Monday, May 19, 2014

Game of Thrones 4x07 Mockingbird

By Sati. Monday, May 19, 2014 ,
Mockingbird - in spite of being the last episode before the storm - the remaining 3 episodes of the season are like a gigantic equivalent of your usual big episode 9 - turned out to be the greatest episode of the season. There were some hiccups and flaws but when the scenes worked? They went right into Thrones hall of fame.

We open with Tyrion being yelled at by Jaime in his cell. Jaime is furious that Tyrion threw away his chance to live. Tyrion asks him if Jaime would be his champion, but Jaime admits to him that he no longer can be considered a great swordsman.

Tyrion asks him to go and look for Bronn who fought for him once before. That whole scene was really wonderful - Dinklage was so much better here with all the subtle nuances than during that ridiculous over acting display last week.
Tyrion asks Jaime who does Cersei plan on choosing for her Champion. Jaime just falls silent and we cut to the glorious re-introduction of Gregor Clegane, The Mountain. He was played by two different actors already - non book readers may remember him from the moment he beheaded a horse during tourney in season 1 or Harrenhal scenes in season 2.

Now Gregor is played by Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson, one of the strongest men in the world. He does have the right look for it - he is huge, to the point Lena Headey, a tall actress, looked so tiny next to him. The thing is that I don't feel the show has done the good enough job on establishing just how monstrous The Mountain is.
They conveyed his brutality well but what is missing is the extent of his evil - the horrific lack of compassion or any good qualities, the horrible tales of what he did - the story of the rape of innkeeper's daughter is one of the worst instances of cruelty in the books. We did have Oberyn's line hinting at Mountain's lack of humanity ('he raped her with their blood still on his hands') as well as Hound mentioning him burning his face, but they should have given us more.

The fear of the Mountain comes not just from him possessing the strength to crush you, it's because he can make anyone his rag doll, treat a person like a piece of meat. He just doesn't care. He killed Elia's child by crushing the newborn's head - throwing an infant at the wall. This is the kind of a man he is.
The scene was very well done with ominous music playing in the background and Cersei relishing the sight of the Mountain cutting down random people in front of the city gates. Cersei walks over to him, stepping over the spilled guts of common folk (I loved loved loved that shot) and welcomes him to the capitol. He asks who is he fighting. Cersei asks if it matters. Mountain just shrugs.

We check in with Arya and Hound. They encounter a wounded man and after pointless chat and uninspired delivery of Arya's 'nothing is just nothing' quote, the Hound kills the man and stops his suffering. Foreshadowing couldn't be heavier here.
Suddenly Biter throws himself on Hound and bites his neck. Rorge is there too, the man who threatened Arya back in season 2 - it's a small world, Westeros, isn't it? Rorge informs the Hound that there is a bounty on his head and Hound asks 'is that what happens when you tell the king to fuck off?'. You've gotta love Rory McCann.

Hound asks if this guy is on Arya's list and she responds that no, because she doesn't know his name. When Rorge gives her his name she says thank you and kills him after which The Hound says 'you're learning'. Also it only dawned on me that Rorge was played by the guy who was Errol in Snatch.
Our hero and savior Jon Snow returns to Castle Black after his raid on Craster's Keep. But the lovin' ends with the hug from Sam. The bitchy duet of Slynt and Thorne appears and Thorne tells Snow that this is not a place for a wolf. Jon leaves with Ghost, insulted, to find a place for his buddy.

The boy whose parents died when the wilding attacked was there too - seems to me like he is assuming the place of Satin from the books and no doubt he will have something very important to do in the battle episode.
We get another scene in Night's Watch storyline in which Jon yet again tries to speak sense to the people in charge and no one listens. He proposes that they seal the tunnels, which would also mean cutting the wall from North and putting a stop to the Wallers patrolling the North.

In a long run this is a bad plan - as we know, and Jon knows ,what is out there. But right now? The Watch doesn't stand a chance. Thorne seems a bit unsure of his 'Night's Watch will win' motto when Jon mentions the giants. They will storm these walls and if they go through, the whole North will be flooded by savage wildlings. And they won't stop there, nor will the other things that live in far North.
I really liked the little moment in which Sam tries to hold back Jon when he is about to lose his temper. It may be a hint for a certain scene people are looking forward to in finale. I don't think it's gonna happen this year, I hope not - the more of Wall the better and there is no need to rush it.

Meanwhile, in King's Landing, Bronn arrives to see Tyrion in his cell. Shae isn't mentioned at all which I thought was a big plot hole - Bronn is the last person who saw her when she was about to get on the ship. And Tyrion doesn't even ask if he had anything to do with her not leaving the city?
Anyways, turns out that Bronn is to be married to Lollys Stokeworth. A noble girl, which would mean by marrying her Bronn will climb even higher on social ladder. A match arranged by Cersei, to get Bronn far away from Tyrion.

In the book the only way this is even possible is because Lollys was raped by over hundred men when the mutiny started - in season 2, after Myrcella was shipped off to Dorne. See, contrary to what some outraged idiots claim the show does not take every opportunity to show violence. She is now pregnant with a bastard and as Tyrion notes 'it's the only reason she'd want to marry scum like Bronn'.
The scene was handled much better than in the book - in the book Tyrion was bitter and angry and they parted on horrible terms. Here there's understanding between them - even if Bronn would fight there is a small chance he could actually survive facing the Mountain.

We get several very interesting lines from Bronn abut the possible duel. I thought it was very clever for them to have Bronn talk about the Mountain - makes the audience more nervous for whoever ends up fighting him, seeing how the man is seemingly unbeatable and we witnessed Bronn defeat a skilled knight in season 1.
Bronn leaves Tyrion after assuring him that he does like him and they are friends. He simply likes himself more. Tyrion understands and they shake hands. I do hope we will see Bronn again in the show, unlike in the books. Hopefully he joins Jaime on his quest next year, capitalizing on those practice scenes we had this season..

Tyrion is now left alone with no champion and his only two possible choices both turned him down. We see a very telling shot of him being alone and so small in his dirty, hopeless cell.
In Meereen Dany finally gets laid. That's the gist of it.

I'm really almost forgetting what it's like when Emilia Clarke is not horrible on screen. The actor who plays Daario is actually quite good and likable. But her? Sitting there with glass of wine in her hand telling him to take off his clothes...I was embarrassed for her.

Is it Meereen: Cougar Town? Is she a middle aged divorcee? Because she is acting more like Cersei here than a young, adventurous and erotically charged girl. Clarke is trying to do something here but my God she is failing miserably. Trying to come off as sexy and confident, she just comes off as laughable.
At Dragonstne we are treated to annual nudity from Carice van Houten. She is a gorgeous, talented actress but there is a massive confusion here. The Dargonstone story arc is not hers, it's Stannis. She is the shadow that lurks, he is the main character. But that's more of a digression over completely fucked up screen time for the actors in season 3. Funny thing is that Stannis and Melisandre work best when they are separated from each other.

That's also true here. We couldn't see Stannis tonight and we won't see him for a while, as much as it pains me being deprived of Stephen Dillane's beauty, it's the right call to make. And that invented scene at Dragonstone this week was actually really good.
Stannis' wife Selyse comes over and acts shy when faced with Melisandre's naked beauty, much like her husband does whenever Melisandre happens to be naked around him. Melisandre tries to make a  joke and Selyse doesn't get it. Making a joke at Dragonstone...it's like making a joke in the middle of a funeral. For a unicorn.

Melisandre tells Selyse a bit abut her powders and potions. One of them is said to cause lust. Selyse asks if Melisandre used it on Stannis and Melisandre says no. Of course not. Stannis doesn't need a potion to bang a woman on a table.

Ah, memories.
Anyways, in highly disturbing turn of events Shireen is mentioned. Selyse and Melisandre are leaving Dragonstone to join Stannis and he wants her to come with them. Melisandre shows Selyse the flames, telling her it's important that Shireen comes with them. I just hope nothing happens to Shireen. If Mel does something to her, bitch is done. Stannis would kill her for much less. Also Stannis loves Shireen - and there is so little love in his life as it is. Please don't take her away from him.

Speaking of love and suffering - Jorah. Daario runs into him as he is doing his walk of shame pride cause he banged the Queen. Jorah is visibly upset. He walks in and Dany has a new dress on. Damn, this just makes everything worse for poor Jorah. Anyways he questions her decision making, telling her that Daario is not someone that should be trusted.
What follows is a well written scene rescued by Glenn because Clarke might as well be a mannequin. Jorah convinces her not to execute the masters who reinstated the slavery in the cities she conquered.

Dany takes his advice and is very kind to him, given her choice of words, she let's Jorah know how much his counsel means to her.
Back on the road there is a lovely scene with The Hound and Arya. Arya tries to tend to his wound with fire but Hound freaks out. He refers to the story of how his brother - The Mountain - once burned his face. He says the worst thing about it was that his own brother did that.

He finally lets Arya wash his wound. They are both so broken together.
Another power couple, Brienne and Pod are having a meal at the inn. And who's there? None other than Hot Pie! Brienne tells him they are looking for Sansa Stark. After they leave the inn Hot Pie mentions that he thinks Brienne is a proper lady so he tells her the truth. He tells her that he never met Sansa but he met Arya.

Brienne asks him about what happened and at one point Hot Pie mentions Brotherhood. The noise you heard when that happened was just me yelling like crazy because SOON. Anyways, Hot Pie gives Brienne a greatly improved version of his wolf breed for Arya and asks her to give her that when she finds her.
Brienne and Pod are approaching crossroads and sex and knowledge of all things savant Pod mentions how Arya is probably headed to the Eyrie, where her aunt Lysa is and perhaps Sansa is there too. I liked how given the events that are about to go down they made a decision to go to Eyrie at the crossroads. If only they chose the other path....

In King's Landing Oberyn visits Tyrion's cell. In the finest scene of the entire season so far, Oberyn tells Tyrion about Cersei's little game - how she came to him acting all nice, but in truth she wanted to manipulate him into making sure Tyrion is executed.
Oberyn mentions that him and Tyrion met before, many years back. Oberyn and his sister Elia visited Casterly Rock. While they were on the way there all they could hear was how a monster was just born to Tywin Lannister. How he has claws, red eye and a tail. When Oberyn and Elia arrived Cersei kept telling them that soon they'll see the baby.

She finally showed them Tyrion and Oberyn notes how Tyrion's head was a bit too large and limbs too small, but he was still just a baby. Oberyn tells Tyrion how Cersei pinched his penis an only stopped when Jaime stopped her. She said that Tyrion killed their mother and he shouldn't even be alive this long. That he'll soon be dead. Tyrion, with tears in his eyes, says 'sooner or later Cersei always gets what she wants'.
This is such a great scene, lifted pretty much from the books only from different scene - I believe Oberyn mentions that to Tyrion in books upon first arriving. Here it worked even better - it shows how Tyrion had to face injustice and humiliation from the moment he was born. It shows that the hatred Cersei has began because their mother died when Tyrion was born. Was it Tyrion's fault? No. But Cersei's hatred for him is so profound because it began in such a drastic way - her losing the mother she loved. Cersei has always been a psychopath but the beauty of those dynamics here is that nothing is easy, nothing is black or white. There is a reason for everything.

Oberyn tells Tyrion that he wants things too. In a gloriously powerful moment he reminds him that Gregor killed his nephew and niece and raped and killed his beloved sister. Oberyn wants justice. And all those who have wronged him are in King's Landing. He'll start with Gregor. He tells Tyrion he will be his champion and Tyrion has an expression of pure joy, relief and gratitude on his face.

We all did while watching that scene, didn't we?
Even though the iconic lines above were changed I didn't care because that scene was just as powerful as in the books - when it's the case I don't mind any tweaks or substitutions they chose to employ. I thought Dinklage delivered one of his better scenes in whole series here - his face told us so many things and he didn't overact once.

But it's Pascal who is the brightest star. Not since the introduction of Tywin Lannister in season 1 has a person embodied the character so profoundly. Oberyn stands there with all of his sadness and nobility while remembering what happened to Elia, tears in his eyes, courage in his heart, right on his side. I read that it was the first scene Pascal shot on the set. Amazing.
That scene was so wonderful and sets up the events of next episode so well I wish it was the ending to the episode, seeing how the other monumental scene didn't have as much impact as I hoped.

In Eyrie we are treated to one of the most beautifully written scenes in the books - Sansa witnessing the snow falling from the sky, thinking of home and building a snow castle - Winterfell. The scene was gorgeously shot and they really did the best they could with it.
In the books Sansa remembers snow ball fight with Arya and Bran. She desperately tries to remember all the little places in Winterfell when she builds the castle. I didn't like the way Sophie Turner acted out that scene and scene with Robin. In the book Sansa comes off as childlike, innocent, sweet. Turner came off as smug. There's something abut the way she speaks that just annoys me.

Robin destroys Sansa's castle, after he loses his temper. In the book Sansa destroyed his doll and Robin went into full on epilepsy attack. Here Sansa slapped him which I enjoyed. Combined with her comment on how much she'd enjoy seeing the people who threatened her die and her smile at Littlefinger's line about essentially killing those who hurt the ones we love, I feel like the show is hinting at Sansa becoming very cold and ruthless in the future. Hopefully, that would at least make her more interesting.
Littlefinger comes over and creepiness ensues. He tells Sansa how much he loved her mother. He tells her in a better world she could have been his daughter. He tells her she is more beautiful than her mother ever was. And he kisses her. The look on his face afterwards was one of the funniest things this season. This whole arc is messed up beyond belief, in many different ways.

While they are kissing we are treated to ingenious and clever shot in which camera slowly goes up to reveal Lysa, who witnessed the kiss.
Sansa comes over to the throne room and finds Lysa standing on the edge of the opened Moon Door. Lysa tells her about how the bodies that fall are sometimes in pieces and sometimes intact. Lysa tells her she saw what she did. Sansa assumes she is talking about her slapping Robin and she apologizes.

Then Lysa grabs her hair, calls her a whore and forces her to look down through Moon Door. She knows about the kiss, she tells Sansa that she cannot lie to her because she saw the whole thing with her own eyes.
Lysa goes full on stay away from my man, bitch on her and starts telling her how everyone who stood between her and Petyr is now dead, that this what happens to those who try to come between them. Turner was actually very good here - she really looked horrified. They didn't let us see the close up of the view from Moon Door - in fact that whole scene was low key. They do need all the money they can gather for the last 3 episodes, so it's understandable, but still disappointing.

Littlefinger walks in and tries to get Lysa to calm down. He tells her that he will send Sansa away. Lysa finally lets Sansa go and Sansa falls on the floor, traumatized. Littlefinger embraces Lysa.
He then tells her that he only loved one woman his whole life. She smiles, thinking that he means her. He says Only one. Only your sister. And then he shoves Lysa through the Moon Door. The scene was too short - it really should have been combined with Jon Arryn reveal. The build up was good but it needed few more lines between Littlefinger and Lysa.

I really don't mind all the changes but there is something I just don't understand. That scene right here is known as Only Cat among book readers. That's the last thing Littlefinger says to Lysa. It's an iconic line - you say Only Cat to the book reader and everyone knows the scene. Why, why, why change that? I'm not saying it's a huge flaw, but what kind of reasoning could they possibly have?
The only excuse I found was how non book readers are bad with names and wouldn't know who Cat is. Do we really think non book readers are this stupid? This is just an insulting suggestion. Out of all the unnecessary changes, this one is just the kind of thing writers seem to do because they can. Worse yet, there really should be more build up. It's like Eyrie storyline is a casualty - they needed time and money for other things this year.

Overall it's a good scene, thanks to Dickie and Turner and the chilling ending shot but sometimes when I watch the show the weird tweaks and puzzling choices made by showrunners occupy my mind more than what actually happens on screen.
We arrived at that horrible time of the year - the two week long hiatus. It's all because 2 years ago instead of watching Thrones people spent time with their families (madness) on Memorial Day. Blackwater, my favorite episode of the series, had much lower viewership than rest of the episodes. So now we have a hiatus. For shame, America.

In two weeks it's time for The Mountain and the Viper. Reek helps Ramsay take Moat Cailin, Lords Declarant arrive to investigate what happened to Lysa, Wildlings reach Mole's town.

And most importantly:

If you die before you say her name, ser, I will hunt you through all seven hells.

For Elia, for Tyrion and for justice.

PREVIOUS SEASON 4 RECAPS:

46 comments:

  1. "Making a joke at Dragonstone...it's like making a joke in the middle of a funeral. For a unicorn." - LOL You brought up an interesting point about Selyse and Stannis both looking at Melisandre the same way when she's naked. I wonder if they have sex fully clothed, with just holes cut out where they need to be?

    This episode is now one of my favorites. I had so many feelings during it! The Hounds "I didn't steal it, I was just playing with it." line totally broke my heart.

    Dinklage was even better in this one, I loved all this scenes. Jaime's in the beginning was great too, the look he gave Tyrion after he mentions "I was stupid enough to think she loved me too." was interesting. It reminded me of the Tysha reveal, which I think they'll have for sure now. I know some thought they'd skip it.

    I didn't mind how Sophie played Sansa in that scene. Sansa was very bratty before everything happened to her, so her regressing for a moment there about having to rebuild the whole thing felt pretty in character to me.

    Excellent recap as always. I like how you included the book quotes after some of your edits!

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    1. Oh come on, why?!:D Stannis needs to be naked! :P

      That was a heartbreaking line. Maisie did a good job at showing how saddened and compassionate Arya was when listening to him.

      Hell, people think that Tyrion's final chapter is not going to be adapted faithfully or that the outcome of trial by combat will be changed. Tysha reveal will for sure happen, they had all those Jaime/Tyrion scenes this year for a reason.

      I figured the quotes will come in handy to show how they like changing whatever they can :) Oh God please let the chant during battle happen on the show.

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    2. YES! That has to stay the same, it would lose some of it's momentum if it didn't.

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    3. I'm hoping the chant stays, Marshall seems to like shit like that, they even had 'half man, half man!' at one point of Blackwater. They'd be fools not to make this as epic as they possibly can, I think they will - they are doing aces job with hiding the whole surprise, seeing how most non book readers probably don't remember Mhysa scene with the flames.

      As for Tyrion's chapter changing anything would be like changing Red Wedding.

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  2. I really loved this episode. Dinklage and Pascal were equally fantastic for me. I also loved Tyrion's scene with Bronn. I hope this isn't the last we see of Bronn. He's ab fab.

    This episode had some of my favourite shots from this season too. Cersei walking on guts, the champion part (the music at that point was fantastic too) and the part in the Eyrie when Lysa and Sansa are above the Moon Door and their hair is flying and it looks gorgeous with that blue backdrop.

    I guess we could have spent more time at the Eyrie but I really enjoyed that scene too. Especially Sansa slapping that little kid. I don't know if this is what happens in the book but I had a feeling that maybe Sansa was kind of playing Littlefinger a little bit, till he kissed her of course (EWEWEWEWEWEW).

    And yeah, we remember who Cat is *obviously*. I totally forgot Hot Pie's name though :P

    And the road that Brienne and Pod DIDN'T take was going to the Wall, yes?

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    1. Oh yeah the music. It was amazing, I cannot wait for the soundtrack. There is a potential for so many new great themes as the existing ones don't really fit the events to come in next 3 episodes.

      Oh the shot from below of the two of them was amazing!

      Sansa is not capable of playing anyone at that point in the books :)

      It was, but my point is that any other road than the one they took would be better. Scary shit lies ahead on the road they took. Wall is fucked now anyways, with wildlings approaching, there will be so much carnage.

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  3. I'm so underwhelmed by everything revolving around Dany.. I just, it's come to a point where I miss the first season Khaleesi because she had this innocence to her that just worked but season to season, all the characters are loosing innocence it seems. Arya is becoming darker than ever.. Sansa as well it seems because whilst you mentioned that the show might be hinting at her becoming cold and cruel.. I considered this myself while watching that kiss-scene. I mean.. if Sansa could just learn from the seasons before, from all of her suffering, and just play the game! She has her beauty on her side, she has so much power over Littlefinger it seems.. if she wanted to.. so I mean.. it would definitely make her a very intriguing character if she adopted some of Cersei's qualities to survive.

    But oh how I enjoyed Littleingers final look after he had pushed her.. I like him, I'm weird, I know but I just like how dark and wonderful his character is. Now that Joffrey is gone, I feel like Littlefinger's much more subtle evil just pops even more.. I like that evil, the kind that I don't necessarily understand. Plus, well, that voice of his is just.. cherry on top for that character.

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    1. She is on a path to do that, Littlefinger is trying to coach her but she seems like she is allergic to knowledge. She just seems so passive to me. I don't mean she should grab a knife and kill people like Arya but she is really a pawn.

      Oh, lots of ladies fancy him :)

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  4. Fast-forward after watching the episode to your review - making it the perfect ending for the day. After all, I need to gather my thoughts after all the crazy shit that happened.
    When Little F said 'Let her go' I thought she would really let her go...through the moon door. I almost forgot you said that her story line was going to be good which would mean she wound't die, but what if you hid that to make the shock even bigger (and even if you did, I would still very much appreciate you not spoiling, if I wanted to be spoiled I can just google it). And her story line did get somewhat adventurous. From the next episode's preview I bet that we will have LittleF/Sansa team, I highly doubt that she'll betray him.
    Oh and, in the very last second before the end credits it seems that Lysa hits the rocks and smacks, or it may just be my imagination.
    Cool recap as always and very nice of you to add what was written in the books (and the print looks just awesome). Thanks for that!

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    1. Sansa is really in tough spot right now. Either lie and stay with the man who is obviously obsessed with her or tell the truth and be on her own.

      I did notice that! I think they really made it look like she hit the ground.

      Glad you liked it! Some of these chapters are my favorites and there is more to come in next 3 episodes, the chapter revolving around Oberyn fighting the Mountain is incredible.

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  5. Great recap Sati. I couldn't agree w/ you more about Dany. I'm so tired of the Dany storyline this season. I'm trying to think if she's had one decent scene this year...I don't think she has. I'm not sure what the problems have been? Emilia definitely looks like she's thinking about lunch or something. Idk. I like her a lot, but she's been hit or miss this year. The scene w/ Pascal and Dinklage was heartbreaking and uplifting. Best scene of the episode definitely.

    I can't wait for the fight.

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    1. Thank you! I think she is just getting material that's not challenging enough...on the other hand she is just going through the lines this year, very lazy performance.

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  6. This episode felt like a good breather to set things up for the final 3. My favourite scene is Tyrion and Oberyn. I'm impressed that's the actor's first scene and as always Dinklage delivers.a great performance.

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    1. Pascal has really been outstanding this whole season. He is easily beating Dance who is usually my go to answer for best supporting performance. But Gleeson in PW still has the first spot for the season, I think.

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  7. The best word for Maisie Williams's acting in this episode really is uninspired. I've always loved Arya, but I was honestly confused this episode.
    Looking at the screencap -- Ghost seemed so out-of-place at the Wall that all I could think about was how he looked like CGI. But I loved Sam holding Jon back, too. Where are they going to go?? Dany getting some was so wrong and awkward and the scene broght back memories of Drogo, so it was very contrasting. How interesting and great she used to be, how lame she's become.
    (I'm not sure if I'm going nuts but I couldn't concentrate on Melisandre's scene at all because her nipples looked so weird. Are they supposed to be there?)
    Oberyn talking to Tyrion and him crying wrecked me! I love them both and I think Tyrion deserves a bath and a hug, even if he'd rather have a whore and wine.
    Sansa's scene was so beautiful! Except for Littlefinger -- all I could think about was how he was a walking and talking pedobear.

    Oh, but think how sweet it will be to see episode 8 after a long wait!

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    1. I think some of the actors who know of the praise just stopped trying - Clarke, Williams, Dinklage, Turner just got cocky after warm reception in recent months. Some actors who never get this big articles and nominations are still on top of their game. Harington who is always mocked and called one of the worst is delivering one of the best performances of the season.

      It's difficult with these wolves - they are literally a gigantic wolves so they will always look a bit out of place :) Clarke's performance really depends on material but this season she was exceptionally lame.

      I think Carice has...small areolas and large nipples hence the way they looked. This was discussed at length yesterday at one of the fanboards :P

      I have people reblogging my episode 8 promo gifset saying they'll die waiting and die after it airs. It's madness, really :)

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  8. That was one hell of intense episode, especially in two moments!

    I was waiting so long for the Moon Door scene and I'm slighlty disappointed. I loved the addition of the slap thing, it was well deserved slap for that spoiled brat. And the kiss... they shloud have put Littlefinger on a box or something while he's around Sansa because it looked ridiculous (or make him wear high heels like Robert Downey Jr. while around Gwyneth Paltrow :D).
    My first reaction to "Your sister" was like: http://nooooooooooooooo.com/vader.jpg
    Why, oh God, why change such an iconic line? For sake of what?
    But all in all I enjoyed that scene.

    My cherry on top was the scene between Tyrion and Oberyn! Oh my! I'm going to cry my eyes out two weeks from now. I hope the rest of Dorne crew will be as good as Pedro Pascal...

    And bitch Cersei! Finally.

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    1. Oh God yes, the height difference! I forgot to mention that but Sophie really is such a giant. Perhaps they didn't do anything about it to kinda emphasize on Littlerfinger really still being on lower level - when it comes to birth, honor, morality. No matter how high he climbs, he's always gonna be a little weasel.

      I cannot wait to see what they have in store for Ellaria. I hope she takes some of Ariadne scenes, I wonder if they even going to have much. I'm sure Dorne makes an appearance, but given how they have to speed everything up since it's 3 seasons left and 3-4 books to cover (minus I imagine most of the stuff that's not Cersei and Sansa from AFFC) they are gonna need to make many sacrifices.

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    2. We definitelly need to see more of Ellaria, because right now she seems like such a wasted character. It's a shame because Indira Varma was great even in those few scenes we saw her in.

      More Dorne, less Dany! :D

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    3. I think she will be given some spectacular moments in ep.8 and ep.10, hopefully she will be around for next season, we need someone who was already introduced to show us Dorne.

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  9. I have to agree with filmsandcoke about Maisie Williams. Rory Mc Cann is carrying those scenes as Maisie has just been flat this whole season. I don't want to get too spoilery but I wonder if the show will follow the Hound's plot in the books. Same with Bronn. I think Sophie has been turning in some of her best work, I wouldn't say emmy worthy, but she's been doing real well. I feel like this episode is the most I've liked Aiden Gillan's performance as Littlefinger and to me it's probably the best the character has ever been. Littlefinger is creepy as hell.
    And Emilia Clarke has been horrible this season, if it was not for Iain Glen, I'd walk out of the room during her scenes. He is carrying that storyline. I have to disagree about Harington, I don't think he's been that good this year but I feel like he has not gotten a whole bunch of screen time as it's basically been Jon saying, "The wildings are coming, we're in danger!" Hopefully when future plots come I'll be able change my opinion of his work on the show.
    As for the episode, I liked Dinklage's performance last week but this week was his best work. I have a feeling last week's episode will be part of his emmy submission but I really hope this week's is submitted. Loved his scenes with Jaime, Bronn and Oberyn. Pedro Pascal, when given good material is excellent. I loved his line about his affinity for dead Lannisters. This was his best work this season by far.
    Kate Dickie was really good as Lysa, I will miss her work on the show. Was not a fan of the Moon Door CGI and I do wish the "Only Cat" line was kept in. But I think the show wants people to keep remembering that Lysa and Catelyn were sisters even though I don't think the audience needed the reminder.
    Two more weeks! I am dreading seeing Ramsey and Theon again.

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    1. I think they are following Hound's storyline, but hopefully we will see Bronn with Jaime in Riverlands. It's just seems like something they would do, considering how much audience loves this character.As for Gillen, he was good but the look on his face after the kiss was hysterical and I don't think it was intentional.

      Considering that even with that Jon screentime I don't think the show managed to establish just how big of a threat the wildlings are, I'm thankful for at least that.

      Pascal is totally stealing the show for me. I really hope they submit him for Emmy in guest category, although Emmys are a joke anyways, they nominated Clarke above Fairley last year, enough said.

      Ramsay and Theon stuff next ep is probably going to be horrific.

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    2. Emmys are joke, I agree. I do hope they submit Pedro for guest actor. He deserves it.

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    3. He really is wonderful, it seems like an universal opinion of everyone watching the show.

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  10. I really liked this episode. Pedro Pascal is so fucking perfect as Oberyn. And people were mad about that casting? I don't see any complaints anymore.

    For a hot sec I thought Brienne might be at the inn where she ran into a certain other missing character that is not Hot Pie. Where the hell is he?

    I kinda hope they stick to the ASOS epilogue for LS. The more I think about it I'd rather it happen that way. I think meeting LS in the AFFC book appearance changes how you see her a lot. I'm pretty positive they won't do the ASOS intro but it's a shame. I'll also miss the Quiet Isle scenes... but those couldn't happen until after the Hound's storyline this season if theories are correct. Ah, so much to consider. I don't know how these writers figure this shit out.

    It's a small difference, but "Only Cat" had a punch while it almost seemed like he mumbled "your sister". It wasn't even that big of a moment. The scene was still fine, but it didn't have nearly the tension of the book's version. It happened much too quickly.



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    1. I think the only people mad about the casting were those people seeing racism everywhere who claimed he looks too 'white' which actually sounds fairly racist to me.

      Gendry? He's not gonna be in this season.

      I was personally never uplifted by the epilogue of ASOS - yes there is a revenge, but at what price? So for me the nature of epilogue will be kept and I'm sure they'll have Brienne - the epilogue on its own is perfect but they tend to change everything they can because they think they are making it better. There is really no need for that there.

      I agree, I don't know what were they thinking.

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    2. I was kinda hoping Gendry would pop up at some point.

      In ASOS I was like "what the hell - this is crazy". In AFFC I was like "noooo shit shit shit". Either way it's gonna be cool to see.

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    3. I think Joe Dempsie comes back next season :)

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  11. This episode had so many unbelievable scenes, probably some of my favourites to be honest. Love Brienne and Pod and Arya and The Hound scenes. And I'm pretty sure I was far too aroused during Oberyn's scenes. I might start saying 'I will be your champion' during everyday conversation.

    Also, poor Jorah. If you slow the scene down, I think you can pinpoint the excat moment his heart breaks as Daario walks out of Dany's room. Oh and Dany's dress. Superb.

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    1. I think everyone was aroused during his scenes :)

      Jorah is so miserable, she is such an idiot - I'd take him over Daario any day.

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  12. A great rundown of events here Sati. Personally I'm finding this season a little slow but it's still brilliant stuff. As you mention, though, I would have liked a bit more attention on The Mountain beforehand. They haven't built him up enough.

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    1. Thank you! Things will speed up, insanely speed up, by next episode :)

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  13. Oh no, no Dillane in this episode?? Sorry to hear that Sati! I saw Daario's bare bum in someone else's recap, the actor playing him is muy caliente ;-)

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    1. I'd rather have fully clothed Dillane over this guy's ass :)

      But...soon :)

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  14. Emilia Clarke is definitely struggling playing this side of Dany. In the books there is so much chemistry between Dany and Daario, but here... it just feels so forced.

    Pascal is the pure embodiment of Oberyn. He's doing such a fantastic job portraying him!

    And while we're on the topic of portrayals, totally agree with your statement about The Mountain. We're just given in this episode that he's huge, powerful, strong, and likes to kill. But not the utter ruthlessness and coldness he has. And the fact that he enjoys it. *shrug*

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    1. She really doesn't have chemistry with anyone this season....

      They should have thrown in some stories about him. Also mix in some scenes with hanged Freys and more scenes with wildlings being brutal. It would make final 3 endings so much better for non book readers.

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  15. All I have to say is that I agree with all of your assertions! Emilia Clarke needs a wake up call, as does Maisie Williams.

    Is it annoying you as well that they haven't bothered to add the Eyrie in to the opening title sequence? I feel like such a pedant for being annoyed by it but I can't help it.

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    1. YES! The main titles are so goddamn lazy this year! They already had animation for the Eyrie, the lack of its inclusion in main titles is absolutely inexcusable.

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  16. Wow, I thought the Mountain was intimidating as is, but man, he sounds downright evil based on your description. I thought his character's introduction was well done in establishing his size and sheer strength, but it could have went to the next level with the other stuff.

    I love the idea of Oberyn fighting for Tyrion. I just have no idea how he's going to pull this off...

    I had a hunch about Lysa's impending death. Now I'm curious how Sansa handles this new situation.

    Wait, there's no Game of Thrones this weekend?!? Noooooo!

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    1. Oh yes it was a good introduction scene but I wish how savage he was in terms of complete lack of empathy and compassion and just being a complete monster could have been implied a bit better.

      Well, Oberyn is a very clever man :)

      Memorial Day :( Worst Sunday in May for the rest of the world :)

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  17. I loved this episode as much as you did, I watched it last night and I totally agree with you in all the highlights and low points. Loved Pascal as Oberyn in that scene, what a wonderful, emotive and thrilling moment when he talked about his sister and he finally got the torch and said: as your champion. I was so thrilled by it, I'm loving Pascal since he appeared but that was perfect. I'm really worried about him though, 'cause I've got bad feelings about that fight... but I guess it would be worth watching.

    Clarke is getting worse, yes. I really hope they don’t nominate her this year to Emmy’s because I think it’s even bad for her, if she gets rave reviews she’s gonna realize she has to improve her acting. And I also felt Turner was acting smug-like during that scene, such a shame because the snow castle and all the setting was really beautiful. I love that you've included the lines from the books there, and from the Oberyn-Tyrion scene. The ones from the snow-Sansa moment are amazing, it only reminds me that have to read the books soon. I hope I can do it during next summer 'cause I love the story and my cousin and a couple of friends are big fans of them and are always encouraging me to do it. Regarding that, I honestly believe they didn't say "Only Cat" because they think non-book readers are stupid, yes. I hope they didn't, but they usually over explain things from books in film adaptations because of that.

    Oh and Blackwater is also my favorite, so many emotions during that episode... and The National, playing The Rains of Castamere on the credits, was like perfection. I really didn't know that all that happened because of Memorial Day! We'll have to wait then.

    As usual, awesome review!

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    1. They really chose a perfect actor for this part. That scene was incredible. I won't be surprised if it ends up in my top 5 by the end of the season.

      I think she thinks she is amazing, because of all those nominations, whereas in true if the material isn't great she fails miserably. Iain Glenn is carrying her scenes and if he is not in the frame the scene is a disaster.

      I know some non book readers are less than attentive, but honestly the show should consider people who care first not those who need explanations all the time. It just cheapens the writing when they do that.

      Thank you so much! It's gonna be such a painful wait for next ep :/

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  18. I am glad to see you loved this episode seemingly as much as I did! What a score! I really liked a lot that happened here but instead of going into each aspect I'm just going to say that I was pleased with how almost each scene was between, essentially, two people exposing truths and being honest with one another. Full of small scenes that were all so ginormous (minus the rather unnecessary re-iteration of Jon Snow's ignored arguments about the coming threat).

    I love the way George R.R. Martin writes. Thank you for those excerpts. Wow. I went back and watched those scenes again after reading those parts and they painted those scenes so well in the episode.

    I laughed at your mention of how Sansa speaks. I rather like it. haha.

    It is my understanding that the Hound's disfigurement is mentioned in Book 1 but in the show we don't have the reveal until this episode. I am not sure if they planned to do that from the beginning of the show, but I have to say it was real effective to me at that moment in the show.

    Let's hope that the writers of the show don't think of their audience as being so daft to not realize that Lysa's sister and Cat are one in the same. I'm not certain of any other reason why they would make that change either, but, oh well. I was afraid in that scene knowing that SOMEone was going through the moon door, but not sure who until it happened.

    as for the 2 week break...BOOO!!! Hurry up. ha

    GREAT recap! Thank you.

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    1. I actually really liked Snow's scene - I feel they have to really make sure audience know just how horrible it would be for the Wallers to succumb to Wildling threat. It also establishes Jon as a good man, hero who recognizes the threat.

      You're welcome! I thought I'd include my favorite parts of the book since they are so incredibly well written and it may be interesting to non book readers to see how the scenes played out in the book.

      Actually The Hound's disfigurement was mentioned in s1 - do you remember the tourney when Mountain lost to Lancel Tyrell and cut off the head of his horse? In this scene Littlefinger leans over to Sansa and tells her the story.

      I can't with the hiatus - it's so cruel!

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    2. I do not remember that scene. I will have to go back and watch. I know what I'm doing during the hiatus now! :)

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    3. I hate HBO for inflicting this pain on people :)

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