Off Topic: Game Of Thrones

After rattling through plot at a hare's pace for the last couple of episodes, yesterday's Game Of Thrones slowed down a little bit, for what that the TV equivalent of an anime filler arc. I was okay with this.

Actually I found it quite cool. It was fun to see The Hound again, in a different context, in a different place. It was fun to see Ian McShane in Game of Thrones. It was fun to pick up a number of forgotten threads and tie them up to an extent.

I suspect that many will complain about last night's episode, but I found it a fun change of pace. Season 6 has been a humdinger so far.

How did you find last night's episode?



    Also, nice to see Bronn again, and Lyanna Mormont is my new favourite pocket badass.

    Last edited 07/06/16 11:17 am

      Lyanna Mormont was great. And Ser Davos knew just how to deal with her. Brilliant scene.

        Of course Davos knew how to deal with her. Lyanna Mormont is one grammar correction away from being Mini-Stannis.

      I am so glad I'm not the only one pumped to the thought that it's going to be Mountain v Hound for Cersei's trial by combat.

      I don't understand the hype for Cleaganebowl. Like, wow big deal that the Hound ate food from a bowl.

        That's more than most dead people get to do on this show.

    I dunno how you could hate or dislike the episode honestly? It was a plot building episode sure, but the foreshadowing was amazing. Marjories manipulation of the sparrows, Cleganebowl 2.0 incoming hopefully, Bastardbowl!, LOTS OF BOWLS! GAME OF BOWLS! ALL THESE BOWLS!

    Last edited 07/06/16 11:22 am

      Some people seem to think there needs to be game changing events every episode.

        I think there were plenty of 'game changing' moments this episode personally. It's just not all of them have to come at the end of a sword. For instance: The Hound finally realised no matter what he does he can't escape his life of violence, but maybe for once, he's fighting for the right reason. We're going to see a Hound with a purpose rather than a Hound fighting for coin for once.

          Also we saw Arya decide to get away from the faceless God and go back to kick some arse ;) Oh except you know, stabbity stab stab...

            But was it actually Arya that got stabbed, or the faceless man repaying a life he owed - and testing the waif...

            I wonder where was needle, why is Arya right handed, where did she get so much money from?

            Next ep will be interesting

              OOOOOHHHH Dude could he really? That would be... amazing. Goddamnit now I REALLLY can't wait until next week :D

              I've heard this theory a few times. Are there any previous examples of Jaqen being able to disguise his height well enough to pass for someone as short as Arya? Also wouldn't he need Arya's face to disguise as her?

              I'm inclined to think they wouldn't have gone through the whole walking wet and bleeding through the streets of Bravos thing if it weren't Arya.

              Last edited 07/06/16 8:26 pm

                Actually looking at it again:
                I think I might be wrong. There's definitely some odd stuff going on with her performance when she's negotiating ship.

                I may be over analysing, but it does kinda look like they might have tried to make her look a little more boyish too by flattening out her chest and giving her a more masculine walk (most noticable right at the end when she's walking away from the camera).

                  how has no one mentioned the Arya Waif theory
                  where The waif is the part of arya wanting to join jaqen and the arya we;ve been seeing is the remnants of the old arya stark. just look here

                  That's certainly an interesting theory. I don't think I buy it, but time will tell.

                  To add a little extra weird to this whole business, Arya walks past someone who looks suspiciously like Arya (same height and body shape, same dress and hair as she's been seen wearing previously, notably when she retrieved her sword) walking in the other direction at 48 seconds of that previously linked video.

              **Double post.

              Last edited 07/06/16 8:24 pm

    A lot still happened, even if it was a slower episode. I suspect next week will be similarly paced and then smashysmashy for the last couple.

    Loving it.

    Ian mcshane is just so great. I'm hype as hell for American gods.

    And Diana rigg has been a consistent badass of diplomacy in GoT. It's so good to see her playing that strength she was renowned for in the avengers.

    And the hound has now aleo risen from the dead, and of course he was going to be dragged back into the fight.

    And arya is now left for dead, building further parallels between her and the hound. It's gonna suck for her, being hunted to the ends of the earth by potentially anyone. Cue paranoia and sociopathy.

    Good stuff.

      It'll be interesting if it's Arya who destroys the faceless men...

        Orrr.... what about her fencing master? What if he pops up? That would be pretty amazing...

      McShane will make a great Mr Wednesday.

    Watching Baby Bear Mormont shutting down Jon and Sansa, only to be swayed by Davos's avuncular maneuvering, was great. It was a very solid episode with great writing and performances. Not filler at all.

    I was so concerned about this season, now being off-book. Ideally I would have loved to just ignore the show from now on until George finishes writing, but I know that is an unrealistic impossibility in the age of Internet spoilers.

    As it turns out, I've really enjoyed this season so far. Much more than Season 5. There's actually something a bit liberating about not knowing what's going to happen next.

    I always forget the characters names! This episode was one of my favourites.

    Marjorie's mum is great, and her put down of Cersei was fantastic.

    Lyanna Mormont was amazing.

    Yara Greyjoy takes her role of queen really seriously! She's pretty ridiculous. That was funny.

    And it's all converging on some royal comeuppance against Bolton. Can't wait for that comeuppance.

    Honestly, the Holdor ending of the last episode left me cold and kinda made me laugh. As did the one that ended with 5 minutes of Daenerys's boobs. Though a lot of my friends thought otherwise.

    I feel like Ian Mcshane was wasted on such a small part. He did make the character, however. I yelled at the screen at the end.

      I agree... what a waste of such a great actor.

      Unless he's going to be resurrected.

    Sigh....what the hell is Clegane Bowl and more importantly why should I care?

    I mean, I know but geez it's a tad embarrasing :p

    Other things:

    What's the state of Riverrun and the Tully's in the books? Largely ignored if I recall?

    I like the Greyjoys, always have, but if the shows dares to foreshadow them going to see Dany, and they take any longer than Tyrion did, I'll be annoyed. They have armies and ships, so they should be there by next episode.

    McShane was shamefully wasted. All that build-up for nothing. Loved every minute of him.

      You may recall it was Brienne who fought with the Hound in the show, in the books it was someone else, but the general circumstances are similar. In both cases Arya refused to mercy kill him and left him for dead after taking his money.
      #CLEGANEBOWL starts with events during book 4 or 5 (I can't remember which) where Brienne visits a small sept in the middle of a swamp and sees the Hound's horse, Stranger, being attended by an unnamed Gravedigger. The Septon tells Brienne "the hound is dead" and "the man you knew as Sandor Clegane is no more". To visit the sept she had to cross a hidden path through a marsh, which was difficult to follow except with guidance. Stranger was a notoriously difficult horse that only Sandor Clegane, the Hound, could control. Seeing him at the sept and acting calmly around the Gravedigger all but confirmed that Sandor had recovered from his wounds and was going to live out his days in peace, leaving his violent past behind. We saw something of a variation on this by having him revealed to be living in a peaceful community with a septon openly wearing a seven-pointed star.
      Similarly in the books we know Sandor's brother Gregor aka the Mountain that Rides has been effectively revived as a zombie after his duel with Oberyn Martell (aka the red viper), a silent Kingsguard who never removes his helmet and now goes by the name Ser Robert Strong, as the Mountain is supposed to be dead, his skull sent as a peace offering to Dorne after confessing to the crime of raping and murdering Elia Martell.
      Ser Robert Strong is of course fiercely protective of Cersei, and her obvious candidate for champion in her upcoming Trial by Combat. The Faith will need to put forward a champion of it's own - and this has long been theorised to be Sandor Clegane, called upon by his faith to take up his sword and fight in the trial. Something people forget about the Hound is that while he is overshadowed by his behemoth of a brother, he is also unusually large and strong, stronger than most other men (something the show tried very hard to impress upon the viewers last night via McShane's character commenting on how strong and fearsome he is). Apart from someone extremely talented (like the Viper) Sandor is the closest match for the Mountain in a duel.

      Once all these theories got thrown into the pot, people became excited by the prospect of a Clegane vs. Clegane showdown, Zombie Gregor vs. Sandor of the Faith, the Mountain and the Hound, and so on. Hence, #CLEGANEBOWL.

      Separate comment for non-speculation stuff:

      The siege of Riverrun has been progressing much to the point you saw it in the show last night, except Brienne has summoned Jamie to show him something (I can't remember what, maybe she was claiming to have Arya and Sansa so Jamie can return them to the Blackfish or something) but it was strongly hinted he was being led into a trap laid by a character that has not been introduced in the show yet, assuming at all.

      Last edited 07/06/16 12:50 pm

        It's been a while since I read the books but didn't Jamie give Edmur back to The Blackfish?

        Also, I kind of miss the scenes from the book where Jamie has to train each night to use his left hand in combat with one of the Lannister troopers... wasn't that The Mountain?

          In the books Jamie trains with Ilyn Payne because he has no tongue. Later with someone else but not the mountain, the mountain is "dead" by then.

            Right... I'd forgotten it was Payne.

            He's not in the show anymore though...

              Show Jamie trained with Bronn instead of Ilyn during season 4.

                I was a little shocked seeing him the other night... I'd thought he was dead.

                  We last saw him leaving Dorne with Jamie at the end of season 5, then Myrcella died. Bronn has simply gone completely unmentioned until then which is slightly odd considering they could easily have had him at least appear to remind us he existed. I guess they were saving his appearance for late in the season as we hit the home stretch, same as the Hound reveal.

      I've a sneaking suspicion that the Arya we saw isn't Arya. Watch the scenes again and you may notice some things about her walk and demeanour, clothes style, peculiarly missing weapon and dominant hand...

      For Riverrun and Tully's:

      Nothing much had happened as the book ended around the time that came into the story. Breanne was taking Jaime to Catelyn Stark though who had been resurrected through Red God magic. Supposedly she was going to exact revenge and kill him...waiting for something along those lines to occur in the TV series...probably in the next 1-2 episodes.

    Hound is great. His return could have been handled with a bit more subtlety though.
    Also can Arya get any more dense?
    Liked it though

      How so? Arya is obviously not the sharpest tool in the shed to think she can just waltz out of there, but she is all of like 16 at this point in the book? She's 19 IRL but still, young and cocky so maybe she thought they'd just let her go...

        I dunno. Blinding and beating her then saying "a girl will not get another chance" is pretty much all the warning she needed. There is also very little to support the decisions she's made this season. Why would she try to be one of them only to change her mind over one conversation with the play actress?

          I wouldn't say that one conversation wavered her opinion, she's been battling her conscience for the entire time whilst in the tutelage of the man with no face. Damned interesting, but I agree it's a weak way to tie it up.

    another solid ep, those who complain about the pacing should really learn a thing or two about telling stories. I think this week was damn fast when it ended I was like "huh, already?" it didnt feel slow at all, it hit all the important story points it needed to and more.

    sadly so many on the internet these days demand instant gratifications they dont realise sometimes you dont need huge stuff to happen, sometimes ground work just needs to be laid

      At the end of every episode I think "huh, already?"

        In our defence, this one was particularly short (2nd shortest thus far after the S6 premiere by my maths).

      I hit the same point. I watched the last 2 eps back to back and could not believe the latest one was finished at that point. Has left me waiting impatiently for next week!

    Filler? This was the best episode of this season. Also Lady Mormont. I really liked this episode, it felt large in scope but intimate for each plot line, felt like a bit of a return to form, I wish the rest of the series was more like this. Also Lady Mormont.

    Aryas bit rather annoyed me though, not only because the whole jump into water and mysteriously disappear from a trained assassin is cliched and dumb, but also because she knew what was coming and didn't have any sort of weapon on her, that struck me as rather out of character and irritated me. I did like the paranoid reality of being pursued by a faceless (wo)man as was alluded to at the end of her scene though. Aside from that I really liked the episode, even if the Hound's reveal was a bit weaker than it needed to be. Also lady Mormont.

      Lady Mormont, best. That was such a great job by the actress.

    They're really going off the reservation with the divergence from the novels, not always bad. However what stinks more is the dialogue in some of the scenes. Theon's pep talk was especially bad. Arya just wandering around without any sort of disguise or subterfuge was also so implausible to what I suspect George has in mind for that character.

      I have a feeling that wasn't actually Arya...

        Oooh explain! You think she's duped someone else?

          That girl who stabbed Arya is Arya. I think the 'man with no face' smiles when he allows the girl to go kill Arya :P.

            Yeah I read that theory since posting this. Totally makes sense. Someone also spotted her passing the oyster girl version of herself on the bridge too...

      I keep hearing about all the divergences from the books, but I don't feel like it's that different at all. Sure the order's been fiddled around a bit, a few minor characters are missing but ultimately the bulk of it is there. Most "changes" are things that could (and probably will) turn up in the books. I think the only changes of consequence are the simplification of the Dornish plot and the absence of LSH.

        Sam's storyline, tyrions storyline, Rickon's and Asha's storyline, arya's storyline- one of the "sample chapters" has a scene where she is at a mummers performance, but it has a very different ending to the shows version. Jamie's storyline, he isn't with Brienne and apparently Catylin has been totally killed off (which I don't mind at all).
        I'm just going off memory here from the changes, but the show after the first couple of seasons is very different to the books imo.

          Sam: only real difference is the detour to Horn Hill.
          Tyrion: skipped over the slave and Second Sons arc but he's ended up in a similar place.
          Rickon and Asha: Their only mention only for like 2 books is a rumour that they're on Skagos. Could prove to be BS in the book and it'll play out like the show.
          Arya: rearranged a bit (her ticking someone off her list happens after the blindness) but not a huge change.
          Jamie: yeah a fairly big change but again he's ended up in a pretty similar spot. The big change is that his relationship with Cersei is decidely chillier in the books. But the show could still arc towards the book (or vice versa). And LSH could still happen, especially now the that the BWB are back in the picture.

          Lots of small changes but nothing I'd call a gamechanger. It's not Robb Stark's still alive or Tyrion's been eaten by a dragon.

            Tyrion also met Jon Connington (who has Dragonscale instead of Jorah) and "the young Griff" aka another bloody secret Targaryen, except this one has actually gone to Westeros and raised JonCon's banners while Dany sits around twiddling her thumbs.

    Anyone else think that maybe Arya will take on the mountain? With the hound maybe then becoming like her new father, and they go around being mercenaries?

    My opinion on some of the things from the latest episode. Spoiler Warnings & all that within:

    @kermitron & @weresmurf

    I am just as eager for #CLEGANEBOWL GETHYPE as the next. Absolutely stoked about this reveal.
    However, am I reading/analyzing too much into the foreshadowing that has happened with this episode and last weeks in regards to the BwB and LSH? Today on /r/asoiaf there was someone that leaked the next 3 episodes synopsis', but then was said to be fake.

    I want to believe...

    On the bright side, the next 3 episodes are 59 minutes +.

    Last edited 07/06/16 4:39 pm

      I think given that the show has given Brienne a completely different reason to be in the Riverlands where Jamie happens to be, and that fact that Brienne has now found Sansa and sworn herself to her, they've kind of written over LSH's purpose in the story. While mentioning the BWB's harassment of the Freys and advancing the Riverlands plot raises hope, I think it's likely we'll be let down. Which I don't really mind, TBH.

        Unless the Brothers without Banners unite under the Starks... giving them an army of the commoners.

        Sansas message... that was to Littlefinger, requesting his army, right?

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