Game of Thrones: Oathbreaker   Show Only 
May 8, 2016 6:59 PM - Season 6, Episode 3 - Subscribe

Daenerys meets her future. Bran meets the past. Tommen confronts the High Sparrow. Arya trains to be No One. Varys finds an answer. Ramsay gets a gift.

Written by David Benioff & D. B. Weiss
Directed by Dan Sackheim
Full cast and crew credits
Official HBO page for episode, featuring maps and other extras.

SHOW ONLY THREAD. If someone wants to discuss the books in relation to this episode, they're welcome to make a separate post.
posted by Brandon Blatcher (179 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
 
NO. SHAGGYDOG. WHY.
posted by Justinian at 7:00 PM on May 8, 2016 [13 favorites]


Umbers == The Worst.
posted by drezdn at 7:01 PM on May 8, 2016 [4 favorites]


Initial thoughts

Melissandre's back to believing again.

Davos, what the fuck was your plan after bringing him back?

Huh, didn't realzie I was a God.

Hugging Ed and bantering with him was great.

A Branback!

Ned was a legend, but in the end, just a man.

Where is Drogon? His mommy needs him!

Sam is the ultimate nerd, fairly useless anywhere outside of a library, which makes him great.

Varys' "birds" revealed. Though it's a bit hard to believe they were able to get so much information.

Cersei has returned to the small council, too bad she hasn't thought much further than that.

A lot of discussion about mothers, heh.

Tommen is an interesting case. Since he wasn't raised to be king, he has no training in actually leading.

Therapy sessions with a wooden stick and a angry waif are the worst.

Rickon's grown, but under Ramsay's control he might not grow much further

Thorne may have been an ass, but he had a few points.

Jon, after seeing nothing comes next, says "Fuck this particular shit." I wonder where he'll go now.

Had we seen Sansa, it would have been the first episode in a long time where all the Starks were seen.

Say, what was in that Tower?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:01 PM on May 8, 2016 [4 favorites]


Poor Tyrion. The awkward conversation with Grey Worm and Missandei was hilarious.
posted by Justinian at 7:04 PM on May 8, 2016 [16 favorites]


Enjoyed the effort with Jon Snow toward nudity gender parity.
posted by andoatnp at 7:04 PM on May 8, 2016 [8 favorites]


Cersei has returned to the small council, too bad she hasn't thought much further than that.

Seriously, she hasn't learned a damn thing from her ordeal. Neither she nor Jaime come across as particularly bright. Did they really think just sitting down at the table and refusing to leave would get them into the official Small Council discussions?
posted by Sangermaine at 7:04 PM on May 8, 2016 [1 favorite]


Yeah Cersei has never been the brightest candle in the candelabra. Tyrion got all those genes from Tywin.
posted by Justinian at 7:05 PM on May 8, 2016


And wizard-yoda leaves us at the foot of the stairs.

"Go no further, young Bran. We're only on the third episode."
posted by Sangermaine at 7:05 PM on May 8, 2016 [31 favorites]


A decent episode, but feels like a bit of speed bump flow wise. A lot was going on, setting up future stories, and little was resolved. Understandable from from a narrative sense, but still a little let down.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:08 PM on May 8, 2016 [2 favorites]


I thought it was great, much better than the first two. But I've always felt there was an inverse linear relationship between the number of storylines in the episode and the quality. The first episodes of a season always bounce around too much for me; this is the first this season which felt like they were settling in and developing things.

Also the fact that I had no idea what was going to happen. I think every single storyline is new to me at this point.
posted by Justinian at 7:10 PM on May 8, 2016 [1 favorite]


SHAGGYDOG! I am pissed! If there's not a Vengeance of the (Remaining) Direwolves this season, I am going to be even more pissed!!

While I'm pleased by Jon Snow's lovely back that Jon Snow executed the traitors, Jon Snow going off to mope at the end was a super-annoying letdown. I want the Castle Black plotline to start moving along, preferably on their way to take out Ramsay...

Tyrion's attempt to get conversation and/or a drinking game going was pretty delightful. Much of the rest of the ep felt like more filler, though, ugh. I'm still annoyed by the plothole that was the killing of Prince Tristain... who they let sail home? And then was still hanging out on his boat so the Sandsnakes could murder him? Hope we'll get back to that sooner rather than later.
posted by TwoStride at 7:10 PM on May 8, 2016 [7 favorites]


And I was kind hoping Jon would spare the four at the end. It looked like he considered it or at least didn't have the stomach for it. Ollie's continued hatred still tugged at his heart, understandably. But a mutiny is a mutiny, so...
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:11 PM on May 8, 2016


But a mutiny is a mutiny, so... Exactly. Knowing what's coming for them from the other side of the Wall, how could you leave the mutineers at your back?
posted by TwoStride at 7:12 PM on May 8, 2016 [1 favorite]


After Thorne's speech, he should have spared him, just to force him to fight more.
posted by drezdn at 7:16 PM on May 8, 2016


Knowing what's coming for them from the other side of the Wall, how could you leave the mutineers at your back?

Man, the Wall is in really fucked position. Low on troops, what they have isn't very good, being from Kingdom's dungeons mostly and they're busy distrusting the Wildings (understandably). Hell of a time for the White Walkers to return.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:19 PM on May 8, 2016 [2 favorites]


Somebody was complaining last week (with some justification) that the fight choreography on GoT is very uneven but I thought the Tower of Joy fight was well done. You really got a sense of how much better Dayne was than the only-very-good fighters surrounding him. Eddard Stark was no slouch but Dayne made him look amateurish.
posted by Justinian at 7:20 PM on May 8, 2016 [6 favorites]


SMOL BABBY NED STARK SCREAM

TORMUND MY GRIMY GINGER PRINCE SCREAM SCREAM

lol rickon looks at least 21

i want the high septon to die in the most gruesome death this series has shown to date

i know i'm supposed to be annoyed/horrified/etc by douche umber jr but tbh he was delightful
posted by poffin boffin at 7:21 PM on May 8, 2016 [7 favorites]


blatcher you monster i thought that was a link to the books thread

hdu
posted by poffin boffin at 7:21 PM on May 8, 2016


"And that's how the Party God from Adventure Time was born."
posted by drezdn at 7:22 PM on May 8, 2016 [1 favorite]


Crazy theory inspired by the way the map curves in the theme song... Planetos is a hollow planet situation.
posted by drezdn at 7:24 PM on May 8, 2016


BTW, calling it now: Umber didn't betray the Starks, this is a ploy. We're going to see in a later episode how Osha and Rickon ended up with the Umbers, who hatch a plan to use them to get inside Winterfell and get the Boltons to let their guard down so the Umbers and their allies can kill them. Shaggydog isn't dead, that head was part of the ploy.
posted by Sangermaine at 7:27 PM on May 8, 2016 [14 favorites]


OK, that would be acceptable.

Otherwise, let the War of the Shaggydog begin.
posted by rewil at 7:29 PM on May 8, 2016 [8 favorites]


There's a good theory that the Umbers offered the gift specifically to invoke guests' rights.
posted by drezdn at 7:29 PM on May 8, 2016 [1 favorite]


Shaggydog isn't dead, that head was part of the ploy.

The umbers have a mediocre, but passable, props department, apparently.
posted by dis_integration at 7:30 PM on May 8, 2016 [13 favorites]


You really got a sense of how much better Dayne was than the only-very-good fighters surrounding him. Eddard Stark was no slouch but Dayne made him look amateurish

Yeah, but who the fuck was that dude, what was Ned doing there and why should we care? It's like the scene was dropped out of nowhere, taking up space.

BTW, calling it now: Umber didn't betray the Starks, this is a ploy.

You know, I thought that direwold head looked small. But as much as I like the theory, not buying it, as Lord Umber was a new one, right? So the one loyal to Stark died of old age and his son just doesn't give a fuck.

i know i'm supposed to be annoyed/horrified/etc by douche umber jr but tbh he was delightful

Yes! It was him constantly giving the finger to Ramsey that was really great. Best watch his back though.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:31 PM on May 8, 2016 [2 favorites]


That swordfight scene with Ser Arthur Dayne was fantastic. "The Sword of the Morning"? Such an awesome title! I wish we could have seen more of him.

Also, totally sad about Shaggydog. I had hopes that he and Rickon would run feral.
posted by hooray at 7:32 PM on May 8, 2016 [1 favorite]


yeah i want to know more about who does their swordfight choreo

i want to fight whoever does their swordfight choreo tbh

dimacherus
posted by poffin boffin at 7:34 PM on May 8, 2016


I actually said aloud "oh good Ramsey has another Stark to torment/hostage he was running low"
posted by The Whelk at 7:36 PM on May 8, 2016 [1 favorite]


Ned was a legend, but in the end, just a man.

Technically Ned did deliver the blow that killed Dane, so if he told Bran that he killed Dane, and not that he beat him, he wouldn't be lying.
posted by Sangermaine at 7:36 PM on May 8, 2016 [3 favorites]


rasexy is without a doubt the worst typo of your entire life
posted by poffin boffin at 7:37 PM on May 8, 2016 [5 favorites]


So the one loyal to Stark died of old age and his son just doesn't give a fuck.

Very good chance the old one was at the Red Wedding. He was the guy that first toasted Robb as the King of the North and then got his hand bit off by the wolf.
posted by LionIndex at 7:38 PM on May 8, 2016 [1 favorite]


Technically Ned did deliver the blow that killed Dane, so if he told Bran that he killed Dane, and not that he beat him, he wouldn't be lying.

He did beat him. It's bloody war. You stab fuckers in the back. But I liked this as an instance of GRRM's efforts to make fools of deontologists. It's a concrete instance of Jamie Lannister's speech to Brienne about duty. (Your duty is to the realm and the king? What if the king tells you to burn down the realm? etc.)
posted by dis_integration at 7:40 PM on May 8, 2016 [6 favorites]



I actually said aloud "oh good Ramsey has another Stark to torment/hostage he was running low"


Well, he was at least trying to be diplomatic with NuLord Umber, so he's learned a few things from the father he killed.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:44 PM on May 8, 2016


Oh hey another direwolf got killed, what electrifying writing, such a dynamite twist! I dunno why they bothered having them at all.
posted by turbid dahlia at 7:45 PM on May 8, 2016 [3 favorites]


wait what happened to bran's pupper? don't make me read the show wiki, it's so terrible
posted by poffin boffin at 7:47 PM on May 8, 2016 [1 favorite]


That blonde king boy Tommen has no clue. His manipulation by the High Sparrow is pretty obvious, the way he asked leave to sit because of his "bad knees" putting Tommen in the supplicant position and then maneuvering Tommen to see him as counsel by nearly quoting his late grandfather ... Or maybe there is an equivalent of The Art of War and both Dad Lannister and High Sparrow have read it.
posted by tilde at 7:52 PM on May 8, 2016 [4 favorites]


if there is an Art of War in westeros then it was definitely written by tywin lannister; see also The Prince.
posted by poffin boffin at 7:54 PM on May 8, 2016 [3 favorites]


Another slow episode but at least Diana Rigg is back.
posted by octothorpe at 7:59 PM on May 8, 2016 [8 favorites]


I gotta figure the High Sparrow was yawning in the back of his mind during that whole convo. [Sigh.] Right. Stick out my little finger here, twist twist twist, drop king in pocket. God this is taking forever, I wonder if Lancel's got my tea ready...."
posted by Diablevert at 8:00 PM on May 8, 2016 [6 favorites]


I'm very sad that we won't get to hear Ser Alliser's awesome accent any longer. We will never hear his like again.
posted by dfan at 8:08 PM on May 8, 2016 [8 favorites]


Lord but this season is moving a LOT faster than last, thank CHRIST. This didn't feel particularly slow to me at all.

It would be extremely Game of Thronesy to have Arya's ability as a fighter come at the direct expense of her identity, i.e., the whole reason she wanted to fight in the first place. It's an interesting trade, but it's not clear to me what A Girl's motivation will ultimately be, since I have no idea what the Faceless Men's whole deal is, geopolitically speaking.

I'm very happy to see Jon Snow back in play.

I was half-expecting Cersei to just have Gregor straight murder everyone in that room, and I'm very much not looking forward to what seems like Olenna and Margery's inevitable death.
posted by Sokka shot first at 8:11 PM on May 8, 2016 [6 favorites]


Was there a point to the scene with Tyerin, Missandei and Grey Worm? It was badly written and just took up time better spent showing how Sansa will get revenge.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:14 PM on May 8, 2016 [9 favorites]


I was half-expecting Cersei to just have Gregor straight murder everyone in that room, and I'm very much not looking forward to what seems like Olenna and Margery's inevitable death.

Yeah, I'm pretty sure that right after "A Lannister Always Pays His Debts" comes "Never Suggest To A Lannister That They Won't Murder You" in the Book of Lannister. Granted, Tywin forgot this when Tyrion encountered him in the privy, but we all have our blindspots.

In other news, I'm getting bored of the buildup to the great Ser Frankenclegane Murderfest. I expect him to despatch about 150 Faith Militant or Palace Guards next Sunday, or I give up on him.
posted by dis_integration at 8:16 PM on May 8, 2016 [6 favorites]


I'm very much not looking forward to what seems like Olenna and Margery's inevitable death.

nah, cersei et al are gonna need the tyrells on their side if they're going to kick the high septon and his jesusthugs out of king's landing.
posted by poffin boffin at 8:17 PM on May 8, 2016 [2 favorites]


Yeah, I'm pretty sure that right after "A Lannister Always Pays His Debts" comes "Never Suggest To A Lannister That They Won't Murder You" in the Book of Lannister.

But the person who said that was a Lannister: Cersei's uncle, Kevan Lannister.
posted by Sangermaine at 8:25 PM on May 8, 2016 [1 favorite]


wait what happened to bran's pupper? don't make me read the show wiki, it's so terrible


Nothing, he's still up north with Hodor, Bran and whatshername
posted by skewed at 8:33 PM on May 8, 2016 [1 favorite]


Last thought on this ep: if Arya gained Daredevil magic while blind, but now has sight, is she like an ultra-ninja now? Just where is this storyline going anyway? She's 100% my favorite character of all and I would watch a pure Arya-show, but it's gonna have to fold back into the rest of the narrative, and soon. Will A Girl go back to Westeros to do some murdering, or will A Girl get involved with Mhysa and the intrigues here in Essos?
posted by dis_integration at 8:45 PM on May 8, 2016 [1 favorite]


R'hllor's save us, the Tower of Joy was one of the dumbest fight scenes they've ever done. Double wielding hand-and-a-half swords just looks so damned silly. *Groan*

OTOH, I think they made the right call by speeding up the exposition on Arya's staff training. I was afraid it was going to go as slowy as her corpse washing did last season, so kudos for that.
posted by homunculus at 8:51 PM on May 8, 2016 [5 favorites]


What are you smoking, it *looked* great, might not be realistic, but it was dazzling looking. No idea why people come along and just shit all over a scene.

Was it called the Tower of Joy in the show? Don't think it was specifically referenced.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:04 PM on May 8, 2016 [1 favorite]


Gotta agree with Brandon, was one of the better fight scenes they've done. Dual wielding swords is historical, like the dimachaeri, but yeah they would have been between half and 2/3 the length of those swords. Oh well, it looked great.
posted by Justinian at 9:06 PM on May 8, 2016


Ned was a legend, but in the end, just a man.

Ned's line from season one popped into my head: " I don't fight in tournaments because when I fight a man for real, I don't want him to know what I can do. "

It strikes me that if Ned was credited with defeating Ser Arthur Dayne (whether or not he earned or claimed it), that's another very good reason for him not to fight in public and risk dispelling the reputation that the victory gained him.
posted by Pryde at 9:26 PM on May 8, 2016 [11 favorites]


but yeah they would have been between half and 2/3 the length of those swords.

And if they had been smaller it would have made a huge difference. The choreography was good, but the swords were so absurdly large for dual wielding they made the whole thing look goofy, imo. It pulled me completely out of the scene. A fight scene has to be somewhat realistic, it can't be all dazzle. But hey, that's my pet peeve, to each their own.
posted by homunculus at 9:44 PM on May 8, 2016 [4 favorites]


It strikes me that if Ned was credited with defeating Ser Arthur Dayne (whether or not he earned or claimed it), that's another very good reason for him not to fight in public and risk dispelling the reputation that the victory gained him.

I think his reputation was still largely accurate, though. He may not have been at Dayne's level, but he was still good enough to kill the other Kingsguard, who must have been one of the better swordsmen in the Kingdom. And he was still good enough as an older man to make it hard on Jaime when they fought in the first season, though Jaime was younger and widely held to be the best swordsman in the Kingdom at the time.
posted by homunculus at 9:57 PM on May 8, 2016 [2 favorites]


Was it called the Tower of Joy in the show? Don't think it was specifically referenced.

That's what it's called in the books.

Interesting how many people want vengeance for Shaggydog versus the Bolton baby (I mean, people were disgusted by that but there weren't battle cries).
posted by toomanycurls at 10:08 PM on May 8, 2016


People were upset about the baby, but realistically it was doomed from conception and didn't have a name yet.

We've known Shaggydog since season one, though most of the time you basically have to imagine that he's out having adventures. Lady and Grey Wolf don't need more friends up in doggie heaven yet.
posted by rewil at 10:32 PM on May 8, 2016 [3 favorites]


Shaggydog was way cooler than that baby.
posted by iamck at 10:36 PM on May 8, 2016 [7 favorites]


I can't help but notice that Jon left without Ghost. That's just poor planning right there.
posted by KathrynT at 10:43 PM on May 8, 2016 [2 favorites]


Did Arya look kind of drugged after drinking that water to anyone else?
posted by corb at 11:13 PM on May 8, 2016


What are you smoking, it *looked* great, might not be realistic, but it was dazzling looking. No idea why people come along and just shit all over a scene.
IMHO this was by far the lamest part of the show. I was annoyed enough that I took the show out of full screen and went to check my email. I seriously don't know what could be appealing about that mess, it made me embarrassed to be watching.

It seems that this branback, or at least what came right after the branback ended, will be incredibly important to the plot, eventually. But the fight itself is not the important part. Unfortunately, the way the scene was set up there's no motivation to care. We know that Ned is going to survive the sword fight, and we don't care about anyone else in the fight whatsoever because we don't know who they are. Having some sort of exposition from Bran during the fighting would have made it more interesting and even tolerable. I don't know if the sword fighting as sword fighting was realistic or unrealistic, but I do know that I had no appreciation for the choreography. I couldn't find any aesthetic appreciation, it felt more stilted than the Tyrion/Missandei/Grey Worm awkwardness. The fight scenes are not what makes GoT interesting to me, what's interesting is the consequences for the characters. There were no consequences for the characters there, the fight was merely a spandrel that I could not appreciate in any manner.

It's great that other people were able to enjoy it! But I couldn't enjoy it at all and it completely took me out of the moment. I know that there are people that appreciate dance, but if it was a dance scene that suddenly appeared in the show, and the only people that could appreciate the dance are people that are into dance, it would have been a mistake to include that scene. I feel the same way about this sword fight.
posted by Llama-Lime at 12:44 AM on May 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


The flashback and fight piqued my curiosity about what's in the tower, but not knowing who any of those folks were other than Ned (incidentally, a more convincing young Sean Bean would have been stop motion screencaps from Goldeneye on the N64) made it a fairly lifeless scene.
posted by turbid dahlia at 3:29 AM on May 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


Oh and I'm getting tired of Dany coasting on her first couple of albums. I feel like she hasn't really done anything of interest or importance for over a season...and now she's in a circus yurt in a desert with a bunch of dusty old crones. I guess she'll have to learn humility or something, like all the women in this show who break the glass ceiling.

I liked the Umber character (have we seen him before?), but as for Rickon and the Witch oh god whatever. Somebody else for Ramsay to torture for a few episodes so we remember he's a Very Naughty Boy.

Also, that poor actor. His next big part is literally Young Hitler. Talk about pigeonholing.
posted by turbid dahlia at 3:40 AM on May 9, 2016 [7 favorites]


Yeah, I really really think its time for Dany to shit or get off the pot. So to speak. Seriously, GO DO SOMETHING. PLEASE. DO IT. DO IT NOW.
posted by Justinian at 3:56 AM on May 9, 2016


But the fight itself is not the important part. Unfortunately, the way the scene was set up there's no motivation to care. We know that Ned is going to survive the sword fight, and we don't care about anyone else in the fight whatsoever because we don't know who they are.

This is where I was on that scene, too. Especially as it wore on it eventually became a giant "we're just teasing you with this right now" warning sign that made it fairly uninteresting thing for me, realistic fighting styles or not.

I like the episode overall, though. Varys and Tyrion are great together and remain the an important source of levity, Jon Snow's "my watch has ended" was well done and delivered, and I'm curious to see what his next move is. Like most everyone else, I liked the Umber character and I'm looking forward to someonein the Bolton camp who isn't unremitting cruelty or sniveling toadying. There was no Dorne. It was a good episode.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 5:07 AM on May 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


The dialog for this episode was written by a Canadian classic rock radio station DJ.
posted by srboisvert at 5:11 AM on May 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


"so hey remember the hound well um he's still totally dead, don't worry or anything or maybe consider that the trial by combat mentioned earlier is some sort of foreshadowing"
posted by DoctorFedora at 5:51 AM on May 9, 2016 [7 favorites]


I'm looking forward to Jon becoming the Dread Pirate Roberts and finding True Love now that he's no longer mostly dead
posted by DoctorFedora at 6:09 AM on May 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


Having Max von Sydow walking Bran through the basic of warging is giving me serious flashbacks to What Dreams May Come

That "direwolf" head brought in by Umber seemed too dark to be one of the Starks wolves right?
posted by LizBoBiz at 6:11 AM on May 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


That's what it's called in the books.

Right, but was it called that in the show? I don't think so, might have missed something, just curious.

And if they had been smaller it would have made a huge difference. The choreography was good, but the swords were so absurdly large for dual wielding they made the whole thing look goofy, imo.

Not being familiar with swords or using them, the two swords the guy was handling did look a bit large in the sense that I was thinking "Oh, he must be pretty strong to wield them like that", but that just added the impressiveness of the fight.

As to the outcome not being in doubt, sure, but I was really curious to see how Ned would do, as his actual talents with a sword were never really seen in the show. So now we know, he was good, but certainly not good enough to beat the best. What's more interesting is how the legend of him winning that fight came to be. It also explains why Ned stayed North and out of Kings Landing. Had he been in the city, he no doubt would have commanded or challenged and then things would have gotten awkward.

Cersei and Dany are wearing thing with their seeming inability to learn. Especially Dany, who showed such promise, but can't figure how to wrangle at least one of her three dragons. Mother of Nothing indeed.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:11 AM on May 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


Jon...

When someone asks you if you're a God, you say YES!
posted by Thistledown at 6:12 AM on May 9, 2016 [18 favorites]


Also, I don't think Jon left the castle, he just left the courtyard. It was an awkward scene, where it looked like he was heading north, which makes no sense. Sansa and Brienne will probably meet up with him and convince him to retake Winterfell.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:25 AM on May 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


Thus cementing Melisandre's "You are the Prince who was Promised" starryeyed "I'm not REALLY wrong" retcon.
posted by corb at 6:32 AM on May 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


Also, I don't think Jon left the castle, he just left the courtyard. It was an awkward scene, where it looked like he was heading north, which makes no sense. Sansa and Brienne will probably meet up with him and convince him to retake Winterfell.

Yeah I feel pretty sure he's gonna team up with Davos and Mellisandre. Unless the good smuggler is taking the black. The leave-the-courtyard scene was just more dramatic than "excuse me I've got to go pack, and put my dog in the car, and chat with my friend Davos about where to go next"
posted by dis_integration at 6:35 AM on May 9, 2016 [11 favorites]


Because mashing the favourites button isn't relieving my feeeelings enough:

Enjoyed the effort with Jon Snow toward nudity gender parity
YES! I possibly may finally have a better handle on where the KH fans are coming from.

Umber WAS delightful!

just took up time better spent showing how Sansa will get revenge.
HELL YES! (for the two nano seconds I thought she might have been Umber's prisoner I was on the point of throwing me laptop through me window.) And why's Tyrion not hanging around with the dragons every chance he gets, god forbid we should like build on a previous episode or anything

a more convincing young Sean Bean would have been stop motion screencaps from Goldeneye on the N64
HELL TO THE YES! This is where Efforts should have been Made at least. This guy was Random Elf #15 from the Wrong Part of Yorkshire
posted by runincircles at 7:01 AM on May 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


Sangermaine: Shaggydog isn't dead, that head was part of the ploy.

dis_integration: The umbers have a mediocre, but passable, props department, apparently.

I like to think that it's in keeping with the medieval illustrations of fantastic beasts. "Sure, a so-called 'li-on' looks a bit like a large dog, but with one of those frilly collars stuck around its head. But that collar is made of long hair."



turbid dahlia: Oh hey another direwolf got killed, what electrifying writing, such a dynamite twist! I dunno why they bothered having them at all.

To make the audience hope for Checkov's pets? The first few were lost early in the books, so it's not just the show making a waste of them for an emotional pull.
posted by filthy light thief at 7:03 AM on May 9, 2016


I'd like to throw out a prediction:

The fight scene with Ser Arthur Dayne has given us a glimpse of a less-than-honorable past Ned Stark.

We know that Robert's Rebellion (which leads to the death of the Mad King and most of his family, and Robert Baratheon becoming king) started when Rhaegar Targaryen (son of the king) "kidnapped" Lyanna Stark (Ned's sister) who was betrothed to Robert.

We also know Lyanna doesn't make it out of the rebellion alive.

Theory:

The tiny bit we've seen of her (in Bran's earlier flashback) is of a competent, strong young woman who can take care of herself. We have no indication that she had any interest in Robert Baratheon. What if in fact she wasn't kidnapped? What if she legitimately loved Rhaegar, and said "fuck this betrothal bullshit", and went off to be with him?

It's pretty obvious we're to assume that Lyanna is in the tower that Ned was heading into. What if the reason she doesn't make it out alive, and the reason Ned never talks of her to his own children, is that it's Ned who kills her when he finds this out?
posted by tocts at 7:06 AM on May 9, 2016 [15 favorites]


Sokka shot first: It would be extremely Game of Thronesy to have Arya's ability as a fighter come at the direct expense of her identity, i.e., the whole reason she wanted to fight in the first place.

She has only lost her need for vengeance and retribution, which was running low with her funny little list of names getting pretty short. Instead, she has self-sufficiency and survival tactics, which was something she wanted before she wanted vengeance. Remember when Jon gave her needle and Eddard had her train with her "dancing" instructor? That was about being able to fight, which she can now do, without emotions clouding her judgement, which is pretty key when fighting.

In short: she's come out ahead, for the most part.
posted by filthy light thief at 7:09 AM on May 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


KathrynT: I can't help but notice that Jon left without Ghost. That's just poor planning right there.

Are you forgetting Wolf/Dog Stealth? Ramsay's hunting dogs disappeared from their last scene, and they were giant dark bloodhounds in snow (and trees and fallen logs, so they weren't without some camouflage assistance), while Ghost was a white direwolf in a snowy setting (even if in a black castle). And everyone was focused on the execution scene, so Ghost could have easily slipped out unnoticed.
posted by filthy light thief at 7:16 AM on May 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


She has only lost her need for vengeance and retribution, which was running low with her funny little list of names getting pretty short.

I *think* she left the two guys from the Brotherhood of Banners off the list, along with Melisandre. She was mad at all of them from taking Gendry.

What if the reason she doesn't make it out alive, and the reason Ned never talks of her to his own children, is that it's Ned who kills her when he finds this out?

Interesting theory, would present a dark side of Ned. But I don't see him going quite that route over this. But we'll see!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:23 AM on May 9, 2016


Random thoughts, not covered already:

* The wildling dudes looked like a gathering of Norse Metal bands.
* Gilly was happy because she saw Gendry and the hounds
* Tyrion is a font of shirt-ready quotes. From last week's "This is what I do. I drink and I know things." to "We do not drink" "Until you do." (OK, mostly drinking-related quotes, but that's what the [college] kids like these days, so I hear.)
* COMEDY FART! Why has no one mentioned the comedy fart? It was even captured in this transcript!
Pycelle: As bad as Lord Varys was, Qyburn is worse. I told them all. I told them. He's arrogant, dangerous. You don't get thrown out of the Citadel without good reason. And no one listened to my advice. (door opens) So here we are. And what he's done to Gregor Clegane is an abomination. We never sanctioned this experiment. I for one think it will be in our best interest to have the beast dest-- (farts)
posted by filthy light thief at 7:50 AM on May 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


Was I imagining things when I thought I heard a woman's scream from the tower during the fight scene?
posted by sparklemotion at 7:52 AM on May 9, 2016


There was definitely a woman's scream.

Sansa and Brienne will probably meet up with him and convince him to retake Winterfell.

Too satisfying. Knowing these showrunners they'll probably have Sansa *just barely* miss Jon as he leaves the Wall.
posted by mediareport at 7:57 AM on May 9, 2016


I thought it was another mostly good episode, moving things along (even if many of the stories are moving along in exactly the way everyone's been predicting for weeks - Dany gets humiliated again before kicking dragon butt, Jon leaves the Watch, Ninja Arya gets her eyes back...)

I like what they're doing with the Young Ned flashbacks; there's good suspense there as we loop around to the beginning of the show. Biggest disappointment so far this season is the dialogue being written for Tyrion and Varys, from that ridiculously dumb walkabout in episode one to that awful scene with Grey worm and Missandei - what a waste of time and great actors. I get that showing the dragons costs money, but of all the possibilities for Tyrion in that moment it's astonishing that the showrunners went with "yeah, good one, let's show Tyrion *not* having an interesting conversation." So wrong.

Also, book people who are here, please remember that saying things like "Tower of Joy" in the show-only thread breaks the guidelines.
posted by mediareport at 8:11 AM on May 9, 2016 [7 favorites]


The scream made me think she was there by choice and pissed Ned was coming for her.
posted by tilde at 8:19 AM on May 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


* COMEDY FART! Why has no one mentioned the comedy fart? It was even captured in this transcript!

My roommates were stoned and watching The Nutty Professor yesterday, and I did not expect it to share so many comedic cues with this week's Game of Thrones
posted by showbiz_liz at 8:35 AM on May 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


I'm almost positive that I know what the "payoff" of the tower flashback is going to be, but since it relies on what might be some bookish knowledge (honestly, I am not sure how much of it is pure bookstuff anymore, especially if you read between the lines of knowing looks and strategic silences in seasons 1 and 5) I'll keep mum. A hint though... it involves math.

I wonder if the Faceless Men (especially sexy jesus) understand that Arya will always still be Arya at her core, but that her, um, passions, could be useful to them. So they are giving her another chance, and teaching her that she needs to at least be better about keeping "Arya" under control.

It would be nice if Umber is really just feigning loyalty to Ramsey in order to help get Winterfell back for the Starks, but let's be honest: The Starks are done. Ramsey Bolton is Warden of the North, as far as anyone in the North is concerned, the Boltons are the house that is favoured by King's Landing, AND they've got more men and arms than anyone around. No matter how much the Northerners may have respected Ned (and even Robb) Stark, they have their own people to protect now, and getting the Bolton's out of Winterfell can't really be a priority. I think that it's interesting that Umber was also so very angry about Jon's decision to let the Wildings south of the wall -- it shows that the Northerners might be more aligned to Thorne's way of thinking than Jon's, which will be a problem if Jon tries to establish himself as a Stark going forward.

Small council: I don't think that Cersei and Jaime wanted to be involved in that particular meeting. I think they wanted to assert that they wanted a seat at the table, and would be sufficiently annoying about it until they got one. There's legit business of the realm that needs work, Kevan at least is adult enough to realize that eventually.

High Sparrow: agrees with me that Cersei loves her children, at least. Also, I wonder if Tommen learned enough from Tywin to realize that there is wisdom in taking advice from multiple places. The scene this episode made it seem like the High Sparrow is totally playing him, but maybe, just maybe, Tommen is letting himself seem like he's being swayed so he can learn more about this particular enemy. Ditto for how he's opening up to his mother. If so, GO TOMMEN!

Dany: the easy way to play this is to have the outcome of the vaes confab or whatever it's called be that Dany needs to be executed, and then Drogon swoops in to save her at the last minute. It would be cool, but I feel like it doesn't really progress anything. More interesting would be the result that Dany has to stay, and she spends a few episodes establishing herself as someone who is actually worthy of respect from the rest of the widows. If it goes that way, I'd be ok with her spending the rest of the season at Vaes Dothrak, because honestly, over 6 seasons she has done zilch to make me (or anyone in the story) believe that she is worthy to rule anything.
posted by sparklemotion at 8:37 AM on May 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


Agreed that the direwolf head looked kind of small for a direwolf. If the Umbers were going to fuck up the Boltons, showing up with Rickon and a (fake) direwolf head and then bullshitting their way around not *actually* making any formal oaths of fealty to Ramsay sounds like a nice start to backstabbing the Bostons. The North remembers.

And, you know, they're spending a lot of time this season talking about the Hound and how he's presumed dead. Given that we didn't see him actually die, I wouldn't be surprised if he shows up later. (Just from a "my foreshadowing sense is tingling" way)
posted by rmd1023 at 8:42 AM on May 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


Dany: the easy way to play this is to have the outcome of the vaes confab or whatever it's called be that Dany needs to be executed, and then Drogon swoops in to save her at the last minute. It would be cool, but I feel like it doesn't really progress anything.

My theory - not based on anything in the books cause we've barreled past them already in this particular subplot - is that Drogon will indeed show up, but not to just save her by snatching her away.

Remember the whole Stallion Who Mounts the World thing from the first season?

From episode six, when Dany's eating that horse heart (in the very room she has now returned to):

Jorah (translating for a priestess): "The prince is riding. I have heard the thunder of his hooves. Swift as the wind he rides. His enemies will cower before him... And their wives will weep tears of blood [...] The stallion who mounts the world. The stallion is the Khal of Khals. He shall unite the people into a single Khalasar. All the people of the world will be his herd."

Here's my guess: Drogon shows up, all right - and the priestess who delivered that prophecy in the first place figures out that she was maybe a little off re: which of Dany's children would wind up being the Stallion. Just like Melisandre was maybe a little off re: the identity of the Prince she was supposed to be serving...
posted by showbiz_liz at 8:48 AM on May 9, 2016 [17 favorites]


A hint though... it involves math.

Please don't do this. It's exactly the kind of thing mods have discouraged book readers from doing in show-only threads in the past.
posted by mediareport at 8:58 AM on May 9, 2016 [19 favorites]


I think that it's interesting that Umber was also so very angry about Jon's decision to let the Wildings south of the wall

An interesting thought- if you were a Northerner loyal to the Starks, who would you back - the 12 yo, or the 25 year old battle hardened commander? Obvs the latter - maybe UNTIL he let the wildlings through, at which point you need to reevaluate.

If Rickon's in on it though, no way is that Shaggydog. But I could see him being upset at any wolf or direwolf being harmed.

What about Nymeria, Arya's direwolf? We haven't seen her in a while, and she was last seen on the road to KL. Does anyone remember what color she was?
posted by corb at 9:21 AM on May 9, 2016


Deeper thoughts in no particular order:

Watching Varys work was nice, especially when compared to Ramsay. For all his friendliness and honest desire to not harm people, Varys can and will do so. He's not above threatening and pushing people to do what he wants, but with a very large carrot. Ramsay's carrot is that he has stick.

Tyrion's scene with Greyworm and Missandei was disappointing because it only served his character. Yes, the latter two are background characters, but they are interesting ones that show has explored before. To see them being used as props for Tyrion's alcoholic life does them both a disservice. And why is Tyrion doing anything but being friendly to the dragon's?! It's been clear for some time that government of Mereen is surrounded and the other two cities are falling. Now is definitely the time to working on bringing out the dragons, rather than waiting around for bad news.

WHERE IS BAELISH? Seriously, major events are going down in the north and he's so out of the loop. Yes, he's traveling the long distance from Kings Landing to the Wall, but narrative wise it's odd not to have heard a peep from him over three episodes. His will probably explode over all these changes.

Daenerys' story arc so far feels drawn out and long, with little reason to enjoy or learn about character. Or even for Daenerys to learn a few things herself. As the mother of dragons, she's theoretically the most powerful person in the world. Yet without her dragons, she's reduced to being a pawn in someone else's game. It would be one thing if we saw Dany attempting to play the game and rouse support and allies to her side, especially in the rigid Dothraki society. But all she does is spout her million names and expect everyone to cower or at least do her bidding. They don't, of course, but Dany keeps going along as if everything will suddenly change.

Cersei's doing the same thing in King's landing. With Ser Gregor on one side (nice how no one is even pretending its anyone else), and Jamie, her husband and Lord Commander on the other, she should among the most powerful people in the world. Yet everyone walked out on her, leaving the comical image of the three of them just sitting there, dumbfounded.

Not sure what's going with the Branbacks. Obviously something important is in that castle, having to deal with Ned's sister, but who knows if that additional information will equal anything interesting. For me, I was fascinated by Ned seemingly hearing something when Bran called his name. Does that mean Bran will be able to interact with dead father in some capacity? Odd, but interesting.

The Arya parts are going as I thought they would, but it was nice to see her admit that she had conflicted feelings about the Hound. They had a unique relationship, one that could have grown to be a father/daugther like one, but neither of them realized that or probably even wanted it. But I do hope that Arya clarifying that he was left for dead means he'll be coming back. He would definitely be useful to Sansa and Jon, if they're going to attempt to take back Winterfell, which seems likely.

What's going on with the Ironborn? Other than bringing Yara into the main storyline, I don't see much of interest there at the moment, because we haven't seen a damn thing from them since Season 3 or so. I guess they could provide ships to Daenerys but that's a long way to go, plot wise.

And what are the White Walkers up to? There's an army of the undead marching South yeah, but like everything else in the story, that's conveniently used, dropped or compressed as the plot sees fit.

What I think happens next: Sansa, Brienne and Pod show up at the White Wall and convince Jon to live for something, like oh, I don't know, trying to retake Winterfell. He's got nothing left for him at the Wall, having failed in so many ways, so he needs something else to do than mope around.

Drogon saves Dany at some point, which unites the Dothraki behind her.

Cersei and Jamie go to war with the High Septon. Because really, what else can they think to do? Cersei's probably still pissed that someone she granted power to is calling the shots on her. Jamie will happily follow her lead. Tommen will die, as per the prophesy, possibly sacrificed by Cersei, 'cause if she can't prevent his death, she might as well profit from it.

Sam learns something. Maybe he'll put two and two together and have Dragonstone mined for dragonglass? That would be simple answer.

Bran learns a lot more unsettling things about Ned. The White Walkers will eventually overrun the three where that group is and Bran will head South to give whatever helpful new information he learns to others.

No idea about the Ironborn, other than eventually providing a fleet. No idea about Dorne. I guess they go to war with Kings Landing? Which could make the Lannister/Tyrell alliance last a bit longer.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:26 AM on May 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


What about Nymeria, Arya's direwolf? We haven't seen her in a while, and she was last seen on the road to KL. Does anyone remember what color she was?

While I *know* that she's off running around in the Riverlands with Syrio, I'm still a little annoyed that you made me youtube this scene where Arya sends her away. She is grey and white (for those of you who don't want to watch that scene).
posted by sparklemotion at 9:28 AM on May 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


mediareport: Knowing these showrunners they'll probably have Sansa *just barely* miss Jon as he leaves the Wall.

Well, we finally had Brienne of Tarth show up just in time to save Sansa, so they're not 100% assholes about creating edge-of-your-seat moments and near-misses. Of course, they could think "OK, we were good with that whole Sansa/Brienne thing, now we can go back to being jerks to the audience keep get them hooked."
posted by filthy light thief at 9:29 AM on May 9, 2016


It's a good point about Ned being able to hear Bran - I wonder if what Bran is going to wind up doing/being is changing the history by getting stuck somewhere? It seems to be leading there but that would be way too much of a shakeup. But I don't understand the point of the reaction if there's not eventually going to be information conveyed.
posted by corb at 9:31 AM on May 9, 2016


Daenerys' story arc so far feels drawn out and long, with little reason to enjoy or learn about character.

Yeah, I hate to say it but every episode with Daenerys in it make me less interested in her or her storyline. I think it's theoretically a really interesting and important part of everything that's going on, but holy shit could they not draw it out any longer with less interesting results. "In this episode, Dany is presented with a bunch of problems that she solves or doesn't solve without much agency or interest, and then stands around trying to look like this is all important or historic. Next week: more of the same".

It feels like she's had not just zero character growth, but almost negative character growth in the last couple of seasons.
posted by tocts at 9:33 AM on May 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


The Starks are done.

I'm not so sure about that. Maybe they won't be taking back Winterfell but most of the remaining Starks are honing their skills for revenge, potential uprising, etc...
- Arya: shapeshifting + fighting skills
- Sansa: political savvy and manipulation
- Bran: something the tree guy will teach him - "one day you will fly"
- Jon: unkillable!
- Rickon - TBD

There's been tremendous character growth for them lately. It's interesting to contrast that to a family like the Lannisters who have remained fairly static over the past season or two.
posted by joeyjoejoejr at 9:55 AM on May 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


Brandon Blatcher: Daenerys' story arc so far feels drawn out and long, with little reason to enjoy or learn about character.

Trying to make reason: she, like Jamie, has gotten used to the power of her reputation, but is learning much more quickly that she is nothing without her dragons (because she's a lady, of course - at least Jamie has his gender to save him from holy persecution). Even among the Dothraki, her reputation was based upon who she was with someone else. It seems even the other crones are no one, despite the prior episodes making it seem like they had a power in this, the capitol (yes, I'm pretty pissed about how that turned out so far - maybe the show will include some of their fortune telling shape how the Khals act, but I'm not holding my breath).

What's going on with the Ironborn?

Kingsmoot! Yara wants to be the first woman to rule the Ironborn after her uncle killed her dad, but there's rules to follow in who is chosen to lead. I'm excited to see how that plays out.
posted by filthy light thief at 9:56 AM on May 9, 2016


The Starks are done.

I'm not so sure about that. Maybe they won't be taking back Winterfell but most of the remaining Starks are honing their skills for revenge, potential uprising, etc...


I was speaking from the point of view of the other northern houses. We, as viewers, know that the Starks, as individuals, are coming into their strengths, but from the point of view of the Umbers, Mormonts, the Karstarks, etc? House Stark, as the unifying force of rightness and good in the North, has fallen.

It's not unreasonable to attempt to ingratiate themselves with the current power in the north (Bolton). Especially since (as far as the minor lords know), Sansa Stark is lady of Winterfell now. So, (besides Umber) are they really being "disloyal"?
posted by sparklemotion at 10:07 AM on May 9, 2016


It seems even the other crones are no one, despite the prior episodes making it seem like they had a power in this, the capitol (yes, I'm pretty pissed about how that turned out so far - maybe the show will include some of their fortune telling shape how the Khals act, but I'm not holding my breath).

I think it's pretty clear that the dosh khaleen are powerful, but that their power is exerted in a different, less ego driven way. These are women who were wives of the most powerful men in Dothraki culture, they are probably all formidable women in their own right. So they probably all come in to Vaes Dothrak headstrong and uppity like Dany, to wield the power they have they need to work together and at least be seen as a united front.

I get the impression that part of Dany's treatment is probably a "standard" hazing sort of ritual for new widows. Maybe with a little added snark because she's a foreigner.
posted by sparklemotion at 10:34 AM on May 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


So, (besides Umber) are they really being "disloyal"?

Yeah, I think this episode look at various ramifications from making oaths, breaking them and then keeping them. Jon and Thorne both swore oathes and did what they thought was best and there were deep consequences. Daenerys had an implied Oath, which was broken, and now she's having to deal with consequences. Sam made an oath to Gilly, but is breaking that, for the best of reasons. The reason Robert became King was because of his rebellion brought about because of broken oath and we all know how that went. The Karstarks broke their oath to Robb because he broke their oath to them, same as Frey did with Robb. There's probably more oath breaking going on but that's all I can think of while waiting for this sandwich.

But it is very interesting that Umber swore no oathes at all. Meanwhile, Brienne, the oathkeeper, is heading towards Castle Black.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:37 AM on May 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


COMEDY FART! Why has no one mentioned the comedy fart? It was even captured in this transcript!

It was delightfully in the Closed Captions as well.
posted by Rock Steady at 10:40 AM on May 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


Whenever I see a character not doing much on the show, I think about how much the show has to use them in order to keep them from jumping ship.
posted by corb at 11:34 AM on May 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


sparklemotion: I get the impression that part of Dany's treatment is probably a "standard" hazing sort of ritual for new widows. Maybe with a little added snark because she's a foreigner.

Ah, I like that idea. Righteous anger quelled.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:40 AM on May 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


It's a good point about Ned being able to hear Bran - I wonder if what Bran is going to wind up doing/being is changing the history by getting stuck somewhere?

The Three-Eyed Raven certainly seems quite emphatic about repeatedly reminding us Bran about the dangers of becoming lost in a vision/the past; I too wonder if this is going somewhere.

(Also, wondering if the Raven was surprised by Ned's looking back towards Bran and had to scramble for a quick "maybe it was just the wind" excuse? Perhaps Bran has more power than even the Raven realizes?)

I also found the Young Ned portrayal not-quite-convincing-enough: they got partway by matching the hair and some of Sean Bean's phrasing, but I don't think the actor looks particularly like him, and his accent isn't quite right.

Annoyed that we're apparently settling in for another long season of Ramsey-being-a-psychopath; the showrunners seem way more in love with the character than their audience is.

Not a new observation I'm sure, but it strikes me: there's some parallels between Theon/Reek and Arya/No-one. Both have been brainwashed into submerging their identities; Theon by force, Arya by sort-of-choice -- although Jaqen's methods feel very manipulative to me. Theon was able to re-assert his identity; will Arya, or has she fully submerged herself into becoming No-one? (Another echo of the Raven's warning about drowning?)

Jaqen sounded very definite about drinking from the poison pool as an ultimate test -- "if a girl is truly no one, she has nothing to fear" -- but does this maybe simply mean that Arya has become good enough at hiding herself to trick Jaqen and/or the Many-Faced God? (Was blind-Arya's mysterious fumbling-with-potions part of that trick? An antidote?)
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 11:45 AM on May 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


I don't think the fumbling with potions can be part of the trick - Jaqen smiled when he saw her doing it. Unless somehow the antidote suppresses ego?
posted by corb at 11:50 AM on May 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


The dialog for this episode was written by a Canadian classic rock radio station DJ.

so much of it was so bad. Bran's play-by-play of Eddard's fight was incredibly lame. This episode is the first time that I've really been made aware of how terrible some of the writing can be as I'm watching it. That plus the killing off of so many of the best actors has me worried for the future of the series. At least Diana Rigg was finally back.
posted by oneirodynia at 12:01 PM on May 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


SO MANY FEELS

ok ok I'll read the thread now
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 1:40 PM on May 9, 2016


OMG, one of my FB friends described Jon Snow's final scene as a take on the best scene from Half Baked and now I cannot stop seeing that and laughing uproariously.
posted by TwoStride at 2:16 PM on May 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


Melisandre asking Jon what he saw beyond death, and getting a "nothing" reply, reminded me that she asked a similar question of Beric Dondarrion a few seasons ago and got a similar response: "There is no other side. I have been to the darkness, my lady."

Is she maybe wondering about all those "their souls are with the Lord now" fire sacrifices?

(The gods in the show don't seem big on afterlife in general: the Drowned God's funeral rites are very "feed on his flesh" utilitarian, and the Many-Faced God seems to be mostly all about death.)
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 2:54 PM on May 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


Olly died as he lived: silently glaring at Jon Snow.
posted by paper chromatographologist at 3:26 PM on May 9, 2016 [38 favorites]


I thought the point of the Tyrion/Grey Worm/Missendei bit (besides some comic relief) was to emphasize how naive and inexperienced two of Dany's (and now Tyrion's and Varys') major "advisers" are. They're trying to overthrow centuries-old cultures and economies, yet they can't even carry on basic chit-chat. Dany was/is waaaaaay out of her depth when it comes to actually ruling, and so are the two people she relied upon most. No wonder everything they accomplished in Slaver's Bay is falling apart.

It's part of Tyrion starting to realize that if he has any desire to support Dany, or even to maybe just prevent that part of the world from exploding into the horror of thousands of innocent deaths, he's gonna have to step up and become the Lannister that he never wanted to be - because he and Varys are the only ones with a clue about how to actually govern.
posted by soundguy99 at 4:44 PM on May 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


Good point raised above: what is with the White Walkers? How long has the timeline been on the show, from episode 1 to the present? Three years? So the White Walkers have been bimbling around for three years, waiting to assault the Wall. Hardhome, the last place we saw them, isn't that far from Castle Black, and an army that doesn't need to rest would go at a pretty good clip across land, especially across a snowy snowscape and if they have skis. Presumably the Walkers are biding their time ("chilling") for Big Winter or whatever it's called, so they don't melt (?). Useless.
posted by turbid dahlia at 5:00 PM on May 9, 2016


Olly died as he lived: silently glaring at Jon Snow.
Fucked Olly
posted by unliteral at 5:04 PM on May 9, 2016


Hardhome, the last place we saw them, isn't that far from Castle Black, and an army that doesn't need to rest would go at a pretty good clip across land, especially across a snowy snowscape and if they have skis.

I'm guessing that the White Walkers didn't intend to take on the Hardhome camp when they did. But since everyone was leaving, they attacked to get as many troops as they could.

All this means they have some sort of plan and timetable, but who knows what the hell it is. Bran will probably find out at this season.

Thinking about it at the moment, it's not clear what a massive army of the mindless undead could do against the Wall. A battering ram against some weak point? Jon talked earlier about pouring water in the tunnel and freezing it solid, so then it would really be impregnable. It doesn't seem as though the wights can climb, soooo what's the plan?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:19 PM on May 9, 2016


End run around the Shadow Tower in the west, or freeze part of the Bay of Souls and cross.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 5:28 PM on May 9, 2016


oops, map
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 5:28 PM on May 9, 2016


End run around the Shadow Tower in the west, or freeze part of the Bay of Souls and cross.

Ok, good point. But non of this seems to have been mentioned too much in the series, so I'm just wondering what the narrative will go.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:40 PM on May 9, 2016


So the whole "Bran interacted with the past" thing seems extremely intriguing. A friend of mine started spitballing, and suggested that it might lead to a closed time loop, perhaps with Bran trying to warn Hodor before he gets kicked in the head by a horse or something by yelling "Hodor!" to get his attention, or maybe warging into Willis in the past and causing the brain damage that turned him into Hodor. He even started idly speculating that it might lead to some sort of Days of Future Past ending, though we kind of agreed that it would be narratively unsatisfying to establish that high-concept premise this late in, rather than during act 1 like DoFP did (since it'd basically just mean that the first five seasons ultimately meant nothing if they did go that route).

Very, very interesting stuff, though.
posted by DoctorFedora at 6:33 PM on May 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


what is with the White Walkers?

Constant bathroom breaks. They really should have went before they left, and also not drank all that gatoraide.
posted by drezdn at 7:00 PM on May 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


Initially Dany was one of the most interesting characters to me. A friend who lent me the books clearly disliked her the moment I mentioned her. I was confused by this. And then after an initial burst of learning and development Dany has completely and utterly stagnated. I mean one of her own dragons had to save her from Mereen, the place where she hold the most power. Now she's just waiting around for someone or something to save her ass again. She's gone from a character I was truly intrigued by to a character I honestly hope gets killed so the show can focus on other more interesting characters like Arya.

As for why people are more upset about Shaggydog than Baby Boy Bolton. Shaggydog appeared waaaaaayyyyyy back in s1.We know about Baby Boy Bolton for like 2 minutes. Even if Shaggydog spent most time off camera, we still have way more emotional investment in SD than an infant that shows up for about the length of a commercial break
posted by miss-lapin at 7:01 PM on May 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


what is with the White Walkers?

You can't fight the Big Boss until you've made it through all the other levels. White Walkers are Final Season Territory.
posted by dis_integration at 7:01 PM on May 9, 2016


Also, Dany needs to train her dragons. No way humanity wins out against The Winter without dragons.
posted by dis_integration at 7:08 PM on May 9, 2016


I do think it would be pretty easy to lampshade why the White Walkers have taken their time moving on the wall. There might be some sort of condition that needs to be in place for them to attack.
posted by drezdn at 7:37 PM on May 9, 2016


oh, unrelated to anything, my wife recently pointed out that Varys looks like White Titus Andromedon and then he had that scene with the lady but neither of us could help but hear what he was saying in Titus's voice and GUYS it DOES NOT HELP a dramatic scene when you are mentally hearing Titus delivering each line instead of paying attention
posted by DoctorFedora at 7:43 PM on May 9, 2016 [16 favorites]


I do think it would be pretty easy to lampshade why the White Walkers have taken their time moving on the wall. There might be some sort of condition that needs to be in place for them to attack.

Winter is coming. North of the wall it's basically always winter. They're waiting for winter to hit the south.

Titus and Varys, fighting crime together!
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 8:03 PM on May 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


As for why people are more upset about Shaggydog than Baby Boy Bolton. Shaggydog appeared waaaaaayyyyyy back in s1.We know about Baby Boy Bolton for like 2 minutes. Even if Shaggydog spent most time off camera, we still have way more emotional investment in SD than an infant that shows up for about the length of a commercial break

Shaggydog was also named by Toddler!Rickon, who spent basically his entire life with that wolf. Knowing that Rickon had to watch the death of the being that had been his companion longer than pretty much anyone but Bran is rough. Plus, those wolves started out in Season 1 as such a promise of hope for the Stark children, and watching them die one by one has been a surprisingly emotional aspect of the show.

Baby Bolton, on the other hand, has literally no one alive who loves him. I mean, Ramsey is evil for killing a baby. But he's also evil for torturing Theon and everything else that came in between. Baby Sam hasn't done a whole hell of a lot but look cute, but if he died*, we'd feel for Sam and Gilly, in a way that doesn't make sense for Walda (because she's dead too).

*Dear D&D&GRRM, this is not a suggestion
posted by sparklemotion at 9:04 PM on May 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


i saw cockneys vs zombies like 3 days before the babynomming episode so really for all i know walda herself devoured that tiny morsel before getting shot in the face by an OAP
posted by poffin boffin at 11:56 PM on May 9, 2016


> I don't think Jon left the castle, he just left the courtyard. It was an awkward scene, where it looked like he was heading north, which makes no sense. Sansa and Brienne will probably meet up with him and convince him to retake Winterfell.

Yeah I feel pretty sure he's gonna team up with Davos and Mellisandre.


It's going to get ugly if Brienne and Melisandre cross paths. Because they were both there when Renly met with Stannis, so at least Brienne will recognize Mel. And if she hasn't already figured out that the fire priestess who served Stannis was the one who actually summoned the shadow, she'll figure it out when she hears about how Melisandre magically resurrected John.
posted by homunculus at 12:22 AM on May 10, 2016


Did anybody else find themselves thinking the black watch could have used a javascript web calculator to do a better job with the hanging? That drop was seriously insufficient for the purpose of hanging execution. This is why you need maesters!
posted by srboisvert at 2:31 AM on May 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


In terms of Oathbreakers on the show, did anyone else mention Tommen? He PROMISED his mum that he would do something about not being able to see Myrcella and then he crumbled like a digestive in hot tea in front of the High Septon (who I wish to see die die die).
posted by like_neon at 4:04 AM on May 10, 2016 [9 favorites]


Tommen has broken all sorts of oaths to his wife, his mom and the realm.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 4:53 AM on May 10, 2016


And to Ser Pounce.
posted by drezdn at 5:06 AM on May 10, 2016 [9 favorites]


Yeah, Cersei's homeschooling strategy seems to have taken the "spare" part of "heir and a spare" really seriously.
posted by stuck on an island at 5:37 AM on May 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


DoctorFedora: "oh, unrelated to anything, my wife recently pointed out that Varys looks like White Titus Andromedon and then he had that scene with the lady but neither of us could help but hear what he was saying in Titus's voice and GUYS it DOES NOT HELP a dramatic scene when you are mentally hearing Titus delivering each line instead of paying attention"

I'm not proud of it, but I created varysandromedon.tumblr.com.
posted by Rock Steady at 5:37 AM on May 10, 2016 [33 favorites]


oh no except OH YES
posted by DoctorFedora at 6:23 AM on May 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


I love you, Rock Steady
posted by Diablevert at 7:19 AM on May 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


soundguy99: Dany was/is waaaaaay out of her depth when it comes to actually ruling, and so are the two people she relied upon most.

It's like a children's crusade, except the children are planning the crusade (and it kind of worked, for a while).
posted by filthy light thief at 7:56 AM on May 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


I thought Grey Worm and Missandei were hiding their relationship or at least not talking about it openly, hence them seemingly being boring. "Uh patrol. We talk about going on patrol, what I saw on patrol and uh, patroling and not all those hot sexy things we're actually, uh, patrolling."

It's hard to tell with this show, it's maddeningly inconsistent and will drop and pick up storylines as it sees fit as opposed to following them consistently. So GW and M might be boring as fuck or might be pretending to be boring, it's not clear at this point.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:37 AM on May 10, 2016 [10 favorites]


Good point, BB.
posted by soundguy99 at 8:39 AM on May 10, 2016


What is clear is that Tyrion drinks and he knows things, which doesn't help his drinking problem, which he knows he has, but doesn't care about.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:50 AM on May 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


It's very moving, and it's very strange, because when I was playing Ser Alliser, I thought of him as a dark, bleak soul. I didn't enjoy being him. I couldn't wait until the end of the day to go off and have a drink with Kit [Harington], and have a laugh. But maybe I miss it.
Vulture: Game of Thrones’ Owen Teale on Jon Snow, That Hanging Scene, and Why He Didn’t Enjoy Playing Ser Alliser
posted by Halloween Jack at 8:54 AM on May 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


I'm not proud of it, but I created varysandromedon.tumblr.com.

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

you are the BEST the very BEST
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 8:57 AM on May 10, 2016


*fart*
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 8:58 AM on May 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


Brandon Blatcher: I thought Grey Worm and Missandei were hiding their relationship or at least not talking about it openly

I think both are true. Missandrei was trained as a scribe and translator, while Grey Worm was to be a replaceable soldier without his own identity (thus Grey Worm, his "lucky" name on the day he was liberated by Dany's forces). In other words, neither are used to having casual chit-chat with their superiors, and they are definitely not trained to manage a city, let alone take one over from the ruling elite.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:06 AM on May 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


I actually took that conversation as showing way more how out of his depth /Tyrion/ is. His entire life, he has participated in a charm offensive that largely takes place by embracing normative Noble Dude culture, but better. He will be the best at strategy, the best at charm, the drinking and whoring noble everyone expects to know and love.

But Missandei and Grey Worm have real problems and real concerns and real dreams. They aren't living the dissolute lives of a Westerosi noble lord. The idea of a fucking drinking game, while the city is burning around them and they are missing their ruler they adore, is incomprehensible. Why do that? Why drink, in fact? Why deliberately lower your thinking processes? They might have had conversation if approached about real issues - but why the fuck should they play "I Never" with Tyrion? What's in it for them?
posted by corb at 10:10 AM on May 10, 2016 [11 favorites]


His entire life, he has participated in a charm offensive that largely takes place by embracing normative Noble Dude culture, but better. He will be the best at strategy, the best at charm, the drinking and whoring noble everyone expects to know and love.

I'm not sure that's really true to Tyrion's lived experience as we've seen it on the show. No one with any power ever respected his strategic mind or his charm. His drinking and whoring was seen as an embarrassment. I'd argue that the drinking and whoring has been his coping mechanism to deal with the hatred and disrespect that he received in his own family (and beyond: "Where's the imp?" anybody?)

Now, he's in a shitty situation, and he's drinking his way through it. Everyone around him continues to disapprove of it, but at least we know that he's still at least somewhat functional (as opposed to say, the beginning of Season 5).

As for the interaction with Missandei and Greyworm -- I think it was interesting in all kinds of ways. Missandei, Greyworm, Tyrion and Varys have to work together to keep Meereen from falling apart. Tyrion and Varys have ruling theory down pat, but don't know the culture. Greyworm and Missandei know the culture, but not necessarily how to run a city-state. Tyrion sees the differences between himself and them and wants to try to figure out how to communicate with them -- I think what's interesting is that Missandei and Greyworm don't understand why that communication is even important.
posted by sparklemotion at 10:37 AM on May 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


Missandei and Grey Worm have been inculcated from birth to just do as they're told. Tyrion has been inculcated from birth to tell others what to do. Varys straddles the divide, as the only person who taught himself how to govern others.

Small wonder they suck at chitchat. They're trying to overcome a lifetime of "don't even look at the nobles." (And I think they'd count Varys as a noble--he looks like one of the Masters, no matter his background).
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 10:45 AM on May 10, 2016 [4 favorites]


As for the interaction with Missandei and Greyworm -- I think it was interesting in all kinds of ways.

My read on the scene was that Varys is "interrogating" the woman, but none of the three have an honest clue what's really going on, except that it is taking a while. Because we cut from Varys to Missandei, Grey Worm, and Tyrion, I think we're meant to understand that they're assuming he's torturing the woman. They're all uncomfortable with that thought, and Tyrion is trying to lighten the mood in the only way he knows how.
posted by rocketman at 11:10 AM on May 10, 2016 [5 favorites]


I love all these takes on the subtext of the Tyrion/Missandei/Grey Worm scene, even though it was probably written as "hey, we need to give Tyrion some funny lines in this ep, M&GW can be the straight man"
posted by prize bull octorok at 11:13 AM on May 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


Did anybody else find themselves thinking the black watch could have used a javascript web calculator to do a better job with the hanging? That drop was seriously insufficient for the purpose of hanging execution. This is why you need maesters!

From the interview with Owen Teale:
I asked them, "Why isn't there a bigger drop, when you hang them?" And they said, "Because if it's a bigger drop, you would die instantly. The whip action would snap your neck, and that's it. You would lose consciousness immediately." But this was actually more cruel, more of a punishment, because your feet almost touch the ground, you haven't fallen that far, so there's still some life in you and your body can't help but fight. I said, "That's really gruesome."
posted by dis_integration at 1:13 PM on May 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


Ah, so it's trying to discourage mutiny.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:18 PM on May 10, 2016


I also talked to my dad about this, and he told me that a short drop was actually more accurate for a Medieval-style execution - apparently the higher drops were a more recent innovation.
posted by showbiz_liz at 1:28 PM on May 10, 2016


(He also not only agreed that the dual-wielding was silly, but also pointed out that the guy's unpadded helmet would have been pretty insufficient to block the impact of a blow to the head, which is more detailed weapons nerdery than would ever have occurred to me)
posted by showbiz_liz at 1:35 PM on May 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


Dual wielding was actually more cruel, more of a punishment, because it hobbles the dual-wielder. You think you have more of a chance, so there's still some life in you and your body can't help but fight. I said, "That's really gruesome."
posted by paper chromatographologist at 1:39 PM on May 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


The things that people think looks silly in a show with dragons, magic, fireproof people and raising the dead never fails to surprise.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 2:25 PM on May 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


Comes back to the old thing: you can ask an audience to believe the impossible (dragons, zombies) but not the improbable (best fighter ever fighting badly).
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 2:32 PM on May 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


Look, all I can say is, I've read a lot of fantasy and historical novels, and a multiple of those novels involved hangings, and many of those involved discursive commentary about exactly where the knot should be placed and how long the drop should be to snap the neck and achieve a clean kill instead of a drawn-out one, because otherwise it's cruel and (more importantly) embarrassing to the hangman, who should have some g-d pride in his work.
posted by bq at 2:38 PM on May 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


I've read a lot of fantasy novels with crowded Inns and Taverns out in the middle of nowhere, and parties making generic fantasy stew out in the wilderness but that doesn't make it so!
posted by Justinian at 2:59 PM on May 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


Hot Pot put in an appearance
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:04 PM on May 10, 2016


Comes back to the old thing: you can ask an audience to believe the impossible (dragons, zombies) but not the improbable (best fighter ever fighting badly).

That's a really good point, thanks.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:09 PM on May 10, 2016


The world has to have internal logic. If the rules of the world say dragons exist, then they do - but that doesn't mean that all causality and logic is automatically forfeit. If you're going to do something "unreal" you must have an actual reason for it. (This argument gets under my skin because it's a way for people to dismiss genre fiction as inherently incapable of telling great stories, because 'whatever it's all made up,' as if all fiction isn't)
posted by showbiz_liz at 3:16 PM on May 10, 2016 [9 favorites]


I agree with you completely; "It's a fantasy story" does not excuse a lack of internal logic.

That said while I would definitely have preferred Dayne's off-hand weapon to be more of a main guache it didn't actually bother me much at all that he did not. But people have different pet peeves.
posted by Justinian at 3:34 PM on May 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


The world has to have internal logic.

Oh sure, totally agree. The sword thing is due to my own ignorance about swords and sword fighting and more knowledgable people noticing the faults. Creating a world is hard, especially one for a fantasy television show, so some cracks will always slip in and there will always folks who notice cracks. Just interesting to see what particular cracks gets under a person's skin about the show. For me it's the vast distances that are usually ignored.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:37 PM on May 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


Arguably, ignoring vast distances is absolutely true to the books.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 3:42 PM on May 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


Ugh, the age of adaptations, where we're forever forced to deal with beloved stories done in new formats that change the story we originally knew and argue about the differences. But seriously, the distances!I can't believe Robert traveled up to the North and back, just for Ned.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:49 PM on May 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


Hot Pot put in an appearance

I know it's been a few seasons and memories are fuzzy, but actually his name is Hot Pocket
posted by prize bull octorok at 3:53 PM on May 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


I think it was Lean Pockets?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 4:02 PM on May 10, 2016


lol Lean is Ned's sister
posted by prize bull octorok at 4:03 PM on May 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


I know it's been a few seasons and memories are fuzzy, but actually his name is Hot Pocket

No I'm sorry it is now canonically Hot Pot. I'm going to go and edit the Wiki (anybody know how to edit an wik?)
posted by turbid dahlia at 4:26 PM on May 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


I can't tell who is joking and who is serious. His name is Hot Pie. But you guys knew that already? I think?
posted by Justinian at 4:43 PM on May 10, 2016


Pretty sure it's Pizza Roll duder
posted by showbiz_liz at 4:45 PM on May 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


I guess we know what Justinian is bothered by.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 4:46 PM on May 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


No I'm sorry it is now canonically Hot Pot. I'm going to go and edit the Wiki (anybody know how to edit an wik?)

That's what I do: I drink and I edit wikis.
posted by nightwood at 5:12 PM on May 10, 2016 [9 favorites]


I can't tell who is joking and who is serious.

ruiner stop ruining
posted by poffin boffin at 5:15 PM on May 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


Justinian? No, Joffinian, amirite?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:31 PM on May 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


a clean kill instead of a drawn-out one, because otherwise it's cruel

Isn't worrying about cruelty more of a modern invention? Lack of cruelty is at the bottom of the list of concerns for GoT especially.
posted by LizBoBiz at 6:24 PM on May 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


re: hangings -

Lord High Executioner: An Unshamed Look at Hangmen, Headsmen, and Their Kind makes a strong case for 1) "professional" hangmen often not actually being "professionals" as we define the term and 2) even professional hangmen got it wrong an awful lot of the time. That "clean snap" isn't just about height, but body mass and musculature and the elasticity of the rope and the speed of the drop and the solidity of whatever the rope is suspended from. In practice, over the course of history, strangulation was probably more likely than a broken neck. (Make the drop too high, and heads had a tendency to pop off.)

So, y'know, even if the hanging mechanism had been a little less makeshift, probably only one or two of them would've had a "clean" death.
posted by soundguy99 at 7:42 PM on May 10, 2016 [5 favorites]


I look forward to the GoT wiki including a number of comical characters, seen only in passing, with names that all spun off of Hot Pie.

"Hot Pocket was a tailor's apprentice, but having sticky fingers, she was thrown into jail. Not to be confused with Hot Pot, the vaguely Asian looking young lad with a rotund belly and a love of stews and soups. Then there's Pot Pie, the anthropomorphic pot pie with suicidal tendencies. Catch phrase: 'eat me, I'm deeee-licious!' "

More GoT humor: SNL - Jon Snow. "OK, update - I have decided to do my magic. But it only works if I do it very slowly. First, I must wash his body. That's part of the magic, for sure."
posted by filthy light thief at 10:54 AM on May 12, 2016 [5 favorites]


Though Jon Snow did previously shoot the one fellow with an arrow rather than let him be burned to death.
posted by RobotHero at 11:59 AM on May 12, 2016


"Hot Chip, the tiny dancer, glimpsed briefly in an alley in King's Landing and played by Daniel Craig, does not appear in the books."
posted by turbid dahlia at 5:06 PM on May 12, 2016 [4 favorites]


« Older The Night Manager: Episode 3...   |  Fear the Walking Dead: Captive... Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments