Sophie Turner, Iwan Rheon and Gemma Whelan chat about the major events of “Battle of the Bastards”

Sansa

Sophie Turner, Iwan Rheon and Gemma Whelan discuss the impact of last week’s enormous Game of Thrones episode on their characters, and director Miguel Sapochnik enlightens viewers as to why the direwolf Ghost was a no-show to the “Battle of the Bastards.”

Sophie Turner talked to HBO’s Making Game of Thrones about Sansa’s influence on the outcome of the battle between her brother and her former husband (which “Sansa wasn’t expecting to win”) and said that Jon’s reluctance to take her strategic advice the night before has sexist roots.

“I think the social boundaries of the time period that Thrones is loosely based on means that these men still view women as less capable of battle planning or anything to do with typical seemingly ‘male’ activities. Patriarchy, even in this fictional world, is very real,” she said.

She also talked about Sansa’s final confrontation with Ramsay – which was a “very, very intense” scene to film – and its significance to her character’s development.

“It means so much because it’s finally her chance to directly get revenge for what he’s done to her. Emotionally, it is so gratifying to watch this man suffer for what he’s done but also to be given the opportunity by Jon to solely take charge of something that typically would be his job. The fact that she doesn’t have to persuade him to give her this opportunity is also very important in her eyes, because it’s really the first time this season that Jon has acknowledged her as capable of taking charge.”

Iwan Rheon also discussed the scene, saying that, though he’s sad to be leaving the show (and disappointed that he couldn’t have one final meeting with Theon) he feels Ramsay’s violent demise was a fitting end for his character.

“He does talk about those dogs quite a lot, so I think fate has a sense of irony there for him. It’s a justified, gruesome, horrible ending for a horrible character. I feel glad he didn’t die in his sleep or something – he goes out with a bang.”

He addressed Ramsay’s haunting line to Sansa, “You can’t kill me, I’m part of you now.” Rheon doesn’t think Ramsay really believed Sansa’s statement that his legacy will be lost, partly because “he’s put his mark on her.”

“It’s really twisted, but I think he’s kind of right,” he said. “He has broken her in a really dark way, but, thankfully, she has found her strength. It’s great to have another strong female character in the show.”

20160602_ep609_Publicity_still_028.00129634[1]

Despite its title, episode 9 wasn’t only about northern politics. We also got to see Yara Greyjoy forge an alliance with the Dragon Queen in a scene that Gemma Whelan told Making Game of Thrones she was thrilled to film. “I was so excited when I saw that I had a scene with [Daenerys and Tyrion].”

Whelan discussed the developing rapport between the two aspiring queens. Though Yara initially felt “enormous trepidation” about their meeting, “it’s clear as the scene plays out that Yara quite likes Dany. We share a lot of little looks and there’s some playful language in how we talk to one another – Dany asks if the Iron Islands ever had a queen, and Yara says, ‘No more than Westeros.’ They recognize the girl power undertow between the two of them.”

She also admitted that she was surprised, herself, at how quickly Yara agreed to abolish the time-honored ironborn practice of reaving and raping.

“I think at that moment, Yara knows that she’s got to cut something that means a great deal to her for the long game. Yara recognizes that her whole way of life has changed anyway. As it stands, she’s not welcome back at the Iron Islands, so sacrificing that way of life possibly isn’t that big of a deal. She’s taking a leap and teaming up with someone who’s got other ways of doing things. In a very quick amount of time, she has to play that chess game and say, ‘OK, no more.'”

20160602_ep609_Publicity_still_057.00160212[1]

And finally, we have a direct answer as to why Jon’s direwolf Ghost was suspiciously absent from “Battle of the Bastards.”

Director Miguel Sapochnik spoke with Business Insider, saying “[Ghost] was in there in spades originally, but it’s also an incredibly time consuming and expensive character to bring to life,” he says. “Ultimately we had to choose between Wun-Wun and the direwolf, so the dog bit the dust.”

Sapochnik explained the process of creating the giant as having to “shoot multiple layers for each shot,” with extras reacting to the actor who isn’t even there, since the footage with Ian Whyte as Wun Wun was filmed “months later on a green screen stage.”

390 responses

Jump to (and Always Support) the Bottom

    1. Sansa is never going to have the high ground argument in this debate since she withheld information that could have persuaded him to wait.

        Quote  Reply

    2. Oh come on. Jon listened to her plenty of times and asked her point blanc last episode what to do to get more men. She said she had no idea lmao. Let’s not forget that we’ve seen he respects women on the show and books so lol.

      Anyway, Yara and Dany have good chemistry. I hope we see more of them together har har! The Ironborn can turn to trade and become merchants. That should get them a lot of money, especially if they trade with Essos.

        Quote  Reply

    3. Glad to hear why Ghost wasn’t there. Now that Wun Wun is out, hopefully an ice spider or two in Season 7 doesn’t bump him out again.

        Quote  Reply

    4. I knew from the moment I heard they would do a adaptation that the direwolfs will never play a big part in the show.

      Simply to much trouble to be worth the effort you need to put into them.

      Sansa…. I don’t talk Sansa on the internet. 😉

      Can’t wait to see more Yara and Dany.

      Well this thread will be interesting. Can’t wait for the photos, think they’ll release them even for the finale?

        Quote  Reply

    5. I was worried about Ghost being in the battle and when he wasn’t I decided it was a conscious decision on Jon’s part not to take a chance at losing him during the battle, like we lost Summer (not that he knows Summer is dead). I’m glad Ghost wasn’t there because I do think he would have fallen. Plus, we needed to see Wun Wun, last of his kind fight to the end for “Snow.”

        Quote  Reply

    6. A flayed man none,

      A wolf on the battlefield wouldn’t be plausible either:
      1. he would be easy prey for the archers.
      2. How should he know who to attack, who is enemy and who is ally?
      (BTW it is believed that they may be mostly color blind, and I’m pretty sure Stark and Bolton soldiers smell basically the same. ^^)

        Quote  Reply

    7. Flayed Potatoes,

      I agree with you ..a simple I have sent a letter to LF and let’s wait for the answer would have been enough …don’t you think..

      and sansa thinking that she didn’t believe that they will win against Ramsey… She seemed very confident when she said ” you will die tomorrow lord Bolton .,sleep well”

        Quote  Reply

    8. Flayed Potatoes,

      You said it!! Sansa had plenty of opportunities to tell Jon about the possibility of the Vale army helping out and she didn’t!!! It was her fault all those men died!!! Jon would have waited for more men!!

        Quote  Reply

    9. Sophie is really pushing this Jon is a sexist argument isn’t she? Inspite of the fact that he listened to her every single time, the only time he didn’t was when he saw Rickon being hunted by arrows. God, I like Sansa and I want to continue liking her, but Sophie is making it very difficult!

      I want to hear the writers’ view on this. Did they actually intend to portray Jon as sexist? This whole storyline continues to mystify me, and not in a good way, lol.

        Quote  Reply

    10. So he confirmed another part of the leak… that Ghost was killing troops left and right in the script. This means those who read the leak know what is coming in the finale.

      And oh boy… people are not going to be happy that…

      R+L=J is NOT resolved.

        Quote  Reply

    11. Kamali,

      Jon would not have sat around waiting in hope that the Vale might turn up. And Sansa has learned by now that she cannot count on hope: particularly if you are pinning that hope on someone you threatened to kill if you ever saw him again only a few months before.

      Indeed, if Sansa had told Jon the whole story (or at least all that she knew), he would have told her: They are not coming.” Davos would have known a little about Baelish because of Stannis: and he would have told them: “he is not coming.” And Mel can only say that she has seen victory in the fire, but she no longer has any idea who’s victory it is!

        Quote  Reply

    12. Mihnea:
      I knew from the moment I heard they would do a adaptation that the direwolfs will never play a big part in the show.

      Simply to much trouble to be worth the effort you need to put into them.

      Sansa…. I don’t talk Sansa on the internet. ?

      Can’t wait to see more Yara and Dany.

      Well this thread will be interesting. Can’t wait for the photos, think they’ll release them even for the finale?

      Funny you say that about the photo’s because I wondered if they would release any today. I certainly hope so. We might have limited direwolf scenes, but at least we’ve had some and I hope we do see Nymeria (not holding my breath) and Ghost again. I can’t believe this season is over Sunday…fast and fulfilling, IMHO

        Quote  Reply

    13. ghost of winterfell,

      Yes, but not Jon per se, but the basic society. It does not occur to men in this world that women could gain insight into a man’s mind. Jon probably is much more open-minded on this than most men would be, given his experience with the Free Folk. However, a slightly ajar door is not the same as an open one.

        Quote  Reply

    14. Wimsey,

      Fine, if she told Jon and Jon said screw that then she would have the high ground in her “he didn’t listen to me” argument. But she can’t play that card when she withheld what she knew.

        Quote  Reply

    15. GeekFurious,

      I have no idea what you are talking about.

      We know that the actor that plays Ned said he’s going to be in the finale. I think we’ll get the conclusion of the ToJ and Jon’s parentage

        Quote  Reply

    16. dragonbringer,

      Jon, Davos and the rest would have said: “there will be no answer.” For one thing, where does LF send a courier? The letter says that they are attacking Winterfell, but not where they are before then.

      “Hope” is nice, but only a fool includes it in his/her tactics. And, let’s face it: after all she has been through, and after her last meeting with Baelish, Sansa could not have considered it probable that Baelish would arrive.

        Quote  Reply

    17. Flayed Potatoes,

      Ye, Jons probably the only character who does take women seriously. He’s lived with Wildlings and seen that they can fight just as well as the men.

      I don’t see us getting the Tower of Joy reveal, I can see it being in it. And maybe Bran having an “ah ha!” moment of clarity, but the viewers will be left out. We can probably guess about it, but I really hope they don’t do the Walking Dead and just not reveal it.

      Maybe its twins…and R+L=M&J

      But maybe they want to give GRRM one more year to get his book out as respect.

        Quote  Reply

    18. Mawk,

      Ah, but “fight” does not equal “think.” Remember, the idea that women are as smart as men is a very new one: and there still are a lot of places in this world where people still pretend that it not true.

      Still, the fact that Jon realizes that women are more than baby-making machines makes him a flaming human rights activist in Westeros!

        Quote  Reply

    19. Wimsey,

      The show established Jon is desperate for more man and tried every avenue he knew of to get them last episode. You seriously think Jon wouldn’t have sent scouts to verify if there was a 10k Vale army coming?

        Quote  Reply

    20. Wimsey,

      Except, he literally asked her what he should do, how should he get more men and she had no answer. The one thing that she did say, don’t do what Ramsay wants you to do, sounds so obvious and vague (even though she was right here) that Jon would probably have scoffed at it even if it had been a man to tell him this. It was not sexism, what we saw.

        Quote  Reply

    21. Mawk,

      I think they need time to establish the identity of the father and explain the family relationships to the casual viewer. They could only establish the mother this season.

        Quote  Reply

    22. Flayed Potatoes,

      What is there to verify? How do they verify that the army is not coming? And why do you expect scouts to learn anything in enemy controlled lands? This is not a world in which these things are eady to learn or to communicate. In the end, there would be no reason to think the Vale is coming. Jon has no clues about Baelish’s larger games, after all.

        Quote  Reply

    23. Wimsey,

      You send scouts to see if there is an army on the move and then they ride to report back. It’s a perfectly rational decision.

        Quote  Reply

    24. ghost of winterfell,

      And saying if Sansa tells him the truth, then he will tell her: they are not going to come. The fact that Sansa does not volunteer it means that she does not think that they are going to come, either. Hoping and thinking are two different things.

        Quote  Reply

    25. Flayed Potatoes,

      True enough, I’ve been waiting since 1999 for the reveal…I guess I can wait a year more.

      But I’m not happy about it.

      I would love a Battle of the Trident flashback via Bran if that could be a thing.

        Quote  Reply

    26. Oh, I’m going to get in so much trouble in this thread. Save me, NWQ!

      So D&D are these great feminists, but Jon is completely sexist? Are. You. Serious.

      It’s really the first time this season that Jon has acknowledged her as capable of taking charge.

      Jesus. Fucking. Christ. This season has been nothing but Jon letting Sansa take charge.

        Quote  Reply

    27. Flayed Potatoes,

      Agreed. Especially if Sansa had told him that Baelish himself offered to help them out (when they met in Molestown), with the Vale knights without her having to ask for it, there would be more reason for Jon to just dismiss her and say, they are not coming.

        Quote  Reply

    28. Even though the question to Sophie was about Jon, her answer wasn’t specific to him; she talked about “men” and the scenario of “manly” things like battle plans. She has a point as women would usually be excluded from the war room. However, if Brienne had been there, would they have asked her to contribute? Yeah, probably. She’s viewed as strong, capable, a warrior. The main issue I see, and I’m struck by this every time Jon and Sansa have a scene together, is that they don’t know each other all that well. They weren’t close growing up, hadn’t seen each other for years, and have only been reunited for what, a month? There’s a struggle to communicate because neither comprehends fully how the other has changed and grown up. A big part of Jon still sees Sansa as the little girl with fantasies of marrying a prince, and a big part of Sansa still sees Jon as the bastard half-brother who was never supposed to lead an army. Until they truly understand each other, there is going to be tension and conflict.

        Quote  Reply

    29. Ginevra:
      Oh, I’m going to get in so much trouble in this thread.Save me, NWQ!

      So D&D are these great feminists, but Jon is completely sexist?Are. You. Serious.

      Jesus.Fucking.Christ.This season has been nothing but Jon letting Sansa take charge.

      This!!

        Quote  Reply

    30. “You can’t kill me, I’m part of you now.”

      I hope this doesn’t presage a turn in Sansa’s character and that her brokenness doesn’t inform her future dealings with others. I love that she’s come into her own, but let’s face it, she has been connected with some really bad men who did really awful things to not only her but to others. I want Sansa to keep her Stark noble mindset.

        Quote  Reply

    31. Flayed Potatoes,

      Where do you send the scouts? How do the scouts avoid being killed by Bolton scouts? Given the conditions, how do any scouts that happen to run into the Vale army (which now is extremely improbable) get back before the Vale does?

      And why waste time on a hope that seems utterly ridiculous in the first place? Why would a man that Sansa has told she would kill if ever she saw him again help them? Given that Baelish has worked with Cersei before, wouldn’t they more quickly assume that the Vale would assist the Boltons and that Baelish is playing Sansa?

      Sansa’s letter might as wrll have been written to Santa Claus for all the real hope it would inspire in Jon.

        Quote  Reply

    32. The manufactured conflict between Sansa & Jon was quite poorly constructed,a bit contrived & totally unnecessary.She was inexplicably condescending towards Jon’s military plans & Davos’s advisory role for quite sometime when they did precisely what Sansa suggested at every turn. Jon asked Sansa to speak first in almost every meeting with the Northern lords & asked for her advice in the battle plan to no avail. So her withholding information from Jon can only be explained as Littlefinger’s sneaky influence on her, sincerely hope I am wrong though.
      I am a feminist & am all for women empowerment & have thoroughly enjoyed each & every scene between Sansa & Ramsay where she stood her ground & totally owned him.
      But Sansa’s vindication with the help of Vale army was a bit patronising & caricaturish at best.
      Anyways,I really hope the conflict is resolved in the final episode.

        Quote  Reply

    33. Ginevra,

      Most feminist writing is set in very sexist worlds!

      Besides, Turner’s focus was on men: and for all of Jon’s liberal notions (Wildling lives matter!), he never did ask Sansa anything about Ramsey.

        Quote  Reply

    34. Is this the first instance where the interviews with primary actors from an episode were done pretty much by an HBO entity?

      If so, my conspiratorial mind wants to think that maybe there will be a twist or development with one of the characters (my first guess would be Sansa) that they don’t want to slip out.

      Then again, I’m probably just looking for grumpkins and snarks where there are none.

        Quote  Reply

    35. Rich Stark,

      There was little conflict between the two. However, there had to be some, for the sake of story. This is a story about the personal costs of alliances, after all: and if everyone joins in as one big happy family, then it contributes nothing to the story.

      But the other thing to remember is that Sansa’s views on Ramsey are themselves tainted because nobody holds objective views towards a torturer. Now, as it happens, her demonification of Ramsay does not much miss the mark: but chances are good that others would not take her seriously because of it.

        Quote  Reply

    36. Ginevra,

      Eh, I don’t know. Up until the battle it was more a case of Jon being depressed and just giving up or agreeing to things, I thought. That’s not the same as seeing someone as capable and wanting them to be the boss. He’ll probably be more like the old Jon after his Choose Life moment in the moshpit.

        Quote  Reply

    37. Oh god, I was about to post a request for this thread not to descend into yet another heated debate on the rights/wrongs of Sansa’s actions that have been raked over and over for weeks now. Too late LOL..

      Three points:

      Sansa didn’t KNOW the Knights of the Vale would actually come. And she actively counselled Jon to wait until they had more men. She didn’t lie to him in any way, she just didn’t give him the full picture. She was clearly concerned because she knew they didn’t have the men-and she wouldn’t have been so stressed if she knew the Valemen were coming (and I imagine she’d have said of she did know).

      Sansa really doesn’t want to rely on LF- it’s a very bitter pill for her to swallow considering what he’s put her through. She’s literally sacrificing herself (and her claim) if she gives LF her hand in marriage (which is likely what’ve wants)… It’s the last thing she wants after what’s happened but she’s willing to do that to secure victory and get revenge.

      Jon is JUST as responsible for those deaths by steamrolling into the battlefield. Sure, it was totally understandable given what happened to Rickon, but then so is Sansa’s position regarding lack of trust etc after the traumas she’s been through. But made a huge mistake and against everything that Sansa advised him- Kit and D&D have even said as much. Who’s to say he’d even wait for the Valemen? He seemed intent on marching immediately, and they covered this on the show several times.

      The victory was primarily Sansa’s over Jons (whether she expected it to be or not, seems she didn’t from her interview)… She was, in the end the victim in all of this. Some people need to deal with this better.

      And from next weeks trailer, we may yet get some answers on all of this so again, let’s wait until next week before making a judgement.

        Quote  Reply

    38. ghost of winterfell:
      I want to hear the writers’ view on this. Did they actually intend to portray Jon as sexist? This whole storyline continues to mystify me, and not in a good way, lol.

      Oh, yes! Please writers, speak up.

        Quote  Reply

    39. I love sophie but come on whatever she says is literally not supported by the dialogue of the show.He literally asks her point blank what should I do asks for her opinion asks where to get more men and she doesn’t say anything.He has listened to her everytime this season sending a letter to the bf,asking the northern houses.She was there on every council.At castle black davos and tormund were listening to her.What more did she want?When for whatever reason she didn’t say anything about the vale.There are plenty of sexist characters on the show but Jon isn’t one of them

        Quote  Reply

    40. Wimsey,

      Sansa knew from LF that the army was stationed at Moat Cailin. Moat Cailin was supposed to be garrisoned by the Boltons. Looks like someone didn’t do their job scouting properly because how did the Boltons not find out the Vale army entered the north?

      Looking at how Ramsay was surprised by the Vale army, it’s clear he didn’t bother to scout because he was too confident in himself. Sansa should know he’s extremely arrogant.

      How did Sansa and Jon travel without any trouble through the North and without being caught by any Bolton scouts? How did Littlefinger travel with his attendants from the Vale all the way to Mole’s Town without dealing with scouts? How did the Vale army enter Moat Cailin without being spotted by Bolton scouts? How could Brienne and Pod make it all the way to the Riverlands without dealing with Bolton scouts? Clearly, Ramsay wasn’t doing his job scouting.

      It’s obviously not that difficult to send scouts to verify the position of the Vale army, especially since they know they were at Moat Cailin and from there they can figure out in which direction they’ll be headed.

        Quote  Reply

    41. Hounded,

      Ripping throats out – but they gave that to Tormund.

      Also, he directly this episode brilliantly, but did he have to say “The dog bit the dust”??? Ghost is NOT a dog!

        Quote  Reply

    42. Still believe BotB was probably the best episode of the series ever. So fantastic and one that I will probably never get tired of watching again and again and again. Everyone was so fantastic. Iwan and Sophie did absolutely phenomenal in the last scene. They have great chemistry and because of that, it made Ramsay’s last moments very believable. I love that Sophie said Ramsay was her “first” kill. That makes me hope that she’ll FINALLY kill or have someone kill Littlefinger. God knows she definitely doesn’t need him in her life anymore. I also think, despite my hatred for Ramsay, Iwan was right in saying that Ramsay didn’t believe Sansa with all of her “you’re gonna disappear” spiel. It’s an empowering, kind of poetic thing to say, and it would totally be ideal if she could just erase her memory and forget all of it, but that isn’t possible. His house is gone and he’s gone, but what he did isn’t, and it never will be. I’m sure she will heal from all of it in the future, but she will never forget. He did leave a huge mark on her, and I think that mark is what really sparked something out of her. She snapped in a kind of way, and seeing from this season, she will never be that “soft, gentle, naive” Sansa again.

      I’ll be interested to see if the subtle hints of a pregnancy are continued or not. Obviously, I don’t want to see her pregnant, but this is GoT, and I wouldn’t be surprised if she was. Logically, I suppose, it makes sense. I guess we shall see in the finale…or, if not in the finale, perhaps maybe sometime in S7. George has said Sansa’s original purpose was to marry Joff and have his children, so it’ll be interesting to see if that’s the direction the show will take; to have a child, or children, and settle down somewhere.

        Quote  Reply

    43. Apollo,

      Not giving the commander of the army you wanted him to assemble to take Winterfell for you the full picture and all the information he needs to go into battle is a mistake.

        Quote  Reply

    44. Flayed Potatoes,

      That tells us how difficult scouting would be in Winter.

      As for Jon and Sansa travelling through the North, they were not travelling near Winterfell. The North is a huge place, after all. However, once Jon’s army made camp near Winterfell, they were easy to scout, and their scouts were easy to scout.

      Moreover, you are confounding two different things: how easy it is to find a known place, and how easy it is to find an unknown place. Send people to Moat Caitln and the trail a possible army? Well, if Jon did that, the the scouts would get back to him after the battle.

      But the biggest point that this reasoning misses is that Jon never would have considered this to be a realistic possibilty, and Davos would have thought that the Vale was coming to support the Boltons (if you could have convinced him they were coming).

        Quote  Reply

    45. Wimsey:
      Kamali,

      Jon would not have sat around waiting in hope that the Vale might turn up.

      If Jon had a greater than 50% chance (which he did) of saving hundreds of thousands of lives (which he did) by waiting a day or two, he absolutely would have. Jon is brilliant at weighing the odds when his head is cool and family isn’t being dangled in front of him.

      Sansa: Just don’t do what he wants you to do.

      Jon: Aye, that’s good advice.

      Sansa: You think that’s obvious?

      Jon: Well, it is a bit obvious.

      Sansa: If you had asked for my advice earlier, I would have told you not to attack Winterfell until we had a larger force, or is that obvious, too?

      Jon: When will we have a larger force? We’ve pleaded with every house that’ll have us. The Blackfish can’t help us. We’re lucky to have this many men. It’s not enough. No, it’s not enough. It’s what we have.

        Quote  Reply

    46. I personally think Sophie’s comments are just her own interpretation of the story. Actors often have wildly different understandings of the material than the writers, directors, and even the actors they share the scene with. Sophie is a young woman viewing her character through a modern lens where feminism is a huge talking point and she is speaking from that viewpoint. I seriously doubt the writers are intending for Jon’s scenes to be viewed as sexist.

      I really hope we get a good scene of dialogue where Sansa and Jon have it out over what happened.

        Quote  Reply

    47. Apollo,

      I’m surprised people think Sansa knew the knights were coming. To me, they made it clear in the pre-battle scene with Jon that she didn’t. Littlefinger was the one in control, as usual, but he didn’t send a raven in reply, or send a rider ahead to say they were coming. He’ll probably say the element of surprise was essential but it must be more devious than that.

        Quote  Reply

    48. Yeah fair enough can understand it was a case of one or the other (Ghost or Wun Wun) given the complications and CGI costs involved

      In this case if it was to be Wun Wuns swansong good that he gets the attention etc

      Though it would have been nice if they’d given Ghost a cameo at the meetup, and he reacted to Shaggydogs head etc, and even whimpered and picked up his litter brothers head to take away (and bury?)

        Quote  Reply

    49. Wimsey,

      You make a lot of good points, like Davos thinking the Vale would be coming to support the Boltons, I just wish we could have seen that play out on screen. It would have only added to the drama.

        Quote  Reply

    50. Wimsey:
      Ginevra,

      Most feminist writing is set in very sexist worlds!

      Besides, Turner’s focus was on men: and for all of Jon’s liberal notions (Wildling lives matter!), he never did ask Sansa anything about Ramsey.

      Why does Sansa feel the need to wait for Jon to ask her about Ramsay? If she had anything to say, she should have just told him. In fact she should have been trying to warn him about Ramsay from the very beginning, and not wait to accuse him on the eve of the battle.

        Quote  Reply

    51. Sophies remarks about Sansa is a little odd, eg Jon goes and asks Mel why she wasn’t in the meeting and asks her for advice so I don’t quite buy the Misogyny line – though tbf I suspect the showrunners are hedging their bets so the actors can’t be entirely clear on things, eg there’s still a debate as to whether it was Bran or Wyllis Holding the Door at the end of E5

      A sense it’s been an awkward juggling act of two main character arcs being merged, so there is a sense of having to put in Sansa/Alayne “learning to play the game”, eg in Alayne chapter she has to go from being belittled as “Littlefingers bastard” to sweet-talking Harry the Heir etc and she’s taking notes of commodity dynamics and people at the Tourney etc and being careful with information

      So there’s a sense of her turning up the way she did is supposed to be her screwing up Ramsay when he thinks he’s won.

      The kill scene was very good, Ramsay could be talking about he’s twisted her but it could be a case of LF has, eg for mine what she did was very LFesque in that she’s screwed his mind by saying all memory etc will be gone and using his own Hounds against him.

      It’s also a good setup if she goes Lothstonesque and becomes a competitor to Cersei

      Sure it does come at the sense of her being untrustworthy in family relations, but this has been the case since AGoT with Ned and S1 when she lies about Joffrey, Arya and Micah so it won’t quite ever go away and will cloud even innocuous things

        Quote  Reply

    52. This Sansa patriarchy thing is such crap. You were in the room during planning so SPEAK UP! Jon then asked you directly to your face so SPEAK UP! If you told him and he ignored you then that is a different story.

      When they received the ‘Pink letter’ Sansa had no issues with speaking up in front of everyone. Sansa also shows absolutely zero emotions when Rickon is killed or any other soldier is killed for their cause. She just may now be a Bolton.

      I do hope everyone on the ‘girl power’ train remembers that this is GoT and when these girls start dying gruesome deaths we do not go back to the shock of ‘violence against woman’ meme. To quote Tyrion, ‘They are in the great game now so be afraid.’

        Quote  Reply

    53. Wimsey,

      When you are actively preparing for battle– as in taking the field– you always have scouts out and about, and throughout the duration of the battle. How else do you know what your opponents are doing? They don’t just magically all line up where everyone can see each other and their tactics. Yes, they usually do that in shows/movies, to give greater emphasis on the amount of men, etc, but in real life that never happens. Commanders must rely on scouts to relay information on troop movements; where things are going well, where they need to reinforce, or where their own line has completely fallen, etc. I know not everyone can think tactically or has the experience, but to expect two armies to be in complete view of each other at all times, with all movements completely visible is absurd. Honestly, it would be considered a serious tactical error on Jon’s part not to know about the Vale army approaching. What if it had been more Ramsay men? They’d have been in deep shit for sure, then.

        Quote  Reply

    54. Mawk:
      Flayed Potatoes,

      Ye, Jons probably the only character who does take women seriously. He’s lived with Wildlings and seen that they can fight just as well as the men.

      I don’t see us getting the Tower of Joy reveal, I can see it being in it. And maybe Bran having an “ah ha!” moment of clarity, but the viewers will be left out. We can probably guess about it, but I really hope they don’t do the Walking Dead and just not reveal it.

      Maybe its twins…and R+L=M&J

      But maybe they want to give GRRM one more year to get his book out as respect.

      I’ve said for awhile now that we will get the TOJ and I hoped the scene wouldn’t end with “promise me, Ned” but also while hoping the pragmatist in me has whispered, “you won’t know what he promised.” I don’t expect a reveal this season.

        Quote  Reply

    55. ghost of winterfell,

      Yes what you said plus it’s clear Jon was trying to not remind her of her rapist.He stopped reading the letter when it got to that part said that she didn’t need to be on the parlay and was saying to her he will never hurt you again before the battle.That’s understandable and what my brother would do.It’s not sexist

        Quote  Reply

    56. Wimsey,

      Except it wasn’t snowing that heavily. The weather was fine. It was specified on the show.

      Based on the timing of the Vale’s arrival, they weren’t that far from Winterfell and the scouts wouldn’t even have to ride all the way down to Moat Cailin. An army of that size is easy to spot.

      Ginevra,

      You hit the nail on the head. Everyone seems to ignore this scene you mentioned. Convenient.

        Quote  Reply

    57. ghost of winterfell,

      Because Sansa is still Catelyn’s daughter. Confronting Jon alone is a big step forward in terms of her evolution. Being able to confront a room full of men is still a step ahead of where she is. After all, and as she tells Jon, she is “a girl.”

      My bet is that this will come up if she tries to assert herself as Lady of Winterfell.

        Quote  Reply

    58. sirensong,

      Yeah some people have been underwhelmed, but for mine it is a case of distinguishing it as 10/10 for directing and perhaps 8/10 for writing. It’s been impacted by lead-up episodes and arguments about the dynamic between Jon and Sansa and what is going on

      But I was deeply immersed and engaged pretty much from the pre-battle posturing and certainly from the moment they all turn up right towards the end

      Even though I had a rough idea what would happen broadly speaking, it was all so deeply engaging

      Miguel Sapochnik is outstanding, obviously helps having Kit who honed his battle acting with Pompeii and does his own stunts etc

        Quote  Reply

    59. Wimsey,

      She has been with Jon for months, I am sure she could have found a moment to be alone with him, if she wanted, if as you say, Sansa would hesitate to speak in front of a roomful of men. Which we already saw is not the case in the earlier episodes.

        Quote  Reply

    60. Lord Parramandas:
      I’ve recently read an article which called Sansa a new GoT villain.I really hope that’s not the case.

      http://www.viralshack.com/new-game-of-thrones-villain-emerge-battle-of-the-bastards/

      I reckon the show is hedging its bets, but she could go in a darkish direction

      If she does then I see her as an adversary towards Cersei, eg two darkish Queens, or controversial at least

      Could be a bit like Dany with Daario on one side and Ser Barristan/Tyrion on the other, there’s LF pulling her one direction but Marge the other

        Quote  Reply

    61. I think Wun Wun could of caused a lot more damage, especially to that shield wall if he used a tree trunk or log as a club like he did at Hardhome.

        Quote  Reply

    62. msd,

      There’s a struggle to communicate because neither comprehends fully how the other has changed and grown up. A big part of Jon still sees Sansa as the little girl with fantasies of marrying a prince, and a big part of Sansa still sees Jon as the bastard half-brother who was never supposed to lead an army. Until they truly understand each other, there is going to be tension and conflict.

      Well said!!!

        Quote  Reply

    63. What are peoples thoughts on Sansa just taking the Vale Knights away from LF? Now that they are there in the North – she could easily just reveal LF was the one who pushed Lysa out the Moon Door and throw LF in chains.

      Boom, now she has her army and no LF in the way.

        Quote  Reply

    64. Flayed Potatoes:
      Wimsey,

      Except it wasn’t snowing that heavily. The weather was fine. It was specified on the show.

      Based on the timing of the Vale’s arrival, they weren’t that far from Winterfell and the scouts wouldn’t even have to ride all the way down to Moat Cailin. An army of that size is easy to spot.

      Ginevra,

      You hit the nail on the head. Everyone seems to ignore this scene you mentioned. Convenient.

      Besides, as Ghosts Lunch mentioned, Jon himself sought out Melisandre, a woman, in her tent and asked her why she did not come to the strategy meeting. He also asked her if she had any advice for him. So unless Jon practices selective sexism, I would say he isn’t one.

        Quote  Reply

    65. Elizabeth,

      Yes, that would also be the case. Add to this that both have become more pessimistic characters as they have evolved, and what they could tell each other is less than what we have seen.

        Quote  Reply

    66. We’re supposed to think Jon couldn’t safely send scouts but somehow Sansa can reach LF and the vale army without being caught? Makes no logical sense.

      I’m not 100% convinced Sansa is “evil” or whatever you’d label her but it seems likely she is to me. The looks on her face at the battle, not telling Jon about the vale (the excuses for her don’t add up) LF made it very clear he would show if asked.

      Also in general she has been rude to people and selfish. She hasn’t been kind to many people except those who are evil themselves. Shea for example and LF. Who else has she been kind to? What has she done for others?

      I’m not saying she IS EVIL I’m saying there’s no reason to think she’s a leader or noble and definitely not someone to idolize. She has done nothing on her own that is admirable or helping of others. She’s a Stark that has been horrendously victimized and we (mostly) can sympathize with that. I certainly do, I just don’t get where she’s a strong woman or a leader like Dany or Yara.

        Quote  Reply

    67. Wimsey:
      ghost of winterfell,

      Because Sansa is still Catelyn’s daughter.Confronting Jon alone is a big step forward in terms of her evolution.Being able to confront a room full of men is still a step ahead of where she is.After all, and as she tells Jon, she is “a girl.”

      My bet is that this will come up if she tries to assert herself as Lady of Winterfell.

      Yeah I’ve been thinking about this, as a trueborn she is after Rickon in the Northern pardigm of succession

      But given she is married to Tyrion and is considered a Lannister in some respects (see SC meeting with Varys explaining why Joffrey can’t present his “Aunt by marriage” with Robbs head) and Lyanna Mormont (a girl) raised this specifically and so there is some murkiness

      So then, if “Arya Stark of Winterfell and I’m going home” turns up, she’s the only one with an unambiguous claim, so there’s a strong case that Arya is actually the new Queen in the North

      This of course all becomes moot if Bran goes south of the Wall as he was Robbs heir, hence the reason he’s in charge alongside Maester Luwin, of course he’s taken on the title of 3-eyed Raven so may be abdicating

      I never anticipated the top two given I figured Bran would be a tree and Arya always in Braavos or running around KL or the Twins

      In either case, Bran or Arya would need a Regent until they become of age, which could be either Jon or Sansa

        Quote  Reply

    68. Wimsey:
      ghost of winterfell,

      They were not drawing up battle plans for months: they were sneaking around the North learning that the Stark nam was not was Sansa believed it to be.

      But she had absolutely nothing to contribute in terms of battle plans. Her strength was that she knew Ramsay and how his mind worked, and she could have warned Jon about this anytime in the past few months.

        Quote  Reply

    69. Wimsey:
      dragonbringer,

      “Hope” is nice, but only a fool includes it in his/her tactics.And, let’s face it: after all she has been through, and after her last meeting with Baelish, Sansa could not have considered it probable that Baelish would arrive.

      Only a fool doesn’t consider the odds when planning tactics. And in her last meeting with Baelish, LF begged and begged and begged for her to allow him any opportunity to makeup for his mistake. He said he’d do anything in his power if only she’d ask. What part of that would make Sansa think LF was unlikely to come when asked?

      Littlefinger to Sansa at Mole’s Town: I’m so sorry.

      And I will [protect you]. You must believe me when I tell you that I will.

      Do you want me to beg for my life? If that’s what you want, I will. Whatever you ask that is in my power, I will do.

      I would do anything to undo what’s been done to you.

        Quote  Reply

    70. Wimsey,

      Yes, I believe so. She may pass to the dark side but I don’t see her as a villain, in worst case an anti-villain (a protagonist with good intentions who does villainous things to achieve them).

        Quote  Reply

    71. Wimsey:
      Apollo,

      Heh, you have stated my view more clearly than I have!

      I agree and exactly for those reasons.

      Why raise Jon’s hopes if there’s no way Sansa would know if her message reached Baelish, let alone if he would arrive at Winterfell in time with the Knights of the Vale.

      No email back in those days 😀

        Quote  Reply

    72. Allthegoodnamesaregone:
      We’re supposed to think Jon couldn’t safely send scouts but somehow Sansa can reach LF and the vale army without being caught? Makes no logical sense.

      I’m not 100% convinced Sansa is “evil” or whatever you’d label her but it seems likely she is to me.The looks on her face at the battle, not telling Jon about the vale (the excuses for her don’t add up) LF made it very clear he would show if asked.

      I took her smile during the battle as more “Ramsays army is at an end.” Nothing like “Now Jon has no army and Winterfell is solely mine.”

        Quote  Reply

    73. ghost of winterfell:
      Sophie is really pushing this Jon is a sexist argument isn’t she? Inspite of the fact that he listened to her every single time, the only time he didn’t was when he saw Rickon being hunted by arrows. God, I like Sansa and I want to continue liking her, but Sophie is making it very difficult!

      I want to hear the writers’ view on this. Did they actually intend to portray Jon as sexist? This whole storyline continues to mystify me, and not in a good way, lol.

      I suspect Sophie’s statement is based on what she’s been briefed about by the writers. But yeah, it will be interesting to hear that directly from the writers. I’m a woman but I didn’t pick up the vibe that Jon “not listening” to her is because of “sexist roots”. Jon included her in their strategic meetings (which I suspect rarely happens during that period) and he listened to her about BF and about recruiting the different northern houses.

        Quote  Reply

    74. Wimsey,

      I welcome conflict,it’s the backbone of a good story, but it should atleast be valid or well justified & not there just for the sake of it.
      They can’t justify her not telling about the imminent arrival of Vale cavalry, because she felt snubbed & nobody asked her.That would be very Stephanie Tanner!

        Quote  Reply

    75. Karen:
      “You can’t kill me, I’m part of you now.”

      I hope this doesn’t presage a turn in Sansa’s character and that her brokenness doesn’t inform her future dealings with others. I love that she’s come into her own, but let’s face it, she has been connected with some really bad men who did really awful things to not only her but to others. I want Sansa to keep her Stark noble mindset.

      To be honest, I’m not sure Sansa has ever had the Stark noble mindset. With the possible small exception of the Dontos incident, I can’t really think of many instances where she has put the needs of the realm or her family or any individual person above hers. (Though to be honest, I’m having a hard time remembering why she agreed to the plan to marry Ramsey in the first place – perhaps that was for family?).

      I’m not saying this is a bad thing or that it makes here “evil” or a “villain”. One of the things that is great about GoT is that it at least tries to avoid the black and white heroes and villains route. Most characters are different shades of grey. I just happen to see Sansa a slightly darker shade of grey than a lot of people do.

        Quote  Reply

    76. Corbyn Stark,

      Why are we not discussing this!?!

      Black Raven,

      Yeah same here. Glad someone said that. Because I didn’t want to be the one who everyone ”attacked”. (Not really attacked, but rather dozens of replies, starting a discussion I didn’t really want to get into. Saying this just so everything is clear.)

        Quote  Reply

    77. Wimsey:
      ghost of winterfell,

      Because Sansa is still Catelyn’s daughter.Confronting Jon alone is a big step forward in terms of her evolution.Being able to confront a room full of men is still a step ahead of where she is.After all, and as she tells Jon, she is “a girl.”

      My bet is that this will come up if she tries to assert herself as Lady of Winterfell.

      Forgot to add before, she was perfectly fine with speaking up at the Wallsmoot meeting about approaching Blackfish at Riverrun while keeping LF a secret and she was perfectly capable of shooting Davos down

      Indeed it’s a tad odd that she can consider the idea of getting the Tully’s but not her cousin Sweetrobin

      Can be explained by the fact she doesen’t want to have anything to do with LF, though after she wrote the letter she should have mentioned it to Jon

        Quote  Reply

    78. Sophie is right about Jon being a sexist pig. If only he had listened to her brilliant strategy of “I don’t know. I don’t know anything about battles” he would’ve taken Winterfell with few losses. Worthy of Lao Tzu that is.

        Quote  Reply

    79. Mawk,

      I could buy that. Why no smile when she sees Jon alive?

      Not that she needs to, but it shows she’s more concerned with her own vengeance than her family. Fits in with saying we gotta save Rickon then writes him off as dead.

        Quote  Reply

    80. Wimsey:
      ghost of winterfell,

      Because Sansa is still Catelyn’s daughter.Confronting Jon alone is a big step forward in terms of her evolution.Being able to confront a room full of men is still a step ahead of where she is.After all, and as she tells Jon, she is “a girl.”

      My bet is that this will come up if she tries to assert herself as Lady of Winterfell.

      It was the times they were in, Brienne’s character is an anomaly. Women (other than the Free Folk) were beneath men in those times. I think Sophie’s words were an implication of the times, or I hope they were. Equal rights for women is fairly recent in terms of history.

        Quote  Reply

    81. Wimsey,

      The same place Brienne’s raven touched down to provide the information about the BF. A courrier is more likely to find people in transit than a raven trained to travel between certain castles.

        Quote  Reply

    82. Jesus F christ .. enough with this female empowerment agenda the show is pushing like crazy.

      GOT is set in medieval like times and women had a specific place in that male dominated world.

      In order to make Dany, Sansa, Cersei, Marg… feminist icons the show made their male counterparts ike Tyrion (redued to making bad jokes), Jon (borderline imbecil miltary commander with no regard for his own men), Jamie (lapdog mentality), Tommen (just weak as hell …) into incompetent idiots.

      Let me put this on here:

      Freedom to the men!

      FREEDOOOOOM !!!!

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=grQ3QAcfLLw

        Quote  Reply

    83. Wimsey:
      Flayed Potatoes,

      Where do you send the scouts? How do the scouts avoid being killed by Bolton scouts?Given the conditions, how do any scouts that happen to run into the Vale army (which now is extremely improbable) get back before the Vale does?

      I love you, Wimsey, but if I were planning a battle, I wouldn’t ask you about tactics. Does that make me sexist? I’d totally ask you about the vegetation, though.

      Scouting is arguably the most important aspect of warfare. An army must know where the enemy is at all times, along with its strengths and weaknesses. The lay of the land, where ambushers may lurk, and where ambushes can be implemented are other important tasks of a scout. Good scouting can answer all these questions and more.

      http://therevolutioncenter.com/war/military-tactics/#Scouting

        Quote  Reply

    84. I wrote this yesterday but it seems people just can leave it alone…here is my 2 centavos:

      I believe that sometimes there is too much of an autopsy run on why people do what they do, when many times – decisions are made purely out of emotion or even logic at the time. This is true in real life as well. If you think about it, many decisions can come to you and you have to make it now….such as being proposed to on the Jumbotron. How much pressure is that? Maybe had you had time to think about it, you wouldn’t want to marry that person or not like that. Of course that doesn’t kill armies, but it many times kills the person inside.

      Jon made a decision in a white anger moment. Sansa made a decision based on what she felt she had to do. No shame or blame on either side. The objective was not to see how many men were still standing at the end of the engagement, the objective was to take back Winterfell. Guess what? Mission accomplished.

      Would it have been “nice” to have more of an army left at the end of the day? Sure. But it is WAR…not nice head games. In war, for example, what happened on the beaches in Normandy in 1944 – Do you think the Americans thought…ooooh could be a bad idea, we will lose many troops. They did what they had to do, objective – take the beach. Mission accomplished at a huge sacrifice.

      To me, the focus should be on what was done that got them to the goal of taking back Winterfell. Job done, maybe not “well done”, but certainly done. (also Ramsay lost a ton of men too at the end of the day, war is hell – so General Sherman said.)

        Quote  Reply

    85. Wimsey,

      I’m inclined, after seeing Sansa watch Ramsay’s death and to smile at it, to think Sansa had a greater understanding of what her offer of a reward to LF would do. She knows he is interested in her. And Cersei had given her advice on using her weapons. And the vague offer of a reward had to be enticing to LF who had already pledged his support to her. I’m not saying she intends on giving him the reward he might be thinking of, whatever that might be, in fact I tend to think the opposite. Yes, she did not likely know the timing of his response and of course she could not have been 100% certain, but I’m willing to accept that Sansa is a better player of the game than I had originally given her credit for.

      Now they might not play it that way on the show as I can see them doing yet another two step forward and one step back on Sansa, but I do think it is a valid hypothesis, on which more will be revealed on Sunday.

        Quote  Reply

    86. Wimsey:
      ghost of winterfell,

      They were not drawing up battle plans for months: they were sneaking around the North learning that the Stark nam was not was Sansa believed it to be.

      Yeah the build-up was doing OK at covering some of the different dynamics, eg Jon and Sansa arguably aren’t quite full Starks but sides with them over the WW’s, as a contrasat to Mormont Glover brought up legit misgivings about Robbs decisions and water under the Bridge etc

      I do feel they could have done with a bit more, eg meeting the new Lord Cerwyn, as a way to cover that a lot of people would want to help and are loyal to Stark name but are afraid, especially if the odds are against them succeeding and even bring up the flayed maid they may have heard about

      The Hornwoods would have been great as a contrast to Cerwyn, eg they killed Lady Hornwood and we’ll rebel against Boltons despite the prospective costs, in both cases they mirror Sansa’s experience

      I was dissapointed about Manderly, but I think I can understand, eg re-jig the speech to be about the North re-affirming their allegiance to the Stark against the prospect of an outside invasion force, eg think of what Roose was saying about the North needing to be fully united against the Lannisters.

      Of course the North was spent at RW, they really scraped the barrel with BoB, Ramsay mentions Boltons, Karstarks, Umbers and Manderly’s were the biggest Houses, the armies of the first 3 are spent after BoB, so if the North/Starks need to be able to deploy sizeable armies against WW’s or Lannisters in future then they need the notion of the Manderly’s making up the bulk of the forces

        Quote  Reply

    87. Flayed Potatoes:
      Wimsey,

      The show established Jon is desperate for more man and tried every avenue he knew of to get them last episode. You seriously think Jon wouldn’t have sent scouts to verify if there was a 10k Vale army coming?

      I agree. Jon and Davos bit the Blackfish news immediately, even though he only has a few hundred men. Imagine being told there’s potentially 10k men who could join them. Sansa can even lie a little about it (like the lie she made about BF) and say it’s her cousin (not LF) who promised to help her in case she would need any.

      Anyway, I believe this is the direction the writers took not because they wanted to portray Sansa as “bad, manipulative, Baelish 2.0, etc.” but because this is potentially what will happen in the book – Sansa and the Vale army saving the day and Jon/Stannis(?) wouldn’t know about it because, unlike on the show, Sansa isn’t with them.

        Quote  Reply

    88. Is quite interesting to think about now, eg is the Vale and the North going to go to war with the Lannisters 8k army in the RL, eg presumably the Lannisters and Freys after re-taking Riverrun were going to turn their attention to either Dorne or Winterfell, eg does Cersei go after Joffreys killer (Sansa) or Myrcella’s killer (Ellaria)?

        Quote  Reply

    89. JCDavis,

      Completely agree. People look far to deep into some things.

      I totally expect next week to anger more people, when they find out Jon won’t be angry at all.

        Quote  Reply

    90. I think it was poor writing to have Dany mention that the Iron born have to give up reaving especially after her speech to the Dothraki about upending every stone in Westeros. The Iron Born would never agree to that. That’s what they are.

      I get what Gemma was saying about the long game in a sense, but the long game would actually be what is Yara going to be queen of in the Iron Islands if the Iron Born can’t live the Iron Born way of life after the war is over?

        Quote  Reply

    91. I do not get involved in the sexism debates.
      But I disagree with Sophie that Jon took a sexist approach. I never even got that vibe

      I think its more about experience/battles/ and the fact that she has never been a part of one. He never said anything to her that would even give an impression that he was sexist. That’s just silly.

        Quote  Reply

    92. Dolorous Methuselah,

      I’ve said it before, she is Cat’s daughter. She was always pretty selfish and spoiled in her behavior with her father and her sister. But she was also young, just a child. I believe it’s possible that she could have a darkness in her because of what she’s gone through, and maybe that’s why Ramsay’s line still rings in my head, “I’m part of you now.” My unsullied daughter’s first comment was, “she’s never gonna be same and he knows it. She’s lost part of her soul.”

        Quote  Reply

    93. Apollo,

      Sansa didn’t KNOW the Knights of the Vale would actually come

      On this we agree, but in one sense I don’t know that the sun will rise tomorrow or that I will be alive to see it. But I plan my life assuming it does.

      And I agree, we will find out Sunday. I’m not taking sides on the he didn’t listen/she lied controversy. I just think Sansa has a better understanding of LF than perhaps she is given credit for. And I think she believed that she had a greater likelihood of succeeding with him than just hoping he would come. Of course, I’m usually wrong so it would not surprise me if I were.

        Quote  Reply

    94. Mihnea,

      I always found the direwolves one of the more unrealistic elements in the books. I find it hard to believe that every wolf behaved EXACTLY like their owner and the fact that every Stark child is a warg. There had been no wargs for centuries but then, the whole generation has the ability.

        Quote  Reply

    95. Hoyti Von Totiy,

      It is also a false and insulting narrative(to both sexes) that the only way woman can be leaders is when men are weak and stupid clowns. Thank god for little Lyanna showing the opposite way.

        Quote  Reply

    96. Lord Parramandas,

      Yup. Never got the fuss with them.

      Also they aren’t important story wise. They are important to their owners but they are not world changing important like the dragons are.

      That is exactly why I support/liked the decision to focus more on dragons.

        Quote  Reply

    97. Ginevra,

      Yes, that was how I viewed the conversation. That LF had taken it upon himself to travel the weeks to Mole Town and taken the risks that that entailed – if the Boltons had found him, he would have been taken to WF and not treated in the most kindly fashion IMO) , that he had raised the Knights of the Vale and taken them to Moat Cailin thus sooner or later crossing the Boltons, that he appeared to beg her (whether this was for real or for show, well that is another question). And then she tells him he will be rewarded.

        Quote  Reply

    98. ghost of winterfell: Why does Sansa feel the need to wait for Jon to ask her about Ramsay? If she had anything to say, she should have just told him. In fact she should have been trying to warn him about Ramsay from the very beginning, and not wait to accuse him on the eve of the battle.

      You’ve hit that nail on the head! Jon has, very wrongfully, assumed that any person on his side holding relevant information would come to him and share that intel, especially his sister. Jon has always had an open-door policy. He listens. That’s what makes him awesome. And he did ask Sansa the most important and relevant question pre-battle that could be asked:

      When will we have a larger force?

        Quote  Reply

    99. Lord Parramandas,

      I really don’t think the writers intended anything like that at all, this is clearly meant to be a great triumph for her, and we are meant to root for her. However, I think the writers inadvertently set things up perfectly for one to be able to make a pretty solid case that her actions were villainous.

      Again, that clearly isn’t the story, but the way they went about things definitely casts Sansa in an ambiguous light.

      Here’s another interesting article, in a similar vein : http://www.theweek.com/articles/631406/game-thrones-sansa-problem

        Quote  Reply

    100. Sam,

      Anyway, I believe this is the direction the writers took not because they wanted to portray Sansa as “bad, manipulative, Baelish 2.0, etc.” but because this is potentially what will happen in the book – Sansa and the Vale army saving the day and Jon/Stannis(?) wouldn’t know about it because, unlike on the show, Sansa isn’t with them.

      I am not seeing the importance of the surprise rescue in the show though. The only reason I am discussing what Sansa knew and why she neglected to disclose it, is because it gives insight into the character.

      The arguments over how Jon uses the info isn’t very helpful imo (a better question would be why Ramsay didn’t know the Vale army marched from MC to WF unnoticed).

        Quote  Reply

    101. Elizabeth,

      How could she not be touched by the evil that Ramsay perpretrated on her (and Joffrey, and Cersei)? Yes, it seems to have made her stronger but, given her smile at Ramsay’s end, I would think there is a darkness there. D&D may not play it that way, and I’m fine with that. But I’d like to see a darkness. I think that would make her a more interesting character. And create an inner conflict or struggle that could be important to the end game.

        Quote  Reply

    102. Allthegoodnamesaregone,

      Yup.

      Episode 4 – Sansa : “A monster has taken our home and our little brother. We have to go back and save them BOTH”.

      This convinces a reluctant Jon to fight.

      Episode 9 – Sansa : “We’ll never get Rickon back”. And she says it very nonchalantly.

      One could easily interpret this as Sansa initially using Rickon’s captivity to manipulate Jon into going to war, despite having no interest in saving Rickon who she had already written off. One could easily interpret everything she has done as being a for the sake of getting back Winterfell, with Rickon being considered a lost cause, and Jon being considered an expendable pawn.

      Obviously, the writers don’t intend it that way, but the point is that’s how their clumsy writing has created ambiguity surrounding Sansa’s motives and morality.

        Quote  Reply

    103. Hahaha, again, in every post discussing Sansa Sansa and Sansa
      I hope this site wouldn’t change its name to sansafansdiscussion.com 🙂

      But, if only I could see Wun Wun and Ghost both in the battle, that’d very good

        Quote  Reply

    104. Darkrobin,

      Well, that’s my opinion. I always see dragons as weapons of mass destruction – whoever holds them, rules the world. It has always been like that. And even if they are remotely controllable, they can still cause damage to both sides if they go wild. (“They are dragons, they can never be tamed”) What exactly is the role of the wolves? A nice addition to world-building I would say but nothing more.

        Quote  Reply

    105. ghost of winterfell: Besides, as Ghosts Lunchmentioned, Jon himself sought out Melisandre, a woman, in her tent and asked her why she did not come to the strategy meeting. He also asked her if she had any advice for him. So unless Jon practices selective sexism, I would say he isn’t one.

      If Jon had a question about sewing, he’d go to Sansa. If Jon had a question about swords, he’d go to Arya. That’s not sexism. That’s knowing your sisters.

      Arya would laugh out a turd if Jon asked her about real needlework. The Sansa that Jon grew up with would sneer if asked about battle tactics.

        Quote  Reply

    106. Rainy Season,

      This is mild.

      You should have seen last year after EP6. It was a nightmare… That is when I stopped discussing Sansa on the internet.
      Don’t worry, this will also pass. It always does.

      Sure couple of people will still keep ranting about this, just like some still do about Stannis, but by the end of the next week it will be over.

        Quote  Reply

    107. Markus Stark,

      I agree. I’m not sure the writers intended Machiavellian Sansa, but it is a valid interpretation of her actions. I like it to an extent. But not that she did all of this to aggrandize her at Jon’s expense on purpose. But her need to protect herself may subconsciously create situations where she makes decisions where that inadvertently could be the result.

      This is a woman who said she would not be taken alive. She was willing to kill herself. to protect herself. She was willling that Rickon die (which was to me the right decision). What else would she be willing to do to protect herself?

        Quote  Reply

    108. Ginevra,

      I LOVE how he literally asked her that, and she didn’t share the information about the Vale, but now somehow they expect us to believe that Jon didn’t listen to her and all this stuff.

      Sansa has absolutely no reason not to share the info, she is the one begging him to wait for more men without giving him any reason to believe that more men coming is even a possibility !

      The whole debacle would be hilarious if it weren’t so annoying.

        Quote  Reply

    109. Kamali:
      Ginevra,

      The part where Littlefinger is a liar. Nothing he says can be taken at face value. Sansa knows this.

      And that’s why I said his odds of showing up were above 50%. As much as LF lies, well over half of everything he says is true. If it weren’t, no one would ever, ever, ever listen to him. So there was at the very least a 50% chance he’d show.

        Quote  Reply

    110. Lord Parramandas:
      Wimsey,

      Yes, I believe so. She may pass to the dark side but I don’t see her as a villain, in worst case an anti-villain (a protagonist with good intentions who does villainous things to achieve them).

      Ooh, like the Dark Knight! 🙂 That would be interesting.

        Quote  Reply

    111. Ginevra,

      She threaten to kill him the last time they met.

      I truly think she didn’t believe they will come and a part of her probaly wished he didn’t come.

      And this is exactly how I expect it will play next week. Jon isn’t angry, Sansa will have a confrontation with LF, he will try to blackmail her into marrying him,…etc.
      In the end she will turn against him but LF won’t be killed.

        Quote  Reply

    112. Mihnea:
      JCDavis,

      Completely agree. People look far to deep into some things.

      I totally expect next week to anger more people, when they find out Jon won’t be angry at all.

      Jon won’t be angry, of course. I think the way they will resolve this next week is that they will both realize that they committed mistakes, Jon by not taking her warning more seriously and Sansa by hiding vital information from Jon. And this resulted in a lot of unnecessary deaths. Basically they will agree to trust each other more.
      What I object to is Jon being said to be sexist, that’s all. Because there is nothing in his behavior to suggest that. In fact he is one of the very few men in that world who is not. His interactions with Arya, Ygritte, Mel and Sansa show that. Plus Val in the books and the fact that he was the first LC ever to recruit women into the Nights Watch.

        Quote  Reply

    113. Sansa asked Jon to fight or else she’d do it herself. She wanted him to take the lead.

      She hooked him by saying they can’t leave their brother Rickon to die. Conveniently once they are at winterfell she no longer cares to save Rickon…she just wants to beat Ramsay.

      As I have mentioned before, I have no problem with that…Sansa is darker now…Ramsay is a part of her. She doesn’t have to be pure of heart.

      Jon is there ready to attack because they wont really have a better time (doesn’t know of the possible Vale men) so he does what he does (but asks if she has a better plan first) and she says no.

      As for not doing what Ramsay wants…doesn’t matter if Sansa or even Ned told him that…the hero type that he is, he was going to charge for Rickon. Ned and Robb would have too.

        Quote  Reply

    114. ghost of winterfell,

      Ghost of Winterfell:

      I completely agree with you! Sansa’s ‘strength”‘ was that she knew how Ramsey’s mind worked: she did not want Jon to fall for any of his ‘games.’ He did, with Rickon, and once he saw Rickon die in front of him, all bets were off.

      I like Sansa, always have. She is still very young and will grow and learn and from what I have heard about TWOW, her character becomes more….profound, for lack of a better word.

      Sansa was young and dumb and stupid and a child: then she saw her beloved father beheaded. All the cruelty done to her by Joffrey and Cersi, using her….’little Dove’ is what Cersi first called her. Being forced to marry Tyrion, then Littlefinger convinces her to marry Ramsey…..she was a prisoner in King’s Landing and she was now a prisoner in her OWN HOME. The horrors Ramsey did to her we can all imagine. She doesn’t trust anyone!

      I compare that with Cersi’s ‘comfy’ upbringing and all the evil and slaughter Cersi is responsible for, all the lies and deceit. I wish, sometimes, that Sansa could be ‘tougher’–but all females cannot be Superwoman on this show. Sansa is the one playing the Game of Thrones now and I hope she continues to play, and play it well.
      Remember–she learned from the best: Littlefinger.

      I see Arya as the physical one and Sansa as the mentally smart one–even though most of us don’t like some of the things she has done–as in not telling Jon about the Vale, etc. I bet she wondered if they would really show up. Most of the northern houses turned them away, Blackfish said no, why would she think her last ditch effort would materialize. ?

        Quote  Reply

    115. I am sorry but Jon is not a sexist.

      Sansa withheld vital information for who knows what reason.

      I never engage in debates about Sansa because I was always neutral in regards to her character but since her actions in this last episode I still fail to understand her reasoning.

        Quote  Reply

    116. Btw I loved the episode and appreciate the honesty by the director re:Ghost.

      I was anticipating a fight between Ramsays dogs and Ghost, I guess Michael Vick backed out of the directing job.

        Quote  Reply

    117. Ginevra,

      That’s a really good article.

      The frustrating thing is that these issues could be fixed rather easily by a few lines of dialogue or structural edits to the script.

      I’m really looking forward to what Sansa will say next episode, since her motivations and ultimate moral code is way too ambiguous based on her actions.

      I will say I disagree with the author when she says it has to be either or. I can envision a scenario where she didn’t know if the Vale was coming, but also had written off Rickon and was willing to draw Ramsay out. Sansa’s scenes with Jon and Littlefinger would just have to be well written enough to explain both.

      But after what happened with Arya, I can’t say I’m confident in the writers to pull that off. It probably is either lucky Sansa or Darth Sansa.

        Quote  Reply

    118. Mihnea:
      ManderlyPieCompany,

      It’s a long time from now to then.

      What matters is getting rid of Euron and taking back the Iron Islands. Everything else comes second.

      That’s why I am saying it was a poor writing choice. Omit the line about giving up reaving and there isn’t an issue. The long game comment from Gemma flies in the face of the writing. That’s why I said I understand what she is saying, but she’s selling out their way of life for what they want at this instant. The actual long game would be how does she become queen of her people and retain their way of life? Iron Born without reaving and raping and salt wives aren’t Iron Born. They’re just fisher folk.

        Quote  Reply

    119. ghost of winterfell,

      this resulted in a lot of unnecessary deaths

      Do you think the deaths were unnecessary b/c Wun Wun could expedite the siege by breaking the gate? The Vale/Sansa “plan” worked because Jon *eventually* drew out Ramsay; allowing the Vale to encircle Ramsay’s troops.

        Quote  Reply

    120. Elizabeth:
      Dolorous Methuselah,

      I’ve said it before, she is Cat’s daughter.She was always pretty selfish and spoiled in her behavior with her father and her sister.But she was also young, just a child.I believe it’s possible that she could have a darkness in her because of what she’s gone through, and maybe that’s why Ramsay’s line still rings in my head, “I’m part of you now.”My unsullied daughter’s first comment was, “she’s never gonna be same and he knows it.She’s lost part of her soul.”

      Agreed. Though I think it’s not all due to the stuff that she went through (as horrific as that was and something no one should ever have to endure). Though that likely plays a part.

      I’m very glad that the show has not (at least up to now) incorporated LSH. But the one thing that I think she served to do was to demonstrate that even the people we root for can do bad things sometimes. I would not be angry if the show gave the role of demonstrating that to Sansa. So far we’ve seen some of the Brotherhood Without Banners demonstrate that in a way. But I think it would hit closer to home if one of the major characters on the “Stark side” would go that route too.

      We’ve had a few redemption arcs. I would kind of like to see the opposite. A “Breaking Bad” so to say.

        Quote  Reply

    121. I hope we do see Ghost in episode 10 and Jon keeps him at his side at all times from now on. (and of course Mel just incase of emergencies)

        Quote  Reply

    122. Kamali:
      Sansa is never going to have the high ground argument in this debate since she withheld information that could have persuaded him to wait.

      I used to agree with this. But I’ve come around to the idea that Sansa made a reasonable (though ruthless and calculated) choice withholding the info, in order to ensure that Ramsey was blindsided by the arrival of the Vale.

      Sansa simply didn’t believe Jon would act believably if he thought the Vale was coming and TBH his reaction to Rickon in this episode demonstrated this is probably true.

        Quote  Reply

    123. Lord Parramandas:
      Mihnea,

      I always found the direwolves one of the more unrealistic elements in the books. I find it hard to believe that every wolf behaved EXACTLY like their owner and the fact that every Stark child is a warg. There had been no wargs for centuries but then, the whole generation has the ability.

      There had been no dragons for centuries. No White Walkers for centuries. No lit glass candles for centuries.

      Look at how every King in the North is buried with his direwolf. The seed is strong.

        Quote  Reply

    124. Mihnea,

      Nightmare indeed, haha. I don’t get why people was so upset about it, even I was cool with that, and think Arya has been through more unpleasing ways than her sister. And that S06 last year was just necessary, at least, to make Sansa more realistic and stronger (I can’t stand her being week in four damn seasons).

      Oh I hope so, by the end of next week. But..just dunno why, I still doubt it tho.

        Quote  Reply

    125. Ghost was not in the tv show since Sansa showed up at CB.

      If he were he would have bared his teeth at her each time he saw her and Jon would be tipped off she is plotting against his intrests.

      #freedomtothemenofGOT

        Quote  Reply

    126. Mihnea:
      ghost of winterfell,

      Him being sexist isn’t written in the script.

      That is how Sophie thinks Sansa feels. Rightly or not. Nothing more.
      Sexism isn’t even the right word, in my opinion.

      Maybe not. But this post is about Sophie Turner’s interview where she claimed this. And all my comments are a response to that. However, given the fact that Sophie has made this claim more than once, it is logical to wonder if she got any direction from the writers about this. Maybe she did not and this is all Sophie’s interpretation. The scenes that we actually saw on the show do not support her statement at all, so maybe this is all her interpretation that’ts it. I am only disagreeing with her statement and other people who said she was right!!

        Quote  Reply

    127. This is serious.
      If Ghost doesn’t appear in episode 10 because of incredibly time consuming and expensive character to bring to life….I’m going to lose my shit

        Quote  Reply

    128. Markus Stark:
      Lord Parramandas,

      I really don’t think the writers intended anything like that at all, this is clearly meant to be a great triumph for her, and we are meant to root for her. However, I think the writers inadvertently set things up perfectly for one to be able to make a pretty solid case that her actions were villainous.

      Again, that clearly isn’t the story, but the way they went about things definitely casts Sansa in an ambiguous light.

      Here’s another interesting article, in a similar vein : http://www.theweek.com/articles/631406/game-thrones-sansa-problem

      Holy Crap! That “Cunning Sansa” part of the article makes more sense than anything has for awhile. Also, looking back on her lies about her sister and again, how she treated both Arya and Ned, I think she has always had a side of her that was self-absorbed. I think with all she had been through a lot of us may have forgotten that. I can see this happening in the future…sadly. George did say the end will be bittersweet and I have a lot of thoughts about that too.

        Quote  Reply

    129. Dolorous Methuselah,

      I think she fits the mold. Spoiled selfish brat gets tortured and used by powerful people. Spends time with Shea, cersei, and LF. Nice role models!
      I could understand the debate whether her not telling Jon about LF is right or wrong, but when you add in her flip-flop on Rickons life it clearly shows deception.
      I don’t recall anything in her story that has shown that’s she’s changed from the selfish little shit she was in the beginning, not to mention her desire for power (being queen).
      I may very well be wrong but the show hasn’t given any indication that she is anything but the same selfish brat she was in the beginning.
      I think people are so wrapped up in sympathy and Starkness they falsely see strength or good in her when there is no indication that’s the case.

        Quote  Reply

    130. My greatest problem with the Starks is the lack of empathy(except Jon) they feel for all the people that die in their cause. Not even a blink of the eye in recognition of the sacrifices made.

        Quote  Reply

    131. Cumsprite:
      Sophie is right about Jon being a sexist pig. If only he had listened to her brilliant strategy of “I don’t know. I don’t know anything about battles” he would’ve taken Winterfell with few losses. Worthy of Lao Tzu that is.

      No need to be sarcastic, there. She never claimed to know much about war strategy. But Jon should have listened to her when she told her about her knowing Ramsay. Instead he pretty much dismissed her with “I’ve seen worse beyond The Wall”. And this could be interpreted as a sexist thought, in not taking in consideration that knowing the opponent’s psychology and triggers in private life could help in beating them in battle.

      What’s important, though, is that I think both Sansa and Jon learned a lesson about each other here. Jon learned that Sansa was right about Ramsay – none of his previous opponents has been a sick bastard like this. And Sansa should have learned she can trust Jon at least go and try to “save her”, the way he did with Rickon. It seems this will be addressed in the next episode, and the issue will have hopefully just as brilliant and effective resolution as the one between Daenaerys and Tyrion.

        Quote  Reply

    132. Mihnea:
      Ginevra,

      She threaten to kill him the last time they met.

      I truly think she didn’t believe they will come and a part of her probaly wished he didn’t come.

      She threatened to kill him, and then he begged to do her bidding. He was not deterred. He made his promises after she threatened to kill him.

      Sansa: You won’t even be able to protect yourself if I tell Brienne to cut you down. And why shouldn’t I?

      LF: Do you want me to beg for my life? If that’s what you want, I will. Whatever you ask that is in my power, I will do.

      Sansa: What if I want you to die here and now?

      LF: Then I will die.

        Quote  Reply

    133. Dee Stark:
      Lord Parramandas,

      HAHAHA

      that’s ridiculous LOL!

      You know after reading that second article and thinking back I’m starting to wonder…lol….Doesn’t matter cause we’ll find out. I’ve defended her actions as much as I am going to. I’d rather not waste anymore time discussing if she’ll be good or bad. I’m looking forward to the finale…wow, just said it for the first time. This season has flown.

        Quote  Reply

    134. Let me rephrase: when I said Sansa is the ‘smart’ one, I mean she is the who is now playing the Game of Thrones. Not that she is smart, as she has made many mistakes, but I believe she is hardened because of the trauma she has suffered. I see both light and dark in her–as I see in Arya.

      I believe Sansa was smart–because she knew that Rickon was going to die, no matter what. She did want to get her home back from Ramsey; she did it for herself as much as the rest of her family. This is why she told Jon ‘not to fell for Ramsey’s tricks, his games.’

      But–Sansa is a fiction character and Sophie is the actress playing her–last time I checked, they didn’t write their own words. If someone doesn’t like someone–blame the writers for the arc of Sansa’s character.

      Thanks for letting me go off on a tangent!

        Quote  Reply

    135. Glad to know Sansa wasn’t sure if LF would show. Makes perfect sense that he’s her last resort, since no one knows quite as well how dangerous he is. Very interested in how this will play out.
      She’s always been her mother’s daughter: family, duty, honor. From what I can tell she desperately wants her home back for herself and her family. Leaving Winterfell has destroyed (some) of her family and scattered the rest to the winds. Seems she’s gearing up for a matriarchal role. She’s also been tapping into her Stark side. She wants to be in the North, she has faith in loyalty, she passed the sentence and swung the sword, so to speak. She’s learned something from everyone along the way. A little sadistic pleasure in Ramsay’s pain has been earned.
      As to the sexism, well, she’s been repeatedly schooled on her lack of strategic experience. I can see why she’d try to talk to Jon alone. Plus family tends to always think of you in a certain way. Pretty sure my mom will always view me how I was as a teenager.
      Think too much time has passed for her to be pregnant. Plus the huge jump from Winterfell’s wall into the snow was probably traumatic.
      I could happily watch Dany and Yara flirt all day.
      Pretty sure a more egalitarian future is the GRRM’s plan. It includes male and female leaders. Key players are already learning how to fight without bloodshed unless absolutely necessary; Jaime, Dany, Jon, etc. Pretty sure no rape/slavery is in her Dothraki leadership clause. It’s not just a rule for the Ironborn.
      So glad Ghost wasn’t in battle. He’d have been killed for sure.

        Quote  Reply

    136. Wimsey:
      Jon, Davos and the rest would have said: “there will be no answer.”For one thing, where does LF send a courier?The letter says that they are attacking Winterfell, but not where they are before then.

      Brienne was able to send them a raven somehow, so clearly in this universe ravens can find people anywhere (see what I meant last week about that creating worldbuilding issues?).

      Wimsey:
      Where do you send the scouts?How do the scouts avoid being killed by Bolton scouts?Given the conditions, how do any scouts that happen to run into the Vale army (which now is extremely improbable) get back before the Vale does?

      You send the scouts south, along the most probable routes that a huge army would take. That’s not hard to determine, seeing as they know the lay of the land. And the scouts would get back before the Vale does because one light horseman moves much faster than a horde of heavy horsemen who have to coordinate. That’s how scouting has always worked.

      Moreover, you’re operating under the false assumption that there’s any sort of hard timeline that the battle will start at that particular day. All Jon has to do is hold off on his Winterfell march a few more days, which is more than worth it given that the potential reward is astronomical. Even if the odds of Baelish showing up are only 1/4 (and contrary to what you assert, there’s no real reason to think he won’t come, seeing as he’s obsessed with Sansa; the Knights of the Vale are a known quantity, pro-Stark, so there’s especially no reason to think they’d side with the Boltons).

      Wimsey:
      Because Sansa is still Catelyn’s daughter.Confronting Jon alone is a big step forward in terms of her evolution.Being able to confront a room full of men is still a step ahead of where she is.After all, and as she tells Jon, she is “a girl.”

      Huh? Catelyn never hesitated to speak her mind in council scenes with men, as we saw repeatedly.

        Quote  Reply

    137. Flayed Potatoes:
      Apollo,

      Not giving the commander of the army you wanted him to assemble to take Winterfell for you the full picture and all the information he needs to go into battle is a mistake.

      Perhaps it is, but then so is charging against 6000 men and mounted cavalry when you’ve been warned against such action.

      And Cersei has been just as selective with the strategic info she has/hasn’t given to her battle commander, yet nobody has mentioned this.

      Actually, another point I’ve just realised is that Jon WAS aware of the fact Sansa had summoned the Tullly forces and still wasn’t willing to wait on a response. Why would it be any different for the Knights of the Vale?

        Quote  Reply

    138. Apollo:
      And Cersei has been just as selective with the strategic info she has/hasn’t given to her battle commander,yet nobody has mentioned this.

      I’m not sure what specific instance you mean, but regardless, Cersei is an idiot and a poster child for dysfunctional leadership, not somebody to be emulated.

        Quote  Reply

    139. Apollo: Perhaps it is, but then so is charging against 6000 men and mounted cavalry when you’ve been warned against such action.

      And Cersei has been just as selective with the strategic info she has/hasn’t given to her battle commander,yet nobody has mentioned this.

      Actually, another point I’ve just realised is that Jon WAS aware of the fact Sansa had summoned the Tullly forces and still wasn’t willing to wait on a response. Why would it be any different for the Knights of the Vale?

      Jon knew the the Blackfish had refused and that the Tullys were not coming. He and Sansa discussed this in the last episode.

        Quote  Reply

    140. Apollo,

      Yes, Jon fell into Ramsay’s trap and made a mistake. But it’s a mistake that at least makes sense because of course Jon, like every decent person, would try to save his family. The hate against him would be off the roof if he had just sat aside and not cared. Not to mention Jon would have regretted not trying to save him. Rickon was going to get shot with an arrow regardless of weather Jon fell into the trap. Ramsay wasn’t going to let him live.

      He mentioned in episode 9 that the Blackfish refused them (in the scene in the tent). So clearly they had received Brienne’s raven. He was willing to wait.

      And the fact that you just compared Sansa’s behavior to Cersei (from whom Sansa has supposedly learned how to play the game) proves my point. Cersei isn’t exactly someone you try to copy.

        Quote  Reply

    141. Okay not to step into a minefield, but that pushed my buttons. And I’m a woman and a feminist, for the record.
      My best take on Sophie’s comments are-this was the acting direction she was given for Sansa (“She feels no one takes her seriously-that Jon isn’t taking her seriously and she has no power. Act that out.”)

      But that’s not what played out on screen. Westeros has been notoriously sexist in seasons past, and Sansa has had no power in 5 previous seasons and been the victim of rampant sexism… HOWEVER, Jon is not and has never been remotely sexist.

      Jon is the guy that had Needle made for Arya.
      The guy who respected Ygritte’s abilities and treated with Karsi.
      The guy who asked the abused women of Craster’s keep what they wanted to do, and respected them enough to let them burn a shelter the NW used on a regular basis while ranging because of the painful memories it held.
      The guy who has had Sansa at every strategy and planning session and listened to her about the Tully’s and gathering people for war in the first place, even though he didn’t want to go. Who was standing by her side as they asked houses for help.
      Who in the last conversation before battle asked her multiple times for her opinion or a better idea-even though she was treating him like he knew nothing.
      The only thing you could point to would be when he said she didn’t have to be there for the talk with Ramsay–but it was clear he was just wanted to protect her from her abuser. If he was sexist, she wouldn’t be there.

      Yes she gave one piece of advice he couldn’t follow because he was confronted with the body of his dead brother and if he’d turned back he wouldn’t have been Jon–but everything else-he did the best he could with the information he had.

      Was he supposed to wait longer without knowing about the potential for Vale forces?
      Why? For a winter storm? For the men already fighting each other in his camp to get more restless?
      AND even after knowing what she did, hiding this info that could have changed the battle plan (even if it was just having the Vale come over the hill fifteen minutes sooner or circle around so Ramsay couldn’t retreat to Winterfell) and saved thousands of lives–he still respected her enough to leave Ramsay for her to deal with.

      And next episode he will probably also apologize because that’s the kind of guy he is-and he’ll try to understand what she’s been through.

      Sorry to go on but this sexist thing just irked me. There are so many sexist men in this world-Jon is not one of them. PS Neither are Jon’s advisors. Tormund-the wildling who fights with female warriors all the time, Or Davos-who loved a smart girl who taught him to read and respected the young leader of the Mormonts. Even her personal guard atm is a woman who fights like a berserker. She is currently in a sexist-free zone.

      So I’m going with acting choice. 🙂

        Quote  Reply

    142. Lord Parramandas:
      Mihnea,

      I always found the direwolves one of the more unrealistic elements in the books. I find it hard to believe that every wolf behaved EXACTLY like their owner and the fact that every Stark child is a warg. There had been no wargs for centuries but then, the whole generation has the ability.

      There have been wargs, just not widely known about in the Seven Kingdoms, not unlike Giants or CotF. There are a handful of Wildlings mentioned in the books that are (Orell was in the show). Varamyr Sixskins traveled with six animals he warged, hence the name, six skins. A couple Houses in the 7K are rumored to have some as well.

      GRRM has supposedly once said that all of the Stark kids are Wargs but other than shared personalities with their wolves only Bran, Jon and Arya have shown any ability to warg. Taking that ability away from Jon and Arya on the show so far is a disappointment.

      The direwolves are a much bigger part of the story than the show has portrayed. I’ve said it before, it’s my main gripe with the adaption, but I also realize it’s difficult to use them a lot.

        Quote  Reply

    143. Elizabeth: You know after reading that second article and thinking back I’m starting to wonder…lol….Doesn’t matter cause we’ll find out.I’ve defended her actions as much as I am going to.I’d rather not waste anymore time discussing if she’ll be good or bad.I’m looking forward to the finale…wow, just said it for the first time.This season has flown.

      Me too. All of a sudden I didn’t want LF to die. He’s now the villain in the north and if he dies, the writers might make someone else a “villain”. I don’t want it to be Sansa!

        Quote  Reply

    144. Dolorous Methuselah,

      You know, now that I think back over Sansa’s character arc, she has not been noble. At every turn, she has chosen a darker path. So, we may have a flawed Stark and that’s okay, but where will it take her. I love GoT’s characters because they are not either black or white, but in gray areas always. They’ve all done things that make us question how we feel about them. However, Sansa, as a Stark, has done more than most down that dark path. I see from comments that I am not the only one questioning the Sansa story. I want to be wrong. Stay tuned.

        Quote  Reply

    145. Clob: There have been wargs, just not widely known about in the Seven Kingdoms, not unlike Giants or CotF.There are a handful of Wildlings mentioned in the books that are (Orell was in the show).Varamyr Sixskins traveled with six animals he warged, hence the name, six skins.A couple Houses in the 7K are rumored to have some as well.

      The direwolves are a much bigger part of the story than the show has portrayed.I’ve said it before, it’s my main gripe with the adaption, but I also realize it’s difficult to use them a lot.

      Bigger part of the story? Sure, I agree they have more screentime in the books but I never noticed them having a bigger role. Like I said, I simply find it unbelievable that mere children were able to tame these beasts and that they completely share their personalities.

        Quote  Reply

    146. Ginevra,

      What’s this “hundreds of thousands of lives” jon could have saved? There weren’t even 9,000 people total between the two armies involved.

        Quote  Reply

    147. RG,

      No, Jon is not a sexist. But Sansa doesn’t know that. A character can be wrong about what motivates another character.

      I think it’s pretty clear from what we see on screen that Sansa feels marginalized and insecure about the fact that she’s a woman leader in this situation. That’s not because Jon has done anything particularly sexist. It’s just a reality that most men in Westeros are sexist – and this is Sansa’s first foray into actual leadership. Plus LF put that bug into her head that all of the forces at the Wall (except Brienne) are loyal to Jon – not to her…

      So any time that Jon asks for advice from his other councilors but doesn’t actively try to include her, she’s probably hypersensitive to that.

      She also believes (probably correctly in this case) that he doesn’t take her seriously as a tactician – he blows her off when she says maybe they shouldn’t attack with not enough men. I don’t think that Jon would have reacted any differently in that situation had Sansa been a male with a similar lack of experience, BUT I completely understand why Sansa might think her sex has something to do with it.

      And that’s all that Sophie is saying in this interview. Sansa doesn’t trust Jon fully in part because she thinks he is underestimating her due to her sex. Whether or not that’s actually the case.

        Quote  Reply

    148. RG,

      Jon also went to Mel and asked her why she wasn’t in the meeting and asked for her advice. (To which she answered, “Don’t lose.” LOL. Best. Advice. Ever.) #definitelynotsexist

      I also would go with acting direction reason. The director possibly wanted to create the “drama” hence told Sophie to act “coming from that perspective”.

        Quote  Reply

    149. Apollo:
      Oh god, I was about to post a request for this thread not to descend into yet another heated debate on the rights/wrongs of Sansa’s actions that have been raked over and over for weeks now. Too late LOL..

      Three points:

      Sansa didn’t KNOW the Knights of the Vale would actually come. And she actively counselled Jon to wait until they had more men. She didn’t lie to him in any way, she just didn’t give him the full picture. She was clearly concerned because she knew they didn’t have the men-and she wouldn’t have been so stressed if she knew the Valemen were coming (and I imagine she’d have said of she did know).

      Sansa really doesn’t want to rely on LF- it’s a very bitter pill for her to swallow considering what he’s put her through. She’s literally sacrificing herself (and her claim) if she gives LF her hand in marriage (which is likely what’ve wants)… It’s the last thing she wants after what’s happened but she’s willing to do that to secure victory and get revenge.

      Jon is JUST as responsible for those deaths by steamrolling into the battlefield. Sure, it was totally understandable given what happened to Rickon, but then so is Sansa’s position regarding lack of trust etc after the traumas she’s been through. But made a huge mistake and against everything that Sansa advised him- Kit and D&D have even said as much. Who’s to say he’d even wait for the Valemen? He seemed intent on marching immediately, and they covered this on the show several times.

      The victory was primarily Sansa’s over Jons (whether she expected it to be or not, seems she didn’t from her interview)… She was, in the end the victim in all of this. Some people need to deal with this better.

      And from next weeks trailer, we may yet get some answers on all of this so again, let’s wait until next week before making a judgement.

      Pretty much. Kit and D&D have both noted that Jon was stupid not to pay attention to Sansa, but sure, let’s blame her entirely for the carnage. Dear Lord. It’s almost as if she charged out into the open battlefield itself…

      One, she didn’t know if Littlefinger would actually show up when they needed him, that is key here. Petyr is the type of man who would show up when convenient for him to do so, not when people actually need him. Two, she knows what the cost would be. Three, the siege would be underway if the Vale would have arrived at that juncture.

      Should she have told Jon? Perhaps, as to that I can’t give a definitive answer. We’ll find out next week by the likes of it and then the writers will be far more likely to address this.

      Just because Jon has let her take the front line several times doesn’t mean that he can’t display moments of underlying sexism, whether or not he actually means it that way. It makes sense, unfortunate as it is, that he would not necessarily see Sansa as an immediate equal at the strategizing aspect. Just because you respect women and are a feminist doesn’t mean you can’t display moments of sexist behavior, just saying.

        Quote  Reply

    150. Flayed Potatoes,

      Exactly and she specifically removes the rape and enslaving part in her speech to them..yet we have this..

      And whats worse even reviewers must have forget that scene in season 1

        Quote  Reply

    151. Lord Parramandas:
      Mihnea,

      I always found the direwolves one of the more unrealistic elements in the books. I find it hard to believe that every wolf behaved EXACTLY like their owner and the fact that every Stark child is a warg. There had been no wargs for centuries but then, the whole generation has the ability.

      In the books, aren’t there wargs north of the wall, currently. Varma Six Skins (sp?) for one?

        Quote  Reply

    152. I’ve thought from the beginning that the whole Sansa/Jon drama was a bit cheap and made little sense other than from a suspense point of view (we go into a suicidal battle feeling pretty hopeless). This I suppose kind of can be rationalized from a storytelling point of view as the audience pretty much knew that Jon would not be dying again and that Ramsay would definitely not be the winner. Therefore the battle had to be as highstakes and seeming suicidal on Jon’s part as possible. This means that Sansa has to keep information back in order to keep that suspense going for as long as possible. And you have to admit… since last season the writers have been making some characters act very OOC for this very reason.
      The problem is, of course, that this paints her in a very strange light for many people…which I actually don’t think they intended.
      They make it clear that she went into the battle with an almost defeatist mentality: she states rescuing Rickon is hopeless because Ramsay will kill him no matter what, reiterates that they can’t win without more men, then caps it off by saying she’ll kill herself if they lose. So yeah… she obviously had little faith of the Vale riding in at that point.
      Also to those who suggest she was being mercenary and trying to get Jon killed. Well that makes even less sense. She was trying to get him to wait and recruit more men to the last moment and she warns him very seriously that Ramsay will attempt to lure him into a trap. If she wanted him to die why would she do that?
      Also for the people saying she showed no reaction to Rickon dying… When she asks Ramsay for evidence that he has Rickon and he throws down the wolf’s head, she is visibly so angry and sickened that she immediately rides away alone before the meeting is concluded. This obviously leads to her realization that Ramsay will kill Rickon. Later, when they have taken Winterfell, we see her and Jon look at Rickon’s body. She then immediately asks where Ramsay is, and you can see she’s furious. She then proceeds to feed Ramsay to his starving dogs. So again… yeah… she’s not a brother killer… I expect after the adrenaline and shock of the battle wears off (next episode) we’ll see a much more emotional reaction to his death from both Sansa and Jon. Perhaps she’s having a sob/praying session in the godswood before LF shows up?

      So why does she keep the possibility of the Vale helping to herself? Easy answer, the plot demanded it… A somewhat flimsy but still believable and fairly rational character based reason? She didn’t want them to plan for an army that may not come (again she seemed very desperate, panicked and uncertain when she spoke to Jon before the battle) and she knew that even if they did believe the Vale would come, Jon and Davos may well question the wisdom in inviting LF into the situation or actually just assume Littlefinger would help the Boltons. Indeed we all question Littlefinger.

      Anyway, from now on Sansa’s boss battle is Littlefinger. She is potentially the only character that can ruin him and it stands to reason that, therefore, she most likely will be the one to bring him down. I think it’s important that a few actors came out of filming this season saying that they think Sansa (or Sansa and Arya together) should be Queen for reasons related to her political maneuvering. Kit Harrington also said something in an interview about him believing that Jon, Sansa and Arya are characters fighting for the good side in the story. Sophie also stated in an earlier interview that Sansa has Jon’s back. This all cumulatively makes me think that in this last episode we will see evidence of Sansa playing the game against Littlefinger, potentially abdicating her own claim to Winterfell in order to push Jon forward as the leader of their house (I’ve felt like she’s been trying to do this all season actually) in order to thwart Littlefinger’s plans of using her as the key to the North.

      Oh one last thing. Did anyone else notice the references to Season 2 Robb Stark in last episode. Sansa’s logical words about Rickon being a lost cause and Jon’s emotional response reminded me of Robb and Catelyn. Robb was being logical about the war and did not prioritise saving his sisters while Catelyn just wanted to rescue her daughters immediately. But an even more direct similarity was Ramsay almost exactly repeating Robb Stark’s words to Jaime Lannister “If we do it your way, you’d win. We’re not doing it your way”. Very interesting to relate those two characters. But then there’s also a repeat of Bronn’s words to Tyrion before the Battle of the Blackwater “Any advice?” “Don’t die” between Jon and Melisandre.

        Quote  Reply

    153. ghost of winterfell:

      Jon won’t be angry, of course.I think the way they will resolve this next week is that they will both realize that they committed mistakes, Jon by not taking her warning more seriously and Sansa by hiding vital information from Jon. And this resulted in a lot of unnecessary deaths. Basically they will agree to trust each other more.

      This I totally agree on what will happen…. I’m just dreading the fallout here that’ll transpire became Sansa doesn’t fall on her knees begging for forgiveness

        Quote  Reply

    154. QueenofThrones,

      No, that’s not what Sophie is saying at all. She is not implying in any manner that these are only Sansa ‘s interpretations . She straight away says that Jon has the typical medieval male mentality when seeing women take part in what is traditionally considered man’s role . And this is absolutely false.

        Quote  Reply

    155. Lord Stoneheart:
      Ginevra,

      What’s this “hundreds of thousands of lives” jon could have saved? There weren’t even 9,000 people total between the two armies involved.

      I think he meant hundreds OR thousands. It was a typo. At least that is how I read it.

        Quote  Reply

    156. Apollo,

      Nope, that will not happen, I think Jon will have to convince her to trust him because she is still too wary. There will be no begging for forgiveness by either of them.

        Quote  Reply

    157. Sean C.: I’m not sure what specific instance you mean, but regardless, Cersei is an idiot and a poster child for dysfunctional leadership, not somebody to be emulated.

      The info I’m referring to is the fact that LF and the Vale are allegedly on a mission on behalf of the crown, to defeat the Boltons and bring Sansa’s head on a spike.

        Quote  Reply

    158. dragonbringer,

      Reviewers forget a lot of things. In most of the reviews I have read, I end up disagreeing with them on their take on most of the characters/ scenes. I don’t really take them seriously.

        Quote  Reply

    159. ghost of winterfell: Jon knew the the Blackfish had refused and that the Tullys were not coming. He and Sansa discussed this in the last episode.

      Yes, but not before they marched for Winterfell. They had already set up camp near WF by the time the news would have come from Brienne.

        Quote  Reply

    160. Wimsey,

      Yes but she took it out of Jon’s hands to make that decision, didn’t she? If Jon had marched regardless then no one will be blaming Sansa for anything but because she withheld the information it is not difficult to understand why some look at her as having a lot responsibility for all those men dying. Not that Jon didn’t make mistakes either but Jon’s were less, let’s say, premeditated.

        Quote  Reply

    161. ghost of winterfell,

      Wrong.

      Sophie says “I think the social boundaries of the time period that Thrones is loosely based on means that these men still view women as less capable of battle planning or anything to do with typical seemingly ‘male’ activities. Patriarchy, even in this fictional world, is very real,”

      She says that Westerosi men in general view women as less capable. And that Patriarchy in Westeros is real. Both are true.

      She also says “Jon, especially in the beginning, underestimates Sansa, but as time goes by he sees her proving her competency.”

      This is also a true statement. None of this means Sansa is either wrong or right about Jon’s motivations in underestimating Sansa (that is whether they are sexist or just based on him knowing for a fact she has little experience). It means that this is the place Sansa is coming from in her dealings with Jon. That’s the whole point of asking actors about how they play their characters.

        Quote  Reply

    162. Dany will bring 100 000 Dothraki !!! to Westeros so she can stop rape and pillaging ….

      I bet those Dothraki when they come over will surely help spread the culture of non violence, i bet some of them will go to the Citadel to become maesters or will disvover faith and become septons …. yep Dany can do no wrong.

      The militant feminism of GOT knows no boundaries.

      #FREETHEMEN

        Quote  Reply

    163. ForestLight:

      Anyway, from now on Sansa’s boss battle is Littlefinger. She is potentially the only character that can ruin him and it stands to reason that, therefore, she most likely will be the one to bring him down. I think it’s important that a few actors came out of filming this season saying that they think Sansa (or Sansa and Arya together) should be Queen for reasons related to her political maneuvering. Kit Harrington also said something in an interview about him believing that Jon, Sansa and Arya are characters fighting for the good side in the story. Sophie also stated in an earlier interview that Sansa has Jon’s back. This all cumulatively makes me think that in this last episode we will see evidence of Sansa playing the game against Littlefinger, potentially abdicating her own claim to Winterfell in order to push Jon forward as the leader of their house (I’ve felt like she’s been trying to do this all season actually) in order to thwart Littlefinger’s plans of using her as the key to the North.

      This gave me some hope and makes a lot of sense.
      Yes, there are elements of Sansa this season that have seemed to hint at her going full darkside.
      However, I can absolutely see a scenario where she’s home at last-the place she says she never should have left, and she plays the game FOR her family (since we know the Starks are really bad at the game-let’s be honest…they are too honest)

      Apollo,

      I don’t think anyone expects her to beg. She’s been through hell. I do hope she finally trusts Jon though. He’s earned it.

        Quote  Reply

    164. ghost of winterfell:
      QueenofThrones,

      No, that’s not what Sophie is saying at all. She is not implying in any manner that these are only Sansa ‘s interpretations . She straight away says that Jon has the typical medieval male mentality when seeing women take part in what is traditionally considered man’s role . And this is absolutely false.

      Maybe the writers aren’t saying that Jon has this opinion generally. But saying that he may have a bit of it where it comes to Sansa specifically? When he last saw her she was a little girl with her head in the clouds. While he knows she’s been through a lot, perhaps the writers are trying to suggest that he still sees her as a little girl (to be fair, a lot of older brothers continue to see their sisters as little girls throughout life so patriarchy may not be that big a factor). Still, I think if that was the point the writers and the actors were trying to get across (and obviously it was), then Kit should’ve played it a bit more condescendingly… if he was just a little more patronizing the whole storyline would’ve made way more sense.

        Quote  Reply

    165. I think that Littlefinger arrived with the army of the Vale exactly when he intended to. I don’t believe he had any intention of risking many Vale lives. His power, on some level, correlates exactly with how many soldiers he commands. He hasn’t gotten to where he is by frivolously spending political or military capital because of a potential love-interest.

      I think it’s just as likely that he had a scout observing the battle, with his forces waiting at safe distance.

        Quote  Reply

    166. books,

      Yes, several wargs North of the wall: Varamyr, Orell, Borroq and Haggon. Not true that there were no wargs for centuries. And this is not even counting Brynden Rivers. The direwolves were a gift from the Old Gods to prepare the Starks because you know Winter is Coming and the Long Night 2.0 is upon them.

        Quote  Reply

    167. Hoyti Von Totiy,

      Are you feeling insecure? Aside from you inferiority complex, I do agree that Dany, as much as she may want to, will have tons of trouble curving the Dothraki’s violent impulses. You don’t change who you are from one day to the other, not even if you fear being roasted by a dragon.

        Quote  Reply

    168. RG,

      To be fair, all of the Stark kids have moments where they seem like they could go over to the dark side. In fact, what Game of Thrones character doesn’t? Maybe Jon? But in the books there are a few things he does before he is killed by the traitors that could certainly be considered a little morally ambiguous. And I’m almost certain those things will come into play next season as they continue to develop his character.
      As far as Sansa goes, she’s hardly even been touching the line of moral ambiguity up until this season. How could she? She’s been a child/prisoner/victim almost her whole arc. People like to bring up her “betraying” her father, but I honestly don’t see how you can blame his death on an 11 year old who had no idea they were even in a dangerous situation. So yeah, they will, now that she’s free, introduce opportunities for her to make shady choices but that is what this whole story is about. The human heart in conflict with itself.

        Quote  Reply

    169. Sean C.,

      Book Lord Baelish to Sansa:

      Petyr: Yes, but don’t let that trouble you. You’re still half a child. Every man’s a piece to start with, and every maid as well. Even some who think they are players.

      Cersei, for one. She thinks herself sly, but in truth she is utterly predictable. Her strength rests on her beauty, birth, and riches. Only the first of those is truly her own, and it will soon desert her. I pity her then.

      She wants power, but has no notion what to do with it when she gets it. Everyone wants something, Alayne. And when you know what a man wants you know who he is, and how to move him.

      And I do believe Sansa knows what Lord Baelish desires. Now whether that plays out in episode 10 or not, that’s up the writers. I personally think it would be a good narrative for Sansa … not the Saint … not the Simpleton … but something much more

        Quote  Reply

    170. Ginevra:
      Oh, I’m going to get in so much trouble in this thread.Save me, NWQ!

      So D&D are these great feminists, but Jon is completely sexist?Are. You. Serious.

      Jesus.Fucking.Christ.This season has been nothing but Jon letting Sansa take charge.

      Many times when Sophie does interviews, I wonder if she actually watches the show. She likes to emphasize how Sansa has been treated the worst of anyone (erm…..ok, no), and perhaps the reason Jon would be hesitant to listen to her would be, I don’t know, because she HAS NO FUCKING BATTLE EXPERIENCE and says ‘I don’t know’ when he DOES ask. Jeebus. She isn’t Yara.

      I feel like there are more than enough gender role/sexism issues that ARE addressed on the show that there doesn’t need to be such a reach to claim even more.

        Quote  Reply

    171. Mihnea,

      I will not be silenced! Men have kept quitet long enough! Militant feminism must be stoped from being showed down our throat by GOT!

      SandSankes killing Doran
      Theon being a dickless plant next to Yara.
      Sansa playing Jon like he`s a simpleton.
      Cersei having a dog chain around Jamie`s neck.
      Margery being strong while her brother Loras weeps like a woman.
      Mace Tyrell is a clown while the Queen of Thornes runs the family
      Dany and her mistreatment of Jorah .. guy deserves to “get some” 100 times over after what he did for her from the beggining.

      Freeeedoooommmmmmmm!!!!!!!!!!!

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lLCEUpIg8rE

        Quote  Reply

    172. Nice Gemma Whelan interview!
      That scene between the four was great. I only wish we could have seen Theon and Yara pulling into the bay on their 100 ships.
      Daenerys now has an army, a naval force with a commander, an aerial force that she herself commands and a skilled politician to advise her. Perhaps also a spymaster in Varys. I wonder which of her crew will be left behind to rule Salver’s Bay, and essentially be gone form the show?

        Quote  Reply

    173. Jenny:
      Apollo,

      They were at Stannis’ camp.Because they went around recruiting people.Should they have stayed put in castle black waiting for the bf

      No- this is exactly my point though. They left the safety, warmth and supplies at CB to go on a recruitment drive in the North before waiting to see if the Tullys could/ would help because time was of the essence/ winter coming/WWs/ Sansa wanted her eyebrow pencil back etc.

      Why should this be any different for the Vale?

        Quote  Reply

    174. Mihnea,

      dragonbringer,

      Thanks. Considering her “no more raping” rule with the Dothraki back in S1 was a big point of strife, it seems unlikely that she’d suddenly give it up, especially having been a victim of it herself. I did think it was an odd choice to leave out of her speech cause you know she’s not going to let that happen. She burned the khals, displayed her power and now all Dothraki follow her willingly.
      And while Yara knows she’s going to have to give up her people’s way of life (and that it will be unpopular at first) she also knows it could be better. She reiterated the failures of Balon’s rule. She wants better for her people, and so far the old ways have not proven successful.

        Quote  Reply

    175. Lord Stoneheart:
      Ginevra,

      What’s this “hundreds of thousands of lives” jon could have saved? There weren’t even 9,000 people total between the two armies involved.

      I totally meant “OR.” I should proofread better. Thanks. Yeah, Jon had at most 2500 men and so he could have lost 2000, which would be barely thousands, or he more likely lost hundreds.

        Quote  Reply

    176. It seems like there are two distinct issues here that people (like Wimsey) are conflating

      1) Why Sansa didn’t tell Jon about the Vale. Like it or not (and I hated it), you can certainly make some reasonable arguments for and against it. Personally, I find it a cheap plot device because ultimately what they want is for Sansa to “win” and the surprise of the Vale riding in, and that dictated that she didn’t tell Jon. That’s it. But, ok, you can argue why she did it.

      2) The second thing, which is totally separate and has made me rant endlessly, is this consistent notion that Jon doesn’t listen to Sansa because he thinks of her as some useless girl.

      W
      T
      F

      If that’s what they want us to believe then they’ve done an absolute shit job characterizing Jon for us for 6 seasons. Because the Jon we know is very much the opposite – he listens to those who “society” thinks are lesser – Someone like Sam, or Tormund and the Wildlings, or yes, gasp, women!

      But forget more generally. Let’s talk specifically:

      Jon listened to her about the Blackfish because it was a good plan
      Jon listened to her about the Northern houses being loyal, and she was wrong.
      She was wrong in her approach with every Northern lord.
      She was IN THE ROOM with them and chose not to say anything, she chose to stand there and glare.

      And then, finally, in that conversation, he asked her twice what they should do. He apologized for not listening to her. And her answer is “I don’t know, don’t do the thing you’re doing.”

      You can argue back and forth about not telling Jon about the Vale, but to base it in this idea that Jon doesn’t listen to her because she’s is a girl is so beyond stupid and goes contrary to everything we have seen and known about Jon.

      Every time I start to think maybe it makes sense about the Vale, one of them gives an interview like this and I just think, “Nooooope.”

        Quote  Reply

    177. Hey Sansa,

      Since you’re a teenager who’s never been in battle/war expert tell me, where we should dig the trenches? How should we align ourselves? Where should the archers stand? What the eff do we do with a giant?

      Jon didn’t consult Sansa for the same reason he wouldn’t have consulted Rickon if he were there; no experience in battle.

        Quote  Reply

    178. Someone derided me earlier in the season for posting that they were killing/not showing direwolves to save money and now the proof is in the pudding. This also makes me feel like the wolfpack might never happen. 🙁

      We need a Direwolf Kickstarter.

        Quote  Reply

    179. Apollo,

      Because the vale had a number of soldiers that could change everything and jon was desperate for men.Because she knew they were at moat callin and judging by their timing they were literally hours away when the battle started.Anyway this is all a moot point cause we don’t know what jon would have decided cause she didn’t tell him.She gave him no opportunity to choose

        Quote  Reply

    180. Sean C.,

      You mean the Cersei Lord Baelish describes as:

      “Cersei stumbles from one idiocy to the next, helped along by her council of the deaf, the dim and the blind.”

        Quote  Reply

    181. Laura,

      Not showing, yes, but killing, no. They could have easily killed ghost in the battle to prevent future use of him to save money

      I think all the killings were necassary for the story.

        Quote  Reply

    182. One thing I know for sure…..I’ll be glad when we have episode 10 to discuss. All the clashing over Sansa is getting a bit draining when we’ve just had an awesome episode to enjoy.

      ***dons tin hat and runs for cover***

        Quote  Reply

    183. Nadia,
      Khal Steve-o,

      It’s what Sansa thinks. It’s where her character is coming from in her dealings with Jon. It’s not even about whether Jon is actually sexist – no one has said directly in any interview that Jon actually is sexist. Everyone talks about how Jon begins not really believing Sansa has much to contribute, and over time comes to believe she may have something to add to the discussion despite her lack of experience. I think this part is true and conveyed well by the show.

      And on the other hand, Sansa is coming to trust Jon gradually over the season. To realize that no he’s not just underestimating her because she’s a girl – but really is just trying his best. This will be shown in the final episode as they reconfirm they are on each other’s team 100%.

      As long as LF doesn’t fuck everything up. He will though! Of Course!

        Quote  Reply

    184. Nadia,

      I agree with you and really hated the way the handled the Northern plot this season (though it was also the most interesting plot to me). The only thing that makes sense of what they are saying is if Jon feels that way about Sansa specifically, not all women in general. She is his little sister (and men are prone to seeing their little sisters as little girls always) and also when he last saw her her head was definitely away with the fairies. He may also think her abuse at the hands of Ramsay makes her too fearful/irrational to be entirely counted on for sound advice. All of these things are reasonable. The problem is the execution. If they wanted us to take this away (and they obviously did at this point) then they should’ve had Kit show a much more condescending/patronizing attitude towards her, even if he meant it kindly. They also, I think, should’ve/could’ve included a scene of Sansa explaining (with valid reasons) to Jon why she thinks Davos may not be trustworthy and Jon being too dismissive of her concerns. Just a short scene like that could’ve been the great exposition and character development we needed to make this plotline work. But instead we have them trying to explain what they meant for us to see…
      I wouldn’t be surprised if there’re loads of deleted scenes from this storyline. I consistently felt like they were skipping something as I watched it.

        Quote  Reply

    185. Dee Stark,

      Yeah, I know we all get really emotional about the direwolves, but if they’re just offing them for the sake of it, this would be the perfect time to have killed Ghost.

      Instead, they left him out, because I think Ghost is supposed to live and those that died are “supposed” to die. They might not die in the exact way that they’re portrayed on the show, but I think Shaggydog and Summer especially are not long for this world.

      Also can you imagine have a real dog, even a trained one, in the chaos of filming a battle? I’m surprised people expected him to be there. It already seemed like a Herculean shoot and to deal with a dog who can easily react or get spooked, that’s not easy either.

        Quote  Reply

    186. QueenofThrones,

      But even your first line about him believing initially she doesn’t have much to contribute is just FALSE. From the get go, he listened to her when she said to rally the North as a son of the last true Warden of the North. Then he listened to her about Blackfish because it was a good plan. Let’s not forget, she basically told them she was the Stark – he knows she plays a real role. Then she came to the Northern houses and got smacked down, both by Lyanna Mormont and Glover.

      Again, I’m not sure where we’re supposed to believe that Jon doesn’t value Sansa’s advice or knowledge.

      But it comes across as remarkably petulant – they’re basically saying that it makes Sansa angry that he also listens to Jon and Tormund, ie the head of the only army Jon ACTUALLY has. Should he have thrown them out and ONLY listened to her?

      I don’t know, I think this train of thought has done an incredible disservice to both their characters.

      I mean, even the amount of snark she showed for Tormund and Davos is ridiculous. Forget Davos. Tormund is the leader of the Wildlings and a man who is risking everything for Jon because Jon risked everything for him. But most importantly, the Wildlings are the ONLY army Jon had. Was he not supposed to listen to him?

      This whole thing makes Sansa look so much pettier than I want to think she would be at this stage.

        Quote  Reply

    187. Laura:
      Someone derided me earlier in the season for posting that they were killing/not showing direwolves to save money and now the proof is in the pudding. This also makes me feel like the wolfpack might never happen.

      We need a Direwolf Kickstarter.

      I guess a direwolf involves more work than other cgi since it stands among men, I mean same height.
      I am definite though that they save Ghost for bigger things. Using him in the Battle would be pointless, he would have been as good as dead.

        Quote  Reply

    188. Laura,

      What? I don’t think this is it at all.

      If they wanted to kill off all the direwolves, killing Ghost in battle would make a ton of sense. Instead, they kept him alive. That to me shows very clearly that the direwolves that die – Shaggydog but definitely Summer, that name! – are meant to die. I think Summer has to die once Winter comes and Bran becomes 3ER.

      It’s not just about cost. It’s that trying to film a live dog in the chaos of this shoot might have just proved impossible. There were a lot of moving parts and while the dogs are trained, they’re still animals that aren’t 100% controllable.

        Quote  Reply

    189. Nadia,

      I never expected to see Ghost in all honesty. Would you ever take your pet ‘dog’ into a battle? He’d end up dead for sure even if he took out a few of the enemy beforehand. It made much more sense to me that Ghost wasn’t there.

      It’s a real shame the Stark direwolves are an expense the show can’t afford as I’m pretty sure they would have played far more of an onscreen role had that not been the case.

        Quote  Reply

    190. Nadia,

      I find it realistic from Sansa’s perspective that she would believe she is being marginalized due to her sex. It starts off with Jon and Sansa vs the world when she reaches the wall, but then when Jon agrees to everything it’s basically Jon and Davos and Tormund vs Ramsey with her as a passive participant. Davos who worked for Stannis, her own sworn sword’s greatest enemy, who burnt his daughter alive. Tormund who leads the wildlings – the great enemy of the North – and who Brienne also doesn’t trust. It would feel to Sansa like she is being pushed aside in favor of these dudes and to me it makes sense that she would think/worry it’s because she’s female.

      Yeah it’s a little petulant – she’s not perfect at all. She totally could have put herself out there more, instead of hanging back and then talking to Jon afterwards. But this is really the first time she has attempted to be a leader and she isn’t that confident or self-assured yet around Jon. Especially after Littlefinger got in his barb about Jon and “his” army (not Sansa’s). Perfect behavior? No. Realistic behavior? Yes, I think so.

        Quote  Reply

    191. Dolorous Methuselah,

      (Though to be honest, I’m having a hard time remembering why she agreed to the plan to marry Ramsey in the first place – perhaps that was for family?).

      Because she trusted LF, she knew nothing about Ramsey, and she probably didn’t think she had a choice…..

        Quote  Reply

    192. QueenofThrones,

      Jon does not begin by not believing in her. He pretty much listens to every single thing she says and lets her dictate how they are to go about their task.

        Quote  Reply

    193. GeekFurious,

      Given the status of all the Houses now, what difference would it make if R + L = J or if R + L not= J?

      And if Jon finds out he is a Targ, born legitimate or bastard, would it be wise to publicize that or keep it secret?

      Jon’s future may not really depend on his heritage, given all that has happened. It could depend on current activity only.

        Quote  Reply

    194. Mihnea,

      Yup! But I actually think it reinforces that they’re not “done” with Ghost.

      If they wanted to kill all the direwolves I would think a massive chaotic battle would be the perfect place to off him 😉

        Quote  Reply

    195. Marlana,

      I’m of the belief that it only matters insomuch as it will reinforce Jon himself fighting the WWs. But I don’t think prophecies or destinies in this show are the end all and be all. If anything, they’ve shown us that prophecies come about by the choices people make.

      He’s the song of ice and fire, but it’s more important because he’s the one whose going to choose to take the fight against the WWs up. He’s already made that choice, without knowing who he is. Why does matter if he’s a Targ or a Snow? I don’t think his destiny is to sit on the Iron Throne.

        Quote  Reply

    196. Nadia,

      im assuming youre comparing to the books…

      Yes! Even for the show only, all the wolves died when it was required for story telling purposes, not for budget reasons.

      I was so pissed when summer died, but that never even crossed my mind.

        Quote  Reply

    197. Nadia,

      This.

      If they wanted him death, this would have been the time to do it.

      Honestly, as I never was a huge direwolf fan, I wouldn’t mind just to see Ghost in the background. The ”bond” they have can’t translate well to TV, just because of the nature of the medium, and frankly I never believed the direwolfs to be important to the overarching story.

        Quote  Reply

    198. Elizabeth,

      Yes, this I saw her as a broken young woman who needs to find away to mend, if not back into that naive girl, then into someone strong, confident and savvy in the rules of the game. Right now she’s finding how to do that. So she’s going to do things that make sense to her, giving her some control while she is able to build herself into this woman.

        Quote  Reply

    199. Dee Stark,

      Well Shaggy and Summer are alive in the books BUT I’m actually assuming they WILL die. Maybe not the exact same way, but it just makes sense to me. Summer especially – will he live once Winter comes and Bran becomes the 3ER?

      I think it’s totally legit to want to see them MORE, but I don’t think they’re whacking them for the sake of saving money.

      Mihnea,

      I also kind of think that at the very end, neither the dragons, nor the giants, nor the direwolves will survive. How we get to that point may very in the show and the books, but it’s always been my theory that it’s how the balance has to be achieved in the end.

        Quote  Reply

    200. Halfman: It’s a real shame the Stark direwolves are an expense the show can’t afford as I’m pretty sure they would have played far more of an onscreen role had that not been the case.

      The Stark direwolves are part of the mystery that is Winterfell. The blood of the First Men, the Stark in Winterfell, the relationship of Starks to indigenous people and creatures, the relationship of Starks to Night’s Watch and Commanders, the secrets in the crypt – all these characteristics play into the resolution of WWs and subsequent restructuring of Westeros.

      Reveals of these mysteries will probably not occur in the show, especially without direwolves accompanying the young Starks.

        Quote  Reply

    201. Nadia,

      Agreed.
      I always speculated Dany will die in the very end, the dragons as well.

      In a way it would be very Tolkien, in my opinion, magic has returned and all the world is falling into madness.
      In the end balance needs to be restored.

        Quote  Reply

    202. ash,

      Let’s be real, that plotline was a stupid means to an end. Realistically Sansa would never marry into a house which is the enemy of her family willingly. She almost freaked out about having to marry Tyrion because he was a Lannister when she had basically sworn to herself to hate Lannisters forever and teach her children to hate them too. She only married him because they practically shoved her down the aisle at knifepoint. Littlefinger also was extremely out of character for that storyline. While he is above all an opportunist tactician to rival Iago of Othello, he definitely wants Sansa for himself and I would argue that he actually wants her maidenhead (he bragged about having taken her mother’s and aunt’s only to realise he had never actually been with Cat). He sees Sansa as a second chance with the only woman (perhaps only person) he ever loved. So him dropping her off at the Boltons (known psychos with a flayed man as their banner) and then leaving her there alone and defenceless with no plan of attack was quite simply ridiculous.

        Quote  Reply

    203. Nadia,

      the wolves wouldn’t be in the field it’s just a ball on a stick then they film the wolves separately in Canada and enhance them with cgi.All of this is very difficult and costs way more than dragons they have said.So I understand them cutting ghost for the battle even from a story persepctive he would have died there with arrows and spears.And it’s clear that they don’t want to kill ghost He still has a part to play

        Quote  Reply

    204. Dee Stark:
      Laura,

      Not showing, yes, but killing, no. They could have easily killed ghost in the battle to prevent future use of him to save money

      I think all the killings were necassary for the story.

      I would disagree on Summer. Wasnt necessary … not that the only reason they killed him was saving budget…but I sure feel it has a role in these decisions.

        Quote  Reply

    205. ”I think the social boundaries of the time period that Thrones is loosely based on means that these men still view women as less capable of battle planning or anything to do with typical seemingly ‘male’ activities.”

      I think it’s not fair to blame Jon that he does not listen to Sansa because she’s a girl. It’s just so unfair and seems so forced. Jon always listened to everyone who was mistreated by society. He listened to Wildlings, he is a bastard and he always had a hard life because of it, so it’ not in his character to view people as the society dictates.

      Sansa was free to say anything she wanted. When Jon asks for her advice, Sansa’s advice IS obvious. It does not matter that in an abstract way you accept your brother’s death. When it’s happening before your eyes, it does not matter how ready you were, it will still crush you. So, Jon did what he did, not because he did not listened to Sansa, but simply because love won over reason. “These men still view women as less capable of battle planning”…. ? Sansa herself says “I don’t know nothing about battles”, and how could she know? it’s not her fault. She was not educated in battle planning like Jon. So this argument is invalid.
      Plus Sansa is not saying a word about the Vale army. She had multiple times to tell Jon about possible aid, so in reality she hide from him the most important information.
      I liked Sansa even before they started to portray her as “bad-ass”, because she was just a child and the mistakes she made, it was not intentional, but because of her worldview and innocence, for believing in fairy tales. In her chapters after Ned’s death, it’s clear how she regrets her foolishness. She had such a hard life, she was played by other people, treated bad by everyone she mistakenly trusted. So I was really looking forward for her to gain confidence and power, to avenge her family and to become the strong person, to become a Stark that she always was in her heart! But to show/sell Sansa’s progress by making Jon look bad, it makes everything worse. It looks like forced promotion.
      When Jon tells her “you don’t have to be here”, and Sansa responds with confidence that she has to, many can see that as “you are so fragile, you can’t face Ramsey, you’re a girl, so go, wait there, I’m a man, I’ll deal with it”. for me, (as for a girl who has a big brother) it was Jon’s way of protecting his little sister, and it does not matter if you are a strong woman, you always will be little sister for your big brother and I don’t see any sexism and shame in that. He simply didn’t want her to feel bad by seeing her tormentor, he wanted her to know that he’s there for her, that she has someone on her side for once. Sorry for the long comment.

        Quote  Reply

    206. i feel like such a doofus only realizing last night the person playing wun wun is the same person who played the mountain in season two.

      if it is a choice of ghost or wun wun having to die in episode 9, sorry wun wun. i loved your character but under the bus you go, lad.

        Quote  Reply

    207. Mihnea,

      Referring to the Stark / Winterfell / Night’s Watch / Westeros original beings relationships throughout five to eight volumes and never revealing the significance would be a cheat to the readers who bought and read the work. We will see if your prediction is accurate.

      Of course, if no further volume is forthcoming, your prediction stands.

        Quote  Reply

    208. TPTWP,

      Not to be rude, but you have no idea if that’s true. That scene is now past the books. I think it’s very likely that Summer doesn’t live forever. Winter has come and Bran will become the 3ER.

        Quote  Reply

    209. Mihnea:
      Nadia,

      Agreed.
      I always speculated Dany will die in the very end, the dragons as well.

      In a way it would be very Tolkien, in my opinion, magic has returned and all the world is falling into madness.
      In the end balance needs to be restored.

      I’m glad you’ve said that. I’ve never posted about it as I know Dany fans would be gutted and I really would like that not to happen myself but her vision from the house of the undying reuniting her with Drogo suggested to me that that will be how it ends for her….reunited with Drogo and her baby in death. The ruin of the Red Keep was the ruin of her dream of taking the IT and the walk out through the gates of the Wall was suggesting she would play a role in the fight against the WW.

      Of course, that is all completely open to interpretation and I may well be way off!

        Quote  Reply

    210. Mihnea,

      I understand that they didn’t want to introduce a whole bunch of characters from the Vale who would end up being ultimately irrelevant to the main plot and maybe they didn’t think GRRM’s Vale plot would be exciting enough for the show. I personally think it’s absolutely as imperative to show Sansa’s mentoring under Littlefinger as it is to show Arya’s training with the FM. These are the skills they will be bringing forth to rescue their house after all. But if they didn’t want to show “boring” political intrigue in the Vale, they should’ve just had Sansa sit out last season like Bran did and come back this season as though she’s been in a “playing the game” prep school. I would’ve much preferred that to having her and Littlefinger act so out of character.

        Quote  Reply

    211. Halfman,

      Ohhhh. Never thought her Drogon vision meant that!!

      Good thought!

      It’s rather silly to get angry at people speculating that Dany might die. I’m quite a strong Dany Fanboy, but I believed she’ll die in the end for the past 10 or so years.

        Quote  Reply

    212. ForestLight,

      Totally agree – my post was just showing that Sansa did not agree to marry Ramsey, she was pretty much given no choice. Yeah I would have liked to have seen a different arc for her, but it is what it is.

        Quote  Reply

    213. Marlana,

      Yes I’m with you on that. I’ve just started re reading the books as I’ve forgotten so much! Watching the show tends to wipe my memory and we have a drought on its way after next Sunday, so any excuse….?

        Quote  Reply

    214. ForestLight,

      Wasn’t out of character for me at all. If anything it was even more IN character then I expected it t be.

      Leaving Sansa out would have been a huge mistake. Bran at that point was perfect position to left out. It fitted the narrative.

      I hate training arcs. Or rather what Martin tried to pass as ”training” I consider both of those ”arcs” pointless filler meant only to fill the 5 year timeskip. I am glad they were never shown and I am glad we are done with them.

      I want my characters to struggle, to suffer and grow from that. Not by having them attend school and throw a info dump at them. Or to put them in Dragon Ball Zs times chamber.

      Let us stop. We will never agree.

        Quote  Reply

    215. ForestLight,

      Littlefinger as Iago – great comparison. Dropping her off with the Boltons – not in character. Does not make sense. If he wants Sansa as much as we think he does, why would he give her up to a family known for torture? Unless he wants to hurt a Catelyn substitute for the put downs he felt he received from the Tullys, while positioning himself for a big promotion.

      If what happens in Ep 9 was the long game Littlefinger was playing, it worked because he is on the verge of winning Winterfell and Sansa.

        Quote  Reply

    216. Wolfish hearts,

      No one is making Jon look bad. Where does what we see on screen make Jon look bad? The only thing that makes Jon look “bad” (and that’s sooo debatable) was his heart over head choice regarding Rickon. And also his seeming obstinancy about fighting regardless of the odds / suicidal tendencies. The show quite clearly does not portray Jon as sexist.

      Sophie’s talking about Sansa’s own issues and what motivates her. Which is what she should be talking about, as the actor for that character. Part of what motivates Sansa this season (not all of it) is a worry that she isn’t taken seriously because she’s female.

        Quote  Reply

    217. ash,

      Other than Dorne that was imho the most nonsensical book change in the whole show. The characterization was all over the place last season too. She starts out seeming fairly calm and collected with Littlefinger, then regresses to a little girl when he tells her she has to marry Ramsay, then plays it cool and strong again when meeting the Boltons and as she realizes that they are psycho, then on her wedding night she doesn’t even attempt to fight back as Ramsay brutally rapes her in front of Theon??? What the hell? She gave those rioting peasants a better fight back in season two when she was just a little kid. It would’ve made the scene even more horribly tragic if she had fought back too…but no…all we see is Theon’s face because let’s real, THAT WAS HIS STORY!!!
      Anyway I generally try to pretend season 5 doesn’t exist so I’m going back to willfully forgetting it now.

        Quote  Reply

    218. ForestLight,

      Anyway I generally try to pretend season 5 doesn’t exist

      OK. here we end our discussion. It would simply be pointless and fill the thread with hate. I will not do that.

      Under this situation, we will never reach anything that would resamble common ground.

        Quote  Reply

    219. Mihnea,

      Yeah, just a difference of opinion I guess 🙂 . I definitely see them as extremely out of character last season and I personally quite like “training arcs” because I enjoy character development over plot most of the time.

        Quote  Reply

    220. ForestLight,

      t

      hen on her wedding night she doesn’t even attempt to fight back as Ramsay brutally rapes her in front of Theon??

      Um yeah, Im done. Move over on that there bench if you would, Mihnea

        Quote  Reply

    221. Marlana,

      I always thought it was a bit unrealistic how often Littlefingers plans came off without a hitch. Last season things not going exactly according to plan was a bit refreshing.

      Littlefinger’s plan was originally this:

      1) Get Sansa married to Bolton.

      2) Let Stannis and Bolton armies weaken each other.

      3) Use Sansa’s marriage to Bolton to get Cersei to declare him Warden of the North & give him leave to use the Vale army, provided he gets rid of the “treacherous” Boltons & Sansa.

      4) Ride in and “save” Sansa from whichever side is victorious. If Bolton wins, kill him. If Stannis wins, pledge Vale’s allegiance to him.

      5) Marry Sansa and rule the North and the Vale (via Robyn).

      6) Unclear, but at this point he probably expects the South to be in Civil war. Probably he’ll bide his time and continue to spread his influence.

      … And as it turns out, it didn’t even “matter” (to littlefinger’s strategy) that Ramsey raped and tortured Sansa. She still needed his army to save them. He even got a promise of a “reward” before he swooped in. The little slimy bastard still wins.

      That is, until Sansa decides he doesn’t get to live anymore… probably next season.

        Quote  Reply

    222. QueenofThrones,

      Well she won’t be, medieval Britain on which the story is based did not empower women. Personally, as a woman (ignore my user name, I just love the world’s most famous dwarf) I’m not comfortable with over doing the strong woman stuff in this story. It doesn’t belong in that world and becomes unconvincing.

      There were strong women in times past. Indeed all the British Queens of England did a far better job than many of the Kings but I’m not a fan of catering to a 21st century audience which seems to be where the writers have gone lately.

        Quote  Reply

    223. QueenofThrones,

      “Jon’s reluctance to take her strategic advice the night before has sexist roots.”

      I was talking about this, when Sophie says that it was the reason of Jon supposedly not listening to her sister. As for me I did not see it that way and I am just expressing my opinion saying that it’s unfair to blame sexism on Jon (and to make him look bad in that way).

        Quote  Reply

    224. Halfman,

      Fingers crossed that Jaime takes the old bastard out (or lets him) but I’m not hoping too hard. I suppose he might if Frey decides to kill Edmure or something?

      Do we know who the dude kneeling with the HS is? That’s got to be Cersei’s trial.

        Quote  Reply

    225. Mihnea,

      I see them as development in that we are shown the characters learning and growing and being tested directly so that they can become the people they need to be. I’ve enjoyed reading Sansa and Arya get there in the books but I do agree that too much of it can be draining. Daenerys has being on a “training arc” in Meereen for wayyyy too long. But to be fair, she has had to be held back so that the other characters can catch up to her initially far more rapidly moving development and story.

        Quote  Reply

    226. ForestLight,

      Well you see I see Sansa and Arya’s ”stories” just like Dany’s.

      Of course I believe I dislike Dany’s story there, much more then you!

      Let us just stop. We will never agree.

        Quote  Reply

    227. Halfman,

      I’m with you. I think she may go down a hero at the end. I think Jon may as well. If Jaime survives and there’s still need of a Night’s Watch, I could see him leading it. I worry that Arya might not make it either, living such a dangerous life and all. Brienne could survive, could die a hero’s death. I just hope Davos gets to go home to his wife and retire peacefully at the end.

        Quote  Reply

    228. Mawk:

      But maybe they want to give GRRM one more year to get his book out as respect.

      Now that the show has diverged from the books, is it the show giving GRRM another year to take credit for reveals, or GRRM withholding the book to give D&D two more seasons without conflict from the book? or both.

        Quote  Reply

    229. Halfman:
      QueenofThrones,
      Well she won’t be, medieval Britain on which the story is based did not empower women. Personally, as a woman (ignore my user name, I just love the world’s most famous dwarf) I’m not comfortable with over doing the strong woman stuff in this story. It doesn’t belong in that world and becomes unconvincing.

      Women are and were always as strong/weak, stupid/smart, and evil/good as men. Women and Men don’t have to be empowered in order to be strong. The difference between now and then are what roles men and women were expected to inhabit and how brutally they were repressed if they stepped outside those roles.

      In many ways, Westeros is more egalitarian than the real world – Dorne exists. The Mormonts exist. Targaryen queens existed, at one point. Being female is portrayed consistently as a hinderance, not a strict barrier to power.

      I agree with you that Sansa is probably not taken as seriously as otherwise because of her Gender. And that hurts as much whether you’re talking present day, in the past of our world, or in Westeros. Jon is pretty damn egalitarian but it’s understandable (IMO) for her to think her gender might be an issue for him.

        Quote  Reply

    230. Mihnea:
      QueenofThrones,
      I don’t think he would have pledge to Stannis.
      I think he would have killed him too.

      Entirely Possible. I think we’ll never know for sure.

      But I don’t think that Stannis would harm Sansa in any way. He’s pretty desperate to have a Stark in Winterfell given the offer he made Jon. So Littlefinger killing Stannis openly isn’t going to look very good to anyone. He could have had him assassinated I guess but in that case he’d probably pledge first to get close enough.

        Quote  Reply

    231. QueenofThrones:
      Marlana,

      I always thought it was a bit unrealistic how often Littlefingers plans came off without a hitch.Last season things not going exactly according to plan was a bit refreshing.

      Littlefinger’s plan was originally this:

      1) Get Sansa married to Bolton.

      2) Let Stannis and Bolton armies weaken each other.

      3) Use Sansa’s marriage to Bolton to get Cersei to declare him Warden of the North & give him leave to use the Vale army, provided he gets rid of the “treacherous” Boltons & Sansa.

      4) Ride in and “save” Sansa from whichever side is victorious.If Bolton wins, kill him.If Stannis wins, pledge Vale’s allegiance to him.

      5) Marry Sansa and rule the North and the Vale (via Robyn).

      6) Unclear, but at this point he probably expects the South to be in Civil war.Probably he’ll bide his time and continue to spread his influence.

      … And as it turns out, it didn’t even “matter” (to littlefinger’s strategy) that Ramsey raped and tortured Sansa.She still needed his army to save them.He even got a promise of a “reward” before he swooped in.The little slimy bastard still wins.

      That is, until Sansa decides he doesn’t get to live anymore…probably next season.

      I think Littlefinger DID err, and his error was in not having a proper estimate of Ramsay’s character, which I think is plausible. Aidan has said as much in interviews (I know, but in this case, I’m inclined to think he’s being on target), and I think he’s actually being truthful for once when he tells Sansa that. Because it’s a mistake that puts at risk any plan to marry Sansa after he comes in to “clean up.” His plan requires retaining some level of trust and friendship with Sansa, and that’s been dashed hard on the rocks of Ramsay’s sadistic brutality.

      So it’s not clear that Littlefinger has “won.” His position is actually still rather fragile. His position in the Vale is entirely dependent on keeping the deference of Robyn Arryn. He has no other real basis of support in the Vale that we can see; and by aiding an outlaw House whose nominal head is suspected of killing King Joffrey, he’s put at risk his relationship with the Iron Throne now, too.

        Quote  Reply

    232. Lord Parramandas: Bigger part of the story? Sure, I agree they have more screentime in the books but I never noticed them having a bigger role. Like I said, I simply find it unbelievable that mere children were able to tame these beasts and that they completely share their personalities.

      Yes, a bigger part of the story in the books so far. They’ve done several things physically on their own, through warging or wolf dreams and they’re ever present save for the period Jon and Ghost were separated. Some important story elements were presented through the direwolves that the show changed, skipped or minimized. It is also my belief that George is going to be using them for additional things the rest of the way.

      There are only two dead so far in the books and Arya has started connecting with Nymeria. I think a direwolf that she can warg is a pretty useful tool for an assassin. Ghost sensed Jon’s danger at Castle Black and I’m not changing my opinion that he wargs into Ghost rather than simply be in ‘nothing’ like the show and Mel will revive his body before he’s stuck there. There are many useful things they could be used for going forward.

      I don’t know why the children with the direwolves is unbelievable. It’s much more believable than ‘pet’ dragons. Well, since there are real people that have had “tame” wolves, very believable. The Starks didn’t tame the beasts anyway, they raised them from pups in their home like pets and companions. They don’t “completely share a personality,” they have shown to have common personality traits, i.e. wild Rickon & Shaggydog.
      I’ve seen quite a few discussions over the years that there’s more to that behind George’s writing as well. Such as what happens to the Stark can be mirrored to the direwolf. Arya on her own trying to discover her identity vs Nymeria on her own doing the same, Robb & Grey Wind with “head problems,” Lady’s death coinciding with the death of Sansa’s personality…. ha!

        Quote  Reply

    233. Halfman:
      QueenofThrones,

      Well she won’t be, medieval Britain on which the story is based did not empower women. Personally, as a woman (ignore my user name, I just love the world’s most famous dwarf) I’m not comfortable with over doing the strong woman stuff in this story. It doesn’t belong in that world and becomes unconvincing.

      There were strong women in times past. Indeed all the British Queens of England did a far better job than many of the Kings but I’m not a fan of catering to a 21st century audience which seems to be where the writers have gone lately.

      THIS! Couldnt say my thoughts better myself!

      And I doubt many agree but what Sophie said re sexism & Jon is just to me a young girl trying to be politically correct for the modern climate re these issues – though she clearly misjudged its use on this occasion – and I’m sure most entertaiment reviewers/analysts etc will accept it as new Gospel and fall at her feet for drawing the reference.

      “She’s wise beyond her years now…so perceptive & feminine”

      Plenty of such examples in todays media.

      I am not criticising her, its the pressures of this crazy era we find ourselves in.

        Quote  Reply

    234. ForestLight:

      I personally quite like “training arcs” because I enjoy character development over plot most of the time.

      I also like training recaps because they show us a way to become competent. Not the only way, but perhaps an efficient way. It shows us the issues involved in learning what today is called skill sets.

      A favorite training montage is found in the police training of the bunny cop in Zootopia. Challenge; failure; exhaustion; discouragement; strategy; practice; unique approach success! Simplified and humorous, it tells us a story. Most creatures that follow that path can be successful. What’s not to like?

      Training is not all it takes, experience is needed too. And like the saying, Got experience keeps a dear school.

        Quote  Reply

    235. QueenofThrones,

      I don’t really see it that way as far as this story goes. The Mormonts and Dorne have women in power in the absence of higher ranking men. The rules of primogeniture. This is a medieval world essentially and having too many women in positions of power weakens the story for me. It just doesn’t work that way, not in the genre we are in.

      Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for the strong female characters. I am just concerned the writers are going OTT with it in an attempt to satisfy a modern day audience.

        Quote  Reply

    236. QueenofThrones:
      I agree with you that Sansa is probably not taken as seriously as otherwise because of her Gender. And that hurts as much whether you’re talking present day, in the past of our world, or in Westeros. Jon is pretty damn egalitarian but it’s understandable (IMO) for her to think her gender might be an issue for him.

      Yes, this. Westeros is obviously a very patriarchal world; but we also see instances of strong women in positions of power, and respected as such. No one tangles lightly with the Queen of Thorns, for example. Of course, she has the advantage of the deference that comes with age – no one will be misled by a pretty face…

      …which they can be with Sansa. But while I think that Sansa *has* grown as a character, it’s also true that she hasn’t given much outward reason for many to give her special deference yet. Littlefinger has begun to figure out that she’s less malleable now; and I think Jon (while not a sensitive 21st century Western man) really does value her counsel, more than pretty much anyone else, which is remarkable since, as others have pointed out, they’re just getting to really know each other again.

      I mostly come down on the side of those who argue that Sansa had an obligation to give Jon all the information she possessed. If she can’t trust Jon with THAT, she’s in far deeper trouble. Perhaps Jon would have disregarded it and acted the same, though I’m inclined to doubt it, for the reasons given by others here (at the least, hard to see him and Davos not sending out scouts to see if they could locate the Vale army and make contact, and an ally of THAT size would be worth the risk of a few days’ delay). That doesn’t absolve Jon of his rash charge that wrecked his own battle plan, though I think most of us (and his men and allies) find that pretty understandable, on the whole. (Heck, it actually may endear him, and builds his growing legend. “Did you hear he charged an entire regiment of Bolton heavy cavalry by himself – and won?”)

      Well, we’ll learn more about all this on Sunday. Might be best to defer the debate until then.

        Quote  Reply

    237. Athelstane,

      Yes, I think he did underestimate Ramsey – and that’s a good thing. I’m glad he’s not perfect.

      However, the fact is he still managed to salvage a version of his plan. Partly because it was quite a flexible plan and partly because of luck.

      Yes, Sansa likes Littlefinger less than she would have if Ramsey was a slightly less-evil person. BUT what if Ramsey had been an awesome person? In that case Littlefinger would have an entirely different set of problems. Because maybe Sansa would actually become Loyal to Ramsey and want to stay married to him. He’d have to kill Ramsey in secret, which is harder to do.

      As it turns out, because of Sansa’s trauma – because Ramsey is a monster, he gets to show up like a Hero. Everyone – including Sansa – knows it was his fault but it’s difficult to hold it against him when he didn’t know – Especially because she now owes her very life and that of her brother to Baelish. LF managed to turn his ignorance about Ramsey into a strength – he could honestly say he didn’t know what Ramsey was… if Sansa believes him it’s hard for her to hold him responsible for what Ramsey did.

      Now do I think Sansa will suddenly want to marry Littlefinger…? No – I think she will try to play that she is trying to decide when he proposes. Or string him along in some way.

        Quote  Reply

    238. Athelstane: So it’s not clear that Littlefinger has “won.” His position is actually still rather fragile. His position in the Vale is entirely dependent on keeping the deference of Robyn Arryn. He has no other real basis of support in the Vale that we can see; and by aiding an outlaw House whose nominal head is suspected of killing King Joffrey, he’s put at risk his relationship with the Iron Throne now, too.

      Interesting and Littlefinger’s actual status of winner or not is crucial to whatever follows. Relationships to LF and to the Vale will determine a lot about a battle to come.

      Where is Tyrion when we need him? He could reclaim Sansa as his wife and rescue her from LF.

        Quote  Reply

    239. Lord Parramandas,

      It is a fantasy. The Direwolves are important in the books. Jon, Bran and Arya are spiritually tied to their wolves, and it’s part of their inner dialogue. Which of course, the TV show does not have time to go into. But, I love the Stark/ Warg aspects of the book and hope, one day, I will get to read what it was supposed to be like.

        Quote  Reply

    240. QueenofThrones:
      Halfman,

      Fingers crossed that Jaime takes the old bastard out (or lets him) but I’m not hoping too hard.I suppose he might if Frey decides to kill Edmure or something?

      Do we know who the dude kneeling with the HS is?That’s got to be Cersei’s trial.

      It’s Loras with a haircut. I had to rewind to work it out.

      I’ve no idea where it’s going with Jaime and the old goat but hopefully we will be cheering after we’ve watched the scene.

        Quote  Reply

    241. QueenofThrones,

      I agree with you that Sansa is probably not taken as seriously as otherwise because of her Gender. And that hurts as much whether you’re talking present day, in the past of our world, or in Westeros. Jon is pretty damn egalitarian but it’s understandable (IMO) for her to think her gender might be an issue for him.

      What hurts Sansa is two things: a) a pretty young face, and b) lack of any “resume” that would cause others to discount (a). Unfortunate, but she’s got to understand that, and work around it.

      Lady Mormont overcomes (b) despite her age. Olenna and Yara also have (b), and Olenna is also elderly, which provides gravitas. Cersei has struggled to overcome (a) simply because she has given little reason for others to think otherwise, as Tywin pointed out (“You’re not as smart as you think you are.”). Sansa, on the other hand, is only known for being a pretty young hapless pawn of disastrous dynastic marriage matches. The only people who really know her as she is at this point are … Littlefinger, Jon, and Brienne – and the last two have only “known” her for some weeks.

      But if Westeros society isn’t giving her fair respect, it’s a two way street; her relentless criticism of Ser Davos seems quite petty, and shaped by resentment that he has become an alternative adviser to Jon, a role she seems to want solely for herself. Yet that suspicion is quite unfounded, as we know, and which she might know as well had she only taken the time to learn more. Ser Davos is probably the best man Jon could have as a Hand or principal adviser. He is extremely fortunate to have him. It is a pity that Sansa has yet to recognize that. (In time, I think, she will.)

        Quote  Reply

    242. I love Sophie, but I completely disagree with her on Jon’s motivations. He doesn’t consult her because the Sansa he grew up with would have had no knowlegde about this sort of thing.

      I do think Jon should have consulted with her more, but his reasons for not doing so were not sexist.

        Quote  Reply

    243. Nuncle Kingsmoot:
      Halfman,

      I’m with you. I think she may go down a hero at the end. I think Jon may as well. If Jaime survives and there’s still need of a Night’s Watch, I could see him leading it. I worry that Arya might not make it either, living such a dangerous life and all. Brienne could survive, could die a hero’s death. I just hope Davos gets to go home to his wife and retire peacefully at the end.

      Well I get where you’re coming from but I would think it’s unlikely that more than one of the major loved characters bite the dust in the end. Still, they may live but not be the happier for it.

      I’m a sentimentalist so I’m totally with you on Davos. The man is very deserving of a life of retirement in peace and harmony…..but this is GOT. I’ll hang on to the hope though.

        Quote  Reply

    244. QueenofThrones:
      Athelstane,

      …Yes, Sansa likes Littlefinger less than she would have if Ramsey was a slightly less-evil person.BUT what if Ramsey had been an awesome person?In that case Littlefinger would have an entirely different set of problems.Because maybe Sansa would actually become Loyal to Ramsey and want to stay married to him. He’d have to kill Ramsey in secret, which is harder to do.

      …Now do I think Sansa will suddenly want to marry Littlefinger…?No – I think she will try to play that she is trying to decide when he proposes. Or string him along in some way.

      1. Your first point here is a good one. What did Petyr really think Ramsay was? What did he expect? It’s hard to say, other than that he did not expect him to be a first class sadist and monster. What if Ramsay had been a great husband? Hard to say. We don’t know. I’m not even sure D&D really know. (With GRRM, at least you get to learn this stuff.)

      My gut says that he was counting on Stannis to win (not an unreasonable bet), and he would not have to deal with the Ramsay situation. But who knows? Honestly, I think that Martin has Petyr acting more plausibly here than D&D do.

      2. I think your second prediction seems most likely. I think the last thing Sansa wants right now is another marriage, let alone a political one to someone she distrusts (and she does distrust him still). She’s basically still PTSD at the moment. But she also is sharp enough to understand that she needs alliance with the Vale to keep the North, especially when the Iron Throne turns its attention to the North. So I can see her saying neither yes or no, if he really is offering her marriage (which seems likely, but we cannot be sure yet), but string him along until something develops.

      Hey – it worked for Queen Elizabeth.

        Quote  Reply

    245. I’m just hoping this Jon is a sexist debate because he turned her down or so is just Sophie’s interpretation because if D&D brief her on this. They should’ve let him dead and not do this to him.

      Let’s hope Jon reunites with Arya so he can have a sister that actually cares about him and they share a strong bond. I’m just tired of this “I don’t trust you” thing going on. It just leaves bitter taste in my mouth. I understand Sansa have been through a lot but Jon showed nothing but care for her. Jon is like that he’ll do anything for his family. He was fool to risk beheading when he ran to help Robb and kill Joffry for his fatther. Bran, Rickon, Sansa.

        Quote  Reply

    246. ghost of winterfell:
      QueenofThrones,

      Jon does not begin by not believing in her. He pretty much listens to every single thing she says and lets her dictate how they are to go about their task.

      The fact is, he wouldn’t even have launched this entire campaign without her persuasion. He didn’t want to do it. Odds are he’d be on his way to some sandy beach in Dorne, maybe to hire himself out as a sellsword eventually.

      On the most important decision he has made since quitting the Watch, it was entirely due to her presence and her persuasion.

      I’m hopeful this relationship will be strengthened and put on a better footing this week, and it looks like it might be. There’s plenty of other sources of dramatic tension that could be used for Jon & Sansa more believably.

        Quote  Reply

    247. Mihnea:
      Halfman,

      Ohhhh. Never thought her Drogon vision meant that!!

      Good thought!

      It’s rather silly to get angry at people speculating that Dany might die. I’m quite a strong Dany Fanboy, but I believed she’ll die in the end for the past 10 or so years.

      You have the upper hand there as I only came across this story a year ago. I guess what my first impression is upon viewing something sticks but of course could be wrong.
      At the time I thought “Oh no…Dany!! ??”

      I dunno. I have just always had the feeling that it’s Dany who is so obviously the chosen one throughout the story that that is not how it will finish up knowing GRRM. But rather like Titanic, although Jack and Rose were parted, in the end they were together, reunited in death.

      Meh!! How depressing lol.

        Quote  Reply

    248. GeekFurious,

      It looks it is. I mean it’s pretty much like “A Targaryen alone in the world” and camera cuts to him. Subtle way of showing it but people will be dissapointed. But I think it’s pretty easy to tell and no other way. We never got to be introduced to any another option than what they’ve been hinting at.

        Quote  Reply

    249. Athelstane,

      AMEN to that last part. Respect IS a two way street. Jon listened to her and then watched her be dead wrong about the North and Davos be entirely right about them.

      And yet her first move was to be so snarky about Davos and securing Lyanna Mormont’s aid – what had she done till that point?

      She repeatedly seemed angry at Jon for listening to Davos and Tormund. Did she expect him to ONLY listen to her, no one else? Tormund is the leader of the only army Jon even has and fought next to him at Hardhome – is he supposed to throw him out of the tent?

      I don’t know, this whole narrative makes Sansa look petty to me, and I don’t think that serves her character at all!

        Quote  Reply

    250. Ginevra: Jon: When will we have a larger force? We’ve pleaded with every house that’ll have us. The Blackfish can’t help us. We’re lucky to have this many men. It’s not enough. No, it’s not enough. It’s what we have.

      In modern times, a famous Secretary of Defense said, “you don’t go to war with the army you want, you go to war with the army you have.”

      Continuing his analysis, we could say that the Army of the Vale was an unknown unknown, rather than a known known, known unknown, or unknown known.

      If it is good enough for current warfare, why isn’t it good enough for a fictional medieval warfare?

        Quote  Reply

    251. Nadia: AMEN to that last part. Respect IS a two way street. Jon listened to her and then watched her be dead wrong about the North and Davos be entirely right about them.

      That’s a great point, Nadia.

      And you know what? That had to rankle Sansa. She was spinning the whole “the North remembers” story, and as it turned out…not enough of it remembered (or even worse, remembered too much). Worse, Ser Davos – a guy not even from the North! – contradicted her in council, and he turned out to be right.

      And I get wanting to resent that. But if she wants to be a good and successful leader, it’s the kind of thing she has got to learn to move past, and not let it color her actions or how she evaluates the worth of subordinates or allies.

      I will be keen to see how she reacts, if at all, to Ser Davos’s indictment of Melisandre. This should make him look like a more moral man, lobbying for justice for another young princess who became a tragic example of the aristocracy of misfortune, as Frank Herbert would put it – and not just an adjunct to a ruthless and reckless Stannis Baratheon.

        Quote  Reply

    252. BigMac:
      I love Sophie, but I completely disagree with her on Jon’s motivations. He doesn’t consult her because the Sansa he grew up with would have had no knowlegde about this sort of thing.

      But Jon did consult her. He asked what Sansa would have him do, he just didn’t follow her (unhelpful) advice.

      Women. Amiright?

        Quote  Reply

    253. Mihnea:
      Nadia,

      This.

      If they wanted him death, this would have been the time to do it.

      Honestly, as I never was a huge direwolf fan, I wouldn’t mind just to see Ghost in the background. The ”bond” they have can’t translate well to TV, just because of the nature of the medium, and frankly I never believed the direwolfs to be important to the overarching story.

      My thoughts entirely… This whole Direwolf thing and posters getting pissed off if they’re not shown or get killed off is just pitiful! – A man say’s: “Fuck the Direwolfs!” 🙂

      I presume the reason behind this Direwolf business (and that HBO’s GoT had to run with it) was simply that it gave GRRM the inspiration to start writing the ASOIF novels in the first place and to try and follow; certainly in the first few seasons, GRRM’s books?

      However the ‘warging’ aspect never needed these oversized wolves in any case? As we all know, Bran could warg into Hodor and that Wildling (Orell) could warg into an eagle. It didn’t need a Direwolf to add that magical aspect into the books or TV show.

      I presume for much of the Direwolf scenes they used German Shepard dogs and then CGI’d them up. Far more difficult to train up a dog for what the show runners required than to make a movable platform which can later be CGI’d into a dragon. Also which is far more spectacular to see on the screen than an oversize dog running around…

        Quote  Reply

    254. Flayed Potatoes:
      Oh come on. Jon listened to her plenty of times and asked her point blanc last episode what to do to get more men. She said she had no idea lmao. Let’s not forget that we’ve seen he respects women on the show and books so lol.

      I agree. Look, I love Sansa and sympathize with what’s she has suffered. PTSD causes people to behave in ways that may not seem logical at times. But Sophie’s read on the scene is that Jon isn’t paying heed because of sexism is not supported by his characterization or the script. Jon feel in love with Ygritte, a strong woman and treated her like his equal. He’s looking for solutions to a problem; the lack of men. No solution seemed forthcoming even though Sansa knows of a potential solution which she has refused to tell him about and which could have changed the battle strategy.

      I wonder if Sansa’s issue is just one of trust – for anyone. After her time in Kings Landing with Joffrey, Cercei and Tywin, Littlefinger’s manipulation that made her dependent on him after he implicated her as an accessory in Joffrey’s murder and sold her to Ramsay who abused her, she may be afraid to trust even Jon.

      It also occurs to me that Sophie may be BSing in interviews about Sansa’s motivations, because the truth will be revealed in the next episode and she doesn’t want to spoil it. We’ll see.

        Quote  Reply

    255. Marlana: Continuing his analysis, we could say that the Army of the Vale was an unknown unknown, rather than a known known, known unknown, or unknown known.

      And I think Jon deserved a chance to at least transform it from an unknown unknown to…something more.

      I think it would have taken a lot for Jon to want to delay attacking, and for good reason: the weather could turn bad, Ramsay could reinforce himself, Jon’s logistics were surely finite. But I think finding out that there was a force of as much as 20,000 first rate Vale knights sitting at Moat Cailin that could even potentially be had as allies might just be “a lot” for Jon. Send out some local scouts down south and give it a few days to see if they can make contact. Send another raven to Moat Cailin. I could see him doing at least that.

      And if Sansa had received more concrete information that Vale Army was on the march – well, that would make her reticence even harder to justify.

        Quote  Reply

    256. Wimsey:
      Flayed Potatoes,

      Where do you send the scouts?How do the scouts avoid being killed by Bolton scouts?Given the conditions, how do any scouts that happen to run into the Vale army (which now is extremely improbable) get back before the Vale does?

      And why waste time on a hope that seems utterly ridiculous in the first place?Why would a man that Sansa has told she would kill if ever she saw him again help them?Given that Baelish has worked with Cersei before, wouldn’t they more quickly assume that the Vale would assist the Boltons and that Baelish is playing Sansa?

      Sansa’s letter might as wrll have been written to Santa Claus for all the real hope it would inspire in Jon.

        Quote  Reply

    257. OR:
      Hodor!

      A few people are asking why wouldn’t the scouts no the vale was coming well scouts are usually deployed when the army is on the move. Jon’s army was in camped an ready 2 attack so scouts would have been pickets and watching the rear

        Quote  Reply

    258. Marlana: In modern times, a famous Secretary of Defense said, “you don’t go to war with the army you want, you go to war with the army you have.”

      No Secretary of Defense in the history of time has said that it wasn’t worth waiting a couple of days to begin an attack if there was at least a 50% chance of quadrupling your attacking force, thus probably quadrupling or better your chances of winning. Team Stark should have been waiting for the Bolton forces to come to them, anyway, because their newly dug trenches were their only defense against the cavalry’s pincer moves and double envelopment attacks that allowed Stannis to slaughter the Wildlings.

      General Lee had very little information about the true strength of the Union Army due to his lack of Calvary reconnaissance. In essence he did not do a 360 before committing to an offensive strategy. He then deployed a group of soldiers aggressively across an open field to attack the enemy. His tactical choice and tool to accomplish it (aggression) failed miserably and the Union repelled the attack. General Meade (commander of the Union Army) responded to this victory in a defensive and patient manner. He was a Pennsylvanian and knew the ground, he knew his resources were completely exhausted, and he knew he could hold his position indefinitely. Additionally he knew the Confederate Army was decimated and could in no way mount any additional offensive. He performed his 360 (and then some) and decided that a defensive posture would be the most successful and executed this very patiently, this in turn forced Lee to retreat.

      http://www.averagejakefirefighter.com/2015/05/02/tactical-aggression-and-patience-lessons-from-americas-civil-war/

        Quote  Reply

    259. Halfman,

      My thinking is that GRRM’s mission in this series is to turn tropes on their heads. He’s said there’s a bittersweet ending; makes me assume a lot of people we think are safe won’t be. Not that I’m negating your point. It doesn’t matter to me if I’m wrong or right, I just enjoy speculating. Or obsessing. 🙂

        Quote  Reply

    260. Sukeone: A few people are asking why wouldn’t the scouts no the vale was coming well scouts are usually deployed when the army is on the move. Jon’s army was in camped an ready 2 attack so scouts would have been pickets and watching the rear

      It’s a stretch but not totally unreasonable.

      The battle is apparently fought to the north of Winterfell. The Vale Army is coming up from the south, up the Kingsroad. The main concern for Jon is to make sure they can detect any forces coming at his flanks or rear, so likely any scouts or pickets are deployed in those directions – not to the south, which is where Ramsay’s forces already are. If Jon had a big enough army to do a complete envelopment of the Boltons, he might well put screens in that direction – but he doesn’t.

      What’s less forgivable is that RAMSAY failed to put scouts out to the south. Because that was HIS rear and HIS flanks. But he blithely assumed, it seems, that there were no possible threats in those directions. I wonder if Roose would have been that careless.

      But if Sansa had earlier alerted Jon to even the possibility that the Vale Army might be out there somewhere to the south? Yeah, there’s a good chance he sends a few scouts to sneak around down the Kingsroad to see if they can find it.

        Quote  Reply

    261. Flayed Potatoes: Yes, Jon fell into Ramsay’s trap and made a mistake. But it’s a mistake that at least makes sense because of course Jon, like every decent person, would try to save his family. The hate against him would be off the roof if he had just sat aside and not cared.

      Great point. And let me underline it with a reminder of just how important family is in this world. It’s a more intense quality than it is for us moderns. Tywin is an exaggerated embodiment of this attitude, but not by much. People identify more with their families than anything else, and that seems to be even more true in the North than elsewhere. And Rickon isn’t just some great nephew he’s fond of, but the titular head of House Stark.

      What Jon did in racing out to save Rickon was certainly a big tactical mistake, and by all rights should have resulted in his destruction. But I suspect that there were few northerners who would not have done as he did, (certainly not younger ones). And you know what? It will, or should, redound to Jon’s credit in the North, which won’t really know the tactics of the battle but will know about a moment like that. Heck, he’s the guy who attacked an entire force of heavy cavalry all by himself, and finished the battle using Ramsay Bolton as his personal punching bag. That’s Arthur Dayne stuff right there.

        Quote  Reply

    262. Athelstane,

      Yes. Putting all your information onto the table is what a council of war is all about. I am surprised it has become such as issue here with such labored excuses. With all due respect.

      As book Jaime thought in his war council at Riverrun, “my father’s war councils never went like this.”

        Quote  Reply

    263. My final two cents on the widely discussed Sansa debate are as follows:

      The creators/writers wanted Sansa to have a storyline where she was vindicated in a way which was grand & gratifying & it would somewhat rationalize why the trauma she suffered last season was essential for her character development (& the backlash they faced due to that). So they went ahead & overcompensated for that by making her a knight in shining armor,which was a little too on the nose & patronizing They wanted to make her more forceful & assertive, but their idea of that was for her to be constantly disapproving & not agreeing with anything for no apparent reason, which again was a bit contrived.

      And I think the reason they decided she wouldn’t tell Jon about Vale army or Littlefinger’s offer, was because if Jon would openly refuse their assistance coz he is suspicious of Petyr Baelish’s true motives, then Jon would come out as wrong at the end when they are eventually rescued. If he would have accepted it,then they couldn’t have portrayed Sansa as a savior. So they decided the non disclosure route as this way no one will emerge as clear right or wrong & the decimation of larger part of Northern forces wouldn’t matter,as most of the characters we cared about survived & the sadistic villain died a fitting gruesome death. Which was fanservice & the writers playing it safe.

      Lastly, Sansa protesting the marginal treatment from Jon can be attributed to shoddy writing at best or they are sending Sansa down a stupid/evil path (my money is on former). Ever since Jon & Sansa reunited this season, Sansa has clearly been the dominant sibling in their relationship, from their chat in his cabin where she basically demands him to forgive her & he obliges. Which fittingly suits their dynamic. She forces his hand & he caves. She had a series of propositions on how to rally the north & Jon was more than willing to do her bidding. She was working alongside him all along & not once it seemed Jon was ignoring her suggestions( unambiguous ones atleast). So her outburst on the eve of battle was totally unnecessary & out of the left field.
      And what Sophie has been saying in these interviews is probably one part her own opinion & one part notes she got from the directors.

      For the record I love Sophie & Sansa . Jon & Sansa reunion was & still remains my most favorite part of the season ( & the one I had been waiting for years,hence the outburst). So I hope their issues are resolved in the finale & we get some nice moments between the Stark siblings to help us get through the hellatus.

      ….Afterall lone wolf dies,but the pack survives.

        Quote  Reply

    264. Athelstane:
      It will, or should, redound to Jon’s credit in the North, which won’t really know the tactics of the battle but will know about a moment like that. Heck, he’s the guy who attacked an entire force of heavy cavalry all by himself, and finished the battle using Ramsay Bolton as his personal punching bag. That’s Arthur Dayne stuff right there.

      That’s what troubadours are for, as much as GRRM maligns his many bad examples of itinerant singers, noble born, low born, criminals, or just grabbing the main chance.

      We look forward to the feast and the musician recounting the exploits of the winners of the BoB.

        Quote  Reply

    265. Nuncle Kingsmoot:

      My thinking is that GRRM’s mission in this series is to turn tropes on their heads. He’s said there’s a bittersweet ending; makes me assume a lot of people we think are safe won’t be.

      Thwarting the assumptions became clear early on. Somehow that seemed more grownup and realistic than customary narratives. The lack of trope busting in show season six has been ponted out and lamented on this site.

      Much of the angst on this thread springs from a romantic tropistic hope for characters. More unconventional story needed.

        Quote  Reply

    266. I think it’s fair for Sophie Turner to say that the default position for most men in Westeros is to ignore the women among them, especially in matters of war, but the relevance of that observation is limited by the circumstances. Not only by the example Eddard and Catelyn set in her family but also by Sansa’s relationship with Jon in the show. He’s been asking her questions about information and ideas from the very first episode they met, and she’s either lied to him and his allies or refused to share her thoughts. When it came time to visit the Lords, Sansa spoke as much as Jon did, sometimes first, sometimes second. Here too there was no strict hierarchy.

      It’s not all bad though: Sansa did have some insight in Ramsey’s gameplaying, and she did tell Jon about that – advice he promptly ignored. But to the larger point of the war effort, Sansa brought preciously little to the table. She couldn’t convince any of the Northern lords, nor the Blackfish, she kept secrets, she lied, and she schemed behind the backs of those precious few who did flock to the Stark banner – putting their house and men at great risk. It’s not a pretty picture, and none of it has anything to do with her gender.

      I’m excited to see how Petyr plays his cards, and what the possible repercussions are for the other characters involved in the Winterfell plot. It should be quite the confrontation!

        Quote  Reply

    267. Marlana,

      Agreed. It’s been nice to get a little justice for once but this season has been less surprising. I’ll eagerly read the books when they come out. I enjoy both mediums and their differences.

        Quote  Reply

    268. Mihnea:
      There is no one here with who I can discuss Danyara…..

      Perhaps you might compare Dany and Yara to the relationship between Xena Warrior Princess and her sidekick the bard. Xena started the TV show an omnisexual who had lovers of every gender and orientation on earth and in hell and other regions.

      After one of her boyfriends Ares the God of war died on set in an accident, Xena focused on her female sidekick who changed from doofus bard to improbable warrior. They became life partners. The show became cliche.

      Now we have Yara who had boyfriends and suitors about to focus on Dany, a barren widow with dragons. Lots of room for contradicting trope.

        Quote  Reply

    269. Marlana,

      Ayup. Its important to check the entire context of the statement and not just view that line as a one all. Rumsfeld is basically making an excuse for the soldiers not to have decent armour and tanks::

      Army Spc. Thomas Wilson: Why do we soldiers have to dig through local landfills for pieces of scrap metal and compromised ballistic glass to up-armor our vehicles? And why don;t we have those resources readily available to us?

      Rumsfeld: It isn’t a matter of money. It isn’t a matter on the part of the army of desire. It’s a matter of production and capability of doing it. As you know, ah, you go to war with the army you have—not the army you might want or wish to have at a later time.—You can have all the armor in the world on a tank and it can (still) be blown up…

        Quote  Reply

    270. Apollo,
      …but then so is Sansa’s position regarding lack of trust etc after the traumas she’s been through.

      I keep hearing people say this. What I don’t understand is how does going through trauma automatically equate to trust issues like this? Who in Sansa’s family ever betrayed her? She fell victim to two lunatic sadists. Surely she’s now learned that while she needs to be very wary of people no matter their looks or prestige, surely she’s smart enough to realize that doesn’t carry over to everyone she meets especially her own brother and the men who’ve proved their loyalty to him.

        Quote  Reply

    271. Athelstane,

      When you say it worked for Queen Elizabeth do you mean Queen Elizabeth I? I got a bit of a Queen Elizabeth I vibe about Sansa at the end of the last episode – not that Queen Elizabeth I ever fed anyone to the hounds as far as I know or was married to a psychopath. There’s the red hair of course – though there have been other notable red-haired women in history – Mary Queen of Scots and Boudica to name but two. Elizabeth I was kept virtually as a prisoner at one period of her life – Sansa was little more than a prisoner during her time at Kings Landing after her father’s death.

        Quote  Reply

    272. What I don’t understand is how does going through trauma automatically equate to trust issues like this? Who in Sansa’s family ever betrayed her? She fell victim to two lunatic sadists.

      Sometime stop by a women’s shelter in your area. Ask the counselors there if abused women have trust issues. I can guarrentee they will have stories for you. (that doesn’t mean that all abused women have trust issues, Im saying its a common theme heard by those who work with them) There is nothing unusual about this. Everyone she trusted to ‘take care of her’ has betrayed her and/or abused her: Joffrey, LF, Ramsey. So its little wonder that she’d be a little skittish about trusting Jon, even tho its her brother. (and no, he has not proved his loyalty to her. Shes smart enough not to trust because dammit she doesn’t want to get hurt again. Its going to take her a long time before she really can) Does that excuse her actions, perhaps not. But knowing that goes a long way to understanding them, and seeing them in the bigger context

      (I worked as a volunteer for our county’s Victim Witness program; worked with a lot of abuse victims and seen the effects it had on them. )

      Whats interesting btw is the amount of trama experienced by Arya doesn’t seem to affect her. Its made her stronger for sure and has taught her lessons, but you don’t see the same issues arising from her. Difference in personalities, as you can see from the beginning in SI.

        Quote  Reply

    273. ash,

      Thanks for the quote and context. It still stuns me in that context and as a stand alone. It has gone into the lexicon.

      That quote and known unknowns has become a trope to apply to varied occasions. Even here.

        Quote  Reply

    274. Dame of Mercia: When you say it worked for Queen Elizabeth do you mean Queen Elizabeth I?

      Exactly so. Elizabeth I strung along numerous suitors, from Leicester to Anjou, just enough to keep them interested and thinking a marriage alliance was possible without really committing to anyone until her fertile years were clearly gone. (Of course, the downside of never committing to any of them meant she died without leaving a direct heir to the throne, which was risky.)

      I’m not saying Sansa will do the same here, because I really don’t know. But it just goes to show there’s another answer she could give to Petyr besides “yes” and “no” – if she’s deft about it. It might even be the best answer for her, politically.

        Quote  Reply

    275. ash: Whats interesting btw is the amount of trama experienced by Arya doesn’t seem to affect her. Difference in personalities, as you can see from the beginning in SI.

      Also difference in age – Arya the middle schooler up for experiences and adventures, hating conventional behavior norms for her gender. Sansa trying to pivot to adult mode and always performing the stereotypical gender role.

      All the time Arya was doing unladylike things, she was not thinking, “this is not suitable behavior for a girl.” She was surviving as she improvised. Big message from the author.

        Quote  Reply

    276. Now i dont know if d&d told sophie or its just her assumption that jon was being sexist… If its her assumption thn sorry sophie u r an idiot i hated sansa character now i hate u…

      First just because a person doesnt listen to u doesnt mean he is a sexist jon did what he did becaus he showed love and humanism instead of sexism… Where sansa was playing game of thrones jon was actually being a human he was trying to protect his little brother and if u were not such a bitch and told jon about hidden army rickon might have been alive….

      2nd if d&d told u that jon was being sexist then they are even bigger idiots because they did not established that… They showed jon doing what any one of us would do for his or her little brother it these situation u dont think u just want ur beloved ones safe and u are willing to sacrifise urself to protect them.. Jon was a hero and not a sexist u morons

        Quote  Reply

    277. Marlana:
      ash,

      Thanks for the quote and context.It still stuns me in that context and as a stand alone.It has gone into the lexicon.

      That quote and known unknowns has become a trope to apply to varied occasions.Even here.

      Yeah, the context makes a world of difference. I knew Rumsfeld was intelligent enough to know not to go off half-cocked, as the quote implies, but rather he was saying you’ve got to adapt to what you do have. That’s not saying we can’t wait days and prepare for days before attacking, but he is saying we don’t wait years.

        Quote  Reply

    278. RG:
      Totally off topic

      Was just sent this video of all the battles so far. Have you guys seen it? So well done! People are so talented.

      What a great video! A superb piece of seamless video editing – A great sound track (Black Sabbath – War Pigs) also. Kudos to the guy who made it 🙂

        Quote  Reply

    279. I have watched you people hating sansa for 6 years. I really don’t give a shit. Admit it you hate her because she is a woman.

        Quote  Reply

    280. Wimsey:
      Kamali,

      Jon would not have sat around waiting in hope that the Vale might turn up.And Sansa has learned by now that she cannot count on hope: particularly if you are pinning that hope on someone you threatened to kill if you ever saw him again only a few months before.

      Indeed, if Sansa had told Jon the whole story (or at least all that she knew), he would have told her: They are not coming.”Davos would have known a little about Baelish because of Stannis: and he would have told them: “he is not coming.”And Mel can only say that she has seen victory in the fire, but she no longer has any idea who’s victory it is!

      He brought his army all the way too Moat Catlin, why would Davos and Jon doubt he would bring them all the way to Winterfell? Especially since that is what he told Sansa he would do?

      You are imagining Jon and Davos quickly dismissing it to make up for Sansa not saying anything or the shady writing.

        Quote  Reply

    281. Kamali,

      Sansa warned Jon not to fall into any of Ramsay’s traps and as far as she knew being in the war tent they were going to dig trenches to protect from a pincer movement and be patient to draw Ramsay out. If they had remained there then the Knights of the Vale could have helped them win with much less losses. Also by not telling Jon about the reinforcements should have been greater incentive for them to have kept a more cautious position so was tactically a good move. Had she revealed the assistance they would have waited for reinforcements/changed tactics and even if they faked appearing weaker there would be a chance Ramsay might have had someone spotting their supply lines and seeing the Knights of the Vale waiting behind them which would have forced a siege. The last thing Jon would have wanted is Ramsay not meeting a ‘weaker’ force on the battleground and holding up in Winterfell because of the White Walkers and there being a Lannister army not too far away. If Jon hadn’t been manipulated it would have been a much less costly victory.

        Quote  Reply

    282. Sir Imp hand Strong: He brought his army all the way too Moat Catlin, why would Davos and Jon doubt he would bring them all the way to Winterfell? Especially since that is what he told Sansa he would do?

      You are imagining Jon and Davos quickly dismissing it to make up for Sansa not saying anything or the shady writing.

      also the littlefinger was only few hours late, i dont think jon wouldnt have waited few more hours before attacking and tbh the desperate he was for more men, he would have listen and maybe sent scouts to see if the army is coming or not…

      also the argument that jon didnt listen to sansa because he was being “sexist” is moronicly idiotic.. i mean imagine if Davos had said the same thing sansa said ooo jon dont fall for trap… wow what a advice, do we really believe jon wouldnt have done what he did… a try to save rickon if davos had told him that?

      fact is Sansa is playing game of thrones and Jon is still Jon.. a bit more angry but that can be expected but it was Sansas selfishness and stupidity that got rickon killed…. maybe seeing the huge army outside winterfell with knights of vale, ramsay just might have consider a different approach…

        Quote  Reply

    283. YourSansaMama,

      lol well this argument is as foolish as sophies statement about jon being a sexist just because he forget about what a person(who happens to be a female) said in his emotional moment when he tried to save his brother

      i hate sansa more thn i hate ramsay… but my favourite character is a women fact most of my top favourite characters are all female…

      Arya
      Dany
      cersei
      lady stoneheart

      after all of these comes Jon

        Quote  Reply

    284. Glad to hear an explanation for Ghost’s absence. I kind of figured he just left him at Castle Black since he hasn’t been around since they all left, but there didn’t seem to be a plausible reason he would do that. I just watched Watchers on the Wall again yesterday and there’s the scene when Jon descends from the top of the wall to join the fight below and the first thing he does is send Sam to unlock Ghost, saying “I need him more than I need you.” Those two belong together. I hope he has more of a presence next season and in the future battles against the Army of the Dead. Remember it was Ghost who saved Sam from the dead during the melee at the Fist of the First Men. It may be confusing in battle to tell who is Bolton and who is Stark and that’s a plenty good reason not to have him there (Robb used Grey Wind more as a scout), but it isn’t confusing to tell who is dead and who is alive.

        Quote  Reply

    285. Athelstane,

      Exactly. It’s exactly the type of folktale you hear in the North. It’s pretty similar to all the stories we were hearing on the show about how Robb turned into a wolf during battle. I wish more people would notice this. Ramsay said that the North had heard of Jon’s excellent reputation. Davos and Jon said that the North would be watching and the North saw:

      – the bastard of Winterfell attempting to rescue the head of House Stark, his liege lord and the rightful Lord of Winterfell
      – Jon fighting bravely with his army while Ramsay did nothing
      – Jon pursuing Ramsay to Winterfell with a giant
      – Jon capturing Winterfell almost immediately
      – Jon taking down Ramsay without a single weapon

      His popularity should go up. And if the surviving Wildlings spread the word about his resurrection it will only add to the legend.

        Quote  Reply

    286. I want to comment about Yara and the Iron Born changing their ways. It seems to me Yara is already leaning that way since the old ways really aren’t working anymore.

      Also if the Iron Born are based on Vikings — Yara = Rollo? With or without the marriage but loosely following the Vikings story as they assimilated into European Culture.

      In other words yes, it’s plausible.

        Quote  Reply

    287. ash,

      I think it will be very interesting to see how Arya reacts when she is finally reunited with Jon andor Sansa. She´s changed and scarred by her experiences and I wonder if that will affect her level of trust for her siblings. So far, everyone that Arya has interacted with since she left the Hound has been a stranger or Faceless man. She struck up a friendship with Lady Crane which got the latter killed, but otherwise her whole mission was to unlearn to be Arya Stark.

      I think the one advantage Arya had was that her “training” gave her tools for survival in a more direct way than Sansa had. Sansa eventually learned to play the game but she didn’t have anyone really trying to help her learn, except Marjorie (a little) and Littlefinger who was also manipulating and using her. Arya also had allies and friends; Yoren, Gendry, Hotpie and Jaqen as well as the Hound in his own way.

      Sansa was surrounded by enemies or exploiters, and even though Tyrion tried to be kind, he was still a Lannister – enemy of her family, and put his House’s interests first (for all the good it did him). She had good reason not to be trusting.

      I note that Sansa was wary of Brienne at first, until Brienne proved herself. I would hope that now that Jon has shown her his character and that he was as good as his word when he said he’d never let Ramsay touch her again, she will be able to trust him.

        Quote  Reply

    288. Markus Stark,

      Yeah, given that they didn’t foresee how the fandom would react to Arya’s stabbing, they probably thought they were setting up a female empowerment moment not leaving us to wonder if she was villainous. To be honest, it would be way more interesting to me if she was a villain or in the process of becoming one.

        Quote  Reply

    289. Flayed Potatoes,

      I believe that, without having the benefit of the character’s POV as written in the books, that all of those events occurred due to Ramsay’s arrogance. He is Warden of the North because of his marriage to Sansa and because he holds Winterfell. Several of the larger houses have pledged their allegiance to him; he is holding Rickon as hostage. He sent a raven to The Wall inviting Jon and Sansa to attack him-he DOESN’T CARE about how big of an army they have nor who they bring with him. He was taunting them, remember? He kept repeating, “Come and see” throughout the letter; basically saying, “Bring it on, bro, because my army is bigger than yours and in the end, Sansa, Winterfell and the North are all MINE and you all will suffer my wrath”.

      Guess he was wrong…

        Quote  Reply

    290. redxgod,

      The battlefield is no place to show weakness/emotion. There will be time for that later. She learned from her time in Kingslanding to keep her emotions hidden. She was punished by Joffrey for mourning her dead father and forced to denounce him and the rest of her family as traitors.

      She thought she would be safe with her aunt; but noooooo… Lysa was looney tunes. She was accused of seducing her new ‘uncle’ (something that still makes me nauseated! LOL. Everything about Littlefinger creeps me out. ) Lysa threatens to throw her through the Moon Door.

      THEN she is ‘sold’ to The Boltons to be used and abused by Ramsay. She has her emotions locked away and will only bring them out when and if she feels safe enough to display them.

      She has been away from her family for so long she’s forgotten what it feels like to be loved unconditionally. She will mourn Rickon in her own time and her own way; privately. To do so publicly would display weakness. Sansa is far from being ‘weak’ at this point.

        Quote  Reply

    291. Rella,

      I’ve been of the opinion that Sansa was the great strategists here. She withheld the info not knowing if Jon would fall into Ramsey’s trap, which he did. Knowing that was a possible outcome she had her own solution to her brother’s blunder, a cavalry army of her own to gain the field to the surprise of both, Jon and Ramsey. She played all of them.

        Quote  Reply

    Jump to the Top

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *