Recap

Episode 30 – Mhysa – Recap

Daenerys

That’s it for season three. Head after the break for my thoughts on the finale and then discuss it in the comments!

Spoiler Note: This post is for those who have read A Storm of Swords. As such the post itself and the comments will contain spoilers. If you haven’t read ASoS yet, you can discuss this episode in our non-book reader recap, coming tomorrow. Thanks!

The episode opens on Roose Bolton observing the carnage at the Twins. The Freys are slaughter and burning Stark men left and right. They trot out the lifeless corpse of Robb Stark, only with Grey Wind’s head crudely attached to the body. Arya locks eyes on the grisly sight, before the Hound spurs his horse on and rides away. Later, Roose and Walder Frey discuss their “victory”.

What I Liked

Sam meets Bran – The north of the Wall storylines have been clashing quite a bit recently. I liked seeing Sam meet up with Bran and Hodor. Although it would have been a huge deviation from the book, I almost wish that Bran had gone to Castle Black with Sam. As it is, we get only the briefest of colliding of storylines and then it is back to scattered Starks.
Rat Cook – It’s always cool whenever we get these really deep lore stories into the show. I especially loved the way it cut from this to Walder Frey.
Season One Throwback – Going back to Castle Black and seeing Pyp and Maester Aemon for the first time since season one was fun.
Season Two Throwback – And look, it’s Yara and Balon! And Yara is going to rescue Theon? Interesting…
Arya’s First Kill – As Bryan Cogman promised, Arya’s character arc has been slowed down but it remains mostly in tact. And I rather liked this being her first kill, one done out of vengeance for her brother and mother, as opposed to just killing a random Harrenhal guard in her escape from the castle. And reminding viewers of Jaqen with the coin and the playing of his theme at the end? Brilliant.
Dragonstone – The stuff in Dragonstone was really good. Liam Cunningham, Stephen Dillane and Carice van Houten continue to do some great work. The scenes between Davos and Gendry were funny and heart-warming. The final scene was also beautiful and epic, the way it was lit. (Did the War for the Dawn come to mind for any one else?) I’m so pumped for what is to come with this story, especially since it seems like they are following the book pretty closely.

What I Didn’t Like

No Creepy Nightfort Door – It’s a little thing, but I always loved the creepy Nightfort door that Bran has to pass through. It really adds to the whole mystical feel that his storyline continues to delve into.
No Coldhands – As does Coldhands, who doesn’t make an appearance this season. The good news is we didn’t actually see Bran and Co. make it beyond the Wall, where CH would be waiting for him. So fingers crossed he appears in season 4.
No Lady Stoneheart!?! – I am completely befuddled that they didn’t end the season with this. It was set up so perfectly. And it would have fit with the other season ending scenes that they have done, both epic and supernatural. As it was, we got a happy scene of Dany with the freed slaves. Ok, that was nice. I guess. But this is Game of Thrones and I feel like they really need to end it on an “Oh shit!” moment. I was so convinced they were going to show it, even the credits rolling didn’t deter me. I was like, “Oh, it’s going to a post-credit scene. This is going to aweso— wait, what? A True Blood trailer? NO!”

All in all, a great season but I was left a little wanting with this finale. Definitely the weakest of the three finales. Some slow-moving scenes, especially in King’s Landing, and the lack of a really strong ending scene really let me down. The one thing that is keeping me excited, in spite of this lackluster finale? Season 4 is going to be epic!

808 Comments

  • Hodor!

    Great episode!

    So many nice call-backs to small moments that haven’t made it from the books yet, or from earlier scenes in the show. The bit with Arya dropping the coin, Tywin telling Tyrion ‘Not you.’

    Lots of stuff to digest, I can tell this episode is going to generate a lot of discussion. Glad the season didn’t end on a certain scene that a lot of people were expecting – would have been way too soon for that.

    Seems like we have a little pattern going of season endings: S1 – Fire, S2 – Ice, S3 – Fire. Will be interesting to see how S4 ends :)

    Beautifully shot episode as well – the Painted Table with the sun (fire?) hitting it, Bran & Co. heading through the wall, Mysha.

    A bit disappointed at seeing all the negativity in the other thread – people really need to take a step back, stop focusing on the little details, and just be thankful were seeing one of our favorite book series on TV.

    Congratulations to D&D on a fantastic season of TV. This is truly one of the best adaptations of all time, and easily my favorite show!

    Can’t wait til next year :)

  • I loved Joffrey being a little brat, as usual. I loved Shae/Varys, and Shae’s absolute loyalty to Sansa in a time where everyone just wants to shit on everyone else. I loved Yara’s scene, which was a PERFECT way to set her up as a main POV character. I loved Davos reading (adorable!) and rescuing Gendry. I could watch a whole show based solely on the Hound and Arya.

    I loved everything, except —

    Well, I think D&D have been reading Fifty Shades of Grey, because those last five minutes were some serious practice in orgasm denial.

  • Disappointed with no Lady Stoneheart. Honestly getting worried even though Michelle has been fairly coy in interviews. I like the episode alright. It wasn’t a let down but it wasn’t amazing.

  • I really enjoyed the finale. I missed the tail-end of the last Stannis scene because my PVR automatically switched to Mythbusters and I yelled and jumped up but other than that, yeah, enjoyed it a lot.

    I really like the fact that they had Sansa start to warm to Tyrion a bit early in the episode, only to have that sort-of ripped away after the news of the Wedding reaches the city. Bit of a more interesting Dynamic than having them always be unable to find common ground with each other.

    Also, so glad they got the Arya with the coin kill in, as well as the Davos/Stannis “What’s one boy against a realm” bit in. Those were some of my favourite parts reading the books, and I was a bit sad when they weren’t included in their original spots. Glad they eventually made it in! I also imagine a lot of new viewers were suddenly very scared for Jon after Ygritte let that first arrow fly!

  • They did their job right if they left you wanting more.

    I think they should have somehow shown the Freys dumping Catelyn’s body into the river though.. otherwise it may be a little sudden/random for Beric and company to find her washed up on shore (unless they change that, of course).

    Anyways.. people are going to be disappointed no matter what, ESPECIALLY after an episode like the Red Wedding.

  • So glad they did NOT include LS. That can be left for season 4, in my opinion. Otherwise we would have had at least an entire season and a half of her walking around murdering Freys and getting absolutely nothing done plotwise.

  • Andrew,

    Was I the only one who was 3 arrows sticking out of Jon and thought ‘Like half-brother, like father, like son…

  • I thought this was a really good episode, however the ending would have been better had it come with the Daenarys stuff from the previous episode.

    So glad we got some stuff with Balon and Yara.

  • I know I’m in the minority, but I’m glad we didn’t get Stoneheart tonight. I think it would have been too soon.

  • Jamie showing up before 2 certain and major deaths was a horrible move. It’s a blatant excuse to give him more screen time that he should NOT have in season 4. I’ve stomached plenty of pointless changes but I won’t put up with this.

  • I don’t understand why all book readers are disappointed there was no Lady Stoneheart, what purpose would showing her at the end of this season serve? NONE. She has only so far made extremely few brief appearances in the books, showing that scene this early would be worse from a story telling standpoint. Those of us of who have read the books have to remember they are adapting the series as a whole, and not individual books. Stoneheart will appear when it makes sense for the show, get over it.

  • So happy with the finale.
    Just a nice, warm, relaxing episode to tie up the loose ends and set things up for next season
    And that last scene with Dany made me tear up a bit!
    This was such a perfect season for her!

    So much awesome character development and a great way to end after tearing everyone’s guts out last season. But that Jon Ygritte scene……..(Kit really can’t cry well….)

  • I loved no Stoneheart so much. “Sad about last week? Here’s a cookie.” NOPE. Lettin’ it fester.

  • Oh, and THANK GOD there was no lady stoneheart…
    It would’ve lost its impact if it was right after the Red Wedding. Like the books, let people think shes dead for a while, then hit them with the bombshell!

  • Harrenhal guard wasn’t even Arya’s first kill (even if you don’t count the stableboy). She killed some guys at the place where Yoren died IIRC.

    Good, but not great.

    Things I thought were disappointing:

    – Final scene felt cheesy (even though I’m glad they saved Uncat for season 4)
    – Same goes for Jon – Ygritte. Should have just let her shoot him in the previous episode. Jon’s storyline overall was disappointing again this season imo.
    – Sansa – Tyrion. Dafuq? Not sure about Varys – Shae, but we’ll see
    – Greyjoys was interesting. Could be a good or a bad change, depending on how they play it.

    The rest was great, especially HOOODOOOOR.

  • This was a real “we shot our wad in episode 9 and are just running out the clock” effort by D&D. And not just because of the lack of a big reveal. It because of what was put in place of a big reveal.

    No Balon death. Replaced with dick in a box and Ramsay making dick jokes with a sausage.
    No Stoneheart or Nymeria with the body. Replaced with boring Walder Frey victory lap and Bolton’s Winterfell This New House dreams.
    No Coldhands. Replaced with dumb Ygritte scene. How come Tormund didn’t catch up to Jon too? Does Ygritte have magic legs like Lt. Dan?
    Plus extra Tywin stuff encouraging his son to rape a girl. Yay! And more Shae nonsense, just what we needed.
    And amazingly, Robbwind looked better in the photo than on the show. The photo made you thing they were march him creepily through the camp, instead we get giant head jerking around like clown bop bag.

    The awfulness knows no bounds. Worse GoT episode ever. Maybe that was the goal, so the boring Feast stuff seems interesting by comparison?

  • I can’t wrap my mind around how many people expected to see LS in the finale. Red Wedding JUST happened; we need some time to pass in order to have the LS have any real emotional (WTF) impact.

  • I’m honestly surprised at some of the stuff people were expecting from the finale. Stoneheart, Braavos, Purple Wedding? It’s not like it was a secret that ASoS was being split in two.

  • Dropped the ball Majorly not having stoneheart. Audience needed a glimmer of hope for the Starks and a kickass end. I’m baffled at her exclusion. Seemed so perfectly queued up. Dumb dumb dumb.

  • totally agree wic… I was anxiously waiting for lady stoneheart… I mean the episode is titled MHYSA FOR CRYING OUT LOUD!!!

    I think the missed the mark there as it would have given some unanswered questions especially for the unsullied…… and that OMG finale moment we are accustomed too……

    I did love the davos moments…. everything was well set up for next season there….

    Interested to see how the jaimie thing will play out….

    Feeling: anticlimatic…

  • Miss Lady Stoneheart but there was just not enough time for everything, if they had eliminated the Tyrion/Cersei scene and trimmed the Tywin/Tyrion scene we could have gottrn it in

  • Horrible episode. Finales are supposed to promise good things to come for the next season, but this one didn’t really set up ground for anything. How do they expect to keep new viewers watching with such an underwhelming finale?

  • Maybe stoneheart will open season 4?

    MISSING from this season:

    Julian Glover mentioned a one o. One scene where Tywins puts him in his place

    Reported scenes filmed at the eyrie with Lysa and Littlefinger.

  • I’ve been telling people this for months! What was wrong with Stonehearts intro in the books.

    Have word of a mysterious woman, hanging Freys, ect. all through season four, then end it with a dramatic reveal at the end of the season.

    All of the buildup and suspense in the epilogue worked perfectly in the books, who not the show?

  • It was a good season finale but not great

    LOVED
    *Daenerys in her moment. I don’t know ppl found it cheesy at all
    *Arya’s first kill. I’ve been waiting for this
    *Sam meeting Bran. It was such a great moment
    *Ygritte shooting Jon then getting all emotional
    *Joeffrey getting put in his place again by Tywin and Tyrion
    *Greywind’s head on Robb Stark was brutal

    LIKED
    *The Tyrion and Sansa & Tyrion and Cersei dialogue
    *All of Dragonstone and the new focus on the Wall
    *Yara sailing to go get Theon

    DIDN’T LIKE
    *Shae and Varys
    *Where the hell is Margaery?
    *Cersei reuniting with Jaime. I wanted way more emotional impact!

    Overall good episode but for a finale expected more. I don’t like they should have revealed certain things like others do but they should have found something that gave the episode a wow factor.

  • Great set up for the next season. Yara’s scene amped me up. I love that girl and i’m not a greyjoy fan. Her I really like and good for her .. going after her lil bro.

    The last dany scene was gorgeous. Although I would have freaked the F out is dragon wings were flapping about my head.

    Arya.. the coin.. THE MUSIC! I want Jaqen back!

    Davos is the man. Where will Gendry end up??? I hope he ends up with arya or brienne. Wherever he ends up it better be along the stark story line.

    Joffrey dissing Tywin! I was like.. daamn.. u could crickets in my living room. We couldn’t believe he smack talked grampa like that.

  • For anyone saying “but Stoneheart is at the end of the book” all I have to say is Jamie is back before the PW so LS could have been moved too. And seeing as how this season ended with a lame crowd surfing scene, it probably should have.

    Yes we had to wait for LS at the end of the epilogue. But it didn’t take us over 10 months to read the last third of the book. Now if LS is pushed to the end of season 4 it will lose its luster. A whole year for a tiny crumb of revenge? Pfff. Too long a wait, added on top of a horrid season finale.

  • Was a fantastic episode up until Danny’s scene. It looked so incredibly cheesy and forced.

    LS would’ve knocked it out of the park for both unsullied and sullied alike.

  • I totally missed seeing the creepy Nightfort door… that thing always intrigued me in the books. There was never any explanation of why it was there or how Sam knew how to open it, but would have still made a good scene in the show.

  • Episode was EXACTLY what I feared it would be. Ho hum. Would have made a great season premiere but as a finale it falls very flat.

    And what are you people talking about, she killed the boy outside Kings Landing. So I don’t get that either.

  • It was a fantastic episode up until Danny’s scene. It looked so incredibly cheesy and forced.

    LS would’ve knocked it out of the park for both unsullied and sullied alike.

  • I would have liked Dany’s scene more, for the record, if those extras had been coached differently. It came off cheesy for me, personally, because they definitely looked and sounded like they were taking a cue from someone off screen (“Okay, now start mhysaing!”) rather than getting into their roles.

    You’ve just been liberated, for Chrissake, kiddies. You’ve just randomly been liberated by a fucking magical woman and her fucking three magical dragons. It’s like a goddamn storybook. You did nothing and this lady literally came in and saved you for no reason other than it’s the right thing to do. And she doesn’t expect you to ever repay her. Act like it.

  • It was a fantastic episode up until Danny’s scene. It looked so incredibly cheesy and forced.

    The “other Mhysa” would’ve knocked it out of the park for both unsullied and sullied alike.

  • Also, after episode 9 consumed pop culture all week, consumed the media, trended on Twitter for days, tonight nothing is trending. Just another sign of the massive WTF going through most fans’ minds. Awful episode. Worst of the series. So bad it makes you miss Ros.

  • Braavos??? Are people really complaining we did not get Braavos in the finale of season 3, which is half way through Storm of Swords? Did we read the same books??

  • Not watched the episode yet but pretty stunned (and disappointed) by no Lady Stoneheart. Really thought:

    1. Title of the episode being ‘Mhysa’ meaning mother
    2. Robb’s last words being ‘mother’
    3. The theme of ending the season on a supernatural note
    4. Richard Dormer, who plays Beric saying he appeared in 5 episodes
    5. The need for a big scene to end the season
    6. The extensive talk about resurrection throughout the season

    Would all lead to the big reveal. Guess I was wrong.

  • That scene of Davos and Mel talking over Stannis’ shoulder really reminded me of the scene in the pilot with Maester Luwin and Cat talking over Ned’s shoulder.

    Little things like that are why I just love this show.

  • Whit:
    I know I’m in the minority, but I’m glad we didn’t get Stoneheart tonight. I think it would have been too soon.

    I agree. as a reader we didn’t see this reveal until the epilogue of ASoS if I recall.

  • Gerr:
    Horrible episode. Finales are supposed to promise good things to come for the next season, but this one didn’t really set up ground for anything. How do they expect to keep new viewers watching with such an underwhelming finale?

    What good things does this finale promise? Based solely on what was in the finale, we have Yara trying to rescue Theon, the reaction of everyone else in King’s Landing to Jaime’s return, what Dany does after liberating all the slaves in a city for the second time, what hijinks do Arya and the Hound get up to, and everything in the North. Lot’s of things got tied up yes, but I don’t see how the finale doesn’t create some interest in what happens next.

  • Ned’s Head:
    Also, after episode 9 consumed pop culture all week, consumed the media, trended on Twitter for days, tonight nothing is trending. Just another sign of the massive WTF going through most fans’ minds. Awful episode. Worst of the series. So bad it makes you miss Ros.

    Come on, dude. Chill.
    Being separated from your body is making you cranky.

  • My favorite scenes:

    Arya’s first intentional murder. Oh my god. Especially coming after seeing RobbWind paraded around. Maisie, Rory: Love you guys. Stick together for awhile huh?
    The Roose is loose! God, watching him not pretending any longer. I think they cast the perfect guy. His performance over the years was so understated, so believable, and yet so consistently creepy and off-putting and I’ve loved it.
    Ramsay/Reek: I’m sure people will say this wasn’t enough to make up for the brutality of previous episodes and maybe they’re right. But Iwan Rheon has me pumped for potential season four material with the two of them, and I hope we get to see Roose and Ramsay together before too long.
    THE NIGHTFORT, GUYS: And Bran told the Rat Cook story and tied it into the Guest Right with the Freys, it worked perfectly.

    This ties into: Pyke. Have always loved Yara. And I’m so glad Balon’s still around for scenes like that. What a douche, he’s fantastic.

    Could have been better: Dany. I liked that the scene was so subdued, but maybe it would have been better served moving the episode 9 material into this episode and giving a few more minutes to the wedding, because this finale lacked punch with just the one scene.
    Jon/Ygritte: I’m afraid I’m never going to come around on these two. So I’m biased, I’m not the guy to talk about them. Jon’s gotten better this season but still.

  • Here’s a good way to spin what just happened:

    Game of Thrones with an epic, amazing season finale. (I’m assuming Episode 9 was the finale and Episode 10 never happened)

  • I thought it was a decent finale. As some people are saying I was glad there was no Stoneheart and not surprised that Coldhands was probably pushed later. Not surprised at ALL that the purple wedding didn’t happen. I AM surprised at the changes to the Greyjoy storyline. I like the Asha/Yara “Eff you Dad” BAMF move though.

    Arya takes one more step closer to the edge… I can’t remember. Did she see GreyRobb in the books?

  • Ned’s Head:
    Also, after episode 9 consumed pop culture all week, consumed the media, trended on Twitter for days, tonight nothing is trending. Just another sign of the massive WTF going through most fans’ minds. Awful episode. Worst of the series. So bad it makes you miss Ros.

    Keep repeating it, just as you copied and pasted your childish”review” from open chat to this one that was a shallow read the first time. It’s “most fans” eh. You didn’t get a couple things you wanted early and the episode sucked completely. /sigh

  • No black gate is the most disappointing thing of the final…it’s not a little thing…it’s confirmation that the Wall was built through the power of the old gods and the Night Watch are the True defenders against the Others…I’m pissed

  • The Daenerys scene really gave my gag reflex a good workout. How I despise that character. I don’t like how they’re trying to shove Tyrion and Daenerys down our throats.

  • Family, Duty, Hodor,

    …When you put it like that, it does seem kind-of odd. Add to that the fact that Dany’s scene fell flat — rewatching it now, it seriously feels like something should come after it — and that many other scenes have been cut this season, and you have to wonder if they sliced it for time. (Or whatever other motive they might have.)

    But that’s pure conjecture on my part.

  • When will they reveal Uncat in season 4? I don’t think it can wait till the end, it will feel like too much time has passed.

    It seems clear that Michelle Fairley is likely moving on, so it would be strange to just have that big reveal mid season and that be it.

  • Anguissette1979:
    Arya takes one more step closer to the edge… I can’t remember. Did she see GreyRobb in the books?

    Nope. But I thought it was a nice touch.

  • Bryon: I agree.as a reader we didn’t see this reveal until the epilogue of ASoS if I recall.

    I think the idea was that they HAD to end Season 3 with an epic scene. And Catelyn’s resurrection would have been epic, and book canon too. We couldn’t really think of another scene with that much epic in it.

    It was never ideal showing it one episode after the RW but I thought the positives far outweighed the negatives. Certainly if the show wants to maintain its viewing figures.

  • Azad Injejikian:
    Maybe stoneheart will open season 4?

    MISSING from this season:

    Julian Glover mentioned a one o. One scene where Tywins puts him in his place

    Reported scenes filmed at the eyrie with Lysa and Littlefinger.

    Also we were supposed to get a scene with Mance, with Tormund and Ygritte telling him about what happened.

  • Who cares about LS, PW should have been the season finale! I’ve been saying it for months. Then we would have had an amazing season instead of just a good one. There was so much buzz and hype after the RW it’s a shame to go out with such a whimper, imagine peoples reactions if the PW was the season finale.

  • So how does Sam knowing that Bran is alive change things? Seems like a huge change that has flown under the radar.

  • I thought it was a pretty strong ending overall. The Young Wolf scene was pretty hardcore — and I was glad they included it, actually. Give the Northmen something to remember. It’s one thing to kill their king, but it’s another thing entirely to desecrate the body.

    As for Stoneheart [I’m assuming spoiler tags aren’t needed since it’s in the recap] — I had a feeling we weren’t going to see her when they kept acting like Catelyn was really dead, and off the show. That would seem to imply they’re going to make her introduction next season a “mystery”. But I hope that’s not the case. Because, the Arya-warg scene is pretty intense. And, personally, I think that would’ve been a great way to end the season — the viewers find out that Arya’s a warg too. I would’ve done the entire scene through the wolf dream (i.e. pull Catelyn from the water — watch Beric resurrect her — lead people on to think it was Bran in the wolf — and show Arya wake up instead of Bran).

    But, overall I thought it was a pretty strong episode. Loved the “Rat King” scene with Bran. Yeah, the door would’ve been cool (but whenever they use special fx like that, they run the risk of coming off too schlocky). And it would’ve been nice to meet Coldhands, but I suspect we’ll see him in E1 next year.

    And, yes, it was pretty great seeing Aemon again (notice, he failed to mention Uncle Bloodraven? We didn’t get an, “Oh no, Sam, it’s cool. Uncle Bloodraven’s the Last Greenseer. He’s got it all under control. Nothing to worry about here. Gilly will be fine on the Other side of the Wall”). Hmm. Seems a little fishy to me, especially since Jojen seems so confident the Three-Eyed Crow will be the answer to all of their problems. Joke’s on him, I guess

    And, can someone please explain — if Melisandre’s going to the Wall because the “dead march on it” why do they end up fighting the wildlings — i.e. the only people in Westeros who know anything at all about the threat the White Walkers pose?. Hmm… I wonder what this “Lord of Light” is really all about? I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

    But a great season overall. Lot’s of stuff happening.

    On a side note: I always love watching the Hound fight. Rory McCann is insane. I get the feeling he could really cut a dude in half if he wanted to. A man amongst babies… little, tiny babies.

  • This episode really is just what D&D always admitted: they wanted to do the Red Wedding and after that its just meh. Perhaps they have come to terms with the awfulness of Feast and Dance and realize episode 9 was their moment, and that the show will likely fizzle out sometime between the reveal of the 39 Greyjoy POV characters and the oh so amazing High Sparrow.

  • Why are people so sure that we will even see LS on the show? Do you really think Michelle Fairley will want to play a nonspeaking zombie role with only a couple scenes a season?

  • Shaun Brady,

    Yeah, I was wondering about that, but I couldn’t remember if it was in the books or not, so I didn’t say anything. I don’t mind the change, however. I just don’t think Jon’s going to take “Oh P.S. we let your tiny crippled brother with blossoming self-esteem issues head off to follow a magical hallucination nbd” very lightly. And Sam doesn’t seem like the type who would keep it under wraps to save getting yelled at — nor Gilly.

  • To the people saying Lady StoneHeart should be next season – wrong! This is how I thought it should play out. Last scene is her revival. THEN remember how we only heard about the Brotherhood without Banners in season 2, well next season we only hear about Lady Stoneheart and the brotherhood, people can run into dead Freys hanging from trees, other rumors, you didn’t have to show the character for a season. Just rumors of her. Call it the Stark curse whatever. Also she is gonna be cloaked (which is why Fairley is done) they can get anyone to stand there and point with a scarf on.

    I think think they dropped the ball BIG TIME with that blah finale.

  • How many episodes in this season based on the best book have to be so slow and noneventful?!?!?

    SLOW!!!!

    Jesus, season 1 will always be the best; these fools need help. Stat.

  • Fans,

    Don’t mind if I do. It was awful in every sense, not only for what could have been included but for what was included.

    You might think Ramsay playing with a sausage measures up to Dragons and White Walkers, but I think its pretty lame ass. This episode was an F-, the fact that Cyndi Lauper is trending worldwide but nothing GoT related is tells you what folks think of this finale.

  • i too was hoping for Stoneheart, even after the credits. mostly because Dany’s ending felt kinda cheap and cheesy. they should’ve stuck with book for that scene. when Dany casually rides past the freed slaves, and they shout Mhysa, and Missandei telling its ghiscari for mother.that moment was so great in the books rather than Dany deliberately marching to be touched and carried. overall, it was a good episode, i felt like this was the weakest season finale.

  • In the book, Bran made Sam swear not to tell Jon about him going north of the wall. That didn’t happen in the episode tonight, did it? Wouldn’t Sam tell Jon as soon as he could. Isn’t that a bit problematic?

  • Enjoyable episode except for the last 5 minutes. I found nothing uplifting or inspiring about it. It was a big “who cares” moment for me. Yes, I was hoping for LS. It was a perfect set-up. I think that the RW will be a distant thought in 10 or 12 months. Viewers will be thinking more about Joff’s death, Tyrion’s trial, Sansa’s escape, etc.

    Having said that, there were many wonderful moments: Bran and Sam, everyone back at Castle Black, Joffrey’s outburst, the Rat Cook, and bad-ass Yara. Glad that we got our Ramsay reveal and Reek…finally.

  • JamesL:
    Why are people so sure that we will even see LS on the show? Do you really think Michelle Fairley will want to play a nonspeaking zombie role with only a couple scenes a season?

    Yes, in fact she made a faux pas in promoting season two about looking forward to “growing grey”

  • Am I seriously the only one that is somewhat freaked out at how the Greyjoy story looks to be headed? They have to have Balon die. Where is Yara going to be at the kingsmoot? Is there going to be a need for Euron and Victarion? I just don’t understand this one deviation. Maybe Im just freaking out, but that scene made me nervous for the Greyjoy story line.

  • I think the final scene will come off differently to non-readers. “If you think this has a happy ending you haven’t been paying attention” They think Dany will spend the rest of the show ass kicking and dracarysing her way through Essos and soon enough Westeros. Little do they know the Mereeneese knot is coming.

  • Great episode, poor ending. I don’t think the episode should be crapped on just because of the ending and no LS. Let me count the characters who were interesting for the first time in a while:

    Bran and crew
    Sam and Jon back at the Wall(The Gang is back together!)
    Theon…err…Reek…his name is Reek!
    Ramsay(His name is Ramsay!)
    Arya finally killed someone in cold blood!

    I loved the episode and believe people wouldn’t be bitching if LS appeared. I said before the season began that there would be no PW and there would be no Lady Stoneheart resurrection. I was right and I think they made the right decision. My only disappointment with the episode was Jaime’s rushed arrival in KL.

    I actually thought this finale was much stronger than season 2. A cliffhanger does not make an episode, IMO.

  • For the most part, I loved the episode. Arya/Hound was great, the Tyrion/Sansa scene, the Tywin council, Bran’s stuff, and Jon/Ygritte. Also liked the transition from the Twins to the Dreadfort and YAY WE CAN FINALLY SAY RAMSAY!

    Alas, this is about the time in the books that I totally stopped caring about Dany, and I got the same feeling while watching her in the ending. I really, really hope that things pick up for her after her ADwD arc, but really hope D and D find some way to make her interesting in the show before we get to that point.

  • Its remarkable but D&D destroyed my faith in their ability to adapt this show going forward with tonight’s episode. If they could so royally ruin the follow up to the Red Wedding, how on earth can they be expected to save the seasons featuring Feast and Dance exclusively.

    I think this is the episode that folks will remember when they cite reasons for the beginning of the show’s decline, and why the show didn’t make it to A Dream of Spring.

  • it was fitting to re-introduce Asha(yara) like that, seeing that next season will probably include some of her chapters from Feast for Crows. and her hair is definitely much better than last season. really excited for her story just hope we get a bit of trolling here and there than the all-the-time serious Asha.

  • Some of the reactions to this episode seem way over the top on the drama scale. I mean, yeah, I wasn’t blown away by the Dany scene (and I didn’t like the Stannis one either, specifically how Stannis and Melisandre were portrayed) but really.

    The final scene was kind of lame but basically other storyline has major cliffhangers as to what will happen next…

  • I thought the overall episode was pretty strong actually. However, I did find the Mhysa chant ending anti-climatic and not anywhere close to an effective season closer. (Especially when we have to wait a year for a new season). Unfortunately from the reaction I’ve seen so far the weak ending is tainting what was a strong episode for the most part.

    I can see why the writers used it as the ending, as I do remember reading that similar scene from the books with it being pretty emotional and impactful. Unfortunately it didn’t transfer to TV with the same oomph. Personally I was hoping for either Cold Hands or Stoneheart to be the closing scene :/

  • If they wanted to give hope they would have had Robb name Jon the heir to winterfell

    Even if Nothing ever comes from it, it doesn’t matter it would have given the non-readers a glimmer of hope.

    LS and anything else in this episode would have been a waste. If you want to think timeline wise the one thing I thought was going to happen was

    Ygritte dying

    Bottom line: I thought season 3 was going to be the pinnacle of the show. Now I know that 4 will be. Rest will be good not great, and four will live as one of the greatest seasons of television ever if they don’t stall what they need to tell. Get through the rest of book three and dip ever so gently into book four and you’ll have it.

  • Also, did anyone notice that how Jon and Dany had scenes (somewhat) similar in that they were both engulfed by a crowd and carried away?

    Als0 – does anyone think it was significant how when Stannis was on the balcony Mel and Davos were on each of his shoulders…similar to this.

    http://aparchedsoul.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/Kronk-Shoulder3Angel.jpg

    Sorry for the silly cartoon, but I’d think they would arrange these things like so for a reason. Think they call it a Mise en scene or something.

  • Shaun Brady,

    It’s not a change. Sam knew who he was, he made a promise not to tell Jon. If anything, the promise not being shown was the only change.

  • Ned’s Head:
    Its remarkable but D&D destroyed my faith in their ability to adapt this show going forward with tonight’s episode. If they could so royally ruin the follow up to the Red Wedding, how on earth can they be expected to save the seasons featuring Feast and Dance exclusively.

    I think this is the episode that folks will remember when they cite reasons for the beginning of the show’s decline, and why the show didn’t make it to A Dream of Spring.

    Yawn.

  • Winter:
    In the book, Bran made Sam swear not to tell Jon about him going north of the wall. That didn’t happen in the episode tonight, did it? Wouldn’t Sam tell Jon as soon as he could. Isn’t that a bit problematic?

    It could have as easily happened off-screen. And while Jon recoveres in the beginning of next season Sam talks to Gilly and she reminds him that they made this promise to Bran. It’s not problematic if you have a bit of imagination. :p

    It’s strange how often the fans here are confused because they can’t imagine a missing information gets mentioned somewhere else.

  • Thoughts on the finale:

    Not sure what to say about that (I’ll definitely want to re-watch), but it’s probably telling that when it ended the words out of my mouth were “Aw really, that’s it?”

    I mean, overall the episode was great; a lot of cool stuff happened, most of which I’d been hoping we’d see from the book (Bran tells the rat cook story and meets Sam! Arya becomes a scary-ass killer! Reek! Asha/Yara is awesome! Team Dragonstone is going to the wall!)

    But ending on Dany crowd surfing the freed slaves was kind of a letdown. I was hoping for some kind of major event to end the season (there are so many left in ASOS!), and yes, after all the speculation I was expecting to see Lady Stoneheart. I suppose that reveal would work well for the premiere of season 4 though. I still hope it’s not left for the next finale.

    So basically, mixed feelings? I think I’m starting to doubt the season structure of having the biggest events happen in ep. 9. “Mhysa” to me was very good, but felt more like a premiere than a finale.

    And what am I going to do on Sunday nights for the rest of the summer? :(

  • Regardless of D & D next season will be un frieken real.

    You all remember book three don’t you, or did you forget? IT was the Jamie and Brienne show with a lot of filler. Then the RW happened and OMFG it turned into the best book of all time.

    We’ve seen one of those moments this season. Next season will be all the rest.

  • Really solid episode. I’m not sure what people are complaining about, or what they were expecting. But so many great moments here in what is typically a denouement type episode after the real climax a week earlier. We learn the Blackfish escaped, a great scene between Tywin and Tyrion (again), Arya turning into a murderess and as others said, the great J’aqen music, the Rat King, another Walder Frey appearance, Maester Aemon (!!), the Shae/Varys stuff which sets up a lot of other things, and of course, ECHO HODOR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    It’s not as good a finale as “Fire and Blood,” which is still the strongest of the finales.

    Overall? I’d rank it in the middle of the pack for this year, something like this:

    1. The Rains of Castamere
    2. Kissed by Fire
    3. And Now His Watch Has Ended
    4. Second Sons
    5. Valar Dohaeris
    6. The Climb
    7. Walk of Punishment
    8. Mysha
    9. Dark Wings, Dark Words
    10. The Bear and the Maiden Fair

  • I liked the finale. But i do understand where people are coming from with some complaints. Then again you must realize it’s mid book and it’s harder to ‘wrap up’. I personally really liked the mhysa scene. Seeing Dany so happy. The Arya scene was SO SO powerful hats off to Maisie. While this episode will not go down in my all time favorites, the acting that I’ve seen in it blows my mind how talented these people are its just.. wow speechless. Cannot wait for season 4 it will be epic!!

  • Valdred Dethstorm: Yawn.

    Ned’s Head:
    Its remarkable but D&D destroyed my faith in their ability to adapt this show going forward with tonight’s episode. If they could so royally ruin the follow up to the Red Wedding, how on earth can they be expected to save the seasons featuring Feast and Dance exclusively.

    I think this is the episode that folks will remember when they cite reasons for the beginning of the show’s decline, and why the show didn’t make it to A Dream of Spring.

    Ok.

    I agree that the final scene was weak, but I even think that it was better than last year’s. At least this year’s makes sense. Last years didn’t- why didn’t the Others or the Wights kill Sam? They were looking right at him? I’ll take cheesy and cloying over illogical.

  • Thought it was a good episode, probably needed a little more ummp at the ending though. Not a Dany fan so most of her stuff just doesn’t do much for me. It was probably too soon for Lady Stoneheart but just having her eyes opening would have been enough.

    Lots of foreshadowing, blood magic and dragons are both bad. Bran still going north and seems more and more like he’s going to join the White Walkers instead of do away with them. The creepy door might have been a nice ending also.

    Davos scenes very good. Ygritte scene very sad. Jaime and Cersei had emotion also. Setting up for the wedding next season and who will be blamed etc.

    Eleven weeks went by incredibly quickly and now a wait until April 1, 2014!!!

  • Shaun Brady:
    So how does Sam knowing that Bran is alive change things? Seems like a huge change that has flown under the radar.

    U obviously never read the books. Sam knows full well in the books that its Bran but since they can’t have an internal monologue on the show they had to be a bit more obvious about it. He has to say it out loud instead of in his head.

  • The inclusion of the Rat Cook plus the Manderly at the Red Wedding gives me great hope that Wyman the Pieman will make it in intact.

  • The last scene fails not because its different from the books, but because Dany is not the beloved hero George desperately wants her to be. Fact is, the Starks are the most popular characters in the books, even more so on the show. Trying to fill the hero void with the girl in the middle of nowhere works even less on the show than it does in print. People like her, for sure, but she doesn’t fill the Stark void. Now a little LS vengeance would’ve helped, but Dany crowd surfing is a snoozer.

    But don’t worry viewers, Dany is coming, she is right around the corner…3 or 4 years from now. Doh.

  • The lack of LS is the least of my hang-ups. There were just too many plot holes and lack of realistic reactions to the going-ons of the world.

    How just anyone can walk through that tunnel under the Wall without the magic of being a member of the Nights Watch seems like a huge plot hole. Perhaps that magic is there, but the show did not address it. The wildlings should know about it, especially with a former crow as their king.

    The Dany scene didn’t move me or play out realistically. The slaves acted like zombies. …Maybe that was the point; a callback to the end of season 2. And the “white person saving brown people” trope is so tired. Crowd surfing was total cheeseball.

    But my biggest qualm is no one seemed to react to the Red Wedding. No one even called it the Red Wedding. (The media calls it that because of their knowledge of the books, not because of the show. Meta.) I was really hoping for more grief and reactions around Westeros to this shocking event.

    The small council meeting was too short. Was hoping for more shock/dialogue on the Red Wedding (perhaps with someone saying, “They’re calling it the Red Wedding….”)* but instead we got another scene illustrating that Joffrey is awful. We get it.

    *ETA: Though it occurs to me now that the event just happened and gossip hasn’t spread yet. Perhaps that’s why. It just bugs me that everyone in the media is referring to the event as the Red Wedding when the show hasn’t called it that yet.

    RobbWind did not have the impact it should. Or maybe it comes across more devastatingly in one’s imagination vs. it being shown. It was awful that Arya had to see that. Man, just heart-breaking.

    Other than that, Arya was fantastic.

    Jon and Ygritte scene was great.

    Davos was wonderful.

    The Frey/Bolton interaction made me hate them more, so excellent.

  • wycoff:
    Ok.

    I agree that the final scene was weak, but I even think that it was better than last year’s.At least this year’s makes sense.Last years didn’t- why didn’t the Others or the Wights kill Sam?They were looking right at him?I’ll take cheesy and cloying over illogical.

    Just to clarify, I’m yawning at Ned’s Head repetitive complaining.
    I liked the episode myself. And the ending scene. I thought it was kind of refreshing and cute, not awesome, but certainly not cheesy or awful.

  • Ned’s Head:
    Fans,

    Don’t mind if I do. It was awful in every sense, not only for what could have been included but for what was included.

    You might think Ramsay playing with a sausage measures up to Dragons and White Walkers, but I think its pretty lame ass. This episode was an F-, the fact that Cyndi Lauper is trending worldwide but nothing GoT related is tells you what folks think of this finale.

    You write as if you think the books are just chapter after chapter of shit hitting the fan with dragons burning things, direwolves killing things and White Walkers pouring over the wall. That’s not what happens. They’re adapting the books very closely. If you’re going to watch ANY show you have to learn to appreciate the subtle things. This isn’t a movie that has 2-3 hours to get from start to finish. They’re telling a lengthy story that HAS to include scenes that don’t include “flying shit.” While several people appear to have thought the final scene lacked punch, nearly every other scene was done well, provided vital information to the story and portrayed events that happen in the book.

  • The reason why I and others have screamed that the PW should be in this season is that the Lannisters have won and Stark fans need something to cycling to… D&D give them nothing and

    Instead do they really want the audience to feel heart warmed over Cersei & Jaime back together?!?!? Do D&D have a clue?!?!

    The show and series should be like a page turner!!!! They talk about how they couldn’t help flipping pages faster and faster when they read the book…. But These fools have turned it into a slow boring drone.

    So pissed off. Hate what they’ve done

  • I’ve learned to not assume something isn’t going to happen in the show just because it doesn’t happen in the same order as the books. Over the past two years I have seen people assume there will be no:
    Reeds
    The title Reek
    Ramsay
    Blackfish
    River run
    All of which appeared in season 3. Let’s not throw temper tantrums just because some of things in ASOS haven’t happened yet. Most of what has emotional resonance and everything that is necessary for the story will eventually make it in.

  • I really liked the episode! It tied together forward momentum for many storylines, while keeping the focus on families reuniting (or trying to). It also points to the bigger plot than the war for the iron throne — the war between Ice and Fire.

    Anyone expecting Coldhands is being silly — it’s later in the story, and as a TV show they hire actors by the season, so it makes sense for next year. It’s way early — We all knew the book was split in two. Ditto for Stoneheart. (some of the Coldhands fans on this board make Gleeks look sane in comparison :p )

    So my vote for an OMG or WTF moment in the finale would’ve been The weirwood door opening in the Wall for Bran as an ending image for a 3rd High Fantasy finale.

    An image which haunted me in the books — would have been a closeup of Robb being crucified with the direwolf head on his shoulders. Or Catelyn’s body chucked over the bridge and floating down the river.

    WHAT I LOVED
    They cleverly had both Tyrion and Tywin threaten Joffrey, which sets things up wonderfully well for next season’s events. There is still a lot happens in the books!

    MY PREDICTION FOR NEXT SEASON
    Episode 1 Coldhands. Cersei and Jaime bone in King’s Landing
    Episode 3 Joffrey and Margaery’s Wedding
    Episode 8 The attack on the Wall
    Episode 9 Ygritte at the wall. Tyrion escapes and sees his dad on the can
    Episode 10 Lady Stoneheart

    It’s going to be interesting to see how they parcel out Dany’s storyline as it is mind-bogglingly slow and frustrating in the books… she doesn’t actually do anything for 3 more seasons…. o.o

  • Endless Giraffe,

    I like that!

    Great episode in my opinion, enjoyed every scene! RobbWind was well done, Arya is great, Bran & Sam, Jon Snow, Stannis & Davos, Tywin & Joff, Reek! Can’t wait to rewatch a couple more times! Can’t wait for season four!

  • So Wic.net is in an odd predicament of whether to put up a curtain call for Michelle Fairley or not

  • Seriously……no one else is concerned with the lack of Balon’s death, and the the departure of Yara to save Theon?

  • Great episode, I think that they did the right thing to withhold the elements mentioned on this thread for next season. I like, as I said before, that this episode was more subdued. Had they tried to top last week’s episode would have been a mistake. This is more of an anchor episode, a bridge into next season. Besides it made sense to end this way since Season Three covered only about half of “A Storm Of Swords “. To introduce any “oh shit” moment at this point would have been ill advised.

    Great season, could not have asked for more! The show just gets better and better, and at least to me, it is developing and evolving the way it is supposed to.

    PS Honestly all the bitching and moaning is getting tiresome. It’s one thing to have a valid complaint or criticism and another to do it just because…so in that spirit people can take their disappointment and outrage and shove them up their asses! Good night! :-p

  • They ruined Stannis so much.

    I want a formal apology from D&D for how much they fucked that up.

  • AngryGoTFan,

    Apparently quite a few people do. Ned’s Head basically said this is the episode that signals the downfall of the series. Love you twitter posts, BTW.

  • jk_s124,

    Not concerned at all, unless you want to see her sitting and starving in Deepwood Motte for all 10 episodes — they have to get there apace. I like the actress who plays her, I got goosebumps in Yara’s scene
    Strepsi,

  • I’m upset about the ending of this episode. Danys scene was cheesy like a lot of you said but once the cows been milked (like Oleena said)…. D and D will learn from this mistake and let us wait for a fantastic season 4.

    Ps: The could have shown Catelyn being thrown by the river at least.

  • Clob: You write as if you think the books are just chapter after chapter of shit hitting the fan with dragons burning things, direwolves killing things and White Walkers pouring over the wall.That’s not what happens.They’re adapting the books very closely.If you’re going to watch ANY show you have to learn to appreciate the subtle things.This isn’t a movie that has 2-3 hours to get from start to finish.They’re telling a lengthy story that HAS to include scenes that don’t include “flying shit.”While several people appear to have thought the final scene lacked punch, nearly every other scene was done well, provided vital information to the story and portrayed events that happen in the book.

    I think that your response is ludicrous.

    Yeah the books have slow beginnings and middle parts… But not at the end!!!! As the books go, they become page turners as the close. Sorry, but the TV show should too… Instead both last year and this year, the show slows down in episodes 6,7&8???? And then this finale was slow as molasses!!!!

    Go watch season 1 to see how a real tv season should work

    To all who say, “yeah but they’re splitting up the third book” that can’t excuse a slow end to this season… It just can’t. It’s a tv season, not half a tv season. Epic fail.

  • coronaking,

    yeah. it actually happened like that in the books too. we don’t get a scene where Bran tells Sam to not tell Jon. we find that out in Sam’s chapter when Jon tells Sam that Bran’s wolf saved him, and Sam is thinks about the promise he made to Bran about not telling Jon.

  • serum:
    Endless Giraffe,

    I like that!

    Great episode in my opinion, enjoyed every scene! RobbWind was well done, Arya is great, Bran & Sam, Jon Snow, Stannis & Davos, Tywin & Joff! Can’t wait to rewatch a couple more times! Can’t wait for season four!

    Glad to read. I’m on my second watch now. I get really frustrated reading comments that call the whole episode junk because they didn’t get one scene they wanted. There were some very, very fantastic scenes in this finale that weren’t only acted beautifully but filmed impressively as well.

  • David,

    How so? He takes Lightbringer out in the books and is about to execute Davos before he presents the letter. Or is it that he said ‘the boy dies’? Well, the reason he was about to kill Davos in the books was because he prevented him from being able to sacrifice Edric/Gendry. I love Stannis in the books and I don’t understand why people think he is so different in the show.

  • The reactions on this thread show many of you “fans” of the show to be some of the most insufferable, entitled, unappreciative blockheads on the web.

    So it didn’t have another event of RW-level climactic amazement in there. Sorry it conforms to the exact same cooldown aftermath tone all the other finales of the show have adhered to.

    So it didn’t have your precious Lady Stoneheart scene which some of the more sensitive of you point out would have been a foolish move with the long-term structure of the show in mind.

    Give it a rest, be glad this amazing book series has garnered an equally amazing television adaptation, and shut up.

  • My rough rankings for the episodes:

    1. Second Sons 9.7/10
    2. Kissed by Fire 9.5/10
    3. The Rains of Castamere 9.2/10
    4. And Now His Watch is Ended 9/10
    5. Walk of Punishment 8.8/10
    6. Mhysa 8.5/10
    7. Dark Wings, Dark Words 8/10
    8. The Bear and the Maiden Fair 7.5/10
    9. Valar Dohaeris 7.3/10
    10. The Climb 6.5/10

    Easily my favorite season. It had its rough parts but the books are hardly perfect, so…

  • Frank:
    The reactions on this thread show many of you “fans” of the show to be some of the most insufferable, entitled, unappreciative blockheads. So it didn’t have another event of RW-level climactic amazement in there. So it didn’t have your precious Lady Stoneheart scene which some of the more sensitiveof you point out would have been a foolish move with the long-term structure of the show in mind. Give it a rest, be glad this amazing book series has garnered an equally amazing television adaptation, and shut up.

    AMEN!

  • Strepsi:

    An image which haunted me in the books — would have been a closeup of Robb being crucified with the direwolf head on his shoulders.Or Catelyn’s body chucked over the bridge and floating down the river.

    Ditto.

  • Well, here’s something I didn’t expect to say as a well-entrenched member of the Sullied … color me surprised. It’s entirely a case of my own expectations setting me up to be taken off-guard, but … damn.

    So Balon Greyjoy does NOT die in the finale. Instead, they set up a storyline where Yara heads out to attack the Dreadfort and free Theon from Ramsay’s clutches. I guess they’re looking to expand the Ironborn material for Season 4 prior to the Kingsmoot? It’s an interesting choice, and one that I’m curious to see how they pay off. For time and budgetary reasons, I would be very surprised if they showed the attack. By the time Yara sails around the Southern end of Westeros to reach the Dreadfort, Balon would have fallen off of the bridge and Yara would need to turn around again to press her claim. I guess that Benioff and Weiss are planning to write quite a bite of new material for Yara next season (maybe this means that Gemma Whalen will be a series regular?) and save the Kingsmoot for the latter half of the season. It can work … but I’d be lying if I said that this is the way that I thought that they would go.

    Cutting off Jaime’s reunion with Cersei … come on! Don’t get me wrong – both Nikolaj Coster-Waldau and Lena Headey were excellent in that too-brief scene. I’m sure that very few of the non-readers were clamoring for Jaime and Cersei to fall into one another’s arms, but I was. As messed up as it is, I believe that their story is one of the few true love stories in Westeros, and I was hoping to see at least one moment of tenderness before everything goes to hell next season.

    No Lady Stoneheart. Damn. I was so … freaking … certain that her reveal would be the final scene, in keeping with the ‘supernatural’ end for the first two seasons. They didn’t even show the Freys throwing her in the river, or the Brotherhood Without Banners finding her body. But as the finale rolled on and there was no sign of the BWB, I began to get suspicious, and once they got to the final Dany scene and I realized that there were only a few minutes left in the episode, I had essentially accepted that they would end on Dany being exalted by the freed slaves of Yunkai. Chalk one up for every person who claimed that it was ‘too soon’ for them to reveal Catelyn’s resurrection … I guess that the writers agreed with you.

    Also , please correct me if I’m wrong, but the final song on the soundtrack, “For the Realm” never played during Season 3. I was certain that it would play over the closing credits (after the Lady Stoneheart reveal) . Shows what I know. A nice little extra for those of us who bought the soundtrack, I guess?

    Don’t misinterpret these observations … I still liked the finale. I thought that a large part of it worked very well, and several individual scenes worked like dynamite. Tywin and Tyrion facing off over the Red Wedding was beyond excellent. Charles Dance and Peter Dinklage sold the hell out of that moment at the end of their conversation when Tywin told Tyrion that he had wanted to let him die … I loved how Charles Dance let his voice crack for just a split second (that may be the first time that we’ve ever seen Tywin as vulnerable). All of the Dragonstone material with Davos and Gendry was great- Liam Cunningham continues to be one of the show’s strongest and most underrated assets. Jon and Ygritte’s material was also fantastic … Rose Leslie’s heartbroken expression as Jon rode off was so effective in summing up the tragedy of that relationship. And Arya seeing RobbWind … Seven Hells. Maisie Williams conveyed so much pain and devastation her expression that she just broke my heart. And the scene where she killed the Frey soldier … if you didn’t stand up and cheer, then I have nothing to say to you.

    I will definitely watch the finale again tomorrow, and without my preconceived expectations, I expect that I’ll enjoy it even more than I did the first time. And my preliminary impression (which I don’t expect to change) is that Season 3 is the best Season of Game of Thrones yet. But it just goes to show you that even armed with knowledge from the books, the writers are still capable of surprising me. And that’s good.

  • One not action packed but subtle and cools thing in the episode; during the final Dragonstone scene they played the creepy music they use north of the Wall. The same that was in the cold open in season one. For the people who can’t see how this episode set up the future of the series, change out of your soiled diapers rewatch and actually pay attention.
    I would have liked a certain supernatural wtf moment as well, but the lack of one does not diminish the season one bit. It was fantastic television that we were lucky to have.

  • WORST SHOW EVER CANCEL EVERYTHING DAVID AND DAN CAN EAT ME THERE IS NO GOD I HATE THIS SHOW CANCEL THIS GOD AWFUL TRASH THIS WAS NO EXCUSE FOR TELEVISION ARRRRRGGGGGHHHH!!!!!!

  • This finale wasn’t great, but definitely a solid good. It left us hanging a bit and wanting more. Are all you “griefers” so upset you won’t watch S4:E1? I didn’t think so. In my opinion, so much of the next two books occurr on the same timeline that it will be difficult to follow the books exactly. And really, this is an adaptation. I’m quite happy with the job D&D have done so far bringing one of my favorite stories to life. So kudos to HBO and let’s see what happens next.

  • loco73,

    To me it shows some people can’t stop licking D & D’s a-hole and can’t stop praising them even when they fuck things up.

  • Zack,

    Pretty close to how I would rank the season I think.
    Nice to see someone else that thinks Rains was not the best episode of the season.

  • This season was very good, but I still think season 1 was much easier to adapt and resulted in a better season. Still, season 3 was a major upgrade on season 2. ‘Blackwater’ was the only S2 episode that would rank above any of the top 7 episodes from this season, IMO.

  • Frank:
    The reactions on this thread show many of you “fans” of the show to be some of the most insufferable, entitled, unappreciative blockheads on the web.

    So it didn’t have another event of RW-level climactic amazement in there. Sorry it conforms to the exact same cooldown aftermath tone all the other finales of the show have adhered to.

    So it didn’t have your precious Lady Stoneheart scene which some of the more sensitiveof you point out would have been a foolish move with the long-term structure of the show in mind.

    Give it a rest, be glad this amazing book series has garnered an equally amazing television adaptation, and shut up.

    many of us fans are not upset about not getting our LS scene but rather upset at the cheeseball, “justin bieber concert” like last scene.
    The Red Viper,

    i hope they learn from their “cheesy” mistake…and not end S4 with Dany and her pets again.

  • Okay, no LS. But, ending it with Dany crowd-surfing was ridiculous. Like Ned’s head alluded to, a lot of show watchers are Stark fans and they should have played that up with at least an allusion to LS.

    Dany at the end of Season 1 made good sense; however, her storyline over Season 3 has not been particularly interesting, and the 3 musketeers “the city is yours” campiness followed by a bunch of liberated slaves hoisting Dany seemed like something I may have nightmared earlier as a Season 3 finale ending scene.

  • They shouldn’t have had Dany being lifted, spun around and crowd surfed. That ruined the whole ending and looked cheesy as fukc.

  • I understand that not everyone likes the greyjoy storyline. It’s just that the Kingsmoot and balon’s death is the kickstart of one of the major plot lines going forward. How are Euron and Vicatarion going to be introduced properly without it? Where the hell is Yara going to be if they decided to postpone it till next season? This affects what is told in future stories dramatically. People are worried about the unveil of uncat, which can happen anytime. This is one of the biggest potential plot deviations so far in the story and no one seems to care. I don’t get it.

  • *rolls eyes* lol, I really wanted the damn zombie scene at the end. I knew a moment of terror as I watched the credits roll. That was a dick move D&D, now I have to fish out the predictable complaints to read the interesting reviews/opinions. Haha Neds Head seems particularly offended by the episode or is trolling.

  • Gerr</strong

    God, you are one of those who continuously lick GRRM's a-hole and ask for more crap. Quit watching and go stroke yourself to the passage with LS and keep telling yourself books 4 and 5 are actually decent works of fiction.

  • Ramsay Ramsay Ramsay Ramsay!! I’m just so happy we can finally say his name!!

    But a certain thing related to that story wasn’t mentioned. And that makes me very very curious.

  • so is anyone worried about Jamie/Brienne/Sansa oath thingy next season. in the books Sansa has already disappeared when Brienne and Jamie comes to free her. they both keep promising to themselves that they will keep their oath, especially Jamie. how will they do it unless the purple wedding is in the first episode and Sansa vanishes from King’s Landing. in the first episode.

  • Balon was named by Stannis. He will still die next season, and Yara will return for the Kingsmoot once she hears of it.

  • I’m sure LS would have been a thunderclap heard round the world if they had included it. And I’m positive D&D were thinking about it, but there is a reason it wasn’t the finish. We will have to wait and see.

    They have the playbook for the series and every decision for whatever is, or isn’t, included is made for a reason. I don’t believe anything in this amazing show is haphazard. Book readers(and I am one), you need to loosen your grip here a bit. Not everything will play out the way you expected it to.

    Reactions here are pretty funny sometimes:
    Book readers: I can’t believe it, they didn’t show Lady Stoneheart in this specific episode. Where is the chain in the Battle of Blackwater?? I HATE THIS SHOW!! NEVER WATCHING IT AGAIN!!
    Non-book readers: OMG, I can’t believe they just killed Ned! How do you kill off the lead character in the first season?? OMG, Robb, Cat, NOOOO!! I HATE THIS SHOW!! NEVER WATCHING IT AGAIN!!

    I just watched tonight’s episode with my niece, who is just starting to read the books, and she was crying with joy at how uplifting the ending was. She loves the series for what it is. She’s certainly in for some surprises in the books, but then, so are we all.

    As a book reader, I’m just grateful that HBO can take this incredible series of books, and, under the guidance and respectful hands of Dan & Dave(and the blessing of GRRM), create one of the greatest, most epic series in television history, and I get to watch it every week. Given the realities of series TV and the limitations HBO imposes upon the show, instead of obsessing upon every small detail that doesn’t get included in a 10-week season, I’d rather celebrate how much we, as viewers, get to enjoy every week.

    I can’t wait for Season Four.

  • Gerr,

    Gerr:
    loco73,

    To me it shows some people can’t stop licking D & D’s a-hole and can’t stop praising them even when they fuck things up.

    How should I say delicately…what this shows to me is that some people are just spoiled shitheads with their heads so far up their arses that nothing could possibly satisfy them. You know no one is forcing you to watch the show. If you can do a better job then by all means go ahead and do your own adaptation…

  • Great episode. The song at the end (titled “Mhysa”) was just perfect. Definitely my favorite Thrones track so far!

    We had some great Tyrion scenes in this episode! The only thing I can even think of nitpicking about is the ending scene. Season 1 ended with Dany emerging unscathed from the fire with freaking dragons! Epic! Season 2 with Sam being surrounded by thousands of white walkers! Epic! Season 3 ended with Dany walking into a crowd of freed slaves. Not quite as epic?

  • It’s not licking anyone’s a-hole. What it is in reality is being aware of what great television is, and how poorly a show of this general sort of genre can be. We have Game of Thrones that even at its worst (which wasn’t this finale per say) is far better than similar programs have made us witness. I mean, Camelot runners would have let the gods bend them over a stool for an episode like this one. Some people are so freely ripping this finale apart because they didn’t have this scene or that scene (YET).

  • It was weird that Melisandre changed her gameplan all of a sudden, after all this time beating the same drum, after Davos handed Stannis the scroll. Was she being real, or did she just make up some B.S. “oh yeah, yeah, that’s the right thing to do! Go to the Wall and take him with you!” because she saw herself losing power with Stannis?

  • Anyone who accuses someone of “liking a-holes” better be someone who was born after 1990. Anyone else should be embarrassed with themselves. It’s a freaking TV people. Who gives a crap if some stranger has a different opinion then you????? Do you throw a hissy fit at home when someone disagrees with you? I truly don’t understand the fussing and fighting. I just don’t.

  • maia,

    haha, honestly i was half-expecting Jorah to throw her a mike and she starts belting out “freed you, freed you, freed youuuu oohhhh”. Dany’s awkward hand extending to touch her fans was so cringeworthy.

  • Another gripe, Kit Harington can’t act for shit. That scene where he was whining/crying to Ygritte was sooooo cringe worthy. Not his fault he’s surrounded by so many talented actors, but he is Kristen Stewart with a penis.

  • Darquemode,

    Yeah. You can tell, I loved Rains, and admittedly a lot of my issues are such little quibbles I hate bringing them up. But the other two are perhaps my favorite episodes of the series. Blackwater, What is Dead May Never Die, and Baelor are my previous favorites.

    Tyrion Pimpslap,

    I thought season 1 (by necessity) started a bit slow, that’s what holds it back for me. Like the book it’s based on, it took until about the halfway poin for things to really get cooking, to my taste at least.

  • Okay, I swear after this i wont mention the Greyjoy’s again. But seriously, when Balon and Yara opened that box, didn’t anyone else have a certain SNL song go through their minds :)

  • Oh I misunderstood that part, I thought she just burnt the scroll in anger like she was foiled, ha. I guess I thought she was someone that was always 7 steps ahead of everyone else and knew exactly what to do, I guess she’s not infallible.

    LordDavos12:
    Richard,

    She saw it in the flames as she burned the scroll.

  • Gerr:
    Horrible episode. Finales are supposed to promise good things to come for the next season, but this one didn’t really set up ground for anything. How do they expect to keep new viewers watching with such an underwhelming finale?

    Really? Like, seriously? We have Stannis heading north to kick ass, we have Yara hell-bent on saving Theon, we have Bran going on a mysterious adventure beyond the Wall. We had Jon return to the wall, we had a city of slaves accepting Dany as their saviour, and we have Davos going out to treat with other lords of Westeros to bring to Stannis’ side.
    How in the actual fuck does NONE of that set up good things for next season?
    Ok, bitching at all the hate aside, I really, really loved this episode. It laid a lot of awesome groundwork for next year, the small-council chamber scene was nothing short of amazing, Arya’s kill was awesome, all the scenes on Dragonstone were great. The ending didn’t pack the same punch that previous season-enders have but the episode as a whole was great. I am also one of the minority that are really glad they didn’t show Stoneheart yet. We need time for the Red Wedding to settle in for it to have the greater impact it deserves. I honestly wouldn’t be surprised if she gets the axe considering GRRM has said he regrets going there with that character.

  • Mike,

    Thanks for allowing others to have different opinions.

    If non-book readers TV critics like Alan Sepinwall or Grantland’s Greenwald or AV Club’s newbie reviewer say this was a great episode of TV, I’ll say “I was wrong. D&D know best.”

    But even Winter is pointing toward the problems. “Slow scenes in Kings Landing”

    Are you gonna hate on him?

  • First time being underwhelmed by Game of Thrones. Probably because I started reading the books only after season 2 and so couldn’t compare show to books before, but so far no episode of season 3 made me feel disappointed. Changes from the books are understandable as medium is different: various factors such as budjet and actors are bound to influence story in TV. However, some times it’s very hard to comprehend the decision-making process the writers went through.

    I liked, maybe even loved first half of the episode: Tyrion vs. Tywin was good stuff, and I loved interaction between whole Lannister family. I liked how Bran’s story about the guest right transmites to scene with Bolton and Walder Frey and fate awaiting them in the possible future. Even scene with Theon and Ramsay, which have been pretty bad in previous episodes, were good: both guys get names to be called, and their storylines moved forward.

    What I dislike comes after: while the show writers can have some epic plans for Theon’s sister and their future rescue-storyline, it will be 100% filler and I doubt it will be interesting enough to carry whole season 4. I kinda assumed they would move the Kingsmoot stuff to season 4 and have Ramsay and Theon hunt Rickon-Osha team (would have been better if they would have done that with Bran and whole group this season though), but I guess this means we get something different. I guess it gives also some screentime to Balon Greyjoy and their war, so it could be good? I probably shouldn’t judge before I see it.

    I really felt episode’s dialogue started being corny and character-interaction forced right after Bran and Sam met. “I have to, I just have to go beyond the wall to save the world from the armies of the Dead” and that kind of stuff sounded like from some high fantasy setting, something that real people wouldn’t say, not at least with a straight face. And the way Sam accepted this was way too easy: like, just a nod without any explanation about Bran’s magical skills or his motivations. I would loved to hear him just ask “why”, because that was what I was asking the whole time. And that epic uplifting music in the background made it worse: I think I spilled a little bit of blood when I saw that last shot with Bran’s fellowship beginning their quest to save the world from the Ancient Evil.

    Romance and love felt forced. I remember that I never really saw that Tyrion-Shae connection in season 2, and I still don’t see it in the season 3. However, I recognize in season 4 this could ultimately result to strong and tragic scenes, so I can understand it: doesn’t make it less painful to watch though. Same with Ygritte and Jon: saying “I love you” so easily, but still abandoning her without a second though doesn’t really add up. Didn’t really feel that “love” from Jon in their earlier scenes either, but maybe that’s just me.

    I didn’t really care about Davos and Genry scenes, or whole storyline which followed. It was changed from the books, and I can see that many people hate it. I probably would have kept Genry with team Stannis so he could’ve had something to do in upcoming seasons, but I guess writers need him somewhere else. It wasn’t good scene, but neither really so bad it could’ve been.
    Same with the Mhysa scene – it could’ve been so much better, but I guess it got message across. However, I understand people who hate it: my friend who watched episode with me laughed that “Khaleesi’s gonna get raped” after slaves started touching her, and laughed louder after scene zoomed out and we witness thousands of people swarming over her.

    What I was mostly frustated about was the wasted potential – like reviewer said, LS awakening scene would’ve been most epic cliffhanger we could’ve gotten, but now that change is lost. People were craving for some kind manifestion of revenge for what happened in the previous episode, and LS was just that. It would have been par with the birth of the dragons or the undead army at the Fist of the First Men, and give something to look forward to.
    Now, of course I don’t know factors behind the writing: maybe they couldn’t keep or didn’t deem it necessery to keep Michelle longer in the show, maybe they wanted to keep Beric Dondarrion in turn longer as a player, maybe they decided to cut LS from the story altogether simply because they didn’t like her or didn’t know what to do with her. However I can’t but feel that it’s change lost.

    As a whole I loved season 3, and look forward to season 4. Hopefully my feelings for this episode were just because of high expectations after previous one, and season 4 will deliver.

    Edit: wow, made post way too long. Sorry about that, I guess I had lot to say :p

  • All I have to say is you people who are shocked that LS wasn’t included are a little ridiculous.
    1. Would completely devalue the RW.
    2. Doesn’t happen in the books until the end of Storm.

    What do you suppose she does all season and all season 5 if they introduce her now? Give me a break.

  • Why wasn’t Dany on a white horse at the end?

    And I’m sorry, but the scene at the end was a bit silly. Quite simply:

    She would have been raped… or at least harassed.

    Generally speaking, if you want a more accurate idea of what happens when a blond woman enters a raucous crowd of impoverished people when all attention is on her, watch this interview of a very unfortunate story, but NOT at all a unique story, mind you:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bO12X1nhzzk

    This Dany/female worship is also getting a bit redundant. This is the second time a season ended with all eyes in the scene on Dany’s body. (I can almost already hear some so-called “third wave” feminists who’ve somehow managed to convince themselves that they’re original or clever saying that Dany is the “goddess” that our society “lacks”… Yes, we get the point, you think you’re wonderful! Now do something useful maybe…)

    And when did Stannis become this evil? The scene in the book was much better.

    On the whole, a rather flat finale… Except maybe some unexpected Jeoffrey-Tywin action. I also liked the Asha change…

  • God you guys are so harsh. Lighten the eff up. I mean last week we were beside ourselves with praise, grief and excitement, and just because you dont get what YOU want to see, its all terrible. We are spoiled to have read the books before seeing this stuff. I cant wait for season 4. And you know what, that last scene was pretty damn moving. Gotta say arya scene and ygritte/jon were my favorites. Everyones talking about ‘the decline of the series’ after the absolute best most emotionally wrenching thought provoking episode in the red wedding. Get a grip theres alot more on the way here. ‘The decline of the series’ what a joke to have even thought those words in your heads. Game of thrones is a juggernaut and will remain strong. Robert baratheon would smash you fools with his warhammer no doubt in my mind.

  • I think the Jaime scenes were awesome….

    He finally enters Kings Landing, his home and a peasant tells him to get out of the way because all that peasant sees is a cripple.

    Then he finally goes to see Cersei, the love of his life, and all she does is stare at his stump basically revealing that with no sword hand he is no longer any use to her…

    I think those few seconds of Jaime scenes spoke volumes.

  • On the lighter side of things…

    If Jon can take three arrows and be just fine….

    how many daggers?

    :)

  • Defending this episode is not the same as licking D&D’s butthole. Most of the book readers who also love the show still have some criticisms. Rational criticisms. Hating the show because things don’t happen in the exact same way they happen in the books isn’t an intelligent critique. When have they ever changed things to the point that the characters or plots are completely destroyed? They haven’t. A lot of adaptations do.

  • I think they may have Stannis arrive at the Wall before the battle even begins instead of saving the day considering D&D have said they are saving the Wall battle until the end of S4.

  • Frank:
    The reactions on this thread show many of you “fans” of the show to be some of the most insufferable, entitled, unappreciative blockheads on the web.

    So it didn’t have another event of RW-level climactic amazement in there. Sorry it conforms to the exact same cooldown aftermath tone all the other finales of the show have adhered to.

    So it didn’t have your precious Lady Stoneheart scene which some of the more sensitiveof you point out would have been a foolish move with the long-term structure of the show in mind.

    Give it a rest, be glad this amazing book series has garnered an equally amazing television adaptation, and shut up.

    I love you for this. Thank you!!

  • I can’t say I blame them for the slow storylines in some cases as some characters more or less just don’t get much development from this point in the books onward.

    Danny is sitting in Yunkai for far too long from here on out. Sansa has some story but almost no character development from here on out. Arya has the hints of a story that isn’t seen much in the books from here on out. About this point in the books Martin starts bringing in characters that I never found interesting and I am praying never make it into the series. Only problem is, what are they going to do if they don’t add those people.

  • Someone above posted the “Dick in a Box” comment, made me LOL thinking about the SNL skit, don’t think Ramsay (The spoiler tag is over!) and Theon could have down as well as JTL and Samberg tho…..

    But really, are we as book readers surprised we were left hanging without Stineheart or Coldhands???? Of course we were left hanging!!!!!!!

    But I’d like to know – is Gendry making it back to the BwB?

    Wtf is Ygritee all off by herself?

    Wouldn’t mess with Arya ever.

    Season 4 looking to be packed with Stoenheart, Coldhands, Red Viper
    And the Purple Wedding! Gonna be pretty freaking packed with evening pushed a season!

  • No no, Stoneheart will be big reveal of S4. Purple wedding in the middle. Balon still has to die as well. All the pacing has been just what I expected, really.

  • Dragolf,

    True; however, people generally have decency of using spoiler tags for things like not-yet-heard-from characters. If you’re jumping ahead like that (and to show that character would have been since it happens in the ASOS epilogue) it just feels spoilery.

  • People are just mad because there wasn’t a epic cliffhanger to hold onto until next year. In a couple of years, you’ll have access to all the episodes and this will just be another one to get to the next one and the next… can’t wait for next Season.

  • Great episode. Watched it twice – once with friends, and again with my family. I was expecting Lady Stoneheart, but I was expecting a lot of things to happen that didn’t happen. I was slightly disappointed with the episode after the first time I watched it, but enjoyed it much more the second time around. I’ve speculated on what I thought would happen enough that the first time around I was just focused on that aspect of it, not really watching it. Watching it again, there was a lot of great stuff.

    Dragonstone was a definite highlight, especially because we got to see Shireen again. Thought the beginning of the episode was brutal, but in a good way, and I was very surprised to see Arya go all Child’s Play on that Frey solider. I figured they’d save her first moment like that for the Inn, but I liked seeing it in the finale. Everything at King’s Landing was fantastic, as usual, but my favorite scene was the conversation between Tyrion and Cersei.

    I never expected the Purple Wedding to occur this season, but I fully expect some book fans to be up in arms about that. Good call on their part, I say. And, the more I think about it, good call on leaving Lady Stoneheart out. I still think it would have been a great moment, but in all actuality it’s a development that hasn’t really gone anywhere in the books yet (though it seems poised to), so it was probably better to omit it.

    Really didn’t dislike too much about it, if I’m being honest. The Bran material was all strong, as was the stuff with Sam & Gilly. I was surprised again that Bran told the story of the Rat Cook and not the Night’s King, but I enjoyed how it was executed. Was very surprised to see Patrick Malahide alive and well, and the moment where Yara declares that she’s going for Theon was pretty awesome. Was not expecting that, either. Seeing Maester Aemon was a surprise, but I guess it shouldn’t have been. For some reason, I didn’t think that the letter from the Watch would reach Dragonstone this episode, but it all came together nicely.

    Weak spots would be the scene between Jon and Ygritte. Something about the framing seemed off, and it wasn’t Kit Harrington’s finest moment. Rose Leslie was brilliant, though, as is usual. Loved the music throughout the entire episode, as well, although I was again surprised (this is a theme with my thoughts on the episode, apparently) that the track For The Realm wasn’t included in the show (this season, at least).

    I’m just gonna’ list a few more of the things I wasn’t expecting from the episode:

    – A scene between Walder and Roose Trollton (“Forever young.” …Roose is a cold mo-fo…).

    – The scene between Varys and Shae (Clearly planting the seeds for Shae’s betrayal of Tyrion).

    – The “Mhysa” scene from the book to work for me. Thought it was cheesy in the book, and it got pretty close in the show as well, but the scale of it and Emilia’s reactions sold it for me. As did the amazing effects work, obviously.

    So yeah, I didn’t get what I was expecting, but that’s not always a bad thing. I like the idea of Jaime being in King’s Landing going into season four, and I also like how next season is set to hit the ground running. Splitting A Storm of Swords was the right move, ultimately, and ending where they did (prior to the Purple Wedding) seems like the right move.

    I’ll wait until I get free weekend to do a marathon re-watch before considering how I feel about the season as a whole, however. I feel like it’s probably the best season yet, but I really loved both of the previous seasons, as well, so they’re all pretty close in my estimation. But again, I’m the kind of reader that isn’t bothered by all of the changes. I read this book series in 2003 when I was majoring in film production, and at the time couldn’t imagine how they could ever be turned into a series of movies. I also thought they’d probably be amazing on HBO, as I was pretty obsessed with a lot of their shows at the time (Six Feet Under, The Sopranos, The Wire, and Carnivalé in particular), so seeing it actually happen has been a bit of a dream come true. So another great season is in the books, and now our watch begins. Looking forward to some casting news.

  • Speculation time!

    Ygritte was on her own because Tormund left to go tell Mance what happened. She will rejoin him shortly, and only left because she wanted to go after Jon first.

    Jamie/Brienne/Sansa situation could basically be them sorting through the complications of Sansa being married to Tyrion, Brienne being dissapointed in Jamie, and then the PW happens. After which, The storyline basically resumes like it is in the books.

  • Prince of Pentos:
    Why wasn’t Dany on a white horse at the end?

    And I’m sorry, but the scene at the end was a bit silly. Quite simply:

    She would have been raped… or at least harassed.

    Generally speaking, if you want a more accurate idea of what happens when a blond woman enters a raucous crowd of impoverished people when all attention is on her, watch this interview of a very unfortunate story, but NOT at all a unique story, mind you:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bO12X1nhzzk

    This Dany/female worship is also getting a bit redundant. This is the second time a season ended with all eyes in the scene on Dany’s body. (I can almost already hear some so-called “third wave” feminists who’ve somehow managed to convince themselves that they’re original or clever saying that Dany is the “goddess” that our society “lacks”… Yes, we get the point, you think you’re wonderful! Now do something useful maybe…)

    And when did Stannis become this evil? The scene in the book was much better.

    On the whole, a rather flat finale… Except maybe some unexpected Jeoffrey-Tywin action. I also liked the Asha change…

    Not really sure if this rant is supposed to be anti-woman or anti-feminist. Either way, you can go eat a…pork sausage.

  • How is nobody talking about the awesome ”hodors” we got from hodor down the well? Was I the only one who overly enjoyed that?

  • Shaun Brady:
    So how does Sam knowing that Bran is alive change things? Seems like a huge change that has flown under the radar.

    Not a change. He recognizes who he is in the books but swears to keep it a secret, as anyone else knowing he’s alive puts him in even more danger.

  • I’m on my third watch right now. Tomorrow I’ll watch again on Go or Demand so I can pause after scenes to collect thoughts. I can say that, again, most of the scenes were very good. I too especially enjoyed the Stannis, Mel, Davos scene lighting. The sun shining through the arch was beautiful.

    If I have to list one thing I wish they would have done in the scenes that they did it would be the Black Gate, or the lack of one. (See, I can present something negative as well, but I’m not going all ballistic over it.) I can perhaps buy that it was too costly to have a talking weirwood tree/face door that asks who they are and magically opens upon Sam’s reciting the Watch oath. However, it seemed odd for there to be just a tunnel open to the light, seemingly not hidden in the least. The way it was filmed presented viewers with the thought that just anyone or anything could walk right in, climb a ladder in a well to a kitchen and off they go into the South.

  • Really intrigued by Yara’s decision. I’m confident she won’t succeed but instead will end up getting captured by Stannis before he reaches the wall (episode 9). We need some Stannis action before episode 9

  • Ned’s Head:
    Its remarkable but D&D destroyed my faith in their ability to adapt this show going forward with tonight’s episode. If they could so royally ruin the follow up to the Red Wedding, how on earth can they be expected to save the seasons featuring Feast and Dance exclusively.

    I think this is the episode that folks will remember when they cite reasons for the beginning of the show’s decline, and why the show didn’t make it to A Dream of Spring.

    You are a sad, strange little man; and you have my pity.

  • It’s ironic that the book-readers are freaking out over the lack of a cliffhanger for next season, even though they all know everything that happened in Book 3-4-5 already, so why does a cliffhanger matter?

    For some perverse reason, I actually want the show to get ahead of the books, so that there’s no difference between readers and non-readers anymore. People will shut up moaning about books, and just focus on what’s on the screen, ie. just the greatest thing on TV ever.

  • I enjoyed the episode for the most part. It wasn’t a tour de force or anything, but it was fun and gave the season closure.

    I was expecting Lady Stoneheart, but I’m kind of split on whether it should have been introduced here. It will be a bit difficult pragmatically to hide Michelle’s inclusion next season, though this shouldn’t be a problem, but mostly I think it would have been a nice bone thrown to non-readers. For everyone saying it’s “too soon,” I don’t buy that argument at all. When you read ASoS, you find out about Stoneheart within a few weeks (realtime) of the RW, depending on how fast you read. A year is an awful long time to wait for that reveal. The length of story-time is less important in this situation. Viewers have all that time to sit with the deaths and internalize them. It may be a bit awkward to reintroduce the character after all that. It was beautifully paced in the book not because of the length of story time in between, but because the reveal happened immediately as the shock was starting to wear off. Viewers won’t benefit from that experience, and I think they would have if it was included this week.

    On the other hand, I do agree with posters pointing out how it would have lead to a lot of filler next season, akin to the Theon torture-porn from this season. They would have had to dedicate a decent portion of next season to have Cat just kind of murdering Freys. Ironically, I think this may have worked better than the Theon stuff from this season, since it could have shown her ascension in the brotherhood and the killing of Freys would be much more viscerally satisfying than Theon losing parts of Theon was, but it’s less pragmatically necessary, since the character is still present next season, and viewers don’t have reason to expect her to be alive, as they did with Theon. In the books, Theon is just kind of a forgotten loose-end until he reappears in ADwD. Showing Stoneheart now would have meant a lot of time spent on plot developments that really don’t warrant it. Although it would have been fun if only to drive the book purists nuts.

  • chral513,

    I did. All annoying sports announcers should be replaced with echo Hodor. I also loved how pleased Hodor was that Sam had heard of him. That was much more uplifting than the mhysa moment.

  • Bryon: I agree.as a reader we didn’t see this reveal until the epilogue of ASoS if I recall.

    So what? In ‘Clash of kings’ we didn’t see the reveal that Bran is alive until the final chapter, but in the show we got it the episode after his supposedly murder. In the books, they only mention the resurrection but in the show it would’ve worked perfectly, setting a conclusion to the brotherhood without banners storyline for this season.
    I have a feeling there won’t be Lady Stoneheart at all.

    As for the Ygritte and Jon scene: even though it does feel odd at first that Tormund and company weren’t there, it can be understood that she asked to go alone and finish Jon by herself.

    Overall, a good episode. But not great. Didn’t have an impact of a season finale.

  • Mark,

    Not really, they could have introduced her just to let the audience know she exists but she wouldn’t have to keep showing up. They could then have her disappear for a season or two and bring her back when she is important to the plot.

  • too much bitching and vitriol here by armchair quarterbacks and amateur directors/producers.

    yawn.

    nothing to see here. these aren’t the droids you’re looking for.

  • Prince of Pentos,

    Sorry but that clip you linked with that crowd is awful and has no relevance to the crowd that greeted Dany.

    That women in the clip is a reporter who was caught at the wrong place at the wrong time by a group of sexually repressed men…

    The crowd Dany went into was a crowd of slaves that Dany just liberated and the crowd was mixed with men, women and children.

    You are comparing apples and oranges but I do understand your point but that point has no relevance in this Dany scene.

  • thought that finale could have been much better but hey you cant get everything you want. I was so sure we were gonna get either coldhands or lady stone heart but i was let down. and no black gate!!! come on that couldnt have costed that much to throw in their D&D. glad we got robbwind tho and Stannis going to the wall but wait a minute where the hell is Lightbringer!! its now bee two seasons without Stannis wielding his fabled blade. I’m one of those people who dont mind the changes to the plot so much but instead them leaving out some the little things that couldnt be THAT costly give Roose Bolton a pink cloak god damn it and show me LIGHTBRINGER!

  • JamesL:
    Why are people so sure that we will even see LS on the show? Do you really think Michelle Fairley will want to play a nonspeaking zombie role with only a couple scenes a season?

    Agreed; it is uncertain as to whether they will choose to go there or not. The principle plot point Stonheart gives the tale — to date — is as interaction with Brienne. The problem is, the rest of AFFC’s pointless tale up until that stage is not going to be the subject matter of a whole season’s worth of “on the road with Pod and Brienne”. Indeed, the early return of Jaime and the fact Pod is a little busy shows us that they are going in another direction with Brienne as we thought they probably would.

    So, I think it is fair to say the jury’s out on Stoneheart. While it may happen folks, it may not, too. So far – the plot does not NEED Stoneheart. She’s gratuitous and unnecessary. Don’t count your zombies before they rise.

    The Implications for Season 4

    Right now we have two BRAND NEW story lines shaping up for the 4th season, with a third almost certain to follow. Consider:

    1) Bran is NORTH OF THE WALL a season early. There is no Coldhands on the other side of the passage. D&D did not WANT there to be one, either. They have to give Bran et al something to do North of the Wall next season. Importantly, they have been armed with Dragonglass, too. This may well get COOL. Whatever way you slice it, It’s mostly ALL NEW STUFF for Bran next year.

    2) Yara is going after Theon. Balon isn’t quite dead yet and his brothers don’t appear to be taking any role yet. Instead, Yara just gave Daddy Dearest a big “Fuck You” and she’s off to rescue him. We are officially “Making up New Stuff” in Season 4 on the Greyjoy family.

    3) What to do with a Knight Errant: Jaime is back early; Brienne is gong to need something to do: I am not sure what that is going to be, but whatever the case, it’s NEW STUFF in the offing for that tale as well.

    Short Strokes: We are ALL about to become “Unsullied” for significant parts of Season 4.

    And that’s merely the clear drumbeats for Season 4. Season 5 will be stepping out in to even more of a Brave New World. We all knew that would happen long ago.

    At least we can now sit down for a day and watch Season 3, episodes 1-10 and binge on the series in the way that much of it seems to have been intended to watched.

    And after? “Black Screens Gather, And now Our Wait Begins. It shall not end until late March 2014…”

  • I’ll be more pissed if Coldhands doesn’t show up next season than if Lady Stoneheart doesn’t.

  • I also don’t mind the no Coldhands in retrospect. It would have been a bit clunky to have him rescue Sam, and then just have him kind of wait for Bran given the pacing of the show. It’ll be much more fluid if he rescues Bran instead, and it’ll give Bran more to do. Bran’s story is really slow developing from this point forward, and particularly given where they left off, if we were strictly following his story in the book, it would almost completely stall out in season 4. Having Wights attack Bran and letting Coldhands save them, instead of Sam, and completely introducing Coldhands through Bran’s eyes gives him a lot more to do next season, and makes up for his reduced role particularly in Season 2. They can also invent some stuff to develop his warging, replacing some of the stuff we’d later learn from Varamyr. If that’s the direction they’re headed with him, I approve.

  • Ned’s Head,

    Will you shut up? We get it, you don’t like the episode. No need to go on and on about it. I usually enjoy reading BTL for entertaining or informative comments or reasonable non-hysterical criticism about the episode I’ve just watched, not some kid bitching about how his (or her?) favourite scenes have been left out.

  • Cyndi Lauper still trending on Twitter. Nothing from GoT finale.

    Well done, D&D. Take a week of excitement and intrigue and snuff it all out in 70 boring minutes.

  • JamesL:
    Mark,

    Not really, they could have introduced her just to let the audience know she exists but she wouldn’t have to keep showing up.They could then have her disappear for a season or two and bring her back when she is important to the plot.

    No way. We already know this isn’t how the show works, and if you want to talk about satisfaction deprivation, introducing LS and then not having her do anything for a whole season would be exactly that. Oz’s head might exlode.

  • If you’re disappointed by no LS you’re wrong…not debatable…I loved this episode…I kept checking the time left because I didn’t want it to end and it was moving so fast…only gripe was the dany scene was cheesy…but everything else was awesome…soooo much meat for season 4…oh and something tells me Yara will get sidetracked by a certain family member or 3 on her way to Theon

  • I always assumed Coldhands would be saved for season 4. It was only the summary of Second Sons about Sam and Gilly meeting an older man that made it sound like he’d show up this season.

  • Butterbumps:
    It’s ironic that the book-readers are freaking out over the lack of a cliffhanger for next season, even though they all know everything that happened in Book 3-4-5 already, so why does a cliffhanger matter?

    For some perverse reason, I actually want the show to get ahead of the books, so that there’s no difference between readers and non-readers anymore. People will shut up moaning about books, and just focus on what’s on the screen, ie. just the greatest thing on TV ever.

    Very good point, really. Some of the complaining appears to be less for the appreciation of the sullied and more about the sullied thoughts of how it should be presented to the unsullied. Rating I suppose is the concern.

    Wanting the PW to be in the finale is an easy example. The PW is one of the major incidents in the whole book series, right along with the RW. Yes, they happen quite close together in the book but is it really that wise to blow two of the biggest moments of the books in just two tv episodes in a week’s time? It’s going to happen. We don’t have to rush-rush from one to the next. That’s like skipping many chapters when reading books. People are simply impatient. If they are going to manage seven or more seasons of the show they’re going to space major events and actually film parts of the story that aren’t action oriented. *shock*

  • AJC,

    Actually, I criticized the scenes in the episode more than what was left out.

    Amazing how criticizing a poorly scripted TV show can bring about personal attacks on an internet message board. Some people are just so uncivil. Probably because if their manhood was shipped to Balon Greyjoy, it would’ve required a much smaller box.

  • Steel_Wind,

    I’m hoping Coldhands gets a similar type introduction in the show that he got in the books only instead of saving Sam and Gilly from wights he will save Bran and the Reeds.

  • Andrew,

    yeah, but that would mean raping Brienne’s character just like they did with Robb and Cat, and i would prefer if they left Brienne having a respect for Jamie like in the books than being disappointed in Jamie. plus Brienne vows to not fail Catelyn and save Sansa even if it’ll be the death of her.
    Jamie coming to KL should’ve been in the early episodes of next season.

  • People did a lot of complaining about the show supposedly omitting the name Reek. Now nobody seems to be excited that it did happen. I clapped my hands with glee.
    I guess entitled whining is more fun.

  • They really needed LS or CH, not too much for non book readers to tune in for in 10 months..,

  • Ned’s Head,

    Enough already! We get it – you didn’t like the episode. How many times do you need to repeat it? In my opinion the episode was quite good overall.

  • WeirwoodTreeHugger: Not really sure if this rant is supposed to be anti-woman or anti-feminist.Either way, you can go eat a…pork sausage.

    It’s both. Also anti-blonde? Also anti-impoverished people, who, as we learned in our biology classes, are never blonde?

    Pork sausage with extra mustard!

  • Ned’s Head:
    AJC,

    Actually, I criticized the scenes in the episode more than what was left out.

    Amazing how criticizing a poorly scripted TV show can bring about personal attacks on an internet message board. Some people are just so uncivil. Probably because if their manhood was shipped to Balon Greyjoy, it would’ve required a much smaller box.

    I’d just love to see the finale scripted fully by you as you would do it, to include dialog and actions. You’ve posted about a dozen times about it being poor yet as I’m completing my third watch I’m still finding nearly all of the scenes intriguing and great inclusions to the show as well as moving the story along well.

  • At what point did the writers fail to understand that in order for Davos to be the voice of conscience for Stannis, Stannis needs to be presented as having a conscience?

    Davos keeps saying he’s a good man, but I see no evidence of it. They’ve turned him into a caricature. And now Davos….Davos, the man whose undying loyalty to Stannis is one of his principal defining features….is blackmailing Stannis into letting him live so that…what? He can act an envoy? The crabber’s son ex-smuggler who can barely read is Stannis’ last hope for an envoy? And Stannis, who is so hard up for people he is forced by circumstances to rely on this guy to appeal to high lords, apparently never thought he might need an envoy before now?

    There’s just…so much WRONG with how they’ve portrayed Stannis. I think it makes me more depressed and angry than the Red Wedding. I mean, at least I saw the Red Wedding coming.

  • WeirwoodTreeHugger,

    Same for me.
    Honestly I’m not sure the series even needs Coldhands at all.

    I loved him when I first read the books, but then ADWD changed my opinion of him from someone who is awesome and important to someone who is fun and completely unneeded.

    IMO Sam giving drangonsglass weapons to Bran’s clan was a sign Coldhands will not be in the series at all. If they can defend themselves why do they need him?
    They do not.

    Don’t get me wrong. he would make for some interesting scenes still, but I no longer see him as a necessity.

  • JamesL:
    Mark,

    They have done that with the white walkers, introduce them and then rarely ever show them.

    Completely different. There’s no emotional attachment to the WW, and they’re a mystery to everyone on the show. It’s not as if something’s happening that the viewer is being deliberately omitted from. Doing Stoneheart now would have 100% been a bone thrown to viewers, and like I said, I can see the argument for it, but I don’t at all expect D&D would have revealed her here, and then just let her sit on the sidelines for most of season 4. It would have been horribly unsatisfying.

  • Ned’s Head:

    Amazing how criticizing a poorly scripted TV show can bring about personal attacks on an internet message board. Some people are just so uncivil. Probably because if their manhood was shipped to Balon Greyjoy, it would’ve required a much smaller box.

    I’m fairly certain that burn just made you an honorary Targaryen. ::windmill high five::

  • Darquemode:
    WeirwoodTreeHugger,

    Same for me.
    Honestly I’m not sure the series even needs Coldhands at all.

    I loved him when I first read the books, but then ADWD changed my opinion of him from someone who is awesome and important to someone who is fun and completely unneeded.

    IMO Sam giving drangonsglass weapons to Bran’s clan was a sign Coldhands will not be in the series at all. If they can defend themselves why do they need him?
    They do not.

    Don’t get me wrong. he would make for some interesting scenes still, but I no longer see him as a necessity.

    Dragonglass is useless against wights. This is established in the show as well. I agree that Coldhands may be unnecessary, but I still would probably put it 60/40 that we’ll see him. Like you say, he’s fun, and we also really need Bran to have something to do in season 4. He has almost nothing left except CH from the ASoS material, and he has what, 3 or 4 chapters in ADwD?

  • I just cannot believe its over for another year!!!

    I wasn’t that keen on the final scene – like others, I though it was a bit cheesy. I would have loved to see Arya board the Titan’s Daughter and sail off to Bravos, the moment she presents the coin to the captain is awesome and would have at least given a bit of optimism to Stark supporters, but then again, very much looking forward to more Hound/Arya in S4 – two of my favourite characters!

    Thought that the Theon/Ramsey scene this week was much improved on the previous ones – I enjoyed the dark humour! At first I thought Ramsay was almost too villainous, this episode was the first where I thought they could pull him off as an interesting character.

  • Ned’s Head,

    Amazing how criticizing a poorly scripted TV show can bring about personal attacks on an internet message board.

    Amazing how someone can confuse their own opinion with fact.

  • I’m respectfully withdrawing from the reader recap comments section forever. Killjoys, whiners, and undiscovered genius novel adapters abound here. LyTar out.

  • robb17,

    Brienne being dissapointed in Jamie isn’t some irreversable, permanent emotion. If they see that Sansa is married, and Jamie says there’s not much he can do, she’ll be dissapointed. And then events will spur him to action and she’ll go back to respecting him. Almost exactly like the books.

  • No cliffhanger at the end of the tenth episode…wow bad decision on HBO’s part. Danys scene was nice but overplayed. We needed either the birth of UnCat or Coldhands. COME ONE DnD and writers of the show. You should know how to leave people wanting more while they wait many months. Horrible last 5 minutes.

  • The Pain Yak:
    At what point did the writers fail to understand that in order for Davos to be the voice of conscience for Stannis, Stannis needs to be presented as having a conscience?

    Davos keeps saying he’s a good man, but I see no evidence of it. They’ve turned him into a caricature.

    What evidence is there of it in the books? Not much and more, seems to me.

    Stannis is a long-distance call from a flesh and blood character in the books imo. He’s the harsh Texas justice, the iron that will not bend, the knee that won’t bend either, yadda yadda yadda. I’ve been waiting for Stannis to get killed since the end of ACoK. I was almost certain he would die in ADwD. I have hopes I will get my wish granted in TWoW. I hate the character and want nothing more than Jon Snow to kill him.

    I thought the scenes in Dragonstone were well done. Davos has become the moral centre of the show in a manner clearer than it ever was in the books. I’m sorry you did not enjoy it, but I certainly did.

    Not hating, just reminding you that there are other points of view that don’t necessarily align with your own.

  • My wife and her sister are non-book readers, both were disappointed in the finale and I share it having read all the books.

    I understand some are happy there was no LS in this episode, saving it for later, but I share WIC’s sentiment. It really should have been here, to give the finale an much needed big moment to carryover. They may start off Season 4 with it, but it’s useless there, this episode was titled “Mother” after all, we just saw her die. I was sure we’d get a scene with Arya dreaming about Nymeria saving Cat’s body and the last scene being Beric and BWB coming upon her body and giving her the breath of life. Having that be the last scene where Uncat’s eyes open would have been spectacular and a worthy end to a mostly epic season. Not having something of that stature was very deflating. Season 1 finale gave us Dragons, Season 2 finale gave us the Wights and White Walkers at the Fist, this season gives us “Hip-Hip Hooray for Dany” and crowd surfing…seriously?

    Really surprised no coldhands too, especially after they included all of those crows with the Sam the Slayer bit, seemed like it would be set-up, with the earlier threat against Ser Piggy, would have been cool to have former Night’s Watch wights attack them and then be saved by Coldhands, but alas, no. Our best hope now is that they’ll attack Bran & Co.

    It seems sentiment is against me, but I’m pretty disappointed by the choices this season. I was in the camp that wanted the RW in Season 4, IMHO this finale proves that it was a poor choice, except perhaps to go for the HBO record for ratings, which could have been achieved in Season 4 anyway. Simply because you want to see a thing doesn’t mean that you should rush the moment. I also would have much preferred them saving the freeing of the Unsullied for this finale which could have been done, and shown more of the development of Dany’s character, with an episode on securing the boat in Qarth, and a couple episodes at sea, Barristan telling stories about Rhaegar, Jorah trying to kiss Dany, etc. Now we’re left with only the Meeren mess for Seasons 4 and 5 and maybe even 6.

    All told, GOT is still the best thing on TV. Season 4 still has more than enough to satisfy us all and it will be a long time until Winter is coming again. But count me in the camp that is a little disappointed with how Season 3 played out and now very concerned with how things will play out for Season 5.

  • This book purist says this is one of the best episodes of all three seasons!
    Loved
    Rat cook story then cutting to Walder Frey and Roose. Happy to see both characters getting more screen time

    Come on guys, Ramsey and his cock jokes where epic, and I think Theon’s storyline for the most part was well handled this season. Only thing I didn’t get was why they tried to keep it a mystery who Ramsey was when they literally said in season 2 that Roose was sending Ramsey to take Theon.

    Jon Sow and Yigrete, I think this storyline was also well executed. Don’t why people our complained. Got to say, I felt for Ygrite (or however you spell her name) as Jon rode away. Her mouth trembling…poor babe.

    Tyrion and Sansa…totally ship that couple…………..just as much as I ship Sansa and Littlefinger….when she hits 18 (yea I’m serious when I say that)

    Arya killing the Freys

    Balon and Asha…great to see them again.

    Greyrobb….one of the most disturbing scenes I have seen on television or film…ever!

    Disliked

    Varys/Shae. D&D have gotten every character right except for Shae. They totally botched her character. She annoys the living hell out of me. Sorry but Ro was way cooler in the show. I’m thinking D&D made the changes to Shae’s character to make her end with Tyrion more tragic but it hasn’t done her character justice. Which is a shame because Sybil I find to be a very talented and intriguing actress and in terms of her acting ability she’s nailing it. Just the writing and characterization is totally off.

    Dany freeing the slaves. Yes the scene it’s self was well written and well acted and important to show…but it was such fairy tale ending and was totally thrown in there just to make everyone feel better about the red wedding. I would have preferred something else. I was thinking Stoneheart…but I’m starting to agree with some of the other post when they say save her for the end of season four…build up suspense….blah blah…good point. So I don’t know…Bran going threw that spooky door thingy from the books would have been cooler. I think it’s a mistake that it got cut along with the wights attacking Sam and Gilly. They need to continue to slowly build up the fantasy element and those whereto of the most important and epic fantasy elements form the books. I’m sure will get Coldhands next season!

    All in all, excellent season. Don’t know why book fans are complaining.

  • Mark,

    I agree with you.
    I still think he could appear next year, and would fill a void in the Bran arc for sure! I like the character and almost always want more details from the books instead of less, but I am no longer sure he absolutely will appear I guess.

  • Ned’s Head,
    Really? Not everything is going to play out the same way as in the books. It was entertaining and so far every time they deviated from the books they mange to get us to the same destination. Relax and realize the show was entertaining and give them a break. They’ll end on the same page I am sure.

  • I also agree that it’s possible we won’t get Lady Stoneheart at all. The best evidence is that they didn’t show her body being thrown in the river. They could somehow alter that, and not have her thrown in the river at all, which might make her a bit less grotesque as well (which would make sense), but it would be a bit more difficult to have the brotherhood encounter her in this scenario. They could also throw her in the rover at the beginning of next season. It’d a bit strange to leave it out entirely considering they did the Tully funeral ceremony without even introducing Hoster or anything, but we’ll just have to wait and see.

  • Ned’s Head:
    Clob,

    I watched it again just to make sure, and yes, it was still a great big pile of shift.

    Well, good for you, yet you still failed to provide your script that would be so much better. I’m tired.

  • Final scene was extremely cringe-worthy and reeked of cheese, but aside from that, I have little complaint. Sure, I would have done things differently, but it’s not as if they’ve ruined the show like some of the melodramatic windbags that frequent this site would lead you to believe.

    The entire Asha scene made my stomach flutter with fear of D&D somehow removing the Kingsmoot / Victarion and Euron Crow’s Eye storyline until I realized that wouldn’t make a bit of sense considering what a huge part it plays in the later books.

    I’m interested / anxious about the direction in which the show is heading, but you dummies jumping off the boat already are being childish and petulant.

  • During Jon’s scenes getting shot with three arrows, did anyone else imagine the unsullied from all the YouTube videos losing their shit again? And as someone above mentioned, I got quite gleeful at Hodor’s Hodoring down the well.
    As for Stoneheart, I honestly wonder if they might skip her entirely. GRRM has said he wishes he hadn’t opened that can of worms(at lease according to some people I’ve seen commenting here, which I assume came from an interview), and they can keep Beric alive in her place and have it serve the same purpose because of where his loyalties lie. I would honestly like to get a lot more of Beric. Sure, her reveal is shocking and cool, but the identity of the person leading the killing-spree isn’t super important, so long as their loyalty has a tie to the Starks.

  • oh my god, write your own forking show aholes! script it, cast it, film it and put it on youtube so that those of us who aren’t entitled book-whores can criticize the ess out of it.

  • Steel_Wind: What evidence is there of it in the books? Not much and more, seems to me.

    Stannis is a long-distance call from a flesh and blood character in the books imo.He’s the harsh Texas justice,the iron that will not bend, the knee that won’t bend either, yadda yadda yadda. I’ve been waiting for Stannis to get killed since the end of ACoK. I was almost certain he would die in ADwD. I have hopes I will get my wish granted in TWoW. I hate the character and want nothing more than Jon Snow to kill him.

    I thought the scenes in Dragonstone were well done. Davos has become the moral centre of the show in a manner clearer than it ever was in the books. I’m sorry you did not enjoy it, but I certainly did.

    Not hating, just reminding you that there are other points of view that don’t necessarily align with your own.

    He never agreed to burn Edric Storm. Not once. He crept closer and closer to the edge, and very well might have done it if Davos hadn’t smuggled him to safety, but he never actually agreed to it. He’s hard, but he has a sense of vicious sense of right and wrong.

    That’s why Davos is still with the man. Care to explain why Show Davos is with the guy you hate so much? Why didn’t he hop in the boat alongside Gendry? I mean, since he only took the lordship for his one and only son, and his son is dead, and Davos and Stannis are apparently so violently at odds now that Davos only avoids execution by blackmailing Stannis, why did he bother to come back and why doesn’t he bolt the first chance he gets?

    It’s idiotic.

    And yes, you’re entitled to your viewpoint. It’s just your viewpoint is wrong and mine is right.

  • So we didn’t get LS.. so what? Didn’t GRRM admit that he made a mistake with her and if he could go back would erase that entire arc? He further went on to say, that prologue is the last time we’ll ever hear about her. It’s one of those things that would have looked even cheesier after the awesome performance by Michelle Fairley. No coldhands = np (since he could pop in s4+). No black gate = weaksauce. Random tunnel that leads out? Let’s just make shit up…That whole Theon arc could have been done without.. like really. considering the amount of torture porn that was wasted in what 5+ episodes.. to end with that is weak. If you can do off screen battles, could have done off screen torture.The finale is a prime example of why changing shit has ramification towards the future. If we would have cut away at the fat of the story, we would have had Strong Belwas. SB means Arstan Whitebeard. The same walk finale could have been interrupted by a bald Mero (who should have been alive just for this epic scene), and the big twist could have been AW’s reveal to dany along with casual viewers who didn’t pay Ser Barristan much attention until then. Which sets up Jorah’s exile through his pride…

    OK, done bitching.. and it wasn’t cause of LS.

    Despite all of that there were some strong positives. The KL’s scenes were priceless (well cept shae’s). Arya’s kill was great.. finally some loose ends tying up. It could have been worse.. now dying to know casting for season 4 to tide us till next year :(

  • Why the hell can’t people criticise the show in an adult manner? Why can’t they just say, “I wasn’t so keen on this bit,” or, “I wish they left so-and-so in,” instead of bitching and moaning like little fu****g sissies.

    GROW UP.

    No, not every episode is gonna please you; no, not everything is going to be in the show at the exact time of you pleasing – no-one minds you expressing this, but why can’t you do it in a concise manner without resorting to histrionics such as “Oh, this show is ruined forever,” “The only thing D&D care about is the RW”?!? It childish and pathetic.

    Rant over.

  • What I find hilarious is that all the things book readers are complaining about non book readers aka the VAST majority of the audience will have no idea are missing or out of order or being left for next season…the tv show is not for bookreaders it’s primarily for non readers who probably had no problem with jaime showing up to KL now and not banging his sister over a corpse after the PW

  • Storm of Swords has 9 or 10 major exciting/shocking/mysterious/important events. When showrunners say they are splitting the book into 2 seasons, its only natural to assume that half the exciting stuff goes into one season and half into the other. Instead we get one big moment, the Red Wedding, turning the rest of the season into a long, slow set-up for the next season. This is not a terrible idea if you’re doing a split season like the Walking Dead, popping in 4 months later with the second half. But when most of your season in a long slog building up to something, and then most of that something is pushed back a year, it takes a lot away from the show. This last episode was a long “hey remember all this shit from last year” kind of episode. Now its important to wrap things up, but leaving a bit of a cliff hanger is also important. This actually hurts season 4 episode 1, since they are going to have to do another round of “hey remember this shit from last year” all over again.
    Just really surprised they chose such a poor path to take in the finale.
    This finale was like if the series finales of Lost and Sopranos had a baby and named it Mhysa. When your finale’s most exciting moment is the ad for True Blood, its not a good sign.

    Those 10 moments that could’ve been better divided are as follows:

    1. Red Wedding – season 3
    2. Purple Wedding – season 4, could’ve been 3
    3. Viper vs. Mountain – season 4
    4. Tywin’s death – season 4
    5. Battle at the Wall – season 4, could’ve been 3
    6. Lady Stoneheart – season 4, should’ve been 3
    7. Coldhands – season 4, should’ve been 3
    8. Arya leaving for Braavos – season 4, could’ve been 3
    9. Jon becomes Lord Commander – season 4
    10. Balon dies – season 4, should’ve been 3

  • Drfunk:
    So we didn’t get LS.. so what? Didn’t GRRM admit that he made a mistake with her and if he could go back would erase that entire arc? He further went on to say, that prologue is the last time we’ll ever hear about her. It’s one of those things that would have looked even cheesier after the awesome performance by Michelle Fairley. No coldhands = np (since he could pop in s4+). No black gate = weaksauce. Random tunnel that leads out? Let’s just make shit up…


    That whole Theon arc could have been done without.. like really. considering the amount of torture porn that was wasted in what 5+ episodes.. to end with that is weak. If you can do off screen battles, could have done off screen torture.

    The finale is a prime example of why changing shit has ramification towards the future. If we would have cut away at the fat of the story, we would have had Strong Belwas. SB means Arstan Whitebeard. The same walk finale could have been interrupted by a bald Mero (who should have been alive just for this epic scene), and the big twist could have been AW’s reveal to dany along with casual viewers who didn’t pay Ser Barristan much attention until then. Which sets up Jorah’s exile through his pride…

    OK, done bitching.. and it wasn’t cause of LS.

    Despite all of that there were some strong positives. The KL’s scenes were priceless (well cept shae’s). Arya’s kill was great.. finally some loose ends tying up. It could have been worse.. now dying to know casting for season 4 to tide us till next year :(

    When did GRRM say that? Stoneheart shows up again in AFfC, she’s not limited to the epilogue…..

  • Also on the lack of a cliffhanger…enough already…how did last season’s cliffhanger pay off this year? oh yeah it didn’t…you all will be squealing the second the first casting announcement is made for next season…you’ll get your stoneheart and coldhands and kingsmoot and yada yada…reread the books in the meantime if you can’t wait

  • AJC,

    So counter my points, don’t attack me personally. What kind of person does that? I suppose the kind with one of those tiny boxes.

  • Mark,

    It was at one of the cons. He said he regretted going down that road with her character. Though there’s still Brienne’s arc to be resolved, I’m not so sure we’ll hear from her again (no pun intended).

  • Lyanna_targaryen,

    But it’s not spoilery. It’s not cool to chide people for talking about things that happen in A Storm of Swords since they are following the clearly stated rules of the thread because it “feels spoilery to you”. You did the same to me last week. If others want to be more cautious (It’s not a matter of decency. The rules are right there) then that’s their prerogative and I get it – people are curious and I would feel bad spoiling an unsullied – but we are allowed to talk about things that happen in Storm in these threads.

  • On Stonehart, Coldhands and Jon Snow

    GRRM is on record saying that the worst thing JRR Tolkien ever did was bring Gandalf back from the dead after killing him in Moria.

    Putting the unquestioned veracity of that observation aside, it appears to be very good advice that GRRM did not follow himself. Assuming (without deciding) that Coldhands is almost certainly Benjen Stark, we are left with an inescapable conclusion:

    GRRM goes to the resurrection well FAR too often in ASoiIaF. By doing so, it loses the power to shock. Worse, it impacts upon other choices and events in the novels and renders them more meaningless than they otherwise should be. Any gamer will tell you that when the players rely upon raise dead too often, it makes for a terrible campaign. Catelyn, Benjen and then, ultimately, Jon Snow as well? ALL back from the dead? Really? REALLY? Well. Okay. not really. Being a wight or a firewight isn’t exactly alive. But it ain’t exactly stone cold dead, either.

    It’s a plot device that if overused begins to take on a rank stench of Camembert. And yes, GRRM has done that AT LEAST once too often, and probably twice more than he should.

    So am I fine with leaving out Stoneheart? Damned right I am. In fact, I think it’s a better story without her in it. Ever. At all.

    I am NOT saying that the ending of Ep 10 didn’t feel somehow a little flat. I am in broad agreement with that sentiment expressed here (though I enjoyed the rest of the episode). HOWEVER, if crowd-surfing felt a little weak, that does not mean that Stoneheart was the only cure for it. There were other options.

    For the sake of the overall impact of the story as it unfolds in later seasons, I think we might be better off without seeing Lady Stoneheart. Ever.

  • Drfunk:
    Mark,

    It was at one of the cons. He said he regretted going down that road with her character. Though there’s still Brienne’s arc to be resolved, I’m not so sure we’ll hear from her again (no pun intended).

    How could we not hear from her again? She shows in in ADwD and leaves on a complete cliffhanger?

    I’m not saying we will or should get Stoneheart, but it doesn’t seem like even if he regrets going down the road, GRRM is trying to do away with it at this stage.

  • Oh and those whining about Yara…she’s on her way to Theon when Balon dies and she turns around and you’ll get the damn kingsmoot

  • Ned’s Head,

    So counter my points, don’t attack me personally. What kind of person does that? I suppose the kind with one of those tiny boxes.

    I don’t care what point you are making, I’m criticising the way you make it. And complaining about personal attacks is a bit hypocritical, considering in your first reply to me you implied that I have a small “member”. Oh, there, you’ve done it again. Mature.

  • I can’t be the only one who was mindblown/speechless when they actually showed grey wind stitched to Robb’s body

  • Ned’s Head,

    I love Ros miss her to death regardless. Ros is to Kyra, Alyilay Chateya as Lock is to Vargo and Talisa is to Jeyne. Get threw your head she wasn’t a pointless character.

  • The only real book material I was holding a torch for was Lady Stoneheart to close the episode. Otherwise, I went in expecting a lot of new material since they had to close a partial adaptation of ASOS.

    This must be my least favorite episode of the season, and I’ve been eating all of it up, including The Climb. There are some great, great scenes this week, but as a whole it felt too packed. I’m wondering why they didn’t just have Ygritte shoot Jon in the leg last week. Their scene came off a so awkward with her appearing out of nowhere. The cinematography for Dany’s concluding scene is surprisingly static until the very end. A good portion of the material could have been excellent as season openers for S4, which would have given a few of the vital scenes more time to breathe.

    My overall reaction is disappointment, and I don’t consider myself an entitled book reader. I think S3 as a whole represents GoT hitting its stride as a show, but the finale felt like a stumble. The series really does suffer when it gives attention to all the storylines in a single episode.

  • Dumbasses, this is part of one book split into two volumes. How could there be a climactic ending in the middle of the book – you’re lucky the Red Wedding was there for the big episode 9 extravaganza.

  • Mark,

    I think he’ll resolve that issue by making her into a minor background character. Definitely no longer a PoV. Either way, having her as a background fixture is pretty much the same as a character death.

  • Ye Olde Wolfe,

    I do not see Stoneheart as important either I guess..
    I love the reveal in the books and the idea of vengeance for te houses of Stark and Tully!

    IF they keep Michelle Fairley on they will have to expand the role of LS and the BWOB and that just makes one more arc on a series with too many arcs! I do not see her appearing for one or two episodes a year for a couple years.
    *shrug*

    I had a wild thought I dismissed rather quickly, but…
    IF they need someone to be killing Freys in revenge how about a different Tully. The Blackfish. XD

    I do not see it happening, but he would be fun leading the BWoB!
    He is needed elsewhere though so of course it will not be…

    It will be interesting to see how they handle the Riverlands and North next year. So much happened “off page” and while it would make for good TV, it would just add another arc to steal time.

  • lord manteezy:
    I can’t be the only one who was mindblown/speechless when they actually showed grey wind stitched to Robb’s body

    You certainly aren’t. My heart sank when I saw they actually put it in. I was hoping they would, but it was hard to watch. I was hoping they would because I knew it would be hard to watch. :/

    I got another one of my wishes granted this week: the return of Peter Vaughn as Master Aemon! :D

  • KG: Dumbasses, this is part of one book split into two volumes. How could there be a climactic ending in the middle of the book – you’re lucky the Red Wedding was there for the big episode 9 extravaganza.

    You can take your namecalling and shove it. Your failure to even conceive alternatives to the finale is a failure of your imagination.

  • Steel_Wind,

    Catelyn’s resurrection is the surprise ending of the best book GRRM has ever written and will likely ever write, so to say that it was a mistake or that it should be out of the show seems silly. Axing Stoneheart alters Brienne, it alters Jamie, and who knows who else. GRRM often talks about the butterfly effect and how D&D must be careful not to change certain things without major repercussions to other events later on. I have to think Cat is brought back for an important role, probably the saving of one of her children or one of the major pieces of revenge still on the table (Jamie, Walder, Littlefinger, Roose).

    As for Coldhands, he is almost certainly not Benjen. Leaf all but reveals this to Bran in Dance. If a centuries old Child of the Forrest says Coldhands died long ago, I doubt she means the previous year. The Night King is the most likely candidate, if he’s a famous name at all.

  • AJC,

    Only in retaliation my friend, to humble you uncivil little head.

    My points are valid and well thought out, no wonder you’re having such trouble writing reasoned retorts.

  • i actually don’t mind people stating their opinion about the show, just really tired of the entitled attitude and pumped up self worth, the histrionics are just soooooo boooring.

  • Ned’s Head,

    And including a glimpse of her wouldn’t have spilled the beans. It would have been a shocker and an unanswered question of sorts. People could guess what the forces at work were, but they wouldn’t know the implications, which could be there own surprise next year.

    I’m really sore about this. More than anything this season, which has been fantastic overall. It feels like such a missed opportunity. That, and Dany’s scene didn’t exactly impress. It was so awkwardly acted and shot…

  • Those saying they will cut out Stoneheart completely are insane

    She is a BIG fan favorite. Plus she is the MOTHER of the Stark children STILL. She also meet Brienne later on. How can anyone other than her do that scene to lure out Jaime plus she can meet her children later.

    Plus showing the resurrection of Beric why even show that id not for Stoneheart and who will now hang Freys its PERSONAL for her NOT for Beric

    I can tell you if they cut her people are gonna get VERY mad.

  • I’m thinking about changing my screen name to Faramir Fourskins in hopes of getting David Wenham cast to play Jon Connington. Let’s start the campaign now! #FaramirFourskins

  • Lady Stoneheart appears in the Epilogue of ASOS. So… I don’t think it should’ve been a part of this season’s ending because this season does not follow the book to the end.

  • How does no one understand having Stoneheart would CHEAPEN what happened its like oh wait we killed you but noooo she is not dead its a cop out and i’m happy they didn’t do it.I hope we get Nymaria pulling her out the river and than just hear other characters talk or mention stoneheart,i’d prefer without the lady so as to give no hint of it being catelyn,and than next season you can reveal her after the moon door thing

  • Disagreeing about some aspect of the show is one thing but I hope mods are on their game. Some classless people are dropping random spoilers without tags…

    As for all the people in here bitching at the people bitching at the show. When is it EVER ok to actually say anything even remotely negative here? Like really. The moment someone says anything that isn’t a glowing endorsement they get registered as a serial whiner. I find it hilarious that the cycle has come full circle. Whiners whining about whiners.

    For readers and non readers alike:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ZvarRe-XVQ

    Listen to Ari XD

  • BWB,

    Agree completely – -in fact, iirc, it is the EPILOGUE of Storm of Swords.

    So these people are like 10 episodes early — I am shocked that ANYONE expected it, never mind apparently a bunch of people including WiC!

  • On a side note: I always love watching the Hound fight. Rory McCann is insane. I get the feeling he could really cut a dude in half if he wanted to. A man amongst babies… little, tiny babies.

    This needs to be repeated because this shiz is so true. His sword-swinging face is scary as f**k. And yet, I could watch Sandor and Arya eat and talk crap all day and be happy as a clam. Those two together are GOT gold.

  • Next season is going to be fantastic and will make up for the lackluster finale tonight. The Jon, Davos, Stannis and Mel, Arya and Tyrion plotlines will keep viewers intrigued. IMO next season will FINALLY get to focus on Jon a lot more since his character arc is probably the most intriguing in the second half. And he’ll transform the most.

    Tonight’s finale was rather weak though; that Dany scene at the end was the typical Dany bullshit tween-enduced crap her storyline gets to be in this show. Seriously, someone made a Justin Bieber-esque comment earlier and that’s right on.

    A Lady Stoneheart ending scene would have been perfect. Here’s why, since I know there’s too many contrarians out there bitching about why book readers should not complain about not having it tonight; just shut up and listen to the facts.

    We don’t actually have to see Lady Stoneheart running around murdering Freys-that’s not what I expected. We’ll see that much later in Season 4. All they needed to do tonight was show the brotherhood coming to the river, finding Cat’s body and having Beric give her some mouth-to-mouth. Get a real tight shot of this, then end the season with her eyes opening, and they’re seething with anger. That really wouldn’t have been difficult to do.

    They wouldn’t need to explain that Beric actually dies in doing this act-they wouldn’t have to show her or the BwB again til like episode 2 or 3 of Season 4. But certainly that would have made for a better finale whereas now they’ll need to do it early on in the first three episodes next season. It made sense to do it tonight while the death was still fresh in the memory of non-book readers, who I’m sure saw Robb’s death as much more important. Now D&D will be tasked with resurrecting her quickly in order for the time frame to work-you can’t just have it be done in the middle of the season. She’s resurrected THREE DAYS AFTER THE RED WEDDING. That time has already passed basically since a raven has flown to King’s Landing and possibly Dragonstone.

    I guess we can hope and potentially expect Lady Stoneheart to end Episode 1 of Season 4, but it would have been a hell of a lot better ending tonight than the start of a Dany snooze-fest.

  • I guess the plan will be to tie Stoneheart to Lysa’s death and Littlefinger’s “only Cat”. I suppose that scene will jog everyones memory of Lady Stark and then wham they hit you with the reveal. Unless, of course, D&D screw that up too.

  • Kel,

    It’s true, and you can tell the writers and actors have done a great job of the character pairings, because I hear non-book-readers say

    “The Hound and Arya has to be a spin-off! I could watch just them for an hour”

    or

    “Jaime and Brienne has to be a spin-off! I could watch just them for an hour”

    which is how you feel reading the books!

  • Drfunk,

    Ehhh, I don’t know if I buy that. Kind of a cheap way out. He might kill her off or something, but even if he regrets it (I’d love to see a report of him saying this, because I don’t recall it, and the only thing I can find on google is him talking about Brienne’s last word in AFfC), I think he’s stuck with Stoneheart.

  • I guess I’m one of the few that’s glad that they didn’t introduce LS in this episode. Killing Catelyn and then bringing her back in the very next episode could have made her death feel kind of pointless from an Unsullied’s perspective. Saving it for next season will have a greater effect since most non-readers will be convinced that she’s gone for good.

  • Strepsi,

    Chronologically, her resurrection happened during the time frame shown tonight in the finale, 3 days after the Red Wedding. Since the show doesn’t do flashbacks, they could’ve done the resurrection part and Beric’s death without moving the epilogue forward.

  • It was a fine episode. It was not the greatest episode of television ever, but it did not need to be. Expecting every episode to be a massive “event” is beyond unreasonable, and EP10 has historically been this shows “wind down” episode. Having a “shocker” at the end is in no means necessary to the show’s success or survival. (And, let’s be honest, the dragons were in NO way a shocker at the end of S1; they was so heavy foreshadowed that I’d be truly shocked if anyone didn’t see that as the obvious result of the entire season.)

    Saving UnCat was the right choice. Showing up here would be way too soon, and I don’t even mean because of where it is in the books. Both the books and shows are nothing if not about delayed gratification; having UnCat show up here would destroy that and be the cowards way out of things, asserting that the audience is unable to stick with the show without some form of instance gratification to say “everything will be ok”

    Jamie getting to king’s landing is also a necessary move for the show’s narrative. Trying to stretch a story arc over three seasons would be a bad move because we’re talking about a TV show, and most viewqws, and I really need to stress MOST, as in the extreme majority of viewers will not remember every storyline and detail season-to-season unless they are actively trying. The Jamie and Brienne arc started in S2 and it could not realistically hold until S4 without an incredible account of padding; having them arrive in King’s Landing closes their arcs neatly and leaves room for their new arcs to begin, with Jamie as the Lord Commander of the King’s Guard as he was appointed way back in S1 and Brienne on-standby for her quest.

    The PW should NEVER have happened this season for the same reasons as UnCat. Forcing it in at the end of this season would have been incredibly heavy handed and done only to “appease” the views who want immediate catharsis, which the books have NEVER EVER GIVEN YOU. In all likelihood, the PW will be early next season, and Jamie’s presence is negligible. Even if he IS at the wedding, the change is minor at worst and anyone acting like that is somehow all important to the storyline is magnifying that fact’s significance disproportionately. Even so, if I had to guess, I would assume that Jamie will attend the wedding, but “step out of the room” during the main event, possibly because of something involving Brienne, such as Joffrey getting drunk and making some sort of comment that makes her leave the room, with Jamie following her to apologize on his cunt of a sons behalf.

    And seriously people, the hate for the Daenerys sense is utterly ridiculously. It seems almost entirely spurred by the fact that no one died in it. We get it, your all manly men and anything involving teenage girls is sappy and gag inducing unless they’re half naked or stabbing someone. Good for you, I’m sure your cock is massive and you had a lovely little rage boner because it was not up to your idea of perfection. But such is life, get used to it.

  • Derek:
    Next season is going to be fantastic and will make up for the lackluster finale tonight. The Jon, Davos, Stannis and Mel, Arya and Tyrion plotlines will keep viewers intrigued. IMO next season will FINALLY get to focus on Jon a lot more since his character arc is probably the most intriguing in the second half. And he’ll transform the most.

    Tonight’s finale was rather weak though; that Dany scene at the end was the typical Dany bullshit tween-enduced crap her storyline gets to be in this show. Seriously, someone made a Justin Bieber-esque comment earlier and that’s right on.

    A Lady Stoneheart ending scene would have been perfect. Here’s why, since I know there’s too many contrarians out there bitching about why book readers should not complain about not having it tonight; just shut up and listen to the facts.

    We don’t actually have to seeLady Stoneheart running around murdering Freys-that’s not what I expected. We’ll see that much later in Season 4. All they needed to do tonight was show the brotherhood coming to the river, finding Cat’s body and having Beric give her some mouth-to-mouth. Get a real tight shot of this, then end the season with her eyes opening, and they’re seething with anger. That really wouldn’t have been difficult to do.

    They wouldn’t need to explain that Beric actually dies in doing this act-they wouldn’t have to show her or the BwB again til like episode 2 or 3 of Season 4. But certainly that would have made for a better finale whereas now they’ll need to do it early on in the first three episodes next season. It made sense to do it tonight while the death was still fresh in the memory of non-book readers, who I’m sure saw Robb’s death as much more important. Now D&D will be tasked with resurrecting her quickly in order for the time frame to work-you can’t just have it be done in the middle of the season. She’s resurrected THREE DAYS AFTER THE RED WEDDING. That time has already passed basically since a raven has flown to King’s Landing and possibly Dragonstone.

    I guess we can hope and potentially expect Lady Stoneheart to end Episode 1 of Season 4, but it would have been a hell of a lot better ending tonight than the start of a Dany snooze-fest.

    The problem is still what to do with her after showing her again in episode 2 or 3. It would be filler, much like Theon’s story this season.

    FWIW, I definitely see the argument for doing it exactly as you describe. It was what I expected and part of me hoped for. But I also see the argument against it. Giving Stoneheart even 20 minutes of screen time next season would be to much, in all likelihood. I don’t always agree with Elio at Westeros, but I do get his points about this type of thing taking up valuable time that can be dedicated to more important storylines, such as Jon’s.

    I do agree about your point about next season likely being “Jon’s season” though, looking forward to that and hoping they can do it justice.

  • Ned’s Head:
    Steel_Wind,

    Catelyn’s resurrection is the surprise ending of the best book GRRM has ever written and will likely ever write, so to say that it was a mistake or that it should be out of the show seems silly.

    A Storm of Swords is my favorite novel of all time, and yes, it’s GRRM’s best. That does not mean that Stoneheart was a good move given where he is clearly going with Jon. In the context of a single novel, it was an amazing moment. In the context of the longer series overall? Not so much. He goes to the well too often.

    Axing Stoneheart alters Brienne, it alters Jamie, and who knows who else.

    Yes it does, but the odds are FAR better than not that specific storyline is getting axed anyway. The whole Jaime/Brienne arc is more likely taking another path. It will probably end up in the same spot – but the butterfly effect on Jaime’s early return, combined with the terrible television that Brienne’s quest would lead to (Isn’t Podrick busy with Tyrion who IS NOT missing yet?) always meant that story was always going to change. So it’s just not important to keep it and for the overall story impact, we can do without it.

    On the butterfly effect, if they can take out Robb’s decree legitimizing Jon and naming Jon Stark his heir, then can change something like Stoneheart over a bagel and OJ in the morning and have it fixed by noon.

  • Characters with the most lines in Season 3:

    1. Tyrion – 224
    2. Jaime – 120
    3. Daenerys – 106
    4. Arya – 105
    5. Tywin – 99
    6. Cersei – 97
    6. Sansa – 97
    8. Davos – 96
    9. Robb – 92
    10. Jon – 89

    11. Bran – 84
    12. Gendry – 72
    12. Joffrey – 72
    12. Margaery – 72
    12. Samwell – 72
    16. Olenna – 71
    16. Ygritte – 71
    18. Theon – 70
    19. Thoros – 67
    20. Shae – 64

    21. Brienne – 60
    21. Missandei
    23. Melisandre – 59
    24. Stannis – 58
    25. Sandor – 57
    26. Varys – 56
    27. Jojen -55
    28. Jorah – 52
    29. Osha – 52
    30. Ramsay – 49

    31. Gilly – 48
    31. Talisa – 48
    33. Catelyn – 46
    34. Bronn – 45
    35. Littlefinger – 40

  • I still do not understand how people thought any scene other than Mysha and Dany would end the episode. No other scene was ever going to end this season. Period.

    Now, I do agree it was lackluster and cheesy.

    Despite those facts (ok opinions), it accomplished what it needed to do story-wise honestly. The impact was not what I expected, but I will not say it was bad enough to ruin an episode that was filled with great scenes prior to the final scene.

    Also, am I the only one that liked the Shae/ Varys scene?
    Im no really a Shae fan, but I thought it set up what is to come nicely.

  • Walter_Eagle:
    Characters with the most lines in Season 3:

    1. Tyrion – 224
    2. Jaime – 120
    3. Daenerys – 106
    4. Arya – 105
    5. Tywin – 99
    6. Cersei – 97
    6. Sansa – 97
    8. Davos – 96
    9. Robb – 92
    10. Jon – 89

    Given that A Storm of Swords is very much Jon’s book, this summarizes in arithmetical form the biggest problem with Season 3, from my perspective.

    Not enough Jon, Mance, Tormund and Ygritte. The decision to phase out the rear-attack on Castle Black was clearly budgetary, but still… depressing. It’s a HUGE element from the novel which is just…gone.

    So much story, so little time.

  • One last thing — I think my favorite hand-to-hand combat scene ever filmed comes at the very beginning of S2, when Sandor is fighting at Joffrey’s Nameday celebration. It was so brutal it was like a Pantera album — a vulgar display of power. So, yeah, I’m stoked any time Sandor’s tearing shit up. The actor who plays him (Rory McCann) is a caveman (which I mean in the nicest way possible… please don’t hurt me), so I’d imagine any action scene he films would be badass. But that particular scene was tops for me… so far.

  • HHK,

    the writers do their best to shove dany down everyones throat. Its so obvious that she is their favourite,. and it has becoming kind of annoying… people who only watch the show are totally obsessed with her, because they make it look like she is the one main character “eyeroll”.

  • Ned’s Head,

    finally someone articulating this properly. I’m amazed it has to be pointed out to book readers that Arya has a wolf dream shortly after the red wedding the contents of which im not going to retype
    , but after having given the BwoB a prominent role early in the season, just to have them go off to kill some lions down south and not reapear for the rest of the season also seems a ‘missed opportunity’.

  • Darquemode,

    I just have a hard time disassociating book Shae with tv Shae, but from a plot perspective you’re right. The episode was fine overall, tying up various looses ends (as much as it can on this show). Not having a “wtf final moment shot” is perfectly fine by me. Just found it annoying that there was a perfectly good way to end it but they couldn’t due to logistics. I hope they learn from this butterfly effect for future seasons.

  • Steel_Wind,

    I think your forgetting that there may be major Stoneheart stuff yet to come, with the possibility that she kills Jamie in TWOW. Of course, Jamie may survive his upcoming confrontation with UnCat, but its Martin so always put money on a death. I think Stoneheart has something important to do, if for nothing else the fact that George doesn’t seem the type to bring a character back from the dead comic book style without a purpose.

  • I agree with one of the comments, RobbWind looked way better in the spoiler images posted 1 or 2 days back. While they were showing that scene they could atleast have shown cat being dumped into the river.

  • So besides all the doom and gloom debates, does anyone want to talk about how damn amazing Arya was in this episode? Her fake innocence in that scene gave me shivers!

  • Ned’s Head:
    Steel_Wind,

    I think your forgetting that there may be major Stoneheart stuff yet to come, with the possibility that she kills Jamie in TWOW. Of course, Jamie may survive his upcoming confrontation with UnCat, but its Martin so always put money on a death. I think Stoneheart has something important to do, if for nothing else the fact that George doesn’t seem the type to bring a character back from the dead comic book style without a purpose.

    Exactly those that say LS is now likely cut or should be cut are insane

  • To me it was the least effective season finale BUT it was still a really good episode. I think they missed a major opportunity by not unveiling LS. Unless they cut it all together I would hope they show her in the season 4 opener. I think waiting too much longer than that won’t work on TV. I adore Arya and the Hound and can’t wait to see more of them next season. I am so glad Ygritte shot Jon, and several times at that! And her face after was heartbreaking. I am intrigued to see how they will play Jaime getting back and his relationship with Cersei. I really hope they start taking her in a darker direction. Overall, I still love the show and will watch no matter the changes because it is damn good TV.

  • Darquemode,

    Darque, I’m always a fan of your posts and agree with them…l

    Not disagreeing with anything you said, but concerning Shae and upcoming events, I’m worried that unless something occurs before THE incident…she needs to do something to lose her status as a face character. If it occurred based on all events that have been shown so far in the show, I imagine watchers might be pissed. She has to do something, anything, to get watchers against her, otherwise it would piss the viewers off towards Tyrion, which I doubt is something D and D would do.

  • Steel_Wind,

    Also, LotR would’ve sucked without Gandalf the White. I think GRRM just wishes he wasn’t alone in the “I killed all the best characters” club house there in the Sword and Sorcery Hall of Fame.

  • AJC:
    Why the hell can’t people criticise the show in an adult manner? Why can’t they just say, “I wasn’t so keen on this bit,” or, “I wish they left so-and-so in,” instead of bitching and moaning like little fu****g sissies.

    GROW UP.

    No, not every episode is gonna please you; no, not everything is going to be in the show at the exact time of you pleasing – no-one minds you expressing this, but why can’t you do it in a concise manner without resorting to histrionics such as “Oh, this show is ruined forever,” “The only thing D&D care about is the RW”?!? It childish and pathetic.

    Rant over.

    Friend, you do know what Einstein’s definition of insanity was, yes?

    If your first six attempts to get people to stop complaining about changes in the show didn’t work, this one isn’t going to work either. Time to try a new strategy (say, skimming over the posts that you don’t like instead of subjecting them to intense rhetorical analysis).

    Yes, I realize that my comment is not without irony, but at least I’m only making it once.

  • Some people need to chill the fuck out. It was a good episode, I always said I hope they leave Lady Stoneheart for as long as the book did. Doing it right now would’ve been a cheap ploy. The way the book did it succeeded in that you just got over the Red Wedding, then out of nowhere, it’s a huge surprise. Seriously, mostly you complain at D&D for changing and adding scenes, now you’re complaining because they didn’t?? Grow up.

  • jk_s124,

    Mate I think that was just some bs to keep people tied over until next season. S4 will start and BAM Balon ‘falls’ off a bridge. Thus forcing her to change her plans.

    There’s no way she can actually rescue Theon from the Dreadfort that will deviate way too much.

  • taim,

    I don’t believe this is true. Otherwise she would have had a great closing scene.

    Certain quashed expectations aside, I can’t get over how ineffective the Mhysa scene turned out to be for me. By the time the music kicked in, it was a bit late. It felt deflated from the moment the gates opened. The crowd surfing, the wooden cinematography of the extras… They just didn’t sell it very well. My only outstanding “book reader” complaint this season was Theon’s gratuitous torture throughout the season. Really, I just think the final scene fell short of the honest-to-goodness TV milestone greatness the rest of the season often reached. You don’t have to have read ASOS to think so.

  • Shmurb:
    So besides all the doom and gloom debates, does anyone want to talk about how damn amazing Arya was in this episode? Her fake innocence in that scene gave me shivers!

    It was awesome. I think Maisie is the best natural actor on the show. And when the Hound asks where she got the knife and her face goes blank and she says “you.” Perfection!

  • it seems like almost everyone hated the final scene. After all that happened in episode 9, the ending should have been stark related, so many people felt devestated after the last episode, and then this? ugh…It was just kind of weird…

  • Does anyone else think it is a mistake for the show to make all the slaves dark skinned. It looks kind of bad considering there is so few people of color on the show. I don’t get why they don’t cast some white people to play the slaves. Slavery in westeros is not based on skin color, white people can be slaves too.

  • Panicintrinsica,

    I don’t think people have a problem with Dany because she’s a teen girl and we’re all men who somehow can’t handle the insufferable nature of listening to a teenage girl prance around saying “I may only be a young girl who knows nothing of the ways of war, but….”
    I think the problem people have with Dany is that she’s always contradicting herself and never really does anything for herself but yet still feels entitled to have this ludicrous sense of entitlement that Westeros belongs to her by right, etc, etc.
    If GRRM didn’t have the aforementioned hard on for her that you love so much, she’d be dead, since a decent amount of things that she’s done would get and has gotten other characters killed.
    She starts off as a girl that we should feel sorry for since she’s essentially sold into slavery, then raped a few times before becoming “empowered” by learning to love her husband, a brute of a man who took her first as a 13 year old girl. Then we get to see her slowly adapt to power and get these magical dragons before losing her power and becoming a glorified beggar. She lies, steals and manipulates her way to FINALLY becoming a badass character by actually accomplishing something for herself when she takes the Unsullied army, only to watch her plot go to complete shit in Slavers Bay and get worse in ADwD.
    She pretends to rule but is incapable in not-entirely-the-same but similar Cersei fashion and spends a large chunk of ADwD being incompetent, subjecting herself to another marriage while going back to her girl-like fantasies about Daario the entire time. After spending all that time in ASoS finally becoming a badass, respectable character her plot completely becomes contradictory and goes to shit, and that is why informed people do not like Dany, nothing more.

  • I liked this epsiode but it wasn’t as shocking and thrilling as the other ones which is good. someone can’t die every episode.
    i personally loved the ending with Dany in the crowd. epic shot and the music is incredible

  • Shmurb,

    Lol you are not the only one, it’s like wanting to talk to another person in the middle of a concert with all this “debate”, the stabbing was vicious and the Jaqen theme was a nice touch, it was an Ohhhhhhhh moment for my unsullied friends.

  • LS is not important to be in S3.

    But on the other hand, I think this is not to far-fetched: they film (unused) scenes that are later cut out to have some cutting and editing room for the total length and for shifting scenes between the episodes. The unnecessary scenes with Ygritte/Jon and Theon’s “toy” looked like two of them.

    Looking at the little facts (and hints by Michelle Fairley that look like a goodbye from the show), I think the scene with Catelyns resurrection was in the finale, but removed recently.

    But Michelle Fairley probably decided not to reprise her role as negotiations for the actors would likely be now and so they can “re-design” the look of the undead Lady Stoneheart for another actress.

    I know this is speculation. But it is more possible than some other theories I read about here.

  • When Lady Stoneheart finally gets her reveal, it should leave the viewers like “Holy Shit! OMG, it’s Lady Stark. She’s gon’ fuck shit up!” I am VERY happy that D&D didn’t pussy out on this one…

  • Drfunk,

    You aren’t alone I’m sure!
    Not many of the character changes have bothered me overly much honestly. I certainly do not agree with every choice made, but my actually anger me. I’m lucky.

    The thing that bothers me more is how some scenes are left out or changed for no apparent reason. I get scenes that are changed for adaptation purposes, but some of the book scenes would accomplish the same things the new-for-TV scenes accomplish so why not use them instead of change (or eliminate) them?
    *shrug*

    To me GRRM’s dialog is rarely terrible and D&D’s original dialog can be hit or miss at times.

    That said, I still obsess with Game of Thrones more than any other show and it is still one of my favorite shows despite its flaws.

  • JamesL:
    Does anyone else think it is a mistake for the show to make all the slaves dark skinned.It looks kind of bad considering there is so few people of color on the show.I don’t get why they don’t cast some white people to play the slaves.Slavery in westeros is not based on skin color, white people can be slaves too.

    They are in the Middle-Eastern analog in Essos. There are brown people there. Moreover (and more importantly) they needed to get EXTRAS from somewhere for the scene in the desert. Looks to me that they got them from among the local people in Morocco. *shrug*

  • There is a reason, why there is a gap of hundred pages between the Red Wedding and Stoneheart, so it makes perfect sense not having it happen this Episode.

  • Strepsi,

    The Epilogue is the Frey hanging-her revival comes MUCH earlier. They could easily do it as filler the same way they did the Theon-Ramsay bit all season. We don’t actually hear how she was resurrected until AFfC just like we don’t hear anything about Theon’s torture until ADwD.

  • LordDavos12,

    Thanks.

    I think they have time to accomplish that.
    However… I am not against making the audience dislike Tyrion for some deservingly dastardly deeds done.

    I can see why you think they may not do that though… D&D have put Tyrion in a whiter light than the books and I think he needs a little darkening….

  • People disappointed in not seeing LS need to chill out. If they had brought it up, we’d all be screaming about how packed it was, no time to develop the storyline, yadda, yadda …

    And don’t you worry about the ratings. There’ll be so much hype that the opening of Season 4 will be one of THE Tv moments in 2014.

  • Harry,

    I’m not trying to be rude, but that’s definitely not the case. Michelle has been dodging alot of questions in interviews in the way that makes it seem that she will be back. If it was a money/contract issue, I would think everyone would be aware of it.

  • It was nice to see Dany give a really big smile! She almost reminded me of Emilia Clarke for a second.

    It also was nice to see some explanation about what really hapened at Winterfell, though I’m still not sure who burned the place – Ironborn or Ramsey (Ramsey I assume). Interesting that Roose Bolton said he wasn’t initially against Robb.

    Arya’s progression is riveting, though I hate to see her suffer. She will need years of therapy and the Hound is a terrible therapist.

    I feel so bad for Shae! Talk about a third wheel. Maybe Tyrion and Shae need to explain it all to Sansa. But I feel like Shae has very few good options. I don’t think book Shae and TV Shae are the same at all, so I’m not expecting the same outcome But with Littlefinger possibly on to Tyrion’s game with Shae, I could imagine Shae getting discovered and hanged.

  • The last scene was pathetic, the rest of the episode was quite good, but I was really pissed how cheesy and anti-climatic those last 5 minutes turned out .

  • Overall, this was a solid episode with some good scenes, but the sheer breadth of handling every narrative thread left many of them feeling a little thin. I was also surprised we didn’t see the return of that other mother — next year I guess, for a lot of stuff. This was a great season, and it contains some of the scenes from the books. I think it solved the main season 2 problem of over-compression, allowing for more character moments, and upped the visual ante so that things felt big (gigantic for television even). Nicely done. Even if there were a few cheap outs — sacking of Yunkai! Given that GOT is now HBO’s second biggest show ever (after the Sopranos) we can hope season 4 is even bigger! As always, my detailed thoughts on the episode can be found on my blog.

  • Excellent episode. I can’t really see why so many people seem to be upset. Don’t we want major things to happen next season?

  • I’m just thinking of all the stuff they have to pump into next season. It’s going to be loaded with “game-changers.”

  • LordDavos12,

    Don’t get me wrong, I would be glad if she appears in S4. I love her in her role.

    Not saying it is a money/contract issue, but the role of LS does not really give her much in relation to her career. Just think of how LS can be played by an actress in regards to the situation the character is in. There is not much room for emotions and facettes of a character.

  • This was much better than the season finale least year, just as this season overall was much stronger than last year’s.

    Personally, I’m glad there was no Catelyn reveal. That can wait, and if included in this episode, it really would have felt too soon, just as when last season they revealed Bran and Rickon to be alive the very episode after they were supposed to be dead.

    As for Coldhands, I don’t think he even needs to be on the show; he really doesn’t do anything, or at least not yet. And if he hasn’t done anything yet, no real need to introduce him yet.

  • No Lady Stoneheart and Brienne is near Sansa *head fucking assplodes*

  • LordDavos12,

    I assume you mean the Dany bit? If so, thank you!
    I mean it’s frustrating, I wouldn’t be opposed to rooting for her if she was consistent but she’s not. In ADwD she makes such a mess of things in Slaver’s Bay after finally getting somewhere in ASoS. She loses Astapor and Yunkai while accomplishing little, cannot stop a good deal of her followers from dying, marries again because she somehow cannot accomplish anything without a man as mandated by Meereen’s society which is total bullshit since she has three dragons and an army at her disposal, then acts like a little girl all the time with Daario while ignoring Quentyn completely. We all understand that Quentyn’s not the most handsome guy in the world but that just shows how immature Dany still is; instead of agreeing to his marriage proposal, which gives her an immense boost and army in Westeros, which is what she apparently wants, she fantasizes about Daario, a man she knows she can never marry. Nearly everything she does is counter to basic logic, which often gets characters killed off in ASoiAF. Which makes GRRM look like he’s playing favorites, which we’ve been shown he never does. So it’s like, George…George…she’s fucking up…but you’re going to let her live…? Everyone should be held to the same standards when playing the Game of Thrones; I really don’t ultimately like her because I feel like she keeps getting a free pass.

  • Harry:
    LS is not important to be in S3.

    But on the other hand, I think this is not to far-fetched: they film (unused) scenes that are later cut out to have some cutting and editing room for the total length and for shifting scenes between the episodes. The unnecessary scenes with Ygritte/Jon and Theon’s “toy” looked like two of them.

    Looking at the little facts (and hints by Michelle Fairley that look like a goodbye from the show), I think the scene with Catelyns resurrection was in the finale, but removed recently.

    But Michelle Fairley probably decided not to reprise her role as negotiations for the actors would likely be now and so they can “re-design” the look of the undead Lady Stoneheart for another actress.

    I know this is speculation. But it is more possible than some other theories I read about here.

    No, it just happens much later (at the very end of the epilogue in ASoS) and then she only appears one time after that in AFfC so, Michelle Fairley’s free to do her new gig on “Suits” and then they can call her back in for a scene here and a scene there, but it won’t get in the way of her new schedule.

  • A lot to love in the episode but wtf was that scene with Varys and Shae?

  • Derek,

    So, basically you hate her for the hideous and unforgivable crime of being a teenager and not doing exactly what you imagine you would do if you were a teenage queen with dragons raised halfway across the world by an abusive psychopath.

    I guess my reading all the books twice has left be woefully uninformed, because it seems I am supposed to hate her for vague and incredibly strained reasons that sound a lot like desperate attempts at justifying dislike of characters that font live up to insanely unrealistic ideals. Well who knows, maybe I’ll hate her on thrid read through.

  • Well, this is the end of thrones for me..

    The lack of any sort of revenge for the starks has made me question the motives of this show.

    And the ending with Dany? seriously wtf?

    I am done. It has turned into a pure book fanboy fest.

  • sCor:
    There is a reason, why there is a gap of hundred pages between the Red Wedding and Stoneheart, so it makes perfect sense not having it happen this Episode.

    They’ll probably save the Lady Stoneheart reveal with the whole Frey-hanging scene for Episode 10 of Season 4. That would be best because it would be one-hell-of-a-cliffhanger before making us wait for Season 5.

  • I guess the lack of Lady Stoneheart made it impossible for this episode to be a success in the eyes of many. This said, why on earth did they name the episode Mhysa if not to bring people to that conclusion? Very disappointed on that front, but not enough to make me question the episode’s quality overall. It set quite a number of plot points up well for next season.

    In order of episodic quality, I’d rank this season: 9, 4, 5, 3, 8, 10, 6, 1, 2, 7

    Next season ought to end with:

    Bran meeting Bloodraven, Arya sailing for Braavos, Tyrion sailing for Pentos, Dany conquering Meereen, Stannis arriving at the Wall and Jon’s election of LC, Littlefinger killing Lysa, and so on. Plenty to do.

    Did anyone else notice the nod to Lord of the Rings with Jon saying “Sam..” in a very Frodo-like way toward the end there?

  • Not impressed,

    Any issues with Dany are most definitely not “pure book fanboy fest.”

    Most book readers agree that her arcs are lackluster compared to others.

  • Panicintrinsica,

    I do not hate her; I’ve read the series thrice now (and this will clearly be taken by you as a slight and a one-upping, no doubt) but I do believe she should not be glorified with the ridiculous notions that her fan base has for her. You mention teenagers, well, when they fuck up, they often die too in the series, especially those ones who profess to be kings. See my above post for in depth reasons as to why Dany is inconsistent, and therefore should not be held on such the lofty pedestal that people like you put her on. And by people like you, no doubt I meant “Of your ilk” since I am such a hateful being.

  • Rhys,

    Excellent Sam notion, I’ve always thought about this scene for Jon like the Aragorn scene when he arrives at the Hornburg as well. “Ten thousand????” Since Jon’s about to tell them how many wildlings are coming, I’ve always thought Martin wrote that bit sort of as a homage. Jon’s wounded too after running into one of those guards from Skyrim.

  • Two things I learned during tonights episode:
    -it was possible for me to hate Joffrey even more than I already did. His giddyness at the small council meeting made me want to punch the screen.

    -Sansa can break my heart with just one look.

    Also, for those complaining about a lack of revenge for the Stark’s. Who would’ve been the one to take revenge? I thought this episode did a great job of promising some sort of revenge somewhere down the line. The story of the Rat Cook basically spells it out.

  • Really hate what they’re doing with Stannis he’s coming off like a typical villain not the teeth grinding hard ass he is. Where’s the doubt about the sacrifice of Gendry/Edric or the you’ll die by inches line if Melisandre is wrong. I wonder if they’re saving it for when he goes to the Wall and his interactions with Jon. Even though I don’t like the direction at the moment the whole Dragonstone crew is hands down the best ensemble on the show.

    I understand why people are upset about the lack of Stoneheart, I wanted to see her myself butI get why they didn’t. Nothing was going to top the Red Wedding this season and the reveal might have lessened its impact. But I think there’s another reason predictability. Not the story itself but the way its mapped out. Ep 9 is always the penultimate of the season while ten has ended with magic. So they’re messing with out expectations as viewers. So I wouldn’t be surprised if next season’s premier ends with the Stoneheart reveal, followed by the midseason PW, Viper fight and then the battle at the wall.

  • Count me as one who wanted the Lady Stoneheart reveal as the final scene. It would’ve been an awesome mystical/cliff hanger ending, and at the same time, maybe the show runners wanted to go out on an up note, after the bleakness of the Red Wedding the previous week. Her reveal is supposed to be creepy and disturbing, not uplifting. OTOH, I do get the argument about it diminishing the impact of last week’s ending. Let non book readers go for a year thinking she’s dead, and then end episode 1 season 4 with it.. So, I’m on the fence with this now. I’ll have to trust the show runners, who are working 12 hour days to bring this awesome story to HBO.
    ETA: Seems Bittersteel came to the same conclusion, seconds before I posted.

  • loved the episode, I think it’s tied with season one for my favorite season ender and the Dany scene was major for me in the books, and I didn’t feel let down by it here.

    Dany as a quasi-spiritual leader (and all the difficulties that having a following of pilgrims/the disposessed basically leads to) is one of the things that I find really interesting about her character. In the same way the white walkers basically make the war for the seven kingdoms look like an insignificant sideshow, her struggles to change fundamental political structures (for all their inherent difficulties, reconstruction/jim crow after emancipation was a quagmire in the US south as well) are the reason that I really hope she makes it to the end of the game, because the Dark Ages need a Renaissance.

  • jk_s124,

    It’s a huge potential deviation, but I think maybe better for the show? I’ve been thinking about this, and why not skip the whole kingsmoot storyline? Yara goes to rescue Theon, gets stuck there, Balon dies, Euron claims the crown while she can’t contest, and we skip the need to film really crowded scenes and introduce a lot of backstory and sideplotting not really necessary, but can still show bitterness between Euron and Victarion and Yara while moving them to the next stage — Yara captured, the Iron Fleet reaving, etc.

  • Definitely a better finale than last season’s, but a lot of things brothered me, most of all the lack of Lady Stoneheart, which I was sure we’d see at the end.

    Liked:

    – All of Dragonstone scenes, especially Davos and Gendry’s nicely written dialogue. They’re handling that storyline really well.

    – Arya witnessing Robb/Greywind: a small change from the books that suited her storyline quite well.

    – Bran & Sam & Rat Cook: I wasn’t particularly disappointed with the lack of Coldhands. His introduction will work much better at a season’s beginning than an ending.

    Major complaints:

    – Lady Stoneheart: how are they going to show something that happened literally days after the Red Wedding only next season? Unless they don’t show the resurrection itself and we get to meet her like in the books. I’m betting that’s what they will do, but the first option would be a thousand times better, I believe.

    – Jon and Ygritte: felt overly dramatic. I wished they kept that confrontation for the battle at Castle Black.

    – Asha: I just wanna know where the hell they are going with this. Also, I was hoping for Balon’s death this season.

    Nitpick:

    – Small Council scene: I wished they kept the dialog more to the books. I believe viewers have understood by this point that, yes, Tywin Lannister only cares about family and legacy. It’s getting repetitive.

    Also, don’t you guys feel a little embarrassed when the characters go on on a boring monologue about something (often irrelevant) from their past? This also applies to Cersei’s remembrance of Joffrey as an infant and a number of other scenes in previous episodes.

  • Rhys: This said, why on earth did they name the episode Mhysa if not to bring people to that conclusion?

    Take another look at the last scene :P

    Anyway, this wasn’t a bad episode by any means, but I guess I was expecting more from a season finale. It’s not so much that I miss Lady Stoneheart or Coldhands, two characters I’m rather indefferent to, but more about what was put on screen tonight. The episode just slogged down after a strong opening.

    Great to see Arya get her first kill though!

  • Michael K,

    So do something about it, tough guy…..Seriously? You’ve “stomached” many “pointless” changes? Remember, that this is an ADAPTATION of a series of novels. Almost every (not all) but almost every change has, in my opinion worked.

  • Ron Glenn: They’ll probably save the Lady Stoneheart reveal with the whole Frey-hanging scene for Episode 10 of Season 4. That would be best because it would be one-hell-of-a-cliffhanger before making us wait for Season 5.

    I think the same. That would save costs, help solving the issue that there is not much story with Lady Stoneheart, except hearing rumors that she lets some Freys be hanged, and give more time for other storylines.

  • Well, maybe it was my lowered expectations, but that was an awesome episode!

    Episode… not finale. I agree it wasn’t the most exciting finale. But as a general episode, it was pretty much excellent! Watched it with 5 other people who agreed.

    Tywin/Joffrey, Arya, Bran/Sam/Aemon, Jon/Ygritte… So many good scenes. The revelation of Roose/Ramsay was really sinister and cool. And Robb/Greywind! The Dany scene wasn’t particularly great, but wasn’t as bad as people said.

    Awesome episode.

  • To every single person saying “Arya’s first kill”, it’s NOT her first kill. So please stop saying it.

  • Don’t know if this was brought up already but I thought there were some interesting parallels between Jon Snow and Daenerys. When Jon gets back to the Night’s Watch, they pick him up just like the Yunkai slaves pick up Dany.

  • Dickon Manwoody:
    To every single person saying “Arya’s first kill”, it’s NOT her first kill. So please stop saying it.

    I know, right? They even named an episode after her first kill. It was her first deliberate kill, I suppose.

  • The show simply can’t have Lady Stoneheart appear yet. They have to let her death sink in with viewers first, make it seem really final before making it unfinal. We want that death wail of hers ringing in viewers’ ears during the entire off-season, leaving them with a sense of grief and bitterness when they think of the season’s end. It was one of the greatest moments in TV ever, why negate it so quickly. And viewers need to have it reinforced that anyone can die (not, anyone can die except major characters who can be resurrected).

    Too bad the ending wasn’t as good as the zombie army from last season and certainly not as good as the season 1 ending. But the only real disappointment is that the season is now over! Now it’s 10 more months before season 4.

  • I didn’t like and I’m a bit mad that it had to end with Daenerys.

    I’ll elaborate on it later, I need it to sink a bit. It felt like a good episode, but not a finale. No Coldhands, no Lady Stoneheart, no Mance Rayder reaction, no mysticism in the Nightfort.

  • I loved the ending with Dany. It made me cry. I’m not disappointed at all by things that didn’t make it into the episode. Just means we’ve still got it to look forward to :) now I’m hoping for some awesome casting news soon!

  • Is that you Linda ?

    Ned’s Head:
    Its remarkable but D&D destroyed my faith in their ability to adapt this show going forward with tonight’s episode. If they could so royally ruin the follow up to the Red Wedding, how on earth can they be expected to save the seasons featuring Feast and Dance exclusively.

    I think this is the episode that folks will remember when they cite reasons for the beginning of the show’s decline, and why the show didn’t make it to A Dream of Spring.

  • Red Hound:
    I didn’t like and I’m a bit mad that it had to end with Daenerys.

    I’ll elaborate on it later, I need it to sink a bit. It felt like a good episode, but not a finale. No Coldhands, no Lady Stoneheart, no Mance Rayder reaction, no mysticism in the Nightfort.

    Oh my god, you’re right. And Hinds totally confirmed filming that too

    And they didn’t use Dark Wings, Dark Words from the soundtrack as far as I could tell.

  • Damn! What a great episode!

    No weak scenes. Everything great.

    Fucking Tywin! I love this guy! There should be a show just about him. How he is running Casterly Rock and shit.

    And the Daenerys scene brought tears to my eyes. Will be harder to feed all those slaves, though.

    Respect. Well done!

    But why just 10 episodes?

    HBO should do an animated version of Game of Thrones. Tell the whole story again but with big battles this time.

  • Dickon Manwoody:
    To every single person saying “Arya’s first kill”, it’s NOT her first kill. So please stop saying it.

    Not her first kill, her first premeditated murder.

  • Rhys: I know, right? They even named an episode after her first kill. It was her first deliberate kill, I suppose.

    Could remember it wrong, but didnt the Hound ask “The first man you killed?”. Her first kill was some halfwit stableboy, not a man.

  • One thing about the final image in the season closers. It’s been supernatural in the two previous seasons, but I don’t think that’s why it’s significant, it’s significant because it introduces a key element that will significantly impact at least one storyline going forward. Dany’s dragons being born completely change her trajectory, the white walker attacking in mass impacts the Bran/Sam/Jon storylines and now Stannis, and I’d argue that Dany not just freeing the slaves to gain a highly-trained army, but freeing slaves and assuming a quasi-spiritual leader role with a massive following (for good or ill), sends her story into a new direction (and it will impact other storylines going forward.)

    Compare this to the LS resurrection which while it may eventually make for a cool scene or two, especially if introduced when needed a) could dilute the immeadiate impact of the RW b) has no significant game changing effect so far on any of the major storylines (terror in the Riverlands? join the long line behind the Mountain, Amory Lorch, and Locke. The BWB becoming sinister is interesting, but they are already going in that direction with selling Gendry to Melisandre). Also by making viewers think it will be a major game changer, and then not having significant followup/payoff in the next season? That would be a kind of cheap trick IMO.

  • It’s interesting to witness the disparity of opinions. Dedicated book readers:”That was the worst thing ever! The non-book readers will hate it because this didn’t conclude with the scene I envisioned!” And the non-book readers and professional critics: “A really good finale to a fantastic season.”

    I know Brian Cogman reads these forums so I hope he sees this post amongst all the vitriol that is oozing about. I want to extend my deepest thanks and appreciation for the amazing job you and your awesome bosses (the two D’s) have done. It’s unfortunate that the immediate feedback you get is from this collection of armchair producers who habitat here, but I hope you remain undeterred. The success of the show speaks for itself. Critics love it, and a staggeringly large and growing audience loves it. The fractional number of book devotees frothing madly right now, but they are the one percent, if even that. And they are so juvenile and hysterical when they complain.

    At any rate, I hope you don’t let it get to you, and you just keep on keeping on. Because you are all awesome.

  • Rhys: I know, right? They even named an episode after her first kill. It was her first deliberate kill, I suppose.

    Woah, I totally forgot about that horny fat boy she stabbed. This is the first time her bloodthirst comes out though.

  • Well, I might as well put in my two cents. I was hopeful for what most of you were looking forward to. BUT, I’m not going to second guess the writers. It was a very good episode overall. I’m looking forward to next season. I’m hoping that Brienne will be written into traveling with Jaime and being his secret fencing instructor. After accompanying him north, she will leave him to continue her quest. A lot of people are thinking that the flanking attack on the Wall is written out. I don’t see that as not happening yet. I think we’re going to still have both of them. I’m also looking forward to seeing Boltons step into the light. Thanks for all of your posted company. Peace to ya’ll into the following year.

  • I guess Alfie Allen has to be ordered away from the gym now? It will be hard to portray the diminished figure of Reek when he has the body of a PT…

  • Harry,

    I don’t mind non-book material in and of itself; lots of the show’s best moments are original to the show, as they should be in the transition to film. But I despised Jon-Ygritte this week. Despised. Ygritte’a disbelieving look last week was perfect. Her ninja-teleportation-target-practice-breakdown this week just seemed so unnecessary and implausible. And man, Jon’s lines… It makes Littlefinger’s play-with-her-ass scene in S1 (one such “extra scene” D&D cite as something they didn’t intend to film/include in the series proper) look completely natural by comparison.

    I have to admit, this episode had many great scenes, but a few (in my opinion!) verging-on-awful ones. I’m a little upset given this has been one hell of a season for me up ’til now. I didn’t want to see it run out of steam, especially after last week.

  • From my understand they have split the third book up into two seasons right?

    So if they only kept it one season per book would this season have been more interesting? how much stuff from the book could they fit in if we didn’t get the theon torture porn stuff?

    seriously where is the revenge? this is bullcrap!

  • I guess, if i haven’t read all the books, after the red wedding and with this weak finale i’d feel i little disappointed, but since i DO read the books i’m looking foward to the next season.

    I was waiting for lady stone heart too, that was such a perfect timing that they will not have anymore

  • Haven’t seen the ep yet, but really need to stop reading book reader reports before I do.

  • Ending the season with a rather weak Dany scene, really? I cant help but notice that D&D seem to be pushing Dany into the center of this series with all forces, and that is the only thing I dont like about this adaptation, along with Cersei getting too much screen time.

  • Wormwood,

    If you liked it all, great. But there’s enough holier-than-thou in your post to keep us warm though winter.

    And just to even out your convenient generalization, not all non-readers were impressed. Some were even disappointed in their own right. Reactions are mixed.

  • People need to stop being upset that certain things from book 3 didn’t happen. If those who are complaining of this were true fans, they would have paid attention when it was stated that book 3 is so big that they’re making it into TWO seasons: Seasons 3 & 4. Next Season (S4) is the conclusion of book 3.

  • Despite the numerous complains, of which I don’t understand, but I feel like this episode may have been the strongest the show has ever produced. Well done

  • Wormwood: ters. It was a very good episode overall. I’m looking forward to next season. I’m hoping that Brienne will be written into traveling with Jaime and being his secret fencing instructor. After accompanying him north, she will leave him to continue her quest. A lot of people are thinking that the flanking attack on the Wall is written out. I don’t see that as not happening yet. I think we’re going to still have both of them. I’m also looking forward to seeing Boltons step into the light. Thanks for all of your posted company. Peace to ya’ll into the following year.

    Why would you insult book readers for not enjoying this episode? “Armchair producers”? If the plane I am in crashes because of the pilot’s fault, I can’t complain about his skills or I’ll get someone like you telling me “Hear these armchair pilots whining…” or what?

    I’m a book reader AND a fan of the show, even with some of the deviations. Some of them I like more, some I like less (mostly about season 2), and I think that this finale was lacking. It’s a solid episode, but not a solid finale. And yes, the last scene was probably what kinda killed the entire episode for me. I don’t like Daenerys, nor in the book nor in the show and ending with a cliche scene like this compared to how we ended the last seasons. Again, I don’t like Daenerys, but the last scene of Season 1 was great.

    I said above I need to re-watch this episode again, because the ending left me a very bad taste. That’s how human mind works, what matters is what you say after the word “but”, not before.
    Compare these two sentences :
    “He’s a good worker, but he’s an idiot”
    “He’s an idiot, but he’s a good worker”.

    This is how I feel about the episode. All solid, but bit lacking for being a finale, but after the “but” comes the ending, which I just didn’t like. What to do. I was looking at the clock, worried that time was running out and Lady Stoneheart was nowhere to be found.

    But since I don’t want to sound overnegative, what I liked :
    -Arya witnessing Robbwind, as it fuels her killing spirit.
    -Roose Bolton and his transition to his son, very well done and it explained what happened at the end of season 2. Also, Rat Cook scene moving into the Frey/Bolton meeting.
    -Gilly is very cute in her ignorance. Well written, well portrayed. A pleasant surprise during the entire season.
    -Joffrey being Joffrey.
    -Davos and Gendry.
    -Hodooooooooooooooooooooooor.

    And especially, Yara/Asha’s speech with What is Dead May Never Die as song. We do not sow!

    Since Brian Cogman reads this, maybe he can answer a simple question :

    Lady Stoneheart, yay or nay?

  • I loved the episode. I just question the choice to make the actual visual image they leave on a white dot in a sea of brown. Google “white saviour” if you don’t know what I’m talking about. The connotations were unfortunate but already present, but seriously — did they have to highlight it to the point of iconography there?

  • This episode promises a lot for next season to come:
    Jon getting to know Bran is alive
    Asha rescuing Theon
    Walder getting a punishment(becouse of Brans story)
    Stannis goaing to help out on the wall.
    Jamie getting to wear clean clothes

    Also the scene where Jon got his Frodo hair all out with an Arrow to the knee and goaing all “Pyp, Sam! My dearest Sam” Was pretty darn epic.

    Now I so hope we can skip the Boltons, Theon and Freys for a season and focus almost purely on The wall and KL

  • WompWomp,

    Nothing’s universal when it comes to opinion. Plenty of people out there think Hamlet’s a giant heap of pretentious crap. If Shakespeare can’t win over everyone by now, no modern work can expect to succeed in that endeavor.

    And lets pause for a moment and consider your chastisement. There have been a huge number of people here who can’t simply be content at criticizing the show, but must, for whatever reason, full on insult the show, and the creators, crew, actors, et al, usually with extremely rude comments. And you’re upset because you think I’m being condescending to that behavior?

  • Derek,

    I fell the Dany scenes in A Dance With Dragons was perfect and I don’t think some readers realize that these chapters make her a more interesting and complex character by making her flawed. Up until A Dance With Dragons Dany was in a lot of ways you typical fantasy hero. A Dance With Dragons showed that she was still 16 year old girl prone to making mistakes a girl of her age would make. The fact that Dany starts making some stupid mistakes is a good thing story wise as it makes her character more believable. Is she a strong willed power female character, absolutely. But is she also a 16 year old girl, prone to mae dumb mistakes and have flaws a 16 year old would have? Most certainly.

  • This episode didn’t seem as a finale. I truly thought Lady Stoneheart was the ending! Why? Because Beric and the Brotherhood arc was to present that power, to imply a bigger purpose for the future; they disappeared in episode 7, and there is no conclusion to their story. How can such a scene as the resurrection of Cat be skipped and not shown? I mean for the audio-visual medium. In the book, yes was different. But I read the book in one day and a half. S3 and 4 are 2 whole years!! Plus the timeline fitted since UnCat happened three days later after RW. Why present a character like Beric, and then to say one year later, yeah, he died… It would have played beautifully, and the episode would have seemed complete. But he get Jesus-Dany… It was a nice scene. but nice is not for game of thrones… Greatness is.

    And where were the Tyrells? Margaery was built this season so that she may appear as a powerfull game player. A single 2 minutes scene between those 3 Tyrells, showing them discuss the recent developments, some hints of their plans, and the arrival of Marg&Loras’s father in KL, would have been to much?

    Not to speak of LF, who seems really off the planet. Mance also. Two whole seasons where the King-Beyond-the-Wall was mentioned as quite something, and yet almost nothing. Why didn’t they culminated Jon’s story with the first attck of the wildlings, when Ygritte dies? I mean, I truly LOVE Rose Leslie, and she is better than Ygritte from the books for me, but again, another season of Jon’s when I don’t feel like anything truly happened. Ygritte dying in his hands, and powerfull noises are heard, and Jon goes into the tunnel to see in the distance Mance and his army. That would have been a conclusion. Jon’s story in ASOS has exactly 2 parts (for 2 seasons): 1. him with the wildlings, infiltration, love story with Ygritte, and Ygritte dies; ending the first part. 2. LC elections and that whole plot, negotiations with Mance and the horn of winter, and Stannis’s arrival. It’s not even that difficult to separate the stories.

    I am sorry for being this harsh, because I’m not usually. I really love this show, and most of the adaptation choices. Most of them I understand. But sometimes I really don’t get it. Where lies the fault? …pff, don’t mind me D&D, Bryan, HBO, you’ve done an amazing job with this show anyways, and there will be always criticism.

  • i have huge problem with what there doing to Arya, sure this kill was extincting and cool but that nothing like what Arya like in the books she not some blood thirsty butcher that murder people for no reason. that’s not as scary as what Arya really is someone who needs to kill she survived because when she needs to kill someone she does it without a second thought this kill is below Arya imo. they’ve skipped too many of aryas kills and now even though they’ve given her one it really wasn’t in the spirit of who she really is faceless men arn’t mindless butchers Valar morghulis

  • Rose,

    OMG. One sees what one does want to see.

    I am really not white, more “brown” myself but that connotation never came to my mind.

  • There was some really good moments but overall it was underwhelming for a finale especially after so much buzz and hype after last weeks. Beside the finale scene with Dany there was a few other cheesy moments. Kit Harington is still the worst actor on the show and Jon Snows arc has been the biggest disappointment of the season. I don’t know why they didn’t save Danys scenes from last week for the finale, it would have added some much needed action and would have fit better in this weeks episode more than last weeks. My biggest complaint would be the lack of Arya. Her scene was great but I wanted more. They write a bunch of long, mostly boring, dialogue scenes for other characters why not write one with Arya and the Hound sitting around a camp fire or something. There is such a great character dynamic between those two and I wanted to see more of them.

  • Sorry, but anyone who thought we were actually gonna see SH this episode is completely delusional. That said, I’m a bit surprised we didn’t see Cat’s body get thrown into the river. And then possible Arya’s dream of Nymeria pulling her body out. But the ASoS epilogue is the perfect introduction to SH, & it’s waaaaaay too soon for that.

    I was disappointed about no Coldhands and no door, but otherwise I thought it was great.

  • I’m seriously disapponted in this episode and this season. D&D spent so much time touting this as the best season ever, the season that will never be beaten but IMO it couldn’t be further from the fact. It really has been a mixed bag. While it does contain top notch eps(namely 4, 5 & 9), it also contains my 3 least fave eps of GoT(6, 7 & 10 AKA the only 3 eps I can honestly say I disliked).

    If it had been a regular ep of GoT, I would have said it was really good. But this is the finale & it was seriously lacklustre by that standard. While I understand the lack of Stoneheart(her plot is far too short in the next 2 books to be spreading out over 3(4?) seasons), I still expected it to happen cos I didn’t know how else they were gonna end the season & still keep that cliffhanger standard. And I was right. Sure, the Myhsa scene is nice but season-ender worthy? I think not. I really think that D&D have been so blind-sided by the Red Wedding, they’ve forgotten about the rest of the book. Anyone who’s read SoS knows that S4 is gonna blow s3 out of the water.

    I know they won’t cut Lady Stoneheart. They can’t. It would completely screw up the BwB, Jaime’s & Brienne’s storylines. That said, they have to do it soon. Decomposition is still a thing in Westeros. The later they leave it, the more ridiculous it seems to have her come back as anything other than a pile of mulch & bones. Personally, I’m hoping it’ll be the end of the s4 premiere(either they can reveal her then or mention that the leadership of the BwB has changed and reveal her face later in the finale).

    I think we should all live by the rule of thumb that, if a book is split in two, the second half will always be better than the first. The next 42 weeks are gonna kill me :(

  • GG,

    I agree that 6 & 7 were a mixed bag, but I disagree with your assessment of the finale. LS would have been a good cliffhanger, but cliffhangers aren’t everything. To me (and the friends I watched with), pretty much every scene of this episode was awesome (dialogue, acting, etc.) and it wrapped up a lot of things. There was so much to like! Definitely better than 6 & 7, at the very least.

    I think the Red Wedding IS strong enough to carry this season to its conclusion. I’m definitely not disappointed in the least.

  • Wormwood,

    I searched #gameofthrones on twitter after the episode and there were tons of nonreaders saying it sucked so no it wasn’t just book readers who were underwhelmed.

  • I think there was something overlooked in the Shae/Varys scene.

    Varys says that Tyrion is one of the few people that could make everything better, etc, and also says that Shae has motivated Tyrion and helped him get on the right path, etc.

    Varys wanting to remove Tyrion’s motivation and lifeline could be D&D hinting at Varys’ true nature as discovered in ADWD. Varys is trying to incapacitate the one person who could unite Westeros and threaten Aegon’s rise to power.

  • Oh shit, I just remembered that interview with Ciaran Hinds where he said he had a short scene in the finale. Guess that got moved to early S4.

    Well, 42 weeks til next episode. “And now my ‘want to watch’ begins”

  • JamesL:
    My biggest complaint would be the lack of Arya.Her scene was great but I wanted more. They write a bunch of long, mostly boring, dialogue scenes for other characters why not write one with Arya and the Hound sitting around a camp fire or something.There is such a great character dynamic between those two and I wanted to see more of them.

    Because they have saved that for next season, hopefully ;)
    If they had put all of their scenes in this season I would be very disappointed next hear, it’s a good thing they didn’t hasten this story line too much.

  • Lex,

    Oh I agree. It was a very good ep. I really, really liked it. And my criticisms are in no way an attack on the acting or the writing, which is always top notch. But when you compare it to “Fire & Blood” & “Valar Morghulis”, it doesn’t really hold up to that standard, does it?

  • The final scene was horribly cheesy, but to be fair, it was cheesy in the books, too.
    That said, Varys telling Shae that Tyrion is “one of the few good people” or whatever, was even more cringe-worthy than the Dany scene. Stannis was completly out of character. The Jaime/Cersei reunion was really underwhelming and the scene was too short. Overall, there was too much jumping around between storylines. And I, too, was disappointed that we didn’t get Lady Stoneheart. Also, the sausage? WHY!?

    What I liked: that random man telling Jaime to get out of the way, Arya’s first kill, the Rat cook story and seeing Maester Aemon again. The Asha scene was also good.

    But overall I’m really disappointed. Worst episode of the season. =(

  • Apart from the cheesy ending, I thought it was a very good episode. I didn’t really expect a dramatic finale, because of course this isn’t the end of a book, but only partway through ASOS. There was no way the writers were going to rush the next big dramatic moments from ASOS into Season 3, so this episode just needed to establish a number of ‘hooks’ for next year. And I thought they mostly did so very well.

    Several of the threads now linked back to the North, and especially to developments beyond the Wall. Jon and Ygritte, Jon’s return to the NW, Bran and his group meeting up with Sam and Gilly, the Dragonstone scenes with Stannis now turning his attention to the north (loved Davos!), and so on. Then there were the scenes linking up to Winterfell – Walder Frey and Roose ‘Warden of the North’ Bolton, Theon and Ramsay, and Asha/Balon. At least everyone should now be clear about who is torturing Theon, plus we got ‘my name is Reek’ !

    I enjoyed the Arya/Hound scenes, and I am glad that we finally got Arya the killer. I know some people have thought that Arya should have killed earlier, as in the books, but I thought it was a very intelligent writing choice to have her take this much darker step in her character arc as a direct consequence of what she’d experienced at the RW – when she killed that soldier who was mocking Robb, it was not only a brief moment of Stark revenge, but also a milestone for Arya herself.

    The lack of Tyrells didn’t surprise me, because the RW aftermath in KL was always going to focus on the Lannisters and their role. Cersei/Tyrion a little overdone, as I don’t think that Book Cersei was the type to reminisce about baby Joffrey to Tyrion of all people, but it did reinforce the fact that she still loves Joffrey. Who can bully everyone else but is still no match for Grandpa Tywin – loved his perfectly calm ‘the boy is overtired’ dismissal! In two minds about Jaime’s return: on the whole, I am glad they left things very much up in the air, with Cersei just staring at him and that stump. And as with so many Jaime/Brienne scenes this season, their wordless exchange on entering KL said so much.

    The only thing I absolutely didn’t like was Dany: too cheesy and staged, especially with the ‘heavenly music’ soundtrack. Really, there was no dramatic point to it. If we had to end with a Dany + dragons scene, I think they could have come up with something better. Still, overall I rated it a good strong episode. Not my favourite of the season, but plenty of intriguing dangling threads for Season 4.

  • What I liked:
    – Something that rhymes with meek
    – The fallout at the Twins, and the Roose-Walder scene
    – Happy Joffrey :P and the small council scene
    – Surprise Patrick Malahide
    – All of the Ironborn stuff
    – Surprise Peter Vaughan
    – Arya is finally becoming the sociopath that we know and love <3

    What I didn’t like:
    – The Blood Diamond soundtrack/Daenerys ending. The scene could have been executed better
    – No Lady Stoneheart.
    – Teleporting Ravens. I found it rather silly that a Raven would get from the Wall to Dragonstone so quickly
    – Surprise Ygritte. I find it weird that she would come across him alone, without any of the other wildlings there.
    – “Signed by Ramsay Snow, natural born son of Roose Bolton, [titles, titles]”. Given who wrote it, it should have read something to the effect of “Signed by Ramsay Bolton, true born son of Roose Bolton, and heir to the Dreadfort”. They wasted a nice opportunity to hint at Ramsay’s hate for his bastardy.

    Implications for next season:

    Regarding the Brotherhood Without Banners, Catelyn’s revival has to happen in the premiere of next season, or possibly episode 2. Any later than that and it would look kind of silly without extensive prosthetics and CGI to show Michelle Fairley’s decomposing body. And if they skip it altogether and just have her come in at the end to hang a few Freys, it would be kind of abrupt in a bad way. That works in books, not on tv. And they are going to have to do a good job keeping Michelle’s presence on set quiet

    At Dragonstone, I was hoping that they would spread the whole Gendry escape/letter from the Wall storyline over the first few episodes of next season. My personal hope was that it would play out like this: episodes 1-2: Melisandre is going on about sacrificing Gendry to awaken stone Dragons, the letter arrives from the Wall. episode 3: the Gendry escape, episode 4: Davos imprisoned, episode 5: Stannis is about to execute Davos, Davos pulls out the letter. episodes 6-8: They are completely absent from the show, episode 9: climaxes with their arrival at the Wall, episode ends with chants of Stannis. but alas, this will now not be the case.

    The Wall: In light of the Dragonstone storyline, I very much fear that, unless a lot of filler is invented for Dragonstone, the battle at Castle Black will be combined with the siege at the Wall, and happen in the first half of the season. I personally want it to play out as follows: 1-2: preparation for the battle at Castle Black. 3: the battle, episode ends with Jon finding a dying Ygritte. 4-5/6: preparation for the siege. 6/7: siege begins, Jon controls the wall and is a badass. 8: Alisser and Janos show up and screw with everything. 9: Jon treats with Mance, episode ends with the arrival of Stannis. 10: aftermath, with the election being left for season 5. However, My fear that the battle and the siege will be combined is increasing.

    The Ironborn and the North: well, this confirms the death of Dagmer. I was curious as to whether he would ever show up again. Anyway, I very much like the idea of YarAsha attempting to save Theon. My predictions for it: first few episodes – the torture continues while YarAsha travels to the Dreadfort. Ramsay focuses especially on destroying Theon’s mind, while also removing a few fingers middle few episodes – the attack is repelled, Theon is very much punished for it. last few episodes – Yara returns to the Iron Islands just as Balon is killed, and the Kingsmoot is set up. maybe one last torture scene.. Overall, I also believe this confirms that we won’t see Victarion in season 4, and Euron most definitely won’t appear, although we may see the Silence in the distance in the finale. Aeron is a possibility towards the end.

    King’s Landing: overall it think it will play out much as it does in the books, the presence of Jaime this early will change his relationships post Joffrey’s wedding, especially with Cersei and the Kingsguard. Speaking of Joffrey’s wedding, I am now extremely certain that it will happen in episode 4. episode 1: Tyrion is informed that he is to welcom Oberyn to the city. episode 2-3: set up for the wedding, Tyrion and Oberyn’s friendship and the tension between Dorne and the Reach. We may see Roose travel to the capital to set up the fake Arya storyline. Also, given the deaths of Ros and Talisa, we can finally put to rest all of the theories that Ros would be a fake Sansa or that Talisa would replace fake Arya :D

    My official predictions for what will end each episode next season (assuming that there is filler at Dragonstone in the first few episodes): 1 – Lady Stoneheart. 2 – Daenerys finding the children nailed to posts on the way to Meereen. These first two could be in the other order though. 3 – Jon finds a dying Ygritte after the battle. 4 – Joffrey dies, Tyrion is captured. 5 – The battle at the Dreadfort. 6 – Tyrion asks for a trial by combat after his farce of a trial. 7 – Daenerys sending Barristan and Jorah on their suicide mission, they capture Meereen. 8 – Oberyn vs Gregor, Tyrion is sentenced to death. 9 – The end of the siege of the Wall, chants of “Stannis! Stannis! STANNIS!”. 10 – Either Coldhands (I believe that Bran and co will travel by themselves for a while, with only a few filler scenes) or possibly Balon’s death and Silence in the background.

    Anyway, overall I thought it was a good finale, but not the best finale. It would have been improved greatly by a Lady Stoneheart ending.

  • Even though this final scene was probably the weakest of the three finales, the actual episode was probably the best finale. A lot of “where are we now” stuff usual form a finale, but it felts more interesting than last two season, and some incredibly well handled scenes. Tyrion and Tywin was again gold, same with Joffrey getting dressed down. And after the way last week ended for jon, i thought having ygrite catch up and fill him full of arrows was unexpected, and incredibly well done. Not to mention, both of arya’s scenes were fantastic. All in all, one of the better episodes of the season, i’d say.

  • WinterRose:

    Also, don’t you guys feel a little embarrassed when the characters go on on a boring monologue about something (often irrelevant) from their past? This also applies to Cersei’s remembrance of Joffrey as an infant and a number of other scenes in previous episodes.

    Rather the contrary, I find that the show lacks the strong backstory and foreshadowing of the books, which we get there via flashbacks and visions and, yes, people talking about their past. I certainly wish we would have had the visions of the House of the Undying, or the story Meera told Bran of the tournament at Harrenhal or mentions of the blue rose.

    When some of these things come up later, they will lack the grounding their mention beforehand in the books would have given them.

  • I like that some people are upset when they adapt it differently from the books (i’m in this camp most of the time) but they are also upset when they follow the books. That makes no sense to me. Lady Stoneheart is not till the end of ASOS, so why are we getting prissy they didn’t have this season? Just because you thought it would work well, doesn’t change the fact that you are crying because D&D DID NOT stray from the books. Which is all sorts of ironic.

  • Charles,

    People weren’t wanting the epilogue scene with Lady Stoneheart, though. People were wanting the scene that Arya sees through the eyes of Nymeria where Nymeria pulls Catelyn’s body from the river, then the Brotherhood Without Banners arrives and Beric gives her the kiss of life, because chronologically that happens only a few days after the Red Wedding.

  • I see people are already overhyping S4. There are a few big moments left but is that enough to make for an “epic” season. Most the characters barley have any story arc left in ASOS and it is most likely going to be the season with the most alterations from the book.

  • Well, I don’t know whats worse: The people complaining that the epsiode does not meet their expectations, or the people complaining about the complainers.
    Everyone thinks their personal interpretation of a part of such a multilayered book is the right one, so we would have people complaining even if we had a 100% adaptation without any changes.

    However, it is everyone’s right to be diappointed by personal “looking-forwards”.

    In my opinion it was a disappointing finale, but a good episode. I love the show (as bookreader), even if I do not agree with everything. A normal discussion? Why not. But I would never waste (life-) time on desperately trying to convince others about what I see as necessary for the show.

  • It’s pretty probable that the next season will start the story one day after the end of the events of this episode, given the timetable of things. Some of the next events need to happen almost immediately to make sense. Or maybe they will be handled in flashback, but the show so far has not used those at all, so I doubt it.

  • I hope AngryGOTFan caught on the fact that Ramsay signed his letter to Balon, ‘Ramsay Snow.’ Ramsay would never do that!! :p

  • they need to change Stannis in the show, because they totaly fucked up with him. shit he is the rightful king, but the producers are making him a clown. that really pisses me off.
    and this finale scene with Dany was so stupid…
    season 3 is better then season 2, but worse then season 1

  • Ser Tahu,

    I can put one of your fears at rest, if you don’t mind some behind-the-scenes spoilers. But if not, read no further: the leaked Magnar audition tape confirms that Magnar has been sent with a large force over the wall to check up on Ygritte and Tormund and reinforce them. So we’re almost certainly getting both the first skirmish on the south-side of Castle Black AND the larger attack from the north by Mance’s army.

  • Let’s just say The Red Wedding was the Season’s 3 BIG FINAL, and Episode 10 – moving the pawns on their positions for the next round of the Game …
    otherwise the Ep was a good one, I liked so many moments – Tyrion’s and Sansa’s brief understanding, Sam’s courage in defending Gilly among the foresaid.
    but Kit Harrigton spoils Jon’s role; he is totally nonequivalent match to Rose Lesley great performance :-(

    the rest is… a Dream for a Spring 2014 !

  • Clear,

    I thought the same, although Shae’s comment and Tyrion’s heavy drinking seemed to imply that he was the one asking Varys to send her off.

  • WompWomp

    Don’t get me wrong, everyone’s entitled to their opinions and criticisms :)
    but it’s difficult to read them and not let it rub off on you. But I always find that, most of the time, when I finally get around to watching the episode, I’m very surprised that the episode exceeds my expectations, especially one that’s hyperboled as weak.

  • I loved the ending. It made me cry, first time and on rewatch. Really inspirational. A little bit of me wondered if there were unfortunate implications with all the brown people crowding around their white saviour, but I think there was probably more brown clothing than skin; the people looked like they had a variety of skintones. Anyway, it was wonderful to see Dany smile, to feel happy because of a moral choice she’d made. I think it would have felt like a huge downer to show UnCat after that. Better for that to come as a horrible surprise, much later

    I feel like we needed some people not being punished for their nobility and this episode largely showed that, both in the final scene and at other points, with Sam, Gilly, Baby Sam (lol, showrunners changing same/similar character names but adding one of their own, “good job”!) and Jon reaching Castle Black, and Stannis’s forces agreeing to answer the call of the Night’s Watch. I think that this reinforces the idea that making the noble choices won’t always lead to Red Wedding-esque situations, which we already saw last week when Arya saved the pork merchant from the Hound, and, to a lesser extent, when Jon refused to kill the Ostler (because, sure, the Ostler died anyway, but it still meant something that he wasn’t killed by a member of the Order sworn to protect him, and Jon hasn’t lost anything as a result except Ygritte, who he always knew he would have to leave).

    I feel like Jon’s scene with Ygritte in this episode and in the last few where he shared scenes with her have shown Kit Harrington to be a good actor. The material he’d been given for most of the last couple of seasons didn’t give him much to work with. He had to hide his real feelings around the Wildlings. But when he told Ygritte he knew he loved her and she loved him, I felt terrible for them both. Rose Leslie has been brilliant in these scenes too. You can see her heart is broken and every breath she takes moves the shards in her chest.

    I liked the scene with Bran telling the story, which reinforced the importance of guest right. I would have liked guest right to the mentioned in the small council meeting as well, but meh. Joffrey’s glee was just as horrible as I expected and it was nice to see him stand up to Tywin (temporarily), though I think I would have liked it even more if Joffrey had accused him of being scared of Aerys (I seem to remember him saying that, but apologies if my memory is rusty). Great moment between Tyrion and Tywin afterwards and also between Tyrion and Cersei. Reinforcing that she loves Joffrey even now is important and will add more weight to her grief when he dies.

    The scene showing Tyrion and Sansa being nice to each other at the start was good in that it shows what the marriage could have been if the Red Wedding hadn’t happened. I do feel a bit weird seeing Sansa mention Arya while smiling, sharing a joke with her husband. She doesn’t know if Arya is alive. And I also feel we don’t know if she knows about Bran and Rickon supposedly being dead. I choose to headcanon that she was told about the Red Wedding and her little brothers at the same time, unless the show does something later to tell me otherwise. I remember Bryan Cogman answering a question of mine during the Q&A and also some DVD commentary to the effect that the showmakers want to avoid too many repetitive “Starks emotionally shattered by bad news” scenes, so maybe the show is actually taking the route I imagine and Sansa will mention later that she was told about them all at once. I’m not gonna lie: Sansa is my favourite character and I do feel a little bit cheated every time the show leaves a scene with her to our imaginations instead of showing it. I know that people have become tired of the torture scenes with Theon, so maybe this “let’s avoid repetitive scenes” business has some merit (although, you know, maybe that adage might have been applied to give us one or two fewer torture scenes, frankly). That said, while I can live with not seeing Tyrion tell Sansa he’s going to marry her, I actually think it would have been a good idea to show her react to the Red Wedding news, or at least to take the news, turn around, and hide in a room to cry alone. Hmm. She was crying in a room alone when Tyrion came in, so maybe that’s what happened. Feck it, I generally just want more Sansa. I’m selfish that way (even though I was fairly glutted with the wonderful episode eight).

    I think that it gives some payoff to have Jaime arrive back at King’s Landing and there’s plenty of time in the first episode or two of the next season to show more of his reunion with Cersei plus his reunions with Tywin and Tyrion. I saw someone complaining that we’ll lose his snippy moment with Kingsguard Loras but how is that more dramatic than facing a Loras who’s supposed to be marrying Cersei? I’ll be interested to see how the show handles him arriving back while Sansa’s still in King’s Landing.

    On the whole, I liked pretty much everything about this episode, including stuff with Sam and Gilly (scenes with Bran et al and then Master, er, Maester Aemon) and the scene with Yara and Balon. On that last front, I felt like at every moment when Yara was looking at Balon, she was silently saying “Theon did this because he wanted you to love him, you bastard.” I wonder how far she’ll get. Will she turn back when she hears of her father’s death, in order to attend the King/Queensmoot? Will she reason that she could do a better job of saving Theon if she’s Queen? Or will she carry on trying to find him in some new subplot, nearly succeed, but fail because Theon won’t fall for the “Yara’s saving you” story again? Might the Kingsmoot even happen without her? I wonder…

    And will continue to wonder. For now our watch begins. It will not end until ten months have passed.

  • I very much liked the episode. Jon and Ygritte’s farewell was a very good scene. Did anyone else think Grey Wind’s head on Robb was as sickening as in the book? I felt like vomiting when I saw it.

    Just seeing the thousands of people that Daenerys freed makes me cringe, since they’re all going to die due to the Pale Mare.

  • Jambo:
    That scene of Davos and Mel talking over Stannis’ shoulder really reminded me of the scene in the pilot with Maester Luwin and Cat talking over Ned’s shoulder.

    Little things like that are why I just love this show.

    Also!! Did anyone noticed the way the Night’s Watch lifted Jon in the air AND the way the Yunkish crowd lifted Dany?!?!

  • I really hope that this means there’s no Lady Stoneheart in the show. It was a bad idea in the book and this way they could at least do something interesting with Beric & the BWB.

  • Slept on it. I’d be more inclined to accept that (the obvious) ripe material was left off-screen (and more reportedly filmed: Mance, additional Beric, Lysa, etc.) if the finale hadn’t been so…soft. I’d rather be frustrated than bored and with this finale, I was both. It’s not the beginning of a 10 month wait I was hoping for…

  • Clear,

    This was the one scene that kind of threw me tonight. I’m actually quite surprised you are the only one that has really mentioned it so far. I wasn’t sure what Varys’ motivation in that scene really was. I think you’re idea that he’s really trying to hurt Tyrion in order to keep the realm in turmoil is probably right.

    I kinda feel like he might be sincere though, because although Varys does plan to put a Targaryen back on the throne, his ultimate goal is peace and stability for the realm, right? Maybe at this point he might still be considering multiple ways to accomplish that. I can’t quite remember his motivations or flexibility in the books. Obviously by the end of Dance he’s set on putting a Targaryen back on the throne (and therefore trying to keep the chaos), but maybe earlier having someone else stabilize the realm would have been ok.

  • I really liked this episode, I don’t think it was weak at all. I don’t understand people complaining about no PW or no Lady Stoneheart – in the previous episode everyone was going on about how ASOIAF goes against expectations, well, now GOT goes against book readers’ expectations, and also against people expecting the show to close with a traditional, satisfying feeling of the bad guys getting their just deserts. (Besides, if you’re complaining about the lack of PW you’ve already read the books so you know the Lannisters’ downfall is coming, anyway.) This finale may not have been as bombastic as in S1 and S2 but it was very tense and made me look forward to S3.

    I loved the character moments in the episode, they were all great. And even Theon’s storyline, the one people kept complaining about, was worth it. Less torture and Ramsay breaking Theon would’ve made his acceptance of his new identity much less convincing.

  • I liked the episode yet was also disappointed.

    I think I convinced my brain that certain events would definitely happen in this episode and they didn’t so really I have only myself to blame.

    Loved everything Bolton, the Hound/Arya and the Greyjoy scene. I felt there was a severe overload of KL/Tyrion scenes though.

    Disappointed the scene with LF/Lysa and the Eyrie was cut :(

  • outdoorcats,

    Oh yeah, I completely forgot about that :P. I guess we will (luckily) just have some filler with the Dragonstone crew at the start of the season then.

  • Nick_Scryer:
    I think I convinced my brain that certain events would definitely happen in this episode and they didn’t so really I have only myself to blame.

    To be honest, I think this is many (if not most) book readers’ problem. They keep expecting the show to go in a pace they think it should go, so they’re thrown off and disappointed when the show doesn’t do what they expect it would do.

  • Ok, now that my bit of anger cooled down, here’s my tops:
    Episodes: 1. Kissed by Fire
    2. The Rains of Castamere
    3. And Now His Watch Is Ended
    4. Second Sons
    5. The Bear and the Maiden Fair
    6. Walk of Punishment
    7. Mhysa
    8. Dark Wings, Dark Words
    9. The Climb
    10. Valar Dohaeris

    Loved: Jaime & Brienne, Arya, the Hound, Tyrion & Tywin, Olenna, and Varys (more of him, please?)

    Liked: Daenerys, Robb&Cat&Talisa (and only because of the RW), Stannis, Mel and Davos, Sansa, Margaery (where was she in the finale??), Joffrey, Cersei, Ygritte, and Walder Frey.

    Ok: Bran& co., Sam, Blackfish, Edmure, Tormund, Theon and Ramsay (ok because of Theon’s speech), Shae, Thoros and Beric (their story is left unfinished!)

    Didn’t liked so much: Jon Snow (once again), Mance (because we barely saw him), Littlefinger (where is he??), Podrick.

  • Hutchi89,

    And when it does happen, it’s been mentioned but never seen in a Wizard of Oz kind of way. To forget that narrative element would decrease the punch of the reveal.

  • I was hoping they wouldn’t have Gendry leave until next season.
    OR at least they would have sent him to Bravos :(
    But it looks like he’s out of the show, oh well.

  • My two major comments on the episode, one good and one baddish:

    I’m kind of (negatively) surprised by how far they went with the Dragonstone plotline. Now that Stannis already knows about the Night’s Watch and Gendry has been released, they really haven’t given him anything to do until he rescues the Wall. And they could have easily had Davos get Stannis to wait until the next two Kings died. I’ll have to see what they use for filler in Season 4, but I thought that was a dumb change.

    And on LS: I’m glad I was right about her not being included this season. It would have cheapened the Red Wedding. Now we can get the full shock value of the epilogue of ASOS next season and have Arya find the body in the river. And no, the surprise isn’t going to be ruined. Millions of people managed to not be spoiled by the RW and they can avoid this just as easily. People are dumping way too much crap on this episode because they got themselves too hyped for that scene.

    Everything else in the episode was pretty good. Yeah, Dany’s last scene wasn’t the exciting cliffhanger the last two seasons had, but still pretty good.

  • LordStarkington:
    Some of the reactions to this episode seem way over the top on the drama scale. I mean, yeah, I wasn’t blown away by the Dany scene (and I didn’t like the Stannis one either, specifically how Stannis and Melisandre were portrayed) but really.

    The final scene was kind of lame but basically other storyline has major cliffhangers as to what will happen next…

    Couldn’t agree more. Times like this are when we see how spoiled fans have had it thus far. One episode where things don’t happen exactly how they want and everybody freaks out. Less key plot moments in this season just means more next season. Which is good. The RW is going to draw a lot more viewers, who won’t be caught up until the start of next season.

    I do think the episode lacked a big moment, but part of that is the fact that George didn’t write a big moment immediately following the RW. Again, LS would have completely ruined the effect of the RW and would have made all the fans look stupid for talking about how in this series, none of the characters are safe.

    The show will certainly survive a lackluster season finale. This is probably closer to what a lot of non book readers needed, because the RW takes some time to digest. They set everything up well to start with a bang next season.

  • http://www.dothraki.com/2013/06/mhysa/

    The translation of Talisa’s valyrian letter:

    “Dearest mother,

    So much news I have to give you from over the seas. I find myself held by the arms of a husband I never expected to have. They say he is a king and of my heart that is true. He holds us safe, for now I am two, with his child beneath the heart that beats for him. The war rages on, but soon, when it is all over, we shall come to you and celebrate together.”

    ;__;

  • I don’t understand why D&D have to make so many bloody changes. Stannis was someone to root for in the books, but here they have made him kind of.. evil? Stupid? The last scene was one of my favorites in the books. Why change so many quotes? “A king protects his people, or he is no king at all.”
    Talk about screwing us over again.

    Overall a terrible episode

  • barak: To be honest, I think this is many (if not most) book readers’ problem. They keep expecting the show togo in a pace they think it should go, so they’re thrown off and disappointed when the show doesn’t do what they expect it would do.

    True. My disappointment is my own fault. I expected LS and didn’t get it. I try not to be one of those types of book readers but this time, I guess that I was. Perhaps part of my dislike for the final scene is because I know what is coming in Meereen .

    Clear:
    I think there was something overlooked in the Shae/Varys scene.

    Varys says that Tyrion is one of the few people that could make everything better, etc, and also says that Shae has motivated Tyrion and helped him get on the right path, etc.

    Varys wanting to remove Tyrion’s motivation and lifeline could be D&D hinting at Varys’ true nature as discovered in ADWD. Varys is trying to incapacitate the one person who could unite Westeros and threaten Aegon’s rise to power.

    Brilliant…and so glad to see some viewers discussing this scene because I wasn’t sure what to think about it.

  • Ned’s Head:
    Its remarkable but D&D destroyed my faith in their ability to adapt this show going forward with tonight’s episode.

    You say that as though you haven’t spent every single recap thread endlessly whining about every tiny change you didn’t like from the books. Go away, annoying troll.

  • jk_s124:
    Seriously……no one else is concerned with the lack of Balon’s death, and the the departure of Yara to save Theon?


    In the book we’re told that Asha heads to the mainland to find Theon, but can’t find him and returns to the Iron Islands after Balon’s death, so it’s not really leftfield or original.

  • Siobhán Mooney: and the scene with Yara and Balon. On that last front, I felt like at every moment when Yara was looking at Balon, she was silently saying “Theon did this because he wanted you to love him, you bastard.”

    Yes, that was a strong performance, perhaps Gemma Whelan’s best scene yet. I also love how her character is evolving – from being somewhat cold and calculating at the beginning back in S2, to turning around to caring about him again now that they’ve been reunited after Theon’s long “fostering”. Too bad Balon didn’t come around, but isn’t that just like a stodgy old father, too stuck in his ways to change? Great scene!

  • Yes, finally this season is over! This season has been as bad as the second season. Dany crowd surfing? And I thought the show couldn’t get more cheesy with the way they shot Jon’s bird attack. You would think I’ll be flipping tables because Coldhands and Lady Stoneheart weren’t there, but knowing tweedle dee and tweedle dum they will find a way to screw them up. So I’m glad they get a no show.

    Okay you GoT fanboys, get all butthurt because somebody here who doesn’t worship the show like you people do. While you do that I’ll be celebrating now since it’s the longest period till the next episode of the GoT. Oh, the months before season 4 will be heaven!

  • I loved everything from S3.

    Really hoping for Colhands and his and elk for s4and ofcoarse Balon Greyjoy DYING, hoping we’ll really find out who or what caused his death

  • This episode was total horseshit.
    I’m not a book fanatic, but In the books Stannis was someone to root for, not hate, and the show desperately needs someone to like. Davos/Gendry scene was a perfect time to show the audience how Just Stannis was, but instead… And then what was with the last two scenes? Pathetic writing. A constant slapfest for bookreaders and a boring as fuck episode overall.

  • Darquemode: Also, am I the only one that liked the Shae/ Varys scene?
    Im no really a Shae fan, but I thought it set up what is to come nicely.

    You’re not the only one. I am a show-Shae fan, and I liked how we get another Ned Stark kind of situation where a choice is given and the character says “screw logic, I’m going with my heart!” I thought Sibel Kekilli did a great job emoting, it looked like she was about to come to tears until her fierce nature won out. I also like how Varys is both looking out for his friends and the realm, yet again. I was totally happy with this scene.

  • JamesL,

    Yes, it was a while back though. Some con of some kind where he was doing a reading then some Q&A’s. I do think there obviously needs to be some resolution to Brienne’s arc. It is very possible she will make an appearance there but maybe not. If he wants to get rid of her, she could always have him in the “background” and ignored while the Brienne/Jaime arc gets completed.

  • Great episode! I don’t get people bitching about it (I mean for the first time ever they had a Shae scene which didn’t make me cringe). I wonder where Gendry will wind up next season, the riverlands? not likely. My personal guess is the Vale, where he will replace Mya Stone but we’ll see

  • First, I would say this has been my favorite season with season 1 a close second (Sean Bean, I love you!).

    Second, this was my least favorite episode of the season.

    Third, the Jon and Ygritte scene was part terrible, part perfectly emotional. How could it be both? Well, sniveling cry-baby Jon was a huge misstep. It made him seem totally pathetic when his choice is about his honor, word, and loyalty to the Watch. I don’t get Kit’s choices in that scene at all (nor the writers for that matter). Rose, however, was tone perfect and I thought the added arrows were a nice touch. But overall the scene tried too hard to spell out for anyone confused what was happening.

    Fourth, body-surfer Dany made me roll my eyes. I think I also threw up in my mouth a little.

    Finally, on a positive note, there were some excellent performances overall.

    Edit: I forgot to mention… I loved Sam’s stuff. The Hodor moment made me smile. The whole thing, even if it isn’t in line with the book, felt right. Though, I do fear the way things went in that regard that a certain character we all want to see won’t ever appear on the show.

  • It wasn’t an exciting finale, but set up everything nicely, and no shockers means that the RW has more weight.
    The thing is, there may be too many shockers in what’s left of the book to cram in a season. I think they’ll go with Purple Wedding around episode 6 and Tyrion’s trial in episode 8, Tywin and Lysa for 9, LS for 10. I know the Purple Wedding would be the obvious choice for episode 9, but unless they change every timeline drastically there’s no time for anything else. I don’t mind that Jaime’s in KL already, there was nothing else for him to do and we don’t lose much, frankly I think that little reunion scene with Cersei would be a little too gross for tv. I’m a little worried about Bran’s storyline though, there’s so little material, for years. Also, I’m not sure, but I think they never made Sam promise not to tell Bran is alive. I’m not nitpicking, but there has to be a reason for Sam not to tell Jon.

  • Honestly, they need to stop changing stuff. Or change the whole show, because these small changes are killing me right now.
    I mean, why do they choose the changes that screw up the story the most?
    Season 2 would have been much better if Qhorin Halfhand was actually the half-hand of the books and not some random dude who comes in 2 episodes.
    And I’m not criticizing the show for not following books, I’m criticizing it for being unnecessarily uninteresting at times and ruining characters who had the potential of being awesome.
    While the show’s writing has improved, it’s still
    Season 1 > Season2 > Season 3. For me and almost everyone I know.

  • I can’t see it until tonight. How long is the episode? The ACTUAL EPISODE, not including the “Previously on” segment, nor the opening and ending credits.

  • Not sure if this has been said or not or if others are of like opinion, but —

    As much as I love Daeny, I’m getting a little bored with her bookending every single season with some sort of Daeny triumph / dragon’s flying / everyone praising her. Sorry, it’s getting a little stale in terms of TV. End on another note !

  • JM:
    Season 1 > Season2> Season 3. For me and almost everyone I know.

    Yes, the “almost everyone I know” leverage-your-argument Internet fallacy. :)

  • ayamo: Spoiler Note: This post is for those who have read A Storm of Swords. As such the post itself and the comments will contain spoilers. If you haven’t read ASoS yet, you can discuss this episode in our non-book reader recap, coming tomorrow. Thanks!

    Spoiler Note: This post is for those who have read A Storm of Swords. As such the post itself and the comments will contain spoilers. If you haven’t read ASoS yet, you can discuss this episode in our non-book reader recap, coming tomorrow. Thanks!

  • Val:
    It wasn’t an exciting finale, but set up everything nicely, and no shockers means that the RW has more weight.
    The thing is, there may be too many shockers in what’s left of the book to cram in a season. I think they’ll go with Purple Wedding around episode 6 and Tyrion’s trial in episode 8, Tywin and Lysa for 9, LS for 10. I know the Purple Wedding would be the obvious choice for episode 9, but unless they change every timeline drastically there’s no time for anything else. I don’t mind that Jaime’s in KL already, there was nothing else for him to do and we don’t lose much, frankly I think that little reunion scene with Cerseiwould be a little too gross for tv. I’m a little worried about Bran’s storyline though, there’s so little material, for years. Also, I’m not sure, but I think they never made Sam promise not to tell Bran is alive. I’m not nitpicking, but there has to be a reason for Sam not to tell Jon.

  • Darquemode:
    Drfunk,

    You aren’t alone I’m sure!
    Not many of the character changes have bothered me overly much honestly. I certainly do not agree with every choice made, but my actually anger me. I’m lucky.

    The thing that bothers me more is how some scenes are left out or changed for no apparent reason. I get scenes that are changed for adaptation purposes, but some of the book scenes would accomplish the same things the new-for-TV scenes accomplish so why not use them instead of change (or eliminate) them?
    *shrug*

    To me GRRM’s dialog is rarely terrible and D&D’s original dialog can be hit or miss at times.

    That said, I still obsess with Game of Thrones more than any other show and it is still one of my favorite shows despite its flaws.

    I think you just nailed 90% of the main complaints from readers. The main reason why the changes happen imo is because of limited resources. This show clearly outgrew D&D in terms of production scale. Between the writing/casting/promoting/shooting/editing/post production work/more promoting etc… over what 3~4 production units…

    The thing most cynical readers failed to realize is that D&D are prob nerdier fans than they are in regards to the source. It’s not like they’re not aware of what they’re doing. They’re “adapting” cause they only have X amount of days to shoot in Y location or Z actor/actress is only available for W time period. It IS a complicated production. So yeah, Jon/Quorin story got ham fisted but I get the how and the why.

    My criticism at times isn’t there to nag about shit they obviously know about (since we don’t have all the facts), my hope is that they realize they do need the help now. Instead of trying to juggle even more balls as the season progresses. Here’s how I’d change things:

    1. Stop with the PR tour, Flying around 5+timezone to regurgitate the same story over and over is best left for the actors. They can use the face time for more work and most importantly they don’t RUN THE SHOW.

    2. Hire more writers. Vanessa Taylor / Bryan Cogman have done a great job so far, but it’s clear they could use more blood so that D&D spends less time writing and more time overseeing.

    3. Guilt trip or intimidate actor/actresses of reading the freaking source. This “I don’t want to get tainted by future knowledge bs” is really dumb. They’re supposed to be professionals. Portraying a character a certain way is suppose to be what they do for a living, how the @#$@ is that hard for them? Reason why? Cause if they put in their two cents without having read the source (at least up to w/e the show is at) then it becomes a hit or miss. Dinklage nailing his role without having done his homework shouldn’t excuse the rest of the lazy cast who haven’t done so. This will insure a certain consistency with the characters and would quell 95% of the nerd ragers out there.

    So yeah, if they can do 1 and 2 at the least, we should get better scenes overall. Not just as fan service but just better story telling overall.

    PS: Darquemode, my latest venture into new shows is Orphan Black. The wait for GoT will be long and tedious, should check it out :D

  • Very disappointed – thought back to the other finales – esp season 1 – where we thought this has to be the most unusual, beautiful, well-scripted and well-acted show in the history of television. We weren’t aware of the books yet – but bought them soon after. But, in our opinion, last night was the weakest episode so far. There were almost no action scenes and even the dialogue was poorly written. NATO (no action – talk only) in King’s Landing, the wolf’s head looked like it was about to fall off, creepy Frey and even creepier Bolton sort of explaining the RW (which should have been done by Tyrion), Ramsey “Boring” Bolton’s scenes are getting stale, and Dany’s eyebrows are taking on a life of their own. She was so pretty in season 1 – now not so good – but that is an easy fix. Her final crowd-surfing scene was silly. Good things – the Hound and Arya – the coin and Jaqen’s theme playing in the background; seeing Maester Aemon and Pyp again; Sam and Gilly and Bran and Co. – wished they had all stayed together though. That said, we still totally respect “Dave and Dan” and the wonderful work they’ve done. This was just a misstep. Can’t wait for next season!

  • Daniel:
    GeekFurious,

    Northing about Stannis? Surprised :O
    But yeah, it’s my least favorite episode too.

    Well, the Stannis bit bothered me as a book reader but I try to separate myself from the books as much as possible or I would be crapping all over this season. I do have problems in general with the way they’ve portrayed Stannis this season but at least they have been consistent with their revised portrayal of him.

    In the end, they are at least heading where they should end up. Obviously a problem with making it so obvious is that we won’t have that moment from the books when the attack is a big surprise.

    But I’m just glad to be out of season 3 with respect to the Stannis story line. Season 4 should bring us back to the character he actually is in the books.

  • The Purist:
    Yes, finally this season is over! This season has been as bad as the second season. Dany crowd surfing? And I thought the show couldn’t get more cheesy with the way they shot Jon’s bird attack. You would think I’ll be flipping tables because Coldhands and Lady Stoneheart weren’t there, but knowing tweedle dee and tweedle dum they will find a way to screw them up. So I’m glad they get a no show.

    Okay you GoT fanboys, get all butthurt because somebody here who doesn’t worship the show like you people do. While you do that I’ll be celebrating now since it’s the longest period till the next episode of the GoT. Oh, the months before season 4 will be heaven!

    yawn! Whiners gonna whine…

  • The Purist:
    Yes, finally this season is over! This season has been as bad as the second season. Dany crowd surfing? And I thought the show couldn’t get more cheesy with the way they shot Jon’s bird attack. You would think I’ll be flipping tables because Coldhands and Lady Stoneheart weren’t there, but knowing tweedle dee and tweedle dum they will find a way to screw them up. So I’m glad they get a no show.

    Okay you GoT fanboys, get all butthurt because somebody here who doesn’t worship the show like you people do. While you do that I’ll be celebrating now since it’s the longest period till the next episode of the GoT. Oh, the months before season 4 will be heaven!

    I’m pretty sure the only butthurt is yours.

    I’m critical of the show when I think it deserves it and I’ve never been much of a fanboy about anything. But I think fanboy is something that fits appropriately with someone who watches a show they think isn’t very good, just to crap on it and bathe in the glory of being able to belittle people who enjoy it.

  • Drfunk: 3. Guilt trip or intimidate actor/actresses of reading the freaking source. This “I don’t want to get tainted by future knowledge bs” is really dumb. They’re supposed to be professionals. Portraying a character a certain way is suppose to be what they do for a living, how the @#$@ is that hard for them? Reason why? Cause if they put in their two cents without having read the source (at least up to w/e the show is at) then it becomes a hit or miss. Dinklage nailing his role without having done his homework shouldn’t excuse the rest of the lazy cast who haven’t done so. This will insure a certain consistency with the characters and would quell 95% of the nerd ragers out there.

    Firstly, book characters != tv characters. Yes, the tv characters are based on the book ones, but THEY ARE NOT THE SAME.

    Secondly, the future knowledge thing can be harmful. Do you think, for example that knowing who Jon’s real parents are would help or harm Kit in attempting to convey the uncertainty that not knowing causes? I would wager that knowing that information that Jon doesn’t know would harm his performance. If you become a professional actor and get a role on the show, then you can come back here and critique the individual actor’s choice of approach to their character. Until then, let the actors do what they are paid to do, and let them figure out which approach works best for them as individuals.

    And thirdly, THE BOOKS != THE TV SHOW.

  • I love how they managed to make the massacre of Sansa’s family all about Tyrion, who gets two scenes about it, while Sansa gets two seconds and no dialogue. It’s not like she’s an important character, after all.

  • i really liked it as an episode, one of the best of the season a side from a few problems, as you said it was the weakest of the three finales so far but thats mainly due to the content of it was somewhat lacking (books fault, not shows) rather than how they pulled it off.
    I liked things that they kept close to the books, Davos’ storyline was really good, all around, and i liked that last scene as well. Jons storyline i was happy with too, i was annoyed last week when we didnt get jon being shot by ygritte as he rode away, so i liked it that they did that this week, and ygritte and jons interaction was really sad. Sam and Bran meeting up was good too, they played that one fairly close to the books to except the black gate and i didnt see why that was so great anyway in the books. Seeing Castle Black again was good too and getting to see Maester Aemon again was satisfying. The whole ‘reek’ thing was good to see as well, Iwan Rheon and Alfie Allen turning in some more terrific performances. And as much as i hated to see it, i’m glad they did robbwind. Also, Tyrion and Tywins conversation was well written and close to the books.
    They added some stuff too that i liked. The Walder Frey Roose Bolton scene was good we got to see a bit more of them a side from what they were acting like when they were with robb, which obviously wouldnt be a true representation of their own character. Arya’s scene to was brilliant, and i agree it was better than some random harrenhal guard and there was the added book reference of dropping the coin. The brief Jaime/Cersei scene also made me weirdly happy (might be a reunion between incestous twins, but reunions are in short supply in westeros so we make do with what we’ve got) The Yara scene with Balon was good too getting to see those two again and i like where they’re taking Yara’s storyline, keeping her in the minds of the viewers, giving her and theon and ramsay something to do next season (which otherwise would be massively boring for them) and delaying the kingsmoot for a bit as well (possibly till season 5? dont really care if they move it along since it will provide for more interesting storyline in probably the most boring season judging by book material
    There were some small problems that annoyed me. Books stuff was fairly good but Gilly naming her kid sam annoyed me so much it just makes her seem really in awe of sam, they should’ve just explained the whole thing about the two years before you can give a wildling baby a name and then name it aemon when he dies later on That was my only minor book problem. The ending i think could’ve been better, uncat would’ve be my choice, the ‘mhysa’ scene was alright, had some strong music, but in parts it was quite cringy. I understand the show wants to go out on a positive note after the RW, but i still think uncat would’ve been better.
    Still, a strong episode to close out a very strong season, have rewatch it all but definitely a candidate for best season (against season 1)

  • “You know what would be cool?! We make MELISANDRE save Davos in an awesome twist that viewers will likely not even care about! While further ruining King Stannis’ character because we haven’t f*cked up enough characters yet!” said D&D. “Oh, and let’s make Dany crowd surfing the final scene because Lady Stoneheart might be too silly for viewers. Trolololol.”

  • After the dust has settled and reading hundreds of posts, even though I was left flat by the season finale, it still is one of the best programs I have ever watched. I and most of us will be anxious for season 4.
    Something that bothered me from last nights show was Tywin telling Tyrion he saved his life at birth. Now it makes Tyrion look like a dick for killing his father. Tyrion is my favorite character of the whole story. I think by the end of the story he will come out on top. Even after his sideshow adventure.
    What if they at least showed Cat being thrown in the water and her body discovered, what if Bran and company run into CH as they exit the wall going north. Two kickass things for viewers to ponder for 10 friggin months.

  • I have not had time to read through all the comments yet, but wanted to say that I enjoyed the episode.

    Some people seem to think the King’s Landing scenes dragged the episode down, and were not worthy of a finale, but I think they provided a lot of conclusion for the season and foreshadowing for next season. I loved how Tywin said to Tyrion, “not you,” as everyone was leaving the council chamber; it was exactly the same staging and line of dialogue from Season 1 when Tywin assigned Tyrion to be hand in his stead. The KL scenes did a lot to set up the Lannister and Shae deaths coming next season. Cersei talking about loving Joffrey, despite him being a monster, was necessary to set up her downward spiral after the PW.

    I really liked the Yara scene, it simply and movingly set her up as a more important character going forward. I think the director David Nutter has a real knack for capturing the POV characteristic of the story. It worked really well showing the Red Wedding from Cat’s POV, and it worked well here reestablishing Yara as an important player. I am also glad they delayed the Balon death, and seem to be stretching out the Iron Island story line, and possibly delaying the Kingsmoot until Season 5.

    I am among the disappointed who expected to see Stoneheart in the final moments. I hope they include her next year, and I hope it is part of an extended mystery, like Theon’s controversial story line was this season. I think the audience needs to learn over the course of the season that the BwB has a new mysterious leader and that lots of Freys are being killed before we get the reveal.

    Speaking of Theon, I can’t wait to see how the Unsullied feel about Ramsay’s reveal, and if they think the whole mystery was worth the payoff. At the very least, I think they will understand how those characters now fit into the overall story.

    Other quick thoughts: loved the scene with Jon and Ygritte, was underwhelmed by the Dany ending, Sam has really come into his own, loving Davos, sad to see Gendry go, confused what they will do with Brienne, laughed when the Kings Landing girls swooned at Podrick.

    Can’t wait for Season 4 – let’s hope some casting news starts leaking soon.

  • Does anyone else feel like they’ve filmed a bunch of stuff for S4 already? What with all the rumoured scenes that have gone missing.

  • geo:

    Something that bothered me from last nights show was Tywin telling Tyrion he saved his life at birth. Now it makes Tyrion look like a dick for killing his father.

    Not necessarily.
    I mean, Tywin admits that we would have happily killed Tyrion, but he didn’t because “of the family”, not because he has any love for him.

  • Ser Tahu,

    Wow really? Tv characters arent’ the same? Thanks, I finally figured it out. Instead of stating the obvious, why don’t you highlight the advantage of “doing their own thing” rather than sticking to the character they’re “supposed to play”? This isn’t a writing issue or shooting scheduling issue. It’s a personal choice issue. This is why there could be 50 actors doing Hamlet and all of them would have their own little spin to it, but at the least they’ve all READ it. The script isn’t fallible at this point because not all the changes D&D makes is to service the storyline. A lot of it is due to compromises and production realities.

    So following a flawed script blindly without the assistance of an existing source is just increasing the odds of deviating. Also, I never implied they needed to be caught up to the full extent of the novels. They just need to read up to the point where the show is at in terms of books. Kit has read the books, and I don’t think it changes anything. You do realize actors can “evolve” the character right? I mean that’s their trade, it doesn’t require me to be an actor to understand that concept when it’s been done countless times on various other film/shows. What the source would do is give some sort of baseline or where they can go with their characters, not make them portray the final version of that character (unless you’re a shitty actor).

    Lastly:

    Book ≠ TV show
    Script ≠ Book
    Script + Book = Better TV SHOW

  • OhDanyBoy:
    Does anyone else feel like they’ve filmed a bunch of stuff for S4 already?What with all the rumoured scenes that have gone missing.

    Yeah, I’m curious about that too.
    We know for certain that some of them exist, like the Tywin & Pycelle fishing scene. I was really curious about that one and in the end they didn’t show it.
    Probably for extended scenes in the BD, or deleted scenes. Or perhaps they’re saving the scenes for S4. We’ll probably know for sure in a later date.

  • Re; the folk who think the episode should have ended with an upbeat Stark scene: was there a corresponding scene in the books at this point? I don’t recall one. As for Stoneheart, I see her resurrection as anything but upbeat or positive. Her one-track vengeance streak costs the Realm and the Brotherhood the strong-minded leadership of Beric Dondarrion (why he would give himself for Cat I never bought 100% in the books – his melancholy is something they should stress in the next season, if we get him at all), it undermines the credibility of the BWB as a force for good, and she destroys Thoros’ joviality and confidence. She’s also, frankly, no longer Catelyn. She’s only one notch above being a wight. At this point in the tale everything is still dark for the Starks and I don’t see Stoneheart lightening the mood.

    Now it might’ve made a good cliffhanger. That’s an argument only the sullied will make (I doubt the show viewers will complain), and I think it’s too soon for that, anyhow. People will feel otherwise but I think that in the long-run, when we finally get her, opinions may change.

    The only real thing that gets me is the absence of Coldhands. Episode 8 really set up an encounter with him, and then episode 9 began as though the White Walker and crow tornado never happened. A real misstep and the only one that really bothers me. All they needed at least was a silhouette among the trees to show us his presence.

  • Nobody will ever be completely satisfied no matter what they do. SOME of you are complaining too much and failing to look at the big picture which is that this has been one of the best tv shows of all time and has become a phenomenon due to the quality. I have never posted here before but I love to read the comments so I come to the web site to gain some insight. Those of you who are getting this upset already need to just stop watching the show because its not going to get any better for you. Stop torturing yourself and everyone else with your negativity. Yes you are all entitled to your opinions im just asking that you take a step back and look at the big picture before proclaiming how horrible the show is becoming when that just isn’t the case. It may not have been as good as it could have for some of you but its more than we could have ever hoped for as fans of the books.

  • I think that favorite character will appear.. Just next season. When Bran and company get to the house where the ww died and ravens showed up. People will realize the ravens followed someone besides the ww

    GeekFurious:
    First, I would say this has been my favorite season with season 1 a close second (Sean Bean, I love you!).

    Second, this was my least favorite episode of the season.

    Third, the Jon and Ygritte scene was part terrible, part perfectly emotional. How could it be both? Well, sniveling cry-baby Jon was a huge misstep. It made him seem totally pathetic when his choice is about his honor, word, and loyalty to the Watch. I don’t get Kit’s choices in that scene at all (nor the writers for that matter). Rose, however, was tone perfect and I thought the added arrows were a nice touch. But overall the scene tried too hard to spell out for anyone confused what was happening.

    Fourth, body-surfer Dany made me roll my eyes. I think I also threw up in my mouth a little.

    Finally, on a positive note, there were some excellent performances overall.

    Edit: I forgot to mention… I loved Sam’s stuff. The Hodor moment made me smile. The whole thing, even if it isn’t in line with the book, felt right. Though, I do fear the way things went in that regard that a certain character we all want to see won’t ever appear on the show.

  • I see a lot of people complaining, but I found the season finale quite a good episode, especially for newbies. Us bookreaders tend to find those kind of episodes tedious and boring, as there’s little action and we already know whats coming. But Mysha had quite a bit of revelations for non-bookreaders and a lot of setting up for next season, all of it done with outstanding skill.
    Especially brilliant were the revelation (or confirmation) of the Boy’s identity and the loss of Theon’s one (both through Roose’s speech and Theon/Ramsay interaction) and the vengeful kill Arya delivered, including the missing “coin drop” from Harrenhall’s flight.
    The setting up for Stannis’ march to the north, though flawed, was still pretty good, and the small council scene was simply gold.
    Sure, some scenes felt a little forced, and we did not get a powerful and shocking cliffhanger like in season 2, but it was an episode of true beauty (artisticaly speaking) and it accomplished the goal of setting up plots for season 4. Plus, last scene with Daenerys acclaimed as Mysha will probably light a glimmer of hope in the heart of the unsullied.
    So, a pretty good episode overall. A man is satisfied.

  • I still can’t get over how they ended this season with one of the worst scenes this show has done. Even worse was there was no real build up to it in the episode. She just arrives at the gates they open them up and she goes body surfing on a bunch of brown people. They should have at least flown in some white extras because that did not look good. A lot of people were praising that “Mhsya” song and I listened to it and thought it sounded really cheesy once the drums kicked in and hoped it sounded better in context on the show but no it just made the scene even worse. The Jon and Ygritte scene was another really cheesy one, bad dialogue and really bad acting from Kit. Nobodies acting on this show makes me cringe more than Kit Harington.

  • sunspear,

    Stannis is most likely going to be arriving at the Wall much earlier than in the books. It looks like the show will have him at the Wall before the battle even starts.

  • Seonaidh Ceanneidigh,

    I’m eager to see how Lady Stoneheart will look like, but that’s not the reason I wish she had made an appearance ; I’m afraid some on set photos or any kind of information will leek before next season, spoiling those who haven’t read the books !

  • I was really upset that they did not show the wedding of Joffery and Margeary. That should have been the finale. Also HBO truly messed up by jumping the gun and bringing Jamie to Kings Landing. Jamie’s appearance could have waited. I was really disappointed with this. They could have honestly left out that ending with Dany.

    The scene with Arya was great! I’m glad that they finally showed her full character adn hopefully they will show her battle that gives her Needles back.

    Please HBO don’t ruin the story!! Thanks!!!

  • Sorry I forgot to put my last comment under spoilers, I clicked edit but it doesn’t have the spoiler function.

  • I just watched the episode again, and I was very impressed at how much more I got out of it the second time around. Thematically, it might be the strongest of the three finales, particularly with regard to the question posed by Stannis with regards to Gendry and Tywin with regards to Robb Stark: the value of one life against the needs of the many. The closing image of Dany with her newly-born dragons remains a stronger final shot than Dany surrounded by the freed slaves (but that’s not anything to be ashamed of. The birth of Dany’s dragons is one of the best moments in the entire series).

    Overall, Season 3 was the best season of Game of Thrones yet, and one of the best seasons of TV that I’ve ever had the pleasure of watching. The promise of what’s to come is truly amazing, and I can’t wait for Season 4.

    Episode Rankings
    1. The Rains of Castamere
    2. Kissed By Fire
    3. And Now His Watch Is Ended
    4. Second Sons
    5. Walk of Punishment
    6. Mhysa
    7. The Bear and the Maiden Fair
    8. The Climb
    9. Dark Wings, Dark Words
    10. Valar Dohaeris

    Greatest Moments (hardly comprehensive or definitive
    1. The Red Wedding
    2. Jaime tells Brienne how he became the Kingslayer
    3. Daenerys sacks Astapor and frees her Unsullied
    4. Jaime saves Brienne from the bear
    5. Tywin and Tyrion discuss the Red Wedding
    6. Tyrion and Sansa’s wedding reception
    7. Jaime loses his hand
    8. Jon and Ygritte climb the Wall
    9. Sam the Slayer
    10. Beric vs. the Hound
    11. Arya and the Hound kill the Frey soldiers
    12. Varys and Littlefinger discuss chaos

    And so many more …

  • JamesL:
    Why are people so sure that we will even see LS on the show? Do you really think Michelle Fairley will want to play a nonspeaking zombie role with only a couple scenes a season?

    Acting is more than simply speaking a line. We aren’t congratulating Michelle Fairley on that final scene in the red wedding for the lines she spoke are we? To convey emotion as a central character without being able to say much is a challenge, I think, any actor would love a chance to have. Also, I see no reason why D&D would need to keep her completely silent. They could easily change it to a character that has great difficulty speaking.

    I honestly don’t understand why you would think she would be cut? This isn’t a case of avoiding the need for another actor. If they are planning on skipping LS then why did they even bother with Thoros resurrecting Beric Dondarrion? Why bother displaying the Chekhov Gun if they never plan on firing it?

    I assume D&D felt having LS in the premier of Season 4 would be an exciting event to kick that season off and get the buzz started. I guess they can hide the surprise for her coming to the set as being needing for more Bran dreams.

  • Drfunk,

    Love Orphan Black!
    I thought Defiance may bring SciFi back to TV again, but instead it was Orphan Black!

    One of the true surprises of this season I think.
    I did not expect a lot from the little show, but it was an incredible first scene. The lad actress has done an exceptional job playing all the versions of herself!!

  • No comment about Jaime returning to KL ahead of schedule?!

    Call me totally perverted but I was genuinely looking forward to creepy reunion twincest beside their son’s body.

  • This was an okay episode, but the ending was so bad it makes the episode feel worse than it actually was.

    I know one person above has mentioned this, but the absolute worst thing about this epsiode was the lack of the door in the tunnel under the Wall. Even if you are not a book reader, you have to wonder why the wildlings would
    bother to attack Castle Black when there is an unguarded highway running through the wall.

  • Put The timer Back,

    I am very much hoping for some form of news around new years, even if it is just George saying it isn’t done yet and releasing a new teaser chapter. For me there is the immediate future with the casting period, as well as the final seasons of Dexter and Breaking Bad. Then there is the great summer lull (or winter for those of you in the north), where it is so slow and agonizing waiting for the next piece of news, and then once that passes we get into the trailer period where things are interesting again. Anything to help with the uneventful summers would be amazing, but given that it is GRRM that we’re talking about here, I don’t have my hopes particularly high.

  • Michael K,

    Michael K
    Posted June 9, 2013 at 10:58 pm | Permalink
    Jamie showing up before 2 certain and major deaths was a horrible move. It’s a blatant excuse to give him more screen time that he should NOT have in season 4. I’ve stomached plenty of pointless changes but I won’t put up with this.

    If THAT is enough to make you stop watching this show…

  • fuelpagan,
    “If they are planning on skipping LS then why did they even bother with Thoros resurrecting Beric Dondarrion?”

    Just because they may leave LS out of the show doesn’t mean that can’t have a resurrection on the show. Berics resurrection is not really an example of Chekhov Gun, only if you read the books you can look at it that way. This is a fantasy series with supernatural elements just because a character gets resurrected doesn’t mean it has to foreshadow some future resurrection. Maybe GRRM doesn’t have important things planned for LS in the books and D&D decided to not even bother.

  • The Dany scene was so bad. Like so bad I can’t watch it without cringing.

    Where are the slaves from Lys who look like Dany and all the other ethnicities! It’s supposed to be more like Roman slaves right? From every country and race, not just shades of dark skin! White and black and everyone in between! GRRM at least explains this and his work is not even in the visual medium.

    All the slave roles have been cast as black even the ones that weren’t in the book!

    I can’t believe they did this again.

  • Seonaidh Ceanneidigh: She’s also, frankly, no longer Catelyn. She’s only one notch above being a wight. At this point in the tale everything is still dark for the Starks and I don’t see Stoneheart lightening the mood.

    We don’t find out Stoneheart is a dark character until later. When she first opens her eyes it is a positive moment that leaves readers with so many questions on what she will do now. Only later do we discover that Catelyn had died and this person resurrected is an agent for cold revenge.
    Only someone who knows the books would look upon her resurrection as a negative.

  • This is the decline of Game of Thrones, thanks to those hacks Benioff and Weiss. I predict only 1 more season of mediocrity before HBO finally gives it the axes. Thank you for ruining the series. and to those who claim that us book readers are out of line, I’m sorry, but WE are the reason this series got made in the first place! Watch the season 4 premiere decrease so significantly because of the atrocities committed last night. Dumbing down and butchering characters/ story arcs is NO EXCUSE for trying to obtain mass appeal. At least I have the books for now. Hopefully someday, this series will finally get the adaptation it deserves, and not this tragedy of storytelling.

  • Winter:
    In the book, Bran made Sam swear not to tell Jon about him going north of the wall. That didn’t happen in the episode tonight, did it? Wouldn’t Sam tell Jon as soon as he could. Isn’t that a bit problematic?

    What he/she said. ^

  • It makes me laugh how people connected Mhysa to another character. It makes no sense whatsoever. It referes only to Dany and nobody else.

    I’m glad that they decided to be faithful to the books and let the epilogue of book 3 where it belongs – after all the stories in it are told. It was also a great decision because revealing Lady Stoneheart yesterday would ruin any chances of Michelle be recognized for her outstanding work with an Emmy nomination!!! Personally, I think it would turn the Red Wedding into a bad joke and that the mystery surrounding Lady Stoneheart’s identity will make great TV, so I’m excited or season 4.

    After the Red Wedding, the focus must shift to the other characters. I believe Lady Stoneheart would not allow the audience to move on and care about the other characters. It’s not like “Revenge” anymore, it’s about all the immense cyvasse board with all these amazing players.

    I loved how they reintroduced Yara. And can’t wait to see the Greyjoys involved on a Game of Thrones of their own! My highlights also include Davos and the Nightswatch. Can’t wait to see the futures scenes at The Wall and beyond.

    About Dany, I think some people simply hate the character, so I understand why most of them are annoyed by the final scene. We can call it cheesy, I won’t argue with any of you guys, but you can’t blame D&D for using that scene to end the season. All the meatier stuff that A Storm of Swords has to offer would mean to mess with the chronological order of the events. And looking at how beautiful the scene was, it was an easy decision.

    We said last year that season 3 would be epic, now we’re saying that season 4 will be epic. And we’ll keep saying this until the very end, I’m afraid. To be honest, I can’t wait to see the last scene George wrote, with Varys and his Lannister friend – and that will be, what?, season 6, 7?

  • AA,

    Agreed on the KL scenes.
    They were one of the highlights of the episode for me… Well, outside of Jaime’s return. I still need to see where they are going with that…

    Personally I thought that Tywin gloating (or Joff in this case) around the Small Council table was just how KL would end this season. I think more than a few of us readers theorized that pre-season….

    Re:
    Cersei’s upcoming scene/arc you mentioned.
    I read an article with Lena Headey discussing how they purposely cut back Cersei’s nudity so that when she is stripped naked on screen it means something. It sounds like that another scene I was not sure would make it to the series will indeed play out on screen in some form.

    Also found today’s Hibberd article interesting… Considering he is one of the more “In-the-know” reporters when it comes to Thrones.

    A cock ticking versus not running ahead of GRM. Also how Hibberd basically dismissed the significance of the EP saying he thinks they will run 7 seasons total. Plus of course a Dunk and Egg mention…

  • Josel Altin (Pyp) mentioned on Twitter that they cut one of his scenes. He didn’t want to go into details in case it’s something they’ve decided to put in season 4. Wonder what it is?

  • Walker: This was an okay episode, but the ending was so bad it makes the episode feel worse than it actually was.I know one person above has mentioned this, but the absolute worst thing about this epsiode was the lack of the door in the tunnel under the Wall. Even if you are not a book reader, you have to wonder why the wildlings wouldbother to attack Castle Black when there is an unguarded highway running through the wall.

    Because the wildlings don’t know about it. Sam explains how it’s a secret door/passage and he only knew because he read some obscure text or whatever (because he’s a wizard).

  • Seriously, all of you who are whining and stomping your feet over the fact that you didn’t get the LS scene. It’s your fault, and your fault only for getting overhyped, for seeing “hints” and because “you thought it was perfect for the closing scene”.
    It wasn’t confirmed. Certainly not by the showrunners, and not by the cast. It’s not the show’s fault and D&D aren’t the devil for not fulfilling all of your wishes.

    How do you deal with life when things don’t go the way you wanted? “Oh, this burger wasn’t as tasty as advertised”, “Oh, my baby wasn’t born with blue eyes like I expected”, “OMG I got an A and not an A+, my life is ruined forever #nooneunderstands”. So what? Do you go and sue McDonald’s? Or do you call a teacher a hack?

    It’s refreshing to see some people giving their opinions in a mature way, even if they wanted LS to appear, they’re not crying or hating on the Dany ending.
    Newsflash: Life isn’t fair.
    Don’t take anything for granted, or you’ll be always disappointed.

  • I chalk this episode up to having to split the story. It’s just disjointed. I kind of wish they would have left the contents of the Night’s Watch letter a mystery but I guess that doesn’t work for TV. Also having Brienne so close to Sansa is going to be wierd.

  • I thought it was fine – very much in the mold of the last two finales, which were also largely dedicated to setting up the next season. There were several great scenes (the aftermath of RW, Arya and the Hound’s attack on the Frey men, Tyrion and Tywin, Davos’ chat with Gendry) several good ones and a few clunkers.

    The Arya scene where she murdered the Frey man was particularly effective, and underlined why I’m not concerned about LS’ late arrival, among other things. Remember all those complaints last year about how they were “softening” Arya up to make her more likable and less dark? I think it’s clear now that they were just operating on a different time schedule, and having her snap like that after seeing Robb’s fate was both very believable and chilling to the bone. -In general, that’s why I don’t care anymore when certain memorable scenes don’t happen at the time we book readers expect them to. If it’s a good scene, they’ll get around to adapting it in their own time frame.

    I am deeply curious about the decision they made with regards to Gendry, which is not what I was expecting (my guesses were in order a) they’d keep him around and take him north to the NW, b) they’d send him back to the Brotherhood, and c) they’d actually kill him). Sending him back to Kings Landing is a surprising choice. It could be a way of keeping him offscreen for a year or two, or it could imply that he might get involved somehow in the future action there. As a substitute for the Kettleblacks? Or could he actually rise to influence somehow with the Sparrow movement? Or something else?

    Finally, with regards to that last Dany scene – yeah, it was a bit cheesy, but I also found it a bit chilling. Dany being elevated to near-goddess status is not something I find inherently comforting. Sepinwall, a non-reader seemed to pick up on the same thing, so I don’t think that effect was unintentional.

  • Mad as Hell:
    This is the decline of Game of Thrones, thanks to those hacks Benioff and Weiss. I predict only 1 more season of mediocrity before HBO finally gives it the axes. Thank you for ruining the series. and to those who claim that us book readers are out of line, I’m sorry, but WE are the reason this series got made in the first place! Watch the season 4 premiere decrease so significantly because of the atrocities committed last night. Dumbing down and butchering characters/ story arcs is NO EXCUSE for trying to obtain mass appeal. At least I have the books for now. Hopefully someday, this series will finally get the adaptation it deserves, and not this tragedy of storytelling.

    Linda, is that you?

  • Ok. A lot of people complaint about Lady Stoneheart not appearing at the end of this season. PEOPLE! She appears at the end of the last book. Be pacient! It might happen at the end of season 4. Coldhands would’ve been awesome to be in the episode, BUT… after that, what’s next for him? Almost nothing! They can switch things for season 4, and give a spot for him. Who knows!

  • Richard:
    It was weird that Melisandre changed her gameplan all of a sudden, after all this time beating the same drum, after Davos handed Stannis the scroll. Was she being real, or did she just make up some B.S. “oh yeah, yeah, that’s the right thing to do! Go to the Wall and take him with you!” because she saw herself losing power with Stannis?

    Earlier in the season Stannis says to Davos, “In the flames I saw a battle in the snow.” There’s your hint.

  • JamesL: Just because they may leave LS out of the show doesn’t mean that can’t have a resurrection on the show. Maybe GRRM doesn’t have important things planned for LS in the books and D&D decided to not even bother.

    They certainly could have introduced the idea of resurrection much later, closer to when these other resurrections are going to take place.

    I highly doubt GRRM would have brought LS to life for trivial reasons. To switch what this role in the story is to a lesser character makes zero sense unless there is some issue with the actress continuing to be a part of the show.

    Who will be the one striking fear and making Lord Frey pay for harming his guests. I know…let’s chuck the whole concept of Arya going to the faceless men and have her and the hound terrorize the Freys so we can avoid LS.

  • Mad as Hell:
    This is the decline of Game of Thrones, thanks to those hacks Benioff and Weiss. I predict only 1 more season of mediocrity before HBO finally gives it the axes. Thank you for ruining the series. and to those who claim that us book readers are out of line, I’m sorry, but WE are the reason this series got made in the first place! Watch the season 4 premiere decrease so significantly because of the atrocities committed last night. Dumbing down and butchering characters/ story arcs is NO EXCUSE for trying to obtain mass appeal. At least I have the books for now. Hopefully someday, this series will finally get the adaptation it deserves, and not this tragedy of storytelling.

    Is this the Comic Book Store guy from The Simpsons?

    Get it straight. The reason this series exists is because GRRM thought of, and wrote, this series of books. And then from there, because another group of immensely talented people got about 600 people together to make this series. Your role in this was just that – you read the book. Congrats. Many others read the books, too.

  • delirium33,

    It’s revealed at the end of the book but timeline wise it’s a few days after the Red Wedding. Besides, they’ve switched around plenty of things – just this episode, in fact. Jamie is back in Kings Landing before Joffrey’s wedding.

  • Mad as Hell,

    haha go away. The best part is that season 4 is already green lit and about to go into production, and season 5 will probably get the go right away just like 4. It is going to be a great season just in arcs alone. Never again will this series be adapted so that the first 2 and a half books are covered in 30 hours. This season has been great.

  • fuelpagan: We don’t find out Stoneheart is a dark character until later. When she first opens her eyes it is a positive moment that leaves readers with so many questions on what she will do now. Only later do we discover that Catelyn had died and this person resurrected is an agent for cold revenge.
    Only someone who knows the books would look upon her resurrection as a negative.

    We never see her eyes open in the books. Such a scene doesn’t exist. She appears in the epilogue having been resurrected for a short time already. I thought her physical appearance and the dialogue in the book about her being dark and merciless was a giveaway about her unrepentant and one-track kill-streak attitude. It left me shocked but never hopeful that a happy Stark reunion would ever happen, or that Catelyn could ever been the same again.

    Of course, only someone who has read the books would see her exclusion from this finale as a negative. Show-only viewers don’t know Stoneheart exists.

  • Jared:
    I just watched the episode again, and I was very impressed at how much more I got out of it the second time around. Thematically, it might be the strongest of the three finales, particularly with regard to the question posed by Stannis with regards to Gendry and Tywin with regards to Robb Stark: the value of one life against the needs of the many. The closing image of Dany with her newly-born dragons remains a stronger final shot than Dany surrounded by the freed slaves (but that’s not anything to be ashamed of. The birth of Dany’s dragons is one of the best moments in the entire series).

    From a thematic basis you have a lot of good points here. I still prefer Fire and Blood, because of the epic – and foreboding “King in the North” / “And I mean to find Benjen Stark…” / Dragons!! trio of moments that really rocked the house. But yes – the cut from Bran to Walder Frey (the true Rat King), the Tyrion/Cersei conversation, Pycelle continuing to be a total dickwad to Tyrion, everything involving Davos. There’s so much here, so rich, and works so well as a denouement.

  • Lord Snark,

    I think Shae’s comment implies she thinks Tyrion is trying to send her off. She’s been suspicious of this since Tyrion tried to give her the chains and Varys’ actions just fanned the flames.

  • Good episode, slightly underwhelming for a finale.

    I hope they’ll find a way to get Jamie out of KL quick and early, perhaps on Tywin’s orders. Thus, Tywin would prevent any true reunion/moments, and the bookies could still get some of their scenes (albeit altered to fit the circumstance of him already dropping in on Cersei, etc.)

    LS will still be included; maybe they’ll have Walder Frey get invited to the PW and have her and the Brotherhood ambush and kill him. Coldhands less likely- why send the ravens to warn Sam instead of help him himself? – but still possible, as Bran and co may need some protecting

    Otherwise, season 4 looks set up nicely, can’t wait for viewers to get into the Greyjoys, assuming Balon kicks it in the S4 premiere and the kingsmoot happens mid-season (recalling Yara/Asha) and the Martells, though I expect only Doran, Arianne, the Viper, and maybe Quentyn

  • Well, it wasn’t my least favourite episode this season.

    Maisie Williams for all the awards! That young woman is going from strength to strength. I cannot wait to see her scenes in the next season.

    I’ll add my voice to those that hated the last scene. It was just too much.

    And I was one of those that desperately wanted a Stoneheart scene. But, with hindsight, it would not have worked. This season has been the slow destruction of the North. All hope has gone now.

    Thinking about it – is it just me or have most of the deaths this season been Northerners?

    It’s been a great season. Highs, lows, and the most explosive episode of television. Here’s to the next one.

  • “I didn’t realize Game of Thrones would end with the Khaleesi crowd surfing at Bonnaroo.”

  • Maxwell James:
    I thought it was fine – very much in the mold of the last two finales, which were also largely dedicated to setting up the next season. There were several great scenes (the aftermath of RW, Arya and the Hound’s attack on the Frey men, Tyrion and Tywin, Davos’ chat with Gendry) several good ones and a few clunkers.

    The Arya scene where she murdered the Frey man was particularly effective, and underlined why I’m not concerned about LS’ late arrival, among other things. Remember all those complaints last year about how they were “softening” Arya up to make her more likable and less dark? I think it’s clear now that they were just operating on a different time schedule, and having her snap like that after seeing Robb’s fate was both very believable and chilling to the bone. -In general, that’s why I don’t care anymore when certain memorable scenes don’t happen at the time we book readers expect them to. If it’s a good scene, they’ll get around to adapting it in their own time frame.

    Well said. The point is the spirit of the books and not the letter of the books. Seeing Arya kill that guy was chilling. Until now, her only “kill” was more or less accidental, and since then she’s A) threatened Hot Pie and Lommy to defend herself and B) let Jaqen kill people for her. Not the same.

    Finally, with regards to that last Dany scene – yeah, it was a bit cheesy, but I also found it a bit chilling. Dany being elevated to near-goddess status is not something I find inherently comforting. Sepinwall, a non-reader seemed to pick up on the same thing, so I don’t think that effect was unintentional.

    Bingo. Well done. The idea of Danys as this avenging angel for the world is the kind of hubristic ideal that got America into the 2nd Iraq war. It’s not exactly comforting, regardless of the cause, necessarily. “I do all these wonderful things and free all these wonderful people and oh by the way I have these fire-breathing monsters to melt everyone down.” No, that Targaryen smugness and righteousness is in her just as much as it was with some others.

  • As a quasi-Unsullied, having read about 1/3rd of ASoS but also having been made aware of CH and LS I don’t understand what folks’ problem with the episode was.

    I knew that episode 10 would be a wrap-up, because episode 9 usually seems to be the climax, so while it would’ve been great to see an introduction of the two characters I mentioned above, I know it’ll be in an early episode of Season 4. Also, is Jaime being in King’s Landing already that big of a deal? Maybe it is, but it seems like a trivial gripe. Finally, I’ve heard gripes about Jon and Ygritte’s scene…not having read it, I thought it was great.

    So anti-climatic: yes. But the various set-ups (Dragonstone, HArya, Greyjoys) were fulfilling.

  • Family, Duty, Hodor: I think the idea was that they HAD to end Season 3 with an epic scene. And Catelyn’s resurrection would have been epic, and book canon too. We couldn’t really think of another scene with that much epic in it.

    It was never ideal showing it one episode after the RW but I thought the positives far outweighed the negatives. Certainly if the show wants to maintain its viewing figures.

    It could have worked out like that. But there was some time before the Brotherhood made the Stoneheart discovery so to speak. Guess they will have to keep the actress under . I agree the ending wasn’t as exciting as it could have been. but ever season the big episode isthe 9th not 10th.

    At least we got to see the Greywind/Rob body head swap.

  • After some reflection on the episode I can’t say it was a bad episode. I just feel the episode lacked anything that would make an unsullied viewer go WOW after the buzz last weeks episode created.

    While I’m definitely suffering from what I think should have happened and trying to keep an open mind…I just don’t feel this episode delivered as a finally.

    The only unsullied response I have is from my wife who, without any prompting from me, proclaimed, “That’s a lame way to end the season.” And I had to agree.

    If D&D are holding off on LS until the opening of next season then I can understand them wanting to get the buzz rolling next season. But I can’t help but feel this was a missed opportunity.

    That being said this was a solid season. I’m excited to start casting speculation and see where next season takes the story.

  • http://insidetv.ew.com/2013/06/09/game-of-thrones-future/2/

    This story is worrisome. I think HBO is beginning to realize how unlikely it is that George will finish two books before they are needed for the show. I can see Winds being finished by 2015, but then we’re on to another 3-5 year wait. And George’s comments about having such a big head start doesn’t seem realistic. They are not going to do more than 2 seasons for Feast and Dance. And remember, its not Winds that needs to be finished by the end of the show’s adaptation of Dance, its Dream that needs to be nearly done if the show is to avoid hiatus. Does anyone really think George will be nearly finished Dream by the time season 6 wraps?

    People from HBO and the show have pegged 7 seasons often as the target. Lets see how that works out on the schedule:

    1. Game of Thrones – 2011
    2. Clash of Kings – 2012
    3. Storm of Swords 1 – 2013
    4. Storm of Swords 2 – 2014
    5. Feast of Crows/Dance with Dragons – 2015
    6. Winds of Winter – 2016
    7. Dream of Spring – 2017

    or

    1. Game of Thrones – 2011
    2. Clash of Kings – 2012
    3. Storm of Swords 1 – 2013
    4. Storm of Swords 2 – 2014
    5. Feast of Crows/Dance with Dragons 1- 2015
    6. Feast of Crows/Dance with Dragons 2 – 2016
    7. Winds of Winter – 2017
    8. Dream of Spring – 2018

    Now this is based on all of the reports suggesting 7 seasons, and the claims that they don’t want to split each book into multiple seasons. But even if Feast/Dance are given 2 seasons, that only pushes the show to 2018. By then, Bran, Arya and Rickon, who are still little kids in the books, will be nearing college. That means, even in the best case 8-seasons-scenario, George will have to finish an estimated 3,000 pages in 5 years, 1 year less than the time it took him to write Dance. And Winds will need to be done by the time the Feast/Dance season starts so the writing of season 6/7 can get under way.

    Based on even the fairest estimates, I can’t see George being anywhere near done Dream by the time it is needed. Perhaps the show will stretch Feast/Dance to 2 seasons and use Winds as the end of the series in season 7. Then HBO will take Dream to the big screen a few years later. So the realistic schedule would be:

    1. Game of Thrones – 2011
    2. Clash of Kings – 2012
    3. Storm of Swords 1 – 2013
    4. Storm of Swords 2 – 2014
    5. Feast of Crows/Dance with Dragons 1- 2015
    6. Feast of Crows/Dance with Dragons 2 – 2016
    7. Winds of Winter – 2017
    Dream of Spring as two or three, 2.5 hour feature films – 2019-2022

  • The episode was so great, I was already saying out loud “this is the best episode of this show to date.” And then, it ended on the Mysha scene. No LS…

    I’m so upset at the fact that they did not end on Stoneheart resurrection… I guess they decided to cut the LS plotline enterily, because this was the perfect time to show it, and they blew it. They’re not going to do it in S4 now, by then nobody will remember who Beric was, and nobody will care about Catelyn being dead. So I guess she won’t be important in the books either, now that they scrapped it from the show. I was really expecting a strong ending, something similar to the white walkers army last year. I really think it was a mistake on their part to not do a big supernatural cliffhanger.

  • Extremely disappointed with the episode. After the last two good ones this was lackluster. I wanted lady stoneheart at the end so bad!
    I liked the re-introduction of pyp and maester aemon and yara and balon though. Im gunna watch it again.

  • all people who expected the LS ending can bash themselves. it was a great episode, it’s as easy as that.

  • I wish people would stop bashing those criticizing this finale. Their disappointment is just as valid as your satisfaction with it. I’m not going to insult people who enjoyed it, so I’d appreciate being able to voice my opinion without being flamed.

    First off, I have a history of hardly EVER criticizing this show. Not because I’m some sort of overindulgent sheep, but because I genuinely have been very surprised and pleased with its content and quality.

    But I’m completely with Ned’s Head on the wrapping up of an otherwise stellar season. They dropped the ball bigtime, and I am completely bewildered by an otherwise very astute TV adaptation. I totally understand holding off on the PW until next year. Two in one season would have been overkill. Those who are claiming that LS will have more impact next year are assuming it won’t be discussed all over the media for 10 months. But it will. There will be no impact. And I don’t know which book y’all read, but in my copy, Sam has already encountered Coldhands, so ending with either LS or Coldhands made a great deal of dramatic, cinematic sense.

    I blame the direction of these past two episodes. Yeah, yeah, I know. The RW generated all kinds of WTF? YouTube videos and trended and blah blah blah, but I was NOT impressed with the way that scene was rendered. I’ve been holding back posting on this, because I thought maybe I just needed some reflection time, but no. The acting, the lighting, the setting were as top-notch as always, but there was nothing artistically imagined about it. For a scene that D&D said motivated their entire creation of this series, it was woefully rote from the book. While others were screaming and crying and what-have-you, all I was thinking was “This is not the artistically imagined death scene of Ned.” When I think back to the imaginative way that was handled, and how ten times more it devasted me because of its imagination, I was left wanting after the RW.

    I figured they were saving the real art of imagination for the finale. So, I bid my time. But, no. Nothing special, at all. It was very much a bridge episode, and I really was not impressed with the direction of either of them. So sue me. And people like me. Who merely want to put a voice to our disappointment. It’s not like I bitch nonstop here, because I don’t.

    I also don’t think it’s the sign of a downward trend for the show. I think they made a couple of very disappointing missteps, but they have a trove of wonderful material yet to be mined, and I still have high hopes. I know Nutter is a very highly respected director in the business, but please, please, please bring back Alan Taylor’s visionary talents next season.

  • Harry:
    Well, I don’t know whats worse: The people complaining that the epsiode does not meet their expectations, or the people complaining about the complainers.
    Everyone thinks their personal interpretation of a part of such a multilayered book is the right one, so we would have people complaining even if we had a 100% adaptation without any changes.

    However, it is everyone’s right to be diappointed by personal “looking-forwards”.

    In my opinion it was a disappointing finale, but a good episode. I love the show (as bookreader), even if I do not agree with everything. A normal discussion? Why not. But I would never waste (life-) time on desperately trying to convince others about what I see as necessary for the show.

    Obviously, the worst is people who complain about both the complainers and the people complaining about complainers.

    But I think complaining about people complaining about complainers is ok.

  • Valdred Dethstorm,

    Yeah, these aren’t bad points. I realized after some time away that a lot of disappointment I had with it came from overhyping things for myself, reading discussion and speculation about how things should go, and getting a bit too into reading about the production process. So, I knew about things like all the missing scenes: Littlefinger and Lysa, Tywin and Pycelle fishing, Mance`s scene, the 5th episode The Brotherhood was in, etc., and it made me wonder more what happened to all this stuff and think about what could have been instead of what was. Unfortunately I think this might mean that in order to enjoy this show more, I’m gonna have to stop being so obsessive over it, which sucks for not getting deep into online discussion but might actually be better for my overall mental health :P.

  • I would have been quite happy with this finale if they had forgone the Dany spinning crowd surf and the Jon Snow pathetic whimpering part. The rest was solid to good but those two scenes really left a bad taste in my mouth.

  • PatD,

    Oh, thank you for this! and besides Alan Taylor, let Alex Graves direct the last 2 episodes next season. He totally is the best addition to the director’s list this year! No wonder his 2 episodes are on the podium this year.

  • TastesLikeTheSea,

    TastesLikeTheSea
    Posted June 10, 2013 at 12:06 am | Permalink
    Another gripe, Kit Harington can’t act for shit. That scene where he was whining/crying to Ygritte was sooooo cringe worthy. Not his fault he’s surrounded by so many talented actors, but he is Kristen Stewart with a penis.

    I completely disagree. It kind of sounds like your preconceived notion of Jon from the books conflicts with the mannerisms/idiosyncrasies of the on-screen Jon.

  • Seonaidh Ceanneidigh: We never see her eyes open in the books. Such a scene doesn’t exist. She appears in the epilogue having been resurrected for a short time already. I thought her physical appearance and the dialogue in the book about her being dark and merciless was a giveaway about her unrepentant and one-track kill-streak attitude. It left me shocked but never hopeful that a happy Stark reunion would ever happen, or that Catelyn could ever been the same again.

    Of course, only someone who has read the books would see her exclusion from this finale as a negative. Show-only viewers don’t know Stoneheart exists.

    The reason we didn’t see her eye’s opening in the book is because no one with a POV was there to witness the event. Something we don’t have to deal with in the show. So I see no problem with seeing her eyes opening leaving viewers thinking “She’s back” and later finding out she really isn’t, that this person is a shell of who Catelyn once was.

    LS will still work well as in an opening episode of season 4, it’s my opinion it would have been better as a finally. Dany’s scene fell flat. I may be missing some symbolism and think otherwise later…but right now the scene just felt too cheesy for Game of Thrones.

  • PatD:
    I wish people would stop bashing those criticizing this finale. Their disappointment is just as valid as your satisfaction with it. I’m not going to insult people who enjoyed it, so I’d appreciate being able to voice my opinion without being flamed.

    Those who are claiming that LS will have more impact next year are assuming it won’t be discussed all over the media for 10 months. But it will. There will be no impact.

    Point one – I’m ok with people not liking the finale, and I’m sure the other guys and gals are perfectly fine with others voicing their opinion. It’s the “WAAHH WAHHH D&D ARE HACKS, THE SHOW IS SHIT, EVERYTHING IS RUINED” crap that gets annoying. Seriously. There are mature ways to discuss your disappointment, people. Just like PatD just did. Not stomping your feet and whining loudly.

    Point two – Even if they had showed LS, it would have been discussed. Who is that? Is that Lady Stark? How did she come back? Some spoilers and some visits to Wikipedia, aaaaaaand the impact is lost anyway.

  • Here’s something to ponder: Do we need the last two books to be finished before the TV series can be finished?

    George worked in Television before writing these books. It’s not entirely crazy to think he could say “screw it, I’ll just focus on writing for the show for now” if the show catches up. We don’t need to have read books beforehand to enjoy the TV show. There’s a great deal of people who have never touched the books and love the show to death.

    That being said, I hope we get the books first. But I don’t really see a problem with the show passing the books for the last few seasons. It’ll still have the same amazing production value, and possible GRRM having a more direct role with the writing.

  • Daniel,

    Speak for yerself my lord, I ain’t rooting for Stannis, book or show. I never liked his dour personalities in the book, and Stephen Dillane did a great job translating it on screen, which means I have no love for the character anywhere. Davos, on the other hand (hah), is great!!

  • The Purist,

    This has to be trolling or your the most pathetic person in the world, maybe both. It’s not even because your hatred of a TV show is so big but the fact that you came to a fan site to cheer because the show had a kind of tame finale and it’s over, beyond pathetic. Is there some kind of legal obligation that forces you watch through the whole season I wonder?

  • I don’t want to sound like a purist whiner but I think I probably will. D&D wasted a lot of screen time on useless dialogue and redundant torturing and they turned a lot of great scenes into cliche crap.

    Wasted screen time:
    -all of season 2 and season 3 when Talisa spoke, useless. RW was great without Robb’s wife in ASOS. She was unnecessary and there are enough characters for D&D to focus on as it is.
    -Varys conversation with Shae..really, she’s just going to leave for a free city in Essos? She boldly declined his offer. ohhhhh let’s focus on Shae. What a compelling character.
    -Margaery’s seemingly hour long coversation with Sansa about the prospect of Sansa marrying Loras. Get to the damn point.
    -Sam taking half an episode to start a fire and discuss the name of the baby. Not exactly building suspense there.
    -too much torture scenes with Theon. We get it, Ramsay is a sadist.
    -a lot of walking and talking with Bran and company as well as Jon and the wildlings. Bran could have had some better dreams too. Remember the useless dream he had of falling from the tree. Had they instead had him dream of Rickard and Brandon Stark being killed in the throne room by Aerys for example, that scene might not have been a redundant waste of time.
    -So Mance is GOING TO LIGHT THE BIGGEST FIRE THE NORTH HAS EVER SEEN!…and instead D&D spend half the season turning Jon Snow and Ygritte into a couple that would fit right in on Dawson’s Creek.

    Hollywood/Cliche/Cheesy:
    -Jon and Ygritte’s entire storyline. The Climb for example. The Wall explodes like it is strapped with dynamite and Jon saves Ygritte from falling like Sylvester Stallone from Cliffhanger (only successfully). They make it to the top just as the sun breaks through the clouds and hold hands while enjoying a view like they’re teenagers on makeout point. Holy nausea. Worst might have been last night’s ‘I love you and you love me’ gag fest. What a bunch of cheap romance novel bullshit.
    -Daario’s character period. That guy is like a 90’s action star from a cheap Jean Claude Van Damme movie in Westeros. He’s out of place and can’t act for squat. Episode 9, he comes in to Dany’s tent like a hero, bends a knee and displays the flag of Yunkai to the sound of dramatic music. CLICHE CRAP!
    -Dany gets carried like she’s a retiring college football coach who just won the national championship. I was waiting for the gatorade bath. Seriously D&D?

    There were some very good scenes this season like Jaime losing his hand (followed by the worst end credit music they could have chosen), Mutiny at Craster’s Keep, Dany acquiring the Unsullied, The Hound’s trial, Lord Karstark’s execution, Queenscrown (the ruined stone mill), Jaime and Brienn’s bath scene and the RW. The great scenes from this season are like fine art buried in a dumpster. Great stuff but you have to get through a whole bunch of garbage to find it. STEP IT UP NEXT SEASON D&D. I hope you got your wasted scenes and sappy nonsense out of your system.
    Okay, so I know that was whiny but that is my honest opinion.

  • Faux Facts:
    The Purist,

    This has to be trolling or your the most pathetic person in the world, maybe both. It’s not even because your hatred of a TV show is so big but the fact that you came to a fan site to cheer because the show had a kind of tame finale and it’s over, beyond pathetic. Is there some kind of legal obligation that forces you watch through the whole season I wonder?

    At this point I don’t take him/her seriously.
    And neither should any of you. I’m really sure it’s a parody account, or something, just with the purpose of pissing everyone off.

  • PatD,

    I agree about the directing for the Red Wedding. It was nowhere near as cinematic as it should have been. Yeah, it got a big reaction but of course it would, they just brutally murdered a bunch of main characters but it was nowhere near as perfectly visualized as Neds execution. It could have been written better too, build more suspense throughout the episode and show more carnage, tents being light on fire, people burning, etc. I really wish Alan Taylor was one to direct the RW considering how beautifully he filmed Neds death.

  • Re LS the fact that Michelle Fairley is confirmed as a recurring series regular on another US-based show strongly indicates that her contract may be finished:

    http://www.eonline.com/news/426178/game-of-thrones-star-michelle-fairley-joins-suits-maisie-williams-posts-reaction-to-red-wedding-deaths

    People have to remember that TV shows are made to generate profits for capitalist hyenas and pay their actors by the season – so if they can bump up the bottom line by ditching an entire role they will do so.

    And all LS gets in 2 and a half books is a reveal and the still to be resolved AFFC cliffhanger scene – the first of which is awesome but the second of which is like most of GRRM’s now wait for 10 or 15 years to be resolved cliffhangers probably going to lead nowhere.

    And neither of these are truly indispensable to whatever the hell the grand story arc is likely to be….

    So unless they do indeed switch that role to another victim of the RW (and Cat is not the only dead mother….) I can see it being completely dropped.

  • I liked the episode. It was good for a normal episode but not so great for a finale. All the scenes by themselves were good BUT nothing really tied them together, there definitely was not a building of momentum to the final scene. And then the final scene was not so great. HOWEVER it did just follow the real ending of season 3, which is the Red Wedding. So lets all calm down just a bit and think of all the amazing scenes that will await us in Season 4! Also my non book reading wife thought is was a good episode. But of course she does not know of a certain someone coming back..

  • AA,

    I want to add one more comment regarding Dany’s scene. Although I did not initially like it, I am starting to appreciate how that moment affects her coming story line, as boring as it may be. The crowd surfing may have been cheesy, but it conveyed exactly how Dany feels in the moment: like a rock star. She hits her peak in that moment, and will spend the coming season wanting to relive that feeling of being adored by an entire city’s population. Hence her move to free Meereen, and hence her sticking around when everything starts falling apart. The scene is kind of cool because many Unsullied will view her as badass and unstoppable, while many readers will see through the dramatics and view her as naive and childish. It works on both levels, and hopefully will be remembered as a fine scene in the middle of an 80 hour epic story, instead of a disappointing finale.

  • Point two – Even if they had showed LS, it would have been discussed. Who is that? Is that Lady Stark? How did she come back? Some spoilers and some visits to Wikipedia, aaaaaaand the impact is lost anyway.

    But at least there would have been a modicum of mystery to it. That’s forever lost now.

    And how can anyone say Harrington is a bad actor? His character has not had anywhere near the level of writing that others have had on this show.

    I don’t know if y’all have read the piece in EW today about the direction of the series. But I’m wondering if their intention to slim down the character list was already made manifest in this “finale.” I’m all for them not following the book as show canon. I prefer an artistic interpretation as it applies to this medium. I don’t mean they should take license with the books’ foundation, but I love seeing it heightened by imaginative rendering. I just hope they are very savvy in the storylines and characters they chose to cut in the future.

    I just had a thought.

    I wonder if they were feeling intimidation by Martin and Westeros.org, etc. in not giving a more imaginative flavor to the RW, or this finale? Their record hasn’t shown prior capitulation, but this was a very iconic point in the books, and I wonder if they weren’t feeling the pressure not to mess with it, so-to-speak? Just a thought. But that would be a real shame, if true.

  • Darquemode:
    Drfunk,

    Love Orphan Black!
    I thought Defiance may bring SciFi back to TV again, but instead it was Orphan Black!

    One of the true surprises of this season I think.I did not expect a lot from the little show, but it was an incredible first scene. The lad actress has done an exceptional job playing all the versions of herself!!

    Could not agree more.

    As I often say, first comes casting, then comes performance, THEN comes writing.

    I maintain, despite what writers seem to think, that a great actor can definitely squeeze a brilliant performance out of not-so-brilliant writing (GLADIATOR being a prime example of great actors delivering great performances via so-so writing).

    ORPHAN BLACK has solid writing and superb performances.

    GAME OF THRONES usually has both. :)

    Both also have fantastic casting.

  • Overall great episode,i was kinda convinced that Lady Stone would appear in the end,or atleast Berric and The Brotherhood would find her… Well you cant get a pack and a sack i guess. I dident think i was going to get more enraged at the Frey’s and Bolton…. But the Wolfhead moment was pretty hardcore,i am glad they included it even tho i hated the sight of it. Stannis going North was one of the most enjoyable moments the entire season.
    Coldhands and Lady Stonehearth next!! and not to mention Joffery biting the dust and OFC The Red Viper!!

    wonder when Balon is going to fall from the bridge? if they dont chose to do it someother way…

  • I missed the Freys/Boltons taking Northmen hostage, i.e. Manderly, Great Jon, etc.. Perhaps not huge plot lines, but important for later? Only D&D knows, I guess.

  • Dragolf: How just anyone can walk through that tunnel under the Wall without the magic of being a member of the Nights Watch seems like a huge plot hole. Perhaps that magic is there, but the show did not address it. The wildlings should know about it, especially with a former crow as their king.

    Did you watch The Rains of Castamere? Sam said no one has used the door in centuries, but he knows how to find it because he read about it in a really old book (the days he spent alone in the dusty, seldom used dungeon library at Castle Black). The secret door beneath the Nightfort isn’t common Crow knowledge anymore. Maybe it was once (ages ago), but no longer. The Nightfort has been completely deserted for hundreds of years. Mance doesn’t know a thing about that secret entrance & neither do any other Brothers of the Nights Watch.

  • Shaun Brady,

    Sam knows it in the books as well. He swears to Bran & co to keep it a secret, though.

    The finale was great. All this whining is clearly an egotistical reaction from all the people who are dissing it. Remember, we need to have a few more seasons of Game of Thrones, there is no rush, only a long wait for next season. Worry not as all storylines are going to play out. And of course, I never found the books boring. So many things happening, so many changes of scenery and new character introduction, and everything (or almost everything) is leading somewhere. People should try to remember that the TV series exists for everyone, not just for book readers or those who think they know everything about everything. Personally I thought it was great, so I can’t wait for next season. And remember folks, I already know what happens, as I’ve read the books, some of them twice. So chill. It was a great TV season through and through. If you are expecting it to be identical to the books, forget about it as it is an impossibility.

  • Predictably, people are judging this episode based on what was missing from their own expectations instead of on what we actually got. A lot of pointless negativity about what I think was a very solid episode. Some of you really need to stop letting your book-fan expectations guide your enjoyment of the episode.

    What did we get?
    -A very nice scene between Tyrion and Sansa, which actually gives some hope that the two of them might learn to get along… which makes the rest of the episode all the more tragic for Sansa.

    -An excellent scene with the small council, in which Tywin gives the other side of the coin’s interpretation of the Red Wedding, and we get some excellent Tyrion/Tywin discussion. Excellent dialogue here.

    -Bran’s telling of the Rat Cook tale worked wonderfully to explain just what was so awful about Walder Frey’s disrespect for the guest right, and was a good scene in its own right.

    -A scene with Roose Bolton and Walder Frey which (finally!) explains what happened to Winterfell at the end of season 2, offering a bit of payoff for the Ramsay scenes this season. These scenes weren’t especially great, but were necessary to fill in the narrative gaps and I’m glad we finally got around to them.

    -A good scene with Asha (er, “Yara”) and Balon Greyjoy. I expect her journey will be cut short by the untimely passing of her father early in the next season, but… we’ll just have to wait and see how that goes.

    -A wonderful scene with Arya and the Hound, which also serves as a necessary narrative reminder of the faceless coin. When people are complaining that without Lady Stoneheart the Starks get no “hope” this episode, this scene is what they should be looking at.

    -An emotional confrontation between Jon Snow and Ygritte. Some strong dialogue here, and it brings a necessary resolution to the events of episode 9.

    -Maester Aemon! Pyp! Castle Black! So happy to see this place again!

    -Some great scenes at Dragonstone. Perhaps not as powerful as in the books, but I really enjoyed Davos and Gendry’s interactions.

    -An uplifting ending with some CGI dragons. Perhaps a bit one-note, but nice for what it was.

    Now, granted, not everything in this episode was perfect—I might have actually enjoyed some dialogue from Jaime, for instance, but I did like the uncertainty between him and Cersei—but it was a very good chunk of TV regardless.

    Now, on to what we’re missing (and why that’s ok):

    -The Lady Stoneheart reveal in the books was amazing. Why screw that up for the show by spoiling the surprise early? I thought it was possible that they’d include the scene, but I’m certainly not displeased that it isn’t there. Everyone realizes that this character doesn’t actually appear until the very end of the book, right?

    -People actually expected Arya to start sailing to Braavos? What? You crazy. That was at the very end of the book. Besides, we still need to see her reclaim Needle and deal with Polliver before that happens! Why do people just want to rush to the end of the story? Has reading these books taught you nothing about patience? :P

    -The purple wedding? No no no no no. Again, this is a moment that requires much more buildup. It’s a more complicated scene than the Sansa/Tyrion wedding, or even the Red Wedding, and so I imagine it will require the better part of an episode to tell. If we’d done Joffrey’s wedding this season we would have had even less room for other important, necessary scenes.

    -The Nightfort door. I enjoyed this in the books, but I’m not really sure it would have worked in the show. A talking door likely would have come across as cartooney, since the show has taken a much more subtle approach to showing magic overall. Nobody should have expected it to be in the show after last week’s episode, either.

    -Coldhands. There’s still plenty of room for this in later seasons. I could also see the character being cut, depending on how D&D approach things, since aside from being mysterious the character doesn’t really do much of anything. Bran’s storyline gets fairly thin once he gets north of the wall—his chapters are few and far between—so I imagine Coldhands might be brought in as a way to create some suspense and intrigue for Bran in the years to come.

    Overall, I find it quite ironic that book readers seem to alternate between criticizing the show for omitting their favorite scenes, but then expect the show to rush forward to the end of certain narratives without laying the groundwork first. Skipping over important scenes just to get to the best ones? Have patience! Try to enjoy what we DO get rather than just focusing on what’s coming next/what you expected to get now.

  • I hate how they completely reduced Legolas and Gimli to a buddy-comedy action schtick duo as it completely relegates their roles severely, oh wait, wrong forum…

  • Roger,

    I wouldn’t read that much into it. Look at all Nikolaj has done while playing Jaime Lannister. If she is still playing LS then her parts could be shot over a couple of weeks. I don’t see it affecting her other projects.

  • fuelpagan: The reason we didn’t see her eye’s opening in the book is because no one with a POV was there to witness the event. Something we don’t have to deal with in the show. So I see no problem with seeing her eyes opening leaving viewers thinking “She’s back” and later finding out she really isn’t, that this person is a shell of who Catelyn once was.

    LS will still work well as in an opening episode of season 4, it’s my opinion it would have been better as a finally. Dany’s scene fell flat. I may be missing some symbolism and think otherwise later…but right now the scene just felt too cheesy for Game of Thrones.

    Your first sentence is essentially my response to you before. There may have been a mix-up in arguments here. As for the rest, or fooling the audience, I offered my opinion on that in my first post: it’s too soon. It’s only my opinion, but I do stick by it.

  • Is the Larry Williams recap of this episode worth it? I want to know if I should waste my time or not

  • MRR,

    It’s not so much that it wasn’t what we are expecting, it’s that the final scene just didn’t deliver. I’d much rather have had Dany earlier and ended on Arya taking out some Frey’s.

  • Gerr,

    Set nothing up? Did you watch the episode?

    Stannis is about to head to the Wall to fight the White Walkers, Yara is about to head to the mainland to take back her brother, Jaime returned to KL to set up great power struggles between the Lannisters next year, Jon returns to Castle Black where we know the Wildling are heading to attack, Bran makes it north of the Wall, Dany has now conquered two cities and has a full-on army…….what more could it possibly have done? Considering this was a mid-book finale, I think thats a pretty damn amazing amount of setup.

    I honestly dont get some peoples need to hate this show. Not everything is going to be the exact same as the books, just becuase your a book fan doesnt mean you cannot like the show too. I thought this was a fantastic episode, and cannot wait for next season!

    Also the decision not to include LS was great. It would have been WAY too soon.

  • AA,

    After an episode which made a huge splash as being a massive downer they wanted to end on a positive note.

    Look good things do happen in GOT!

    Dany liberated an entire city of slaves and is (the unsuspecting unsullied will assume and for the future of the show its kind of important that they do) well on her way back to Westeros to burn all the Freys and Boltons and Lannisters in their castles.

    Ditto for the Stannis scenes: we start off thinking Gendry will be burned and he’s not and then that Davos will be killed and he’s not and that the Wildlings will overwhelm the Wall with no one other than the pitiful remnants of the Night Watch to fight them and then be followed by the Others and clearly Stan and Mel are not now going to let that happen.

    Joffrey haters also get the visceral thrill of seeing him slapped down metaphorically if not literally and some hope being offered that he is not going to be allowed to torture poor Sansa any more.

    As for Jaime he and Brienne are now back in KL and he gets a conventional romantic conundrum set up for next season – now he’s done all that growing emotionally will be realise that his sister-lover really is a complete bitch and his dad an asshole while he has plain but loyal Brienne as a new relationship.

    And Shae really loves Tyrion!

    Even the Arya scene has a positive aspect she at least begins exacting her revenge and a future where she is not just a passive witness to her loved ones being slaughtered is being clearly signposted for her.

    And Bran and co. are finally Off To See The Wizard.

    It even looks like poor Theon may get rescued and reunited with his dick in a box……

    So what they’ve clearly done is written an almost relentlessly positivistic episode to counteract the shock of the RW (that in fact most of this stuff won’t turn out at all well or indeed turn out at all unless they abandon AFFC and ADWD is another matter altogether)

  • c’mon guys this episode was great !! although i think the last scene with dany should have been shorter. but loved all the other scenes. yara arya bran sam jon and stannis .. really enjoyed these scenes .. seeing Maester Aemon made me smile .. i missed that guy.. i think it was a brilliant episode ..

  • MRR:
    Predictably, people are judging this episode based on what was missing from their own expectations instead of on what we actually got. A lot of pointless negativity about what I think was a very solid episode. Some of you really need to stop letting your book-fan expectations guide your enjoyment of the episode.

    Overall, I find it quite ironic that book readers seem to alternate between criticizing the show for omitting their favorite scenes, but then expect the show to rush forward to the end of certain narratives without laying the groundwork first. Skipping over important scenes just to get to the best ones? Have patience! Try to enjoy what we DO get rather than just focusing on what’s coming next/what you expected to get now.

    This is really nicely stated, all of it.

    You’re missing 2 things:

    1. Kerry Ingram. I want to give her a big big hug.

    2. HOOODOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOORRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR.

  • It was a good episode. The only real problem was that fans of House Stark were left with nothing to give them hope for the future. At the end of the episode, House Stark is still decimated, and there is nobody stepping forward to claim they will get revenge for them. Also all the remaining Starks are scattered to the wind. It will be the longest of waits for House Stark fans.

  • Not impressed,

    That would make a great thread….folks posting their own backyard remakes of the final 10 minutes of S3. I’m rounding up my neighbors today!

  • It was a good episode. The only real problem was that fans of House Stark were left with nothing to give them hope for the future. At the end of the episode, House Stark is still decimated, and there is nobody stepping forward to claim they will get revenge for them. Also all the remaining Starks are scattered to the wind.

  • WIC: is it just me, or are you spoiling the (eventual) resurrection of Cat on Twitter?

    “It happens like a day or two after the RW”, “the BWB come upon the body”, “having Beric do his thing”, “makes me wonder if she’s out”, “bringing her back next season”, “removed from all the Beric/Thoros stuff”… It doesn’t really take a genius to connect the dots.

  • This episode was just ok for me. Especially after episode 9 – which was epic. I expected a little more out of the finally. However, I do think they played this well to set up the next season.

    Things I Loved:
    * Arya & The Hound. This was perfect.
    * Robb w/ Greywinds head, although I’m not sure if non-book readers would get that as much. It didn’t look how I imagined it would, but I still found it effective.
    * Everything at Dragonstone. Davos reading!! And Davos saving Gendry.
    * Tywin… He’s hands down, a force not to be reconned with.
    * No Lady Stoneheart yet. I’m hoping this will come, as it did in the book, at the end of season 4. I think it would have been too soon.

    Thing I liked:
    * Tyrion & Sansa at the beginning of the episode kind of making the best of it. Then at the end of the episode – that difference between them. I thought that was great.
    * Shae & the Spider. This is total leading up to next season. I think they will want to show her human side before she flips the script on Tyrion. Maybe they will try to show a reasoning behind why she does what she does because she obviously loves him now
    * Reek. It was time for Theon to transform already.

    What I didn’t like:
    * Jamie has reached kings landing w/ Brienne. What about the Purple Wedding? Brienne isn’t there when Sansa is… Trial by combat w/ the Red Viper. None of this makes sense This is all wrong, but I’m waiting to see how this plays out.
    * Ygritte should have shot Jon Snow in episode 9. I’m glad they finally showed this, but I didn’t like how she magically caught up with him (on foot?).
    * Wished they would have shown what happened with Catelyn. Maybe bring back the Brothers without Banners and have them find her face down in the River… Maybe not. We know she’s dead and all, but it would have been good to see them demean her as they did Robb
    * The ending with Dany. It was nice, but kind of dull in my opinion. I guess I just expected more.

    All in all, this was a fantastic season. I’m sad it’s over. Good job to D&D and all the actors, etc.

  • I guess I shouldn’t have said that I was disappointed about no Lady Stoneheart. Surprised is more like it as it seemed like they were setting it up pretty hard. I liked the episode but as others had said, it didn’t really feel like a finale. I’m anticipating next season more so because I know awesome stuff is going to happen next season rather then the episode leaving me wanting more. The Dany scene was nice but not really the WHOA! I was hoping for in the ending. Love the Arya and the Hound buddy cop stuff. Loved Sansa and Tyrion. Loved Tywin. Was surprisingly touched by the twins reuniting. Don’t really like how they are setting up the Shae storyline but any Varys time is ok with me!

  • In season one the White Walkers arranged the corpses into a pattern which ended up matching Drogo’s funeral pyre in the finale. In this season they arranged the horses into a spiral. I wonder if Dany’s spinning crowd surf is supposed to match that? Kind of a stretch there D+D, if so.

  • David,

    Actually, I like show Stannis better than book Stannis. He is much more nuanced this way, probably because the actor playing him is so good. But his story is pretty much the same with some minor, unimportant deviations.

  • I loved the final scene with Dany. I’m not that disappointed with them not showing Lady Stoneheart. I guess it will come as a bigger surprise when they show her in the fourth season.

    The dialogue between Tyrion and Tywin sent chills down my spine. As well as Cersei seeing Jaime.
    I loved all the Dragonstone stuff as well. I must say I think I’m starting to love Davos. He was just blah in the second season, and in the books he was nothing special. But I’m liking him more and more. The actor is phenomenal. The same goes for Stannis.
    The stuff with Sam and Bran was brilliant. And Yara/Asha was amazing! Arya killing that Frey guy was priceless. I also liked the scene with Varys and Shae. Any scene with Varys is a great scene :)

    Can’t wait for the next season!

  • Hodor!

    In all honesty, I think it really did need to be a slower finale. A lot of people are still reeling from the sheer shock of the Red Wedding. I think they needed some time to catch their breath, and we still did get some interesting setups for the next season. Yara’s going to rescue Theon? Cool! Arya’s still running with the Hound? Awesome! Stannis is heading north to the Wall? I can’t wait for that plot line, personally.

    In addition, I think viewers really need a bit of time to grieve for Catelyn. I would have been surprised if they brought in Lady Stoneheart that quickly. “Zombie Cat” is a big deal in the story because it’s the first time you’ve seen a major character that gets killed off but comes back somehow. We have the dead rising north of the Wall, yes, but Cat is killed normally, not by White Walkers. We haven’t seen that before.

  • it was an enjoyable episode. Although, I still don’t understand why they keep doing a cliffhanger episode before the last episode. A denouement isn’t all that necessary. However, I did enjoy the episode quite a bit.
    The Bolton scenes were my favorite additions. Good to see the Frey/Bolton relationship develop, as well as the Ramsay revelation. Non-book readers were really surprised at this (I had heard guesses about “Boy’s” identity that were so far in left field, it was fun to see the shock reveal).
    Some things bothered me, however. Notably, Jaime showing up in Cersei’s bedroom months earlier than I expected. It was poignant, but I would’ve liked to see more Jaime/Brienne scenes instead.
    Oh, and let’s change Arya’s name, because it sounds too much like Yara.

  • A great post here. Well said, MRR.

    MRR:
    Predictably, people are judging this episode based on what was missing from their own expectations instead of on what we actually got. A lot of pointless negativity about what I think was a very solid episode. Some of you really need to stop letting your book-fan expectations guide your enjoyment of the episode.

    What did we get?
    -A very nice scene between Tyrion and Sansa, which actually gives some hope that the two of them might learn to get along… which makes the rest of the episode all the more tragic for Sansa.

    -An excellent scene with the small council, in which Tywin gives the other side of the coin’s interpretation of the Red Wedding, and we get some excellent Tyrion/Tywin discussion. Excellent dialogue here.

    -Bran’s telling of the Rat Cook tale worked wonderfully to explain just what was so awful about Walder Frey’s disrespect for the guest right, and was a good scene in its own right.

    -A scene with Roose Bolton and Walder Frey which (finally!) explains what happened to Winterfell at the end of season 2, offering a bit of payoff for the Ramsay scenes this season. These scenes weren’t especially great, but were necessary to fill in the narrative gaps and I’m glad we finally got around to them.

    -A good scene with Asha (er, “Yara”) and Balon Greyjoy. I expect her journey will be cut short by the untimely passing of her father early in the next season, but… we’ll just have to wait and see how that goes.

    -A wonderful scene with Arya and the Hound, which also serves as a necessary narrative reminder of the faceless coin. When people are complaining that without Lady Stoneheart the Starks get no “hope” this episode, this scene is what they should be looking at.

    -An emotional confrontation between Jon Snow and Ygritte. Some strong dialogue here, and it brings a necessary resolution to the events of episode 9.

    -Maester Aemon! Pyp! Castle Black! So happy to see this place again!

    -Some great scenes at Dragonstone. Perhaps not as powerful as in the books, but I really enjoyed Davos and Gendry’s interactions.

    -An uplifting ending with some CGI dragons. Perhaps a bit one-note, but nice for what it was.

    Now, granted, not everything in this episode was perfect—I might have actually enjoyed some dialogue from Jaime, for instance, but I did like the uncertainty between him and Cersei—but it was a very good chunk of TV regardless.

    Now, on to what we’re missing (and why that’s ok):

    -The Lady Stoneheart reveal in the books was amazing. Why screw that up for the show by spoiling the surprise early? I thought it was possible that they’d include the scene, but I’m certainly not displeased that it isn’t there. Everyone realizes that this character doesn’t actually appear until the very end of the book, right?

    -People actually expected Arya to start sailing to Braavos? What? You crazy. That was at the very end of the book. Besides, we still need to see her reclaim Needle and deal with Polliver before that happens! Why do people just want to rush to the end of the story? Has reading these books taught you nothing about patience? :P

    -The purple wedding? No no no no no. Again, this is a moment that requires much more buildup. It’s a more complicated scene than the Sansa/Tyrion wedding, or even the Red Wedding, and so I imagine it will require the better part of an episode to tell. If we’d done Joffrey’s wedding this season we would have had even less room for other important, necessary scenes.

    -The Nightfort door. I enjoyed this in the books, but I’m not really sure it would have worked in the show. A talking door likely would have come across as cartooney, since the show has taken a much more subtle approach to showing magic overall. Nobody should have expected it to be in the show after last week’s episode, either.

    -Coldhands. There’s still plenty of room for this in later seasons. I could also see the character being cut, depending on how D&D approach things, since aside from being mysterious the character doesn’t really do much of anything. Bran’s storyline gets fairly thin once he gets north of the wall—his chapters are few and far between—so I imagine Coldhands might be brought in as a way to create some suspense and intrigue for Bran in the years to come.

    Overall, I find it quite ironic that book readers seem to alternate between criticizing the show for omitting their favorite scenes, but then expect the show to rush forward to the end of certain narratives without laying the groundwork first. Skipping over important scenes just to get to the best ones? Have patience! Try to enjoy what we DO get rather than just focusing on what’s coming next/what you expected to get now.

    This right here.

    Valdred Dethstorm: It’s the “WAAHH WAHHH D&D ARE HACKS, THE SHOW IS SHIT, EVERYTHING IS RUINED” crap that gets annoying. Seriously. There are mature ways to discuss your disappointment, people. Just like PatD just did. Not stomping your feet and whining loudly.

  • Strepsi: bogglingly slow and frustrating

    I agree with all apart from the battle.. I think we will see another blackwater type episode and just a whole episode about the battle itself…. almost mirroring when tywin appears with Stannis. It will be episode 9 I say.

  • Upon reflection I loved the episode except for the lack of LS which I was convinced was gonna happen (they set it up so well!!!), the lack of For The Realm and Dark Wings music, and the utterly uninspiring ending. Whoop dee doo dany has a fan club of slaves. Where is the magic? Where is the wow factor, the ZOMG moment of super naturalness that is gonna make these next 10 months unbearable?! It’s absent, and it’s absence is noted BIG TIME. Sure they may have wanted to buck the trend, but as far as formulas go, ending each season with a huge WTF! moment is the way to go. At least D&D won’t make this mistake again

  • Reek, it rhymes with “oh my god, noobs have no idea how bad this is going to get”.

    When GRRM says he never intended for ASOIAF to get adapted to the screen, I don’t think he was talking about the special fx-magic that might be needed. I think he was talking about Ramsay “fucking” Bolton. I mean, they already cut out “the hunt” scenes. And I can’t imagine they’ll show the dog fancier scenes with fake Arya. There’s just no way. Aren’t there laws against that sort of thing?

    From a philosophical standpoint, I can see why those scenes are in the books (i.e. to demonstrate how vile and depraved humanity is), but they’re really going to have to tone it down for the show (which they already have, believe it or not).

  • Upon reflection I loved the episode except for the lack of LS which I was convinced was gonna happen (they set it up so well!!!), the lack of For The Realm and Dark Wings music, and the utterly uninspiring ending. Whoop dee doo dany has a fan club of slaves. Where is the magic? Where is the wow factor, the ZOMG moment of super naturalness that is gonna make these next 10 months unbearable?! It’s absent, and it’s absence is noted BIG TIME. Sure they may have wanted to buck the trend, but as far as formulas go, ending each season with a huge WTF! moment is the way to go. At least D&D won’t make this mistake again!

  • Overall, I’d say the episode was good, but some things left me disapppointed and others left me a bit perplexed.

    Arya and the Hound continue to be brilliant, and I really hope we get to see more of them next season. This sort of dysfunctional buddy dynamic is gold, it’s got comedy, development and tension.

    The Boltons are officially among my favorite casting choices. Michael McElhatton is PERFECT as Roose, I thought so since season 2, but he is really lighting up the screen this season. And Iwan Rheon is enjoying himself so much, I’ve come to really love Ramsay, which I never thought possible. The scene between Roose and Walder was another one of those scenes that help the series stand on its own.

    Great stuff in KL too, again, loving Varys more and more, and Charles Dance is flawless as always. Props to Jack Gleeson as well, I come to miss his smug, punchable face.

    Really enjoyed the stuff in the North as well, with major props to the acting in the Jon-Ygritte scene, that was a tear jerker. Nice to hear the story of the Rat Cook as well, that finally showed the severity of they Frey’s betrayal.

    Kinda perplexed by Jaime’s return to KL, though. I’m not sure what they’ll have him do, since he returns much later in the books, but I’m interested, especially in interactions between him and Tyrion. I think his reunion with Cersei was much too short, but I guess they didn’t have the time to expand on it, and it’s more of a teaser for next season. I look forward to seeing Brienne interact with the KL characters, too !

    And to finish, I’m pretty disappointed by Dragonstone. Not Gendry and Davos, that was really good stuff. It’s Stannis that rubs me the wrong way, the way he is written. He’s one of my favorite characters from the books, and this whole season, it felt like he had no agency, like he was a puppet. His scenes with Shireen and Selyse were nice, they gave him development, and I liked his decision to free Davos. But I’m really bummed that they had him be so angry at Davos in this episode. In the books, he’s relieved that he no longer has to kill an innocent boy. Here, it feels like he’s an ineffectual sucker, obeying Mel’s every word.

    So all in all, this season was pretty good, but the liberties D&D are taking with the material are just not doing it for me. Theon and Bran’s storylines dragged a lot throughout the season, Robb and Cat’s characterization were still terribly mishandled, and I’m very worried that Stannis might come next. However, terrific stuff North of the Wall, in KL and between Jaime & Brienne. You take the good with the bad.

  • As someone who wanted LS I’m coming around to the idea that it would have been taken poorly by the audience. I think we are forgetting how negativelypeople took that reveal initially and only sort of but not really accepted it.

  • Richard,

    because she saw herself losing power with Stannis?

    I kind of thought that too. And I was wondering if she saw something in the flames when she burned the note. So it was unclear as to her motivation. The only thing that supports the change in focus is stuff I’ve heard outside of the show via GRRM about Zoroastrianism. GRRM said the Lord of Light is based on that real-world religion and in that paradigm, the lord of light is in direct opposition to the lord of darkness. The lord of darkness is represented on the show by the White Walkers. I think later in the books this becomes clearer once we encounter more red priests/priestesses. This shift in focus is definitely setting up a supernatural show down of sorts and GRRM probably always intended for that to happen. But yeah, that was an abrupt shift for Mel that wasn’t explained well in the show. Fingers crossed that her reasoning is made clearer next season.

  • I think D&D sort of wrote themselves into a corner by establishing in the first 2 seasons that the final scene will be a supernatural cliffhanger. If season 2 had ended the way ACOK did with Bran & co. heading north, people probably wouldn’t have minded last night’s final scene so much. We were all overhyping the reveal of LS and got a bit let down. It’s a bit hyperbolic to assume this means the show is going to be forever more. The mhysa scene btw is very similar to the book chapter, so making a complaint based on “why are they changing the books?!?!?” doesn’t really make sense. The over exaggerated joy perfectly sets up the reality that conquering a place is much easier than occupying it. It subverts the normal expectations people have for a fantasy protagonist.
    Looking back on some of the criticisms people have had all season, I have noticed a disturbing trend. People seem to think that every episode that doesn’t contain a huge plot twist or a big fight scene are “boring”, “filler” or a “waste of time”. We actually need time to develop the characters and set up the plot points. Without that the action is meaningless. If you only want to see action sequences; go watch the Transformers or Fast and Furious movies or any of the other countless shallow brain dead big budget blockbusters littering the popular culture landscape. Maybe for some readers this stuff is boring because the books have already developed the characters. Personally I love the talking scenes and don’t only watch so I can see badass fights.

    Predictions for next season:
    Jaime appearing early won’t ruin anything. He will fail to save Joffrey, Cersei will put some of the blame on him, they will still have disturbing crypt sex.
    The beginning of the series will show the attack on Castle Black. The LC choosing will happen mid-season. Stannis and co. will arrive during this portion to offer his help. In return he will expect the right to order the NW around. Episode 9 will contain the big battle of the wall. Episode 10 will have Jon becoming LC. Davos will stay with Stannis to fight at the battle. Liam Cunningham is too great to get rid of for the whole season and it’s too soon to go to White Harbor. Stannis sends Davos to Manderly in the season finale
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