Game of Thrones: High Sparrow. The one where they throw the books out the window– like Bran.

This week’s episode shows us what they meant when they said they were changing things from the books. They totally weren’t kidding about that.

Arya

She is striving to become no one yet she is holding onto her anger and her past. She continues her prayers and her hoard of treasures that she gathered since her escape from King’s Landing. Jaqen H’ghar is very mysterious here talking about how A Man behaves and who A Man is. I feel like I should start talking like that. “A Woman needs you to take out the trash.” That works right?

There is a young blind girl– or what appears to be a young blind girl who works there who begins to hit Arya when she questions her. Before Arya can kill her though Jaqen points out to her that Arya cannot become a faceless man while still holding on to her name. This leads Aray to throw away all her belongings– well all of them but Needle which she stashes in a crevice.

I’m so glad they left this scene in– in fact I’m going to just quote the book:

“It’s just a stupid sword,” she said, aloud this time…
… but it wasn’t.
Needle was Robb and Bran and Rickon, her mother and her father, even Sansa. Needle was Winterfell’s grey walls, and the laughter of its people. Needle was the summer snows, Old Nan’s stories, the heart tree with its red leaves and scary face, the warm earthy smell of the glass gardens, the sound of the north wind rattling the shutters of her room. Needle was Jon Snow’s smile.”
― George R.R. Martin, A Feast for Crows

I feel like if she had given up Needle that she would have been lost for good. One other thing that the show hasn’t done well with Arya is show that she’s still having wolf dreams. This whole time she’s been living through her wolf at night– seeing what she sees and killing with her. Unlike Sansa, who lost her wolf, Arya is still connected to the North through her wolf. And through Needle.

Later on Jaqen takes her to learn how to clean the dead and starts her on her journey to become a faceless man. Which is important too, but not as many feels as the scene with Needle.

Margaery and Tommen

First of all– gross. If we want to cover departures from the books this is one of those. In the books Tommen is a whopping 8 or 9 years old and his favorite thing to do is stamping his royal seal on documents. So obviously they don’t consummate their marriage. Actually Cersei tries to frame Margaery later on in the books for cheating on Tommen. She assumes that an older woman would have a sexual appetite and although she might be right– it back fires on her just a bit. So although some of the resulting scenes are hilarious after their wedding night all I could think was– wow that’s disgusting. I know in the show he’s older, but still not that much older.

Margaery is an amazing manipulator though. She takes Tommen’s virginity and then pushes all the right buttons to begin to push Cersei out of the way. Cersei tries to do the same to Tommen the next day, but he turns it around on her. He’s begun talking about sending her away and that scares Cersei more than anything. Sorry mom– I’m pretty sure that the carrot is going to do a lot more than the stick in this instance. And once again even that analogy grosses me out. He’s a little boy.

Cut to Cersei interrupting Margaery talking about all the sex that she had last night with her child husband. Other than the child molestery comments Margaery is perfection. She issues barb after barb in Cersei’s direction. She mentions over and over again how old Cersei is and how she isn’t of any importance anymore. Well played Margaery, well played. Even if you did just have gross sex.

Disgustingly well played

Reek

It rhymes with meek. And grossed out. Poor Theon. The changes to show from the books have actually been in Theon’s favor– I hope for Sansa’s sake that it continues that way.

Sansa

Littlefinger has arranged for Sansa to marry Ramsey Snow Bolton and then stands uncomfortably close to convince her to go through with it. The only thing I can hope is that his speech about avenging her family means that he’s going to take the part of Lord Manderly from the books and is really plotting against the Boltons. After all Roose Bolton had a big hand in killing Caitlin Stark– the woman he truly loved.

This is the first huge departure I’ve seen this season from the books. In the books the Lannisters send “Arya Stark” to marry Ramsey Bolton. The Arya they have is a childhood friend of Sansa though that is just pretending to be Arya. Horrible. horrible things happen to this pretender and her situation leads Jon Snow into making decisions that are detrimental to his health. So I’m curious to see where they are going with this.

But in the show Sansa ends up back at Winterfell and Ramsey’s bitches (his term for them) look on– knowing what her fate will be if she marries Ramsey.

Ramsey and SansaSneak peek from tonight’s episode on Game of Thrones by tvafterdark

Pod and Brienne

We get to hear more of their back stories and we see why these two are how they are. Brienne has been horribly mistreated all her life because of her size and build. Brienne was loyal to Renly because of his actions towards her and I think we all can empathize with that sentiment.

Pod was similarly saved by the Lannisters because of his heritage (Pod is the relative of Ser Ilyn Payne– the King’s Justice who in the books received the Stark’s Valyrian steel sword, Ice. Until it gets melted down into 2 swords that is). He talks of his time with Tyrion with fondness as he’s one of the few  people that has seen Tyrion for what he is worth.

This was a nice scene for all the feels– and to keep us from forgetting about these two.

i can’t get this line out of my head and I kinda keep crying about it

Jon Snow

He’s now the Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch and is still receiving pressure from Stannis to take Winterfell. Stannis then announces that he is going to march on Winterfell and they discuss the fate of the Wildlings. I have to say I was glad when he left though and he talked to Davos. Davos has a similar sense of honor, but with a pirate/smuggler feel to it and I feel like this is the first real conversation Jon has had with any of Stannis’ camp.

We are mostly on par with what happened in the books here with just a little less detail. This is one of the stories that I don’t understand why they are speeding up. Unless it’s just because the scenes at The Wall are dark and depressing.

Jon later splits up duties assigning a few menial duties and naming Ser Alliser first Ranger. He then tries to assign one of the broken down tower to Lord Janos Slynt. Slynt refuses which doesn’t go quite like he expected it to. Jon beheads him there in the yard for all to see. But really what other choice did he have? Here are some more book excerpts to explain the situation better:

Alliser Thorne smiled a thin smile, his black eyes fixed on Jon. At another table, Godry the Giantslayer began to laugh. “As you will.” Jon nodded to Iron Emmett. “Please take Lord Janos to the Wall— ”

and confine him to an ice cell , he might have said. A day or ten cramped up inside the ice would leave him shivering and feverish and begging for release, Jon did not doubt. And the moment he is out, he and Thorne will begin to plot again . And tie him to his horse , he might have said. If Slynt did not wish to go to Greyguard as its commander, he could go as its cook. It will only be a matter of time until he deserts, then. And how many others will he take with him?

“— and hang him,” Jon finished

Of course that’s not exactly how it ended:

“He would not dare to hang me. Janos Slynt has friends, important friends, you’ll see …” The wind whipped away the rest of his words.

This is wrong , Jon thought. “Stop.” Emmett turned back, frowning. “My lord?”

“I will not hang him,” said Jon. “Bring him here.”
“Oh, Seven save us,” he heard Bowen Marsh cry out. The smile that Lord Janos Slynt smiled then had all the sweetness of rancid butter.

Until Jon said, “Edd, fetch me a block,” and unsheathed Longclaw.

Jon really shows off how perfect he is from here on out. Which of course bodes well right?

I totally wouldn’t want to cut someone’s head off.

The High Sparrow

The High Septon is drug out of a brothel naked and made to walk back in front of everyone nude. He goes to complain to the small council and Cersei sees it as an opportunity to put someone in her debt into the High Septon’s place. So she goes to find the “High Sparrow” or the leader of the refugees that have come into the city.

He is a devout man that follows the law perfectly and stands by what he did to the High Septon. She behaves that she totally agrees and has arrested the High Septon and thinks that her and the Sparrows are on the same page. This will be important later.

In the books the High Septon was actually pulled to pieces during the riots and his crown stolen. The church then flounders for a while and shows it’s corruption while trying to find a new High Septon. This leaves it primed for the Sparrows to step in and take control– which they do.

I was shown a theory about the High Sparrow that I had somehow missed and I really really hope that it ends up to be true. I’ll just post it here though and tell me what you think. That would just be amazing.

We also get a glimpse of Qyburn’s project and are given the impression that he’s working on a Frankenstein like monster– which isn’t too far off.

He is special.

Tyrion

He utters his famous last words about how everything will be fine and he’ll blend in. Which of course he doesn’t at all. They take in a speech from the League of Assassins– I mean a Red Priestess and Tyrion of course draws her attention. So they follow that up with a restful evening at a brothel. A brothel that just happens to have Jorah Mormont in it as well. As soon as he can he snags Tyrion and proclaims he’s going to take Tyrion to the Queen. Now some watchlings might hear that and think that Jorah is going to take Tyrion to Cersei so he can reclaim his home and his title. However they’d be hella wrong. That is unless HBO is taking a huge left turn and really changing the story. Jorah is going to try to take Tyrion to Dany and try win her favor back.

As far as what’s happening on the show versus what’s happening in the books they’ve cut out about half a book’s worth of what Tyrion was doing. I’m not really sure why they did that since they are basing these shows on books that are running out of content. You’d think they’d flesh out what material they have instead, but I’m not in charge of this show obviously so I wonder if they are going to bring it around full circle or if this is one of the areas they also make big changes. We’ll see next week!

Cause Jorah just has ball gags laying around. . .for reasons.

Game of Thrones: The Wars to Come. They are deviating from the books?! EVERYONE RIOT!

[S5] After watching the Season 5 premier last night…

So we’ve heard so much about how the books and show are not really going to coincide in the future and people have been upset.  My response? Duh. GRRM is busy looking like a boat captain troll instead of finishing the books. Right now I’m waiting for GRRM to die so Brandon Sanderson can take over the series, finish the rest of the books in about six months and create a better written book then we’ve gotten so far. He did it for Robert Jordan and did a masterful job.

As always though I will hit the highlights of this episode and note any changes/deviations from the book series. Sometimes– like in the case of Sansa– this isn’t the worst thing. BE WARNED!! There are so very many spoilers in this post that if you haven’t read the books or if you haven’t gone down the rabbit hole of the Internet theories you should stop reading this now. I’m going to cover what happened in the show vs what happened in the books and to throw some spoilers on top I’m also going to talk about theories I have.

Maggy the Frog

Maggy is a fortune teller that Cersei and two friends met with in Lannisport. The fortune that Maggy gives Cersei in the show is pretty much what she told her in the books. Of course she thinks that Maggy means that she will marry Rheagar, but obviously that’s not what she meant. She also told Cersei that the “valonqar” would “wrap his hands about your pale white throat and choke the life from you.” Valonqar means little brother in High Valyrian so she of course takes it to mean that Tyrion is going to kill her, but what she’s ignoring is that Jaime is also her little brother. Also Maggy wasn’t super specific about everything so it could just be a younger brother of someone else. However, when it’s all said and done there are so many people that want to kill her it’ll probably be someone we don’t care about that kills her.

The show left out the other friend (who ran away before getting her fortune read anyway) so I would have left her out too, and they left out the friend that was there getting her fortune told. The other girl asked Maggy if she would marry Jaime and Maggy told her she would die that night. It’s implied that Cersei pushed her down a well to die and I feel like she did so because she was interested in Jaime. Cersei wanted to marry Rheagar at this point, but I don’t think she would have ever shared Jaime with anyone.

This fortune telling is very important in the upcoming time period because Cersei becomes obsessed with killing Tyrion because she thinks he will not only kill her, but hurt her remaining children as well.

Tywin’s Funeral

Cersei storms in to see her father and ignores all the people she needs politically. She once again shows that Tyrion is the better Lannister. She lays the blame of Tywin’s death on Jaime’s feet and wants Tyrion’s head to pay for his crimes. She has a big long crazy rant here, but we all knew she was crazy.

The big thing they left out of this part is that he smelled so bad. People were sick during the funeral because he smelled like a sewer. It is possible that Tywin was already poisoned by the Martells and would have died anyway. He also dried out very strangely which made it appear that he was smiling in a crazy manner. Both the smell and the smile hurt the tone of this event and make Cersei even crazier. I do wish they’d left in the smell thing because Cersei showed her craziness even more by blaming the Sisters who prepared the body of trying to harm his reputation.

Tyrion 

OK they take another big departure here, but I think it’s all going to end up in the same place. Last night Tyrion showed up across the narrow sea at an estate with Varys and he’s given the option to stay there and drink himself to death or to go with Varys to Meereen to help restore Dany to her throne. Jokes and quips are made, but he finally agrees to go with Varys.

In the books he ends up at Illyrio Mopatis’ estate and is sent off with people in obvious disguise to meet Dany. Tyrion eventually figures out that one of the people in the crew is an exiled– believed dead Lord and Rheagar’s young son that is also thought to be dead. It is never clear if he’s actually the boy or if he’s a good impostor, but he’s been raised to one day return to King’s Landing to take his throne back. He’s going to Dany though because she has dragons– and a dragon must have three heads after all. Which in my theory world is Dany, Jon and one other person I can’t 100% decide on.

In the books not everything works out as expected (yes– shocking I know), but he still ends up in Meereen. He just isn’t in a position to gain audience with Dany. So sure they’re skipping all that so he can go with Varys and more characters don’t have to be introduced. I get that, but does that mean that Rheagar’s child is an impostor? Or that his storyline isn’t important? Cause if it’s not that is a lot to write about someone that doesn’t matter.

Back with Dany

Dany is destroying the Harpy and is still meeting resistance within this city. This whole story drives me crazy. Dany can’t figure out why she can’t rule. Dany has locked up her dragons. Dany allows the people of the city to push her around and murder her Unsullied. OK here’s the thing. You have dragons– mother of dragons– how about you burn this mother down and then the next city you try to rule will listen to you when you tell them what to do. Quit bowing and scraping and act.

They don’t deviate that much from the books. Dany suddenly becomes weak and uninteresting in those as well. Don’t worry by the end of book 5 she begins to become interesting again.

listdeux was the brains behind this.

listdeux was the brains behind this.

Castle Black

Jon is training young kids and Sam is being mocked. So it’s business as usual. Really what they are doing is setting up what is about to happen with Jon Snow. Some aspects of this story they have sped up and others they’ve slowed down. I’m not really sure why they’ve done this, but I’m not going to spoil too much here. Just Melisandre is a super creeper towards Jon Snow and I don’t understand why her hair looks so dark.

They have Mance Rayder in custody and have told him that he must bend the knee or he will be burned. He chooses the second option and we see him put on a pyre. Jon Snow shoots an arrow into him which interrupts the sacrifice to the Red God and doesn’t please Stannis or any of his crew.

In the books Mance is killed in a similar way, but dies begging for his life and claiming that he wasn’t really Mance. Later Jon Snow finds out that Melisandre has put a spell on Mance and Rattleshirt so they they look like each other and it was really Rattleshirt that was killed. Mance plays a big role later in an attempt to save Arya. So I’m interested if they somehow save this plot line as it was one that made you like Melisandre a little. Right now she’s just a weirdo that likes sex with odd people, gives birth to demon babies and likes fire on an unhealthly level.

Stannis did offer Winterfell to Jon Snow and the hand of the “wildling princess” but Jon turned it down. He wanted Winterfell, but he won’t abandon his vows and he won’t take this thing that should have been Robb’s or Bran’s. Stannis and Melisandre deserve each other.

We’re twinsies!

Sansa and Littlefinger

We see Littlefinger plotting and double speaking about Sansa’s name. I wish that Robin (aka Robert) had been left with someone to be beaten into the ground. It probably would make a man of him. Sadly though in the books Sansa is still playing the part of Littlefinger’s bastard daughter and having to deal with a crying little boy that for some reason is always rubbing on her breasts. I rarely say that I am happy that a show departs from the book, but right now I’m glad I don’t have to see that. I do wish Sansa would grow up though and stop going along with Littlefinger’s plots.

Brienne and Pod

Arya has run off and refused Brienne’s help while Pod is trying to motivate his “knight.” Brienne is kind of a cod to Pod here and all he’s trying to do is help her. This is another departure from the books, but I’m hoping that they will get back to what happens in the books. I won’t say too much about it just in case– but it has to do with zombies, Jaime Lannister and hangings. (Sansa is tantalizingly passing them in a carriage with Littlefinger– I guess to build tension).

Cersei

Cersei is bored at the reception for her father. She’s being forced to listen to everyone talk about how amazing her father was and how no one will ever match his greatness. Instead of taking these at what they are– platitudes– she assumes that they are slights aimed at her. She sees herself as Tywin Lannister the second– only with breasts to better manipulate those around her. Her anger is growing at the arranged marriage that was put in place for Tommen and as her drinking begins to increase so does her quest for absolute power. Now did they say all that in the show? Nope. but that’s what’s happening in the books and that’s what I picked up on through her body language in this episode.

The big thing that happens in this segment is that Lancel (her first cousin whom she had an affair with after Robert’s death– during Jaime’s capture) implies that he might let everyone know about their “unnatural relations” and about how he made sure that Robert was so drunk during his boar hunt that an accident was almost guaranteed. Cersei feigns ignorance, but it’s obvious that this is driving her crazy. It’s yet another area that she doesn’t have absolute control.

This is a understandable departure from the books. In the series he is given the land of Darry and is forced to take a wife. Instead of doing his husbandly duties he chooses to spend all of his time in prayer. Jaime is witness to all of this– and to his wife’s promiscuity during his march to face the Blackfish. Jaime is actually the one who talks to Lancel and hears about the boar hunt and his relationship with Cersei. This just reinforces all the things that Tyrion said to him during his escape. That Cersei was having sex with Lancel, the Kettleblacks and Moon Boy (the last one being a quip, but sticks in his mind). Later– when Cersei requests his return– for reasons– Jamie ignores her because of what she has done. He sees their incestuous relationship as something pure and he’s never desired or taken another woman, but has now found out that Cersei was just using him too for her own gains. This revelation is a big turning point for Jaime’s character and I wonder how they will replace that exchange in the show since Cersei ended up being the one to deal with Lancel.

Creeper of the Year Award

Margaery Tyrell

A couple friends of mine and I watched this as it aired and before the episode started I guessed that we’d see 5 pairs of boobs before the end of the episode, and although we fell short of that I feel like I should be able to add in all the bare butts that we got a view of. This scene opens up on Margaery’s brother Loras and his new lover doing lover-y things and Margaery walks right in and sits on the bed. She claims that she’s hungry and that they are late to see the King, but it’s super awkward. I don’t care that Loras is in there with another man– you don’t walk in on your brother nude with someone else and make yourself a spot on the bed to chat. I get as hangry as the next person, but nope. She seems to be checking out Olyvar just as much as her brother was. They have a brief discussion about Tywin’s death and the impact that that will have on Loras’ engagement to Cersei. Margaery is obviously plotting something. Although a scene not in the books– this is right on target as to what was going on between these two. The only thing I don’t think they have emphasized enough is Margaery’s reputation among court. She’s a woman that was married (to a man that was well known as gay though) and has been wedded to Tommen’s older brother, but as soon as she’s promised to Tommen she adopts a childlike attitude. She’s surrounded by maidens and they occupy themselves with everything that is good and innocent and sweet. That’ll be important later on.

Tyrion and Varys

We see Tyrion in much better shape, but still drinking heavily. They discuss the plan to take Tyrion to Meereen and Varys goal to bring peace to King’s Landing. I’ve talked about this earlier, but any scene with Peter Dinklage should be mentioned again.

Dany in Meereen

She’s still ruling like a queen that has been in power for a long time and not a queen that is struggling for power. Dany is listening to the wrong people and taking the wrong advice. Once again she’s the Mother of Dragons and she has her dragons chained up in the pyramids. She’s so concerned with the dragons killing other people that she’s letting the rebellion kill her people.

My theory is that to control the dragons you have to be able to warg into them a little. Like the Starks control their Direwolves. Dany just hasn’t figured out how to do it on purpose. When she was hurt and alone after their birth she did it by instinct. Now she has lost herself and her power.

Overall I’m not super concerned with their departures from the books because they are going to have to adapt to the fact that they have almost completely caught up with what has been written by GRRM and they need to foreshadow what is coming and we might see things that we don’t understand. I just wish that I could read it before I see it.