Feedback on Game of Thrones: Book of the Stranger: Podcast for Season 6, Episode 4

I gave this episode a 78 out of a 100.

There was a lot going on here. The female characters dominate in this episode. There were some things for me that were weak or just events spinning in place waiting to set off other events (that I note in the bad.)

Best Line Daario to Ser Jorah: ‘If I win, I’m the sh*t who killed an old man. If I lose, I’m the sh*t who was killed by an old man.’

The Good:

• Strong leadership scenes from Sansa, Dany, Yara, Cersei, Margaery and Olenna.

• I loved the scenes at the Dinner table at Castle Black when Ramsay’s letter arrives. Sansa is showing the shrewdness of Baelish by noting Roose is dead because Ramsay addresses himself as Lord of Winterfell and Warden of the North whilst providing passionate sisterly motivation to reluctant leader Jon Snow to rally troops and rescue Rickon and preventing them from being victims of the Boltons. I love her lines “I want you to help me …but I’ll do it myself if I have to.”

• Margaery is shrewd enough to see the High Sparrow is trying to manipulate her with his homily and tries to convey this to Ser Loras whilst trying to give him the strength to carry on. (There’s some parallels here with Sansa trying to get Jon to man up and Cersei trying to get Ser Kevan to help get back his son Lancel.) His weakness puts their House future in jeopardy as well create a dilemma where she may have to throw him under the bus to get herself out of prison.

• Brienne’s talk with Ser Davos and the Red Priestess about not forgetting about what they did to Renly and the fact they worked for Stannis.

• Dany using her immunity to fire to take the lives of the Khals at Vaes Dothrak.

• The *Wonder Twin Powers* of Cersei and Jaime activate to form the shape of Tywin Diplomacy with Lady Olenna and Kevan Lannister and formulating a plan to rescue Margaery, Loras and Lancel.

• Yara not forgiving Theon for the loss of the men and near loss of her life trying to save him from Ramsay and then Theon begging for forgiveness and tells her he’s there to make sure she rules the Salt Throne. Yara will definitely be a force to contend with at the Kingsmoot.

• Baelish squaring off with Yohn Royce and quickly reversing the implication that Baelish married off Sansa to the Boltons with the Boltons abducting her with only Lord Royce knowing where Baelish was going. Then getting Royce’s support for joining forces with Jon Snow to attack Winterfell.

• Jon Snow reuniting with Sansa (That’s the first time they have been reuniting with each other I believe since Season 1.)

The Bad:

• They really don’t seem to know what to do with Ser Davos (or the Red Priestess). He could have helped out with guidance for the Starks at that dinner table. It’s pretty clear from Brienne’s talk with Ser Davos that they are not a part of a trusted inner circle.

• Osha’s death was a throwaway. What was the point of it? We know Ramsay is evil. If anything he should have killed her back when she was unveiled to terrify Rickon (which is something Ramsay would have loved to see right?)

• Tyrion’s diplomacy with the Slavers of Astapor, Yankai and Volantis or ex-slaves of Meereen didn’t really seem to accomplish anything for me. The net effect is stalling until Dany gets back. The Slavers have seven years to stop slaving and didn’t own up to funding the Sons of the Harpy. The ex-slaves are just growing in their distrust of leadership at Meereen. This lead me to ask myself the question, what if the Slavers didn’t fund the Sons of the Harpy? What if Vala was lying to Varys all along? What if the real funding source of the Sons of the Harpy was someone in Meereen?

The Unknown:

• Will Margaery have to repent herself of Ser Loras altogether?

• Will Daario keep quiet about Ser Jorah’s greyscale?

• What does the Red Priestess see when she looks at Brienne?

• Is there a way to mobilize the Hill Tribes (Hill Tribes: Stone Crows (Shagga), Burned Men (Timett), Black Ears (Chella), Moon Brothers and Painted Dogs into Jon Snow’s growing Army or would they support the Lannisters and Tyrells?

• Is Brienne going to kill Ser Davos and the Red Priestess in the future?

• Will the Tyrell forces arrive in time to stop Margaery’s walk of atonement?

• What if the Slave Owners of Astapor, Yunkai and Volantis didn’t fund the Sons of the Harpy? What if Vala was lying to Varys all along?

• What if the real funding source of the Sons of the Harpy was someone in Meereen?

* Does Jon believe in the power of the Red Priestess? Will he trust in her prophesies and allow her to move forward with him.

* Does Jon have the will to be a leader still or is he just done with everything? (He did push away Edd’s comments about abandoning the Night’s Watch and the threat from the North.)

I think Dany’s incendiary plans over the Khals put her as the winner of this week’s Game of Thrones.

Game of Thrones: Direwolf Update (S6E3)

This is a living document to run up through Season 6. Please let me know of any corrections or additions and I will update this information.

Stark Child: Direwolf Name; Direwolves Status; Location

Arya Stark: Nymeria; Alive; Somewhere in Riverlands
Bran Stark: Summer; Alive; North of the Wall (Now with Bran and company killing Wights.)
Jon Snow: Ghost; Alive; Castle Black
Rickon Stark: Shaggydog; Deceased; Winterfell (by House Umber)
Robb Stark: Grey Wind; Deceased (by Lannister sympathizers)
Sansa Stark: Lady; Deceased (by Ned Stark)

Game of Thrones: Threads at the TV Critic

Game of Thrones: War of Five Kings (S6E3)

This is a living document to run up through Season 6. Wikias have way too much information and can spoil things and I wanted to reference (as I watch) a concise form and came up with this. There is lots of stuff missing (characters and places.) Please let me know of any corrections or additions and I will update this information. From here forward, I will save a version of this after each episode. Unfortunately I don’t have time to go backwards and do this for every episode prior.

War of Five Kings

Territory House King Status

#1. King of The North: Speculation: Could end up being Ramsay Bolton, Baelish or even Jon Snow (if he decides to give up his quest for King of Westeros.)

#2. King of the Iron Throne: Baratheon of King’s Landing (Lannister); Tommen Baratheon; Alive
(Territories include The North and The Riverlands.) Tommen appears to be wiser than Joffrey. He is being mentored and manipulated by Cersei. I look at this as the Crown (still) being run by Cersei House Lannister. However, there is a struggle with House Tyrell since Margaery is the Queen now.

#3. King in the Narrow Sea: Baratheon of Dragonstone; Stannis Baratheon; Executed (presumed by Brienne of Tarth)

#4. King in High Garden: Baratheon of Storm’s End; Renly Baratheon; Killed (by a Stannis smoke monster)

#5. King of the Iron Islands: Greyjoy; Balon Greyjoy; Killed (by Euron Greyjoy at the Pyke.)

Major Events:

* Stannis was in charge of a Navy that defeated the Greatjoy Fleet a number of years before the War of the Five Kings so there has been bad blood between the Greyjoys and Stannis in the past. (S1E7.)

* Battle of the Blackwater: Lannisters held back the Baratheons and Tyrion has the scars to prove it.

* Stannis killed Renly using dark magic: Most of his followers at Storm’s End sided with Stannis.

* Red Wedding: Lannisters used the Freys and Boltons to kill Robb Stark (S3E9.)

* Purple Wedding: Joffrey is poisoned after his wedding to Margaery Tyrell at his wedding reception (S4E2.)

* Stannis is defeated by Ramsay Bolton in the Battle for Winterfell (S5E10)

* Lord Bolton is killed by Ramsay Bolton (S6E2)

* Balon is killed by Euron Greyjoy (S6E2)

Speculative Anticipated Upcoming Events:

* Sansa could end up the bride of another house other than Bolton which could challenge who has control over the North

* Ramsay may eventually declare himself King of The North (if they chose to Challenge the rule of The Crownlands.)

* Attack on Winterfell (and the rest of the North) by Jon Snow with some of the Wildlings (potentially with the help of Little Finger and the troops at the Eyrie.)

* Attack on Winterfell by the Lannisters because they may think Roose Bolton was responsible for King Joffrey’s death; the motive being framing Tyrion so Ramsay could marry Sansa to secure the North.

* Attack on the Wall by the White Walkers and Wights

* Attack on Westeros by House Targaryen:
(Not Yet.) Danaerys currently has:

8,000 Unsullied Troops
2,000 Second Sons Troops
Small # of Dothraki Troops or followers
Unknown # of freed Yunkai Troops or followers
3 Dragons
The City of Meereen
She defeated Astapor, Yunkai (which she may need to reconquer through Tyrion; not sure if we should count Quarth.)

Game of Thrones: Threads at the TV Critic

Do the rituals of religion help generate the Magic in Game of Thrones?

Each religion within Game of Thrones appears to have different magic associated with them and the rituals play a part in bringing about that magic.

Faceless Men:

The ritual of sipping the same water given to dying Pilgrims that offer their lives up to the Faceless God cause followers of the faceless men to become faceless men. In S6E3, a blind Arya Stark becomes no one once she sips the water. She regains her sight because she is no longer Arya Stark. She has been transformed into a being with the ability to change its appearance.

The Old Gods of the First Men/Northerners/Children of the Forest:
Folks are born with warging and green sight abilities. This is after thousands of years of worship and rituals that the first men and Children of the Forest engaged in so often it changed them physically.


White Walkers:

The ritual of sacrificing male babies to the White Walkers by Craster or other Wildlings generates the White Walkers themselves:

The White Walkers themselves are seen as Gods in this world.


Lord of Light/Valyrian Gods:

If you believe in the Lord of Light or Valyerian gods and you’re a priest or priestess you can invoke your own ritual to bring someone back from the dead:


Dothraki/Valyrian Gods:

If you believe in the great stallion in the sky and/or Valyerian gods and you invoke their rituals and you were born Targaryen you can spawn Dragons:


What do you think?

Comments for Season 6: Episode 3: Oathbreaker


I loved the episode. 85 out of 100. It was fairly solid as far as material and moving plots forward.

* I felt they gave me just enough of Ned’s past so that his racing to the castle and our cutoff by the three eyed Raven was enticing; leaving me craving as much as Bran; good Fourth Wall stuff. Let them draw out the scene a little.  We will know soon enough if this L+R=J.

* There were some minor things that were irritating and continuity based (SEE The bad); overall I thought the episode was quite enjoyable.

* Jon mirrors Beric Dondarrion’s words about seeing nothing but darkness after he passed ‘Afterwards, after they stabbed you, after you died, where did you go? What did you see? Nothing…’

The Good:

* Ned Stark and Howland Reed battling Ser Arthur Dayne. Easily the best sword battle of the show so far in my opinion.

* I loved the clashing of the actual truth in Bran’s green sight with Ned’s recollection of the fight with Ser Arthur Dayne.

* The Mountain staring at Pycelle as he quickly slinks off after calling him an ‘abomination’

* Cersei and Jaime sitting alone at the Hand of the King’s meeting table was hilariously awkward at showing how powerless they have become.

* Jon hanging his mutineers (see the Bad).

* Tommen does have regard for the Gods (spiritual conscience), which I questioned last episode. This helps set up an inner conflict for him as King as to what to do about the High Sparrow regarding the situation with the Queen and his Mother.
This conflict would have helped explain why he sequestered himself behind the door while his Mother and wife were locked up in jail cells last season. It also works well though with him having a reason to question the trial of his mother after her atonement.

Best Line: ‘What kind of god would have a pecker that small?’

The Bad:

Jon Snow had *six* people stab him death: Ser Alliser, Olly, Othell Yarwyck, Bowen Marsh, a Black Brother with Long hair, and one unseen person
(There are actually 13 Black Brothers surrounding him including Olly.)

He has *seven* stab wounds (six match the story line):

I am going to guess that Jon either has no recollection of the other six men who were at the scene, however surely Jon remembers the other
two Black Brothers that stabbed him though right? Why aren’t they being hung along with Ser Alliser, Olly, Othell Yarwyck, Bowen Marsh? There should be six men being hung; not four:

* Does it make sense for Sam to take Gilly to Horn Hill? Won’t Sam’s father kill him if he goes there or make it look like a hunting accident? If that’s the case why would bring to his house a wildling woman and child that he is claiming to be his? Wouldn’t his father try to kill them all? Am I missing something here?



* Did Ned actually hear Bran through the Green sight? Is there a way someone with Green sight can communicate with someone in the past? If there was a way, isn’t it possible to change the future by going to the past? Sort of like on the TV show Lost (where you cannot change fate; just the ways of getting to that specific fate.)

* Was that Lyanna screaming from the tower that Ned was racing to? Why was the woman screaming?

* What will Ser Kevan do about the death of Myrcella?

* How long is it going to take for Bran to learn *everything*? That’s got to take a few years right?

* What is the message Varys and Tyrion intend to deliver to the Good Masters of Astapor, the Wise Masters of Yunkai, and benevolent enslavers of Volantis?

* Will the Men of the Knights watch hold Jon accountable for breaking his oath? The death penalty obviously wouldn’t work for him with Mel by his side.

* What are Jon’s next plans?

* Has Jon lost a bit of his soul? He appears to be the same?

* Is Arya still Arya or did she transition over to becoming a faceless person by sipping the water from the pool that typically kills pilgrims who come there?

* What happened to other folks on Arya’s list? Is she shortening it on purpose or is she really losing her identity?

* Was that really Rickon Stark? Is House Umber really giving Rickon Stark to the Bolton’s? They aren’t swearing Fealty to them. That whole scene was weird. Was that Shaggydog’s head with a hook sticking out of it? Who’s side are the Umber’s on?  House Bolton’s or their own or the Starks?  The consequences of forming an alliance with the Wildlings appear to be costing Jon the life of his Brother.


* My vote is for Jon Snow winning this weeks Game of Thrones.

Game of Thrones: Season 6: Episode 2: Home

Here’s my comments for Game of Thrones: Season 6: Episode 2: Home

I gave this one an 80 out of 100. I never believed the producers when they said Jon Snow would not be back this season, and he was resurrected exactly the way I expected him to be resurrected (which was fine.) Mel has been doubtful of her abilities since Stannis failed against the Boltons at Winterfell. As it’s been pointed out in the past on this podcast, Game of Thrones really seems to be a story about two characters Jon Snow and Daenerys Targaryen. I am not sure if it’s a love story or a story of the Targaryens laid onto of the history of a fantasy world.  In either case, killing off Jon Snow didn’t make sense so I am not surprised he is back. It does seem like though the only way to get ahead in this world is to have magic on your side.

The Good:

  • Ned, Benjen, Hodor (Wyllis), Old Nan?, Ned’s father? and Lyanna Stark. I actually loved the flashbacks with Brandon and the three eyed Raven. Especially the way Brandon was walking through it.
  • Tyrion releasing the Dragons. His story of dragons as a child was touching. Why he wasn’t roasted alive was kind of curious (see the unknown.)
  • Lord Bolton joins the list of the dead. This was something I have expected for a while. Ramsay has been squaring off mentally with his father for a few seasons now and that has been brought to its natural conclusion.
  • Hodor back story! What you talking about Wyllis!? (See the unknown).


The Bad:

  • This show still likes shock factor over storylines and back story. This makes the deaths for me less impactful.

Balon Greyjoy spends 6 seasons of losing battle after battle in the War of Five Kings. All of a sudden his brother Euron comes out of nowhere and kills him. We get quick little bits of backstory moments before Euron pitches his brother off of a walk bridge. Apparently Balon thought Euron was lost at sea and there is little else I know about him making his murder of Balon not very significant to me. Who cares? Balon wasn’t that interesting to me as a character other than being Theon’s father. Did Euron feel that Balon wronged him in some way or was he just drunk with power thinking it was his time over his brother (I am the drowned god)? Who cares…Is this change in personnel all of sudden going to make the Iron Isles a superpower worthy to go up against Ramsay Bolton or another Kingdom House? I don’t think so…The iron price has been paid. That’s all I got from this.

  • I still don’t understand the power the Sparrow has over Tommen or King’s Landing so I doesn’t have the impact of conflict it could have. I don’t see how the King and his guards are powerless against the Faith Militant.

Cersei (as by Order of the King) allowed for the creation of the power of Faith Militant. Can’t the King order the dismantling of it as well if he thought it wielded too much power (especially over his own office; including the Royal family? Even Jaime is revolting against the Sparrow. I supposed it’s more dramatic if there was battle rather than the King just dismantles them by decree.


The Unknown:

  • Where the heck did Jon Snow’s soul go when he was dead?
  • Will the Men of the Nights Watch and the Wildlings rally behind Jon Snow?
  • Is Jon still technically the Lord Commander? If not, who is?
  • Does anyone envision Jon and the Wildlings leading a battle against Ramsay Bolton? If that does happen, will House Umber rally behind Jon Snow?
  • If Jon Snow still is Lord Commander, can he actually do such a thing (a battle of the bastards) or does he have to stay at the Wall?
  • What happened to Wyllis to cause him to just say Hodor? Who really is Hodor if he really is Wyllis?
  • Why wasn’t Tyrion roasted alive by the two dragons? Dragon’s might be intelligent, however he got into their confidence fairly quickly. Is there something about Tyrion that made them trust Tyrion besides his best weapon (his mouth)?
  • What is the King’s move in the Iron Islands? It appears Yara will go up against some other challengers for the Iron Islands Crown. Will it be against Euron or Theon?



Season Six: Episode One: The Red Woman


Some story points really only have only one place to go; like Ser Alliser outing himself and the council as Jon Snow’s executioners.

It was a bit too Julius Caesar for my tastes though. It’s hard to tell if Jon’s supports in front of Ser Alliser would rise up against his defiance.  It doesn’t look that way; leaving a sharp focus on the small group of black brothers orbiting now around Dolorous Edd and the Onion Knight.

Theon and Sansa being chased by dogs and being rescued was a bit predictable. It’s kind of amazing how they both were unarmed by that same jump off the walls of Winterfell that broke Mryanda’s face at the end of Season Five.

I guess Arya was tossed out onto the street by the faceless men to beg for food.
I suppose the staff fight means they really didn’t and she’s being given a second chance
to train and change her vengeful ways.

The Good:

* Cersei’s reactions and scenes with Jaime were so real. Lena Headey gives enormous amounts of emotional depth to Cersei’s character. She floated me through this episode.

* Tyene and Ellaria staging a coup over Doran and his guard was a nice twist. Does that mean Ellaria now rules Dorn?

The Bad:

* I loved the Dothraki dialog; however the outcome to the buildup was a bit like the comfy chair skit (Monty Python).  Banished to the Vaes Dothrak with the other widows?  Dany wasn’t exactly wailing in sorrow over this; beheading sounded a bit more sinister and threatening…

* Daario Naharis went looking for Dany along with Jorah Mormont  by themselves leaving a large force of Unsullied and Second Sounds under Tyrion’s watch. How does the whole Naval fleet get burned down without either large groups of troops knowing about it or trying to stop it? Were they old drunk somewhere or killed by the attack on Dany at the colliseum?

* How did Obara and Nymeria get on the boat *to murder Tristane* when they were on the dock with Ellaria and Prince Doran *seeing Jaime off with Myrcella and Tristane?*  That didn’t make any sense.  What would have made *more* sense is if they originally introduced two more other Sand Snakes of Prince Oberyn (since he has eight daughters) *last season* and had those hide on the boat and pop out. They could also digitally airbrush the Sand Snakes out of the dock scenes in Dorne in Season Five.  That was just sloppy writing and dragged down my score big time.

* The Queen doesn’t understand why she’s being held and I am losing interest in this story line (as to lying about knowledge of her brother’s infidelities)
and it’s clear it’s design is to get Tommen to grow enough balls to have a confrontation with the Sparrow.


* Is Melissandre naturally very old and just uses the her Power through the Lord of the Light to *disguise* her age?
If she is using the Power of the Lord of Light to prolong her life; why take off her necklace?
Wouldn’t you want to wear it bed so you won’t die in your sleep? Has she served any Targaryens in the past (like the mad king?)

* I believe Edd went looking for Mel to possibly to use some powers against Ser Alliser and his crew. Ser Davos mentioned her powers;
does she have the power of resurrection like Thoros of Myr?  How the heck is Mel going to get them out of that standoff?

* Where will Brienne take Sansa to protect her from the Boltons?  I am guessing House Umber would be the closest place where Rickon is right?

* Does Ellaria Sands now rule Dorn or her eldest Daughter?

* Is Ramsay Bolton going to murder Lord Bolton and his wife to secure Winterfell since Sansa is gone?