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Rant & Rave Season 8 [Spoilers]: When you are cool like a cucumber, as evil as the mother of madness, but never as perfect as the pet!

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8 minutes ago, BlackLightning said:

I'm going to have to stop you right there. Why do you keep forgetting about Myrcella? It seems to be a bad habit of yours.

The prophecy explicitly says that Cersei will have THREE children who will be adorned with first golden crowns and then golden shrouds. Three. Not Two. Three. Three includes Myrcella. Myrcella will be Queen before she dies.

I'm not saying that she'll be Queen for an extended amount of time. I think that she'll be Westeros' version of England's Nine-Day-Queen.

But in the book Myrcella already was a queen, no? Arianne proclaimed her a queen, did she not? Granted, she didn't give her crown, but if she were queen for only a couple of days she isn't going to get her own crown, either. Tommen also wears Joffrey's crown, and doesn't have one of his own yet in AFfC.

I can see Myrcella as Aegon's queen or Euron's queen for a short time, but while we don't know how and when Tommen dies it is idle speculation to wonder if/when she is going to be proclaimed queen regnant in her own right. But I'm not saying that's impossible. If she were to return to KL and Tommen were to die very soon she certainly could be the monarch Aegon is going to depose when he takes the city.

But to be sure - royal children do not have to be proclaimed kings and queens to have crowns or be seen as wearing crowns. There is some poetic/artistic license in those obscure prophecies.

8 minutes ago, BlackLightning said:

To your other point about Euron taking King's Landing and the Iron Throne from Aegon. If Euron takes King's Landing and the Iron Throne from Aegon, Aegon is dead. I don't can't envision a scenario in which Aegon lives to see Euron sit the Iron Throne and "rule" (re: terrorize) King's Landing, much less be able to fight to win it back. That's Daenerys' job. She's the slayer of lies and Stannis, Aegon and Euron all seem to be the lies.

Well, I also doubt that Aegon has any chance against Euron in any scenario. The man is a sorcerer and might be able to slay Aegon without getting close to KL at all. But the idea I'm having is that Aegon is going to leave KL very soon after his coronation and wedding to pacify the Realm - restore order in the Riverlands, offer help to his leal followers in the Reach against the Ironborn, lead an army west to subdue the Westermen, that sort of thing.

Euron would steal the Iron Throne while Aegon is out in the field. And then Euron might leave KL with his great armada to crush Daenerys while she is on her way to Westeros and Aegon can retake his capital and throne after Dany cuts Euron down to size (without being able to kill him), so that when this Second Dance gets going Aegon is the one on the Iron Throne (again), and Dany the outsider challenging him.

8 minutes ago, BlackLightning said:

I definitely agree though. When Daenerys, Jon and friends move against King's Landing, it's going to be an ugly, bloody affair. That's when I see King's Landing being destroyed. Either with dragonfire, wildfire or a horrific monster battle where Drogon is pitted against one of his brothers or against one or more of these deep sea monstrosities (much more likely) Patchface keeps harping on about.

I don't think there is much of KL left when that happens. If Cersei and Euron were to ever take KL from Aegon or Daenerys or anyone they will turn it into a corpse city in a matter of days. Nobody there is going to want these people to rule over them.

I don't see much potential for the good guys (i.e. those facing the Others) to ever fight to conquer KL. The good guys will fight for KL before the Wall falls, not thereafter.

And if Dany ever takes the capital it should be her first victory on Westeros soil. KL is a harbor city on the eastern coast. It is where her armada would land. Any other landing place would make no sense.

8 minutes ago, BlackLightning said:

The idea of there being two mad queens (aka ten women) who end up directly or indirectly murdering at least a million people between the two of them as they battle each other is also deeply misogynistic and very nihilistic.

I mean that's one of the things that really bothered me about the last two episodes? What is this? A cautionary tale about what happens when women are given power with Sansa as the token "exception."

Well, it is not just that, also the issue with the fact that if we took the show seriously both Dany and Cersei would, in the books at least, die pretty much in the same manner - murdered by the man they (once) loved and who was very close to them. That is not very likely to happen.

If Jaime were to kill Cersei then his motivation would be exactly the same motivation they gave Jon in the show - as far as we can speculate about this right now. But we won't get two deaths which are effectively the same death.

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Posted (edited)
13 hours ago, Cas Stark said:

Well, you would need entire episodes for things they threw off in one line.  She's not loved here.  Show us, and I don't mean making the Northerners and Sansa irrationally hate her.  There was no reason either for Varys to betray her when he did, he never killed the mad king for fuck's sake, or Joff or Cersei!  if he betrayed her after she committed some massacre and then went on a public rant against her 'enemies' and threatened again to burn cities to the ground, okay maybe, but that whole thing was in the wrong order. Perhaps if we had seen her obsess over why the people of KL had not ovethrown Cersei for a few episodes and had started saying repeatedly that she was going to burn it to the ground, where we as the audience might have thought, hey she won't really do this...and then she did.   Maybe if she had pardoned Tarly and then he stabbed her in the back somehow.  Of course if they had any artistry they could have paralleled things that she did in Essos which worked, but failed in Westeros, but this would have taken a lot of planning and a skill they never possessed. The entire last two seasons were complete clusterfucks of stupidity, so I don't know how you'd even begin to chart something that would have worked, because you'd have to start off with a reason that is believable of why she didn't go to KL with her full force and end the thing in a weekend, and you'd have to have not had Tyrion give uniformly terrible advice for 2 seasons on and on.

Remember when all the critics in season 5 said that the show was improving on the books and how awesome it was that now they were free of the books and could chart their own direction.  HAHAHHAHA.  

All the talk, in the run up to the attack on Kings Landing, was about burning the Red Keep, and treating the civilians there as collateral damage.  Not about burning the city (victorious generals don't burn their own capital, defeated ones might).  The "humane" alternative favoured by Varys and Tyrion was to starve the population (something which would actually have resulted in far higher casualties than hitting the Red Keep).

Having Daenerys fly for the Red Keep, only to swerve aside for no reason in order to strafe the civilian population, made no sense, did not tie up with prior discussions between the characters, and was, I suspect, added into the episode very late.  They could have given a plausible reason for Daenerys to massacre civilians eg a botched surrender, or her soldiers getting bogged down in street fighting, but that was beyond their imagination.

Likewise, the Sack on the ground could still have gone ahead.  The Northmen in particular would all have had friends or relatives who died at the Red Wedding, and would want to avenge Ned Stark and his men.  It would in practice, be very hard to restrain such an army.  

Even D & D know that none of it made sense, which is why they keep comparing the attack the bombing of Dresden, or Hiroshima and Nagasaki, all of which took place prior to surrender.

As to Season 7....well.  No modern general would hesitate to use drones or bombers to flatten the Red Keep if he had the means, even if civilians were killed in the process.  Would any military leader or advisor in a medieval world hesitate to to the same if they had the chance?  The only way it would really make sense for Daenerys to pull her punches would have been, say, if Tommen and Margaery had survived, and Cersei died.  They really would have been loved by the population, and Dany might well hesitate to kill them, knowing she'd make herself hated.

Edited by SeanF

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I think Aegon is gonna find it very easy to take Kings Landing. Kevan and Pycelle's deaths are going to work exactly how Varys plans but there's also what the Iron Bank are going to do.

By supporting Stannis, they are going to want to make his conquest easier and they will do more than give him the money he needs. They are going to do real damage inside Kings Landing too. They won't forget how Cersei insulted them by refusing to pay back her debts and I expect they will send a faceless man (possibly Arya) to kill Tommen as punishment for how Cersei behaved and to make sure people remember that the Iron Bank will have its due. 

So whether Stannis sits on the iron throne or not, we will definitely see multiple kings in the next months.

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Posted (edited)
13 hours ago, SeanF said:

As to Season 7....well.  No modern general would hesitate to use drones or bombers to flatten the Red Keep if he had the means, even if civilians were killed in the process.  Would any military leader or advisor in a medieval world hesitate to to the same if they had the chance?  The only way it would really make sense for Daenerys to pull her punches would have been, say, if Tommen and Margaery had survived, and Cersei died.  They really would have been loved by the population, and Dany might well hesitate to kill them, knowing she'd make herself hated.

Well, at least for early Season 7 Daenerys could have tried to just fly up to the Red Keep and try and intimidate Cersei into surrendering. Bear in mind this is before the ballistae (is that the right term?) have not gone into mass production. Why did nobody think of that? It's even been discussed in the Histories and Lore that this is a valid tactic, as Visenya Targaryen used it to get the Arryns to surrender.

Edited by Angel Eyes

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On 5/17/2020 at 12:02 PM, Angel Eyes said:

Meanwhile I’ve been doing some tabulation of kill numbers for different characters and here’s what I got. Letting animals loose from cages counts, ordering them (Daenerys telling the dragons to kill Pyat Pree) does not. For example:

House Stark

Ned Stark: 7 (5 as Sean Bean, 2 as Robert Aramayo)

Catelyn Tully Stark: 1

Robb Stark: 3

Jon Snow: 442

Sansa Stark: 1

Arya Stark: 410

Bran Stark: 5

Rickon Stark: 0

More Numbers:

House Lannister:

Tywin Lannister: 0

Cersei Lannister: 1

Jaime Lannister: 33

Tyrion Lannister: 5

Kevan Lannister: 0

Lancel Lannister: 0

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Posted (edited)
On 5/17/2020 at 3:46 PM, Cas Stark said:

Again, I wasn't really bothered by the Nuremberg imagery, it is a short cut way to tell the audience that X leader has lost it, is a villain, they are a danger to peace, etc.  it would have been fine if it was paired with showing us how Dany got there, how her personality changed and her decision making became clouded, but they would have needed a season of episodes to do it.  I also don't mind it because Dany has always understood how to use 'image' and symbols, this is why she has 2,000 titles and is always talking about her Targ history, why she re opened the pits and started wearing a Meereen outfit, she instinctively understands pageantry and PR, more so than anyone else in the story except maybe Tywin Lannister.

As to the Nuremberg imagery, I expected the Unsullied to burst into a chorus of "Auf der Heide blüht ein kleines Blümelein
Und das heißt, Erica....."

The brilliant way that Dumb & Dumber "subverted expectations" was to make the Nazis people of colour.

Edited by SeanF

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Posted (edited)
59 minutes ago, Angel Eyes said:

Well, at least for early Season 7 Daenerys could have tried to just fly up to the Red Keep and try and intimidate Cersei into surrendering. Bear in mind this is before the ballistae (is that the right term?) have not gone into mass production. Why did nobody think of that? It's even been discussed in the Histories and Lore that this is a valid tactic, as Visenya Targaryen used it to get the Arryns to surrender.

Exactly. There is absolutely no way Cersei could be allowed to live but all these people that Tyrion "I wish I had enough poison for the whole pack of you" Lannister was desperate to keep alive would never have been harmed if Dany simply promised the common people that nobody would be harmed if they would open the gates and bring Cersei out for execution, otherwise there would be a sack of the city. That would be the humane way to deal with things. Not that starve the people to initiate a riot stupidity.

You'd think that Jaime would then 'go to the queen and beg her to surrender peacefully'.

Edited by Ghostlydragon

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21 minutes ago, Ghostlydragon said:

Exactly. There is absolutely no way Cersei could be allowed to live but all these people that Tyrion "I wish I had enough poison for the whole pack of you" Lannister was desperate to keep alive would never have been harmed if Dany simply promised the common people that nobody would be harmed if they would open the gates and bring Cersei out for execution, otherwise there would be a sack of the city. That would be the humane way to deal with things. Not that starve the people to initiate a riot stupidity.

You'd think that Jaime would then 'go to the queen and beg her to surrender peacefully'.

So why did Tyrion never consider this? 

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46 minutes ago, Angel Eyes said:

So why did Tyrion never consider this? 

Because Tyrion is secretly trying to keep Cersei alive by screwing up Dany's chances. Or more likely because D&D genuinely believe starving a city is a humane way to fight a war.

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21 hours ago, Ghostlydragon said:

Because Tyrion is secretly trying to keep Cersei alive by screwing up Dany's chances. Or more likely because D&D genuinely believe starving a city is a humane way to fight a war.

I’m not quite sure why Tyrion would want to keep Cersei alive, considering the times she’s tried to kill him throughout the show. 

For D&D that seems to be the case. And I’m surprised that nobody thinks of propaganda against Cersei; Cersei certainly uses propaganda to get the nobles on her side by saying that Daenerys has allied herself with the malcontents of Westeros (Dorne, Yara and Theon, the Dothraki, the Unsullied), but Daenerys and her circle could have done a bit better if they

  • Appealed to the Faith in Oldtown about Cersei’s destruction of the Great Sept, maybe promising to build a new one
  • Promoted law and order in the war-torn and leaderless Riverlands
  • Pointed out that Cersei’s a pot calling the kettle black by allying herself with Euron

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As Lord Varys said, I’ve been going through all the season 8 Blu-ray commentaries in order, slowly scrutinizing them for info and making highlight clips.

Tonight I will get to the last one:  the series finale, with Benioff and Weiss.

May the Seven grant me strength.

 

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4 hours ago, The Dragon Demands said:

As Lord Varys said, I’ve been going through all the season 8 Blu-ray commentaries in order, slowly scrutinizing them for info and making highlight clips.

Tonight I will get to the last one:  the series finale, with Benioff and Weiss.

May the Seven grant me strength.

 

You're a stronger man than I am.

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Posted (edited)

For those curious about it, these are the two videos I recently made using clips from the Blu-ray commentaries:

I'm posting them in reverse order, because the one from 8.5 is a short 3 minute watch, while the 8.4 one is almost half an hour, and actually 3 separate clips intercut with my own comments.

 

The basic theory is this:  when someone pointed out to me that video on "Daenerys the Mad Queen" that HBO *delisted from YouTube but forgot to delete*, we noticed that Emilia Clarke's comments prominently don't match what actually happened.  By extension, this made us pay more attention to other points in Season 8 when...dialogue in finished episodes, didn't even match up.  AT THE TIME, I thought these were relics of earlier scripts that weren't corrected when filming BEGAN, or at least, that Benioff and Weiss gave Emilia Clarke a big pep talk about Dany's INTERNAL motivations, that she's not insane but in grief...but others pointed out to me in reaction, that it's possible they were outright lying to her about EXTERNAL events, beyond her head-space, but lying about the extent of Daenerys's destruction.  That is, not just that this was an early draft of the script that wasn't corrected before they BEGAN...but that they were rewriting it AS THEY WERE FILMING Season 8 itself.  And thus Clarke is outright referring to a different version that persisted as late as the live table read.  

Bullet Point Version:

  • Different people at separate points hype up that Daenerys is going to burn "the Red Keep" but not "all of King's Landing".  Yes, there is a massive difference.  Hyping up that Cersei is using "human shields" in "the Red Keep" itself...even though, in the finished version, nothing of the sort happens.  No real attention is paid to civilians in the Red Keep, and Daenerys is...randomly burning fleeing civilians in the streets of the city, making carpet-bomb strafing runs back and forth, rather than heading straight to the Red Keep.
  • The theory is that CERSEI was supposed to be "the Mad Queen", and that as a dead-man's trigger of sorts, she hid caches of wildfire throughout the city.  In the original version, Daenerys, in a moment of rage, would burn THE RED KEEP itself...ACCIDENTALLY setting off a wildfire chain reaction that burns much of the city.  Obviously her army was filmed pillaging, but what if the original version is that they took her burning the Red Keep as a SIGNAL that it was okay to start pillaging?
  • Why are random wildfire explosions going off in the background of the fall of KL, without comment?  Even one of those explosions could have spread through the whole city.
  • In the episode 8.5 commentary, the VFX Team...openly admits that there were originally a LOT MORE shots of wildfire explosions, which were later "reconceived" and changed into regular red dragonfire.  So...that's confirmed, originally wildfire was a much bigger element.  And okay, maybe they intended for Daenerys to burn the city itself AND much more than she ever intended, by setting off wildfire caches, and simply cut it because they think viewers are idiots who would forget and it would take too long to explain again.
  •  If you pay attention to specific points when people describe what Daenerys is going to do, in behind the scenes videos, Emilia Clarke herself says "she's filled with rage and the drive to F-ing kill her"....HER, Cersei.  As in, directly attack the Red Keep...not randomly burn the streets in strafing runs, taking her time to get to the Red Keep.  Meanwhile, Dan Weiss also said in the Inside the Episode that "she sees the Red Keep, and decides to make this PERSONAL"......Personal?  How?   By killing the civilians that Cersei doesn't care about?  Also implies she was supposed to attack just the Red Keep.
  •  Within the episodes themselves, is there a pattern to the mismatching lines of dialogue about Daenerys burning "the Red Keep"? Well....when they start bringing it up in episode 8.4, it's consistently when we can't see actors' lips moving.  What tipped me off was that one of them was a body double scene - in itself not an issue, they often use body doubles for green screen shots of Croatia merged with Belfast.  But the mismatch in her facial movements made me realize "even when Qyburn and Varys talk about it, their lines are off-screen".  ....It would be silly if they added these lines BACK in during post-production, given that they mismatch what happens in the aired version....so more probably, they're RELIC dialogue....and....they're all off-screen lines, probably recorded as ADR.  This happened on LOTR: many lines get re-dubbed by the actors anyway.  My theory is that they forgot to update the script they sent to the ADR studio, so ADR is using an OLDER version of the script, when Daenerys just burns "the Red Keep" firing through HUMAN SHIELDS....no use of human shields happens in the final version, she just randomly burns the city!
  • Daenerys's final scene in the throneroom, while visible, also mismatches; Jon says "you burned innocents" and she says "Cersei used them against me"....how?  HOW?  You COULD have flown straight to the Red Keep, but was instead needlessly massacring civilians?  It sounds like this is also a relic of an earlier version onf the script..  
     
  • So we're left with various clues:  originally, a wildfire chain reaction WAS going to happen.  Probably from attacking the Red Keep, through human shields, NOT "going mad and burning the city".

    Quite separately....a month after the finale, Lena Headey bluntly admitted that a Cersei miscarriage scene was filmed for the Season 7 finale, but cut.   
  • MORE curious, are the deleted scenes for Season SEVEN, involving Varys....which HBO hid from us.
     
  • HBO didn't release ANY deleted scenes in the Season 7 Blu-ray set, which was odd.  The only season (since Season One) that they didn't have any.
  • They DID list deleted Season 7 scenes...included in the final, Season EIGHT Blu-ray set.  All hidden away in there...but technically "released", technically not "hiding" it, but swept under the rug.  When we actually GOT those deleted scenes, there was an intriguing one with Varys:
  • In a deleted scene stated to be from the Season 7 finale, Varys arrives at the Dragonpit after everyone else leaves, and reunites with one of his "Little Birds" - the dwarf girl Trella, who was previously introduced in Season 5.  As if they were leading somewhere with that.  Their actual dialogue isn't specific, just Varys saying he doesn't blame her for switching to work with Qyburn; she's an orphan and needs powerful friends to survive.  "But what's better than having one powerful friend? Having TWO powerful friends" - and they both smile.
  •  

Now consider that, in the books, Varys is still sneaking around the Red Keep, and book five ends with him using the little birds to kill both Pycelle and Kevan Lannister.  AND, keep in mind Varys's stated goals to Kevan as he's dying:   if he can sneak around the Red Keep, why not just assassinate Cersei?  He killed Pycelle and Kevan easily enough.  

Simply killing Cersei is not his intention.  His stated goal is to drive her insane, making the Lannisters' political position crumble, turning into overt tyranny...to "soften up" the populace of Westeros, so that they welcome Young Griff as a liberator.   

I call this the "Rabban gambit" by the way, from Frank Herbert's Dune.  Baron Harkonnen's younger nephew Feyd can't understand why he put Feyd's older brother Rabban in charge of Dune, even though he's a tank-brain, filled with brutality but no sense of cunning or strategy like the Baron and Feyd himself.  The Baron later reveals to Feyd that he INTENTIONALLY made Rabban the governor over Feyd...because he knows that Rabban will fail.  That way, when the Baron replaces Rabban with Feyd, they'll hail Feyd as a liberator.  

So keep in mind that for a time at least, Benioff and Weiss were ripping off rags and remnants of the future book outline, albeit mish-mashing them together with whim and caprice (Sansa and Jeyne Poole)….but if we sort through the inane babble, we might be able to sort out elements of what the hell GRRM told them.  Or, they were just ripping off fan theories.  I don't know.

But consider the facts:  Book-Varys COULD have Cersei poisoned in the Red Keep, but doesn't, because he wants to drive her insane, so Young Griff will be hailed as a liberator.  

Separately...we get hints in the books that Cersei is pregnant again.  Her dresses don't fit - could be alcoholic weight gain, but maybe not.  Season 7 of the TV show had her pregnant again ….though who knows if that's proof.  

The question though is simple:  Varys's goal is to drive Cersei insane....and then she doesn't act particularly insane in the TV show ending.  But what better way to drive Cersei insane...than to have one of the little birds poison her with an abortifact? (Tansy Tea)….a miscarriage would probably drive her into full-on "Mad Queen mode".  

So the theory is that they were starting to set this up in the Season 7 finale:  a filmed scene of Varys having a significant meeting with his Little Birds....and a scene of Cersei having a miscarriage.  Put two and two together.  

But then they cut all that out, and Cersei is inexplicably not visibly pregnant for months - they never bothered to significantly address this massive, last-minute rewrite.  Because D&D are sloppy idiots.  

So there WAS buildup that CERSEI would be "the Mad Queen", and that Daenerys would AT WORST do something "ruthless" (shoot through human shields)….did they rewrite all this at the last minute to CHANGE it to Daenerys being the Mad Queen?

There are a lot of surviving relics if we examine all the deleted scenes, scripts, etc.  

There's a puzzle here.  A puzzle that needs solving.  Smarter people than me will need to solve it, but I keep finding new puzzle-pieces - a LOT of new pieces.  Enough to throw Benioff and Weiss's ending into the shadow of doubt.

Or, if you prefer, we could go right back to the mentality in Season 5 that "Benioff and Weiss must have a good reason for the Sansa rape, let's have blind faith in them".  
 

Edited by The Dragon Demands

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Other than the fact that they ruined GOT, I kind of love how much the showrunners suck.  It is truly an accomplishment.

If any of that is true, that they intended her to attack the red keep and the wildfire stashes accidentally destroy the city and then changed it to be a mindless bizarre attack on the whole city, that is hilarious, because wouldn't 'King's Landing is full of wildfire caches" be a semi reasonable reason why Dany might have been talked out of going to KL as soon as she landed?  She would not want to be seen to destroy Westeros capital city even by accident.  It's a weakish reason, but there is at least a thread of sense there, as opposed to what the show did which was pure nonsense.

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1 hour ago, The Dragon Demands said:

For those curious about it, these are the two videos I recently made using clips from the Blu-ray commentaries:

I'm posting them in reverse order, because the one from 8.5 is a short 3 minute watch, while the 8.4 one is almost half an hour, and actually 3 separate clips intercut with my own comments.

 

The basic theory is this:  when someone pointed out to me that video on "Daenerys the Mad Queen" that HBO *delisted from YouTube but forgot to delete*, we noticed that Emilia Clarke's comments prominently don't match what actually happened.  By extension, this made us pay more attention to other points in Season 8 when...dialogue in finished episodes, didn't even match up.  AT THE TIME, I thought these were relics of earlier scripts that weren't corrected when filming BEGAN, or at least, that Benioff and Weiss gave Emilia Clarke a big pep talk about Dany's INTERNAL motivations, that she's not insane but in grief...but others pointed out to me in reaction, that it's possible they were outright lying to her about EXTERNAL events, beyond her head-space, but lying about the extent of Daenerys's destruction.  That is, not just that this was an early draft of the script that wasn't corrected before they BEGAN...but that they were rewriting it AS THEY WERE FILMING Season 8 itself.  And thus Clarke is outright referring to a different version that persisted as late as the live table read.  

Bullet Point Version:

  • Different people at separate points hype up that Daenerys is going to burn "the Red Keep" but not "all of King's Landing".  Yes, there is a massive difference.  Hyping up that Cersei is using "human shields" in "the Red Keep" itself...even though, in the finished version, nothing of the sort happens.  No real attention is paid to civilians in the Red Keep, and Daenerys is...randomly burning fleeing civilians in the streets of the city, making carpet-bomb strafing runs back and forth, rather than heading straight to the Red Keep.
  • The theory is that CERSEI was supposed to be "the Mad Queen", and that as a dead-man's trigger of sorts, she hid caches of wildfire throughout the city.  In the original version, Daenerys, in a moment of rage, would burn THE RED KEEP itself...ACCIDENTALLY setting off a wildfire chain reaction that burns much of the city.  Obviously her army was filmed pillaging, but what if the original version is that they took her burning the Red Keep as a SIGNAL that it was okay to start pillaging?
  • Why are random wildfire explosions going off in the background of the fall of KL, without comment?  Even one of those explosions could have spread through the whole city.
  • In the episode 8.5 commentary, the VFX Team...openly admits that there were originally a LOT MORE shots of wildfire explosions, which were later "reconceived" and changed into regular red dragonfire.  So...that's confirmed, originally wildfire was a much bigger element.  And okay, maybe they intended for Daenerys to burn the city itself AND much more than she ever intended, by setting off wildfire caches, and simply cut it because they think viewers are idiots who would forget and it would take too long to explain again.
  •  If you pay attention to specific points when people describe what Daenerys is going to do, in behind the scenes videos, Emilia Clarke herself says "she's filled with rage and the drive to F-ing kill her"....HER, Cersei.  As in, directly attack the Red Keep...not randomly burn the streets in strafing runs, taking her time to get to the Red Keep.  Meanwhile, Dan Weiss also said in the Inside the Episode that "she sees the Red Keep, and decides to make this PERSONAL"......Personal?  How?   By killing the civilians that Cersei doesn't care about?  Also implies she was supposed to attack just the Red Keep.
  •  Within the episodes themselves, is there a pattern to the mismatching lines of dialogue about Daenerys burning "the Red Keep"? Well....when they start bringing it up in episode 8.4, it's consistently when we can't see actors' lips moving.  What tipped me off was that one of them was a body double scene - in itself not an issue, they often use body doubles for green screen shots of Croatia merged with Belfast.  But the mismatch in her facial movements made me realize "even when Qyburn and Varys talk about it, their lines are off-screen".  ....It would be silly if they added these lines BACK in during post-production, given that they mismatch what happens in the aired version....so more probably, they're RELIC dialogue....and....they're all off-screen lines, probably recorded as ADR.  This happened on LOTR: many lines get re-dubbed by the actors anyway.  My theory is that they forgot to update the script they sent to the ADR studio, so ADR is using an OLDER version of the script, when Daenerys just burns "the Red Keep" firing through HUMAN SHIELDS....no use of human shields happens in the final version, she just randomly burns the city!
  • Daenerys's final scene in the throneroom, while visible, also mismatches; Jon says "you burned innocents" and she says "Cersei used them against me"....how?  HOW?  You COULD have flown straight to the Red Keep, but was instead needlessly massacring civilians?  It sounds like this is also a relic of an earlier version onf the script..  
     
  • So we're left with various clues:  originally, a wildfire chain reaction WAS going to happen.  Probably from attacking the Red Keep, through human shields, NOT "going mad and burning the city".

    Quite separately....a month after the finale, Lena Headey bluntly admitted that a Cersei miscarriage scene was filmed for the Season 7 finale, but cut.   
  • MORE curious, are the deleted scenes for Season SEVEN, involving Varys....which HBO hid from us.
     
  • HBO didn't release ANY deleted scenes in the Season 7 Blu-ray set, which was odd.  The only season (since Season One) that they didn't have any.
  • They DID list deleted Season 7 scenes...included in the final, Season EIGHT Blu-ray set.  All hidden away in there...but technically "released", technically not "hiding" it, but swept under the rug.  When we actually GOT those deleted scenes, there was an intriguing one with Varys:
  • In a deleted scene stated to be from the Season 7 finale, Varys arrives at the Dragonpit after everyone else leaves, and reunites with one of his "Little Birds" - the dwarf girl Trella, who was previously introduced in Season 5.  As if they were leading somewhere with that.  Their actual dialogue isn't specific, just Varys saying he doesn't blame her for switching to work with Qyburn; she's an orphan and needs powerful friends to survive.  "But what's better than having one powerful friend? Having TWO powerful friends" - and they both smile.
  •  

Now consider that, in the books, Varys is still sneaking around the Red Keep, and book five ends with him using the little birds to kill both Pycelle and Kevan Lannister.  AND, keep in mind Varys's stated goals to Kevan as he's dying:   if he can sneak around the Red Keep, why not just assassinate Cersei?  He killed Pycelle and Kevan easily enough.  

Simply killing Cersei is not his intention.  His stated goal is to drive her insane, making the Lannisters' political position crumble, turning into overt tyranny...to "soften up" the populace of Westeros, so that they welcome Young Griff as a liberator.   

I call this the "Rabban gambit" by the way, from Frank Herbert's Dune.  Baron Harkonnen's younger nephew Feyd can't understand why he put Feyd's older brother Rabban in charge of Dune, even though he's a tank-brain, filled with brutality but no sense of cunning or strategy like the Baron and Feyd himself.  The Baron later reveals to Feyd that he INTENTIONALLY made Rabban the governor over Feyd...because he knows that Rabban will fail.  That way, when the Baron replaces Rabban with Feyd, they'll hail Feyd as a liberator.  

So keep in mind that for a time at least, Benioff and Weiss were ripping off rags and remnants of the future book outline, albeit mish-mashing them together with whim and caprice (Sansa and Jeyne Poole)….but if we sort through the inane babble, we might be able to sort out elements of what the hell GRRM told them.  Or, they were just ripping off fan theories.  I don't know.

But consider the facts:  Book-Varys COULD have Cersei poisoned in the Red Keep, but doesn't, because he wants to drive her insane, so Young Griff will be hailed as a liberator.  

Separately...we get hints in the books that Cersei is pregnant again.  Her dresses don't fit - could be alcoholic weight gain, but maybe not.  Season 7 of the TV show had her pregnant again ….though who knows if that's proof.  

The question though is simple:  Varys's goal is to drive Cersei insane....and then she doesn't act particularly insane in the TV show ending.  But what better way to drive Cersei insane...than to have one of the little birds poison her with an abortifact? (Tansy Tea)….a miscarriage would probably drive her into full-on "Mad Queen mode".  

So the theory is that they were starting to set this up in the Season 7 finale:  a filmed scene of Varys having a significant meeting with his Little Birds....and a scene of Cersei having a miscarriage.  Put two and two together.  

But then they cut all that out, and Cersei is inexplicably not visibly pregnant for months - they never bothered to significantly address this massive, last-minute rewrite.  Because D&D are sloppy idiots.  

So there WAS buildup that CERSEI would be "the Mad Queen", and that Daenerys would AT WORST do something "ruthless" (shoot through human shields)….did they rewrite all this at the last minute to CHANGE it to Daenerys being the Mad Queen?

There are a lot of surviving relics if we examine all the deleted scenes, scripts, etc.  

There's a puzzle here.  A puzzle that needs solving.  Smarter people than me will need to solve it, but I keep finding new puzzle-pieces - a LOT of new pieces.  Enough to throw Benioff and Weiss's ending into the shadow of doubt.

Or, if you prefer, we could go right back to the mentality in Season 5 that "Benioff and Weiss must have a good reason for the Sansa rape, let's have blind faith in them".  
 

That seems quite clear-cut.  Daenerys *did* intend to destroy the Red Keep and *did not* care whether civilians were killed in the process.

Daenerys *did not* intend to swerve away from the Red Keep solely in order to murder civilians. 

Now you can condemn Daenerys for her determination to go after the Red Keep, but basically, it makes her no worse than the average modern general, let alone a general in a medieval world.  And, the "humane" alternative was to starve the population of Kings Landing.

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3 hours ago, The Dragon Demands said:

For those curious about it, these are the two videos I recently made using clips from the Blu-ray commentaries:

I'm posting them in reverse order, because the one from 8.5 is a short 3 minute watch, while the 8.4 one is almost half an hour, and actually 3 separate clips intercut with my own comments.

 

The basic theory is this:  when someone pointed out to me that video on "Daenerys the Mad Queen" that HBO *delisted from YouTube but forgot to delete*, we noticed that Emilia Clarke's comments prominently don't match what actually happened.  By extension, this made us pay more attention to other points in Season 8 when...dialogue in finished episodes, didn't even match up.  AT THE TIME, I thought these were relics of earlier scripts that weren't corrected when filming BEGAN, or at least, that Benioff and Weiss gave Emilia Clarke a big pep talk about Dany's INTERNAL motivations, that she's not insane but in grief...but others pointed out to me in reaction, that it's possible they were outright lying to her about EXTERNAL events, beyond her head-space, but lying about the extent of Daenerys's destruction.  That is, not just that this was an early draft of the script that wasn't corrected before they BEGAN...but that they were rewriting it AS THEY WERE FILMING Season 8 itself.  And thus Clarke is outright referring to a different version that persisted as late as the live table read.  

Bullet Point Version:

  • Different people at separate points hype up that Daenerys is going to burn "the Red Keep" but not "all of King's Landing".  Yes, there is a massive difference.  Hyping up that Cersei is using "human shields" in "the Red Keep" itself...even though, in the finished version, nothing of the sort happens.  No real attention is paid to civilians in the Red Keep, and Daenerys is...randomly burning fleeing civilians in the streets of the city, making carpet-bomb strafing runs back and forth, rather than heading straight to the Red Keep.
  • The theory is that CERSEI was supposed to be "the Mad Queen", and that as a dead-man's trigger of sorts, she hid caches of wildfire throughout the city.  In the original version, Daenerys, in a moment of rage, would burn THE RED KEEP itself...ACCIDENTALLY setting off a wildfire chain reaction that burns much of the city.  Obviously her army was filmed pillaging, but what if the original version is that they took her burning the Red Keep as a SIGNAL that it was okay to start pillaging?
  • Why are random wildfire explosions going off in the background of the fall of KL, without comment?  Even one of those explosions could have spread through the whole city.
  • In the episode 8.5 commentary, the VFX Team...openly admits that there were originally a LOT MORE shots of wildfire explosions, which were later "reconceived" and changed into regular red dragonfire.  So...that's confirmed, originally wildfire was a much bigger element.  And okay, maybe they intended for Daenerys to burn the city itself AND much more than she ever intended, by setting off wildfire caches, and simply cut it because they think viewers are idiots who would forget and it would take too long to explain again.
  •  If you pay attention to specific points when people describe what Daenerys is going to do, in behind the scenes videos, Emilia Clarke herself says "she's filled with rage and the drive to F-ing kill her"....HER, Cersei.  As in, directly attack the Red Keep...not randomly burn the streets in strafing runs, taking her time to get to the Red Keep.  Meanwhile, Dan Weiss also said in the Inside the Episode that "she sees the Red Keep, and decides to make this PERSONAL"......Personal?  How?   By killing the civilians that Cersei doesn't care about?  Also implies she was supposed to attack just the Red Keep.
  •  Within the episodes themselves, is there a pattern to the mismatching lines of dialogue about Daenerys burning "the Red Keep"? Well....when they start bringing it up in episode 8.4, it's consistently when we can't see actors' lips moving.  What tipped me off was that one of them was a body double scene - in itself not an issue, they often use body doubles for green screen shots of Croatia merged with Belfast.  But the mismatch in her facial movements made me realize "even when Qyburn and Varys talk about it, their lines are off-screen".  ....It would be silly if they added these lines BACK in during post-production, given that they mismatch what happens in the aired version....so more probably, they're RELIC dialogue....and....they're all off-screen lines, probably recorded as ADR.  This happened on LOTR: many lines get re-dubbed by the actors anyway.  My theory is that they forgot to update the script they sent to the ADR studio, so ADR is using an OLDER version of the script, when Daenerys just burns "the Red Keep" firing through HUMAN SHIELDS....no use of human shields happens in the final version, she just randomly burns the city!
  • Daenerys's final scene in the throneroom, while visible, also mismatches; Jon says "you burned innocents" and she says "Cersei used them against me"....how?  HOW?  You COULD have flown straight to the Red Keep, but was instead needlessly massacring civilians?  It sounds like this is also a relic of an earlier version onf the script..  
     
  • So we're left with various clues:  originally, a wildfire chain reaction WAS going to happen.  Probably from attacking the Red Keep, through human shields, NOT "going mad and burning the city".

    Quite separately....a month after the finale, Lena Headey bluntly admitted that a Cersei miscarriage scene was filmed for the Season 7 finale, but cut.   
  • MORE curious, are the deleted scenes for Season SEVEN, involving Varys....which HBO hid from us.
     
  • HBO didn't release ANY deleted scenes in the Season 7 Blu-ray set, which was odd.  The only season (since Season One) that they didn't have any.
  • They DID list deleted Season 7 scenes...included in the final, Season EIGHT Blu-ray set.  All hidden away in there...but technically "released", technically not "hiding" it, but swept under the rug.  When we actually GOT those deleted scenes, there was an intriguing one with Varys:
  • In a deleted scene stated to be from the Season 7 finale, Varys arrives at the Dragonpit after everyone else leaves, and reunites with one of his "Little Birds" - the dwarf girl Trella, who was previously introduced in Season 5.  As if they were leading somewhere with that.  Their actual dialogue isn't specific, just Varys saying he doesn't blame her for switching to work with Qyburn; she's an orphan and needs powerful friends to survive.  "But what's better than having one powerful friend? Having TWO powerful friends" - and they both smile.
  •  

Now consider that, in the books, Varys is still sneaking around the Red Keep, and book five ends with him using the little birds to kill both Pycelle and Kevan Lannister.  AND, keep in mind Varys's stated goals to Kevan as he's dying:   if he can sneak around the Red Keep, why not just assassinate Cersei?  He killed Pycelle and Kevan easily enough.  

Simply killing Cersei is not his intention.  His stated goal is to drive her insane, making the Lannisters' political position crumble, turning into overt tyranny...to "soften up" the populace of Westeros, so that they welcome Young Griff as a liberator.   

I call this the "Rabban gambit" by the way, from Frank Herbert's Dune.  Baron Harkonnen's younger nephew Feyd can't understand why he put Feyd's older brother Rabban in charge of Dune, even though he's a tank-brain, filled with brutality but no sense of cunning or strategy like the Baron and Feyd himself.  The Baron later reveals to Feyd that he INTENTIONALLY made Rabban the governor over Feyd...because he knows that Rabban will fail.  That way, when the Baron replaces Rabban with Feyd, they'll hail Feyd as a liberator.  

So keep in mind that for a time at least, Benioff and Weiss were ripping off rags and remnants of the future book outline, albeit mish-mashing them together with whim and caprice (Sansa and Jeyne Poole)….but if we sort through the inane babble, we might be able to sort out elements of what the hell GRRM told them.  Or, they were just ripping off fan theories.  I don't know.

But consider the facts:  Book-Varys COULD have Cersei poisoned in the Red Keep, but doesn't, because he wants to drive her insane, so Young Griff will be hailed as a liberator.  

Separately...we get hints in the books that Cersei is pregnant again.  Her dresses don't fit - could be alcoholic weight gain, but maybe not.  Season 7 of the TV show had her pregnant again ….though who knows if that's proof.  

The question though is simple:  Varys's goal is to drive Cersei insane....and then she doesn't act particularly insane in the TV show ending.  But what better way to drive Cersei insane...than to have one of the little birds poison her with an abortifact? (Tansy Tea)….a miscarriage would probably drive her into full-on "Mad Queen mode".  

So the theory is that they were starting to set this up in the Season 7 finale:  a filmed scene of Varys having a significant meeting with his Little Birds....and a scene of Cersei having a miscarriage.  Put two and two together.  

But then they cut all that out, and Cersei is inexplicably not visibly pregnant for months - they never bothered to significantly address this massive, last-minute rewrite.  Because D&D are sloppy idiots.  

So there WAS buildup that CERSEI would be "the Mad Queen", and that Daenerys would AT WORST do something "ruthless" (shoot through human shields)….did they rewrite all this at the last minute to CHANGE it to Daenerys being the Mad Queen?

There are a lot of surviving relics if we examine all the deleted scenes, scripts, etc.  

There's a puzzle here.  A puzzle that needs solving.  Smarter people than me will need to solve it, but I keep finding new puzzle-pieces - a LOT of new pieces.  Enough to throw Benioff and Weiss's ending into the shadow of doubt.

Or, if you prefer, we could go right back to the mentality in Season 5 that "Benioff and Weiss must have a good reason for the Sansa rape, let's have blind faith in them".  
 

To me this just shows they needed to have a scene of danny becoming the final villain and jon killing her. And they decided that in that scenario danny wasn't bad enough. Basically they needed to respect some bullet points from grrm and din t know how to do it… witch is just sad...

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26 minutes ago, divica said:

To me this just shows they needed to have a scene of danny becoming the final villain and jon killing her. And they decided that in that scenario danny wasn't bad enough. Basically they needed to respect some bullet points from grrm and din t know how to do it… witch is just sad...

I still can't understand how anyone, the actors, showrunners, HBO executives, anyone could have thought that season 8 would be a success, even with the blind eye that fans had turned to the show becoming ever more stupid, how could they have thought that Dany turning evil in the space of 2 episodes, and then Jon killing her in some totally cliche, stupid, reverse Romeo/Juliette scene wouldn't be gag and rage inducing?  Not even giving her a final dying line(s).  Its amazing, with so much riding on a successful final season, that we got what we got.

 

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28 minutes ago, Cas Stark said:

I still can't understand how anyone, the actors, showrunners, HBO executives, anyone could have thought that season 8 would be a success, even with the blind eye that fans had turned to the show becoming ever more stupid, how could they have thought that Dany turning evil in the space of 2 episodes, and then Jon killing her in some totally cliche, stupid, reverse Romeo/Juliette scene wouldn't be gag and rage inducing?  Not even giving her a final dying line(s).  Its amazing, with so much riding on a successful final season, that we got what we got.

 

Even something more basic. How could anyone think that dividing the season into 2 storylines with 3 eps each was a good idea?

1 side was always going to do nothing for most of the season and the other taken out too fast… Hell, if the had dealt with cersei first it would have been so much better...

 

How could they expect anyone to like how they handled r+l=j and the prince that was promised profecy!? What they did with these things was downright insulting!

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