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[Book Spoilers] Ep 202 Discussion

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So is Ros pregnant with one of Robert's bastards or something?

I sincerely hope not

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I sincerely hope not

I hope not either...but I was thinking of how she looks a little bigger, of that shot in the trailers with Joff/Ros, and Joff is now officially a mass bastard murderer...

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Kings can legitimize bastards with a single signature.

While technically true this is not a strong move for a king to do it for his own bastard. It wrecks havoc in the lines of succession.

Again, as someone stated before, Stannis is such an honorable prude TV Mel's flimsy attempts to sway him in such a way at such an early stage in the game would have been met with disgust rather than lust. Robert was the weak man who fathered bastards.

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While technically true this is not a strong move for a king to do it for his own bastard. It wrecks havoc in the lines of succession.

Again, as someone stated before, Stannis is such an honorable prude TV Mel's flimsy attempts to sway him in such a way at such an early stage in the game would have been met with disgust rather than lust. Robert was the weak man who fathered bastards.

Stannis doesn't have any sons, so there's no line of succession to disrupt.

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On whether Stannis had sex with Mel in the books:

A Storm of Swords U.S. paperback pg. 347

"Is the brave Ser Onions so frightened of a passing shadow? Take heart, then. Shadows only live when given birth by light, and the king's fires burn so low I dare not draw off anymore to make another son. It might well kill him." Melissandre moved closer, " With another man, though...a man whose flames still burn hot and high...if you truly wish to serve your king's cause, come to my chamber one night. I could give you pleasure such as you have never known, and with your life-fire I could make..."

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On whether Stannis had sex with Mel in the books:

A Storm of Swords U.S. paperback pg. 347

"Is the brave Ser Onions so frightened of a passing shadow? Take heart, then. Shadows only live when given birth by light, and the king's fires burn so low I dare not draw off anymore to make another son. It might well kill him." Melissandre moved closer, " With another man, though...a man whose flames still burn hot and high...if you truly wish to serve your king's cause, come to my chamber one night. I could give you pleasure such as you have never known, and with your life-fire I could make..."

She also mentions in the last book that her bed has seen very little use since Stannis marched for Winterfel, so I would say between this detail and that passage you quoted that there is little doubt Stannis was serving tube steak to Melissandre. Not that I think he did it for enjoyment or lust, it was pure duty for him like everything else.

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I didn't mind the (subtle) changes, in fact I haven't minded them at all....

I am just wondering where the hell they're taking the Jon/Craster sub plot....

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Quite a few things irked me about this episode sadly though overall it was still a nice one.

1) Joffrey ordering the killing of the bastard children. I mean really?

2) The conversation between Tyrion and Varys was very underplayed and a let down.

3) Rorge had a nose

4) Arya/Gendry however have a great thing going in this series and Arya's story has been great so far

5) Someone already said it but did we really need Detective Snow out seeing Other's and getting bopped on the head?

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Wow, I finally managed to access the forum (I tried to post here after the second episode aired, but the site has been offline or inaccessible due to heavy traffic).

Anyway,

Good:

  • Tyrion's scenes are very good, even better than the ones in the first season.
  • The guy who plays Davos Seaworth (sorry, don't remember his name) has been well cast. The actor is good and his persona (or rather the persona he projects onscreen) reminds me of the character from the book. A nice addition to the series.
  • The scene with Balon and Theon. Casting Patrick Malahide as Balon was an excellent choice.
  • Gleeson gets a lot of credit for his role as the despicable Joffrey (and rightly so), but I also think Alfie Allen deserves credit for his role as Theon Greyjoy, a character that I find highly unsympathetic.
  • I was delighted to see Maisie again :) I liked her brief scene with Jaqen (that actor was spot on) and I look forward to seeing Arya with the Hound and Jaqen later in the season.
  • Kit Harington continues to deliver a consistent and solid performance as Jon Snow.

Bad:

  • I don't mind sex scenes per se, but some of them felt a bit 'uninspired'. This is, at least in my opinion, a tough challenge for movies/TV-series in general: Sex scenes are rarely erotic or 'sexy'. Instead the viewers are just waiting for the scene to end so that the plot can make any progress.
  • The writers are trying to do their best to cram several basic plot elements into one episode, and I think they're doing a good job overall. However, the pacing still feels a bit off, and the setting changes a bit to often perhaps. The first episodes in season one faced the same problem (they had to introduce a lot of characters and basic plot elements, exposition, etc.), although I felt that the pacing in those first episodes were handled a bit better.
  • Ros's scene: I really like Ros and the actress who plays her. I don't mind that the writers devote screentime to Ros, but I wish they had written a scene that felt more 'substantial' or important (unless I'm missing something about the scene that makes it more important than it appears to be). This is even more important when pacing and limited running time comes into play.

Overall I think this episode was good, although not quite as good as the first one. Nonetheless, I wasn't bored for a second and I think some of the pacing problems will go away after the first episodes. As in the first season, it looks like the second season will need a few episodes before things really start to get exciting (I feel the same way about the books, for that matter, they're slow starters). I think it bodes well that the acting so far (for both new and established characters) in this season has been very solid.

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I've been waiting to comment on this episode since it aired last night, but since most of my thoughts have escaped me in the hours the forums were down I'll briefly say that I loved the episode. I know a lot of people had concerns particularly with the Dragonstone scenes last week because they felt that not enough was explained. I thought, and was happily proven right, that they would continue to build on the foundation they had built. A lot was explained about Davos, Melisandre and Stannis within a short time. And the actor who plays Davos is fantastic. He is doing a phenomenal job with the role.

Now, I know a lot of people have problems with "all the changes" but I don't think anything was drastically changed that changes the plot. Rakharo was killed, but so what? How does that change the story? Bronn is the captain of the goldcloaks, again, does not change the story. Stannis had only stillborn sons but that doesn't mean he never had any daughters, so Shireen is probably lurking somewhere offscreen with Patchface. People really need to get over small changes like these. As long as the story is not changed and characters still maintain the same essence with which Martin created them, then the changes in this adaptation are acceptable.

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Maybe they're combining Stannis' wife and daughter. I don't remember the the book wife as sickly and weak or being stuck in a tower the way Mel talked about her.

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Maybe they're combining Stannis' wife and daughter. I don't remember the the book wife as sickly and weak or being stuck in a tower the way Mel talked about her.

Yeah, Selyse's not sickly or weak IIRC....that's Lysa...

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I was ok with the Theon Sex scene only because it contrasted his arrival on Pyke... he went from the future king and that girls wet dream to a nobody in 60 seconds, and it was awesome

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Ch-ch-changes...

There's really too many differences from the books to even keep track at this point. I just hope by next season they don't barely follow the book at all like True Blood.

Changes off the top of my head:

-Davos being an agnostic instead of Stannis

-Sallador arguing about whether he will rape or just take Cersei

-Arya being unable to keep a secret

-Joffrey being even more of a dick than he was in the books while Cersei gets more sympathy

-Killing off Daenerys' bloodrider (and she lost Silver last episode too)

-Wasting good screen time with another useless Ros scene with Petyr just so we can remember that Petyr is evil (no shit)

-Craster being stupid enough to give a sacrifice while he has 200 guests in his one room house

We already knew that Stannis was doing Melisandre...

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BABY SHEREEN!!!!!!!!!!!! This is what I'm most upset about. There go my chances of seeing greyscale, and I was really looking forward to watching Patchface act like a creep.

Otherwise, everything was great. Arya was great, the Greyjoys were great, Cersei is doing a great job becoming that asshole we know and love her to be.

I'm just going to say this right now: I like book-Tyrion way more than show-Tyrion.

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I can't think of a reason why it would not fit, personally. I think you are overestimating the differences in cultural mindset between the middle ages and these days. If anything, people back then would be more aware of how optional belief in deities actually is.

No, you're wrong. Read some historical books on the subject.

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It certainly very hasty, I'll grant you that. But we don't really know what motivates Stannis to sleep with her in the novel, so I suppose the whispered promise of a son might be all it takes. It does make me wonder how they'll deal with it when a son isn't exactly forthcoming -- not the sort of son Stannis imagined he'd get, anyways.

Melisandre has been explicit in ASoS that she births her shadows by sleeping with Stannis -- she tries to get Davos to sleep with her because Stannis's energies are depleted, so to speak. And yes, ADwD makes it even clearer.

My interpretation is that the son isn't the primary motivation; it's what he needs to get over the wife thing. The primary motivation is victory in war.

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My own nerdrage thoughts about episode 2.

What I liked:

- Arya and Gendry! <3

- Jaqen, though it was painfully brief. Can't wait to see more of him.

- Yoren being all badass. Loved it, true to the book too.

- Tyrion vs Janos Slynt.

- Random Ironborn giving Theon the cold shoulder + Balon putting Theon back in his place. Take that, Greyjoy. Also, Pyke looked great.

- Sallador Saan was memorable and funny. Good for him.

- Varys and his "I keep on paddling" line. Yay! Glad they kept that.

- GHOOOOOOOOOST! \m/

What was cool-but-should-have-been-better:

- Theon and Yara Asha. I'm not sold on the actress playing Asha yet (she doesn't look like the bold, cocky, badass woman I read about), and I thought the scene was a lot funnier in the books...

- Tyrion vs Cersei. In the books he confronts her with the incest before the rumours spread. He appears less clever now since the viewers can't tell he already knew about it. Also, no slap-fest. Boo.

- Dolorous Edd is always amusing, but fart jokes? Really, HBO? You didn't want to use GRRM's witticisms from the books, so you replace them with... fart jokes. Meh.

- Needs moar Arya.

- Boo, no Shireen. :( And I think it was too soon to see Stannis and Melisandre having it on. We know it happened (off-screen) in the books and I don't mind that they show it, but for non-readers it seems that it's just yet-another-sex-scene.

What I didn't like:

- WTF, Rakharo? He doesn't die in the books. Gratuitous death? I know the bloodriders are all kind of interchangeable, but still...

- I know the Theon/captain's daughter scene is in the book but that's actually something that could have been cut since Theon already had a "sexposition" scene (totally made up for the TV version) with Ros in S1. But hey, they probably thought, moar sex = good!

- Changing the orders about the bastard's purge as coming from Joffrey instead of Cersei. Stupid. Joffrey's already a Complete Monster, no need to pile on.

- The constant softcore porn is getting tiring and just gives more ammo to the detractors. And that mouth-wiping, really? Grow up, D&D. :rolleyes:

- Everything involving Ros and Littlefinger. Ugh, worst character adaptation ever? I was thrilled when Carcetti from the Wire was cast, but I hate how they wrote Baelish for the TV show. He's a creep but not THAT kind of creep (the voyeurism was just too much). And we already know he's greedy and ruthless, this was just mustache-twirling stupidity. And to add insult to injury, that scene lasted longer than the Daenerys scene (and it also meant no screen time for Sansa, the Hound, Catelyn and Robb, etc.) while being complete and utter filler. Pointless, stupid, F U D&D, you guys are hack writers and the only reason the show's still good is because of the source material being that good. Seriously. (Yeah, yeah, I is mad brah!)

The artificial cliff-hanger: I can understand why we had to catch Craster throwing his kids to the Others? But why the lame cliff-hanger? ZOMG! I wonder what happened?

Actually, I do wonder what will happen. Not in the "is Jon okay???" sense, obviously, but I didn't really get what they were going for with Craster knocking Jon out (also, that "blow to the head = instant KO" cliché needs to die, plz). I assume that Jon will wake up the next morning in his camp, will try to tell Mormont what he saw and Craster will tell him he must have dreamed it or something, but that people will start muttering about Craster to foreshadow the later mutiny. But that's just my speculation. Edited by Morrigan

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My two pence on the Jon stuff (I posted this in the cliffhanger thread)

People are saying it is a bit of a coincidence that someone had a baby right when the NW were there, I don't think it is. I think the baby was already around and Craster gave it to the Others to protect the NW. Then next episode I can imagine Jon telling Mormont, Mormont confronting Craster about it, Craster explaining, and Mormont being pissed. Then Craster kicks them out for being ungrateful.

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I do agree they seem to reach for sex as a constant bridge...not as subtly as Rome or Deadwood. Doesn't bother me, but it's where you don't wonder where they're going to go with certain scenes/conflicts/interactions anymore. Just kinda ''so how long until she takes...oh, ok."

I think GGRM's sex scenes weren't written all that well...the show's sex scenes are a little more effective, but still slightly obvious and as I said, beginning to be predictable.

Edited by James Arryn

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