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.
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.
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.
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.
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 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
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.