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Fengari

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  1. Winterfell: Great scene between Theon and his sister, I had no problems with Yara before but I really liked her today. I especially loved how she sent her men away before changing her tone from mocking Theon to telling him she doesn't want him to die. The anecdote was a nice touch to show she does care for her brother, even though she does not think him fit to lead the Ironborn. North of the Wall: I just repeat what I said about last weeks episode: the changes do not affect why/how Jon joins the wildlings, so no problem. The scenes with Ygritte showed the viewers how strong Jon feels about his vows, while he could still say it (as we can't hear him think it later). He was all alone with her, nobody to rat him out, and he was clearly tempted, but didn't give in to it. Now we're done with that, I'm ready for Kit to get out of all these furs for her now. So, we were all wrong. It wasn't Sam finding the dragonglass, it was Grenn (I think?). At least it has been found. I wonder what the first men's signs were about... Robb's camp: Different 'trigger' for releasing Jaimie, yes, but not less understandable, and actually more justified. Though I understood the grief driving Cat to her decision, she did make a terrible gamble in the books: after all, with only Brienne as an escort (I don't think Cleos ever counted...), how good was the chance of Jaimie actually reaching Kings Landing, and even if he did, how big was the chance that that would get her girls back? (We know how well it worked out...). In this scenario, she takes the gamble as opposed to leaving Jaimie in a situation where he would most likely be lynched soon, which would certainly be disastrous for her girls. Great acting in the scene between Robb and Cat, by the way. I liked the scenes of Robb and Talisa this episode. Now they havved dropped their guard around each other they feel a lot less awkward, and that's fitting. Yes, it's a lovey-dovey romance story, but it needs to be to have his fall from the Frey's grace make sense at all. Personally, I feel this relationship they have set up makes more sense than the one in the book. Robb risking his kingdom for a woman he has come to know and love is less foolish and more mature than him sleeping with a nice nobody in a moment of weakness and then deciding he has to do the 'honorable thing'. One can argue not marrying her and honouring his previous promises would have been just as honourable. After all, as far as he knows, even his father has had a 'fling on the side'. I also don't get why people want Talisa anything other than she appears to be. Because it is a different character than in the book? It would be kind of hard to explain a nobleman's daughter, espacially from an enemy house, being around him long enough to get to know and love in these circumstances... And having him wounded and being nursed back to health in a castle would take him out of his camp too long to fit with the rest of the timelines as they are presented in the series. If the conspiracy theories about Talisa do turn out to be right, though, I'll happily accept that D&D have managed to surprise me as GRRM has done so many times... On the Road (or river): Soooo looking forward to more of that! Harrenhall: Did I understand it correctly that Tywin is marching towards Robb? Isn't he coming to the rescue of King's Landing then? I liked how they showed Arya was too late in thinking of naming Tywin, and I loved the 'Unname me', 'No', 'Please?', that smug expression on her face, and the shrug when Jaqen says 'a girl lacks honour'. Weasel soup, as I have said before, is something I can do without, even though I loved it in the books. Without prisoners, it wouldn't have made much sense. I do hope the escape isn't finished yet, though, I feel Arya killing people along her journey with lessening horror at what she's doing is important. But, we know there's more Jaqen and a coin to come, so the possibility is still there. Them walking between all these staged guard-corpses was pretty cool-looking, though. (By the way HBO, when Jaqen sheds his face, could you please send it over here for my husband to borrow for a bit? That would compensate nicely for the lack of a certain bath-scene...) King's Landing: All Tyrion's scenes were great, as always, and Bronn, Varys and Cersei are great with him. I'm a bit worried about him being so desperately late in planning the defenses, though. I really want the viewers to see that he really was who saved King's Landing, not Renly's ghost or Tywin (if he ever gets there). I'm reserving judgement until after next episode, though. I wonder if Tyrion ever contemplates this opportunity: if he gets Joffrey killed, Cersei will kill Roz, and Shae will be safe because Cersei will think she's already gotten Tyrion's love. Win/win/win. Well, the last one purely for Tyrion. The actress playing Shae is not convincing me. I'm looking forward to seeing Joffreys arrogance crumble next week ('There's too many of them!' in the preview had me cracking up...) I'm not usually one who notices the cinematography aspects consciously unless they are bad, but what a great image, when Varys and Tyrion talk about the dragons, with the flames on the foreground... On sea: I now know why I have never like Stannis. He is not a cat person. Good exposition between Stannis and Davos, though I think for non-readers it would have been good to get this a bit earlier in the season. Qarth: When Dany's dragons were stolen I thought it was to give her something to do until going to the House of the Undying. But she doesn't really do much, does he? I'm starting to fear it is to give her something to do IN the House of the Undying, INSTEAD of walking around having visions... If I think about it more, that makes sense. They have left everything that is dreams, visions or prophecy out, except when it is for Bran (where it is quite obviously very necessary). So why would they include those from the House? Showing the RW without giving too much away is difficult, the vision of Rhaegar has no immediate part in the storylines so far (and we didn't get the other R+L=J clues either). I'm lowering my expectations, that way i can only be pleasantly surprised... A final note: if I'm wrong and there will be visions, I want to request an added one: Arya holding armfuls of small golden statues of naked bald men holding swords...
  2. The Wall was built as defence against the Others originally, but in the 1000 years that no Others have been seen, it has become more about defense against Wildling raids than against the Others. Even though they may know that Mance means to keep his people safe from the Others, that doesn't mean they agree with his assessment of the danger. After all, all they've seen so far are a few walking dead, and, as long as you remember to burn your dead, that doesn't seem such a huge problem. With their 100 years of experience of fighting the Wildlings and the memory of the others having faded over those same 1000 years, they probably consider both threats equal. It's not that strange that people who have been fighting a certain people don't want them to come to their lands even if they are threatened.After all, all they have seen of the threat so far is a few walking dead. As long as you remember to burn your dead, that does not seem an enormous problem. After all, people who ware fleeing war and genocide in our world are often seen as people who have just come to steal their jobs and welfare by the people of the lands that give them refuge...
  3. I know I'm a bit late with this, but here's my 2 cents on the 'best claim' and 'better King' debate. It seems some people can't differentiate between 'who has the best claim to the throne' and 'who would be the best king'? In medieval feudal society, nobility titles were hereditary and 'claim' had nothing to do with capability or popularity (just as capability and popularity have nothing to do with each other, judging by modern politics). So, of the 'five kings' who has the best claim to the Iron Throne? (Let's keep in mind that Dany, who arguably has the best claim, hasn't come forward to actually claim it yet...). 1. Joffrey: he is the oldest son of the recently deceased king. Yes, we know he isn't legitimate, but as long as Cersei doesn't come forward to confess, there is no way of proving that (you know, no DNA-analysis yet). Actually, I'm quite sure throughout history there have been a few successions where the heir wasn't actually a legitimate son. With all the arranged marriages I don't think it is far fetched to assume that some (most) Queens had their little love-interests on the side. As long as those were kept out of sight of 'the public' I'm also quite sure their Kings wouldn't actually care about that. 2. Stannis: if Joffrey being illegitimate could be proven somehow (and Tommen's as well), next in line is the King's eldest brother. Which means, in his eyes (being sure of the truth about Joffrey and Tommen), Stannis has a legitimate claim. 3. Renly: comes after Stannis whether you accept Joffrey as the legal heir or not. I don't think he ever claims it as 'his right' either. He just figures, if there is going to be chaos and war concerning the succession, he might as well have a stab at it, and backs it up by saying 'at least I would be popular'. 4. Robb: No way. But then again, he doesn't claim it either. He just wants to kick the Lannisters of it after what they did to his father. He does have a claim to the title that he claims (or that was claimed for him?), though. I'm quite sure if things had gone a different way, he would have had no problem bending the knee to whichever Baratheon ended up on the throne, if that was the end result. Maybe with 'King of the North' as his title as opposed to the 'Warden of the North' of his father, if his role in taking the throne was significant enough. 5. Balon: Again, no way. But neither does he claim it. He just sees an opportunity to take what isn't his in the chaos that has become of the Seven Kingdoms, as the Old Ways of the Ironborn dictate. So, who would make the better King? Joffrey: I guess that's obvious. No way! Another Mad King in the making. Stannis: Debatable. I don't think he would be a 'truly bad' King. He is rather proud of being 'just', and being 'just' is not a bad thing in a King. But his idea of justice is rather hard and unbendable, and being popular is not on his agenda. I can see the occasional conflict arising and being ruthlessly put down. A 'peace under tension' for the kingdom at best. Renly: In the books, he is described as a younger version of Robert. Their reasons for taking the throne might be different (Robert's was righteous indignation at the acts of the Mad King and his son, Renly is just being opportunistic), I think the result will be the same: a King more interested in 'putting on the King show' than in actually ruling a country. Which means his reign would stand or fall according to who he chooses to be his Hand and thus the actual ruler. We can only hope that, because Renly likes to be popular, he would choose someone who would do a good job. Robb: Being his father's son, I think he would have been a good King. Ned as a Lord appears to have been someone with honour, someone who didn't disregard 'the common people', and someone who realised a title brings duties as well as rights, and it is clear he did his best to pass on those values to his sons. There is nothing in the books to indicate Robb wouldn't follow his father in his footsteps, except that, well, he doesn't get the chance. Balon: No. Not even for his own islands. Come on, what is this guy thinking? Though the Ironborn may well like going back to the Old Ways of plundering and pillaging for a while, he should know by now that Westeros will not take that anymore. Eventually things will settle down there, and whoever sits the Iron Throne (or an alliance of the different kingdoms if it comes down to the Seven falling apart) will come to put him in his place again. And I doubt this time they will be happy with a bent knee and just one hostage...
  4. * No problems with the looks of the shadow. Yes, it's not exactly as described in the books, but that's just a matter of aesthetics. It would have been weird to have a 2D shadow on the tent wall after the 3D shadow creature we saw being born the previous episode. This was more consistent. I do agree something felt wrong with the pacing of the scene, though. Especially panning out to show the whole tent after all the close-ups felt forced. I can only imagine it is because they originally wanted to do it more like the book, then changed their minds afterwards. * Brienne killing the guards: nothing wrong with that as far as I'm concerned. I actually think their escape from the tent makes more sense to me than Cat being able to convince one of them that Stannis did it. After all, the guards see Brienne, Cat, and a dead King. Magic is just 'reborn' so it is not as if they have lived with the concept all their lives. It didn't really make much sense to me that someone would believe the word of Cat (who's not even on their side) above what they can see with their own eyes. * Oh wait. Loras obviously just made the conclusion it couldn't have been Brienne and Cat but had to have been Stannis. He didn't see the shadow or even hear about it, but he obviously thinks the only thing important about solving a murder is motive. Circumstances and the fact that Stannis is nowhere around obviously don't matter... What? * "Do you want to be a Queen? No ... I want to be THE Queen". Great line. It looks more and more like she will actually take the Queen of Thorn's role herself instead of just being her grandmother's pawn (which was how I judged her in the books). I think having a strong elderly woman in the show would have been great, but I do love the new Margaery. * At last someone in Kings Landing realises there might be trouble ahead... I was starting to think Stannis was going to have to burn his own ships... Still no chain though. * Loved Tyrion and Lancel in that small, small carrying chair :P and Bronn's "It will be my pleasure" and that grin. * Stannis and Davos: this is the first time Stannis feels like the real Stannis to me. Not sure about the changes: why put Davos in charge of the fleet? Will they pin the failure on him? He's even apologising in advance: "my time on the seas was spent evading ships, not attacking them". * Tyrion taking a stroll through King's Landing: this whole scene felt wrong. We see a fishmonger with crates full of fish, a farmer selling fresh fruit, and a stand with vegetables. I thought the people of King's Landing were supposed to be half-starving and pretty hostile against their rulers in the Red Keep by now? The guy criticising them and the few people cheering him on must be a very small minority, because most of the people seem to just ignore the 'demon monkey' as he is walking amongst them with only one guard... * Theon being his own arrogant self once again, only to be taken down a peg by his own crew. Good thing he has Dagmer to all but tell him what he needs to do to gain their (and his father's) respect. (Can you tell I really don't like this guy?) I've been on the fence about this, but I am starting to like Yara. She's sassy and down-to-earth enough to make her place amongst her men make sense. * The Tywin and Arya scene was awesome, but left me wondering. Why does Tywin take this attitude from his cupbearer? Does he suspect who she really is? If so, what does that mean for the rest of Arya's arc? Though I would have loved to see Arya's story closer to the books, some part of me likes that it has been mixed up so. It leaves me wondering what will happen at Harrenhal, a kind of suspense I would never have felt if everything remained as in the books, of course. * A man looks really sexy. * I hardly recognised The Fist. Nothing at all like the description in the book, but amazing scenery! And Ghost, just being there, without him actually having to be in the image because of the story. Did they have a little bit of budget leftover after all? Good exposition by Sam, too. From him, it didn't feel forced at all, especially with the 'you read it in a book' comment from Ed. * Couldn't help but think, in a castle lit by candles and fires, having indirect lighting coming from behind/between the pots of wildfire seems a bit imprudent. Tyrion needs to have a word with the castle's interior designers, as well as making men practice with the empty pots. * Drogon is so cute when he tries to breathe fire and only coughs up some smoke at first. Also, yay, a glimpse of a second dragon! * After showing all the rather pointless nudity we've seen before, HBO decides to do away with the tokar. The fashion could easily have been explained in the dialogue between Dany, Doreah and Irri.The excuse of it being too distracting doesn't make sense, as in the first season whole expositions were being made over whores doing each other. And it's not like we haven't seen Dany's breasts before. Why would we be distracted by a mere bare breast and not by two girls having sex? I can only think that extras willing to have one bare breast in the garden scene were more expensive than fully clothed extras. * Pryat Pree looks creepy enough, that was a good introduction. Same with Quaithe, although I really saw her mask differently. * Good scene of Brienne swearing her loyalty to Catelyn. A bit strange that they are alone there, yes, but it is very possible that Catelyns escort is a bit further away, giving the women a bit of privacy. * Bran is learning quickly about how to be a good lord. And Rickon is shown for the halfwild boy he has become. * Looks like Jojen and Meera's essential plotpoints will be taken over by Osha and Bran. I don't really mind, I like Osha in the show and think she can make up for Meera and Jojen, assuming she comes with Bran. It makes me wonder who will be with Rickon, but I suppose, as we don't get to see that arc, that doesn't really matter that much. Also, why did the crow become a raven? * Didn't care for the change to how Jon gets to go with Qhorin. In the books it is obviously Qhorin who wants him there, not so much here. Also Jon's bragging about killing the Wight and Mormonts response about Craster is a big change to their relationship. Gotta love Sam for offering to do his friend's work so he can become the ranger he wanted to be, though. Who will find the dragonglass now? * Vault? Valyrian stone? Ser Jorah wanting her to sail to Westeros with one ship? * Shirtless Gendry, and Arya notices how broad a target that would make :) * The tickler dead already, makes me wonder who Arya is going to kill. Doesn't really matter (the 'is there gold in the village' scene was great in the book, but I doubt it would come over well on TV, seeing how much time there is between both scenes.) but i hope they won't have her not kill someone. I loved the tiniest of smiles on Arya's face when she realises the power she has. I wonder who she's going to pick next. Overall, I liked the episode. Lots of changes, but nothing i can't live with...
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