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NW Deserter

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About NW Deserter

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  1. Gave it an 8. It started at a 10: Stannis/Davos, we FINALLY get some good backstory on the whole Onion Knight thing. Thought that exchange was awesome. Tyrion/Cersei stuff was gold, and the Tyrion/Bronn/Varys exchanges were pretty funny. Best episode of the season for Asha/Yara. And as always, Alfie Allen is an amazing Theon and the unexpected highlight of the entire season for me. Bran's look at the end was heartbreaking. :( I love the Brienne/Jaime stuff, great dialogue. I'm still not sure what to make of Talissa, but the Free Cities lore was neat and she is fucking hot. I liked how they brought Quorin back in the storyline, and Rattleshirt looks really, really cool. Liked that Sam found the dragonglass, too. Points off for three things: Half a point off for the disappointing end to Arya's stay in Harrenhall. I understand that a lot of it isn't vital to the overall plot, but I missed Jaqen's face change, the coin being given, the weasel soup, etc. I noticed episode 10 is caled Valar Morghulis, so hopefully this means we get some of that then. Half a point off for nobody actually learning about Bran and Rickon, particularly Catelyn and Robb. I can still buy that they both did what they did (releasing Jaime and forsaking a vow, respectively), but it took a lot of the emotional punch out of it. I'm honestly not sure why this decision was made, but oh well. The other point off for what I am legitimately pissed about - not revealing Tyrion's plan with the freaking chain! That thing does so much for saving the city, for giving Tyrion the credit he deserves from viewers/readers (but of course not from the citizens of Kings Landing), and there's not even a mention of it. What has he even really done? All I can think of is him taking Cersei's wildfire idea and doing it more, but other than that, nothing. This won't even seem like Tyrion's victory to the viewers! First thing that has really frustrated me during the entire series. One thing I didn't mention was Dany, and really I'm just meh at this point. Either go to the HotU or don't, but quit building it up so much. It better be really fucking awesome when we finally see it. I did like that Jorah mentioned the ship going to Astapor, but if Dany doesn't go get her stupid dragons next episode, then it'll have to be episode 10, and then she won't have time to meet Barristan at the docks, unless they're saving that for next season.
  2. Gave it a 9, with a point lost because of some of the Dany stuff. Not the plot derivations, because her dragons getting stolen is actually pretty interesting, and will give her a legitimate reason to go to the HotU. What bothered me was her whining to the spice king guy. I feel like every time TV-Dany is built back up to be this strong woman, they give her some monologue where she re-hashes the same "fire and blood" threats with a cracking voice. The "no ordinary woman" bit was probably one of the most painful set of lines on the show so far. But there was a TON of good to outweigh that annoying scene: All the winterfell stuff was absolutely perfect. Alfie Allen continues to show off his acting chops week after week, and the death of Ser Rodrick was brilliantly done. The KL riot was about how I imagined it. Badass of the Week goes to The Hound this time around for those kills, that was Khal Drogo-level shit! Add another name to the list of spot-on castings in Ygritte! I'm curious how they'll do Jon's stuff now. I think the most likely scenario is to have him release her next episode right before he meets back up with the rest of the NW crew. This will allow for some good interaction between them (as we've already seen) while still keeping the integrity of the plot - that way, when she and Rattleshirt and the rest of the wildlings find Jon and Qhorin, the viewers (and Jon) will clearly remember who that red-headed wildling is. Robb's stuff was decent. The Talissa character is still perplexing me, but that's made up for by us learning that Ramsay does indeed exist in TV-Westeros. I am slightly worried that non-readers will have no idea who Roose Bolton is, as I don't think they've even said his name and he's only appeared briefly before this episode. Arya stuff was all gold. Not much else to say. The plot changes here are keeping the spirit of the books while involving characters we actually know fairly well by now instead of random throw-aways. Looks like next week we'll get even more meat - I'm thinking House of the Undying, Jaime getting freed, Tyrion's chain, and maybe the orphan boys getting killed. Pumped!
  3. NW Deserter

    How would you rate episode 205?

    I am honestly confused as to how some of you are saying we need to "divorce it from the books". There really just hasn't been that many major changes. the biggest ones I can think of... -Littlefinger going to Renly's camp, makes sense just because he's absent almost all of ACoK, can't do that with a highly-paid actor and very intriguing character. -Arya being Tywin's cupbearer. I was skeptical of this at first but when it makes for Emmy-worthy scenes like tonight's, I can excuse it. -Qarth and Dany's entourage have changed somewhat, but really, I just don't think those changes will snowball. The characterization is still there, and in some cases (Doreah, Xaro), is much more interesting. -No Jojen or Meera. This is probably one of the more legitimate gripes, but it's one of those things where we just need to keep reminding ourselves that it's a TV show with a finite budget, and you've got to cut corners where you can. The writers have excelled here in picking up the slack by making Bran a much more powerful character. -No Riverrun or Tullys - similar to the last point. Probably the one I'm most worried about, but given how all the rest of the changes have been handled brilliantly by the writers, I have confidence in the team. Other than that, there have been little changes here and there due to the change in structure (point of view versus third-person audience), pacing, characterization, and of course, budget. I'm not trying to attack those who are disappointed with the adaptation side of the series, just trying to understand where the biggest gripes are coming from, cause for the most part, I'm agreeing with the changes that are being made.
  4. NW Deserter

    How would you rate episode 205?

    Starts out as an easy, easy 10 for: Every. Single. Arya. Scene. Maisie Williams could not be more "Arya Stark" if she tried. The exchange with Tywin (who is also simply magnificent in the show) is probably my favorite scene of the entire season thus far. And her telling Gendry to stand "sideface" was stinkin' perfect. So, Arya gets this week's Badass of the Week award. Stannis/Davos stuff was great. I was worried about Stannis' portrayal for most of the season, but I think by this point, Dillane has found the right way to play him. Davos reaction to being made leader of the naval attack was great, Liam Cunningham is a great Davos. The casting director must have made the trip to Tarth to get Brienne to play herself, that's the only thing I can think of that explains the fantastic acting. Her savage and angry fighting and her swearing fealty to Catelyn was exactly how I pictured when reading. Cat was great there too. Although the Nights Watch stuff was decent at best, I feel like they're finally going to get to the meaty stuff next week. Not much else to say. Quorin is adequate so far, and keeping Dolorous Edd continues to be a great choice. Transferring Jojen's dream of "the sea coming to Winterfell" to Bran was a great choice. You could feel the eerie foreshadowing there, I'm curious if non-readers caught on to what that meant. I like Qarth's portrayal, it's supposed to seem really odd, fanciful, and "not real". I liked the inclusion of Quaithe, and both Pyatt Pree and Xaro are actually pretty interesting characters. And Doreah's still smoking hot, nothing new there. Jorah is great too. But, nothing is perfect, so some nitpicky things dropped it down to a 9 for me: So far, all the ironborn stuff has been pretty flawless to me, so it was disappointing to see such a small Dagmer Cleftjaw. Theon is still an interesting character, but both Dagmer and Yara were underwhelming and just "meh". Jaqen switching between normal speech and third-person speech was weird. Not sure what happened there, maybe just careless script-writing? Visually, he's still great though. Littlefinger seems to be teaming up with Margaery and Loras here, I don't know how I feel about that, even in the context of the show. I'll wait and see what happens there I guess. As awesome as Brienne was, the way Renly died was a little underwhelming compared to the books. I know that's really, really nitpicky, but I think that just shows how good the episode was when I'm reaching that far. Overall, my favorite of the season, barely topping last week. Thinking about it now, they actually got almost all of the storylines in there with some incredibly tight pacing and writing, and nothing felt rushed or under-done. Hoping the rest of the season follows suit. Looks like we get some Ygritte next episode! Hoping we get to hear "you know nothing, Jon Snow".
  5. I don't think that's the Damphair, just a random priest. He was never listed as cast.
  6. This is probably my only real issue with the TV series as a whole. We'll get scenes like Viserys/Doreah in the tub, Shae/Sansa, sociopathic Littlefinger monologues - which are all great characterization scenes, don't get me wrong, but the writers dwell on them more than they need to and then we get a 10 second battle with Yoren dying so quickly and no one helping him. I guess it's a strategy to keep the budget lower by focusing on drawn-out dialogue as an excuse to shoot less of the expensive scenes.
  7. Things I absolutely loved that started my grade at a 10: -Bran's wolf dreams are being handled excellently. I'm actually seeing how they don't need the Reeds this season, Maester Luwin (and probably Osha later) is a great exposition tool. Hodor greeting us from Summer's perspective was so fucking cool. -Everything Theon-related was amazing. I agree with most of you when I say that my favorite TV-series change was the note-burning scene, I can't get over how beautiful that was. Looking forward to more Theon and Balon, and I don't really even mind Yara that much. -Tyrion is the star of the second book to me, and that's coming across on-screen. The editing of the council manipulation was brilliant, his arrest of Pycelle was straight from the books (I grinned like a fanboy when he said the goats line), and the conversation with Varys was an Emmy-worthy scene (plus Conleth Hill continues to amaze). -Also loved all the supporting cast in KL this week - Cersei breaking down, LF getting pissed (finally some solid characterization of him), Varys' riddle (got chills), Pycelle being a whimpering stoat, helping us care about Tommen & Myrcella finally, and even Sansa's plight. Only real exception was Shae (I'll mention later). -Renly stuff was handled perfectly IMO. Would've liked more Cat/Renly conversation but I think that's next week. I thought the Loras/Renly/Margaery triangle was played excellently, and what I loved about it was that it all makes sense in the context of the plot, we just don't really see it at all in the book. Oh and Brienne was straight from the books. -Just like last week, Yoren edges out Tyrion for Badass of the Week. I love love LOVE how they give Arya's prayer motivation to Yoren, that story was chilling and badass. And his Boromir-style death was awesome too. Looking forward to more of Arya's stuff. ------------------- Now, things that took away some points: -1: Night's Watch stuff just kinda bored me. This really can't be helped at this point cause GRRM didn't give them much to do for a large part of the book, but still, the "climax" of last week ended up being anti-climactic - they were going to leave soon anyway, and Craster didn't even really seem that pissed given the circumstances. Sam moment was cute but it didn't serve much of a purpose, it was obvious that he was crushing on Gilly last week. -0.5: This is a broken record on this thread by now but Shae just gets on my nerves on the show. I liked the Sansa/Shae scene for the Sansa characterization but I feel like they've been building Shae to be a lot smarter than in the books, and yet she just stands there like an idiot and gives an attitude to Sansa. She's not a hugely important character and always has others around her that are more interesting so I only took off half a point. Oh, and then +0.5 for Natalie Dormer. So effing hot, you have to be really gay to turn that down. Like, Renly-level gay. :P Solid 9, best episode of the season probably and definitely in the top 5 episodes of the whole series so far. A lot of good from-the-book dialogue.
  8. Best episode of the season, by far. I loved the editing of Tyrion's meeting with the council members, and then him capturing Pycelle was awesome. I think my favorite little change was Yoren giving his backstory and introducing the idea of a nightly prayer to Arya. Great way to condense the storytelling a bit. Next week looks to be full of iconic book scenes! The peach, the shadowbaby, Joffrey abusing Sansa, Ser Gregor punishing his prisoners...gonna be awesome!
  9. NW Deserter

    [Book Spoilers] Ep 202 Discussion

    WOOOOOOOOOOOOO! Loved it. And can finally get on the forums now. ;) I'll probably be repeating what has been said but here it goes: Kingsroad -Badass of the Week award goes to Yoren. At first, when he brought his knife between the Goldcloak's legs, I thought we were going to get a castration joke - but the fact that he basically was threatening to sever the dude's femeral artery...you just don't get cooler than that. It'll be sad when he dies, the actor playing him is just perfect. -Arya/Gendry/Hot Pie/Lommy were all perfect. One of the few sunny moments this season with the "m'lady" scene. Made me smile. :) -Quick look at Jaqen, made me pleased to learn I'd been pronouncing his name correctly. Looking forward to the Ghost of Harrenhall stuff. Kings Landing -All of Tyrion's stuff was money, as usual. I loved that they brought in the fact that his mom died giving birth, and that Cersei finally found a weak spot in him. -I got giddy with fanboy excitement when they kept Bronn's line about asking how much. I love when they lift lines directly from the book like that. -Varys was effing amazing this week with Tyrion, too. Those two actors together make a great scene. -Littlefinger scene brought his character to a whole new level, from scheming bastard to ruthless sociopath. I loved that monologue. -I personally found the multiple levels of peep-holes in the brothel really amusing on a second watch. It's a great analogy for the devious politics of the capitol. North of the Wall -Dolorous Edd had our whole group laughing, even the non-readers. Great choice leaving him in in the show. -The actor playing Sam is awesome! I love that they're making him sort of a horndog, it makes him a more compelling and (sym)pathetic character. -I don't mind the change with Jon/Craster. I'm looking forward to seeing how it gets resolved. It's nice to be surprised sometimes when I've read the books so many times. -Gilly was cast perfectly too. Oh and Ghost was awesome, more convincing than Grey Wind IMO. Dragonstone -I love Davos' actor, but he talks too damn fast. Maybe it's just because I'm American, but the thick accent with the speed of his dialogue makes me have to really listen hard to pick up the lines. Loved the stuff about Stannis being his god, though. -Sallador was well-cast and perfectly scripted. Loved when he made Mathos squirm a bit. -Mel/Stannis scene was done about as well as it could have been. Also, CVH is really freakin' hot, so that helped. Red Waste -A lot of meh. I feel like they're over-using Dany's lines about vengeance and blood and fire and blah blah. I know the show-writers can't really help it when Dany doesn't do much in the second book, but it's still boring when she comes on screen. Pyke -The visuals of Pyke are stunning, exactly how I thought it'd be. -Balon Greyjoy was cast so perfectly (I feel like I'm saying that a lot). -LOL at how they handled the Theon/Asha stuff. Even funnier than in the books, with Asha's line about "Anyone with a cock can be fooled" or something. -Alfie Allen is doing Theon justice with his portrayal. We're already seeing the inner conflict. I've always thought Theon was one of the most tragic characters in the entire series, and I think if the show gets to the 5th book material, Alfie will portray him excellently. Great episode overall! I like the deviations for the most part, and the parts where it's staying true to the books are stellar.
  10. NW Deserter

    How would you rate episode 201?

    Why do people keep thinking that there is something between Dany and Rakharo in the show? I didn't get that impression whatsoever. It just seemed like a loyal servant wanting to help out his lord. The bloodrider relationship among the Dothraki is an extremely close bond, closer even than siblings, but it's never sexual. You guys are reading too much into that little scene.
  11. NW Deserter

    How would you rate episode 201?

    I give it an 8 for me. The acting was basically spot on for every character, both old and new, and the visuals were exceptionally stunning, in particular the two CGI'd creatures and the wide city shots (Kings Landing, Robb's camp). Points were only lost for me because of the pacing issues.
  12. NW Deserter

    [Book Spoilers] EP108 Discussion Part 2

    Forgot to mention something in my earlier post-review. I know we don't talk about the music in this series much, but I feel this is worth mentioning - when Robb first gets Sansa's letter and Luwin is explaining what it means, there's really slow piece of music in the back that almost screams "this dude is about to go kick some ass" and it starts to swell as the birds fly out, and then hits a peak as the scene shifts to Catelyn running up the stairs to Lysa. Gave me chills even on my second viewing. I think what makes it even better is the crafty editing. Most of the first half of the episode is dealing with immediate aftermath of Ned's imprisonment, so we see each of his family members in turn - and we end on the one who loves him most dearly (Cat). One of those little pieces of brilliance, IMO, especially with the music there.
  13. NW Deserter

    How Would You Rate Episode 108?

    I am a reader, yes, so I know what's going to happen, but seeing events unfold onscreen can still give me those "holy shit" moments. Examples of that include... -Seeing the Wall for the first time -Seeing the sky cells -Arya's first lesson And I could go on. Every scene in this episode was very well done and there were a couple of really exciting moments like I said, but not enough to warrant a perfect 10. The next two episodes may very well earn 10s easily though... :smoking:
  14. NW Deserter

    How Would You Rate Episode 108?

    Solid 9. I don't have a real complaint about any of the scenes for the first time - they were all beautifully written and acted - but there were no "WTF HOLY SHIT" moments, save for possibly Syrio's, and maybe Drogo's. Main reason it loses a point was the anti-climactic ending...but given the endings in store for the final two episodes, I don't really mind. I agree, but there's really no other way to do it. This part of the book has a ton of important stuff going on, and they only have so much time. I actually thought they did a fantastic job with the hour of time they had to work with.
  15. NW Deserter


    Howdy guys! I read the series for the first time back in 2007 and am currently on my third full re-read to prep for ADwD. I've lurked here a while reading the series general board (which by the way, enlightened me to a ton of things that I never picked up - Renly/Loras, R+L=J, just about ever symbol in the house of the undying), but just made an account recently to talk about the HBO show. I figured it was time to finally scroll down and check out the non-book-related sections of the message board!