Posts posted by mrlukeduke
For me this was one of, if not the best, episodes of the last few seasons. Not quite on par with season 1 YET, but they're bringing it back. They slowed everything right down, no cheesy scenes. Some odd choices yes, but on the whole, stunning character-based performances all-round.
I really want to know what the 'beatles' conversation meant! Really cryptic.
Oh! Forgot to add: while I don't like any of the build-up scenes with the Reeds (annoying, inexplicable characters IMO), the whole weirwood green dream sequence was truly amazing. Kinda blew me away actually, almost spot on as far as what I had imagined from reading all the books. It was a bit like Frodo's ring-visions.
I watched it back and there are tons of little clues, whispers, book references and so on. I also like how they hinted that Bran might be the "promised prince" (where book readers know where that whole thing is going...). But sorry, I don't like the Reeds' given dialogue, it's too corny, i.e. any of the scenes where Bran is "awake" with them. It all seems rushed and over-staged with obviously "derp derp" lines.
When he's a dire wolf or in vision states it's cool. Also he was great with Rickon, but something about his new adventure seems a bit hammy.
Didn't like most of it. Hammy acting, lines and sequences felt rushed. I have no idea what's going on with Ramsay's new sidekick. Feminist lobby maybe?! Also, Theon does NOT look like a traumatised mind-raped torture victim, he looks like a good-looking guy in makeup who's "a bit scared". Didn't get the dinner scene with Mel/Stannis/Selyse either. (Had to chuckle at Stannis' line, when he said not to strike his daughter, but he's just come back from burning people alive!)
Having said that, all the Lannisters were superb. Oberyn does very well with the crap scenes he gets (episode 1, in a brothel, wth?!). The costume and set design is just... unparalleled. Beautifully done. The final scene I enjoyed, although they really drew it out in an obvious way. Actor that plays Stannis is brilliant, again given the crap scenes he gets.
Basically my main criticisms of the show as a whole have all come down to one or two things: it feels rushed and/or not subtle enough, i.e. they're trying to appeal to too large an audience but at the expenses of integrity (but look at a show like Deadwood or Breaking Bad, they were successful but kept their consistency, characters, plot depth and overall integrity in tact).
All the Dani stuff was horrible, just horrible through and through. The rest was ok, a few bizarre changes as usual.
The RW was brutal though!
I give it 6.
At best: Brienne recaptures Jaime. Cat doesn't kill him, but he did agree to give back her daughters.
This is where he broke his oath. So now he's prisoner again at best. Dead at worst.
Assuming this is the case, what do you think Cat would demand (from Cersei/Tyrion) for Jaime's safe return?
— The change from the books re: Melisandre. I thought it was a cunning way to sneak in more info about and reinforce the workings of R'hllor, and the Red God's connection with and significance to Beric and Thoros. Also makes Mel more politically active. Grass roots movement baby yeah!
— The change to Gendry's story. I didn't like the scene with Selyse and her "foetus jars" in the previous episode, but it makes sense they'd use Gendry now to simplify things for the viewership. Also, it gives Stannis a nice background context to his cold/hard nature. He lost all his children "to the gods" except the strange and facially scarred Shireen, and since clearly they're skipping out Patchface they can make Shireen more creepy, while using her to educate Davos instead of his sons (also all dead).
— No Podrick and his "talents".
— No more whatsherfacewhocarestheonethatJoffkills.
— The "chaos" scene with Littlefinger. Scary shit. Thrives in chaos; nice book nod. Nicely edited sequence.
— Ramsey and Theon. So, so good. Had to hide behind a pillow for THAT scene I knew was coming...
— Beric looked more scarred and generally messed up as per booky wooky.
— That they used Tyrion to speak to Sansa rather than Cersei's cruel surprise in the books.
— Mel meeting Arya. I totally get WHY they did it. Simplification, too good a chance to pass up. But still... it's like everyone's meeting everyone. Again, maybe I'm too harsh. I did like the subtle many-faced-god reference I suppose.
— The Wall scenes. Why can't they have some non-important extras walking/climbing about in the distance. THey did the whole perfectly predictable Star Trek thing, where the non-introduced new guys in the yellow shirts die...
8/10 coming from a book "purist". Great episode. Great show.
I think it's also connected to events at Hardhome.
Just think they could have added maybe one line for Randyll Tarly as Master of Laws. Maybe someone as Master of Ships talking about Stannis/Aurane etc etc. Just my thought and opinions is all! Not bitching. I still enjoyed the episode!
It's a small council meeting. Why would the population of King's Landing be sitting in a small
Not what I said. Of course it's a small council. Still too small though, and musical chairs could have been replaced by better dialogue IMO. And I'm talking about generally anyway, at King's Landing. It feels empty, sparse, not like the Kingdom's at war internally and externally.
- There has been no mention of Robb's plan to lure the Mountain West at all prior to this episode.
- Also Robb talking about "our country" in the West - what is he referring to?
- Robb's concern over losing men, but nobody mentions the 4000 soldiers he lost when he married Talisa.
- Jorah questioning Daenerys in front of Kraznys. Dany's arc last season (whilst badly written) at least led to Jorah realising that he can trust Daenerys because she knows what she's doing.
- Littlefinger thanking Tyrion for freeing Ros even though Tyrion was the reason Ros was arrested in the first place, and even though Tyrion was incapable of doing anything after the Battle of the Blackwater.
- Ramsay killing four of his own men.
- Mance sending a group of 20 to attack Castle Black.
- Two Lannister children being able to recognise Talisa as Robb's wife, despite no one in King's Landing even being aware of Robb's marriage yet. Or worse: if everyone in King's Landing is aware of Robb breaking his oath to the Freys, why is no one discussing it?
- Daenerys not freeing Missandei. It's inconsistent with her book characterisation and also the characterisation on the show (she freed her khalasar as soon as she could, and she's always had a strong anti-slavery stance).
- The lack of funds to pay for Unsullied. Dany could buy around 227 Unsullied if she sold the ship (that isn't hers to sell), her goods, and her Dothraki. So why did Jorah suggest buying Unsullied if Daenerys couldn't afford them?
- Melisandre getting on a boat and sailing away from Dragonstone without knowing where she has to go.
- The prostitutes not accepting Tyrion's money (the most likely solution is that Littlefinger arranged a free session to repay Tyrion... but again, this makes little sense; it's not in-line with the show's characterisation of Littlefinger, and it's not in-line with the show's characterisation of Tyrion, who doesn't have any interest in saving money).
- Brienne being able to fight off her (attempted) rapists for the amount of time it took for Jaime to explain her value to Locke, and her rapists handing her back without a problem.
Excellent points. All stuff I recall thinking about when watching but never took such consideration over. You're right, although I feel more or less strongly about certain scenes for different reasons.
Plot holes are crucial to plug. It's not that they can't fit things in. They have the time, but they're using it in inexplicable ways. IMO they're trying to broaden viewership and losing a bit of artistic integrity. Which is fine, but not what turns me on, personally.
- There has been no mention of Robb's plan to lure the Mountain West at all prior to this episode.
— The woman who plays Catelyn is sensational. The scene where she cries in front of the Blackfish was so heartfelt; what a talented actor. Although they forgot to edit the tears back in on the cut to the close-up! :)
— Blackfish, Blackfish, Blackfish.
— The changes made to Theon/Ramsey etc. Perhaps the biggest departure from the books yet but I thought it was ok actually, no biggie. Sped things along a LOT! Understandably they can only have so much violence in one show. And months and months of perpetual medieval torture doesn't make for great TV...
— Daenerys scenes in Astapor. For once she acted fine for a whole show! Just one or two corny lines, which I'll forgive her for. She looked incredible and lost a bit of her self-entitlement and became strong and more dragonlike.
— The reference to the Meereneese knot. CHEEKY!
— Most of the Jaime/Brienne scenes; if much more toned down in cruelty and suffering compared to the books (expected) until...
— Jaime's hand getting cut off. Holy, holy crap. For a while didn't think they'd do it. They did, oh boy did they. It looked so realistic and I felt sick watching his arm slide away and hearing his cry of agony. But it captured the book perfectly. It's such a critical scene. Even though they used Bolton men (a bit wtf, but they have to simplify everything so it's fair enough).
— The guy who plays Kraznys, the slave master. He's an utterly superb asshat.
— Riverrun. The funeral scene. Robb Stark's actor, as usual, being amazing.
— Corny watered-down dialogue between Selmy and Jorah, for the viewer's benefit.
— Missandei aka the translator who cannot act, aka Inexplicably Posh Robotic Slave Girl, who now tragically works for Dani.
— Jon/Mance etc. Boring. Corny.
— The council meeting. Er... where are the Kingsguard? Where is, oh I don't know... EVERYONE?!! King's Landing is apparently empty and 5 or 6 people rule the entire Kingdom with all its logistics. I'm not saying give them all lines. Just show a few more important people here and there, in the background, nodding or talking privately. Throw in a grumpy lordling or two. A serving wench, a knight, a captain, a page, a scribe... someone, anyone! It's the capital city for goodness sakes. No time for musical chairs. Stupid.
— The Podrick getting laid scene. Funny yes. Pointless otherwise yes.
— Stannis acting completely out of character from BOTH previous scenes AND the books. I think they're over-playing the "he's getting weaker, Mel's sapping him of life/dignity" card. Dunno, just did not work IMO. (Mel's sexy though).
— That stupid bloody song in the end credits. What. The. Hell.
Think that's all. Overall, I liked it. 8/10.
Oh oh and Lady Olenna the Queen of Thorns. She was perfect. Wish they'd kept in the Butterbumps scene while meeting with Sansa, but hey, no biggie. Liked the way they had Marg use Joff's cruelty as a tactic to have him "aroused" and trusting her.
Great episode IMO.
Things I liked:
– Changes made from the books seemed more acceptable to me than the previous episode.
– Timing and pacing was great; no rushed scenes like I thought there were in Ep1.
– The Hound, superb. Liked the way they recut the whole BwB scene overall.
– Didn't mind the Theon/Ramsey changes despite that being my biggest concern. Torture scene was disturbing/tense.
– Surprisingly, I liked the Jon Snow references by Catelyn. Thought it fit well, i.e. she even misses HIM because she's devoid of any comfort any more.
– Orell too; the bit with his creepy whited-out eyes while warging the eagle, was a lovely subtle addition IMO.
– Pretty much everything tbh.
Things I disliked:
– Completely unavoidable of course, no one's fault, but Bran seemed to have aged too suddenly and grown a deeper voice! :)
– Jojen was too well spoken for a Stinky Bog Dude.
– That it was only an hour long.
I gave it a 6. Imho:
1. The prologue scene was really bad. In first season they managed to introduce white walkers in a convincing fashion, but this scene was outright idiotic, like from a 3rd rate zombie movie. Apparently Mormont decided to make it worse by saying the most cliche line we have yet heard of him.
Omg yes yes YES. Horrendous cliche bit that was, very un-GoT like.
2. Wildling scene was ok i guess, i feel like Ygritte's acting declined a bit compared to what we saw in 2nd season, though that might be just me. I dont like the change the made to Tormund at all. The dialogue with Mance wasnt particularly mindblowing either, i actually liked how it turned out in the book that he has seen Jon twice before. I feel like cutting that out was a bad idea. Basically non book readers got a lot of foreshadowing, and when the King Beyond The Wall finally appears, he gets like 2 minutes of screen time, without anything significant to say.
I liked Tormund as a TV character, and Mance was ok. But you're right about the ott and slightly-samey Ygritte bits.
3. Bronn in brothel, Tyrion vs Cersei all ok. Contrary to many opinions i've read, i actually think the delivery of "still makes me smarter than you" was the weakest link to that scene. Just so obvious to say that, Peter Dinklage can do waaaay better.
4. Davos's scenes are for me the strong point of this episode. Mind you, I dont like the change they made, with Stannis personally imprisoning his Onion Knight, but i do think that Stannis/Melisandre/Davos/Sallador Saan's parts were all very well played. Good stuff.
5. Robb in Harrenhall. Not bad, not great either. The one thing that really annoyed me is how Robb looked at all those bodies and suddenly went "oh right, imprison my mommy plx". That just looks naive. You either punish a crime or not, he's not supposed occasionally express how angry he is for freeing Jaime.
6. Tyrion&Tywin, another strong point for me, Charles Dance perfect as usual, with Peter Dinklage performing way better than in the Cersei scene.
7. Shae&Sansa. Well i just dislike heavily the plot changes they make here, and i find it rather unlikely LF would parade in KL with a whore but whatever. My opinion would be too biased on this one i think, didnt like it.
8. Margaery - those kind of scenes bore me, but Natalie Dormer is a very strong addition to the cast, she really nailed the character i think. And i guess they need that orphanage crap to show how the Tyrells are perceived in the capital compared to lannisters.
9. Jorah, Daenerys, Unsullied, Barristan. What made me write this post is basically the Unsullied scene. God that was so great, "my master points out that men dont need nipples", i forgot how much i loved that in the book. For me the last 5 minutes of the episode saved it. Barristan appearing also pretty badass, though i guess few non book fans will recognize him at all :D.
Wow I so agree with almost every point you made it's SCARY man. Especially the Davos point.
Always the same with the fans on the forums. I too am disappointed with the overall result given the budget and magnificent cast. Since Sean Bean no character has been allowed the time on screen to develop a persona. I suppose that's the inevitable outcome when 10 hour long episodes only equate to around 45 minutes each. To be honest, taking into account GRRM's appalling lack of motivation to finish writing the books the producers would have been better advised to make three series per book. That way they could have made a better fist of including everything from the books as well as keeping pace with the source material.
I always felt like if anything there's more pressure on George now because of (1) how complex the novels are becoming (i.e. wrap-ups & twists, tangents), (2) the novellas, and (3) the amount of input he needs to put into the HBO production. I just feel like the show could slow down a bit and go to 10, 14 seasons. I mean, why not? My fave scenes have been when they've just let the intense and emotional character acting go (like you said, yes Sean Bean was a superb example); whereas my least fave scenes have been ones with the cheap cgi effects, "sum up the situation" dialogue and cliché lines.
IMO this comes about because they're trying to cram so much in. And yet they're skipping so much from the books already, so I'm really curious to know how many seasons/episodes they're shooting for.
I didn't mid the Jon Snow stuff so much, I mean his character is a bit naive and/or two-dimensional anyway. The guy that plays Mance is awesome.
Re: manticore scene...
I'd personally have preferred it if Barristen appeared suddenly, hooded ok sure, but perhaps with a small troupe/gang in a thick crowd of poor people/slaves, many of whom offering Dani gifts or asking for her blessing or generally making her uncomfortable. Not just an incredibly obvious unsubtle "the hooded man" moment perfectly timed with the manticore attack from a bizarre "child warlock hologram", with Jorah seemingly letting Ser Grandad overpower him in a matter of seconds. If there were a crowd (a bit more like in the books but simplified obv), IMO it could have built tension better and slowly got out of control before Barristen appearing to knock the sphere from Dani's hand to the ground (more logical) and squash it, rather than have that cheesy knifey-stabby-hero scene.
There's 15 seconds between Jorah grabbing Barristan and the manticore dying. More than enough time for one of the greatest knights of his time to get out, push Jorah away and kill it. Jorah would naturally hesitate to keep attacking when he clearly sees that the knife wasn't meant for Dany. A very simple explanation that's easy to figure out as I see it, so I still have trouble seeing how there's no logical explanation available.
And being witless, or acting stupidly, is a very common thing when you're afraid so I have a hard time seeing the odd thing about that as well. I know that some people want their heroes to be capable at all times but other than that I don't really know why it's wrong for Dany to be like that.
Thinking that the scene could be better in another way is fine but I think that's a different criticism than what I responded to.
If he pushed Jorah, the knight would have been after him with a sword. The way they did it made it looked like they were sudden buddies. If I were Jorah, I wouldn't have trusted ANYONE at that point! Hence my feeling about the timing being off (possibly rushed) for that scene. Compare for example, with the Tyrion/Tywin scene. Superb. 10 or more seconds (haven't rewatched yet) of nothing but Tywin scribbling on a parchment. All sublime character acting and tension building. That's where I thought the timing and editing was done well.
being worse than the book, is not a valid criticism!
Not sure if you meant me, but I didn't say that. Just for the record.
Anyways, someone else might say: the timing was good, the reactions were great, and the sequences felt right and flowed oh-so nicely! OK so fine! Valid opposing opinion! I respect that. I don't ask for more justifications, because there's no right or wrong critique in something which is a feeling thing, a timing thing, i.e. subjective. Narrative isn't objective.
However, I can't fathom how Barristen and Jorah could have come to such a swift resolution, for one. I suppose you can argue "Jorah knew the guy right away, let him go immediately and Selmy rushed in just in the nick of time!" I just didn't like how it was done sequentially, assuming that quick resolution happened. Selmy's such a huge character, and the dialogue was a bit corny. I also thought the magical vanishing child wasn't done well and it was far too obvious when Dani blamed warlocks (i.e. NOT subtle, i.e. opposite of what others were saying it was).
Still love the show, just sayin'! Nobody picked up on my compliments of it! Ser Davos, the northmen... et al. I mean considering I thoguht that was a "bad" episode, only shows how good the series is, no?
I just gave my reasons: the timing was off, the reactions were poor and the intro sequence felt contrived and rushed.
Not sure what you missed.
Haha, I love how emotionally defensive everyone is about the slightest criticisms! Dissenting opinion won't be tolerated, even though it's entirely subjective! Apparently you can only post if you like it. Didn't realise that.
I enjoy the series very much indeed; my opinion is that this episode was poor as an opener. I'm not the one acting like a child (that accusation is in and of itself childlish). I post my opinions, as valid as anyone else's opinions, and everyone gets tetchy about it.
No logical explanation? How about Barristan getting free of Jorah's grasp and stabbing it? The scene was most likely shot that way because the viewer would think that Jorah and the other guy was tangled up and couldn't rescue Dany. I can understand someone wanting to be shown the tussle but I can't understand how someone can fail to figure out a logical explanation. For a show based on a series of books with a lot of subtlety I see a surprising amount of need for the show to spell everything out in bold letters.
They rushed it. No idea how Barristen got free so quickly, and came to an amiable agreement with Jorah in the crucial moments of time it took Dimwitted Dani to realise that it wasn't particularly smart to stare at a vicious scorpion-looking daemon creature you've accepted blindly from a stranger.
And Dany wasn't idly gazing, that's just a flat out wrong description. I found it pretty clear that she was terrified and froze a bit because she didn't know what to do, which is one of the two pretty common reactions when someone gets terrified from something like that. The other is to run and scream.
There are a hundred better ways that scene could have been co-ordinated IMO. Maybe it was her acting, dunno.
Save the money and use better character acting and editing. IMO.
Oh and both the inexplicable and cheaply-done "child warlock" as well as the the dragons-catching-fish-and-flipping-them-like-pancakes scene was just... a bit silly. Didn't need to see that. CGI almost always sucks, if not now then in a few years time for sure.
Must say I was disappointed. Some suspicious editing going on throughout, and Barristen's intro sequence was poorly done. The manticore scene was rushed; no logical explanation of how the knife-wielding Barristen got free of Mormont after he'd grabbed him, just in the nick of time as Dani was idly gazing at the OBVIOUSLY DEADLY manticore like the witless fool she seems to be being portrayed as in this series.
The guy who plays Ser Davos was superb IMO and near rescued the episode, as were the performances from Tyrion and Tywin's characters. Marg giving to charity was a total ham, cheese and corn-fest. King's Landing felt like it was missing out on half of the decent characters from the book. Although I half expected that from this series in general.
Baically it's so far from the books now that I can't really compare any more so I won't, but as a series on its own I feel that as an opening episode this didn't feel right.
The northmen, Catelyn etc always well done and the Harrenhal scene was nicely thought-out IMO. Jon, Mance et al – great. Not sure about the Qyburn twist yet... might be a clever time-saver later on, dunno.
Endless re-use of the same two "whore" characters (Petyr and Tyrion's pets, basically) becoming utterly ridiculous at this point. In fact it became ridiculous in season 2. Shae I can understand more as she's going to have bigger parts to play.
How would you rate episode 408?
in E08: The Mountain and the Viper