While I really liked this episode, I had to warn my non-book friends that it's like 75-80% non-book if only because it was working on the new plots HBO installed. Here are my reader's thoughts in no particular order: They got Theon's plot back on track by the end even without Ramsay and kept it vague while still making it clear to the observant viewer that it's the miller's sons who are dead. We still need Bran and Rickon to double back to the crypt and the Reeds to appear or else I fear their plot might be moving too fast. The Arya-Tywin stuff has always been a brilliant addition and remains thus even if it "wastes time that should be devoted to the sacred texts" as some would say. "Talissa" better be Jeyne Westerling or I'm going to get mildly annoyed, although I did love Lord Bolton's expressions as he walked away from her and Robb. I'm glad they were willing to include Sansa's "flowering" freak out and felt the addition of Shae actually gave me my first ever reason to care about Shae at all in either version. The very idea that she could have actual sympathy for anyone is a real surprise. As far as the gigantic departures: I'm glad they have Dany on track to enter the House of the Undying (as I figured/hoped the dragon theft would be an excuse to send her there) but I still have no idea where in the seven hells they are going in an effort to make her story more exciting this season. I will try not mourn the loss of the "It is known!" cliche as long as we get to see her visions. As far as Jon Snow, I really enjoyed his interactions with Ygritte but I am very concerned about his apparent capture by the wildlings. Why introduce the Halfhand if Jon doesn't join the wildlings on his command? And how can we accept Jon as a loyal man of the Night's Watch if he tries to return without that command? I can only assume that in the effort to establish Ygritte they decided to have his entire party be captured by the Lord of Bones, at which point Jon might initially refuse until he is thrown into captivity with Qhorin who then orders him to join them. Regarding Jaime, I am now convinced that "Alton Lannister" was never Cleos Frey. However, if we are going to invent a random Lannister for Jaime to murder, no matter how distant the relative, is he not now an absolutely accursed kinslayer? It took a few books for me to become a Jaime fan despite all his crimes but I can't see him ever murdering a fellow Lannister. I also would have preferred for him to slay Karstark's sons in battle rather than murder just one by treachery but I am happy to get that plot at all. I'm sure plenty of viewers were confused enough by the Karstark name suddenly appearing without explanation. (though I appreciated the Sunburst on some cloaks) I had hoped that with the known casting of a Lord Karstark we might have seen more of him before this. There are so many random unimportant Lannisters to kill off that I will never understand why we need fake ones. At any rate, if Robb ends up beheading Karstark just for wanting Jaime dead, I'm going to have a really hard time rooting for him in futility and that can only get worse if "Talissa" isn't a Westerling. In Conclusion: As much as they departed from the books in this episode, I really appreciated how much they drew from the source material in telling the tale of Aegon's conquest of Harrenhall, the marital life of Robert and Cersei and the tale of Jaime squiring for Barristan Selmy in the fight with the Kingswood outlaws. Forgot to add the best inclusion of a book scene: "Brienne, your sword." I was always hoping that would be an end of episode cliffhanger and it nearly was. Also, Ygritte said "you know nothing, Jon Snow!" That alone deserves a celebration.