It Is Known: “The Door”

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It’s easy to sort through “The Door’s” various moments of note – the revelation of Wylis’s transformation into Hodor, the choosing of Euron Greyjoy as the next king of the Iron Islands, Sansa Stark’s confrontation with Lord Petyr Baelish – and pick the dominant thematic motif: (re)birth, particularly considering that Euron has a literal return from death. (A corollary recurring theme: second chances [which, I suppose, is a type of rebirth, as well], as the developments surrounding Arya Stark and Ser Jorah Mormont more than ably point to.)

But the most important thematic footwork in this episode is done on the dancefloor of backstory, not necessarily of character work – and in order to properly analyze, deconstruct, and otherwise appreciate the slick dance moves, we’ll need to change up the format or scope of this column, even if slightly and even if only for this one instance.

There have been few times throughout Game of Thrones’s five-and-a-half-year lifespan that the series drops a megaton bombshell of a revelation, one that makes all of the events before it be thrust into an entirely different light – which is more than likely a byproduct of showrunners Dan Weiss’s and David Benioff’s deliberate decision to strip their adaptation of most of the world-building, histories, and mythologies that George R.R. Martin so adroitly (if not always so successfully) employs in heaping helpings in his massive tomes of novels. (They have, obviously, perfected the bringing of Martin’s game-changing, shocking moments to the small screen, as the death of Lord Eddard Stark or the bloodbath that was the Red Wedding resoundingly attests to.) This makes “The Door’s” surprise reveal of the White Walkers’ origins all the more effective – it is, more likely than not, the single most powerful narrative twist yet.

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Here’s how it works thematically: the children of the forest, suddenly finding their home of Westeros being invaded some 12,000 years ago by the savage and unruly First Men (who were able to leave their lovely continent of Essos behind by a naturally-occurring land bridge), decided that the only way for them to win this sudden, unexpected war was to turn the greater size and strength of the humans against themselves – and, indeed, by transforming man into the White Walkers, it would nullify the First Men’s greater technology (leather shields, long lances, the domestication of horses), as well. It was as much of a sure thing as could be possible.

Except, in the joint world of A Song of Ice and Fire and Game of Thrones, things never go according to plan. The Walkers turned out to be uncontrollable – there’s another thematic touchpoint here, perhaps, of how power corrupts all peoples at all levels across all civilizations – and became just as much of a menace against their creators as against their intended victims. Finding themselves overpowered and fending off enemies on two fronts, a peace pact was eventually signed, and the First Men and the children both beat back the supernatural ice zombies and created the Wall in order to ensure their joint future safety.

(It should be noted that there is another possible explanation for the creation of the White Walkers: our current understanding of the novels’ timeline suggests that the Pact between man and child occurred some four thousand years before the advent of the Long Night, which could possibly suggest a rogue splinter group of children of the forest that saw a truce as capitulation and humanity as nothing more than a tainting influence. This, too, would be perfectly in keeping with Martin’s narrative and its various thematic buttresses.)

Ned's execution

Queen Cersei Lannister installs her son, Joffrey, on the throne, unleashing what is arguably the worst monster on the unified Seven Kingdoms across all three centuries of their existence. King Robb Stark marries Talisa Maegyr out of love, thereby setting up both his and his kingdom’s deaths. Cersei grants the High Sparrow his own martial autonomy, Jon Snow moves to liberalize the Night’s Watch far faster than the organization can cope with, Daenerys Targaryen unwittingly creates an interregional pro-slavery insurgency, Magister Illyrio Mopatis meant his wedding gift of three dragons’ eggs as a purely symbolic gesture – the story is rife with unintended consequences (and in A Song of Ice and Fire, with its significantly bigger cast of characters and corresponding thistle of throughlines, they’re exponentially more present). Even the most meticulously of laid-out plans – Illyrio and Varys’s planned Targaryen restoration (original lynchpin: Viserys), Littlefinger’s designs for total war across the land (Cersei was originally intended to rule for five years before everything would fall apart under her tenure, not five measly months) – invariably fall apart or, at the least, require constant course corrections.

This is both more realistic and less so. On the one hand, those stories that feature a dastardly villain with a highly convoluted master plan (such as the recent Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice) require almost literally an omnipotent and omnipresent figure to pull them off (such as Darth Sidious in the Star Wars saga), which is, obviously, rather implausible in those areas where the Force isn’t available. On the other hand, however, the laws of probability dictate that things go according to plan at least some of the time; by painting everything all black instead of all white, neither Martin nor the showrunners depict their narrative any more realistically (as I have written about at length before on another site).

Children

There’s another potential problem rearing its ugly head here in “The Door” exposing the White Walkers’ secret history: Game of Thrones’s lack of exposition on the children of the forest/general Westerosi history front, which means that, for most casual viewers (those who either haven’t read the source material or who don’t frequent such treasure troves of information as Watchers on the Wall), the revelation might either fall flat or seem to come out of left field. The accusation that a late-arriving storyline suddenly lurches to the foreground – and to relevance – is one, ironically, that is routinely levied against Martin with his latest two books, and it looks increasingly like it will be getting aired more and more as the final three seasons continue to play themselves out.

Oh, well – at least, thematically, Game of Thrones continues to be held resolutely together.

 

You can view all previous It Is Known posts here. Or you can peruse my older column, Anatomy of a Throne, here.

88 responses

Jump to (and Always Support) the Bottom

    1. Does it mean that there are more Children of the Forest or were they the last ones standing?

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    2. The comment about The Children leaping to the foreground is accurate, as my husband (casual viewer) asked me who “the little fairies” we’re after this episode. Har!

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    3. I am very interested in how the books will spell out the origin of the WW. As you state, AWOIAF gives the account:

      The CotF made a pact of peace with the First Men on the God’s Eye long before the arrival of the long night. It does however also have what now appears to be a deceptive line about the CotF being driven to an act of desperation in their war with the First Men. That ends a paragraph and the next paragraph goes into the legend of the CotF possibly bringing the “Hammer Of Waters” to destroy the land bridge between Essos and Westoros. This is then discredited by the Maestor giving the account as more likely a natural event. After seeing the show reveal it would seem Martin cleverly separated the statements giving a hint at something true (act of desperation) and throwing off what that might mean with the “Hammer of Waters” story. Perhaps the CotF did create the WW during the war with the first men but they eventually came to the peace pact while WW were still under control of CotF which they could use as leverage. Sometime later they lost control and the WW started gathering their own power and motivations which later led to the long night. I am definitely interested in how the books will fill in this story

      Also hope there is more exposition on the magic of how frozen ice creatures that can raise the dead are generated from a dragon glass dagger to the heart. I imagine the show is not going to go into it though…

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    4. Random thought; so I wonder if Bran the Builder was actually more Bran the Diplomat forging an alliance with the Children to use their magic to build the wall.

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    5. GeekFurious,

      # 1 to me .caused me to join the watch. I’m a noob so forgive my ignorance.trying to learn but seems some would rather not have new members.1st ever social exchange for me and kinda got carried away with all info Sunday shined on us.

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    6. Maybe weirwood trees started crying tears of blood when the white walkers were created by the children of the forest? i have always wondered why those trees cry tears of blood

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    7. My daughter who hasn’t read the books but loves the show has been so confused about what is going on this season whereas I have been thrilled so far. I’ve tried to explain but I know she gets confused when I’m trying to explain in 15 minutes what just happened and who everyone is….I never thought about people who were unfamiliar having such a hard time. She had no idea that TOJ scene was the TOJ or why young Ned was there, something about his sister….that’s sad.

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    8. I always thought that Jon Snow was Ice and Daenerys was Fire… But other posters convinced me that actually, Bran is Ice, Dany Fire and Jon

      the “bridge” between Ice and Fire, per his Targaryen-Stark heritage

      .

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    9. Hiccup Targaryen:
      I am very interested in how the books will spell out the origin of the WW.As you state, AWOIAF gives the account:

      Also hope there is more exposition on the magic of how frozen ice creatures that can raise the dead are generated from a dragon glass dagger to the heart.I imagine the show is not going to go into it though…

      There are a couple of ways the show could do it in a way casual viewers could understand:

      Perhaps the Night’s King was an extremely powerful Greenseer prior to becoming a WW?? This power includes skinchanging/warging, so the show could play it that way. Or……(Puts on tinfoil hat), perhaps Bran IS the Night’s King?? and there will be some sort of time loop explanation ala Hodor? (takes off hat).

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    10. Elizabeth,

      I didn’t read the books either, but what helped me understand better was watching the accompanying History and Lore episodes from each season. They have quite a bit of useful knowledge about past events. And they’re really fun to watch.

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    11. Bunny Without Banners:
      Elizabeth,

      I didn’t read the books either, but what helped me understand better was watching the accompanying History and Lore episodes from each season.They have quite a bit of useful knowledge about past events.And they’re really fun to watch.

      Thanks so much! I will point this out to her. We have all the blu-rays but she seldom has watched any of the background info and she didn’t know after the credits run each Sunday that you see a “sneak peek” of the upcoming episode OR a breakdown of the episode by D&D. It would be quick and easy for her. Appreciate your help.

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    12. Hiccup Targaryen: Also hope there is more exposition on the magic of how frozen ice creatures that can raise the dead are generated from a dragon glass dagger to the heart.

      That is an excellent point. As I watched the Night King touch the ground in front of the Tree that caused a huge rumbling rent in the ground all the way to the base of the Tree, my thought was that they had certainly developed a lot of their own magic and power along the way. Unfortunately for the rest of the world, their power to raise the dead, however it was discovered or developed, could mean the end of Westeros and all its inhabitants.

      They, the White Walkers, are certainly “intelligent” beings, able to understand and use strategy and the use and refinement of their own powers. The wights are just shambling killing machines, but the White Walkers seem to be smart and crafty. Is that a result of Craster bloodline and craftiness? I’m wondering if the source of their intelligence will ever be discussed.

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    13. Elizabeth,

      If people don’t rewatch GoT before the new season it can be very hard to follow. I think the best way to watch GoT (if you don’t want to prepare yourself before every season) is to wait for 2018, when the show will be over, and then you can just watch everything at once.

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    14. I’ve just seen this on GoldDerby and i’m curious to see what people think of it. It’s the Emmy Mailer, HBO sent for consideration. On the Game of Thrones section, they have submitted for
      Supporting Actor:
      Peter Dinklage, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Kit Harrington
      Supporting Actress:
      Lena Headey, Emilia Clarke, Sophie Turner, Maisie Williams
      Guest Actor:
      Max von Sydow, Ian McShane
      Guest Actress:
      Diana Rigg
      They’ve submitted all five directors for consideration.
      http://static.goldderby.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/hbo-08-emmy-awards-fyc-mailer-game-of-thrones-veep-620×360.jpg

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    15. I don’t watch the DVD extras or read the books and I am baffled as to the Children / First Men conflict and backstory. I got that the WWs were created by the Children (as Bran saw in his vision with the Three Eyed Raven), that they were created as a last-ditch weapon against humans (said by one of the Children to Bran when he cam out of his vision trance), and that the Children were in Westeros long before men (said by one of the Children after Bran, Hodor (sniff) and Meera arrived at the cave beneath the Weirwood tree.

      Not looking for more info or correction, just saying how it plays to an ‘unsullied’.

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    16. Elizabeth,

      ‘She could also start reading the books if she’s old enough to manage the reading level and definitely watch the after the episode show.

      I know there was way too much history and such in the books for a show like this, but I think the show did a diservice by leaving it all out. While I do love this adaptation but I think there could have been some whispers about ancient or origin history as it developed. Wouldn’t need much, just a bit to explain what this larger picture is all about. I know that the post show comments help, and HBO certainly makes sure to let people know those are available. I guess if someone had questions they can go there, or just go to the source material.

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    17. ash,

      All the greats know history is key to making a grand epic like this it’s why the books take so long. Grrm giving alot of his self to us .I’d love em to be done already but take all the time u need grrm.

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    18. mau:
      Elizabeth,

      If people don’t rewatch GoT before the new season it can be very hard to follow. I think the best way to watch GoT (if you don’t want to prepare yourself before every season) is to wait for 2018, when the show will be over, and then you can just watch everything at once.

      She didn’t rewatch the seasons this year before they started because she was so busy and you are right. I think she has forgotten a lot, add that to the areas they are moving into (TOJ, COtF, etc.) and I’d be confused if I hadn’t read the books or didn’t watch everything on every disc and watch the show at least two times after it airs each Sunday AND hang out here….lol

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    19. Dylanstargaryian,

      Well, many have speculated that BR is working for the great Other, as if he was “good”, and omniscient, you would’ve thought he saw Bran’s screw-up coming, and prevented it. He didn’t prevent it, so perhaps half-trained is what he really wants??

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    20. Elizabeth,

      If she doesn’t have time to read the books or may simply not like it, I read AGOT when I was 19 I struggled quite a bit to get into it until Neds execution and she may not find them that interesting as the first 3 are quite similar with the show and reading them may not feel that interesting, once you know the outcome.

      I truly recomand the History and Lore videos. Each season has about 1 houre long videos, so she has 5 episodes worth of material, they are very well done and do a amazing job at giving backstory and lore and explaining them in a very easy and nice manner.
      The narration by the actors really helps them feel…”alive” and not just a info dump.

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    21. as mentioned above, the histories and lore videos are a great source of information about things the show night not cover but only refers to, or doesn’t cover completely. such as the doom of valyria, TCOF, the first men, even the beginnings of the major houses. you can find them here:

      https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=histories+and+lore+game+of+thrones

      they are narrated by the actors from the show. it will often help those who haven’t read the books have a better understanding of the events taking place and why they are taking place. plus it doesn’t take as long as reading it all does.

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    22. Morrigen,

      I toyed with the theory that the Night King was actually controlled by the TER and Bran was going to be turned into the new “Great Other”. I think the last episode shot that down for me though since clearly the CotF were fighting against the WW and though it was offscreen the NK snuffed the TER.

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    23. Huntermac87: so I wonder if Bran the Builder was actually more Bran the Diplomat forging an alliance with the Children to use their magic to build the wall.

      Or, Bran the Builder was simply our Bran Stark gone back in time and perma-warging some human boy from that time, who grows up to be Bran the Builder? That is, could GoT/ASoIaF pull off what Babylon 5 did with the human-Minbari connection?

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    24. GeekFurious,

      Thanks I’ve been getting little shit on. Cause I didn’t know what to do .I’ve got a shit load of post that just seemed to keep coming.I’m not a troll as I’ve been described already ,I’ve just got a lot of spare time at work.and thanks for the welcome. Whole lot nicer than the “Dan the banner”.

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    25. Hiccup Targaryen,

      Don’t forget that that account was written from the perspective of a maester thousands of years after the fact; piecing together a narrative from various accounts, all of which were written thousands of years after the fact. That’s a rather unreliable narrator. I wouldn’t be surprised some chronology was messed up.

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    26. Mag,

      Same, I loved Max von Sydow this season. I’m surprised they haven’t submitted Jonathan Pryce for Supporting Actor. Love him or hate him, it’s a great performance and name recognition alone might have gotten him the nod. Also is there someone who can zoom in on the image. It says the name of the character, Ian McShane is playing but it’s hard to make out, it’s quite a short name.

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    27. Kongaholic,

      For the love of God, not Peter Dinklage again. We love him, we know he’s an extremely good actor, but an award to Lena, Kit or Sophie is long overdue. Fingers crossed for Max Von Sydow and Ian McShane too. GOT’s cast is one of the best and it deserves every acting award there is.

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    28. The death of almost everyone in the cave was so horrible. It also made me more pessimistic about the survival of my favourite characters at the end. The likelihood of surviving a massive wight attack is slim. So, if they survive the Battle of the Bastards and/or the Siege of Riverrun, they will have to fight against White Walkers and wights.
      I remember the Old Nan stories where people hide in their castles and starve to death.
      In the meeting between Jon, Davos, Sansa, etc… Jon mentioned they had the White Walkers attacking North and the Boltons South, are they going to hide in Winterfell or are they going to run South???. Are the dead going to rise everywhere in Westeros at the same time???? I wonder how the Long Night will develop.

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    29. Morrigen,

      as if he was “good”, and omniscient, you would’ve thought he saw Bran’s screw-up coming, and prevented it.

      Yeah I wondered that, but then I usually wonder that about any one with psychic powers; why couldn’t you have done something! But the we wouldn’t have a story, so…

      Elizabeth,

      i’d be confused if I hadn’t read the books or didn’t watch everything on every disc and watch the show at least two times after it airs each Sunday AND hang out here….lol

      Yeah I know what you mean – we spend so much time with it, we should get college credit with a major in ASOIaF 🙂

      Mihnea,

      she may not find them that interesting as the first 3 are quite similar with the show and reading them may not feel that interesting, once you know the outcome.

      I dunno, often for me knowing some of the outcome helps me read the story, esp if there is a bunch of interesting if somewhat dense narrative with it. But ymmv.

      I haven’t seen the history and lore videos since I figured I got lots from the book, but I am certainly no expert and bet I’d get more from them.

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    30. I just spent some time watching the beginning of the history and lore videos and really like it – read like a story book by the actors Here’s a link to the complete videos from seasons 1-5

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    31. Bran has no one to direct him on where to go .

      This is the time benjen . Or maybe even cold hands?

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    32. Rhaenys Stark: For the love of God, not Peter Dinklage again. We love him, we know he’s an extremely good actor, but an award to Lena, Kit or Sophie is long overdue.

      What about Alfie/Theon? That’s robbery, if you ask me. By the gods, this year, in just this last episode, when he was nominating Yara to be Queen, you could see every effing emotion on his face: The realization that if he hadn’t messed up so badly, the throne would automatically have been his (except for that pesky evil uncle of his butting in) Everything was on his face, the agony of having to relive his physical condition, and therefore the torture, in public and not only have zilch in the way of empathy from his people, but be the butt of their jokes, and STILL have to carry on with as much nobility as he could muster. It was all there, and has been. If he doesn’t get nominated NEXT year for THIS year, I’ll be really annoyed. All respect to Peter, but damn, he’s not the only supporting actor of merit on the show.

      We should start a campaign for him this summer, while we are bored and mending from the wounds caused by the end of the season slumpishness.

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    33. Kongaholic: Guest Actor:
      Max von Sydow, Ian McShane

      Yeah, but could you make out the role Ian was nominated for? I tried to enlarge the picture to see if I could read it, but nada, it was all blurred. Somebody with some good magnifying equipment should try and see if they can read the character name. I’m dying to know who McShane is playing. Does anyone have any idea in what episode he will star? If it’s already been posted, forgive me, I missed it, but would really like to know.

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    34. Elizabeth: My daughter who hasn’t read the books but loves the show has been so confused about what is going on this season whereas I have been thrilled so far

      Um, lots of people wanting to be helpful in saying the daughter should read he books didn’t ask how old the daughter is. Is she an adult in her own right and somewhat experienced in the world? Or is she still kind of an innocent giddy teen? It makes a difference. Hell, I’m an old grown person, and some of the cruel stuff I read shocked me to the core, especially where Ramsay was doing his deeds. Show Ramsay is about as much as I can take, and I skipped past the torture scenes as fast as I could. You don’t want some sweet innocent young girl taking these on as summer reading unless you are readily available to answer a whole lot of questions and provide a whole lot of support.

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    35. One of the more intriguing aspects of the “White Walker origin” scene is the fact that the man tied to the tree is played by Vladimir Furdkik, who also plays the Night’s King. Now obviously, it would seem like a pretty straight-forward choice to choose the same actor to portray the Night’s King as the “first” (?) White Walker… but is there something more to this? Will we actually get any information on who this man was when he was a man, or is his position as “King” merely a result of his being the first WW? HmmmmmmMmmmmmmmmMMMMMmmmmmmmmMMmmm………………. *ponders deeply for the remainder of the week*

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    36. Thronetender,

      I’m dying to know. It’s too hard to make out. Someone suggested it could be Hans, and I’ve seen someone suggest Hero. But I am really not sure. I think the most telling thing about all the actors they’ve submitted for consideration is that it’s based on name recognition. Plenty of people know Kit Harrington, Sophie Turner, Lena Headey etc. however not everyone recognises the name Alfie Allen, same applies to Carice van Houten, Conleth Hill.

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    37. Thronetender,

      Yes I agree with everything you said… Alfie definitely deserves an Emmy, at least a nomination. As did Sean Bean, Charles Dance, Pedro Pascal etc. Hopefully some of our remaining favourites get the recognition they deserve sooner or later.

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    38. ash,

      I been listening the entire history of westeros series while at work. About all of essos, the first men, then the andals, then the targaryans conquest, up to Robert rebellion.

      What I found absolutely amazing was trying to listen to the entire targaryan dynasty. There are so many of them with the same name and a lot of times alive at the same time! Trying to keep up demanded a lot of rewind! It was great knowing why they name certain things, like the Sept of Valor etc. The dance of the dragons and the blackfyre rebellion was marvelous. They have those on YouTube separate as well with more detail.

      They also have the history of the first men, the war with the children of the of the forest, the andals as well. I am at the seven kingdoms, just about to be done with the iron islands.

      Its just crazy though because if you just watch the series or read the books you would think the throne belong to the targaryans. But the reality is the ones who rule have always been the ones who have been stronger and or smarter and having the dragons gave them a huge advantage. And its no wonder they were dethroned after the dragons died and it was much their own doing

      . So if Dany conquor westeros again, it won’t be because she deserve it, it will be because she was the most powerful and the smartest.

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    39. Thronetender,

      some of the cruel stuff I read shocked me to the core, especially where Ramsay was doing his deeds. Show Ramsay is about as much as I can take, and I skipped past the torture scenes as fast as I could.

      Huh, I don’t remember reading details of the torture, but of other things yes esp with Jayne. Besides if she’s already seen the show she’s probably old enough to read the book (hope so anyway!:)

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    40. Thronetender,

      She already copped to being a show lover. Is it truly your contention that, in the realm of age-appropriateness, the books are actually LESS appropriate than the show??

      That is a fascinating line of thought, though one I’m not sure I can get behind. The show would seem to me to offer far more in the way of disturbing imagery, in particular with regards to Ramsay Bolton and his deeds. Book Ramsay does most of his worst stuff off-page, where as show Ramsay is right there in your face.

      I don’t mean to pile on, just can’t imagine someone who is totally okay with the show somehow being too young or immature to “handle” the books.

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    41. Elizabeth,

      So I haven’t read the books and seem to understand everything perfectly fine
      I know I visit the site but I’ve come to many conclusions without this site
      My sister and cousin don’t visit such sites and seem to understand everything perfectly fine. It all depends how you’ve kept up in prior seasons and how much you understood before. If you understood the children in season. 4 then you should get them now.
      It depends on how deep you know the show (no even needing the books )

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    42. There’s another potential problem rearing its ugly head here in “The Door” exposing the White Walkers’ secret history: Game of Thrones’s lack of exposition on the children of the forest/general Westerosi history front, which means that, for most casual viewers (those who either haven’t read the source material or who don’t frequent such treasure troves of information as Watchers on the Wall), the revelation might either fall flat or seem to come out of left field.

      I suspect that it will not for one simple reason: MB&W are riffing on a very familiar historical pattern where humans destroy nature and indigenous life forms (including, sometimes, other humans) out of callus greed. They were killing us and destroying our forests: how many times in history have now extinct or badly eradicated peoples said that?

      I think that the big take home point is the one that stands this fantasy on its head, and makes it much more like many Science Fiction stories instead: the big “baddies” in this are the humans!

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    43. Hiccup Targaryen: Also hope there is more exposition on the magic of how frozen ice creatures that can raise the dead are generated from a dragon glass dagger to the heart. I imagine the show is not going to go into it though…

      Nor should the books! Nothing GRRM can write will make “sense” of it: it’s magic, and thus, well, magic. In a way, it would be like bogging down a story set in the modern world by explaining how guns work or how computers work.

      The important point is that the Children were so desperate in their losing war with the First Men that they created a weapon that subsequently turned itself on them. (This has come up a lot in SciFi stories: but insofar as I know, this is the first Fantasy story to try that.) The irony is that the weapon probably did end the War with the humans: because the Walkers consider humans, Children, Giants and probably even snarks and Grumpkins the “foe” (or at least meat for their armies), the Children and the Humans had to unite against them.

      The question we should now be asking is: assuming that the Children are like humans, what animal did they import to deal with the Cane Toads? Are we going to learn that R’hllor or possibly the Valyrians somehow had origins with the Children as they tried to “get it right this time”? The former would seem more probable, as R’hllor seems to be directing its followers against the Walkers. However, R’hllor also likes having people destabilize their societies by burning their leaders and it also seems to tell its followers that the Old Gods are a bad thing (given Mels comments at the Wall).

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    44. I

      don’t mean to pile on, just can’t imagine someone who is totally okay with the show somehow being too young or immature to “handle” the books

      .

      Esp when you remember what all happens just in the first season….I was reading adult themed books by the time I was 10. The imagery of those never bothered me (till I read Grapes of Wrath at 12 and my dad took it away from me for a bit because it was making me so depressed) But tv shows, oh my – I could never watch Outer Limits or Twilight Zone without getting nightmares….(I can watch the latter as an adult without trouble, but the visual imagery still would get to me big time)

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    45. Morrigen,

      I just watched hodor scene again.it sure seems bran had to be there only so young hodor could hear meera’s voice .she seems the mirror image as far as personality goes to lyanna Stark yes I believe the twins .can’t. Really fiqure her in if not for that. So it wasn’t bran they were after
      Blood raven and meera.its the meera ,mirror that got me into the twin. Anyone else? Add to or tear a part.

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    46. Throne Thoughts…

      The TER told Bran at the end of season 4 that he would never walk again… but he would fly. This is important. Bran will fly before this is all said and done. Most assume that this means he’ll warg into a dragon. Well, if he’s going to warg into a dragon then it’s got to be Drogon, right? Dragons are magic made life, and Drogon is the biggest dragon in the world. He’s also a wanderer.

      I think we may find out that there’s a harsh catch to warging into a dragon. It’s a one way ticket, and you pay a permanent price. You go in, but you don’t come out. If Bran does that, if he makes that sacrifice to save humans from the WWs, it’ll be done as Drogon.

      Additional thoughts…. Bran warged into Wylis while he was still a healthy minded young man. This changes what we originally assumed – that Bran could only warg into Hodor because he was a simpleton. No, Bran can warg into a smart, capable human. Let that sink in….

      Hodor (assumed) and Summer were killed by wights. Does this mean they’ll be revived as zombies, too? If so, will Bran still be able to warg into them? If he can, it will give us some real insight into the true intentions of the WWs, and some scenes set way North into the Lands of Always Winter. A bone chilling place. In more ways than one.

      Benjen or Coldhands, or maybe Benjen Coldhands will be there to aid Meera and Bran, right? Just has to be…

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    47. Wimsey: The question we should now be asking is: assuming that the Children are like humans, what animal did they import to deal with the Cane Toads? Are we going to learn that R’hllor or possibly the Valyrians somehow had origins with the Children as they tried to “get it right this time”?

      Well, if I wanted to get rid of an almost invincible icy super-warrior that surrounds itself in armies of undead corpses, I’d probably invent a large, flying thing that breathes fire. Of course, when that got out of control, I’d have to invent fireproof people to tame it, and when they started conquering the world, I’d invent a bunch of face-changing assassins to kill them. Face-changing assassins seem safe enough…nothing could possibly go wrong with that.

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    48. I myself not a book reader but I love the book readers if not for reading your posts I would not have understood the importance of young Ned and the tower of joy scene. As far as who is the Night’s King I remember Sam talking about Ostric Stark, I think he was L.C. at the tender age of 9 not Bran but still a Stark and it is connected to the Night’s Watch, be nice remember not a book reader and had 3 glasses of wine!!!!

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    49. Kay,

      hey, this is also my favourite Theorie. There are many historical Brans mentioned, what if they all are our Bran in disguise, whilst he tries to stop the WW, for example by building the wall etc.
      Beside that I can`t wait to see the “Spiders big as Hounds”, promised by Old Nan!

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    50. I’d be interested to know if anyone else thinks the scene with the Night’s King cracking the ground and the cave is a foreshadow of the method he may use to destroy the wall?

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    51. Dylanstargaryian,

      While I support R+L=J, I don’t necessarily believe R+L=J+M. I was thinking in that scene it was Bran who heard Meera (listen to your friend) but will re-watch again today. However, what was interesting was that Meera was able to somehow reach Bran while he was in his vision. Not sure if that indicates something special about Meera, but it certainly underscores the power of Bran’s gifts.

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    52. CarsonWayne:
      Throne Thoughts…

      The TER told Bran at the end of season 4 that he would never walk again… but he would fly.This is important.Bran will fly before this is all said and done.Most assume that this means he’ll warg into a dragon.Well, if he’s going to warg into a dragon then it’s got to be Drogon, right?Dragons are magic made life, and Drogon is the biggest dragon in the world.He’s also a wanderer.

      I think we may find out that there’s a harsh catch to warging into a dragon.It’s a one way ticket, and you pay a permanent price.You go in, but you don’t come out.If Bran does that, if he makes that sacrifice to save humans from the WWs, it’ll be done as Drogon.

      Additional thoughts….Bran warged into Wylis while he was still a healthy minded young man.This changes what we originally assumed – that Bran could only warg into Hodorbecause he was a simpleton.No, Bran can warg into a smart, capable human.Let that sink in….

      Hodor (assumed) and Summer were killed by wights.Does this mean they’ll be revived as zombies, too?If so, will Bran still be able to warg into them?If he can, it will give us some real insight into the true intentions of the WWs, and some scenes set way North into the Lands of Always Winter.A bone chilling place.In more ways than one.

      Benjen or Coldhands, or maybe Benjen Coldhands will be there to aid Meera and Bran, right?Just has to be…

      Your entire post opens up so many questions! The parallels between the abilities of Bran and the Night’s King are a bit scary, actually. If Bran can warg a fully capable human, then how far a step is it for him to warg a corpse, really? I think we have only just seen the metaphorical tip of the iceberg, if you ask me. Regarding Drogon, I have always assumed that Bran will eventually warg a dragon, so that to me is a foregone conclusion. As to a one-way ticket, given what we saw with the last episode, you may be onto something.

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    53. A dornish Tyrell,

      While dany and bran is certainly magic and powerful ..these two are the main characters that has spent most times in magical part of this world ..

      But when you take targarayens alone ..
      Then dany being fire targaryen and jon being ice targaryen makes sense..

      See both have been lost their parents forced to live in excile and hiding and both yearn for a family most ..

      Both rises to power and try to make a new world where wildlings and nightwatch and slavers and slaves coexist and live together ..

      One raised in icy north and other in fiery essos .

      Beer Island,

      The targaryens held the throne for 150,years after the dragons died. .

      I think that citadel is the reason why targaryens died and for what happened to dragons amd at summerhall ..

      So i hope we get answers to those when we get to see oldtown and if they are the reason i hope dany burns them down amd bring the whole citadel to ashes .

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    54. Morrigen,

      This reminds me of a question I had regarding the TER. When the WW approach him and we get the stare down he says something like “It is time, leave me.” Of course we assume he’s talking to Bran but it is shown being spoken present day, not past-vision where he is with Bran at WF. Bran is warging in the present day cave, plus he’s not even in the cave cause Meera’s already dragged him down the tunnel. But even so, the choice of words “leave me” as opposed to “I must leave now?”

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    55. Bran eventually living in the past, and making the past what it was/is, didn’t seem likely to me when I read most of the books (I skipped around bit), but GRRM (and by extension D&D) use so much foreshadowing that now I’m beginning to think that’s what might happen.

      The Three-eyed Raven implied to Bran that if Bran wasn’t careful, he could get stuck in the past. I’m still not convinced Bran will become “Bran the Builder,” but I think this season has made it look much more likely to happen, at least in the show.

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    56. (OT: I’m staying out of any deep analyzing and theorizations as usual, but after watching last night’s Graham Norton Show, I just had to say somewhere that Kate Beckinsale would make the ultimate Red Priestess!)

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