Game of Thrones: Book Of The Stranger   Show Only 
May 15, 2016 7:00 PM - Season 6, Episode 4 - Subscribe

Tyrion strikes a deal. Jorah and Daario undertake a difficult task. Jaime and Cersei try to improve their situation.
posted by Brandon Blatcher (200 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
 
Good timing Sansa! She at least has fire and purpose

Brienne understands how to make herself known!

Ooops, trouble brewing in the Mereenese government! Tyrion's wise ways won't work too long on GW and Missandei! Those two have quite a backbone compared to earlier.

Yay, Daenerys finally acts like a leader!

Hey, there's Margeary! Wonder where she's been. Oh, in a cell, getting educated by being read at.

The septon changed because of a painting!

Iron Fist origin story!


Poor, poor Tommen, a king, yet a pawn.

Uh oh, Cersai is scheming. That means somebody is going to die.

Brother and sister relationships are soooo tricky.

At least Osha went for it and tried to kill Ramsay and he didn't have a chance to be himself with her.

Tormound has a crush, Tormound has a crush!

Way to get your enemies all hyped up Ramsay.

Nice move by Daenerys, all by her lonesome. Good callback to final in the first season, when she got her first Dothraki believers. Looks like Slavers Bay isn't quite as finished as the Wise masters.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:01 PM on May 15, 2016 [3 favorites]


I gotta learn not to get invested in Natalia Tena characters.
posted by rewil at 7:03 PM on May 15, 2016 [8 favorites]


Danaerys just has the one trick. But it's a pretty good trick!
posted by Serene Empress Dork at 7:17 PM on May 15, 2016 [29 favorites]


This entire show has basically been five seasons of setup for Tormund/Brienne, hasn't it.
posted by dfan at 7:23 PM on May 15, 2016 [50 favorites]


She can conquer, but ruling has escaped her. With Tyrion and Varys by her side, she might have a decent chance of being an actual queen.

But first, thousands will probably have to die.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:24 PM on May 15, 2016 [1 favorite]


Danaerys's one trick is pretty damn impressive... but I just was really, really hoping that for once the writers would actually give us the satisfaction of Danaerys first actually telling the various Khals that their rape threats are also a one trick pony that was, you know, about to be set on fire.
posted by TwoStride at 7:37 PM on May 15, 2016 [4 favorites]


Also, Brienne/Tormund is the delightful pairing I didn't know I needed in my fannish life.
posted by TwoStride at 7:37 PM on May 15, 2016 [15 favorites]


Go Sansa! Robin, you are terrible, but maybe you will help Sansa. No moon door for you yet.

I liked this episode.
posted by sparklemotion at 7:38 PM on May 15, 2016 [2 favorites]


She can conquer, but ruling has escaped her. With Tyrion and Varys by her side, she might have a decent chance of being an actual queen.

Yes! Dany will break the chains and Tyrion and Varys will take care of the messy little details. Like, you know, keeping the people fed, keeping the streets patrolled effectively, keeping dysentery from killing everybody, keeping some semblance of a judicial and political system going. The small stuff.

Thought every episode this season has been better than the last with the first one being mediocre, the second one being a bit better, the third one being good, and this one being very good.
posted by Justinian at 7:43 PM on May 15, 2016 [1 favorite]


This entire show has basically been five seasons of setup for Tormund/Brienne, hasn't it.

It's like you see them going "hey I thought I was only giantic violent warrior weirdo!"
posted by The Whelk at 7:43 PM on May 15, 2016 [16 favorites]


Loved the way that they just seemed natural when the first saw each other up Brienne entering the castle.

Also, this was the first time Sansa and Jon have been in the same scene. Well done.

This was a pretty good episode, what with Sansa having a clear goal, Tyrion trying to do some good, Grey Worm and Missandei calling him on it, Osha trying to kill Ramsey and Daenerys taking control.

Things are moving much quicker this season and it's been almost uniformly good.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:44 PM on May 15, 2016 [2 favorites]


As soon as Brienne and Tormund saw each other I shouted "I'D SHIP IT" and was vastly rewarded by the rest of the episode.
posted by redsparkler at 7:49 PM on May 15, 2016 [16 favorites]


I kind of wonder if part of the need for Varys to be out of King's Landing is because he could figure out the High Sparrow's deal super quick.
posted by drezdn at 7:55 PM on May 15, 2016 [8 favorites]


However I also expected Robin Arryn to immediately open the cage and either be attacked by the falcon or have it immediately fly away, never to be seen again.
posted by redsparkler at 7:57 PM on May 15, 2016 [21 favorites]


The falcon couldn't fly away because then Littlefinger would be testing the moon door, but I was kind of expecting the falcon to peck at Robin's eyes...
posted by TwoStride at 7:59 PM on May 15, 2016


I guess we all just suspend our disbelief on how quickly all the kids grew up. Like maybe Westeros has an accelerated again process until after puberty?
posted by Justinian at 7:59 PM on May 15, 2016 [1 favorite]


So no one else is on the Brienne/Sansa ship then?
posted by showbiz_liz at 7:59 PM on May 15, 2016


Brienne goes to Pod to ask to find out if someone ..likes you like you while Tourmond tries to ask Jon for equally disasterous advice in a wacky Westerosi rom com

On thier first date they stab the same Bolton.
posted by The Whelk at 8:00 PM on May 15, 2016 [31 favorites]


Brienne/Jaime!
posted by Justinian at 8:00 PM on May 15, 2016 [1 favorite]


Interestingly, Tormound has murdered innocents also, probably more than Jamie. Yet I still think Tormound is more worthy of Brienne.

Jaimie is, in the end, a follower. Cersei and Breinne both guided him. No one is guiding Tormound. Plus, if you remember his advice on how to have sex with a woman, Brienne is in for a helluva time.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:04 PM on May 15, 2016 [5 favorites]


The High Sparrow looked into the camera and said he realized he was living in a story. I assume he meant the show and not the books.
posted by paper chromatographologist at 8:06 PM on May 15, 2016 [1 favorite]


All those eyebrows at the dinner table. Niiiiice.
posted by tilde at 8:08 PM on May 15, 2016 [4 favorites]


Guys this is the first time I'm instantly shipping a heterosexual couple

This feels wrong somehow
posted by The Whelk at 8:11 PM on May 15, 2016 [23 favorites]


After my comment two weeks ago, I should note that my sexuality is gay, plus Daenerys Targaryen.
posted by andoatnp at 8:12 PM on May 15, 2016 [1 favorite]


Speaking of our gay characters I was surprised Loras still had all his limbs (the beard looks good on him, oddly)
posted by The Whelk at 8:17 PM on May 15, 2016 [1 favorite]


Tormund/Brienne forever. He just genuinely thinks she's hot! Right away! Because she is! Eeeeee.
posted by corb at 8:42 PM on May 15, 2016 [19 favorites]


He definitely had a "now this is a woman" look when she rode in.
posted by Sangermaine at 8:45 PM on May 15, 2016 [17 favorites]


I love the pace of this season. The characters are all so well defined it makes sense to cash in on that to move the plot along. I hope that it's because Benoiff & Weiss have good ideas and want to get to them sooner. I wonder if the faster pace is because Martin isn't around to set the pace.
posted by about_time at 8:59 PM on May 15, 2016 [2 favorites]




Am I alone in rooting for the high sparrow?
posted by humanfont at 9:05 PM on May 15, 2016 [2 favorites]


We can agree the feudal , autocratic monarchy of Westeros needs reform and change without also supporting an extremist religious dictatorship.

I mean in the just world it ends with Queen Sansa And the discovery of constitutional monarchy with strong parliaments but I'm sure "rule by bone chewing ice zombies" is still feasible.
posted by The Whelk at 9:16 PM on May 15, 2016 [4 favorites]


Had to look up "shipping" so thanks I think. I made a deal with myself to learn one new thing every day.
posted by turbid dahlia at 9:16 PM on May 15, 2016 [2 favorites]


Am I alone in rooting for the high sparrow?

That line about Margaery wearing someone's years on her back was a good one. But he's still playing the same game as everyone else.
posted by cardboard at 9:24 PM on May 15, 2016 [1 favorite]


The Whelk: I mean in the just world it ends with Queen Sansa And the discovery of constitutional monarchy with strong parliaments but I'm sure "rule by bone chewing ice zombies" is still feasible.

I always thought a good ending would be the white walkers conquering King's Landing and the final shot being the Night's King ascending to the Iron Throne as the rest of the city of undead watches in complete silence.
posted by bluecore at 9:26 PM on May 15, 2016 [4 favorites]


Yes! Dany will break the chains and Tyrion and Varys will take care of the messy little details. Like, you know, keeping the people fed, keeping the streets patrolled effectively, keeping dysentery from killing everybody, keeping some semblance of a judicial and political system going. The small stuff.

Her House words are Blood and Fire, not Policy and Good Governance. She is the Breaker of Chains, not the Forger of New Traditions.

Good episode. Felt like they are driving things forward, where I felt the first three episodes were kinda treading water in many places, setting things up.

Liked Dany taking charge and finding a way to take charge without a dragon to burn everything down (although, what was up with the sand floor in that place? Fire spread like crazy). Liked Brienne and her stare-down of Melisandre. And Tormund's stare-down of Brienne. Liked seeing Jon and Sansa together, though the first half of that conversation would have been awesome - "You died?" and "White Walkers?" Only moment I wished for and didn't get: Sansa tells Jon that the Northern Houses will come to his call, as the son of Ned Stark...only for Jon to say "Not for his bastard. But they'll come for his daughter."

Kinda surprised to see Theon back in Pyke, but maybe this means Yara becomes Queen? In which case, did the show really need to introduce Euron? Any random Iron Islander would seem to serve if that is the direction they are going.

Somethings that I found interesting: Brienne and Cersei call back to difficult moments in the past, and say that they are in the past - but not forgotten. Those were the explicit call outs. But Jon and Sansa reminisce about the past. The slavers are stuck in the past way of being. Grey Worm and Messandi are focused on their past. Daenerys recalls her past visit to Vaes Dothrak. The High Sparrow speaks of his past.

Alongside that, rivals learning to work together - Jon and Sansa, never friendly as children. Cersei and Olenna. Jorah and Daario.
posted by nubs at 9:55 PM on May 15, 2016 [7 favorites]


what was up with the sand floor in that place? Fire spread like craz

I assumed , gasoline like, the fumes of whatever they where using in the braziers where watching fire not the actual sand so it was basically a grease fire?
posted by The Whelk at 10:09 PM on May 15, 2016 [1 favorite]


Yeah those braziers were full of lamp oil, so when she pushed them over the fire just poured everywhere. Plus the whole building is basically made of kindling.
posted by KathrynT at 10:41 PM on May 15, 2016 [3 favorites]


Also, way back in season 2 or something, I said to my husband "you know what Westeros needs?" and he immediately answered "Representative democracy and universal suffrage?" which YES OBVIOUSLY but BESIDES THAT what I meant was, like, antibiotics
posted by KathrynT at 10:45 PM on May 15, 2016 [18 favorites]


Khal-B-Que
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:46 PM on May 15, 2016 [12 favorites]


Also probably eyeglasses, movable type, and bean cultivation but that's me being grumpy about the middle ages and going WHAT THEY NEED IS MORE RELIABLE CALORIES AND EFFICIENT FARMS SO MORE PEOPLE CAN MOVE INTO CITIES SO THEYRE NOT JUST MILITARY FORTS but this has been mid middle age period yelling with the whelk
posted by The Whelk at 10:46 PM on May 15, 2016 [24 favorites]


(Basically the 14-15th centuries have to happen first, for them )
posted by The Whelk at 10:48 PM on May 15, 2016 [1 favorite]


My favorite thing to yell about Game of Thrones re:the Middle Ages is how the Middle Ages lasted, what, thousands of years there? I know lots of fans have elaborate theories about this involving the long winters and magic, but I think Westeros is seriously overdue for some Renaissance.
posted by lunasol at 11:01 PM on May 15, 2016 [2 favorites]


Weeeel contemporary historical viewpoint is that what we think of of "The Renaissance" actually only happened to some really rich people and the flowing of art and culture and science we saw was due to re-urbanization and the creation of middle classish (or people who live in town! not farms or castles) structure and culture and relatively safe international trade, not to mention the hundreds of years of agricultural science going on to make sure there was enough well fed, healthy people to do this and all of that was from part the long, slow slog of developing science in the Middle Ages. The "Renaissance " was just when the changes became impossible to ignore

(Also, the period lasted for a long long time! Everyone kinda glosses over the entire 1first, second thigh like tenth centuries! It was so bad and so staid and fixed for literally hundreds of years)
posted by The Whelk at 11:11 PM on May 15, 2016 [5 favorites]


Lots to love in this episode, but I really didn't care to see Ramsey kill someone else. I'm tired of his character and would have loved nothing more than to see Osha just dispatch him nonchalantly...unlike Joffrey, I'm not even particularly looking forward to seeing him suffer and die horribly.

On the other hand, in King's Landing after Cersei's awful walk last season, I'd actually like to see her get vengeance on the High Sparrow, before Arya or whoever gets their own justice from her.
posted by Pryde at 11:34 PM on May 15, 2016


Only moment I wished for and didn't get: Sansa tells Jon that the Northern Houses will come to his call, as the son of Ned Stark...only for Jon to say "Not for his bastard. But they'll come for his daughter."

next episode this has to happen next episode or I shall POUT
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 12:01 AM on May 16, 2016 [4 favorites]


also westeros needs some chlorine, CHLORINATION SAVES LIVES, do you WANT your children shitting themselves to death? also yeah antibiotics and condoms would probably be good too.
posted by Ragini at 12:44 AM on May 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


The New York Times show-only recap called it a "bar-b-coup".
posted by about_time at 3:28 AM on May 16, 2016 [15 favorites]


About five minutes in, I quite literally said aloud: "oh thank god, Sansa and Jon weren't just one more missed connection". Because seriously, shit needs to start progressing. No more "two characters miss each other because they pass on either side of a hill" bullshit, thanks.

I'm glad that Dany's storyline is going somewhere. I still think they could have made it there in an episode less (maybe two). I'd have been happier if they'd left her out of the first episode of the season entirely, and only did a little in 2, and then this in 3.

Too bad about Osha. I feel like she was criminally underused after S1, and having her be one more notch on Ramsay's belt is pretty meh. I'm so tired of Ramsay. Hey showrunners: we get it, he's crazy. He's also not very interesting, so maybe work on that, or kill him?

I feel like they're trying so hard to make Ramsay the bad guy that we'll be happy when he's (hopefully) pushed out by Sansa/Jon, but in reality the storyline would be way more interesting if he was a complex character who maybe you could even kinda see where he was coming from and maybe there was some tension between what he wanted versus what the Starks want. Instead, he's basically a cross between Snidely Whiplash and a rapist with no goals or motivation other than "kill, fuck [not necessarily in that order", which gets old real quick.

I hope the Iron Islands stuff ends up being interesting or meaningful, because right now it feels like a distraction the show can't really afford.
posted by tocts at 5:16 AM on May 16, 2016 [7 favorites]


Aww, Tormund's heart eyes the moment Brienne rode in were priceless. I've never understood people shipping her and Jaime anyway; she deserves so much better than Uncle Daddy.

The Dothraki should be much more mindful of fire safety. No open fire in a highly flammable tent!

Jorah is planning to infect Dany with the Eczema From Hell, isn't he? So that he'll be the only one left for her when she gets shunned? Creep.

Ramsay's letter was hilarious. Replace "come and see" with "lol", and he sounds like an internet troll.
posted by sively at 5:21 AM on May 16, 2016 [14 favorites]


Am I alone in rooting for the high sparrow?

I love it when fandom surprises me. I get the whole "none of these assholes should rule, tear the whole system down instead" thing, and I'm kind of rooting for that myself, but never would I have thought the sparrow has fans.

The thing I love about the sparrow as a character is the same thing I loved about literally every bad guy in "The Legend of Korra". They're all people who started out wanting good things, but took them waaaaaaay too far and got corrupted by their own ambition to pull the strings in the process.

It's kind of like Snowpiercer: Go on and have your little revolution, but unless you tear down the power structures themselves, they're going to make you as bad or worse than what you overthrew. The sparrow's like a young Khomeini to me.

Also there is something very "my basement is a consent-free zone" about the sparrow to me.
posted by middleclasstool at 5:43 AM on May 16, 2016 [11 favorites]


Also there is something very "my basement is a consent-free zone" about the sparrow to me.
I came here to write something else and saw that. Totally true.

I'm so glad they gave agency back to Dany instead of let's play another round of wait until Dragons save my ass, which where I thought this was going. That she takes advantage of the khals underestimating her reminds me of why I initially liked her character. Still, I'm not sold on her yet as being an actual LEADER.

Osha....my heart bleeds. I was so excited she was back and then...not so much. Is it too much to hope that after Jon and Sansa kick some Bolton butt, Melisandre brings her back?

I'm actually shocked to see that Cersei might be making a decent plan here. Seems like she's more together than even House Tyrell. Of course, once Margery GETS back....yeah not sure how that is going to go down. After all, King's Landing will be occupied by the Tyrell's. I think the short term plan is wise, but...I really really hope Cersei has finally figured out that trying to hold onto the Queenship at all costs is not a good plan.
posted by miss-lapin at 5:55 AM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


The High Sparrow looked into the camera and said he realized he was living in a story. I assume he meant the show and not the books.

"Westeros is a flat circle hollow sphere..."
posted by Strange Interlude at 6:17 AM on May 16, 2016 [4 favorites]


Is it too much to hope that after Jon and Sansa kick some Bolton butt, Melisandre brings her back?

A character who can do what Melisandre did to John has about three episodes left in a story like this. You can't have RESURRECT DEAD sitting there on the board waiting to be used again.
posted by gerryblog at 6:23 AM on May 16, 2016 [9 favorites]


I think Benioff and Weiss are just having fun with seeing how many cartoon-villain tropes (e.g. peeling/eating the apple with a knife) they can work in with Ramsey before they kill him off in the next 4-5 episodes.
posted by Strange Interlude at 6:28 AM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


Jorah is planning to infect Dany with the Eczema From Hell, isn't he?

No, that makes no sense. He's a fool and creepy at times, but not THAT creepy.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:43 AM on May 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


Khal-B-Que and "bar-b-coup"

Daenerys Stormborn of the House Targaryen, First of Her Name, the Unburt, Queen of the Andals and the First Men, Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea, Breaker of Chains, Mother of Dragons ---

Pit Master of the Dothraki
posted by dawg-proud at 6:52 AM on May 16, 2016 [12 favorites]


I think Benioff and Weiss are just having fun with seeing how many cartoon-villain tropes (e.g. peeling/eating the apple with a knife) they can work in with Ramsey before they kill him off in the next 4-5 episodes.

Ramsey was intentionally toying with Osha in that scene, by leaving a knife nearby, seeming forgotten and out of his view. There was no way it was going to end any other way, based on who Osha was and who Ramsey is. He toyed with her, to make it seem like a chance, when she never did (his hidden knife). There's no other way I would have wanted it to end, other than her killing him.

His letter to Jon is obviously a goading tactic, designed to get them all attacking him, possibly while he slips into Castle Black.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:56 AM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


Sparrow fan here. We do exist! I think for me 90% of my love for the character is Jonathan Pryce's wonderful portrayal. I'm not necessarily on team sparrow, but the people in power are really really awful.

Remember when Cersei murdered all those babies? The tyrels are good only in so far as they are not as bad. They are schemers who started a war backing a totally illegitimate candidate (Renly) out of self interest. They then switched sides to support team incest/baby-murder when it suited and then conspired to kill the King but flipped the narrative to blame Sansa and Tyrion so they could re-up with team incest/baby-murder. Between the two families so so many 'little people' have died it's not at all surprising that the Sparrow has come to power.
posted by French Fry at 7:11 AM on May 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


The noble families only want to screw you out of your money and freedom. The sparrows want to screw you out of you.
posted by Pope Guilty at 7:22 AM on May 16, 2016 [8 favorites]


Am I the only one who thought this episode was also genuinely funny ?Like, Pycelle's slow, loud and extra long walk out of the king's chamber left me in stitches, along with several other great moments (such as, of course, Tormund's looks at Brienne). I don't really remember the show ever having that much of a fun sense of humor in previous episodes.
posted by General Malaise at 7:25 AM on May 16, 2016 [18 favorites]


Re: Dany's one weird trick (Khals hate her!)

For some reason, it bubbled up on my feed this past week that Emilia Clark has a "no-nudity" clause in her contract now. So when she walked out of the temple, I was primed to look for the body-replacement CGI, and it seemed quite a bit more obvious than it did for Cersei's walk.
posted by sparklemotion at 7:36 AM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]




I just found the fire thing a little odd. I guess I had always thought of her previous fire survival as a one-off miracle, not as a repeatable superpower. So is that what it is? She literally cannot get burned by fire, and can walk through one any time she wants?
posted by dnash at 7:50 AM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


If you remember back back to season 1 in what was perhaps the first episode, the servants warned her that her bath was too hot and she walked into it like it was a cool refreshing dip in the pool.
posted by mmascolino at 7:54 AM on May 16, 2016 [8 favorites]


I guess I had always thought of her previous fire survival as a one-off miracle, not as a repeatable superpower.

If you remember back back to season 1 in what was perhaps the first episode, the servants warned her that her bath was too hot and she walked into it like it was a cool refreshing dip in the pool.

And later on handles the dragon eggs that have been sitting on hot coals without getting burned.
posted by rocketman at 7:56 AM on May 16, 2016 [3 favorites]


And later on handles the dragon eggs that have been sitting on hot coals without getting burned.

Poor Doreah. I wonder what Esserosi burn care looks like.
posted by Pope Guilty at 7:59 AM on May 16, 2016


That's not what she's saying.

Huh... what's the German word for assuming that something is CGI when it's really not? I assume it's something like furiosaschamen.
posted by sparklemotion at 8:00 AM on May 16, 2016 [4 favorites]


That's not what she's saying.

I thought it was CGI too, but maybe that was just because of the fire?

The nudity in that scene had way more impact and (to my mind, but I'm not a woman, so I may be way off base) felt more empowering to her character, particularly with a bunch of manly-men kneeling before her after she'd barbecued their leaders.

I'm still not sure it was necessary, but it felt more appropriate than the usual "and now...prostitutes!" that they normally do.

I in no way blame the actresses for this at all, but the CGI "solution" strikes me as a very icky way of kicking the can down the road. We'll still objectify an actress's body, but we'll use a cheap one we can pay scale to and we'll literally remove her head from the shot so you can't even see her face. That feels more exploitative, not less.
posted by middleclasstool at 8:01 AM on May 16, 2016 [10 favorites]


word for assuming that something is CGI when it's really not?

Sounds sort of like the opposite of the uncanny valley. So the canny valley? The uncanny mountain? The canny mountain?
posted by paper chromatographologist at 8:07 AM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


General Malaise: Am I the only one who thought this episode was also genuinely funny ?Like, Pycelle's slow, loud and extra long walk out of the king's chamber left me in stitches

Remember back to some earlier episode where he's getting up from time spent in the company of a young lady, and he's naked and spry, and he stretches before putting on his clothes and chains and resumes his hunched shuffle. He's playing a number of games, like everyone else.
posted by filthy light thief at 8:09 AM on May 16, 2016 [9 favorites]


tilde: All those eyebrows at the dinner table. Niiiiice.

Dolorous Edd wins, though. Best face acting in this episode.
posted by filthy light thief at 8:10 AM on May 16, 2016 [5 favorites]


Dany's relationship with nudity has definitely evolved over the seasons.

At the beginning of season one, she was nude for the purposes of being gazed at by her brother and Khal Drogo. At the end of season one, her nudity was part of her triumph over the fire and the birth of her dragons.

In later seasons, she's used her nudity as a power play (when Daario sneaks in). Now again, she's nude at a moment of triumph. Very different than Cersei's atonement, which in itself was very different from random naked lady scene dressing.

Also, can we talk about the "you're too old to ride the dragon" exchange between Daario and Jorah? Because I can kind of see a reading where it's just male gaze nonsense/objectification, but I really loved it. You could see that Daario (a man who is likely not inexperienced) is full-on awed by this woman.
posted by sparklemotion at 8:11 AM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


Yeah, the nudity in the fire scene made scene and wasn't objectifying. Sure, the flames burned her clothes off, but they didn't burn her and Daenerys comes off as very powerful. It's somewhat similar to the scene where she stepped out of the tub in front of Daario Naharism, after he had killed his "brothers" for her. She just radiated power and knowing she was firmly in control.

Now if she could just learn how to rule and get her dragons under some sort of control.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:11 AM on May 16, 2016 [3 favorites]


Game of Thrones: "and now...prostitutes!"
posted by tilde at 8:20 AM on May 16, 2016


Am I alone in rooting for the high sparrow?

I'm certainly not. There are too damn many real life would-be High Sparrows. Some of them recently ran for the Republican nomination for President. I want to get my vicarious cathartic revenge by having something truly horrific happen to the High Sparrow. Let Ramsey Bolton at him.
posted by dnash at 8:24 AM on May 16, 2016 [5 favorites]


It's not surprising that Jon was still hesitant to do anything, while Sansa is raring to do something. He's been alive about a day and still reeling from knowing he was 1) killed for doing the right thing 2) knowing there's no after life 3) dealing with sending Ollie there. Sansa's had some time to adjust to the awfulness that she endured, so she's ready to move on.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:30 AM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


I thought it was CGI too, but maybe that was just because of the fire?

The way I read her statement, she wasn't standing around naked on location... it sounds like they filmed her nude shots on a closed set somewhere else and then composited her into the scene? So she should still look like a digital insert?
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 8:31 AM on May 16, 2016


Khal-B-Que

A friend suggested "Real Housewives of the Dothraki just got hella serious!"
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:47 AM on May 16, 2016 [3 favorites]


I hope the Iron Islands stuff ends up being interesting or meaningful, because right now it feels like a distraction the show can't really afford.

I hope and expect they're setting Theon up for leading the Iron Islands army toward some serious personal revenge-getting. I'll lay odds that he strikes the killing blow against Ramsey, with Sansa looking on with approval.
posted by schoolgirl report at 8:49 AM on May 16, 2016


I'll lay odds that he strikes the killing blow against Ramsey, with Sansa looking on with approval.

It should be Sansa who delivers the killing blow. What that's, she's never held a sword and it'll take a while of her hacking away at his neck? Not seeing the problem here. Yeah, it probably won't happen that way, but I can dream.

Is who is going to kill Ramsey and how the newest deadpool? 'Cause I got 10 Gold Dragons on it being Jon, after minutes of swordplay. That seems like how the showrunners would have things go. But they're wrong and it should be Sansa.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:06 AM on May 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


(This might be the wrong place to ask this since the answer may involve book spoilers but as a non-book reader I'd rather not go into the other thread.) Was it always Daenerys' intention to conquer the Dothroki tribes eventually, or was this simply a case of an opportunity presenting itself and she took it (while saving herself from being killed by the khals in a long and brutal ordeal)?

I hope and expect they're setting Theon up for leading the Iron Islands army toward some serious personal revenge-getting. I'll lay odds that he strikes the killing blow against Ramsey, with Sansa looking on with approvalI hope and expect they're setting Theon up for leading the Iron Islands army toward some serious personal revenge-getting. I'll lay odds that he strikes the killing blow against Ramsey, with Sansa looking on with approval..

Yes, it would be great if Sansa hands over the "honor" to Theon. If it weren't for him she'd never been able to escape, plus he's the one who's suffered more permanent personal damage due to Ramsey. Whatever, I'm gonna need Ramsey's death to be a lot worse than Joffrey's.
posted by fuse theorem at 9:07 AM on May 16, 2016


Sansa won't wield the blade herself; she'll give the order. AS QUEENINDANORF
posted by The Nutmeg of Consolation at 9:11 AM on May 16, 2016 [4 favorites]


I'm delighted that the murder of Shireen hasn't just be swept under the rug. It's great that Brienne and Daavos, two character I both love, are at odds with each other. But if he finds out how Shireen died, then he and Brienne will become allies right quick (probably). I suspect Melissandre won't be alive much longer, which will neatly take care of the "Hey, X just died, go get the Red Queen!"

I wonder if Ollie had asked for forgiveness if Jon would have spared him. Probably not, but it sure has hell would have tore him up emotionally. At the moment, he's still messed up from everything, including Thorne's comments that Jon would be fighting for someone else, forever.

Which is perceptive from Thorne's limited view, but silly overall. It's just a matter of Jon choosing what he'll fight for ('cause sitting on the sidelines and monking out really isn't an option right now). Choosing to fight for family and their birth home, to help against the White Walkers would be a choice.

Though Rickon won't be saved. Ramsay has him and that'll probably be one of the last nails the showrunners use to hammer home that Ramsay is sick psycho. In case we forgot.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:22 AM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


io9 brought up the possibility of Rickon having hung around cannibals in his time under Osha, so maybe Rickon will wind up eating Ramsey? Unlikely, but I am intrigued and wish to subscribe to this newsletter.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:33 AM on May 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


It occurred to me that maybe we've got him all wrong. This is a fantasy world. It is possible that his devotion and humility are genuine, not the hypocritical bullshit we expect in the real world Presidential candidates.
posted by humanfont at 9:49 AM on May 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


Do you think that Cersei was being honest and upfront with her plan? My interpretation was that she was going to purposefully sabotage the plan, so that High Garden's army ends up in a bloody fight against the Sparrows. "Hopefully" they end up fighting and destroying each other, the High Garden kids end up being killed in the process, and High Garden gets blamed for attacking the Faith. And the Lannister army in the city can then come in and take care of any survivors. From Cersei's perspective it is win-win; she destroys all her enemies politically and militarily, and it would basically be a repeat of the end of Season 1.
posted by Balna Watya at 9:59 AM on May 16, 2016 [3 favorites]


[Show only thread y'all, skip the books stuff.]
posted by cortex at 10:04 AM on May 16, 2016


What's Baelish's long game? I know that's a hard thing to unpack, beyond the stock "he would burn Westeros to the ground if he could be king of the ashes", but I'm curious what everyone thinks about his plan to "rescue" Sansa.

Restoring the Starks is, on the surface, what he's going for. But what ulterior motive? To gain Sansa's gratitude and a powerful backing from the North? To arrange a marriage?

Gotta say it was great to see him back. He improves the show.
posted by rocketman at 10:12 AM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


It occurred to me that maybe we've got him all wrong. This is a fantasy world. It is possible that his devotion and humility are genuine, not the hypocritical bullshit we expect in the real world Presidential candidates.

The High Sparrow? Well, people IRL can also be humble & devoted, and hold really rotten beliefs. And that's how I read his character, too. He's genuine about his religious fervour, but his faith is e.g. homophobic and dictates that imprisonment, torture, shamewalking and execution are righteous methods.
posted by sively at 10:18 AM on May 16, 2016 [5 favorites]


I've been fast forwarding through most of Ramsay Bolton's scenes this season. My viewing experience has greatly improved since I started doing that.

I'm bracing myself for the possibility that Terrible Ramsay will defeat the Starks and either Jon or Sansa will be murdered. Although what would be interesting is if Ramsay kills Jon and he gets resurrected again. Freshly resurrected Jon confronts Ramsay, who is then paralyzed by shock, allowing Sansa to stab him in the back with his own stupid apple knife.
posted by joeyjoejoejr at 10:19 AM on May 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


Freshly resurrected Jon confronts Ramsay, who is then paralyzed by shock, allowing Sansa to stab him in the back with his own stupid apple knife.

Come and see.
posted by rocketman at 10:21 AM on May 16, 2016 [12 favorites]


What's Baelish's long game? I know that's a hard thing to unpack, beyond the stock "he would burn Westeros to the ground if he could be king of the ashes", but I'm curious what everyone thinks about his plan to "rescue" Sansa.

He wants to put combine the Vale and North to be able to handle other houses. Both the Vale and North are considered unconquerable and that's a helluva power base to start from.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:21 AM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


On a sidenote, typing "Tormund" into Google now results with "and Brienne" as a top result, and there are hordes of glorious Twitter responses.
posted by corb at 10:50 AM on May 16, 2016 [7 favorites]


I am trying to piece together Petyr's plans within plans, and I'm not quite sure how getting House Arryn involved in the fight for the North fits in. It is known that he wants to be King, and he's planning to do that by having power in both the North and the Vale.

In the Vale, he married Lysa in the hopes of working through her for control but she turned out to be too crazy to be an asset, so he's working on Robin, who he has eating out of his hand.

In the North, when he arranged the marriage of Sansa and Ramsey, he told her his plan was to was to maneuver her into the position of Wardeness of the North -- either by her being the only logical choice to hold Winterfell if Stannis beat the Boltons, or by her being the good wife to the heir of the victorious House Bolton.

I think that if things had worked out with Stannis, he would have angled for a marriage to her for reasons both gross and political. But, his backup plan seemed to be to have the Lannisters take out house Bolton and have himself be named Warden of the North in exchange for Sansa.

But now, he's getting House Arryn involved, is it because he doesn't expect the Lannisters to move? Or because he wants to keep Sansa in the game?
posted by sparklemotion at 10:59 AM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


If you're looking for gifs of those glances between Tormound and Brienne, Vanity Fair has what you need. I need a cig.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:01 AM on May 16, 2016 [9 favorites]


Game of Thrones bingo cards. 10 cards, with fresh ones promised for 6.05.
posted by rewil at 11:02 AM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


It occurred to me that maybe we've got him all wrong. This is a fantasy world. It is possible that his devotion and humility are genuine, not the hypocritical bullshit we expect in the real world Presidential candidates.

The scene between Jaime and the Sparrow in Baelor's Sept disproves this. The Sparrow knows exactly what he's doing, he's playing the Game. Sure, perhaps he's a true believer, and that would only make him more terrifying and grotesque, not less.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 11:20 AM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


Do you think that Cersei was being honest and upfront with her plan?

No; this "why don't you come and crush the Sparrows while we watch from the sidelines" plan seems like it'd basically hand control of Kings' Landing to the Tyrells, who she despises.

It does feel like a "let our enemies weaken each other before we spring the trap" thing. Cersei using Olenna's protectiveness of Margery as the bait: because surely in normal circumstances Olenna would stop and wonder why Cersei all-of-a-sudden cares about Margery's fate.

(Also, I suspect Kevan will either fall into line with the real plan, or will meet with a sudden fatal Jaime-or-Gregor-induced accident.)
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 11:22 AM on May 16, 2016 [5 favorites]


Olenna's way too smart not to see right through Cersei's sudden "o let us work together we are frands" nonsense.

Although they gave Baelish the Idiot Ball this week. The only way he gets out of this alive is to kill Sansa before she spills the beans.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 11:24 AM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


Is Littlefinger's power in the Vale contingent on Robin remaining (a) alive, and (b) manipulable by his good ol' Uncle Petyr? Who would the Lord of the Vale title pass to if Robin met some sort of "this kid's going to get us all killed if we don't frag him first" accident?
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 11:33 AM on May 16, 2016 [3 favorites]


I think the nature of Baelish's plans is that he is just always rolling boxcars, doubling down and rolling again. His risk/reward math just keeps getting bigger and bigger and less likely. It seems in terms of narrative his play with Sansa and the Boltons is going to be the roll that breaks him, but who knows. He tends to be magically good at being 'the schemer' in the same way ramsay is magically good at being a 'the sadist'. He had a knife at his throat from both the lannisters and starks as far back as season 1 but he just keeps scheming his way out. All part of the plan etc.
posted by French Fry at 11:34 AM on May 16, 2016 [5 favorites]


Who would the Lord of the Vale title pass to if Robin met some sort of "this kid's going to get us all killed if we don't frag him first" accident?

I think that ventures into books territory, bc it involves going into some family tree stuff. You'd probably have to go back a couple generations and find a cadet branch.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 11:40 AM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


But now, he's getting House Arryn involved, is it because he doesn't expect the Lannisters to move? Or because he wants to keep Sansa in the game?

It seems to me that the arrangement of the marriage between Bolton and Sansa was entirely to sell it as her being kidnapped and married against her will, so that he could enlist the Vale to conquer Winterfell for him.
posted by dis_integration at 11:42 AM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


It should be Sansa who delivers the killing blow. What that's, she's never held a sword and it'll take a while of her hacking away at his neck? Not seeing the problem here. Yeah, it probably won't happen that way, but I can dream.

Am I the only one that's kind of annoyed at how obvious this sort of outcome is? Not Sansa hacking away at Bolton's neck, but at Jon+Sansa killing Bolton. Although the Vale is going to complicate things, Ramsay has been so thoroughly established as Evil with a capital E, as an entirely unrelatable character, that he, like King Joffrey, is just doomed to die. And they can't kill Jon twice can they? And Sansa got her torture scenes in, so they can't kill her off. It seems like there are no Red Weddings in our future, and that disappoints me in terms of the gutsiness of the show runners to fight against conventional narrative expectations.
posted by dis_integration at 12:07 PM on May 16, 2016


And Sansa got her torture scenes in, so they can't kill her off.

I very much want Sansa to live happily ever after ruling the North (and taking lovers when it suits her but leaving the heir producing to Rickon and his chosen bride because her newly established direwolf foster program satisfies any maternal urges that she might have).

But given that this show is this show, I'm not convinced that they can't kill her off.

Am I the only one that's kind of annoyed at how obvious this sort of outcome is? ... It seems like there are no Red Weddings in our future

Ramsay Bolton killed Walder Frey's daughter and grandson. If Frey decides that it's in his political interests, he'll be quite a bit more justified in doing to the Boltons what he did to the Starks. And you're forgetting Pyke, which has got to figure in the mainland plot again at some point. And, you know, all of the Wildlings. And the Walkers.

There are plenty of ways for Ramsay to die. It doesn't have to be at the hands of someone we love (nobody felt cheated by Joffrey's death, I hope).
posted by sparklemotion at 12:24 PM on May 16, 2016 [3 favorites]


I have a deep an abiding hope that when Starks come to shove: Ramsay completely vanishes, because it accomplishes so much; subverting the narrative expectations of his 'satisfying death', makes his character slightly interesting as an unseen threat, and most importantly gets him the hell off screen.
posted by French Fry at 12:24 PM on May 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


I could imagine Sansa somehow sacrificing herself to kill Ramsay. Of course, I thought she was going to sacrifice herself to kill Joffrey a few seasons ago.
posted by dfan at 12:24 PM on May 16, 2016


Something interesting I can see possibly happening is Baelish and the Vale take Winterfell before Jon and Sansa can get there (either killing Ramsay themselves or saving him as a gift to Sansa), and then there's just a super awkward decision/negotiation of who gets to keep Winterfell, the Arryns or the Starks.
posted by General Malaise at 12:33 PM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


Theory: the white walkers are biding their time for *something*, and also watching and waiting while Westeros conveniently destroys itself from within. But what if they still need allies to accomplish whatever their goal is?

Ramsey & the Flayers meet up with Sansa and the Wildlings (Jon can come, if he feels like it I guess) in battle somewhere between Winterfell and the Wall. The Boltons are routed (b/c of last minute reinforcements from the Vale) and Ramsey runs of in the chaos of the battle.

He's walking through some woods trying to figure out his next move when this guy, or this guy (who have been monitoring things, of course) comes up to him, and offers him a deal.

Is there any reason why Ramsay Bolton wouldn't team up with the Walkers? Is there anyone in Westeros besides him who would?
posted by sparklemotion at 12:39 PM on May 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


I saw Dany come out of the fire and figured there was a meeting somewhere with her... "Emilia, we want you to do another nude scene." [Emilia Clarke stares, skeptically] "IT'S FUCKING AWESOME, EMILIA, YOU'RE SURROUNDED BY BURNING DOTHRAKI." "... Yeah. Let's do this."
posted by rmd1023 at 12:57 PM on May 16, 2016 [3 favorites]


I could imagine Sansa somehow sacrificing herself to kill Ramsay. Of course, I thought she was going to sacrifice herself to kill Joffrey a few seasons ago.

She was, back in season 2! Joffrey was proudly showing off Ned's head on a pike, while they stood on a high bridge and that pissed Sansa off so much she was moving to push him off, consequences be damned. But then the Hound noticed what she was about to happen and stepped in to prevent her from doing so, without mentioning what she was trying to do.

I still think the Hound is alive. Mostly because of clumsy scripting. When Brienne told Sansa that Arya was still alive, she didn't mention she was with the Hound and Pod was some distance away and didn't bring it up. That's a strange bit of writing, why wouldn't Brienne mention that? Because it creates some sort of plot hole in something else later. Add in that Brienne said she searched for 3 days and never mentioned the Hounds body and that sad fucker is alive somewhere and will pop up. Maybe with the Vale's troops heading west, they'll stumbled across him and he'll tag along? He certainly had an itch to be a father to the Sansa and Arya.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:58 PM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


When Brienne told Sansa that Arya was still alive, she didn't mention she was with the Hound and Pod was some distance away and didn't bring it up.

"I saw her, with a man, I don't think he hurt her. She didn't want to leave him, he didn't want to leave her..."

Brienne has no reason to know that Sansa had past dealings with The Hound.
posted by sparklemotion at 1:10 PM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


Also - I don't understand why they would bring The Hound back as a character. Sure, he became a sorta fan-favorite, but he was always an auxilliary character, and he got a complete arc (as part of assisting Sansa and then Arya on their arcs).

He doesn't bring any special knowledge that could help anyone (friend or foe), he's a decent fighter, but there are plenty of those in the world, he doesn't really have allegiances to anyone but himself (and, unlike LittleFinger or other self dealers, he doesn't have the power/money/charisma to change the course of anything). And I can't really imagine a more fitting end for him -- what's he going to do? Go be head of house Clegane because Gregor is, um... busy? Die in a different battle (that won't be as well choreographed or feature anywhere near enough Gwendoline Christie grunts)?

That the show took a character who could have just been a throwaway henchman trope, showed us that he was not as heartless as he seemed (even before the Blackwater, he showed some kindnesses to Sansa), showed us he had vulnerabilities (the Blackwater), and used the softening of his heart as a foil to the hardening of Arya's, all while keeping him plot relevant was pretty impressive. I'm ok with leaving him to die, in pain and alone, cursing the old gods and the new.

If the show needs a self-serving fighter who's kind of a dick and isn't afraid to show it, they can give Bronn some scenes.
posted by sparklemotion at 1:24 PM on May 16, 2016 [5 favorites]


Brienne has no reason to know that Sansa had past dealings with The Hound.

Pod specifically told her who he was when they met him and Arya near the Vale. That's pretty how Brienne figured out that it was Arya.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:35 PM on May 16, 2016


Yes, Brienne knew that it was the Hound, but she didn't have reason to know that Sansa would care.

So, I'll admit that the dialog between Brienne and Sansa was probably convenient from a scriptwriting perspective (did they really want to go into how Sansa would feel about her sister being with the Hound in a scene that was going to end up being about Theon leaving?), but it's also not inconsistent with what we know that the characters know.

Maybe Pod could have spoken up while he was failing at making the fire, but holy hell that conversation was not his to butt into.
posted by sparklemotion at 1:41 PM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


Also - I don't understand why they would bring The Hound back as a character.

He seemed to be transforming into something vaguely resembling a hero, so there's curiosity on whether he'll go all the way. Plus, I just don't think he died out there in the vale. He had basically hit rock bottom, he plans for selling Arya were repeated squashed, he was badly injured, there was no place to call home or family, except for Arya and he didn't realize until Brienne confronted them. It would be interesting to see where the character went, emotionally and mentally.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:42 PM on May 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


Maybe the Hound will come back riding Shaggydog who is totally not dead la la la I can't hear you.
posted by corb at 1:59 PM on May 16, 2016 [3 favorites]


Davos is totally going to want to kill Melisandre when he finds out about Shireen. What will come of that? A plot twist of cosmic irony, when Mel dies before she would be needed to resurrect someone we love? Or will Davos be required to once again disregard his own moral instincts because Mel is too useful? He can't remain teamed up with Shireens murderer, though. But Jon can't be the one to condemn her to death anyway, considering what he owes her. The possibilities, they abound!
posted by sively at 2:29 PM on May 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


The last scene with Dany made me think about how much GoT has dialed back the sexposition. Remember the first two seasons where every episode or two we had a scene like Viserys in the bath speechifying about the Targaryens with a prostitute or Theon speechifying about the Starks with Ros or Littlefinger in the brothel speechifying about... stuff... with prostitutes? They don't do that anymore. I guess they figured they have a big enough audience without (that particular form of) gratuitous T&A.
posted by Justinian at 2:37 PM on May 16, 2016 [3 favorites]


I would seem to be out of character for Lady Tyrell to be this trusting of Cersie's plan and just agree to send in her army to attack the faith militant and the sparrows.
posted by humanfont at 2:39 PM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


Her main goal is to save Margaery. After that, she'll deal with the Lannisters, if Cersei doesn't manage to double cross her first. Olenna's no fool and no doubt expects Cersei to try something, but her main focus is her grand-daughter, which make cause her to lose focus on the Lannisters.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 2:51 PM on May 16, 2016


I would seem to be out of character for Lady Tyrell to be this trusting of Cersie's plan and just agree to send in her army to attack the faith militant and the sparrows.

I think that depends on what Olenna thinks Cersei's long game is*. The show didn't give us much time to see her puzzling things out, since getting her grandchildren out of prison is a shortterm outcome of Cersei's plan, I can see her being tempted to play along for now.

*I'm still not sure what Cersei's long game is. Maybe she's hoping Margaery and Loras meet with "accidents" during the Tyrell vs. Sparrow fighting? What makes her so confident that her people will get to them before Olenna's people do?
posted by sparklemotion at 2:54 PM on May 16, 2016


1) I have never shipped anyone before but I am shipping Brienne/Tormund SO HARD.

2) The Hound is not dead if only because I expect a post-show spinoff called Arya and The Hound where they go on adventures and fight crime while saying snarky things to each other.

3) I agree Dany's nudity was powerful, not objectifying, this time around. She was like a Greek Goddess in all her glory, and you better fucking bow down.

4) Nobody's mentioned yet how much mentally tougher Sansa was than Jon. They've both been through some very traumatic shit, but Sansa is ready to face it down and beat it back and Jon wants to go crawl in a hole and have feelings about his hair. Jon is very lost right now; Sansa for the first time knows exactly where she's going and has no fear of it.

5) Did I mention Brienne/Tormund????
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 3:01 PM on May 16, 2016 [7 favorites]


FanFare: Brienne and Tormund at Winterfell. Sansa when the walls fell!
posted by tilde at 3:07 PM on May 16, 2016 [13 favorites]


5) Did I mention Brienne/Tormund????

I think that the Brimund/Torenne ship has a leak, and that leak is that Brienne doesn't truck with rapers or pillagers.

Tormund has undeniably got the bug, as Jaime did (but didn't want to admit to himself) before him. But I don't see Brienne going for it, unless it's in a Eowyn and Faramir realizing that they are both still standing and conveniently hanging out in this hospital together at the very very very end of the story kind of way.

My girl has work to do -- she doesn't have for that D.
posted by sparklemotion at 3:11 PM on May 16, 2016 [4 favorites]


I'm actually okay of it's just Tormund pining after her, because Brienne is a bad-ass goddess made flesh and it was fantastic to see Tormund struck dumb by realizing the same thing the audience knows. It's a nice change of pace to have a female character on a show that women really admire and look up to, who doesn't perform traditional femininity, be the one who makes a man completely fall to pieces with admiration, rather than a one-dimensional male fantasy of femininity and boobs.

Although in my preferred headcannon, he decides to woo Brienne by awkwardly mentoring nerdy proper Podrick with helpful stories about how to make war in the least civilized manner possible, because there is no such thing as an episode with too much Podrick.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 3:20 PM on May 16, 2016 [16 favorites]


It's a nice change of pace to have a female character on a show that women really admire and look up to, who doesn't perform traditional femininity, be the one who makes a man completely fall to pieces with admiration.

Absolutely! Which is why I have no interest in watching Brienne have a crush on anyone (beyond the honor-and-duty crush she gets on everyone she swears fealty to). It's also why I like where they've gone with Dany's sexuality.

In a completely unrelated random thought that I might as well put here: Tommen taking advice from Pycelle (for whatever it's worth) is in keeping with my theory that as part of finding the gonads to lead, he's taking the time to learn from anyone willing to teach him, but his decisions will be his own. I wonder if he is going to be the one to throw the wrench into Cersei's latest scheme.
posted by sparklemotion at 3:27 PM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


4) Nobody's mentioned yet how much mentally tougher Sansa was than Jon.

I don't think it's good to compare who's mentally tougher based on this one episode, as Sansa's had more time to process what's she been through. Jon's been back from the dead for only about a day, he's still dealing with everything.

We could discuss who's had it worse, but I don't see that as being much fun or very productive. At this point, it's just cool that they've been reunited.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:51 PM on May 16, 2016 [3 favorites]


"I don't think it's good to compare who's mentally tougher based on this one episode,"

Yeah, but I think the script/director/etc. were clearly setting up that contrast, between Jon's desire to hide (refusing to remain Lord Commander, not wanting to go after Ramsey, not even being able to bear reading the rest of the letter out loud) and Sansa's determination to fight and willingness to face the ugliness of Ramsey. Obviously (to me, anyway), Jon has to continue on his journey of growth and find a purpose and a heroic role; I don't think he's permanently flummoxed. But I think they clearly wanted to contrast Sansa's strength here with Jon's weakness.

Anyway, I didn't mean cosmically, just in this episode.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 4:04 PM on May 16, 2016 [3 favorites]


I think that the Brimund/Torenne ship has a leak, and that leak is that Brienne doesn't truck with rapers or pillagers.

Is it possible she'll see it as a class issue and that Tormund is below her socially? A Lannister he is not. Whatever, I wouldn't mind seeing Brienne get her some, especially since it would be from somebody well-matched to her physically and who seems like he'd be in awe of her on multiple fronts.
posted by fuse theorem at 4:12 PM on May 16, 2016


But I think they clearly wanted to contrast Sansa's strength here with Jon's weakness.

Interesting, I saw more contrast in old Sansa vs new Sansa and that was the enjoyably startling difference. Jon will obviously get his crap together, the show didn't bring him back from the dead for no reason. Him wanting to crawl back into bed seemed typically human.

Is it possible she'll see it as a class issue and that Tormund is below her socially?

If she doesn't, Pod most certainly will. I think Brienne will be intrigued, especially since she's rarely, if ever, gotten admiration from men for being who she is. That might be interesting enough for her to overlook the rough edges of Tormound's previous ways.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 4:19 PM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


If they bring the Hound back, I'd like to see him finish off Ser Strong the Frankenmountain. Perhaps by burning him.
posted by rmd1023 at 5:31 PM on May 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


Is it possible she'll see it as a class issue and that Tormund is below her socially? A Lannister he is not.

Given how she was treated by other people of her class over the course of her life, I can't see Brienne having those sorts of prejudices. I think that what would be important to her is that a man be good and honorable (in the sense of treating people with honor and fairness).

Tormund does have that, but, you know, there's also all the murder (I don't honestly know if he's a rapist -- though I doubt he got consent from that bear).
posted by sparklemotion at 5:39 PM on May 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


How come Sansa was given a bowl of cold offal and everyone else got to chow down on turkey drumsticks?
posted by turbid dahlia at 6:57 PM on May 16, 2016 [3 favorites]


That's the real crime here.
posted by turbid dahlia at 6:57 PM on May 16, 2016 [5 favorites]


Those turkey would have been free range too.
posted by turbid dahlia at 6:57 PM on May 16, 2016 [4 favorites]


This gif based episode recap is very funny
posted by humanfont at 8:40 PM on May 16, 2016 [6 favorites]


But... those are jpgs...
posted by Justinian at 8:55 PM on May 16, 2016 [5 favorites]


I think that the Brimund/Torenne ship has a leak, and that leak is that Brienne doesn't truck with rapers or pillagers

Yes, but Tormund does have a great big bushy beard.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 9:04 PM on May 16, 2016 [4 favorites]


"Interesting, I saw more contrast in old Sansa vs new Sansa "

Definitely that too -- Sophie Turner's even speaking in a noticeably lower-pitched tone of voice than in prior seasons, which is a common actress technique to show a character has gotten more serious or weighty. She's done a really nice job embodying Sansa's emotional growth through her physical choices as an actress -- posture and voice and gestures, not just relying on the script and some facial expressions like a lesser actor might. I really enjoy watching her.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 9:40 PM on May 16, 2016 [8 favorites]


Me too! Sophie Tucker has always been my shadow MVP for acting chops on the show and I just *like* her character a lot cause she doesn't fall into a lot of easy high fantasy tropes and she's got a really defined growing up arc.
posted by The Whelk at 10:03 PM on May 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


Didn't Mance have a hundred thousand wildlings following him? But now Tormund has just two thousand. A combination of the attrition from the battles with Stannis and at Hardhome, plus the difference between boasting to your enemies versus realistically assessing your strength to your allies? (Tormund carefully notes that he has 2000 "able to run and fight"; "the rest are children and old people".)

But still: I was surprised that the wildling horde that's been positioned for years as such a threat to the North is now substantially outnumbered by the Bolton bannermen.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 10:35 AM on May 17, 2016 [5 favorites]


I think the Wildlings were always overestimated as a threat. The Wall was built to protect from the White Walkers, but people forgot that over the generations and began to assume it was built to protect against the Wildlings.
posted by Rock Steady at 10:55 AM on May 17, 2016 [9 favorites]


FanFare: Brienne and Tormund at Winterfell. Sansa when the walls fell!

Pycelle, when he farted.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 1:08 PM on May 17, 2016 [4 favorites]


I was surprised by the 2000 fighters left too but figured a good amount of rest have dispersed across the countryside now that they've gotten past the wall to do their own thing, as wildings are wont to do, especially as Castle Black couldn't feed that many mouths for even a day.
posted by jamaro at 1:17 PM on May 17, 2016 [2 favorites]


Jon is going to be shocked when he realizes that Tormund was counting himself as at least 100 of the 2000.
posted by drezdn at 7:25 PM on May 17, 2016 [5 favorites]




I expect the Tyrell and Dornish armies will beat the shit out of eachother soon and the knight of the Vale will get effed up somewhere up North.
posted by Justinian at 8:21 PM on May 17, 2016


Tormund was counting himself as at least 100 of the 2000.

He's probably good for it, though.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 9:16 PM on May 17, 2016 [7 favorites]


I don't see why Olenna Tyrell (lbr, she's not going to allow any idiot man to have anything other than titular control of the armies of Highgarden) would do anything to the Dornish armies except put up big signs saying LANNISTERS THIS WAY.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 10:18 PM on May 17, 2016 [2 favorites]


Arguably siccing another army on the Lannisters could result in that kingdom's leadership going "Oh hey, let's just go ahead and take the Iron Throne now so we can be in charge...what's that? There's a queen? *stab* I don't see a queen. Oh well, now we're in charge." I don't know if she's heard yet what's going on in Dorne, but if she has, she's smart enough to see that little coup as a kind of fundamentalist takeover itself and wouldn't trust it. Even if she doesn't know, bringing in another kingdom's army with its own agendas is a risk.

Olenna's number one goal here is getting Margeary out from under the fundos alive, but if she can do it in a way that preserves her power, she's absolutely going to do that because she is nooooooo dummy.
posted by middleclasstool at 5:37 AM on May 18, 2016 [1 favorite]


Eyebrows McGee: 4) Nobody's mentioned yet how much mentally tougher Sansa was than Jon. They've both been through some very traumatic shit, but Sansa is ready to face it down and beat it back and Jon wants to go crawl in a hole and have feelings about his hair. Jon is very lost right now; Sansa for the first time knows exactly where she's going and has no fear of it.

This episode showed three pairs of siblings, where the sister was still ready to fight, while the brother had all but given up. Sansa was ready to take back Winterfell, while Jon was finished fighting (having being killed by his brothers and whatnot). Jon said "I fought and I lost," and hasn't taken Davos' words to heart (yet?)
Jon: I did what I thought was right. And I got murdered for it. And now I'm back. Why? I don't know. Maybe we'll never know. What does it matter?
Davos: You go on. You fight for as long as you can. You clean up as much of the shit as you can.
Jon: I don't know how to do that. I thought I did, but... I failed.
Davos: Good. Now go fail again.
(I might have gotten some of those quote attributes wrong, but you get the gist.)

Margaery & Loras were in a similar dynamic, as were Yara & Theon. The brothers were broken, had given up, given in, while the sisters were still willing to fight.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:59 AM on May 18, 2016 [9 favorites]


The brothers were broken, had given up, given in, while the sisters were still willing to fight.

Not quite. The sisters were clearly in the positions of power, but for only one of them was that unusual, Margeary and Yara are used to being in charge. Theon, arguely the one who's suffered the most (though we don't know what exactly was done to Loras), is willing to fight (he killed a soldier to save Pod and wants to help Yara become Queen) .

Jon is still reeling from being back from the dead for only a day, so he'll come around. I suspect Loras will wind up dying, it looked like he had been tortured and hasn't had time to recover.

It's clear, to me, that Margaery and Yara will remain the leaders in their sibling relationships. I do hope something similar occurs for Sansa, where she at least uses her talents to help build an army which Jon can then lead into battle )since he's the one with fighting experience). I just don't want to see Sansa relegated to playing second fiddle for Jon, they should be working together as equals.

Hmm, Sansa and Theon have a bond now, so the Ironborn could possibly be for aid.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:54 AM on May 18, 2016 [3 favorites]


Ah, the Entertainment Weekly recap reveals what happened to Loras:
Ser Loras is in terrible shape. He doesn’t explain what’s happened to him, but actor Finn Jones told us his character had been severely physically and sexually abused while in solitary confinement.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:01 PM on May 18, 2016 [1 favorite]


I've been trying not to think too hard about what happened to Loras -- it was obviously terrible and I'm glad they just showed us the aftermath.

But that brings up something that I was thinking about. Margaery thinks that she was sent in to try to "turn" Loras (get him to confess/whatever). I actually think that she was sent in as part of an attempt to break her. She is stronger than Loras, and could probably put up with whatever torture they subjected her to. But would she be so stubborn if it were her brother's suffering that she was prolonging?

Pretty soon, the High Sparrow will be soothingly telling her all about how her brother's suffering could end at any moment, if she would only confess/repent/atone/whatever.
posted by sparklemotion at 12:32 PM on May 18, 2016 [10 favorites]


I actually think that she was sent in as part of an attempt to break her.

I think that is likely the case. I think she may have been under some illusions regarding his treatment. Margaery seems like the only person who's shared a room with the high sparrow who is not getting successfully conned by him. She's seeing his moves for the most part.

They may not be willing to torture the queen, but they can use Loras' suffering against her in that way.
posted by French Fry at 1:30 PM on May 18, 2016 [2 favorites]


It seems part of the misogyny of the show for us to see Loras (my poor sweet stupid Loras) only in the aftermath of his abuse while they are more than willing to linger pornographically over the abuse of women.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 2:09 PM on May 18, 2016 [5 favorites]


Sansa could say: I did what I thought was right and got my dire wolf killed, got tortured, married to a Bolton, raped and then tortured some more. Now please proceed with your son story about being murdered that one time and laying around for a few days. my boo hoo John Snow did you get a boo boo.
posted by humanfont at 2:21 PM on May 18, 2016 [6 favorites]


It seems part of the misogyny of the show for us to see Loras (my poor sweet stupid Loras) only in the aftermath of his abuse while they are more than willing to linger pornographically over the abuse of women.

I was wondering about that too -- but I decided to give D&D the benefit of doubt in that this might be them listening to the fans who keep telling them about how we don't need to see people get raped all the damn time.

There have been a couple of times this season where D&D could have depicted similar abuse happening to women - but Dany talked her way out, and Osha got a mercifully quick death. Walda's death wasn't merciful or quick but at least they didn't feel the need to go anywhere near there.

So I'm in a wait and see mode.
posted by sparklemotion at 2:26 PM on May 18, 2016


Sansa could say: I did what I thought was right and got my dire wolf killed, got tortured, married to a Bolton, raped and then tortured some more. Now please proceed with your son story about being murdered that one time and laying around for a few days. my boo hoo John Snow did you get a boo boo.

If you're not keen to hear people say "Jesus Sansa, what's wrong with her, why doesn't she just get over it already" then one should probably refrain doing the same with Jon. Both of them suffered, not question. Playing the who suffered more game isn't one with any winners.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 2:36 PM on May 18, 2016 [1 favorite]


Re: abuse and misogyny...

I just watched some clips of Margaery from this season. And we don't see her being abused either. Episode 1, Episode 4. It's clear that she's terrified of physical abuse from Septa Unella, and has been in the dark long enough that the sun is painful, but we didn't actually have to *see* her getting hurt to know that she has been.

Part of that is that we've seen the form that abuse from Unella takes (Cersei S05E08), and don't need to see it again. Similarly, we know what abuse that can break a person looks like (Theon, season 3, anyone?) and it doesn't make sense to show it again.
posted by sparklemotion at 2:40 PM on May 18, 2016


Okay, here's my Theory of Everything: following Daenarys pretty much literally burning the patriarchy, Game of Thrones is heading toward a situation where there will only be female contenders left to rule Westeros. They will all look at each other across the battlefield, decide war is stupid, and usher in a new era of peace in a matriarchal democratic society during which the White Walkers are easily defeated by the united armies of Westeros under General Brienne of Tarth (and the dragons). George R R Martin is finally revealed as a hardcore feminist at the end of his epic long-game troll against misogynistic fantasy fans. Actual patriarchy self-immolates.

I'm really looking forward to this.
posted by olinerd at 3:43 PM on May 18, 2016 [9 favorites]


I could definitely see some variation of this happening.
posted by crossoverman at 5:07 PM on May 18, 2016


Whoever mentioned the "War of the Five Queens" a couple of threads ago seems to have been spot on -- we're increasingly heading for a situation of Cersei, Margaery, Sansa, Danerys, and Yara butting heads in various ways and combinations. It is interesting how the show has shifted from being "men, with a few women, doing politics" to "women, with a few men." Or course the Five Queens seem no more stable a configuration than the Five Kings were, so we're looking at another turning of the wheel. I do imagine the end game involves marrying some pair off* to make a more legit claim to the throne (and fulfill various prophecies), so I wonder how strongly the show will highlight the idea of a gender balance in power being a part of that, since the show is profoundly interested in the genderedness of power (even if sometimes that's expressed very clumsily).

*I have some ideas about whom that will be but I can't remember now which bits come from the show only and which I think because of the books, so I won't speculate lest I get myself in hot water!
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 5:27 PM on May 18, 2016


I'm curious if Margaery will make it out of the Great Sept rescue alive, since it seems best for Cersei if both her and the Sparrow meet their end there. But on the flip side, a battle by champion could end badly for Cersei if the Hound reappears to beat his brother. It seems like either one of them could be removed from the game before the season's end.

Question: if Tommen accidentally gets killed in the rescue attempt, who legally gets the throne?
posted by bluecore at 5:44 PM on May 18, 2016


Question: if Tommen accidentally gets killed in the rescue attempt, who legally gets the throne?

There is a theory (bolstered by book knowledge of detailed family trees) that Cersei would be next in line for the throne after Tommen because of Tywin's ancestry (assuming that Tyrion isn't in the picture, because he'd be stupid to put himself in the picture).
posted by sparklemotion at 5:49 PM on May 18, 2016


sparklemotion: Cersei would be next in line for the throne after Tommen because of Tywin's ancestry

Huh, that's interesting. I wonder if Cersei would off Tommen herself? She was broken-hearted at losing Myrcella, and she does love him dearly... but if she feels she's losing him to Margaery (as well as others whispering in his ear like the High Sparrow and Grand Maester Pycelle) maybe she would kill him in a fit of frustration as well as self-preservation? I guess that's a leap, since her children are everything to her.
posted by bluecore at 6:10 PM on May 18, 2016


Whoever mentioned the "War of the Five Queens" a couple of threads ago seems to have been spot on -- we're increasingly heading for a situation of Cersei, Margaery, Sansa, Danerys, and Yara butting heads in various ways and combinations.

This is why I'm really curious how things go with the Sansa and Jon: Will one of them take the lead as head of House? Rickon would bump Sansa, but he has to stay alive, sane and get free from Ramsay. Not sure if Sansa automatically trumps Jon, since he's a bastard. I hope they figure out a way to work together.

'Cause if they do, or if Sansa is Head of the House, and Tyrion is still in Dany's good graces, that's potentially powerful alliance. Especially if the Stakrs are comfortable being Wardens of the North rather than fighting for the crown, which both Jon and Sansa sound amiable to.

Not sure if Elisa Sand and Dorne factor into the War, I had imagined either Cersei or Margaery would be in King's Landing, not both. Yara has to win the Kingsmoot and became the first Queen of the Iron Islands, so that's gonna be tough to do.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:36 PM on May 18, 2016


Yes, Sansa automatically trumps Jon. But Rickon is in line before her.

And Tyrion inherits before Cersei, for the same reason.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 6:25 AM on May 19, 2016


Yes, Sansa automatically trumps Jon. But Rickon is in line before her.

And Bran is in line before Rickon.

I'm worried about Rickon, guys. He's the only Stark kid not to have a "story," and given the pace of the show I'm not sure that there's time to give him one. Which means that he might just be back to get fridged.
posted by sparklemotion at 7:28 AM on May 19, 2016 [3 favorites]


Yeah, it looks we better clear a space on the shelves, the character hasn't had 5 lines on the show.

But then again, if he's in Winterfell's dungeons, where he grew up, that's probably the best place he could escape from. A scene from season 1 did have Bran yelling at him about wandering around in the crypts, not hard to imagine who's prowled all over the place in Winterfell.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:22 AM on May 19, 2016 [2 favorites]


And he was "raised" by Osha, whose lessons are likely to help him survive a bit longer (even if she didn't expect a hidden knife on Ramsay).

I still think he's worth more alive than dead, unlike poor Osha.


olinerd: Game of Thrones is heading toward a situation where there will only be female contenders left to rule Westeros. They will all look at each other across the battlefield, decide war is stupid, and usher in a new era of peace in a matriarchal democratic society during which the White Walkers are easily defeated by the united armies of Westeros under General Brienne of Tarth (and the dragons).

I would love to see this, but I think there are a few hot heads that would have to roll before this happened. Cersei, if no one else, would do something foolish with the goal of having it all, and Dany seems pretty bent on the same goal as her foolish brother (being king queen of everything), though she has been savvy enough to not look down on those who would have to help her ascend the Iron Throne.

Still, I could see Margery, Dany, Olenna and Sansa getting along well enough as to share the world, with the Sand Snakes in their own kingdom, unbothered after Cersei is dead. Hmm....
posted by filthy light thief at 9:19 AM on May 19, 2016


They will all look at each other across the battlefield, decide war is stupid, and usher in a new era of peace in a matriarchal democratic society during which the White Walkers are easily defeated by the united armies of Westeros under General Brienne of Tarth.

Still, I could see Margery, Dany, Olenna and Sansa getting along well enough as to share the world, with the Sand Snakes in their own kingdom, unbothered after Cersei is dead. Hmm....

Dany is going to turn up with her dragons and see the daughters and mothers of men who slaughtered her family trying to control the land that she believes she is destined to rule. Her first interaction with pretty much anyone in Westeros is likely to go badly, in such a way that she feels justified in her continued mission to break the wheel.

If you eliminate Cersei, Sansa and the Tyrells could probably get along, but Margaery and Sansa are both kinda-married to Lannisters*, and I doubt that would sit well with the Sand Snakes.

*Yes, Sansa's marriage to Tyrion was never consumated, and yes, Tommen is a Baratheon by name, but still.

I don't see peace being anymore more likely just because the women are in charge.
posted by sparklemotion at 10:08 AM on May 19, 2016 [1 favorite]


Her first interaction with pretty much anyone in Westeros is likely to go badly, in such a way that she feels justified in her continued mission to break the wheel.

She has Varys and Tyrion with her now, both of which are known and at least somewhat respected. If they are by her side when Daenerys arrives in Westeros, then it's possible they could mediate a peace, if Dany is fine with the various families being governors of their lands. The Tyrells and Starks would go for that. Boltons and Lannisters would pretend to, at best, before pulling all sorts of hijinks. Same with Baelish.

There's possibilities for peace, but it would be a tricky thing and depends on who's in charge of the various major houses and if the dragons can be trained. If they can be, then just leave the Dothraki in Essos to keep the slavers in line and the dragons could take Westeros.

Presuming the White Walkers could be stopped by dragons. If the Walkers bring howling winds and deep cold, that could be reduce the effectiveness of the dragons. Who's knows what the Children of the Forest bring though.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:33 AM on May 19, 2016


Same with Baelish.

Can you even imagine the sheer glee with which Tyrion would order Littlefinger's execution?
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 10:42 AM on May 19, 2016


Imagine how Varys would feel.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:04 AM on May 19, 2016 [1 favorite]


Brandon Blatcher: She has Varys and Tyrion with her now, both of which are known and at least somewhat respected

By whom? Tyrion murdered his father, and Varys assisted Tyrion in escaping. As long as Cersei is around, neither are welcome.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:06 AM on May 19, 2016


Seems like a trivially easy problem to solve, filthy light thief.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 11:11 AM on May 19, 2016 [1 favorite]


To kill Cersei, you'd need to get through Jaime and The Mountain. Which, yes, dragons, but they won't help unless Dany is willing to burn the Red Keep to the the ground (which...maybe?)
posted by sparklemotion at 11:21 AM on May 19, 2016


Pycelle has access to poisons and doesn't much like Cersei.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 11:24 AM on May 19, 2016 [2 favorites]


Pycelle has access to poisons and doesn't much like Cersei.

Pycelle isn't a fan of Tyrion either.

p.s. I had totally forgotten about Tyrion's mountain people. There are no goats halfman!
posted by sparklemotion at 11:31 AM on May 19, 2016


By whom? Tyrion murdered his father, and Varys assisted Tyrion in escaping. As long as Cersei is around, neither are welcome.

The Seven Great Houses of Westeros are:
Stark of Winterfell, rulers of The North
Tully of Riverrun, rulers of The Riverlands
Arryn of the Eyrie, rulers of The Vale
Lannister of Casterly Rock, rulers of The Westernlands
Baratheon of Storm's End, rulers of The Stormlands
Tyrell of Highgarden, rulers of The Reach
Martell of Sunspear, rulers of Dorne
The Starks, led by either Jon or Sansa (or both), would see Tyrion as an ally. The Tullys are friends of the Starks. If Baleish gets the Vale, Sansa will probably have him as an Ally (or kill him and align with Robyn as his advisors know and like her). The Lannisters won't align with anyone who has Tyrion, so that puts the Tyrells and Marells in play for any side Tyrion is on. Not sure about the Baratheons, they may all be dead.

Played right, which Tyrion and Varys are good at, most of the Great Houses with them side with Tyrion's allies.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:02 PM on May 19, 2016


Oh right, Tommen is considered a Baratheon, though everyone pretty much knows/believes he isn't. But he has the name. There's Gendry, but not may know of him, just Davos.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:05 PM on May 19, 2016


weird thing in this show: Cersei is never called Cersei Baratheon. Even in the first Season. Presumably almost her entire public life she had been married to Robert the most famous man alive and she ruled as the queen of the Baratheon held throne. She and Robert had been married as long as Ned and Catlyn. But Catlyn was called Catlyn Stark and Cersei was/is always called Cersei Lannister.

It's an interesting choice because it's casually done, no one makes a big point of calling her that, even though it is by all accounts wildly outside convention.
posted by French Fry at 12:17 PM on May 19, 2016 [4 favorites]


Don't forget House Greyjoy of Pyke, rulers of the Iron Islands (for some reason there are actually nine regions in the Seven Kingdoms, if you include the Crownlands around King's Landing, ruled by whoever sits the Iron Throne).
posted by Rock Steady at 12:23 PM on May 19, 2016


The Greyjoys are essentially pirates, so they were probably snubbed from being considered a great house.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:50 PM on May 19, 2016


They are a great house, in that they are vassal to no one but the Iron Throne.
posted by Rock Steady at 1:36 PM on May 19, 2016


Well, I'm not inviting them to *my* castle.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:59 PM on May 19, 2016 [3 favorites]


sparklemotion: To kill Cersei, you'd need to get through Jaime and The Mountain. Which, yes, dragons, but they won't help unless Dany is willing to burn the Red Keep to the the ground (which...maybe?)

Maybe if in a fit of anger for listening to the High Sparrow and others, Cersei kills Tommen (secretly with the Franken-Mountain) during or shortly after the Great Sept raid, then she ascends to be Queen of the realm. Later, as Dany descends on King's Landing with her dragons, Jaime finally learns that Cersei killed his remaining son and he has to be become the King(Queen)slayer once again, as well as Kinslayer like Tyrion.
posted by bluecore at 4:27 AM on May 20, 2016 [5 favorites]


But then a red priestess brings her back!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:13 AM on May 20, 2016


Just rewatched as my husband caught up, and I noticed that Littlefinger also says "come and see" to Lord Arryn about the falcon; then it's echoed in Ramsay's letter several times. Obviously not a coincidence but I don't know what it means.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 9:08 PM on May 21, 2016 [6 favorites]


Also I'm a tiny bit concerned about how much Dany likes lighting people on fire.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 9:13 PM on May 21, 2016


As I said a while back, you know everyone around her is like "well let's hope if she is the redeemer of the kingdoms she doesn't go screaming mad like literally all her relatives"

*Dany sets city in fire*

"well okay then"
posted by The Whelk at 11:22 PM on May 21, 2016 [4 favorites]


Just rewatched as my husband caught up, and I noticed that Littlefinger also says "come and see" to Lord Arryn about the falcon; then it's echoed in Ramsay's letter several times. Obviously not a coincidence but I don't know what it means.

Ha, what if Ramsay didn't even write the damn thing?
posted by showbiz_liz at 3:05 AM on May 22, 2016 [7 favorites]


Whelk, is it wrong that I want Dany to be the ultimate antagonist of this series? How hilarious would that be?
posted by showbiz_liz at 3:06 AM on May 22, 2016 [2 favorites]


Maybe Ramsay didn't. Petyer did say he assumed after her excape Sansa was headed to Castle Black.
posted by tilde at 2:10 PM on May 22, 2016 [2 favorites]


Ramsay wrote the letter, the director confirmed. I'd like to the story, but it mentions stuff about the book, so...yeah.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:49 PM on May 22, 2016


Hey Brandon, I also meant to say, I disagree with your read of Jon having only been back from the dead for a day. After second watch, still disagree. (I also thought the people who thought at the end of last episode he was just leaving Castle Black were nuts -- he'd have to PACK. He was just storming off-screen!) I think it's been a little while -- not too long, but a little while. He has to reorient himself to being alive, decide what to do next, etc., and it's not like there's much rapid transit in Westeros. The alluded-to arguments between him and Ed about who was really in charge seemed like they'd been going on long enough they'd settled into a groove. So I think, I don't know, a week? A couple of weeks? Possibly longer, they do a good job making sure we have no idea how much time has passed.

(Also, conversation every week with my husband: "OH MY GOD, did they recast Bran? What happened to Bran?" "Puberty happened to Bran. That's the same actor." "No it's not." "Yes it is! We had the same conversation last week!" "No we didn't!" "Dude, google it, same actor!")

Felt like they did a pretty good job with Young Ned; through whatever combination of casting and hair and makeup and clothes, you can pretty immediately tell it's Young Ned. (Accent's a bit off maybe?)
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 5:36 PM on May 22, 2016 [2 favorites]


Hmm, there really is nothing definite about how long he's been back once Sansa shows it. It feels like only a day or so to me.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:15 PM on May 22, 2016




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