Blog of the Dragon

Game of Thrones/Song of Ice and Fire news, theories, and other nerdy goodness

Author: vkcole277 (Page 2 of 4)

New Sample Chapter from The Winds of Winter

The Winds of Winter may not be available yet, but George R. R. Martin has thrown a bone to fans of A Song of Ice and Fire by releasing a sample chapter last night. His latest blog post states that he isn’t finished with his latest novel, but that it is progressing. The new sample chapter is available here, and is written from the perspective of Arianne Martell.

It’s an interesting choice, given that Arianne does not appear on Game of Thrones. There has been harsh criticism of the Dorne storyline in both season 5 and season 6, so perhaps this is Martin’s way of appeasing fans? Readers who enjoy the Dornish plot in the novels seem to have much to look forward to, if this latest chapter is any indication.

If you would like to read the other chapters that have been released, Reddit has a fantastic wiki page with information on where to find them.

Happy reading!

Game of Thrones Episode 3 Play by Play (Beware of Spoilers!)

Below is my running commentary of last night’s episode, Oathbreaker. As always, don’t read if you want to avoid spoilers.

game_of_thrones_s06e03_young_ned_stark

We start where we left off last week, at Castle Black. Davos must have heard Jon gasping since last we saw him he had left the room. He looks stunned – isn’t this what he was trying to achieve? Poor Jon looks terrified and confused. And cold. Thankfully Davos has a cloak handy.

Melisandre looks shocked as well. She asks him what happened once he was stabbed; Jon not only knows nothing, but apparently also saw nothing after his death. Melisandre appears to be hitching her wagon to Jon Snow as the Lord of Light’s champion as she tells him there still needs to be a Prince that was Promised. That didn’t go so well for Stannis – hopefully it works out better for Jon.

Davos wisely sees that Jon doesn’t need any pressure from Melisandre right now and asks her to leave them. He gives Jon some much needed straight talk and doesn’t let him wallow in self pity. Davos will be a wonderful right hand man for him whatever he decides to do moving forward.

The wildlings think the resurrected Jon is a god, but Tormund quickly puts him in his place with a well timed pecker joke. Edd is so happy to see his friend has returned and that he seems to be mostly himself. He also gets Jon to smile – no easy feat under normal circumstances, but especially now.

Sam and Gilly are on a ship and Sam looks miserable. At least the baby has finally aged a little. Gilly is excited  to see Oldtown, but Sam dashes her hopes by saying he is leaving her at his family home, Horn Hill. Gilly seems accepting, but I’m not sure Sam’s father will make things easy for her.

Bran’s Tower of Joy vision – get hype! Cue people complaining about how it’s not 100 percent like the books. It looks like Arthur’s sword could be Dawn, even if no one explicitly says so. At least they are using some of the book dialogue; considering that the scene in the books was a dream, reality probably would be different anyway.

Ned dispatches one Kingsguard with ease (Oswell Whent?), and then there are four on one. Arthur Dayne proves why he was the greatest swordsman in Westeros. Ned really doesn’t stand a chance, but luckily for him Howland takes out Dayne from behind. Ned finishes the job, although he doesn’t look too happy about it.

We hear a woman (Lyanna!) screaming, then Ned appears to hear Bran. The Three Eyed Crow says it’s time to go, and book fans everywhere are in agony. Guess we’ll have to wait another week or two to see how the rest of this story plays out.

Daenerys makes it to Vaes Dothrak and is taken to the Dosh Khaleen. She is chastised for not coming sooner as it was her duty after Khal Drogo’s death. Daenerys tries to explain that she’s too important to be there, but the head of the Dosh Khaleen puts her in her place. She tells Dany that the khalasars will decide where Dany will go due to her defiance of tradition, and that the Dosh Khaleen is the best she can hope for now.

In Meereen, Varys interrogates the woman who helped the Sons of the Harpy kill Unsullied soldiers. He tells her he won’t torture her, but that she has a choice – tell him everything and receive his help to flee Meereen with her son for safety in Pentos, or be executed for treason. It seems to work, as Varys interrupts a very uncomfortable meeting of Tyrion, Grey Worm, and Missandei to inform them that The Sons of the Harpy is being funded by Astapor, Yunkai, and Volantis – all under control of the slavers. Grey Worm and Missandei vote for violence, but Tyrion wants to send a message first.

In King’s Landing, Qyburn has taken over the management of Varys’ “little birds.” It’s uncomfortable seeing creepy Qyburn around children. Zombie Mountain enters and the kids can’t get out of there fast enough (not that I blame them). Jaime and Cersei discuss Cersei’s predicament and the upcoming trial by combat (which they are certain Zombie Mountain will win), and Cersei tells Qyburn that she wants informers everywhere.

Pycelle is running his mouth about Qyburn and Zombie Mountain in a small council meeting, so of course they walk in and hear it (along with Pycelle’s nervous, uh, emission). Something tells me Pycelle won’t be around much longer. It’s so good to see Olenna back, and the Queen of Thorns doesn’t waste time smacking Cersei down. Jaime and Cersei try to assert their power, but her uncle Kevan is having none of it, and the council members walk out.

Tommen pays a visit to the High Sparrow and similarly tries to assert his authority, but the High Sparrow easily manipulates him. He tells Tommen that Cersei is a liar, but that the Mother’s love shines through her regarding Tommen. He says the gods make their will known, and that Cersei and Tommen have to accept their judgment. Tommen is weak and seems like he will be swayed to the High Sparrow’s side.

Arya has returned to the House of Black and White but the beatings continue. She talks about Arya’s past and is forced to confess that the Hound was no longer on her list. The Waif asks her about the other names on her list and she names Cersei, Gregor, and Walder Frey. I think the Waif is going to be added to the list soon, if she hasn’t been already. Jaqen seems satisfied with Arya/No One’s progress and gives her sight back.

Back in Winterfell, Ramsay receives a visit from Lord Umber (Smalljon I assume). He doesn’t buy Ramsay’s story about Roose’s murder, but pledges to help support him to fight back the wildlings. Smalljon refuses to kneel or pledge an oath, but has brought a gift – Osha and Rickon, and (supposedly) the head of Shaggydog (which looks rather small in my opinion). Either this is all an elaborate ruse, or I really hate the Umbers now.

Back at Castle Black, Jon prepares to execute the traitors who murdered him. Bowen Marsh and Othell Yarwyck seem scared both by Jon’s presence and their impending deaths. Alliser Thorne is without remorse and says he’d do it all again. He stands by his choice and tells Jon his fight is over but that Jon will be fighting forever. Olly looks defiant and doesn’t say a word. Jon looks heartbroken, but resigned to do his duty. He cuts the rope and hangs them all.

Edd says Jon should burn the bodies, but Jon gives him his cloak and tells Edd he should do it, because Castle Black now belongs to him. Jon walks away, saying “My watch is ended.”

Overall, a good episode, and a nice bit of setup for the storylines to come. I think we all needed a breather from the tension and excitement of last week, but I don’t think it will last long.

Games of Thrones Episode 3 Play by Play (Beware of Spoilers!)

Below is my running commentary of last night’s episode, Oathbreaker. As always, don’t read if you want to avoid spoilers.

game_of_thrones_s06e03_young_ned_stark

We start where we left off last week, at Castle Black. Davos must have heard Jon gasping since last we saw him he had left the room. He looks stunned – isn’t this what he was trying to achieve? Poor Jon looks terrified and confused. And cold. Thankfully Davos has a cloak handy.

Melisandre looks shocked as well. She asks him what happened once he was stabbed; Jon not only knows nothing, but apparently also saw nothing after his death. Melisandre appears to be hitching her wagon to Jon Snow as the Lord of Light’s champion as she tells him there still needs to be a Prince that was Promised. That didn’t go so well for Stannis – hopefully it works out better for Jon.

Davos wisely sees that Jon doesn’t need any pressure from Melisandre right now and asks her to leave them. He gives Jon some much needed straight talk and doesn’t let him wallow in self pity. Davos will be a wonderful right hand man for him whatever he decides to do moving forward.

The wildlings think the resurrected Jon is a god, but Tormund quickly puts him in his place with a well timed pecker joke. Edd is so happy to see his friend has returned and that he seems to be mostly himself. He also gets Jon to smile – no easy feat under normal circumstances, but especially now.

Sam and Gilly are on a ship and Sam looks miserable. At least the baby has finally aged a little. Gilly is excited  to see Oldtown, but Sam dashes her hopes by saying he is leaving her at his family home, Horn Hill. Gilly seems accepting, but I’m not sure Sam’s father will make things easy for her.

Bran’s Tower of Joy vision – get hype! Cue people complaining about how it’s not 100 percent like the books. It looks like Arthur’s sword could be Dawn, even if no one explicitly says so. At least they are using some of the book dialogue; considering that the scene in the books was a dream, reality probably would be different anyway.

Ned dispatches one Kingsguard with ease (Oswell Whent?), and then there are four on one. Arthur Dayne proves why he was the greatest swordsman in Westeros. Ned really doesn’t stand a chance, but luckily for him Howland takes out Dayne from behind. Ned finishes the job, although he doesn’t look too happy about it.

We hear a woman (Lyanna!) screaming, then Ned appears to hear Bran. The Three Eyed Crow says it’s time to go, and book fans everywhere are in agony. Guess we’ll have to wait another week or two to see how the rest of this story plays out.

Daenerys makes it to Vaes Dothrak and is taken to the Dosh Khaleen. She is chastised for not coming sooner as it was her duty after Khal Drogo’s death. Daenerys tries to explain that she’s too important to be there, but the head of the Dosh Khaleen puts her in her place. She tells Dany that the khalasars will decide where Dany will go due to her defiance of tradition, and that the Dosh Khaleen is the best she can hope for now.

In Meereen, Varys interrogates the woman who helped the Sons of the Harpy kill Unsullied soldiers. He tells her he won’t torture her, but that she has a choice – tell him everything and receive his help to flee Meereen with her son for safety in Pentos, or be executed for treason. It seems to work, as Varys interrupts a very uncomfortable meeting of Tyrion, Grey Worm, and Missandei to inform them that The Sons of the Harpy is being funded by Astapor, Yunkai, and Volantis – all under control of the slavers. Grey Worm and Missandei vote for violence, but Tyrion wants to send a message first.

In King’s Landing, Qyburn has taken over the management of Varys’ “little birds.” It’s uncomfortable seeing creepy Qyburn around children. Zombie Mountain enters and the kids can’t get out of there fast enough (not that I blame them). Jaime and Cersei discuss Cersei’s predicament and the upcoming trial by combat (which they are certain Zombie Mountain will win), and Cersei tells Qyburn that she wants informers everywhere.

Pycelle is running his mouth about Qyburn and Zombie Mountain in a small council meeting, so of course they walk in and hear it (along with Pycelle’s nervous, uh, emission). Something tells me Pycelle won’t be around much longer. It’s so good to see Olenna back, and the Queen of Thorns doesn’t waste time smacking Cersei down. Jaime and Cersei try to assert their power, but her uncle Kevan is having none of it, and the council members walk out.

Tommen pays a visit to the High Sparrow and similarly tries to assert his authority, but the High Sparrow easily manipulates him. He tells Tommen that Cersei is a liar, but that the Mother’s love shines through her regarding Tommen. He says the gods make their will known, and that Cersei and Tommen have to accept their judgment. Tommen is weak and seems like he will be swayed to the High Sparrow’s side.

Arya has returned to the House of Black and White but the beatings continue. She talks about Arya’s past and is forced to confess that the Hound was no longer on her list. The Waif asks her about the other names on her list and she names Cersei, Gregor, and Walder Frey. I think the Waif is going to be added to the list soon, if she hasn’t been already. Jaqen seems satisfied with Arya/No One’s progress and gives her sight back.

Back in Winterfell, Ramsay receives a visit from Lord Umber (Smalljon I assume). He doesn’t buy Ramsay’s story about Roose’s murder, but pledges to help support him to fight back the wildlings. Smalljon refuses to kneel or pledge an oath, but has brought a gift – Osha and Rickon, and (supposedly) the head of Shaggydog (which looks rather small in my opinion). Either this is all an elaborate ruse, or I really hate the Umbers now.

Back at Castle Black, Jon prepares to execute the traitors who murdered him. Bowen Marsh and Othell Yarwyck seem scared both by Jon’s presence and their impending deaths. Alliser Thorne is without remorse and says he’d do it all again. He stands by his choice and tells Jon his fight is over but that Jon will be fighting forever. Olly looks defiant and doesn’t say a word. Jon looks heartbroken, but resigned to do his duty. He cuts the rope and hangs them all.

Edd says Jon should burn the bodies, but Jon gives him his cloak and tells Edd he should do it, because Castle Black now belongs to him. Jon walks away, saying “My watch is ended.”

Overall, a good episode, and a nice bit of setup for the storylines to come. I think we all needed a breather from the tension and excitement of last week, but I don’t think it will last long.

Kit Harington on Jon Snow’s “Biggest Season” (Spoilers and Speculation)

Entertainment Weekly’s cover story this week features Kit Harington, in which he discusses the hows and whys of Jon Snow’s death and resurrection on Game of Thrones. Kit talks about the difficulty of keeping it a secret from friends and cast mates, and also how season 6 will be Jon Snow’s biggest season to date. The entire article is worth a read – you can pick it up in stores now or order a digital copy here.

There are a couple of tidbits I find quite interesting. Kit states that even after receiving the season 5 script containing his infamous stabbing, he held out hope that he would return since Game of Thrones never resolved the mystery of his parentage. “Why would there be this whole arc about your mother if that was never going to be relevant information because you died before finding out?” Why, indeed.

Kit later states, “There’s one episode this season, which is Jon’s story, that’s the most epic episode we’ve done.” So it appears we will discover who Jon’s mother is (and likely father as well – most of us are sure it isn’t Ned Stark). Since tonight’s episode will feature a vision of the Tower of Joy (you can read my previous post on why that’s so important), is it possible we will finally get the truth?

Mother’s Day would certainly be a fitting day to show the mother of Jon Snow, but unfortunately I think Game of Thrones will tease us and save that reveal for a later time. Hopefully that “epic episode” will be soon, and it will give us the answers we’ve been waiting years to see.

 

The Tower of Joy – What is it and Why Does it Matter? (Potential Spoilers)

Castillo-de-Zafra-or-Tower-of-Joy-Game-of-Thrones

If you have seen the previews for Sunday’s episode of Game of Thrones, then you are aware it will include a vision of a young Ned Stark’s confrontation with some Targaryen soldiers. The soldiers were members of the Kingsguard tasked with guarding Ned’s sister Lyanna, who was being held at the “Tower of Joy” at the end of Robert’s Rebellion.

The story goes that Rhaegar abducted Lyanna sometime after the Tourney at Harrenhal, in which Rhaegar was victorious and crowned Lyanna the Queen of Love and Beauty. He supposedly fell upon her in the riverlands and carried her off to the tower. There are reasons to doubt this tale, however.

Rhaegar was perceived as an honorable man by all who knew him (with the exception of Robert Baratheon who never forgave him for stealing Lyanna from him). Lyanna was independent and impulsive, and she was not happy about being betrothed to a womanizer like Robert. She could have gone with Rhaegar willingly, and one theory (detailed here) suggests Rhaegar may even have rescued her from an increasingly paranoid King Aerys.

Why is any of this important to the current story? Well, the theory commonly called R+L=J suggests that Rhaegar and Lyanna had a child together, and that child is Jon Snow. When Ned finds Lyanna in the tower, she is lying in a “bed of blood,” which is used throughout the A Song of Ice and Fire novels to describe the birthing bed. She then makes Ned promise her something, which many people believe was a promise to keep Jon’s identity a secret and raise him as Ned’s own child.

Now that Jon is indeed back from the dead, his heritage matters more than ever. With Stannis gone, Melisandre needs a new champion. Jon could possibly be Azor Ahai reborn or the Prince That Was Promised – legendary figures who are prophesied to defeat the White Walkers/Others and stop the Long Night (more information on that here).

Jon Snow may not even be a bastard. It’s possible that Rhaegar and Lyanna married in secret (Targaryens had practiced polygamy in the past), which would make him an heir to the Iron Throne. There are numerous hints in the novels about Jon being a king, which are catalogued here. In short, Bran’s vision on Sunday could confirm a theory that has been discussed for almost 2 decades by book readers, and which could have enormous implications for the future of Westeros.

I am incredibly excited to see how this plays out on screen. Do you think we will find out the truth about Jon this Sunday?

Game of Thrones Episode 2 Play by Play (Here Be Spoilers!)

Here is my running commentary of last night’s episode, Home. HUGE spoilers within, so read at your own risk.

10308028-game-of-thrones-saison-6-episode-2-bande-annonce-epique-pour-la-suite-home

It looks like we are kicking things off in the Three Eyed Raven’s cave. It’s good to see Bran back – it appears the two of them received a visit from a barber while he’s been training. Now it’s vision time. Here are young Ned and Benjen Stark sparring under young Rodrik’s tutelage. I love seeing Winterfell during happier times. Yes! We have a young Lyanna riding in on a horse. I hope we get to see more of her this season. There’s young Hodor – no, Wyllis (no, Walder actually. Enough with the unnecessary name changes from the books guys).

Bran wants to stay longer… so do we all. It was good to see the Stark family happy again. And Hodor was talking; I wonder if we will find out what happened to him. Meera is out getting some fresh air. It must get stuffy in that cave. Boring, too. At least it sounds like they will leave the cave eventually, so Meera can have a purpose again.

At Castle Black, Alliser is trying to talk Davos into surrendering. Davos isn’t buying it. I don’t think I would be trying to bust down a door with an angry direwolf on the other side. This won’t end well for the Night’s Watch. Where’s the wildling cavalry when you need them? It’s sounds like there is a giant knocking on the door… Wun Wun is back, and he is pissed. Alliser wants to fight, but the odds are most definitely not in his favor. The guy who shot Wun Wun with that tiny arrow serves as a messy reminder not to fool around with a giant. Alliser’s men wisely surrender except for Olly, who clearly has a death wish.

Off to King’s Landing, where a random commoner is telling raunchy stories about Queen Cersei. I don’t see that going well for him. Cue Zombie Mountain – at least he gave him a quick death. Cersei looks like she wants to unleash Zombie Mountain on the guards who aren’t letting her attend her daughter’s funeral, but she restrains herself. She must be saving that for later.

Poor Myrcella. And poor Tommen losing another sibling. Jaime seems a bit naïve thinking that Cersei wouldn’t have Trystane killed. I wish he would stop defending her already. Has no one told him of Cersei’s crimes yet? The High Sparrow doesn’t seem too intimidated by the Kingslayer, and why would he when he has an army of militants to do his bidding? Jaime seems to finally realize the danger they are in, when the common people no longer support those in power.

Cersei is being very calm during Tommen’s apology – when is the crazy going to come out? Tommen definitely needs to grow a spine, but I don’t think his mother is the best person to look to for guidance. I hope he doesn’t become more like her.

We move on to Meereen and more eunuch jokes. That’s getting a bit old Tyrion. Meereen seems to be in worse trouble than they thought, as the slavers have undone all of Dany’s hard work in Astapor and Yunkai. “I drink and I know things” is now everyone’s new motto, and apparently Tyrion is confident enough in his dragon knowledge to pay them a visit. If the dragons know Missandei why on earth wouldn’t Tyrion take her with him?

Thankfully Tyrion’s plot armor is firmly in place or I’d be worried. Varys wisely isn’t having any part of this crazy plan. The dragons look amazing, and fierce. I really hope they understand the Common Tongue, for Tyrion’s sake. Tyrion tells them the story about wanting a dragon as a boy, and book readers rejoice! Tyrion is able to unchain them without getting burn to a crisp, and we all breathe a sigh of relief.

Time for more stick beatings in Braavos. I think the waif will come to regret this when Arya gets her sight back. Jaqen comes to the rescue, and seems to believe Arya is sincere about being no one. She hasn’t convinced me though, and probably never will.

At Winterfell Roose is looking for a way to fix the damage caused by Sansa’s escape. Ramsay wants to march on the Night’s Watch, but Roose doesn’t agree. He dishes up more criticism to Ramsay, who clearly doesn’t like it. Roose needs to be careful, especially now that Walda has just given him another son (who probably won’t live very long). Apparently neither will Roose – who didn’t see that coming? Good riddance Roose. Robb Stark sends his regards.

Ramsay doesn’t waste any time dispatching the last 2 threats to his brutal takeover of House Bolton. Poor Walda never had a chance. She shouldn’t have set foot in that kennel; I’m just glad that part was heard and not seen. I really can’t wait for Ramsay to die a (hopefully) horrible death.

In the woods and still on the run, Brienne tells Sansa that Arya is still alive. I hope they get to reunite soon. Sansa is reluctant to discuss her ordeal, and Brienne wisely doesn’t push the issue – poor Sansa has been through enough. Theon decides to go home, telling Sansa even taking the black won’t absolve him of his crimes, and that he doesn’t want forgiveness. I hate to see them part ways, and I’m very apprehensive about how Theon’s homecoming will go.

Speaking of home, we see the Iron Islands is still under Balon’s control. He is refusing to give up his plans for conquering Westeros, and Yara clearly isn’t happy. It’s time for Balon to go; he’s outlived his usefulness. It appears his brother Euron agrees, as he returns to confront Balon and throws him into the sea to his death. There will be a Kingsmoot to decide the new ruler, much to Yara’s dismay. How will she react to her uncle’s return? Will her life be at risk as well? Euron has proven he will stop at nothing to get what he wants.

Back to Castle Black, and Melisandre looks defeated. Davos is being awfully kind to her, considering their history. Once he finds out what she did to Shireen, that will definitely change. I’m not sure why Davos is asking her to bring Jon back, since he has never trusted her magic. He must be desperate for a strong and just leader to follow now that Stannis is gone. I’m surprised Melisandre didn’t think of it on her own. She should realize that if Jon comes back, her visions can still happen.

Jon appears very Jesus-like as Melisandre cleans his body. She looks tired and not at all confident, but fingers crossed she can pull it off. The anticipation is killing us all. Melisandre tries, and fails. She is giving up. Come on, open your eyes Jon. Please don’t leave us all hanging for another week…

Everyone leaves except Ghost, and he stirs. Clearly something is happening. Annnnd YES! Finally!! Millions of people are screaming at their TVs right now, and the internet is about to explode! After almost a year of waiting and speculating (and 5 long years for book readers), Jon’s resurrection is confirmed!

If tonight’s episode is any indication, this season is going to be the most exciting one yet. I can’t wait to see what next week holds in store!

 

Games of Thrones Episode 2 Play by Play (Here Be Spoilers!)

Here is my running commentary of last night’s episode, Home. HUGE spoilers within, so read at your own risk.

10308028-game-of-thrones-saison-6-episode-2-bande-annonce-epique-pour-la-suite-home

It looks like we are kicking things off in the Three Eyed Raven’s cave. It’s good to see Bran back – it appears the two of them received a visit from a barber while he’s been training. Now it’s vision time. Here are young Ned and Benjen Stark sparring under young Rodrik’s tutelage. I love seeing Winterfell during happier times. Yes! We have a young Lyanna riding in on a horse. I hope we get to see more of her this season. There’s young Hodor – no, Wyllis (no, Walder actually. Enough with the unnecessary name changes from the books guys).

Bran wants to stay longer… so do we all. It was good to see the Stark family happy again. And Hodor was talking; I wonder if we will find out what happened to him. Meera is out getting some fresh air. It must get stuffy in that cave. Boring, too. At least it sounds like they will leave the cave eventually, so Meera can have a purpose again.

At Castle Black, Alliser is trying to talk Davos into surrendering. Davos isn’t buying it. I don’t think I would be trying to bust down a door with an angry direwolf on the other side. This won’t end well for the Night’s Watch. Where’s the wildling cavalry when you need them? It’s sounds like there is a giant knocking on the door… Wun Wun is back, and he is pissed. Alliser wants to fight, but the odds are most definitely not in his favor. The guy who shot Wun Wun with that tiny arrow serves as a messy reminder not to fool around with a giant. Alliser’s men wisely surrender except for Olly, who clearly has a death wish.

Off to King’s Landing, where a random commoner is telling raunchy stories about Queen Cersei. I don’t see that going well for him. Cue Zombie Mountain – at least he gave him a quick death. Cersei looks like she wants to unleash Zombie Mountain on the guards who aren’t letting her attend her daughter’s funeral, but she restrains herself. She must be saving that for later.

Poor Myrcella. And poor Tommen losing another sibling. Jaime seems a bit naïve thinking that Cersei wouldn’t have Trystane killed. I wish he would stop defending her already. Has no one told him of Cersei’s crimes yet? The High Sparrow doesn’t seem too intimidated by the Kingslayer, and why would he when he has an army of militants to do his bidding? Jaime seems to finally realize the danger they are in, when the common people no longer support those in power.

Cersei is being very calm during Tommen’s apology – when is the crazy going to come out? Tommen definitely needs to grow a spine, but I don’t think his mother is the best person to look to for guidance. I hope he doesn’t become more like her.

We move on to Meereen and more eunuch jokes. That’s getting a bit old Tyrion. Meereen seems to be in worse trouble than they thought, as the slavers have undone all of Dany’s hard work in Astapor and Yunkai. “I drink and I know things” is now everyone’s new motto, and apparently Tyrion is confident enough in his dragon knowledge to pay them a visit. If the dragons know Missandei why on earth wouldn’t Tyrion take her with him?

Thankfully Tyrion’s plot armor is firmly in place or I’d be worried. Varys wisely isn’t having any part of this crazy plan. The dragons look amazing, and fierce. I really hope they understand the Common Tongue, for Tyrion’s sake. Tyrion tells them the story about wanting a dragon as a boy, and book readers rejoice! Tyrion is able to unchain them without getting burn to a crisp, and we all breathe a sigh of relief.

Time for more stick beatings in Braavos. I think the waif will come to regret this when Arya gets her sight back. Jaqen comes to the rescue, and seems to believe Arya is sincere about being no one. She hasn’t convinced me though, and probably never will.

At Winterfell Roose is looking for a way to fix the damage caused by Sansa’s escape. Ramsay wants to march on the Night’s Watch, but Roose doesn’t agree. He dishes up more criticism to Ramsay, who clearly doesn’t like it. Roose needs to be careful, especially now that Walda has just given him another son (who probably won’t live very long). Apparently neither will Roose – who didn’t see that coming? Good riddance Roose. Robb Stark sends his regards.

Ramsay doesn’t waste any time dispatching the last 2 threats to his brutal takeover of House Bolton. Poor Walda never had a chance. She shouldn’t have set foot in that kennel; I’m just glad that part was heard and not seen. I really can’t wait for Ramsay to die a (hopefully) horrible death.

In the woods and still on the run, Brienne tells Sansa that Arya is still alive. I hope they get to reunite soon. Sansa is reluctant to discuss her ordeal, and Brienne wisely doesn’t push the issue – poor Sansa has been through enough. Theon decides to go home, telling Sansa even taking the black won’t absolve him of his crimes, and that he doesn’t want forgiveness. I hate to see them part ways, and I’m very apprehensive about how Theon’s homecoming will go.

Speaking of home, we see the Iron Islands is still under Balon’s control. He is refusing to give up his plans for conquering Westeros, and Yara clearly isn’t happy. It’s time for Balon to go; he’s outlived his usefulness. It appears his brother Euron agrees, as he returns to confront Balon and throws him into the sea to his death. There will be a Kingsmoot to decide the new ruler, much to Yara’s dismay. How will she react to her uncle’s return? Will her life be at risk as well? Euron has proven he will stop at nothing to get what he wants.

Back to Castle Black, and Melisandre looks defeated. Davos is being awfully kind to her, considering their history. Once he finds out what she did to Shireen, that will definitely change. I’m not sure why Davos is asking her to bring Jon back, since he has never trusted her magic. He must be desperate for a strong and just leader to follow now that Stannis is gone. I’m surprised Melisandre didn’t think of it on her own. She should realize that if Jon comes back, her visions can still happen.

Jon appears very Jesus-like as Melisandre cleans his body. She looks tired and not at all confident, but fingers crossed she can pull it off. The anticipation is killing us all. Melisandre tries, and fails. She is giving up. Come on, open your eyes Jon. Please don’t leave us all hanging for another week…

Everyone leaves except Ghost, and he stirs. Clearly something is happening. Annnnd YES! Finally!! Millions of people are screaming at their TVs right now, and the internet is about to explode! After almost a year of waiting and speculating (and 5 long years for book readers), Jon’s resurrection is confirmed!

If tonight’s episode is any indication, this season is going to be the most exciting one yet. I can’t wait to see what next week holds in store!

 

Will Bran Stark’s Visions of the Past Save Westeros for the Future?

With the return of Bran Stark to Game of Thrones this coming Sunday, I have dedicated this character prediction to him. Please don’t read if you want to avoid potential spoilers.

Bran Stark in A Song of Ice and Fire

In A Dance with Dragons, Bran finally finds the three-eyed crow, who turns out to be Brynden Rivers (aka Bloodraven). Bloodraven is a Targaryen (legitimized) bastard, formerly both Hand of the King and Lord Commander of Night’s Watch. He was a spymaster who was also said to dabble in sorcery. He played a key role in protecting the Targaryen dynasty from the Blackfyre pretenders, but was ultimately sent to the Wall for his for his underhanded methods.

We know Bloodraven is extremely powerful, and he has seen this power in Bran. He lures Bran beyond the wall to train him in his gifts, and we assume that they will use these gifts to help stop the Others from destroying humanity. However, Bran’s final chapter in A Dance with Dragons is full of ominous imagery and a sense of fatalism. There is a detailed breakdown here, but we find out that worship of the Old Gods historically involved blood sacrifice and that the Children of the Forest likely practice it still.

Prior to this, the Children of the Forest and the Old Gods seemed to be forces for good which battled against the forces of evil (the Others). Bran appeared to be on an important journey to awaken his gifts for the betterment of humanity, and he still may. But nothing is black and white in A Song of Ice and Fire, so we are left to wonder how Bran’s story will play out – will he be a hero, villain, or something in-between?

I do believe Bran will discover important information about the Long Night, the true nature of the Others, and also about his family and ancestors. He will probably be the vehicle for revealing Jon’s true parentage and the significance it has for Westeros (if any). What is more difficult to determine is how he will use this information.

Bloodraven’s time as Hand and Lord Commander seemed marked by his desire to keep the realm safe and at peace, and to preserve the Targaryen legacy. Are these goals important to him still? We don’t know what he has learned from the Children and from his visions, and – not knowing Bloodraven’s true motivation – we are left to wonder how he plans to use Bran to further his ends.

Bran Stark in Game of Thrones

FullSizeRender

Bran’s role in Game of Thrones seems to be less ambiguous than in the books. From the footage that’s been released so far – and what we’ve learned from interviews – he seems poised to become a powerful warg and greenseer who will use his gifts to try and save Westeros from the White Walkers.

We know that he will see the events at the Tower of Joy, where Ned Stark went to retrieve his sister Lyanna Stark after Robert’s Rebellion was over. Bran will likely discover that Lyanna gave birth to Jon (Rhaegar’s son) and made Ned promise to raise him and keep him safe. Hopefully he will use his power to share this information with Jon prior to his resurrection.

The trailer footage appears to show the White Walkers burning the cave where Bran, Meera, and Hodor are sheltered with Bloodraven. If this is the case, they will need to escape but where will they go? They will be in extreme danger from the weather and the White Walker army. It remains to be seen how they will survive, but if Bran has the knowledge necessary to save Westeros he will hopefully try to find his family. Jon and Sansa (with help from Davos) appear to be on track to unite the North against the Boltons. With the Bolton threat removed, they will need to turn their focus to the threat beyond the Wall –  before it’s too late.

 

Game of Thrones Season 6 Premiere Play by Play (Spoilers, obviously)

Below is my running commentary of the premiere episode, The Red Woman. If you haven’t watched it, please stop reading now.

jon s

Ok, we get it, Jon is dead. Poor Ghost is howling in the distance; you should have kept him close Jon. Davos suspects something is up and goes to look, along with (luckily) some other loyal brothers. Yes, take him somewhere safe – or better yet – take him to Melisandre. Am I the only one who thinks the blood in the snow looks a bit like a dragon? I feel like I’m taking a Rorschach ink blot test – tell me what you see. Poor Edd is ready to fight, but yes please go get Ghost. A direwolf by your side couldn’t hurt.

Poor sad Melisandre – nothing is going the way she planned. Have faith, I think your visions are true; you just need to get better at interpretation. If you bring Jon back he can still fight at Winterfell. Let’s get on that, okay?

Alliser is showing no shame or remorse and telling the entire Night’s Watch what he did. Someone please go Caesar him and the rest of his cronies. Where’s Wun Wun when you need him? At least Davos is making plans; it’s good to see him taking charge. The wildlings will not be happy about this turn of events…maybe Alliser should have killed Jon before they let a wilding army past the Wall.

Poor creepy Ramsay actually seems sad – or more accurately like someone whose favorite toy got broken. Myranda looks pretty good for landing face first. I’m glad to see Ramsay hasn’t become too sentimental – l suppose good meat is hard to come by this time of year. Roose needs to watch his back. You can see Ramsay plotting his murder while Roose is handing out criticism. Walda and baby Bolton probably won’t be far behind.

Run, Sansa, run! Freezing to death in the woods would be infinitely better than going back to Ramsay. It’s good to see Theon (no longer Reek) have a backbone again, and so sweet him hugging her like that – I could see these two get together if it weren’t for him being, well, you know. Theon is willing to sacrifice himself to the Bolton pursuers to save Sansa – how valiant! It’s too bad they didn’t buy it. But no worries, here are Brienne and Pod to the rescue! I’m glad Brienne finally gets to do something useful after staring at a window for season 5. It appears Pod has been doing some training, but not enough. Thankfully Theon comes to his rescue. Brienne swears an oath to Sansa like she did to Catelyn – I hope it works out this time.

Cersei has lost another child, and her performance is so heartbreaking I almost feel empathy for her. She surprisingly isn’t furious with Jaime because she knew it was coming – has she given up and resigned herself to the prophecy being fulfilled? Jaime isn’t having it though and vows to fight their enemies. I really hope they start hating each other soon; that was the best part of his redemption arc in the books.

Poor Margaery is still in a cell, and it looks like Septa Unella is making another enemy. She will regret that one day. The High Sparrow sounds reasonable here – they must be playing good cop/bad cop. He may be swaying Margaery to truly repent and confess, or else she will wise up and play the game.

Ugh, Dorne. Do we really have to see them again? Oberyn was so amazing that he must have sucked the awesome out of the rest of his family. Doran finds out about Myrcella; what will he do to Ellaria now? Ah. Nothing at all, because he’s dead, along with Areo. And with that, a bad storyline just got worse. Yes Ellaria, I’m sure Oberyn would be thrilled you are murdering his family on his behalf.

Cue Trystane on the boat. How did Nymeria and Obara get to him? Weren’t they on the dock when the ship left Dorne? Maybe Gendry showed up in his rowboat. Jaime, you should have kept Trystane as a hostage. He’d probably still be alive. What happens now? Can we just cut Dorne off from the rest of Westeros and pretend it doesn’t exist?

Tyrion and Varys must feel pretty secure in their plot armor to walk around Meereen unguarded. Tyrion cracks a joke at Varys’ expense. Glad to see he hasn’t lost his sense of humor, although his Valyrian could use some work. I see the harpies are still stirring the pot (with some freedmen going over to their side perhaps?). They are apparently setting things on fire too. There goes Dany’s fleet…which opens an opportunity for the Greyjoys to have some significance this season.

Daario and Jorah make an awkward search team. Neither of them deserve Dany –  I hope she comes to her senses. Keep that greyscale covered up Jorah! I don’t see his carelessness with it ending well for Essos (or Westeros if he makes it that far). Of course he conveniently finds Dany’s tiny ring in all that grass. Now what? The two of them will take on a Dothraki horde? Sounds like a great plan.

Speaking of Daenerys – she doesn’t look too happy. These crude Dothraki are going to regret whipping the Mother of Dragons when she unleashes Drogon on them. Dany meets Khal Moro and doesn’t take any of his crap. Fire and blood – she remembers who she is and doesn’t care who knows it. And now Moro knows she is Drogo’s widow, so it’s the Dosh Khaleen for her. At least until Drogon decides to show up and burn them all.

Arya is still blind. The waif takes advantage of it to beat her with a stick. I see her Arya sticking her with the pointy end sometime soon.

Alliser tries to negotiate with Davos, but he isn’t falling for his lies. Just open the door and let Ghost have at him – Ghost is looking rather hungry. It will end with blood all right; hopefully Alliser’s. The brothers are concerned that their fate is in Edd’s hands, but Davos reminds them about Melisandre. I’m shocked that he is putting some faith in her. At least until he finds out she was responsible for Shireen’s death.

Melisandre doesn’t look very confident though… more like defeated (not a good sign for Davos or for Jon). And now the moment the men have been waiting for – Melisandre naked. Until she turns until an old woman; I’m pretty sure the men don’t want to see that. Book readers shouldn’t be shocked that she’s old, but it is surprising to see it revealed, and for what purpose? And of course that’s the end of the show.

I guess they want to keep Jon on ice a while longer. It’s been 5 years for some of us to find out if he comes back – haven’t we waited long enough? Oh well, here’s hoping for next week!

 

 

Will Melisandre Find Redemption and Help Save Westeros?

Happy premiere day everyone! The long wait for Game of Thrones season 6 is finally just a few short hours from being over. In honor of tonight’s episode – The Red Woman – I am doing my character prediction on none other than Melisandre. Love to hate her or hate to love her, no one can deny she is an intriguing character who looks to have a big impact on the story. Possible spoilers below, so read at your own risk.

Melisandre in A Song of Ice of Fire

She first appears in the books under mysterious and villainous circumstances. Most of her actions are seen through Davos Seaworth’s point of view, and he sees her as an evil, negative influence on Stannis Baratheon. Indeed, she does many things that disturb the reader and paint her as an antagonist.

It isn’t until Melisandre’s POV chapter in A Dance with Dragons that we get the opportunity to see inside her head. We then get the impression that whether or not you believe in her cause or her methods, she truly believes in what she does and that it’s necessary to save Westeros from annihilation.

Melisandre’s story ends with her warning Jon about the danger he faces and his impending betrayal. Many readers assume that she will resurrect Jon in the next book, since we have seen this done by Thoros of Myr (another red priest of R’hllor). Unlike in the show, Melisandre did not see this feat being performed, so it’s not guaranteed that she knows about it.

I do believe Melisandre will bring Jon back. Thoros brought Beric back by accident, not knowing it was possible, so it may be a similar circumstance for her. Many think that she will burn Shireen to perform the resurrection (believing she will need king’s blood to give her power). Although this is likely to happen, I don’t see it being done in conjunction with Jon.

The rest of her story is a mystery to me. There are many theories about Melisandre, but it seems to be certain she is much older than she appears (and possibly the daughter of Bloodraven – there is a wonderful synopsis of that theory here). She has seen Bloodraven and Bran in her fires, believing them to be agents of the enemy – perhaps their stories with intersect. I do think she will become a believer in Jon as Azor Ahai Reborn (whether he actually is or not) once he returns from the dead.

Melisandre in Game of Thrones

mel.jpg

Her purpose seems more straightforward on the show – we are clearly set up for Melisandre to resurrect Jon after she witnesses Thoros bring back Beric in season 3, and then she returns to Castle Black in season 5 right before Jon’s stabbing. From the released footage we’ve received, Davos and the other loyal Night’s Watch brothers seem to be protecting Jon’s body for a reason. Surely Melisandre would have shared the possibility of bringing him back.

As much as I would like for Jon to come back in the premiere, I think we might be kept in suspense a while longer. Carice van Houten and Liam Cunningham have said something big happens with Melisandre in the premiere, and that it isn’t what we think. What seems likely is that it will involve something surprising about her – her true age perhaps, or maybe more about her backstory.

I, for one, can’t wait to find out what this season has in store for Melisandre. Will she redeem herself after her failure with Stannis? Will she atone for Shireen? I find her fascinating and look forward to seeing more of “The Red Woman.”

Just 5 hours left – enjoy the show!

 

Page 2 of 4

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén