Episode 15 – The Ghost of Harrenhal – Recap
By Winter Is Coming on in Recap.

I have some good news and some bad news. The bad news is we are halfway through season two. The good news is these last 5 episode should be awesome. But what about tonight’s episode, “The Ghost of Harrenhal”? Head past the break for my thoughts and then leave your reactions in the comments!

Spoiler Note: This post is for those who have read A Clash of Kings. As such the post itself and the comments will contain spoilers. If you haven’t read ACoK yet, you can read our non-book-reader recap here. Thanks!


Summary

The episode opens in Renly’s tent… and everyone probably knew what was about to happen. Not 5 minutes into the episode and Renly is no more, thanks to Melisandre’s shadow demon. Brienne kicks some ass and then her and Catelyn hightail it out of there. Later in the episode, we get a great scene between Brienne and Catelyn, where an emotional Brienne pledges her loyalty to Catelyn Stark. A touching moment.

Back in Renly’s camp, the Tyrells have discovered what happened to Renly. Loras seems much more upset than Margaery. He’s ready to kill Stannis himself. Margaery advises caution, as does Littlefinger. Margaery is thinking only about the end game here, and Littlefinger looks like he has an offer for her…

Stannis has arrived in Renly’s camp and all of his bannermen, sans the Tyrells, have joined Stannis. Davos wants to know what the plan is now. Stannis tells him they sail to Blackwater Bay and Davos will command the fleet. Davos wants Stannis to leave Melisandre behind, he tells him he will lose his men to the Red Woman if they are victorious, that they will credit her for the victory. Stannis acquiesces.

In King’s Landing, Tyrion meets with Cersei about Renly’s death. Tyrion warns that Stannis is coming for them now. Cersei reveals that Joffrey has begun making siege plans, but she won’t tell him what exactly. No matter, Tyrion goes to Lancel to get that info. The King is making wildfire. Tyrion journey’s to the Alchemist’s Guild and meets with A Song of Ice and Fire audio book narrator Roy Dotrice (is he using his Wisdom Hallyne voice for the role?). Tyrion sees the potential in “the substance” and orders Hallyne to continue making it… for him now.

On the Iron Islands, Theon is preparing to set sail on his ship, the Sea Bitch. His crew doesn’t respect him. We meet Dagmer Cleftjaw for the first time, Dagmer suggests instead of raiding some fishing villages, they attack the under-defended Torrhen’s Square. Theon tells him they could take it, but couldn’t hold it once Winterfell sends forces to reclaim it. Dagmer’s look says “Exactly” and the lightbulb goes off in Theon’s head.

In Winterfell, we see Bran continuing to listen to the petty complaints of minor lords. There is a Rickon sighting! Rodrik bursts in and says Torrhen Square is under attack. He says he could round up 200 fighting men, so Bran orders him to do so and reclaim Torrhen Square. Later, he talks with Osha about his dreams. He talks of the three-eyed crow and then tells Osha about his dream of the sea coming to Winterfell.

In the far North now, the Night’s Watch has arrived at the Fist of the First Men. As they set up camp, Qhorin Halfhand arrives with a force from the Shadow Tower. Qhorin and the Old Bear talk strategy; the Halfhand wants to take a small force of men to eliminate Mance’s scouts. Jon wants to go with him. Commander Mormont resists at first, but relents when Sam offers to pick up Jon’s steward duties.

Across the Narrow Sea, Dany is a guest of Xaro Xhoan Daxos. We see she has learned how to feed her dragons. We also see that she feels comfortable in pimping out Doreah. Xaro throws a welcome party for Dany, one of the guests is the creepy Pyat Pree. He shows Dany a bit of magic and invites her to the House of the Undying. Then Quaithe makes an appearance and delivers cryptic warnings to Jorah. Later that night, Xaro demonstrates his immense wealth and then proposes to Dany. He also delivers some news: King Robert is dead. Dany consorts with Jorah, she wants to accepts Xaro’s proposal and sail to Westeros immediately. Jorah advises they wait, that their allies are in Westeros and they only need one ship to get them there.

In Harrenhal, Arya attends to Lord Tywin as he meets with his lords. They are discussing what to do about Robb, he is pretty much kicking their ass. Tywin calls out Arya as a northerner. He asks what they say of Robb in the north. She tells him the tales of Robb riding a direwolf into battle, or even turning into a direwolf, and that he can’t be killed. “Do you think he can’t be killed?” Arya gives him a look. “No. Anyone can be killed.” Tywin tells her to fetch some water. On her way, she runs Jaqen H’ghar. A man tells her she owes the Red God three lives, that she must give a man three names and a man will do the rest. Arya gives him his first name, The Tickler. Later, a scream and a thud comes from the courtyard. The Tickler lies on the ground, his head facing in the wrong direction. Arya looks up at the battlements and sees Jaqen. He holds one finger up to his face.

What I Liked

The Shadow Baby Does Its Thing – The special effects team did a great job with the shadow demon and Renly’s death scene. It was different than the books strong wind, then rush of blood from the neck, but this version looked badass on screen.
Hooray, It’s The Halfhand! – My favorite minor character made his first appearance tonight. Simon Armstrong isn’t exactly how I pictured the Halfhand (my pie-in-the-sky casting choice was Liam Neeson), but he seems like he will be able to portray Qhorin’s quiet confidence quite well. Can’t wait to see more of him. And while I’m on the subject of the Watch, let me just say that Iceland looks amazing. I know the Fist in the book is totally different, but the show’s version of the Fist is so epic and beautiful, that I completely understand the change.
Dany’s Magical Mystery Tour – I love that they aren’t shying away from the mysticism and mystery in Dany’s Qarth storyline. Pyat Pree, Quaithe, even Xaro with his Valyrian steel door. Qarth is clearly not Westeros and they are showing it in all its weird, wonderful glory.
A Man Likes What He Sees – We’re finally getting some good Jaqen action! Tom Wlaschiha is nailing it so far, in my opinion. His accent, his syntax, his whole demeanor is the Lorathi to a tee. And did any one else think of Inglorious Basterds when he flashed his German three?

What I Didn’t Like

Note: My dislike this week is going to contain some spoilers from A Storm of Swords. So if you haven’t read it yet, skip down to the comments now!

The Tickler meets the Many-Faced God – I had problems with the handling of Arya’s first “kill”. Ok, so I understand the need to cut Weese due to time constraints, so I knew she would be giving a different name. But did it have to be the Tickler? That moment in Storm, when she pounces on the Tickler and stabs him over and over while shouting “Is there gold in the village?”, is so intense and it’s the first time she gets to cross a name off her list due to her own actions. And now we won’t get to see that on screen. Plus, in the book, Arya’s first name is not “for the greater good”, but more about killing someone that has hurt her personally. Wouldn’t Polliver, who stole Needle and killed Lommy, be a better choice to illustrate that point? Lastly, Arya literally just came from talking with Tywin and basically threatening to kill him. Why wouldn’t her mind immediately go to him when Jaqen makes his offer? It didn’t make sense. I’m bummed that this moment wasn’t as great as it could have been.

So those are my thoughts. What about you? What did you think of “The Ghost of Harrenhal”? Leave your reactions in the comments and rate the episode in our poll question!


500 Comments

  1. Clob
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 9:59 pm | Permalink

    wow! Who ever misses this episode misses fantastic.
    One of my favorites!
    hmmm, my list of favorites is getting jumbled…

  2. spacepope
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:00 pm | Permalink

    the tickler :(

  3. Jack
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:00 pm | Permalink

    Such a fantastic episode !

  4. Lex
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:01 pm | Permalink

    Haven’t watched it yet, but I’m sad to hear about the Tickler, because it really is one of Arya’s most bad ass moments in Book 3. I’m sure they’ll give her some other bad ass moments, but I will miss it. “IS THERE GOLD IN THE VILLAGE?” :(

  5. JamesL
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:01 pm | Permalink

    The audience probably wouldn’t remember who the Tickler was by the time they got to that part in the show.

  6. J
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:02 pm | Permalink

    Ugh, I don’t want to be, but I’m starting to get a little iffy about some of the changes. I get that changes are part of an adaptation, but some of them just feel kind of like changes for the sake of making changes.

    I did mostly enjoy this episode though.

  7. Clob
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:03 pm | Permalink

    I really loved the scene with Arya and Tywin. The stare in her eyes when she answered Tywin’s last question… Maisie continues to be incredile.

  8. Dee
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:03 pm | Permalink

    I am kind of annoyed that they show Jaqen… given that he has magical abilities there is a point to all the mystery behind the deaths in the book.

  9. MetalgoddessAMB
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:04 pm | Permalink

    One split second before Bran told Osha what he dreamed of, I said to my sister, “it’s going to be Jojen’s dream about the sea.” and sure enough, I was right. My sister’s matter of fact like response? “they’re not going to cast him.” :(

  10. Arthur
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:07 pm | Permalink

    All I got to say is… AMAZING!

    This was the best episode by far.

    Everything was just amazing. From the the Shadowbaby to the little dragons breathing fire on their food to Ghost in the background shot of The Fist.

    All the acting was awesome. When Brienne took her vows to Cat my throat got lumpy.

    Looks like Bran is taking over the role of Jojen Reed but there still is a possibliity we will see Meera in season 3.

    I just want to say THANK YOU to D&D for that episode.

    Now that was fucking Game of Thrones!

    No stupid needless nudity, no Ros, no fart jokes. Just pure GRRM and awesome acting/scenes/writing.

    I LOVED this episode, simply amazing…

    I have to go watch it again…

  11. Gwalchmai
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:07 pm | Permalink

    Solid episode. Brienne is perfect, Arya more so. I kinda wish the Jaqen #1 had taken another week to develop after developing his character a bit more. No complaints tho!

  12. ThePinkDragon
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:09 pm | Permalink

    Another hit with weird moments. (GoT seems to have become The Show That Is Mostly Awesome Except For A Few Glaringly Strange Decisions for me.)

    For example: Quaithe’s mask, the cutesy dialogue between Dany and Kovarro (I think it was Kovarro) when he wanted to loot Daxos’ place, the fact that Jhiqui seems to have randomly fallen out the bottom of the show, etc. I’m also kind-of puzzled by some of the changes in Arya’s storyline.

    Anyway, other than those things, cool episode.

  13. Corn
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:09 pm | Permalink

    Amazing episode. Loved Jaqen and anticipated some of the changes from the way things have been going in previous episodes. No time for some of the things all us readers would want to see (like the harvest feast) in only 10 episodes. They have to cut to the chase and keep the major people moving ahead. The major people are still going in the right directions, so I don’ t have a problem with minor characters (like the Tickler) dying in a different manner or place or time. Arya’s look at Tywin was so bold, it made me afraid he’d get all medieval on her or something, she dodged that pretty well. I wonder who the other 2 of Jaqen’s hits will be? Super badass. Brienne was amazing, and Catelyn brought the goods. Loved Rickon smashing walnuts on the table while Bran tries to run the north. My only wish would be to see Jojen and Meera at some point, though they’ll have to sneak them in at a different time now if they are to be included in the plot. Dany’s journey gets better every week, and Jon Snow…well he just talked his way into a whole lot of trouble, but can’t wait to see it play out.

  14. ThePinkDragon
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:12 pm | Permalink

    Brienne and Catelyn’s scene was amazeballs, by the way. It’s really upsetting when you consider what happens, well, eventually.

  15. kabhal
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:12 pm | Permalink

    Lex:
    Haven’t watched it yet, but I’m sad to hear about the Tickler, because it really is one of Arya’s most bad ass moments in Book 3. I’m sure they’ll give her some other bad ass moments, but I will miss it. “IS THERE GOLD IN THE VILLAGE?” :(

    Agree completely, that was an awesome Arya rage moment in the book where she just went off on the Tickler.

  16. David the Grey
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:13 pm | Permalink

    There wasn’t anything I didn’t LOVE in this episode. Seemed like it lasted about 10 minutes. Everything was magical and felt non-scripted to me… but the highlights for me were all of the Dany scenes (especially with Dany becoming aware of Jorah’s affections), Bran’s talk with Osha, Qhorin’s intro, and the final scene with Arya that gave me goosebumps. This is my favorite ep so far this season, surpassing #3 (which I had given 5 stars). So I reckon this one deserves 6!!!

    And, let me just say, it breaks my heart what is coming with Winterfell. It did in the books, and even though I love watching Theon scenes, it’s going to break even worse with the TV show because of the actors bringing these characters to life.

    It is such a great show!!!

  17. mikeintexas
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:14 pm | Permalink

    Lex:
    Haven’t watched it yet, but I’m sad to hear about the Tickler, because it really is one of Arya’s most bad ass moments in Book 3. I’m sure they’ll give her some other bad ass moments, but I will miss it. “IS THERE GOLD IN THE VILLAGE?” :(

    Polliver has her sword. She can still kill Polliver herself. To be honest Polliver, the Tickler, and Raff (not cast) are interchangeable.

    Also Chiswick was the first..not Weese.

  18. Deborah
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:15 pm | Permalink

    After this I doubt theywill cast Jojen and Meera. Good episode. Plots and schemes are the same thing. Classic Tyrion. I want to marry Jaqen H’ghar.

  19. GinVA
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:15 pm | Permalink

    Good episode but this man is not happy about one of the changes from the books. :(

  20. Dee
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:16 pm | Permalink

    also wasn’t the wildfire Tyrion’s idea? he’s supposed to be the tactical war genius!

  21. Deborah
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

    Oh and I can’t believe they actually got me to feel something for Theon. The next eps will be interesting.

  22. Andrew
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

    That was a really great episode! Even though they seemed to get in scenes with the majority of the characters (save for Sansa, Joff, and Robb), the pacing was a lot less rushed to me. The writing was also very good this episode, even without very emotional scenes to showcase it. The way they handled Littlefinger and Margaery was also very well done, in my oppinion. It’s good that they didn’t just spell out what was going to happen.

    I’m of course going to miss Arya and the Tickler’s scene from book 3, but i’m not too mad about it. She’ll presumably have a different exchange in it’s place, though maybe not quite as powerful as the original one.

    Jerome Flynn is absolutely nailing the part of Bronn, and Tom Wlaschiha is doing an equally fantastic job as Jaqen. I wont lie, though, I was a bit miffed we didn’t get to see Rorge and Biter this episode, though they’ll probably still be around for the Weasel Soup.

    I’m also very intrigued as to who that woman was, talking to Ser Jorah. When she said that she is no one, my thoughts immediately went to The Faceless Men, but I doubt they’d take such an active interest in Westerosi politics. My second thought was it could be Lemore, but I don’t know.

  23. wargsareawesome
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

    Dee,

    No, no it wasn’t. The chain on the other hand…

  24. MetalgoddessAMB
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:18 pm | Permalink

    Qarth is very pretty. So is Jaqen H’ghar. :)

  25. ThePinkDragon
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:18 pm | Permalink

    Yeah, I’m a lesbian and I would marry Jaqen H’ghar.

    Perfect casting.

  26. Dee
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:19 pm | Permalink

    Andrew,

    I’m also very intrigued as to who that woman was, talking to Ser Jorah

    I’m nearly positive that was Quaithe, considering she’s been cast and eveyrthing

  27. David the Grey
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:19 pm | Permalink

    OMG that was Roy Dotrice? I didn’t even catch his name in the credits. I can’t wait to watch the episode again!

  28. wargsareawesome
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:19 pm | Permalink

    Andrew,

    I think it was Qaithe

  29. Dee
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:19 pm | Permalink

    wargsareawesome,

    that’s going to look amazing on the show

  30. SillyMammo
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:20 pm | Permalink

    Arthur:
    All I got to say is… AMAZING!

    No stupid needless nudity,no Ros, no fart jokes.Just pure GRRM and awesome acting/scenes/writing.

    I LOVED this episode, simply amazing…

    I have to go watch it again…

    Agreed! I was very excited when HBO showed the beginning screen that rates the show [M] for MATURE and none of the reasons were NUDITY. And I usually all for nudity . :0)

  31. Giselle Glasgow
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:20 pm | Permalink

    Fantastic episode!!! I did find myself more attached to Renly watching the show than reading the books…
    I loved the scene with margery and littlefinger, it really shows us a glimpse into the Tyrells and what they’re really after…
    How good was the Tywin-Arya scene!!…. ugh… goosebumps…

    But i have to agree with WIC i was irked that the tickler was killed first…
    And though i was peeved that there was no Jojen and Meera (yet) , i appreciated that they made the dream Bran’s…

    Overall loved it!!! cant wait for next week

  32. ThePinkDragon
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:20 pm | Permalink

    And Gendry. Gendry too.

    Hot damn, he was not even remotely built like that in Skins. Not even REMOTELY.

  33. Wdb617
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:21 pm | Permalink

    Best episode this season!! All characters were spot on! Fantastic Arya/Jaqen scenes. I’ve been waiting for this one.

  34. Laura
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:21 pm | Permalink

    I was thrilled with this episode…fine with the Tickler being Ayra’s first but I really hope they are still going to cast Jojen and Meera for season 3…Brienne/Catelyn scene was outstanding. Intense episode but still humor thanks to Bronn and Tyrion. Looking forward to seeing how the battle of blackwater looks on the screen!

  35. wargsareawesome
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:22 pm | Permalink

    Dee:
    wargsareawesome,

    that’s going to look amazing on the show

    Even more so because GRRM is writing the Blackwater episode

  36. Clambake
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:26 pm | Permalink

    I predict that Meera and Jojen will appear after Winterfell falls and Bran and company emerge from the crypts.

  37. ThePinkDragon
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:27 pm | Permalink

    Yeah, I personally still think there will be one Reed, and it will be Meera.

  38. Rukie44
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:28 pm | Permalink

    This episode was able to fit in everyone (except Robb) without feeling too crowded. We got to see both a dragon and Ghost, plus a demon shadow baby. We got to explore two new locations (Fist of the First Men and Qarth), said goodbye to an old character (RIP King Renly) and was introduced to a new character (Quorin). I also enjoyed seeing the more in-depth look ay Brienne and Jaqen. Good job, GoT. Great episode.

  39. Gwalchmai
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:29 pm | Permalink

    Did Quaithe talk to Jorah in the book? I assumed it was her, but don’t remember that conversation.

  40. nightwolf
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:30 pm | Permalink

    I was glad to finally see Rickon

    Bran having Jojen’s dream is really worrisome :(

    I love Qarth, it reminded me of a Star Trek planet

    I really wish they didn’t do the tickler that way

  41. Andrew
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:30 pm | Permalink

    Dee,

    ..I’m going to have to go back and read Clash again, because I honestly have no memory of any Character named Qaithe. My other friend, who read the books too, was also a bit confused. Apperently we skimmed some Dany chapters. Thanks for the heads up, though!

  42. Scholesy
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:30 pm | Permalink

    Arthur:
    All I got to say is… AMAZING!

    This was the best episode by far.

    Everything was just amazing.From the the Shadowbaby to the little dragons breathing fire on their food to Ghost in the background shot of The Fist.

    All the acting was awesome.When Brienne took her vows to Cat my throat got lumpy.

    Looks like Bran is taking over the role of Jojen Reed but there still is a possibliity we will see Meera in season 3.

    I just want to say THANK YOU to D&D for that episode.

    Now that was fucking Game of Thrones!

    No stupid needless nudity,no Ros, no fart jokes.Just pure GRRM and awesome acting/scenes/writing.

    I LOVED this episode, simply amazing…

    I have to go watch it again…

    It is weird. Because considering GoT has had it fair share of those things, and with the exception of Ros same for the books, how are those things not a part of what GoT really is?

  43. House Snow
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:31 pm | Permalink

    So, anyone think the 2 orphans Bran mentioned might end up turning into something down the road?

  44. tysnow
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:31 pm | Permalink

    This man says another one bites the dust…….Renly

    This man says again, another one bites the dust………Jojen

    This man for a third time says, another one bites the dust………Tickler

  45. Mike from Braavos
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:31 pm | Permalink

    Am I the only one hoping we DON’T get a Jojen in the show? I’m hoping for Meera next season, but I honestly think that ship has sailed (on the good ship Osha).

  46. nightwolf
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:31 pm | Permalink

    Gwalchmai,

    I’m pretty sure she only talks to Dany in the books.

  47. mikeintexas
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:32 pm | Permalink

    Kind of unfortunate they didn’t have the time to do the story on the two shadow babies. Can you imagine watching that scene in Renly’s tent without the preceding Mel birth scene? It was so far out of left field in the books and unexpected it would have made a quite a shocking television moment.

  48. Langkard
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:33 pm | Permalink

    That episode was full of win.

    I wasn’t as bothered by the Tickler being killed instead of Weese, but WiC makes a great point about the effect on one of the better Arya scenes from later in the books. I guess we’ll have to wait and see how they handle that. I agree that it is a shame that we’ll not be seeing the events in the inn and the reiteration of “is there gold in the village?” Ah, well.

    The first scene was wonderful. I was most struck by how strong and kingly Renly appeared. Great dialogue and acting there. Shame it was soon to end. The only thing I missed from that scene was Renly saying “Cold…” as in the books before dying. Or did I miss that? I’ll have to watch it again several times. Loving Brienne’s reactions.

    We never actually got to see Littlefinger’s machinations with the Tyrells in the book. I think they handled it well. Margaery is certainly a little schemer. I just hope that doesn’t mean they’ve given her all the best lines of the Queen of Thorns! (Just say yes to Fionnula Flanagan for the Queen of Thorns!)

    Tyrion and Cersei just keeps getting better and better. We’re starting to see flaws in Cersei’s carefully maintained control. Peter and Lena rocked that scene.

    Tyrion, Lancel and the ever-incredible Bronn. Great scene! “It will be my pleasure.”

    Tyrion and wildfire. More Bronn – always a good thing. I think I’ll miss the bits in the book about them discovering caches of wildfire all over King’s Landing, though. I was looking forward to seeing Tyrion’s reactions to being told about all of them.

    Circumstances just keep pushing Theon to the bad side. I think Asha/Yara/Stephanie’s taunts and general demeanor are starting to grow on me. She’s taken some getting used to, but I think it’s working out. Poor Theon. He’s discovered a slippery slope and once on it, he seems to have decided to hang on and enjoy the ride.

    Bran! I loved that scene. A Rickon sighting! Even better. Bran is growing nicely under Luwin’s tutelage. Another great scene followed by more Hodor! And Bran and Osha. And.. dangit! They gave Jojen’s dream to Bran instead. I suppose that they had to do so; but…does this give more weight to the possibility that Jojen is not going to appear ever? Sad, if true. I can still hope that Meera and Jojen somehow make an entry next season; but hope grows dimmer.

    Dragon sighting. More win. Dracarys! More win! Scene went downhill a little from there, but I’m willing to forgive a lot just for Drogon and Dracarys!

    Pyat Pree is a creepy bugger isn’t he? Nice casting. Again WiC hit it on the bullseye regarding them not shying away from the magical. The House of the Undying should be fun!

    The only thing missing from the Dany and Ducksauce (I’m sorry, it’s just so funny that I can’t resist) exposition was sex for some sexposition. So… now all the viewers know Jorah’s motivation and so, now apparently for the first time, does Dany. Ship captain? Hmmm… will we be seeing a certain man with a white beard soon? I do hope so!

    Arya and Tywin. Wow. Great scene. A change from the books but written and acted to perfection! The looks alone between Arya and Tywin when she answers, “anyone can be killed” was absolutely the best scene in the episode, in my opinion. Great interaction. A change from the books actually has enhanced the story, I think. The looks in Arya’s eyes. Maisie better win an Emmy. Well, if they’re smart then they used this episode as one of the samples.

    Arya and Jaqen. I don’t care that people whine about syntax. Jaqen is being played very accurately, really. Dialogue aside, it’s a great character and a great choice for the role. Almost creepy, but you can’t not like him. Good stuff.

    What else? Oh, yeah. Davos and Stannis. I liked that scene too. “Hard truths cut both ways.” Nice. Very nice.

    Dolorous Ed isn’t as dolorous as in the books yet. Hopefully he’ll get some better lines. He’s still dolorous, just not quite dolorous enough. Sam is great, as usual. I liked the lines Jon delivers about the First Men coming there to get away and not succeeding. Nice. Qhorin Halfhand! Finally. More good stuff. More next week, I think.

    The final scene. While WiC made a well-founded point about the loss of the Tickler now instead of later and how that affects later scenes to the worse, I think that final scene was another good one. Arya correcting Gendry on his swordsmanship! More Maisie for Best Actress fodder. And that look on her face after she glances up and sees Jaqen on the walkway. She almost smiles, not quite but almost, as it sinks in to her. Priceless.

    Mostly great, a few minor things that really don’t spoil the episode. Worries about future scenes, however, because of things done in this one. We’ll see. Meanwhile…

    Maisie Williams for Best Actress. Forget supporting. Just Best Actress.

  49. Stephen
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:33 pm | Permalink

    I agree with Dee that they prob shouldn’t have shown jaqen at all after the tickler was killed. It detracts from the style that Martin likes to use to make the viewer/reader not know to a certainty what happened and only be able to make assumptions which may or may not turn out to be accurate later. And it seems to be unanimous that killing the tickler now alters the story too much despite their reasons for doing it.
    I loved the episode overall though. Charles Dance nails his part soooo well as Tywin. Just the posture he had sitting in his chair had me thinking this is the more regal patronly version of emperor Palpatine. His tone of voice, facial expressions all of it, they scream perfect acting for Tywin Lannister. Tom Wlaschiha did an excellent job in his performance. Lastly, I enjoy the scenes with Tyrion and Bronn just as much if not more than the books. The two characters are class-acts who are right up each other’s alleys and the actors have done what I consider to be a perfect job enacting those roles. It’s sad to see that Jojen and Mira are now not likely to be in the story at all but I can understand cutting them out for succinctness.

  50. House Snow
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:33 pm | Permalink

    Rukie44: This episode was able to fit in everyone (except Robb) without feeling too crowded. We got to see both a dragon and Ghost, plus a demon shadow baby. We got to explore two new locations (Fist of the First Men and Qarth), said goodbye to an old character (RIP King Renly) and was introduced to a new character (Quorin). I also enjoyed seeing the more in-depth look ay Brienne and Jaqen. Good job, GoT. Great episode.

    I think it had a lot with using up all the time allotted. They kind of missed a chance to sneak some good stuff in there. By not filling in some time. The thing that amazed me about the episode was how spot on everyone was compared to how imagined them. Some seriously impressive acting.

  51. purplejilly
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:34 pm | Permalink

    I’ve changed my mind on the nudity parity issue. I am now willing to trade one shirtless Gendry for every set of boobs they put on screen.

    The pacing did seem better this episode. I didn’t get the rushed, ‘clip show’ feeling I’ve had in the past. Instead, it had a quality ‘soap opera’ pacing – where they have a lot of stories to tell,but they know when to let the camera linger, to get those emotional shots in, like when Arya tells Tywin “Anyone can be killed.” perfect!

    But building on what Winter says, right after that happens, it makes no sense for Arya to pick The Tickler to be killed, instead of Tywin, unless she didn’t believe he was telling the truth and so she just said the Tickler because she didn’t think it would really happen..

  52. Ms.Stormborn
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:35 pm | Permalink

    Loved the dragon flame-broiling his meat! Now I’m craving a tri-tip!

  53. Arthur
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:36 pm | Permalink

    ThePinkDragon,

    Yeah, I personally still think there will be one Reed, and it will be Meera.

    I agree, Meera needs to be there to flesh out Bran’s storyline a bit more. D&D can easily find a clever way to write her in next season. D&D choosing to give Bran the “Green Dream” ability does make it look like there is no longer a need for jojen…

    But yeah, this episode was what I have been waiting to see. All the other episodes before this were a little disappointing. This is the first episode this season EVERYTHING was awesome. From start to finish I was thinking “Wow, the book has come to life”.

    There is so much to talk about, for now I am just overwhelmed with adrenaline.

    This is the Game of Thrones I have been waiting for…

    If things are like this from this episode on, then all I got to say is WOW, we are in for a real treat and GoTs is in for a bunch of awards.

  54. Eric Fitch
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:37 pm | Permalink

    So far all the changes being made by D&D make perfect sense. Given their track record and assuming that the show lasts long enough to cover books four and five I think there is a very good chance they will be able to fix some of GRR’s errors. The story may be getting away from George but I don’t think it will get away from these two.

  55. J
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:38 pm | Permalink

    One thing I really enjoyed were all the off-hand mentions of places that haven’t been in the show yet, but are from the books. Including one mention of Meereen in the Qarth scenes!

  56. House Snow
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:38 pm | Permalink

    Stephen,

    I think one other reason to cut them out and give Bran their stuff is that it makes Bran more interesting IMO. I mean him saying Jojen dream was honestly much better than if Jojen had done it. Watch the cinematography on that scene, the way they linger on the walls of Winterfell, it was made specifically for book readers-sort of take one last look before it comes down.

  57. Shock Me
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:39 pm | Permalink

    I am a bit sad that Arya doesn’t get to take the Tickler. That is one of my favorite scenes in the book. But on the whole this is my favorite episode in the series since “The Pointy End”.

    There was also the bonus of no sexposition.

    But the favorite new thing is the visual thought process of Theon realizing what it will mean to draw troops from Winterfell to Torrhen’s Square. In combination with Bran’s dream about the sea coming to Winterfell, it was as subtle as the writing has been since the series began. LOVE IT!

  58. Clambake
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:39 pm | Permalink

    This is way off topic but I’m in a posting mood I guess. But does anyone else think Coldhands is Benjen?

  59. WizStorm
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:39 pm | Permalink

    House Snow:
    So, anyone think the 2 orphans Bran mentioned might end up turning into something down the road?

    I have a feeling they might have an encounter with Theon in the near future.

  60. House Snow
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:40 pm | Permalink

    Also I think the way they are going to handle Arya not name Tywin, is for him leave before she gets the chance.

  61. mikeintexas
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:41 pm | Permalink

    Andrew:
    Dee,

    ..I’m going to have to go back and read Clash again, because I honestly have no memory of any Character named Qaithe. My other friend, who read the books too, was also a bit confused. Apperently we skimmed some Dany chapters. Thanks for the heads up, though!

    Quaithe was one of the three that met Dany to see the dragons in the red waste in the books. She forewarns about a lot of dangers to Dany and gives one of the most memorable prophecies concerning Dany. Dany recollects her words a lot in the books. Surprised you missed it.

  62. Maxwell James
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:41 pm | Permalink

    I fuckin’ loved this episode. Best yet.

    EDIT: Because I’ve been hard on him, a shout-out to Aiden Gillen tonight. That quarter-smile was just perfect.

  63. PatD
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:41 pm | Permalink

    I can’t believe how effin’ perfect is Brienne. She even sounds/talks like I imagined her. Loved the Cat/Brienne scene.

    They sure brushed over the fate of NuRos, didn’t they? Tyrion just kind of blew it off.

    Gorgeous shots of Iceland.

    I like that they picked off Tickler first. It’ll keep us guessing on the next two.

  64. Chris
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:44 pm | Permalink

    Mourning the loss of Meera and Jojen in the series. They are so intregal to Brans story. Also, no Reeds means no mention of Howland Reed who is the only person who knows John parentage.

  65. tysnow
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:47 pm | Permalink

    Loved this episode, another 9.5/10, and no Ros either, and no graphic S&M to boot, perhaps a sign of maturity for the show.

    Loved all the Qarth scenes, the best part of this week after Renly/Brienne, Arya/Tywin and Theon. Unfortunately, felt Jon’s arc was a little flat, impressed with Iceland though, seems like some of Jon’s stuff was cut, like introduction of QHH, seemed a little choppy (-0.5).
    One thing though, are they hinting at changing Dany’s story arc, Jorah mentioning get only one ship and sail to Westeros and gather army there. Also it looks like Qarth is going to see some bloodshed next week (significant change) ala a civil war. This man has no problems with Dany arriving early, but this man soooo wants to see Astapor and the massacre.

  66. House Snow
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:48 pm | Permalink

    mikeintexas: Quaithe was one of the three that met Dany to see the dragons in the red waste in the books. She forewarns about a lot of dangers to Dany and gives one of the most memorable prophecies concerning Dany. Dany recollects her words a lot in the books. Surprised you missed it.

    Yeah Quarthe as a whole is actually working for me better than I thought it would, considering how bizarre it was in the book. Also props to the person who said it feels like a star trek episode. So true.

  67. Arthur
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:48 pm | Permalink

    Chris,

    Mourning the loss of Meera and Jojen in the series.

    Don’t assume things so fast! We know there will be no Jojen, but Meera still has a shot at making the cut for season 3!

    Like we decided before. D&D probably would have to ask GRRM if Meera becomes a major part of Bran’s story. If so, they cast her, if not they don’t…

  68. PeterD
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:48 pm | Permalink

    I’m not at all pleased with the deviations from the book here, whereas normally they don’t bother me, and some work well.

    I, too, fear for Meera and Jojen, two characters I loved from the books. If they’re rolled into Osha, who takes Rickon to the Land of Unicorns and Cannibals™?

    Since when was The Substance Cersei’s idea? I’m certain that was Tyrion. And no mention of the chain? This was a huge part of the battle of the Blackwater.

    No BoobDresses in Qarth? WTF? This is HBO ferheavensakes! The one time that they needed to show breasts, damn it!

    Count me as one who was bitterly disappointed at the demise of The Tickler at the hand of J’quen. Arya’s killing him the way she did in the books was magnificent and so cathartic after her previous ordeals.

    On the upside, I loved Drogon roasting his own dinner, the Arya, Brienne and Catelyn scenes were perfect, ShadowBaby™ doing for the peachless Renly was we got an “It is known” out of Irri. Dolorous Edd! We get to live another day. Hurrah.

    I can’t give this one any more than a C+ or maybe a B- after the first viewing.

  69. Clambake
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:49 pm | Permalink

    I thought this post was for book readers and contained spoilers. Why am I (and others) being censored?

  70. Langkard
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:49 pm | Permalink

    Chris:
    Mourning the loss of Meera and Jojen in the series.They are so intregal to Brans story.Also, no Reeds means no mention of Howland Reed who is the only person who knows John parentage.

    Spoiler tags needed. I added them in quoting. I agree. If we don’t get Jojen and Meera or at least one of the Reeds, then they have to give the information Howland knows to someone else and think up a convoluted reason for that person knowing. Howland, and his children, are the only people left alive who know now. The death of Ned means no one else knows. While none of us technically knows either, since it hasn’t been explicitly laid out in the books yet, we all have theories on what we know. And someone has to know what we think we know or how else how will the people in the books learn what we think we know so that they know too? Er… now I’m confused.

  71. House Snow
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:50 pm | Permalink

    tysnow: Loved this episode, another 9.5/10, and no Ros either, and no graphic S&M to boot, perhaps a sign of maturity for the show.Loved all the Qarth scenes, the best part of this week after Renly/Brienne, Arya/Tywin and Theon. Unfortunately, felt Jon’s arc was a little flat, impressed with Iceland though, seems like some of Jon’s stuff was cut, like introduction of QHH, seemed a little choppy (-0.5).One thing though, are they hinting at changing Dany’s story arc, Jorah mentioning get only one ship and sail to Westeros and gather army there. Also it looks like Qarth is going to see some bloodshed next week (significant change) ala a civil war. This man has no problems with Dany arriving early, but this man soooo wants to see Astapor and the massacre.

    Well one of the people who said they got a an preview of episode 6 said there would be pretty significant changes, but I can’t imagine it would be going home early. That would be insane.

  72. Andrew
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:51 pm | Permalink

    mikeintexas,

    If a prophecy was ever mentioned again, I probably just attributed it to the House of the Undying, to be honest.

  73. KG
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:52 pm | Permalink

    I would rather have had the Tickler get his in the proper time and place but hey – *adaptation.*

    Trust in the show’s staff. They seem to have it all under control (unlike GRRM!)

  74. Corn
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:53 pm | Permalink

    Clambake: But does anyone else think Coldhands is Benjen?

    Yes, that’s been mentioned before somewhere, and I think it makes sense.

  75. Arthur
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:53 pm | Permalink

    PatD,

    I can’t believe how effin’ perfect is Brienne. She even sounds/talks like I imagined her. Loved the Cat/Brienne scene.

    That was the best scene IMO of this episode. Brienne giving her knights oath and Cat excepting it. Gwen is a freaking awesome Brienne. That scene was so powerful…

    Dude, can you imagine what the Jaime/Brienne scenes are going to be like? How there relationship builds from that of Jaime feeling hatred towards her to that of him feeling the utmost respect. That storyline is going to be so badass in season 3…

  76. Impi
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:54 pm | Permalink

    All was fantastic!

    Plus, we couldn’t have an episode called Ghost of Harrenhal without that awesome shot of Ghost at the Fist.

  77. Andy Gavin
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:54 pm | Permalink

    If last week’s theme was torture, this week’s is revenge. This is a very solid episode that really moves everything along. In fact, we have most of the threads, if only briefly. My full episode review here.

  78. Strepsi
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:55 pm | Permalink

    wargsareawesome,

    For example: Quaithe’s mask

    I’m curious, what didn’t you like about Quaithe’s mask? I mean when I read the book I imagined it as a wooden voodoo mask (like you can gain in World of Warcraft) but this mask was very exotic and mysterious, so it worked for me. Pyat Pree ws also perfect.

  79. KG
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:55 pm | Permalink

    Mike from Braavos,

    No, I too have nothing but utter disintrest in the Reeds. Glad I’m not totally alone anymore lol

  80. Kevin w
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:56 pm | Permalink

    I can’t think of one thing that I didn’t like about this episode. Bad Ass, and I feel bad for all the people missing out.

  81. tysnow
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:57 pm | Permalink

    While rewatching episode, I really love Dany’s scenes, not just the garden, but especially her scene with Doreah and Irri, excellent acting and fluidity. The awsomeness of Dany and Jorah, hoping they share a bed sooner then later (I know plenty want to see Ian naked). Damn was Pyrat Pree creepy or what and Quaithe was mysterious, but she sure seemed to be another hottie in disguise. Wow and there were some compaints about Gendry being not smithy enough, I can hear the clamouring for more shirtless Gendry scenes in the future.

  82. darrylzero
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:58 pm | Permalink

    Andrew:
    That was a really great episode! Even though they seemed to get in scenes with the majority of the characters (save for Sansa, Joff, and Robb), the pacing was a lot less rushed to me. The writing was alsovery good this episode, even without very emotional scenes to showcase it. The way they handled Littlefinger and Margaery was also very well done, in my oppinion. It’s good that they didn’t just spell out what was going to happen.

    I’m of course going to miss Arya and the Tickler’s scene from book 3, but i’m not too mad about it. She’ll presumably have a different exchange in it’s place, though maybe not quite as powerful as the original one.

    Jerome Flynn is absolutely nailing the part of Bronn, and Tom Wlaschiha is doing an equally fantastic job as Jaqen. I wont lie, though, I was a bit miffed we didn’t get to see Rorge and Biter this episode, though they’ll probably still be around for the Weasel Soup.

    I’m also very intrigued as to who that woman was, talking to Ser Jorah. When she said that she is no one, my thoughts immediately went to The Faceless Men, but I doubt they’d take such an active interest in Westerosi politics. My second thought was it could be Lemore, but I don’t know.

    Yeah, I was really anxious at first about the Tickler, but I’m calming down. I mean, it’ll just be one of the great little nuggets for people who see the show first to notice when they get around to reading the books. That’s nice, and I trust they’ll be able to make this work.

  83. Arthur
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 10:59 pm | Permalink

    KG,

    No, I too have nothing but utter disintrest in the Reeds. Glad I’m not totally alone anymore lol

    How dare you speak so ill of everyones favorite Frogspear Huntress! Pfft… =(

  84. Arthur
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:00 pm | Permalink

    Okay, off to watch the second airing!!!

  85. Langkard
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:00 pm | Permalink

    darrylzero: Yeah, I was really anxious at first about the Tickler, but I’m calming down.I mean, it’ll just be one of the great little nuggets for people who see the show first to notice when they get around to reading the books.That’s nice, and I trust they’ll be able to make this work.

    I think this is absolutely a great attitude! What a great way of looking at it. Something wonderful for new readers to discover, drawn to the books from the TV series. I like it.

  86. Varamyr Fourskins
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:02 pm | Permalink

    I loved the episode, but I would concur that The Tickler’s death was wasted. Could’ve been so much better.

    I was also surprised Theon didn’t know who Cleftjaw was. In the book, he’s basically the Ser Roderick of Pyke, but I suppose it would’ve eaten up too much screen time to introduce him that way.

    And for the Shadowborn, it looked great, but it did seem a little rushed (i.e. the guards walk in and instantly suspect Brienne of killing Renly without even confirming that Renly was in fact dead. You’d think there would’ve been a little more confusion going on there, but I suppose that’s a small detail).

  87. PatD
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:02 pm | Permalink

    I can’t give this one any more than a C+ or maybe a B- after the first viewing.

    Seriously???

    Instead of being so busy scoring it maybe people should just try enjoying the ride.

    I really feel like I’m becoming desensitized to a lot of the criticism I read, anymore. It’s beginning to feel like criticism for criticism’s sake. If ya’ know what I mean…

  88. ThePinkDragon
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:02 pm | Permalink

    Similarly off to the second airing! :D

  89. Langkard
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:02 pm | Permalink

    Hey, was Jaqen eating a peach in that final scene as he looks down to Arya?

    (Cackle! /runs away)

  90. skipdutch
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:04 pm | Permalink

    mikeintexas: Polliver has her sword.She can still kill Polliver herself.To be honest Polliver, the Tickler, and Raff (not cast) are interchangeable.

    Also Chiswick was the first..not Weese.

    This.
    I if Polliver isn’t #2 on the list, then I don’t see why Arya can’t scratch him off her list next season in that scene. It will mean more for the audience than Tickler, since he only had one scene, whereas Polliver killed Lommy, stole Needle, and participated in the Tickler’s torture.

  91. Stephen
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:05 pm | Permalink

    PeterD,

    The no mention of your spoiler, I’d bet $1,000 on, is that it just hasn’t been addressed yet. It’ll be in next episode I’m sure.

  92. Ed
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:05 pm | Permalink

    Huh. I had not considered that.

    Okay, just kidding. I think everybody pretty much assumes that.

    Clambake:
    This is way off topic but I’m in a posting mood I guess. But does anyone else think Coldhands is Benjen?

  93. Clambake
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:06 pm | Permalink

    PatD,

    I agree. Too many opinions about this and that when people should take it for what it is and enjoy.

  94. Andrew
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:06 pm | Permalink

    PeterD,

    The battle of the Blackwater hasn’t happened yet. There is still a few episodes in which the chain can be mentioned.

    HBO has explained the reason for the removal of the Qartheen dresses saying that it would seriously distract viewers from what was happening in the scenes, and the emotions in the actors faces and eyes. It’s one thing to have nudity in a sex scene, it’s another matter entirely to have a character constantly be showing her boob no matter the content of the scene.

    Has Bran started north yet, then? Is he heading North of the Wall now, looking for the three eyed crow? Oh, he isn’t? Then it seems like this is a rather silly time to declare that the Reeds are absolutely not going to be in the show in any way. Just because things aren’t unfolding the way they do in the books, does not mean that the outcome will be completely different. Don’t fret, yet. The story is in good hands.

  95. Jason
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:07 pm | Permalink

    People, the only reason Arya-Tickler scene in book 3 is so powerful is because Arya was repeating the Tickler torture thought in her head over and over. In the TV show it makes no sense for the audience to remember Tickler just because one torture scene. Audience won’t even remember Tickler after Arya’s long journey

    Remember it’s a TV show for TV audience, not just for book fans. Stop whining about Tickler being killed. I’m sure D&D will find someone else for Arya to kill…

  96. Craig Leska
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:08 pm | Permalink

    Well, technically the first name is Chiswyck, not Weese, and while your point about the significance of the scene in Storm isn’t undermined by this, Weese clearly is a good substitute for Chiswyck (who relayed some disgusting back story about the Mountain that didn’t make it through the editing process).

  97. Clambake
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:11 pm | Permalink

    Ed,

    I don’t really spend time reading Game of Thrones posts. I’ve just recently been finding out people’s thoughts and assumptions. I’ve read the books multiple times but have never conversed with anyone about them or wasted my time reading posts until last year.

  98. Varamyr Fourskins
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:11 pm | Permalink

    One more thing… I really liked the exchange between Theon and Black Lorren. Alfie Allen really pulled off the “I’m putting on a tough face but I’m really shitting myself” look. Subtle, but great.

  99. Ed
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:12 pm | Permalink

    KG:
    Mike from Braavos,

    No, I too have nothing but utter disintrest in the Reeds. Glad I’m not totally alone anymore lol

    Add me to that list too. I’ve never been much of a fan of them, and could not care less if they never made the show. I don’t understand people’s mad love for them. Same goes for the Blackfish, imho. A minor character (with a cool name, admittedly) with a few scenes and he’s some people’s favorite character. (shrug)

  100. LordStarkington
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:14 pm | Permalink

    Cersei came up with the idea of using wildfire in the book too, so that’s not a change.

  101. Jason
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:15 pm | Permalink

    Ed:   

    Me 3. Reeds are not important at all…

  102. Ed
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:15 pm | Permalink

    Clambake:
    I thought this post was for book readers and contained spoilers. Why am I (and others) being censored?

    That’s a fair question.

  103. Varamyr Fourskins
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:16 pm | Permalink

    Sorry about that.

  104. House Snow
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:16 pm | Permalink

    You know what crazy is how amazing the cinamatography, better than most movies to be honest and noone really even mentions it. For instance all the scenes with the boats looked pretty freaking amazing. Very epic looking.

  105. Varamyr Fourskins
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:19 pm | Permalink

    Screwed up my last post (used the quote tag instead of spoiler), but here’s what I was going to say:

    I care about the Reeds because Bloodraven feeds Jojen to Bran, and their father, Howland Reed, is the only person still alive who knows the truth behind Jon Snow’s parentage. But other than that, I suppose I could do without them. ;-)

  106. Khal Zhen
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:20 pm | Permalink

    The Reeds provide Bran the motivation and direction to go North. As long as he does, who cares where it comes from? Up until he reaches the wall, Bran’s journey is more for exposition and flushing out how large the North is. If some things must be cut, it seems an easy choice.

    Condensing plot points and characters is essential to shoot an unshootable story…

  107. Winter Is Coming
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:22 pm | Permalink

    Clambake, no one is being censored. You can still highlight the black bars to read the stuff underneath if you’ve already read the books or just don’t care about being spoiled.

    And this recap is for those who have read up to A Clash of Kings. Any discussion about events in future books needs to be spoiler tagged.

    Thanks!

  108. ThisIsAMan
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:23 pm | Permalink

    Loved the scene with Stannis and Davos this episode.

  109. Ed
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:33 pm | Permalink

    Wow – This may be my all time favorite episode.

    Just amazing.

    - How hot was Dany? Just freakin’ stunning. I like her so much better without a dirty face. :)
    - The CGI dragons were amazing. Very, very well done. Better than much CGI I’ve seen in movies.
    - Love, love, LOVE the scene with Arya and Tywin! Her stare was creepy as heck. Love her starin’ down the Lannister Patriarch. He almost seemed a little shook. (a little)
    - Jaqen’s single finger up was cool.
    - I liked Margaery’s “I want to be THE queen” line. Natalie’s great.
    - I’m real cool with the slight changes D&D made, especially with Bran’s dream. Very well done. They have SO much to trim and tighten up. I get that.

    Really rampin’ up for the second half, SO excited. Can’t wait!

  110. Langkard
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:33 pm | Permalink

    The stuff with Jon north of the Wall is one of the most compelling story lines in the books. Somehow, it just isn’t turning out that way in the TV series. I’m not sure why, but I’m finding other stuff more to my liking in the TV show. I can’t put my finger on what is different. Maybe it’s just that the condensing of the story lines seems to have made Jon’s story thinner while making other story lines deeper? I don’t know. It is a definite contrast to me, however. I realized it tonight when thinking back over the episode. Except for Qhorin appearing, it didn’t hold my interest as well as things happening elsewhere. Anyone else feeling that somehow Jon’s story north of the Wall is missing something?

  111. Hi-Fi
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:34 pm | Permalink

    Perfect, PERFECT episode!

    Everything worked. The Qarth scenes were amazing. I LOVED how Doreah, Irri and even Kovarro (who I liked so much this episode that it made me feel like I was betraying the amazing Rakharo) had a good chunk of lines. Pyat Pree was creepy as he should be. And the dragon + Ghost were amazing.

    Beautiful shots in Iceland (look how Grenn’s beard has grown!)! Jon looked great with all that windyhair.

    Peter Dinklage owns every scene he’s in. It’s efortless Great showing by Lena and Eugene (who’s surprisng me!) as well.

    Every Iron Islands scene is fantastic. The cinematography, art direction, costumes, music. EVERYTHING works. I loved Cleftjaw. And Yara, who I loved in her first episode but found kinda depressing in the second one, was hilarious. Loving her! Theon’s arc is really great to watch.

    Jaqen is so damn well cast. Sexy, mysterious. Great stuff. The Arya/Tywin scene was so well-acted as well.

    Brienne/Cat scene moment was great (did Cat leave behind Ned’s bones, though? lol).

    Anyway, already perfect episode with only 5 minutes left.

    And then…

    And then they go and take Gendry’s shirt off…

    Damn.

    Perfect episode indeed.

  112. Mark
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:39 pm | Permalink

    I think that a lot of the changes have been for the best. This episode was fantastic. However, for all the critics that question whether or not D&D are making the right changes…..they know more about this story than we do. They know how it’s going to end.

  113. Winter Is Coming
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:40 pm | Permalink

    Langkard, his story was pretty light in the first half of the book too. The second half is awesome though and I expect it will be awesome in the show.

  114. Ingemar Svensson
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:55 pm | Permalink

    I missed the line from Renly; “The time for talk is over, now we see who is stronger.”

  115. KG
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:56 pm | Permalink

    Arthur,

    I know, I know – it’s just one more thing about me that everyone hates lol But at least I’m honest!!

  116. Mack
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:56 pm | Permalink

    did H’gar say the Many-Faced God? I could have sworn I heard him saying the Red God and that really threw me off.

  117. darquemode
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:56 pm | Permalink

    I feel a bit strangely with this episode honestly…

    Nothing stood out as bad and yet it is likely one of my least favorite episodes of the season. I guess despite its few moments of brilliance (thank you Shadowborn, Ser Dinklage and Ser Dance), it just did not draw me or have any real intensity in it.

    Episodes like this advance the plot a great deal and are needed though to be sure. I think it was good bordering on great, but in no way one of the best of the season much less of the series as a whole.

    I posted the Episode Extras here:
    http://www.spoilertv.com/2012/04/here-are-this-weeks-episode-extras-from.html

  118. darquemode
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:59 pm | Permalink

    KG,

    You are not alone.
    I actually hoped they would NOT be in the series when I heard it was being made. It was one of my first thoughts for the series honestly. I’ve loved about 95% of all the changes in the series so far and I am very interested to see what will be done next year with the Reeds…..

  119. Mirri Maz
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 11:59 pm | Permalink

    i’m in love with the iron islands, every scene there has been amazing. Theon’s story in ACOK is probably my favorite and the way they are realizing it is just perfect.

    Quaith looked very different from what i thought she would, i always had an image with a tiki mask and tattered clothes in mind but i like the way she fits in with the surroundings yet still looks slightly scary.

  120. J
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:01 am | Permalink

    Mack,

    He said “the Red God”, which is what he says in the books. Because they were going to be burned to death, which means they were stolen from the Red God, who deals with fire and whatnot. The “Many-Faced God” includes aspects of many of the Gods in the world, including the Red God (and the Stranger, and so on and so forth).

  121. Michelle
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:02 am | Permalink

    Fantastic episode!

    I don’t care a jot about the Reeds, so if they are ultimately cut, I’m OK with that. Osha is a perfectly acceptable replacement. I’d forgotten about Arya killing the Tickler in ASoS, so that change didn’t bother me either. I’ve never been all that invested in Arya’s storyline anyway, so there’s that. I will gladly take all the shirtless Gendry they choose to give us, however!

    Loved everything with Renly, the Tyrells, Littlefinger, Brienne and Cat. Especially the Brienne/Cat scene. Gwen is exactly as I pictured Brienne in my head. The sooner she meets Jaime, the better. Loved Jon and the Halfhand. Loved Tyrion and Cersei. Loved Stannis and Davos.

    I just loved it. I’ve gotten very good at separating the show from the book. Makes my viewing experience so much more enjoyable. :)

  122. darquemode
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:06 am | Permalink

    Langkard,

    I feel the same way…
    I loved his arc in the book. I know more of his action scenes will happen in the second half of the series, but I think it is more than just light drama in his early scenes. I think the comedy stylings of Sam and Edd take away from what could be more dramatic moments in Jon’s story.

    I am quite bored of fart jokes and the like from Edd and Sam’s constant commenting about women….. In the books with insight into Jon’s mind and the greater depth of the story, the jokes and humor played better. In the series they come off as unneeded to me and sophomoric at best.

  123. Hi-Fi
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:08 am | Permalink

    darquemode:
    Nothing stood out as bad and yet it is likely one of my least favorite episodes of the season. I guess despite its few moments of brilliance (thank you Shadowborn, Ser Dinklage and Ser Dance), it just did not draw me or have any real intensity in it.

    But… but… this episode had this:
    http://30.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m39wdoxRXo1rtt9ayo1_500.gif

    !

  124. Ed
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:09 am | Permalink

    Oh! And how awesome was Brienne with the sword!!????

  125. Dan
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:09 am | Permalink

    MetalgoddessAMB,

    looks like they are going to replace the frog eating children with Osha….

  126. Corn
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:10 am | Permalink

    Mack:
    did H’gar say the Many-Faced God? I could have sworn I heard him saying the Red God and that really threw me off.

    He said the Red God because that’s the god of fire, and they would have died from the fire if Arya hadn’t given them the ax. Whoops, somebody beat me to it!

  127. Imhollow
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:16 am | Permalink

    What’s with Jaqen saying Arya owes three lives to the Red God? I thought she owed them to the Many Faced god? Too many gods for HBO? Seems like this could be a big change for Arya’s future.

  128. KG
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:16 am | Permalink

    Ed,

    She was quite convincing. Well done by her, the fight team, and the editors.

  129. House Snow
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:17 am | Permalink

    darquemode: KG, You are not alone.I actually hoped they would NOT be in the series when I heard it was being made. It was one of my first thoughts for the series honestly. I’ve loved about 95% of all the changes in the series so far and I am very interested to see what will be done next year with the Reeds…..

    Add me to the crowd that really hopes that they cut the Reeds. In fact I’m really hoping that they keep master Luwen around. He would be a much better vehicle for exposition plus we would get to learn about the maesters something that is woefully lacking in the book. Plus it will seem less ridiculous to have a crippled Bran surviving in the woods with a handicapped guy and Osha. It just makes sense on so many levels

  130. cindyash
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:17 am | Permalink

    And no mention of the chain? This was a huge part of the battle of the Blackwater.

    Was it my imagination, or was there the sound of a chain being moved or dropped when Tyrion entered the shop? I was surprised too that it was Cersei’s idea to use the green fire, but it will be his idea to do something else with it. And I am sure they will use the chain – how can they not?

    I think the reason that Jon’s story isn’t that compelling or interesting is that we don’t know what they will be facing. We have been shown the Wildings, but not the others. Thats a whole different kettle of fish. Once that battle is done, I think his story will become as interesting as in the books.

  131. Corn
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:17 am | Permalink

    BTW, any conjecture on who will be sent off with Rickon if the Reeds don’t show up and Osha stays with Bran?

  132. Arthur
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:20 am | Permalink

    Ed,

    - How hot was Dany? Just freakin’ stunning. I like her so much better without a dirty face. :)

    Not to sound like a Emilia Clarke fanboy but wow… Dany looked so beautiful…

    I forgot how beautiful she was when she doesn’t have chapped lips or dirt caked on her face.

    After watching the episode for a second time it is so amazing how many hints of things yet to come and subplots were thrown all over the place. Besides the Brienne/Cat scene that was totally epic. There are so many little scenes that were so perfectly played out.

    I think the first time I watched this episode, during Dany’s scenes I was just focused on Dany and how beautiful she was. There was so much going on in all Dany’s scenes.

    Dany kind of orders Doreah to use her sedcution skills and find out about Xaro from the men close to him.

    Doreah and Dany’s other handmaiden kind of have a difference in opinion on how Dany should carry herself. (Should she be a Dothraki or something else?)

    Dany starts to notice and feel a little awkward around Jorah because of his affections.

    Poor Dany getting pulled in all directions.

    This episode really put Dany back in the middle of things. Her traveling through the Red Waste was such a boring part of her storyline and I am glad that is over.

    Glad Daenerys Targaryen is back! She has returned to being an interesting character.

    The season is now in full throttle…

  133. House Snow
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:20 am | Permalink

    Imhollow: What’s with Jaqen saying Arya owes three lives to the Red God? I thought she owed them to the Many Faced god? Too many gods for HBO? Seems like this could be a big change for Arya’s future.

    Is it really that hard to read the 15-20 posts already addressing that this was exactly like in the book.

  134. Hot Pie
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:20 am | Permalink

    Am I the only one who’s upset that Davos commands Stannis’s fleet. What about Imry Florent’s condescending attitude toward Davos’s misgivings. Damn

  135. Kels
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:21 am | Permalink

    MetalgoddessAMB,

    I hope that Arya still tells him the second name when he is in the tub…

  136. Ours is the Fury
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:23 am | Permalink

    Yeah, I don’t care about the Reeds either. It actually took me a few minutes to remember it was Jojen’s dream and not Bran’s.

    I think Renly’s death scene came off anticlimactic. Something about the buildup was off. They wanted to surprise people and I’m sure they did, but there was no tension. But Gwendoline Christie was total 100% win in this episode.

    I don’t mind the Tickler’s early exit. I do love the book- death with the quoting of his lines. People would’ve forgotten him by the time he showed up again in the fourth season or whatever (since ASOS is two seasons and it was late in it when he popped up.) I did sort of expect Polliver to get swapped in first, but hey I can live with the Tickler going.

    Tom Wlaschiha is amazing. I do love the German three. :)

  137. TC
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:25 am | Permalink

    As a TV show it was probably the best flowing hour this season, probably an 8 or 9. No bad scenes if you can allow yourself to be completely divorced from the book. As an adaptation it was probably a 4 or 5. The changes are mounting and while they mostly worked within the context of this episode, there were some rather drastic shifts from the book and only later will we see how much they effect things. I have to get some sleep now, so I will have to go in more detail tomorrow.

  138. Jorge
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:27 am | Permalink

    Strong episode, and a big improvement over last week’s. I came into this episode dreading the Qarth scenes, since I was a fan at all of the Qarth gate scene least week, but I was very pleasantly surprised. Good performances from Xaro and Dany, and I like that they’re capturing some of the magic and mystery of Qarth, as scene with Pyat Pree adn Quaithe. I couldn’t care less that they have changed Xaro.

    Loved the scene between Arya and Tywin, although I have to admit I do miss Weese, just because he made Harrenhal seem so awful. Great scene too between Arya and Jaqen, though I wish they also had a shot of Rorge adn Biter. Regarding the Tickler; that’s a great, great scene in ASOS, and it sucks that there’s no way it can happen now, but there really wasn’t a conceivable way for them to ensure it would happen. The actor playing the Tickler most likely wouldn’t be around for that scene, which would have likely taken place in season four.

    Good scenes with Tyrion as well. Still enjoying his interactions with Bronn, and I loved his continuing torture of Lancel.

    My main complant; Renly’s death was kinda meh. Wasn’t really creepy, and I thought it looked pretty corny overall. Also, and this is really nitpicing, but I would have preferred if Brienne hadn’t killed the two guards.

  139. Arthur
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:32 am | Permalink

    Geez, all you people don’t want to see the Reeds.

    I guess the bottom line is the TV series will be able to function perfectly fine without Meera or Jojen…

    However, wouldn’t you rather have Bran’s storyline involve something other then him traveling through the vast wilderness with Hodor?

    You do realize that Osha has to eventually go in a different direction?

    Even if D&D deviate from the books and keep Osha with Bran, without Meera that storyline would be very boring IMHO.

    I guess it is all a matter of preference. I really liked reading about Bran with Meera and Jojen.

    I guess not everyone felt the same way I did. I hope we do get Meera though.

    I can’t wait for the casting of season 3 to start!

    And when/if they announce Meera’s casting I am going to be jumping for joy and smiling…

    I <3 Meera… Heh…..

  140. Morgan King
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:34 am | Permalink

    Obviously the Ticker’s demise in the books is epic, but there’s no chance that they aren’t going to make Arya’s first kill a HUGE moment, however they do it. I feel bad show-only people won’t get the ‘is there gold in the village!’ moment, but I’m sure they can cobble together something great.

  141. KG
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:36 am | Permalink

    BTW I have always been vocal in my belief that Joe Dempsie is too old for the part of Gendry.

    While I still feel that way, at least it spares me from having to feel terrible over the warm happy feeling that shirtless bit instilled in me lol

  142. Lex
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:44 am | Permalink

    Morgan King,

    Arya has already killed. The stableboy was her first. Sadly, that scene was terribly executed.

  143. Lex
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:46 am | Permalink

    Ours is the Fury,

    Haven’t watched the episode yet (about to start it) but it sounds like it really was a mistake to end last week’s episode after the shadow baby birth scene. It killed the shock (all my non-book reader friends guessed “Well I guess Renly’s going to die next week”), and it sounds like it killed the momentum of the event as well. That’s a real shame, because it was so shocking and creepy in the book. Ah well.

  144. andrea
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:47 am | Permalink

    darquemode: it just did not draw me or have any real intensity in it.

    thanks. I´m glad I´m not the only one. I felt nothing. For me there was a problem with direction but I can not describe it yet except in Arya´s scenes with Jaqen. This episode is called The Ghost of Harrenhal but I don´t see any mistery or intensity regarding that. I noticed the same problem at the scene when Arya recites her “prayer” (episode 3, I think). They took away the mistery, intrigue and the enchantment, I just don´t know yet.
    Yes, there were some good scenes, Littlefinger did not act like an idiot this time, some characters are more transparent now and yes the plot move a little. That´s true but it feels like they´re narrating what needs to be narrate in order to continue, but without emotional connection. It felt lifeless for me. I have to watch this episode again.

    I´m still waiting Tyrion´s reaction against what Joffrey did with his “gift”.

  145. userj
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:47 am | Permalink

    Um, I don’t think Dany wants to accept Xaro’s proposal.

    She just told Jorah that Xaro told her Robert was dead, and the time to strike is now. Not that she’s gonna marry Xaro. She gave no answer to that proposal one way or the other. She’s clearly discussing its merits/demerits with Jorah.

    Jesus if that is what the show runners want us to think of Dany whaaa??

  146. Ice
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:48 am | Permalink

    Loved:
    Tyrion/Cersei’s witty banter “Schemes and plots are the same thing”
    The casting for Pyromancer and Pyrat Pree- wiggling his fingers while describing burning flesh like tallow was so disturbing, the warlock’s face will haunt my dreams
    Arya’s stare-down of Lord Tywin- “Anyone can be killed” indeed
    J’haqen’s smoldering stare- that is one sexy dude
    The more subtle use of CGI in this episode- background Ghost shot to remind us he’s still there

    Eh:
    Renly’s death- I personally thought the shadow man (he’s not a baby at this point) looked like a blackened mummy (from the Mummy) instead of a shadow. Plus, I was expecting the throat gurgle of blood, not a solid knifing through the back.

    I loved Brienne’s sword scenes, but her line delivery with Cat seemed wooden and forced. I know that she is meant to be a rigid character who is uncomfortable sharing her feelings, but that scene in the woods was not convincing for me.

    I read the books twice, the last time a few months ago, and I honestly don’t remember how the Tickler died. I guess that book scene had no impact for me, so I don’t care that the Tickler was J’haqen’s first victim. Don’t we all wish Arya would just pick Tywin and Joffrey? Her choice demonstrates her immaturity.

  147. evilchuck
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:53 am | Permalink

    Prediction for Reeds and Ramsay. Ramsay shows up in full armor + full helm near the end to knock Theon out and burn Winterfell . Meera & Jojen show up outside Winterfell obscured by shadows/smoke saying something along the lines of “we were too late” somewhere in the last scene just before we see Bran, Rickon, Osha and Hodor.

    Also, if now if Polliver is killed before the end of this season there is no non shitty way to do one of the best Arya scenes from the third book.

  148. Zack
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:00 am | Permalink

    Nooooo the Tickler :(

    Agree 100% with you on that point Phil. On the plus side though, Jaqen is nailing this role, one of my favorite characters.

    I too enjoyed the shadow kill, despite its differences from the text. One thing I did miss was the reaction by Loras. It was so emotional in the book and I think it would have made for a great, heartbreaking moment.

    Arya/Tywin was gold, Jerry! GOLD! I have no trouble understanding how time constraints necessitate these sorts of changes, and when they lead to great scenes such as that, why worry about it?

    And I have to give a shout out to Isaac. This kid is consistently great, and he is making me really truly like Bran, to whom I had previously always been completely ambivalent in the text. On that note, I was always bored with the Reed siblings as well, while Osha’s portrayal on TV has been really great. So I’m glad to see her appearing to begin to take over those roles.

    Theon’s storyline is proceeding nicely, isn’t it? I think my most anticipated scenes from next week’s episode are his.

    Briefly now: Pyat Pree, Xaro & Qarth as a whole: A+
    Brienne: Such good casting here.
    Bronn: Fuckin’ wonderful. More Bronn plzthx. Ditto for Tyrion, of course, but everyone knows that. Bronn was always one of my favorites, and Jerome IS Bronn.

    And I’m still in love with Natalie Dormer’s Margaery.

    9/10 overall. My nitpicks are so minor this week

    ETA: I also think they didn’t really think through the timing of Renly’s death. Couldn’t they have lengthened last week’s episode by 4 minutes or so, to end with how this episode began? The shock and momentum really took a hit for that choice.

  149. Arristan the Old
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:01 am | Permalink

    Didn’t Xaro say his vault door was made of Valyrian stone, not steel? That threw me off for a minute, until I remembered about those ancient highways in Essos…

    Loved this episode, and given there just weren’t going to be any Reeds this year (it is known), I thought giving the sea-coming-to-Winterfell dream to Bran was a pretty cool way to at least keep some of their story in. Also, Brienne was just freakin’ perfect.

  150. Clambake
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:03 am | Permalink

    Winter Is Coming,

    I had no idea I could read through the black bars. I am using an iPod touch and I can’t get rid of the black lines. Do you or anyone else know how to?

  151. Corn
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:07 am | Permalink

    IMO Arya’s first pick was meant to show that she’s still a child, though a child that’s growing up fast, and doesn’t always think things through regarding the consequences of each action. It will be so interesting to see where D&D take this plot line next. J’haqen is the new Yoren…a small character in the book that is making a huge impact in the TV series. Go J’haqen!

  152. Zelniq
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:07 am | Permalink

    AFFC spoilers

    I just realized, you think David/Dan already cast the new Jaqen H’ghar when he changes his face, right when he gives the coin to Arya in ACoK? for those who read AFFC but missed the subtle reference in the Prologue of AFFC, the man who claims to be an alchemist and has Pate steal the archmaester’s key then kills Pate, matches the description of Jaqen’s new face exactly. He’s also assumed to be the new Pate in the later chapters of AFFC, who’s assisting Archmaester Marwyn.
    Or perhaps they aren’t even using a new actor for the new Jaqen? what do you guys think will happen?
    (source: http://awoiaf.westeros.org/index.php/Jaqen_H%27ghar)

  153. Varamyr Fourskins
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:08 am | Permalink

    One more thing, and then I’m done (for the night): Zarozan Ducksauce was way creepier in the books. He was a weeping albino fruitcake with a nose ring, for christ’s sake (something I assume everyone is naturally creeped out by… sort of like clowns).

    But somehow, the TV version of Mr. Ducksauce doesn’t weird me out nearly as much. He’s not quite so effeminate, or festooned with gold as I imagined him being.

    Perhaps the book-Daxos wouldn’t have played as well on screen (i.e. he may have been a bit too eccentric to believably pull-off), but he created a much more bizarre atmosphere than the HBO-Ducksauce does, IMO (that could’ve just been my own mind at work, but I could’ve sworn GRRM had something to do with that).

  154. Zack
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:08 am | Permalink

    Clambake:
    Winter Is Coming,

    I had no idea I could read through the black bars. I am using an iPod touch and I can’t get rid of the black lines. Do you or anyone else know how to?

    Copy/paste the blacked-out text into the Notes app. I’m assuming iPod Touches have that, since my iPhone does.

  155. darquemode
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:15 am | Permalink

    andrea,

    I don’t think that D&D have done a good neough job showing how dangerous Jaqen is. In the books we know that even the killers in the cage with him feared him. We never got that in the series. In the books I liked the aspect of Jaqen that was almost supernatural in his killing abilities. In the series they come off very human and with no mystery like you stated.

  156. Steel_Wind
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:17 am | Permalink

    Corn:
    BTW, any conjecture on who will be sent off with Rickon ifthe Reeds don’t show up and Osha stays with Bran?

    Rickon? Give him to the Liddles, en route. Hugs and kisses. *Done*.

    Sorry folks, Jojen and Meera died tonight. And the Queen of Thorns did too, I think. The Queen of Thorns was a nice old grandmother who made the decisions for a not very worldly sixteen year old Margaery Tyrell.

    GoT’s Margaery needs no Queen of Thorns. And we won’t be wondering who slipped him the mickey, either.

  157. Spryte
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:21 am | Permalink

    Lots of people talk about the acting/story progression, but I have to give huge kudos to this episode for how visually stunning it was. The cinematography, set design, costumes, everything. Qarth was beautiful. All the details down to even the hydrangeas — beautiful! And the scene with the Night’s Watch on the Fist.. you can really understand how true it is when the actors spoke of how their set locations do a lot of their work for them.

    And darquemode, thank you, now I’m really curious what’s behind that vault!

  158. Andrew
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:22 am | Permalink

    darquemode,

    The series isn’t over yet, and the bit from the book that demonstrates Rorge and Biter fearing him hasn’t actually happened yet in the timeline, from what I recall. Don’t complain about parts being cut when we haven’t even gotten to the point in the story where they happen yet.

  159. darquemode
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:22 am | Permalink

    Ice,

    Ian Hanmore is one scary looking dude even without drastic makeup or prostethics! He was one of the baddies in the BBC sereis “The Fades” nad he is eve nmore disturbingly frightening!
    http://dehast.tester001.org/maniacs/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/S01fades10.jpg
    http://scifimafia.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/the-fades-polus-bd-dvd.jpg
    http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-xvTkBPs_WgU/TvloGcYH3RI/AAAAAAAAIKs/DzPlgL8TPpc/s1600/thefades.jpg

    They even liked his look so much his eyes made it into the covert art!
    http://images.blu-ray.com/movies/covers/29908_front.jpg

  160. Langkard
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:23 am | Permalink

    Winter Is Coming:
    Langkard, his story was pretty light in the first half of the book too. The second half is awesome though and I expect it will be awesome in the show.

    I think you’re probably correct. I’m looking forward to getting kissed by fire. Things should pick up with Qhorin Halfhand in the mix now. It’s been awhile since I read ACOK. After I finish plowing my way through the 3rd book in Glen Cook’s new series, I’ll start ASOIAF over again.

  161. LordStarkington
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:27 am | Permalink

    Hot Pie:
    Am I the only one who’s upset that Davos commands Stannis’s fleet. What about Imry Florent’s condescending attitude toward Davos’s misgivings. Damn

    Hot Pie,

    I’m guessing they didn’t want to spend more time on a scene like that (since they threw in Davos’ own self-deprecating analysis of his qualifications to lead the fleet), especially since it looks like they went all out on the actual battle.

  162. ropeadope
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:29 am | Permalink

    ThePinkDragon: Yeah, I’m a lesbian and I would marry Jaqen H’ghar

    ThePinkDragon: And Gendry. Gendry too.Hot damn, he was not even remotely built like that in Skins. Not even REMOTELY.

    Are you sure you’re a lesbian? I’m thinking “armchair lesbian,” not practicing lesbian.

  163. Ice
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:34 am | Permalink

    darquemode,

    And I didn’t think he could look more terrifying. How wrong I was! Ian Hanmore should be in every zombie movie/show ever made. The House of the Undying just took on a whole new meaning…

  164. Ms. de Winter
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:35 am | Permalink

    Excellent episode!!

    Shame about the Tickler, I agree with WiC on this point.
    Jaqen was fabulous, I love him. He was a perfect mix was enigmatic, dangerous, and sexy rolled into one very powerful presence. His eyes are almost hypnotic.

    Renly dying touched me, even though in the books I didn’t feel anything when I read that scene. His conversation with Cat, agreeing to an alliance with Robb, made for so much lost potential, that it broke my heart to see him die.

    Arya interaction with Tywin was gorgeous to behold. She held her own and more in that scene. Maisie is just wonderful!! I can’t praise her enough.

    To be honest, for the first time this season I find that I have very little criticism for an episode. The Ghost Of Harrenhal was a great watch.

    I forgot to mention: RICKON! We finally see him and he’s cracking nuts like a homicidal squirrel?! lol

    Important note:

    Until yesterday I have posted on this site under the username Dee, but since I find that someone on this thread has appropriated the name for themselves, from now on I’ll be posting under the name Ms. de Winter.

  165. Steel_Wind
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:42 am | Permalink

    Re shirtless Dempsey: I have no idea how many workouts were involved and how many chickens died to bring the audience those dark-washed pecs and abs, but I expect it was a helluva lot of both. Got to respect the man’s dedication to the role and making the most of it to advance his career. A lot of sacrifice and hard work for a 1 min scene. I’m sure the ladies appreciated it!

  166. Ye Olde Wolfe
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:43 am | Permalink

    Clambake:
    I predict that Meera and Jojen will appear after Winterfell falls and Bran and company emerge from the crypts.

    That should be spoiler-ed, and I think you’re right. And I think the fact that Osha refuses to tell Bran anything about the Three-Eyed Crow bodes well for future Reed-casting.
    Hot-DAMN what a great episode! The Fist! That look on Theon’s face when talking about Moat Cailin and Winterfell! The Arya-Tywin scene! DROGON ACTUALLY DOING SOMETHING AND LOOKING FLAWLESS! LOLOLOL Rickon! Half-hand! Dolorous Edd dealing up his brand of humor, and being perfectly cast! This episode was so full of win! And someone mentioned Ghost being in scene, I was focused on the actors I didn’t even notice him. I’ll have to re-watch (which I always do anyway).

  167. darquemode
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:48 am | Permalink

    Andrew,

    I was thinking Arya noted Rorge and Biter’s fear of Jaqen prior to the first whispered name…. but it was the second I guess. You’re right.

    Regardless something was missing for me… Nothing major or episode-ruining. There’s plenty of time for Jaqen to come off as he does he in the books. I’m not worried about it.

  168. Dogmayor
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:52 am | Permalink

    I, like others, was disappointed that we won’t get Arya’s lines while she stabs the Tickler to death, but as others have pointed out, this is understandable because the audience may not remember him. I do however believe they will keep Polliver alive and have him in this scene as it will be easier to connect who he is due to the fact that he has needle.

  169. Filla
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:53 am | Permalink

    Am I the only one who thought Renly’s death was poorly handled? The rest of the episode was fantastic though, and Stannis… My goodness did Dillane nail that scene. Xaro was phenomenal as well.

  170. Magnar of Thenn
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:55 am | Permalink

    Loved the episode.

    We are finally starting to see the true north, instead of just some forest.

    I for one am glad to see the Tickler die. Everybody goes on about how epic his demise in the book is, but everyone forgets that there was a serious consequence that resulted from that encounter. Now it appears that the resulting consequence might not happen at all, and I am very happy about the possibility.

  171. ThePinkDragon
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:55 am | Permalink

    ropeadope:
    Are you sure you’re a lesbian? I’m thinking “armchair lesbian,” not practicing lesbian.

    What, being queer suddenly blinds a person from the appearances of the opposite gender? Goodness.

    The sexual fluidity argument aside, just ’cause I think they’re handsome doesn’t mean I want to sleep with them; for the record, I was mostly kidding about the Jaqen thing.

  172. Nyahs
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:05 am | Permalink

    The scene with Arya and Tywin = AWESOME! Epic stare down!
    Since Arya X’ed out The Tickler with one of her 3 names it kinda makes me wonder how much of her adventure with the Hound we’ll get to see next season. I hope they don’t cut too much of it out, her story line is one of my favorites.

    Oh… and I CANNOT wait for Dany’s visit to The House of the Undying. I’m so curious to see how the visions I have in my head from the book will play out on screen. And the of course what happens after that, hehe.

  173. Corn
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:06 am | Permalink

    Was I hallucinating, or did that shadow thing have Stannis’ hairline and head shape?

  174. Nyahs
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:09 am | Permalink

    Ye Olde Wolfe,

    Ghost is in the background looking around while Grenn, Jon, Sam and Dolorous are talking. Hard to spot at first, I missed it the first viewing but caught him on the second.

  175. ropeadope
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:13 am | Permalink

    ThePinkDragon: What, being queer suddenly blinds a person from the appearances of the opposite gender? Goodness.The sexual fluidity argument aside, just ’cause I think they’re handsome doesn’t mean I want to sleep with them; for the record, I was mostly kidding about the Jaqen thing.

    Apologies. I was jesting myself. Sorry if my comment was out of line.

  176. Corn
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:16 am | Permalink

    House Snow:
    So, anyone think the 2 orphans Bran mentioned might end up turning into something down the road?

    You mean like the Miller’s boys I’m the book?

  177. ThePinkDragon
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:18 am | Permalink

    ropeadope: Apologies. I was jesting myself. Sorry if my comment was out of line.

    Oh, it’s alright. :) The internet doesn’t have a joking tag.

    I also didn’t know after I posted if people thought I was trying to get attention by saying that or something. For the record, if I preface my comment with something gay, it’s because it’s necessary to know the comment (or lame joke, in this case) is coming from that POV.

  178. anti userj
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:19 am | Permalink

    userj,

    your opinions and points are pretty stupid all the time, dumbbie

  179. LordStarkington
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:27 am | Permalink

    Corn:
    Was I hallucinating, or did that shadow thing have Stannis’ hairline and head shape?

    It did.

    Not sure if this requires spoiler tags but to be safe; the shadow”babies” take Stannis’ shape, which is how Davos recognizes the one he sees in the books and is the hint for the readers as to what was going on.

  180. Lex
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:28 am | Permalink

    Well, that was just awesome. Probably the best episode of the season, for me.

    There were a couple things that really bothered me (the Tickler change is disappointing, and wasn’t Renly’s throat cut in the books? Would have looked more gruesome).

    That being said, nearly every single other scene was awesome. I really thought that, despite the changes, this episode felt true to the book. Brienne is PERFECT. Jaqen is PERFECT. Brienne/Catelyn in the woods was amazing, The Fist looked insane (Ghost!!!), Arya/Tywin was intense, and Stannis/Davos was the best scene yet for those characters.

  181. Joshua Taylor
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:36 am | Permalink

    I know I’ve praised the last 4 episodes, and to be honest I think I may have been a bit over zealous, but that was as great hour of television. It even made the first four episodes even better and with the exception of seeing Tyrion react to NuRos’ fate, all the heinousness from last episode was either answered or at least acknowledged.

    -The opening with Renly was understated and well done especially since I thought they would make it more graphic. I think the way Renly was killed is even more frightening in it’s small amount of gore. It was an assassination not butchery.
    -Gwendoline Christie (wow) and Michelle Fairley are magic together. I loved Fairley so much in this episode. I think I have a bit of a crush on her ;-)
    -Littlefinger, Loras and Margaery. Great scene. Even Loras was good. I loled at how he didn’t believe Brienne killed Renly. A change from the book but understandable.
    -Stannis/Davos. Wonderful. Stephen Dillane is mesmerizing. As I knew he would be. Cunnnigham has this charisma about him that gives Davos a Han Solo meets Theoden quality to him.
    -Iceland. Halfhand. Fist of the First Men. Great.
    -Arya and Tywin. Words fail me. I love Charles Dance so much.
    -Quarth was just a joy to behold. Emilia has really bought her A-game. Glad Doreah is still alive. Quaithe was just bizzare, which is great. I guess Doreah replaces Jhiqui? Any moment with Amrita is a blessing. I’ll blame the scene from last episode on the writer. Pyat Pree was creepy as all get out. Was that Drogon or Rhaegal?
    -Props to Tom Wlasicha (spelling?) and yeah I’m bummed that the Tickler got killed early, but I think his death made the most sense given the limited castings and the fact that he is obviously one of the first perpetrators Arya would go after. She’s not going to turn on Tywin because she is probably a) immature and dealing out vengeance on an emotional level given her experience at Harrenhal and b) She owes him her limited freedom. For now.
    -Roy Dotrice! Now I know him, he played Wesley’s “father” on Angel! And yes I am aware he narrated 4 of the 5 audiobooks.
    -bye bye Jojen Reed! Fingers crossed for Meera.
    -Ships! Oh I have very high expectations for Blackwater now!
    -Glad their beginning to show the civil unrest. Tyrion and Bronn was great. Lots of understatement with Tyrion regarding the Wildfire. Great acting. Loving Cersei and the wine.

    And with the exception of Gendry (enjoy ladies!) I do declare that I came across no nudity whatsoever! Which is kind of funny being that a portion of the episode was set in Quarth and we bookreaders are very aware of the particular minutiae of ladies fashion in the greatest city there ever was or ever will be!

    That was Deadwood/Rome calibre in my opinion, great directing, writing, acting, the gears are fully in motion. I wonder if D & D rushed to get the screeners out and edited the first four episodes on a time constraint and simply edited the rest with more breathing room while these were airing? There was something about the pace and the lack of choppiness that just made this episode soar.

  182. Magnar of Thenn
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:38 am | Permalink

    I don’t really have a problem with them showing Jaqen looking down in his Lannister armor, since he is not the only Lannister soldier up there.

    Anybody else wonder how Jaqen came to wear the Lannister garb?

    And the answer is yes, to the earlier question about Jaqen flashing the german 3. It reminded me of Inglorious Basterds all the way.

  183. Joshua Taylor
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:38 am | Permalink

    Ms. de Winter,

    Like the new name. A nod to Monsieurs Dumas and Martin? ;-)

  184. Lexyvil
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:39 am | Permalink

    Best episode this season for sure! It was more to the point than the previous 4. I’m really looking forward to next week.

  185. Mimsy
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:40 am | Permalink

    I guess I have no favorite episodes, cuz that would make me a liar. They keep getting better and better!!

    I’m thinking it doesn’t matter to the newbie viewer who Arya first names to Jaqen. The obvious choice to the non book reader so far has been to name Joffrey.. even though he’s all the way in Kings Landing. I kept hearing kill Joffrey! all night long. Non book readers were giving the nod to Tywin.. like you’re screen time is numbered buddy.

    How AWESOME was that Arya/Tywin stare down?! Our little girl is fearless!

    How creepy is Rickon?! Dang that kiddo creeps me out. I wonder what’s gonna become of that lil guy.

    Tom is my perfect Jaqen. Ugh, there are no words for that man. I hope they stretch that character out for the next 3 seasons.

    Shameless shout out for Gendry. Dayum!! Did twitter explode? Can’t wait to see the tweets. I like that Arya was teaching him how to fight. LOL Gendry was so annoyed with her.. ha ha. Fabulous!

    JON.. that entire scene was fantastic! Everyone yelled GHOST when they spotted him at the top of the hill.

    The Kovarro bit got a lot of good laughs with him trying to steal everything. I couldn’t stop cooing at my screen when the baby dragon appeared. I pretty much missed the dialogue there. heh I want a baby dragon!!

    The entire cast was superb. Brienne, Stannis, Davos, Renly *tears*.. EVERYONE!

  186. John-Michael Lelievre
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:44 am | Permalink

    Great episode! Was much better the second time around.

    Things I liked

    - Brienne being a badass.
    - Tyrion feeling bad about being blamed, the look on his face!
    - Dagmer! he’s really the only ironborn I like from the books, along with Asha and maybe Victarion. Very different from his appearance in the book, but I’m good with that, seems like a good casting choice.
    - How about that Iceland scenery? wow!
    - Wildfire!
    - How cute is Drogon? I want one dammit!
    - Nice to see Qhorin finally, excited for some better scenes with him coming up!
    - Emilia looked beautiful, and it was cool to see Dany start to realise Jorah’s feelings for her.

    Things I didn’t like (mostly just nitpicky things)

    - Renlys Death, was just something off about it that I can’t quite put my finger on, like Othor the wight in season 1.
    - Loras’ constant pouty face, though I understand It’s part of his character.
    - This probably belongs in things I liked but thought the lists should be balanced haha. I found Pyat Pree and Quaithe genuinely disturbing. Thanks HBO, I didn’t need to sleep tonight!
    - I’m not one of those that worships the Reeds, but I do hope at least Meera will make an appearance at some point.

    Pumped for next weeks episode, looks like we get to meet Ygritte! And more Roose. :) Sad that we are halfway through another season though.

  187. David
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:50 am | Permalink

    Wow, Maisie is slaying this year. When I saw the “anyone can be killed” in the trailer I was not impressed, but her lines were so great. Also bummed/baffled about the Tickler. My guess is she will stab Polliver in three, but I just don’t get it. I would have never predicted The Tickler meeting the fate he did.

  188. Lex
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:53 am | Permalink

    Oh, Larry Williams is good this week. Some amazing rants. XD

  189. MW
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:59 am | Permalink

    LordStarkington: It did.

    Not sure if this requires spoiler tags but to be safe; the shadow”babies” take Stannis’ shape, which is how Davos recognizes the one he sees in the books and is the hint for the readers as to what was going on.

    I watched the birth scene several times and I swear they mixed in a little of Stannis’s voice with the squalling demon sounds.

  190. Phil
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:02 am | Permalink

    Possibly my favorite episode yet. I just want to say that Maisie Williams needs to win an Emmy. Has there ever been a child actor this good? Her scene with Charles Dance was especially amazing, as were her others.

    And hey, Dany’s training her dragons — but will they ever name them? Poor Viserion hasn’t even been shown : ( He’s the Shaggydog of the dragons.

    I also quite like the way that Theon’s developing. Dagmar telling him how it is and helping plant the idea in his head was a nice touch.

    Really liked the Halfhand too. Things are really looking to be getting really interesting north of the Wall — and everywhere else too. Can’t wait.

    What I didn’t like is that they iced the Tickler, but I’m sure they’ll find something for her to do that’ll make up for it.

  191. Violentos
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:05 am | Permalink

    I am seriously upset about the Tickler being dead already. Maisie would have brought so much emotion to the original book scene. That could have been an award-winning scene for her!

    On another note though, Jaqen is just how I imagined him in the book, minus the hair. I love him so far!

    Brienne had some great emotional scenes as well. I felt her pain and anguish towards Renly’s death! Great job!

  192. Ms. de Winter
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:09 am | Permalink

    Joshua Taylor,

    Thank you. :D A nod to Daphne du Maurier and Martin, actually.

    ETA:

    To the Mods,

    I’m not sure if this is a prank or a glitch on this site. I have changed my name once today because a person has appropriated my username. I was using the name Dee, but I came here to find someone using that name. ( this person Dee, is not me).
    A couple of hours ago I changed my name to Ms. de Winter, and now someone else has posted under that name (this person is also NOT me Ms. de Winter, ). I would appreciate it if you could look into this and tell me if it’s a site glitch. Until then I will refrain from posting on this site.

    Thank you.

  193. Mimsy
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:09 am | Permalink

    Phil,

    If Isaac had more screen time, I think he would be just as Maisirific. Those two are such naturals. Incredible talents those two.. just incredible. Jack Gleeson as well.. fantastic casting.

  194. All_Men_Must_Post
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:09 am | Permalink

    Nice review WiC. My thoughts from my blog (and printed below):

    “Anyone can be killed” is like the active phrase to “all men must die.” I enjoyed tonight’s episode because it reminded me how much I enjoyed how the secondary characters are portrayed in Game of Thrones. Rather than another love letter to Peter Dinklage and Tyrion, here are the things I liked about tonight’s episode and the one thing I didn’t like, in the context of the supporting cast. Four of five stars.

    What I liked:
    1. Anyone can be killed. Maisie Williams, the young actress that plays Arya Stark, has surpassed all my expectations for the role. For those of you who’ve read the books, you know Arya’s character arc is one of the more difficult and Maisie has done a masterful job in portraying the little tom girl who grows up to become a killer. She acts more with the little inflections in her voice and her blank stare than some of the less-talented cast members (I’m looking at you Yara Greyjoy).

    2. The red god takes what is his. If you’re looking for the face of the man who plays our favorite criminal, Jaqen H’ghar, then you are looking for Tom Wlaschiha. In the short time we’ve seen Tom’s work as Jaqen, I’ve been very impressed. It’s a thankless job, really, because everyone has such high expectations for Jaqen H’ghar. Faced with this challenge, Tom’s held his own.

    3. My friend remains unconvinced. The role of Bronn has expanded beyond the books and I’m very grateful for the changes made by David and DB. The actor Jerome Flynn has made Bronn his own. He’s perfectly captured Bronn’s irreverence and his dangerous aura. If there were a show with just Tyrion and Bronn running around Westeros solving crimes and bedding wenches, sign me up.

    4. I only want… Iain Glen, the actor who plays Ser Jorah Mormont, has been the steady glue that has brought consistent gravitas across the Narrow Sea. Like Bronn, he has a quiet strength (and danger) about him that he doesn’t need to wear on his sleeve. It’s hard to imagine Ser Jorah as anyone else other than Iain Glen.

    What I didn’t like:

    1. Is there gold in the village? It’s funny how great minds think alike. For those of you who haven’t read the books, stop reading this now.
    Okay… so the Ticker’s untimely death is a huge departure from the books. For the book readers, I think we can agree that Arya’s cathartic killing of the Tickler in A Storm of Swords was epic because of the context (she is in a vengeful frenzy) and is a thoughtful bookend to the horrors she witnessed at Harrenhal. I’m not happy they took that away from her and I’m sure Maisie would’ve done a masterful job.

    I’d be remiss to not bring up some other great supporting cast like the young actor and actress that play Joffrey and Sansa, but I’ll save it for another time.

  195. More Rice Cooks
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:14 am | Permalink

    I thought that was a great episode. Honestly the only problem I had was with how the Renly scene was shot. It just looked so…pedestrian. Reminded me waaay too much of Lost with the way the shadow swept into the room, and the way he was stabbed just felt cheesy and rushed; to be fair, it’s even more rushed in the book. I had hoped it would just travel on the walls, which would have looked creepier imo; like a Dracula homage.

    Qarth looked beautiful, and while there still was a Sci Fi channel cheese level, overall I liked the scenes there. Not a big fan of Quaith’s mask though; she looks like a gimp or some shit. Pyrat Pree looked awesome though.

    In terms of the Arya change that has book fans pissed: eh. I’d imagine “that scene” will be replaced with something else that could work equally as well, so I will reserve judgement until we get to that point.

    I loved all the anterior shots in this episode, especially in King’s Landing (filmed in Croatia). Dubrovnik is one of the most beautiful cities in the world and I’m glad we got to see more of it tonight. The Qarth scenes were shot there too, and they managed to hide it perfectly; it gave me a Babylonian vibe.

    Also it was awesome to see Roy Dotrice playing the pyromancer! Awesome cameo, and I loved his interaction with Tyrion and Bronn. Bronn continues to get some of the funniest lines in the series

  196. Magnus
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:16 am | Permalink

    They are probably going to replace Polliver with the Tickler in the third season. Aryas lines work well with him, too, since he also was present during the torture scenes from last episode.

    And now that they have shown Brienne taking that oath to Catelyn and Catelyn taking *her* oath to Brienne on the TV show, I am pretty sure that Briennes one word ( from book four ) was “Stannis!”.

    Looking forward to Ygritte next week! Rose Leslie does look lovely.

  197. Dan
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:22 am | Permalink

    This is my kind of thread. I didn’t notice one nitpicky complaint. I can understand people not liking some of the changes and their complaints weren’t over minor deviations. Personally, I don’t have a problem with the change for Tickler. I love that chapter in the books but there is so much to tell in that third book that I figured a lot of these type of scenes with secondary characters will be lost. Plus I think it has more weight for the tv viewer this way. If you go the rest of this season and then all the way to the end of season three or four before you get to that chapter a lot of the pleasure in seeing that douche die will be missed for someone who didn’t read the books. Anyways, I loved the episode. Can’t wait to see Jon meet Mance’s spotters next week.

  198. Nivar
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:25 am | Permalink

    Bummed out about the Tickler, however as long as Arya goes crazy on somone we dislike the moment can be saved. Just so long as the scene is powerfull like the scene in the Patriot when Mel keeps hiting that dead brit.

  199. Rinso
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:27 am | Permalink

    Honestly, I’m not that upset about the Tickler. Sure, the scene is ASOS is badass and intense, but I’m not sure we’re gonna get the whole subplot there at all – after all, the Hound is so butchered in the TV show that I barely remember that he exists anymore.

  200. Ash
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:28 am | Permalink

    Clambake,

    Every time I said that on here, they black it out! Totally agree with you

  201. George
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:40 am | Permalink

    I HATE that Meera and Jojen are being cut into Bran and Osha. I loved that pair!!

  202. babar
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:41 am | Permalink

    Did you notice that the intimidation technique Theon tries to use against Lorren is the same as the one Robb used against the Greatjon in season 1 ?

  203. Weirwood
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:43 am | Permalink

    Could this be an actual….. (wait for it)….. Gate-Free episode???????? ;)

  204. Scholesy
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:51 am | Permalink

    Who ever compared Renly’s death to the Wight attack, I think you are completely right. It is just as awkward and feels like they weren’t sure how to film it.

    The rest was pretty great though. Loved everyone and everything.

  205. the goat
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:53 am | Permalink

    HOLY FUCKING SHITBALLS, SEVEN SAVE ME!!!!!

    THEY NEED TO MAKE NEW AWARDS, SO THIS EPISODE CAN WIN ALL OF THEM!!

    RENLY (LOVE THE ALMOST SOLUTION)
    SHADOW
    BRIE-FUCKING-ENNE!!
    “WE SHOULD LEAVE”
    LORAS, LITTLEFINGER, & “THE” QUEEN
    TYRION/CERSEI: AREN’T YOU ALWAYS SO CLEVER? (“UH, YEAH”)
    “PLEASE KILL ME IF ANYTHING SHOULD HAPPEN TO LORD TYRION”
    HARD TRUTHS, ONION KNIGHT (the sheer amount of awesome in this scene would melt Harrenhal)
    DEMON MONKEY
    THE CLEFTJAW
    “NOT WINE. WATER. WE WILL BE HERE FOR SOME TIME.”
    “THEY CALL HIM THE YOUNG WOLF. THEY SAY HE CAN TURN INTO A WOLF WHEN HE WANTS.”
    “FETCH THAT WATER.” (fucking amazing)
    CUT TO: JAQEN-FUCKING-H’GAR
    “A MAN HAS SAID.” (straight cryin rn)
    SO LET’S GO TO, I DUNNO, FUCKING ICELAND
    THE FIST!
    DOLOROUS HISTORY OF HORN BLASTING
    wildfire
    ROY FUCKING DOTRICE!!!!
    DROGON, DRACARYS (more crying)
    VISERION!
    IT IS KNOWN
    PYAT FUCKING PREE!
    OH WAIT, Q.U.A.I.T.H.E. (shit got real a while ago, you just missed it)
    OATH-FUCKING-KEEPER (i could NOT, even the Ironborn couldn’t ford the rivers I was cryin, she screamed a word)
    oh, okay, so how bout some ravens in the background, and then,
    RICKON!!!!!!!!!!!!! CRUSHIN SHIT!!!!!!!! (with a great weight! nice), and,
    GREEN DREAMS!!
    XARO! (I agree with those things you said)
    JORAH CREEPIN
    NO!!!!!!!!!! NOT THE TICKLER!!!!!!!! WHO’S GONNA FIND LORD BERIC NOW????
    “i could’ve named anyone?” FUCKING KIDS
    Fade to black

    Alright, if you were mad about changes and wha! wha! wha!, then sure, fine, whatever. I’m sorry for yr inability to feel. Truly.

  206. Oi!
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 4:00 am | Permalink

    Is it just me or is Doreah going to end up as a crispy treat for Drogon and a good reason for Dany to keep the 3D’s caged.

  207. Anvil
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 4:08 am | Permalink

    Weirwood:
    Could this be an actual….. (wait for it)….. Gate-Free episode???????? ;)

    “Gate-free”-gate!

    Ep. was a bit shorter than the 57 min. So, runtime-gate!

  208. Rukie44
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 4:12 am | Permalink

    episode 1: knowledge is power/power is power (Littlefinger/Cercie)
    episode 2: more power = less grace (Littlefinger)
    episode 3: swords are power/power is an illusion (Tyrion/Varys)
    episode 4: friends are power (Renly)
    episode 5: fire is power (masked woman)

    It’s like they’re trying to tell me something, I know it…!

  209. the goat
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 4:22 am | Permalink

    Rukie44,

    Yes, they were definitely concerned with the fact that you discern a particular theme each episode. That is very important. Without that, the show would fail. So glad you are here.

  210. Matt Chung
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 4:34 am | Permalink

    Anyone else notice the glaring continuity error with Arya? When she’s talking to Tywin she’s all clean and stuff, and then she goes out to get water for him, and she’s suddenly all messy.

    Anyway, great episode, as usual. Arya can still kill Polliver. I didn’t like Renly’s death being at the start of the episode, though… it would have done a lot better at the end of E4. The Catelyn/Brienne scene was awesome, though a little sudden. Cersei’s dumbassery is beginning to show through, thanks to Headey’s performing. I’m not sure I like how the Qarth storyline is being portrayed, and Dany seems to have reverted from powerful khaleesi to young girl in a matter of weeks – it’s just a little weird given that at the end of season 1 she was so headstrong and certain, and now she seems a little… vain? I dunno. I can’t remember how this bit played out in the books, or the kind of character Dany was, though I remember her being quite sharp.

  211. Owen Parker
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 4:36 am | Permalink

    JamesL: The audience probably wouldn’t remember who the Tickler was by the time they got to that part in the show.

    Previously ons are built for the reintroduction of supporting characters.

  212. ravens20
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 4:58 am | Permalink

    I think that Arya will still get a vengance scene in the future even without the Tickler…my prediction is that they will show her getting needle back and stabbing Polliver in the neck the same way he killed Lommy two episodes ago. TV audiences will remember that more than a line about “gold in the village” they heard two seasons before.

  213. Scholesy
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:09 am | Permalink

    Owen Parker: Previously ons are built for the reintroduction of supporting characters.

    But really shouldn’t be necessary for such a big moment. I think I preferred how they handled this.

  214. the goat
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:10 am | Permalink

    “Speak three names, and a man will do the rest. Three lives I will give you. No more, no less.”

    Fuck. Fucking. Hell. Fucking. Yeah.

    Suck fucking lemons, bitches. For all the good it’ll do ya

  215. Jay Arms
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:11 am | Permalink

    Since when does Jaqen H’ghar serve the red God? For those who’ve read the books, this is a MAJOR change that will screw up everything from ASOS on! What happened to The God of Many Faces? I understand too many religions might get confusing, but this is a MAJOR plot point!!!!

  216. Damián Erro
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:13 am | Permalink

    Renly’s death was bad, they over-used CGI to make “black smoke man” stab him trough the back, when in the book it is described as a shadow (was it Renly’s own shadow ?) that is what makes it really scary, shadows are everywhere, and now they can kill you! also “smokeman” was very slow, I mean they could have run from it.

    Making a moving shadow could have been IMO much better, darker, and cheaper, thus more dragon scenes instead of smokemans

  217. Damián Erro
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:16 am | Permalink

    yes thats what i call it now, “smokeman” no more “shadow baby”because wasn’t shadow and wasn’t baby

  218. Jeda
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:17 am | Permalink

    Ok, now that was a very, very good episode… Maybe there is a pattern here, in season 1 the first four episode were only the introduction to the series, with things only kicking off with Tyrion’s capture. Episode 5 was when things really got interesting with that awesome final scene between Jamie and Ned. Same here, there is this feeling episode 5 kicks start the rest of the season: Theon’s plans,
    Stanis’ fleet, Bran’s dream, Tyrion’s wildire, Jon’s mission, Dany and the House of the Undying…

  219. Paweł Ausir Dembowski
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:21 am | Permalink

    Jay Arms: Since when does Jaqen H’ghar serve the red God? For those who’ve read the books, this is a MAJOR change that will screw up everything from ASOS on! What happened to The God of Many Faces? I understand too many religions might get confusing, but this is a MAJOR plot point!!!!

    As has been said a few times already, he says “Red God” in this scene in the book as well.

  220. ryra
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:26 am | Permalink

    ravens20: I think that Arya will still get a vengance scene in the future even without the Tickler…

    I really hope you’re right, Arya needs THAT scene. I’d be very very disappointed if they’re gonna change all that part (the fight in the inn between Arya, the Hound and Gregor’s men) or – even worse – decided to cut it completely (no, please, nooo)

    That would be quite sad, that is basically my favourite part in Storm of Swords :(

  221. Suzaku
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:29 am | Permalink

    JamesL:
    The audience probably wouldn’t remember who the Tickler was by the time they got to that part in the show.

    Gotta agree with you here.

    They can have Arya kill someone else later and still make it just as effective.

    The Tickler’s role, within the context of a television production, is so minor that he’s basically an extra. I don’t know if it’s feasible for them to keep such a minor guy attached to the show when he’s barely going to be featured.

    And yeah, absolutely, by the time that scene turns up, the more casual viewers will have forgotten who he was.

  222. Suzaku
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:32 am | Permalink

    Jay Arms:
    Since when does Jaqen H’ghar serve the red God? For those who’ve read the books, this is a MAJOR change that will screw up everything from ASOS on! What happened to The God of Many Faces? I understand too many religions might get confusing, but this is a MAJOR plot point!!!!

    The Red God’s fire represents but one of the many faces of Death. If she’s saved them from drowning, he’d be wanting to repay the Drowned God.

    The dialogue from the book is as follows:

    “The Red God has his due, sweet girl, and only death may pay for life. This girl took three that were his. This girl must give three in their places. Speak the names, and a man will do the rest.”

  223. darquemode
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:35 am | Permalink

    I agree with the people saying that Renly’s death was a bit “under”….
    To me the shadowbaby in the books was always “almost there”. You could not quite be sure you saw it…. and if you were certain you saw something you were not sure exactly what it was. The Shadowborn in the series was too corporeal and defined to me.

    I liked the VFX they used in making it appear somewhat like Stannis, but in this case I think the great VFX worked against the more mysterious unseen or indecipherable aspects of the book’s shadowbaby.

    I still liked the scene and how Brienne kicked ass, but I felt it was just under what it could have been.

  224. Suzaku
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:38 am | Permalink

    Chris:
    Mourning the loss of Meera and Jojen in the series.They are so intregal to Brans story.Also, no Reeds means no mention of Howland Reed who is the only person who knows John parentage.

    The writers have said they pushed back casting certain S2 characters until S3, because they couldn’t afford to hire a bunch of actors and have them wait around for their characters to become central to the plot.

    Also, regarding why Arya might not be ready to kill Tywin: Tywin isn’t torturing the hell out of people. He’s the guy who put it to a stop, in fact.

  225. alex
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:38 am | Permalink

    Clambake,

    yes! i could see that happening

  226. the goat
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:39 am | Permalink

    “Its just a stupid dream.”

  227. Virtus
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:40 am | Permalink

    Jay Arms:
    Since when does Jaqen H’ghar serve the red God? For those who’ve read the books, this is a MAJOR change that will screw up everything from ASOS on! What happened to The God of Many Faces? I understand too many religions might get confusing, but this is a MAJOR plot point!!!!

    LOL, nothing funnier than watching purists complain about something that they think was a change but which in fact was directly from the book… “The Red God has his due”, is what Jaqen says in the book, as has been mentioned by many already.

  228. JamesL
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:43 am | Permalink

    Pyrat Pree was awesome but I thought Quaithe’s mask looked silly. Does anyone not like the Iceland landscape for beyond the Wall. There needs to be forests, having everything out in the open like that, being able to see for miles all around you ruins the whole atmosphere and mystery of beyond the Wall imo. You can see any white walkers or wilding coming from miles away. The Fist of The First Men should be surrounding by trees and when Jon and and the Halfhand go off tracking the Wildlings it should be through creepy wintery forests.

  229. karro radley
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:46 am | Permalink

    Great!Awesome..just can’t wait to see them all

  230. JamesL
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:49 am | Permalink

    I also gotta agree with people who say Renly’s death was very underwhelming and somewhat cheesy looking. He should have had his throat slit and it should have happened quick , blink and you missed it. Too bad Alan Taylor didn’t direct this episode.

  231. Lana
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:49 am | Permalink

    Isaac, Maisie and Tom .W. made this into the best episode of season 2 thus far! Such nuanced performances by such young actors – it boggles the mind. And forgive my girlish fervour, but Tom .W.’s Jaqen H’ghar is impossibly desirable. 4.5/5 (0.5 deduction for the Tyrells in the tent scene – just didn’t buy Loras’ grief. Marg was great, though: “I want to be THE queen indeed.)

  232. Magnar of Thenn
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 6:07 am | Permalink

    JamesL:
    Does anyone not like the Iceland landscape for beyond the Wall. There needs to be forests, having everything out in the open like that, being able to see for miles all around you ruins the whole atmosphere and mystery of beyond the Wall imo. You can see any white walkers or wilding coming from miles away. The Fist of The First Men should be surrounding by trees and when Jon and and the Halfhand go off tracking the Wildlings it should be through creepy wintery forests.

    Haaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrr!
    Guess you’ve never been caught in a white-out or a snow storm. Gotta funny feeling those things don’t affect White Walkers……….or us wildlings.

  233. Alex
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 6:10 am | Permalink

    How lucky were they to find Gwendoline Christie? What a score! Give that woman a raise.

    Also I’d sign up to the many-faced God already, just based on the amount of Jaqen we’ve seen so far.

    The scenes north of the wall aren’t hitting the spot because except for Sam there’s no emotional content. They’re all about moving the plot along. Makes life difficult for the writers and actors I imagine. Good thing they got the scenery in. Hello Iceland.

  234. Rob
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 6:20 am | Permalink

    Whatever happened to Jojen and Meera? Shouldn’t they have been introduced by now?

  235. the goat
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 6:36 am | Permalink

    From the preview:

    “Aren’t you afraid?”

    “Last night I was,” she admitted. “But now the sun’s up.” She pushed her hair aside to bare her neck, and knelt before him. “Strike hard and true, crow, or I’ll come back and haunt you.”

  236. JamesL
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 6:42 am | Permalink

    What’s going on with Sansas storyline? No Dontos yet and not one single interaction with the Hound. You would think after some of the criticisms they got last season they would have put in at least one Sansa and the Hound moment in the first half of this season.

  237. Lala
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 6:52 am | Permalink

    AMAZING episode. Maisie is pure emmy material in it.

  238. Jordan Healey
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 6:53 am | Permalink

    I absolutely hate the direction David and Dan have gone with nearly everything this season.

  239. Bubbles
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 6:55 am | Permalink

    JamesL,

    Meh, I don’t know I’m missing the Sansa / Hound scenes… they’re very tense in the book, but ultimately not all that satisfying, at least for me. I think the readers often forget just how many characters are introduced in the books — at least 20 – 30 major ones in this book alone, which is just impossible for a TV show. Dontos has been introduced, tney’ll have him do his plot piece and move on, they’bve been doing good stramlining so far IMO.

    Besides, with Sansa’s Littlefinger storyline and Dany / Jorah and Dany /Xora across the sea, how many middle aged men falling in love with teen girls do we really need to see in the TV show?

  240. Bubbles
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 6:56 am | Permalink

    Jordan Healey,

    Then there is no TV or movie version of this that could possibly satisfy you.

  241. Jordan Healey
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 7:15 am | Permalink

    Bubbles,

    Sure there is, just not this one.

  242. Lancel_lannister
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 7:15 am | Permalink

    When would we see a scene between Lancel and Cersei?
    I do not understand

  243. ANiceChianti
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 7:26 am | Permalink

    I completely agree about the Tickler. This is the first change that D & D have made that truly bothered me.

  244. Shock Me
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 7:31 am | Permalink

    Matt Chung,

    In the ACOC, Daeny was quite competent at Qarth. She sent Jorah off to the docks for news, she sent a Bloodrider out to look for things about the city she wasn’t shown. She sent a woman to look over the places men could not go.

    A bit of the same sort of thing shows up in the series. and it doesn’t strike me as vanity. I think she is just really happy to have a bath and clean clothes. It does remind me though what a waste it has been so far in the books to invest any time in Dothraki customs.

    I’m hoping the next books address that given where Daeny and Drogon land at the end of ADWD.

  245. Ser Eld
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 7:33 am | Permalink

    Whats the beef between Irri and Doreah? Did they put it in there to show the huge cultural difference between the Dothraki and the Quartheens (where Doreah feels comfortable while the Dothraki Irri feels alienated), or is somethinge else brewing?

  246. purplejilly
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 7:35 am | Permalink

    Langkard,
    You know what I thought, while watching those poor men freezing in that utter cold last night was; “Who freaking cares what these people north of the wall are doing? This is a gosh darned ice desert! It’s freezing! There is nothing growing! You can barely survive already, and winter is coming! Leave the wildlings to do whatever the heck they want up here, gather with Mance, go north, go south, make ice sculptures, square dance with the white walkers, who cares?? Just go back to the wall, and if the wildlings ever show up at the wall, then decide what to do with them then.

    I mean, the wall is 700 feet high, so what’s the better strategy for fighting 10,000 wildlings? Doing it out in the open in the ice desert, or doing it from the top of a 700 foot ice wall? Brrrr!!!! Looking at their faces, the cold seemed like a worse enemy than the wildlings could ever be!

  247. Lala
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 7:49 am | Permalink

    Other stuff I liked:

    - Pyat Pree, sooo creepy
    - Jaqen Hgar
    - Arya checking Gendry out :)
    - Those.. things in Iceland Jon was looking at, what were they really, geysers?
    - Emilia doing a good job with Jorah, showing him she’s not interested in him
    - Xaro. Can’t wait for book 5.
    - Brienne and her scream
    - Margaery
    - Loras

    etc. :) I basically liked everything.

  248. Ser Eld
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 8:00 am | Permalink

    Seven hells, I it just me, or are there others who I get nothing done the day after a episode airs??? My whole day just flies past with reading comments, re-viewing the episodes, re-re-reading the parts in the books etc etc.

    IMO: A Good episode! Reminded me of episode 5 last season, when I thought “THAT is why GOT is the best show on televison”….

    What I liked, aka Goosebump moments:

    -Margaery: “I want to be the Queen.”
    -The slow appearance of that wicked smile on Littlefingers lips when it dawns on him what Margaery just handed him. (It was all I could do not picturing a pinky up there on my second viewing)
    -Bran telling Osha about “the sea” coming to Winterfell, washing over the walls. (I think this change from the books worked very well)
    -Sam rambling on the Fist of the First Men, Dolorous Edd complaining in the background (not exactly goosebumps but enjoyed it immensely)
    -Briennes oath of fealty and Catelyns response. Maybe a bit goofy for non-readers, but a big moment for me!
    -Tywin – Arya interaction was just so powerful. Very strong acting. Very good writing.
    -Arya casually teaching Gendry how to fight. heheeee
    -Finally: Jorah Mormont counseling Dany, telling it true and more or less admitting he is in love with her. Awesome, loved it:

    “You have a good claim. You have a title, a birthright. But you have something more than that. You may cover it up and deny it, but you have gentle heart. You would not only be respected and feared, you would be loved. Someone who can and should rule; centuries come and go without a person like that coming into the world. There are times when I look at you, and I still cant believe you are real.”

    What I did´nt like

    -And now to the fabled complaint from a book reader. Bound to happen every single episode, it is known …. Just have to get it out there, my only beef on this episode: Renlys Death was a bit spoiled for me due to bad bad CGI / Directing. Much more awesome in the books.
    - Ticklergate: Actually, it does not worry me that much personally, but truly understand those who reacts. I guess they will just put Polliver (?) in the Ticklers shoes later on, Arya taking back Needle by “paying the Iron price”…

  249. purplejilly
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 8:04 am | Permalink

    JamesL: Pyrat Pree was awesome but I thought Quaithe’s mask looked silly.

    Yeah, when I saw Quaithe’s mask I thought; “Oh Hey, creepy lady, there is this freaky young man over in King’s Landing right now that you would probably get along really well with…”

  250. CT Wahoo
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 8:10 am | Permalink

    Some thoughts on the fretting about the Reed kids. It’s pretty clear that elements of what they bring to the table are being doled out to Osha and Bran. I think, at a minimum, one of the two Reeds will have their storyline greatly reduced or eliminated.

    Does anyone think that they’ll have Natalia Tena’s character whisk Rickon away to Skagos at the end of Season 4 and then disappear for 2-3 seasons? I certainly don’t. Osha is either replacing one or both Reed kids north of the Wall with Bran, or they have to kill her character off and replace it with a Reed. I really don’t see another possibility.

    That does not mean, however, that the Reeds won’t show up entirely. They could have one or both Reeds appear next season and have them take Rickon away (maybe even to the Neck instead of Skagos–why not, neither place has been visited in the books yet). I mean, someone is going to have to do it–I just don’t think it’s going to be Osha.

    It’s entirely possible that both Reed kids still make an appearance, but they either split up–one with Bran and one with Rickon–or they both take Rickon away. I agree that their story on the show is undoubtedly going to be different from the books. But, that doesn’t have to be a bad thing. I think it can still be done decently and, if reducing one or the both of their roles is the cost to give Tena more time on screen, then personally I’m comfortable with that trade.

  251. purplejilly
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 8:13 am | Permalink

    Weirwood: Could this be an actual….. (wait for it)….. Gate-Free episode???????? ;)

    No, I think most of us “Gaters” have grown tired of all the hate and criticism that gets heaped upon us, with the ‘just shut up and enjoy the show’ comments, the ‘don’t you know this is an adaptation?’ reminders, the ‘OMG you book purists are so stupid/ridicul0us/picky/insert negative and hateful comment of your choice here’ responses that invariably pile on anyone who wants to express their opinion about their feelings in regards to changes from the book vs the show. So I am just going elsewhere to express those thoughts and feelings. I only hang out here and post brief, funny, happy thoughts now. And maybe not even that for much longer..

  252. Turncloak
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 8:19 am | Permalink

    babar,

    Yes! Theon was totally copying Rob there

  253. Nagga's Kin
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 8:26 am | Permalink

    Yes, yes, yeeesssss!!! What an awesome episode. Just goes to show how much story can be told when you leave out 4-5 minutes of Ros time.

    Renly’s assassination was so strongly foreshadowed (pardon the pun) last week that the element of surprise was gone for the viewers. The really interesting question is if the shadow was just a single use assassin. The notion that Catelyn and the extra-tall Brienne managed to escape from the middle of a army of 100,000 men without encountering any resistance seemed a little far-fetched, though.

    Stannis and Davos were excellent, as were LF and Margaery (should we ‘ship’ this power couple?), but Loras wasn’t as believable. For once, he should have dropped his perennial sourpuss emo mien and shown genuine grief and rage over Renly’s death. His desire for revenge would then have had a stronger personal and emotional basis.

    Brienne and Cat in the woods was another well-executed scene, with Gwendolyn Christie excelling at the stilted chivalry of her new oath.

    The scene with Tyrion and Lancel in the palanquin fit only for a dwarf was great, especially Lancel repeating Tyrion’s order to Bronn. The two of them mingling with the commoners was great, too. However, it seems implausible that the speaker would not have noticed Tyrion, perhaps only after calling him a demon monkey. That would have set up a tense moment (think The Good, the Bad and the Ugly), with Tyrion demonstratively looking up at the guards on the parapets before saying something like “Carry on” to communicate to the people that he is in fact nothing like Joffrey. I did like the matter-of-fact way in which he wrote off the boy-king, suggesting he already has a plan for killing his nephew.

    Theon’s finally catching on how the Ironborn do their G-thang. Nice of Balon to send Dagmer to chaperone him, perhaps he does give a back-handed shit about his only remaining son. However, Dagmer’s plan to draw Sir Rodrik Cassel to Torrhen’s Square so Theon can sack Winterfell seems very far-fetched. The Sea Bitch only has a small, lightly armed crew that cannot hope to win a battle against a much larger, disciplined rear guard on horseback. Note that with war raging in the Riverlands, it seems highly unlikely the fishing villages along the Stony Shore will even have enough horses for all of Theon’s men. On foot, it would be at least a week’s march and they’d be sitting ducks all the way.

    Loved the scenes in Qarth, especially Ian Hanmore’s extra-creepy Pyat Pree. Drogon’s BBQ was cute but kind of weird: since when do animals cook their food? It would have made more sense for him to defend his tasty morsel with a hot breath at Doreah to remind her (and us) that dragons are not pets. Also, isn’t Dany supposed to be sixteen-ish? Xaro makes it clear he’s proposing to climb the social ladder, so he’d presumably be willing to wait with the baby-making until after her coronation. Jorah, though, just went from father figure to pedo perv. The masked lady was interesting but we did not learn her name – why is everyone assuming she’s Quaithe?

    Bran’s premonition marks a change in the quality of his dreams, one that he’s obviously confused by and apprehensive about. However, with Osha obviously knowing more than she’s letting on, I don’t understand why so many commenters are pining for the Reeds – non-book readers are being bombarded with new characters as it is.

    Arya’s exchange with Tywin was really well acted, as was the one with Jaqen. It’s clear she blurts out the first name that comes to mind, Tickler, because Jaqen wants one right away. She’s still just a child and his offer comes as a complete surprise. I expect she’ll have a good think about the other two names now that she knows Jaqen is the real deal. Joffrey and Tywin would be rational choices, but circumstances may force her to target lesser men instead. I gather Arya kills the Tickler herself in book 3, perhaps D&D will have her steal back Needle and kill Polliver with it. Six one way, half a dozen the other.

    Overall, I’d give episode 15 an 8.5/10.

  254. persephone88
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 8:26 am | Permalink

    Boy this episode was only about ten minutes long, wasn’t it? Once again I grieve that D and D don’t have a way to make a longer season of this quality – so much good stuff, but so condensed. I wish we’d had longer to linger with Arya in the villages and then in Harrenhal, etc.

    First I am deeply sad that we will likely not get any more Jaqen / Tom after this season. LOVE the casting and I will mourn his “leaving” the show as much as I was sad to see Viserys leave the show. Doing a great job with that part, and I LIKED him doing the one finger against the cheek to Arya. Minor quibble: no Rorge and Biter.

    I figured all along that Bran would have Jojen’s green dreams and the Osha would fill the Meera / interpreter role, and it worked out this episode.

    While I miss the bucktoothed, freckle-faced, hopelessly-devoted-to-you teenage Brienne of the books, I have to say, Gwendolyn Christie kicked major ass in that tent scene – awesome job, and the writers have nicely transitioned Brienne into an awkward but strong, brave but longing adult woman. Can’t wait to see her scenes with Jaime later on – that will make for an interesting season 3!

    Do you think we will get the propehcies in the House of the Undying? I am not sure how they could wing that with the severe lack of backstory / history on the show so far, and I will feel bad if all that is cut…

    Also, while I am liking Margaery a bit more I really fear the loss of the Queen of Thorns, who was an AWESOME character, one of my favorites. I do hope they find some way to keep her in.

    Overall, excellent episode, I think the best so far this season!

  255. Nagga's Kin
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 8:29 am | Permalink

    Rukie44:

    episode 5: fire is power (masked woman)

    I think she’s predicting the industrial revolution ;^)

  256. sunspear
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 8:33 am | Permalink

    Pyat Pree was awesome, but when I saw him all I could think was “What the heck is Marilyn Manson doing in Game of Thrones”?

  257. JamesL
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 8:37 am | Permalink

    Nagga’s Kin,
    “Drogon’s BBQ was cute but kind of weird: since when do animals cook their food?”
    Animals might not but dragons do, or at least the dragons in this story. I’m pretty sure in the books Dany has to cook the meat before they eat it too. I assume considering dragons breathe fire that they burn their food before eating it.

  258. Arristan the Old
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 8:42 am | Permalink

    I already made a pointing out something new and cool post above (re: the Valyrian Stone door), so this will be my minor nitpicks post.

    Wait, was it just me or did Renly call Moat Cailin, “Moat Caitlin” during negotiations with Catelyn? Am I supposed to chalk this up to foppish southron igrnorance on Renly’s part, AKA something sort of like GRRM’s ‘unreliable narrator’ device? That’s a tough sell. Oh well, still a great scene IMO.

    Also, I can live with Theon not knowing him ahead of time, but Dagmer Cleftjaw looks distinctly unlike a man who had his head chopped in two with an axe but was such a bdass he just pushed the two halves back together again. That said, I though he was pretty awesome even without the cloven jaw. But how did people know that dude giving Theon all that attitude was Black Lorren? I am thinking maybe I missed something, or was it just in some old casting news I have somehow forgotten about?

  259. Dee
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 8:45 am | Permalink

    Ms. de Winter,

    It is not my username, Dee is my REAL name. I’m posting as a guest on this site… didn’t know you could have a monopoly on names.

  260. PatD
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 8:47 am | Permalink

    One of the reasons I think Renly’s death scene didn’t have the impact some would’ve liked is because we know exactly what was coming. I’ll be interested in reading the non-bookers twitters on that one. I love Michelle F., but I think her non-reaction to the slinking in of the shadow assassin kind of hurt the scene (I blame the direction on this, not the actress). She just stands there and follows it pass her by with her eyes. No reflexive startle, or jump back, or utterance of surprise. Also, Gethin looked like he was more concerned with his blocking than anything else (again, that’s a flaw in the direction, IMO). Acting/directing against green screen is a really dicey thing, I’m sure. I also have to agree that a shadow FX might have worked better. I’d really grown to like this TV Renly quite a lot, and after his deal with Cat, I was even more convinced that he’d make a very good King. I was hoping for a more spectacular send-off for him, but these weren’t fatal flaws by any stretch of the imagination. It was still pretty amazing television.

    I can’t believe the “wooden” criticisms I’m reading about Brienne’s depiction. I’m like a sputtering idiot trying to articulate how perfect Gwen’s portrayal has been. I was trying not to get my expectations up too high about the Jamie/Brienne parts coming up, but after watching Brienne’s few, short scenes, I’m totally psyched for them now. I know they’ll be in capable hands.

    It’s not that I don’t have criticisms, or disagreements, with some of the decisions on the TV show, it’s just that they are hitting all the major things so spot on that I can’t really be bothered by the small stuff.

    I like this Xaro soooo much better than the book’s. He was all slimey, lecherous, one-way and one-dimensional in the book. This Xaro is smart and all about “the long game.”

    I didn’t think any character could win my fangirly heart away from Snow, but, hooboy, TomW’s Jaqen is running a very close second in that department. I just won’t be able to get enough of that character. I can see it now.

    Was anyone else waiting for a crossbow arrow to come flying in and strike that soapbox citizen down?

    I can understand not having the budget/resources/time for any more than 10 episodes a season, but I really think HBO should reconsider the 60 minute format for this show. There just isn’t enough time per character’s storyline. I think if they were to go to a 90 minute episode format the series (and viewers) would be much better served.

  261. Shock Me
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 8:48 am | Permalink

    Filla,

    My favorite part with the Stannis/Davos scene was the look on Dillane’s face when Davos leaves. It was as if he had just sentenced his friend to death.

  262. TP222
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 8:48 am | Permalink

    Loved the episode but some things bothered me…

    1. The Tickler getting it so early.

    2. Bran getting Jojens dream. I wish they at least showed it, but I know it would have cost a bundle. (I actually jumped up and left the room on this)

    3. Sam.. His lovey dovey shit over Gilly is pissing me off. He should still be a scared craven.

    4. Three eyed Raven.. ugh

  263. foxtrot uniform
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 8:54 am | Permalink

    Next news item:
    “Ratings steady for episode 5″

  264. PatD
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:00 am | Permalink

    What’s with the “Your Comment Is Awaiting Moderation” tag on all my posts? I wasn’t aware that I was so controversial :P

  265. Dave..
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:07 am | Permalink

    Arthur,

    Interesting take. I thought it was the weakest of the season.

  266. Lana
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:08 am | Permalink

    JamesL,

    Someone in the GOT wardrobe department is clearly a Gaga fan. : /

  267. Shock Me
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:12 am | Permalink

    Dan,

    Yes the drama of Arya’s fight scene at the Tavern in the books is connected to the extended torture and captivity on the road to Harrenhal. Without that extended exposure to the folks in the Mountain’s crew to give context the bad guys sort of fade into the background and would be hard for an audience to recall by the third of fourth season.

  268. Spartan
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:19 am | Permalink

    The best episode so far this season. The photography was just gorgeus… that red northern sky in the fist of the first men, that light in Dany’s chambers in Qarth, even the scenes at the Red Keep look quite better, i think. And the script is pretty concise, significative: Sam’s joy thinking about being in a really old place and telling abouth the horn calls that he read in a book; they made an accurate portrait of Sam in 4 minutes. Brienne…. fantastic. The scene with the vows with Cat was heartbreaking… everybody’s gonna love Brienne… the script don’t mess with characters, every word on it is significative to the history… one of the best script so far in the series. Pyromants and wildfire! Arya and Tywin! Tyrion and Lancel! Wonderfull, much better than the disspointing 4th ep (well, except for Melissandre and Tyrion parts). I don’t dislike sex scenes, but mind this is the best script this season, and whithout sex. Interesting!

  269. OhDanyBoy
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:27 am | Permalink

    purplejilly,

    I think the logic was that if they manage to sneak in and assassinate Mance, the wildlings would fall apart into hundreds of individual bands, and would no longer be a threat to the wall. And in the meantime, Mance knows all about the state of affairs on the wall, their patrols, their strength, and would know to perform an attack like he does in the books (small party – or parties – climbing the wall and attacking from that side to open the gates at Castle Black) – which by the way would have been completely successful if Jon hadn’t gone with them and betrayed them to warn the Watch in time.

  270. dizzy_34
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:32 am | Permalink

    Arya’s story is kind of bothering me at the moment. I know there are time constraints and everything but it seems like she went through a much harder time in the book than what they are presenting in the show. Weese I know was part of that but she skipped over most of the hardships that she experienced in Harrenhall. I’m guessing Polliver is going to be getting the “how many, how many, how many…” moment in season 3 or 4. Other than that the rest was pretty good.

  271. Carne
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:32 am | Permalink

    Sweet dreams, Tickler ;_;

    Actor seriously nailed that role.

  272. gswelcome
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:36 am | Permalink

    Killing of the Tickler was very disappointing to me given what happens later in the series. One of the best Arya scenes is now gone. Also while I liked the CGI of the shadow baby and the death of Renly it felt so quick. Plus the fact that it was at the start of the episode, the real emotional impact, the shock was just missing. Then the head scratcher of why the shadow baby didn’t cut his throat like in the books. Same with Jaime killing Aerys, instead of cutting his throat he “stabbed him in the back”. Needless changes ftl. Then though not a problem for book readers, anyone watching the show will remember the exchange Arya just had with Tywin and will wonder why Arya didn’t use her first death on him. Given the fact that she obliquely just threatened him with “anyone can be killed”. Sad.

    I’d like to say the rest of the episode was great (and it was) loved Jon and the Cat/Brienne scenes and the Arya-Tywin sparring was great. I have to wonder where the show is taking some of these characters given the changes. I suppose have to trust D&D but it is making me wary of what is to come.

  273. Juan
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:38 am | Permalink

    First episode without a direwolf sighting.

    Dissapointed :(

  274. Fisher
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:39 am | Permalink

    First of all let me say that I absolutley love the show. Secondly, I know that this may not be the best place the post this but here goes.

    Someone PLEASE start a “RECAST YARA PETITION/WEBSITE”!! I get nauseous every time she appears on the screen. Hey, we all make mistakes. Time to correct this one before it goes any further.

  275. Vanderhook
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:44 am | Permalink

    Wow! Amazing episode! Probably the best the series has had yet. I really want to give this a 10/10 because I was that impressed by it, but I have to dock a few tenths of a point because I do have a few criticisms

    What I liked: Too much to list. Seriously, every scene was really good.

    What I didn’t like:
    - The Tickler death
    For the same reasons as everyone else. I’m not that distraught over it, but it’s a change that didn’t need happen. Why couldn’t it just have been Polliver? I understand Polliver/Tickler/Raff are somewhat interchangable, but it kind of robs us of a scene later in the book, or at the very least waters it down. If that scene gets cut altogther from SoS I’d be pretty upset.

    - Loras
    I was looking forward to Loras going into a berserk rage. I was actually hoping for the show to stray from the book in a bit in the sense that we might get a Loras/Brienne fight in Renly’s tent a la the Jamie/Ned fight in season 1 and Brienne and Cat narrowly escape. Instead, Loras doesn’t go berserk at all and we see him later in the tent with a much more subdued form of grief. Even if they didn’t want to show Loras in Renly’s tent, I think they should have at least shown more anger in Loras.

    - Lack of Jaime and Robb
    This isn’t really a complaint about this episode, but season 2 as a whole. I was excited that the show would expand more on Robb and Jaime since these are two characters who don’t get a lot of “screen time” in Book 2. Of the first five episodes, only two have featured Robb, and we haven’t seen Jaime since the first episode. There’s still plenty of season 2 left though, so hopefully we’ll get our fill.

    But even with those complaints, I still have to give the episode a 9.8 — Outstanding. Best episode of the season, and maybe the best of the entire series.

  276. Spartan
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:45 am | Permalink

    Juan,

    Then you missed it. Take a look at Night Watch’s arrival on the Fist of the First Men.

  277. Magnus
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:47 am | Permalink

    Juan,

    Ghost was in the bacground in one of the scenes atop the Fist.

  278. TastesLikeTheSea
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:50 am | Permalink

    Amazing episode. Loved every second of it. Only a small nitpick(just for the sake of nitpicking :D) : is it just me or did it seem like the iron islanders were wearing camouflage gear? Was kind of distracting lol.

  279. SeVv
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:52 am | Permalink

    Fisher,

    stop SPAMING this bullshit, please

  280. Ed
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:53 am | Permalink

    babar:
    Did you notice that the intimidation technique Theon tries to use against Lorren is the same as the one Robb used against the Greatjon in season 1 ?

    Nice! Great catch there! Cool to see Theon was paying attention.

  281. Kroket
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:53 am | Permalink

    I am with the people who said this episode was a bit mweh. It lacked something… Namely Tits and Violence. Don’t get me wrong there was some great acting. I especially liked Charles and Maisie’s interaction as well as Cat’s and Brienne’s but nothing ‘major’ seemed to happen (apart from the obvious at the beginning of the episode). This episode didn’t really leave that much of an impression somehow even thought the acting was excellent as always.

    Hope we still get Meera but Jojen is probably a goner now…

    Pretty sure this will be the episode to comment on for Isaac and Maisie. Wonder if they’ll throw in Sophie as well since she didn’t have scenes this episode. I loved the kids audio comment last year would hate it if they broke them up.

  282. Hawk
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    Fisher,

    Why do people have a problem with her? There’s absolutely no justifiable reason to be so off put by her. From the 5 minutes she’s been on screen, she’s been more than adequate… Can you explain to me what your issue is, because it’s certainly your issue, and not Gemma’s…??

  283. Casey
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    When it comes to deaths, I’m a stickler for the Tickler…That was one of my favorite Arya moments in Storm, and I can only guess Polliver will be next

  284. Ed
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:00 am | Permalink

    OMG can you guys just PLEASE read a few posts before whining about sh&%t that WAS actually in the books. RED GOD = Fire. She saved him from the fire!!!!

    Jay Arms:
    Since when does Jaqen H’ghar serve the red God? For those who’ve read the books, this is a MAJOR change that will screw up everything from ASOS on! What happened to The God of Many Faces? I understand too many religions might get confusing, but this is a MAJOR plot point!!!!

  285. Ser Eld
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:01 am | Permalink

    Juan,

    Actually, Ghost was seen in the background of a rambling Sam at the Fist of the First men :-)

  286. Michael
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:02 am | Permalink

    At first I was bothered by the Tickler’s death. It’s a great scene in ASOS, but I had a thought. Is it at all possible that instead we’ll still get that scene, but with Polliver and Amory Lorch? After all, in the show, Lorch is directly responsible for Yoren’s death and in some ways that would be a more satisfying confrontation in a couple of seasons.

  287. AlexBaratheon
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:03 am | Permalink

    Man they are really making these books come to life. Perfection!!

    AB

  288. Impi
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:05 am | Permalink

    Fisher,

    Nauseated…. not nauseous.

  289. LoF
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:06 am | Permalink

    I’m not sure why everyone is upset over Quaithe’s mask…I thought it looked awesome, and thought she looked mysterious and terrifying.

  290. Vanderhook
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:08 am | Permalink

    Hawk: Fisher, Why do people have a problem with her? There’s absolutely no justifiable reason to be so off put by her. From the 5 minutes she’s been on screen, she’s been more than adequate… Can you explain to me what your issue is, because it’s certainly your issue, and not Gemma’s…??

    I’m with you. Gemma is great as Asha/Yara. I don’t understand the hate.

  291. The Winter Rose
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:10 am | Permalink

    I really liked this episode alot!
    I loved the scene between Arya and Tywin.
    The scene with Tyrion and Cersei was also awesome.
    Qarth stuff was very cool and I’m happy we got to see a dragon again! :)
    Small downside is I am still not digging “Yara”. She’s poorly cast in my opinion.
    Other than that though, I thought it was an excellent episode.

  292. Drewr15
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:13 am | Permalink

    yeah the Arya Tickler part was the only thing that bothered me – exactly because of that future scene which I was dying to see brought to life. But I also understand that scene wouldn’t happen for 2 years almost and it would be hard to keep a minor actor employed for that long as he basically has no other scenes until that point.

  293. Bgap
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:13 am | Permalink

    So much for the theory that the creators are contractually bound to have at least one scene per episode with sex/nudity. Like many, I have no issue with these scenes as long as there is valuable exposition or plot, and this applies to the non-sex scenes as well. With so little time and loads of great content, every second counts. I felt like the Ros/Little Finger scene with the veiled threats was such a scene, but now I wonder if it was intended as a sort of set up for the Joffrey scene last week.

  294. Skip
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:14 am | Permalink

    With all the changes that have already been made, would I be out of line for thinking that Cleftjaw will really end up being everyone’s favorite rhyme for “leak”?

  295. The Winter Rose
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:15 am | Permalink

    Vanderhook: I’m with you. Gemma is great as Asha/Yara. I don’t understand the hate.

    I can’t speak for everyone, but for me I am just not seeing Asha from the book. She doesn’t have the charisma and presence needed to carry the character. I also feel they styled her to look incredibly frumpy. The actress doesn’t seem to have the finesse that the character calls for. She comes off as very dull and flat. But, hey that is just how I feel. People are entitled to their own opinions.

  296. Vanderhook
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:15 am | Permalink

    LoF: I’m not sure why everyone is upset over Quaithe’s mask…I thought it looked awesome, and thought she looked mysterious and terrifying.

    I agree. Her mask looked really cool. I also agree with whoever said earlier that she is a “hottie in a mask”.. she had nice eyes! She seemed to have the same accent (dutchish) that Melisandre had. Nice consistency there.

  297. 1_RedCat
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:15 am | Permalink

    + love jaquen, the whispering voice of the actor and that half of his face is almost always in the shadows – beautiful done . always one of my favourite charakters and soooo happy and relieved the way he turned out on the show :D
    + how great were tywin and arya! (I never expected that she was using the statement in the promos “anyone can be killed” in reference to rob. always thought it would be with jaquen. nicely done)
    +also brienne – so perfect, as if she stepped directly out of the book

  298. Ours is the Fury
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:16 am | Permalink

    I thought Quaithe’s mask was gorgeous and in line with the Qartheen styles we’ve seen.

    And I love Gemma Whelan as Yara. Just because someone isn’t exactly like a book character doesn’t mean they aren’t good.

  299. Vanderhook
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:18 am | Permalink

    Skip: With all the changes that have already been made, would I be out of line for thinking that Cleftjaw will really end up being everyone’s favorite rhyme for “leak”?

    You might be on to something here. Not sure how I feel about that, but it might be able to work out if handled well.

  300. Arthur
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:23 am | Permalink

    Rob,

    Whatever happened to Jojen and Meera? Shouldn’t they have been introduced by now?

    Giving the fact the Bran is having “Green Dreams” I very much doubt there is a need for Jojen Reed. Meera may still have a shot at making the TV adaptation but seems like the odds are stacked against her… But one can only hope.

    Natalia does a wonderful job as Osha but I still want to see the Frogspear Huntress come to life.

    It is strange, the only thing I didn’t like about this episode is the fact that there is strong evidence now that theReeds may not make it into the TV show. When Bran explained his Green Dream to Osha, I thought itwas cool they gave him that power instead of Jojen while at the sametime was saddened by D&D merging Jojen into Bran.

    I refuse to give up on Meera. I think she will be around…

  301. Fisher
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:26 am | Permalink

    Thank you Winter Rose!!

    Cssting Gemma as Yara/Asha is right up with there with Hayden Christenson as you know who. It is so bad that I can’t even find one redeeming quality about her in this role. It just baffles me. For the most part, the casting is masterful!!

    Hawk and Vanderhook,

    Instead of me stating the 100+ obvious things that are wrong with this casting, it would probably be quicker for you to tell me what you think is right with it. That should be a VERY short list!

  302. J
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:30 am | Permalink

    I really liked Gemma as Yara/Asha in this episode. She’s been kind of on and off for me so far, but I really thought she nailed that scene.

  303. DB
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:30 am | Permalink

    The lack of Sansa this episode just made me severely Dissapointed. She’s a POV character with an amazing arc in clash and they’ve already left her out of two episodes.

    Also, they’re pushing the Catelyn-is-a-mother! thing way too fucking much.

    They’re trying really hard to make Cersei look like an idiot around Tyrion, when she’s supposed to be more composed and just as witty.

    Whatever, all I can say is that this show can stop claiming to be feminist because it’s far from it.

  304. SKM
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:33 am | Permalink

    ropeadope:
    Are you sure you’re a lesbian? I’m thinking “armchair lesbian,” not practicing lesbian.

    I’ve made similar comments about Margaery and Danaerys. I guess that makes me an non-practicing straight? Wonder what my husband will say to that…

    Anyway, this episode was spectacular. The only change I would make is to take out the shot of the shadowbaby coming in under the tent. Without it, Brienne suddenly seeing the shadowbaby in the mirror would have — and should have — made me jump. Other than that, I enjoyed every minute of it.

  305. Vanderhook
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:33 am | Permalink

    Fisher: Thank you Winter Rose!! Cssting Gemma as Yara/Asha is right up with there with Hayden Christenson as you know who. It is so bad that I can’t even find one redeeming quality about her in this role. It just baffles me. For the most part, the casting is masterful!! Hawk and Vanderhook, Instead of me stating the 100+ obvious things that are wrong with this casting, it would probably be quicker for you to tell me what you think is right with it. That should be a VERY short list!

    I think you’re overreacting. I mean seriously, you’re comparing this to Hayden Christenson in Star Wars? I understand the complaints about Asha/Yara in the sense that she is slightly different, but I don’t understand the outright hate for it. Just try to be a bit more measured in your criticisms instead of shouting out hyperboles like “100+ obvious things wrong” and “worst casting since Hayden Christenson”. You’re acting like Arthur.

  306. Mike from Braavos
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:33 am | Permalink

    Arthur: Geez, all you people don’t want to see the Reeds.

    I guess the bottom line is the TV series will be able to function perfectly fine without Meera or Jojen…

    However, wouldn’t you rather have Bran’s storyline involve something other then him traveling through the vast wilderness with Hodor?

    You do realize that Osha has to eventually go in a different direction?

    Even if D&D deviate from the books and keep Osha with Bran, without Meera that storyline would be very boring IMHO.

    I liked book Meera – but honestly not as much as I like TV Osha – everything that Meera did/said can basically be done by Osha.

    Unless HBO is going to commit to fully fleshing out the Reeds (ie their personal backstory, along w/ the crannogmen lore) I would rather they just stick with Osha, personally. I’d prefer we get even MORE backstory on the Reeds than JarJar gave us, but I don’t see that happening.

    And I just found Jojen to be kinda whiny & annoying especially once they got beyond the wall. I get what the character was going through, just didn’t care.

    Regardless of the Osha vs the Reeds thing, I am really curious to see how HBO treats Rickon. Even if they stick w/ the book – will we get to peek in on him? Will he really disappear for 3+ seasons? They certainly could – and just bring in a brand new actor to play the older Rickon, and it’s not like he’d be missed.

    Totally agree on the “matter of opinion” aspect though. I always scratch my head when people insist that some minor character is “ESSENTIAL TO THE PLOT!” when they barely did anything in the book, or could easily be replaced by another character who does the exact same thing.

  307. Mike from Braavos
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:53 am | Permalink

    Mike from Braavos,

    Sorry – I meant to spoiler tag the “once they got beyond the wall” part! Can one of the site admins fix that – I’m too late to edit it now.

  308. dizzy_34
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:56 am | Permalink

    I did get a pit in my stomach when Bran gave that miller the two orphans…
    The Rickon sighting was good too.

  309. Nick Larter
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:00 am | Permalink

    Quaithe’s mask – gloriously disturbing – I kept thinking Hannibal Lecter, Hannibal Lecter :D

  310. Ed
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:07 am | Permalink

    I’m not Fisher, but I’ll toss in my .02. She is (to me) one of the poorer casting choices so far.

    She doesn’t seem to pull off the “Bad Ass Warrior-Woman” look for me, in any way. She would play a great college drop-out that got dumped though.

    She’s supposed to be lean, and strong, and physical, and I imagined her with sharp features and firey eyes that say “I will f&%$k you up if you get in my way”. All that, and still sexy.

    Think Zoe, on Firefly/Serenity (but in the white version): Bad ass, strong, yet still sexy as hell.

    All that said: It’s NOT that big of a deal. It in no way is lessening (let alone ruining) my experience of this series. Just a minor observation, really.

    Hawk:
    Fisher,

    Why do people have a problem with her? There’s absolutely no justifiable reason to be so off put by her. From the 5 minutes she’s been on screen, she’s been more than adequate… Can you explain to me what your issue is, because it’s certainly your issue, and not Gemma’s…??

  311. Clob
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:16 am | Permalink

    There were several excellent lines/exchanges in this episode that I loved. The ones I remember the most right now are:

    Cersei getting a little Tyrionesque jab back at Tyrion:
    Tyrion – “May I ask specifically….”
    Cersei – “You may ask specifically or you may ask vaguely, the answer will be the same.”
    I think Lena liked that scene

    Arya and Gendry exchange at the end when she tells him to turn his body ‘sideface’

    Arya answering Tywin’s questions and especially the stare with the line “anybody can be killed.”

    Tyrion, Bronn and the pyromancer. “My order does not deal in pig shit!” That old man was funny, and good. I liked his actions when describing the idea of flinging wild fire from the city walls.

  312. TheBlackFlame
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:33 am | Permalink

    I’m beginning to sound like a broken record here but these changes everyone keeps saying are so great aren’t! Last week I mentioned that I was beginning to feel uneasy about this second season and this week’s episode is only adding to that. Lets change Xaro’s primary motivation no one will care/notice, lets take away one Ayra’s best scenes in the entire series no one will notice/care, Stannis didn’t really need to take Storm’s end who’s gonna notice/care, lets eliminate the two characters who determine Bran’s story arc for the next 3 books no one will notice/care, You know Edmure and Riverrun really aren’t that important to the story no one will notice/care, I could go on. In the words of renowned anthropologist Ken Fader: “How many elements of a story are you allowed to change and still call it the same story?” You guys defending these changes have to ask yourselves if maybe just maybe you want this show to be good so badly that you are ignoring the fact that every week the show diverges even further from the source material in significant ways. How much longer before we’re watching John Snow jump over a shark tank on horseback? One last note, those of you complaining about how much nudity is in the series need to look back at the books. Sexuality is a prominently featured theme in all of the books.

  313. jdp13
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:33 am | Permalink

    Can someone refresh my memory. With Cat and Brienne taking off after Renly’s murder (similar to the book) what happens with Ned’s bones? I wonder if it’ll be addressed on the show.

  314. Kalasin
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:34 am | Permalink

    I don’t know if this has been mentioned but what about Loras/Margaery having to run after Renly dies? I generally liked the episode but thought it had a bunch of holes and this was one of them. The majority of Renly’s men were Tyrell/Tarly. Loras and Margaery should have been well protected by their bannermen, with only the Baratheon banners going to Stannis. I believe this is how it works in the books, but let me know if I’m wrong. Then Mace/Loras side with Tywin and ride on Stannis at Blackwater. Are they cutting all of that out and making like the Tyrell banners instantly move over to Stannis?

    Thoughts?

  315. Laura T.
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:35 am | Permalink

    Hot Pie,

    I agree completely. In the book he notices the chain & has a bad feeling about the battle. Making him the admiral is going to make the loss look like his fault. The quality I love most about Seaworth is that while he is low born he is far wiser than most high born characters in the book & that includes the admiral of Stannis’s fleet.

  316. Laura T.
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:38 am | Permalink

    jdp13,

    In the book Cat sends the Silent Sisters home to Winterfell with Ned’s bones before all this with Renly & Stannis happens. I believe they arrive in Winterfell with his bones after it is put to the torch.

  317. fuelpagan
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:39 am | Permalink

    It was a solid episode, but it could have been a great episode. My biggest complaint are with 2 scenes that are also my favorite parts of this episode.

    The scene between Tywin and Arya…WOW. A little confused why Tywin is concerned where she if from and not even asking for a name. I think showing how easily Arya assumes a new name and identity is key to her development. They show this a little bit with her changing where she is from, and it makes sense that Tywin just wouldn’t care what her name is, but I would think by now she would have assumed a new name other than Arry. But the exchange between the Arya and Tywin was just TOO FREAKING COOL. So glad they made this change. It gives me chills just thinking about it.

    Then the scene between Arya and Jaqen. Awesome!!! Taking the Tickler out now doesn’t bother me. It was a great character moment for Arya in the book, but I don’t think it would have translated well having her go bad ass on him next season when he was only on screen about 15 seconds. It would have fell flat. Maise just did a great job in going from scared of Jaqen to realizing he was helping her.

    So here is my problem with these two great scenes, they are in the wrong order. Let me explain. For Arya to go from staring down Tywin Lannister and saying “anyone can be killed” after hearing about them trying to take down her brother, to naming the Tickler as her first target moments later makes no sense. They didn’t even include “The Tickler” on Arya’s death list in the previous episode, so why would she name him? Larry Williams already noticed it was a mistake move to name the Tickler as her first target. By switching the order of the scenes would have allowed Arya to realize it as well. Add a small exchange between Arya and Gendry about Arya looking for Jaqen right before the Tickler gets snuffed to show Arya wanted to change her request and you change the dynamic of the choice from being a bonehead request to just a rookie mistake. A mistake that Arya was trying to correct and didn’t get the chance to fix it. A missed opportunity.

    Arya naming Polliver next and getting needle returned to her makes sense and I think viewers who haven’t read the books wouldn’t question why Polliver was named as the second target, who was actually on her Death List.

    Giving Bran the green-sight eliminates the needs for the Reeds as far as I can see. The reason Meera and Jojen meet up with Bran are because the visions Jojen has about winterfell compels them to go help Bran. They could have postponed the Reeds entering the story until later, but now they just are not needed. Even combining the green-sight ability into the Meera character, it makes no sense why they would give Bran the ability as well. If Meera is planned for next season, D&D better come up with a good reason for her to be there, otherwise I would rather have Osha go with Bran and the Maester take Rickon. Bothers me a little bit why Osha would go north of the wall after trying so hard to flee south, but it bothers me less than Meera showing up and helping Bran without a good reason for her to be there.

    Sad to see the Reeds go the way of the Blackfish, but I think it will be fine.

  318. Laura T.
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    Kalasin,

    No, if you watch the scene with Davos & Stannis again, Stannis says that all Stormsend’s bannermen are with him now but that the Tyrells (of Highgarden) have fled. Loras wants to revenge Renly’s death & Margeary wants to be “THE queen” & Littlefinger will make this happen.

  319. Mrs. Wun
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:45 am | Permalink

    Lex,

    I agree 100%. We’ll just have to wait and see what she does in the tavern with Sandor later on . . .

    My favorite episode. No meaningless sexposition, no character assination, just pure awesomeness. Wow, Brienne ! and I liked Quaithe’s mask. Hoping HOTU doesn’t disappoint.

  320. Croccifixio
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:45 am | Permalink

    i am good with most changes but i really didnt enjoy the episode from the moment he said the Tickler. this is actually the first time i was kinda disappointed.

    i don’t know, for a book that is very depressing and full of gruesome and some spectacular deaths, i was really looking forward to he tickler’s book death. it was a very powerful moment and one of the series’ greatest scene when it showed how much damage and effect the world placed upon a child such as Arya that made her shout and stab him over and over again.

  321. Laura T.
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    Clambake,

    I thought that as well but (& I need to reread Dance with Dragons to be sure) wouldn’t Bran recognize him if that were the case?

  322. Vanderhook
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    TheBlackFlame: I’m beginning to sound like a broken record here but these changes everyone keeps saying are so great aren’t! Last week I mentioned that I was beginning to feel uneasy about this second season and this week’s episode is only adding to that. Lets change Xaro’s primary motivation no one will care/notice, lets take away one Ayra’s best scenes in the entire series no one will notice/care, Stannis didn’t really need to take Storm’s end who’s gonna notice/care, lets eliminate the two characters who determine Bran’s story arc for the next 3 books no one will notice/care, You know Edmure and Riverrun really aren’t that important to the story no one will notice/care, I could go on. In the words of renowned anthropologist Ken Fader: “How many elements of a story are you allowed to change and still call it the same story?” You guys defending these changes have to ask yourselves if maybe just maybe you want this show to be good so badly that you are ignoring the fact that every week the show diverges even further from the source material in significant ways. How much longer before we’re watching John Snow jump over a shark tank on horseback? One last note, those of you complaining about how much nudity is in the series need to look back at the books. Sexuality is a prominently featured theme in all of the books.

    - I don’t think a lot of people are saying the changes are great, most book fans are of a similar mind to you. At least thats what it seems to me.
    - Xaros motivation wasn’t really changed that much if I remember correctly.. He wants to marry Dany primarily for the dragons, but I always thought it was implied that Xaro also wants to capitalize on the fact that theres a good chance she could seize the Iron Throne
    - I STRONGLY doubt that the Arya scene from SoS will be taken out. It looks like it will just be changed a bit. Instead of the Tickler, it’ll probably be Polliver or Raff. Really, those three are almost interchangable. We will get screwed out of Arya yelling “WHERE IS THE GOLD?” but hey, it could be replaced with equally heated dialogue towards Polliver or Raff. It sucks, but I don’t think Tickler’s death means we won’t see Arya’s famous SoS scene.
    - Is the Storm’s End storyline from ACOK really that important? The entire point of that story was two-fold: have Davos witness Melisandre giving shadowbirth, which was already accomplished last episode, and setting up Edric Storm. Edric Storm can be introduced in a different way, it’s not that big of a deal. Hell, they could probably make it so that Edric Storm has been on Dragonstone the entire time. And don’t try and give me the whole “Stannis would never allow a bastard to stay at Dragonstone!” — they can easily write that off as “Robert forced Stannis to foster him”.
    - Don’t give up on the Reeds yet! I think they’ll probably be introduced next season. Especially since I have the feeling that winterfell burning might be pushed to early next season
    - Honestly, the Tullys really aren’t that important. At least not in Book 2. Edmure obviously needs to be introduced before the Red Wedding though

  323. Ed
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:51 am | Permalink

    Fair enough. Maybe it’s just not for you. Some people may be just better off reading the books only. I think you’re one of those people. Buh-bye.

    TheBlackFlame:
    I’m beginning to sound like a broken record here but these changes everyone keeps saying are so great aren’t! Last week I mentioned that I was beginning to feel uneasy about this second season and this week’s episode is only adding to that. Lets change Xaro’s primary motivation no one will care/notice, lets take away one Ayra’s best scenes in the entire series no one will notice/care, Stannis didn’t really need to take Storm’s end who’s gonna notice/care, lets eliminate the two characters who determine Bran’s story arc for the next 3 books no one will notice/care, You know Edmure and Riverrun really aren’t that important to the story no one will notice/care, I could go on. In the words of renowned anthropologist Ken Fader: “How many elements of a story are you allowed to change and still call it the same story?” You guys defending these changes have to ask yourselves if maybe just maybe you want this show to be good so badly that you are ignoring the fact that every week the show diverges even further from the source material in significant ways. How much longer before we’re watching John Snow jump over a shark tank on horseback? One last note, those of you complaining about how much nudity is in the series need to look back at the books. Sexuality is a prominently featured theme in all of the books.

  324. Mike
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:57 am | Permalink

    Here’s why I love Cat. Brienne, out of almost nowhere, decides that she will swear herself to Lady Stark and makes her overly-formal vows. Instead of being bewildered or just ho-humming it like some upper class snoot, Cat throws a substantial vow right back at Brienne making it more of a mutual-aide pact than a master/sevant relationship of fealty.

    Very cool.

  325. Jen@House Stark
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:59 am | Permalink

    “I hate it when men fall in love” or something like that, great quote, LOL. Jaqen (Tom how-the-7-do-you-say-his-last name) is wonderful, adore him. Gendry no shirt, meow. Tywin will not spill his wine glass again, I’m sure!

  326. Weirwood
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:02 pm | Permalink

    purplejilly,

    While I understand some of your sentiments here is what I feel when Book Purists nitpick an episode apart for what is missing and/or wrong: It is as though you have been given a present (that most people would cherish) and you are complaining about the size of the bow or the color of the wrapping paper.

    Having your favorite book series turned into a high quality film or TV series (that is one of the closest adaptations I can think of) is hardly something to complain so vociferously about IMO.

    Martin is an Executive Producer and seems happy with the adaptation and obviously agrees that some changes are necessary and/or acceptable. He has worked in television for years and knows that it is a much more collaborative medium than books and has limited time and budget constraints.

    I recommend you enjoy the show for what it is and not think about what goes into “making sausages” while eating them. ;)

    (Count our blessings, This could be like True Blood, or a thousand other adaptations, where the books are completely ignored).

  327. Kalasin
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

    Laura T.,

    Margaery and Loras have fled. The entire Tyrell army cannot decamp and “flee” in a morning. It is definitely not clear where Tyrell’s banners have gone. There should have been absolutely no reason for Loras and Margaery to feel like they’re in danger.

  328. Drew
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

    If anyone has visited the HBO website to view next weeks preview… I have an itching suspicion Roose might be replacing Ramsey… if so, i’ll cry blood because that will be a MAJOR departure I just cannot handle

  329. andrea
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

    Mike: Cat throws a substantial vow right back at Brienne making it more of a mutual-aide pact than a master/sevant relationship of fealty.

    True, that was really nice.

  330. Mrs. Wun
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:14 pm | Permalink

    dizzy_34,

    I know, my stomach dropped too :( I think readers sometimes forget what Theon and Reek did to them.

    BTW, I want to see Asha/Yara do the fingerdance!

  331. Laura T.
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:16 pm | Permalink

    Why haven’t we seen Riverrun yet? We’re gonna need some background there before the Red Wedding & also Hoster Tully setting up the entire Lysa/Littlefinger storyline in the future. I feel like a lot of important characters are being edited out. I’m assuming everyone here has read the book so nothing here should be a spoiler. The blackfish is important because he escapes & presumably will have a important role in the series further down the road (Also why I do not believe Jon Snow is truly dead or Brienne either for that matter) Jojen & Meera are important not so much for their journey beyond the wall but in the bigger picture, their father knows Jon Snow’s true identity & what happened at the tournament of the false spring at Harrenhall. Who the heck is this chick from Volantis? Why edit Jayne Westerlings storyline but maybe she was lying about her identity. I can’t imagine Dany sailing from Qarth to Westeros (ahh, the Unsullied would be a big omission) I’m assuming Ser Baristan & Strong Belwas are next week but then again I though Meera & Jojen would be introduced by now & it appears they’ve been edited out (which can’t be true….to huge a plot change). So many questions. Any thoughts?

  332. Shock Me
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:18 pm | Permalink

    jdp13,

    They probably gave them to the silent sisters to take north.

  333. Shock Me
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

    Kalasin,

    I’d say that Stannis gets all of Renly’s host except for the High Garden forces guarding Margeryas they de-camp. Then later in the day the rest declare for Stannis.

  334. areacode212
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

    The Winter Rose: I can’t speak for everyone, but for me I am just not seeing Asha from the book. She doesn’t have the charisma and presence needed to carry the character. I also feel they styled her to look incredibly frumpy. The actress doesn’t seem to have the finesse that the character calls for. She comes off as very dull and flat. But, hey that is just how I feel. People are entitled to their own opinions.

    Everything you said encapsulates my problem with Gemma Whelan/Yara. I don’t have a real problem with any of the other casting choices or book-to-TV changes, but I really can’t stand TV Yara.

  335. Kalasin
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

    Laura T.,

    Laura T.: Why haven’t we seen Riverrun yet? We’re gonna need some background there before the Red Wedding & also Hoster Tully setting up the entire Lysa/Littlefinger storyline in the future. I feel like a lot of important characters are being edited out. I’m assuming everyone here has read the book so nothing here should be a spoiler. The blackfish is important because he escapes & presumably will have a important role in the series further down the road (Also why I do not believe Jon Snow is truly dead or Brienne either for that matter) Jojen & Meera are important not so much for their journey beyond the wall but in the bigger picture, their father knows Jon Snow’s true identity & what happened at the tournament of the false spring at Harrenhall. Who the heck is this chick from Volantis? Why edit Jayne Westerlings storyline but maybe she was lying about her identity. I can’t imagine Dany sailing from Qarth to Westeros (ahh, the Unsullied would be a big omission) I’m assuming Ser Baristan & Strong Belwas are next week but then again I though Meera & Jojen would be introduced by now & it appears they’ve been edited out (which can’t be true….to huge a plot change). So many questions. Any thoughts?

    My thoughts: I actually don’t think Riverrun is essential. The Red Wedding can easily happen without it (Edmure or whatever groom they wind up with can show up anywhere – he could just be in Robb’s camp even), and Lysa/Littlefinger don’t require much background either, imo. Sure, there is a lot of depth in the books that won’t be in the show, but the idea that she was in love with him while he was in love with Cat can be explained in a sentence, and is really all we need. I don’t see how they can cut the unsullied, since that’s Dany’s entire storyline in season 3. Meera and Jojen are definitely out this season (they were not cast), but could show up in season 3. We know some people who were cut from 2 will show up in three (David/Dan have confirmed it). Not sure if that’s referring to them or Tullys or what. I agree with you that it might become an issue with Jon’s parentage, but David and Dan know where that is going in the books, so I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt. I doubt the tournament will be mentioned, even if they do show up. Blackfish may or may not be important but he can be introduced later if he is.

  336. Laura T.
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

    Laura T.,

    In the book Renly makes a tactical error by dividing his force into two parts, his battlements, horse, men at arms etc. are with him in the front while his supplies, wife etc. are in the second camp to the rear. When he is murdered Ser Loras & the Tyrells retreat to the second camp (Bitterbridge?) while those loyal to Stormsend remain & Stannis claims them & marches onto Stormsend to get Edric Storm & take the castle (so as to not be taken from behind by Stormsend whilst marching on King’s Landing, but ultimately he is taken by the Tyrells that he left at Bitterbridge). Littlefinger is never at Renly’s camp. He treats with the Tyrells after Renly’s death to propose an alignment between the Lannisters & Tyrells.

  337. Mike Snow
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

    I thought Loras’ response in the show was completely unbelieveable. He doesn’t even suspect Brienne or Catelyn, when they were the two with Renly when he died and both have fled? I’m at a loss for why they made this change, since it wouldn’t have taken any more dialogue for him to blame her. The actual shadow and death were acceptable, given TV budgets and what not. I also thought it was an odd change to have them removing Renly’s armor rather than putting it on. The stab thru the armor was also a fact that helped absolve Brienne in Ser Loras mind later. It’s another change that appears to be completely arbitrary and unnecessary at this point.

  338. Kalasin
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

    Shock Me,

    You mean all of the Tyrell bannermen? That would be a huge deal. The bannermen are sworn to the Tyrells and the Tyrells clearly need to forge an alliance with the Lannisters, if for nothing else to set up the Margaery-Joffrey wedding. If they sided with Stannis against Mace that would be HUGE. That includes the Tarlys and everyone else – most of Renly’s force. I just don’t see it happening. Stannis should have picked up only a fraction of Renly’s men.

  339. Laura T.
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:35 pm | Permalink

    Kalasin,

    I think you’ve hit the nail on the head. I loving the show but it lacks the depth of the books, partially because a lot of the back story is in characters memories, dreams etc. I am interested to see how they are going to deal with the visions Dany sees in the house of the undying, when a lot of what she sees hasn’t been addressed at all in the show. Interesting.

  340. Kalice
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:40 pm | Permalink

    Steel_Wind: . The Queen of Thorns was a nice old grandmother who made the decisions for a not very worldly sixteen year old Margaery Tyrell.

    GoT’s Margaery needs no Queen of Thorns. And we won’t be wondering who slipped him the mickey, either.

    O, I really hope your wrong about Queen of Thorns. She is interesting in so many ways and could be used to show how Margaery got to be the way she is. Plus, Sansa has such a fantastic scene with her coming up I would really hate if that was eliminated!

  341. TheBlackFlame
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:41 pm | Permalink

    Ed,

    Thank you dismissing my completely legitimate concerns with snark! Where would the internet be without hilariously clever individuals like yourself? If you take exception to what I say thats fair but acting like I’m a pedant for pointing out that they are going way off base this season, especially when they are and almost everyone agrees. Maybe they don’t have the problem with it I do but you have to acknowledge that I have a point. I’ll reiterate the point I made last week. (which is just as valid now as it was then.) The success of the first season was due large in part to their adherence to the books as much as possible. The further they move away from the story in the books the less sense the story is making. Why would Xaro, an obviously homosexual man have a first wife? Why would the Terrells have to flee what is essentially their own army? Why would the Quartheen refuse admittance to a person they had invited? These are all lame plot points that serve no purpose except to close up other previous plotholes that are a direct result of the changes they made in the story. If you’d like I can give other examples of how these changes in the show are taking things in a not good direction. I understand that its an adaptation and to expect it to be shot for shot identical to the books is silly. But as I have said before every time they change a character’s trajectory they get further from the basis of the story. The way things are going I’m beginning to wonder if there is going to be a Red Wedding at all? Other than Rob’s interest in this Volantine (tell me thats not completely random!) they have not put in motion any of the other situations that brought it about. Imagine a cue ball rolling across a poll table, every bump no matter how small changes its trajectory maybe just a fraction but by the time that cue reaches the other end of the table that change in trajectory small to begin with has grown. Sometimes so much so you miss your target altogether. (I am just up with the science text examples today!) And not for nothing with the potential for an eight or nine year run thats a very long trip from one of the table to the other.

  342. Shock Me
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:41 pm | Permalink

    Kalasin,

    No I mean all the Tyrells leave with Loras and Margery.

  343. Shock Me
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

    Kalice,

    A bear there was a bear…all black and brown and covered with hair…

  344. Kalasin
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

    Laura T.: Kalasin, I am interested to see how they are going to deal with the visions Dany sees in the house of the undying, when a lot of what she sees hasn’t been addressed at all in the show.

    I’m very curious about this as well.

    Shock Me,

    That’s what I’m saying. If they still have the entire Tyrell force at their back (a) there is no need to flee, as Littlefinger insists; and (b) it’s impossible to flee. They were encamped. That’s not fleeing. It’s packing up and walking the other way. Stannis would have to actively let them go. So it’s confusing because Littlefinger and Stannis both make comments implying that Loras and Margaery were in some kind of danger and had to sneak out. As if they didn’t have an entire freaking army with them.

  345. morbiczer
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:51 pm | Permalink

    Overall a nice episode again, but as some others have already mentioned, there were again a few strange changes from the book. I really didn’t like that it was Joffrey’s idea with the wildfire. Or was it Cersei’s? That part was a little confusing.

    Liked the dragon and the bitching between Doreah and Irri was really funny.

    But the high point was the mention of the House of the Undying. I really thought they would leave that out, but why would they have brought it up then?

  346. Mensje
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:51 pm | Permalink

    I’m a bit worried about the reeds as well.
    I hope we still get at least Meera next season, because it doesn’t make any sense for Osha to go beyond the wall and you can’t just have Bran traviling north of the wall with Hodor , he’ll need someone to talk to about coldhands.

  347. Skip
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:56 pm | Permalink

    Vanderhook,

    Ya, same here. I don’t remember much of Cleftjaw’s role in the books, and I’m not sure how they’d explain the purpose of “creek” being there but when the lightbulb went on above Theon’s head one lit up above mine as well.

  348. fuelpagan
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

    TheBlackFlame: I’m beginning to sound like a broken record here but these changes everyone keeps saying are so great aren’t! Last week I mentioned that I was beginning to feel uneasy about this second season and this week’s episode is only adding to that. Lets change Xaro’s primary motivation no one will care/notice, lets take away one Ayra’s best scenes in the entire series no one will notice/care, Stannis didn’t really need to take Storm’s end who’s gonna notice/care, lets eliminate the two characters who determine Bran’s story arc for the next 3 books no one will notice/care, You know Edmure and Riverrun really aren’t that important to the story no one will notice/care, I could go on. In the words of renowned anthropologist Ken Fader: “How many elements of a story are you allowed to change and still call it the same story?” You guys defending these changes have to ask yourselves if maybe just maybe you want this show to be good so badly that you are ignoring the fact that every week the show diverges even further from the source material in significant ways. How much longer before we’re watching John Snow jump over a shark tank on horseback? One last note, those of you complaining about how much nudity is in the series need to look back at the books. Sexuality is a prominently featured theme in all of the books.

    1) Changing Xaro’s primary motivation may or may not be true. Xaro isn’t going to go straight to Dany and tell her he really wants one of her dragons for his own. So to claim this as a change is premature. Even if it is changed, it is Dany’s response that is important, not Xaro’s true primary motivation.

    2)Arya may still have an awesome scene that we love, it just will be killing different people. The reason the scene is so great in the books is because we know how the phrase “Is there gold in the village” come to haunt her, and that is why it is so satifying when she takes him out. Sorry, but that will just not translate well to the screen. In order for that scene to be powerful, you have to see how haunted Arya is by those words. That means spending a lot more time around the tickler hearing that phrase over and over again. There is no need to waste screen time on the Tickler to make Arya killing him as satisfying as it was in the books. Fifteen seconds of the Tickler in season 2 episode 4, to having her kill him, most likely in season 4…just wouldn’t work. It would only be powerful to those who read the book. For everyone else, you could have her attacking anyone, most wouldn’t remember who the Tickler even was.

    3) The only thing Stannis got out of attacking Storms End was Edric Storm. A character that does nothing. Stannis never gets to utilize him, nor does the Red woman. He was simply a device by GRRM to show how Stannis planned to prove Joffrey wasn’t Roberts that will probably come into play with different characters in the last 2 books. So no, Stannis didn’t need to go to Storms End. If Edric Storm is important later on, he will be introduced later.

    4)Sad to see the Reeds go, but if Bran can get to where he needs to go without them, then they are not needed. Less cost and less confusion. No need to add more characters that require development and introduction to the story if it can be avoided.

    5)Who says Edmure and Riverrun are not important to the story. Just because they are not focused on yet doesn’t mean they are cut completely. When we get to the point where Edmure is important and D&D plopped in some other lame reason for the wedding or give some lame excuse why Edmure is there, then I would agree. But until we see that event, it is hard to claim this is a drastic change when it may simply be delayed.

    Honestly, I think making Bolton be the groom in the Red Wedding to Fat Walda would be fine. I would prefer Edmure, but it really isn’t necessary.

    If you can’t separate the book story from the show story, you are better off reading the books and avoiding the show. Adapting from one medium to another requires compromises. As Cogman stated about the “Hot Pie!” scene, sometimes you have to give up the things you love most for the good of the show as a whole.

  349. Shinyteapot
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:05 pm | Permalink

    Improvement on last week I think. Brienne was great, both in combat and being emotional. You know she loved Renly without her having to say it or explain anything. Renly’s death was shocking and sudden- or it would have been if it ended the episode last week. I’m surprised Catelyn didn’t seem to take Ned’s bones with them though?

    We didn’t see Loras take Renly to be buried. I hope we see that next episode- while Margaery is scheming away, Loras is truly grieving. I’m surprised he didn’t blame Brienne- a shame, as in the books having to deal with that, and be talked out of it, gives him more to think about.

    Melisandre is finally mentioned by name, abou time! I liked the scene with Stannis and Davos, it seemed very real somehow. And Stannis really is perfect- he’s utterly uncharismatic.

    Liked Irri quietly showing she’s still upset over Rakharo and not comfortable in a rich city. She’s making a big deal of being Dothraki, it’s something to cling to. She didn’t bless Drogo’s spirit when his name was mentioned in the red waste. I was less happy about Dany mentioning that she was sold off in the same scene as essentially telling Doreah to go and sleep with local men for information. Bit hypocritical!

    Drogon is great, but I think it’s time we saw a bit more of the other two. He’s been the focus of all the dragon scenes so far, people will be forgetting Viserion and Rhaegal exist! And being in a new city would have been a perfect time to explain the names, which still haven’t been mentioned in the show.

    I like Xaro, but unless he was lying about his wife that’s another change from the books. It’s not a big deal, but I wonder why?

    Tyrion, Lancel and Bronn were great. And Cersei is struggling and it shows. Great acting on all accounts. I hope we do get a mention of the hidden wildfire around the city- given the emphasis last series on Jaime (who really needs to be back on screen now!) telling us the mad king wanted to ‘burn them all’, that needs to tie into place.

    I do wish Tyrion had made more of what happened with Ros and friend. He could have mentioned visiting Ros to check up on her, or at least sending extra money- he is a Lannister after all. It’s not surprising the people don’t like him- they probably hear rumours that he picked out two whores specifically for Joffrey to torture!

    Bran is learning well about being a lord, and it was good to see Rickon again. Will those orphans replace the miller’s sons? I hope not- it detracts from Theon’s story. He knew they were there because he’d been quietly shagging the miller’s wife for years, it was even hinted the younger boy could have been his.

    Great to see the halfhand, but I can’t watch those scenes without wondering why most of the men are too stupid to wear hats in such cold weather? They should be practical first, forget about hairstyles. Give Jon a particularly fancy hat if necessary.

    When Theon was failing to impress his men, he tried the same tactic Robb used on the Greatjon. Without a direwolf or indeed any supporters to hand, it really didn’t work. A nice touch there- Theon is still taking inspiration from the Starks despite betraying them. Yara was ok, but she’s not as much fun as Asha. I’m still disappointed she didn’t introduce her ‘lord husband’ and ‘sweet babe’ as in the books. We haven’t seen a hall full of drunk and violent ironborn yet.

    Finally, all at Harrenhal were brilliant this episode. Loved Arya quoting Syrio to Gendry. Who does look like a convincing blacksmith- and very nice too! As is Jaqen. I like having Arya as Tywin’s cupbearer, those scenes were great. I’m surprised he’s not suspicious of the northern girl- perhaps he thinks Robb is too honourable to stoop to child spies. Which he probably is, but Arya must be wishing she could pass information to him.

    I’m not surprised about the Tickler’s death, though I really hope it doesn’t prevent a certain scene from later on taking place, with someone equally horrible (Polliver?) in his place?

    This episode ended on an almost positive note- a brutal death, but at least of a torturer. That’s unusual, but nice- there’s more than enough horror after all.

    Off topic- I don’t know why I have only just noticed this, but in the credits Michelle Fairley has a Stark sigil, but Lena Headey and Natalie Dormer have Lannister and Tyrell respectively rather than their husbands’ sigils. To show their true allegiance perhaps?

  350. Jeremy
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:20 pm | Permalink

    What I liked:

    Cute baby dragon tilting his head sideways like a confused puppy.

    What I didn’t like:

    Dagmer Cleftjaw’s Jaw

  351. The Rabbit
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

    This episode left me crying for more…
    just saying.

  352. Weirwood
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

    Did anyone else notice that Quaithe’s arm bands (and mask) match the pattern of Melisandre’s necklace?

    http://www.afterelton.com/www/data/afterelton.com/sites-files/2012/04/gamethrones2-5snakelady.jpg

    http://www.skittlestorm.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/melisandre.png

    And her comment that “fire is power”?

  353. Klavonivs
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:37 pm | Permalink

    Weirwood,

    A nice find there………hmmm makes me wonder now…and thanks for commenting on this and getting me out of that vicious pit form the above posting:)

  354. Weirwood
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:46 pm | Permalink

    Klavonivs,

    Thanks. And no problem. Opinions are like armpits and some do need to be shaved occasionally. (Sorry bad Renly pun there).

  355. Peter
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

    Awesome, awesome, awesome! For some strange reason this episode was my favorite in both seasons so far. I agree with someone else that it felt totally unscripted and natural. I got absorbed in a way that I’ve never been. The scene with Tywin and Arya was so friggin kicka*s and those 2 consistently nail their parts. Arya is such a little twirp rebel, love her!

    At least once an epsiode my fiancee blurts out what a slimeball Theon is. She doesn’t know what’s coming but she’s knows it can’t be good.

    The special effects of the shadow were incredible and much better than I imagined it. Although Martin’s description in the book is much creepier, the way Renly’s gorget parts like cheese.

    Really makes all the difference filming the Night’s Watch film in authentic weather/locale. The conversation with Qhorin looked like everyone was genuinely miserable.

    Qarth has a truly foreign feel to it. They’re doing a really nice job with that atmosphere. Feels like Dany is totally out of her element.

  356. fuelpagan
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:54 pm | Permalink

    TheBlackFlame: Why would Xaro, an obviously homosexual man have a first wife? Why would the Terrells have to flee what is essentially their own army? Why would the Quartheen refuse admittance to a person they had invited?

    TV Xaro may not be homosexual. I see no reason why Xaro’s sexuality is necessary to the plot the way Renly and Loras’ sexuality are. Or he may still be homosexual and had a first wife to cover up the fact he was a homosexual.

    The Tyrells are not fleeing their own army. Their army is going to join with Stannis and they think Stannis was behind Renly’s death. I thought the show did a fair job of explaining why they wouldn’t join Stannis.

    I’m not even sure of your point on that last question. It seemed to me Xaro simply explained that Qarth customs forced him to invite the man, even though Xaro would have preferred not to invite him. I’ll have to watch it again. Did Xaro claim he slipped past his guards or something?

    TheBlackFlame: a cue ball rolling across a poll table, every bump no matter how small changes its trajectory maybe just a fraction but by the time that cue reaches the other end of the table that change in trajectory small to begin with has grown. Sometimes so much so you miss your target altogether. (I am just up with the science text examples today!) And not for nothing with the potential for an eight or nine year run thats a very long trip from one of the table to the other.

    The difference is D&D see the whole table, you are only seeing a portion of the table. And they can put in other bumps to steer the cue back on course. Until we see the end result, you can’t say change X makes it impossible for the character to get from A to B.

  357. Violentos
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:01 pm | Permalink

    Weirwood,

    I agree, nice find! Makes complete sense that Quaith would be allied with R’hllor, and that R’hllor would have some sort of official seal/design/emblem.

  358. Shady_Grady
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:05 pm | Permalink

    TheBlackFlame,

    I agree with some of your points but as I think you know, show Xaro is most emphatically not gay. Interview with actor here.
    http://www.theroot.com/views/nonso-interview
    There are some changes which don’t work but most do and I’m willing to wait and see where this one goes.

  359. Kalasin
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

    Shinyteapot: I hope we do get a mention of the hidden wildfire around the city- given the emphasis last series on Jaime (who really needs to be back on screen now!) telling us the mad king wanted to ‘burn them all’, that needs to tie into place.

    I personally don’t feel like we need to see it all over the city to know that. I think that can easily come out with it just being in the vault we saw. I don’t think the mad king wanting to burn the city is dependent on us knowing where the stores are. I think it’s enough that he wanted to do it and he had the means.

    Will those orphans replace the miller’s sons? I hope not- it detracts from Theon’s story. He knew they were there because he’d been quietly shagging the miller’s wife for years, it was even hinted the younger boy could have been his.

    Really? I sort of feel like there is no logical way they could get that out/squeeze it in, so it was a really great way to establish those boys in advance.

    Give Jon a particularly fancy hat if necessary.

    Awesome.

  360. Shock Me
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

    Kalasin,

    I think what he is saying is that to avoid battle between Tyrell’s forces, Stannis, and Renly’s Storm lords they need to leave. That suggests to me that no matter how large the Tyrell presence is, they won’t stand against both Stannis and the Storm Lords trying to curry favor with Stannis.

    In the books, the forces were divided because of the speed of Renly’s cavalry advance with Margery back in the rear with the supply wagons from High Garden. Mounted there is a good chance they could escape no matter the conditions. And it sounds as if the bulk of the Dragonstone forces were still at sea.

  361. Corn
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

    Kalasin:
    I don’t know if this has been mentioned but what about Loras/Margaery having to run after Renly dies?I generally liked the episode but thought it had a bunch of holes and this was one of them.The majority of Renly’s men were Tyrell/Tarly.Loras and Margaery should have been well protected by their bannermen, with only the Baratheon banners going to Stannis.I believe this is how it works in the books, but let me know if I’m wrong.Then Mace/Loras side with Tywin and ride on Stannis at Blackwater.Are they cutting all of that out and making like the Tyrell banners instantly move over to Stannis?

    Thoughts?

    It’s been a few months since I finished my 2nd reading of the books, but to my recollection not ALL of Renly’s men wanted to back Stannis since only hours before they were meant to attack Stannis. Some of them would be more committed than others to the king himself, others mainly to the steady meals and a job. So, as Margaery and Loras really despised Stannis due to their loyalty to Renly, it’s not so odd for them to want to leave and go back to their own lands. Then, they could take their time and decide who will give them the best “deal” to align with in the future. This is where Littlefinger comes in…he immediately sees that a Margaery/Highgarden (fertile lands in the south with abundant crops) alliance would be much more advantageous to Joffrey than marrying Sansa (who is the daughter/brother of a traitor and comes with cold, uninteresting and unproductive lands). If LF can get the credit for the alliance, more power and prestige for him, and perhaps a reward of a nice land grant with accompanying rights and incomes. Not to mention that would leave Sansa available for LF to pursue on his own since it’s now clear Catelyn will never be his. Margaery wants to be THE queen, so that helps LF with his plan. It’s a done deal, Margaery will be Joffrey’s queen, not Sansa. I hope I’ve laid that out well enough.

  362. freoduwebbe
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:16 pm | Permalink

    I think we are all forgetting that Arya is a young girl. her ‘anyone can die’ – is really anyone YOU LOVE can die – her father, Syrio, Yoren…. I dont think it was a threat so much as a cry of despair – after all, she was talking about Robb being unkillable – and knows he’s not.

    Then Jaqen gives her the ability to kill three people. And Tickler had been working on Gendry…. It was a quick, pick him now moment (oh and yes, Gendry can take his shirt off ANYTIME..)

    Even so I dont think she’ll put Tywin on the Jaqen list anytime soon – she doesnt have the adult knowledge needed to do that.

  363. Andrea Burgos Prieto
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:26 pm | Permalink

    Deborah,

    Join the line, sister…

  364. Doran's Gouty Toe
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

    Was Ser Kevan Lannister seated around Lord Tywin’s war council table? I didn’t notice him. Why not give him lines? I liked the small part they gave him in season 1, hope they kept him around this season.

    I like Kevan Lannister, he is the only sympathetic-not-over-the-top Lannister. One of the most decent and realistic characters in the whole series IMHO, with Davos. And he DOES play a role later on after all.

  365. Corn
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

    freoduwebbe:
    I think we are all forgetting that Arya is a young girl. her ‘anyone can die’– is really anyone YOU LOVE can die – her father, Syrio, Yoren…. I dont think it wasa threat so much as a cry of despair – after all, she was talking about Robb being unkillable – and knows he’s not.

    Then Jaqen gives her the ability to kill three people.And Tickler had been working on Gendry….It was a quick, pick him now moment(oh and yes, Gendry can take his shirt off ANYTIME..)

    Even so I dont think she’ll put Tywin on the Jaqen list anytime soon – she doesnt have the adult knowledge needed to do that.

    Good points, as this leads us to the realization that Arya is now more attached to Gendry since Yoren is gone, and the Tickler was definitely primed and in position to kill Gendry before Tywin came in and stopped the torture. So, Tywin could get a temporary “pass” in Arya’s mind since he saved Gendry from death even though he is practically the devil (being the head of the evil Lannisters). She also knows full well how well guarded Tywin is since she is his cupbearer, and maybe she wouldn’t put him on the “kill 3″ list since it would be difficult to pull off for J’aqen (being a new recruit who would not be trusted in the presence of the great Tywin). It does make the question of “who are the other 2″ more interesting, a big question that hopefully will get at least a partial answer next week?

  366. JamesL
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

    morbiczer,

    People keep complaining about this “change” but the wildfire was Cersei’s idea in the books too.

  367. Corn
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:42 pm | Permalink

    JamesL:
    morbiczer,

    People keep complaining about this “change” but the wildfire was Cersei’s idea in the books too.

    Yes, I thought I recalled that…but it was Tyrion who ended up getting the soldiers to practice with empty jugs, or jugs or water, before the actual battle so that the substance would meet its target more frequently and not end up landing within the castle walls. I think Tyrion also worked out the construction of more catapults and the big chain, but we’ll see if those aspects make it into the tv version. Seems like Tyrion never gets credit for anything good that he does, I’d bet that remains the same in the tv series since it contributes to motivations for some of his future activities.

  368. Kalasin
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

    Shock Me,

    I just wish is was more clear that they still had a whole freaking army. The way Stannis is talking it sounds like everyone is switching to him. I think for non-book readers in particular, who don’t have a handle on the families and alliances, it definitely could seem like all the men went over to Stannis and Loras and Margaery were in danger and had to run.

    Corn,

    Yeah, I get all of that, and Littlefinger planting the seeds was just fine. I think the switching of allegiances among the men just wasn’t clear.

  369. Corn
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

    Kalasin:
    Shock Me,

    I just wish is was more clear that they still had a whole freaking army.The way Stannis is talking it sounds like everyone is switching to him.I think for non-book readers in particular, who don’t have a handle on the families and alliances, it definitely could seem like all the men went over to Stannis and Loras and Margaery were in danger and had to run.

    Corn,

    Yeah, I get all of that, and Littlefinger planting the seeds was just fine.I think the switching of allegiances among the men just wasn’t clear.

    It definitely could have been a little clearer, I agree.

  370. darquemode
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

    Steel_Wind,

    I had the very same thought about the Queen of Thorns as I watched Margery. She is a younger version of the queen more than an older version of book Margery in many ways.

  371. Eor
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

    I had to agree with Arya’s first kill, the fact that she didn’t kill Tywin is really amped up, Jaquen even seems to make mention of it when afterwards he says “go fetch that for your master” and gives her a little glance. Also didn’t like the shadow baby, perhaps just me but I don’t like the interpretation of it having a separate form and not being a shadow, though it’s a minor enough difference, my non-book friends thought it was cool. Loved all the bits with Davos and Stannis, a good hint at the rise of the Queen’s Men.

  372. Doran's Gouty Toe
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:03 pm | Permalink

    Budget budget I know, but showing a scene where Tyrell horsemen with the green banner would leave the camp while others with yellow banners would linger on would have been a LOT clearer. The whole idea of a stag on green was visually confusing, it had become impossible to distinguish the Tyrells from the non-Stannis Baratheons.

  373. Lars
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

    Weirwood:
    Did anyone else notice that Quaithe’s arm bands (and mask) match the pattern of Melisandre’s necklace?

    http://www.afterelton.com/www/data/afterelton.com/sites-files/2012/04/gamethrones2-5snakelady.jpg

    http://www.skittlestorm.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/melisandre.png

    Good catch!

  374. Idaan
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:13 pm | Permalink

    freoduwebbe,

    freoduwebbe:
    I think we are all forgetting that Arya is a young girl. her ‘anyone can die’– is really anyone YOU LOVE can die – her father, Syrio, Yoren…. I dont think it wasa threat so much as a cry of despair – after all, she was talking about Robb being unkillable – and knows he’s not.

    Then Jaqen gives her the ability to kill three people.And Tickler had been working on Gendry….It was a quick, pick him now moment(oh and yes, Gendry can take his shirt off ANYTIME..)

    Even so I dont think she’ll put Tywin on the Jaqen list anytime soon – she doesnt have the adult knowledge needed to do that.

    This, so much this. I understand that there WAS a bit of a threat in her words, but her empty stare and sullen look towards Tywin were in line both with her presumable cover story (a peasant girl from Barrowton wouldn’t be imprisoned in Harrenhal unless something terribly bad happened to her family), and the fact that she just saw Ned, Syrio and Yoren die.
    Tywin probably assumed that she had just lost someone, and she was just disillusioned, not cocky.

  375. darquemode
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:15 pm | Permalink

    Weirwood,

    Nice catch!

    I think it is Gemma Jackson’s way of adding some continuity to the series. Both Melisandre and Quaith are from Asshai and worship R’hllor so their jewelry can easily be seen as cultural or religious even maybe and therefore both women should have similar jewelry.

  376. chrys
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:31 pm | Permalink

    hmm…and the mask that Quaithe wears in the books IS red lacquer, even if it’s not depicted as such in the series. I wonder what D&D may know that we don’t? I don’t recall Quaithe being a red priestess or even associated with The Lord of Light, but she does hail from the same city as Melisandre, IIRC…

  377. seras
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 4:08 pm | Permalink

    David the Grey,

    I totally agree. What I fear most is seeing Catelyn’s response to it all. She is going to be put through hell.

  378. Fantôme
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 4:13 pm | Permalink

    Yeah but she’s not an idiot who has no idea how dangerousTywin is ,and even if she was he’s in front of her holding a council for the war against her brother . She doesn’t think about it in the book because she’s still a little girl who will thinks first of punishing people who have personally hurt her but above all because he’s not right under her nose ! She regrets not thinking of him afterwards. Except for a little problem of likelihood it doesn’t change anything though so… not a big deal !

    Anyway great episode! I miss the reeds though , i fear they’re not going to cast jojen at all…

  379. Langkard
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 4:18 pm | Permalink

    On the topic of Tickler and Polliver and future stuff…

    Polliver has Needle now. The audience knows this. They’ve seen several obvious shots intended to remind us that Polliver has Needle. For Needle to end up with the Tickler for later, more explanation would have to be done. As it stands now, the audience knows who has Needle. No further explanation need be made, later. So, I expect it to be Polliver who appears in a future episode instead of the Tickler. Yes, we’ll miss out on a very powerful scene and asking if there is gold in the village; but it won’t confuse viewers as much.

    The real question is who will be victim #2? I don’t think it will be Polliver. We haven’t ever met Raff or Chiswyck. It can’t be Weasel the gaoler, because he’s #3… sort of.

    So… something has to happen in the next few weeks that sparks Arya to pick someone.

    Here’s my guess: the Tickler was going to torture Gendry and he bought it as the #1 victim of Jaqen. In the next couple of weeks, someone messes with Hot Pie, a cook perhaps, and he is #2. Everything is still immediate and a bit confusing for Arya. Then Arya realizes that she’s wasting her choices and makes the awesome #3 pick of a certain name.

  380. Ser Dukes
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

    Fantôme:
    Suzaku,

    Yeah but she’s not an idiot who has no idea how dangerousTywin is ,and even if she was he’s in front of her holding a council for the war against her brother . She doesn’t think about it in the book because she’s still a little girl who will thinks first of punishing people who have personally hurt her but above all because he’s not right under her nose ! She regrets not thinking of him afterwards. Except for a little problem of likelihood it doesn’t change anything though so… not a big deal !

    Anyway great episode! I miss the reeds though , i fear they’re not going to cast jojen at all…

    I thought the scene between Arya and Tywin didn’t seem authentic and honest. We know Arya becomes a serious badass assassin in the future but I don’t think she would be so boldly threatening and confrontational by intensly staring into Tywin’s eyes while saying, “Anyone can be killed.” I think it should have been directed more softly. But that is nitpicking. I love this series. I live for Sundays.

  381. Mike
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 4:49 pm | Permalink

    Arthur,

    Arthur:
    Ed,

    Doreah and Dany’s other handmaiden kind of have a difference in opinion on how Dany should carry herself.(Should she be a Dothraki or something else?)

    I think that the “other handmaiden” (Irri?) is still a little off her game because of her “boyfriend” losing his head.

  382. Ser Dukes
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

    Langkard:
    On the topic of Tickler and Polliver and future stuff…

    Polliver has Needle now.The audience knows this.They’ve seen several obvious shots intended to remind us that Polliver has Needle.For Needle to end up with the Tickler for later, more explanation would have to be done.As it stands now, the audience knows who has Needle.No further explanation need be made, later.So, I expect it to be Polliver who appears in a future episode instead of the Tickler.Yes, we’ll miss out on a very powerful scene and asking if there is gold in the village; but it won’t confuse viewers as much.

    The real question is who will be victim #2?I don’t think it will be Polliver.We haven’t ever met Raff or Chiswyck.It can’t be Weasel the gaoler, because he’s #3… sort of.

    So… something has to happen in the next few weeks that sparks Arya to pick someone.

    Here’s my guess:the Tickler was going to torture Gendry and he bought it as the #1 victim of Jaqen.In the next couple of weeks, someone messes with Hot Pie, a cook perhaps, and he is #2.Everything is still immediate and a bit confusing for Arya. Then Arya realizes that she’s wasting her choices and makes the awesome #3 pick of a certain name.

    Good point. I am with you.

  383. Maxwell James
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

    Langkard,

    I suspect that Polliver is next (probably after a feint towards Tywin that gets defused somehow), and Arya will end up reclaiming Needle far, far earlier than in the books.

    While I understand why some may be a bit disappointed with the loss of Arya’s murderous rage towards the Tickler later on – I don’t see how that scene would have worked on the show. He’s a character who appears precisely twice, and the second time would have been 1.5- 2 years later. Non-readers would never have remembered who he was, let alone that Arya might have been haunted by watching him torture prisoners so long ago. While the first problem might be solvable through the “Previously On” segment, the latter is more challenging especially given the time constraints in the show.

    I think there will be an entirely new scene in which the Hound gets wounded, which may or may not include Arya getting all stonecold killer.

  384. Udi
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 4:56 pm | Permalink

    House Snow,

    Absolutely agree with you on that point!
    “We” whine about this and that and praise some other things but GoT has some of the best cinematography in television history! The acting is so good that with such a huge cast it’s mind boggling! I saw only the 1st episode of Spartacus and was sickened by the lack of even one decent actor. CGI is amazing. Locations are breathtaking, the complexity of the story makes for a better set of plots than most “pure” dramas… let’s not forget how good this series is, when we complain of.. well… whatever it is we complain about.

  385. Langkard
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:02 pm | Permalink

    Maxwell James,

    I worry that messing around too much with the Arya story line for expediency this season is going to make it near impossible to do justice to her motivations and attitude for later, when what she has done and who she is at heart become much more important. I can see your point, however. You may be right.

  386. purplejilly
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:11 pm | Permalink

    Weirwood,
    You know what I wish now, I wish I had watched the show first, THEN found the books. That’s what happened with True Blood, I watched the show first, enjoyed it very much, and then went and got the books. And I find that I appreciate the changes they made, and in some ways the show is better than the books.

    With this adaptation, it’s hard having read the books first. Sigh. Where’s that Men In Black mind blanker when you need it?

  387. LockeLamora
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:14 pm | Permalink

    I too think that Polliver is next, him and the Tickler are just too minor characters in the show to be remembered by the audience in 2 years when the inn incident happens. I just hope that doesn`t mean they will cut that part with Arya and the Hound entirely, that are some of my favorite chapters.

  388. Maxwell James
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

    Weirwood,

    Yes, very nice catch.

  389. LordStarkington
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:33 pm | Permalink

    Weirwood,

    Quaithe and Melisandre are from Asshai (although the books imply Melisandre may be from somewhere else originally, as she was bought as a slave)

  390. Lex
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:37 pm | Permalink

    Side note: I think this episode was the first time we heard Melisandre and Osha’s names spoken.

  391. Joshua Taylor
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

    This place has become Beirut circa 1985.

    Calling all “Purists” and all Lovers of the HBO series…let’s make a deal. Allow us to gush and we will allow you to vent. Don’t criticize us for gushing and we won’t criticize you for venting.

    Praise Rh’lorr.

  392. Ed
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 6:05 pm | Permalink

    Hah!!! Nice! Great catch there Weirwood!

    Weirwood:
    Did anyone else notice that Quaithe’s arm bands (and mask) match the pattern of Melisandre’s necklace?

    http://www.afterelton.com/www/data/afterelton.com/sites-files/2012/04/gamethrones2-5snakelady.jpg

    http://www.skittlestorm.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/melisandre.png

    And her comment that “fire is power”?

  393. Steel_Wind
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 6:12 pm | Permalink

    And I love Gemma Whelan as Yara. Just because someone isn’t exactly like a book character doesn’t mean they aren’t good.

    I don’t disagree that Gemma Whelan is doing fine with the role of “Yara” from an acting viewpoint; the problem is, D&D have written Yara to be FAR less likable. She taunts Theon at every moment and there is no reason given to the viewer to like Yara at all. As matters stand right now, I frankly look forward to Theon killing her at some vague and uncertain date in the future.

    In short:: D&D have decided to make the character of Yara a character whose bearing and demeanor make Theon a more sympathetic character. While that isn’t Gemma Whelan’s fault, nobody should be surprised that fans are not warming to her character. we aren’t supposed to be.

    darquemode:
    I agree with the people saying that Renly’s death was a bit “under”….
    To me the shadowbaby in the books was always “almost there”. You could not quite be sure you saw it…. and if you were certain you saw something you were not sure exactly what it was. The Shadowborn in the series was too corporeal and defined to me.

    I liked the VFX they used in making it appear somewhat like Stannis, but in this case I think the great VFX worked against the more mysterious unseen or indecipherable aspects of the book’s shadowbaby.

    I still liked the scene and how Brienne kicked ass, but I felt it was just under what it could have been.

  394. A Bear_A Bear
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 6:20 pm | Permalink

    PatD:I really feel like I’m becoming desensitized to a lot of the criticism I read, anymore. It’s beginning to feel like criticism for criticism’s sake. If ya’ know what I mean…

    Too true. My first thought after watching the ep was “let’s go on Winter is Coming to see what irrelevant details people are whinging about this week.”

  395. Karen
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 6:26 pm | Permalink

    Laura T.,

    I can see why this was done but I found it disconcerting. The Tyrells are supposed to be so powerful. In the bookRenly’s bannermen thought Stannis was behind Renly’s death so didn’t go over to Stannis.

  396. Tomer Segal
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

    Renly’s death was rather disapointing.. I can’t help but feel like no one else liked him as much as I did.

    But damn, Pyat Pree was freaking amazing. can’t wait to see more of him.

  397. ThePinkDragon
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 6:55 pm | Permalink

    I’m only sad about the Tickler because the dude’s actor was so awesome. I wanted two more seasons of him being a nonchalant, sociopathic asshole, lol.

  398. Knurk
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 7:09 pm | Permalink

    Hmm, this episode sucked for me, this was my least favourite. Though I blame GRRM more than the showrunners, Renly’s death is just a horrible scene in the books and I can’t see D&D improving it a lot. I also couldn’t care less about Qarth so those scenes fell flat for me too, except JORAH, that actor is just so damn good. And the dracarys scene was also well done. The Halfhand was awesome but the writing was quite bad in those scenes, the brilliant cinematography saved the moment. And lol, Rickon is still there!

    I know a lot of people had earlier complaints about the first couple of episodes feeling rushed, but this was the first time for me it felt like the episode was all over the place. Nothing in this episode really overwhelmed me, they checked a few boxes but that was that.

  399. Mike
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

    I think having the Tickler be the first death makes some sense. Because they skipped over all the time spent in “The village” where the Tickler was trying to see if any of them knew about hidden gold, the “Is there gold in the village?” line was only heard once, didn’t have much context, and didn’t become anywhere near as big a deal inside of Arya’s head as it did in the books (to become her killing scream). I trust they’ll come up with something suitably dramatic for the scene when it happens.

    I liked Quaithe’s mask. It was nothing like I had pictured it but it was really odd-looking and kind of uncomfortable to look at. The fact that it made a real impression beyond “Oh, she’s wearing a mask.” is pretty cool.

  400. CM
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 7:19 pm | Permalink

    As much as I like the Jaqen character, he’s been pretty underwhelming so far this season. Hopefully they do a little more with him in the next couple of episodes.

  401. Udi
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 7:45 pm | Permalink

    Waiting for a Gethin Anthony Curtain Call now.
    Didn’t like him much in S1 but he has definitely changed that in S2. Very good actor and will be missed. All in all a terrific episode, well-paced, awesome cinematography, CGI and things are definitely picking up in pace. Emilia made up for last episode (didn’t like her acting there but she is again spot-on). Best scene in this episode imo is Cat-Brienne. Such an emotional and powerful scene and both actresses were just incredible. As always, can’t wait for next Monday (yup, Monday, not Sunday) but guess it’s nothing compared to when this season will be over, which is alarmingly soon!

  402. Udi
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 7:48 pm | Permalink

    Pyat Pree: “I am so friggin’ amazing looking that one of me isn’t enough… Oh… here… look into this gem… that’s better”!

  403. tysnow
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 8:00 pm | Permalink

    I was rewatching and something that slipped by the first time suddenly hit home. QHH mentioned to the Bear that it would be best for the rest of them to head back to the wall. His little commando squad will go Inglorious Bastards on the Wildlings.
    Does this hint that we wont have a FoFM, but perhaps they flee back to Crasters and thats is where the WW hit them. No way Sam and the few stragglers could survive out there in the Ice wilderness. Because in the books they wait at FoFM for them to return.

  404. Andrew Mack
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 8:23 pm | Permalink

    Just a question, but have we heard if Ramsay factors into this at all yet? There has been no lead-in or even whispers as of yet, and now with Rodrik gone to retake Torrhen’s Square, until he is disarmed by Ramsay and killed, there is no whispers about the Lady Hornwood stuff unless they come from Luwin. Obviously an easy thing to cut out, but it seems like they are unlikely to introduce Reek/Ramsay this season. I’m just a little confused as how they will handle this, and the explain the connection with Bolton, etc.

    I don’t mind parring back the Winterfell storyline here or there but Ramsay is one of the best antagonists in the book for pure shock value. Unless they decide to stretch out that until Season 3…

  405. H, aka Vee
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:08 pm | Permalink

    PatD:
    I can’t believe the “wooden” criticisms I’m reading about Brienne’s depiction. I’m like a sputtering idiot trying to articulate how perfect Gwen’s portrayal has been. I was trying not to get my expectations up too high about the Jamie/Brienne parts coming up, but after watching Brienne’s few, short scenes, I’m totally psyched for them now. I know they’ll be in capable hands.

    This, this, THIS. Gwendoline Christie saved the Renley scene for me, truthfully. I was feeling a bit underwhelmed by how it was executed on screen, but I also have a special attachment to that scene as it was my first huge “WTF?!” moment while reading and sent me spiraling through the rest of the book series in a few weeks. But Gwendoline’s Brienne? I could not have hoped for more perfect casting. And knowing what’s coming with Jaime… The anticipation is now unbearable. And I think the chemistry between Brienne and Catelyn is amazing, but I felt that way soon after their first meeting. I’m looking forward to seeing that relationship develop.

    There was a lot to love in this episode, despite my mild disappointment with the tent scene. Maisie Williams going toe-to-toe with Charles Dance absolutely killed me. She is simply a force of nature. And Jaqen is near-perfect. I especially liked his line to Arya “only death may pay for life,” which was a nice callback to Mirri Maz Duur’s words to Dany in Season 1.

    I continue to be…pleasantly baffled? by how much I am loving the Theon scenes as I hated his POV in ACOK. I wanted to reach through the TV and punch that smile off his face last night – in that “oooh, I can’t wait!” sort of way. The tension/pay-off is going to be so worth it. I’m pretty much living for non-reader reaction on Twitter when Shit Goes Down.

    And a special shout-out to Isaac. There is so much depth behind his eyes ; that scene in the courtyard with Osha, talking about the dream, was rather astonishing, and most of that was in his face. I continue to be blown away by all of the young Starks, truth be told.

  406. Jesse
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:21 pm | Permalink

    MetalgoddessAMB,

    I felt a twinge of sadness when I realized that as well :(
    On a high note, I loved the discussion between Arya and Tywin it gave me chills when she said “Everyone can be killed.” I also loved the scene where Brienne swears fealty to Cat… Knowing how Brienne is “killed” I almost shed a tear.

  407. Dan
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:26 pm | Permalink

    Jesse,

    Wow, spoiler much. I’ve read the books but that is really wack to do to other people.

  408. Corn
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:29 pm | Permalink

    H, aka Vee: This, this, THIS. Gwendoline Christie saved the Renley scene for me, truthfully. I was feeling a bit underwhelmed by how it was executed on screen, but I also have a special attachment to that scene as it was my first huge “WTF?!” moment while reading and sent me spiraling through the rest of the book series in a few weeks. But Gwendoline’s Brienne? I could not have hoped for more perfect casting. And knowing what’s coming with Jaime… The anticipation is now unbearable.And I think the chemistry between Brienne and Catelyn is amazing, but I felt that way soon after their first meeting. I’m looking forward to seeing that relationship develop.

    There was a lot to love in this episode, despite my mild disappointment with the tent scene. Maisie Williams going toe-to-toe with Charles Dance absolutely killed me.She is simply a force of nature. And Jaqen is near-perfect. I especially liked his line to Arya “only death may pay for life,” which was a nice callback to Mirri Maz Duur’s words to Dany in Season 1.

    I continue to be…pleasantly baffled? by how much I am loving the Theon scenes as I hated his POV in ACOK. I wanted to reach through the TV and punch that smile off his face last night – in that “oooh, I can’t wait!” sort of way. The tension/pay-off is going to be so worth it. I’m pretty much living for non-reader reaction on Twitter when Shit Goes Down.

    And a special shout-out to Isaac. There is so much depth behind his eyes ; that scene in the courtyard with Osha, talking about the dream, was rather astonishing, and most of that was in his face. I continue to be blown away by all of the young Starks, truth be told.

    So funny you should mention the young Starks, I point out how AMAZING the young actors are to everybody I talk to about the show. Old souls I think, they’re beyond perfect.

    On another note, I must give the “Man-candy Hotty McHot-man” Award of the week to…Jaqen H’ghar, who oozes charisma, danger, compassion, and magical energy with his every look. Oh baby. Don’t care if he just sits there and stares that menacing stare, that’s good enough. He’s definitely grabbing the gusto and making the most of a minor character’s part. Gendry gets runner-up for the awesome physique, but he’s way too young for me so I feel a little less attracted to him. Anyway…Jaqen FTW! More Jaqen!

  409. Jeda
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:29 pm | Permalink

    Eh eh, just checked what appeared to be a blatant continuity mistake from episode 7. When Sam says ’3 blasts for the white walkers’, Snow seems as surprised (if not more) as anyone else. So I thought ‘hey that’s a continuity error since he already told him in Season 1 when Benjen’s horse comes back…’
    But no, well played by D&D, in S01E07, as Sam says ’2 blasts for wildlings, 3 for…‘ and right there Jon interrupts him “There is no rider!” so Sam never had time to tell him and we can only imagine never did afterwards (a bit unlikely but…).
    Anyway well played, well played… It’s probably on purpose since they wrote both episodes

  410. The Red Avenger
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:49 pm | Permalink

    Why does everybody assume Jojen is out just because they gave his dream to Bran? You often find in adaptations that things get moved around, dialogue gets swapped to other characters and so forth. So this is not a definite RIP Jojen. Not by a long chalk.

  411. Ye Olde Wolfe
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:54 pm | Permalink

    Juan:
    First episode without a direwolf sighting.

    Dissapointed :(

    Actually, and I had to have it pointed out to me on this site, Ghost is in the background at the Fist before they hear the horn blast.

  412. Laura T.
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:56 pm | Permalink

    Tomer Segal,

    I agree. I was also underwhelmed by Renly’s demise. Sad, because it is very creepy scene in the book. Although, I liked Martin’s Renly better then the show’s Renly- not that he was poorly acted but there are just some actors who are perfect & he wasn’t one of them. Tyrion, Arya, Gendry, Sansa, Tywin, Jon, Eddard, Catelyn (though I’m only recently warming to her, but didn’t care for her the book either), Bronn, Varys, Danearys, Drogo, Jorah, Cersei are all nailing it.

  413. Ye Olde Wolfe
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:07 pm | Permalink

    DB:
    The lack of Sansa this episode just made me severely Dissapointed. She’s a POV character with an amazing arc in clash and they’ve already left her out of two episodes.

    Also, they’re pushing the Catelyn-is-a-mother! thing way too fucking much.

    They’re trying really hard to make Cersei look like an idiot around Tyrion, when she’s supposed to be more composed and just as witty.

    Whatever, all I can say is that this show can stop claiming to be feminist because it’s far from it.

    Why is there so much bitching about this “change?” I just finished a re-read of Clash, and there were many parts where, in Catelyn’s head, she shows a desire to be with Bran and Rickon, and to be with all her children. I’ve always seen Cat as a mother who was forced to be more because of extenuating circumstances. I see this as making her stronger. She could very easily have stayed in Winterfell with a comatose Bran, but instead she showed true strength by setting out and getting involved in the Game. I think Catelyn has been well-imagined, while not spot-on, still quite good. I know this isn’t a popular opinion, but oh well.

  414. Laura T.
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:09 pm | Permalink

    tysnow,

    I also had a hard time believing that the fight on the fist of the first men will take place as it did in the book because frankly, how could the wights ever get up that frickin mountain without being seen & if they managed how would any of the Watch escape. Your theory is sound….except that Craster’s already tossed them out once but almost all the events thus far that have happened twice have been condenced into one event…examples: Arya skips the village but is tortured in Harrenhall, Lord Tywin/Lord Bolton become Lord Tywin (I’m guessing weasle soup is how Arya, Gendry & Hot Pie escape Harrenhall….maybe not Hot Pie), Dany’s city of bones becomes Qarth, so it is likely that the epic battle happens at Craster’s & Craster, Mormont, etc. are killed during the battle. Sam still kills the Other & gets away w/ Gilly & child. That’s my guess.

  415. The Kingslayer
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:11 pm | Permalink

    I am pretty confident the Reeds won’t be used at all, Osha is going to take their place. There’s going to be alot more characters introduced in the coming seasons so some are going to unfortunately face the chop. I fear Blackfish will also be left in the sidelines.

  416. Laura T.
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:16 pm | Permalink

    Mrs. Wun,

    I don’t think anyone can forget what happend to the miller’s boys. I’m going to have to leave the room when that scene comes, same with all the torture scenes. I wish I had known how graphic the Bara scene was going to be I didn’t sleep at all that night.

  417. The Kingslayer
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:18 pm | Permalink

    The Red Avenger,

    Because the show is being stretched already with the multiple characters and different story arcs, The Reeds can easily make way for Osha considering she’s a wildling with knowledge about north of the wall. Budget and time constraints are going to disappoint alot of the book fans, it’s going to be impossible to fit every character into the series.

  418. Ye Olde Wolfe
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:26 pm | Permalink

    Kalasin:
    I don’t know if this has been mentioned but what about Loras/Margaery having to run after Renly dies?I generally liked the episode but thought it had a bunch of holes and this was one of them.The majority of Renly’s men were Tyrell/Tarly.Loras and Margaery should have been well protected by their bannermen, with only the Baratheon banners going to Stannis.I believe this is how it works in the books, but let me know if I’m wrong.Then Mace/Loras side with Tywin and ride on Stannis at Blackwater.Are they cutting all of that out and making like the Tyrell banners instantly move over to Stannis?

    Thoughts?

    My thought is: Stannis explicitly says the Tyrells are the only ones who didn’t come over to his side. Don’t understand your confusion.

    fuelpagan:

    So here is my problem with these two great scenes, they are in the wrong order. Let me explain. For Arya to go from staring down Tywin Lannister and saying “anyone can be killed” after hearing about them trying to take down her brother, to naming the Tickler as her first target moments later makes no sense. They didn’t even include “The Tickler” on Arya’s death list in the previous episode, so why would she name him? Larry Williams already noticed it was a mistake move to name the Tickler as her first target. By switching the order of the scenes would have allowed Arya to realize it as well. Add a small exchange between Arya and Gendry about Arya looking for Jaqen right before the Tickler gets snuffed to show Arya wanted to change her request and you change the dynamic of the choice from being a bonehead request to just a rookie mistake. A mistake that Arya was trying to correct and didn’t get the chance to fix it. A missed opportunity.

    Arya naming Polliver next and getting needle returned to her makes sense and I think viewers who haven’t read the books wouldn’t question why Polliver was named as the second target, who was actually on her Death List.

    Giving Bran the green-sight eliminates the needs for the Reeds as far as I can see. The reason Meera and Jojen meet up with Bran are because the visions Jojen has about winterfell compels them to go help Bran. They could have postponed the Reeds entering the story until later, but now they just are not needed. Even combining the green-sight ability into the Meera character, it makes no sense why they would give Bran the ability as well. If Meera is planned for next season, D&D better come up with a good reason for her to be there, otherwise I would rather have Osha go with Bran and the Maester take Rickon. Bothers me a little bit why Osha would go north of the wall after trying so hard to flee south, but it bothers me less than Meera showing up and helping Bran without a good reason for her to be there.

    Sad to see the Reeds go the way of the Blackfish, but I think it will be fine.

    Arya’s immaturity is shown by not picking Tywin. She chooses people who hurt her or the people around her in some way, rather than contributing to the war effort. I’m sure this will be adressed. And as for a reason for the Reed’s showing up later, how about they hear Winterfell has been attacked, so they go north to try and help Bran and Rickon by getting them out of Winterfell, but they arrive in season 3 to find Winterfell in ruins, and Jojen has a green dream about where they go, or if they cut Jojen, Meera tracks them north. I REALLY don’t want to see Osha take their place, as it would COMPLETELY contradict Osha’s motives for fleeing the wildlings in the first place.

  419. Dark Star
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:41 pm | Permalink

    ThePinkDragon,

    Doesn’t really end well, does it :)

  420. Hot Pie
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:42 pm | Permalink

    Laura T.,

    Yeah my thoughts exactly Linda. Plus they probably would have just needed to cast an extra as Florent to make the whole thing work. The whole dimension of Davos being this commoner who exhibits better common sense than the other lords and lickspittles who surround Stannis is key to explaining his rise to ultimately become King’s Hand.

    And I agree about the blame part as well. If he essentially loses the fight, then wouldnt it be hypocritical to blame Mellisandre? That being said there is the possibility of there being no chain at all so we’ll just have to see how things pan out

  421. Kalasin
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:55 pm | Permalink

    Ye Olde Wolfe: My thought is: Stannis explicitly says the Tyrells are the only ones who didn’t come over to his side. Don’t understand your confusion.

    It shouldn’t just be the Tyrells. It should be the Tyrells and all of their bannermen. It should be the majority of the force. You wouldn’t usually word a minority of the group as “everyone but the Tyrells”. Pairing that with Littlefinger’s insistence that Loras and Margaery were in danger just made it unclear. I’m not actually confused – I’ve read the books. But I thought it was not very well done.

  422. Skip
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:00 pm | Permalink

    Andrew Mack,

    I commented somewhere in the sea above that I think we met the man whose name rhymes with “bleak” last night, under the alias of Dagmer Cleftjaw. At the time I said I didn’t really remember much of Dagmer from the books, and since that post I’ve gone back and done more refreshed my memory. After my research I’m fairly confident my prediction will pan out. Having read the books I realize they’ve made many changes throughout the show thus far, some bigger than others, and the fact that they seem to have already altered Cleftjaw’s character and story so heavily with just one scene leads me to believe that the casting of a Dagmer Cleftjaw was just a cover to swerve the readers towards the end of this season.

  423. fuelpagan
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:09 pm | Permalink

    Ye Olde Wolfe,

    I agree that Arya chooses targets that are personal and not really a part of the war effort. I don’t think she would have chose Tywin at all. It is simply a matter that the show has done a poor job explaining why she would choose the Tickler over the Mountain. She didn’t even mention him in her list of names in the show. Heck, just have him follow Jaqen and give her a creepy pedophile look as he passes would have at least put him in the front of her thoughts and explain why the Tickler was the first person she thought of when Jaqen offered to kill three people of her choice.

    I agree about Osha. Except Osha ends up on Skagos which isn’t exactly south. Plus her knowledge of the north would benefit Bran. Not sure if they can make Bran jumping to trust a couple of older teens he just met believable. Maybe if they had been frequent visitors that Bran previously knew could work.

    I really think the Reeds are cut. If not it will be a bonus.

  424. andrea
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:21 pm | Permalink

    Knurk: they checked a few boxes but that was that.

    Damn! these are the words I needed to describe what happened to me.

  425. H, aka Vee
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 12:24 am | Permalink

    Skip:
    Andrew Mack,

    I commented somewhere in the sea above that I think we met the man whose name rhymes with “bleak” last night, under the alias of Dagmer Cleftjaw.At the time I said I didn’t really remember much of Dagmer from the books, and since that post I’ve gone back and done more refreshed my memory.After my research I’m fairly confident my prediction will pan out.Having read the books I realize they’ve made many changes throughout the show thus far, some bigger than others, and the fact that they seem to have already altered Cleftjaw’s character and story so heavily with just one scene leads me to believe that the casting of a Dagmer Cleftjaw was just a cover to swerve the readers towards the end of this season.

    I was thinking back to the Dagmer of the books, as I remembered Theon knew him as a child, right? Had fond memories of him or something similar? But show!Theon obviously didn’t know this person, which wouldn’t have tweaked me normally (changes, blah blah) but I thought the way Dagmer immediately positioned himself with Theon was…notable. And rather unlike the Ironmen. If that’s what they’re doing, I think it’s effin’ BRILLIANT for a variety of reasons. It would really tighten things up and simplify the “ruse” for the non-readers and would be a nice surprise for the readers.

  426. Blink
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 12:30 am | Permalink

    I agree with the opinion that Yara/Asha is a definite departure from what we see of her in the books, but I think it’s pretty clear she’s being set up as more of a heel for Theon (who at this stage in the show is already more likable than he was at a similar point in the books) in the series — or at the very least, we are meant to see her as Balon’s child. It seems at least somewhat likely Theon’s character is intended to be sympathetic throughout the series (unlike the novels where I recall despising him until fairly recently), and having an Asha that is as much a fan favorite as she was in the books would probably detract from that.

  427. Leuf
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 12:37 am | Permalink

    How fucking rich is Xaro when the DOOR to his vault is probably worth more than the entire 7 Kingdoms put together? How many Valyrian steel swords could you melt that sucker down into? All of the Lannisters’ gold can’t buy Tywin one. Dany should just chill there until her dragons are big enough to melt that door down and just take it. At first I thought Xaro wanted her dragons to melt that door to get some buried treasure, before I realized it was his door.

    They really fucked with us book readers on Renly’s death. The way that scene is shot and lit you can see Renly’s shadow prominently and the whole time I’m looking at it to see something move that shouldn’t. Then the monster that killed Tasha Yarr slithers under the tent, pops up and offs him. Meh. Having seen it all now I stand by my thoughts that they really screwed that up by changing the order of what we see.

    I was glad to see Tyrion out in the city and we had a bit of buildup for the next episode, but still they’re just strolling through the market and everything is normal there. People are supposed to be starving. But you have the cumulative effect of the changes. Renly didn’t march down the Roseroad, so their food supply isn’t cut off. Renly didn’t divide his forces, so Stannis now has a huge army. We’ll see how that plays out. I don’t at all like that Tyrion has waited until Stannis already has his army to start worrying about the defense of KL. Blackwater isn’t until ep 9 though, so how does it take Stannis 3 episodes just to get to KL from the Stormlands? Nice of Stannis to take his sweet time actually using his army once he gets it.

    I’m not going to harp on the Tickler. I just have to accept the fact that many of my favorite moments from the books will never make it to the screen. It sucks, but there’s nothing to be done about it. I’ll be mad if “..with a trebuchet” gets cut though.

    Ghost is freaking huge. I thought he was a bear at first. (A BEAR! A BEAR!)

    I really thought they were going to have Theon kill that guy that was disrespecting him. In the books he doeskill one of his men after they land so I thought that was going to get condensed. Instead he was just a pussy about it.

    All in all it was a solid episode, just wounded by what came before it. I thought the Qarth scenes were the highlight. I wouldn’t complain if there was a needless Doreah sexposition scene next week. Btw, I loved the continuity of Doreah wanting to play with Drogon, who is such a cute wittle baby dwagon.

  428. Hexonx
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 1:37 am | Permalink

    Leuf: How many Valyrian steel swords could you melt that sucker down into?

    Actually I am pretty sure he says Valyrian stone not steel.

    We know the Valyrians were capable of advanced technology.They could melt and mould stone.Tyrion admires the Valyrian stone roads of Essos-”a river of fused stone raised half a foot above the ground…”.Dragonstone Castle itself was built this way.
    source: http://asoiaf.westeros.org/index.php/topic/61551-valyriawhat-lies-beyond/

  429. Dan
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 1:45 am | Permalink

    H, aka Vee,

    I hope they don’t go that route. I almost never complain about the changes because I look at the show and books separately but this change would bother me. All of the book 5 scenes with Theon would have to be changed dramatically and those are my favorite chapters from the book. Why would Dag, an Ironborn, be in Winterfell with the Boltons for example? It just doesn’t make sense to me. It seems like it would have been easier to just cast Ramsey than go that route.

  430. Dan
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 3:01 am | Permalink

    Did anybody notice that Jaqen and the two men with him have their helmets in their hand as they walk by Arya. Then when Arya gets to the water his helm is on the barrel. I’m curious if this is a continuity error or a hint of his future displays of magic/power.

  431. Flouride
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 3:15 am | Permalink

    Disappointing episode, mostly because all the damn changes to the book.

    First of all they completely fucked up Renly’s death scene and how Loras felt about it. In the books it was done perfectly. Now they completely dropped the ball. 1st of all they have Brienne do all the killing instead of Loras in rage killing his sworn brothers while Brienne and Cat run away. Why change that? The whole point in the books was that Loras was certain Brienne and others killed Renly, now he even goes saying how he does not think it was Brienne who killed him.

    Also it seems Margaery will do all the plotting for Highgarden, so I guess Queen of Thorns won’t show up at all… Shame.

    I guess Ned’s bones won’t make it to Winterfell either, ever.

    Stannis makes Davos his naval commander? Seriously? The man is a smuggler, not a damn admiral. Again, why the deviation from the books?

    Tickler getting killed. They robbed us a great scene from S4. Takes about 30 seconds of screen time to have Arya run into Chiswyck while fetching water for Tywin and hearing him brag about the people he has killed/raped/tortured.

    Didn’t Qhorin handpick Jon to tag along with his crew, instead of Jon and Sam begging for them to let Jon go?

    Isn’t Dagmer Cleftjaw supposed to be pretty much a bad ass who everyone knows? And here we have Theon who suddenly doesn’t recognize one of the most feared and seasoned raiders…

    Other than that, I did enjoy the episode. Really loved Pyat Pree (so creeeeeepy), Quarth and Fist of the First men.

  432. Frost Nocturne
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 3:16 am | Permalink

    Great episode, possibly the best this season, at least as good as episode 3. There were no bad scenes, really, unlike 3 which was more focused but wasn’t as consistently great as this ep.

    Like many, I’m disappointed the Tickler died already, but it’s true that by the time his death scene came around in S4, non-readers would have forgotten all about his brief interrogation session back in S2. I’m confident Arya will get to kill Polliver in a similarly cathartic fashion. Perhaps stabbing him in the back just as he’s about to finish off a surrounded, wounded, and drunk Hound? After grabbing Needle from his belt and using it herself?

    On the whole Arya’s arc so far this season has been amazing. However I am a bit disappointed that she went from prisoner scum to being the cupbearer of the richest man alive so quickly. In the book it was satisfying to follow her journey from the bottom, when she was on the road with the Mountain’s men, to working under Weese at Harrenhal, to having Weese killed, to initiating a coup that put Harrenhal in the hands of the Northmen and becoming cupbearer to the badass Roose Bolton, to finally escaping on her own with horses. Here she rises to the top immediately due to a circumstantial meeting with Tywin instead of doing much of it on her own. At least she still has the rest of the season for Weasel Soup and her escape.

    Loved Arya correcting Gendry on his stances with what Syrio taught her. Arya/Tywin was also a great scene, both actors are brilliant in bringing their characters to life, but I think it would have been much more effective for it to be in episode 6, after she’s already had Jaqen make the first kill. “Anyone can be killed” would have even more meaning then. And then there wouldn’t be the transition from her subtle threat to Tywin to Jaqen’s convenient offer to which she doesn’t end up picking Tywin at all. Not a big deal, just a thought.

    I’m curious as to who her second kill will be. I’m guessing they’ll introduce “weasel” as being cruel to Hot Pie or Arya herself and it will be an impulse kill as it should be like in CoK. Looking forward to more Jaqen, Tom W. is nailing one of my favorite characters. I got chills in the final scene when he puts one finger up to his cheek. I had been hoping the episode would end like that, and putting Syrio’s introduction music to the scene somehow worked perfectly!

  433. Croccifixio
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 3:43 am | Permalink

    the Tully’s are important because Edmure’s glory actually was their undoing, that was one of the pivotal moment of the series. without Edmure, Tywin’s march to defend the west will not be impeded, and he won’t be there in time to take Stannis in the rear thus saving Kings Landing. that was one of the moment when treachery bloomed in the camp of the King in the North.

  434. Frost Nocturne
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 4:00 am | Permalink

    Doran’s Gouty Toe,

    Doran’s Gouty Toe:
    Was Ser Kevan Lannister seated around Lord Tywin’s war council table? I didn’t notice him. Why not give him lines? I liked the small part they gave him in season 1, hope they kept him around this season.

    I like Kevan Lannister, he is the only sympathetic-not-over-the-top Lannister. One of the most decent and realistic characters in the whole series IMHO, with Davos. And he DOES play a role later on after all.

    Yes! I always liked Kevan. He’s like a kinder, less extreme version of Tywin. A rational, reasonable, honest, believable character, and somehow a Lannister.

    There was someone on the council this episode that was wearing the armor Kevan’s actor wore last season, but I wasn’t sure if it was the same guy. I’d appreciate some scenes here and there in the next couple seasons that show him as being Tywin’s competent right hand, as well as Lancel’s father, a character who has been getting even more screen time than he had in the books up to this point.

  435. Frost Nocturne
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 4:40 am | Permalink

    I liked Renly’s talk with Cat in the beginning, it made his death more tragic. However, I think his death was poorly handled, and most importantly should have been at the end of ep. 4 instead of starting this episode where it feels very sudden and, as one poster aptly put, “pedestrian”. Having a breeze blow in followed by Renly’s shadow on the canvas behaving oddly followed by a flash of the shadow baby slicing Renly’s throat, maybe even shown in the mirror – would have been better. His death sadly fell flat, but that was really the only low point for me in an otherwise amazing episode. I liked the LF/Margaery scene, where they were finally at least somewhat subtle with the dialogue, especially considering how blatant LF has been lately, but I was hoping Loras’ rage and possibly skirmish with Brienne would be shown. Also odd that here Loras is convinced Stannis was behind it instead of Brienne.

    I can understand the dissatisfaction some have with the casting of Asha. This Yara comes off very flat, instead of dynamic and fiery like Asha. But I never really liked the book character much either, so it’s not a major issue for me.

    Bronn/Tyrion continue to impress this episode along with Pyromancer Hallyne. I was glad D&D finally showed some of the commoners unrest and anger that will erupt next episode (so looking forward to that scene), but you would think they would notice that the “Demon Monkey” is right there in front of them. Tyrion should have been disguised or at least had more protection than just Bronn.

    Finally, Dany’s storyline is getting interesting! I enjoyed finally getting to see the Dragons again (well, mainly Drogon apparently. Dany has some favoritism issues). That shot of Drogon burning the meat was the best cgi I’ve seen on this show. I hope we’ll eventually get to hear the dragon’s names and Dany’s reasons for them. Also glad they kept Doreah alive after all, as it gives the continuity of her wanting to see a dragon, her seduction skills being put to use, and a bit of a competing dynamic to her handmaidens. I wonder if she’ll get into some trouble with the dragons when they’re older and more dangerous..? Xaro, Pyat Pree, and Quaithe are all excellent in my book, even if Xaro is different it doesn’t have any significant ramifications.

    Loved Bran’s scenes this episode, I approve of giving him Jojen’s greendream. It was a nice hint toward the Ironmen in the book, and I like that they’re playing up Bran’s seer qualities. Still holding out hope for Meera next season. Seeing Bran acting like a true lord with Ser Rodrik giving him that proud half-grin is going to make the coming episodes all the more tragic. I wonder if the Cleftjaw will have a part in giving Theon the idea for the millers kids? Seeing as he already planted the idea of taking Winterfell in Theon’s mind. Interesting to see theories of him taking over as Reek. Not sure how the Bastard of Bolton would come to be the first mate of some ship in the Iron Islands though. He came off as quite likeable in his short scene, unlike virtually every other Ironborn. It was also cool to get a wild Rickon sighting! Crushing Almonds like a beast. Good that he’s being shown as the wild, feral Stark.

    Finally, hearing Sam’s comment about the three horn blasts has me convinced that’s how the season will end. Anyone else notice that bit of set-up?

  436. Shock Me
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 7:32 am | Permalink

    Kalasin,

    Yes it could have been clearer. Even a throwaway line like “The news has spread to outside Tyrell lines. Does our High Garden levies have permission to retreat back along the Rose Road to High Garden?”

  437. Shock Me
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 7:35 am | Permalink

    chrys,

    Well the individual panels of the mask could be red lacquered panels.

  438. Shock Me
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 7:51 am | Permalink

    Dan,

    No worries, I think perhaps this guy may not have read ADWD very closely if that is what he believes

  439. AJ
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 7:56 am | Permalink

    Wow, teared up at Brienne’s reaction when Renly died. Amazing acting. Thank God, because Brienne is my favorite character in the books next to Danearys.

  440. Shock Me
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 7:56 am | Permalink

    The Kingslayer,

    Can we take this time to also bitch about how little we see of Howland Reed in the books?

  441. Shock Me
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 7:59 am | Permalink

    Ye Olde Wolfe,

    Yes I find it hard to believe the woman who wants to go as far south as south goes would want to go north again. Luwin might guilt her into it, but she would know better and take BOTH boys south.

  442. Nick Larter
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    Yohoho the jolly old Sea Bitch looks a bit of a tub at first glance – doesn’t really fit my mental picture of an ironborn reaving vessel – you might even have your work cut out to smuggle onions in it!

  443. Shock Me
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 9:46 am | Permalink

    Nick Larter,

    I usually picture ships with a very narrow beam and lots of canvas. But perhaps the Sea Bitch is a trophy and Theon doesn’t yet rate a true Iron Born ship? (Although in the books she was created keel up for reaving.)

  444. Laura T.
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 10:23 am | Permalink

    Frost Nocturne,

    I have been thinking about how they might end the season. I had read speculation that it would end with the Red Wedding but that seems impossible at this pace. Plus, I’m rereading a SOS & half way through it hasn’t happened yet so maybe the conjecture was how season three would wrap up. I think the battle on the Blackwater will happen soon, so your theory makes sense. I could see the battle on the fist being the finale or Sam & the Other. Thoughts?

  445. Kalasin
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 10:54 am | Permalink

    Shock Me,

    Yeah, I just rewatched and they definitely make like Margaery and Loras are in real danger and need to just saddle their horses and run. There’s a whole “you can’t avenge him if you’re dead” line too. But Loras shouldn’t be in that much danger.

    Oh well. I’ll move on now :)

  446. Leuf
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 11:22 am | Permalink

    Hexonx: Actually I am pretty sure he says Valyrian stone not steel.

    Okay, good catch. I really don’t want to see them using “Valyrian” like Star Trek tech babble though. Stone melted by dragons ought to just be similar to volcanic rock.

  447. Skip
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    Dan:I hope they don’t go that route. I almost never complain about the changes because I look at the show and books separately but this change would bother me. All of the book 5 scenes with Theon would have to be changed dramatically and those are my favorite chapters from the book. Why would Dag, an Ironborn, be in Winterfell with the Boltons for example? It just doesn’t make sense to me. It seems like it would have been easier to just cast Ramsey than go that route.

    I’m not saying they changed Ramsey’s lineage to that of an Ironborn, I’m saying is that Ramsey Bolton is masquerading as someone named “Dagmer Cleftjaw”. It’s an alias for the bastard of Bolton, and in the tv universe there is no Dagmer Cleftjaw. Of course we’d need some explanation of why he’s on Pyke, but to change Dags from a mentor of Theon’s and a well known captain of his own ship (the Foamdrinker), to a stranger to Theon who introduces himself as “Dagmer, first mate” wouldn’t make sense. He’s also much more helpful to Theon than the rest of his crew, or any Iron Islander, has been to this point as H alluded to. Watch the scene again, and tell me that the smile “Dagmer” gets when Theon realizes he can take Winterfell doesn’t say “Now you see my plan”.

    Flouride:

    Isn’t Dagmer Cleftjaw supposed to be pretty much a bad ass who everyone knows? And here we have Theon who suddenly doesn’t recognize one of the most feared and seasoned raiders…

    See above.

  448. Skip
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 11:46 am | Permalink

    H, aka Vee: I was thinking back to the Dagmer of the books, as I remembered Theon knew him as a child, right? Had fond memories of him or something similar? But show!Theon obviously didn’t know this person, which wouldn’t have tweaked me normally (changes, blah blah) but I thought the way Dagmer immediately positioned himself with Theon was…notable. And rather unlike the Ironmen. If that’s what they’re doing, I think it’s effin’ BRILLIANT for a variety of reasons. It would really tighten things up and simplify the “ruse” for the non-readers and would be a nice surprise for the readers.

    Exactly! Not only did Theon know him, he looked up to and respected him, even calling Dagmer uncle though he wasn’t. Cleftjaw was the captain of his own ship in the book, and man gone old and white, known everywhere for his reaving. The Dagmer we saw Sunday is quite a departure from the book’s description, and I think we now know why!

  449. Dan
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

    Shock Me,

    In the books Osha is believed to have headed to Skagos which is right next to the wall. It wouldn’t be a change to have her head north because that is exactly what she did with Rickon.

  450. Eor
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 1:10 pm | Permalink

    I seriously doubt Dagmer is Ramsay, I think it’s more likely they changed Dagmer’s character to make it so we would be sympathetic to at least one of the Ironborn. I concur that the show makes it like Dagmer is the one who really came up with the plot, but personally I see it more likely that just Roose Bolton goes north, takes Winterfell back and has some line like “give this turncloak to my son in Dreadfort” or something. Just saying that it wouldn’t make a lot of sense for Ramsay to be able to work his way up to first mate in the Iron Islands.

  451. Grimnir
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 1:39 pm | Permalink

    Either Dagmer is Ramsey or Reek will come next season, Roose sacking Winterfell would seriously spoil his “regards” at the wedding

  452. SeVv
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 1:39 pm | Permalink

    wait a minute, people actually believe it is DAGMERS plan??
    Dagmer smiles because he understands THEONs plan and likes it

  453. Blackfish
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 1:39 pm | Permalink

    The Kingslayer,

    Seven Hells! Damn you Kingslayer for saying such things. Don’t count me out, I may still make my appearance in season 3.

  454. Skip
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 1:45 pm | Permalink

    Eor,

    You’re presuming he worked for anything. Seeing as though Theon is the captain of the boat, if he tells the crew that this is his first mate, then that makes it so. Granted, we don’t know anything about this Dagmer, but the way he buddy-ed up with Theon right off the bat, waiting until the others had already set on their way to the boat implies that he’s not “one of the boys”. Introducing himself as “first mate” and being amiable while the others basically spit on Theon instantly makes Theon trust him a bit. There’s no need to change an Ironborn to make them sympathetic when Theon’s story arc is all about finding redemption and gaining the sympathy of the viewers/readers after his heinous treason.

  455. Skip
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

    SeVv,

    Watch the scene again. Dagmer says “Don’t you think we can take it?” Theon replies, “Of course we can take it, but we’ll never hold it. Once Winterfell learns of what’s happened they’ll dispatch their forces..” and you can see the wheels turning in his head, to which Dagmer gives a knowing smile. The best manipulation is when you make people think your plans are theirs, and that’s what our “Cleftjaw” has done here.

  456. Yellow Dog
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

    Frost Nocturne: Finally, hearing Sam’s comment about the three horn blasts has me convinced that’s how the season will end. Anyone else notice that bit of set-up?

    Yes! I think all those this winter who promoted that as this season’s cliff-hangar have the upper hand now.

  457. SeVv
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 1:59 pm | Permalink

    Skip,

    I guess you have to rewatch

    Theon: Stoney Shore is not far from Torrhens square
    Dagmer: …a more impressive price…
    Theon:*thinking*
    Dagmer: you don’t think we can take it?
    Theon:…we can never hold it… starks send their men to take it back
    Dagmer: *asking glance*
    Theon: *smiling about his kickass plan*
    Dagmer:*understands and grins back*

  458. Maxwell James
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 2:01 pm | Permalink

    Skip,

    Hmm. Interesting theory but… I have a little trouble seeing Ralph Ineson as Michael McElhatton’s son, since I think they’re around the same age.

  459. KTO
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 3:01 pm | Permalink

    I don’t think this was addressed above, but its hard to tell.

    Wasn’t Ghost supposed to find the cache of dragonglass before Jon took off with the Halfhand? Which begs the question how is Sam going to get his nickname?

  460. SeVv
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 3:07 pm | Permalink

    KTO,

    maybe sam finds it

  461. Skip
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

    SeVv,

    I love the fact that we can see the same thing and draw different meanings from it. You say po-tait-oh, I say po-tat-oh. Only time will tell, I suppose. At least we won’t have a long wait.

  462. Skip
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 3:41 pm | Permalink

    Maxwell James,

    Well now you’ve gone and done it. According to a Google search I’ve just performed; Ineson is approx 42, and McElhatton is estimated to be 37. I suppose that shoots a fairly large sized hole in my theory. Ah well, it was fun thinking and got me to make my first few posts here.

  463. SeVv
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 3:47 pm | Permalink

    Skip,

    well it was a pleasure to read it and argue with someone who doesn’t punsh you in the nuts for disagreeing with the own opinion ;)

  464. Maxwell James
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 3:55 pm | Permalink

    Skip,

    Well, in all fairness – Cary Grant was a few years older than Jessie Royce Landis when she played his mother in North by Northwest. So it can be done!

    But yeah, probably not.

    I do think the idea of hiding Reek in plain sight, so to speak, would be an clever ploy by the writers. Hopefully it’s not Hodor…

  465. SeVv
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 3:58 pm | Permalink

    Maxwell James,

    …why do I want it to be Hodor now???

  466. Tinuviel
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 6:36 pm | Permalink

    Did Jaqen H’gar make a reference to the Red God? Does that mean that the many faced God is getting replaced in the TV series? I suppose him of many faces has many names, but I don’t remember the Red God as one of them.

  467. Remaal
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 6:47 pm | Permalink

    Skip: I’m not saying they changed Ramsey’s lineage to that of an Ironborn, I’m saying is that Ramsey Bolton is masquerading as someone named “Dagmer Cleftjaw”. It’s an alias for the bastard of Bolton, and in the tv universe there is no Dagmer Cleftjaw. Of course we’d need some explanation of why he’s on Pyke, but to change Dags from a mentor of Theon’s and a well known captain of his own ship (the Foamdrinker), to a stranger to Theon who introduces himself as “Dagmer, first mate” wouldn’t make sense. He’s also much more helpful to Theon than the rest of his crew, or any Iron Islander, has been to this point as H alluded to. Watch the scene again, and tell me that the smile “Dagmer” gets when Theon realizes he can take Winterfell doesn’t say “Now you see my plan”.

    By golly, that’s brilliant! Great piece of deduction. I think you’re probably right on the money.

    Skip:
    Maxwell James,

    Well now you’ve gone and done it.According to a Google search I’ve just performed; Ineson is approx 42, and McElhatton is estimated to be 37.I suppose that shoots a fairly large sized hole in my theory.Ah well, it was fun thinking and got me to make my first few posts here.

    Not necessarily. Ramsey need not be Roose’s bastard son on the show. They could make him his bastard brother.

    Wrong or right, I do love your theory, and I think it would be a great way to simplify Ramsey’s intro without diminishing the impact.

  468. Steven Swanson
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

    Skip: I’m not saying they changed Ramsey’s lineage to that of an Ironborn, I’m saying is that Ramsey Bolton is masquerading as someone named “Dagmer Cleftjaw”. It’s an alias for the bastard of Bolton, and in the tv universe there is no Dagmer Cleftjaw. Of course we’d need some explanation of why he’s on Pyke, but to change Dags from a mentor of Theon’s and a well known captain of his own ship (the Foamdrinker), to a stranger to Theon who introduces himself as “Dagmer, first mate” wouldn’t make sense. He’s also much more helpful to Theon than the rest of his crew, or any Iron Islander, has been to this point as H alluded to. Watch the scene again, and tell me that the smile “Dagmer” gets when Theon realizes he can take Winterfell doesn’t say “Now you see my plan”.See above.

    But regarding Flouride’s point, how is this stranger going to somehow become the first mate of this ship? Won’t the rest of the crew wonder where he came from? I think it just as likely that show-Dagmer is just a smart Ironborn who saw a good opportunity for plunder and glory and suckered Theon into it.

  469. Sekandar Martell
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 7:43 pm | Permalink

    My favourite episode of the season so far, although I too was disappointed by the Tickler’s fate.

    Frankly, I would rather they had moved Arya’s killing of him forward to this series and retain that moment instead of either removing it entirely or replacing it with something else. He could have been the one she kills to escape for example.

    Really felt like Dany’s storyline got going in this episode too, although it felt a bit like that in the book as well. Kind of a shame they have changed XXD so much, but I have a feeling it is a decision that has been made with some foresight towards future events. Personally I really liked the humorous touch to these scenes, fits with the oddness of it all.

    Regarding the Reeds: The way I could see it working is thus: Depending how they handle Bran’s escape from Winterfell I could see them meeting the Reeds on the road (as opposed to random mountain man, and considering the lack of things Bran otherwise has to do that season) Jojen would go off with Rickon and Meera with Bran.

    Alternatively they could only introduce Meera and have Jojen cast later on should it be required due to the books plot. Either way you lose Jojen going north, but Osha and Bran seem to have taken his role over already anyway.

  470. Richard Ballesteros
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 7:57 pm | Permalink

    Rather unfortunate you guys spoiled the Arya/Tickler event from the third book. I thought this was just going to be going on about the second one.

  471. H, aka Vee
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 8:38 pm | Permalink

    Maxwell James:
    Skip,
    Well, in all fairness – Cary Grant was a few years older than Jessie Royce Landis when she played his mother in North by Northwest. So it can be done!

    But yeah, probably not.

    I do think the idea of hiding Reek in plain sight, so to speak, would be an clever ploy by the writers. Hopefully it’s not Hodor…

    Thaaaaaaanks. I’m going to have that in my head now next time I read ADWD. ;)

    It’s a totally fun theory, regardless of whether it holds water in regards to this particular character – but I completely agree that hiding him in plain sight would be really smart and a nice kick in the pants for the readers. I like to imagine the show runners have tricks up their sleeves for the express purpose of seeing how many readers they can surprise and make claw their own faces off as they realize what’s happening. And I think Ramsay is one of the biggest.

  472. Jason
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 9:20 pm | Permalink

    SeVv,

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5HKlKK2FlFo

    Skip to 4:19. Dagmer is definitely someone important as Alfie Allen says he’s in the scene he really proud of in episode TEN.

    We know the kids “die” in episode 7, Asha visits in episode 8. What could have left for Theon that’s very important, and at the same time involve another character that worth mentioning?

    Hmmm….

    For the age problem. How about have Reek/Ramsay/Dagmer to be Roose’s bastard half-brother? I haven’t read book 5. So if there’s anything wrong with this change that won’t make sense, tell me I’m wrong but don’t tell me any specifics…

  473. Jason
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 9:27 pm | Permalink

    Richard Ballesteros:
    Rather unfortunate you guys spoiled the Arya/Tickler event from the third book. I thought this was just going to be going on about the second one.

    You’re right. The recap itself shouldn’t have spoil things in SOS. If it has to, make it clear in the Spoiler Note.

  474. Knurk
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 9:32 pm | Permalink

    Richard Ballesteros:
    Rather unfortunate you guys spoiled the Arya/Tickler event from the third book. I thought this was just going to be going on about the second one.

    Jason: You’re right. The recap itself shouldn’t have spoil things in SOS. If it has to, make it clear in the Spoiler Note.

    he clearly warned he was going to spoil something from the third book:

    Note: My dislike this week is going to contain some spoilers from A Storm of Swords. So if you haven’t read it yet, skip down to the comments now!

  475. Jason
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 9:39 pm | Permalink

    Knurk:
    he clearly warned he was going to spoil something from the third book:

    Ha! Didn’t notice that… Well, good thing I already finished book 3…

  476. Vini
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 10:47 pm | Permalink

    well. and i guess bran’s green dream about the sea flooding winterfell means we won’t have a jojen, right? with some luck maybe a meera. :/

  477. Hilda
    Posted May 2, 2012 at 1:03 am | Permalink

    I have been away from here the last few weeks. My mom just passed away in April so I have had so much to take care of. Anyways, GoT has been a great distraction for me. There is so much that I want to cover but wont. I will say this I can’t believe we are already 5 episodes down. it is going so damn fast! I have loved the most all the Arya and Gendry stuff.
    Did anybody else notice that Bran has a bit of a moustache?? Or was it just me?

  478. Corn
    Posted May 2, 2012 at 1:12 am | Permalink

    Hilda:
    I have been away from here the last few weeks. My mom just passed away in April so I have had so much to take care of. Anyways, GoT has been a great distraction for me. There is so much that I want to cover but wont. I will say this I can’t believe we are already 5 episodes down. it is going so damn fast!I have loved the most all the Arya and Gendry stuff.
    Did anybody else notice that Bran has a bit of a moustache?? Or was it just me?

    Hilda,
    I also noticed a bit of fuzz on Bran’s upper lip…glad you saw it too so now I don’t feel like I was hallucinating.

    So sorry for your loss. Game Of Thrones is a blissful distraction for many of us I think. Having gone through the loss of one parent and 2 parents-in-law, just make a list of the things you need to do and take them one at a time. It worked for me, I had a little notebook and followed it day to day, making notes on who had been called, etc. It helped a lot. I hope the old gods and the new will bring you and your loved ones peace in this difficult time.

  479. Bemma
    Posted May 2, 2012 at 5:22 am | Permalink

    Is anyone else hoping the parody this week has Dany telling drogon to “dracarys!” whilst holding up a marshmallow on a stick?

  480. OKENO
    Posted May 2, 2012 at 7:56 am | Permalink

    Stray observation here… has anyone noticed that Jaqen sounds almost identical to “Anton Sugar” from No Country for Old Men.

    If you didn’t, got back and watch the scene where Jaqen explains to Arya that he’ll kill three… some of the lines sound like they’re coming right out of Javier Bardem’s mouth.

    Not that it’s a complaint… think the guy playing Jaqen is nailing it.

  481. Hodor
    Posted May 2, 2012 at 11:01 am | Permalink

    I’m pretty sure Jojen or/and Meera will turn up soon. Maybe after Winterfell is destroyed. Why? Because I doubt Bran and Hodor will go to the the Wall alone. If someone still don’t think so: Do you believe Hodor will be saying everything Jojen and Meera was supposed to say? In that case, I can’t wait to listen to Hodor telling stories and teaching Bran about being a skinshanger.

  482. OKENO
    Posted May 2, 2012 at 11:16 am | Permalink

    Hodor,

    Why couldn’t Osha take him North, and someone else take Rikkon?

    I know, I know… Osha was originally fleeing the North, but personally I think they could write around that by playing the “she adores Bran now, and will sacrifice for him” angle.

    Not saying either scenario is right… but I could definitely see them writing the Reeds out altogether without much trouble (minus readers getting sad about it).

  483. Pau Soriano
    Posted May 2, 2012 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    OKENO:
    Hodor,

    Why couldn’t Osha take him North, and someone else take Rikkon?

    I know, I know… Osha was originally fleeing the North, but personally I think they could write around that by playing the “she adores Bran now, and will sacrifice for him” angle.

    Not saying either scenario is right… but I could definitely see them writing the Reeds out altogether without much trouble (minus readers getting sad about it).

    Someone mentioned Maester Luwin could go off with Rickon. If the Reeds are out, Osha will be the one accompanying Bran

  484. Pau Soriano
    Posted May 2, 2012 at 11:50 am | Permalink

    SeVv:
    Skip,

    well it was a pleasure to read it and argue with someone who doesn’t punsh you in the nuts for disagreeing with the own opinion ;)

    To me it seemed as it was Dagmer’s plan. I don’t think it has further, more reeking implications though :P

  485. Christian Delbove
    Posted May 2, 2012 at 11:58 am | Permalink

    As many people here, I am very disappointed that Davos get to lead the attack on King’s landing… The whole point was that Davos was pleading for a more cautions plan of attack, and his fears being ridiculed by the so-called seasoned admirals…

    Very bad change, don’t see how it will work out…

  486. Hodor
    Posted May 2, 2012 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

    Pau Soriano,

    It would recquire a deal of changing from the books, but I suppose it makes sense. But what about Coldhands? When Osha sees him, won’t she take him for a white walker? I can’t imagine Osha putting their lives in the hands of Coldhands when being close to the wights. Maybe Bran insists… and tells her that he and Hodor will leave her if she won’t follow them. I hope Jojen and Meera will be coming soon, and put an end to these theories.

  487. Skip
    Posted May 2, 2012 at 1:22 pm | Permalink

    Jason,

    Nice one Jason, I missed that interview.

    Remaal:
    Not necessarily. Ramsey need not be Roose’s bastard son on the show. They could make him his bastard brother.

    Jason:
    SeVv,

    For the age problem. How about have Reek/Ramsay/Dagmer to be Roose’s bastard half-brother? I haven’t read book 5. So if there’s anything wrong with this change that won’t make sense, tell me I’m wrong but don’t tell me any specifics…

    That’s an angle I hadn’t considered, and no I don’t think it would greatly upset events later if that were the case.

    Pau Soriano,

    What you did, I see it. Well played.

  488. Ed
    Posted May 2, 2012 at 1:41 pm | Permalink

    Hilda:

    Did anybody else notice that Bran has a bit of a moustache?? Or was it just me?

    Hah!! I saw that too! :-)

  489. Ed
    Posted May 2, 2012 at 1:45 pm | Permalink

    A – Hit Ctrl-F
    B – Type in “Red God”
    C – Read all the posts about this

    Tinuviel:
    Did Jaqen H’gar make a reference to the Red God? Does that mean that the many faced God is getting replaced in the TV series? I suppose him of many faces has many names, but I don’t remember the Red God as one of them.

  490. Pripea
    Posted May 3, 2012 at 4:41 pm | Permalink

    More Shirtless Gendry Scenes!!! yaaaa!

  491. Mrs. H'ghar
    Posted May 3, 2012 at 5:11 pm | Permalink

    This one has a new screensaver. Thank you for posting this lovely picture of this one’s beloved.

  492. Kneeling Knight
    Posted May 3, 2012 at 9:36 pm | Permalink

    You know what sucks the most about living in South Africa? Getting the episodes 5 days late and having to wait that amount of time before joining in the fun. You Americans just appreciate what you have!

  493. Kneeling Knight
    Posted May 3, 2012 at 9:45 pm | Permalink

    Just a question, if this is a forum for those who have read the books, why are so many spoilers being censored? I mean we all know that Young Griff aka Rhaegar’s son aka Aegon the VI will conquer the Seven Kingdoms with the help of Daneyres and her dragons whom he will marry…Daneyres, not the dragons.
    I’m such saying, if you ignored all the spoiler alerts you deserve to find out what happens prematurely. Just saying

  494. Knurk
    Posted May 3, 2012 at 9:51 pm | Permalink

    Kneeling Knight:
    Just a question, if this is a forum for those who have read the books, why are so many spoilers being censored? I mean we all know that Young Griff aka Rhaegar’s son aka Aegon the VI will conquer the Seven Kingdoms with the help of Daneyres and her dragons whom he will marry…Daneyres, not the dragons.
    I’m such saying, if you ignored all the spoiler alerts you deserve to find out what happens prematurely. Just saying

    it’s only for people who have read book 2, all spoilers beyond should be in spoilertext.

  495. loco73
    Posted May 4, 2012 at 7:29 am | Permalink

    Outstanding episode! I definitely get the feeling that one day will look back at this show as one of the absolute greats, definitely up there with “The Wire”, “Deadwood”, “ROME” and others!

  496. Kneeling Knight
    Posted May 4, 2012 at 7:53 am | Permalink

    Thanks Knurk
    Any links to discussions on the rest of the books?

  497. Kneeling Knight
    Posted May 4, 2012 at 8:20 pm | Permalink

    Ok finally watched it and absolutely loved it! Man Xaro is huge! No Robb though :-(
    Two things, really wish Arya would’ve asked for Tywin’s death although he is one of my fav characters (it would’ve helped Robb alot as it seems, with the exception of Kevan, that the Lannisters lack any real backbone.)
    The other thing was Cersei’s absolute blind stupidy making me wish that the Red Keep would fall just so she could be raped and burned as an offering to the Red God. Hate that infernal woman!

  498. Damryn of Dorne
    Posted May 6, 2012 at 2:51 am | Permalink

    damn didnt even notice ghost on the first until my 6th rewatch…

    oh and 500th post in the thread :)

  1. [...] note: The discussion in this post is primarily for non-book readers (book fans can discuss the show here). We ask all the series veterans to refrain from posting spoilers in the comments here, veiled or [...]

  2. [...] note: The discussion in this post is primarily for non-book readers (book fans can discuss the show here). We ask all the series veterans to refrain from posting spoilers in the comments here, veiled or [...]


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