MGoT: Behind the scenes of the bear pit and more
By Winter Is Coming on in Filming, Media, Production.

Making Game of Thrones has had a couple of interesting updates over the past week, detailing some of the behind the scenes work that has gone into these most recent episodes. First up, this post which includes a video of the making of the bear fight scene.

The post also includes some cool storyboard art of the scene and a link to a new interview with Nikolaj Coster-Waldau about the latest episode.

And then there was Cat Taylor’s post from last week, which includes a bunch of behind-the-scene nuggets from episodes 4-6 of season 3. Here is a sample:

In Westeros, the Wall and King’s Landing are thousands of miles away from each other, but things are a little different in the real world. In Belfast, you’ll find the Wall sandwiched between the Throne Room and parts of the Red Keep, and more specifically Tywin’s new chamber, where Cersei confronts her father.

When you see Tywin writing a number of scrolls in his chamber, keep this in mind: each and every scroll, document or map that you see on screen throughout all the episodes, is accurate to the story and where we are in the series. The contents of each of the letters are directly relevant to what’s happening on screen or where we are in the series.

Winter Is Coming: Cool stuff. I’m quite blown away by the quality of the sets this season. Compare Tywin’s chamber to Ned’s chamber from season one. The difference is staggering.


67 Comments

  1. WompWomp
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 3:43 pm | Permalink

    Hodor~<3

    Knowing how much work is poured into each and every detail makes this show that much more of a trip. It really does make a difference, elevating it from a TV show to an experience. All the love that goes into the production makes it that much more effective as mindporn. :]

    I’d love to read those letters once the season is over…

  2. DjWeideman
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

    WompWomp,

    Agreed, I’m constantly amazed by the level of detail we see every week. It would be fun to see more close-ups of some of the props used, including the letters. I’d like to see Talisa’s letters written in Valyrian. That little writing stand she used was also a nice touch.

  3. WompWomp
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 3:58 pm | Permalink

    DjWeideman,

    I dunno about most people, but the learning about the real work that goes into the props makes the show that much more “real” to me. I like mentally filling in the blanks so more of my mind is invested in the reality the show is trying to create, and every hand-wrought prop, from Tywin’s letters to Jaime’s legit-forged sword, is a substantial aid in that active process.

  4. Yellow Dog
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

    NCW on Danaerys:

    “She’s going to burn thousands and thousands of people and have that self-righteous smirk on her face the whole time.”

    Nailed it. Now I understand why I hate her.

  5. Juego de Tronos
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

    Nice!

  6. caoimay
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 4:19 pm | Permalink

    Where is the Nikolai interview? on the hbo page, where do I go

  7. caoimay
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 4:23 pm | Permalink

    I keep getting a picture of dany ! Why hbo why

  8. MyBFFTheHound
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 4:53 pm | Permalink

    “The night is dark and full of Bart the Bear II”!

  9. notintheusa
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

    Anybody got a link to a version of this video that’s not region-locked?

  10. mariamb18
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

    NCW – always clever, always charming. We could not have gotten a more perfect Jaime Lannister.

  11. Darquemode
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 5:26 pm | Permalink

    Yellow Dog,

    Exactly! XD

    I always thought she was a bit tyrannical in her drive to free slaves. Slaughtering all the masters is not what I would call heroic. I had not thought of it exactly that way until NCW mentioned it.

    I always saw both sides of the Targaryen crazy/ sane coin with Daenerys personally and never understood how some think is this pure benevolent creature of justice and peace.
    It’ laughable! XD

  12. WompWomp
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 5:29 pm | Permalink

    Darquemode,

    While it’s hard to dislike her completely, part of me sees Dany as some twisted embodiment of the white man’s burden.

  13. Darquemode
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 5:47 pm | Permalink

    WompWomp,

    Ha XD
    I guess she is ina way…

    I agree though, I don’t dislike her completely either.
    I just found her arrogance annoying. I will admit however, if I had given birth to dragons I may be a little arrogant too! XD

    “Oh, so you’re child is reading full books at 4? Nice… mine is flying, breathing fire and helped me to rule the world.”

  14. WompWomp
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 7:36 pm | Permalink

    Darquemode,

    Being male, me and my ilk are resigned to “giving birth” to little more than wet shits and the occasional monster truck. Not the same ballpark, or even the same game. :(

    It’s harder for some fans to see (especially show-only fans, if I could be so bold) that she is yet another imperfect candidate for the Iron Throne. Since so much of her appeal on the show is spectacle (e.g. tree dagr0nz0rz!!1!!!1 kaleezi 4 sheezi!!!!), it’s easy to gloss over her personal failings and take her burning brood as an all-out affirmation of her righteousness.

  15. ATG
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 7:39 pm | Permalink

    Man you can see from the interviews that Nikolaj really nails down his character. And the bear scene was really fucking awesome as well.

  16. WompWomp
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 7:46 pm | Permalink

    ATG,

    Pretty sure his opinion of Dany reflects how Jaime would feel about her if he had all the details. I could totally see him earning the title of Queenslayer if he still had his sword hand.

  17. Lost nose
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 7:54 pm | Permalink

    mariamb18,

    mariamb18,

    I couldn’t agree more!

  18. Lars
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 9:39 pm | Permalink

    Darquemode:
    Yellow Dog,

    I always thought she was a bit tyrannical in her drive to free slaves. Slaughtering all the mastersis not what I would call heroic. I had not thought of it exactly that way until NCW mentioned it.

    So what would be the heroic deed, then? Asking them nicely to stop?

    I agree about her self-entitlement issues, but your comment is dangerously close to “Slavery? If if they don’t want to change why should I make them?” territory. Slavery is a real issue TODAY in OUR world, and ending it should be something that everyone should be able to agree on.

    Her drastic actions to change it does cause a fair bit of chaos, but that is inevitable, and IMO one of the most fascinating aspects of the series.

  19. MRR
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 9:53 pm | Permalink

    Nikolaj interviews are the best! It’s been clear from the beginning that he really, truly loves playing his character and feels very invested in the role, and that makes his interviews a delight to read. He’s never just giving a PR smile and nod; he speaks from the heart.

  20. WildSeed
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 10:44 pm | Permalink

    WompWomp:
    Darquemode,

    While it’s hard to dislike her completely, part of me sees Dany as some twisted embodiment of the white man’s burden.

    There’s another perspective , and not so much ” Kipling-ish ” in nature. To some,
    Danerys embodies a woman’s biological need to nurture, as well as fulfilling
    social roles to demonstrate deeds of benevolence uniquely represented by
    women, no matter the status ( sovereign or not ). Some would say her nascence
    reflects her lack of insight on the best interest of a populace and political impacts.
    Maybe it’s just instinct based on her newfound ability and warg link to her dragons.
    No doubt GRRM has created a montage( superimposed) of characteristics that defy
    any given standard. Just my opinion. *>*

    There are many straight forward examples of cultural imperialism, but I’m not
    sure Danerys fits squarely in that box.

    The only person in ASOIAF I disliked was Lysa Tully,Ramsey Biter and a
    few other irrelevant or forgettable characters.

  21. WildSeed
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 10:57 pm | Permalink

    MRR,

    He is fun to listen to. I really found his perspective on filming embarrassing sex scenes
    as rare insights in what actors must do to achieve the role or persona. He shared
    fighting back LOL or considering how foolish he must look. He’s charming
    and an old hat for the talk show circuit, PR smile and all. Too bad his GoT
    character isn’t high on my list.

  22. WildSeed
    Posted May 15, 2013 at 10:59 pm | Permalink

    WompWomp:
    Hodor~<3

    Knowing how much work is poured into each and every detail makes this show that much more of a trip. It really does make a difference, elevating it from a TV show to an experience. All the love that goes into the production makes it that much more effective as mindporn. :]

    I’d love to read those letters once the season is over…

    It’s the little things, they leave an indelible impression. These artifacts indeed help
    bring to life what readers only envisioned in their thoughts.

  23. Bean
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 2:00 am | Permalink

    Just watched the preview for episode 8.

    All those who say that the “purple” wedding isn’t going to happen this season just based on the episode subtitles are totally wrong. it’s gonna happen – it’s the natural culmination of this season.

  24. kelly
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 2:04 am | Permalink

    DjWeideman,

    Talisa’s letter in Valyrian is one of the “extras” they have for people with HBOGo. I think you can find it on SpoilerTV. It is fairly long and it would be interesting if the guy that created the language would translate it.

  25. WompWomp
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 2:05 am | Permalink

    Bean,

    I dunno. Have you read the episode summaries? Doesn’t seem likely. I’d be glad to see it reserved for S4 anyhow. Better to budget their events to fill out that season.

  26. kelly
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 2:23 am | Permalink

    Bean,

    Not sure if by subtitles you mean the episode description or actual close captioning over the preview but I am as close to certain as I can be that the only weddings we are getting this season are Sansa and Tyrion’s and the Red Wedding.
    Joffery and Margery’s wedding has to be next season both budget wise and to allow time to set up some important plot points.

  27. hargrind
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 2:48 am | Permalink

    Bean,

    It won’t. I agree that it should have been, but it won’t. Nevermind the absence of the Martells for a moment – we simply would know if a third wedding has been filmed. There were extensive set reports on this very site from the other two weddings. There is no reason to keep that one a secret (and frankly, with so many extras it would have been impossible anyway).

  28. Darquemode
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 3:43 am | Permalink

    Lars,

    No, no. It isn’t about the slavery.
    Slavery is bad, no grey area.

    Dany has killed more people this season than many knights do in a lifetime. The difference being that a knight’s kills take place between two combatants on the battle field while Dany’s kills were in cold-blood with combatants that did not even realize they were in danger, much less a battle. To me that is slaughter.

    I cannot write off her actions as something more or something different than what they are. She kills (or has others kill for her) and achieves her goals by any means necessary including subterfuge, without thinking of the aftereffects. She seems little different to me than the other candidates for the Iron Throne at this point in the story.

  29. Darquemode
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 3:48 am | Permalink

    hargrind,

    Agreed, NOTHING points towards it happening this season.
    To date there is no evidence of it occurring, no rumors from one of what would be dozens of extras on the set, leaked images… noting… nada.

    Like I said weeks ago, IF the PW happens this season it is undoubtedly the most well kept secret ever on a TV or movie set.

  30. Brendan
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 4:43 am | Permalink

    What is the ethical difference between killing people in warfare and killing them in a backstabbing deal? Reminds me of Jaime’s ironic comment to Ned: “If I stabbed him in the belly, would you respect me more?” (Something like that).

    Yeah she’s willing to do just about anything to do anything to accomplish her goals…but what makes her different than other players is her goals in the first place! Robb’s goal of avenging his dad is causing the deaths of thousands of people (not slavers, innocents). Dany’s war is no longer a personal goal to sit on the throne, she has a cause, one that might ultimately make the world a better place. If there’s one thing to learn from Martin’s story, especially Jaime’s oathbreaking, it’s the goals that really determine the morality of the action, not the methods. That’s what makes Dany the only contender I actually hope wins

    Darquemode:
    Lars,

    No, no. It isn’t about the slavery.
    Slavery is bad, no grey area.

    Dany has killed more people this season than many knights do in a lifetime. The difference being that a knight’s kills take place between two combatants on the battle field while Dany’s kills were in cold-blood with combatants that did not even realize they were in danger, much less a battle. To me that is slaughter.

    I cannot write off her actions as something more or somethingdifferent than what they are.She kills (or has others kill for her) and achieves her goals by any means necessary including subterfuge, without thinking of the aftereffects.She seems little different to me than the other candidates for the Iron Throne at this point in the story.

  31. Nagga's Kin
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 5:20 am | Permalink

    kelly:
    DjWeideman,

    Talisa’s letter in Valyrian is one of the “extras” they have for people with HBOGo. I think you can find it on SpoilerTV. It is fairly long and it would be interesting if the guy that created the language would translate it.

    Here’s that image of Talisa’s letter, allegedly to her mother. David J. Peterson, the conlanger who created Dothraki and the Valyrian dialects for HBO has promised us the original English text after the season wraps up:

    [...] I don’t think I should put it up right now. I’ll put it up when the season’s done with, but there’s been a lot of creativity amongst fans regarding Talisa, and so I think this should remain a mystery for the time being. It isn’t gibberish, though, I can assure you.

    Mr. Peterson hasn’t published a dictionary nor the grammar for his latest creation, though he has confirmed some details. Of course, this hasn’t kept cunning linguists such as The Mad Latinist from the painstaking task of reverse engineering these languages. These analyses usually lag the show by a week or so.

  32. Darquemode
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 5:51 am | Permalink

    Brendan,

    My point was just that – She is no different.
    To use your (or Jaime’s) analogy, she still stabs them.

    I see her just like every other claimant for the Iron Throne. A human with flaws and a personal code that allows her to do terrible things because she thinks she is doing the right thing.

  33. Darquemode
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 5:59 am | Permalink

    Nagga’s Kin,

    I’d be very interested in the translation of that letter!!
    In the book, I always felt Jeyne was a pawn and not necessarily in on the plan, but Talisa has always struck me as a spy. The letter writing at that time, the interjection that she I pregnant to change the subject, and other bits I cannot recall right now make me wonder…

    Either way the letter writing was a nice touch!

  34. Tessa_Leonie
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 6:29 am | Permalink

    I’ve been taking a quick look at the letter and the mad latinist transcriptions.

    Here is a line from the mad latinist :múñar “parents.” This is the nom. collective; we have already seen the gen.sing. as muño, which I translated “of mother.” Talisa’s letter begins with Munur, which is probably related to that word, so possibly meaning mother, or parents. Doesn’t mean much yet, but the letter does not open with ‘what’s up Tywin’

  35. Brendan
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 6:37 am | Permalink

    I guess the characterization of “terrible things” is my main issue, and I certainly don’t think that seeing her actions as justice is “laughable,” as you say earlier. I think it was a “hero” moment in the series. Because it was basically a slaughter, and not a combatant v combatant situation on a battlefield, you seem to think it’s actually not just/heroic (correct me if I’m wrong, I’m trying to use the same words you used so I don’t mischaracterize your argument). Therefore, no different than other players.

    I’d say (purely on this Astapor issue) she was acting justly, heroically, and differently than other players. Yes, it was slaughter, not conventional battlefield killing, but she is very different from Joffrey, Robb, Stannis in that her slaughter in cold blood will make things better for thousands of people. Just as Jaime’s backstabbing, while also in cold blood, was the right thing to do because it saved lives. Your distinction between slaughter and combat in the battlefield is why I quoted Jaime’s distinctions between stabbings. Does it matter whether it’s slaughter or battle engagement, backstabbing or frontstabbing, or who it is who you kill (slavers) and whether it will have a net good (ending slavery?) By that standard Dany is exceptional amongst the players (I think).

    Darquemode:
    Brendan,

    My point was just that – She is no different.
    To use your (or Jaime’s) analogy, she still stabs them.

    I see her just like every other claimant for the Iron Throne. A human with flaws and a personal code that allows her to do terrible things because she thinks she is doing the right thing.

  36. Abyss
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 8:33 am | Permalink

    Off-Topic:
    Steve (the guy with the GoT voices) is back.

  37. GreatJon of Slumber
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 9:33 am | Permalink

    Darquemode:
    Brendan,

    I see her just like every other claimant for the Iron Throne. A human with flaws and a personal code that allows her to do terrible things because she thinks she is doing the right thing.

    Except of course the guy holding the Iron Throne now, who is a monstrous little cretin.

  38. GreatJon of Slumber
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 9:34 am | Permalink

    Random thought on the bear pit scene. The line that sticks with me the most is Locke just as it starts:

    “Well, this is a shameful fucking performance.”

    Hilarious. Gets me every time. There’s something a bit absurd and Monty Python-esque about it. Great stuff.

  39. MRR
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 10:40 am | Permalink

    Darquemode,

    The people Dany has killed are either murderers themselves (Pyat Pree and Xaro Xhoan Daxos killed the nobles of Qarth in cold blood) or are slavers and torturers.

    “Knights” in Westeros don’t just face off in the battlefield: they rape and pillage after a battle is won.

    So, Dany sacks Astapor: The slaveowners (who torture and mutilate their slaves) are killed; the common people are unharmed.

    Any other conquest in Westeros: The heads of the house may or may not live depending on whether they’re willing to swear an oath of fealty or on how significant their crimes were; the common people are terrorized and many are slaughtered.

    How is what Dany has done anywhere near as bad as the rest?

  40. Caravaggio
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 10:43 am | Permalink

    Well! Now we know why the bear pit wasn’t featured in the most recent “Inside the Episode:” this scene was so epic it needed its own video feature!

  41. Caravaggio
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 10:56 am | Permalink

    I just read the interview. Nikolaj gave this fascinating insight into why Daenerys’s character scares him:

    “She’s going to burn thousands and thousands and thousands of people and have that self-righteous smirk on her face the whole time.”

    You just know that that is what’s going to happen the moment she lands on Westeros. The show has done a great job conveying the possibility that Daenerys could have a touch more of the Targaryen madness than she’d expect to.

  42. Ms. D. Ranged in AZ
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 10:57 am | Permalink

    Darquemode,

    Okay, by your reasoning President Lincoln and anyone who fought for the Union to end slavery was an immoral person?

    Remember that Dany has given the Yunkai a peaceful option and they refused.

  43. Ms. D. Ranged in AZ
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 11:06 am | Permalink

    Abyss,

    OMFG, that guy who does the voice impressions is hysterical!

  44. Caravaggio
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 11:09 am | Permalink

    Brendan:
    What is the ethical difference between killing people in warfare and killing them in a backstabbing deal?

    Since you brought it up, I think the best analogy is this:

    “Explain to me why it’s more honorable to kill a thousand men in battle than a dozen at dinner.”

  45. GreatJon of Slumber
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 11:31 am | Permalink

    Caravaggio:
    I just read the interview. Nikolaj gave this fascinating insight into why Daenerys’s character scares him:

    “She’s going to burn thousands and thousands and thousands of people and have that self-righteous smirk on her face the whole time.”

    You just know that that is what’s going to happen the moment she lands on Westeros. The show has done a great job conveying the possibility that Daenerys could have a touch more of the Targaryen madness than she’d expect to.

    Well said. We’re presented with a lot of different and varying options for the Iron Throne here, and there’s no telling what Danys will be like when she reaches that point, if she does. And the scene with Reznak mo blahblah really conveyed it as well.

  46. Adrian
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 11:33 am | Permalink

    Ms. D. Ranged in AZ,

    She knew full well her “peaceful option” was a non-starter. The choice between “dismantle your entire civilization because I object to slavery except when it suits me, or I’ll destroy your entire civilization” isn’t much of a choice.

  47. Darquemode
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

    Ms. D. Ranged in AZ,

    Ms. D, that is not in any way a fair comparison…
    1)It is not about moral or immoral. those terms mean different things to different people depending on what culture they’re in.
    2) What dany did was NOTHING like going o battle, she was not there to war, she was their to buy goods. Yes, that is what slaves are in e culture of Astapor.

    Here is something more realistically what Dany did….
    Her “Union Army” entered Savannah to buy cigarettes, then brainwashed the entire Confederate Army to turn on their politicians and generals and slaughter them as the were doing their daily business without saying why or giving them a choice……

    Yes, that is as bad as anything done by Stannis and the rest.

  48. Darquemode
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

    Adrian,

    Exactly, she gave them a non-choice.

    Plus, getting back I specially said “To this point of the story” meaning up to Astapor where we are in the series. So I was not taking Yunkai into consideration even honestly. If I had nothing would have changed though since like you aid, she did not give them a realistic choice.

  49. Joshua Taylor
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 12:56 pm | Permalink

    I find Julius Caesar one of the most fascinating figures of history. I admire his bravery, his military prowess and his brilliance. But the man despite how much the Optimates or “Bonii” had it coming, was a tyrant pure and simple. He showed amazing genius throughout his military conquest of Gaul and yet whilst there committed evils that were tantamount to genocide. With our moral views, the dozens of daggers that entered his body is a karmic justice for all those that suffered in his wake. Yet I still admire the man. I know that despite his intelligence, charisma and valiant demeanour he lives in a society where might means right.

    That’s how I approach the characters of ASOIAF. They are human beings, immeasurably flawed and I while in the real world I would harshly judge their actions, I can admire their pros and weigh their cons.

  50. Darquemode
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

    Brendan,

    I think each of the people vying for the Iron Throne use their particular skillset. They all go about it in ways that reflect who they are, but I do not think any approach is “better” than the others. Outside of Joffrey, each leader thinks they are doing the right thing, for the right reasons.

    I don’t give Dany bonus points because I can agree with one of her motivations. Her actions result in as much death and destruction as anyone else’s….

  51. Ms. D. Ranged in AZ
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 1:18 pm | Permalink

    Adrian,
    Granted the choice wasn’t a good one nor one they were likely to accept but in Westeros does anyone else give choices to their victims, unrealistic or not? Seems to me those that are openly vying for the Throne do as they please and if the common people suffer, “oh well”. It’s also important to distinguish those who are consciously vying for the throne, like Dany, versus those who aren’t like Jaime or Jon (e.g., Jon isn’t vying for the throne but we as fans put him in the running anyway, nevertheless we can’t ascribe our desires for him to be on the throne the same as his intention to be there and therefore can’t judge him by our intentions for him).

    I’m just pushing back against some who are saying that Dany is just as evil as the others who are openly vying for the Iron Throne. Compare their intentions AND the means. Varys wants peace and order but he’ll destroy anyone or let someone be destroyed (e.g., Ned) if that means his goal will be met, innocent or not. Dany doesn’t purposely destroy innocents and she feels horribly guilty when the innocent do suffer as a result of her trying to do the right thing. In any position of power, there is no way to affect the course of history and affect thousands of people without hurting someone. It’s simply impossible. So we can pretend that GRRM doesn’t underestand that (although we know he does) and say Dany’s just as bad as everyone else because innocents get hurt in spite of her good intentions. Or we can recognize the reality that sometimes the ONLY way to distinguish between good and evil is to look at their intentions, how they try to minimize the damage to the innocent before, during and after, how they react to learning about the negative consequences of their actions (i.e., guilt, apologies, amends,etc).

    D.B. Weiss confirms in the latest “Inside the Episode” that Dany wants to good with the power she has based on her empathy for slaves. Tell me of one other character who is openly vying for the throne that 1) has a similarly noble intention and 2) who willingly embraces that goal without having to be forced to it. You can’t use Jaime because with the Mad King he was put between a rock and a hard place and he ended up doing the right thing for the greatest number of people. But if he had embraced that goal to begin with, he would have killed the Mad King a whole lot sooner and not at the last minute when forced. Same with Jon….his situation is a forced moral choice. I think Jon will grow and change to eventually embrace the same kind of goal as Dany but for now, he’s stuck in what I like to call a “Jaime Conundrum” by the course of events.

    And final question about your statement:

    because I object to slavery except when it suits me

    Early on she accepted slaves to her retinue because circumstances forced a moral choice on her (like Jon and Jaime), she was in no position to free them and doing so would have been ineffectual anyway because she had no real power. She had to either take them on and protect them or let them be used/raped/killed/mistreated by others. [Added on edit: If at the time she had let those slaves go and not kept them, I'm sure the slaves would not have thanked her for acting ethically by refusing their service. Her morality would have come at their sacrifice. She took on the moral hazard of owning slaves to serve a greater good, keeping them safe until she was able to set them free. And her thinking on this was pretty clear both in the books and in the show. Again it comes down to intentions. Being moral for the sake of being moral regardless of consequence is what Stannis does and one can successfully argue that this kind of behavior, in the end, is unethical.]

    She’s moved beyond that now. She’s freeing them because now she can and she feels she should. Seems to me her growth in this area is only further proof of her morality, not proof against it.

  52. Deekan
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 1:22 pm | Permalink

    It’s videos like this that piss me off that some people just can’t respect what an amazing job they are doing, not in making it an amazing adaption but an amazing show that stands up on its own, and not riddled with plot-holes that plague most other adapted film series.

  53. fan in AZ
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 1:40 pm | Permalink

    I found this link when researching Bart the Bear. Looks like this bear is Little Bart, as the original Bart died back in 2000. What I found interesting is that they said the actors filmed in Ireland and the bear stuff was in LA and that the two never were together! The bear scenes were put into the actor scenes later! I don’t get it????

    http://gameofthrones.wikia.com/wiki/Little_Bart

  54. Ms. D. Ranged in AZ
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 1:42 pm | Permalink

    Darquemode,

    I don’t give Dany bonus points because I can agree with one of her motivations. Her actions result in as much death and destruction as anyone else’s….

    But do we judge the ethics of someone’s behavior ONLY by the negative consequences? Don’t people get credit for the good consequences? Using your logic, no one could ever be truly “good” in the history of our world or in the history of GRRM’s world. No one, no matter how powerful, acts in a vacuum and ONLY ever has good outcomes.

    MLK Jr encouraged passive resistance and many people followed his lead. They were hurt during sit ins doing exactly what he advocated. Does that make what MLK a bad person because there were bad consequences? Pres. Lincoln by signing the Emancipation Proclamation encouraged slaves to attempt escape to the North to obtain that freedom. Is Lincoln to be blamed for those slaves that did try to escape but were caught, whipped and/or killed? Does that make Pres. Lincoln an unethical person? After all, these were foreseen consequences.

  55. Ms. D. Ranged in AZ
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 1:44 pm | Permalink

    fan in AZ,
    Actually, I thought I read or heard that the actors were specially flown to LA to do some scenes with the bear or at least in the bear pit that was constructed in CA.

  56. fan in AZ
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

    Ms. D. Ranged in AZ,

    Well the info. about the actors flying to LA to film the bear scene was mentioned in the link to Nikolaj’s interview above (under the video capture). Maybe what I read over in the link I posted was the original plans and they later decided to fly the actors over instead of using CGI?

  57. Ms. D. Ranged in AZ
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

    fan in AZ,

    I see what you mean. Maybe they took a look at the integrated film of the footage with the trainer in LA with the footage of the actors in Ireland and decided it wasn’t enough and/or wasn’t good enough. I also read somewhere else that they did struggle with this scene quite a bit, so perhaps there was some second guessing and changes in plans…….would be a good question for our “show sources”.

  58. Darquemode
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 2:29 pm | Permalink

    Ms. D. Ranged in AZ,

    Dany is not a civil rights activist! XD
    Unless she decides she does not want the Iron Throne or her army, and decides to stay in Essos and end slavery. Then that would be a civil rights movement.

    As it I now, she is a warlord who kills slavers and sets free slaves because he knows the freed slaves will join her cause. IF all of them stated leaving her army do you honestly think she would be okay with it? This is about her gaining an army first, and being able to free slaves in the process second. If it came down to one or the other which do you think she would chose? I know what I think she would do!

    There are no strictly “good” people who want to rule in GRRM’s world and that is his very point I think. The all do bad things. Okay, some do worse, but Dany does not get a pass because her intentions are good is she is doing those bad things. It does not change atrocities to actions of a savior. The innocents in Astapor are still dead.

  59. KG
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

    Did any of you notice the GoT reference in VEEP the other night?

    She’s told that a blogger called the Khaleesi from DC

  60. Joshua Taylor
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 2:38 pm | Permalink

    Darquemode,

    What innocents in Astapor? They were slavers.

  61. Chris
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 3:27 pm | Permalink

    A bear there was, a bear a bear.
    All black and brown and covered with hair.
    But 4000 miles from the maiden fair.
    “We need a bear,” they did declare.
    “This distant bear, he will not scare!
    And fly him here, we do not dare.”
    “So write him out. No one will care.
    Just skip the fight. Don’t make them stare.”
    “No, we cannot! This twist is rare
    and loved. Brienne MUST fight the bear.”
    “Special effects this scene will spare.
    Use green-screen tricks to make it square.”
    And thus the bear was beamed-in there.
    Across the ocean, through the air.
    So now, book lovers, don’t despair.
    The tale of the bear and the maiden fair.
    Survives.

  62. Juego de Tronos
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

    Nice to see the behind the scenes videos

  63. Ms. D. Ranged in AZ
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

    Darquemode,
    I never claimed Dany was a civil rights activist. I was simply giving you examples of good people who did good things that sometimes had bad consequences. Those were the first two people who came to mind.

    In regards to Dany’s motivation……there is nothing in the show to indicate that she is only freeing them so they will join her army. Indeed she told the Unsullied that they were all free to go but they chose to stay. In the books many of the freed people who weren’t soldiers before followed her army and she didn’t actually want that. She wanted to them to be truly free and make their own way in the world. Instead many trailed behind her army trying to get food and other things. That alone is proof that she didn’t free them just so they would follow her.

    And again, I refer to D.B. Weiss in the latest “Inside the Ep”, he says:

    She’s always been negatively predisposed to slavery because she knows what it feels like to be property. I mean, she was a very fancy slave, for all intents and purposes. She was somebody who was sold to another man in marriage, taken against her will and I think that her feelings about slavery have started to really inform her reasons for wanting the Iron Throne. It’s finally started to occur to her that if I want to take on this responsibility it’s almost incumbent upon me to do something with it and she sees this great wrong, probably the greatest possible wrong, surrounding her. And she has decided that she’s not just going to take back the Iron Throne because it’s her right, she’s going to take back the Iron Throne because she is the person to make the world a better place than it is. And she’s not going to take it, she’s going to use it for something greater than herself.

    So, you can keep believing what you do, of course, but I think I’ll go with what the person who is writing the character’s role has to say about it. And if what D.B says is true, she is better than the other throne contenders. Perfect? No, but better? Yes.

  64. Brendan
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 5:37 pm | Permalink

    Caravaggio,

    That’s the perfect example. That character, honestly, is absolutely right.

  65. Nagga's Kin
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 5:46 pm | Permalink

    Tessa_Leonie:
    I’ve been taking a quick look at the letter and the mad latinist transcriptions.

    Here is a line from the mad latinist :múñar “parents.” This is the nom. collective; we have already seen the gen.sing. as muño, which I translated “of mother.” Talisa’s letter begins with Munur, which is probably related to that word, so possibly meaning mother, or parents. Doesn’t mean much yet, but the letter does not open with ‘what’s up Tywin’

    The salutation as such doesn’t prove anything either way. A spy would not rely on just using a foreign language, but on code words, phrases or patterns arranged a priori in that language. These would usually be embedded in innocuous text.

  66. Brendan
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

    Darquemode,

    I think the real debate here is “Approaches vs Intentions.” Your reasons for not liking Dany’s Astapor actions seem to be that she killed them in cold blood, not in a combat situation. That’s what I’m inferring from your distinction between how a knight kills and how she killed, calling what she did slaughter. I really don’t think that matters. I think we have several examples in the books of actions that are socially unacceptable for Westeros, like breaking an oath to the King, but when you look at the intentions of the actions, we discover they are actually morally neutral, or maybe even good things to do. I’d say Jaime is the strongest and most obvious example of this. Unless you can explain how what he did was less in cold blood…or how the slavers of Astapor didn’t get what they had coming to them…or how Jaime’s actions were actually bad…I don’t see how we can similarly think it was wrong of Dany to have the slavers killed. I don’t think you can ignore that what she is doing is in the service of freeing slaves, you have to look at the intentions of an action if you’re really going to evaluate whether what she did was wrong.

    Sorry, I’m long-winded.

  67. springwillcome
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 6:48 pm | Permalink

    Darquemode: Dany has killed more people this season than many knights do in a lifetime. The difference being that a knight’s kills take place between two combatants on the battle field while Dany’s kills were in cold-blood with combatants that did not even realize they were in danger, much less a battle. To me that is slaughter.

    Quite an interesting parallel to modern weapons /warfare here ., I think .. .(and a door wide open to a discussion of whether the best of intentions will always justify the means you employ to get there….).
    Right now, I think, Dany did what she had to do (I find it a bit disconcerting though that she doesn’t really seem to mind the violence…,.especially as she will have the means to kill thousands of people without putting herself or her army in any real danger soon.)
    It is going to be very interesting whether Dany will stay true to her original intentions as there are quite a few people who started out with the best of intentions and then lost sight of them while struggling for power …..


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