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Xray the Enforcer

[Book Spoilers] EP506 Discussion v. 2

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Yeah, I think you just kind of have to take the book's and show's word that the High Sparrow is really powerful because he has a shitload of people supporting him. It doesn't really make too much sense when you think about it, beyond "Well, there are a shitload of poor sparrows in KL supporting him, and because Crazy Cersei has armed them all, they have all the power."

I agree on Tyrion. I think D & D have done their best work in Essos in terms of simplifying and consolidating, between Dany, Tyrion, and Arya. I just wish that same amount of attention was paid to the North and especially to Dorne, which has to be a freaking joke at this point.

Man am I glad I'm not the only one, who has trouble following the power shifts in KL. I was already expecting somebody to school me on the intricacies of the Sparrows milicia. :D

Yeah, the North stuff isn't perfect, but I really want to withhold judgment, cause it's not clear to me where they are going with that. LFs plans are still kind of nebulous, especially since we don't have any more book knowledge to go off of.

As to Dorne: That storyline isn't great on a script level, but honestly, it's just poorly acted and directed as well. Especially the most recent stuff was surprisingly poorly staged. Really oddly clumsy.

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I stayed with this show through all the unequal nudity, the brothel scenes whose only point was to objectify women for the pleasure of male viewers, the jaime/cersie 'rape' mess, the stupid pod 'sex god' joke. I was willing to give Sansa's arc this season a chance, but it's become clear that she really is taking Jayne's place as a motivating force for Theon.



They obviously don't want women as viewers so I'm going to oblige them. I'm done.


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Oh that fucking birthmark. I can't even... What a stupid plot device. Jeez. And I have to say that whole plot doesn't really sit right with me but I kind of didn't really get it in the books either. The amount of power the High Sparrow has, I don't know, I just really don't get it. How is he that legitimized and shouldn't the Gold Cloaks protect the Queen as well? How can a fucking queen be that easily inprisoned? Same later on with Cersei. I felt like it wasn't explained properly in the books and I still feel that way after watching the episode.

I thought it actually made sense in the book. Most of the Lannister and Tyrell armies are gone fighting off Ironborn and subduing the Riverlands. A lot of the Kingsguard isn't present or is injured or otherwise incapacitated. The cityguard might not even be loyal if it seems the money is close to getting shut off. Plus the Faith obviously have the backing of a huge number of people, and the city and countryside alike would riot if their trial was ignored, and the Faith Militant includes well-trained, battle-hardened knights and lords, not just peasants, and at least in Margaery's case, her arrest had the backing of the court because she was accused of adultery against the king.

Of course, none of this is true in the show, so it makes way less sense for it to be that easy to arrest a queen and the heir to Highgarden.

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I am pretty sure that sansa will start planning her revenge real soon.

Until she is able to exact it, she will have to brace and us will have to brace for more time with hubby. That is a given and I do not think I can stomach any of it, even if she "goes with it" now that the first time is over with. Trust me, this is going to get uglier than what we have seen thusfar.

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I quite enjoyed this episode. Dorne was meh, which it was in the books. I was hoping Myrcella might get her face slashed during the fight so that Jaime might feel responsible for her beauty getting ruined, even if it wasn't as bad as in the books.



The Queen of Thorns is definitely going to get Cersei for what she's doing to the Tyrell family. I predict either she or Margaery will tell the High Sparrow of Cersei's exploits in bed, possibly getting it from Littlefinger unless they've figured it out themselves by now (I can't remember anything pointing to that in previous episodes/seasons or the books - other than Stannis's letter). The Faith Militant have Lancel, if he hears of Cersei being accused of incest and adultery he's sure to back up the adultery part. I've looked at the preview for the next episode and we see Olenna meeting with the High Sparrow, and Margaery in much the same situation Cersei's in when she gets arrested.



As for Sansa's arc... I seem to be the only one on this forum who enjoys it ._.



Its deviation from the books doesn't bother me much, I can live without seeing Sweetrobin groping her and crawling into her bed. I enjoy her Alayne chapters, but I also enjoy her story here. Jeyne Poole wasn't in the show much, and her reappearance in the books actually had me surprised. I figured she was dead in a moat somewhere, so to me having little bird Sansa replace her makes sense. Arya wouldn't work, she'd stab Ramsay as soon as she figured out what he is. A character who was merely a background extra being introduced as "hey, this is totally Sansa's best friend, y'all!" would be laughable. We have it set up in the books, we've barely seen her in the show. It would be confusing for Unsullied viewers.



As for her innocence being ruined by her wedding night, I don't have a problem with that. Obviously being raped is a bad thing, and that is what (to me) is good for her arc in the series. She used to be quick to cry, and then Joffrey had Ned killed. Rather than cry, she nearly killed him (and herself) when shown her father's head. She was stopped, and that was it. Her illusions of Joffery's gallantry were shattered, but she didn't change dramatically after that, she stayed naïve and innocent - both in the books and in the show. She became better at hiding her feelings, but she did not become an emotionless husk. She's had her moments of defiance against Joffrey, and she has been reduced to tears after this. Simply wearing a black dress isn't going to make her a player or a seductress if watching her father's head roll around on the ground and then tarred and put up on a spike on a wall didn't turn her heart into stone. Being raped however, might.



She has been prepared for her wedding night a long time. Before Joffrey revealed his cruelty she's sure to have been imagining it as some magical night. After that, she dreaded it, as evidenced by her freaking out over getting her moon blood. When she was put aside for Margaery, she was overjoyed. And then she got engaged to the Imp. Tyrion showed her more kindness than she'd ever believed however, and in the show nothing happened. And in the show, the marriage was at least amicable. Then Joffrey went and got himself killed, and she ran away with Littlefinger. When he revealed his plan about marrying her to Ramsay she was upset, she had just escaped a monster and now she was shipped off to someone else, someone who was involved in her family's death. So, she has been prepared for a less than ideal wedding night for a year or so. The one she got just happened to be with another monster, and with a person she grew up with watching.


This doesn't make it any less traumatizing, though. It likely will bring about change, far more drastic than what a makeover could do (which wasn't much, she was snarky towards Joffrey and she was snarky towards Littlefinger). I want to see her do badass things just as much as the next person who subscribes to the "Sansa becomes a player"-idea does, but I feel like people don't want to sacrifice the innocence she has (had, now...). I also feel like this wedding night is going to be the catalyst of her pawn-to-player transformation. The dress was an awesome scene, but other than maybe giving her a confidence boost it doesn't change her personality. Sansa feels like the type of person who needs to have something from the outside influence her for any major change to occur, major change won't come from inside (not directly at least).



Not saying Sansa will turn into a majorly talented player of the game of thrones, I don't believe that's her fate, or that she will become a seductress (I find it hard to believe that being raped would inspire anyone to start seducing people), I'm just saying what I like about her arc in the show. Her flirty conversation with Harry the Heir in TWOW was also enjoyable for me :D


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Just watched Thronecast (the UK show that airs after the main showing on Sky Atlantic) and they more or less avoided any discussion of the last scene (apart from one crass joke and a couple of "poor Sansa" comments). How telling.


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I think Loras will absolutely demand a trial by combat. Unless Brienne is coming back to King's Landing, the Faith doesn't have a champion that can defeat him. He might even just double as Margaery's champion as well.

why would she even need a champion if he wins his trial? given the logic of trial by combat, loras winning his trial would mean there is nothing she could have lied about. so she would only need a champion if loras already lost (to determine if she knew about it). then however loras couldn't be her champion.

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Sansa obviously expected the bedding. But the part that makes it horrific and turns it into rape is Reek being ordered to watch.

Having eye witnesses present at the consumation of political marriages was quite common in medieval times.

Remember the show Rome and how there were slaves around the bed whenever their owners had sex?

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Well, amongst other things, that finale has sullied the Winterfell snow castle building scene, particularly as presented in the book.


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Just watched Thronecast (the UK show that airs after the main showing on Sky Atlantic) and they more or less avoided any discussion of the last scene (apart from one crass joke and a couple of "poor Sansa" comments). How telling.

The lack of response from the major players I follow has been disappointing up to this point.

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You have a very weird definition of "paying off":Oliver's his squire. He'd have seen Loras naked plenty of times in non-sexual circumstances.

Even my mum pointed this out.

I thought of something and im curious as to why D&D didnt think of this. Why didnt they simply have Myranda pose as Sansa? They could have still had this plot, included Wyman Manderly, and still make us feel for Reek. Heres how i would have done it. (like from the beginning of the season btw.)

Littlefinger sends Cersei a raven saying hes found Sansa Stark. She is in Winterfell set to wed Ramsay. (real Sansa is in the Vale of course. Cue HtH plot only with Sweetrobin. Sansa works to manipulate the Vale lords and Sweetrobin.)

We see "Sansa" greet Ramsay and Roose in front of a bunch of Northerners. Its really Myranda with some hair dye. Brienne and Pod heard about "Sansa" being at Winterfell and followed the lords whispering about it to the area. Northern lords raise some eyebrows a bit because "Sansa" seems a little too giddy about this marriage. In private quarters, Ramsay takes Myranda aside and explains how she need to be Sansa. He forces Reek to tell her things about Sansa's girlhood and junk to make it convincing. Myranda agrees and reiterates that she cannot wait for the wedding. "You'll be mine officially." she says.

"But you must play your part. And do not bore me." he says.

Reek, Reek, it rhymes with sneak.

Come time for the wedding. Reek must give away "Sansa" as the closest thing to kin. Northern Lords are looking on. Manderly is there. Theres a feast. Manderly quarks on and on about these wonderful meat pies that he got from a baker found towards the Neck. He brought them to the wedding. "Dohohoho! I do say the bride is awfully happy to be home!" Manderly gloats. This is a sign he is leery that that is not really Sansa. After all, what sort of girl would be that excited to marry the son of the man who killed her brother? Roose bites into the meat pie and comments on how tender it is. "A special kind of pork," says Manderly. They further discuss that Stannis is moving toward the North. Time for the bedding.

"Sansa" is just really happy about it. "Reek, take my wife to the chambers!" Ramsay gets up to follow. We see Myranda start undressing and basically trying to climb onto Ramsay before hes ready. He remarks on how good a role she played for him. "And i have a surprise for you!" She starts grinning ear to ear.

"Reek, bring in the surprise."

Reek is seen in the hallway with two large dogs. This time, the shot is from the hallway and we see them through the doorway to the chambers. Myranda is laughing. "Reek. Dont keep us waiting." Reek enters the room with the dogs and closes the door behind him. We just see the door. Then we hear giggling and laughing and then...dog noises and shrill screaming. Cut to black.

This really should have been how this whole business played out.

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Sansa has a choice here, she can follow Little Finger's advice and win Ramsay over or she can take her own course.

How do you "win over" a psychopath? With any normal guy that might work. But Ramsay's tastes and inclinations are out of ordinary. He's not going to be attracted to sweet flirtation or ordinary missionary sex. Either he has to get a personality transplant or Sansa has to become a Myranda. I think taking her own course and either getting out of there or figuring something else out is what she'll have to do.

Edited by Ismay73

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How do you "win over" a psychopath? With any normal guy that might work. But Ramsay's tastes and inclinations are out of ordinary. He's not going to be attracted to sweet flirtation or ordinary missionary sex. Either he has to get a personality transplant or Sansa has to become a Myranda. I think taking her own course and either getting out of there or figuring something else out is what she'll have to do.

Good point. The only likely way is with a pair of pliers and a blowtorch

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Even my mum pointed this out.

I thought of something and im curious as to why D&D didnt think of this. Why didnt they simply have Myranda pose as Sansa? They could have still had this plot, included Wyman Manderly, and still make us feel for Reek. Heres how i would have done it. (like from the beginning of the season btw.)

Littlefinger sends Cersei a raven saying hes found Sansa Stark. She is in Winterfell set to wed Ramsay. (real Sansa is in the Vale of course. Cue HtH plot only with Sweetrobin. Sansa works to manipulate the Vale lords and Sweetrobin.)

We see "Sansa" greet Ramsay and Roose in front of a bunch of Northerners. Its really Myranda with some hair dye. Brienne and Pod heard about "Sansa" being at Winterfell and followed the lords whispering about it to the area. Northern lords raise some eyebrows a bit because "Sansa" seems a little too giddy about this marriage. In private quarters, Ramsay takes Myranda aside and explains how she need to be Sansa. He forces Reek to tell her things about Sansa's girlhood and junk to make it convincing. Myranda agrees and reiterates that she cannot wait for the wedding. "You'll be mine officially." she says.

"But you must play your part. And do not bore me." he says.

Reek, Reek, it rhymes with sneak.

Come time for the wedding. Reek must give away "Sansa" as the closest thing to kin. Northern Lords are looking on. Manderly is there. Theres a feast. Manderly quarks on and on about these wonderful meat pies that he got from a baker found towards the Neck. He brought them to the wedding. "Dohohoho! I do say the bride is awfully happy to be home!" Manderly gloats. This is a sign he is leery that that is not really Sansa. After all, what sort of girl would be that excited to marry the son of the man who killed her brother? Roose bites into the meat pie and comments on how tender it is. "A special kind of pork," says Manderly. They further discuss that Stannis is moving toward the North. Time for the bedding.

"Sansa" is just really happy about it. "Reek, take my wife to the chambers!" Ramsay gets up to follow. We see Myranda start undressing and basically trying to climb onto Ramsay before hes ready. He remarks on how good a role she played for him. "And i have a surprise for you!" She starts grinning ear to ear.

"Reek, bring in the surprise."

Reek is seen in the hallway with two large dogs. This time, the shot is from the hallway and we see them through the doorway to the chambers. Myranda is laughing. "Reek. Dont keep us waiting." Reek enters the room with the dogs and closes the door behind him. We just see the door. Then we hear giggling and laughing and then...dog noises and shrill screaming. Cut to black.

This really should have been how this whole business played out.

Yes, I agree and Sansa and Littlefinger could have been destinguished guests as a "reach out" by Bolton to gain allies. No, the showrunners already stated that they chose sansa to go into this plotline and yes, be raped, and have a psycho/ sexual marriage with him for 3-4 years now. This thing we are seeing has been in the works and a close secret that was only revealed to the cast when they met to start filming season 5. Everything we are seeing was stated to be desireable to put Sansa, a character that us, the fans are "invested in" to grip us "emotionally". Well, they succeeded. Unfortunately, they may have lost some viewers and from what some major publications globally are printing/writting, they have lost a lot of respect, professionally.

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How do you "win over" a psychopath? With any normal guy that might work. But Ramsay's tastes and inclinations are out of ordinary. He's not going to be attracted to sweet flirtation or ordinary missionary sex. Either he has to get a personality transplant or Sansa has to become a Myranda. I think taking her own course and either getting out of there or figuring something else out is what she'll have to do.

Precisely why the "make him yours" was so incomprehensible to me, and still is.

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Let me preface my comments by noting that I am not a purist about changes from the books in the TV series. I recognize that significant editing and reworking of the story is necessary to fit within the 10 episode constraint. In fact, except for Dorne and the final scene of the last episode, I had generally been enjoying Season 5 quite a bit.



Unfortunately, the lows last night are so low that they tend to overshadow everything else.



The Sand Snakes “Attack.”



Others have already mentioned how the b-movie aesthetic of the Sand Snakes’ first appearance didn’t exactly inspire confidence in D&D’s ability to come up with a compelling abrogated Dorne plotline (see Exhibit A, Obara’s insipid rhetorical question—“You must choose: Doran’s way and peace, or my way and war?”).



That said, I still had hopes for Dorne at least being passable. The scene where the four horseman find Bronn and Jaime was pretty good. I could overlook the Sand Snakes’ bad acting if they were chosen based on their ability to convincingly pull off the fight scenes of a more action-adventure-oriented story arc.



What we got instead was rushed, cheesy, and utterly forgettable. There was no sense of urgency or investment in the fight. And the cinematography was just terrible. What were D&D thinking? Seriously. Why even bother with the Dorne story if telling it seems like a chore? Why not chop it out altogether and spend more time on the stuff that actually matters? Even the siege of Riverrun would have been a lot more engaging.



The gratuitous Sansa rape scene.



Look, I get that Sansa has been merged into Jeyne Poole’s character, and that much worse happens to Jeyne in the books.



What purpose does it serve here though? If D&D were going to alter the story, why not alter it in a way that builds on Sansa’s erstwhile accrual of independence and self-sufficiency rather than planting hints of that transformation in the very same episode (the ”you don’t frighten me” scene) only to swat it down in the cruelest way imaginable. Everyone already knows what a psychopath Ramsey is and loathes him for it. The threat of what he might do would build just as much—if not more—suspense than seeing him actually do it (see the dinner scene in the last episode).



I’m not saying that depicting a gruesome event can’t ever serve a legitimate narrative purpose. Even as a book reader, I was still shocked watching Talisa Stark get stabbed repeatedly in the womb (particularly given that my wife was pregnant), but I can't argue the Red Wedding didn't make the books and show better. I’m just pointing out that here, in this specific instance, it did nothing to advance the plot or show us any aspect of the characters we didn’t already know. So why do it at all? And if you're going to do it, why put the focus on Theon, thereby implicitly making this scene more about his vicarious trauma than Sansa’s horrific and very real direct trauma?



I'm not going to stop watching the show because of this one episode. But the mere fact that even it crosses my mind reveals the extent of D&D’s loss of credibility with me last night.


Edited by autarkh

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Until she is able to exact it, she will have to brace and us will have to brace for more time with hubby. That is a given and I do not think I can stomach any of it, even if she "goes with it" now that the first time is over with. Trust me, this is going to get uglier than what we have seen thusfar.

I don't know. I think anything that happens will mostly be offscreen from here on out. Given the weight given to this scene by the actors, I think that's the worst we'll see for Sansa. Otherwise, I think Sophie would have mentioned other "traumatic" scenes.

In the meantime, she needs to poison or drug him to where his dick can't function and he's too weak to beat the crap out of anyone. Who's the local apothecary? He/she needs to be her friend. Real quick.

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I guess that for me it's been pretty evident what they were going to do with Sansa for awhile now, which is why I've been upset for awhile now. The WF portion of the episode wasn't bad in the sense of how they did it. It was bad in the sense of them doing it at all which, again, has been clear for awhile. When I set aside the idea that they were going to do it, this is actually well done, imo.

Dorne is the opposite. Even down to the still shot they had of a Sand Snake on HBO Go last night - that was maybe the most fake dagger I've seen. Ever. How do you not CG that dagger to at least a semblence of realism? How do you end up with such cartoonish and poorly acted characters? How could they be so inept with this entire storyline? They all arrive at the same time? Really? In production and on the set they didn't see how cheesy it all was? Really? Woof. It's got all the wrong vibes and is an inexcusable misstep. It's like a good joke delivered poorly - not funny and lost all effect. I actually think the Doran actor could save this if he was featured. He has some sense of realism. Everyone else looks and feels like they're playing dress up. With poorly designed costumes.

I can't overstate how frustrating this season has been for these two reasons. 1. Complete change-up on a fairly high profile character and 2. Destroying the production of Dorne.

Edited by Ser Not Appearing

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why would she even need a champion if he wins his trial? given the logic of trial by combat, loras winning his trial would mean there is nothing she could have lied about. so she would only need a champion if loras already lost (to determine if she knew about it). then however loras couldn't be her champion.

That's actually what I meant by "double." That winning his own trial is winning her's, too, so he'd effective be her champion as well.

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