) Jon is not a Stark in the eyes of the Umbers.
      2) Why is Smalljon willing to give up a valuable hostage (he could marry Rickon to an Umber or any number of things) instead of just kneeling? My point why is kneeling so much more difficult than killing a direwolf and turning over a prince of winterfell? Could he not have gotten the same “deal” from Ramsay by simply kneeling?
      3) Why include Osha? She’s nobody (to ramsay).

      I am presuming it is thematic

      Eg it is Greatjon that knelt before Robb in the KitN scene back in S1, whereas like Karstarks line of there being “new blood in the North”, Ramsay knifing Roose, Euron killing Balon etc there seems to be a point if distancing sons from father etc

      Osha is the one who kept both Bran and Rickon safe, if Rickon is out of bounds torture wise for diplomatic reasons, Osha has knowledge of how he was hidden, where he might have gone – eg the fact he went off with Meera and Jojen is just as important, Howland Reed was specifically pointed out in this episode so it goes down to who the Crannogmen may back

      The Crannogmen/Reeds are potentially hugely important, because as we see in the books they can effectively besiege Moat Cailin and may manage to oust the Boltons from it.

      Moat Cailin is what prevents say the Lannisters getting north, but it is also potentially where the army of Sansa’s cousin can pass through and change the calculus of the Northern war

      This will be a major part of Ramsays undoing, he is focused on only the North and aiming to rule by terror alone

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    249. Ghosts Lunch

      I reckon it is the Manderly’s who will play the Ramsay insider to switch sides ala Umbers in the books, so the dynamic plays across 3 distinctive Houses, not within the Umbers. Easier to do with easily distinguishable leaders with different symbols

      This is what I thought after the Rickon/Shaggydog scene. The Manderlys were not included just for the sake of having a third name in the Bolton army. They were stressed to have one of the biggest armies and White Harbor was mentioned to lay some foundation for them. Instead of grand Northern conspiracy, it will simply be Smalljon in the role of Hother Whoresbane begrudgingly backing Ramsay, while Manderly’s plot will be reduced from an elaborate scheme to a prison break now that they know Rickon is alive. That sounds right up D&D’s alley.

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    250. El-Bobbie:
      Didn’t think Jon would kill a child. Jon is definitely no longer Snow White, he’s now in the grey territory with so many other characters.

      I disagree. Please correct me if I’m wrong, but the show seems to be ambiguous on whether Olly had taken the black and was officially part of the Night’s Watch. Olly is clearly Jon’s steward, which implies that he did take the black and say the words.

      If Olly is officially a brother, what Olly did was mutiny. In a brotherhood where the only possible punishment for desertion is death, then surely the only possible punishment for mutiny is death. There is no way around it, as Lord Commander, while still doing one’s duty.

      If Olly wasn’t a member of the Night’s Watch, then what he did was only murder, which could have been punished by allowing him to take the black. However, given his status as steward to the Lord Commander, it seems unlikely that he didn’t take the black.

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    251. Wimsey,

      Yeah this is a fair point

      Go back to Season 2, Roose sends “his bastard” to re-take Winterfell from Theon, so we see a precedent in the show at least where bastards are able to be given command of armies

      Bastard or no, Jon can still be given command of an army, or as the show points out, can take command of one (Wildlings).

      To be fair this discussion about Jon Snow is the same as Cersei wanting Jon killed in the books

      Also, Maestar Aemon had to double-bind himself to not get dragged into politics, eg first to take the Meastars oaths and then to really reinforce Eggs position (I think, haven’t read Novellas) and keep himself safe he then had to take on the Night’s Watch oaths

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    252. Wimsey,

      What I don’t understand, for both novels and show, is the inability to accept the danger the Walkers and their zombies pose. Southerners don’t know about the Walkers, and Olly has good reason to hate the wildlings, but what about Thorne, Marsh, others? They all know the Walkers are coming, all know how few crows are left to defend humans against this apocalypse, yet they are still more worried about the wildlings. It doesn’t make sense. They should all be terrified and thankful for every human willing to defend their forts.

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    253. a few things sticking with me after processing the episode

      love that Davos shoo’d Mel out of the room when she started on Jon being “PtwP” . Davos isnt stupid and Mel is not getting her claws into Jon the way she did Stannis

      I am getting the feeling that the happenings at TOJ may not be 100% explained even this season. We will see Lyana..we will see “Promise me” but we may not see the WHOLE story until next season (unless TOJ part 2 is very dialogue heavy )

      my one complaint so far this season would be Tyrions story..he is just marking time and his screen time could be used better on other storys…if they werent going to have him do anything at all (and he hasnt) then they should have brought him back later (in the season)when he was needed

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    254. It was a good, quiet episode. I really loved the happenings at the Wall, that’s always been my favorite to watch. I don’t think Jon is leaving CB yet. To me, Jon looked like he went into the tunnel that leads under the Wall. My initial thought was maybe he’s going to the wierwood tree (which would be a good way to alert Bran to what happened). I do kind of have a hard time believing Ghost would leave Jon’s side, not even for a second, after what happened. Maybe they’re just saving that CGI to use later ?

      The ToJ flashback was amazing! Can’t wait to see the rest of it.

      I’m sort of inbetween when it comes to the Umbers. They seem like they are playing Ramsey to me. I love the GNC theory and hope its some snippet of that. There was a look that Osha gave Rickon when Smalljon brought out Shaggys head that made me think it could be a ruse. I hope it is.

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    255. Bastards can certainly lead armies and hold high command. Bloodraven was hand of the King and a principle commander against the Blackfyres.

      Plus Jon is not alone in his fight against Ramsay. Sansa is the heir to Winterfell and her status was significant enough that the Boltons needed her to hold the North and allow them to resist the Crown. Sansa as heir and Jon as commanding general of the army should be seen as legit.

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    256. Mixed reaction for me. I like a good portion of it. But I also found some of it a total snoozefest and kept looking at the clock bored (here’s looking at you Meereen). I did not like the Tower of Joy segment. I am not a book purist before someone accuses me of that. I don’t care about changed lines or changed actions, or changed swords or whatever. I don’t care. I just thought the scene was flat. I found it to be an odd scene. I didn’t have these overly high expectations either. I don’t know, it just…didn’t do it for me.

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    257. When we see Arya in the Hall of Gods, she is sitting in front of weirwood tree face. She says ‘I am no one’ in front of the face. I wonder if that means she is truly no one, or that she is in front of the tree accidentally (she is blind and may not know which god is in front of her), or that she will always be Arya of Winterfell? In books at least, Arya’s connection with Old Gods is strong. She does not throw Needle away because ‘the gods wanted her to have it back. Not the Seven nor the Many-Faced God, but her father’s gods, the Old Gods of the North. Many Face God can have the rest, but not this.’

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    258. Victoria of the Vale,
      They’ve basically removed the book version relationships of the wolves to the children (except Bran), the warging in all of the Stark blood (even Jon’s half-blood). So I don’t think Nymeria, unfortunately, matters either. Which, to me, is a bummer. Simple warging scenes without even showing the wolves and busting CGI budgets, would appear to have been easy if desired. Something like Arya seeing the whole picture from above, while a quick cut to a cat in the rafters, etc. Oh well. My belief is that

      Summer will be last one, and Ghost will probably die when Jon dies, as I don’t see anyone coming back from the dead as surviving to live a nice quiet normal life.

      It is what it is. I still enjoy it even if it has become even darker, and the Starks can’t catch a frigging break to literally save their lives.

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    259. Hi

      First time posting.

      I get some of the frustrations some people have with the show but i think they lack appreciation of the fact that this is television. Shit happens. And then things move on. They don’t have unlimited resources and perhaps the show runners noticed the missing hounds+ their handler in episode one but decided that it was a detail, that they couldn’t fix within reasonable means.

      I have to admit I did not notice those missing hounds until everybody started complaining about it. Were people as critical when Tyrion picked up the cup twice at the wedding in season four. Or have people just got used to extremely high standards…?

      Theory to send nitpickers into uncontrollable rage if true:
      Cersei wants to use her monster in a trial by combat. and she is (as would I be) sure that he’ll win. Confident in herself she sends Jamie off to The Riverlands only to find out that two very naughty girls from Dorne whipped her monster to death the day before the trial – presumably to die in the process.

      Cersei’s expression would be priceless. And so would the reactions from all the bad-pussy-haters on this forum.

      Just a thought.

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    260. Ghosts Lunch:

      I personally expect Jon to take up Dawn later in the series, eg S7 as a reflection of him more fully walking the path of the Prince that was promised.

      Why would Jon have Dawn? It’s a Dayne sword not Targ. Or are you suggesting N+A=J?

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    261. Elizabeth:
      Mihnea,

      You are so right!When he heard Bran, I was like “Ned heard him!!!” and up on the edge of my seat.Great episode.

      I can’t recall after just one viewing, but was their a weirwood tree shown in the general area? I could have sworn they could only use the weirnet if the faces can see the action. But I may be wrong.

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    262. The best I will allow myself to hope for out of Winterfell is that

      Osha will become the Ghost in Winterfell.

      But I won’t be surprised if we don’t even get that. Or if it’s only temporary.

      Ramsay needs Rickon alive as a bargaining chip, but he’s made it clear that he doesn’t have any qualms about maiming the heirs to major houses, and I don’t buy the fake Shaggydog theory.

      And the Manderleys will be the ones to turn, but not until the very end.

      Also, because I expect Sansa and Jon to ultimately triumph, things can just keep getting worse and worse until that point.

      I was bummed we didn’t get the whole ToJ, but it still played well to me. I’m mostly just curious to see who is playing Lyanna, because, I mean, we know how that scene is going to go.

      Love the idea that the little birds still belong to Varys. That didn’t occur to me, but it seems like the kind of thing the show would do.

      Wondering if Tommen will be swayed by the High Sparrow and betray Cersei, leading to a Mountain head-smash.

      He is *a* little brother, so perhaps he’s the Valonqar? All Maggy’s prophecies wrapped up nicely.

      We’re all in agreement he doesn’t survive this season, yes?

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    263. I loved Arya’s training scenes. They were very effective in showing us the passage of time along with Arya’s rapid increase in skill. Considering how many people have been complaining about the pace of her story in both directions, I thought this sequence split the difference rather perfectly. With the potential exception of “Chaos is a ladder”, it’s possibly the best montage that the show’s ever done (although to be fair, they haven’t done all that many). The moment when Arya finally manages to block the Waif’s attack was chilling, especially when paired with the excellent score and the look of shock on the Waif’s face. She’s become very formidable.

      Short scene with Sam and Gilly this week, but I’m glad that we got to catch up with them for the first time this year. Their dynamic remains sweet, and I’m very much looking forward to seeing Horn Hill and meeting the Tarly family. At first glance, I thought it was odd that we cut directly from Sam throwing up to the Tower of Joy flashback. Selfishly I would have preferred that they had used Jon to lead in to that scene, but that may have been a little too obvious given that they weren’t ready to deliver the full reveal quite yet. It’s amusing that they cut from the decidedly unglamorous image of a man being sick to perhaps the most lauded piece of history in the entire series, but then again, that kind of tonal contrast illustrates both sides of this particular story rather perfectly. In retrospect, I think it works well.

      One extremely minor quibble – it looks like the next time we see Sam and Gilly, we may be jumping straight to Horn Hill. That’s understandable, but I was really looking forward to seeing Gilly laying eyes on the Hightower of Oldtown for the first time. Oh well.

      Dany’s arrival in Vaes Dothrak was probably the most perfunctory scene of the week, but it’s clearly setting up massive developments to come as soon as next Sunday. I appreciated that Souad Faress’s High Priestess explicitly recalled Dany eating the stallion’s heart back in Season 1. I know it’s not the same actress, but I think it would be cool if she’s meant to be playing the same character who supervised that ceremony. I don’t think there’s anything explicitly contradicting it, so I think I’ll roll with that idea for now.

      Tyrion’s scene with Missandei and Grey Worm seemed strange on my initial viewing, but on rewatch I loved it. Not every scene needs to relentlessly drive the plot forward. Sometimes, it’s fun to just put vastly different characters in a room together and watch them bounce off one another.

      I love that we got to pull back the curtain on how Varys collects his knowledge and cultivates his little birds. Bringing back the prostitute who was luring the Unsullied into traps for the Sons of the Harpy last season (named Vala, as we learn here) was a nice touch – I always like it when the show fleshes out minor characters like that.

      We also got apparent confirmation that it’s the masters of Astapor, Yunkai, and Volantis who are funding the Sons of the Harpy. That was expected, but I appreciate it nonetheless. There was a school of thought that the Harpy needed to be a character we knew. I didn’t subscribe to that, mostly because there were no viable candidates for that role once Hizdahr was killed last season. And while I never believed it, I was terrified by the persistent theory that the Harpy was going to turn out to be Daario, which would make no sense at all. I’m glad we can lay that idea to rest.

      Speaking of Varys’s little birds, Qyburn certainly seems set to play a larger role this season. I think it’s a safe bet that he may take on some of the role that the Spider plays in the novels with respect to removing certain pieces from the game board. And while I know that everyone’s eager to see Jaime break from Cersei, I must say that I’m really enjoying their us-against-the-world dynamic so far.

      Kevan Lannister continues to show an impressive amount of spine. And all hail the return of the Queen of Thorns. That is all.

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    264. Fact:

      – We see Ramsey holding a knife while someone is lying on the bed in one of the trailers, saying “do you like games little man”

      – Rickon is a handsome young man.

      – Karstark is a gay pedophile.

      – Ramsey is well… Ramsey.

      Conclusion:
      Rickon is either going to become Ramsey´s new Reek or serve as a sex toy for Karstark.

      I truly do not know what is worse. Actually i do … if Ramsey makes him the new Reek and Karstark rapes him.

      Either way Rickon has turned out to be what book readers have always tought of him … a Shaggydog story.

      RIP

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    265. Pretty good episode. Best of season for me. There were the long awaited talking bits too and while I have to admit they werent that awesome, they balanced the episode much better than before. First nice bit of dialogue and then some decent action. Dayne going dualwield and hitting the sword into ground before the fight was bit meh, but 1-on-1 with Ned pretty much took the price. Such nice scene. Jon was really good and nice to see some old faces too. They really need to pick up speed with Meereen and KL though, Tyrion half man comedic relief is starting to get ugly. Understandably they cant do much while Dany isnt there, but then they could show something more interesting.

      Jon/Sansa meeting is pretty much guaranteed. What else would Sansa do in CB, become new Lord Commander? They will form the new Stark army with Sansa getting the north sympathy and Jon leading the army. Seems that Cleganebowl hints also started to drop. I agree with Jaime, thats one trial by combat I want to see. Maybe soon we also start to get passing glimpses of big scarred man in faith robes.

      Good episode. Enjoyed it a lot. Just getting the longer dialogue parts up to par and this will be awesome season.

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    266. Direwolf Lvr:
      Victoria of the Vale,
      They’ve basically removed the book version relationships of the wolves to the children (except Bran), the warging in all of the Stark blood (even Jon’s half-blood).

      Perhaps, but we do have hints that D&D may still yet be planning something more. I’m not yet giving up.

      All these wolves have a strange and deep connection with their Stark counterparts. –Benioff

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    267. The whole idea of Bran leaving the gave, does anyone else get the impression he will return to Winterfell and use the heart tree in the Godswood, the same one Ned was sitting at.

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    268. I’m guessing for the show Dawn will just be another Valyrian steel blade. They don’t have time to build up the whole other legend and that will be enough to make it important for the show. That way, it doesn’t need to be sharpened and sticking it in the dirt wouldn’t be a problem. 🙂

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    269. mattpeto,

      Interesting! I’d assumed that Eddie Eyre was playing Oswell Whent, and that Gerold Hightower had been removed from the Tower of Joy sequence so that Arthur Dayne could assume the lead role among the Kingsguard knights stationed there. But then again, Gerold Hightower was mentioned in the Small Council scene and confirmed to be the Lord Commander, whereas Whent hasn’t been mentioned at all. It makes sense that the show would namedrop Hightower in another scene if he was Dayne’s companion at the Tower. Perhaps Whent joined Rhaegar at the Trident in this telling, and died there. Or he just doesn’t exist, which is fine by me.

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    270. JamesL:
      I usually read reactions before I watch an episode and considering the mixed reaction to this one I was surprised how much I liked it. I thought it was a good episode, not as good as last week but certainly better than the premiere.

      One nitpick, I still hate what they’ve done to the Children of the Forest. I much prefer the childlike one from season 4 than this lizard creature woman.

      Also, there needs to be a petition to get the show to stop cutting the male characters hair. Jaime, Bran, and Jon all look better with longer hair though I know some may disagree with this.

      I actually like the Children of the Forests new look, they aren’t really children, they aren’t even human. And they don’t look like lizard people at all lol, they have a forest look to them.

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    271. I don’t understand why people think Umber is faking out Ramsay. Since neither Ramsay nor Karstark likely know Rickon or Osha, why would a fake-out include the actual real Rickon Stark being sent to Winterfell? Why not send some other non-descript boy? I think it’s grasping at straws there. Sure, Umber can switch allegiances back, but I think the Bolton/Karstark/Umber alliance is pretty solid in this episode.

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    272. 3-Eyed Raven said he has been under the tree for thousands of years, and Melisandre is actually centuries old. So could that be a hint that

      3-Eyed Ravens aka Brynden Rivers is her father?

      I hope we will learn more about 3-Eyed Raven in the episodes to come.

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    273. Victoria of the Vale,

      The direwolves that still alive are very interesting: Ghost is with litterally with a ghost, Nymeria the Warrior queen is still out there, nobody knows where (same as Arya), and Summer has a very suggestive name that can be foreshadowing of Bran’s role in the end. As there was a Bran The Builder last time the WW attacked, there is a very powerful Bran around that might help rebuilding Westeros?

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    274. Hoyti Von Totiy: Rickon is either going to become Ramsey´s new Reek or serve as a sex toy for Karstark.

      You realize Umber was simply insulting Karstark, right? Obviously there’s no love lost between these two houses, and that was Umber throwing shade.

      Also, Ramsay has incentive to keep Rickon alive and healthy. Without Sansa, he has no legitimate claim to being Warden of the North… but if he can manipulate Rickon in the same way the High Sparrow is manipulating Tommen, he might be able to gain in such a way that allows a Stark to remain at Winterfell *and* keep the Warden title. Hurting or otherwise penalizing Rickon would only lead to unrest, and as much as he wants to lure Jon out, he doesn’t need to actually do it with blood. Then again, it’s Ramsay so who knows… 🙂

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    275. Tycho Nestoris: 1) Jon is not a Stark. He’s LC of the NW.
      2) Why is Smalljon willing to give up a valuable hostage (he could marry Rickon to an Umber or any number of things) instead of just kneeling? My point why is kneeling so much more difficult than killing a direwolf and turning over a prince of winterfell? Could he not have gotten the same “deal” from Ramsay by simply kneeling?
      3) Why include Osha? She’s nobody (to ramsay).

      2) The alliance is one of convenience. The Umbers still hate the Boltons, they just hate the wildings more. (Think of USA and USSR against Nazi Germany during World War II, if you must have a modern-day analogue.) Why did Smalljon give Rickon to the Boltons? Because it’s an empty gesture. Rickon is politically worthless now. Who cares if the Umbers have a bunch of “Stark” offsprings? The Boltons control Winterfell now, therefore they control the North. So why not offload Rickon on to the Boltons?

      3) Why include Osha? if Smalljon is smart enough to know that Ramsay killed Roose, Smalljon also knows that Ramsay likes his playthings. Osha, as a wildling, makes the perfect plaything for Ramsay and will keep him amused (and distracted) for the time being.

      I wouldn’t be surprised if the Umbers’ plan is to betray and overthrow the Boltons *after* the wildings are taken care of. And if Rickon is also killed, the easier for the Umbers to lay their claim to Winterfell.

      The Manderlys is the family who is going to betray the Boltons right before the battle and turn the tide of the battle.

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    276. Only been able to skim watch the episode so far and haven’t had a chance to read everyone’s comments so apologies as usual if I’m just repeating what everyone else has already said. Some initial thoughts: Ed was the last one holding Jon’s cloak so he gets to be Lord Commander – go Edd! Davos, you are the father figure half the characters in the show need. Don’t remember him being sweary around Stannis, maybe the latter didn’t approve. F***ing go for it, you’d be a great Hand to any leader. Smalljon Umber, motives seem perfectly reasonable in the show

      if it weren’t for book readers’ doubts I’d take him 100% at face value, due to them it’s currently 95%.

      Maybe Ramsay takes all he needs from the Umbers and kills SJ for lack of respect

      burning cross anyone?

      although he might warm to his don’t-give-a-f**k attitude.

      Finally, if they are going to carry on killing off people at this rate it’ll be easier to revise our deathpools to who-will-still-be-alive-for-S7 pools. Bolstered by my self-awarded internet points for correct guesses so far (9), I’m going for Ramsay kills Osha (not a hunt PLEEEEAAAAAASSSSEEEE) but keeps Rickon as a valuable hostage. Cersei tries to have Olenna killed or even her, Mace and Loras because unless I’m missing something, Margery becomes the Tyrell heir and as she is married to Tommen, if something ‘unfortunate’ happened to her after she gets the lot, it all goes to him?

      plus I imagine she is the one who has Kevan and Pycelle dispatched?

      New Karstark guy – if someone else doesn’t do it I’ll kill him myself. Instant dislike there.

      Awesome headgear watch still on standby, but it will be worth the wait! 😀

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    277. I honestly don’t even care about Dawn, I think this is the first time we have seen someone duel wielding swords in a fight in the show.

      And it was awesome!

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    278. Jared,

      Hightower is also a name that might come up again as we’re heading to Oldtown. Whent’s never been mentioned in the show, I don’t think, Harrenhal is always just Harrenhal.

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    279. “…he needs to fight only one..”
      In my head is was:
      CLEGANEBOWL!!!!!

      Get HYPE!

      ToJ was fine, really amped up for the Northern storyline… Bastardbowl, Umberbrawl, Manderly-mike-drop, RW 2.0… it’s going to be sick!

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    280. Jared:

      Tyrion’s scene with Missandei and Grey Worm seemed strange on my initial viewing, but on rewatch I loved it. Not every scene needs to relentlessly drive the plot forward. Sometimes, it’s fun to just put vastly different characters in a room together and watch them bounce off one another.

      I think that this scene was very successful at pointing out what Tyrion has to work with and who he can rely on and for what.

      We so both small councils (KL and Meereen) and we got a lot of situations to past council meetings: people doubting or not understanding Tyrion’s points in Meereen (as it had been at KL). A reminiscense of the musical chairs of a few seasons ago, when Tyrion managed was able to capture everyone’s attention (specially Tywin) and say what he wanted to say, while Cersei came with the full cavalry and still wasn’t able to garner the attention of Kevan.

      I can imagine how this will end up for the KL Small Council.

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    281. Rhaenys Stark: More flashbacks to come??

      Interesting. I’m assuming this one will be the scene where Lyanna is “kidnapped” and we get to see Hodor’s origin? In either next week’s episode or at the start of E5?

      The casting call for “Young Stunner” (presumably Lyanna) did state that the role was for two scenes. So there’s still more to tell there beyond what everybody (myself included) assumes is confirmation that R + L = J.

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    282. Josh L,

      2) Kneeling seems like an *emptier* gesture. I disagree that Rickon is politically worthless.

      I would have liked a little background on Rickon’s time at Last Hearth and the Greatjon’s death. I feel like the lack of context (about Rickon’s relationship with the Umbers) is fueling my speculation.

      EDIT: By context I mean interaction (b/t Rickon and the Umbers) outside of the politically delicate situation we saw in Oathbreaker.

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    283. It was definitely Whent at the ToJ, Gerold Hightower was much older than Dayne and was referenced as Lord Commander. He wouldn’t have taken such a backseat to Dayne in that scene. Plus he speaks Whents lines from the book.

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    284. dragonbringer,

      At some point Drogon will fly over the city.
      -it was in one of the previews, so i’m thinking while they are deciding her fate in their Khal counsel… her badass protector will fly over and that’ll take care of this staying in a temple non-sense.

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    285. Grumpkins:
      I got the opposite feeling, because they so blatantly name dropped him at the start of the scene! Have to wait and see I guess.

      Yes, I agree. Also, the fact that they choose to remind us of his relationship to Meera, got me thinking the Meera/JS twins theory might have some legs.

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    286. dragonmcmx,

      That probably only sounded good in Ned’s dream. Looking back after all that had happened. Somber and wistful. Resigned. Definitely sounded better for me in my mind for the older, wiser Ned to be remembering it.

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    287. I made a comment after last season wishing they had added to Arya’s training with her learning the Braavosi language and to make poisons as she does in the books. While the scene last night of her making poisons was short, I am happy they included it so it’s shown that she’s learning things other than just fighting and lying.

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    288. Josh L,

      I also disagree that Rickon is worthless. His most obvious use for Ramsay is to manipulate Jon.

      The Umbers could have used him against Ramsay. They could have demanded he help with the wildlings because they held him. It could have been advantageous to the Umbers to keep him as a guarantee that Ramsay would do what they wanted. It gives them an edge. And maybe they wouldn’t have needed to pledge fealty to him because of that edge. It is very mysterious. But why kill the direwolf it it is a conspiracy? That complicates things.

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    289. This might be my favourite episode so far this season. I wasn’t particularly a fan of how fast the first two seemed to be taking things. I know this season is going to be faster and more intense than previous seasons, but it’s still good to have slow moments that still move the story

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    290. We lost a lot of viewers this week, no? I mean the “if anything happens to Shaggy…” “If anything happens to Olly….” “If there is no white sword…” ….. there’s the door. 😉

      Wimsey Olly had to go, regardless of if it was the best thing to do or not. He deserved it or not. (according to some) I think he did. To me he was the ultimate traitor, he was supposed to be mentored by Jon, be paying attention, hopefully building loyalty, helping to get over his past. But he was poisoned by the nastiness of the rest of the traitors. They had to go. I am not doing an “I told you so” here, just simply giving my thoughts. *whispers* But I did tell ya so. 😉

      For the episode….

      I really enjoyed this episode. The only down time was the Tyrion scene, they are just not giving this guy meat to play with, I think his time is still to come for more greatness. OH AND IF DAENY GIVES HER PEDIGREE ONE MORE TIME, CUT OUT HER TONGUE. All the rest was wonderful. A few thoughts….

      I think the statement from BR “that is Howland Reed, Meera’s father” was to prove the “Meera and Jon are twins” rubbish and get rid of it once and for all. Not some huge other meaning.

      Arya has just added a new name to her list, The Waif. I think that was the significance of that scene.

      I DO think that is Shaggy. 🙁 Sadly I think that Rickon will be held as a hostage and Osha, I don’t want to think about right now.

      CB was handled great, love the new Jon, love Edd, love Tormund, love Davos….I even love the new look of Mel. Usually she has that deadpan “I know what you don’t” look. Now she looks on in wonder of Jon. Can’t wait to see what happens next.

      ToJ:. I think it was a perfect scene, dialog great, excellent foreshadowing for Bran. Can’t wait to see Lyanna and Ned. I have patience, I don’t mind being doled out greatness in spoonfuls.

      This is only episode three. I don’t want to rush the rest. Let it happen in slow perfectness, as it is. I LOVE GoT’s!! In D & D I trust. and I really DO want GRRM to finish his book, I know I will love it just as well.

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    291. stoneboy: Let it go?? You don’t read well. I’m saying Arya will become a Faceless Man, thereby being able to use the faces. Have you not seen every episode and all the teasers this year.

      Funny that i’m just having a theory and that you seem to know everything. Very scary. Are you one of the writers?

      Regarding Stoneheart, she could show up, but there’s a bigger chance she isn’t. But theres also evidence she does, since ALL the characters in her storylines are cast except her. Think about that…

      Arya is not going to leave Braavos a “Faceless Man.” She’s going to reclaim her identity as Arya Stark before heading back to Westeros to finish off her List. That was the whole point of that Needle scene last season. When she recovers Needle, she’ll also recover Arya Stark. But with mad ninja assassin skills.

      I’m not the writer of the show, but I am somebody who can see where the story is going, and I am somebody who pays attention to D&D’s choices when creating this show, as well as figure out where the “butterfly effect” is heading.

      Are my predictions 100% correct? No, and I am sometimes thrown for a loop. I definitely did not see Dorne playing out like it did, and I was wrong in that I thought the words “And now his watch is ended” would be uttered over Jon Snow’s dead body (and pleasantly surprised when the reason why that didn’t happen is because Jon Snow says it himself in his mic-dropping moment).

      But it’s painfully obvious that LSH is cut from the show, just as Young Griffin, Victarion Greyjoy, Arianne Martell, and Sansa-in-Vale were cut from the show. The clues are all there.

      1) “The Lannisters send their regards.” In the books, it was “Jaime Lannister sends his regards.” Why was this changed? Because without LSH, there’s no need to specifically emphasize Jaime Lannister. In the books, one of the very last thing Catelyn Stark hears before being butchered is Roose Bolton saying “Jaime Lannister sends his regards” as he stabs Robb. When Catelyn comes back as LSH, one of the first thing she does after capturing Brienne is to send her to kill Jaime Lannister. Why? Because Catelyn believes that Jaime was a major participant behind the Red Wedding — he sent his regards, after all (when we know that Jaime knew nothing about it), so Catelyn wants vengeance against Jaime.

      2) The streamlining of the Starks’ wolf dreams / warging. In the books, all of the Starks (except Sansa, who lost her direwolf early on) can warg / has wolf dreams. This plays a role in LSH’s story, as one of Arya’s wolf dreams shows Nymeria pulling a 3-day old corpse from the river (which is Catelyn’s corpse) and doesn’t eat it. As of this episode, I think it’s officially safe to say that the chances of a Stark other than Bran being able to warg is now 0%. Arya never warged into a cat to learn how to block the Waif. Jon Snow clearly didn’t warg into Ghost when he was dead (he saw nothing). Removing Arya’s warging / wolf dreams also removes LSH’s beginning — because there’s no LSH.

      3) D&D have consistently downplayed the more fantastical elements of “A Song of Ice and Fire.” Less prophecies. The lack of a eternally-shining Lightbrighter. Only Bran can warg / has wolf dreams. Ser Gregor still has his head. And so on and on. LSH is another fantastical element that’s been removed.

      So yeah, LSH is gone. The big “Frey Revenge” plot is still around, but there’s plenty of other characters around who can easily assume the “leader of BwB” role.

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    292. Something about this episode just lingers with me
      It was so… haunting…

      The dialogue was so well written, so many layers…
      I loved it.
      Only slight nitpick was Dany reciting her titles again, hoping they show a bit more evolution of her character, but then again, shes stuck in a foreign, scary surrounding with really no leverage other than her titles, so it makes sense.

      And I do believe we are getting a big development for her next week

      Also, I loved the KL scenes, but they need to get it moving a bit more. We need more crazy Cersei, and I’d like to see how her and Jaime’s relationship evolves (and hopefully comes to a breaking point)

      This episode reminds me of Kissed by Fire and Kill the Boy… Slow burning, yet terrific episodes. Actually enjoyed it more than last week.

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    293. Cameryn,

      I don’t believe Ramsay has an incentive for keeping Rickon alive beyond manipulating Jon, Sansa, and whoever supports them. Maybe he could use Rickon as a guarantee of the Northerner’s loyalty, but more likely Rickon would just provide a rallying point for anyone looking to overthrow Ramsay. He killed his own half brother. Why keep Rickon?

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    294. Mihnea:
      Halfman,

      This is the exact way I wanted to see Jon.
      Not a ruthless man, who was changed just because he died but a conflicted man who was changed because he was betrayed and so on. It isn’t dying that changed him but the events around his death.

      Of course death did change him, he is perhaps a bit more cynical and doesn’t believe in ”fairy tales” any longer.

      But he didn’t become like LSH he just ”killed the boy and let the men be born”.

      Well Jon literally DID kill thr boy!

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    295. Demon Monkey,

      It is very mysterious. But why kill the direwolf it it is a conspiracy? That complicates things.

      You bring up a good question. Someone else mentioned why not use a Rickon decoy? That too, is valid. My hope is for a Northern Conspiracy so my bias is for Rickon/Osha black ops (lol).

      That said, the Umbers are up to something and b/c there’s not much to go on… everything feels like fair game IMO.

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    296. Darkrobin:

      Tyrion, GW, and Missandei – okay so now I get that the scene was purposefully excruciating, but it still sounded to me like nails on a chalk board … whether on purpose or not …

      Tyron is training GW and M to be rulers so the Westerosi and D can vacate Essos. They used to be slaves, so teaching them to lead is tedious.

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    297. Lulus Mum:

      Awesome headgear watch still on standby, but it will be worth the wait! ?

      Lyanna Forever: Are you talking about a

      No, Carmen Miranda is in Episode 6 :‑O

      Reliable leak, honest!

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    298. Mihnea,

      Agree with the rankings. Yes, I think Episode 2 fell flat as we all knew Jon was going to be resurrected and it was likely that Mel would try and fail at first (I think the SNL skit captured this perfectly).

      Yes, I had read about Mel’s big reveal in Episode 1, I was just surprised the show decided to go that way. It had been clear to me in the books that Mel was much older than she appeared. Her chapter in ADWD plus just the description of her indicated she was other than she appeared. I had read the interview where CvH says she was told she was ancient but it did surprise me they chose to reveal this. In retrospect it makes sense that this is the gag that D&D had talked about.

      I just thought the pacing, acting, writing, and flow was so much better this episode, even knowing some of the reveals (Rickon = the gift)

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    299. Daughter of Winter,

      This is the best thing about this episode, at least to me. Jon is not unJon, he may be disillusioned, wounded and confused but he is still the Jon who feels everything that he is suppose to feel, he smiled at Tormund’s joke and took the time to hug his friend. This new Jon is still in essence the old Jon and that is great because there was little wrong with original Jon. Good and decent people are still needed in desperate times.

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    300. Stargaryen,

      This is what he said:

      “you think I wanted to sit here for a 1,000 years watching the world from a distance while the roots grew through me?”

      Whether poetic license or not, I don’t know. I just don’t know if him being BR and all that entails is important enough to the show story to delve into his background.

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