George R.R. Martin’s original plan for Game of Thrones

Yesterday Game of Thrones and A Song of Ice and Fire fans received a glimpse into the future of what might have been, thanks to a tweet from Harper Collins UK.

Harper Collins is the publisher of the ASOIAF books, and yesterday the Twitter account posted the early proposal for a “high fantasy” trilogy featuring the warring houses of Westeros. Martin outlines his thoughts for the entire series- but don’t get too excited as the last paragraph has been blacked out.

The tweet has since been deleted but the information contained is still floating around the internet, reposted on multiple Twitter, Reddit and Tumblr pages.

Though a great deal of the story has changed already, it should be treated as a possible spoiler, so proceed with caution.

The proposal includes notable events such as Ned and Robb Stark’s deaths, but Catelyn’s death happens later in this version. Jaime is a straightforward villain, and Martin goes so far as to say which five central characters will live to the end. There is a rather un-ASOIAF-like love story included, and it’s all rather strange, frankly. I think it’s safe to say Martin has changed his mind about most of this, based on the books we’ve read, but it’s fascinating to see what could have happened.

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Sue the Fury: Well, what do you think? This is pretty mind-blowing. They’re like fanfic versions of our favorite characters.

383 responses

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    1. I love how reddit is uncovering the redacted part of the text. This fandom has truly gone insane lol.

      I’m glad GRRM didn’t go through with the

      Jon, Arya, Tyrion love triangle

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    2. THE FUCK DID I JUST READ?!

      ETA: seriously though, Sansa Marries Joff and has his kid, Jaime becomes king by killing everyone and blaming Tyrion, Dany murders Drogo in revenge for Viserys (lol!), Tyrion and Jon both fall for ARYA, WHAT

      OK GRRM, I’m going to go read those first 13 chapters again assuming this is the endgame because wow.

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    3. Turncloak,

      I was wondering if someone would be able to do that. If you invert colors, you’d be able to make out some outlines, but I’m not sure you can make out all the words really.

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    4. After this all i can say is a big LOL to those people who think that Martin had everything planned from the start and he doesn’t ever change his mind,yeah right . One one hand this sounds like a more straightforward generic fantasy story so in this case i’m glad he changed his mind but on the other hand we wouldn’t have the “wonders” that are AFFC and ADWD,two mostly filler and pointless books that could have been either shorter(in the case of ADWD) or not exist at all(in the case of AFFC). Oh well you lose some and you gain some .

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    5. “Until the secret of Jon’s parentage is revealed in the final book”: but I thought that Ned said that his mother was some tavern wench…..

      🙂

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    6. Glad that Arya’s remained a key character. Her relationship with Jon has creepy undertones bow though, especially when considering how both Ygritte and Gendry reminded them of their sibling.

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    7. The Jon and Arya thing didn’t shock me(i mean this is ASOIAF we are talking about)as much as Tyrion being in love with her and being in conflict with Jon over it,like wtf,even in fan fiction you wouldn’t expect this insanity .

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    8. Jesterr223456: After this all i can say is a big LOL to those people who think that Martin had everything planned from the start and he doesn’t ever change his mind,yeah right .

      Yes and no. The difference between plot and story does spring to mind here. Yes, GRRM has changed a lot of the plot details: but this synopsis certainly is consistent with the type of story that he has told so far. Moreover, if you look at these elements, then it seems that there are a lot of things retained but adapted. Sansa doesn’t marry Joffery or bear his son, but she does side with him to the ruination of her house and she does bitterly rue that. Winterfell is besieged and burned. Tyrion does not murder Joffery, but he is convicted of the murder, and one of Joffery’s parents assumes rule in Joffery’s stead. There is not going to be a Jon-Arya-Tyrion love triangle: but there certainly is a chance for Jon to be involved in a love-triangle with a near relative.

      All of this would easily create the character development that in turn creates GRRM’s stories. All of this could easily be leading to the same basic end-game that GRRM envisioned. So, yes, GRRM clearly has changed his ideas about the plot structure: but, no, he probably has not changed his mind about the basic stories and he might still be working to the same end-game.

      Jesterr223456: wtf,even in fan fiction you wouldn’t expect this insanity .

      Many aspects of their character developments would have been a lot different had Martin stayed with these plot outlines.

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    9. Luka Nieto:
      Turncloak,

      … how?

      For starters, letters that continue above the blacked-out portions shouldn’t be too hard to determine. Such as t’s, b’s and d’s. Perhaps the i’s and letter groupings like “th”.

      I don’t know if it is possible to crack the whole thing, but it should keep some people busy a while.

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    10. In light of this, it’s interesting how all those Jon-Arya shippers didn’t entirely imagine things. Martin didn’t, for one reason or another, manage to completely rid the published material of this rather… icky… subtext. (And really, what is it with him and incest?)

      Makes one wonder what other fan theories turn out false yet true, in a manner of speaking.

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    11. gisizzlah:
      Someone please turn this version into a fan fic… i will read it…

      It seems like it is fanfic already. But if I read this as fanfic after watching the show, I would been like ‘oh pulease! Not even believable!’ lol Thank God he improved the storyline.

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    12. saki:

      Hey. Guys, can you tell me if this article is real? http://variety.com/2015/tv/news/game-of-thrones-george-r-r-martin-book-ending-which-characters-survive-1201424268/

      This link to a Variety article was posted by Saki in another thread. It recaps the main highlights.

      And the last paragraph listing who would ultimately survive might end up being true after all.

      That was so much fun to read. It’s fascinating how the characters and storylines were developed to what they are now.

      (Another poster, Felt Pelt, mentioned the early outline read like early versions of Star Wars: A New Hope, “Journal of the Whills”.)

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    13. There are loads of juicy tidbits in here that have implications for the ASOIAF theories floating around, such as the armies of the undead and the neverborn (?!).

      R+L=J seems more likely now, and A+N=J a bit less likely. I have a feeling he wouldn’t change that mid-books but I may be wrong. After all, go figure with this outline.

      I also have a feeling this was written a bit tongue-in-cheek. GRRM doesn’t like doing outlines and may have made some over the top details up out of spite because someone made him do it. 🙂

      Also, eww, love triangle. Maybe the original Arya was more like what Sansa is today, or what Lyanna is today.

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    14. Yeah maybe because it’s outlined but the love triangle is making me cackle when I think about it. It reads like a very bad fanfiction. Oh god, it’s horrible. I’m glad for the series we have.

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    15. gisizzlah:
      Someone please turn this version into a fan fic… i will read it…

      It seems like it is fanfic already. But if I read this as fanfic after watching the show, I would been like ‘oh pulease! Not even believable!’ lol Thank God he improved the storyline.

      Mr Fixit:
      In light of this, it’s interesting how all those Jon-Arya shippers didn’t entirely imagine things. Martin didn’t, for one reason or another, manage to completely rid the published material of this rather… icky… subtext. (And really, what is it with him and incest?)

      Makes one wonder what other fan theories turn out false yet true, in a manner of speaking.

      And it also allows for the Jon-Sansa shippers who are everywhere. I can see that more easily that Arya-Jon personally but only if he is their cousin and not their half brother.

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    16. Mr Fixit:

      In light of this, it’s interesting how all those Jon-Arya shippers didn’t entirely imagine things. Martin didn’t, for one reason or another, manage to completely rid the published material of this rather… icky… subtext. (And really, what is it with him and incest?)

      Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s A Hundred Years of Solitude. William Faulkner’s The Sound and the Fury. Shakespeare, Greek mythology, even the Bible. Incest is an element in all of them.

      Until ASOIF/GoT came along, I never realized how common incest was in literature. Now it freaks me out. Eeww!

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    17. The Jon-Arya-Tyrion triangle thing is weird. That being said

      It’s entirely possible Martin keeps that idea and replaces Arya with Dany.

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    18. I wonder how many editors/publishers rejected this in 1993? I wonder what kind of advance he got when they did accept it?

      “As you know, I don’t outline my novels. I find that if I know exactly where a book is going, I lose all interest in writing it.”

      These prognosticating words are very worrisome, given that he has indeed outlined ASoI&F in “a possible final form” for D&D/HBO. But given the vast difference between this summary and the tale offered thus far, there may be many surprises yet for all.

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    19. GRRM admits he loses interest of writing and admits he never planned how everything interconnected. That explains the last 2 books being bad and the long delay for them.

      Gone are the fans who can claim it is just his creative process

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    20. GRRM has been fascinated with the idea of incestous love for a long time. He seems to have no tolerance for the idea of the Westermarck effect. 😀 I do hope there is no “triangle” in the end though.

      I hope the idea of the “five” surviving to the end is still true.

      It’s curious how amalgamated some characters were, in the early drafts, and then they got split. Also, it’s shocking that there was no named Cersei to start with! In fact, ’93draft Jamie, the one big villain, seems to be an amalgamation of Tywin and Cersei.

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    21. The Bastard:
      GRRM admits he loses interest of writing and admits he never planned how everything interconnected. That explains the last 2 books being bad and the long delay for them.

      Gone are the fans who can claim it is just his creative process

      Well, it IS his creative process that is causing the delay…perhaps a permanent delay. This makes me lose hope that GRRM will ever finish the books, but perhaps by leaving all of this material behind (the show and the information that he has provided D&D) someone else would be able to finish after he is gone (not that I want him to go any time soon!). I would like to read the conclusion eventually even though I will see a conclusion over the next couple of years. Best case scenario: GRRM develops late-in-life discipline and finishes the dang things. Probably the least-likely scenario, however.

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    22. As someone suggested in westeros.org, it seems that Jaime Lannister, as we know him, didn’t exist in that draft. It seems that the character that Martin refers as “Jaime” in the draft, was later changed to a woman and named Cersei, then she was given a twin brother. If you read it, it makes perfect sense, the Jaime in that draft is essentially Cersei, her hatred for Tyrion, how she ends up as the sole ruler, etc.

      Also, it seems that the majority of the Arya character in the draft was finally given to Sansa. I think George planned Arya to age much quicker, but in the end she stayed relatively young, so she gave her part to Sansa. So, I guess it would be ok to count Sansa as a sixth main character now. Sansa’s character in the draft seems to have been filled by Margeory Tyrell.

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    23. Flora Linden,

      Yes, I always found it surprising that Martin gets such a backlash for the incest leitmotif yet it has been in the classic literature from the time of Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex. And no one I know criticizes Shakespeare for introducing Gertrude and Claudius’s “incestuous” marriage in Hamlet.

      I have to assume Martin’s is such a hot topic because the two characters at the center of it consider it love and damn the rest of the world.

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    24. My God i said it before and i will say it again.

      This is amazing. The basic story in writing without filler!

      #nodorne
      #nobrianne
      #nopyke
      #noslaversbay
      #nofuckingmereenthankyougod
      #nobravoosandnofacelessmen
      #notraveling
      #noturtles
      #nogriffs
      #noquentyn

      NO FILLER !

      WHY didnt he write this??????????????????

      #NOONEUNDERSTANDS

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    25. This was such an interesting read, it’s great to see where GRRM was planning for the story to go.

      The love triangle does sound a bit unbelievable now, I mean Tyrion and Arya? Jon & Arya doesn’t sound so strange to me actually, the bond between them has always been strong and it wouldn’t take that much to turn it into a romance in the future. It was only a bit over a hundred years ago when a marriage between cousins was completely normal, so it’s funny how grossed out people are about the possibility of Jon and Arya getting together in the end. Or maybe I’m just really weird.

      I hope someone manages to get the blacked out text uncovered!

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    26. Wow, thank the seven gods that GRRM didn’t stick to this first outline, specially re the love triangle.
      But I’d have loved a 3000-page trilogy. That I’d have totally read. And maybe we’d have had the ending the last century/millennium!!!!

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    27. Hodor’s Bastard,

      Looking at this 1993 draft outline, and going back a week or so to a previous discussion we had: what if between 2006 and now Martin changed his mind about some of the storylines? This right here proves that he does change (5 yr gap also proves it)

      What if Martin found a better way to tell a storyline or realized something he originally outlined to HBO doesn’t work so well in his vision on paper? Can you imagine him being tied to the HBO original draft he gave? !

      PS. If we ever see that contract we’ll be striking up a different conversation HB LOL

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    28. Well, Arya is Llyanna Stark reborn in a way … Which makes the love triangle even creepier.
      I’m glad it didn’t go that route.

      I am not sure if the main 5 are safe either although that would be nice, I counted out Arya making it after ADWD.

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    29. Well, we won’t know how the series ends until episode 7×10 airs sometime in June 2017. Possibly we’ll get the final book in 2020 or thereabouts.

      Fortunately, David and Dan don’t read these boards, but what if Watchers on the Wall held a fan fiction contest of some sort?

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    30. Wow…. considering that Benioff and Weiss only get a few months to nail their ideas down and write each season… you can’t exactly say that they’re worse than GRRM in limited time

      But seriously isn’t Arya 11 and Tyrion around 30?

      and I wonder if Bran becoming a not-that-major-hardly-gets-any-chapters character was because GRRM has difficulty writing him, or if he’ll suddenly become a very-major-gets-all-the-chapters character in TWOW

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    31. Ah yes the infamous “Queso-Letter” of 1993, sent by raven from the library tower in Santa Fe dark wings, dark words.

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    32. Tormund’s Woman,

      🙂 I also love how GRRM had LS completely fleshed out in those early drafts. 🙂

      Seriously, some of the details mentioned in this early summary, like Needle, “savagery of the direwolves”, “no one is completely safe,” Tyrion switching sides…make me smile. Even “the dreadful glimpse of the inhuman others as they attack the wildling encampment” make me wonder if that was the GoT prologue or something else (HH?). We really haven’t got an actual “Others” attack in progress yet (maybe Fist of the First Men, but that wasn’t with wildlings). Hmmmm.

      I wonder how the Others also became known as the WWs in GRRM’s mind and ASoI&F lore.

      That 13-chapter first draft would be quite the collectible.

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    33. Balerion The Cat,

      Well, not speculation on how the series will end, just a fanfic contest with actual prizes. Maybe place a length limit of 1,000 words, a.k.a. “short short stories” or flash fiction.

      Arya would feature in mine, but no time for squicky love triangles 😉

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    34. Tormund’s Woman,

      D&D had a long conversation about the last two books with Martin just last year, so nothing of that matters now, unless you’re also suggesting Martin might completely change his plans from what he had just last year.

      Greenjones,

      Thanks!

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    35. The letter states that before Ned is taken into custody, he helps Catelyn and Arya escape to Winterfell. They are later forced to flee north when the castle is beseiged by Tyrion. The Night’s Watch is unable to help them and they ultimately end up in the hands of Mance Rayder beyond the Wall. After an attack from the Others, Catelyn is killed though Arya and Bran survive.

      The letter also mentions that, after becoming disenchanted with his family, Tyrion sides with the Starks and falls in love with Arya.

      The only part of Arya’s original storyline that you could argue was given to Sansa is the “relationship” with Tyrion. Otherwise there are little to no similarities.

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    36. Luka Nieto,

      Great Christ Luka, what part of what I wrote is unclear to you?

      what if between 2006 and now Martin changed his mind about some of the storylines?

      Can you imagine him being tied to the HBO original draft he gave? !

      Let me know when you figure it out.

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    37. I always brushed off fan theories about Jon marrying Arya or Sansa. Now I’m not so sure. I still hope they’re wrong. Not so much because he’s they’re his nieces. He’s Dany’s nephew (assuming R+L ) and although I’m not a shipper of the two it doesn’t gross me out. It’s because they grew up as siblings.

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    38. Tormund’s Woman,

      I was exclusively talking about the second part about changing the ending, spinning off to criticize what many book readers seem to believe. They have the idea (that is, the hope) that the Game of Thrones ending, which we will have sooner, will be completely different from the books, despite all the evidence to the contrary.

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    39. Hodor’s Bastard,

      HAHA you definitely hit it right off the park with LS! 😛

      But funnily enough I was thinking that if she was killed by the Others in this letter than she definitely could have returned as a wight. How about that?!

      Oh, talk about direwolves which I know you like:

      The direwolves will have a part according to a Martin interview in Wow. Who knows what, though? He said IIRC approximately this: that you cannot have a pack of direwoves roaming the Riverlands without some consequences and that he did not hung a gun on the wall for nothing.

      Reminded me instantly of Wimsey!

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    40. Tormund’s Woman,

      Actually, GRRM said that you cannot hang

      a pack of wolves on the wall!

      , at least in the clip that I saw. (He might well have repeated it differently at other places.) But my understanding is that good writers think like this all the time: Chekhov put a catchy phrase on it, but Shakespeare made some general comment to these effects, too.

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    41. Luka Nieto,

      Yes, but I was not suggesting that. Martin said repeatedly he won’t change the endgame. How he gets there is a different story though. It may be a bit different that the show or it may not.

      My original discussion with HB (to which I was referring) was trying to figure it out if the writer also has some room to change the storylines when such a contract for adaptation is signed or is it only the producers who adapt the story who have that privilege. Because it might turn out form a writing standpoint that he wants to change something he previously thought it would work. Is he allowed to do that? Who knows? HB thinks that it is an organic contract that changes during the years. We don’t know really, just speculate like the rest of the fandom.

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    42. Luka Nieto,

      Come on, Luka. There is always a “best of both worlds” possibility, don’t you think? Given the look and feel (and detail) of this first draft summary, there is always the possibility that things are in flux. From 1993 to 1996, things regarding GoT completely changed! Also, the meeting that you mention between D&D and GRRM happened over 3 years ago. What matters are the updates since then…and I think it is fairly clear that GRRM and D&D are heading in different directions (butterfly effects, etc). Hopefully, GRRM is actively headed in some direction.

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    43. Hm. The original storyline of “Game of Thrones” (war of 5 kings) ended up taking 3 books. The original storyline of “Dance” (Dany assembles her dragons/hoards and invades) appears to be taking 3 books. I bet ASoIaF, if it ever finishes, ends up being 9 books.

      Write like the wind, George!

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    44. Honestly, the thing that jumped out at me–apart from the Jon/Tyrion/Arya love triangle, because WTF–was GRRM stating that if he knows exactly where a story is going, he loses all interest in it. Welp.

      I get the sense that the original version of Tyrion was supposed to be much younger than he is in the books.

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    45. Hodor’s Bastard,

      I don’t think that’s fairly clear at all. I’d say they’re heading in the same direction, with plenty of differences along the way, but all leading to the same place. What gives you the idea they’re heading in a different direction? Yes, each season is less faithful to the books than the last in detail, but the big plot points have always been hit. I don’t see how that will stop happening. Sure, the details and the actual experience of reading the books will be quite different from the show, but for those who are very spoiler-averse… the show’s gonna spoil stuff; who ends up in positions of power, who dies, and of course major character arcs and events, not just the endgame (it’s not all about “who dies” and “who ends up in the Iron Throne”, and the show will not only reveal that.)

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    46. Fascinating stuff. Whilst I don’t think any of the outline will necessarily remain the same, I do think this could potentially confirm the essence of the characters and also confirm the characters who the saga is supposed to focus on.

      I know this sounds obvious, but there are an awful lot of people who overstate the importance of secondary characters in any kind of endgame. As the show confirms, the story is essentially a focus on Tyrion, Dany, Jon, Arya and Bran. The rest is enrichment through texture!

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    47. Can this games title and commercials rip off GoT any more blatantly?

      I mean geez, is there legal grounds for HBO to sue? Lol.. They basically stole the title and main female character. Even Dany’s bath scene now!

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    48. This was a fascinating read. As others have noted, it evokes a similar reaction to reading some of George Lucas’s early drafts for Star Wars, in which the DNA of certain characters such as Luke, Leia, Han, Chewbacca, Vader, and the Emperor are all clearly visible, but often with different names and radically different character designs. I love getting this sort of insight into the creative process. Ultimately, I agree that it’s probably for the best that we ended up the version of ASOIAF that we have, even if it’s far longer and messier than George R.R. Martin originally intended. But some of these new (old) ideas are really cool. What jumped out at me …

      1. “The Neverborn”. Holy shit, that sounds badass and terrifying. Who could they be? My first guess – and perhaps the most obvious take – is that it’s another name for the babies that the Others take and turn into White Walkers (setting them apart, perhaps, from a true “pure-blooded” race of Others). But perhaps they’re something else entirely. If so, then I hope that they survived the cut, and that we’ll learn more about them in a future book.

      2. The bit about “Jon’s true parentage” isn’t exactly revelatory, but it’s nice to see it there in George R.R. Martin’s own words. To be sure, many things have changed from this outline to the final draft, including things related to Jon’s character. Hell, even the identity of his parents may have changed (as there’s no mention of Rhaegar or Lyanna in this outline). But I very much doubt that the core idea that “Jon Snow is not the son of Ned Stark” has changed. It seems like a fundamental pillar of this story (in addition to having a tremendous amount of textual support in the finished novels). So … yeah.

      3. Jon and Arya’s forbidden love seems to be causing the greatest amount of consternation among the fandom, but I have to say that I’m not too surprised. I never believed – and still don’t – that any form of Starkcest will come to pass in the series as we know it, but I never thought that the theories were as unequivocally ludicrous as some did – and it seems that they weren’t. Perhaps a few of Martin’s sentences in which Jon and Arya think about one another survived multiple drafts more-or-less intact (in wording, if not context), fueling the theories. As many have noted, Arya seems to be older in this version of the story, and her character appears to be less obsessed with death and vengeance and more of a traditional young heroine – or as traditional as any character written by Martin can be.

      4. Tyrion appears to have a different backstory and motivation – but the same godawful luck. In contrast to the revelation of Jon and Arya’s love story, the bit about Tyrion falling in love with Arya was a bit more surprising to me, but again … different characters, different context. What’s even more interesting to me is that there is absolutely no indication that Tyrion is a dwarf in this version of the story. Also, there’s his role in besieging and burning down Winterfell, actions that were later allocated to Theon and Ramsay (who don’t appear at all here).

      5. All of those textual allusions to Jaime and Cersei being more than brother and sister take on a new perspective here, as it seems fairly obvious that they were derived from the same prototypical character. Cersei took on some of the more power-seeking, Tyrion-hating characteristics from “Jaime”, while the new Jaime, while starting out from a similar place, eventually evolved into a different character. Obviously the more overt aspect of the brother-sister love story got transferred over to them when they were split up, possibly to underline that connection.

      6. Out of all the characters that we recognize from this draft, Bran and Daenerys seem to be the ones who seem to bear the greatest level of similarity to their current characters. At least terms of recognizable features and storylines and overall storylines, it’s basically the same (though, as we know, Martin got his mind all twisted up in a Meereenese knot around Daenerys later). That bit about Dany killing Drogo to avenge Viserys is a nice little easter egg, though.

      7. Ned, Catelyn, and Robb were all doomed from the start, although it’s notable that the Red Wedding was conceived of much later in the process. It would have been interesting (if less abjectly devastating and memorable) to see Cat meet her end at the hands of the Others while Robb fights Joffrey and maims him before falling in battle.

      8. The Greyjoys, Martells, Tyrells, Blackfyres, countless characters from Essos – hell, even Stannis? Nowhere to be found here. That obviously means next to nothing, given how much this story has evolved, and that this is a three-page outline for a massive, sprawling, ever-expanding epic. That being said, I have to say that I appreciate that the characters we met at the beginning of the story are the ones that Martin planned to follow from the beginning. Regardless of how prominent the Greyjoys, the Martells, and fAegon Targaryen were in AFFC/ADWD, this lowers the already-miniscule chances that they’re going to take over the story completely going forward.

      9. And then of course, there’s affirmation of the Core Five (or is it the Core Six now)? Regardless of how radically and enormously ASOIAF has diverged from this initial outline, I think it’s safe to say that if you asked your average book reader who they thought were the most important characters, set to have the greatest impact on the story and be the most likely to make it through to the last book and beyond … then Tyrion, Daenerys, Arya, Jon, and Bran would all make the top 7 or 8, if not the top 5. Low and behold, here they are. While the details may be radically different, I doubt that Martin’s outline in this respect has diverged too much from this original plan. The outlier is Sansa, who isn’t counted among that number, but appears to have taken on a bigger role now that some elements of her initial character (i.e. bearing Joffrey’s child) have been scrapped. What Martin’s plans are for her character, I don’t know, but I feel confident that her role in the story has become more integral than Martin originally envisioned.

      10. Joffrey Baratheon … still a petulant, sadistic little brat in any timeline. What can you say? Winter may come, multiple drafts may be expand and be extensively re-written, but it seems that some people truly can’t change.

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    49. BB: Honestly, the thing that jumped out at me–apart from the Jon/Tyrion/Arya love triangle, because WTF–was GRRM stating that if he knows exactly where a story is going, he loses all interest in it. Welp.

      you didn’t know? the book’s coming out at the earliest in 2016 and he just bought a bowling alley to go with his cinema

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    50. Hodor’s Bastard,
      Ah, but there is a big “inertia” effect here. Martin was free to change anything he wanted to change before he published the first book. However, once he published Thrones, he had carved some things into Stone. He couldn’t go back to parts of this outline after that: he had changed Bran, Arya and Tyrion (at the least!) too much to do so. He also had sent people very different places. So, his degrees of freedom were diminishing. Indeed, although the characters have evolved over the series, we have seen nothing like the differences between what GRRM outlined here, and what appeared in GoT.

      It is only one example, but GRRM’s infamous “Meerenese Knot” suggests that his issue is not where he wants people to be at the end, but how he’s going to get them there. He didn’t decide to change it so that he didn’t have to get Persons 1, 2, 3, 4, etc., to Point A: instead, he got hung up on how best to get them all to Point A. My bet is that GRRM has always had a larger “Mereen” in mind: and he’s just getting hung up on getting everyone there.

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    51. So I guess Arya

      becoming a faceless men

      wasn’t in the original plan. It doesn’t look like they were in the storyline in general. Interesting. Arya being one of the main five characters, I am assuming the ending involved her doing something big since she doesn’t become a

      faceless men

      .

      Makes me wonder if Arya and Jon/Tyrion will meet up again and be pretty much unrecognisable to each other.

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    52. Luka Nieto,

      I don’t think I am disagreeing with you, Luka. I’m just open to the probability that things could end up differently, contractual BS or not.

      A year or so ago, I had a brief discussion with Greatjon regarding your point…how the show has taken different fanfic paths to the same net effect (Talisa, Gendry, Locke, etc). This may well still be true, but I guess I am starting to believe more in the absolute ramifications of the butterfly effect now that we are exposed to some drastic differences in S5 (Jaime, HH, etc). This season should be amazing fun but can they still align the endgame as GRRM envisioned? D&D have gotten fairly good at this game (and are influenced by a variety of factors, unlike GRRM), so do they want to? Who knows? Who cares? But I do like to speculate about it at times.

      Btw, although I jest a fair amount, I absolutely respect your thoughts and I appreciate what you and others have done with the wiki. 🙂

        Quote  Reply

    53. Hodor’s Bastard: A year or so ago, I had a brief discussion with Greatjon regarding your point…how the show has taken different fanfic paths to the same net effect (Talisa, Gendry, Locke, etc).

      There is a big difference between adaptation and fan-fiction! “Fan-fiction” really should be reserved for things with which GRRM has no association and that attempt completely novel “stories” (although I suspect that most fan-fiction lacks that).

      However, all novels have a lot of fins and gills that need to be altered into legs or replaced with lungs if they are going to succeed on screen. We shouldn’t call those “fan-fiction” when the things that they replace would not have been there had the story originally been written for TV or films.

      Hodor’s Bastard: This season should be amazing fun but can they still align the endgame as GRRM envisioned?

      Almost certainly. Most of these things are pretty small issues compared to what is coming up, it should seem. In particular,

      Aegon’s arrival is going to be a huge “clear the screen” moment for the over-arching plot. And as for Jaime, just as long as he: 1) gets to the point of showing us that he’s not Tywin II no matter what Jaime wants to think; and, 2) throttling his sister like a good valonquar, then it will add up to the same thing in the end.

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    54. Hodor’s Bastard,

      Your appreciation is appreciated 😉

      Jaime can have the same character development in Dorne that he had in the Riverlands, and in terms of plot, he probably will simply have a much expanded version of the role that Boros Blount plays in ADWD. Same story for Jaime, simply told through a different plot and environment, taking over the role of a minor character. When all is said and done, everything ends up being pretty much in the same place as in the books. The same goes for Hardhome. Wimsey has written a whole lot about this, I hope he elaborates on the issue.

      Aegon is the only character whose absence I see causing big changes, but that’s mostly coming out of our ignorance of what his role will be like exactly. I’m sure if D&D have cut him is because they can consolidate his role into another character (Dany, probably.)

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    55. Zain: Makes me wonder if Arya and Jon/Tyrion will meet up again and be pretty much unrecognisable to each other.

      Oh, I am sure that Arya will recognize Jon, to be certain. However, this again shows how the original idea evolved rather than simply get replaced: in the books, Jon definitely has a thing for smart independent women that can take care of themselves. That suggests that Martin used Jon’s interest in a particular young woman as a model for his general taste in women.

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    56. Wimsey,

      I actually don’t think “fan-fic” is a negative term, like others do. The Benjen stuff that is out there, and possible ending (last few paragraphs of ADoS) speculations, is quite fun. However, you can hardly call Yara’s excursion to the Dreadfort an adaptation though. 🙂

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    57. Tormund’s Woman:
      Flora Linden,

      Yes, I always found it surprising that Martin gets such a backlash for the incest leitmotifyet it has been in the classic literature from the time of Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex. And no one I know criticizes Shakespeare for introducing Gertrude and Claudius’s “incestuous” marriage in Hamlet.

      I have to assume Martin’s is such a hot topic because the two characters at the center of it consider it love and damn the rest of the world.

      Oedipus doesn’t realize he’s committing incest at the time, and he tears out his eyes when he learns the truth. Claudius & Gertrude aren’t even blood relatives; their marriage is actually of the sort demanded by God in the story of Onan (though that is depicted negatively because Henry VIII justified his break from the Catholic Church on the grounds of such marriages being null).

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    58. Waxfoot,

      You’re right. The show confirms the shit out of Bran being a main character by leaving him out for a whole season, while other “secondary” characters are heavily featured.

      I am enjoying the pocket-sized love triangle from hell though…and everyone’s overreactions to an outline that never came to life. Tumblr in particular is a very amusing place at the moment. Oh shippers and their eccentricity, always a source of great entertainment.

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    59. Wimsey,
      Luka Nieto,

      I wish I had a bigger bully-pulpit to stand on with this issue. All I have is GRRM’s “The books are the books and the show is the show.” to exploit, with no TWoW in hand. 🙁

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    60. What I find especially interresting is how both stories have similar outcomes with different pathes. Dany’s initial endpoint in Agot reminds me of her last chapter in adwd, and it sounds like Catelyn wouod have returned as a wigh (lady coldheart?). Funny how so many caracters (littlefinger, Varys, Theon, Ramsay…) seem to be ofshots frol the original Tyrion. Also, I wouldn’t be surprised if Cersei ends up taking Jaime’s role in the final version, and it sounds like Rickon was created after this because he needed someone to become lord of WF.
      Ultimately, I don’t think the endgame we’ll get will be too different from the one GRRM came up with back then (most of the secondary characters will be gone, and we’ll have the same characters on the same sides).

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    61. How could you expend so much effort writing about totally fictional things ? You leave comments like this on nearly every post. Clearly you have nothing better to do.

      Jared:
      This was a fascinating read. As others have noted, it evokes a similar reaction to reading some of George Lucas’s early drafts for Star Wars, in which the DNA of certain characters such as Luke, Leia, Han, Chewbacca, Vader, and the Emperor are all clearly visible, but often with different names and radically different character designs. I love getting this sort of insight into the creative process. Ultimately, I agree that it’s probably for the best that we ended up the version of ASOIAF that we have, even if it’s far longer and messier than George R.R. Martin originally intended. But some of these new (old) ideas are really cool. What jumped out at me …

      1. “The Neverborn”. Holy shit, that sounds badass and terrifying. Who could they be? My first guess – and perhaps the most obvious take – is that it’s another name for the babies that the Others take and turn into White Walkers (setting them apart, perhaps, from a true “pure-blooded” race of Others). But perhaps they’re something else entirely. If so, then I hope that they survived the cut, and that we’ll learn more about them in a future book.

      2. The bit about “Jon’s true parentage” isn’t exactly revelatory, but it’s nice to see it there in George R.R. Martin’s own words. To be sure, many things have changed from this outline to the final draft, including things related to Jon’s character. Hell, even the identity of his parents may have changed (as there’s no mention of Rhaegar or Lyanna in this outline). But I very much doubt that the core idea that “Jon Snow is not the son of Ned Stark” has changed. It seems like a fundamental pillar of this story (in addition to having a tremendous amount of textual support in the finished novels). So … yeah.

      3.Jon and Arya’s forbidden love seems to be causing the greatest amount of consternation among the fandom, but I have to say that I’m not too surprised. I never believed – and still don’t – that any form of Starkcest will come to pass in the series as we know it, but I never thought that the theories were as unequivocally ludicrous as some did – and it seems that they weren’t. Perhaps a few of Martin’s sentences in which Jon and Arya think about one another survived multiple drafts more-or-less intact (in wording, if not context), fueling the theories. As many have noted, Arya seems to be older in this version of the story, and her character appears to be less obsessed with death and vengeance and more of a traditional young heroine – or as traditional as any character written by Martin can be.

      4. Tyrion appears to have a different backstory and motivation – but the same godawful luck. In contrast to the revelation of Jon and Arya’s love story, the bit about Tyrion falling in love with Arya was a bit more surprising to me, but again … different characters, different context. What’s even more interesting to me is that there is absolutely no indication that Tyrion is a dwarf in this version of the story. Also, there’s his role in besieging and burning down Winterfell, actions that were later allocated to Theon and Ramsay (who don’t appear at all here).

      5. All of those textual allusions to Jaime and Cersei being more than brother and sister take on a new perspective here, as it seems fairly obvious that they were derived from the same prototypical character. Cersei took on some of the more power-seeking, Tyrion-hating characteristics from “Jaime”, while the new Jaime, while starting out from a similar place, eventually evolved into a different character. Obviously the more overt aspect of the brother-sister love story got transferred over to them when they were split up, possibly to underline that connection.

      6. Out of all the characters that we recognize from this draft, Bran and Daenerys seem to be the ones who seem to bear the greatest level of similarity to their current characters. At least terms of recognizable features and storylines and overall storylines, it’s basically the same (though, as we know, Martin got his mind all twisted up in a Meereenese knot around Daenerys later). That bit about Dany killing Drogo to avenge Viserys is a nice little easter egg, though.

      7. Ned, Catelyn, and Robb were all doomed from the start, although it’s notable that the Red Wedding was conceived of much later in the process. It would have been interesting (if less abjectly devastating and memorable) to see Cat meet her end at the hands of the Others while Robb fights Joffrey and maims him before falling in battle.

      8. The Greyjoys, Martells, Tyrells, Blackfyres, countless characters from Essos – hell, even Stannis? Nowhere to be found here. That obviously means next to nothing, given how much this story has evolved, and that this is a three-page outline for a massive, sprawling, ever-expanding epic. That being said, I have to say that I appreciate that the characters we met at the beginning of the story are the ones that Martin planned to follow from the beginning. Regardless of how prominent the Greyjoys, the Martells, and fAegon Targaryen were in AFFC/ADWD, this lowers the already-miniscule chances that they’re going to take over the story completely going forward.

      9. And then of course, there’s affirmation of the Core Five (or is it the Core Six now)? Regardless of how radically and enormously ASOIAF has diverged from this initial outline, I think it’s safe to say that if you asked your average book reader who they thought were the most important characters, set to have the greatest impact on the story and be the most likely to make it through to the last book and beyond … then Tyrion, Daenerys, Arya, Jon, and Bran would all make the top 7 or 8, if not the top 5. Low and behold, here they are. While the details may be radically different, I doubt that Martin’s outline in this respect has diverged too much from this original plan. The outlier is Sansa, who isn’t counted among that number, but appears to have taken on a bigger role now that some elements of her initial character (i.e. bearing Joffrey’s child) have been scrapped. What Martin’s plans are for her character, I don’t know, but I feel confident that her role in the story has become more integral than Martin originally envisioned.

      10.Joffrey Baratheon … still a petulant, sadistic little brat in any timeline. What can you say? Winter may come, multiple drafts may be expand and be extensively re-written, but it seems that some people truly can’t change.

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    62. Luka Nieto:
      Same story for Jaime, simply told through a different plot and environment, taking over the role of a minor character. When all is said and done, everything ends up being pretty much in the same place as in the books.

      Doesn’t the Jaime difference bother you though? Like we explored a few threads ago, how the heck does Jaime get out of his meeting with LS intact??? Are they ignoring that huge plotpoint and going elsewhere (for some other payoff)? Or are they returning to it at some point? That, in and of itself, is the biggest book spoiler that S5 will offer, imho! Within my small, deluded brain, I can’t get past that easily.

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    63. Hodor’s Bastard: However, you can hardly call Yara’s excursion to the Dreadfort an adaptation though.

      I would, at least in the sense that the show needed to do something like that after they made the decision to keep Theon in the show for Season 3 & 4. It was a sort of “domino effect.” It’s sort of like needing to add toes if you go for a foot.

      And I shall read your use of “fan-fiction” differently in the future!

      Hodor’s Bastard: I wish I had a bigger bully-pulpit to stand on with this issue. All I have is GRRM’s “The books are the books and the show is the show.” to exploit, with no TWoW in hand.

      True: but the story is the story! Obviously, there is more than one way to tell the same story, and the show will be different from the book if only because good TV scripts are lousy novels and vice versa. However, presumably the goals of the last two seasons and the last two volumes is to tell the same story or pair of stories. We will have plenty of fin vs. foot differences: and the attendant toes, feathers, etc. of the different media.

      And there is always this: whereas B&W got to learn from the criticisms of the first five volumes of SoI&F, GRRM will get to learn from any criticisms of the last season! (I suspect it will be way too late for reaction to Season 6 to have any influence on what he does for WoW: or at least I hope it will be too late!)

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    64. blinkonce:
      Waxfoot,

      You’re right. The show confirms the shit out of Bran being a main character by leaving him out for a whole season, while other “secondary” characters are heavily featured.

      Bran is out because his next story line probably ruins a bunch of stuff from the unpublished books.

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    65. FictionIsntReal,

      Which is why I’ve used the “incestuous” because Hamlet thinks it so. Where do you think is the backlash for Antiochus and his daughter in Pericles?

      And thank you for proving my point. The incest theme doesn’t outrage us against the author if the characters are unknowingly committing it 😉

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    66. What I find most interesting, believe it or not, is that blacked out last paragraph that says nothing. But what it DOES say to me, is that the ending conclusion to it all is very short and very simple.

      Look at all the loose ends that are strewn about right before that. There isn’t even any mention of Dany leaving the Dothraki Sea before the end, just that she finds a dragon and “sways” the Dothraki. Do you really think her attacking Westeros and claiming the throne could be outlined in just that little bit of text at the end? Or how the Others are defeated? What happens to Tyrion or the Starks or the Kingdom in general?

      I don’t want to speculate and start throwing crazy theories out there, but it is a pretty interesting and unlikely hint towards the future. Or the future he originally planned, anyway.

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    67. From this outline though it seems pretty safe to say if there is an iron throne one of the big five will end up on it. So Tyrion, Dany, or Jon? I feel like Sansa might be doomed it was foreshadowed when she lost her direwolf.

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    68. He writes:

      This is going to be (i hope) quite an epic. Epic in its scale, epic in its action and epic in its length

      Just imagine the guys face if GRRM wrote to him Jon Snow would be on his hands and knees for an entire book counting turnips.. Tyrion watching turtles, Brianne watching trees… Arianne watching sand. Daenerys doing nothing in Mereen.

      #EPIC

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    69. AlbionFayre,

      Actually, regardless of his time management, Jared’s posts (like the posts of many others) are striking examples of what a vibrant and robust community this ASoI&F fandom is.

      Jared,

      Fuck yeah, dude. Do carry on. I will need to slowly digest much of this, after work.

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    70. The Arya/Jon stuff isn’t surprising in the least. Jon is only 3 or 4 years older in the books, and even in the finished version, the closeness of the two and Jon’s taste in strong willed women hint at GRRM’s initial plan. Jon even thinks to himself that Ygritte reminds him of Arya.

      Tyrion seems to be a completely different character, with a few of his final traits still there. I imagine he was younger in the initial version.

      Sansa seems the same, only she didn’t marry Joffrey or bear him a child. She still betrayed her family and chose staying with Joffrey in AGOT and she regretted it.

      Jaime is basically and amalgamation of Tywin and Cersei. I’m glad George changed this. Not that a total villain Jaime wouldn’t have been great, but the complicated grey character that he became would have been missed.

      Can anything be inferred by this original outline? I doubt it. The biggest take away is probably that Ned isn’t Jon’s father, but most people knew that already.

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    71. Renly’s Peach,

      After the redacted text, he states “But, that’s the second book…” Are we to assume that the blacked out portion was something that was meant to happen before the final book, but has yet to happen in the series yet?

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    72. AlbionFayre,

      Maybe because it’s fun? And because I can process and type out something of that length relatively quickly – say 10 to 15 minutes? And that because of that relative efficiency, taking that amount of time out of my day to check this website, read what other people are thinking, and leave a comment or two – lengthy or otherwise – really isn’t that disruptive and doesn’t adversely affect my work or my life at all? This particular community happens to be devoted to a fictional show, but people here are far more likely to engage in civil, rational discussions about the topics on hand than they are in the comment sections of various sports, political, or news-oriented websites that I might otherwise visit. I count that as a point in its favor.

      Do what makes you happy, buddy. I do. 🙂

        Quote  Reply

    73. Tyrion Pimpslap: Can anything be inferred by this original outline? I doubt it. The biggest take away is probably that Ned isn’t Jon’s father, but most people knew that already.

      Actually, I recently realized that the Daynites are alive and well over at Quora. Every plot hole in SoI&F is proof that R+L=J is false, it seems.

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    74. Wimsey:
      And there is always this: whereas B&W got to learn from the criticisms of the first five volumes of SoI&F, GRRM will get to learn from any criticisms of the last season!(I suspect it will be way too late for reaction to Season 6 to have any influence on what he does for WoW: or at least I hope it will be too late!)

      Given GRRM’s very public use of his middle finger lately, I wonder if he truly cares about that. I think he has mentally distanced himself from the concerns of the show, but at times he does pop up to jab defensively, as implied by his weirdly reactive comments regarding the Jaime-Cersei sept scene (S4/ep3):

      “The scene was always intended to be disturbing… but I do regret if it has disturbed people for the wrong reasons.”

      ….and subsequently, he is no longer writing GoT episodes…. Hmmmm….

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    75. Jared,

      I rather like your summaries because they are extremely organized and some times point out things I missed. For this one I didn’t even realize we had “neverborn” until you typed it and then I did a reread! Sounds way more frightening then Others or WW actually.

      We are all nerds. This is why we are here. Some just type more than others.

      Renly’s Peach,

      Off Topic: Every time I see this: :3 I have to remind myself that even though it looks like boobies it means something else LOL In this case though I felt it was as though it might mean you tweaked Hoyti’s boobies (figuratively speaking!) with your comment.

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    76. This gave me a fun theory! Originally tyrion was hopelessly in love with arya who wasnt interested in the slightest so he was captain friend zone. But who is the master and commander of the friendzone now? Jorah Mormont!
      Originally Jon became lord commander after his uncle. But who is lord commander in the books? Jeor Mormont!
      Originally the captain of the friendzone (tyrion) was in a deadly rivarly with jon because they loved the same woman (arya). However for some obvious reasons tyrion and jon won’t most likely love the same woman and arya is probably not the woman jon will love. But why change the lord commander to a mormont instead of benjen? So that there will be a deadly rivarly between jorah and jon due to jon basically being a son to jeor who now uses his old sword and because they both will love dany. Jon will ultimately be challenged by jorah and jorah will lose. Would be a pretty cool fight too since in the show jon and jorah have had the most fight scenes. And through flawed logic this also proves dany and jon romance is coming.

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    77. Hodor’s Bastard: Given GRRM’s very public use of his middle finger lately, I wonder if he truly cares about that

      I should rephrase that. It probably will be less how other people react to what they do, and more how he reacts. A lot of times an idea seems good in your head, and then you actually see it played out, and you think otherwise. Sometimes you go: “oh, that’s fatally flawed because of X.” Other times you go: “Hmmm, that’s OK, but it’s missing something….” and you rework it.

      So, GRRM is going to get that very rare (unique, insofar as I know) opportunity to see a “test run” of his basic ideas for Spring before he fully writes them. And that in turn could lead him to make modifications analogous to what B&W have done. (Again, even if Winter is not out by next season, I really doubt that he’ll have time to rewrite anything based on that, or even that he’ll rewrite Sansa’s Winter stuff based on how this year plays out.)

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    78. Tyrion Pimpslap,

      That’s my takeaway, too. Whatever it is, I think it’s a safe bet that it’s related to Daenerys (since he says the second book is meant to focus on her). Hard to say, though.

      Hodor’s Bastard,

      I think it’s really apparent that GRRM’s over the show by now. In every interview he’s done lately you can practically taste the displeasure in his tone.
      Which, in my opinion, would carry more weight if he had finished these damn books already. But whatever; I’m not touching this subject again.

      Tormund’s Woman,

      WELL MAYBE I DID, MADAM. Maybe I did!

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    79. Wimsey,

      Hah! I see your point. Given how GRRM has publicly appreciated Natalia Tena’s performance thus far, I fully expect Osha and Rickon to rule the North at some point. 🙂

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    80. Renly’s Peach: What I find most interesting, believe it or not, is that blacked out last paragraph that says nothing. But what it DOES say to me, is that the ending conclusion to it all is very short and very simple.

      The blacked out portion does not say anything about the ending. It says “but that’s the second book.” Second out of three books. So I suspect it’s blacked out because it might spoil the middle part of the story – something to do with the show’s Season 5/6 and also part of the next books in the series.

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    81. Tormund’s Woman:
      Flora Linden,

      Yes, I always found it surprising that Martin gets such a backlash for the incest leitmotifyet it has been in the classic literature from the time of Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex. And no one I know criticizes Shakespeare for introducing Gertrude and Claudius’s “incestuous” marriage in Hamlet.

      I have to assume Martin’s is such a hot topic because the two characters at the center of it consider it love and damn the rest of the world.

      I have no problem with incest as plot point – used sparingly. But the idea that pretty much everyone in the series is into incest (which is what the Starkcest theories are based on) that a part of the fandom seems to believe, strikes me as bizarre.

      However, the plot that GRRM initially planned for Jon and Arya (“brother and sister fall in love, are horrified by it, but then it turns out they’re not biological siblings, and they’re relieved!”) is other one of worst, cheesiest cliche plot points used in crappy novels/movies and kitchy TV soaps by writers who 1) have no clue about human psychology and 2) want to have their cake and eat it: they want to have incest for the drama and sensationalism, but aren’t bold enough to be honest about it and take it to its logical conclusion, so they do this half-arsed story where they go: “hey, it’s not really incest, so it’s all fine! I mean, it’s the acceptable kind of incest! Right? So, everything’s jolly!”

      If you want to do incest as plot point, just do it (come on, John Ford did it in the 17th century), don’t try to make it socially acceptable/slap a happy ending on it by making it “not really incest” (even though it actually still is).

      Luckily, GRRM abandoned this crappy idea, and has had guts to do an actual no-holds-barred incestuous love story with Jaime and Cersei. Which, contrary to what Starkcest fans think, makes it even less likely that he’d now try to follow it with a half-arsed story about Jon and Arya kinda-incestuous love (not to mention Jon and Sansa, which makes even less sense).

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    82. The Bastard,

      Season 5 will spoil Jaime’s, Sansa’s, Brienne’s, etc. story lines too and yet the showrunners decided to include them. D&D don’t care about Martin’s writing speed, they’ll do their job regardless of the number of published books. Bottom line is: if they had considered Bran important, he would have been there. He may be special for GRRM, but for the show, not so much.

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    83. Crabber’s Son:
      From this outline though it seems pretty safe to say if there is an iron throne one of the big five will end up on it. So Tyrion, Dany, or Jon? I feel like Sansa might be doomed it was foreshadowed when she lost her direwolf.

      The story has grown and changed. These ur-characters are not the same characters we know. This Tyrion is not ASOAIF Tyrion, this Arya is not ASOAIF Arya, and this Sansa, who was clearly a supporting character, is not ASOAIF Sansa, who is a central character. In the draft, there were “big 5 characters”; in ASOAIF, there are “big 6” characters (if there’s still any such thing as “big X”).

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    84. Maybe I missed it but does it ever refer to Tyrion as the Imp ? It would be interesting if he was a full grown man originally

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    85. I think his original plan is quite good.

      It is like a much more concise and focused version of the story we currently have, which would make for a shorter read (though still one with an epic scope).

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    86. Eurio:

      This gave me a fun theory! Originally tyrion was hopelessly in love with arya who wasnt interested in the slightest so he was captain friend zone. But who is the master and commander of the friendzone now? Jorah Mormont!

      I think the original love triangle will end up being Jorah-Dany-Tyrion in the TV series – with Jorah as the loser again. Poor Jorah, the guy has no luck with winning Dany’s affections. 🙁

      Hodor’s Bastard:

      I think he has mentally distanced himself from the concerns of the show, but at times he does pop up to jab defensively, as implied by his weirdly reactive comments regarding the Jaime-Cersei sept scene. . .

      I wish Martin hadn’t said anything about it. Viewers had a beef with the show, not him or the book version of the scene. I thought his response was a little weird too.

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    87. ColdPie,

      He submitted this letter with the first 13 chapters. I believe that’s why he doesn’t go into much detail describing the characters. My guess is Tyrion was a little person from the get-go, but hey, you never know.

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    88. Arran:
      I think his original plan is quite good.

      It is like a much more concise and focused version of the story we currently have, which would make for a shorter read (though still one with an epic scope).

      He could have been more concise and focused with his current story too. Based on what he had planned for the first book originally, it makes me wonder if he can really finish the series in 7 books.

      As great as the books are, there are sometimes instances where nothing happens for 100 pages….

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    89. Tyrion Pimpslap,

      Yes, please, no love triangles.

      Annara Snow:

      Luckily, GRRM abandoned this crappy idea, and has had guts to do an actual no-holds-barred incestuous love story with Jaime and Cersei. Which, contrary to what Starkcest fans think, makes it even less likely that he’d now try to follow it with a half-arsed story about Jon and Arya kinda-incestuous love (not to mention Jon and Sansa, which makes even less sense).

      Agree. We have our incestuous love story. Another is not needed.

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    90. The Bastard: He could have been more concise and focused with his current story too.

      It’s something of a side note, but it does not look like the actual story changed that much. Clearly he had something in mind where the lead characters were going to be struggling do decide what to do, with one value saying “Do X, not Y” and a different value saying “Do Y, not X.” The first three stories all are variants on that. It might be that GRRM thought that these changes to the general plot (and to the general characters) would make what he has given us a more powerful telling of the story than what he originally planned.

      (The real flab sets in with Crows/Dragons: i.e., the stuff after this extended synopsis.)

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    91. mariamb:
      Tyrion Pimpslap,

      Yes, please, no love triangles.

      Agree. We have our incestuous love story. Another is not needed.

      I never had a sister growing up, so the whole incest story lines don’t bother me. I know guys who had sisters growing up, and the incest stories bother them a lot more.

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    92. blinkonce:
      Waxfoot,

      You’re right. The show confirms the shit out of Bran being a main character by leaving him out for a whole season, while other “secondary” characters are heavily featured.

      I am enjoying the pocket-sized love triangle from hell though…and everyone’s overreactions to an outline that never came to life. Tumblr in particular is a very amusing place at the moment. Oh shippers and their eccentricity, always a source of great entertainment.

      Ha ha good point. I guess I was thinking of the others more.

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    93. The Bastard,

      I agree, it’s a case of catching up. I should say also that I think in Bran’s case the best is probably yet to come in his story. He will re-enter the show with renewed importance, I think.

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    94. So there was no original Baratheons in the trilogy? No other Houses including the Tyrells or Martells either? Looks like he really expanded the scope of the tale, though it was still called the Seven Kingdoms back then. Maybe the other Houses were present but there were no main characters from them? Also, does anyone else get the feeling that Daenerys was a conqueror rather than a re-conqueror? As in that she wasn’t the daughter of an usurped king, but rather more of an Aegon the Conqueror figure?

      EDIT: On reread, I am somewhat amused that the original trilogy was supposed to be three books with a mere 700-800 pgs each.

      EDIT 2: And I’m surprised that readers are suddenly saying Jon and Arya’s relationship is icky based on this. Their relationship is *not* icky. It’s a sweet brother sister type of relationship, which is what everyone thought before this came around.

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    95. Annara Snow:

      Which, contrary to what Starkcest fans think, makes it even less likely that he’d now try to follow it with a half-arsed story about Jon and Arya kinda-incestuous love

      You’ve clearly missed the foreshadowing on the wall, not to mention one of the major themes of the books: that even the most sharply contrasted characterizations and plot points of certain characters often show strong similarities (that or the contrasts are really just cleverly disguised shades of the same thing), though it takes more than a shallow interpretation of the text to see this. Following through with a Jon and Arya relationship would be right in line with sticking with this theme, especially since he’s done it before.

      Also, of course he wouldn’t do anything half-assed. It’s an outline; things are expected to be explained in very broad strokes with minimal details. But even as it is, it bears such strong similarities (of things yet to come and ones that already happened) that one would be a fool to dismiss it outright.

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    96. Most important quote: “when I know the outcome I lose all interest in writing”.

      [speculation]

      Winds of Winter is done, by the way, they are just holding it for the start of Season 6 to minimize cross-spoilage.

      Dreams and the ending are underway and we will not see that until the movies (plural). The movies will begin at the point of greatest despair and then we move to the “bittersweet” but happy ending: the corruption born of the long summer purged by the long winter, and the cycle continues.

      George may currently know the ending, but it may not be the same ending he previously said he knew.

      [/speculation]

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    97. Nessa,

      Yes there were Baratheons, as Joffrey inherits the throne from somewhere and Ned Stark dies for the truth he learns… so at least Robert Baratheon exists at this point

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    98. Nessa,

      You’ve got to keep in mind that this is just an outline, and a really, really short one at that. As someone who’s written a few (terrible) novels, I can tell you that writing an outline is a sort of painful, soul-sucking experience. All the interesting side-characters and details that make the world rich and interesting just cannot feasibly be included. And most outlines are like 10-20 pages, not 3.

      So it’s impossible to say what did or didn’t exist at this point (like whether Tyrion was a dwarf or not originally) without reading those 13 pages he sent as well. And even if we had those, it would only be a fraction of the original concept.

      Totally with you on Jon & Arya, though. I don’t see anything icky about their relationship as GRRM ultimately wrote it, and I never have! 🙂

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    99. ColdPie,

      It doesn’t really say Tyrion personally kills him in battle, it says Robb can’t withstand Jamie, Tyrion and their allies. Besides, Outline Tyrion could lead battles from the rear, like Roose and Tywin. Anyone’s guess.

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    100. I was complaining about Grey Worm/Missandei just a few days ago. Silly me, it could have been much worse!!

      Flora Linden:
      I think the original love triangle will end up being Jorah-Dany-Tyrion in the TV series – with Jorah as the loser again. Poor Jorah, the guy has no luck with winning Dany’s affections.

      Why did they cast someone as gorgeous as Iain Glen as Jorah, if he has no chance of winning such affections? My poor old bear…

      Off topic: I wonder if Harper Collins posted this so we stop talking about how they got Harper Lee’s sequel to “To kill a mockingbird”. Timing is suspicious, to say the least

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    101. @Mormont: I did read that Ned died, but it isn’t clear what secret he discovered – the text says he found out the truth about his friend Jon Arryn, not Robert Baratheon, which suggests there was no twincest plotline beforehand. Plus, Jaime Lannister inherits the throne which means that the Lannisters were originally on the throne? Otherwise how could he inherit it?

      @thornofhighgarden: I agree it isn’t complete. I’m just having fun speculating on what the omissions might mean. It seems a bit like the original tale was a lot simpler and had fewer Houses involved in the conflict, or at least the other Houses didn’t have the same motivations for war they have now…

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    102. Dogcheese,

      Already discussed in an earlier thread.

      The link is incorrect. There are doors like that at the Eyrie, as in episode 4.05. Not that they’re at the Eyrie, because they left it. It’s a minor set; shows reuse things like that.

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    103. Spaniard SheBear:
      I was complaining about Grey Worm/Missandei just a few days ago. Silly me, it could have been much worse!!

      Why did they cast someone as gorgeous as Iain Glen as Jorah, if he has no chance of winning such affections? My poor old bear…

      Off topic: I wonder if Harper Collins posted this so we stop talking about how they got Harper Lee’s sequel to “To kill a mockingbird”. Timing is suspicious, to say the least

      I know many find tv Jorah gorgeous, but when compared with someone like Drogo, or even Daario, especially when taking her age into consideration, I can see why she’d never look at Jorah “that way.” Moreover, he seems like a bit of a puppy dog, when it comes to her, and with a woman who is becoming as strong as Dany is becoming, I can’t imagine the puppy-dog type would be very appealing.

      I’m really looking forward to the publication of the sequel to To Kill a Mockingbird. I haven’t read the original in years, so it gives me an excuse to reread it. 🙂

      Back on GoT – It will certainly be interesting to see if GRRM sticks with the 5 who survive.

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    104. Greenjones,

      Also remember back in the day when I found Jake Abraham as Meereenese Peddler with only IMDB to back it up…just so people don’t start questioning that one too, here’s a CV of his.

      Of course it speaks to IMDB’s unreliability that they have him credited there as being in ep. 501, when actually according to that there link he’s in a Podeswa ep. (Which makes sense of course because the lady playing his wife is in a Podeswa ep. too).

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    105. Sean C.,

      Yea, I missed out on that discussion. I really wouldn’t mind

      Sansa going to Winterfell. Just so long as she doesn’t take Lady Stoneheart’s role I’m happy.

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    106. The Jon/Arya romance may yet blossom, albiet in an altered state.

      Remember Mel saying they’d meet again. Since a FM can take the identity of those they kill (if I remember right) could Arya become lovers with Jon without him realizing it, then he plunges LC into Mel not realizing the truth, sounds bittersweet to me.

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    107. Back on GoT – It will certainly be interesting to see if GRRM sticks with the 5 who survive.

      “The Five Who Survive”… That’s what I’m gonna call them now. 😛

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    108. The way the series has changed from the original plan makes me believe even more now that the last 2 books will be based on the show … In other words the fat mans so lazy now he’s given the key points to D&D and is now sitting back waiting for them to finish the show with their own vision and then he will add filler stuff to it or tie up his loose ends that weren’t adapted for the show and end the series

      Well either that or even D&D have realised how his story keeps changing and have decided to go about it their own way with the key points he first gave them which is why the producers and the author haven’t been that close lately and why GRRM has kinda distanced himself from the show . Also don’t be surprised if the books end very differently from the show cuz George may change his mind again and not want to have the same ending as the show , he may even go so far as to call the show fanfic

      So yeh if u like the books more and wanna enjoy them this may be the point where u stop watching the show :'(

      I think I’m just miffed cuz Sansa may not survive the series now

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    109. Sansa’s Knight:
      The way the series has changed from the original plan makes me believe even more now that the last 2 books will be based on the show … In other words the fat mans so lazy now he’s given the key points to D&D and is now sitting back waiting for them to finish the show with their own vision and then he will add filler stuff to it or tie up his loose ends that weren’t adapted for the show and end the series

      Wait, the fact that GRRM worked for years on the outline, completely changed a lot of things, expanded the plot considerably and made the series much more complex, has driven you to the conclusion that he’s lazy?

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    110. ieyd: You’ve clearly missed the foreshadowing on the wall, not to mention one of the major themes of the books: that even the most sharply contrasted characterizations and plot points of certain characters often show strong similarities (that or the contrasts are really just cleverly disguised shades of the same thing), though it takes more than a shallow interpretation of the text to see this. Following through with a Jon and Arya relationship would be right in line with sticking with this theme, especially since he’s done it before.

      Also, of course he wouldn’t do anything half-assed. It’s an outline; things are expected to be explained in very broad strokes with minimal details. But even as it is, it bears such strong similarities (of things yet to come and ones that already happened) that one would be a fool to dismiss it outright.

      That was one hell of a convoluted and flowery way to say: “Yes, everyone in ASOAIF is into incest!”

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    111. Such an interesting read tbh, it just goes to show nothing is sacred and can change or be altered dramatically anytime.

      Clearly Mr Martin has changed his mind about which pivotal characters survive the series, I can’t at all the major characters avoiding death. Not going to happen this time round.

      I don’t know why, but I get a nagging sense Jon and Sansa may hook up, definitely more inclined to go with this than Arya. Sansa in this draft was clearly a supporting character, Arya reads as if she might have had Sansa’s plotlines. A brilliant idea to flesh out two sisters who are foils to each other, whose arcs whilst diverging, I see as parallel to one another.

      Also, Sansa belongs in that main character bracket, the show and her POV count adds credence to that. The other 5 are pretty much on par with the current trajectory of the series. Interesting that Mr Martin has continued to focus more on these characters.

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    112. Winter: Interesting that Mr Martin has continued to focus more on these characters.

      Well, those five (plus Sansa, who now seems to have subsumed part of Arya’s initial role) are the primary protagonists: and it’s their dynamic development that really delivers the stories. Sure, there are some other notable protagonists in the tale now (Jaime, Brienne, Davos): but they play lesser roles than the Big Six.

      Indeed, a big reason why Crows fell so flat for me was the addition of new protagonists. The Crows/Dragons tale in particular really relies on the evolution of characters, as they are all in a “where I was/where I am/where I am going” mode. That worked really well for the established characters, because we knew where they had been, what other people thought of them, etc. However, for the new characters (Arianne, Victarion) or the ones that were incidental characters in the past (Asha), it fell really flat. If GRRM had just stuck to the established characters as protagonists, then Crows would have been a LOT better than it was, at least in my unhumble opinion.

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    113. I’m glad this came to light as well. I was getting sick of people acting like I was speaking blasphemy when I’d opine that GRRM is not omnipotent and is probably making stuff up as he goes. You know, like a fiction writer, or something.
      Jesterr223456,

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    114. I agree that he should have stuck to the primary characters, but I can’t deny Mr Martin’s knack for creating singular characters some of which I found in Crows (which I enjoyed after re-reads), namely Arianne and the Sand snakes. He just got too trigger happy, too late imo. Had he introduced them earlier, I probably would have felt more invested in their arcs.

      I second Wimsey’s opinion that he should have stuck to the primary characters more, the fact that I am still waiting for that elusive Alayne chapter…

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    115. lol at love triangle

      Interestingly Jon and Arya doesen’t bother me so much as the idea of Tyrion liking Arya (lol)

      Wouldn’t actually be bothered with Jon and Arya as this is a universe with Targ polygamy, but I wonder if this has been adjusted to Gendry in Arya’s case and Ygritte/Val in Jons case. Arya is a lot like Lyanna, so he is going for a cousin Tywin Lannister style who has presumably got the same traits, and Arya is half kneeler and half free-spirit Wildling style and on the other side Jon never judged Arya which happened a lot given she wasn’t a “Lady”

      It’s interesting to recall the initial chapters, we hear in late AGoT and early ACoK that Jon is in Aryas thought and vice versa with hair ruffling being missed etc. We also hear of Tyrion gymnastics which we don’t hear of as much later on

      It would be tricky to do, they (Jon and Arya) have a good relationship but to keep it going in peoples minds they have to think of eachother ala Tysha in Tyrions mind, they’d have to come back together late in the books and build it up. Would be even trickier on TV because we only had the “Nymeria, gloves!” scene. Both would have to be talking about eachother in the build up

      This is a very rough draft. I don’t quite think even now GRRM has all the final details planned even now and it has obviously been fleshed out when the trilogy expanded to 6 and then 7 and perhaps now 8 books, eg I still think it’s up in the air whether Tyrion is a Targ or not, fAegon may be a case of hedging his bets as the third head after Dany and Jon IMO.

      Blackfyre or no he can still control a dragon presumably (we know from Arianne sample chapter there will likely be another “Dance of the Dragons” and wherever they danced people died). I reckon he will take over Viserion dragon, he is fulfilling Viserys dream after all

      Tyrions arc is better off with him as a Lannister, if he is a secret Targ it legitimises everything with his father but if he is a Lannister it is bittersweet that Tywin hated the person most capable of assuring the family name going forward and then we have Tyrion killing his own father (his own kin) which implies he is doomed in the AGoT universe

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    116. Wimsey:
      Indeed, a big reason why Crows fell so flat for me was the addition of new protagonists.The Crows/Dragons tale in particular really relies on the evolution of characters, as they are all in a “where I was/where I am/where I am going” mode.That worked really well for the established characters, because we knew where they had been, what other people thought of them, etc.However, for the new characters (Arianne, Victarion) or the ones that were incidental characters in the past (Asha), it fell really flat.If GRRM had just stuck to the established characters as protagonists, then Crows would have been a LOT better than it was, at least in my unhumble opinion.

      I liked Crows and Dance, but I agree that it would have been better to avoid the POV inflation. We might have lost a direct view of some events going on in the world, but we could have focused more on the established characters and how they dealt with and learned from their challenges. Trying to cover every significant event in a massive, apocalyptic, multi-sided, magical world war is just too much, and sometimes its better to step back and watch how a few characters handle their part in it.

      Some of the events that didn’t have an established character present could have happened offpage, and been reported indirectly if they were relevant to the main characters, or plots chould have been altered a bit to get established characters in place to participate in events. Minor characters could get a prologue or epilogue POV to cover a few events as well (Myrcella POV Queenmaker prologue, ending with a sword to the face could have been quite interesting).

      Events that happened offpage could even be turned into separate short stories or novellas with those new characters as protagonists. There’s some interesting material there for the new characters, but it seems like there is simultaneously not enough time spent on them to properly flesh out the new characters (particularly in comparison to characters we’ve been reading about for several thousand pages), and too much time spent on them, distracting from the story of the characters we already know and care about.

      Introducing new protagonists this late in the series just seems like an extremely difficult thing to do well, because they start out at a huge disadvantage in terms of reader investment compared to the established characters. I’ve noticed that quite a few fans have liked Feast and Dance better on a second reading, and I wonder if perhaps years of fan discussions and crazy theories have gradually established some amount of investment in those new characters that the initial reading of the text failed to accomplish.

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    117. Sansa’s Knight,

      lol

      There’s too many peripheral characters for the books to follow the show now

      not just Aegon and perhaps Victarion and Euron, but the Brown Ben Plumms, Gerris Drinkwaters, Darkstars etc and then there’s the fact that Book Sandsnakes seem to be world apart from what the show Sandsnakes are set to be

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    118. As somebody who has written a few novels, it’s pretty funny to see how mistaken some people are in their thoughts about the process. As an author, especially after many years, your characters are like good old friends you know very well, friends that make demands of you, drive the story into places you’ve never planned it to go.

      And just to mention one point I’m positively sure about: the show won’t change the plot of future books, or stop or hinder their creation, it’s not remotely on a comparable level from the perspective of the author.

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    119. I’m kinda baffled how serious/obsessed ASOIAF/GOT fandom’s reaction to this is. It’s utterly silly too me. TWOW really needs to come rather sooner than later or Arya will indeed marry Jon behind GRRM’s back. *eyesroll*

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    120. While everyone has a right to critique and offer their opinion, we must remember how ASOI&F came about. GRRM was sick of following certain literary rules and just wanted to write what he wanted and how he wanted, regardless of how flowery or bloated or convoluted it might be.

      It’s no-holds-barred writing.

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    121. Sand snakes have only just been introduced in the books…

      Indeed. I would say this was the first time the mere introduction didn’t work for me and I’m curious what the show will make of them (apart from the obvious sexpots).

      Of course GRRM couldn’t go into great depth about them, what with the size of AFFC/ADWD combined (and that “one book” is not even finshed yet!) already, but this makes me headscratching when he says they all have big roles to play.

      Then again he also says this of Strong Belwas and Mago. (Seriously?)

      As somene who loves AFFC and having less important characters fleshed out I still must say at some point you just have to stop. (Or write side novels or whatever).

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    122. I think a lot of this seems silly and unbelievable to us because we are so accustomed to existing story. Looking at the suggested outline objectively, it’s easy to see how a few of storylines could have especially played out beautifully

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    123. Tyrion Pimpslap:
      Flora Linden,

      Hopefully, there are no love triangles. And there’s no way that Dany, who spurned Quentyn, will fall in love with a noseless, misshapen dwarf.

      I was referring to the TV series, not the books. Chances are there is no Quentyn in the show. TV Tyrion is still in one piece, with his nose intact. And Peter Dinklage is quite an attractive guy. (And anyway, Khal Drogo and Book Daario of the blue hair aren’t exactly dream men, either.)

      Spaniard SheBear:

      Why did they cast someone as gorgeous as Iain Glen as Jorah, if he has no chance of winning such affections? My poor old bear…

      As Nymeria Warrior Queen pointed out, Dany, at her young age and at that point in her life, just isn’t interested in who Jorah is. Plus the way he behaves toward her is a bit obsessive, if not stalkerish and creepy.

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    124. Balerion The Cat,

      Oh for f’s sake… I’m constantly (and maybe unreasonably) bothered by GoT’s official channel’s inability to upload anything in 1080p. And here we have HBO Romania doing it. It’s a bit silly that the only version of the proper quality is not even in its original version. Oh well. Good enough to obsessively analyze every frame 😛

      Thanks a lot Balerion! Good kitty.

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    125. I am not defending incest in any way, shape or form, but as a kind of footnote, the ‘rules’ on how closely related people have to be for a relationship to be regarded as incestuous are entirely cultural and have changed over time and from place to place. Throughout history some groups have been very closely inter-married, sometimes to keep their heritage ‘pure’, or through lack of available unrelated partners. In the present day there are many societies where marriages are common between first cousins (where the parents are siblings, like Cersei and Lancel as their fathers are brothers) and not thought of as wrong in any way. The European royal families all tended to marry each other until quite recently and lots of them are related to each other both by blood and marriage. As with so many things the idea of whether or not something is wrong depends not only the views of the people involved and their society, but those of the person looking at it from the outside.

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    126. Thanks to the 1080p version, I can see some things more clearly:

      -The one leading the boat in the first Hardhome shot is Jon.

      -It certainly looks like Mance is the one being burnt by Mel. His distinctive (and honestly not very flattering) haircut is now visible. He’s on the right side of the shot, escorted by two Baratheon soldiers. That doesn’t mean, of course, that it’s really Mance. But if you’re reading this you’ve read the books, I assume.

      -It seems AT LAST they bothered to invent a foreign (probably Valyrian) alphabet. There is some writing on the shot in Volantis with Tyrion and Varys, and it’s not our alphabet.

      -Still can’t tell who is getting a ceremonial pyre (a different scene from the sacrifice scene.)

      -Most importantly, the wildling Jon is fighting is undoubtedly a wight. I couldn’t tell before, but it’s clear now. Come on, does this, this or this look like someone who’s still alive?

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    127. Lulu’s Mum,

      I think the natural inclination of people to not be romantically interested in people they are raised with is what makes Jon/Arya not work for me, not the incest part. It’s human nature – evolution trying to spread genes causes people to look outside the household.

      Jon/Dany are even closer related that Jon/Arya as per R+L=J… but it’s much more plausible.

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    128. Winter:
      Such an interesting read tbh, it just goes to show nothing is sacred and can change or be altered dramatically anytime.

      Clearly Mr Martin has changed his mind about which pivotal characters survive the series, I can’t at all the major characters avoiding death. Not going to happen this time round.

      I don’t know why, but I get a nagging sense Jon and Sansa may hook up, definitely more inclined to go with this than Arya. Sansa in this draft was clearly a supporting character, Arya reads as if she might have had Sansa’s plotlines. A brilliant idea to flesh out two sisters who are foils to each other, whose arcs whilst diverging, I see as parallel to one another.

      Also, Sansa belongs in that main character bracket, the show and her POV count adds credence to that. The other 5 are pretty much on par with the current trajectory of the series. Interesting that Mr Martin has continued to focus more on these characters.

      You’re right about Sansa being a main character now, but you’ve lost me with the idea of Sansa being likely to marry Jon. I’m completely puzzled by the statements that this idea is somehow supported by the text. There’s zero textual substantiation of it, and it’s clear that Jon and Sansa are even less likely to hook up than Jon and Arya, since in addition to not having any non-sibling feelings for each other and having completely separate storylines, they don’t even think often about each other and play completely marginal roles in each other’s stories. The idea of Sansa taking over ur Arya’s storylines makes no sense – the idea of a “forbidden passion” between her and Jon is extremely unlikely for the existing characters, as in the idea of some love triangle between them and Tyrion, who is also definitely not in love with Sansa (unrequited physical desire was the extent that went). Even if Sansa were to be a point of contention between Jon and Tyrion in some future conflict, without any unlikely romantic feelings for her on Jon’s part, GRRM would have been setting it up by at least having Jon react to the news of Sansa’s marriage to Tyrion. Instead, he wrote major reactions from Robb, Cat and Sandor (while Arya learned about it but didn’t seem to believe it or understand it), and none whatsoever for Jon, which makes the Jon/Sansa crackship even less likely.

      If there’s tormented passion coming up for Sansa in the future books, it would be the one that’s been built up already over four books – with Sandor Clegane, and if there’s to be a “love triangle” of sorts for her, it’s going to be the one that’s been foreshadowed all the way back in AGOT – when she had significant interactions with both Sandor and Petyr Baelish, who showed signs of transferring his Catelyn obsession on Sansa already in their first meeting – and would be actually relevant in Sansa’s actual storyline that’s happening in the Vale.

      If Tyrion is to have an unrequited love in the future books, instead of being only focused on Tysha, the most likely suspect would be Dany. And if there’s going to be some sort of Jon/someone/Tyrion love triangle, Dany would also be more likely, since there’s at least some textual foreshadowing for Jon/Dany in the House of the Undying chapter. (Not to mention, people who are yet to meet but will almost definitely meet are a far more likely romantic pairing than people who have grown up as siblings, think of each other as siblings, have zero romantic interest in each other, and play marginal roles in each other’s stories.) Or there may be another love triangle with Dany and one of those two guys plus someone else (like Jorah). Or there may not be another love triangle involving any of these characters at all. Each of these is far more likely than this odd idea of Jon/Sansa/Tyrion, which seems about as likely as High Sparrow being Howland Reed or Mance Rayder being Rhaegar.

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    129. Oops, in moderation. I’ll post fewer images.

      Thanks to the 1080p version, I can see some things more clearly:

      -The one leading the boat in the first Hardhome shot is Jon.
      -It certainly looks like Mance is the one being burnt by Mel. His distinctive (and honestly not very flattering) haircut is now visible. He’s on the right side of the shot, escorted by two Baratheon soldiers. That doesn’t mean, of course, that it’s really Mance. But if you’re reading this you’ve read the books, I assume.

      -It seems AT LAST they bothered to invent a foreign (probably Valyrian) alphabet. There is some writing on the shot in Volantis with Tyrion and Varys, and it’s not our alphabet.

      -Still can’t tell who is getting a ceremonial pyre (a different scene from the sacrifice scene.)

      -Most importantly, the wildling Jon is fighting is undoubtedly a wight. I couldn’t tell before, but it’s clear now. Come on, does this or this look like someone who’s still alive?

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    130. Lady Wolfsbane,
      It wasn’t really a comment on the pros or cons of relationships with relatives in the story, more me doing my usual habit of reading others’ comments and adding in something that’s along those lines but not strictly the same thing. You get the end result of my thought process once it has drifted off topic a bit. Sorry everyone I’m really bad for that! :O(

        Quote  Reply

    131. Annara Snow,

      I’m not going to contend with your analysis, it’s on point! I do agree that there is little textual evidence or foundation for Sansa and Jon to be together. I certainly don’t think there’ll be a love triangle for her affections with Tyrion. When I referenced Sansa taking some of Arya’s storyline, I meant her marriage to Tyrion. It’s really nothing more than a crackpot theory that I’ve been musing. I don’t know maybe cos I see them being amongst the last Stark/Targs remaining, maybe there could be a union, more political than romantic, of course.

      Tbh I feel like her end-game will probably come full circle with the Hound, but she won’t end up with him. I’m inclined to think, that of she survives she’ll remain alone disenchanted with love.

        Quote  Reply

    132. Hoyti Von Totiy,

      I’m really excited about it. Along with the rest of the Hardhome-related shots, this one points to a few crucial facts:

      -It’s Hardhome… if there was still any doubt. The sea on one side, a cliff on the other, and in the middle a ramshackle village full of hundreds and hundreds of wildlings… and now, wights (and probably White Walkers) are coming. Definitely Hardhome.

      -There will probably be no actual “battle” between Night’s Watchmen and wildlings at Hardhome. There is certainly a scuffle, which we glimpse in another shot of the trailer, but it is plainly noticeable that nobody has their weapons out. The wildlings are trying to get in the boats, and the crows are trying to avoid it (I guess they are already full, as we see in another shot, in which a few wildlings are still trying to get in the boats, swimming to them.) The only evidence of an actual fight between them was this shot of Jon killing a wildling… but this wildling has been dead for a while.

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    133. Luka Nieto:

      -Still can’t tell who is getting a ceremonial pyre (a different scene from the sacrifice scene.)

      Some have said the Maester Aemon’s chains are visible. I thought it was definitely Thorne, dying from his wounds, but he is at the crowd shot burning of Mance.

        Quote  Reply

    134. The quick shot near the end of the trailer is of Brienne and Pod fleeing the Inn at the Crossroads on horseback, correct? The set looks identical to where they were last year.

      I know that there’s an old lady cast who is said to help Brienne and my guess she is the Innkeeper or something similar here.

      My question, in trying to piece together Brienne’s story this season, is who is trying to chase down Brienne and Pod here? Based on the leaked script, I think it’s fairly clear that Brienne being in the Vale and trying to get Sansa occurs very early on in the season and she is rebuffed in her attempts. The Inn is a good enough place for her and Pod to regroup back to but then why would they be on the run? Would Vale knights be hunting them that far and for what purpose?

      The more I think about where things are going, the more I’m convinced that Brienne must run into the BwB this season. I have no idea what form the BwB will be in (or if LSH is even involved) but there’s really no other place for Brienne to go if not with them. Jaime’s clearly not making his way back up to her anytime soon and she can’t go back to King’s Landing. The Stark girls mission will be exhausted very early on so what else is there?

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    135. King Tommen,

      If it’s not the BwB, it’s something like it. I’m really curious and confused about Brienne this season. I have no idea what she’ll do for most of the season.

        Quote  Reply

    136. King Tommen,
      Luka Nieto,
      Relevant to what’s being discussed this time, promise! That bit is very quick so I could be wrong but I don’t think we actually see anyone following them? If not there’s a chance they’re in a super rush for another reason (chasing someone themselves, need to pass on urgent news etc). Woah, brief and to the point, I’m getting the hang of this :O)

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    137. My list of things I’m most intrigued with trying to put together for S5 is:

      1. Sansa’s story. We can surmise Brienne reaches her early on and Sansa/LF send her on her way (script leak indicates this happens E1 or E2). This seems to be out in the Vale countryside on their tour and also leads to LF’s little pep talk to her we see in the trailer. After that, we know LF bugs off to King’s Landing (somewhere Sansa definitely isn’t going) which leaves Sansa and I guess Robin. The only other thing we’ve seen is the quick trailer shot of her looking worried in the bathtub in a room in some castle. And that she’s said there’s some kind of traumatic scene at some point. The headscratcher for me is that we’ve seen a ton of minor castings leaked and there are zero from the Vale that would suggest people Sansa could interact with. Last year we had the guard at the Bloody Gate and the Vale lords. This year, nothing. Zero. I just can’t see what the hell she’d be doing alone with Robin in the Eyrie for the remainder of the season and why they’d have LF just abandon her. I have to think she gets included in another storyline.

      2) Brienne story: I referenced this in my post above.

      3) How the Dorne stuff concludes: I have a very good idea of how everything in Dorne with Jaime/Ellaria and the Sandsnakes progresses but I don’t know what exactly will be the deal once Doran gets everyone in a room and we presumably get some kind of info on his plan. This probably doesn’t happen until the finale but that’s going to be very interesting. Also, will they kill off Bronn? I tend to think they won’t but who knows? Myrcella might not make it either.

      4) Does Jon die or will this be held back until next season? Hardhome being in E8 gives some leeway for there to be more in the final episodes.

      5) Related: How far does Stannis get on his march to Winterfell. I think we can be confident that he starts the march but there has been absolutely no footage or shooting leaks indicating that there’s a physical conflict with the Boltons that actually occurs. Also, how long is Davos sticking by Stannis and will they branch him off to have his Rickon mission at some point, delay it or have him do something completely different? My guess is that he at least starts out on the march to Winterfell with Stannis.

      6) What the crap are they doing at Winterfell all season? No Frey’s that we’re aware of, no Manderly’s, no Jeyne Poole but all indications are that there’s plenty of screentime for Roose/Ramsay/Theon who have already set up shop in Winterfell as of the end of last season. There needs to be some kind of conflict going on there and there’s the shot in the trailer of the Boltons all standing in the courtyard to receive someone of some kind of importance. I still believe they’ll be marrying Ramsay off but I don’t think it’ll be to someone posing as a fake Arya.

      7) Dany and Tyrion’s story I more or less can guess at and should be good. I’m interested to know if we’ll see Varys pop up again in Westeros after he and Tyrion presumably get separated in Volantis. Just because it’s a deviation, I’m interested to see what exactly the interaction between Dany and Tyrion is once they meet. Also what the hell happens to Barristan since he’s MIA during Daznak. And who sets the dragons free too.

      8) King’s Landing is more or less known. I’m interested to see if they’ll include the ADwD epilogue and I also want to know why LF felt compelled to come to KL and what the conversation (I believe is with) Olenna in the brothel is all about.

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    138. Hi I just want to ask if there is a transcribed copy of the letter Im having a hard time reading it! Thanks in advance!

        Quote  Reply

    139. Flora Linden,
      Nymeria Warrior Queen,

      Oh, I can see why Dany isn’t into Jorah. She has a type, and Jorah is not that type. He’s in love, but I wouldn’t say he’s obsessed or a stalker. I guess if you are trying to take westeros and the Iron Throne you’re going to meet a good bunch of foes by the way, so he’s just a bit too much overprotective. Probably he still sees her as the vulnerable girl he met in the beginning of AGOT and doesn’t want to accept that she’s now a grownup, strong woman and she doesn’t need him that much.
      I pity him (and that’s why I like him; always had a soft spot for underdogs and other doomed souls) And all I said is that Iain’s gorgeousness is wasted in the show 😉

      As for Tyrion, I think Peter is quite handsome too but book!Tyrion is not, and I can’t see Dany falling in love with someone like him. Not her type, again. Look-wise or “brain-wise”. I believe that Dany will never fall in love again (if we don’t count her infatuation with Daario), and, if she’s one of Team 5 (or Team 6), she’ll end up alone and unhappy.

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    140. Huh. I knew Hardhome was in ep. 8 but somehow I hadn’t considered that probably means there’s still more of him in episode 9 and/or 10, so maybe we’ll get an adaptation of his last ADWD chapter this season, after all… we’ll see.

      There is plenty of evidence of a battle with Stannis, though not that the Boltons are involved… not that they would be, at least not in the books —the Battle of Ice that will open TWOW involves Stannis vs Freys (with the Manderlys also sent with them but as a wildcard since they don’t actually support the Boltons and want the Freys dead.) The Battle will take place at the Crofters’ Village in the woods, between two frozen lakes, where Stannis has decided he will make a stand —as we know from TWOW Theon I. Taking Winterfell would come next, and I think it could be considered a separate battle, which I don’t think we’ll see this season (nor I think it will come immediately after the Battle of Ice at the beginning of TWOW.) So, the first of the two conflicts can happen this season.

      As for the evidence that it will in fact take place in Season 5, we’ve seen Stannis in the woods with bloody makeup all over his face. Also, he’s prepared for a proper battle —hence the armor; cannot be an unexpected scuffle, and he fights himself. Sounds like the Battle of Ice to me. Also, there was that report a while ago from a producer who talked about relocating the filming of a huge snowy battle scene from Iceland to Ireland, due to logistical issues, though some establishing shots without the actors would still be filmed in Iceland. Now, people theorized that could be the show version of Hardhome, but considering what we’ve just discussed, I think there’s not going to be a proper battle there, let alone the huge battle in the snow that’s been described. Also, I doubt they were ever going to construct such an elaborate set in Iceland in the first place —the battle could only be in a natural location.

      Also, even though Grey Worm and Barristan haven’t been seen at Daznak’s Pit, both of them are alive and well when Daenerys descends the Pyramid to go there —she has the same wedding dress in one of the shots of the trailer, which marks it as the same day, and she’s accompanied by them (and Dario.)

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    141. Luka Nieto,

      Yes, Stannis being bloodied up does suggest that there’s a conflict. I find it strange that we’ve seen multiple shots of the Hardhome battle and zero of this. If it was a big fight, you’d think the trailers would include something there. Even the Stannis arrival at the Wall last season which was a secret had shots of the Baratheon soldier on horseback taking out a Wildling in all the trailers.

      If the show has fights during the season, they tend to get a lot of play in the trailers, even if they’re just quick, indistinguishable shots. We’ll wait to see on the next one I guess.

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    142. King Tommen,

      We’ve seen no battle at Hardhome. We’ve seen Jon killing a wight and Crows saving wildlings with their boats and stopping an excess of people trying to get into them (not even drawing their weapons in the process, mind you.) Not exactly a “battle.” Not even a fight.

      As for Stannis, I guess we could see something in the next trailer or in the featurette in a couple of days. Let’s be patient. But something is clear: Stannis fights, with armor, and he’s on the woods.

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    143. One theory I currently have is that they relocate the battle of ice to take place at the wall. With the Boltons coming for Stannis instead of Stannis coming for the Boltons.

      This could then happen at the same moment as Jon will get assasinated making it a battle between boltons/stannis and night’s watch. It’s not a possibility I would like, but it can happen.

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    144. davy,

      Stannis is certainly not at the Wall in that video with the armor and the blood. He’s on the woods. And probably real woods, not a set (the ground is way too uneven.) There are no trees at the Wall.

      I don’t think any of that will happen.

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    145. Luka Nieto,

      “Battle” isn’t the right word but Hardhome on the show is clearly a massive set piece with tons of extras and a very intricately designed brand new set. The trailer goes back to it on 8 separate occasions so obviously it’s a big deal. They have zero shots of anything having to do with whatever conflict Stannis is entering into. That’s what I found strange.

        Quote  Reply

    146. King Tommen,

      Oh yeah I wasn’t trying to downplay it, don’t worry 😉 It certainly looks like one of the biggest set-pieces of the show.

      I get what you mean now. It IS strange. Maybe most shots with Stannis’s battle (whatever it is) require VFX that haven’t been completed? Or maybe it’s a conscious omission. Not sure. We’ll see!

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    147. Luka Nieto,

      I think we can see also Tormund’s red hair on that boat in the first Hardhome shot, and now the last time I watched it in 1080p there’s a man on the back of the boat a bit bald on the top the head, it looks like Thorne to me but I’m not sure…

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    148. King Tommen,

      So for Sansa’s arc one way to look at the lack of Vale character castings, as far as we know, (side-note: this is completely unsupported speculation), is that Sansa will be interacting with non-Vale characters later in the season. I also suppose there’s room for more Sansa/Brienne/Pod interaction after the initial encounter. Who says Brienne will simply give up after Sansa sends her away? If anything, Brienne has demonstrated that she is a) very loyal and b) very persistent. But, I agree, those arcs are very mysterious.

      As for your #8 point, I definitely think the rise of the FM, along with their subsequent destruction of brothels, bars etc is a solid motivator for LF to go back to KL. He owns KL brothels. Them getting destroyed is problematic. I’m really looking forward to an Olenna/LF interaction. It seems like a good opportunity to solidify the conspiracy surrounding Joffrey’s death.

      Luka Nieto,

      It is wise to keep in mind that show battles will not be the nuanced multi-battle campaigns we see in the books. Besides the money factor (which may not even be the biggest issue this season, given the expanded budget), time is a constraint. I wouldn’t be surprised if Stannis vs. Boltons gets simplified for the purposes of the show. That is, no Crofter’s village, no S5 Stannis vs. Bolton’s bannermen. I don’t mean to downplay it, I’m very excited to see everything fully fleshed out. That being said, I do think we’ll either have a big battle for Winterfell or else a Deepwood Motte equivalent-something that illustrates Stannis is gaining momentum, influence and troops on his march South.

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    149. Jofrey’s Cunt,

      Oh, didn’t notice. That’s most likely Tormund, and the other one does look like Alliser. Well, his bald spot anyway.

      Lion of Night,

      Deepwood and the battle at the Crafters’ Village would both show Stannis gaining momentum… and one of them does not require yet another castle set. So I agree, we’ll see Stannis’s campaign simplified due to time and budget… and that’s why I don’t think we’ll see Deepwood, but we’ll probably see a battle at the village / woods.

      Also, at first I was describing the situation in the books (as I said: “the Battle of Ice that will open TWOW involves…”.) That part was just about the books. In terms of the show, I know we’ll probably not see any of that; it may just be Stannis vs Bolton in the woods… which is the kind of thing the show would do with its constraints, not something like Deepwood, which is too elaborate, especially for its little impact in the plot and the story. It’s also what Stannis’s blurry background in that video implies —woods. Which is all I said 😉

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    150. Luka Nieto,

      Yeah, I realized you were talking books. I think all of this kinda boils down to how Stannis gets the support he needs to confront the Boltons, which seems to be the big question mark right now. Maybe we’ll get clues in the next trailer

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    151. Has anyone seen anything in the trailers that would

      imply that Sam, Gilly and Aemon don’t ever leave the wall? I mean, so far we don’t any reason to think they make it to Bravos… but no sign of Aemon or Sam at Manse’s burning for example? I would think that Aemon (if still alive) or Sam would attend that if they were still there… I’d still love for them to be in Bravos… even just in an interior scene? Oh heck, even Sam at the House of B&W briefly contemplating a drink or something invented. Any eagle-eyes on that yet?

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    152. Lion of Night,

      All circumstantial evidence seems to point to wildling support… but I admit it’s very circumstantial.

      Lady Wolfsbane,

      Their absence makes me think they’ll leave the Wall. They’re nowhere to be seen in any of the Wall crowd shots (and there are quite a few by now, in the trailers and the promotional pictures.) And they wouldn’t show them anywhere else, similarly to how they didn’t so Sansa much last season, because it would spoil that they go to somewhere else. Also, it’s not like those two are in trailers a lot. Anyway, no, as far as I know we haven’t seen anything about them.

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    153. King Tommen,

      That’s a good point that rarely gets mentioned.

      Why on earth would they bring Brienne’s story back to its origins (the Riverlands) if not to lead up to that incredibly satisfying and sadistic encounter with the Brotherhood? There is nothing else going on in the Riverlands. Incidentally, LSH’s apperance would provide a major payoff to Brienne’s failure to retrieve BOTH Arya and Sansa. Otherwise this plot element becomes meaningless.

        Quote  Reply

    154. Spaniard SheBear:

      Probably he still sees her as the vulnerable girl he met in the beginning of AGOT and doesn’t want to accept that she’s now a grownup, strong woman and she doesn’t need him that much.

      That’s a great point. Jorah’s problem is he can’t see past his initial impression of her as a vulnerable girl needing protection. From Dany’s POV, he’s being smothering and getting way too close for comfort.

      Spaniard SheBear:

      I believe that Dany will never fall in love again (if we don’t count her infatuation with Daario), and, if she’s one of Team 5 (or Team 6), she’ll end up alone and unhappy.

      This is speculation about the TV show. I have the suspicion Dany

      will not even head to KL to claim the throne, but head North to fight the Others/WW and die there with her dragons.

      I think it’s actually Sansa who’ll end up alone and unhappy. All those dreams of chivalry and knights and handsome princes that never come true.

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    155. I think I can see Sam and Gilly in the trailer:

      in the shot with Mance’s trial they are standing in the lower left part with the nights watch crowd, Gilly right next to the brazier and then from left to right Sam, Edd, Jon and Olly

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    156. My favorite part is how he doesn’t make outlines because he loses interest in writing once he knows where the story is going. I’m guessing they eventually got so complicated that he had to make an outline, which explains why the last few books took so long. :p

        Quote  Reply

    157. minty,

      Woah. You’re 100% right. I didn’t catch that. Gilly, Sam, Edd, Jon and Olly. No doubt. Now, if only we knew in which episode this happens 😉

        Quote  Reply

    158. A few other things I could see in the 1080 version of the trailer:

      Map with the Bolton crosses:

      I think I can read Torrhen’s Square and White Harbor at the lower parts of the map, so from the layout I think four of the fife Bolton crosses are at Oldcastle, Torrhen’s Square, Winterfell and the Dreadfort, the fith’s and leftmost cross I have no idea

      Hardhome:

      I think the unarmed quarrel starts because the nights watch is pulling a ‘women and children first’ and some wildlings are not ok with that

      Winterfell:

      From the one shot of Theon/Reek we can see a distinct stone structure next to a window and some very similar stones next to a doorframe in Sansa’s bathtub room. (I know someone already compared the wooden doors) Assuming that Theon is in Winterfell and having read his chapters from ADWD last night (fArya bathtub) this gives me pure horror

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    159. Luka Nieto,

      The lack of Aemon in that Mance trial scene could also mean (if he is the one that is burned in the other scene) that he simply died before Mance’s trial and that this scene took place earlier.

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    160. I think the Mance burning scene has to be fairly early (perhaps even E1). So in terms of what happens to all the characters there, it’s wide open after that.

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    161. Hbo just posted a new preview of the “A day in the life” special on their facebook… I’m so excited to see this, hopefuly we’ll learn more about the battle scene with Stannis the Mannis.

        Quote  Reply

    162. minty,

      As awesome as a Theon saving Sansa scenario would be, there is no possible way she’d end up there. LF would not send his crush to Ramsay. If Boltons have Sansa, Lannisters have Sansa. That would be in nobody’s interest. She’s staying in the Vale and if she’d go anywhere it definitely wouldn’t be to the Boltons.

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    163. Making Game of Thrones has also posted an article on the “A Day in the Life” special, detailing three things that we can expect to see.

      http://www.makinggameofthrones.com/production-diary/first-look-got-a-day-in-the-life-special

      1. The Water Gardens of Dorne

      Prince Oberyn Martell mentioned to Cersei that her daughter Myrcella enjoyed the Water Gardens. Now, the Dornish setting makes its on-camera debut in Season 5. The real-life location attracts an average of 8,000 tourists each day.

      2. A New Character in Action

      See Jonathan Pryce, aka the High Sparrow, play against Lena Headey’s Cersei Lannister.

      3. A New Northern Outpost

      Go inside the creation of a fishing village north of the Wall.

      We already knew about the Water Gardens, of course. It seemed logical that we would at least catch a glimpse of Jonathan Pryce as the High Sparrow in this special, but now it’s confirmed, and it looks like we’ll be seeing a lot of him.

      I suppose it’s worth noting that the “fishing village north of the Wall” isn’t specifically named as Hardhome, but that doesn’t tell us much. The name wouldn’t mean anything to someone who hasn’t read the books, and just because they don’t name it here doesn’t mean it won’t be named as such in the show. Even if it isn’t, however, it’s pretty clear that it’s going to effectively serve the same purpose.

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    164. goodkinghenry,

      I know it would make no sense to send Sansa to the Boltons, Pedofinger doesn’t want to lose his prize and Sansa is not the

      helpless Jeyne Poole type

      . I’m to 99% sure that she will stay in the vale but this one % in me fears that

      Ramsay will marry Alayne and somehow Littlefinger scheming himself to be part of the great northern conspiracy.

        Quote  Reply

    165. minty,

      In this scenario, I agree that there would need to be heavy lifting behind the motivations for all involved, including LF but remember that LF wanting Sansa to be eventually revealed as the heir of Winterfell is part of his master plan in the books. We sure as hell aren’t getting a Harry the Heir on the show and there’s no Jeyne Poole equivalent to speak of. Is it so crazy to think that we’re just going to get a condensation of this storyline that aligns us to what happens in the books anyways?

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    166. My take on the show’s version of Hardhome and Jon’s arc. There won’t be a huge scene of Jon letting the Wildlings through the Wall at Castle Black. Instead all of those Wildlings will be at Hardhome/’fishing village’ and the debate will be whether to go there and save them/let them on the other side of the Wall. I’m still not sure if ‘For the Watch’ will happen this season, but if Hardhome is in episode 8/9, there is still a chance of FTW happening in the finale, but I would think Mel would need to be around.

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    167. minty,

      Luka Nieto,

      Oh, you two just broke my heart a wee bit.

      OK then… so odds are looking poorer for even just

      Sam and Gilly to make it away from the wall. Aemon gets toasted at home, most likely. Would make “fat pink mast” less icky with him not around I suppose, *sigh*.

      Next… Brienne, LS and Jaime meeting in the same place on the show AND in the books.. is it doable?

      Predicting a season endgame for Dark Sansa (who may be the new LS) and Brienne AND Jaime… can Sansa go south chasing Brienne and oh.. I dunno gathering the BwoB in such a way that if Jaime goes North mid-season with some sand snakes (minus Bronn) and meets up to rescue Brienne in the middle? Is there a location that makes any even “jetpack sense”… if the BwoB were somehow… near King’s landing or something?

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    168. Is this the outline GRRM’s editor mentioned would be released with ADOS in an interview last year? If so, what is the purpose for releasing it now

        Quote  Reply

    169. King Tommen,

      #crackpot theory

      It’s probably veeery unlikely but what if

      Alayne marrys Ramsay, the Boltons are disposed of by Stannis/Mance/Northmen, Alayne is consequently revealed as Sansa to northern Lords (heir of Winterfell etc.) and Littlefinger can marry her finally (Sansa won’t let that happen)

      and here comes my ‘ultimate’ proof for

      Sansa becoming Ramsay’s bride

      look closely at the bathtub from the trailer and the bathtub that Ramsay puts Reek in in season 4. That one was part of their household back then and could have easily been moved to

      Winterfell for his bride

      #hopeallthiswontcometrue

        Quote  Reply

    170. Flora Linden,
      I don’t think Dany will make it to the end, either. That’s why I wrote “if”. And Sansa… I don’t know what to think of Sansa. I’m really looking forward for her storyline in season 5 because it’s uncharted territory. I want to see if she lives up to that Maleficent dress and goes all dark and vengeful, leaving the dreams of chivalrous knights behind. It’s about time, after all she’s been through!

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    171. Rygritte,

      Hehe. I want that scene, too. Or

      a proper slave auction, where slaves are stripped naked for buyers to inspect for scars and signs of disease…

      Or better yet, I want both scenes 😉

        Quote  Reply

    172. King Tommen,

      Right, but LF wants Sansa for himself. Yes not going to jeapordize the only bargaining chip he has, not to mention his crush, by delivering her into the hands of the biggest psychopath in Westeros. Not to mention risk her getting delivered by the Boltons back to the Lannisters.

        Quote  Reply

    173. Turncloak:
      HBO Game of Thrones special a day in the life debuts this Sunday!!!
      Can’t wait!

      Exciting times! ADitL this Sunday, as well as Better Call Saul (to tide us over, along with the Americans, ’til April). Followed by S4 bluray soon. Yay!

        Quote  Reply

    174. goodkinghenry,

      The only thing that makes me think otherwise would be Roose’s line of “Tywin Lannister has given me the north, but he won’t lift a finger to help me keep it.”

      Makes me wonder how loyal Roose will be to Cersei and the crown now that Tywin is dead and if they’ll just do their own thing.

      I love the idea of seeing Theon save Sansa but i agree that it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense from LF’s POV.

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    175. Freddy</strong

      So just because Arya was initially meant to 'fall in love' we claim aspects of her character were transferred to Sansa? I see the bigger problem with this initial plan as simply timing. Not everyone has caught on to the idea that Jon's parentage is not what it seems – so many potential readers, given our modern sense of 'incest'- would be simply grossed out and stop. I'm not a fan of Jon/Arya but it has only been 'brother/little sister so far so 'I know nothing'. Arya is Jon's weakness, though, for sure…

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    176. ColdPie,

      You could come up with a number of ways to write the motivation for LF to set this plan in motion:

      For instance:
      1) In his speech to Sansa in the trailer, he is advocating for her to seek vengeance on the Boltons for how they’ve betrayed her family by entering into a long con type of plot with him where they both agree for her to be married off to Ramsay so that LF can either engineer some kind of coup from the crown, or Vale forces, or for her to do the deed herself.

      or

      2) He could tell her that she needs to reclaim her birthright and clear her name and the marriage pact is the only way to do so, whereby he advocates for the marriage in King’s Landing (with Cersei) as a way to legitimize the Boltons (much like the books have the Lannisters help out Roose by producing FArya). He could convince Cersei to do this by implying a marriage to Ramsay would be a fate worse than death for Sansa, but secretly having a plot to protect Sansa (or have her liberated shortly after the marriage).

      These are only suggestions off the top of my head, I’m sure you could come up with a number of different reasons why they would put this plot in motion. Again, heavy lifting writing-wise but it can be done.

      I question why LF is simply abandoning Sansa to go to King’s Landing unless she is going somewhere other than the Vale. Storytelling-wise, leaving Sansa by herself at the Eyrie more or less shuts down her story for the season and I’m pretty positive that’s not happening.

      We need more footage and clues to make any true declarations at this point. If Sansa is indeed going to hang out at the Eyrie for the rest of this season, we’ll need to see a good reason for it because right now that just seems like a complete narrative dead end.

      Also, the Sansa as LSH “idea” born from one out-of-context line in the trailer is just too stupid for words and makes no sense at all so I wish people would stop bringing it up.

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    177. Adding Dothraki to the wiki. Yeah, it looks like the same guy who we glimpsed at Daznak’s Pit.

      So, doesn’t prove the Dohtraki will be back for Dany’s last moments. Still, there’s always this: Dragon-burnt horses.

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    178. LF said he will gather the Vale lords and “I want to know whos side youre fighting for?” Sending Sansa away and him leaving basically makes that whole plot pointless. Whatever Sansa will be doing, she will have the Vale behind her. Maybe they will march on the riverlands? He would also not leave Robin Arryn alone unless Sansa stays with him or……

      Sansa is crying because LF is trying to convince her that they need to kill Robin

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    179. Lady Wolfsbane,

      I need just one Aemon scene to be happy with whatever happens in the show……

      “Aemon’s blind white eyes came open. “Egg?” he said, as the rain streamed down his cheeks. “Egg, I dreamed that I was old.”

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    180. Crabber’s Son:
      LF said he will gather the Vale lords and “I want to know whos side youre fighting for?” Sending Sansa away and him leaving basically makes that whole plot pointless. Whatever Sansa will be doing, she will have the Vale behind her. Maybe they will march on the riverlands? He would also not leave Robin Arryn alone unless Sansa stays with him or……

      None of the Vale lords are in this season. No minor characters that have anything to do with the Vale have been cast. There is no one for Sansa to hang out with (outside of Robin) for the whole season after LF bolts. That’s just not a feasible storyline.

      Why the hell would the Vale attack the Riverlands?

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    181. I’m on board with the Sansa in Winterfell theory. And I even believe that she will go there by her own choice, because Littlefinger convinces her that’s the easiest way to take revenge and kill Ramsay.

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    182. Crabber’s Son,

      Indeed, one of the saddest moments in the entire series.

      ——-

      All of you “Dark Sansa & Ramsay in Winterfell” theorists have been drinking Crackpot Whiskey from Greywater Watch.

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    183. Obviously this ought to be taken with several grains of salt given the recent LSH IMDB fiasco BUT Stephen Dillane is now credited on IMDB as appearing in seven s5 episodes. 501, 502, 504, 505, 507, 509 and 510.
      http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0226820/?ref_=tt_cl_t1

      I don’t think his management filled in how often he’d appear on IMDB in past years so this could just be a fan-edit…but it does gel with what D and D said at SDCC about him getting more screentime. Anyhow, there you have it.

      (If this is just the work of some troll then I’m sorry for circulating it. Otherwise it might be newsworthy or worth debating over anyways).

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    184. Greenjones,

      Certainly a big step up from the last couple season, if true. Not unexpected, but still reassuring. Hopefully they’ll give him more of those little moments that make him a more complex character in the books (for example, mourning Renly & talking about avenging Robert and Ned, just after killing Renly.)

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    185. King Tommen,

      Because they are controlled by the freys and lannisters? The waif or varamyr six skins or other minor characters havent really been cast either we dont know everyone who has been cast. So what was the entire point of last seasons ending where LF says he will gather the lords of the vale? What will happen with robin arryn when sansa goes to winterfell to marry ramsay and lf goes to kings landing to marry ollena or whatever the theories are now?

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    186. King Tommen,

      How do you know any of that? We are never aware of all the castings (We know for a fact the Waif and Varamyr are getting cast… but who are playing them? That’s right, we have no idea.) We hear even less news about established characters returning.

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    187. Tyrion Pimpslap: Will never happen. The majority of the audience has no clue who Egg is. These little moments almost always are excluded from the show.

      To modify Tyrion Pimpslap‘s point, if they do include the line, then they will exclude the “Egg.” Even if Aemon mentions Aegon when telling Jon to kill the boy and become the man, then the audience wouldn’t recall “Egg” episodes later. They could use “Aegon”: it would throw the audience a little, but they would probably get the idea that he was talking to someone long dead. (“Egg” wouldn’t work because that’s not a name, it’s a food item!.)

      Still, the line could be included without Aemon directing it at anyone in particular. It could be an effective last line before he dies.

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    188. Crabber’s Son,

      I think you misread that scene. It was basically LF getting the Vale Lord’s ok to run things through Robin as Lord Protector. He wasn’t calling them to war or anything. His suggestion was that Robin should get out of the Eyrie and travel around the Vale to meet his subjects.

      Their allegiance is to Robin (and tangentially LF). Sansa’s presence or non-presence doesn’t make any difference to them at the end of the day.

      LF’s consolidation of power is not done through way of force. He’s not going to call on the forces of the Vale to wage war overtly on people. He’s going to work in the shadows to consolidate his power and then pull whatever final move he has when he’s ready. There is absolutely no reason for him to start having forces from the Vale defy other lands loyal to the Crown. What purpose would that serve at this point?

      Last season was about him getting the Vale under his thumb, which he accomplished with Sansa’s help. Now he’ll set his sights on getting the North onside (while no one is the wiser). For that, he needs Sansa and her name to secure Winterfell. That’s the way it is in the books, on the show I suspect he’s going to put those wheels in motion more quickly.

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    189. King Tommen,

      You’re right that he probably won’t call the banners and attack directly, but remember the main reason they came to the plan of Robin touring the Vale —so that he became an effective leader the Vale could stand behind against the Lannisters. A reminder:

      Littlefinger: “You want justice, Lord Royce. I can hardly complain about that. I want the same.”
      Waynwood: “Not much justice to be meted out in suicide, is there?”
      Littlefinger: “For Lysa, no. But for her son? Only 20 years ago, the knights of the Vale rode behind Jon Arryn, Ned Stark, Robert Baratheon. They fought together to overcome the Mad King. And since then, Arryn and Royce, Corbray, Waynwood, all the great houses of the Vale watched from the corner. A timid boy at a tavern brawl.”
      Royce: “Are you questioning our courage?”
      Littlefinger: “I want to know which side you’re on. Do you support the Lannisters, the house that executed your friend Ned Stark?”
      Royce: “Of course we don’t support the damn Lannisters.”
      Littlefinger: “No? Catelyn Stark begged her sister for support and Lysa refused. By staying out of the fray, you’ve allowed Tywin Lannister to destroy his rivals on every compass point. Who stands against him now?”
      Waynwood: “Who would you have us back, Lord Baelish? Robb Stark is dead.”
      Littlefinger: “I’d have you back Robin Arryn, Lord of the Vale.”

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    190. Luka Nieto,

      We don’t know for certain obviously but none of the agencies for those actors have anything listed and we have nothing listed amongst minor castings (eg Baratheon general, Gordy, Braavosi prostitute, Loboda, Old woman who helps Brienne, crypt keeper, Dorne ship captain etc etc) that has anything to do with the Vale. You would think something would have popped loose by now if that were the case.

      The Lords Declarant played their role last season, there’s not much reason for them to come back now.

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    191. Hodor’s Bastard: All of you “Dark Sansa & Ramsay in Winterfell” theorists have been drinking Crackpot Whiskey from Greywater Watch.

      Indeed, I have to wonder what basis there is for this. There were no reports of the relevant actors being on the same sets. We have heard alternative ideas for

      fake Arya

      that make much more sense logistically. It’s much simpler to assume that Sansa is just going to embark on the basics of her plot line for Winter: or at least the stuff before

      Aegon’s invasion alters whatever she is doing.

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    192. Wimsey,

      Until somebody provides me with a logical storyline for Sansa in the Vale after LF takes off, then I’ll choose to assume she’s a part of another character’s storyline. That is how D&D do things. Every season. You think fans would have picked up on this by now.

      They just aren’t leaving her to dick around with Robin Arryn for 7-8 episodes. Not happening.

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    193. Agreed. I shot of the ‘mounted house arryn’ could well just be picking up where it left off- with LF, Sansa and co. leaving the Eeyrie. As far as LF leaving Sansa- a man must keep up appearences to KL. As far as Sansa’s ‘new tears’… Well, her sister did just arrive at the gate with the hound and turned around- and rumor has it the Lannisters caught her and sold her as a bride to the Boltons. Surely she will hear about that giggle fit at the gate…

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    194. King Tommen,

      They were not the Lord Declarant in the show, and they ended up in much better terms with Baelish than in the books, as I explained in my previous post. Crabber’s Son was more correct than you implied —Littlefinger wanted them to stand behind Robin… specifically against the Lannisters. That’s not from the books, I’m aware, but that’s what the show set up right at the end of the Eyrie story line last season, not anything to do with Winterfell.

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    195. King Tommen,

      What I am expecting is that they are going to do some of her Winter stuff, but in a bit more detail. My thought is that once

      Aegon’s invasion become’s well known, then essentially the whole War for Westeros is rebooted. Sansa, like everyone else, is going to change course: and once Daeny gets back, the question of “with which Targaryen do you side?” will become huge.

      But until that reboot, I suspect that Martin has some important (and long overdue) dynamic development for Sansa.

      At any rate, I am (as my picture suggests) a big advocate of parsimonious thinking. We know that there is an early Winter chapter for Sansa that is going to upset people. We know that there are some Season 5 seasons for Sansa that are going to seem a bit traumatic. The simplest explanation is that these are one and the same. (Of course, that’s always the simplest explanation!)

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    196. Wimsey,

      What trauma is Sansa going to experience hanging out by herself in the Vale while not interacting with any other main (or even semi-main) characters in the story?

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    197. King Tommen: Quite right. They served their purpose though. There’s really no point in them being seen this season.

      I suspect that a “Vale Chorus” will work just fine. However, the fact that

      Harry the Heir has not been cast does suggest that this little side scheme is not going to amount to much in Winter. (I, of course, am betting that she winds up with someone different.)

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    198. King Tommen,

      Well, you argue that “Sansa can’t be alone with Robin all season!”, that for a Sansa-centric storyline (without her attaching herself to another storyline) there would have to be secondary characters around; and then you say that there is no point for these secondary characters to come back. I hope you see the contradiction.

      I’m not saying they’re necessarily back, but it does make a certain amount of sense. More than Sansa becoming Jayne, that’s for sure…

      Also, what about Littlefinger’s intentions at the end of season 4 vs the end of AFFC? Are you taking it into account in your theories? I mean, Crabber’s Son was more on point than you, even though most likely Petyr won’t call the banners. Read the transcript I C&P’d, if you don’t remember exactly about what Littlefinger convinced the Lords of the Vale.

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    199. King Tommen: What trauma is Sansa going to experience hanging out by herself in the Vale while not interacting with any other main (or even semi-main) characters in the story?

      Well, there certainly has been a lot of speculation about that! People in the Cult of the Virgin Sansa get horribly offended if you suggest that it involves sex. People in the Cult of All You Need is Love Sansa get horribly offended if you suggest that it involves her participating in something violent. Given that we were warned that some readers would find it controversial, I would bet that it involves one of those two. Heck, maybe both!

      However, I have no particular horse in that race.

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    200. Luka Nieto:
      King Tommen,

      They were not the Lord Declarant in the show, and they ended up in much better terms with Baelish than in the books, as I explained in my previous post. Crabber’s Son was more correct than you implied —Littlefinger wanted them to stand behind Robin… specifically against the Lannisters. That’s not from the books, I’m aware, but that’s what the show set up right at the end of the Eyrie story line last season, not anything to do with Winterfell.

      Do you really believe the implication was for the Vale to rise up against the Lannisters immediately? That seems like an awful misread. The implication was that Robin needed to grow into being a real leader and getting out to meet his subjects by touring the Vale was the best way to do so. Then, when he was grown up to the point where his people would follow him, they could rebel in whatever form they chose against the crown. Like in years from now. It was not a call to arms, I assure you.

      LF’s message was “I’ll eventually change this boy into a man so that eventually, we’ll be able to do something about the Lannisters being in power.” And the rest of them agreed. Starting to tour the Vale was the first of many baby steps toward eventually restoring the power of the Vale.

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    201. King Tommen: LF’s message was “I’ll eventually change this boy into a man so that eventually, we’ll be able to do something about the Lannisters being in power.” And the rest of them agreed. Starting to tour the Vale was the first of many baby steps toward eventually restoring the power of the Vale.

      Ah, now we go from parsimony to prior probability! Given the way that Littlefinger operates, we can probably exclude that as his real plan. If it is, then it will prove to be very ironic. And, of course,

      it is pretty clear in the books that LF is not planning of Robin hanging around too long.

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    202. Luka Nieto,

      Anya Waynwood and her crew are not even semi-main characters. They served their purpose for the two scenes they took part in but they can’t carry a Sansa storyline over multiple episodes.

      We have so, so, many examples in previous seasons of taking characters who are isolated in the books and putting them together with other main characters in order to consolidate the story that we should understand how things work by now.

      Instead of wandering the Riverlands running into minor characters, Brienne stays in KL longer and then bumps in Arya/Hound on the road.

      Instead of going alone into the Riverlands to negotiate sieges with minor characters, Jaime goes to Dorne to interact with all the new major characters introduced there.

      Instead of Bran wandering for a season North of the Wall, he intersects with Jon’s story at Crasters.

      Instead of Tyrion being escorted to Volantis by a bunch of new, minor characters and Varys being absent for the bulk of the season, Varys and he are going to take the journey together.

      Instead of Arya facing hardships alongside various minor villainous characters at Harrenhaal, she spends half the season as Tywin’s cupbearer.

      Instead of Theon being trapped at the Dreadfort with Ramsay for the 2nd season in a row and Yara isolated on the Iron Islands, they create a rescue attempt so the two of them can interact.

      Fill in the blank: instead of Sansa and LF talking philosophy of manipulation and making fun of Robin for a season, they send LF to King’s Landing to interact with some of the main character there and…

      But I’m sure Sansa will be the exception the rule…

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    203. Wimsey,

      Definitely agree here. He’s buying himself time with the Vale lords and I think that Robin is not long for this world. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if something didn’t happen to him during this little goodwill trip at the start of the season. Perhaps that’s what the Sansa tears are all about.

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    204. King Tommen,

      Oh, yeap. Robin is doomed.

      King Tommen,

      I agree about the consolidations, don’t get me wrong (and contrary to many book readers, I like almost all of them), but please don’t take what I say to the absolute possible extreme. I’m not saying she’ll spend the whole time with those Lords of the Vale (who I admit are secondary at best, if properly developed in the future; if not, tertiary.) I’m certainly not saying they’ll have to “carry a Sansa storyline over multiple episodes”! But they could still be there to serve a part of, as Wamsay would say, the “Vale Chorus” —if Vale Lords are needed for some scene, why not them?

      Brienne will be escaping from Knights of the Vale in either episode 2 or 3, so Sansa meets her either in episode 1 or 2. That plotline could be resolved right there and there (Brienne fails again in her mission, Sansa’s refusal “grows” her character a bit more, Brienne manages to escape), or maybe it goes on for a little bit more time, but I doubt it. So, let’s say that about a quarter or a third of Sansa’s season will deal with her encounter with Brienne and its aftermath. Then Littlefinger goes to King’s Landing. The reasons for it, whatever they are, and the goodbye scene, in which I’m sure Littlefinger will leave her some “good” advice and even maybe a particular mission, are more than enough for an episode. So, indeed, there’s half a season in which we literally don’t know what Sansa will be doing… but that’s mostly because there’s nothing more from the books that have been released; however, there could be something meaty around the corner of which we are not aware, and that’s what they may be adapting. Who knows, perhaps she WILL meet other main characters, and maybe it doesn’t even have to be off-book.

      My point is… we don’t know. When one has no evidence, one shouldn’t jump to the first crackpot theory that springs up —Sansa as Jayne. Normally I’d be open to it but it seems a bit too crazy to me.

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    205. Luka Nieto,

      I’m with you on the first 3-4 episodes and what most likely transpires. But given that this is where LF and her part, there is just not enough in the way of meat to justify her being in the Vale with (largely inconsequential) characters. I think the assumption that the Vale lords would be there again is a big one since there has been zero indication they are back but even if they are, they are plot devices not real audience identifiers. You can’t base a storyline on them interacting with Sansa. The audience doesn’t give a shit about them.

      The show obviously could have easily kept LF in the Vale for the whole season with Sansa. There probably isn’t a 100% necessary reason for him to go to King’s Landing. If he was there, I could see them coming up with something semi-interesting for the two of them to do that involved a kind of psychological push-pull on the power each think they have over each other. And maybe this culminates with some kind of creepy sexual move by LF that Sansa has to deal with. That could be a storyline. Not an amazing one but at least it’s with 2 of our big players bouncing off each other.

      But the show has made the concious decision to have LF leave. And I can only assume this is because they have bigger plans for Sansa to interact with one or more of our major characters. Then, that frees up LF to go somewhere and have some cool scenes with Olenna for example.

      But there is just little narrative reason to split these two up and have Sansa isolated in a plotline with no other characters we care about. Hence the assumption, she’s going somewhere else (whether it’s by her and LF’s design or some other reason). I don’t see how there’s another option.

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    206. King Tommen,

      Fair enough. Taking LF away from Sansa (even if he has a cool jetpack, so it’s not like he has to be away for half the season or anything) is a weird narrative choice, so it may mean Sansa needs to be alone for something… joining some other storyline seems a more than likely choice, I grant you 😉

      BTW, how do we know that’s where they will part ways? He may still be with her a couple more episodes. Wasn’t he glimpsed in KL for episode 7 or so?

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    207. King Tommen:
      They just aren’t leaving her to dick around with Robin Arryn for 7-8 episodes. Not happening.

      The Vale and Riverlands and Neck and Mountain Clans and Brienne and Pod and a dying Hound and BF and BwB and Riverrun and wandering Freys and Lords Declarant (Royce, Waywood) are more interesting than that! I have nothing against the disabled but Sweet Robin be damned!

      It’s just too soon to consider WF. They need to give Sansa some proper formative, possibly violent, steps to prepare for such a major northern game-changer as some are implying. From my perspective, a tearful Sansa in the trailer being consoled by LF was a step back. Sansa’s assertion will happen but not at WF, imho.

      Plus, Stannis (and Manderly!) have to do some damage for the Starks to even consider the North again, don’t you agree? The Starks are like tertiary-level players for the time being. I’m definitely rooting for Sansa Uprising but I’m actually more fascinated by the rumour of her uprising as spread throughout the kingdom. 🙂 LF and others (maybe QoT) will do well to help with that, right?

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    208. King Tommen: I don’t see how there’s another option.

      There are always lots and lots of other options! One of those is having Sansa doing her own thing in the Vale. It is quite probable that

      the Vale will be at war against the Lannisters in Winter, anyway: once Aegon arrives, they certainly will throw their lot in with him. The TV show might take a little extra time to set Sansa up as a leader in her own right.

      One key thing to remember is that Sansa’s character development so far has left her character in a sort of hole needing to crawl out: namely, she’s come across as pretty darn dumb. She never displays any intelligent traits. However, Martin (and B&W) will want us to believe that it’s because Sansa never has tried: and that once she does apply herself, then she will be pretty good at it. Maleficent Stark descending is a start, but it is not enough by itself: we need to see Sansa think and act for herself; we need to see her demonstrate curiosity, imagination, foresight and other diagnostic signs of intelligence that are necessary to convince us that she can be tactical. The Vale might be a good place to do that.

      (In a lot of ways, what they need to do is parallel what Daeny did in the first season: which she did without any other lead characters present!)

      OR…. what Hodor’s Bastard wrote! 🙂

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    209. Hodor’s Bastard,
      Wimsey,

      I agree with you both.

      1) “Dany Season 1 = Sansa Season 5” is a great possible parallel.
      2) The Vale is certainly gonna play at war now, just as Dorne will.

      Also, the obvious isn’t being considered with the Sansa in Winterfel theory…

      Let’s say she takes the role of Jayne completely, and gets saved by Theon. Right… so now she’s either with Stannis’s army, who are about to fight the Boltons, or (as in the books, per TWOW Theon I) traveling to the Wall. Either of those options would be a huge departure from whatever Sansa’s storyline will be in the future. Okay, then maybe she doesn’t get saved by Theon? So… she’s still at Winterfell when Stannis eventually attacks? She just escapes herself? How? Yes, sometimes storylines collide when they didn’t in the books, but it always goes back —a different path is taken, but with the same result. I don’t see how Sansa in the Battle of Ice or at the Wall makes any sense, I don’t see how she can then magically go back to whatever is her role in TWOW.

      I’m with Wimsey on this. We’ll get a character-centric season for Sansa, with a few plot twists and events but not extremely plot-heavy. And hey, she might not be there a lot. Why do people assume she’ll be in every episode? Barely any characters are anymore, especially since they decided to have more time with each character each episode, and then not appearing for a while. The Boltons had a big story line in Season 4, in the sense that they were the main characters of their own storyline for the first time, but they were only in 3 episodes and in 25 minutes overall (about half of, say, Daenerys’s screentime.) Sansa will appear more, of course, but maybe not that much more.

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    210. King Tommen,

      If you read between the lines Littlefinger also said Robin should learn to fight and ride a horse and do all these things. What it sounded like to me is Robin should leave the safety of his fortress and do things that can get him killed which will look like an accident. I think that Sansa is either crying about hearing about arya being so close or something she has to do to Robin. I could also see Harry the Heir being cast but under a different name, Harry the Heir seems like a name DD would love to change. Another place Sansa could go which could be interesting is Highgarden. GRRM said wed see Highgarden, it would fit well with Sansas arc and dreaming of being with a prince from highgarden or something, and that Olenna scene seems to be made just to remind us of the alliance that has formed. Could be something like Littlefinger- “I have Sansa stark the key to the north” Olenna- “There wont be anything left of you when the lannisters find out” Ofcourse we probably wont see highgarden this season, maybe a cgi shot from the distance.

      I also just remembered the blackfish is out there? Could he be involved in some way? There are so many characters this season that seem to not have much to do. I dont see why they even cast blackfish and edmure if they were only meant to be in 2 episodes.

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    211. Crabber’s Son,

      The Blackfish and Edmure were in half of Season 3, exactly 5 episodes, not only a few. They were cast exactly for the role they played that season. Not everything is for the sake of future story lines, and thank God for that. They were there for the sake of themselves and the characters of Robb and Catelyn.

      Sansa in Highgarden is an interesting theory. I could see it happening in the future, who knows. Certainly more than Sansa in Ramsay’s crazyland.

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    212. Luka Nieto,

      Seriously, I do like the way you and KT and others justify Sansa and WF, especially when considering Conservation of Story. I even get a bit giddy. However, a swap of Sansa and fArya fucking scared me when others (Turncloak is suddenly silent) brought it up a few months back. It’s too dark and reckless for me. LF does take risks but Ramsay is insane. Just putting Sansa near that snow castle without a true Northern uprising puts me on edge. That’s so far into TWoW, it pisses me off, actually. :/

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    213. Hodor’s Bastard,

      I don’t justify it… I find it a bit crazy actually, as I explained. Sansa may attach herself with other characters… but Ramsay? Roose? Stannis vs Boltons? And Petyr sends her there? I don’t see how any of it fits.

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    214. Maybe Sansa dies. She tries to game Littlefinger and fails, or Robin is more experienced at Moon Dooring people and she dies, because she has no experience being Evil Sansa. We are in an accelerated timeline and like Ned, her importance as a Stark is about the effect her character arc has on others. In this case, Littlefinger. Littlefinger changes, and following the prophecy, is slain by her because he is weakened by her death.

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    215. Sansa is a really valuable chess piece she is the key to the north as far as anyone knows. Who wants her more than anyone? The boltons. Giving her right to the people who want her to have control of the north is like shooting yourself in the foot. LF would only send her to Highgarden or set up a marriage in the vale. What would the plan be if she was married to ramsay? Infiltrate winterfell and assassinate ramsay and roose? And also the Blackfish and Edmure along with the Brotherhood and Gendry are the only people who havent had their stories resolved. Those were all pretty big parts in season 3 I cant see them being excluded for two straight seasons.

      Turner commented that Sansa’s character has become much darker since her family’s murder, saying: “I hope people start to rally behind her and see her as a badass… But yeah, it’s going to be pretty good.” Turner finally hinted that Sansa could soon be reunited with someone close to her, teasing: “Paths cross and there’s a lot of mingling.”
      “Obviously things aren’t turning that great because it’s Game of Thrones, but Sansa has this whole new mentality to her and she’s shed this innocent, vulnerable skin. She goes through a lot of hardships this season, but she approaches it very differently and it’s really interesting to watch.”

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    216. Luka Nieto,

      Ooops, my apologies…I misinterpreted the initial version of your “spoiler” comment above. I understand now…it was a faux-justification that you dissolved after you stated it. Cool! (I should have refreshed). Perhaps my comment is more directed at others….we’re in violent agreement!

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    217. Hodor’s Bastard: However, a swap of Sansa and fArya fucking scared me when others (Turncloak is suddenly silent) brought it up a few months back.

      Maybe my memory is off, but didn’t people suggest Sansa taking the role while trying to talk themselves out of the idea that they would use Ramsay’s psycho girlfriend as Arya?

      At any rate, I don’t remember anything resembling actual evidence that this was happening: it seems to have been more a “what if….” that got repeated so often that it became “it’s rumored that…”

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    218. I am certainly not fully on board with Sansa in Winterfell as I agree it creates a lot of logistical questions around motivations that would be tough to justify.

      What I am doing is taking the evidence we have to this point (Sansa has jack shit to do and nobody to act against in the 2nd half of the season) and walking it backwards against other things we know (LF wants her to secure the North, LF is being shuttled off into another story, the Boltons marry Ramsay off in the books and we have no plausible candidates for this role on the show, the Boltons have precious little to do this season given the lack of new characters in their storyline, the shots of Sansa in the bathtub in a castle looking worried, D&D love to have characters who don’t interact in the books, run into each other on the show etc).

      As soon as we see some evidence of another way her story could go, I’ll be glad to discard this particular theory.

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    219. I think we can all agree that many of the deviations we do see on the show appear to come from D&D saying “wouldn’t it be cool if these two characters met here? We never saw them talk to each other like this in the books” and then coming up with the reason afterwards.

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    220. Wimsey,

      Yes, I was one of those who thought Myranda could be the one that Theon could save if/when she is chosen to be fodder for Ramsay’s bitches (Charlotte Hope is in 3-4 episodes, I believe). But that would be as ludicrous as having Yara travel 7000 leagues around Westeros with her dedicated ironborn crew to almost be fodder for Ramsay’s bitches. 🙂

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    221. King Tommen: the Boltons marry Ramsay off in the books and we have no plausible candidates for this role on the show

      Sure we do: the brown-haired archer woman that we saw with Ramsay last season. Alternatively, they could just trot out any brown-haired young woman. After all, we should assume that the marriage is going to be to someone that is being passed off as Arya.

      As for the Boltons, they can have plenty to do. Theon will be there, and they will be girding for war with Stannis. There probably will be dissension among their ranks: just because no Manderly is cast, it does not follow that this is cut. (Manderly is a necessary tool in the books; he’s not necessary on TV.)

      As for Sansa sitting in the tub looking worried, there are a million and one reasons already in play as to why she might look so worried.

      As for LF wanting her to secure the north, we don’t know that. We do know that he’s helping her plan revenge. But there are any number of ways that might be done: including ways with all of those Knights of the Vale that we saw in the trailer.

      As we have had no rumor of Turner being on the Winterfell set or anything like that, I find it hard to give this any credence.

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    222. Hodor’s Bastard,

      Actually, it would not be very ludicrous. (Of course, I didn’t find Yara sailing to rescue Theon ludicrous, either.) For one thing, we know that the actress is in several episodes with the relevant characters. We know that she looks vaguely enough like Arya that they could be pulling the same stunt.

      And, perhaps most critically, this would put Theon in a classic Game of Throne situation: having to help someone he dislikes in order to thwart someone he absolutely hates. That would feed the story quite well: if Reek is going to become Theon again, then he has to do things that Theon would have done.

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    223. Hodor’s Bastard,

      Sansa makes more sense than Myranda in relation to Theon. In terms of… everything else, Sansa makes less sense. Not that I like any of those theories, to be honest. I see fArya being cut before any of those happening. Anyway, people overestimate the number of castings we hear about. We don’t know if these secondary characters are being included or not. The reason we know others aren’t being cast is that they’re big enough that their absence creates ripple effects we can notice even in other casting news, filming and promotional material (Arianne, YG.)

      As I said earlier: we know the Waif and Varamyr are being cast because of the leaked casting calls, but if not, we would assume they were cut. Without the leaked script summary, many assumed the Kindly Man wouldn’t be there. And we haven’t got actors pegged to any of those characters, a couple of months before the premiere. Days ago, we didn’t even knew who was gonna play Maggy (who we also wouldn’t know would be included if not for the casting calls.) So, it’s only logical to conclude that there are plenty of new characters we know nothing about, because their casting calls weren’t leaked and the actors weren’t announced anywhere.

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    224. The “super traumatic” scene to film doesn’t fit with Sansa’s current situation.
      It has to involve rape, ultraviolence or Ramsay.
      This became clear after the lack of Boltons in the trailer. They’re hiding something with Stannis too.

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    225. The Hound: The “super traumatic” scene to film doesn’t fit with Sansa’s current situation.
      It has to involve rape, ultraviolence or Ramsay.

      There are lots of other options. Sansa might seduce someone for political gain. She might kill someone in a non-violent fashion (e.g., smother them in their sleep or poison them) for political gain. She might pull some form of double-cross that leads to death or ruin for a catspaw. She might nearly be killed by a pack of wolves, only to have the very large and vaguely familiar Alpha leave her be. She might find her brother’s corpse with the dire-wolf head sewn onto it. Hell, she might have taken a few steps backwards and discovered that she had split-ends.

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    226. Luka Nieto: So, it’s only logical to conclude that there are plenty of new characters we know nothing about, because their casting calls weren’t leaked and the actors weren’t announced anywhere.

      That is true. After all, fArya need not be anyone that we know or that Theon has met before. The important point is that Reek wouldn’t stand up to Ramsay, but Theon would: and someone has to be the impetus for that.

      I do think that using Myranda would be more Thrones like: after all, temporary allies who would happily kill each other in different circumstances is something of a calling card.

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    227. The Hound:
      …ultraviolence…

      Heh…“Come get one in the yarbles, Billy-Boy, before me and my droogies go for some milk-plus!”

      Crabber’s Son,

      Now you got me wondering. I thought that brief shot was a welcome stance for other Northern Houses arriving for the housewarming party with the new family that moved in next door…but…maybe…(sigh)

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    228. Wimsey,

      I just think it’s important to understand that the lack of casting news for these secondary characters means pretty much nothing. I even turned it into a more elaborate version of it as a sort of PSA.

      Just a PSA on the new characters apparently missing from season five of Game of Thrones:

      Before panicking about Jayne Poole, Wyman Manderly and a dozen other secondary or tertiary characters not being cast for season five, please consider that you may be overestimating the number of castings we hear about. We don’t know if certain secondary characters are being included or not. Not all of them will, of course. But some might. The sole reason we know for sure that certain characters aren’t being cast is that their role is significant enough that their absence creates ripple effects noticeable in other casting and filming news and leaks and in promo material —such as Arianne, because of the enlarged roles of Ellaria and the Sand Snakes, as well as Trystane’s much larger role and his description as Doran’s heir; or Young Griff, because we are pretty sure Tyrion will travel only with Varys and then only with Jorah.

      For example, we only know the Waif, Varamyr Sixskins and Lollys Stokeworth are being cast because of the leaked casting calls months ago, but if weren’t for those we would assume they were cut. Before the leaked script summary, many assumed the Kindly Man wouldn’t be cast (or that Kevan and Lancel wouldn’t come back.) We are just a few months from the premiere, yet we haven’t got actors pegged to any of those characters. If not for The Watchers on the Wall reporting on it a few days ago, we wouldn’t even know who was going to play Maggy (who we also wouldn’t know would be in the show at all if not for the casting calls.)

      My point being: it’s only logical to conclude there are plenty of new characters we know nothing about, because their casting calls were not leaked and the actors haven’t been announced. Be patient —we may hear some news yet. Or better yet: once we resign ourselves to certain people being cut, let’s be pleasantly surprised when they are suddenly introduced!

      Or, in other words, I very much doubt Ramsay, Roose and Theon will be talking to each other all season. Sansa is not a solution.

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    229. Wimsey,

      The option that I think is the most likely is that sansa will kill Robin in a really traumatic way so smothering with a pillow seems to fit. This would totally work even better if we are comparing season 5 sansa to season 1 dany. I dont think we are doing sexual violence again I feel like we had that with sansa before and this is something differnt in my opinion going by her interviews and stuff. But also I read an interview that says sansa will cross paths with familiar faces, and there will be lots of mingling. Idk if that meant familiar faces to her or not though, cuz that could just mean brienne. She also has a lot more action in her scenes apparently so i dont think she is going to sit around for long.

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    230. Hodor’s Bastard,

      Ya the picture of the boltons is revealing in my eyes because under what circumstances would ramsay be the center of attention awaiting someones arrival. It seems like the person arriving is for him so it almost rules out myranda since shes probably already there.

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    231. There is one small role we know has been cast for Winterfell, and that is “Winterfell Worker.” Who knows what that means.

      On the note of Robin and Sansa: given we know Robin is prone to tantrums, his mother is dead, so he could be even more unstable, and he’s under the impression he will be marrying Sansa, there seem to be all sorts of disturbing possibilities for his interactions with Sansa. What if Sansa finds herself in a position where she has to physically defend herself against him? I don’t even mean necessarily in a sexual context.

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    232. Nymeria Warrior Queen,

      Although show!SR is not as handicapped as book!SR, we do have a possible case of history oddly repeating itself with Sansa being forced to off a handicapped child, much like her mother, Cat, was forced to off a handicapped child (Aegon!) at the RW before…well, you know….

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    233. He’s waiting for fake arya so
      People believe it’s the real one Sansa will not be his bride that’s insane

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    234. Luka Nieto: Sansa is not a solution.

      Ergo: she’s a problem!

      No, seriously, I agree with you. Who pretends to be Arya isn’t that important. It’s all about Theon when you get down to it.

      Hodor’s Bastard: He was a “lackwit” 50 yr-old.Frey. Apologies. (My drinking buddy just told me that “child stuff” was crap)

      Which just shows how equal opportunity GRRM (and reality) is about random, senseless brutality…..

      (That written, the show’s alternative worked quite well, too.)

      Nymeria Warrior Queen: There is one small role we know has been cast for Winterfell, and that is “Winterfell Worker.” Who knows what that means

      Well, they still are finding Dire Wolf feces in the oddest places…..

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    235. Luka Nieto,

      Well said. We all have to be cognizant of the fact that the primary reason that these theories are flourishing at the moment is because we have so little concrete information right now about either Sansa’s storyline or the Winterfell storyline … be it casting news, set photos, or in Sansa’s case, a detailed storyline from a published book. If someone happened to unearth a CV for an actor playing “Harrold Hardyng” tomorrow, all theories that Sansa might travel somewhere outside the Vale this season would likely dissipate very quickly. Since they haven’t, there’s room to speculate – and that’s just fine! But as the saying goes, an absence of evidence should not be counted as evidence of absence. We still have quite a bit of time before the new season premieres, and we’ll certainly learn more in the coming weeks. No need to nail everything down now.

      I don’t think that this “Sansa to Winterfell” theory is as unequivocally crackpot as some have claimed it is (and I have seen many commenters, both here and elsewhere, condemn it very harshly). I can understand why, based on what we know at the moment, people might wonder if it’s a viable direction for the show to take. That being said, I don’t subscribe to the theory personally. I think that there are many serious issues with it in terms of both narrative logistics and character motivations. Those issues would all need to be addressed in order to make such a development work – and even then there would be certain irreversible consequences. Until I see irrefutable evidence to the contrary, I’m going to assume that Sansa will remain in the Vale this season. Even without definitive confirmation that she’ll have any significant characters to interact with, I think that it’s the simpler explanation.

      But if Sansa does wind up going to Winterfell, I will certainly keep an open mind and see how it plays out on screen (rather than decrying the writers as clueless hacks who don’t understand the characters and the story that they’re working with). As I’ve said many times, Benioff and Weiss have solidly earned my trust. I’d be interested to see how they would handle it.

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    236. If Myranda ends up posing as Arya in the WF storyline, I’ll eat all the hats.

      I don’t know a lot of things, but I do know that this television show would never go in that direction. Too stupid for words.

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    237. By all means, theorize. But I very much agree with previous posters, many people tend to jump to conclusions just because we haven’t heard of a certain casting. And sure, that’s good, considering all the stuff we’ve been able to guess correctly in previous seasons. However, I am 100% certain that Myranda will not act as FArya.

      FArya is supposed to be a victim to Ramsay, and Theon must actually want to rescue her. And she is just completely the opposite of Jeyne. Even D&D would never use Ramsay’s psycopathic minor-character friend as FArya. Sure, they might be crazy enough to use Sansa, but I agree that it would make very little sense for the story itself. Who knows, they did some pretty weird things in the past, just to make points or make characters almost meet.

      Personally, I’m not sure they’ll be doing the marriage at all, which scares me even more. I really want to see some proof of it. It all trails back to their refusal to do disguises. No Arstan, no Ramsay as Reek, and not really a big change from Theon to Reek either (yes he’s flayed, but put him in the greyjoy armor and he looks completely normal again. Alfie is awesome, but he should have been given a bigger make-over imo). My point being that the characters always stay recognizable, and so I doubt they would insert FArya. They probably think that it would confuse viewers or just not seem believable.

      I REALLY, REALLY hope I’m wrong. FArya+Young Griff are the most vital castings that we need at this point.

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    238. King Tommen,

      I don’t believe anyone has seriously suggested Myranda would be fArya, but we have had some fun with the idea that Ramsay’s treatment of Myranda could provide a vehicle for Reek’s semi-lucid return to Theon. In ADwD, Reek/Theon knew fArya wasn’t Arya, and it’s not like fArya is going to be a game-changer by being saved. It’s about Theon.

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    239. TorbofThrones,

      Myranda would work just fine for the audience. The actress is in multiple episodes: and this is a simple explanation as to why. As for Theon’s motivations, they have to be about re-asserting himself more than anything else: everyone else involved is a foil.

      As for YG, that would be for next year. They would want YG to be as much of a bomb for the viewers as he is for the main characters. (They could do a teaser at the tail end of this year, but I suspect that the casting would have leaked.)

      Regarding disgiuses, they do not work on screen. Tolkien fans bitterly lamented the loss of Dernhelm, but there is no way that the audience would not have recognized Miranda Otto. The same thing would have happened with Arstan: he would have seemed familiar, and people would have put it together.

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    240. Sansa, Robin, & Petyr begin their tour of the Vale in a litter protected by knights of the Vale when they run into Brienne and Pod. The sight of Pod freaks Sansa out. Brienne explains she has come to save her as she promised her mother. Sansa doesn’t believe her. “They dead,” she says. “My mother and brother are dead.” Brienne tells her she saw her sister with the Hound right before she killed him. Sansa cries. Petyr orders the knights of the Vale to seize them. Brienne and Pod flee and escape. Petyr consoles Sansa as she remembers…. Petyr insists they return to the Eyrie because Shagga likes axes.

      Back at the Eyrie, Sansa takes a bath during which she travels south of The Fingers in a scene that was controversial and traumatic to film. Petyr interrupts, startling Sansa. He creeps by the tub. “I’m leaving for King’s Landing to attend The King’s wedding,” he says.

      Back in King’s Landing, Petyr inspects his busted brothels. The next day, he greets Cersei at the wedding and reassures her he controls the knights of the Vale and will imprison the Blackfish if he shows up. After the wedding, Petyr gets cornered by Olenna. She knows he has Sansa and warns him that if Cersei finds out, she will give him to Qyburn and they’ll never even find what’s left of him.

      Meanwhile, back at the Eyrie, Lord Royce has arranged riding and dancing lessons for Robin in preparation for a small melee he planned for the squires of the sworn houses. Sansa tries to help Robin during his riding lessons but he falls into a pile of shit. He blames Sansa and storms off. Later, Sansa opens the moon door and stares down in silent contemplation.

      On the day of the melee, a hairy squire from Runestone gives Sansa a rose, and as customary for a Lady, she gives him her favor. Later, a letter arrives by raven sealed in pink wax. It’s an invitation to a wedding…in Winterfell. Sansa fears the worst, not knowing if the letter is a ruse or if her sister was captured. Later that night, the hairy squire suggests Petyr killed Lysa and everybody hates him. Sansa plots with The Lords Declarant in exchange for helping her claim Winterfell with the knights of the Vale.

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    241. Rygritte:
      Brienne tells her she saw her sister with the Hound right before she killed him. Sansa cries. Petyr orders the knights of the Vale to seize them. Brienne and Pod flee and escape.

      After the wedding, Petyr gets cornered by Olenna. She knows he has Sansa and warns him that if Cersei finds out, she will give him to Qyburn and they’ll never even find what’s left of him.

      Later, a letter arrives by raven sealed in pink wax. It’s an invitation to a wedding…in Winterfell. Sansa fears the worst, not knowing if the letter is a ruse or if her sister was captured.

      🙂 The use of pink is a nice touch.

      If Brienne does meet up with Sansa, and she blabs about Arya and the Hound and Cat and Jaime and Pod, the multiverse shall explode.

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    242. Wimsey: Oh, I am sure that Arya will recognize Jon, to be certain. However, this again shows how the original idea evolved rather than simply get replaced: in the books, Jon definitely has a thing for smart independent women that can take care of themselves. That suggests that Martin used Jon’s interest in a particular young woman as a model for his general taste in women.

      I agree. I would also like to add that Jon also possibly inherited his (true) father’s taste in women, if R+L=J is true. Rhaegar could have been attracted to Lyanna because she was independent, strong willed and probably completely capable of taking care of herself. We get glimpses of these traits through Ned’s memories of her and Arya is often compared to Lyanna. Another suggestion is that Jon sharing a close bond with Arya should not necessarily be read as a pretext for incest in the final version we see in the books, but rather that having an appreciation for these types of women acts as another clue to Jon’s true parentage, i.e, Jon likes Arya / Ygritte / Val, who all share similar characteristics with Lyanna. So Jon, completely unaware, actually likes women who all share similar personality traits with his own possible mother.

      This was an intriguing read and I am happy to see the “core five” might survive. And reading about the Neverborn made me think of Craster’s sons, but they could also possibly refer to the half-human children fathered by wights who supposedly slept with human women (according to Old Nan).

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    243. I won’t lie, the prospect of Sansa possibly taking fArya’s role has me a bit worried.

      I normally don’t mind when they make changes in the show. I generally feel they should focus on the already-established characters rather than introducing all these new ones.
      I don’t mind them ommitting the Tysha thing (they basically just expanded Shae to fill her role); I don’t mind them using Gendry in place of Edric Storm; I don’t mind the idea of Jaime going to Dorne (he’s essentially taking over Balon Swann’s role); I don’t even mind Ros (I mean, she was basically just an amalgamation of various book characters).

      However, sending Sansa to Winterfell this season seems a bit of a stretch, and there doesn’t seem to be any real reason for it. This is one case where we DON’T need a familiar character – that moment is about Theon, and seeing him risk his life for someone else. Who that someone is isn’t important. It doesn’t NEED to be an established character. And like others have said, this would basically change Sansa’s entire storyline.
      There’s also the question of how to make everyone’s motivations in this make sense…

      Previously, I was also worried that this would be a step back for Sansa, after the development she got last season, to once again be a victim of a violent sociopath. However, Sophie’s recent interviews have at least Alayned (*shot for terrible pun*) my fears in that particular regard. She wouldn’t say those things if it were just going to be another victim scenario.

      But yeah, it just seems pointless to have Sansa go all the way to Winterfell just to fill a role that could be filled by any random character.

      And yes, I am aware this probably won’t even happen, but the possibility does have me worried.

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    244. Rygritte,

      The Eyrie set was destroyed after last season. There will be no more Eyrie on the show. Otherwise, your theorized arc for Sansa and Littlefinger is not so crazy. They’re not going back to the Eyrie, but they might go to, say, Runestone, Yohn Rocye’s castle. Your theorized ending, with Sansa having the new mission of reacquiring Winterfell, is probably exactly what’s gonna happen, as I see it. Probably not exactly the way you describe, but that may be the general mission that’s gonna end her arc.

      Hodor’s Bastard,

      I don’t see why she wouldn’t say so.

      Big Mac,

      I agree with you 100%. In fact, I’d say that certain amalgamations, such as Gendry taking the role of Edric Storm, were master-strokes of adaptation. Sansa as Jayne, however… no, not so much.

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    245. Crabber’s Son:
      Lady Wolfsbane,

      I need just one Aemon scene to be happy with whatever happens in the show……

      “Aemon’s blind white eyes came open. “Egg?” he said, as the rain streamed down his cheeks. “Egg, I dreamed that I was old.”

      They will most likely replace “Egg” with “Rhaegar” or “Rheg” just to bump his name in the show.

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    246. Wimsey,

      I hope you’re right about YG, although I don’t see them releasing any kind of teaser before next year or late this year.

      I don’t agree on Myranda though.
      1. Roose would NEVER agree to it. It’s one of Ramsay’s girls. Do you really think Roose would trust one of Ramsay’s girls?

      Jeyne was plucked by Littlefinger, and trained for months, if not years.
      2. I stand by my previous statement, it wouldn’t be the same because of her position and personality. It really is about the damsel in distress, and in this case it wouldn’t be, it’d just be wrong. Can you imagine Theon rescuing Myranda and bringing her to Stannis? No, she would turn on them and kill someone. The whole point of his story is that he escapes with her, which is on of the few things I don’t believe they’ll cut. It’s the high point of his redemption line. He has to do a noble thing, and Myranda wouldn’t fit at all. Yes she could be revealed to actually be Ramsay’s victim (and having just played along so far), but I highly doubt that.
      3. Can you really imagine her marrying Ramsay? Really? It’d look ridiculous, especially to the viewers. Also she’s way too tall. At least some of the Northerners would know Arya is still a child.

      I’m with King Tommen on this one. Too stupid for words.

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    247. TorbofThrones,
      Luka Nieto,

      I’m another one in the “anyone but Myranda” camp. It needs to be someone that Theon hasn’t been around during the last 2 seasons of mind-&@#$ing things he’s been through. Even if it was a random girl found living underneath the stairs – it wouldn’t fly.

      He’s been treated better physically on the show, but WORSE than in the books from a sexual/women perspective. Osha used sex to escape. Myranda and friends were a… tease, to put it mildly. He’s SEEN her and perhaps other Ramsey women hunt people with a bow. And he’s already seen a women try to rescue HIM (Yara) and he refused to believe it wasn’t a trap.

      I was VERY happy to see that shot of the Boltons waiting for the arrival of someone. ANYONE from the outside. Not Sansa, please – that makes no sense at all to me. But hell, our missing Arianne would be better than Myranda…

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    248. This strengthens my belief that Jaime will become a villain again by the end of the series. Fits with Bran’s dream of three people standing over his father.

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    249. The most logical explanation for Myranda appearing in 4 episodes this season is because the Boltons are going to have a lot of screentime and there are precious few characters surrounding them to bounce dialogue off of. Fat Walda more than likely won’t have any lines so that leaves Roose, Ramsay and Theon to talk to each other endlessly until Stannis arrives in the finale. Having a Ramsay henchwoman there at least gives Ramsay and Theon a chance to talk to someone who isn’t Roose.

      I also think that if they’re going with the “sabotage from within” storyline at Winterfell, the absence of notable Freys and Little/Big Walder puts Myranda as a legit option for a mysterious murder that will enrage Ramsay.

      If you want “easiest explanation” for her, there it is.

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    250. Crabber’s Son: It seems like the person arriving is for him so it almost rules out myranda since shes probably already there.

      Even if they used someone on hand as fArya, then they would still stage her arrival.

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    251. Crabber’s Son: It seems like the person arriving is for him so it almost rules out myranda since shes probably already there.

      Even if they used someone on hand as fArya, then they would still stage her arrival.

      TorbofThrones: although I don’t see them releasing any kind of teaser before next year or late this year

      Sorry, I meant a teaser scene at the end of the season, sort of similar to what people wished for a different character at the end of last season or the season before.

      TorbofThrones: I stand by my previous statement, it wouldn’t be the same because of her position and personality. It really is about the damsel in distress, and in this case it wouldn’t be, it’d just be wrong.

      This is not at all about a damsel in distress. It’s about one of the lead characters reascending in a Phoenix mode. The damsel is just a tool here.

      King Tommen,
      I did not ask for “easiest,” I asked for “simplest”: those are not synonymous! This is a simpler explanation because it is one answer for two questions: who is posing as Ramsay’s bride? and, why is the actress in so many episodes? The alternative (“someone else” and “some other reasons”) has two explanations, and thus is more complicated. This also is closer to the source material than the Sansa model, which is another simplicity criterion.

      Now, it might not be right: they might simply get some other brown-haired young woman. After all, the “who” is not important for the most critical part (

      having Theon turn on Ramsay and Reek

      ). That does not explain why the actress is in so many episodes: “more Bolton scenes” does not really explain that, as they wouldn’t retain her just to be a face in the Bolton chorus.

        Quote  Reply

    252. Wimsey,

      I agree I think there staging the arya stark thing for whoever is with them at winter fell ( freys , Bolton reinforcements ) also every year they leave people out of casting announcements . – last year – blood raven year 3 – Dario ,even how hbo will do new charectors and have an on demand where they all explain themselves they only introduce new charectors threw the first 5-6 episodes . I think will meet atleast one big charector noone saw coming . I think Sansa has a better chance of running into lsh than meeting Ramsey

        Quote  Reply

    253. Grand maester giz,

      I still think we’re gonna see euron this year in one episode just like yara has one episodes last year I say that it’ll be like Ep 6-7 and will get a big name euron who may forshadow next years story line . Also wiki has nothing about
      It but did thoros of myr or Beric get recasted for this season ? Or are they holding everything away from
      The public ? ( seems more likely) we had the brotherhood in 4 episodes season 3 and hot pie mentions them
      In episode 7 of last year if the whole lsh thing is canceled by the show why do they keep
      Talking about the brotherhood ? Why spit at the book readers and taunt us some more ,Unless the brotherhood resurrects someone else that’s even more important in the later books , doubt it and why would hbo keep teasing us about the brotherhood ? What purpose do
      They serve besides the resurrections ? Zero it
      Makes no sense . I have faith in
      D and D

        Quote  Reply

    254. Grand maester giz: I still think we’re gonna see euron this year in one episode just like yara has one episodes last year I say that it’ll be like Ep 6-7 and will get a big name euron who may forshadow next years story line .

      I think that it is much more probable that they will squeeze a Yara/Asha scene into the tale rather than a Euron one. Euron is just an incidental character in the books: if he even has a line “in person” (as opposed to from afar), then I don’t recall it. (If so, then it would have been in a Victarion chapter: and those refuse to stick in my memory at all!) Moreover, I think it very improbable that

      Euron will be all that significant in Winter, although his fleet might be an important plot device. Still, there are other ways to skin that particular cat!

      Also, B&W did go out of their way to squeeze in a Yara/Asha sequence last year. In many ways, that was more to develop just how far Theon had fallen, and to develop the “love/hate” story of Reek’s and Theon’s relationship with Ramsay. However, that could have been done in other ways, yet they chose to use Yara. There might be contractual issues: i.e., if they don’t include her in a year then she’s released from the contract. And it might be just to keep her character in the audiences’ memories. Either scenario predicts that they would use her this year, too.

      That written, I do not think that we’ve gotten any confirmation that Gemma Whelan did anything on Thrones this year.

        Quote  Reply

    255. Wimsey,

      I think Greenjones pointed this out recently (although I cannot remember for sure!),

      but Gemma Whelan’s CV lists GoT as “ongoing” which strengthens the speculation that there is either more in store for her character or that she is indeed still under contract. As you pointed out, her inclusion in S4 is surely some sort of indicator of what’s to come!

        Quote  Reply

    256. The Bastard:
      GRRM admits he loses interest of writing and admits he never planned how everything interconnected. That explains the last 2 books being bad and the long delay for them.

      Gone are the fans who can claim it is just his creative process

      What kind of idiot thinks the last two books were “bad”?

        Quote  Reply

    257. GeekFurious: What kind of idiot thinks the last two books were “bad”?

      No idiots. Some very smart people! They even have valid arguments at times when they exert themselves to point out the less strong parts in Martin’s writing. Just because you and I think they are good doesn’t mean everyone else does.

        Quote  Reply

    258. Rygritte,

      Hahahaha…I like your vision for Sansa’s arc.

      On a serious note, though, there’s been lots of speculation about why Sansa’s crying in the bathtub. It really could be as simple as: she runs into Brienne and finds out not only is her sister alive, but she just missed her.

        Quote  Reply

    259. Tormund’s Woman: No idiots. Some very smart people! They even have valid arguments at times when they exert themselves to point out the less strong parts in Martin’s writing.

      And some of us even have split opinions! I though that Crows was very poorly done. However, I thought that Dragons was close to a return to form for GRRM.

        Quote  Reply

    260. Wimsey,

      I preferred ADWD over AFFC. A lot of that, I think, was due to ADWD being more focused on characters I really liked, who were absent in whole, or in part, from AFFC.

      I am really looking forward to rereading both of them, but following the boiled leather order. I’ll be doing that as soon as Season 5 is over.

        Quote  Reply

    261. Rygar,

      I read all the book in like 2 weeks so i wasnt as frustrated be feast as most. It felt a lot like reading a book length epilogue following a storm of swords but i thought it had some great concepts. The introduction of the faith militant, the trial, dorne, kingsmoot. The content isnt bad its just how it was split up. I think they should re-release adwd and affc except rearranged with all the main characters included.

        Quote  Reply

    262. Wimsey,

      I generally share the same opinion as you regarding ADwD > AFfC but I must state that there were elements in AFfC that I treasure:

      1) The ironborn kingsmoot, with THREE different PoVs (Asha, Vic and Aeron), was bizarre and unexpected, with the most dominating figure, Euron, only depicted from the other PoVs. Asha’s courage was remarkable and the general brashness of the ironborn was oddly enjoyable.

      2) Jaime’s bridge parley with the BF. The dialogue is superb, especially the lingering and knowing defiance in BF’s tone, then afterwards Jaime does his best to handle the Frey idiots. Then BF’s mysterious escape.

      3) The futility and anxiety of the Queenmaker plot

      4) Finally, I absolutely enjoyed Sam’s journey south, via Braavos & Arya/CotC, with all those revelations and anecdotes from Aemon before he died (naturally!). And, of course, the FPM.

      Furthermore, one of the most intriguing aspects of AFfC (which is sort of lost in the Boiled Leather reading) is that the book begins with Pate v1 and ends with Pate v2. That was mindbending for me and implies that Oldtown is already compromised. Sam the Slayer has entered the lion’s den and is totally at the mercy of the faceless (Jaqen!).

        Quote  Reply

    263. A few more (I guess I’m rather fond of AFfC)

      5) Although Brienne’s journey was a bit convoluted, the end was horrifying and stunning. So bloody and bleak. Biter and Rorge and fake Hound were disturbing. Gendry and the BwB! Then came the eerie meet with Thoros and LS and things got crazy.

      6) Frickin’ Arya (how could I not include her?)

        Quote  Reply

    264. Hodor’s Bastard,

      I liked the Arya chapters. I also found Jaime’s chapters interesting, although that particular conversation that you so like fell flat for me. My biggest problem was all of the new characters. This story in particular really relied on understanding who the characters had been: and although it worked fine for Arya, Jaime, Cersei and Sam, it fell really flat with the Iron Born and Dornish, who were either entirely new or who had been only incidental characters up to that point.

      The Brienne chapters didn’t work for me either: I couldn’t see what the trajectory was. I do agree about the ending, although it would have have been much more powerful to me if we had not gotten the epilogue chapter from Storm.

      Introducing Lady Stoneheart there and withholding that chapter until Dragons would have been much better given that LSH played no role in Crows/Dragons: that sort of “cliffhanger” demands something big shortly thereafter.

      Ditto that for Sansa: but, then, she only got three chapters, and just when she seemed on a threshold of some ascendancy, we got nothing more. As it was, I thought that the point was that she was just

      hopelessly bad at pretending to be a bastard: and that helped mislead me into thinking that the story was about people pretending to be someone that they really were not instead of a story about people aspiring to something higher than they were.

      As it was, I didn’t get the story: and I always feel that if I don’t get the story by about 3/4ths of the way through a book, then something went very wrong. That also is why Dragons worked so much better for me. I could see quite clearly where GRRM was taking Jon, Daeny, Theon and Bran because I knew very well where they had begun. Oddly, Quentyn worked for me, too: but he was the one “new” character that I felt got developed quickly enough for me to clearly comprehend the starting point and thus appreciate the attempted ending point. (I also understood the Crows story much more clearly after that: but I feel like I should have been able to get it in 2005, not 2011.)

        Quote  Reply

    265. Rygar,

      True. But I still think that’s the plan. Part of the big theme of the show, at least to me, is that the character’s can’t seem escape the fate that was handed to them. Even when they die they come back as the kind of character they were being led to be. It’s the Game of Thrones after all, and they’re all pawns. Whenever they try to be somebody else, they get punished for it. I think Jaime purpose is to be the bad guy. He wants to be more like Brienne but can’t. And I think that

      Brienne’s betrayal will break him for the last time.

        Quote  Reply

    266. Wimsey,

      The who is indeed most important. Myranda is a psycopath, why would the audience feel that Theon has his

      redemption if he rescues someone who’s not in a bad spot?

      [ According to the show so far, Myranda and Ramsay fit together perfectly, they even have sex! Obviously it fits that she is in many episodes because the boltons will be in many episodes, why wouldn’t she be there to strengthen the Bolton chorus? It makes perfect sense, in the books we have tons of hounds and Ramsay boys, in the show we only have Myranda, we need someone to be his henchmen(or woman). Considering how big the Theon storyline should be this year, this is no surprise for Myranda. And again #1. Roose would never allow it, basing his whole claim on the north on one of Ramsay’s servants.

      As for the teaser you’re talking about, that would be amazing. It would almost make up for no LS. I think the show will end with either

      Dany’s last chapter or Kevan’s last chapter though. Possibly Jon’s.

        Quote  Reply

    267. TorbofThrones: The who is indeed most important. Myranda is a psycopath, why would the audience feel that Theon has his

      Because that’s not the key. The key to

      Theon “killing the Reek and rebecoming the man” is Theon choosing to thwart Ramsay and act on his (Theon’s) own. The “chivalry” of the act is not important: indeed, as Theon is not a very chivalrous character, that can almost undermine the important point. However, Theon is someone who thinks for himself, who acts for himself and who is naturally ambitious. And in the Game of Throne, using one enemy to hurt a greater enemy is something that free-thinking ambitious people do. This is not about Theon “redeeming” himself: it’s about Theon doing the same thing that Tyrion is doing, i.e., going from nadir back to self. (It is “kill the boy, become the man” for every lead character in his/her own way.)

      As for Roose’s objections, why would he object? In the books, he allows

      fArya to be based on the daughter of one of Ned Stark’s servants. This is the case where it is the real deal or it is fake: using a dark-haired Lannister woman would be just as fake as using the winner of the Arya Stark look-alike contest from Flea Bottom. The girl is one of Ned Stark’s daughters or she isn’t: and Ramsay’s bride is not going to be.

      What Roose would want is someone that can be controlled: and as season 4 demonstrated most emphatically, Ramsay’s play-things are under Ramsay’s control.

      As for the idea that they’d use the same actress for part of a Bolton Chorus, I am inclined to doubt it for simple financial reasons. She’s had speaking parts before, and her character has a name tied to it. The makes using her a lot more expensive than just casting extras to play a bunch of Bolton henchmen. The face characters of the different “choruses” have tended to come and go each year: indeed, people here have complained about how some of the Northern Lords from Season 1 never have been seen again, whereas Northern Lords who were seen in Season 2 & 3 never were seen in Season 1.

        Quote  Reply

    268. TorbofThrones,

      I’m not going to sing praise for Myranda either but twists can happen in this crazy world. Did you like Jaime after the first season? There could be things unsaid that make a difference moving forward. But as we have debated previously, it really doesn’t matter who is “saved” (if anyone), because it is about Theon losing his Reekness.

      Think of the possibilities if Yara had been captured….

      Secretly, I think Theon is going to kill Myranda and severely wound Ramsay before escaping as Stannis approaches. He may save someone (servant girl #7) but it really isn’t necessary. The audience will cheer for Theon.

        Quote  Reply

    269. Hodor’s Bastard,

      a big part of theon finding his reality though was him recognizing jeyne and her innocence. It kind of snapped him back especially since she was someone from his winterfell days. This kind of helps the sansa argument. What will be the catalyst for him to remember his identity. I dont see myranda being it. It would make more sense if theon rescued Old Nan lmao. Thats the only winterfell character i can remember that isnt dead, i think.

        Quote  Reply

    270. Crabber’s Son,

      I do not recall Theon thinking anything about

      Jeyne’s “innocence.” To the contrary, Theon remembers Jeyne as the beta-bitch that helped torment the real Arya. The catalyst for Theon ascending from Reek to Theon will be fighting back against Ramsay in any palpable way. Reek would not do that. Theon would.

      The other thing to remember is that Theon’s storyline in the book heavily parallels another lead character’s (

      Tyrion’s

      ). It will be the general things in common with those two storylines that will resonate with the audience, not the specifics. Moreover, one plus about the Myranda hypothesis is that this creates parallels with the story lines for three other lead characters:

      Jon, Daeny and Cersei, as all will be dealing with choosing the lesser of 2+ enemies in different ways.

      As that is a recurring motif in Game of Thrones and (I think) a big part of it’s appeal, they might use it for that reason alone.

        Quote  Reply

    271. Wimsey,

      But what is the moment that makes him go through his change. There has to be a key moment his sister didnt do it, the ironborn at moat didnt do it, so something has to be bigger to him in some way. What if they brought Robs body to winterfell for some reason. That would do it in my opinion. Sansa would also do it sadly.

        Quote  Reply

    272. Luka Nieto,

      Well, that’s good: what fun would it be if we ever agreed with someone all the time!

      It is entirely possible that they’ll just have some random brown-haired northern girl who won’t even get a name, too. Really, the strongest arguments that I can see in favor of the Myranda scenario is that the actress is in three episodes, so she’s doing something. This is just a simple answer that explains two things at once: who fArya is and why the actress in question is on so many episodes. I always lean towards (more) simple over (more) complex until I have to reject simple.

      Crabber’s Son: But what is the moment that makes him go through his change.

      Was there one moment in the book? There, he was kind of forced into it. At any rate, chivalrous concern for an innocent was not what propelled the transformation. Hatred from Ramsay will be impetus enough insofar as the audience is concerned, and probably single biggest impetus in the book: after all, there it is an almost Smeagol/Gollum conflict. At any rate, the audience certainly can understand why Theon hates Ramsay. The audience also is smart enough to understand that if you hate two people, then you probably hate one more than the other: and the enemy of my enemy can be my tool even if that tool is another enemy.

        Quote  Reply

    273. Wimsey,

      I think it’s four episodes, actually 🙂

      EDIT: oh, you mean she’s BEEN in 3 episodes. Okay. Well, in case you didn’t know, she will be in 4 further episodes this season 😉

        Quote  Reply

    274. Wimsey,

      “It is entirely possible that they’ll just have some random brown-haired northern girl who won’t even get a name, too.”

      You mean like “Winterfell Worker?” I could easily be wrong, but to me, especially after seeing the young woman they cast, who I thought resembled Maise, she is the option which makes the most sense.

        Quote  Reply

    275. Crabber’s Son: Sansa would also do it sadly.

      Theon… ” remembered a time when he had thought that Lord Eddard Stark might marry him to Sansa and claim him for a son, but that had only been a child’s fancy.”

        Quote  Reply

    276. Wimsey: Really, the strongest arguments that I can see in favor of the Myranda scenario is that the actress is in three episodes, so she’s doing something.This is just a simple answer that explains two things at once: who fArya is and why the actress in question is on so many episodes.

      When I first read JP’s torture, I thought it would never make it to the show. Maybe Ramsey is fNice to his new bride at first & Myranda gets jealous & torments her like she did Tansy & Reek. Reeks witnesses & remembers & becomes Theon.

        Quote  Reply

    277. Luka Nieto,

      No, I thought it was three this year. You are correct, however, that they had her in three episodes: I had forgotten that until binge watching Season 4 this last week. The fact that they had her in multiple episodes up to this point suggests that they’ve been thinking about using her for something more in the end.

      Rygritte,
      Yeah, the main characters do a lot of that sort of thinking in Crows and Dragons. One of the challenges of adapting this particular story will be getting those thoughts out of their heads and into something that can be seen, or at least heard.

        Quote  Reply

    278. Wimsey:
      Was there one moment in the book?There, he was kind of forced into it.

      As awful as it is to ponder, I saw his turning point happening with the desecration of fArya (as Rygritte pointed out, I see). However, immediately before that, during the godswood ceremony, Reek hears “Theon” from the weirwood…which may have enabled his lucidity too. Bran reaching out…?

        Quote  Reply

    279. Rygritte,

      Why are you making me do homework on a Sunday night? 🙂 I believe Reek is hearing “Theon” and “Bran” when in the godswood and he thinks it is the old gods taunting him about his crimes but it is either Bran or BR reaching out. Below are other instances of “Theon”, which seems to indicate that there is more than delusional internal voices at work here.

      “Theon,” a voice seemed to whisper. His head snapped up. “Who said that?” All he could see were the trees and the fog that covered them. The voice had been as faint as rustling leaves, as cold as hate. A god’s voice, or a ghost’s. How many died the day that he took Winterfell? How many more the day he lost it? The day that Theon Greyjoy died, to be reborn as Reek. Reek, Reek, it rhymes with shriek.”
      – ADwD, The Prince of Winterfell

      “Theon,” they seemed to whisper……
      A leaf drifted down from above, brushed his brow, and landed in the pool. It floated on the water, red, five-fingered, like a bloody hand. “… Bran,” the tree murmured. They know. The gods know. They saw what I did. And for one strange moment it seemed as if it were Bran’s face carved into the pale trunk of the weirwood, staring down at him with eyes red and wise and sad. Bran’s ghost, he thought, but that was madness. Why should Bran want to haunt him?

      – ADwD, A Ghost in Winterfell

      And suddenly there came a wild thumping, as the maester’s ravens hopped and flapped inside their cages, their black feathers flying as they beat against the bars with loud and raucous caws. “The tree,” one squawked, “the tree, the tree,” whilst the second screamed only, “Theon, Theon, Theon.”
      – Theon Preview TWoW

        Quote  Reply

    280. Wimsey,

      Well the thing is, she isn’t from Flea Bottom, she’s Sansa’s servant girl,

      Jeyne (which they can easily make her in the show as well, by explaining it, she is in at least s1ep1). And once again, she had months, if not years of training from LF for the role of FArya. That’s why Roose trusts her. He would never put his claim of something Ramsay owns.

      And I beg to differ, even if we disagree on the matter of redeeming, Theon still needs to bring someone back to Stannis, and it won’t be Myranda. One of the reasons he might not be executed in TWoW is because he saves “Ned Stark’s daughter”. They might go on a different path, but to me and many other readers it’s essential, because he DOES save the damsel in distress. And who other than him does that? Loras Tyrell? Hardly, he doesn’t save Sansa. Dontos? Nope. Jorah? He betrays Dany. No, the ones who saves damsels in distress are creepy LF and miserable Reek. It’s an important part of Martins story.

      Also, the only reason the Northern lords in 2-3 weren’t in S1 was because they didn’t have big roles yet, and Greatjon couldn’t come back for S2, which was the reason he disappeared. Myranda is already casted, and in a season where they should have Theon’s storyline in 5-6 eps at the least, they could easily include her in 4 of them. They’re not really that tight on the budget anymore. Imagine how many actors they had to sit in the sun for hours and hours during the last wedding, so I think they can have one minor actor in 4 eps for so, for the sake of the storyline.

        Quote  Reply

    281. Hodor’s Bastard: Why are you making me do homework on a Sunday night?

      Because I did it for fun? Theon had a lot going on. Doomed in every scenario, he wanted to die as Theon because the old gods know his name. Being in Winterhell with Northern ladies, treated like human, and forced to be cruel to an innocent forced him to assess the situation and react while he had a chance. Theon is not evil. That’s why he can’t become Reek II.

        Quote  Reply

    282. Rygritte,

      Theon dug his own self-indulgent, delusional grave and became entrapped in another level of evil entirely. I thought we were discussing how/when Theon became lucid again…(?)

        Quote  Reply

    283. TorbofThrones: They’re not really that tight on the budget anymore. Imagine how many actors they had to sit in the sun for hours and hours during the last wedding, so I think they can have one minor actor in 4 eps for so, for the sake of the storyline.

      They had very few actors sitting in the sun for the wedding. Most of those people were extras paid very little money and not appearing in the credits. Appearing in a speaking role and in the casting is another kettle of fish altogether: even a small speaking role costs as much as an entire wedding full of extras.

      And, yes, it is true that they get more $$$. However, that does not mean that they will become less frugal with unnecessary expenses: those $$$ can be used for effects, hiring quality actors for parts next year, etc. They wouldn’t keep her around simply to be a continuity extra.

      As for what is essential to you or to other readers, well, nothing is “essential” to any of us: this is a story! However, we can ask if it is essential to the story: and if it is, then we would see it repeated in some other form or some other way throughout the text. After all, a story is the thing that all of the protagonists are doing throughout the tale or in parallel. Here, nobody else is

      doing any analog of saving “damsels in distress. At best, one other protagonist (Jaime) might be seen as on a path to redemption.

      That means that neither of these ideas are part of the story. However, every protagonist is trying to go from

      some “lower” state to some “higher” state. Jaime and Cersei are trying to be Tywin. Arya is trying to become a Faceless Woman. Jon and Daeny are trying to be rulers. Arianne, Asha and Quentyn are trying to be Queenmakers. And Tyrion and Theon are trying to go from a nadir back to themselves. In other words, every protagonist is trying to (in his/her own way) kill the boy and become the man.

      . That is the essential thing to communicate to the audience. If B&W confuse people by making them think that it is about saving an innocent, then they run the risk of distorting the story in the minds of the audience.

        Quote  Reply

    284. Hodor’s Bastard: Theon dug his own self-indulgent, delusional grave and became entrapped in another level of evil entirely.

      eh, I wouldn’t say he was trapped in “evil.” Heck, don’t holy books like the Bible say that one should honor one’s father and obey him in all things? Yes, I am being somewhat sarcastic: but Theon was trapped in an absolutely crappy situation where he had to choose between loyalty to his genetic family that abandoned him and loyalty to his surrogate family that kidnapped him. There was not a “good” choice.

      Look at it this way: for all the fact that Theon is called “Turncloak” by the Northmen, he would have been called “Turncloak” by the Iron Islanders had he remained loyal to Robb. Readers view him as a traitor out of affection for the Starks: but if you look at both sides indifferently, what did it matter? He was a traitor either way. Either choice he might make was going to be deemed the right and honorable one by some people and the wrong and dishonorable one by others.

      And that’s Martin’s idea of a good storyline!

        Quote  Reply

    285. Wimsey,

      D&D waste money all the time. But that’s up to opinion, and not really the core of this discussion.

      I disagree, what is essential to people is often what is essential to the story, especially in D&D’s case. Martin gave out a Feast for Crows, which was essential to the story, but has gained a reputation of being boring, making it less essential to the people. D&D does the opposite. They remove the boring, and add more exciting things like action (or gratious things, lik sex), for more viewers, regardless of the story. Their task is to hold on to the audience, and that’s why what’s essential to the people is just as, if not more, important to them. You might be right about the litterature, but when Theon’s storyline is adapted to the show,

      saving someone’s life is essential to the people, and therefore essential to the show. The damsel thing included, which is a fine point as I mentioned earlier, showing how GoT is so much different than every other show. Making Theon’s arc a big redemption arc including saving a girl’s life just screams D&D. Him escaping on his own would just seem awkward. Of course you are correct about what Theon strives for, but this is a necessary plot device for that to happen. He is never about just saving himself.

      And you haven’t commented on the logical errors all this Myranda=FArya stuff would make that I mentioned in my last post, so even if we disagree on what’s essential to who, those problems are still there.

        Quote  Reply

    286. TorbofThrones,

      Wimsey,

      But the damsel in distress trope is included in more than just Theon’s storyline, and GRRM finds many ways to warp it. Cersei wishes Jaimie to save her and he refuses. Dany

      saves herself from Drogon

      . Arya

      as Cat saves Sam

      . The whole Queenmaker plot. No one wants to save Sansa except Brienne, who is Don Quixote at this point. And it looks like D&D are going to consolidate this idea into Jaimie’s arc this season. So to have Theon’s redemption come from such a visual/action representation makes perfect sense from a non-text perspective. It is still turning the trope on it’s head as the girl is a common whore and Theon is hardly a spotlessly chivalrous man.

      But I’m in the Winterfell Worker as fArya camp. I can’t see them using Miranda because it would make Theon’s redemption less clear to the tv audience. There’d be the whole Stockholm Syndrome thing then. A complete stranger (pretending to be someone he once considered family) is clearer. And, of course, including the tree talk portion as [bold] Rygritte [/bold] suggests.

      Apologies if I am late to the discussion. Haven’t read through all of your stuff.

        Quote  Reply

    287. Ashara D,

      Yes, thank you, that’s a good way to put it. Either way,

      I’m happy as long as we get a wedding though, and as long as Jon gets word that Arya is marrying Ramsay. That was a powerful moment in the books, since Jon cares so much for Arya, and it’s obviously a huge reason for him to go down there and take on Ramsay himself. Also, it made Stannis cool when he wrote to him that he’d try to save her. It’s a big part of what puts the Starks and Stannis on the same team (even if they have disagreements), and because the Starks are one of the most popular families (for viewers), it would make Stannis more likable. Personally, I love The Mannis, but the show hasn’t put him in the best light (+their double season of SoS made him sit and mope on Dragonstone for 2 seasons).

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    288. Wimsey,

      I agree to an extent regarding the “Turncloak” manifestation but Theon’s self-indulgence and delusion of being a usurper at Winterfell (even his sister balked at that and warned him) led him to a level of evil (Ramsay/Reek #1) that he couldn’t handle, much less foresee. His own delusion of ironborn grandeur in effect blinded him to the actual weak positioning that he and his men were in after their relatively-easy Winterfell victory. And he and his men paid for it, severely.

      Although Reek’s PoV’s (and especially his semi-return to lucidity) were well written (and fairly-well depicted onscreen), one really has to wonder what lies ahead for Theon and his sister. After the ironborn abominations at Winterfell, Moat Cailin and with their defeat by Stannis many years past, it’s hard to feel energized for the ironborn plight. GRRM seems to want to give them another chance (with Vic & Euron, at the Shields, even Oldtown is threatened, and maybe with Asha) but we’ll see how long that lasts. To me, both Theon and Asha are tragic characters who may still have some fight left in them but are ultimately doomed. Any cheers I have left for Theon and Asha at this point are anxious and desperate.

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    289. TorbofThrones: D&D waste money all the time. But that’s up to opinion, and not really the core of this discussion.

      How? And, yes, it is germane. Insofar as I see, they do not. If they bother to spend money retaining people, then they do so for a reason: they have not yet retained a speaking role over multiple seasons as a continuity extra.

      TorbofThrones: I disagree, what is essential to people is often what is essential to the story, especially in D&D’s case.

      Well, hopefully! However, there seem to be two different issues here: saying that some people like part of a book for a reason and saying that this part is essential to the story for that reason. People like things in tales all the time that have nothing to do with the story! (After all, people like plots and themes or even individual lines of prose.)

      But this takes us back to: what is essential to the Crows/Dragons story, anyway? Well, obviously, the same thing that is essential to any multi protagonist story: what all the lead characters are doing in common. Now, there are stories like this about redemption. McEwan’s Atonement is a good recent example: in that story, we see the different lead characters trying to atone for wrongs in many different ways. However, in this story, the other leads are not trying to redeem themselves. (Nor, would I argue, is Theon.) Instead, they are all doing something else:

      the are all building themselves. In the case of Theon and Tyrion, they are rebuilding themselves, one from Reek and one from an embittered drunken wretch. Jon and Daeny (and possibly Sansa on the show) are trying to build themselves up to acting leaders. Jaime & Cersei are trying to build themselves up to by Tywin (in their minds and in others). Arya is trying to build herself up to a Faceless Person. Arianne and Quentyn are trying to build her/himself up to being a queen maker (which will probably be Tyrstane’s story on the show). Etc. Now, there is a strong parallel between redeeming and rebuilding: but the parallel here is in the “building” part of the rebuilding,

      Ashara D: But the damsel in distress trope is included in more than just Theon’s storyline, and GRRM finds many ways to warp it.

      None of those examples qualify as “damsel in distress.” The closest one might be

      Cersei’s plea to Jaime

      : but that just sets the stage for something like it rather than anything else. All of the others are just cases where one individual bails out another: and although “damsel in distress” is one type of “bailing out,” there are many, many other types.

      Hodor’s Bastard: I agree to an extent regarding the “Turncloak” manifestation but Theon’s self-indulgence and delusion of being a usurper at Winterfell (even his sister balked at that and warned him) led him to a level of evil (Ramsay/Reek #1) that he couldn’t handle

      How are these self-indulgent or delusional? What Theon is trying to do parallels what Tyrion is trying to do: he is trying to win his father’s approval. Now, Theon is wrong about how willing other Iron Born would be to help him: but, again, although being delusional is one form of being wrong, not all examples of “being wrong” reflect delusion. What it reflects was Theon simply not appreciating how little the Iron Born should appreciate holding and keeping Winterfell. It is all perfectly understandable: as someone who was basically captive to Winterfell, it is a mighty and powerful place to Theon; to the other Iron Born, it’s a strange and distant place that they probably disparage in the way that rivals disparage each other. (It does seem that Balon heaped a large share of the blame for his downfall on Winterfell in particular, although this seems to be a classic post-war misdiagnosis: after all, it seems that most of Westeros joined in on the act. However, Balon clearly does not blame the Lannisters or Baratheons the way that he blames the Starks.)

      Regarding the future of the Greyjoys, I agree that

      GRRM has not set them up for us to root for them. However, a lot of protagonists in a lot of great books are pretty unlikable people. Moreover, GRRM has stuck both Theon and Asha/Yara (as well as Tyrion!) in “real” situations: they are in bad plights because of circumstances created for them by the father. Again, it’s the “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” crux around which authors like Martin structure their stories. In their cultures, it is dishonorable and immoral (although the former borders on a special case of the latter!) to defy your father’s wishes. Good people do what their father wants: which creates a problem when your father’s ideas of honor (reaving, etc.) conflict with other peoples’ ideas of honors (not reaving).

      But as for rooting for or against them, do we need to do so? The characters are no less interesting for being unlikable. I don’t really care whether their outcomes are “happy” or “sad”: I’m just interested in where GRRM is taking them.

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    290. [Potential SPOILERS]

      Thank you so much to the person who uploaded this!:)
      Thank you to all the poster’s as well for this debate too , its been fun.

      To all the die hard GOT fans who have been waiting so long; I have to say Respect.

      Just some Generalised Comments:

      1. It’s pretty fustrating as a book reader if the show continues with arcs that differ significantly to the upcomming book; which I guess is a part of the adaptation debate crystallising with readers now in the dark on some issues.

      2. I have to add that I’m for one glad the books changed from the orginal proposal and became the books I am a fan of. Otherwise they would have been much to simple and universalist in their narrative…

      3.On the FFC/DWD being boring: sure there was alot of construction and new character introductions but I was happy to finnaly hear more of Dorne, ever since Arya named her direwolf. That culture imho is by far the most intersting in Westeros and at the least seems to be the least patriachal and non-heteronomrative.

      In closing what I would like to see in TWOW is the main story converging and taking shape moreover; the competing or alternative prophecies playing out againts the political backdrop in earnest.

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    291. Crabber’s Son,

      Unless and until Tyrion is confirmed dead, as far as the Powers-That-Be in Westeros are concerned, or unless the marriage between Sansa and Tyrion can be legally annulled without Sansa’s whereabouts being outed, I don’t think any marriage plots involving her will work. I had the same problem when reading Littlefinger’s plots concerning Sansa in the book as well.

      Littlefinger is clever, but unless he’s able to maneuver an annulment or ensure Sansa’s widowhood, I don’t see her being used in a marriage plot; least of all married to someone (a) known to a sadistic monster, and (b) beholden to the Lannisters for his current status as not-a-bastard and presumed Lord of Winterfell. Also, Sansa is a fugitive and I don’t seen Roose Bolton wanting to protect her if turning her over to Cersei will buy him more favor.

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    292. Oh well. I just read through the comments, interesting indeed. Season 6 better be one hell of a season and for once offer light for the Starks.

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    293. Jared,

      Well the fact he doesn’t mention that tyrion is a dwarf doesn’t mean anything, not one character is described he just gave an outline of the story

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