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

So what did a non-book-reading viewer think of last night’s episode? Our newbie recapper We Do Not Sow gives you his take on “The Ghost of Harrenhal” after the break.

Spoiler 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 otherwise. This show is best viewed without knowing all the surprises beforehand, so please be respectful of your fellow fans. Thank you!

We Do Not Sow: It didn’t take long for that shadowy figure to change the course of the war. As Catelyn and Renly discuss being allies after the battle of Baratheon brothers, the shadow comes in and there goes Renly. During the course of the week I had thought that Renly might not make it too much farther this season with a shadow figure coming for him. I hardly expected it to be so soon, so now we are down to four kings all fighting for the iron throne.

It wasn’t all for nothing though, Brienne really kicked some ass in the tent. So now Catelyn and Brienne escape and are on their way to Winterfell. I feel I have said that too often, and then a week later we learn that it’s not going to be that easy of a trip. Brienne’s scene where she devotes herself to Catelyn is pretty cool and it should help because I feel that Wintefell will be attacked pretty soon by the sea.

Bran is actually holding things together up there and now he is going to have to deal with the Torrhen’s Square attack and reading between the lines it seems like Theon will move to Winterfell after Torrhen’s Square. Which really sucks! I really want to like Theon and the Greyjoys, but they are making it so hard for me this season. We will see what really happens but I am bracing myself for the disappointment now. I have no problem with Theon trying to prove his loyalty to his father but at the cost of Winterfell? Fingers crossed but I’m not holding my breath… the Sea Bitch, really, haha.

So now with Renly dead, Stannis has his ships and almost all of the men who were going to fight for Renly. It seems like the battle on King’s Landing could be any Sunday night soon. I had the same expression on my face that Tyrion had when he saw all the pots of wildfire. Bronn and Tyrion nailed it too; King’s Landing is more likely to burn down from the wildfire than all Stannis’s men and ships. Thank goodness Tyrion is around, he might be the only Lannister at court who is thinking their actions through.

In Harrenhal, there were some great scenes tonight, first off Arya serving Tywin is pretty funny and ironic in itself. When he asks her what she thinks of her brother Robb, I was just chuckling to myself and what a great answer she gave him too. Riding into battle on a dire wolf and some say he can change into a wolf himself, priceless! Arya’s new friend Jaqen H’ghar seems pretty awesome. I thought all along that somehow he would play a bigger part than a prisoner being transferred to the Wall. Arya has been muttering names every night before bed, I am really eager to see what two names she will give him next.

Tonight we got some dragon action, my friends! The graphics for the dragons, the direwolves and the shadow figure surpass my expectations every time I see them. Daenerys has found herself in some trouble, right? Am I the only one who sees this? These guys are all rich, the city is full of gold statues and men and women wearing expensive clothing. It seems like Qarth is a city of people who do anything to increase their wealth or social standing. Daenerys has a few things going for her… the dragons. I feel like these people in Qarth want her dragons or want her powers of the dragon. We will see what happens here, but I don’t think they will give her a boat to leave there for nothing.

I can’t wait for more of the Night’s Watch next week. I feel like we are slowly marching deeper past the Wall and I keep waiting for something to erupt, it has to happen soon, either that or they will be too far north if the Wall gets attacked by these undead.

It was another great episode tonight, we lost a king but honestly did anyone think he was going to be on the Iron Throne? And if so we all knew it wasn’t going to be for long. New Viewers, sound off and let me know what you think of all this magic that has been revealed to us this season. Honestly, I thought everything was cool, the shadow figure threw me for a loop and this week the guy that magically cloned himself made me do a double take as well.


52 Comments

  1. Troy
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:36 am | Permalink

    One of the best things about this series is how the magic is being ever so slowly introduced and beginning to grow. I’ve read a few fantasy books where magic is so ever-present that when you start to read, it’s off-putting. The characters just shrug it off like it’s no big deal than any scrub on a farm can summon a water elemental to water the crops or something (Jim Butcher, I’m looking at you here). The growing presence of magic in Westeros and Dany’s increasing exposure to it in Essos makes magic seem more wondrous and powerful instead of mundane. The shadow assassin was perfectly done, and Pyat Pree’s introduction was great as well. Plus there’s Bran’s dreams and the supernatural goings on beyond the Wall. Just great stuff, and I am really excited for what the rest of the season has in store.

  2. Nagga's Kin
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:37 am | Permalink

    The Iceland scenes were gorgeous, a treeless and forbidding yet beautiful wasteland of ice, snow and rock. LOL’d with Qhorin Halfhand, he’s the only one who has the common sense to wear a cap in the middle of a snowstorm.

    The black uniforms make them all stand out against the snow like sore thumbs, though (except Ghost). It would have been awesome if Qhorin and his men had shown up with white fur coats. Many real-world arctic animals have them in winter, e.g. polar bear, caribou, arctic fox, arctic hare. Surely similar creatures roam the woodlands and meadows to either side of the Wall in Westeros. You’d think someone in the Night’s Watch would have figured this camouflage thing out during the 8000 frickin’ years they’ve been manning the wall?

  3. moi
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:14 am | Permalink

    Arya stole every scene she was in. I liked the close of the show with her and Jaqen becoming buddies or at least help mates. I have not read the books. The whole show good though on the subdued side. Nice that the Tickler got his…..

  4. Zach Z.
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 11:27 am | Permalink

    Troy,

    Wow, no need to throw Jim Butcher under the bus there, an extremely talented writer. Magic being super-prevalent and shrug-worthy is true in his Codex Alera series other then the main character doesn’t have the use of magic, which I guess is besides the point. But in Dresdon Files my other favorite ongoing bookseries other than ASoIaF it is definately not treated lightly. Yes some people have lots of magical power they can wield but it is never thrown out lightly and has lots of rules and consequences…

  5. Ed
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

    Nagga’s Kin:
    The Iceland scenes were gorgeous, a treeless and forbidding yet beautiful wasteland of ice, snow and rock. LOL’d with Qhorin Halfhand, he’s the only one who has the common sense to wear a cap in the middle of a snowstorm.

    The black uniforms make them all stand out against the snow like sore thumbs, though (except Ghost). It would have been awesome if Qhorin and his men had shown up with white fur coats.Many real-world arctic animals have them in winter, e.g. polar bear, caribou, arctic fox, arctic hare. Surely similar creatures roam the woodlands and meadows to either side of the Wall in Westeros. You’d think someone in the Night’s Watch would have figured this camouflage thing out during the 8000 frickin’ years they’ve been manning the wall?

    LoL!!! Good point!

  6. Ditchdigger
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

    Ed: LoL!!!Good point!

    The impression I get is that they wear black to differentiate themselves from any other house or faction in the realm, since “The Watch takes no part.” If they wore white people might think they were Kingsguard who traditionally wear white, although honestly it should be pretty easy to tell the difference there. ;)

  7. DavidBC
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

    Ditchdigger,

    The Night’s Watch have to wear black, it i spart of their vows.

    Mance Rayder sews red into his cloak and this is seen as an act of defiance aganist the watch.

  8. Magnar of Thenn
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 1:14 pm | Permalink

    People seem to miss several points.

    First, The Nights Watch has never been this far north before, and would normally have the cover of the vast forests near the Wall.

    Second, The Nights Watch has never traveled in such great numbers, normally sending small groups of Rangers into the true north. So them traveling in great numbers is actually a show of strength.

  9. Mike
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

    It would be great if Daenarys could get intel about the wildfire. She could watch as Stannis’ army is engulfed by it and walk to the city unharmed.

  10. No Raven For You!
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

    Ditchdigger,

    If they wore white people might think they were Kingsguard who traditionally wear white, although honestly it should be pretty easy to tell the difference there.

    Of course, we haven’t seen any Nights Watchmen beat any girls or nearly drown a hapless knight in wine (yet), so there is that non-wardrobe related difference too.

  11. SillyMammo
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

    It was cool how Jaqen H’ghar walks by Arya with his helmet in the crook of his arm, but then beats her down to the water barrel and has the helmet place on top of it. Makes you believe he’s clearly not all that he seems.

  12. Fantôme
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:42 pm | Permalink

    Nagga’s Kin,

    The Black Brothers of the night watch are not allowed to wear anything but black.

  13. Magnar of Thenn
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:45 pm | Permalink

    Fantôme:
    Nagga’s Kin,

    The Black Brothers of the night watch are not allowed to wear anything but black.

    Well said. Simple and to the point

  14. The Onion Knight
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

    I am very excite about Samwel becoming a magician wizard next season like they said in the original season :)

  15. Fantôme
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 4:27 pm | Permalink

    The Onion Knight,

    ???? Whaaaaaat?

  16. I Know of Fear
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 4:45 pm | Permalink

    I was expecting the shadow assassin to utterly fail so Renly could continue being awesome for a while. Up until now the magic in this show hasn’t worked too well or had unintended results. Red Lady seems even more foreboding now that she seems to have full control of her magic. Good thing Stannis has someone willing to tell him she’s bad news.

    And those dragons! Learning to breathe fire is a big deal, even if it’s only enough to cook McNuggets. Then we get to see a man who can copy himself? This world is starting to seem a lot more mystical and dangerous. Perhaps the wildfire potions will work as the pyromancer hopes.

    I’m glad Arya has a new friend of sorts. If she was smart she’d tell him to kill the man holding Needle and then kill himself, because I just know he is trying to gain her trust for some reason.

    And finally, I hold out hope for Theon. Perhaps he wants to be the man who conquers Winterfell so that he can protect the Starks. If that’s not his intention than I can only hope Bran realizes the attack is coming.

  17. Magnar of Thenn
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:15 pm | Permalink

    Fantôme:
    The Onion Knight,

    ???? Whaaaaaat?

    LOL, I think someone is having a little fun with you. No one has said anything of the like.

  18. sj
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

    Nagga’s Kin,

    There’s also the fact that black cloth absorbs the most light, hence making it the warmest when out in hazardous conditions 24/7. We can afford white camouflage nowadays because our soldiers have comparatively shorter assignments with the prospect of being evacuated to a warm, centrally-heated location in between missions. It’s not just the wildlings that the Night’s Watch has to worry about, it’s the weather conditions.

    Besides, I get the impression that traditionally, the Watch uses more standard military tactics when dealing with enemies rather than guerilla warfare, so in the general course of things, it’s more important to maintain a uniform than to blend in. Of course, given how low their numbers are, perhaps they do need to re-evaluate their position on uniform colors. Especially the Half-Hand, if he’s stuck doing scouting missions.

  19. bluerhino
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 5:29 pm | Permalink

    The theon scene confused me a little his firstmate he just met reminded him how close to winterfel he would be as if he knew he wanted to go there to warn them. The guy couldnt possibly think they could take it with such little numbers.

  20. Nagga's Kin
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 6:08 pm | Permalink

    Fantôme:
    Nagga’s Kin,

    The Black Brothers of the night watch are not allowed to wear anything but black.

    File under: military intelligence. *facepalm*

    sj:
    Nagga’s Kin,

    There’s also the fact that black cloth absorbs the most light, hence making it the warmest when out in hazardous conditions 24/7.We can afford white camouflage nowadays because our soldiers have comparatively shorter assignments with the prospect of being evacuated to a warm, centrally-heated location in between missions.It’s not just the wildlings that the Night’s Watch has to worry about, it’s the weather conditions.

    Besides, I get the impression that traditionally, the Watch uses more standard military tactics when dealing with enemies rather than guerilla warfare, so in the general course of things, it’s more important to maintain a uniform than to blend in.Of course, given how low their numbers are, perhaps they do need to re-evaluate their position on uniform colors.Especially the Half-Hand, if he’s stuck doing scouting missions.

    Uhm, some arctic animals (e.g. polar bears, caribou) actually have winter fur featuring multiple layers and even hollow hairs to maximize insulation. There’s nothing warmer. Convective heat loss is a much, much bigger issue than the clothes’ albedo.

    While it’s true the Night Watch rarely ventures beyond the wooded areas north of the Wall, especially in force, they are obviously aware of the Fist of First Men and the Skirling Pass in the Frostfangs – and how to get there. The Rangers at least should have some camouflage, if not a white coat then at least a white tunic they can slip over their black clothes when the need arises.

  21. Zach Z
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

    The Onion Knight,

    Lol nice troll fake spoiler, totally untrue…

  22. Sergey Sarnavskiy
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

    bluerhino: The theon scene confused me a little his firstmate he just met reminded him how close to winterfel he would be as if he knew he wanted to go there to warn them. The guy couldnt possibly think they could take it with such little numbers.

    I think the point of that was to distract the few troops Winterfell had to come to relieve the siege of some little castle while the other 30 ships attack Winterfell directly after the defenders left.

  23. Randy
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 7:52 pm | Permalink

    Brienne’s reaction towards Renly’s death felt too sympathetic, I think they should have shown their relationship more before his death. That girl with the face mask in Qarth freaked me out, what’s the deal with her.

  24. Adenhart
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 7:53 pm | Permalink

    Sergey Sarnavskiy: I think the point of that was to distract the few troops Winterfell had to come to relieve the siege of some little castle while the other 30 ships attack Winterfell directly after the defenders left.

    Winterfell is landlocked, and the other 30 ships are elsewhere. That’s not it.

  25. João Lopes
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 7:56 pm | Permalink

    Don’t forget that all the men in the Night Watch were criminals, and black is a color somewhat related to impurity and sin. White wouldn’t suit them, at least ethically.

  26. Jéssica De Freitas Maciel
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 8:20 pm | Permalink

    Guys you are forgetting their name is NIGHT’S watch, in the dark they blend all to well. and at the time the night’s wath was created it was in the great night wich was as long as the great winter

  27. Argliac the Arrogant
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 8:41 pm | Permalink

    Magnar of Thenn: LOL, I think someone is having a little fun with you. No one has said anything of the like.

    I think he’s talking about the dialogue between Sam and Jon last year after they been chosen for NW professions. Jon said “I always wanted to be a ranger.” Sam said “I’ve always wanted to be a wizard.”

    Since Jon got to become a ranger this episode, he probably assumes Sam is next to become a wizard. Whether or not that becomes true is still unknown; Sam was merely lightening the mood when he said it, but you never know what might happen.

  28. I Know of Fear
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 9:53 pm | Permalink

    Argliac the Arrogant: I think he’s talking about the dialogue between Sam and Jon last year after they been chosen for NW professions. Jon said “I always wanted to be a ranger.” Sam said “I’ve always wanted to be a wizard.”Since Jon got to become a ranger this episode, he probably assumes Sam is next to become a wizard. Whether or not that becomes true is still unknown; Sam was merely lightening the mood when he said it, but you never know what might happen.

    I don’t think he was merely lightening the mood, I think he was serious about always wanting to be a wizard. I bet he still secretly hopes it’s possible, just unlikely. Of course it isn’t going to happen until we see pigs fly.

  29. spacechampion
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:03 pm | Permalink

    Davos pointing out the victory was one for Melisandre not Stannis makes me wonder if the use of magic in the books and show, since Martin like to play with tropes and overturn them, is to say that every time we will see magic in this story it will be for big dramatic moments, but all big moves in the Game of Thrones will have to be realpolitik moves won through something more genuinely human, real, and earn, as opposed to deus ex machina magic rabbits pulled from hats (or shadowbabies pulled from coochies).

  30. Kornelia
    Posted April 30, 2012 at 10:35 pm | Permalink

    Adenhart,

    Theon wants to prove himself to his father. The guy that he befriended, his first mate, was hinting at taking over Torren’s Square and then Winterfell to help him in that direction. Yara, and her 30 ships, doesn’t know anything about what Theon just planned on that dock. He wants to do it himself to show he is truly loyal to the Greyjoys and to prove he has the capabilities. And no, they cant do it by sea, which should be even more impressive to his dad, since the greyjoys pretty much do everything by sea.

  31. Lady Stoneheart
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 12:26 am | Permalink

    I can’t wait to see more of Pyat Pree and the Warlocks. The magic in this series is woven into the story well!

  32. Toast
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 12:28 am | Permalink

    Magnar of Thenn,

    The NW has not been this far north with these numbers in many years. The NW has been everywhere north of the wall.

  33. mags
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 2:53 am | Permalink

    sam just might become a maester…

  34. Jacut
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 5:23 am | Permalink

    Just a bit of info for new viewers since the world of Westeros has not been as properly introduced in the series as it was in the books :

    “Brienne’s scene where she devotes herself to Catelyn is pretty cool and it should help because I feel that Wintefell will be attacked pretty soon by the sea.”

    That’s absolutely impossible. The distances of Westeros are so extraordinary, it would be like going from Los Angeles to New York on horse, clearly, at this point of the story, you can’t expect them to arrive in Winterfell before several weeks or even months, passing through war-ridden, hostile lands while being chased by countless factions. I know in the second or third episode of the series, we saw Ros inexplicably depart from Winterfell and then two or three scenes after being in King’s Landing, but it was clearly a, unlogical script shortcut (and for me a huge mistake from the part of the scriptwriters since new viewers can’t understand that time and distance are of the essence in Game of Thrones).

    And other thing : as someone already pointed out, Winterfell is right in the middle of the North, boats can’t reach it before accosting a nearby shore so the 30 boats of Asha/Yara are out of the question, even more since Ironborn dislike fighting on land.

  35. New Wolf
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 11:31 am | Permalink

    Another great episode! And what a beginning! I didn’t expect the plot to move so quickly, but I’m very happy that it did. I’m sad that Renly’s dead, I liked him. I think his marriage with Margaery was interesting and I wanted to see more of it. But I hope we’ll see more of the Tyrells! Margaery said she wants to be the queen so I expect we’ll see more of her.
    I really love Brienne! Now I’m starting to get why she’s a favorite among the readers of the books. It’s lovely to see her pairing up with Cat.
    Qarth is really interesting. The dragons were awesome. And about that bald guy with blue lips… he’s peculiar. There’s something odd about him. I hope we’ll see more of him. It seems that Dany refused Xaro’s offer. But I think it will be tricky leaving Qarth, I imagine they (Qarthians?) will want something from her.
    Tyrion is taking control in King’s Landing and I love it! It looks like he will be the one defending the city. A small part of me wants Lannisters to win just because of him.
    Theon is a confused kid. But like Madden said, he’s a bastard!
    That dream Bran had seems to be an allegory of the Iron Islanders attacking Winterfell. It’s like he can sort of predict the future. Or at least predict enemy’s plans. And I really want to know the meaning of the crow with three eyes. It definitely has something to do with the winter coming.
    Things are moving slow north of the wall. I hope the pace picks up next week. It looks like we’ll be following just 5 people from now on. I’m gonna miss Sam and the others. Hope we’ll see them soon!
    I love when Arya said “Anyone can be killed”. The look they shared… wow, it was kinda chilling. One of the best moments of the episode! Jaqen seems great. Even though I thought he was a creep when we first met him in episode 2. But I’m glad he’s helping her!

    Can’t wait for next week!

  36. Yellow Dog
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 11:44 am | Permalink

    New Wolf,

    Your posts almost make me wish I hadn’t read the books, so that the show would be new to me like it is to you. Almost!

    Still, they are very enjoyable reading for this jaded old book reader. Thank you!

  37. No Raven For You!
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 3:31 pm | Permalink

    New Wolf,

    …about that bald guy with blue lips… There’s something odd about him.

    Like the fact that he has the ability to project himself in two places at the same time? ;-) I am interested in why he feels it necessary to drink so much Grape Fanta.

    Theon is a confused kid. But like Madden said, he’s a bastard!

    So I was thinking of this: Remember when Theon was looking out with apparent pride at his first command, The Sea Bitch, just before he was humiliated by his crew and then by his sister? His words seemed to be a recitation of the words of someone else, and then I remembered this:

    Ned is in a dungeon in KL. Robb Stark is feasting with his father’s bannermen, and Lord Umber wants his men in the front…

    Umber: I will lead the van, or I’ll take my men and march them home.
    Robb: You are welcome to do so, Lord Umber, and when I am done with the Lannisters I will march back North, root you out of your keep, and hang you for an oathbreaker.
    Umber: Oathbreaker, is it?! I’ll not sit here and swallow insults from a boy so green he pisses grass! (Umber reaches for a blade, Theon and other bannermen reach for theirs, and Robb’s direwolf attacks Umber, taking several fingers.)

    Now, here is the dialogue between Theon and the crew of The Sea Bitch

    Crewmember: I have been reiving and raping since before you left Balon’s balls. I don’t reckon I’ve got much use for your ideas on how to do it. I don’t reckon I’ve got much use for a captain at all… All I need is a ship; You wouldn’t know where I could find myself a ship, now, would you?
    (Laughter from rest of crew)
    Theon: You could do that – take the ship, head out on your own, but I will hunt you down, drag you back here in chains, and hang you for a traitor.
    Yara: (arriving) (sarcastic) Stop! We yield!

    There are similarities to the two scenes, as well as significant differences in the setup — Robb is acting as his father’s surrogate, Theon is not. Robb is attempting to lead lords sworn to his father, Theon is attempting to gain the fealty of a group of men who are sworn to reiving and raping.

    I think that Yara is a sort of ‘anti-direwolf’ in this scene. In Robb’s feast, his direwolf is his protector, a source of power, and a living symbol of his Starkness. Yara belittles Theon, undermines Theon’s authority in front of a crew who should be following him, and is a living symbol of how un-Greyjoy Theon remains (despite his baptism in ‘salt and iron’). Yara’s crew would wait for a year for her, while Theon’s won’t wait one minute before leaving the quay without him.

    If Theon is going to gain the respect and fealty of a group of parasite pirates, he has to become a parasite pirate himself.

  38. A man pays his debts
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 4:02 pm | Permalink

    João Lopes,

    João Lopes: Don’t forget that all the men in the Night Watch were criminals, and black is a color somewhat related to impurity and sin. White wouldn’t suit them, at least ethically.

    No, you’re forgetting that black is the colour of power and authority, that’s why in our world, priests and judges wear it.

  39. João Lopes
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 4:14 pm | Permalink

    A man pays his debts,

    Ok, you’re also right. I was opposing black vests to white ones… and altough priests use black, the higher “ranks” use white (and red).

  40. New Wolf
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 4:19 pm | Permalink

    Yellow Dog,

    I’m glad someone’s reading my long posts :) Thanks!

    No Raven For You!,

    That is a really nice comparison. They are similar because they are both boys trying to be men. They are both trying to live up to their father’s reputation. But, in my opinion, that still doesn’t justify Theon’s behavior. He comes off as an arrogant little boy who wants to be a prince and looks down on everybody else. But Robb has respect for others and knows when to be harsh.
    I don’t see why Theon has to become a “parasite pirate”. It seems to me that he doesn’t like the Iron Islands as much as he thinks he likes them. Whether he likes it or not, he has a bit of Stark in him. And I hope he clings to it.

  41. No Raven For You!
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 4:47 pm | Permalink

    New Wolf,

    Whether (Theon) likes it or not, he has a bit of Stark in him. And I hope he clings to it.

    Absolutely agree, but I think it is doubtful :-( I think that the contrast btw Theon and Robb and why they command fealty is at the root of it. At first, Robb has his father’s banners following him because of his blood. It seems that the reason his sister Yara and his “crew” don’t respect Theon is because he isn’t doing anything the right (ie the Iron Islanders) way. He hasn’t proved that he is one of them. The only way to prove himself in this new environment is to adopt the yardstick of the Iron Islands (‘pay the Iron price’) and lay aside the Winterfell yardstick (‘do what is honorable’).

    Theon seems arrogant because he is insecure, and he is insecure because he is between two worlds.

    The most I can hope for from Theon is that he does some bit of honorable self-sacrifice, thereby redeeming his Stark upbringing and repudiating his parasite pirate blood, before it is too late for Winterfell.

  42. iRaven
    Posted May 1, 2012 at 6:18 pm | Permalink

    1st post ever on here. I AM a book reader, but I just wanted to say how much more I enjoy the non-book reader analyses. Sometimes I think all of you guys actually catch more in the show, and even have a better understanding on some level without having the book knowledge clouding your enjoyment. Sometimes I find myself waiting for “this” line, or “that” scene instead of actually letting what’s happening wash over me. So that said, keep up the good conversation. I actually gain more insight to the show from these threads than any other (re: Theon/Robb similarities in their conversations with their men). Cheers (mulled wine).

  43. Dave Brownell
    Posted May 2, 2012 at 9:32 pm | Permalink

    Where the EFF is the Twitter posts?!?

  44. David the Grey
    Posted May 3, 2012 at 12:45 am | Permalink

    Book-reader here, and have a non-spoiler question for the non-readers. In fact, this question applies to both S1 and S2 stuff that we’ve seen so far, so it should be safe to ask.

    One of the things that shocked me the most, and I guess really hooked me in reading the books, was the danger that the Stark kids got themselves into. From Bran to Sansa to Arya – I was just amazed what they had to go through (and strongly rooting for them all along). Even Robb and Jon, but as they were older I didn’t get the same sense of worry for them.

    I may have missed people’s posts in pasts threads, but do you non-readers ever get that kind of chill about just how much these children go through? For example, Arya’s journey from last year killing the boy at the wagon and this year with a strong desire for revenge – the looks she gives Tywin, or the looks she gets when she sees the Tickler dead after having given his name to Jaqen. So incredibly dark, but deeply thrilling (and satisfying) too. You want the kids to get their justice.

    Just curious if the non-readers get that sense from the show too? It seems to come across to me, but I might just be bringing that from having read the books.

  45. I Know of Fear
    Posted May 3, 2012 at 1:04 am | Permalink

    David the Grey,

    The show does an excellent job of setting the tone to ominous. I especially have to applaud Maisie Williams, who does an excellent job looking nonplussed when her character doesn’t know how to get out of a situation. When Tywin questioned his new cup bearer about her homeland, the tension was palpable.

    Sansa didn’t get much sympathy from me in the first season. But now that she is on her own I’m much more concerned about what can happen to her. There is now foreboding whenever a Lannister (or Lannister agent) walks in to the same room as her.

    So far Bran hasn’t been in much danger other than being confronted by wildlings while alone on a horse. But I got hooked on this show for good when he asked to hear a scary story. The lightling, cinematography, and especially music created the perfect atmosphere as Old Nan looks at him and says “what do you know of fear?”

  46. loco73
    Posted May 4, 2012 at 6:39 am | Permalink

    I thought that they wear black, not only for the resons already listed by others here, but also because they are called the Night’s Watch, hence the black…I am not sure what other colour could be associated with night? If they called themselves the Winter’s Watch or the Wall Watch they would wear white then…

    Besides, what good would camouflage be against the White Walkers?! Even the Wildlings would find them quite easily…

  47. Ed
    Posted May 4, 2012 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

    Sigh… Yes, we get that. We just think it’s funny that it’s not exactly tactically sound in a snow-filled combat environment. Jeeeezzz, it’s just a funny thought, we’re not trying to incite an uprising.

    Fantôme:
    Nagga’s Kin,

    The Black Brothers of the night watch are not allowed to wear anything but black.

  48. No Raven For You!
    Posted May 4, 2012 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

    I Know of Fear,

    I agree: The show has done an excellent job in making me care for the collective fate of the Stark children as the gravitational center (Ned) was suddenly removed and they flew off into their own stories (though Jon was off to the Wall prior to Lord Eddard losing his head). I know there are probably dark days ahead for them, and some probably won’t make it since this show kills off characters I like at an alarming rate (so long, Renly!), but the thrill of their journeys is one of the huge hooks this show has in me.

    As for the actors…

    Give Maisie Williams ALL THE AWARDS!

  49. David the Grey
    Posted May 15, 2012 at 11:34 pm | Permalink

    I Know of Fear: So far Bran hasn’t been in much danger other than being confronted by wildlings while alone on a horse.

    Sorry it’s taken so long to respond back to this old thread. The danger I was referring to for Bran was back in S1, with his “fall” from the tower. Like, if the author could have that happen to a child, what would be going too far? So of course I had to keep reading! :-)

    Glad to see the show is also imparting that same kind of hook to non-readers! Thanks for answering my question.

  50. David the Grey
    Posted May 15, 2012 at 11:37 pm | Permalink

    No Raven For You!: I know there are probably dark days ahead for them, and some probably won’t make it since this show kills off characters I like at an alarming rate (so long, Renly!), but the thrill of their journeys is one of the huge hooks this show has in me.
    As for the actors…
    Give Maisie Williams ALL THE AWARDS!

    I am very happy to hear the show is having the same effect to at least some of the non-readers as the books did to me! And yeah, give all the kids awards, they are all doing amazing jobs with such mature storylines. (Sorry for the late reply!)

  51. Arjun Kanuri
    Posted May 21, 2013 at 11:17 pm | Permalink

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