Monday, June 15, 2015

Game of Thrones 5x10 Mother's Mercy + thoughts on season 5

By Sati. Monday, June 15, 2015 ,


I'm declining to rate this episode.

Let's just get the bitterness out of the way:

I watched the show for two reasons - Stannis and the chance of Lady Stoneheart. Stannis is now dead in the woods and Stoneheart isn't even on the show.

This....is not great.
Stannis? They have assassinated his character last week when he made the decision to burn his daughter alive. Then his wife committed suicide. Then it turned out that burning Shireen only bought him a bit of sun to melt the snow because Stannis lost in the battle of Winterfell. Then Brienne finds him and swings her sword intending to kill him. Because of Renly. Off screen.

One of two things is happening here - either Stannis is dead and they couldn't even give him a badass on screen death or in a shitty cliffhanger move we are supposed to be wondering what happened. What else will you do to him if he is alive? Turn him into wight? Flay him? Fuck you, you repulsive bastards.
You have broken the unbreakable man. You had honorable man kill his daughter. You turned the one lord who recognizes the threat of White Walkers into someone who lost against fucking Boltons. You had him killed without putting up a fight. Neither of the above happened in Martin's books.

I have seen you get the character wrong for years. Then you finally get it right and then do a full turn and wreck the character. Then in finale you have him lose, you have him wounded and you have him beaten. And worst of all you underused the incredible talent of Stephen Dillane. I hope Stannis is dead because you don't deserve Stephen on this show.
And as for Stoneheart? Mother's Mercy, which is ridiculously close to one of her nicknames in the books turned out to be the 3rd year in the row the showrunners are cynically generating the hype without giving us a pay off with episode's title .And worst yet-  with the blood bath of the finale and the show moving to Riverlands next year there is still hope she shows up.

Winterfell:
A clusterfuck. Stannis is grieving over Shireen, then he finds out half of men rode off, then he finds Selyse - who couldn't bear the guilt and hanged herself (which I actually kinda liked, the idea to burn Shireen was unforgivable of the writers to make but this was a good exit for Selyse). And then Melisandre, the idiot, rides off, because apparently it is a surprising and shocking information for her that half the men rode off after they saw their King BURN HIS OWN DAUGHTER ALIVE.
Stannis is pissed off and orders the men to march onto Winterfell. When they arrive it turns out that somehow Boltons knew and the massive army surrounds them. Meanwhile Sansa finally does something and lights that god damn candle. Brienne is standing around waiting for the signal and just as Sansa finally gives it Brienne abandons her post because Podrick alerts her that Stannis is coming.

Can those of you who defend the show no matter what please explain to me what the fuck? Brienne, who obviously as a woman of honor should value her oath to Catelyn to save that poor girl chooses her own dumbass oath above it. The only silver lining here is that this is something that would get her into massive trouble with Stoneheart so as usually, let's give me enough leads to think she is in and torture me for another year.
Sansa is waiting and sees the massive army surround Stannis' troops. That is it. That is the massive Battle of Winterfell the book have a huge build up too. But it gets worse, because Stannis actually loses it. I'd rage and rant but I'm so damn tired.

Stannis is wounded which was painful for me to see. Two Bolton soldiers follow him and Stannis kills them - thank you for the small mercy of giving me something to drool over. Stannis falls down and sits next to the tree. Brienne arrives, tells him who she is and informs him of her oath to kill him for murdering Renly. Stannis doesn't deny it and tells her to do her duty. We see the shot from below of Brienne swinging Oathkeeper. They couldn't even give him a proper death scene.
Back to Sansa she is taking the matter into her own hands because Brienne is too busy killing the hottest man in the world. Sansa runs into Myranda, already armed with bow and arrow and Reek, looking like he is dying inside. Myranda threatens Sansa and Reek finally snaps and pushes that no good psycho of the walls.

In what was probably my favorite moment of the episode Reek takes Sansa's hand and just as Ramsay (oh yeah we got a scene of him killing one of the Baratheon soldiers) is about to ride into castle Theon and Sansa share a look, hold hands and jump off the walls of Winterfell.
If Stannis is dead Gendry better stops rowing because the show has now annihilated one of the four most important houses in the game. Ladies and Gentlemen! The Battle of Five Kings is over! And the winner is Balon Greyjoy as the only one alive! Because the show runners forgot about him and Melisandre conveniently omits the mention of that one leech that didn't work but who cares I mean 2 out of 3 was still enough to kill Stannis' only heir, right?!

Meereen:
Daario, Jorah and Tyrion are sitting in the throne room. We get a humorous scene where Grey Worm - who is apparently gonna outlive Barristan, Stannis, Shireen and what? Jon? - is introduced to Tyrion. After a witty banter Jorah and Daario decide to go looking for Deenerys while Tyrion, Missandai and Grey Worm are to stay behind and rule the city. Are we forgetting there are two more dragons or did the CGI budget run out?
Somewhere Daenerys is trying to train her dragon but Drogon wants to nap or something and ignores her. Daenerys, still in her pretty dress decides to - get this - find dinner. So she walks around and then bam! suddenly thousands of Dothraki arrive and surround her. That was a very well made scene. In the book Dany had diarrhea and kept hallucinating. I'm not shitting you, this is what happened. At least once the show managed to make something better.

And then! Varys, who is in the books showing up in King's Lading and killing whole bunch of people including Kevan who was apparently brought back for 3 scenes this season - ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING AND YOU CANNOT SHOW ME TWO WITH STONEHEART YOU CLOWNS? - shows up in Meereen and well at least it's more of our favorite Varys/Tyrion banter. Not an awful change but I wish Varys had his ninja moment and then went to Meereen. But clearly I'm unable to grasp the ideas of brilliant minds of D&D.
Braavos:
We see more of Trant being a creep and beating up 3 little girls. One of them can really take a punch, so he sends the others away. The girl is creepily crunching on the floor and as she lifts up her face it turns out it is Arya. Arya throws herself on Merryn an in impressively brutal, even for Thrones, scene stabs out Trant's eyes and keeps stabbing him and then she cuts his throat.

After Arya comes back to the House of Black and White some more bizarre shit follows which ultimately ends with Arya going blind as a punishment for her killing someone she wanted dead.
Dorne:
Oh, God. Jaime, Bronn, Myrcella and the Dornish but more feminine looking Jon Snow are finally leaving this shithole. Ellaria kisses Myrcella on the lips and the horny for Bronn one drops this golden line into Bronn's ear "you want to marry the good girl but you need a bad pussy". Emmy nominated writing, boys and girls.

On the ship Jaime clumsily tries to tell Myrcella he is her father but Myrcella already knows and tells him she is glad. Oh good, so she is cool with being the child of incest. Because it's not bad enough the show turned Stannis into Tinder Meine Kinder King, no, now let's make it look like Robert Baratheon was a shit dad and Myrcella prefers to be a child of siblings than his.
Jaime and Myrcella share a hug and the scene works because of Waldau's acting (that show would be in the gutter if it wasn't for the actors and the music) and then all the bonding ends because Myrcella's nose starts to bleed. Then she falls into Jaime's arms and dies. On the docks in Dorne we see the Sand Snakes and Ellaria, whose nose also starts bleeding. The horny for Bronn one gives her a tissue, Ellaria wipes her nose and drinks the antidote from her necklace.

Because apparently neither her nor the dumbass Snakes care their cousin is now in the hands of Lannisters.
King's Landing:
Cersei finally confesses but not to everything - she denies that her kids are hers and Jaime's not Robert's - but she says she did sleep with Lancel. The High Sparrow allows her to return to Red Keep and wait for her trial but only after she atoned. She is to be shaved, scrubbed and then walk naked, through the streets of King's Landing to the Red Keep.

Cersei's hair are cut short by the septas and then she is presented to the crowd and disrobed. In a very long sequence, around 6 minutes long, naked Cersei walks through the enraged crowd. After a while the people start throwing food and what I assume was feces at her, call her horrible names. Cersei starts breaking down and the closer to end the more filthy and crying she is.
She finally gets to Red Keep and Qyburn clothes her as Kevan and Pycelle are shocked at her appearance. Cersei doesn't say a word and is shaking while Qyburn tells her how good it is to have her back. He introduces her to the new member of Kingsguard - freakishly tall knight who apparently took a vow of silence. He takes her in his arms and carries her.

A person who would watch the show passed out drunk would be able to guess who that silent fucker is.
I thought the sequence of the Walk was very well made. It wasn't given the rich context from the books and the character of Cersei was ridiculously whitewashed in the show - in the books she actually sends innocent women to Qyburn to experiment with - but still Cersei has been one of the worst people in the series so far.

Still the show took this chance to hammer in that she is doing this 'for her children' (a reminder only one of them alive at that point)  - we had several shots of Red Keep, where Tommen is, and Cersei looking there in the moment of weakness.
Nonetheless it was a difficult and well done scene - almost uncomfortably long. Headey and the body double did the walk and in the shots where we see her completely naked, apparently her face was CGIed onto the double, but I didn't really notice that.

I would have preferred if they kept the thing from the books were Cersei hallucinates she is seeing the people she wronged - including Sansa and Ned Stark (what a wasted opportunity, considering Sean Bean apparently would love to have a cameo). But still, considering how the show usually butchers scenes from the book, this was very well done.
And you gotta give credit to Lena Headey. She was excellent. The cinematography was wonderful too - it was refreshing how the camera didn't shy away and really showed us the nudity and vulnerability of Cersei, especially in this day and age when they censor everything. The walk scene was mostly silent but then near the end Djawadi's Atonement blasts in with its sad version of iconic Rains of Castamere.

It's definitely one of the best and most unapologetic scenes the show has had so far.
The Wall:
We see a scene where Jon tells Sam of White Walkers and then Sam tells Jon he got laid. Jon sends Sam, Gilly and the baby away to Oldtown so that Sam can study in the Citadel.

Melisandre arrives just s Jon refuses Davos' request to send the King some aid. Melisandre, that fucking bitch dares to look apologetic and wordlessly communicates to Davos and Jon the fates of Stannis and Shireen. They are both incredibly shocked.
Then Olly comes in telling Jon that his uncle Benjen (who was featured in 'previously on' segment making a lot of people think that Benjen will actually show up in the episode, how does it feel to be trolled by D&D, huh? And you laugh at as LS fans, here, how did you like it?) was found. Him and Alliser tell Jon they are taking him to the wildling who has seen him.

It turns out there is no wildling, just a cross with the word "TRAITOR" written on it. Alliser Thorne stabs Jon and says "For the Watch" and the other watchers follow stabbing Jon one by one. Jon falls to his knees and Olly comes forward. Jon says his name but Olly stabs him too.
The last shot of the episode is the camera closing in on Jon's lifeless body as blood trails on the snow finally giving us the finale with the proper cliffhanger.

The problem is though, that they are being too cruel when it comes to non book readers. BOOK SPOILERS Jon Snow may have died but he will be back. He is the son of Rhaegar Trargaryen and Lyanna Stark, in unconfirmed but almost completely certain book theory. He is the Azor Ahai reborn, not Stannis. There is a popular theory that Melisandre brings him back - not sure how she is supposed to do that but all right. And now we have her on the Wall. END OF BOOK SPOILERS
This has been a decent finale....for the last 40 minutes of it. I liked that it was tidy - we moved from location to location, rarely moving back and forth. But the first 20 minutes of it, apart from Sansa's scenes was basically just D&D spreading their asses and shitting all over Stannis and his fanbase. It was the most anticlimatic thing ever. Again, you people do not deserve Stephen Dillane on your show.

There are so many people who are dead - Team Dragonstone is now probably gonna be Team Jon. Baratheons - don't fucking remind me. Cersei is down to one kid. Arya is now blind so I bet this is gonna be riveting television, considering what her arc was like when she could actually see.
Season six - Riverlands? Freys? Stoneheart? This season other than Hardhome and few other bits feels like a filler. What exactly was the point of Sansa's arc except for getting raped and being a device that allows Theon to redeem himself? And what is the overall point of Stannis? No, seriously. Because you couldn't even give him the victory and be the guy who saves Sansa. No, you killed him in the woods. Off screen. I'm never forgiving the writers for that one.

Seeing good actors trapped with that material, knowing what was in the books and how great it could have been and seeing what we are given instead is just too much to handle. It pisses me off and it doesn't bring me joy. At least before I had Stephen to marvel that and that is gone.

So I'm just gonna patiently wait for The Tunnel season 2 instead. You know where the writers actually respect Stephen Dillane.

49 comments:

  1. This episode just felt like abuse to me. It was SO bleak. I know it's a bleak show but usually the finales leave some hope for the future. God, I felt sick after watching it. Also if Jon doesn't come back, this is probably the worst death for me. He had that underdog thing, same as Dany, Sansa, Tyrion, Arya and Brienne- all of their deaths will hurt just as bad. I mean, all of the other "biggies" who had died were still lords and ladies and one cannot help but root for the underdog and this was just fucking awful.
    I know I will watch season 6 but I'm not looking forward to it as much as I have every year so far.

    Also FUCKING OLLY!! Killed Ygritte AND Jon- fucking child needs to die!

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    1. I'm with you. At least in previous years the deaths were better set up or at least executed than this season. This is also the first season everything is so blatantly foreshadowed. It's just so horribly written.

      I think Jon will be back

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  2. Next season presumably opens with Ramsay leading a party to try to recover Sansa and Theon, who will run into Brienne, since she's still hanging around that area. So we will soon know the answer to the question of who would win in a fight: Super-Ramsay or Brienne, Westeros' greatest swordfighter? It may come down to whether Ramsay is shirtless or not.

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    1. Brienne, hands down. She can Hulk smash her way through everyone and everything.

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  3. I'm going to be controversial and say I loved Stannis' ending.

    We all know Stannis is a good man and by rights the one true king of Westeros. He was meritocratic in a heavily class-based society.

    He suffered from two fatal flaws: His total unwillingness to compromise and, most importantly, his complete trust in Melisandre's religion and belief that he is Azor Ahai.

    He bet EVERYTHING on Melisandre. His plans were determined by her visions. He used her supposed powers to justify atrocities. His rigid way of thinking kept him with her and led to the murder of his own daughter. And in the end it backfired horribly. Melisandre was WRONG. He bet on the wrong pony and it cost him everything.

    All the talk of Kings Blood got him was a couple hundred men marching on foot to their deaths. And in the end he wasn't killed by a Bolton in combat. He was executed for the murder of Renly. He ended up paying the final price for the first bit of evil Melisandre pulled from him, the first demonstration of the power of king's klood, the first time he killed his family.

    It's significant that Stannis weighed so much power on king's blood because king's blood is worth jack shit. Stannis had king's blood that entitled him to the throne but in practice it doesn't make any difference. The magic of king's blood failed. It goes back to Varys' riddle. Steel is what makes a king, not his blood.

    I also thought it was very appropriate that Stannis' last words were telling Brienne to do her duty. No man in this show understands and appreciates duty as much as Stannis, and he completely understands that she has to do what she's going to do. I didn't want or need to see his head roll either. Give him some dignity.

    As someone who wanted Stannis to come out on top his story this season was obviously disappointing. But I can't deny that it was a great story about a hero falling to pieces, selling his soul and dying a failure. R.I.P. Stannis.

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    1. See I'd agree with everything you wrote here if it was well written in the show. But it just wasn't in no shape or form was that good writing. You have:

      1. Stannis burning Shireen in spite of this not being last resort - she wasn't freezing to death, they had horses to butcher, they had Davos sent away for supplies
      2. You have Stannis burn Shireen even though Balon is still alive so there is no it works 100% chance
      3. You had Stannis refuse to kill Gendry yet he is willing to kill his own heir because..it's cold?
      4. We have the great military commander fooled by 20 morons on a horse
      5. he didn't send any scouts
      6. he didn't notice half his army left
      7. which shouldn't be a shock to anyone, also to Melisandre, after what those men witnessed
      8. Melisandre gets a horse but the King doesn't?!
      9. we had almost no mention of Northern lords
      10. the show didn't let anyone know about Sansa, which would at least add more urgency and sympathy since Stannis would be going to WF not just on principle but also to free Ned's daughter
      11. His army didn't even go in formation they just took a stroll to WF
      12. Brienne chooses own selfishness over her oath to protect a child - another character assassination
      13. Brienne chooses to kill Stannis instead of using him and what's left of his army to help her rescue Sansa

      It's just preposterous.

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    2. 1. Stannis needed the weather to clear before more men deserted him.
      2. A definite oversight and an unfortunate result of delaying the Greyjoys until next season.
      3. Stannis was going to kill Gendry until he had an attack of conscience and sought out Davos to convince him not to do it. Then he afterwards he decided killing Gendry WOULD be a good idea. This time he sent Davos away knowing that the Onion Knight would succeed in talking him out of something he couldn't afford to be talked out of.
      4. We don't know that Ramsay's men were morons, thats a presumption. And sabotaging a sprawling camp of men unaccustomed to the North shouldn't be that hard.
      5. Scouts wouldn't have saved him, the Bolton army charged out to meet him when they saw his host.
      6. He was told about his army deserting when he was getting dressed for the day. Seems normal.
      7. He didn't expect it because he put his trust entirely in Melisandre, which is one of his defining flaws as a character.
      8. The story required that Melisandre have a horse in order to get back to Castle Black in time for Jon's death.
      9. So? It was pretty clearly implied in the beginning of the season that he asked them for help and was either ignored and refused by all of them.
      10. A lack of communication between characters and factions is at the root of half the drama in the series.
      11. They did march in formation, except in the one aerial shot of his host half of his men are deserting him.
      12 and 13. Brienne has no idea that Sansa is in trouble. The whole point of Brienne standing there staring at the tower is so she can be present if Sansa calls for help. If Brienne knew Sansa needed help then there'd be no need for a signal at all, she'd just march in there right away and kill everybody (because Brienne apparently has the power to kick anybody's ass no matter how Clegane they are). At this point she's been watching for weeks (possibly months?) with no indication that Sansa is in trouble. At that point she does what Pod suggested she do at the beginning of the season: Give up on her oath because both Stark children have refused her so she can fulfill her earlier vow to avenge Renly. And Stannis was severely wounded with a totally destroyed army, theres no way he'd be able to help her at all. By the time Brienne found him he wasn't even able to walk.

      And come on, who didn't wet themselves a little bit when Stannis looked at the oncoming army, processed what was going to happen, smiled, drew his sword (with dramatic cape flourish) and marched to his death? That alone makes the whole story worth it.

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    3. Y'know, I just realized the Shireen sacrifice thing would have worked a lot better if it had been preceded by Stannis getting a raven saying Balon Greyjoy died, confirming Melisandre's magic beyond all reasonable doubt.

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    4. Yes because burning your own family alive is something that won't make the men desert him? Of course the scouts would save him - he sends them, they come back saying the Boltons have shitload of men, no battle. Stannis going back and forth on Gendry does not apply to his own daughter while, again, Balon is still alive and Melisandre has been thusly proven to be wrong.

      Please don't say one shot makes the story worth it. It's just insulting people's intelligence much like this elaborate defense of this terrible writing 'because the story required it' is not an excuse. This is some of the worst writing I've ever seen in tv show and Thrones is never ever going to remedy that no matter what they do.

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  4. I didn't read the books, but even I am starting to wish Stoneheart happened - it would certainly make things more interesting at this point.

    On the Stannis offscreen death... please correct me if I'm wrong (god knows I have a shitty memory for these things) but GoT has never been the type of show who kills its big characters like that, right? They certainly haven't shied away from bloody, painful, visual deaths in the past. So... I'm guessing he's not dead? Pretty clichéd move though, like Brienne just hit the tree like HAHA, GOTCHA! And if he is dead, then that was a pretty shitty way to kill such an important character. So either way, they screwed-up - even someone like me who's not a *huge* fan can see that.

    Cersei's scene was difficult but very well made, yeah. Now Jon... I've heard about the Melisandre theory, and I'm glad I read those spoilers, even though the production and him say otherwise (but really, no one expected them to spoil the next season), because I've grown to like Jon Snow. But is that something that has already happened in the books, coming back, or is the theory the whole thing? I know Martin hinted that he's not necessarily dead *dead*, so.

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    1. David Nutter who directed the episode said that Stannis is dead and they didn't show his death because it would be 'gratuitous'. Seriously, that's what he said in the episode that contained this Arya/Trant scene. The show is just a chain of ridiculous creative decisions at this point.

      It's a theory but the one about his parents is almost confirmed and it is unlikely Martin kills off someone this important.

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  5. I do feel bad for people who have been fans of the books/show for years. This episode really seemed to hurt a lot of you. I’ve only loved the show for three weeks, so I didn’t particularly mind the bleakness of this episode. But I can’t imagine living with the show for five years and then they do THIS.

    Cersei’s walk was one of the best scenes in the show’s history, just because it was so brutal and uncompromising (and unapologetic, as you said). Lena Headey was utterly fearless – she was as emotionally naked as she was physically, which is no easy feat.

    Arya killing that dude was fucking insane. Jesus. And I wanted more Daenerys, because I always want more Daenerys. Sucks to have to wait a whole year now!

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    1. I really feel betrayed. I'm gonna link a great article written by 2 fans of the book which shows what they did in the show was the total opposite of what was in the books. I'm really beyond pissed off at that show :/

      But hey, I'm glad you have fun with it! It's really different when you have hopes and expectations for 10 months of wait every year and then in the show this is what they do :/

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  6. I don't know how to feel about this finale/season as a whole. They wasted too much time not adequately setting up the biggest plot lines and motivations for some the events that took place.
    I'm mostly concerned with Stannis's arc actually. It was very confused. They bring him in as a heroic character at the end of the last season which actually was a nice way to make him more complex on the show since we've mostly just seen him be this hardened man who's dabbling in what seems like black magic. Then the first half of the season, they tried really hard to humanize him as a man and build him up more like a hero than we've ever seen him before. We even have what we can assume is the main hero of the show, Jon, revering him. It even feels like he might be stepping away from Mel & the religious aspects that have defined him so far. Then last episode everything is flipped around and he goes the darkest he ever has gone with the religion and magic and all of a sudden all the nice things we've been shown all season were just misdirection? He really is the villain the show's pretty much portrayed him to be? They certainly gave him the death of a villain but I didn't feel like it was earned at all. It was also way too unceremonious for such an important character and the editing was very confusing. Are we really supposed to take it ambiguously? It's weird. Also weird was Brienne calling Renly the "rightful" King... I mean I know she had aligned to him, but still. Perhaps my least favorite thing about it all though is there is never a scene with him questioning Mel about if she had been wrong all along. I hope there is a scene that addresses this next season because it's the deepest part of that story line & relationship.

    Dorne was awful! I kept thinking, this will at least end with the revelation that Doran has his own plans, but that didn't even happen. This has to be the worst story arc the show has ever done. The only thing I kind of liked about it was that the season began with Cersei's prophecy and part of that prophecy came true with another of her children dying.

    A lot of the other story lines just ended on unsatisfying notes - most notably Sansa. We desperately needed an upside to this episode and killing Ramsey would have been perfect. Besides the momentary payoff of Myranda's death, nothing really came out of all the suffering from this season. And where the f is Littlefinger? The writers forgot he existed apparently.

    I have a hard time seeing LS making an appearance at this point. RW was just so long ago that I don't think it can have the right effect. Sansa in her hood reminded me of Lady Stoneheart though...

    Dany's storyline might have been the most well done this season oddly enough? Jon's was exciting but I think "for the watch" could have been built up better and with a lot less Olly. Cersei's walk was executed very well. It was excruciating to watch.

    So overall, a mixed bag of a season with some fantastic scenes and A LOT of questionable choices. I just want TWOW to come out!!

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    1. That Stannis storyline was just such a clusterfuck. I really have no words. I used them all in my RF which I will publish soon. I'm just beyond disgusted at how they treated the character and his fanbase.

      Dorne was a disaster. Doran...why was he even there? It was just so shitty.

      Sansa's arc is what I see is getting a lot of people to drop the show. It really was just horrible...if only she actually killed someone important but all she did was picking a lock. Pathetic.

      With how terrible the narrative structure is I think the timing of LS being too late is no longer an issue. And apparently we are going to Riverlands again in season 6...why the fuck didn't they do it this year and had Jaime in Dorne and Brienne staring at the tower?

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    2. Thanks for replying to my insanely long comment... I didn't realize I had written damn near an entire post by the time I was done typing!

      Yeah, I would've rather gone to Riverlands + seen Northern conspiracy than Dorne. They could've had Brienne go to Manderly (in search of Sansa or whatever made up reason) and introduced it that way if they wanted to keep Davos with Stannis.

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    3. My pleasure!

      They really could have done dozen things instead of what they did to Brienne and Sansa and Jaime this year :/ This season was a waste of time for all of them

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  7. So... does this mean the show has now... jumped the shark?

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    1. It jumped the shark last week with Shireen burning

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  8. After finally seeing the episode and remaining in an internet hiatus for three days because SPOILERS (duh!), I can say......screw D&D. And this is coming from a non-book show watcher. SERIOUSLY?!?! Even after giving us WOS, which imho is the best scene in GoT PERIOD, I can't forgive them for what they did to Stannis and Jon.

    Everything seems to be going to waste and these deaths are just purely shock value just so they can make Danaerys Azor Ahai and they need to get rid of the rest of the main players as quickly as possible.Just wished it was handled better but at this point, I'm just seeing how everything will end and I'll just slog through the episodes. I've got plenty of other shows worth investing my time and energy on such as Orphan Black and Penny Dreadful and those shows don't seem to run out of quality and they keep on delivering.

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    1. I think it's more likely Tyrion is gonna be Azor Ahai after all he is a Saint who will show Dany her incompetent ways.

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    2. I ,too, thought at one point that Tyrion might possibly be Azor Ahai but there's another strong contender for that role and it didn't even pop in my head till I saw this video I'll link below that blew my mind and made start questioning everything in the show. Go to the 11:34 part of it to immediately get to what I'm talking about.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tBvOQPD_cD8

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    3. That's a really good theory! I'd like Jorah being AA more than the two popular choices

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  9. Lovely review Sati. I've been reading reviews on the internet and so far yours is the most detailed. I still can't believe what they did to Stannis. I think they wrote the Shireen scene just so that people would hate him and so that Brienne could kill him off. The writers butchered him.

    I was hoping that Sansa would have some form of revenge against Ramsey, but there appears to have been no payoff for that storyline. I'm really disappointed with some of the decisions the showrunners made this year. I may eventually start watching again if Season 6 improves. Thanks for the Jon Snow spoiler. That's good to know.

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    1. Thank you! Absolutely, that Shireen scene was just there to make Brienne look honorable when she kills him. Revolting.

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  10. I'm not familiar with the books, but the episode in general seemed pretty rushed to me, especially with the demise of Stannis. And what about Sansa and Theon???? Did they commit suicide or did they make it to the bottom to escape?? That scene cut so quickly that I had absolutely no clue what to think?

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    1. Stannis is still alive in the books, as is Shireen. Everything beyond him leaving the Wall and marching is the showrunners' bad fan fiction. It is their dumb way of cliffhanger, but I cannot imagine they are dead

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  11. Good write up Sati, but I enjoyed this finale a lot. I am not a book reader, so I'm incapable of comparing the show with it. However, I loved whatever I saw, including assumed death of Stannis. In the end of the day, one of the things I love about GoT is how unexpected turns it may take.

    Probably, not the strongest finale of all seasons, but still descent and good to watch.

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    1. Well I'm glad you enjoyed it but that finale really killed any chances that I'm ever gonna be a fan of this show again

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  12. honestly, I'm only still watching the show because of your reviews. enjoyed these very much for this season, thank you for giving me a reason to keep hanging on. this finale has me feeling absolutely hopeless now.
    kind regards, a book-reader from austria :)

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    1. Thank you so much! I'm glad at least this got to be enjoyable, because this season certainly wasn't

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  13. I'm a bit over this show now. The constant depression and inescapable lack of "joy" in this series has worn my out. I'm doutbful I'll be back for future seasons. Stannis was a meh character for me, so no great loss, but that final scene with Jon Snow ruined any chance the show had of winning me back.

    If a show keeps killing characters before they can complete their arc within a narrative, if the rug keeps getting pulled out from under us, how long until people learn not to stand on the rug?

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    1. I'm so over it too. I really hope the ratings plummet next season

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  14. I'm very angry. When I first started watching GoT, I was stunned to see that it was able to capture what I loved most about the books. Now, after shamelessly leading on all of the readers and watchers, D&D do this?! Just awful. It was bad enough that they used Sansa's rape as a way to give Theon/Reek redemption, plus the fact that they totally ruined Stannis… but then to call an episode 'Mother's Mercy' and not have Stoneheart? I mean, I'm still hoping that they'll have her next season, but knowing D&D, they'll probably just omit her again.

    Jon Snow's death was slightly surprising, but I don't think he's dead yet, due to the theory about Melisandre. Stannis, on the other hand, is definitely dead. What a lousy way for his character to exit. At least Dillane managed to deal with the arc. The Arya storyline was good though, and I liked the scene with Jaime and Myrcella. The best part of the episode by far was Cersei's walk. I have a love/hate relationship with her, but even though she's done some terrible things, no one deserves to be treated like that. Lena Headey was amazing.

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    1. I'm very angry too. Disappointed. Ashamed a little bit that I had all those hopes and they shat on them.

      The Walk was indeed very well done. Everything else, though...

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  15. I hated this finale. Stannis and Davos are two of my favorite characters and the way this show treated Stannis at the end of this season was ridiculous. I don't understand why D&D are so hellbent on making Stannis out to be a villain. Yes, he's not the best of Lords, he burns people alive, but he actually gives a fuck about the realm. I think he's dead. I think they killed him off screen because they don't understand/give a fuck about his character. And that's a damn shame. I like that you pointed out Brienne's selfishness in that oath. I love her too, but that was a stupid moment for her.

    I really liked the scenes with Sansa, and Arya. They were the only saving graces in this episode. I didn't like the scene with the Dothraki because I wanted Drogon to be WITH Dany like in the books. The Walk was good, but the body double was distracting, and like you said, they missed an opportunity to show Ned Stark as a hallucination.

    Ugh. This is going to be an interesting hiatus.

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    1. I just hope Stoneheart finally comes and hangs her. I mean my God, Sansa was getting raped and Brienne was waiting for the candle to be lit. It's just beyond dumb.

      I'm not even dreading the hiatus because I'm not excited about the show so they will probably start fucking around and announce BwB actors are coming back soon

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  16. Right on point review!

    I seriously don't know what the fuck is wrong with these idiots. 'We don't have time' and this season really does feel like a filler. The show brings in billions and it can't spend a few million more to at least give us a good battle scene? Fantastic. I'm glad I haven't given them 1 penny.

    I didn't even notice the CGI Cersei. I thought Lena Headey agreed to be nude. Though as I found out now it would have been better to add to that her hallucinations of all the people she's wronged and her crying as if she might have some remorse and make the scene feel even more like an atonement.

    That shit Olly and the rest of the Night's watch fuckers. Don't they realize that having the wildlings as dead corpses it even worse than them being alive? So they hate them because the latter didn't want to die north of the wall, where they just happened to be born and had to attack to survive. I hope when the White Walkers break the Wall all these fuckers die, which I believe will happen, as it would be a terrifying and a great scene and I doubt the Others will stay North of the Wall for the whole series.

    Why did Sansa take that corkscrew? What am I to make out of it? Or was that scene made only for Sasnsa to remind Ramsay yet again that he is a bastard confirmed by a bastard king to be a Bolton??? I fathomed it out. She wants the Boltons to run out of corkscrews and be unable to build better defense for when Stannis comes. The show runners are geniuses.




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    1. She took the corkscrew to open the door lock, which was how she got out of her room.

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    2. It would have been nice if they actually showed it.

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    3. I think the issue with Lena and nudity was that she was pregnant at the time of shooting the scene and already showing so they had to use the double. But the thing is at that point the books Cersei was drinking heavily for a while now and it show and her body does not look great and the people who gather during the walk mock her which is also something that adds to her humiliation. And what did the show do? Give her hot body.

      In the book it was far more complex because Jon wanted to desert to fight the Boltons, but of course what we got in the show was black and white :/

      They did show her pick the lock but then she dropped it. You'd think she would take any weapon at her disposal, but nah.

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    4. They should have made show Cersei look a little fat. That would have been a real confidence destroyer.

      That explains a lot.

      I was just hoping that she would, I guess, stab Miranda or something.

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    5. Yeah I hoped Sansa would be the one to kill someone too, but D&D just love Theon too much :/

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  17. Love that you refused to rate this episode. This is the shittiest episode for me. I didn't care what they did in the later part of the episode after watching Stannis Vs. Brienne the Bitch. I don't know why D&D did this but it seemed like they wanted us to believe Stannis din't die. BUT my million $ question is, Why in the world did Ramsay left for Winterfell when Stannis was still alive. How is the (non-existent) battle over without killing the leader of the enemy????

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    1. According to the director Stannis is dead they just didn't show it. i don't know how anyone could even attempt to argue that the showrunners didn't hate his character. They are the worst.

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  18. “'m declining to rate this episode” Oy, that speaks volumes!

    It’s a pity they didn’t even give Stephen the honor of a good, memorable screen death. Based on what I’ve read in your recaps and others, sounds like he played his role very well, even if his character could’ve been better written. “I hope Stannis is dead because you don't deserve Stephen on this show.” Well that about sums it up. Yeah it's painful to see a good actor's talent being wasted!

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    1. People seem to like his death as he was very very much like book Stannis there but the way that death was set up was just an abomination. They literally rushed his arc just to clear the path for the characters they like better.

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  19. I was just re-reading this post and then read through the comments and my comment from around the time the episode aired somehow didn't post! Anyway, I just want to reiterate that I'm still in denial about this episode and I still think the showrunners are dumb idiots. Really dumb idiots. Amazing write-up as always!

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    1. Thank you! God I really hate the writers so much. i cannot imagine ever rewatching the show

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