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A Thread of Ice and Fire - BOOK AND TV SPOILERS
  • Guys, I have never had a better time on twitter. I was tearing up from laughing so hard.

    Now I’m done with writing motions so I’m going to actually watch the episode. And yeah maybe I’ll start bawling too.

  • Really unimaginatively executed, though.

  • There was a lot I missed, but a lot of it was stuff that would have been hard to pull off. I thought the moment between Cat and Roose was great, and Michelle Fairely was excellent all around. I think for the RW to be what I wanted it to be, it would have had to have been the entire episode with a significantly larger budget.

  • yeah going back and reading this thread, I can see you guys might have been disappointed. no real mention of blackfish that I could see, no surviving stark baby, and not much buildup. for me it was still exciting as fuck, though my reading ahead did mean the surprise was mostly gone.

  • I think it would have been better had the jovial part of the wedding not been separated from the end by so much time spent on the other storylines, so we could better feel the sudden turn with the music.

  • Yeah that’s kind of what I was getting at—I feel like this episode deserved to be structured, and maybe even filmed, differently. The cutaways really fucked with the atmosphere they could have otherwise built, and the blocking and staging was just really rote. I guess I was hoping for a big setpiece, but it ended up feeling as cramped and claustrophobic as the rest of the series, really. If there were ever a scene in this show that could have benefited from a long tracking shot!

  • I agree. did the show’s budget drop a little this season?

    fun fact: oona chaplin is charlie chaplin’s granddaughter.

  • I can’t believe they killed off Ned Stark again!

    I love all the small details in this show. Just did some reading on “The Rains of Castamere” and realized why Cat knew they were fucked when she heard it. It sounds like there was a whole lot the episode missed, but I thought the scenes they did shoot were pretty great.

  • // because I don’t know what I’m talking about

  • I feel bad for all the viewers who have to wait until next year to see Joff get his

    Also, is Fairely just being coy in interviews, or might the show dispense with Lady Stoneheart?

    Also also also we better get Coldhands goddammit

  • Oh, we’ll get Lady Stoneheart. I think it’ll be the season-ending cliffhangery thing. I just hope we get the scene that’s in the book, and not the actual scene of Beric raising her, though I understand why they might go that direction.

    I don’t think we’ll get Coldhands this season, but they pretty much have to introduce him at some point.

    The Blackfish excused himself to take a piss before the carnage, so he presumably survived. They went a bit out of their way to make that happen, so presumably they want to do the Jaime/Riverrun stuff at some point, though I have no idea how they will make that stuff make sense with Talisa dead.

    I agree with pollo’s comments about the weird stagey-ness of it. I think they overplayed the TRAGIC LOVERS angle. It was weird that Robb just kind of stood there and stared at Talisa while Roose sauntered up casually, stabbed him, and then walked away. I think it was sorely missing the Umbers, or some other characters fulfilling a similar function. Smalljon throwing the table over Robb, drunken Greatjon killing Freys, etc. The scene in the book is much more chaotic. It was weird that it just played out as Walder staying the archers while Robb and Cat wobbled in place for 5 minutes.

  • I really want next week’s episode to open with the aftermath of the Red Wedding—a long, slow pan over the corpses of Robb’s bannermen and soldiers littered about inside and out the castle; Cat’s body floating down the Green Fork, and as it nears the riverbank, a heretofore unseen direwolf sniffing at the bloated corpse; Robb Stark sitting upon a throne with Summer’s head sewn to his body. Take that, people who said they’ll never watch again but then tuned in anyway!

  • Did people actually say that? I never saw any of those reactions after Ned in se. 1, though I remember blucas talking about it.

  • One of the funniest tweets I saw last night was by a girl who just happened to be watching Ned’s death for the first time and was vowing never to watch the show again.

    And yeah, a TON of people, with varying degrees of seriousness, claimed they’ll stop watching it.

  • ::faints::

  • Also, my new favorite dumb fan theory:

    http://www.reddit.com/r/asoiaf/comments/10tv6i/spoilers_all_benjen_starks_secret_identity_theory/

    TL;DR: Daario is actually Benjen Stark

  • Don’t you think that “Season 3 is pretty straightforward” post is probably trolling though?

    Re: that Benjen theory, I still like the mermaids one better, but that was fun.

  • Oh yes thank you

  • Speaking of the mermaid theory: Wendel Manderly, rocking the merman sigil:

    merman

    Apparently he’s shown being killed later, too. A nice touch, given how important they are later.

  • Also, my favorite thing about the reaction videos is how they’re all clearly filmed by assholes who’ve read the books, and who have probably spent the last three years smoothing over the show’s rough edges for their friends and family: helpfully filling in details the show has missed, offering reminders of who various characters are, etc, etc, just fucking waiting for this day.

  • without TOO many spoilers, can someone explain to me where the hell this bran plot is going?

  • Just watching Sunday’s episode now. I did NOT think they would actually show Grey Wind’s head on Robb’s body. Fuck, that was brutal.

  • The Red Wedding must be so much worse if you have to wait almost a year for that thing that happens later in book three that makes you hate GRRM just a little less. Although maybe that’s balanced out by the show watchers not worrying whether Arya is dead or not (which can be fixed by checking the table of contents, but only if you are a cheater).

  • I totally cheated.

  • Jess are you all caught up with the books now?

  • No, I am in early book 4. Stopped reading so much since slammed w/work, but should make some good headway when traveling soon. Ventured into this thread though, and found it pretty easy to avoid stuff that seemed likely to contain book 4 and 5 spoilers.

  • Warning, then, for spoilers within: I found this episode really satisfying. I really enjoyed a lot the stuff that was created for the show, like the scene between Roose Bolton and Walder Frey. It seems like there are possibly some big deviations from the books coming up, so I’m interested in seeing how those play out. I wonder if they are going to skip the Kingsmoot entirely? Also it seems like not only are they advancing Asha’s story, but Bran’s as well. I’m guessing there will be a lot of aFfC and aDwD next season. Can’t wait to see Asha (er, Yara) kick some Northsmen asses.

  • fitzhugh said: without TOO many spoilers, can someone explain to me where the hell this bran plot is going?

    I’m not sure how to do that without some major spoilers. I’ll just say that he is going somewhere unexpected, and that it’s pretty awesome when he gets there, and it’s clear that he is going to be very, very important to the end game.

  • Jeb, have you read the Dunk and Egg stories? 1) If you haven’t, you should, ‘cause they’re really good (a way better use of your time than ADWD) 2) The third one, in particular, sheds a lot of light on Bran’s storyline.

    Re: The finale. I almost didn’t care about anything else, because we got the wolf’s head sewn on Robb’s body, we got that glorious Arya/Hound scene (I legit started pumping my fist when she showed that Frey the coin), and we got to see Tywin bitchslap Joffrey. I do think they picked a weird note to end it on, though. I don’t know that it really gets people amped for S4. They should’ve ended it on Lady Stoneheart or Coldhands.

    The fact that they’re waiting on Lady Stoneheart makes me hopeful that they’ll preserve the way she was introduced in the books, though, instead of just showing Beric fishing her out of the river.

    We got the wolf’s head, but was the desecration of Catelyn’s body mentioned?

  • jeb said:

    fitzhugh said: without TOO many spoilers, can someone explain to me where the hell this bran plot is going?

    I’m not sure how to do that without some major spoilers. I’ll just say that he is going somewhere unexpected, and that it’s pretty awesome when he gets there, and it’s clear that he is going to be very, very important to the end game.

    yeah i went onto a wiki of ice and fire and read ahead a little. still makes no sense to me. it’s like those x-men side stories where we spend a ton of time watching some mutant becomes super powerful, and only WAAAY down the road does that narrative arc pay off. GRRM, QUIT COPYING EARLY 90S X-MEN WRITERS.

  • Blucas said: Jeb, have you read the Dunk and Egg stories? 1) If you haven’t, you should, ‘cause they’re really good (a way better use of your time than ADWD) 2) The third one, in particular, sheds a lot of light on Bran’s storyline.

    Oh yeah, I’ve read ‘em. I know all about Bloodraven, who’s got a thousand eyes and one.

    Re: The finale. I almost didn’t care about anything else, because we got the wolf’s head sewn on Robb’s body, we got that glorious Arya/Hound scene (I legit started pumping my fist when she showed that Frey the coin), and we got to see Tywin bitchslap Joffrey. I do think they picked a weird note to end it on, though. I don’t know that it really gets people amped for S4. They should’ve ended it on Lady Stoneheart or Coldhands.

    That Arya scene was great. I’m assuming that it replaces the scene at the inn, since I don’t think all those characters have been introduced on the show. I love that they’re not afraid of making the sympathetic characters do rash/shocking/horrible things (something I was really worried about re the upcoming events in Tyrion’s storyline, especially given how they’ve changed the dynamic between him and Shae). For some reason I keep expecting them to pull punches, but nope!

    I don’t know that they got the tone of that Dany scene right. I felt like it was much, much more affecting in the book. That said, it was as good of an end point as any, and at least we end on a sort of hopeful note. I do wonder what they’re going to do with her next season though, since I’m under the impression that they condensed Yunkai and Mereen. I sure can’t wait til we get to the Dany find ruling boring stuff! Oh man how that’s going to excite! (Seriously, I thought most of the Dany story in aDwD was so, so boring.)

    We got the wolf’s head, but was the desecration of Catelyn’s body mentioned?

    I don’t think so, no.

  • Also, you didn’t like aDwD? I know a lot of people were let down by it, but I loved it.

  • You guys have a way better memory of the books than I do at this point, but I agree that the finale was really satisfying. So many super-intense, jaw-hanging-open moments. I had totally forgotten that Ygritte tries to kill Jon, so that was surprising all over again. I also agree that the ending could’ve been stronger; I wish there had been some clue as to what was in store for the Night’s Watch — some idea that Jon Snow was going to survive and take over. But maybe that’s farther off than I remember?

  • Yeah, he isn’t made Lord Commander until the very end of SOS. A whole bunch of stuff happens first; that’ll probably be the end of next season. I hope the show doesn’t cut out the Janos Slynt stuff, if only because that’s probably the most satisfying scene in ADWD.

    But yeah, I think ADWD is hands down the weakest book in the series. There are parts of it I love (all the Reek/Bolton stuff, the end of the Dany plotline, some of the Connington/Aegon stuff), but the Dany plotline is boring and needlessly complicated, the Jon plotline draaaaags (I don’t need like 3 chapters of Jon inspecting the stores at Castle Black), and while some of the Tyrion stuff is interesting, on the whole I don’t like the way he’s relegated to being a Catelyn-style passive observer of other people doing important things.

    Luckily, though, the show should be able to avoid a lot of that, since they can condense things, and since they obviously won’t be splitting up the POVs like the last two books did. For them to do that, though, Martin needs to fucking put out another book.

  • Pretty much agree with bluke re: ADWD; I liked Feast waaaay more. Which is funny, because everyone seemed really down on that one. I remember tweeting something snarky about being frustrated with the endless administrative tasks of Jon Snow, too.

    How much does Dany’s storyline already feel like a completely arbitrary diversion? I tuned out through most of her chapters in the last couple books; just a seemingly endless slog through a galaxy of Orientalist fantasy with interchangeable place and character names, none of which is going to matter a fucking lick in the endgame. It already feels so so pointless in the show, and it’s compounded by the fact that the budget means even the cool setpieces from the books (like the siege of Swarthy Eastern City States 1-3) are relegated to shitty little sword fights shot in cramped close up in courtyards.

  • Yeah, I love AFFC; it’s probably my second favorite after SOS. I think a lot of the hatred for it mainly comes from the fact that it didn’t include Tyrion and Dany, and that there was such a long wait for ADWD. And the Cersei POVs. I think a lot of people misinterpret those as a failed attempt to make Cersei more sympathetic, a la Jaime, but to my mind, they’re a meticulous retelling of the wrong-headed thinking behind each tiny step she takes toward her undoing. If you saw those events happening from other characters’ POVs in Kings Landing, they would seem bizarre and not organic, but as it is, everything that happens makes perfect sense.

    And I’ll defend the Dany plotline a bit. She’s actually in an interesting place at the end of SOS, especially once we learn about the Dornish angle in AFFC. I think a book where she deals with the problems of ruling Mereen, and has to deal with the complication of the Dornish showing up, could’ve been great. A big part of the problem is that Martin just repeats the “will she marry this dude to help her cause” thing with her for the third time? fourth time?

    And if Dany wasn’t going to learn anything other than “Fuck politics, use dragons” AGAIN, then ADWD should’ve gotten there halfway through the book and moved on. I have similar feelings about the Jon plotline: “Jon repeats Ned’s mistakes” is interesting in theory, but in practice, but there’s just not enough real intrigue at The Wall to sustain that thread for an entire book, especially when we’re at a point in the series where the plot needs to move.

  • I find the developing conversation about Dany-as-white-savior pretty interesting, if, I think, kind of off-base. As a whole, I’ve found a lot of the criticisms about the series’ depiction of race and gender to be fairly myopic and also, well, completely unwilling to engage with the text beyond a very superficial level, and also seemingly devoid of any working knowledge of literary devices. That’s not to say the series is never problematic, because it is, but I feel that the tumblr-level analysis that exists everywhere on the internet (and I really try hard to not make this a blanket criticism against internet feminists or whatever, because, you know, that’s not what I’m saying, and I pray to the seven that I’m not mansplaining) is superficial and self-serving and willfully obtuse.

    That all said, I think the way the show depicts race and gender vs. the way the books depict race and gender is an entirely different story, and that some of the things in the show move beyond “problematic” to “totally fucked up.” See in particular the show’s off-hand dismissal of Ros.

  • io9 wonders how much of Feast and Dance we’ll see next season: http://io9.com/how-much-of-the-books-will-we-see-next-year-on-game-of-512639504

  • Bran traveling a short distance and meeting Coldhands may not be enough for him to do in season four, notes Whitehead.

    lol, was he not paying attention to this season?

    I honestly don’t think we’ll see much of anything from AFFC and ADWD next season. If we see things, it will be little individual scenes, not whole plotlines. There’s PLENTY from SOS still left to keep them occupied. Sending Yara after Theon really just seems like more water treading. They’ll do some stuff, then Yara will turn around at the end of the season and head for the Kingsmoot.

    They’ll just focus on King’s Landing and The Wall, which should be easy given the way they’ve beefed up the Tyrells, and the way they’ve accelerated things with Stannis (I’m kind of bummed about how explicitly they spelled that out).

    re: Dany as white savior. In the books, the slaves she’s freeing are from all over the world. The show made a decision way back in S1 to make pretty much everyone in Essos a person of color, which created this weird catch 22: They did it (pretty explicitly, IIRC) so they could have more racial diversity on their show, but that very diversity created a whole host of problems.

    Also, I actually think Martin gets way too much credit on the gender score, though, just for creating Arya and Brienne. HALF OF THE FIRST BOOK IS ABOUT A TEEN GIRL WHO LEARNS TO LIKE GETTING RAPED. And, honestly, Dany’s sexuality never ceases to be creepy in the books; Martin generally does a good job of making you believe you’re inside a particular character’s head, but whenever Dany gets a little hot-and-bothered, it’s straight-up a creepy old man writing bad erotic fiction from a teen girl’s POV.

  • jeb said: the tumblr-level analysis that exists everywhere on the internet…is superficial and self-serving and willfully obtuse.

    this times a million. can we put it on a big banner in the middle of every major city across the country?

  • Man, as a non-book-reader I just wanted to chime in that I found much of the finale boring as hell. I really wanted more of jaime’s return and, as always, more of king’s landing in general. dany kept freeing slaves we didn’t care about (and I know this will go on forever), theon kept getting tortured, bran kept going north (though his meeting sam was kinda cool). I think it’s a flaw in the show that all the best actors (and indeed the best characters) are lannisters, and their intereractions are so damn exciting, so it seems like they have to keep reminding us that dany and bran are the ones we should care about.

  • You will like next season.

  • Don’t read a thread entitled “Was Cersai’s walk of shame misogynistic?” because you’ll have three people who understand that it was in fact misogynistic, but that’s because it’s the product of a misogynistic culture, a punishment handed out by a (most likely) misogynistic religious leader, but that that doesn’t mean that GRRM himself is a misogynist—followed by pages and pages of people saying she got what she deserved, that she needed to be “brought down a peg” and “humiliated.” Rape culture alive and well on the westeros.org forum y’all.

  • Whoa Jeb :( :( :(

  • Ugh, that’s depressing. The reaction GRRM is so clearly going for is, “Whoa, even she doesn’t deserve this,” and then, “Whoa, there’s a Lion left in King’s Landing, after all.”

    If you’re just sitting there going, “Suck it, Cersei!” 1) You’re a misogynistic asshole, 2) You must not have been paying attention during AFFC if you’re happy about a Tyrell/Church Militant triumph.

  • Oh, whoa, I don’t know how I missed Dangerous Women coming out, sadly without “The Shewolves of Winterfell” as a part of it. God knows when that’ll see the light of day, now. Fucking GRRM.

    It apparently does have that long “historical” piece about the Dance of Dragons that had an excerpt floating around the internets a while back. Anybody read it?

  • I actually bought Dangerous Women for the kindle and was planning on reading it once I’m caught up on comics.

    I found the excerpt booooooorrrriiiinnngggg, but I’ll definitely give it another shot. I’ve actually been hearing pretty good things.

    I am super bummed that we don’t get “Shewolves of Winterfell” though.

  • Yeah, I thought the “historical piece written by a maester” conceit was pretty cornball in practice, but I wondered if the actual story was interesting enough to get past that. I’ll probably read it at some point.