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[Book Spoilers] EP 204 Discussion

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What concerns me is that the writers are inserting more and more deviations into the story. One or two, as in Roz' prominent role and the lack of Damphair, don't bother me so much. But the story of ASoIaF is a tapestry: pull out one thread and it will hold, even two. Pull out thread after thread after thread and insert blue thread where there should be red, and the tapestry will eventually be far less recognizable.

Some of the changes I've noticed:

1. Roz; not just Theon's favorite prostitute in the North; now she is an important supporting character. I think she's getting more screen time than Sansa; and most of it is semi-pornographic. If I wanted to watch porn, I know how to find it. I don't want to see porn every season of AGOT; at this point I guess it's inevitable. I'd have rather seen them stick to Chataya and Alayaya as prostitutes in King's Landing, they were interesting characters.

2. No Jeyne Poole. Are they going to send Roz up north to sub for Arya as Ramsay Bolton's bride? Will anyone believe it?

3. Robb's love interest is a Florence Nightengale type, with a very 20th century attitude, from Volantis, rather than little Jeyne Westerling. Maybe the writers thought that the viewers could not handle Robb marrying out of duty after sleeping with a minor nobleman's daughter, or that Jeyne was sweet and shy; but that's how the character was in the books.

4. The Hound grimaces when Sansa is beaten in the throne room, but does not speak up to protest. They could have included that, it's far more important, as far as I can tell, than Roz and her friend bouncing on Joffrey's bed to warm him up or whatever, and would have taken less time.

5. Littlefinger seems almost a completely different person in the TV production; far from being a superficially pleasant, useful financier who controls himself enough to help his game brilliantly succeed, he's almost as mouthy as Tyrion.

6. Shae is much older and, in my view, less realistically portrayed, than the character in the book; a prostitute who was utterly dependent on the whims of her patron would have been a bit less arrogant, at least at this point in the story, especially since she has no other friends or allies or resources in King's Landing.

7. Margaery is at least 10 years older; perhaps a move to consolidate her with her grandmother and thus spare the need to add the Queen of Thorns to the cast. They could have included the Queen of Thorns and had one less scene with Roz; since the QoT only has one major scene. I would have preferred that Natalie Dormer play Melisandre and that they had found a teenager to play Margaery.

8. Apparently no Reeds, and no Edmure Tully in sight. I don't know who the Red Wedding bridegroom is going to be. Perhaps Maester Luwin will survive and accompany Bran; though I don't know if he would be physically strong enough for the long journey in the cold. At least no one's fooled around and changed Hodor from the book. And I don't mind the changes to Osha; they're minor; and her conversation with Theon in Season 1 was wonderful.

9. Joffrey not just being a vicious sociopath who enjoys inflicting pain and torture on practically everyone who annoys him, no matter how minor or imagined the slight is; he's a sadist who forces prostitutes to hurt each other. I think it was more important to the story that Joffrey inflict pain and humiliation on Sansa (and not just one blow and one slap with the sword, there were welts on her legs; and it was implied that there were several other beatings, not just one other) than Joffrey torturing prostitutes; but perhaps the writers are more interested in the storyline of their invented character (Roz) than one of GRRM's own characters who is an important supporting character in the series. Joffrey's already been depicted as a monster for removing the tongue of the minstrel and trying to choke Dontos with wine because the knight was drunk, and having Sansa beaten; the scene with his torturing Roz & friend was, in my opinion, overkill.

10. Cersei not only was not the one who ordered the massacre of Robert's bastards after the king's death (implied in the books), she was fond enough of Robert early in their marriage to have him father a child on her. That lessens Cersei's ferocity; she's been made a softer and more subtle character. I prefer the character as GRRM wrote her.

I know that the writers have to compress a great deal of pages and characters. I just don't see the reasoning for all the changes I've listed. I suppose I should be glad that Bronn and Tyrion and Sam Tarly and the Old Bear and Arya are very much in character. I enjoyed the first season; and some of the second, at least so far, but I really prefer book scenes to Roz-porn; and I fear that we're going to get more Roz-porn at the cost of dialogue and scenes that GRRM created.

The bright spot this episode was Tyrion; his intervention in the throne room and interaction with Joffrey and Sansa, and then his scene with Lancel. I guess Lancel isn't quite dumb enough to go search for another breastplate stretcher, but he comes close.

Aside from point 2 & 8, what points affect the tapestry directly? It seems to me that most of your criticism is about the show not portraying characters the way you imagined them. That's fine, but I don't see how they directly influence the plot. So joffrey, according to you, is more sadistic than in the books. How does that really change future events? Same goes for the portrayal of Shae and the inclusion of Ros... So far, no major event or development has been left out or changed significantly by them. With regards to Shae and Ros, there has not been a real butterfly effect yet. Also, you're assuming that, because margaery is older, they will leave out QoT... That's just inventing butterfly effects to make your qualms with the actress' age more sifnificant. I'm not saying QoT is definitively cast for S3, but I'm not going to judge margaery's performance in S2 according to something which may or may not be true.

I understand that these are important changes for you personally, but that doesn't mean they're unraveling the entire tapestry of asoiaf (plot for example). That's really too soon to tell. You're trying to add a gravity to your peeves that's not entirely justified.

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Strange that we all see things so differently. Tyrion's 'Lady Stark...' line was my absolute favorite in the entire episode. I thought it was the perfect movie moment, in that it conveyed a world of recognition and respect in just a few words. With that line, Tyrion is saying (in my interpretation) that he was extremely impressed with the dignity, maturity and sheer grown-up class with which Sansa handled herself following that terrible public humiliation. I believe he meant it as a salute to a girl Stark who'd handled herself as magnificently as if she'd been a Lady Stark. I loved it! Loved it!

Then you love something that is not in the books, or even hinted at in the books. That's not wrong, but it's definitely different, just sayin'. That whole scene was different, too, so obviously they are changing the Sansa - Hound interaction to something different they think will work better on screen. Or something.

It's one thing to say "OMG the Mountain is too short!!" another thing to question why certain dialogue choices were lifted for no apparent reason, or why the interaction between certain characters were changed, while the characters were still there and the scene was set, so to speak.

Edited by Lyanna Stark

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1. Roz; not just Theon's favorite prostitute in the North; now she is an important supporting character. I think she's getting more screen time than Sansa; and most of it is semi-pornographic. If I wanted to watch porn, I know how to find it. I don't want to see porn every season of AGOT; at this point I guess it's inevitable. I'd have rather seen them stick to Chataya and Alayaya as prostitutes in King's Landing, they were interesting characters.

I agree with your underlying point, namely that some third-level characters (or lower) are getting more "face time" than POV characters (Sansa) or really solid secondary characters (the Hound, Stannis)> THis is a primary difficulty many have with this area of the show.

Now, with that said, I can definately understand why the writers and producers did not introduce Chataya and Alaya- its ineconomy of characters. The authors would have to write in two more characters, pay two more actresses, time to meet them and give them stuff to say and do so the audiance cares about them and remembers them etc. That takes time; too much time for any show to legitimately do. So, they cut some corners/cheat and Roz - the whore with the heart of gold -pops up everywhere and actas as the writers "go to woman" whenever the situation calls for it. Its certainly not good writing (its actually very bad writing), and its not great TV. But in some ways its a necessary evil to keep the show from over-proliferating with characters.

2. No Jeyne Poole. Are they going to send Roz up north to sub for Arya as Ramsay Bolton's bride? Will anyone believe it?

At this point I think they are going to send the "other" girl in the Joff "beat up prostitutes" scene, but I have nothing to go on here.

3. Robb's love interest is a Florence Nightengale type, with a very 20th century attitude, from Volantis, rather than little Jeyne Westerling. Maybe the writers thought that the viewers could not handle Robb marrying out of duty after sleeping with a minor nobleman's daughter, or that Jeyne was sweet and shy; but that's how the character was in the books.

This is another area that initially has me rolling my eyes, but also crossing my fingers. Yeah, no question this character is horribly misplaced and a grand cliche. However I am going to try to accept some of her as she is and maybe it will grow on us; I can give the benefit of the doubt and hope this works out. Then again, I said the same thing about Shea and that turned out to be a huge misfire.

4. The Hound grimaces when Sansa is beaten in the throne room, but does not speak up to protest. They could have included that, it's far more important, as far as I can tell, than Roz and her friend bouncing on Joffrey's bed to warm him up or whatever, and would have taken less time.

This oirked me a great deal as well; why not give the man some dialog and lets have some fun with a character many really enjoy. Nah, instead, here is an extended scene of boobies...

6. Shae is much older and, in my view, less realistically portrayed, than the character in the book; a prostitute who was utterly dependent on the whims of her patron would have been a bit less arrogant, at least at this point in the story, especially since she has no other friends or allies or resources in King's Landing.

Train. Wreck. I stated it before- the writers/producers said that they met the woman who is playing Shea and they immediately loved her. She was older had a different accent and then they decided, almost on a whime, to change the character to fit the actress. The result? Its not working, and its not just because this woman's acting is ... uhm... different... they kept the original Shea's story lines but have shoved that Shea's dialog into this Shea's mouth and its utterly unbelievable. The prodcuers thought they did not need to recreate Shea; just explain away the accent and the age etc and it would work. It has not. And everytime she talks I am reminded how much its not working.

7. Margaery is at least 10 years older; perhaps a move to consolidate her with her grandmother and thus spare the need to add the Queen of Thorns to the cast. They could have included the Queen of Thorns and had one less scene with Roz; since the QoT only has one major scene. I would have preferred that Natalie Dormer play Melisandre and that they had found a teenager to play Margaery.

I am just going to very politely disagree woith you. For starters everyone in the show is older because of the innaporpriateness of some of the actions (hey Khal Drigo how's your 13 year old wife doing? Pregnant you say? Wow, and how old was she when you married? Oh... I... I need an adult! I need an adult!!!). I also like how this MAergery is incorporating the larger styles and messages from these portions of the books. Yes, the Queen of Thornes MAY be lost but its an understandable loss (as you said yoursel; she is in onlya few scenes).

9. Joffrey not just being a vicious sociopath who enjoys inflicting pain and torture on practically everyone who annoys him, no matter how minor or imagined the slight is; he's a sadist who forces prostitutes to hurt each other. I think it was more important to the story that Joffrey inflict pain and humiliation on Sansa (and not just one blow and one slap with the sword, there were welts on her legs; and it was implied that there were several other beatings, not just one other) than Joffrey torturing prostitutes; but perhaps the writers are more interested in the storyline of their invented character (Roz) than one of GRRM's own characters who is an important supporting character in the series. Joffrey's already been depicted as a monster for removing the tongue of the minstrel and trying to choke Dontos with wine because the knight was drunk, and having Sansa beaten; the scene with his torturing Roz & friend was, in my opinion, overkill.

Perhapse. I cannot deny that you bring solid points to bare. But also consider this- Joff in that scene is not just torturing prostitues (though its hard to justtalk that point away; he is also sending a message to Tyrion in a flat and ham-handed attempt to play the Game of Thrones. Joff is just coming into his own and the power of his station has not only made him more crazed. The attack on the bastards; the attack on the prostitues; on Sansa; the Singer etc. Yes he's a fucking nut job but he is also sending the message that he will not be ignored or cowed. ITs a little more layered than just "Aerys the Mad 2.0."

10. Cersei not only was not the one who ordered the massacre of Robert's bastards after the king's death (implied in the books), she was fond enough of Robert early in their marriage to have him father a child on her. That lessens Cersei's ferocity; she's been made a softer and more subtle character. I prefer the character as GRRM wrote her.

To me this is an aethetic change and one that can be debated; I do not believe it inherently weakens the series.

Overall I agree with much of what you ahve written and I believe most people who are gaving problems with some episodes fall into camps closely related to the ones you outlined.

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I agree with most of what Raksha has posted above, and would like to subscribe to his/her newsletter.

That said: I can understand the lack of the Reeds and Edmure, if only because there's so little space and so many characters even without all the Ros scenes (who I'm convinced is going to end up as the Prince That Was Promised) that it'd be bewildering to TV viewers. It's possible their stories might just have to be left to ASOS and the comparative breathing room of 2 seasons for a book that's only 100 or so pages longer.

I agree completely about Margaery, despite finding the current version utterly hilarious, if only because I think that doe-eyed innocent Margaery from the books is a better player than she lets on and is a worthy protege of the QoT, but the show version is far more blatant in her desires. Both her and LF ought to be subtle--I think the audience can be trusted to be uneasy about them.

I *completely* agree about Ros being a waste of time, and if they needed a character like her, they could have at least used one that was actually supposed to be in KL. Regardless, the role is completely inflated and you're absolutely right, overshadows an already marginalized character called Sansa *Stark*.

As for Jeyne Poole, D&D did make some joke in the commentary that the girl that Sansa was talking to in the pilot was Jeyne Poole but at any rate, nobody knows that.

I also completely agree about Shae. Tyrion is not some dashing debonair fellow, used to getting submissive women and therefore getting a kick out of one that talks back to him. For him, his relationship with Shae is because she is completely his coupled with the self-loathing that it's completely fake and paid for with his gold and jewels.

I'm fine with most added scenes/changes we've seen, and I'm not expecting textual literalism in an adaptation--the show is better than most in that regard. But Ros and Shae are the most grating, and Sansa is the most shabbily treated as a result. I don't think it's intentional on their part--the commentaries suggest that the creators just really liked Bianco's acting, and that they're puzzled as to why the fandom dislikes Sansa but unfortunately the former is oppressively omnipresent to the point of being a main character, and the latter (despite exceptional acting by Turner) isn't given enough of a chance to shine.

I'm female; but I don't have a newsletter, Dragon.

We could do without the Reeds for the moment; but someone has to accompany Bran and Hodor up north; preferably someone with informative dreams and survival skills. Maybe one of the Reeds will show up later. Unless Bran and Hodor travel with Rickon and Osha and they all go up north; which would be a huge change from the books.

Without Edmure, who will be the bridegroom at the Red Wedding? How many other unattached male heirs of Great Houses can Robb put forth to Walder Frey as a substitute for himself? Unless the writers plan to have Robb just fool around with Talisa and break off the engagement with the Frey girl, and then be persuaded, before marrying Talisa, to marry the Frey girl after all - which makes Robb look even worse.

Roz will surely end up revealed as Princess Rhaenys, switched and smuggled out of King's Landing before Tywin's forces came in and murdered Elia and (maybe) Aegon. Or she'll be a long-lost Sand Snake. :ack:

I like Natalie Dormer, she is fun to watch. But part of Margaery's appeal in the book was that she was this sweet-looking, apparently gentle, pretty, "nice" girl whose sharp mind and political acumen were very busy behind those doe eyes. She was more than she seemed; while Natalie Dormer's Margaery is exactly what she seems; a charismatic and strong-willed ambitious adult woman.

It could well be that the girl Sansa was talking to in Winterfell in Season One Episode 1 was Jeyne Poole. They could have easily brought her along to King's Landing. I am convinced that Roz will end up being sent north as Arya Stark to marry a Bolton, because TV-Theon liked her and could reasonably respond to her when they are both frightened captives. But it would be preposterous that any Bolton (and/or formerly Stark) bannermen would actually believe that the 20-something Roz is Arya Stark.

The actress who plays Roz doesn't do too badly; but her role does not have that much range; and much of her screen time is devoted to porn. I wonder if Roz will substitute for Alayaya in getting a whipping on Cersei's orders and thus sparking some nasty threats from Tyrion and rising hatred/fear of him from Cersei.

A man like Tyrion would quickly tire of an arrogant, back-talking prostitute. Tyrion wants to be the boss in such relationships; his intelligence and verbal skills are topnotch and he prizes them as powerful weapons in a personal arsenal that is low on physical and warrior strength. He wants to be the witty, acerbic one in a relationship; and have the girl admire his intelligence as well as his sexual prowess. Besides, Tyrion's relationships with both Shae and Sansa were twisted attempts to redo the truncated romance he had with Tysha; a sweet, grateful 14-year-old-girl. (Shae is neither sweet nor grateful, and is older than book-Shae) I think that the writers created TV-Shae with an abrasive, arrogant (for that time and place) personality for the same reason they made Robb's new girlfriend 'Talisa' a self-righteous nurse who tells him off - they want Westerosi women with modern Western 21st century attitudes, or at least female characters who are far less influenced by/invested in the male social/legal hierarchy of most of Westeros, so they can appeal more to modern Western 21st century female viewers. It doesn't work for me.

Why would the creators of the TV series be surprised that the TV-fandom does not like Sansa? They made her less sympathetic and much more bratty than book-Sansa in most of the first season; the real Sansa would never have spoken so rudely to her Septa. And Sophie Turner's voice was often whiny; which I think was by direction; I've heard the actress speak in interviews with a very pleasant, clear, voice. I do think Miss Turner stepped up her acting this season, starting actually from her last scene in AGOT with Joffrey dragging her to see her father's head.

I will still enjoy much of TV-AGOT. But it is rapidly shaping up to be a slightly different story from the actual series; and I'm wondering how much more divergence there will be. And, to be honest, the semi-porn (or soft porn, I don't know the actual definitions) is a huge turnoff for me - when sex scenes are presented in the books, one can either read them or turn the pages (as in the Cersei/Taena affair, which I found rather icky); and there is at least a little bit left to the imaginations. And to me, the Theon/Roz sex, the Littlefinger/Roz/friend, and now the Roz/friend (before Roz had to seriously hurt her to avoid being shot by Joffrey) oral stuff, was porn. I have no objection to porn being available to those who want it, I just don't see the need for it in this series (when there is already a lot of sex, and scenes that could be done in bed or without showing everything); and would rather avoid seeing more of it. I can only hope that if they ever have Ramsey or Roose Bolton bedding his reluctant wife "Arya", we will not see any sexual activity between dogs and people :ack: :ack: :ack: - P.L.E.A.S.E.!!!! (GRRM left that a bit vague as to whether that happened or not, intentionally I think, to let the readers' imagination fill in the blanks, but the creators of the TV series prefer to spell out too much for us)

(and if they're end up showing the Boltons flaying anyone alive - Kyra or Theon, etc. I will probably not buy the dvd; there's only so much violence and torture I can stomach; I had to fast-forward past the Tickler and rat sequences in this episode)

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So what?

All of you are going to watch the Season to the End.

Even it is the biggest piece of trash you will watch it, only because you can say what all was wrong.

I have no problem with the changes, or Characters like Ros or Shae (the Actress is very good in Germany). I have read the first 4 Books, but I am not a Book-Maniac, like a lot of the people here.

PS: Sorry for the poor English :frown5:

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I'm female; but I don't have a newsletter, Dragon.

We could do without the Reeds for the moment; but someone has to accompany Bran and Hodor up north; preferably someone with informative dreams and survival skills. Maybe one of the Reeds will show up later. Unless Bran and Hodor travel with Rickon and Osha and they all go up north; which would be a huge change from the books.

Without Edmure, who will be the bridegroom at the Red Wedding? How many other unattached male heirs of Great Houses can Robb put forth to Walder Frey as a substitute for himself? Unless the writers plan to have Robb just fool around with Talisa and break off the engagement with the Frey girl, and then be persuaded, before marrying Talisa, to marry the Frey girl after all - which makes Robb look even worse.

Roz will surely end up revealed as Princess Rhaenys, switched and smuggled out of King's Landing before Tywin's forces came in and murdered Elia and (maybe) Aegon. Or she'll be a long-lost Sand Snake. :ack:

I like Natalie Dormer, she is fun to watch. But part of Margaery's appeal in the book was that she was this sweet-looking, apparently gentle, pretty, "nice" girl whose sharp mind and political acumen were very busy behind those doe eyes. She was more than she seemed; while Natalie Dormer's Margaery is exactly what she seems; a charismatic and strong-willed ambitious adult woman.

It could well be that the girl Sansa was talking to in Winterfell in Season One Episode 1 was Jeyne Poole. They could have easily brought her along to King's Landing. I am convinced that Roz will end up being sent north as Arya Stark to marry a Bolton, because TV-Theon liked her and could reasonably respond to her when they are both frightened captives. But it would be preposterous that any Bolton (and/or formerly Stark) bannermen would actually believe that the 20-something Roz is Arya Stark.

The actress who plays Roz doesn't do too badly; but her role does not have that much range; and much of her screen time is devoted to porn. I wonder if Roz will substitute for Alayaya in getting a whipping on Cersei's orders and thus sparking some nasty threats from Tyrion and rising hatred/fear of him from Cersei.

A man like Tyrion would quickly tire of an arrogant, back-talking prostitute. Tyrion wants to be the boss in such relationships; his intelligence and verbal skills are topnotch and he prizes them as powerful weapons in a personal arsenal that is low on physical and warrior strength. He wants to be the witty, acerbic one in a relationship; and have the girl admire his intelligence as well as his sexual prowess. Besides, Tyrion's relationships with both Shae and Sansa were twisted attempts to redo the truncated romance he had with Tysha; a sweet, grateful 14-year-old-girl. (Shae is neither sweet nor grateful, and is older than book-Shae) I think that the writers created TV-Shae with an abrasive, arrogant (for that time and place) personality for the same reason they made Robb's new girlfriend 'Talisa' a self-righteous nurse who tells him off - they want Westerosi women with modern Western 21st century attitudes, or at least female characters who are far less influenced by/invested in the male social/legal hierarchy of most of Westeros, so they can appeal more to modern Western 21st century female viewers. It doesn't work for me.

Why would the creators of the TV series be surprised that the TV-fandom does not like Sansa? They made her less sympathetic and much more bratty than book-Sansa in most of the first season; the real Sansa would never have spoken so rudely to her Septa. And Sophie Turner's voice was often whiny; which I think was by direction; I've heard the actress speak in interviews with a very pleasant, clear, voice. I do think Miss Turner stepped up her acting this season, starting actually from her last scene in AGOT with Joffrey dragging her to see her father's head.

I will still enjoy much of TV-AGOT. But it is rapidly shaping up to be a slightly different story from the actual series; and I'm wondering how much more divergence there will be. And, to be honest, the semi-porn (or soft porn, I don't know the actual definitions) is a huge turnoff for me - when sex scenes are presented in the books, one can either read them or turn the pages (as in the Cersei/Taena affair, which I found rather icky); and there is at least a little bit left to the imaginations. And to me, the Theon/Roz sex, the Littlefinger/Roz/friend, and now the Roz/friend (before Roz had to seriously hurt her to avoid being shot by Joffrey) oral stuff, was porn. I have no objection to porn being available to those who want it, I just don't see the need for it in this series (when there is already a lot of sex, and scenes that could be done in bed or without showing everything); and would rather avoid seeing more of it. I can only hope that if they ever have Ramsey or Roose Bolton bedding his reluctant wife "Arya", we will not see any sexual activity between dogs and people :ack: :ack: :ack: - P.L.E.A.S.E.!!!! (GRRM left that a bit vague as to whether that happened or not, intentionally I think, to let the readers' imagination fill in the blanks, but the creators of the TV series prefer to spell out too much for us)

(and if they're end up showing the Boltons flaying anyone alive - Kyra or Theon, etc. I will probably not buy the dvd; there's only so much violence and torture I can stomach; I had to fast-forward past the Tickler and rat sequences in this episode)

How could you skip the torture scene, that kind of stuff is important, it really shows us what kind of horrible stuff Arya had to witness.

I have no problem with sex scenes, unless they are pointless and to time consuming, because then important stuff has to be cut. I also wish the sex scenes were the ones in the books, because I feel like all of those had a purpose in one way or another.

I agree that Sophie Turner has really stepped up her game, not that I thought she was bad in the first season or anything, it's just that she is very good this season. That's why it does suck that they are giving her very little screen time. Sophie Turneris exactly how I imagined Sansa, I think she is utterly perfect.

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There are far too few episodes in this series to adequately cover the content of the books. There is no suspense surrounding plot development. The pacing and lack of continuity between story lines in the series is jarring. The characters and their relationships appear superficial and come and go without much substance. Everything feels rushed. It is hard to follow, and the dearth of available episodes causes all sorts of plot re-writes. In short, it is a mess and the series deserved a lot better.

To the Producers: We get it. We don't need Roz flashing her tits every week or Renly and Ser Loras making out for 10 minutes. These scenes could be handled much more quickly and with greater effectiveness while still getting the same point across. Some of these scenes are just excruciatingly long and hard to watch (like the one with Roz beating the other girl). Really? Is sexual abuse/assault telling the story of Game of Thrones? This stuff is jarring to the point where you lose the entire message of the scene. In this case I don't think there was one that hadn't already been established multiple times before (i.e. Jeoffrey is an ass).

Edited by footballcoach

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I'm female; but I don't have a newsletter, Dragon.

Just an expression denoting agreement. :P

I've been staying far away from TV spoilers, because I like to see things week to week so the only thing I know about the Reeds is that they haven't been cast. So my speculation would be that either they're going to delay the journey north until next season (or at least, just set off once Theon starts his nonsense) and then come across the Reeds at that point or there are going to be some very difficult changes to justify (given that as far as the books go, we don't know what's up with Rickon and Osha).

As for the Red Wedding - hm, good point. I can't think of anybody with him right now that'd be weighty enough to substitute, and it'd seem weirdly convenient for Edmure to just show up. That said, I've heard speculation that Riverrun plotlines are being held back for the next season, in which case he might well show up. It's possible the creators just don't want to throw too many characters at us at once.

Roz will surely end up revealed as Princess Rhaenys, switched and smuggled out of King's Landing before Tywin's forces came in and murdered Elia and (maybe) Aegon. Or she'll be a long-lost Sand Snake. :ack:

Oh, why'd you have to go and say that. I happen to like Princess Rhaenys--or rather, from what little we know about her, I like her sense of humor in naming a *kitten* Balerion.

I like Natalie Dormer, she is fun to watch. But part of Margaery's appeal in the book was that she was this sweet-looking, apparently gentle, pretty, "nice" girl whose sharp mind and political acumen were very busy behind those doe eyes. She was more than she seemed; while Natalie Dormer's Margaery is exactly what she seems; a charismatic and strong-willed ambitious adult woman.

Signed.

It could well be that the girl Sansa was talking to in Winterfell in Season One Episode 1 was Jeyne Poole. They could have easily brought her along to King's Landing. I am convinced that Roz will end up being sent north as Arya Stark to marry a Bolton, because TV-Theon liked her and could reasonably respond to her when they are both frightened captives. But it would be preposterous that any Bolton (and/or formerly Stark) bannermen would actually believe that the 20-something Roz is Arya Stark.

The actress who plays Roz doesn't do too badly; but her role does not have that much range; and much of her screen time is devoted to porn. I wonder if Roz will substitute for Alayaya in getting a whipping on Cersei's orders and thus sparking some nasty threats from Tyrion and rising hatred/fear of him from Cersei.

Yeah, they can't possibly use Ros for that. They're either just going to have to get a random lady-in-waiting, or somehow introduce Poole later. I really don't know how that's going to work, but that definitely seems a butterfly effect candidate.

I think that the writers created TV-Shae with an abrasive, arrogant (for that time and place) personality for the same reason they made Robb's new girlfriend 'Talisa' a self-righteous nurse who tells him off - they want Westerosi women with modern Western 21st century attitudes, or at least female characters who are far less influenced by/invested in the male social/legal hierarchy of most of Westeros, so they can appeal more to modern Western 21st century female viewers. It doesn't work for me.

Agreed. Westeros is anachronistic. I think it does the audience a disservice to have a mouthpiece that says "hey, feudalism is unfair! sexism is unfair! War, what is it good for?" The audience is going to do that themselves, they don't need a character to do the thinking for them. They need the world to be what the world is. I'm sure some of the peasants are unhappy about being forced to fight in a war, but I doubt any of them are going to mouth off to an armed dude in charge of an army. We don't know whether Talisa is highborn or not yet, but it seemed forced.

Why would the creators of the TV series be surprised that the TV-fandom does not like Sansa? They made her less sympathetic and much more bratty than book-Sansa in most of the first season; the real Sansa would never have spoken so rudely to her Septa. And Sophie Turner's voice was often whiny; which I think was by direction; I've heard the actress speak in interviews with a very pleasant, clear, voice. I do think Miss Turner stepped up her acting this season, starting actually from her last scene in AGOT with Joffrey dragging her to see her father's head.

Agreed completely. I absolutely hated that scene. If there was anything Sansa was, it was courteous. Even during her captivity, she kept her courtesies--that's what the Hound teased her about. She would not have been sassy and mean-spirited to her septa. I felt as if they were purposefully trying to make her unlikable during the first season so they could somehow give her a turnaround during the next one (a lot of my friends admit to changing their minds about her during ACOK). I think her unpopularity would have handled itself just fine, though. And while Sansa's always been the character that I related to best, her rudeness to the septa on multiple occasions was uncalled for.

Sophie Turner is phenominal though. I say this a lot, and the reason is because I was really unsure about the casting. I didn't know a thing about her other than the name, but just because I thought the character would have a challenge for anybody. I am glad to say my concerns proved to be unfounded. Turner is the definitive Sansa Stark, and thank goodness for that. I think she played her brilliantly from the pilot onward--I think my favorite two scenes with her were the pilot banquet (when she was every bit the bubbly young girl she was, but demurely in control) and the awkward family dinner and Shae scene of the previous episode where you saw this huge range of emotions play across her face in scenes where she otherwise spoke evenly. In both instances, she gets across emotion while still putting on the mask that the character had to put on and that's a rare talent. I can't sing her praises enough. That's probably why I enjoyed her scenes with Tyrion this episode: they're the two finest actors in a production with a lot of good actors, imo.

I will still enjoy much of TV-AGOT. But it is rapidly shaping up to be a slightly different story from the actual series; and I'm wondering how much more divergence there will be. And, to be honest, the semi-porn (or soft porn, I don't know the actual definitions) is a huge turnoff for me - when sex scenes are presented in the books, one can either read them or turn the pages [...]

Yeah, we expected nudity and violence coming in. I'm not a prude, and when it's necessary, useful, and/or artistic: go for it. Ros's scenes weren't those--especially Hooker Academy™, which had the added problem of telegraphing Littlefinger's intentions in the episode ending in his "surprise" betrayal of Ned. I didn't mind the nudity with Mel because it had a purpose, both times. But the Ros scenes are just porn, plain and simple. And it's a problem because there are a lot of people I'd love to introduce the show to and who I'd think would enjoy it, but for those really tacky porn scenes.

I don't mind sex or nudity when it serves a legitimate point. I don't mind diverging from the books when it has a point too--and a lot of their changes and additions have been right on the money, so I'm fine with those. But the porn has got to stop, if this show is going to keep any self-respect. Enough with Ros already. I know D&D said they liked her and wrote more stuff with her because of that, but come on. I can't think of a Ros scene that's contributed anything new outside of her first scene, and maybe--maybe the babykilling scene.

Edited by Dragon of Valyria

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How could Tyrion know about Cat being in Renly's camp (thus gave LF Ned's bone)???

Varys isn't just hangin around for his good looks and charm. This kinda thing is his job.

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There are far too few episodes in this series to adequately cover the content of the books. There is no suspense surrounding plot development. The pacing and lack of continuity between story lines in the series is jarring. The characters and their relationships appear superficial and come and go without much substance. Everything feels rushed. It is hard to follow, and the dearth of available episodes causes all sorts of plot re-writes. In short, it is a mess and the series deserved a lot better.

To the Producers: We get it. We don't need Roz flashing her tits every week or Renly and Ser Loras making out for 10 minutes. These scenes could be handled much more quickly and with greater effectiveness while still getting the same point across. Some of these scenes are just excruciatingly long and hard to watch (like the one with Roz beating the other girl). Really? Is sexual abuse/assault telling the story of Game of Thrones? This stuff is jarring to the point where you lose the entire message of the scene. In this case I don't think there was one that hadn't already been established multiple times before (i.e. Jeoffrey is an ass).

There is a second message in the Joff scene that people seem to gloss over quite quickly. Joffrey asks several times "my uncle sent you?". I took that to mean he is trying to get back at Tyrion for publicly embarrasing him on several occasions. Not only is Joff cruel and sadistic (already established); he is also threatened by Tyrion.He handles this in his own vile way. Violent repression is Joff's strategy in the game. The scene was less gratuitous than other scenes IMO.

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I am a book reader, however I am not as doctrinaire as some other posters on the forms are. It is clear to me that there is room for the TV show to be its own artistic creation and even improve on the original books. I think the inclusion of a greater role for Osha was one such improvement over the books.

That said, I think this episode had some problems:

1. The Volantine girl that may or may not replace Jayne Westerning is obnoxious as hell. If I were a lord who just won a battle, the last thing I´d want to hear is a random nurse bitching at me. Yes, my army injured him, just like he would have done to me, if he had the chance.

1a. In defence of the annoying nurse woman, she is there to point out to the audience in explicit terms that Robb´s excellent military skills are not complimented by political skills. He is in many ways the mirror opposite of Tywin Lannister. Robb wins all battles but loses the war, whereas Tywin loses practically all the battles but wins big. Why? Robb dosen´t have a clear political vision about what he wants. He can kill Lannisters all day, but ultimately he has to decide what the point of all this is: install a new king? Become king? choose someone else? He never does this in a satisfactory way, and it bites him in the ass big time.

2a. She could be lying about being a Volantine and is just Jayne Westerling in thin disguise. Her mother was Volantine if I remember correctly. She also did not answer what side she is on.

Anyway, whoever she is, she acts like a rebellious teen from the late 1990s. Obnoxious brat. I actually might become a Fray/Bolton supporter.

2. The Joffrey Torture scene - Not needed. Even Bronn already knows he´s a cunt. The scene itself was well done in that it caused me to cringe, but to what effect? We all KNOW Joff is a real cunt. He just spent some time publicly humiliating his bride to be.

3. Could have seen a little more of the inside of Qarth. Seems like we spent an eternity outside looking in.

Positive side:

Renly: Is he a ham? I LOL´d.

Bolton: Creepy, with a low, smooth voice. Just as he should be.

Tywin being practical: I can´t see him caring about smallfolk so much, but then he has a rep for running a tight ship, which to him might logically come first in his list of priorities. I do not think its a big deal for Arya to be a cup bearer a little faster. It moves the story along just fine.

Shadow baby: It´s a fucking shadow baby!!! What´s not to like.

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There are far too few episodes in this series to adequately cover the content of the books. There is no suspense surrounding plot development. The pacing and lack of continuity between story lines in the series is jarring. The characters and their relationships appear superficial and come and go without much substance. Everything feels rushed. It is hard to follow, and the dearth of available episodes causes all sorts of plot re-writes. In short, it is a mess and the series deserved a lot better.

To the Producers: We get it. We don't need Roz flashing her tits every week or Renly and Ser Loras making out for 10 minutes. These scenes could be handled much more quickly and with greater effectiveness while still getting the same point across. Some of these scenes are just excruciatingly long and hard to watch (like the one with Roz beating the other girl). Really? Is sexual abuse/assault telling the story of Game of Thrones? This stuff is jarring to the point where you lose the entire message of the scene. In this case I don't think there was one that hadn't already been established multiple times before (i.e. Jeoffrey is an ass).

I really do not know why they are rushing things so much, I just read an interview with D&D, and they said they were not going to do a season for every book. Meaning that it may take a season and a half, or even two seasons two cover everything in one or more of the books. D&D said they were just going to tell GRRM's story the best they can, no matter how many seasons it takes. So there is no requirement saying they have to get all of ACoK into season two, so I don't understand why they are rushing through so much important stuff. It really makes a lot of things seem forced. At the same time though, they are adding scenes that are not neccisary, and it's almost like when they do that, they are thinking "it's ok there is no rush". Yet they then cut down on all the important stuff, like they have to cover every book per season... I really just do not understand it.

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Terrible may be overstating... clunky and lazy writing. And if its a 'loving nod' to book fans, it feels more like a dismissive middle finger.

Implicit within the book and tv series, is that Renly needs to keep his homesexuality on the down low to secure the Iron Throne. All those Houses aren't going to support someone who can't have a true heir (hence the political marriage to Margaery). Yes - There would be gossip, but it wouldn't be known at the other end of Westeros. Especially by two low born sentries. How would they even know who Loras is?

Moreover, it just makes Westeros seem smaller and smaller. More Orange County with everyone knowing everyones business, and less of a medival continent in which information moves slowly and often incorrectly. This show, with its budgetary constraints, doesn't need another scene reinforcing how small everything is.

I think one thing that people are forgetting when they say "lowly sentries wouldn't know..." is that everyone in the realm is pledged to a lord. Their lords are their only "celebrities" and they all serve someone and have nothing to do in their downtime except bang, drink and gossip. Basicly if anyone from house Lannister ever had a drink with anyonr from house Tyrell or Baratheon, they might learn the truth.

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Hmmm... A bit ambiguous about this episode.. I agree with ckal about cutting major scenes and dragging out others, like the Joffrey one, And the beginning, please just a little tast of battle?? and too much littlefinger, especially as I am not a lover of Aiden Gillen performance in this role. It seems like its really a priority for HBO to give him screen time, much more than i than in the book, at this point. But i guess they have a plot objective for it....

The parley was rushed, the shadow baby cool, but maybe should be a bit more subtle? However in my opinion they should have kept the order which is in the book. In the prebattle stage, I was really perplexed as to how this would turn out. Renly with his superior numbers, still there was a feeling of Stannis having a card up his sleeve. Still I was certain there would be a battle, and I was really taken unawares by the shadow scene. Now they are showing the shadow up front, and Renlys death is pretty much a given, furthermore, I`m afraid we are not even going to see it.

Tyrion and Lancel scene spot on, So is Bron; laughed out loud at the no cure for being a cunt-remark.

Great to have a introduction to Harrenhal and the characters, like Polliver and the tickler.

The Mountain: to be renamed the beanstalk. I am very liberal to appearance compared to the books, but sorry; if it is really true that HBO decided that Conan Stevens didn`t work, we are looking at a casting tragedy. He is 7-2" and IS a mountain. The new guy has the height, but no more. Good to se Tywin though, Charles Dance is perfect.

Qarth scene-hmm. The qarthians looked like a mix of all sorts, expected them to look more middle-east.. The scene and dialog was not very good. Seemed like they prolonged the dialog to avoid showing the dragons, cause we used our special effects money on the Harrenhal and Qarth visuals-which by the way were fantastic.

GOT-standard a medium ep i my view

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+1

When we criticize, it's because we don't want to see this show tank because of the inconsistent, bad writing. I'd like to see GoT survive till the end of the series, which will be a decade away if we're lucky. If they're making it unwieldy, disjointed, and difficult to follow in the first half of season 2, what are non-readers going to do by the time Davos goes to Skagos and Tyrion is running around with The Golden Company?

I totally agree with your concern about losing non book viewers as the plot gets more and more expansive. Especially when you get to Feast and Dance and there is massive amounts of story that doesn't involve Jon/Dany/Arya/Sana/Tyrion. I agree that they stumble sometimes trying to re-interpret such a massive story...

But we should all remember that this is still by far the best show on tv...

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Hmmm... A bit ambiguous about this episode.. I agree with ckal about cutting major scenes and dragging out others, like the Joffrey one, And the beginning, please just a little tast of battle?? and too much littlefinger, especially as I am not a lover of Aiden Gillen performance in this role. It seems like its really a priority for HBO to give him screen time, much more than i than in the book, at this point. But i guess they have a plot objective for it....

The parley was rushed, the shadow baby cool, but maybe should be a bit more subtle? However in my opinion they should have kept the order which is in the book. In the prebattle stage, I was really perplexed as to how this would turn out. Renly with his superior numbers, still there was a feeling of Stannis having a card up his sleeve. Still I was certain there would be a battle, and I was really taken unawares by the shadow scene. Now they are showing the shadow up front, and Renlys death is pretty much a given, furthermore, I`m afraid we are not even going to see it.

Tyrion and Lancel scene spot on, So is Bron; laughed out loud at the no cure for being a cunt-remark.

Great to have a introduction to Harrenhal and the characters, like Polliver and the tickler.

The Mountain: to be renamed the beanstalk. I am very liberal to appearance compared to the books, but sorry; if it is really true that HBO decided that Conan Stevens didn`t work, we are looking at a casting tragedy. He is 7-2" and IS a mountain. The new guy has the height, but no more. Good to se Tywin though, Charles Dance is perfect.

Qarth scene-hmm. The qarthians looked like a mix of all sorts, expected them to look more middle-east.. The scene and dialog was not very good. Seemed like they prolonged the dialog to avoid showing the dragons, cause we used our special effects money on the Harrenhal and Qarth visuals-which by the way were fantastic.

GOT-standard a medium ep i my view

The Mountain: to be renamed the beanstalk.

:agree:

LOL!!!!!

Conan Stevens personified the seething menace and brutality of Gregor Clegane. I couldn't differentiate the new guy, whasisname, from the other Lannister thugs; and when I caught a glimpse of him, I thought that Sandor could knock him over with one hand. Why on earth would they dump Stevens for this actor?

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The Mountain: to be renamed the beanstalk.

:agree:

LOL!!!!!

Conan Stevens personified the seething menace and brutality of Gregor Clegane. I couldn't differentiate the new guy, whasisname, from the other Lannister thugs; and when I caught a glimpse of him, I thought that Sandor could knock him over with one hand. Why on earth would they dump Stevens for this actor?

Stevens was not dumped.

He had a contractual obligation to Peter Jackson for the Hobbit that precluded him from working this season.

He has said he would like to come back.

In CoK the Mountain has his slash and burn tactics mentioned ,but his actual physical presence on the page is minimal in the novel.

Why they didn't just have him off screen for this season is a puzzle.

Just keep Ian Whyte for the White Walker stuff.

I noticed in the Harrenhal scene we do see Ian Whyte for a little while tho the camera angles seemed to be kind of hiding him, when Gendry is picked, I think we only hear a voice , I don't think we see him at all.

He may vanish from the rest of the episodes.

Edited by boojam

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I really do not know why they are rushing things so much, I just read an interview with D&D, and they said they were not going to do a season for every book. Meaning that it may take a season and a half, or even two seasons two cover everything in one or more of the books. D&D said they were just going to tell GRRM's story the best they can, no matter how many seasons it takes. So there is no requirement saying they have to get all of ACoK into season two, so I don't understand why they are rushing through so much important stuff. It really makes a lot of things seem forced. At the same time though, they are adding scenes that are not neccisary, and it's almost like when they do that, they are thinking "it's ok there is no rush". Yet they then cut down on all the important stuff, like they have to cover every book per season... I really just do not understand it.

I don't understand it either.

It's my hunch that the unnecessary stuff is a marching order from HBO* and not D&D's idea.

They only have 50 min. each week to work in a 'best effort' interpertation of the story and precious time is being wasted on stuff that neither adds nor advances the plot.

*Does HBO notice a drop in viewership when they don't have have enough adult material.

Seems to me there is enough 'in context' stuff to satisfy that fraction of the audience.

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