Game of Thrones: High Sparrow   Show Only 
April 26, 2015 7:16 PM - Season 5, Episode 3 - Subscribe

Cersei meets the High Sparrow after learning of a clergyman's embarrassing tale. Meanwhile, Davos talks to Jon about the future of Winterfell, where Ramsay Snow has just learned the identity of his future bride; Arya grows impatient doing menial tasks in the House of Black and White; and Tyrion searches for more comfortable surroundings on a long trip with Varys.

Oh and Sansa returns home!
posted by Brandon Blatcher (98 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
 
I grew impatient with the Arya storyline too; yes, we get it, wax car, paint fence.

The rest of it though: this is the episode where the story engine starts revving up.

Littlefinger has a really good "you don't realize that I'm smarter than you" smirk in this one.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 10:16 PM on April 26, 2015 [2 favorites]


Oh and Sansa returns home!

Bleargh. I will be happy with this season as long as it ends with ALL BOLTONS DEAD.
posted by Karlos the Jackal at 10:17 PM on April 26, 2015 [13 favorites]


I wonder if Littlefinger knows that Stannis is at the wall.
posted by homunculus at 10:22 PM on April 26, 2015 [2 favorites]


Also, a breadcrumb is thrown that suggests THE FRANKENMOUNTAIN LIVES.

The ending: I wonder which Queen Jorah is referring to.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 10:35 PM on April 26, 2015 [1 favorite]


I'd bet a dollar that there's still only one Queen as far as Jorah is concerned.
posted by Karlos the Jackal at 10:47 PM on April 26, 2015 [9 favorites]


On reflection, yes, I bet you're right. I was thinking of Cersei's "bring me the head of the dwarf" bounty. But even if he were loyal to King's Landing, Jorah's a stickler for protocol and wouldn't refer to Cersei as "the Queen"; Tommen's the one wearing the crown.

Maergery is playing a dangerous game with Cersei I think: surely the lesson from the trial-by-combat is don't overindulge in taunting your vanquished enemy.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 11:01 PM on April 26, 2015 [8 favorites]


Interesting mirror: Maggie manipulating Tommen into doing something "oh wow your mom would so like to be away from all this wretchedness!" And Littlefinger implying Sansa should like, Marry into the Boltons and then kill them? Or allow it to happen? I got a strong "look, just marry him and then I'll kill him and boom we hold the entire North." Vibe.
posted by The Whelk at 11:03 PM on April 26, 2015 [4 favorites]


Maergery with the baby ambition again.

I recognized Rila Fukushima, think we'll see her again?
posted by the man of twists and turns at 11:06 PM on April 26, 2015


Baby ambition is good Queening, the Queen without an heir is always replaceable, and Cersei is like going " FINE, you wanna out virtue me with all your smiles and compliments and baby drive- I'll go REFORM THE CHURCH YES, TALK TO PEOPLE WITH NO SHOES, LOOK HOW MODEST AND HUMBLE I AM I WIN AT BEING HUMBLE! WHY DONT THE DIRTY PEASANTS LOVE ME MORE."
posted by The Whelk at 11:15 PM on April 26, 2015 [5 favorites]


I recognized Rila Fukushima, think we'll see her again?

I assume so. I don't see her being cast for only one appearance.
posted by homunculus at 11:21 PM on April 26, 2015 [1 favorite]


Sansa, Schmansa, I'm about ready to murder Ramsay myself. Good lord he is so loathsome. Iwan Rheon is a genius.
posted by KathrynT at 11:27 PM on April 26, 2015 [5 favorites]


How is it that the religious zealots haven't heard the rumors about Cersei and her children? I thought that was common knowledge/gossip in King's Landing?
posted by Ik ben afgesneden at 11:50 PM on April 26, 2015


Is it just me or did they deliberately age up Cersei's makeup in the Margaery scene? I was wondering if it was done on purpose for contrast.
posted by corb at 3:36 AM on April 27, 2015


Maybe? I may have missed it, as I was too busy laughing my head off at Margaery's sick burn in re: Cersei's drinking problem.
posted by tocts at 4:26 AM on April 27, 2015 [17 favorites]


I know Jon wants to show he is a strong leader but getting the Stannis Seal of Approval doesn't seem like a good thing.
posted by computech_apolloniajames at 4:30 AM on April 27, 2015 [4 favorites]


I know Jon wants to show he is a strong leader but getting the Stannis Seal of Approval doesn't seem like a good thing.

You can't just have one of your underlings shit talk you in front of everyone and then just weasel out of it with an apology. Orders are orders, Slynt. You never did figure out that The Wall isn't King's Landing.
posted by absalom at 4:40 AM on April 27, 2015 [13 favorites]


That scene at the The Wall was done just right. Jon names Thorne First Ranger, thus nodding to his experience and saying, "You're the man. Now you have to back my next play."

Slynt is a coward AND an incompetent, and Thorne sees no reason to continue as Slynt's patron; Thorne's got what he needs for now.

And Slynt loses his head. Figuratively and literally.
posted by Thistledown at 4:45 AM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


Poor Sansa. I'd like to see her marry a non-sadist for once. Unfortunately I'm not sure that's in her future.

Brienne and Pod continue to be fabulous.
posted by olinerd at 4:59 AM on April 27, 2015 [4 favorites]


Orders are orders, Slynt. You never did figure out that The Wall isn't King's Landing.

I liked that this theme played out with Slynt's and Arya's sequences. Slynt was stuck in the past, in King's Landing, in the glory he used to, or thought he used to, possess. He is not willing to let that go, not willing to be subordinate, and so he dies.

We see Arya learning that she must let go of her identity. I'm not sure if that means letting go of your grudges, too, though I suspect it does. Whether its coincidence or karma, one of the names is removed from her list. I wonder if all her enemies will die by someone else's hand and if she'll truly be able to be a faceless woman when the revenge lust that's fueling her is taken away, or if she'll go back and dig out her sword to find new enemies.
posted by GrapeApiary at 6:32 AM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


my bad, Meryn Trant was on her list, not Slynt. my thesis is ruined.
posted by GrapeApiary at 6:38 AM on April 27, 2015


Poor Sansa. I'd like to see her marry a non-sadist for once. Unfortunately I'm not sure that's in her future.

It seems like only Tyrion remembers that she's married to him. I appreciated (and actually kind of believed) Ramsey telling Littlefinger that he'd never hurt Sansa. I hope that stays true (or, if he tries, I hope that Sansa has learned to sleep armed).
posted by sparklemotion at 6:49 AM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


Best "O RLY" look this episode: Cersei at Grand Maester Pycelle, after he said "private lives should be private." She knows of his lecherous ways with young ladies, as seen in the Purple Wedding, if not elsewhere.


The Whelk: WHY DONT THE DIRTY PEASANTS LOVE ME MORE.

I was wondering about that element in Cersei - in the beginning, when she was getting so sullen about the people calling for Margery, was it because of the prophecy? She didn't give two fucks about the little people when Joff was king, and told him as much when comparing styles of ruling with Margery, who was already a favorite of the unwashed masses.


sparklemotion: It seems like only Tyrion remembers that [Sansa]'s married to him.

Oooooh, that's why Tyrion didn't go off with the whore. I'm a bit dense, I thought it was something about memories of Shae.
posted by filthy light thief at 7:11 AM on April 27, 2015 [4 favorites]


It seems like only Tyrion remembers that she's married to him.

Sansa's marriage to Tyrion doesn't matter (in a lot of eyes) because it was never consummated.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:16 AM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


Sansa's marriage to Tyrion doesn't matter (in a lot of eyes) because it was never consummated.

I think it's interesting (and sweet, and misguided) that Tyrion still feels that he must be faithful to Sansa. It's not like his life had previously been full of role models of marital fidelity. And it's not like Sansa ever asked him to be faithful -- I could totally believe that had he told Sansa about Shae, Sansa might have been able to reconcile allowing that relationship to continue.
posted by sparklemotion at 7:35 AM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


I'm curious what happens when Sansa meets Theon/Reek and recognizes him. He can't be kept away from her forever.
posted by dnash at 7:39 AM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


I'm having a hard time remembering what Sansa probably knows about Theon. I assume that she knows that he took Winterfell, and therefore that there were two little boys murdered. Does she know that that wasn't Bran and Rickon? (I mean, not that it makes Theon any less of a child murderer, but maybe she'll hate him just a tiny bit less if he didn't, in fact, murder her brothers).
posted by sparklemotion at 7:45 AM on April 27, 2015


I'm having a hard time remembering what Sansa probably knows about Theon.

Pretty sure Joeffery gleefully told her everything, repeatedly, off screen. Robb definitely got news of Theon's betrayal, so it stands to reason that everyone else in the Kingdom knows.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:58 AM on April 27, 2015 [3 favorites]


Also, a breadcrumb is thrown that suggests THE FRANKENMOUNTAIN LIVES.

♫Puttin' on the Ritz!♫
posted by fuse theorem at 8:05 AM on April 27, 2015 [21 favorites]


Now that I've thought about it more -- if it was widely known that Theon didn't kill Bran and Rickon, Sansa's value as "key to the North" would be somewhat diminished, and I'm sure it would have been brought up as a caveat.

I'll bet that, in an attempt to win her favour, Reek tells Sansa that her younger brothers are possibly still alive. Sansa will still hate him (possibly enough that she wouldn't even put him out of his misery), but she'll have another driving motivation besides just killing Roose.
posted by sparklemotion at 8:12 AM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


I just want to see Sansa stabbing Roose, repeatedly, to he's dead, then Brienne split Ramsay in half with Oathkeeper. Or vice versa, not picky.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:33 AM on April 27, 2015 [12 favorites]


It's odd to see people taking The Seven seriously. Unlike the Lord of Light and the Godswood trees, it seems possible that The Seven are just completely made up by mortals. I'm pretty sure I haven't seen any miracles or interventions from them.
posted by paper chromatographologist at 8:42 AM on April 27, 2015


There's been war, the death of one king and the murder of another, while Cersei lets everything go to hell. I'm surprised there isn't open rebellion.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:46 AM on April 27, 2015 [3 favorites]


That would take too long to shoot, and they have a tight budget of time to cover (roughly) one large fantasy book in ~100 hours. If you're going to revolt, best be quick about it! No skulking around and holding numerous secret meetings, we don't have time for that! [Not a book-related spoiler or reference, as far as I can recall]
posted by filthy light thief at 8:53 AM on April 27, 2015


I think it's interesting (and sweet, and misguided) that Tyrion still feels that he must be faithful to Sansa.

Did you get that from that scene? I felt like it was because of Shae - because Shae was a whore who he loved and was relatively 'faithful' to, and then she betrayed him and he killed her. Like that that made him unable to be as casually merry about having sex with whores all day.
posted by corb at 8:56 AM on April 27, 2015 [21 favorites]


I never would have interpreted Tyrion's hesitance with the prostitute as some sort of loyalty to Sansa. I just assumed that the woman reminded him of Shae and that's why his little soldier retreated.
posted by Kitty Stardust at 8:57 AM on April 27, 2015 [8 favorites]


That scene at the The Wall was done just right.

I completely agree. I think having Jon show that, given real power, he really does have the courage of his convictions, was important. So, his choice of Thorne as First Ranger speaks to his ability to actually put the greater good above his own feelings. His handling of Slynt, meanwhile, speaks to his ability to do the hard things, even when he (probably) doesn't want to. (Meanwhile, the scene with Stannis shows that no, he's really serious about his honor, even when presented with the one thing he's wanted his whole life).

I would go as far as saying that this is the closest Jon has been to "not boring" in a long time.
posted by tocts at 9:06 AM on April 27, 2015 [7 favorites]


Oh man, that scene at the Wall! I also love how every man in the room knew what was coming except Janos Slynt. Like even Thorne was like, "Well, you done fucked up now."
posted by corb at 9:07 AM on April 27, 2015 [11 favorites]


Unlike the Lord of Light and the Godswood trees, it seems possible that The Seven are just completely made up by mortals. I'm pretty sure I haven't seen any miracles or interventions from them.

This is actually one of the things about the books/show I've always found curious, and sometimes annoying. The whole area of which gods are real and which aren't. I sometimes feel like Martin hasn't bothered to come down on any one side or other - the various gods are treated as either real or unreal as fits whatever he needs for his plots. (Though I admit I can't make a detailed argument about that, it's just how I feel about the ways religion and magic show up here.)
posted by dnash at 9:10 AM on April 27, 2015


If you wanted I suppose you could see all the unlikely meetups as due to the Seven. Like, maybe the Seven are just more subtle than everyone else. Brienne worships the Seven, and look how astonishingly she has stumbled over both the Stark girls!
posted by corb at 9:14 AM on April 27, 2015


So, his choice of Thorne as First Ranger speaks to his ability to actually put the greater good above his own feelings.

It neatly accomplishes several things. It appeals to Thorne's ego, which causes him to not stir up too much shit. Then it sends him away from the Wall for long periods, further decreasing his chance to stir up shit. Finally, it deprives his follows of their leader, so they won't stir up too much shit.

So yeah, Jon made a latrine pit!

Like even Thorne was like, "Well, you done fucked up now."

Sort of. Stannis was standing with him at first, until faced with the wall of his brothers who clearly meant business. At this point, he's First Ranger, so he doesn't need Slynt's dumb ass antics. Plus Thorne, will being an ass, believes in what he's doing ,can't not happen, especially after what happened with the last one and the with the Wildings on their side of the Wall now.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:15 AM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


I never would have interpreted Tyrion's hesitance with the prostitute as some sort of loyalty to Sansa

(One of) the reason(s) why Shae turned on Tyrion was because Tyrion started rejecting her sexually as soon as he was married -- even though it's not like he was consummating with Sansa, and even though he was very much in love/lust with Shae. I'm pretty sure (season 3 memory is shaky) that being in love with Shae didn't stop Tyrion from enjoying the company of other prostitutes during their relationship.

When Tyrion meets Oberyn, Tyrion tells him "I used to partake [in prostitutes], now I'm married". It doesn't seem like a loyalty to Shae ever stopped Tyrion from doing anything (which, again, is part of why Shae was so rightfully angry with him).

And, if it were his feelings for Shae that were troubling him, honestly, the healthiest way to move on from being betrayed by and having to kill your prostitute girlfriend is probably to have fun with other prostitutes -- which is probably what Tyrion had in mind when he decided to go to the brothel in the first place.

All of these lead me to believe that it was his marriage vows that were the primary thing that kept Tyrion from sealing the deal in Volantis.
posted by sparklemotion at 9:21 AM on April 27, 2015 [5 favorites]


How is it that the religious zealots haven't heard the rumors about Cersei and her children? I thought that was common knowledge/gossip in King's Landing?

If confession is a part of their religion, then Lancel probably told the High Sparrow everything.
posted by homunculus at 9:21 AM on April 27, 2015 [5 favorites]


Tyrion tells him "I used to partake [in prostitutes], now I'm married".

Oh yeah, I forgot about this! I'm actually doing a rewatch in honor of the new season and to bring the husband on board, but I'm still on Season 1.
posted by corb at 9:26 AM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


It's odd to see people taking The Seven seriously. Unlike the Lord of Light and the Godswood trees, it seems possible that The Seven are just completely made up by mortals. I'm pretty sure I haven't seen any miracles or interventions from them.

I'm willing to bet that the vast majority of the citizens of Westeros have never actually seen a "miracle." We've seen a bunch, because we are following the "heroes" of this world, but most folks have probably just heard stories/myths.

When you're getting your miracle news second hand, it probably becomes a lot easier to attribute magic events to whichever god(s) you've been raised to believe in.

I actually really like the (new to me) Braavosian take on this: There is only one god, the God of Death, but s/he takes on many faces to fit the different cultures over which s/he holds sway.
posted by sparklemotion at 9:31 AM on April 27, 2015 [3 favorites]


Brandon Blatcher: I just want to see Sansa stabbing Roose, repeatedly, to he's dead, then Brienne split Ramsay in half with Oathkeeper. Or vice versa, not picky.

If it's going to happen, it'll happen like you said - Ramsay was the one who broke his oath to the Starks, so Brienne with her Oathkeeper puts an end to him, slain by Cat's sworn protector with a blade made with Lannister gold.
posted by filthy light thief at 9:49 AM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


Which oath did Ramsay make to the Starks?
posted by sparklemotion at 9:54 AM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


I don't think Ramsay did, but Roose certainly. But in this world you're generally considered bound by your parent's oaths, I think.
posted by corb at 9:55 AM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


Blast and bother - I mixed up the Bastard with his father. I meant for Roose to get cut down by Brienne with Oathkeeper, who is finally keeping her oath to keep Cat's daughter's safe.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:01 AM on April 27, 2015 [4 favorites]


I'm loving the Brienne & Pod show. Her memories of Renley are sweet - he was a real mensch of a person indeed.

> Orders are orders, Slynt. You never did figure out that The Wall isn't King's Landing.

That's true. However, there is something extremely foreboding about Jon Snow becoming a leader doing the beheading here. This scene called to mind the times the other men in Jon Snow's family had to make a leadership call and chose to behead people when they could have instead shown them mercy. In early S1, Ned Stark chose to execute a deserter from the Night's Watch who had tried to warn Ned about the return of the White Walkers (correctly, I might add! why doesn't anyone ever discuss the threat of the ice zombies?), but Ned dismissed him as a crazy man. Robb, Bran and Jon witnessed the execution, and Ned made a point of telling his sons: "The man who passes the sentence should swing the sword and take responsibility for his own decisions." Um, not sure this was terribly awesome advice, Ned. Then, in S3, towards the end of Robb's reign as King of the North, he chooses to execute Rickard Karstark for killing the young Lannister prisoners (against Catelyn and Talisa's advice to show mercy and send him to the Night's Watch). Rickard curses him: "Kill me and be cursed. You are no King of mine!" Boom! Red Wedding. If Ned and Robb had made different decisions in those moments, who knows how that could have altered their fates. Not sure what this means for Jon Snow of course; maybe it will turn out differently.

Sansa is "home" again-- and maybe Littlefinger is actually not screwing her over as badly as it had originally seemed from their conversation on the hilltop. I loved the support her lady-in-waiting showed her: "The North remembers." Hells yeah!!! Those looks Ramsey's harem of women were giving her? Yikes. Also, Ramsay got Theon/Reek to admit to him that Bran and Rickon Stark's deaths were faked and that they are still alive somewhere, so I wonder how the "key to the North" will actually play out.
posted by hush at 10:03 AM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


Those looks Ramsey's harem of women were giving her?

Oh thaaat is who they were. Have we seen him with women before? Does he give them nice presents or treat them really well? Those were some mean hatestares indeed.
posted by corb at 10:07 AM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


Oh thaaat is who they were. Have we seen him with women before?

Those are Ramsey's bedwarmers. They seduced Theon into getting a hard on, which was promptly cute off. The darkhaired one got jealous of another and so she and Ramsay hunted her for sport. I don't think we've see the other two before

But that's ok, we'll probably be seeing more of them! Sansa too!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:11 AM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


The Janos Slynt scene felt veeeeeerrrrryyyyy O-Ren Ishii to me. Like, we're all here, the transition to power is genial enough, and one motherfucker's ego can't handle being under this new command, and the new command has to show at once that, no, outright insubordination has a price (I collect your fuckin' head) but that otherwise rule will be fair and open and all voices will be heard and merit recognized.

I thought it was great.
posted by Navelgazer at 10:24 AM on April 27, 2015 [5 favorites]


I just want to see Sansa stabbing Roose, repeatedly, to he's dead, then Brienne split Ramsay in half with Oathkeeper. Or vice versa, not picky.

Could Sansa even lift Oathkeeper? Would Brienne let it be taken from her unless prised from her cold, dead hands? ;)

Put me in the "Shae" camp for Tyrion. I think she reminded him of Shae, why he killed her, and why he stopped sleeping with her - because of Sansa. I totally thought it was because of Shae and the memories - completely forgetting about Sansa.
posted by tilde at 11:16 AM on April 27, 2015 [4 favorites]


I think she reminded him of Shae, why he killed her, and why he stopped sleeping with her - because of Sansa. I totally thought it was because of Shae and the memories - completely forgetting about Sansa.

Agreed. They bantered the way that Tyrion and Shae used to banter, and she was kind to him the way that Shae used to be kind with him.

Plus, she physically looked like a blurred, not-quite-as-pretty version of Shae -- I think it was meant to be a mirror to Mormont getting his manpain on over the blurred, not-quite-as-pretty, assless dress version of Danerys. Both outcasts, both alienated from the women they love because of a betrayal, etc.
posted by joyceanmachine at 11:34 AM on April 27, 2015 [5 favorites]


I agree that the fact that she is a Shae clone (both in looks and seeming intellect) is what made Tyrion interested in her in the first place. But if the memories of Shae were too painful for him why would he even go talk to her?

When he has to turn her down (did she have a name...I wish I could talk about her by name), Tyrion keeps hold of her hand, and looks her in the eye when he says that he can't do it, even though he really, really, really wants to. I don't think that those are the actions of "I'm sad about Shae" Tyrion, but more the actions of "I'm actually kind of a noble husband" Tyrion.
posted by sparklemotion at 12:03 PM on April 27, 2015




For someone so dismissive of all the talk, talk, talk, Oberyn is a verbose recapper.
posted by filthy light thief at 12:52 PM on April 27, 2015 [3 favorites]


It's the wine!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:53 PM on April 27, 2015 [3 favorites]


I recognized Rila Fukushima, think we'll see her again?

Another interesting thing about her character: the Red Priestess was telling the crowd in Volantis that Daenerys is their savior, while Melisandre is in Westeros claiming the same thing about Stannis. So is the church just hedging its bets? Dany seems like the obvious choice for a religion that worships a fire god, and I would assume that dragons must have a special significance in their faith, so what is Melisandre going to do when the Mother of Dragons finally reaches Westeros?
posted by homunculus at 2:27 PM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


But is it a small world after all, So they run into Jorah Mormont, Danaerys’ disgraced advisor. As Tyrion attempts to woo one of the prostitutes, then he decides not to go with her. He’s shocked at his own reluctance. As am I. The Tyrion Lannister has formidable reputation as visitor of brothels, yet he refused my offer in Kings Landing and here he is doing it again. I do not understand this behavior.
I LOVE OBERYN MARTELL RECAPS AND WISH TO HEAR MORE ABOUT HIS HIDDEN PARTY ISLAND

(Thanks, Brandon Blatcher!)
posted by joyceanmachine at 2:34 PM on April 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


(did she have a name...I wish I could talk about her by name)

Clea, according to IMDB.
posted by vibratory manner of working at 2:39 PM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


...the Red Priestess was telling the crowd in Volantis that Daenerys is their savior, while Melisandre is in Westeros claiming the same thing about Stannis. So is the church just hedging its bets?

This was the big question for me this episode. Does the church have central control of its Priestesses' political activities (seems likely), or are they each free agents in that regard (seems unlikely)? Has one of the two Priestesses gone rogue? Is one operation or the other just a deception? Or is one a false flag operation? And what will happen when word gets back to Stannis about the Priestess in Volantis talking up the Dragon Queen?
posted by ogooglebar at 3:33 PM on April 27, 2015


She says, "She is your destined Queen. Kill that woman you don't actually love and achieve your destiny."
posted by corb at 3:40 PM on April 27, 2015


Does the church have central control of its Priestesses' political activities (seems likely), or are they each free agents in that regard (seems unlikely)? Has one of the two Priestesses gone rogue?

I can't remember if I'm getting this from the actual episode or from reading a recap, but I think there was some interaction between Melissandre and the dude who kept bringing Ser Robin Hood back to life --- remember the bit where she picks up Gendry from those dudes, and Arya's all pissed about it? Anyway, IIRC Melissandre says to the priest something to the effect of, "WTF are you doing farting around in a forest with the Merry Men, you had a job to do, you were supposed to convert [Somebody quite important, maybe Robb or Joffrey] to Team Fire God." I think that's the same Thyros of Myr dude Tyrion makes a reference to, so maybe it was Joffrey.

Anywho, the implication I take from that is whoever the head honchos of Team Fire God are, they're trying to get their guys as close to any source of power as possible. It may be that they're trying to bring about some sort of apocalypse, it may be that they just want to make sure they have an in with whoever ends up ruling Westeros.

And what will happen when word gets back to Stannis about the Priestess in Volantis talking up the Dragon Queen?

Eh, I think Stannis is really more team Melisandre than he is Team Fire God per se. Keep the smoke baby assassins and the "there, there, it is your destiny, my King"s coming and street preachers half a world away can say what they like as far as he's concerned. The more interesting question is what this points to about Melissandre's potential as a betrayer should a better contender for the throne get on her radar.
posted by maggiepolitt at 4:05 PM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


Maybe the Lord of Light ships Stannis/Daenerys. Or is hedging his bets.

that's the same Thyros of Myr dude Tyrion makes a reference to

Apropos of that: I thought Tyrion's mention of Thoros of Myr sounded just a bit too forced, in a "hey viewers, remember him from a few seasons back? just thought we'd remind you of him OH NO REASON RIGHT NOW but hey, keep him in mind okay" kind of way.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 4:29 PM on April 27, 2015 [4 favorites]


Melissandre says to the priest something to the effect of, "WTF are you doing farting around in a forest with the Merry Men, you had a job to do, you were supposed to convert [Somebody quite important, maybe Robb or Joffrey] to Team Fire God." I think that's the same Thyros of Myr dude Tyrion makes a reference to, so maybe it was Joffrey.

Yeah, that's the same Thoros of Myr. Here's the scene where Melisandre meets Thoros and Arya.

He was sent to Westeros to convert Robert, so he'd already failed that mission. He also didn't allow Melisandre to tell him how to do his job, so it seems like individual priests are allowed to act on their own discretion.
posted by homunculus at 5:08 PM on April 27, 2015 [3 favorites]


He was sent to Westeros to convert Robert, so he'd already failed that mission.

First off, how many seconds do you figure he got into that attempt before the words "oh fuck off" were bellowed?

Secondly, come on, Lord of Light, you've got Melisandre at your disposal and you send King Robert Thoros? Do your damned research.
posted by Navelgazer at 5:40 PM on April 27, 2015 [11 favorites]


So is the church just hedging its bets?

I see no reason to believe that the Red Faith is a top-down hierarchy in the same way the Faith of the Seven is. Thoros of Myr is a laughingstock and a drunk and lives in Westeros and somehow gets to be a priest of the faith. No way he's getting talking points from Central Office, and yet he gets to raise the dead!

The Church of the Seven is essentially wedded to the state. (Didn't the crown pick the most recent High Septon after the last one was ripped apart in that Season 1 riot?) The Red Faith seems to be a pretty big umbrella, big tent sort of faith. Also, I think we've only ever seen in places where it's a minority faith? Missionaries in our own world are known for playing fast and loose with native beliefs and expectations to proselytize their own faith.
posted by absalom at 6:16 PM on April 27, 2015


Something occured to me watching the title sequence. Why not just go take Braavos? Screw Kings Landing. If I was gonna take a city, I'd rather have New Orleans, or New York, before I worried about taking Washington, D.C. I guess that's why I would lose the game of thrones. But I'd have some fuuuuuun!

Oh, and I would call this scenario Rio Braavos.
posted by valkane at 7:24 PM on April 27, 2015


Braavos isn't in the Seven Kingdoms. It would be like attacking Baghdad when your target was Afghanistan. Nobody would be that dumb.
posted by Justinian at 9:10 PM on April 27, 2015 [10 favorites]


Also Braavos can afford to hire the best sellswords to defend itself; or at least it has very carefully cultivated the image of being able to do so.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 9:55 PM on April 27, 2015


I assume if and when the debts to the iron bank come up they'll do the historically accurate thing and lock up any leading representative who comes to collect in a tower for ransom until the debts are cancelled.
posted by The Whelk at 12:05 AM on April 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


Plus, Braavos was founded by former slaves and is militantly kept free of slavery, so I feel like Dany is probably pretty cool with the Braavosi.
posted by Pizzarina Sbarro at 12:59 AM on April 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


As far as I'm concerned as long as Dany does something which actually involves other members of the main cast I'm good. Please. Before I die of old age.
posted by Justinian at 1:58 AM on April 28, 2015 [6 favorites]


The Seven Kingdoms are a soft target. The Lanisters are broke. The Starks are scattered. Stannis is controlled by a priestess and has to borrow money for an army. With luck someone could climb on the Iron Throne and remain there until he's murdered. Braavos has money and power and would kill any fool that thought about invading before the words reached his mouth.
posted by rdr at 3:39 AM on April 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


It makes zero sense for Braavos to lead and invasion. Once you conquer, you have to rule, and as Dany is finding, that's a little tricky.

Far better to stay on the sidelines and remain the richest city that every other city comes to for money.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:30 AM on April 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


I wasn't saying that Braavos should invade. I was saying that it would be foolish to invade Braavos when there's a chance of grabbing the iron throne however temporarily.
posted by rdr at 5:51 AM on April 28, 2015


Also would be foolish to invade Braavos because there's a small chance that the titan actually does come to life to defend the city when it's threatened. The fact that all the characters dismiss this as an idiotic myth makes it seems that much more possible to me.
posted by paper chromatographologist at 6:31 AM on April 28, 2015 [7 favorites]


So I'm doing a rewatch, and I just noticed - which may or may not be significant - in episode 8 or so, the Kings Landing crowd is all talking about Sansa and what to do with her, and the statement is made, "She's so sweet now, but in ten years what will she be?" (slight miswording but basically the intent).

I am now wondering if it was intentional and if Arya's plot doesn't go as far as we think and Sansa is going to become the Big Evil Stark of Westeros.
posted by corb at 7:07 AM on April 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


I have a hard time seeing Sansa becoming the Big Evil Stark of Westeros. I see her becoming the Formidable Might of the Starks and the North. Bran will become the Wise One, Sansa's Intelligence Service. And Arya will be the Hidden Blade, striking as needed from the shadows.

Assuming the one true god doesn't once again raise her face against one of them...
posted by insert.witticism.here at 6:21 PM on April 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


I'm very confused about something. Sansa and Littlefinger are shown outside Moat Cailin, and Sansa says she recognizes the place. But then, according to HBO's own summary, she's apparently at Winterfell. Did the show jump ahead from Cailin to Winterfell without showing any travel whatsoever, and was there no emotional moment for Sansa upon seeing Winterfell again for the the first time since she left?

If so, that's shabby editing and confusing writing—the first we've really seen to this degree so far. That's why I was convinced Sansa was still at Cailin.
posted by Conrad Cornelius o'Donald o'Dell at 9:01 AM on April 29, 2015 [1 favorite]


Yes, they were at Winterfell. It was pretty obvious to me, as they were discussing returning to Winterfell, but I can see how it would be confusing.

Here's a pretty awesome map, with spoiler control, of the geography of the series.

and was there no emotional moment for Sansa upon seeing Winterfell again for the the first time since she left?

She's had a lot of time to practice reigning in her emotions.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:07 AM on April 29, 2015


"Sansa and Littlefinger are shown outside Moat Cailin, and Sansa says she recognizes the place. But then,"

But then she says, and I paraphrase: "But if this is Moat Cailin then you're taking me to Winterfell?"

Littlefinger: "Yes I am, and here's why."

SCENE: Littlefinger and Sansa arrive in Winterfell.

I would have been more confused to think that the Boltons and Theon/Reek were somehow at Moat Cailin to meet them.
posted by komara at 9:13 AM on April 29, 2015 [3 favorites]


At this point, one grim northern castle looks like the next, especially when they don't spend a lot of time inside these castles to highlight the different features and design elements that make them unique.
posted by filthy light thief at 9:17 AM on April 29, 2015 [2 favorites]


I just remembered that after the Littlefinger / Sansa conversation about going to Winterfell we're shown the following:

Pod: "How do we get through there?"
Brienne: "We don't. We go around."
Pod: "It sets miles out of the way. We'll lose sight of them."
Brienne: "Doesn't matter. I know where they're going."

Anyway, my point is that I don't think their arrival at Winterfell was confusing or unexpected. I believe we were given plenty of information about where we'd see them next so I can't agree with the criticism of "shabby editing and confusing writing" ... on this scene, at least.
posted by komara at 9:51 AM on April 29, 2015 [1 favorite]


What? There's no way they are at Winterfell. A rider came from the Eyrie with the message from Cersei. How many horses did he kill to get there so quickly? That is one thing I don't like about this show. There is no sense of time or distance, and everything travels at the speed of plot.
posted by eruonna at 10:54 AM on April 29, 2015 [3 favorites]


If they are in Winterfell, then Brienne and Stannis are headed on a collision course.
posted by homunculus at 11:01 AM on April 29, 2015


For the record: if someone produces evidence that I'm wrong and that they are at Moat Cailin I'm happy to eat my hat because that will be unmistakable proof of their confusing writing and shabby editing.
posted by komara at 11:13 AM on April 29, 2015


Sansa, Littlefinger, and the Boltons are at Winterfell.

Moat Cailin is not really a great place to be (bit shabby, after all) -- it's where the Iron Islanders were camped out when Reek (as Theon) convinces them to surrender to the Boltons. No house really wants it, but it is a bottleneck on the way up to Winterfell and the rest of the North so it's strategically important.

At the end of the linked scene, Reek asks Ramsey if they will "go home now?" Ramsey replies, "yes, to our new home," that being Winterfell, seat of the North. In the opening credits of Season 5 so far, Winterfell is rebuilt, and flies the banner of the flayed man (House Bolton). Moat Cailin is also in the credits for this episode but had no banner that I can remember.

The significance of Sansa recognizing Moat Cailin on the road is that she didn't know where they were going, and if they were at Moat Cailin then there wasn't any other place they could be headed to except Winterfell.
posted by sparklemotion at 11:43 AM on April 29, 2015 [3 favorites]


I guess it makes sense they're at Winterfell going by the very obvious rebuilding everywhere, but I totally thought they were at Moat Cailin too due to the way it was edited.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 12:12 PM on April 29, 2015 [1 favorite]




Davos is Stannis's Dourness Translator: always staying behind to explain to other characters (and us) what Stannis actually meant.

(Or revealing his missing fingers. STERN BUT FAIR.)
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 11:14 AM on April 30, 2015 [1 favorite]


komara: "Anyway, my point is that I don't think their arrival at Winterfell was confusing or unexpected."

See, I viewed it as Brienne saying, "I know where they are going"—as in, I know where they are headed and will eventually wind up. So I thought that we wouldn't get to Winterfell until the next episode.

As far as the scene outside Moat Cailin, this is Sansa's exchange with Littlefinger:
Sansa: Where are you taking me?

Baelish: Home.

Sansa: The Boltons have Winterfell.
Again, I did not think Sansa meant, "Where are you taking me right now?" because they were right outside Moat Cailin during this scene, and as eruonna points out, these places are not at all close to one another.

On top of that, there was no indication of any passage of time or any travel shown between Cailin and Winterfell. The show went to an effort to show Sansa and Baelish traveling from the Vale to Cailin, so when it failed to show anything between Cailin and Winterfell, I assumed that they were still at Cailin.
posted by Conrad Cornelius o'Donald o'Dell at 10:10 PM on April 30, 2015 [4 favorites]




A rider came from the Eyrie with the message from Cersei. How many horses did he kill to get there so quickly?

Not a rider, a raven.
posted by Pendragon at 3:03 PM on May 5, 2015


Actually, it was a rider.
posted by homunculus at 4:11 PM on May 5, 2015 [2 favorites]


Ah, sorry, I thought it was a raven.
posted by Pendragon at 12:24 PM on May 7, 2015


Sansa, Schmansa, I'm about ready to murder Ramsay myself. Good lord he is so loathsome. Iwan Rheon is a genius.

So shockingly different from Misfits where he was also excellent.
posted by srboisvert at 10:07 AM on May 9, 2015


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