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10 Things We Learned From This Week's Cutting Episode Of "Game Of Thrones": Spoiler Whore and Book Reader Edition

By Joanna Robinson | TV Reviews | April 17, 2013 | Comments ()


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Author's Note: Hey folks! Since you dug it so much last week, we're back with the book spoiler-heavy "Game Of Thrones" rundown. If you're looking for eloquent or sophisticated analysis, I suggest you head on over to TK's superlative Monday recap. This post serves mainly as an outlet for all your pent-up frustrations at having to tip-toe around your book knowledge lest you spoil a "Game Of Thrones" newbie. So, in case it isn't clear, IF YOU DON'T WANT TO BE SPOILED BY BOOK KNOWLEDGE OR SOME INSIDER SHOW INFO, GET OUT OF HERE. SERIOUSLY, WHAT IN THE SEVEN 'ELLS ARE YOU DOING HERE? LEAVE!

Are they gone? Phew. Anything goes in the comments, folks. We're hoping this will help curb some of your urges to spoil in the regular recap. Have at it!--JR

1. They're Trying Awfully Hard To Get Us To Love Robb : Robb Stark has been a bit of a cipher so far in the series. I don't think that's Richard Madden's fault. He's just not been given much to do. But in this episode we had both this very human, young-seeming moment at Hoster Tully's funeral...
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...and this later, fiercer scene. I loved this dressing down of Edmure so very much because it showed Robb's strength as a leader and a strategist. That's something that's been sorely lacking. I think we all know why they're trying to endear Robb to us. More on that in just a second.
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2. They're Trying Awfully Hard To Get Us To Love Cat : Cat has been even harder to love. In the "Game Of Thrones" podcast I do, my co-host likened Catelyn Stark to Skyler White from "Breaking Bad," implying that our dislike for Cat is similar to our dislike for all "nagging" wives from TV dramas. (What Dustin once called "The Rita Bennett Problem.") I don't think that's quite accurate. Book Cat is both awfully stern and tragically foolish. That being said, her distress here over losing her father (and probably her sons) was moving. So love up on Robb and Cat while you can, folks. It'll only make Episode 9 that much harder to watch.
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3. There Is Another Baratheon: I loved this exchange between Melisandre and Stannis mostly because of Carice van Houten's pitying "bitch please" look. That being said, she dropped this vague, Yoda-esque promise that there are others with Baratheon blood in their veins. We book readers know that she means Edric Storm. My prediction? They'll put Gendry in Edric's place, keeping the popular Joe Dempsie around for awhile longer and putting someone we already care about in peril rather than introducing a new character. DON'T HURT THE ABS, MELISANDRE.
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4. Hey! They're Laying The Groundwork For The Iron Bank Of Braavos Plot!: This was a little throwaway line. (Dany had one last season as well.) But it lays the groundwork for conflicts to come and I think that's very smart.
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5. The Hunting Of Theon Greyjoy : How are we feeling about Theon's plot being integrated into "Book 3"? I'm for it. I thought this was an absolute thrill ride and provided some much-needed action. He almost got beaned by that tree.
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Also, book readers, you know this was just for you.
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6. SHAMELESS GRATUITOUS NUDITY ALERT: We haven't yet talked about the non-book-related nudity HBO is so very fond of. This scene with Pod, invented out of whole (scraps of) cloth was pretty unnecessary, yes. The post-game wrap up with Bronn, Tyrion and (tri) Pod? Priceless.
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7. It's A Boy : But there is some nudity I can get behind. For example, the camera's lingering shot on Gilly's newborn son. That's an unfortunate penis right there.
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8. Crop Circles : Speaking of North Of The Wall, I don't recall the "artistry" of The Others from the book. It certainly made for a stunning shot but I couldn't suppress my snickers at the thought of the ice zombies working methodically in the snow to get their horse hash crop circle *just* right.
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9. The Lannisters Really Brought The Laughs : This is an instance of perfect adaptation work. There is a throwaway line in the book about what Cersei and Tyrion do here with the chairs that the writers, in their infinite wisdom, decided to play for laughs. Kudos, of course, to Dinklage and Headey (and the great Conleth Hill who kills it every single week as Varys).
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And if this isn't your new favorite "Game Of Thrones" gif, well, I just don't know what to say.
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10. The Bear And The Maiden Fair : I think this song would have been poorly received had it been sung last week during the Sansa/Oleanna scene, but as a traveling song for the Brave Companions Roose Bolton's men? It was perfection. I may be in the minority, but I actually preferred the sung version to the end credits version. Tidbit of useless trivia via the lovely Josh Kurp: that was Snow Patrol's Gary Lightbody singing Westeros's favorite tavern song. He can be seen here on the left.
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But, to be fair, I liked the Hold Steady version more than most. I think those who weren't expecting The Kingslayer to lose his hand were still reeling from shock when the punk-ish music kicked in. The scene was shot so beautifully, though, that even those of us who knew it was coming felt gutted by the violence of it. Kudos, of course, to Noah Taylor for his Count Rugen-ish looking thug, Locke. How did you feel about smash cutting from this...
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...to that?

New Character Rundown: I'm going to include a few of the people we met in episode 1 because Western whores neglect Master Kraznys at your peril.

Brynden "Blackfish" Tully: Delightful. Clive Russell was everything I could have hoped for. Excellent wordless introduction to both of these characters.
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Edmure Tully: And Edmure, of course, (who played a similarly useless character on "Doctor Who" this week) was magnificently inept. I really loved this whole sequence.
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Missandei: We met her in episode 1, but it's worth noting that Missandei has been significantly aged up from the book. I cannot possibly fathom why. I'm sure it has nothing to do with the revealing Astaporian garb.
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Master Kraznys: This guy is killing it. I sort of love that they're keeping the audience in suspense as to whether or not Dany (or Jorah) understands his High Valyrian vulgarities.
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The Harpy Of Astapor: Not my favorite. Not a fan at all.
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Martin and Willem Lannister: This plot line is one of my favorites in the book and a very important moment for Robb. They've been laying the groundwork with Lord Karstark for awhile now so I shouldn't have worried that they would leave it out, but I was. It doesn't much matter that, for simplicity's sake, they changed Tion Frey to Martin Lannister. We've got two little princes in a tower and that's what's most important. This was also a nice Talisa scene.
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Rando Member Of The Night's Watch: Burn Gorman showed up for the first time as a member of the Night's Watch. The geeks among you may recognize him as Owen from "Torchwood." There was a queer, ominous shot when The Watch first showed up at Craster's Keep panning down Gorman's body to land on his fist. It was either reaching for a weapon or clenching in...anger? ...hunger? I swear to you I've watched that scene five times and I can't figure out what they were going for. The point, however, is that these boys are both hungry and angry and Rast is going to need some shifty-looking help when sh*t goes south at The Keep. I can't, for the life of me, find out what his character's name is supposed to be, but I don't think you cast Gorman just to glower in the background.
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Comments Are Welcome, Bigots and Trolls Are Not


  • BlackRabbit

    Hey, I've got a minor GoT question I wonder if one of ya'll fine folks can answer. Way back when, how did Lysa's message get to the Starks? I mean, the King didn't stop at the Eyrie. Did Varys do it somehow? Or Littlefinger smuggle it to Winterfell on the Royal Road trip?

  • AshBookworm

    Apologies if this has already been mentioned (I don't have time to read all the comments today), but that eye-roll rivals Liz Lemon's.

  • The death watch post is up and oh, what fun!

  • melissa82

    Hehe, yeah Theon Greyjoy is "safe" now

  • basse buus

    I'm reading a feast for crows now, and just had to google "stuck in a feast for crows". It is sooo slow and I really couldn't care less about a lot of the characters. Anyone with tips to get through this book? I really love that the series doesn't follow the books timeline, because this means that the adaptation of book 4 might be bearable.

  • When you figure it out, let me know. I am plodding through, very, very slowly.

  • 1. They succeeded in getting me to sway my opinion on Robb. Season 1 was great in selling "He has Ned Stark's strategic mind," like in the books, but Season 2 was like they were grabbing chunks of book and throwing it walls like apes with shit. It was embarrassing. Robb was supposed to have married Jeyne Talisa with the same gravity as Ned had when he brought Jon Snow home from Robert's Rebellion.

    2. Unpopular opinion: I love Catelyn. I do. She's written as a typical mother which, as her comparison in the fandom is often made to the Mother, is perfect. She's concerned for her family, she hates threats (Jon Snow, Lyanna Jon Snow's unknown WINK WINK mother) to that family, and all she wants is her goddamn kids back. She's been forced to give up on getting Ned back for obvious reasons, and now it's a race to get her kids back beneath her protective wings as soon as possible. We all know how that turns out.

    3. It's been confirmed by a fleeting scene in the extended trailers that it is Gendry who replaces Edric Storm's role in the show. She's seen caressing a face in the trailer, the form looking like Gendry's. That means she's more than likely meeting up with Thoros of Myr, who's also a priest of R'hllor.

    4. Who wants to place money on Arya somehow getting to a Braavosi ship via King's Landing, BARELY MISSING SANSA PLEASE HOLD ME I CAN'T CONTAIN STARK FEELS

    5. I'm for Theon's SL unfolding the way it is, but it's seriously going to confuse the fuck out of those who haven't read the book. Hell, it's confused me and I've read the book. They really could've gussied up that terrible Season 2 by having this plotline unfold the exact way it was supposed to in the book. Cassel deserved a better death than the one he had (despite that still being a damn powerful scene).

    6. SERIOUSLY WHAT'S A MEEREENESE KNOT

    7. This has the same power to me as the throwaway line about the Iron Bank, because Gilly's baby's involved in a switch to keep Mance Rayder's son away from Melisandre. It's one of those "file under 'Random Ass Detail I'm Going to Have to Remember a Season From Now'" details.

    8. I called it a "death spiral" to explain to my mom and she seemed okay with it. It made me giggle that white walkers had that kind of time, but then again, they also wed and bed men centuries ago, so anything is possible.

    9. Perfect scene is perfect.

    10. I do love both versions of "The Bear and the Maiden Fair," but when Ned lost his head, it was a shot of pigeons/doves, Arya exhaling, and a slow, quiet melody to really weigh heavily on the viewer. Your favorite character just died. Yep. We did that. We just killed Sean Bean. I don't know why they believed Jaime losing his hand would have us feeling the same as breaking out in a mosh pit.

    --

    The characters were perfection, Edmure and Brynden being my favorite this episode. Edmure was someone I never really felt was fleshed out in the book (there was a significant lack of reaction from him regarding the Red Wedding, imo), so to see him derping it up and getting chastised by both Brynden and Robb was great.

    Also, Craster was panning his gaze around the Night's Watch men and saw that they were going to get some food and rest, whether he wanted them to have it or not.

    Varys' reactions to Littlefinger's words should have its own section, because oh my God.

  • foolsage

    Very nicely said, and I agree on all points. :)

    I'll just address #6. The Meereeneese Knot referred to a problem George R.R. Martin faced in resolving a number of plotlines within the city of Meereen. Several POV characters converge there, and George struggled to find a way to express the big picture without violating his single POV at-a-time rule.

    There's a nice video where he explains it; it's only a couple of minutes long.

    http://geek-news.mtv.com/2011/...

    On the TV show, it's apparently a sexual position involving great flexibility.

  • I saw that explanation down below in the comments, which was a GREAT wink to the diehards.

  • Looks like Gary from Snow Patrol made a day of it. http://thedailyedge.thejournal...

  • Strand

    They cut to Gorman's fist as he's grasping towards the hilt of his sword.

    Also, I'm not too sure about them portraying Edmure as utterly incompetent. Sure he makes some brash decisions, but in the book, he wins a very bloody and hard victory over Tywin to hold the fords, instead of an impulsive attack on a mill.

    While he misses his first 3 shots at the funeral boat, he's also grief-stricken at his father's death and The Blackfish and Cat are also more sympathetic. The show versions obviously treat his character with utter derision.

  • Hmm. Could it be that they've aged Missandei to give Dany someone close to her age to be with? Given that all her other maids were killed...

  • RIP, Irri.

  • JRob - I thought you were going to open this like Tyrion and Bronn, grabbing a chair and bottle of wine, asking for copious details. This show was as much fun as a squire could have with three whores, one of whom was a contortionist. The are quietly ratcheting up the tragedy stakes all-around, deepening Arya's prophecy that anyone, except Danerys and Jon Snow, can die. And maybe Arya. You know who I wish would die, and quickly? Sam and Gilly. Gah! Make it stop. It didn't work in the book and it's not working on the screen. Get them the fuck on the boat and out of sight.

  • I was cringing into my pillow during the whole last minutes, when I'd planned to just watch my husband's face. But I couldn't. It was unbelievably well done.

    And I love that, as a book reader and knowing exactly what happens, I'm still really in a blank about Theon's storyline--I know where they're going but I'm loving not knowing how they'll get there. It'll make the turnaround that much more disturbing, I think.

  • John G.

    Of course you have to keep doing these book reader posts, Joanna. Why would you even think about doing just one or two? These posts ALMOST makes up for your American Horror Story ones.

  • stryker1121

    Favorite GoT nerd catch of the episode - Tyrion mentioning the "Meerenese Knot" as a sex position. Savvy readers will know the phrase from GRRM himself, who used it to (sorta) explain his problems in writing the Dany storyline in Book 5.

  • foolsage

    Ohhhhhhhhh. I think I know what's planned for Missandei. Remember that Irri climbs into Dany's bed and services her sexually at around the same time Dany considers buying the Unsullied. Irri, in the TV show, died already (when the dragons were stolen, she was found dead at the scene). I *really* doubt HBO would miss an opportunity to show a sex scene between Dany and her maid (we had a teaser already with Doreah in the first season). I imagine the newly-aged Missandei will fill that role.

  • yocean

    Thirded. I was thinking that too.

  • Ticket bought, I'm in my seat. I'll wait.

  • Tinkerville

    That was my thought as well, though it's been a while since I've read the books so I couldn't remember if the Dany/Irri scene came around then or not. Dollars to donuts Missandei will be having sexy times with Dany very soon. Their conversation at the end of the episode definitely showed a bond forming between them.

  • yocean

    I thought it might have been in ship or something after Jorah kissed Dany? Or was it after Daario joined her?

  • Yes, it was after Jorah kissed Dany. I don't think Daario had actually joined up with them yet officially but I don't recall. (AFFC is taking all my attention.)

  • foolsage

    In book continuity, the Irri/Dany sex scene took place during the events of the most recent episode. This corresponds to Dany's second POV chapter in A Storm of Swords.

    http://awoiaf.westeros.org/ind...

  • mkt-rex

    At least Burn Gorman will be speaking with his normal accent. The American accent he has was fine on Revenge, but I always thought it would be more intimidating with his native voice...

  • PDamian

    Burn Gorman is fucking awesome. And while geeks may appreciate him from Torchwood, he'll always be sad bastard Mr Guppy to me. To date, he's the only actor I've ever seen who can do slimy and pathetically attractive at the same time.

  • BWeaves

    Yup, he's always Guppy to me. Even when watching Torchwood, I would refer to him as Guppy.

  • JoannaRobinson

    Oh god yes. I don't always like to out myself as a die hard BBC literary mini-series girl, but he is first and foremost Guppy to me as well.

  • foolsage

    Robb's death won't be properly tragic if viewers don't understand how close he came to winning everything. It's essential to show scenes highlighting his skill as a general and a leader so we can understand that he's not just trading on his daddy's good name or the loyalties of his daddy's bannermen; he's genuinely good at what he does.

    Similarly, viewers won't appreciate Lady Stoneheart if Cat remains as, well, stonehearted as she has thus far. It's important to humanize her and draw attention to both her strengths and failings, while she's still alive. That way, when she's raised by Ser Beric, she becomes her own foil.

    Missandei was made older in the TV show so they could safely sexualize her. I don't think there's any real doubt there. ;)

  • What I don't understand is the whole changing Jeyne to Talisa and giving her all this story. Because the whole reason for the Red Wedding was that marriage, and the whole reason for that marriage winds up mattering in a huge way. Jeyne Westerling's name matters. Who her father is matters, when considering the players after the fact. I'm just curious how they're going to work that now, with this Talisa character.

    They have to be able to show what Robb pretty much just says out loud - he's great at the battle and strategy but he's still losing. And he's losing for the same reasons Ned Stark got his head cut off. The honorable thing, the right thing, is not always the smart thing, or the thing that keeps your own head on your shoulders in a place like Westeros.

  • foolsage

    What matters most about Robb's wife (by whichever name) is that she's not a Frey, and Robb had promised to marry a Frey. By marrying Jeyne/Talisa, Robb alienated a needed ally, and brought about the Red Wedding. That's just as true whether his wife is a Westerling or a Maegyr.

  • Yeah, but Jeyne's mother made sure she didn't get pregnant, and turns out they were all working with Tywin to make the Red Wedding happen. Sure, it's not a huge point, but it's important to the story.

  • foolsage

    Agreed. That plot point can remain though regardless of Jeyne's given name and surname.

  • Ian Fay

    My favorite Bear And The Maiden Fair version:

    http://youtu.be/zJ0rzsNfmIc

    Two reasons:

    1) Actual female singer for the maiden part

    2) Bagpipes.

  • Fabius_Maximus

    That's a bit better.

  • Yocean

    One burning question: So are they gonna show Sam killing White Walker in next episode when it comes for Gilly's son? I kind of remember John showing him obsidian weapons ( or was it someone else in TV version?) .

  • It was Sam, Grenn, and Dolorous Edd who discovered the obsidian in the show.

  • foolsage

    I dunno. That was supposed to happen before the watch arrived at Craster's keep. I really hope they include that scene; Sam's the Slayer, dammitall.

  • Three_nineteen

    Don't they have to have that scene? Sam has to kill an Other with dragonglass so he can tell Jon what happened. That information drives much of what Jon does later.

  • foolsage

    It's not strictly necessary, I think, from a plot perspective. Jon could learn about the value of the dragonglass from the wildlings, for instance.

    Still, it'd be disappointing if we don't see Sam's heroic side.

  • BendinIntheWind

    The dragonglass was part of the bundle Sam and the 2 other Crows dug up at the end of season 2 at the Fist of the First Men.

  • Yocean

    Thanks! So he should have them on him right?

  • DarthCorleone

    I didn't mind the smash cut. Some others on the Internet are complaining about it True-Blood-ing up Game Of Thrones and that such a dramatic, important moment shouldn't have been followed by that music cue. There were a few goof videos created with different songs too. Some were amusing.

    I'm good with it for a couple reasons. First, the cue had to go over the credits of some episode. There probably won't be any episode that is any more appropriate than this one, especially as they had the song used previously in the episode.

    Second, at this point Jaime is still pretty much a villain. Why not mix up his misfortune with a little bit of tonal incongruity? The dude did have it coming.

  • The best was this one, imo: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v...

  • meh

    I am finding the Theon scenes INCREDIBLY difficult to watch. I'm not sure if my knowledge is just how bad it will get is coloring my viewing, or if they really are just that harrowing.

    I loved the jump cut to the Bear and the Maiden Fair, only because I've thought for years that it would make an excellent punk rock song. Close enough.

    I really think with Cat they are actually bringing out a rather dark side of her, and have been throughout the show. They are really playing up her mistreatment of Jon, and knowing just how far down the rabbit hole her character goes, I think that's a good thing so it isn't out of bizarro land.

    I currently watch this show with my husband, a non book reader, and oh am I having to bite my tongue. He utterly loves the show but is frequently beset by the vast number of characters, and I just want to tell him "Don't worry, honey, half of them will be dead by the end of the season".

  • Yocean

    Lady Stoneheart FTW

  • Dan

    Gorman was reaching for a weapon because Craster didn't immediately let them in. When Craster realized he would be totally fucked with thirty pissed-off and armed Crows, he relented.

  • It's possible you're spending too much time on this.

  • foolsage

    He didn't move his hand towards a weapon though, and no weapon was shown. Instead, he flexed his fingers a bit. I interpreted this as a generic sign of menace.

  • pcloadletter

    I thought his hand was on the hilt already.

  • foolsage

    The scene in question is 22:04 into the episode, give or take. There's no weapon visible, but his hand seems to be clutching something. After watching it again several times closely, I really can't tell what's going on. Maybe there's a weapon there; maybe there isn't.

  • JoannaRobinson

    BUT WHY WASN'T HIS WEAPON IN FRAME?!!? It was killing me.

  • Third time is the charm. His hand is on the knob and the top end of his sword handle. You can see it down to the hilt at his belt.

  • Ziver

    I'm happy to see two actors from my favourite british show (Misfits) are on this season. I can't wait to see Iwan Rheon as Roose Bolton's crazy bastard.

  • competitivenonfiction

    On one hand, I'm happy with the casting because Iwan will kill the role. He's absolutely perfect for it. On the other hand, I fell in love with Simon (in an almost creepy way) but hated the Bastard of Bolton so so much in the books that I contemplated skipping the Theon chapters. Not sure if I can handle my beloved Simon becoming a creepy torturer.

  • foolsage

    Hells yes.

  • manting

    I like how the small council scene they sit each according to his/her faction or their perception of it, and their relative power.
    Tywin at the head of the table - the once and future hand to the king
    Cersie (who sees herself as the son he should have had) is on right
    The three reamaing council members togther in order of power - Little finger (who all us book readers know becomes Lord of the Vale, Lord Paramount of the Trident, and Lord of Harrenhall. Varys - the spider, we all know that he is plotting with Illyrio and he Kills Kevin at then end of DoD. Percell - The weakest of the remaining council members but still a power
    Tyron at the foot of the table, alone, and in a seat that both shows how much power and authority he has lost and that puts him in direct opposition to his father. It also shows him seperate from Cersie and Twyin who have both tried to have him killed. (Cersie with Mandon Moore at the Battle of the Blackwater, and Tywin when he puts him and his clansmen under Gregor at the first battle with the north.

    Hows that?

  • sm

    This pairs awesomely with TK's review. Thanks, Joanna!

  • lowercase_ryan

    They don't need to try to make me love Robb. I just do, he's GD Robb Stark.

    They shouldn't try to make me love Cat, I just won't. I hate her so much, she could never recover in my eyes.

  • We are always in the same place. I'm two weeks upset already and still have six weeks of despair growing into the flesh of my big toe before it'll be cut out.

  • MissAmynae

    Who knew the White Walkers had a Spirograph?!

  • yocean

    First, love love love that you are continuing this. Thanks!! Now, two speculations I got:

    Few other people has mentioned this already but I think the Baratheon blood Melissander mentioned is Shireen too. The look of recognition Stanis had made me think it. And the whole point Edric Snow sacrifice plot was to have Davos convince Stanis not to kill the young boy and to ship to The Wall. Gendry would not seem innocent or young enough for the act to be cruel enough, whereas with Shireen, it would have a double purpose of making her sacrifice more cruel and also change of Stannis' heart more convincing.

    Second speculation which no one else seem to have mentioned; Talisa. That scene with her and Lannister kids kinda gave me "Oh shit" reaction, because it kinda cemented for me the theory of her being Tywin's spy. She is taking care of Lannister kids (which she might have volunteered) and also confirming the rumor about Robb turning into a wolf at night (though that had some double entendre) which is what Frey men claims what happened at Red Wedding. Maybe I'm over reading it but I don't know. i just did not trust her in that scene.

  • Melisandre is going for a king's blood. If she were to go after Shireen, Stannis would've reacted more than he did on the shore. Shireen and Selyse are also on Dragonstone with Stannis, so Melisandre wouldn't have had to go very far to get at them both.

    You're over-reading the scene with Talisa, only because you're forgetting the scene in Season 2 where she and Robb met. She was taking care of both injured sides. Robb also takes care of his injured hostages.

  • Sherry

    Maybe it's just because I'm so begging for the "Talisa is a Lannister plant" plotline to work out but I read the same thing from that scene. Also, I love that we have this forum to discuss these things, so please, keep it up! The Talisa vs. Jeyne W. switch-up has bugged me from the start but I can't tell non-book-reading hubby why because, obvs, I don't want to spoil the huge payoff. "It just DOES," is all I can say as I fume.

  • Yocean

    I was even thinking maybe the Lannister kid's line is where she and Freys would get the idea for the Northmen are werewolves cover story.

  • $27019454

    I think what I am least looking forward to is Theon's fate. I hate that fucker and the actor playing him is creepy-looking as hell. Knowing what I/we all know, though, I just cannot stand it. I actually may have to somehow edit thru anything more to do with him.

  • Sherry

    Yeah, I'd prefer most of that happen off-screen, if I get a vote. Reading about it in the books was hard enough. [shudders] But I do like that they moved it up in the timeline--makes sense.

  • DocDoom

    Ooh! And there was a Lem sighting, too! Pushing The Hound into the wagon.

  • manting

    his cloak is yellow from all the piss

  • TheOriginalMRod

    Now I am actually interested in what happens to Theon. Show us more of that dude with the bow!

  • manting

    he gets tourtured, flayed, gets some fingers and toes cut off, his hair turns white, his name is changed to reek, he is forced to wear rags and sleep with dogs, he smells like shit, and oh yeah Ramsay Bolton (the only truly evil character in the books in my opinion) CUTS HIS COCK OFF. Sucks to be Theon.

  • Becks

    Castrates Theon? When? I must have missed that one in the books.

  • manting

    There are repeated references to this - he refers to himself as not a man - his talk of once wanting to tumble the washerwomen that come with Mance to winterfell but that day has passed. When he eats out fake arya because he has no dick.

  • Becks

    I went back and had a read of the bedding scene with Jeyne and Ramsay asks him "Does this make your cock hard?" Was Ramsay just being metaphorical then?

  • The_Ghost_of_Bo_Crowder

    It's not actually depicted in the books, but definitely alluded to during the bedding of Fauxrya.

  • coryo

    Well, looks like I spoke too soon last week. We got "The Bear and the Maiden Fair" after all.

  • Fabius_Maximus

    Yeah, but look at what we got: a weak and flat punk version that sounds like the band doesn't care.

  • BendinIntheWind

    Another tiny detail I appreciated for some reason: Tully armor resembles fish scales. I don't know why I loved this so much, but I did.

    I don't know if I ever really understood what a "harpy" was supposed to look like until this episode, so I was ok with their leaving it in, but the CGI looked very poor compared to some of the other treats we've gotten.

    Really didn't care for the whole White Walkers spin-art thing.

    I may have been a little confused by the Stannis/Melissandre scene... in the books, Edric Storm is pretty well-known (by the right people) to be a bastard of Robert's, so it would make sense for Melissandre to go after him. But, since we know Edric won't be appearing in the show, how does she know about Gendry? Are they using the fire as her justification for how to track him down? I guess I assumed she was going to retrieve Shireen, which is why she was so cagey in answering Stannis' questions, so he wouldn't stop her.

  • Stannis knew about Gendry, though. Remember, him and Jon Arryn went around to visit all of Robert's bastards at one point. So he probably told Melisandre about him at some point.

  • Robert had quite a few bastard children. Edric was probably the most *ahem* notable because of the whole "defiling Stannis' marriage bed" thing, and his obsession with Storm's End. So if you're going to kill a King's bastard, choose the one he acknowledges, who knows his father is the King (and goes on at length about that) rather than searching down the ones you don't know of.

    And, it kind of unites Davos with Courtenay Penrose - they both risked everything to protect Edric. Granted, Penrose actually lost his life, and so far Davos seems to have succeeded. Edric is going to matter somewhere down the line, but at this point I'm not sure when.

  • Jon Arryn was the only one to visit them, but he sent Stannis a letter, I think. Or Ned did. I thought in the books that the letter never reached Stannis, though.

  • MissAmynae

    I was thinking they'd use Shireen in Edric's place as well, since they announced her casting pretty early on. Why would Stannis, (and Davos!) give a fig about Gendry? Using his own daughter would lend more drama and conflicting human values to Stannis' character. I'm think the writers will use Shireen as a bargaining chip to get Stannis to ok using Gendry.

    Agreed about the scales- the costuming is so brilliantly done on this show. Harpy looked silly.

  • John G.

    I had my money on some important things happening to Shireen in books 6 & 7, so if they put her in Edric's place, it might ruin all my theories.

  • BendinIntheWind

    She wouldn't be killed, tho, so I don't think it should effect much. Didn't Edric's bit end with Davos convincing Stannis to spare the boy's life and head to the Wall instead? If I'm remembering correctly, it shouldn't change much for Shireen down the road.

  • John G.

    True, he isn't dead, but Davos had him shipped off to the free cities. Shireen ends up at the wall along with her father, and it's at the wall that I need Shireen to be for my theories to work.

  • MissAmynae

    She's struck me as a Jeyne Westerling-type character. Small player, but big things happen in their wake.

  • Ian Fay

    Shireen also handily lays the seed for the disease stuff in Book 5.

  • JoannaRobinson

    Oh I'd forgotten about the Shireen casting. Excellent point, all.

  • MrsAtaxxia

    I love that the Tully armor is scaled, and also that Jorah's new armor has a Dragon motif. The sigils are so much more than just a house sign, I love how they are woven into almost everything. Speaking of which, I COVET that awesome single piece lion-faced collar thing that Cersi has been wearing for the last two episodes. It is beautiful.

  • Gaius

    It would make sense that she would know who Gendry is, given what we've seen of her powers so far... Also, Thoros is a red priest, who may very well have similar powers, so the two may be in contact with each other... I like this plot idea because, like Joanna said, it keeps Gendry around at least a little longer and gives him something interesting to do.

    Oh, and agree about the fish scale armor! Loved it!!

  • Tinkerville

    I love TK's recaps, but this whole post made me laugh very hard indeed, so please keep it up.

    "I couldn’t suppress my snickers at the thought of the ice zombies working methodically in the snow to get their horse hash crop circle *just* right."

    And now I'm imagining it too, and my co-worker is giving me serious side-eye. Can't stop giggling. Can we get some Nazca line designs from them next?

    I definitely gave a little "whoop whoop" at the "you little bastard" line. These writers are absolutely killing it with cleverness. I'm almost darkly excited for the Red Wedding (put away the pitchforks, hear me out) only because of how they've been building up Cat and Robb as sympathetic characters in the last couple of episodes, which means it'll be all the more shocking for those who don't see it coming. It's clear that by doing this they're making a calculated effort to make that episode even more HOLY SHIT and heart-wrenching than it already is in the books.

  • Laura

    I'm looking forward to it just as much as I'm not looking forward to it, if you know what I mean. But my husband's reaction to it having not read the books? Can. Not. Wait. (He thinks he knows everything).

  • BendinIntheWind

    Totally agree - I've been reading the weekly death-predictor with sheer delight as Robb and Cat move farther towards "safe".

  • That "safe" thing is KILLING me. (Pardon the pun.)

    Sure they're safe. Perfectly safe. And Oberyn Martell is monogamous.

  • DocDoom

    I assumed Melisandre was talking about Shireen. Maybe she's leaving to find some Leeches.

  • Hmm. But I don't think they've ever mentioned Stannis having any children, have they? And wouldn't she be at Dragonstone anyway?

  • BendinIntheWind

    They announced casting for Shireen earlier this year, so she'll definitely show up in some capacity. They haven't shown Selyse yet this season, so maybe they've got her staying with some Florent relatives while Stannis licks his wounds?

  • Oooh completely forgot about that. Carry on!

    Though I do like the idea of her taking Gendry. He disappears for so long after Arya leaves him, and then shows up as a blip in the landscape.

  • BendinIntheWind

    I really missed Gendry during that long stretch in the books, so I wouldn't be opposed to the change. And you're right, I totally forgot about Stannis being part of Jon Arryn's bastard-hunt.

    I do wonder where that would put him down the road, though... if they're going to the trouble to put Gendry in Edric's place, it seems odd that they would then leave him behind when Stannis heads to the Wall. And THEN, if Gendry *does* accompany them to the Wall, he should probably factor in some way into Mance's retrieval of fake-Arya later, since he's the only person aside from Jon who would know what she looks like...

    ETA: though he does eventually resurface when Brienne finds him with the Brotherhood... gah, now I'm all lost again

  • Gaius

    So, the kid is obviously Ramsay...

    My theory: He's going to play the long game in torturing Theon this season. He'll endear himself to Theon as Reek, in an effort to gather any information that the knives and toe-screws didn't get. Eventually, Theon will mention that the Stark boys really aren't dead, and "Reek" will insist that the two of them try to track them down (they are still valuable hostages for Yara, after all).

    Ramsay's reveal will then probably play out similarly to the way it did in the second book.

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