Monthly Archives: April 2015

Game of Thrones: Season Five: High Sparrow (S5E3): Comments?

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Thoughts:

  • Margaery to Cersei: ‘I wish we had some wine for you. It’s a bit early in the day for us.’ I supposed in some ways the Lannister line is on the ropes so Margaery could throw some shots at Cersei, however Cersei holds grudges; careful Margaery!
  • If Stannis cannot get the Wildlings as troops, I think he will make a pact with Little Finger to use troops from the Eyrie to try and overtake Winterfell and secure the North. As Robin has pointed out, Baelish probably wants revenge on Roose for killing Catelyn, so he would go for this. Little Finger also probably put Sansa there to keep her safe and for simultaneously watching how the Boltons implement their plans and also to help implement his own plans for revenge of Catelyn (and to also maneuver without Sansa checking his every move.) Roose doesn’t trust him, so if Little Finger has plans for securing the North he has is going to have to find a way to get his messages out other than raven for his true plans. He will probably use his songbirds.
  • Interesting…The faceless men serve the ‘many-faced god’; their faceless quality is the epitome of who they worship. (I will add this to the religious thread in the forums to keep track of it.)
  • Arya was willing to throw away her possessions except for Needle (she hid it), so she still wants to be Arya Stark in some ways. I think it reminds her of Jon Snow. I wonder if she also has to throw away her death list because that too is a possession of Arya Stark?
  • How old is Tommen supposed to be at the time of his wedding? He has to be a young teenager.
  • I am dying to see how Theon and Sansa react to meeting each other.
  • Apparently if a marriage isn’t consummated then it’s not legal? Little Finger did say to Roose that this was the case by the Law of the Land. Roose seemed to acknowledge that is the case stating he believed Little Fingers statement about Sansa’s virtue.

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Faceless God

Beliefs:

Essential to this religion is losing one’s personal identity because everyone is part of the greater one true god.

Since everyone can behave differently then all behavior or actions performed selflessly have the same weight; killing and saving someone can be done with the same purpose to serve the one true god or to do favor for another.

This I believe is the black and white nature (the balance) of the faceless men.
Killing isn’t done because a faceless man wants to kill that person, the faceless men do it because they must serve (ie they have been asked as a favor to do it.) (Think back to the episodes where Arya asked Jaqen H’ghar to kill for her because she did him a favor by letting him out of his imprisonment.)

I am going to guess here that in order to hire a faceless man to kill for you, you have to perform some selfless act to assist the faceless men first.

Worshipped by:
The Faceless men of Braavos. The closest modern equivalent is Agnostic Theism. The belief that all gods really boil to down to one true god with many different appearances. Whatever actions they do are only as servants for their god and for others because they are truly selfless.

Possibly the people of Braavos as well. They all use Valar Morghulis (All Men must die) Valar Dhaeris (All men must serve).

The thieves backing off of Arya in S5E3 reveal that people serve their own needs in Braavos, however if a holy man (faceless man) is in their path they back off (either because it’s religiously blasphemous or because they risk certain death if someone is protected by a faceless man.)

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Good:

  • Janos Slynt meets his end! There hasn’t been a more worthy death for a snobby elitist coward in the show. I felt a weird mixture of satisfaction and pity seeing him executed. Jon got to lay down the bitter law as commander.  Stannis looked on admirably in the background. I truly think he sees Jon as a leader.
  • Little Finger’s argument to Sansa was brilliant and true. Sansa has been running and she has to face up to her demons and stop being a victim. ‘There’s no justice in the world unless we make it…You loved your family. Avenge them’.

He’s training her to be like him; perhaps to be with him as a life partner.

The maiden at Winterfell told Sansa ‘Welcome home Lady Stark. The North remembers. The arranged marriage works two fold. It solidifies the Bolton’s hold over the North and it also puts Sansa (and the Starks) back where she (and they) belong (in the North). Of course she appears to be going (with the exception of Tyrion) from one psycho to the next. Robin’s right about the narrative. This positions her to avenge her Mother and Brother’s deaths somewhere down the line, which is something both her and Little Finger want. She did put on a pleasant face so she’s learning Little Finger’s ways.

  • Podrick can fight as we saw at the Battle of the Black water so Brienne offering to mentor him to eventually become a knight is a welcome change from the buffoonery we have been given full mouthfuls for a few seasons.

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Bad:

I thought most of this episode was superb. The scene between Sansa and Little Finger needed a bit more ways of showing Sansa struggle with becoming a Bolton; then again that is very minor. Sansa has been through far worse so I can see her having a thick skin; especially if she is to be a Little Finger in training.

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Unknown:

  • The faceless man gave a man a cup of what appears to be water to drink and then the man fell down seconds later (apparently dead or is he?) Did the faceless man poison him? Is the water a potion that transforms a dying person? I wonder why the faceless men wash the bodies of the dead? This is Game of Thrones so my mind did venture into a few dark places. Could you imagine if they eat the dead to get their power of shape shifting?
  • Will Arya truly stop being Arya Stark and become one of the Faceless men? She most certainly will have to give up needle and her death list right? Those things serve her and certainly aren’t the quality of one who serves selflessly to the many faced god right?
  • It’s pretty clear to me Tormund is the next logical leader for the Wildlings. He has more fire and angst towards the Men of the Nights Watch and Stannis then Mance had, however I think he has respect for Jon Snow which may act to temper his past hatreds.
  • The faceless man talking to Arya stated “no man knows the gift (of the faceless god)’. What is this gift?
  • How much time has elapsed since Tommen was made King and his wedding to Margaery? Is he trying to get rid of his mother in King’s Landing so he can feel more like a man? It appears Margaery is playing that psychology on Tommen by saying that Cersei treats him like her ‘cub’ and that to her he will always be her baby boy. Perhaps to push Cersei out of King’s Landing? (Cersei isn’t going to go willingly.)
  • What use is the High Sparrow to Cersei?
  • Will the Wildlings help Stannis with Jon’s help? I don’t think so.

My prediction (as it was in Season 4) is that the Wildings will work on the Wall helping to defend it from White Walkers. They could easily man all the existing abandoned castles along the wall; rebuild them and take on watch duty all along the wall. I am not so sure they would work with Stannis (especially after he burned their King at the Stake and took them all prisoner.)

  • The massive thing under the cloth next to Qyburn in his chambers no doubt is the Mountain (in some feral form). When will his horrible repaired magnificence be unveiled?
  • What will happen when the Lannisters find out Sansa has been married off to the Boltons? Will they think that King Joffrey was killed by the Bolton’s to secure Sansa as Ramsay’s bride and secure the North for themselves? Is this why Roose is keeping such a tight watch on Baelish’s communiqués with Cersei?
  • Who’s eyes and ears were that of the Red Priestess at Volantis glaring at Tyrion?
  •  Will Ser Jorah meet his end before delivering Tyrion to the queen? As Robin Pierson has pointed out, which queen? Is it Cersei or Dany? He is kind of on the outs with both of them. Dany threatened decapitation (if he ever returned), so the more receptive would be Cersei for sure. I hope it’s Dany for Tyrion’s sake. I would rather see Jorah go over Tyrion. Tyrion is my favorite character.
  • Tommen wanting Cersei to go back to Casterly Rock doesn’t sound like a King who has appointed his mother Hand of the King right? Does he know she’s Hand of the King?  How many more years does Cersei rule for him until he comes of age? Margaery didn’t know whether to call Cersei Dowager Queen; that was an admittance to her power as well as a slight.

Game of Thrones: Season Five: The House of Black and White (S5E2): Comments?

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Thoughts:

I would like to preface these thoughts by stating, I am only a book reader of the first book and mostly a show watcher.
I do think in this episode (and last) we have been given some strong clues about Little Finger’s plans.

The Inn scene had Little Finger’s line: ‘My marriage proposal has been accepted.’

Then Sansa says:

‘I thought you still mourned the death of my beloved Aunt Lysa?’

They cut to Podrick and Brienne spotting Sansa before we got his response to her.

He did tell Sansa in the Season opener: ‘We are (heading west)… To a land so far from here, even Cersei Lannister can’t get her hands on you.’ Before that line he told Lord Royce that on ‘(his) return (he) had no doubt Robin’s skills will have improved immeasurably’, which implies he will be returning without Sansa.

I think there are two possibilities here with all those lines:

1.    Little Finger intends to marry off Sansa Stark in exchange for the cost of hiding her.

I am half expecting in episode 3 to have the writer’s finishing that scene at the Inn and with him saying to Sansa ‘Who said anything about the marriage proposal being mine?
So I am speculating that in exchange for Sansa’s safety he has married her off to someone.
Let us have that sink in for a second…  A bunch of questions then flood my mind:

•    Who would benefit the most from marrying Sansa Stark that is in the West (far from Cersei’s eyes)?

•    Does this person know she’s Sansa Stark or is her identity also a secret to them?

•    Can Sansa get out of that arranged marriage if that is what Little Finger has done?
Technically she’s still married to Tyrion, so the new marriage wouldn’t be legal.  However, Little Finger could blackmail her into the marriage with fear of turning her over to Cersei.  Then again, she could turn around and try to black mail him with his involvement in Joffrey’s death.  I think Sansa knows though it would be her words versus Baelish and Lady Olenna.

•    If this person knows she is Sansa Stark they would have to keep that secret right? What would they stand to gain from knowing she was Sansa Stark ? I guess technically Jon Snow isn’t the rightful heir to Winterfell and Arya, Bran and Rickon are assumed dead, so as far as they are concerned she is the heir Winterfell. However, that doesn’t matter as long as she is still being implicated in Joffrey’s killing. Wouldn’t this person be risking death by harboring a possible assassin to King Joffrey so they would be branded a traitor for doing such a thing?

•    The two men who would fit plot line would be: Balon Greyjoy or maybe even Ramsay Bolton.

2.    Baelish is marrying himself off to gain another kingdom or more land.  Let that sink in…More questions come up:

•    What is the kingdom or lands furthest to the west that isn’t doing so well that has female heirs where he can gain more power and land?  The Iron Islands…or maybe Bear Island?

•    Perhaps Baelish has sealed a deal to marry Yara in exchange for the Greyjoy’s hiding Sansa? Or could it be to Maege Mormont or perhaps she has other daughters than Lyssa? (Maege I believe was at the gathering in the first Season where Rob was plotting in the North during the War of Five Kings)

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The Good:

•    Samwell’s speech for electing Jon Snow.  Wow! I loved how he also beat down Janos Slynt.

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The Bad:

•    When Baelish’s guards split up pursuing Brienne and Podrick, Pod had a least four horseman chasing him and only two managed to reach him.  Am I to assume Brienne dealt with all those guards on her own before reaching him and killing the last two?

•    I didn’t understand the student/teacher lesson between the Faceless Man and Arya.  Was it to have faith and not believe everything you see? Why let her get despondent; run off and find food and then save her?

•    I am finding it hard to believe titles mean anything to a man who has already taken the black and is a member of the Night’s Watch.  The show has never sighted any instance where a member had left the order (once given a title) and became a Lord of his lands. Usually titles mean nothing (except Lord Commander) and desertion is death.  I suppose a king’s pardon would allow it, however this idea brought into the story didn’t sound right to me.  Stannis however has used all kinds of methods to gain power.

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Unknown:

•    Will Kevan Lannister lose his head for being so disrespectful to the Queen Regent?

•    Will Maester Pycelle end up being a set of ears for Varys (because he’s so upset with Qyburn’s promotion?)

•    What the heck is Qyburn doing with decapitated heads?

•    Will Jaime and Bronn reach Myrcella before something happens to her in Dorne? How the heck are they going to get her out of there? They will have to sneak her out right?  Wouldn’t it be obvious who took her and there will be retaliation?

•    How much power does a Master of War yield? What will bring him back to King’s Landing?

Game of Thrones: Season Five: The Wars to Come (S5E1) Comments:

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Thoughts:

  •  I think the narrative demands that Stannis have an army and the Wildlings are certainly a very convenient source for that and Winterfell is the most logical close target.  Stannis knew it would resonate with Jon Snow and he is someone the Wildlings will listen to.
  • I guess Stannis’ ultimate plans and strategy for the Crown (starting with the North) comes down to how many Wildlings will obey his orders and bend the knee to him. He needs more forces then he currently has to do anything.
  • I would be very surprised if all 100K Wildlings follow him all the way through with his plans.  They may agree to follow Stannis at first; however someone like Tormund may see an opportunity to lead the Wildlings himself at a certain point.  I see him possibly trying to escape into the area North of the Wall with a group of Wildlings. That being said, the area North of the Wall has proven to be a *real estate fiasco* with its threat of the White Walkers.   There is also the cultural change the Wildlings would have to endure living side by side the people in the other Kingdoms; farming permanent tracts of land boasting titles in some cases.  I don’t think certain groups are adaptable at all.  Somehow I don’t see the Thenns (cannibals) easily obeying Stannis or the way of living of anyone in the Five Kingdoms, so there is bound to be some tribes that will go back North of the Wall.
  • I am unclear about the how much the marriage plans between the Lannisters and Tyrells will work out since Tywin is dead.  Does Cersei still intend to marry Ser Loras after Margaery marries Tommen?  Cersei didn’t want to do it, however she knows about the financial hardships both the Lannisters  and the Crown have so those plans seem to be the most logical way for the kingdom to continue.  She is the wild card.  Will she make the same sound judgements her father made or is she just hell bent on finding Tyrion first to exact revenge for the deaths of Tywin and Joffrey?
  •  If we follow the witch’s prophecy in this episode it looks like Myrcella and Tommen aren’t going to last very long will they? It also appears from this prophecy that the Tyrells will take over for the Lannister’s as the most powerful House in Westeros. Since the Lannister’s are in serious debt it looks like they wield the power already in a lot of ways. Then again, if Lady Olenna is somehow connected to Joffrey’s death that could be a nice twist eh?

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Good:

  •  The cold opening was pleasantly disorienting.  I didn’t figure out one of the girls was Cersei until the witch said ‘The king will have 20 children and you will have three…You’ll be queen. For a time… Then comes another, younger, more beautiful, to cast you down and take all you hold dear.’ The ‘other’  could easily be Dany just as well as Margaery. Perhaps Cersei doesn’t see Dany as much of a threat than Margaery because she’s in Slaver’s Bay and she also doesn’t know how Dany actually looks? This goes well with Robin Pierson‘s observation about Ser Loras’ assessment of his sister with Cersei. Cersei may try to beat the witches prophecy by killing Margaery somehow and then Dany will still end up conquering Westeros and Cersei will fall. Just a thought. It’s there in the narrative, however that could easily be a twist as well.
  • White Rat’s slaughter in the brothel by one of the Sons of the Harpy (Gold mask).  It seemed like all he wanted was companionship and he was willing to pay for it.  That actually had more impact on me than Mance Raydar’s burning at the stake. Dany also direly needs more enemy’s closer to her than Westeros to keep my attention on her storylines.
  • Tyrion’s disillusionment seems well placed.  He has no homeland anymore; little family; no titles; no money.  The narrative sort of demands he ends up in Dany’s court along with Varys, so Vary’s plans weren’t surprising and will be very interesting. Wherever Tyrion and Varys goes I want to be, so that should make the Slaver’s bay scenes sizzle.
  • There’s an interesting character counterpoint with how Jojen at such a young age (wise beyond his years) accepted his fate for the greater good (having full knowledge of it) while aging Cersei is selfishly determined to fight and deny her fate; trying to shun (a few glimpses of) prophecy (the witch) and cover her immorality by shunning religion (interactions with Lancel).

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Bad:

  •  Mance’s defiance to bending the knee to Stannis did make sense. However, his execution just didn’t have any emotional impact for me.  Perhaps it was the way it was shot.  They should have had more close-ups of him suffering mixed with reaction close-up shots.  There were too many long and medium shots that didn’t capture enough emotion.  Could it have been the editing as well?  Hard to say.

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Unknown:

  •  How many in number are the Sons of Harpy? Who was the one with the gold mask?
    •    Will Varys and Tyrion end up doing service for Dany?
    •    Who will end up being Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch?  Jon Snow or Ser Alliser? Or Ser Denys Mallister?
    •    What is Brienne’s next move? Is she heading North?
    •    Where is Little Finger going with Sansa?  I suspect it’s the Wall or even North of the Wall.
    •    Will Tormund and the rest of the Wildlings bend the knee to Stannis?
    •    Will Tommen still marry Margaery Tyrell?
    •    Will Ser Loras marry Cersei after Margaery marries Tommen?
    •    Will Cersei make the same sound judgements her father made to save the finances of the crown or is she just hell bent on finding Tyrion first to exact revenge for the deaths of Tywin and Joffrey?

Game of Thrones Season Five Predictions:

My predictions:

Cersei will rule as queen regent (pulling the strings behind Tommen) with an iron fist setting up  assasins to find a kill Tyrion to avenge their father’s and Joffrey’s deaths.

Baelish won’t be outted yet as conspirator against Joffrey. He will continue to cause chaos and seize opportunities.
He may (if necessary) throw the Tyrells under the bus so he can make a play for their Kingdom with Cersei.  He wasn’t at the Purple wedding
and they were, so I see Lady Olenna on the chopping block.  Margaery will be spared because she had nothing to gain with Joffrey’s death.

Sansa will be safe behind Baelish and manipulate him.  If he outs her she will out him as the killer of Joffrey.

Varys and Tyrion will join he small council of Daenarys Targeryon.

Jon Snow will work closely with Wildings because the battles with the White Walkers will get fiercer.
Jon will continue to work with Stannis Baratheon to battle the White Walkers (not sure if he will become true king; Stannis that is.)

Brandon Stark will continue to work on his green sight abilities and learn to warg into more living things.
We will see more of the children of the forest. There are probably more of them then we have seen.

We will learn what has become of Benjen Stark (I hope). I think he has become a White Walker.

Roose Bolton will meet his end (most likely from Ramsey Bolton.)

Arya Stark will become one of the Faceless Men.

Sandor Cleghane (The Mountain) will become some fowl looking super villain that is nearly unstoppable at the
control of Cersei.

Balon Greyjoy will continue to spiral downward and I think that Kingdom is destined to fall in the hands or Ramsey Bolton.

We will meet Print Doran(Oberyn’s older brother) and his daughters who will seek to avenge his death. (Myrcella may be in danger.)

I don’t think Daenerys will make it to Westeros this season.  I think all her dealings will continue in the Slaver’s Bay area.