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[Book Spoilers] EP 209 Discussion

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This episode had me crying. How can my heart maintain a quick pace of 60 minutes?! At first, I was apprehensive since there was still no blood spilt a quarter into the episode. You soon realize that all that build-up had a purpose.

Tyrion, once again, was a marvel. This is his episode as much as it was Cersei's. Some may take issue with the showrunners humanizing Tyrion too much, but I like him in this episode. He was afraid, but then it was a time that he was brave as well (See what I did there?). In his most unconventional pep talk, he tells the soldiers the truth rather than what they wanted to hear. He cuts legs! And he pulls off this gasp of what-the-F-just-happened when Ser Mandon attacks him.

Stannis is as straightforward as ever ("Hundereds will die." "Thousands."). There is really no doubt that Stannis is a good war leader. Fearless and leading in battle, a stark contrast to Joffrey hiding behind his mother's skirts (Gleeson's facial expressions are refreshing, btw.), and his look of despair while his men force him to fall back struck a cord in people's hearts.

Sansa and Cersei have such a great dynamic. It really is great to see Cersei slowly geting inebriated, like a foreshadowing of her fall from grace. In a way, Shae's presumption that the Queen is jealous of Sansa rings true, because she is a younger, more beautiful would-be queen. Headey was fantastic (as well as her armour corset. cue: "I should have been a man."). One second, her words send shivers down your spine, and the next, she is a vulnerable woman. As much as we all know her true nature, you really cannot deny that Cersei loves her children. For a second there, I was genuinely glad to see Loras and Tywin.

I think it's amazing that audiences can feel a little romance tingling in the midst of a battle, and the SanSan dynamic is just that. This episode served for Sandor as well in seeing his two sides. He enjoys killing - he would've been quick to prove it in that heart-stopping confrontation with Bronn, but at the same night, he offers safety to a terrified Sansa, inspite of being afraid himself.

I don't think I have to mention, but I will anyway, how amazing the far shot of the wildfire explosion is. A bit queer though on how Davos recognized wildfire, in the misty night, mind you. I now get what D&D kept saying about the individual things that happen to people in a war. I know this one will be compared to Minas Tirith, but the approach is entirely different. You don't just see the troop movements and flanks. You get to see the war from all the people involved: the soldiers, the women, the servants, the squires. Everyone! Down to the last random burning seaman.

Blackwater had too many great lines that it would be a crime to mention any without quoting the whole script. It's enough to say that The Rains of Castamere will ring in my head for a fortnight.

That and "DRUUUUMS!".

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My one complaint: Stannis was the first one to touch the shores? Stannis being the first to scale the walls? Stannis argued when the retreat was necessary? Stannis would not act like that. He would know when/if the retreat it necessary and take it. He is objective in his own Stannisy way. But hell, GRRM wrote it.

I think Stnnis leading the charge and being first up the ladder was one of those "can't resist" moments in writing a battle scene, where it just would've looked too awesome not to put in...Also, in the books Ser Axell Florent did have to convince Stannis that the day was lost and to retreat.

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-Sansa. The actress was great.And this line:

"I will pray for your safe return my Lord"

"Will you?"

"Just as I pray for the King's" and her conversation with Joffrey.Loved it!

That line jarred me a bit. We know she prays for Joff to NOT return. So that implies she feels the same for Tyrion. Yet she and we know that Tyrion has saved her and taken her side when no one else did. It was clever writing but not entirely appropriate.

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I have to say that I had never heard of SanSan until last night. I had thought that I&F was immune to the shipper crap that almost ruined Lost fandom. Guess I was wrong. :-/

Anyone mind translating that for me? (I understand SanSan)

Stannis had to lead the charge to provide the contrast with Joffery, especially after his "Thousands" comment. A huge chuck of the episode (and previous speeches from Bronn and Littlefinger) established how morale of your men is probably the most important thing in a battle. I am now disappointed we won't see this Stannis again until 4.10. June 2014.

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Sansa: I shall pray for your safe return my lord.

Tyrion: You will?

Sansa: Just as I pray for King Joffery.

This episode...can't stop nerdgasming...need to lie down....

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So this will be hard to write my mind is currently blown over the nearest wall so ill try....

This episode is the best hour of television ive ever seen in my life, and as a book fan it stayed very, very true to the book. I get there was no chain, and no sing song for Sandor but i think the alternatives worked well, i mean did you see that Wildfire explosion i think my jaw dropped just as everyone in the city did.

I wish they gave more incite into why the Kingsguard turned on Tyrion, the average fan probably was like WTF was that, in the book i had a sense of dread the whole latter half of the book with Tyrion. Otherwise Go POD! and a nice touch leaving the is he dead or no cliffhanger :)

All in all i was worried they were going to skip the Tywin/Renly Ghost for a second but got the instant relief. And my god was the credit song ever haunting is the RoC or something else? i would love to know thanks!

Fuck Water, Bring me Wine

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That line jarred me a bit. We know she prays for Joff to NOT return. So that implies she feels the same for Tyrion. Yet she and we know that Tyrion has saved her and taken her side when no one else did. It was clever writing but not entirely appropriate.

Tyrion maybe be the Lannister that treats her the best

but he's still a Lannister.

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Awesome episode. The only real complain I got is that Stannis sword wasn't fiery or whatever, which is such a minor complaint that it is pretty much irrelevant.

So let's list the sheer amount of badassitude and awesomeness of the ep.

- Stannis on the front line was great, a good contrast to Joffrey squirming away from the battle. King Stannis indeed.

- Bronn was extra awesome, singing Reynes of Castamere, bumping heads with The Hound, lighting the wildfire, saving The Hound and killing people with only a knife.

- The juxtaposition of Cersei / Tommen and the arrival of the Lannisters / Tyrells was great

- The scene with Davos ship being blown to hell was totally gut-wrenching.

- Tyrion fighting was handled nicely as was Ser Mandon's betrayal

- Renly's Ghost!

- And lastly awesome dialogue, Davos / Mathos, Tyrion / Varys, Tyrion / Bronn, Bronn / Sandor, Tyrion / Sansa, Sansa / Cersei, Tyrion / The troops, Bronn / the troops / prostitutes

Also a mention for everyones favourite Kingsguard, the honourable and valiant Ser Boros Blount.

Oh, and I forgot to mention, the drums were Epic!

Edited by The_Gallows_Knight

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All in all i was worried they were going to skip the Tywin/Renly Ghost for a second but got the instant relief.

Sorry but I don't think this part lived up to the rest. As a book reader I was looking for the Renly ghost and even for me the scene was too quick, poorly shot, or obscure for that kind of recognition. For a non-book reader it must have been completely opaque. Also, the separation between the Tyrion's charge, Stannis' charge, and Renly's charge, especially the last two, would have also given no clarity to a non-book reader. In other words if you were not expecting that to happen, there is no way to know that it had happened. The Stannis forces in the charge after Tyrion faded away instantly. The editing there could have been vastly improved.

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http://insidetv.ew.com/2012/05/27/game-of-thrones-blackwater-2/

D&D interview about this ep.

A few little things:

Tyrion and Bronn's conversation was great and really sets up Bronn's abandonment of him, and as the EW recapper put it, Tyrion has to buy his woman and his friend. He could not be more sympathetic on the show. After his speech and short-lived victory, I half expected him to be killed at the end of the episode. Every step for the death of a hero sequence had been played out.

Bronn's reaching for his dagger to fight Sandor. Just great, Bronn knows he shouldn't go sword to sword with the bigger man in a crowded brothel, he is going to use a small weapon.

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Mandon Moore was mishandled. He very obviously made a go at Tyrion, and did it in front of witnesses. Even in the din of battle, the books handled the awkwardness of murdering the Hand by having it be a private affair on some boats. Also you can't tell the white/gold armor as none of it stood out besides the helm. I could tell since I read the books, but I wonder about the noobs.

The helm he was wearing looked like that of the Kingsguard. Kind of like three curvy lines meeting at the face.

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I previously heard a number of complaints about the Rains of Castamere as sung at the end, but when I first heard it (before the episode aired) my immediate thought was they were trying for a very Leonard Cohen-type rendition, that air of world weariness Cohen imbues in his songs. And the n hearing it at the end of the episode (ahem, three times) really brought out that weariness/wariness of what war and death are all about. IMHO.

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Jaime - Riverlands

Boros - Blackwater

Mandon - Blackwater

Sandor - Blackwater > Sansa > fleeing the city

Meryn - With the queen (I think you can spot a kingsguard by the doors every now and then,)

Balon (neverr actually named - With the queen

Arys (never actually named) - With Myrcella in Dorne, presumably

Balon Swann, I wanna say

Arys Oakheart

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Thanks for clearing that up I got confused in the names I guess and Hearteater looked really sweet it looked like it had the gem in the hilt

Still Longclaw FTW.

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Anyone else digging this song during the end credits?

Not me. After such a good episode, it was like a slap in the face. All the other credits have had an orchestral, not a vocal background. I would have preferred that they'd stuck with that formula. Besides, Bronn's version was much more enjoyable for me.

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That Wildfire looks like some effective stuff.. makes you wonder how the Others would react to it. Install some catapults with that stuff on the wall, and tada?

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Quick question about the Rains of Castamere. Were the lyrics of the song ever mentioned in the books? I always remember at feasts like Joff's wedding that the song would be played, but I don't remember a specific instance where the lyrics were spelt out. Anyone have an idea?

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