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Game of Thrones "The Bear and the Maiden Fair" Review: Taking It To the Next Level

Game of Thrones S03E07 "The Bear and the Maiden Fair"

(Apologies for the tardiness! I had to cover news out of the Upfronts all weekend and this morning. It shan't happen again.)

Although it features slave-master melting dragons, a man who shrugs off a sword that slices a foot into his shoulder, and boys who take vision quests for three-eyed ravens, Game of Thrones is just as much a soap opera as it is a fantasy epic. Soapy threads were dangling all over the place in "The Bear and the Maiden Fair," but instead of grossing us out with PDA and kissy faces, the relationship drama added to the tension as important steps towards what's to come. Sure, a siege on a castle is awesome. But when there's an extra layer of motivation to the characters involved, it's even better.

Let's lavish praise on the man who deserves it, George R.R. Martin, who used his one writing credit per season on "The Bear and the Maiden Fair." It's a huge change from his Season 2 effort, the blow-the-shit-out-of-everything "Blackwater," but even that episode had fantastic, insightful character moments–I'm thinking of Cersei in particular–beneath all the madness. Martin is also skilled at using words as daggers, and there were enough one-liners in "The Bear and the Maiden Fair" to make Arnold Schwarzengger jealous. Rather than fill pages with indirect actions and suggested meaning, Martin writes earnestly and directly, and his words created a great episode where its characters laid it all out. He also likes to write in plenty of bare buttocks. My kinda guy.

Let's pray to Death and discuss what happened in "The Bear and the Maiden Fair."


"You won't love him so much when you find out what he really is." – Orell Skinchanger, destroyer of relationships

Mr. and Mrs. Snow are in new territory now, both physically and emotionally. They're on the "wrong" side of The Wall (seeing Ygritte in something that isn't white as far as the eye can see is a punch in the eye) having climbed that icy mountain last week, and they're officially the prom king and queen of the wildlings, their relationship out in the open and hand-holding and all that nonsense in full swing.

And both changes had a deep effect on them. All of a sudden the "you know nothing" reversed and Jon Snow was starting to show that he knew something and Ygritte was the one in a brand-new world. The girl mistook a windmill for a palace, for crying out loud, elevating her just one half-step above the delusional Don Quixote. The abandoned windmill also served as a symbolic middlepoint between the two, just wild enough for Ygritte, but nearly civilized enough for Jon. Jon, on the other hand, was feeling comfortable enough to give Ygritte a sobering history lesson about her people, explaining that Kings Beyond the Wall are oh-for-six in attempted land grabs of the North. And it's heart-wrenching stuff because they're both in denial about the truth of their whole relationship. Jon knew that his plan involved betraying her, and Ygritte–thanks to some counsel from a jealous Orell–knew somewhere deep down that Jon might be a traitor but doesn't have the stones to outright confront him about it now.

"If you attack The Wall you'll die, all of you," Jon said. "All of us," corrected Ygritte, which was about as far as she could broach the subject of Jon's loyalty for fear of losing him altogether. But instead of a blow-out fight or a walk in silence, Ygritte shlurps his face and coos, "You're mine and I am yours, if we die we die, but first we'll live," and Jon agrees. Hokey on the surface, it's actually incredibly powerful stuff and the relationship's defining moment that appears to be setting us up for tragedy, or at least some huge decisions. These two are mad for each other, stuck in a cycle of common sense telling them things will end badly but unable to resist urges cultivated by genuine, wildling girl and royal bastard love. 


"I've seen wet shits I like better than Walder Frey." – The Blackfish

A quick stop with Robb and Talisa revealed that The Blackfish had a fondness for fecal analogies, Catelyn was still none pleased with Robb hooking it up with Talisa, and Robb and I have a hard time concentrating when Talisa is butt-nekkid. I seem to remember her saying something about being pregnant? Congratulations, you two! Start building a picket fence around Winterfell.

But what I can't seem to shake was the letter Talisa was writing to her mom. I'm probably being a bit paranoid, but I just don't trust letters written in foreign languages. Was the letter to mom included just because it was Mother's Day? Or was it something more sinister, like TALISA IS A SPY! She's got all the key components; she has a mysterious past and zero connections to any other character, she's infiltrated the king, and she enjoys rolling around naked. Spies love that kind of stuff. I'm not making a full-blown accusation here, but next time I stare at her ass, in the back of my mind I'll be thinking, "That might be a spy ass." 


"There is power a king's blood." - Melisandre

First things first: how awesome did The Blackwater Bay look? Littered with shipwrecks and rocks with a grand view of King's Landing, this short scene was the series' artists showing off their skills. And I didn't mind at all. Although I do have to wonder why they were sailing North in the Blackwater Bay when Melisandre picked up Gendry in the Riverlands! I mean, they'd have to sail west and around Crackclaw Point, sail South into Blackwater Bay, then sail North back up Blackwater Bay (which makes no sense) just to show Gendry his dad's old house. Who has the time for all that out-of-the-way extraneous travel, especially without Dramamine? (Note: My Westeros geography is shaky at best and I may be totally wrong.)

On the boat, Gendry looked like he wasn't having too bad a time for a guy whose blood was about to be sucked out to make shadow assassins, or whatever Melisandre has planned for him. He was free to roam the deck, and looked like he was more special guest than captive blood bag. At least he finally knows that he's special, as Melisandre told him the truth: his dad was Robert Baratheon. And the way she told him came across as more than just "you're an ingredient for my witch soup," she appeared to believe in him and think he was capable of great things. Do Melisandre's plans for him involve keeping him alive? Will he be used like a Capri-Sun whenever Melisandre has some witchcraft to whip up and needs some king's blood? Does he even know he's talking to his potential future step-aunt? There are lots of questions in this plotline in a good way, and this is a non-book (at least in A Storm of Swords) thread that's extremely tantalizing.  


"The we have 200,000 reasons to take the city." – Daenerys Targaryen, breakin' some chains

One of the coolest things about being royalty in Game of Thrones is you get to just willy-nilly add some titles to your name. For example, if I had a claim to the throne I'd be "Tim Surette, Chugger of Beers and Master of Pajama Bottoms" and no one would be able to dispute that after they saw me on a Sunday afternoon. Same goes for Dany, who was so high on her path of slave liberation that she's now formally known as "Daenerys Stormborn of House Targaryen, Queen of the Andals and the First Men, Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea, Breaker of Chains, and Mother of Dragons." She topples one slave-owning society and suddenly she's "Breaker of Chains." But that's Dany's mindset now. She's got a one-track mind to set all men free, and it landed her on the doorstep of the well-protected and slave-dependent Yunkai.

Of all the versions of Dany–demure wed-for-strategy jailbait Dany, eager Dothraki horse-heart-eating Dany, and clueless dragon-losing Dany among them–ass-kicking arsonist tough-negotiating Dany is right there at the top. She has more confidence than Theon with a sea wench, and more importantly, she has a cause. And while I'm not sure I agree with her tactics of following her beliefs (I prefer long mediating discussions and grassroots educational programs at the source), it sure is fun to watch. The key to an entertaining negotiation is one in which both sides feel they have the upper hand, and that certainly was in play here. The Yunkai emissary tried to buy her off with gold bullion and ships, but he was far from cowering. Dany countered with one heck of a strong arm: she threw raw meat to her lizard pets, a not-so-subtle middle finger to the slave masters. "Just feeding my DRAGONS, bitch," the act said. It was all wonderfully covered in false courtesies before spiraling into plain mutual hate. 

And though Dany won the first battle, there's concern about the war. Yunkai is much more well protected than Astapor ever was, and the element of surprise left when Dany cockily told the emissary what to do. And who are these "powerful people" that Yunkai is in bed with, and do they dragon-seeking missiles? Dany's story is already fifty times better than it was last season (and so far it's much more interesting than the book), and it's also in a fantastic spot with three episodes to go. 


"Death." – Arya Stark

The transformation of Arya Stark from adorable Stark Lil' Sister to Destroyer of Worlds continued, and with Gendry plucked away from her, she's alone for the first time in a long time. It leaves her understandably cranky, especially when The Brotherhood Without Banners sold her friend to a creepy old lady and she's sleeping in caves with a man with an eyepatch. Ned's dutiful blood runs deep within Arya, and she has no time for traitors even if they are funny guys that mean her no direct harm. When Beric asked her what God she prayed to, she said, "Death." And did you see Beric's face? He was all:

So what did Arya do? She ran at the first chance she got! And ran! And ran! And got caught by The Hound! Oh boy, another one of Game of Thrones' wacky pairings coming right up!


"I'm not killing you, just making a few alterations." – The guy from Misfits

At this point, the writers of Game of Thrones are probably regretting writing Theon into this season at all. At the end of every meeting, they're probably saying, "Oh dang, we forgot about Theon. What should we do with him this week?" *silence* And then a particularly messed-up writer says, "We could torture him some more." And because everyone wants to beat traffic, they agree. You'd think it couldn't get any worse for Theon, but it did. Granted this was the sexiest of all the torture scenes, but we can all tell that Theon is a broken man. The man who would stick his willie in a tree knot if he wasn't scared of splinters wanted nothing to do with two naked ladies writhing on top of him, the fear of trickery keeping him (mostly) flaccid. Ah, but his own body betrayed him and by the time it realized the threesome was a ruse to make sure his torturer got all of his privates, it was too late. This was a painful scene for everyone to witness, and something tells me Theon isn't going to be as patient as Varys was with the man who stole his bat and balls.   


"Hodor." – Hodor

It's getting to the point where if Bran shows up on the screen and Hodor is nowhere in sight, I'm going to the bathroom or refilling my beverage. But that little man-child got lucky, because Hodor WAS there, and he was awesome. "Hodor," he said. Oh Hodor, you slay me! 

Other than that, I have to admit it was another Bran the Boring scene, but slightly better than those in the past. Osha livened up the joint was some great backstory about her ex that went out for cigarettes but came back looking pale and really into choking. It may be one of those "I was a victim, too" backstories, but it did so in a way that really made her anger towards Jojen wanting Bran to go into wildling territory searching for deformed birds much more substantial. 

But really what I want to talk about is Osha's appearance. Osha, you've been on this side of The Wall for a while now, how about a shower? Just give it a try.


"We could arrange to have you carried." – Tywin Lannister

King's Landing this week was a lot of "Girl!" this and "Dude" that, with Sansa and Margaery having a chat about making love and Tyrion and Bronn talking about boning. The disparity in tone and language between the two conversations said more about how far this Tyrion-Sansa marriage has to go before either can be comfortable than what they actually said.

It was dear old Margaery who attempted to convince Sansa that Tyrion would make a good husband because he's experienced in the sack, and it was naive Sansa who asked Margaery if that's a good thing and if her mom taught her that the female body is a complex labyrinth that not all men understand. Game of Thrones isn't the type of show to keep the sexual practices of its characters under wraps, but we're still blissfully unaware of Margaery's experience points. Yes she dresses like she can only afford two-thirds of a dress and she was eager to strip down for Renly and make him a man, but we have no concrete evidence of her actually being loose of morals. And that mystery carries over to the rest of her behavior. Is she really as kind as she appears? It seems to be a waste to use Natalie Dormer in a role that's just a nice girl, especially one who is such a ladder climber politically. Yeah, these are the things I think about when watching Game of Thrones. "Is that girl as big a slut as she seems? Hmmm, must investigate." 

Meanwhile, back at Tyrion's stabbin' cabin, the bros were being bros! Bronn laid it out for Tyrion as plain as he could. Do your job, put a son inside Sansa, and keep Shae on the side. These are men talking, it's simple to understand. I have to fit this somewhere, so I'll just talk about the Shae/Tyrion scene right here. Ugh. Shae. Please. Stop. I might call Tywin myself and let him know about her.

But no scene in King's Landing was as delightful as Joffrey sitting ALONE on the Iron Throne and summoning his grandfather Tywin. I know in the opening I said George R.R. Martin was great at getting his characters to speak directly, but Tywin climbing the steps to the Iron Throne after Joffrey whined about climbing stairs to get to the Small Counsel meeting was incredible. "We could arrange to have you carried," he spat, disgusted with this insolent little squirt that's king. It went back to Varys' old monologue about assumed power and actual power. Both Tywin and Joffrey know Joffrey is just a king by name and that Tywin is doing the real work, but they also know that Joffrey can snap his fingers and have Tywin's head on a plate. They're just going to have to tolerate each other.

However, Joffrey did show some regal instinct in asking about "the Targaryen girl"and the threat she posed. And you know what? He's right. Robert knew enough about it to try something, but Tywin can't be bothered with something that's a continent away. How does this regime not have concrete intel on the dragons yet? This isn't Bigfoot or Nessie, Dany is parading these dragons around like they're new shoes. This would be all over the Internet in a matter of minutes today. How has Varys' whispernet not confirmed them to Joffrey? Or is that exactly what Varys wants?


"I owe you a debt." – Jaime Lannister

Though there were a lot of similarities between last week's episode and this week's episode in terms of structure, it was the Jaime and Brienne story that propelled "The Bear and the Maiden Fair" well ahead of "The Climb." The mini-arc picked up in a perfect spot and ended in completely satisfying manner, providing a great short story contained within the episode that had a beginning, middle, and end.

There's so much awful stuff that happens in this show, that when someone does something that remotely resembles honor, it's extra triumphant. Jaime started off the series as a pompous sister-humping jerk and a prime example of Lannister lousiness. And it was deserved. His rivalry with Ned Stark was simplified down to good versus evil but that's only because we saw him within that rivalry, which didn't bring out the best in anybody. It was his journey with Brienne that showed us his true self; he is a man of honor, maybe not to the extent of Ned Stark who, let's be honest, was honorable to a fault.

So when Jaime jumped into a death pit with no regard for his own life and only concerned with paying his debt that he felt he owed Brienne (a Lannister always pays his debts), it was hard to not stand up and cheer. There's a lot more worth in an unreputable character acting unexpectedly in a positive way (just as there's extra disappointment in a good character acting bad) than, say, if Ned Stark jumped into that pit. We'd expect Ned to do it. Although that might not actually be the case if there was some tradition behind it that he felt he couldn't disrupt, as honor and "good" aren't always tied to the same thing. Jaime jumped into the pit because it was the right thing to do. And that speaks to who Jaime is as a person inside. I don't know if I'm saying that Jaime is genuinely a better person than Ned ever was, but the great part of Game of Thrones is that it creates these debates and the side you take is a reflection of who you are.

There's no reference guide to the penance for pushing a boy out of the window, but I'd say Jaime has come pretty close to redeeming himself after he rescued Brienne from the bear pit and Roose Bolton's men. Besides, Bran–who was spying, let's not forget!–got superpowers from his fall, so if anything, Bran probably owes Jaime something now. (Yes, I'm kidding, don't get your doubloon in a bunch.)



WEEKLY POWER RANKINGS

Each week, I'll rank the episodes of Season 3 from best to worst. But remember, these are just my opinions! Feel free to post your own in the comments!

This week:
"The Bear and the Maiden Fair" was a set-up episode for the most part, but I have a confession. I like set-up episodes! In fact, I love good set-up episodes! And this was a good set-up episode. They're so hard to pull off because you have to rely on viewer anticipation, but George R.R. Martin did a fantastic job putting the series in the right spot for the final three episodes. There are still some storylines that are slowing things down, but overall, we're in good shape particularly in King's Landing, in Essos (where Dany is), and near The Wall. I know I'm probably going to put this higher than most people, but I see it as the third-best episode of the season and very close to cracking the Top 2.

1. "And Now His Watch Is Ended" (Episode 4)

Jaime vomited horse pee-pee, Varys crafted a plot to derail Littlefinger's plan to marry Sansa, the Brotherhood Without Banners brought the Hound to trial, Dany got her army with a little trickery, and anarchy took over the Night's Watch. 

2. "Walk of Punishment" (Episode 3)

Dany concocted a plan to buy the Unsullied from their slave master and offered a dragon as payment. Jaime and Brienne found out that being untrue will cost them a lot more than their honor. Tyrion got a new job as Master of Coin, Catelyn attended her father's funeral, Hot Pie said goodbye to Arya, and Jon was headed to the Wall.


3. "The Bear and the Maiden Fair" (Episode 7)

Jon and Ygritte looked at a windmill, Dany brought her dragons to Yunkai at laid down some terms, Robb is going to be a father, and Jaime Lannister became Brienne's knight in shining armor. George R.R. Martin wrote this one.


4. "Kissed By Fire" (Episode 5)

Themes of loyalty and oaths were explored with the help of Bryan Cogman's excellent script, creating an episode unlike most. Jon and Ygritte went hot-tubbing in a cave, Jaime and Brienne went hot-tubbing in custody, and Stannis's dead babies went hot-tubbing in jars. 

5. "Valar Dohaeris" (Episode 1)

The season premiere found Tyrion wondering why he wasn't getting dap for saving King's Landing, Jon getting pledged into the Wildling fraternity, Davos pissing off his friend's girlfriend, and Dany shopping for an army.

6. "Dark Wings, Dark Words" (Episode 2)

We saw Arya, Jaime, and Bran for the first time in this season. But the most exciting parts of the episode were the introductions of the Queen of Thorns, Thoros of Myr, and the Reed super siblings. And we may as well mention that Joffrey got a boner from imagining Margaery killing things, that pervert.

7. "The Climb" (Episode 6)

Jon and Ygritte climbed a big ice cube, and Tywin got his way with the King's Landings marriages. Sansa cried, Edmure was betrothed to one of Walder Frey's daughters, and Gendry was taken away from Melisandre.




NOTES FROM THE RAVENS

– Those dragons are getting older and NOT cuter!

– I wonder what a version of Game of Thrones with long mediating discussions and grassroots educational programs at the source would look like. Probably pretty exciting!

– Watching Ygritte do her impressions of fancy Jon Snow are worth the subscription to HBO alone. "Right foot, left foot, right foot, left foot. Oh you need help remembering that?" Part of what makes the Jon-Ygritte love story work is Rose Leslie's performance. She's fantastic. 

– Wisdom from Bronn: "You waste time trying to be loved, you'll end the most popular dead man."

– Tyrion's attempts to Kobe his upset woman Shae with jewelry didn't work.

– I loved sex tips from Dr. Thormund Giantsbane. "Your cock shouldn't go anywhere near her until she's as slick as a baby seal." "Don't jam it in like you're spearing a pig." And fans of the book will appreciate his trademark, "Har!"

– When Locke argued in favor of having Brienne fight the bear with a wooden sword with, "We've only got one bear," it was very hard to argue with that logic.

– Question to the men running Yunkai: If someone shows up demanding you release all your slaves, is it really smart to show up to the negotiations with a bunch of slaves?


Follow TV.com writer Tim Surette on Twitter if you want to: @TimAtTVDotCom


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It was neat touch the Yunkai messenger mentioned Qarth and Astarpor, he was afraid of her before Dany showed off her dragons, you could tell by the generous offer they made to her.
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To be fair, the Yunkai messenger didn't know she was going to take all their slaves...
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I thought it was kinda smart of him to ask about Daenerys, Joffrey wastes so much time killing Ros with his crossbow, or finding new ways to "shock" Margaery, he loses track of important things like theTargaryen heir or what Stannis is planning to do to retaliate.
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For all of the Joffrey hate, and people saying they hope he gets stabbed/eaten by a dragon/whatever, I think the series would be considerably worse without him. He's just SUCH a bastard (pun not intended). He's practically the only character on the show who isn't portrayed with any redeeming characteristics, but he doesn't really suffer for being a 'comic book' villain. That's testament to the amazing job the young actor is doing. When he does finally get his 'just deserts', I'll be cheering, but I think I'll also be oddly disappointed. There's nothing more fun to watch than a psychopath.
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People want to see him get what he deserves, not disappear from the series.
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Putting him alongside Theon, getting the same treatment would be a good start.
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I was just thinking exactly the same thing.
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Bears aye? Tsk Tsk.
- no idea how to treat a lady.
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True, "bears" don't spend much intimate time with women.
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Tim ... regarding Gendry/Melisandre's scene. You mention that this is a plotline that wasn't in the book. Well it was ... sort of. Gendry's character in the TV show is an amalgamation of two characters from the books (Gendry and Edrick ... both Bastards of Robert Baratheon). Melisandre didn't encounter Gendry in the books ... but did capture Edrick and take him back to Dragonstone to be sacraficed. The essential plotline is in the book. I'm interested in which path this Gendry will take ... follow Edrick's or return to Gendry's (I'm guessing the latter).
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Actually, it wss Strannis who found Edric, not Melisandre. She still wanted to sacrifice the boy, but the same could be said for anyone with royal blood in them, including Stannis's daughter (Shireen), Maester Aemon (son and brother of a Targaryen King) and even the King beyond the Wall's baby (Mance had a wife and a child on the books). Melisandre is far from done this season.
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I would love for Jon to find out Orell has a thing for Ygritte, not in a macho display of testosterone way because I think he's above that, but so that Snow could tell the warg in his face he knows nothing about Ygritte.
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Oh how I would love for someone to make a "Right Foot Left Foot" Ygritte gif.
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Everytime somebody uses the word 'tardiness', the Tardis pops up in my mind.
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No we didn't, 13 episodes ago Jaime didn't even know Brienne of Tarth, 10 episodes ago she was charged with him by Lady Catelyn, only 4 episodes ago he did the first thing remotely honorable (saving her from rape) and 3 episodes ago he told her the reason why he killed Dany's father (he was going to burn every man, woman and child in King's Landing).

Up until 2 episodes ago, the character would've never go back for her, 1 episdo ago we didn't know if he would face Bolton for her, much less a bear.
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And, before the series, he saved half a million people, while sacrificing quite a lot.
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Yet we didn't get it 13 episodes ago, which is whole point. At best we've known it 2 episodes ago, just like Brienne did.
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Meh. Long dragged out love scene with Robb just to reveal she's pregnant, long dragged out sex/torture scene with Theon, Shae acting like a ... well, a hormonal woman, And a pointless back-and-forth with Jaime. Jaime likes Brienne, he isn't such a bad guy after all, he is brave and honorable. We get it. We got it 3 episodes ago.

I'd say this was amongst the worst couple of episodes this season so far.
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Yes, the Robb scene was lame. Shae is always lame. But, the Tywin/Joffrey scene was marvelous, the Jamie/Brienne back and forth was definitely not pointless. The Sansa/Marge scene was great, and Dany's scene was undoubtedly entertaining. Middle of the pack epi, but not bad. If you're looking for nonstop action, not your series.
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I like Maragarey, she's scarily smart and she knows what she's doing the whole time. If if weren't for Dany, I'd wish she would be the Queen.
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How did Melissandre know about Gendry being Robert Baratheon's Bastard? I guess it is explained thoroughly in the books, but i don't recall being any mention of it in the show. To my knowladge the only one's who knew are Ned Stark and Jon Arryn, both of which haven't gotten a chance to tell anyone before being killed.
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She probably saw it in the fire.
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Melissandre doesn't know this in the books. She's never met Gendry in the books. She captured Edrick (another bastard of Robert who was openly acknowledged by Robert) when she killed Renly with her "smoke baby".
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That's a very good question, all the people who knew - Ned Stark, Jon Arryn, Gendry's mother - are dead since season 1. There's no way Melisandre could know unless by supernatutal means (this plot never happened on the books either)
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I believe a lot of people knew who Robert's bastards were. Also all of his bastards look a LOT like him, to the point where they are supposedly instantly recognisable. Gendry is said to be the mirror image of Renly in the books.
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He does kind of look like Renly in a certain light, especially now that he's growing a beard.
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Tim, I believe the implication is that Melisandre went up the Blackwater Rush to get Gendry, not the Trident. At this point in the books, they were near Acorn Hall, which is almost exactly where Blackwater Rush begins. This leads them right by Kings Landing on their way to Dragonstone.
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The only damsel in distress I can think of is Sansa, even Margaery can fend for herself in this show.
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I absolutely hated the Jaime part. The show has enough damsels in distress. We don't need Brienne to be one of them. She should have slayed the bear with a wooden sword and all!

Seriously, the Brienne part was a serious hit to my liking of the character.
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He was helping someone he respects, and to someone he owes a debt... How many grown men must she kill before she passes damsel status?
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mmmm, 3 probably
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How exactly does one slay a bear with a training sword? She's supposed to be badass, not invincible. I hate the implication that just because someone needs help, they are a "damsel in distress". Was Tyrion when he was saved by Bronn during the first season? Was Bran when Kat saved him? Tyrion again, when Pod saved him at Blackwater Bay?

Just because a character is in peril and needs help, doesn't make them a "damsel in distress".
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I see the fact that I was joking about the sword was not obvious. Next time I'll include an smiley.
Of course she couldn't kill a bear (or at least, it is difficult. I think she could have kill him with a lucky hit in the eye).
As a literary character, yes. Every women who needs a man help is a damsel in distress. It's the definition of it.
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And of the tv shows/books GoT has incredibly strong female characters. No one could kill a bear with a wooden sword. In case you didn't notice, Jaime ran from the bear too. So he helped her escape and fled, and she helped him get out of the pit.
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Again, the wooden sword comment was a joke reflecting my dreams. And I was glad she helped him. You don't need to be agressive, I've watched the entire episode.
I still think Brienne shouldn't have been portrayed as needing help...again. He helped her first when the sapphire lie.
And I didn't see any incredible strong female characters. I saw some strong female characters, perfectly plausible, and some f them are really stupid.
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Genuinely didn't mean that comment to be aggressive. Queen of Thorns, Ygritte, Cersei, Danny, Catelyn, they are all incredibly strong women. Look what Danny alone has gone through. Yes there are stupid female characters and weak female characters, but that goes for the men too. I just think that for these types of shows/books (and in more general genres) women are portrayed to be very strong in GoT.
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Ok, I know that Theon did some horrible things, but I'm not a big fan of torture. We could see one, or maybe two scenes, but now is just to fill the episodes and give the guy reason to get paid this season. Specially since in the book 3, Theon doesn't appear. I skip this scenes, it's unecessary to watch.
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If you skipped this one, you missed something pretty important, and I'm not just talking about the naked psycho whores. (They would have to be psychos to keep smiling to the end of the scene).
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In the books you get chapters narrated by Theon in book 5 so we can understand what he went through. And it has much more detail than the show. The show can't do internal monologues, so they have to show what happens him. It's a pretty important transformation of his character.
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I know his transformation is pretty important, but without the monologues, and showing in every episode, is too much torture and too little reflection, do you know what I mean?
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We can't have the reflection until after the fact. I know it's hard to watch, I had to cover my eyes a few times, but I guess I don't see it as pointless because of his story. If they were showing torture for the sake of torture then I wouldn't be happy with it.
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I agree - the scenes are repetitive and not particularly pleasant to watch, but actually showing us how long it's going on for, and how many different horrible ways he's being tortured helps it to sink in how badly he's being abused and (in theory) helps us to have more sympathy for him later. If he just showed up in season 6/7 and said he'd been tortured for ages, all we'd remember of him was that the last time we saw him he killed a couple of innocent kids. They have to properly show, and give a reasonable sense of the scale, because they don't have a narrator or any internal monologues.
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Then again, Jaime hasn't behaved wonderfully towards any other but Brienne. Don't get me wrong: I love it (so far)! But we are yet to find out if the corruption she stopped was Jaime's overall, or just the one spreading from the hand.
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He hasn't had much opportunity to "be the good guy". He's spent the entirety of this series, after the Bran-pushing stage, surrounded by his rivals (Starks... and remember, he hates Ned Stark for accusing him of being a traitor) or his captors.
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He only hated Ned because Catelyn took his brother: Jaime doesn't know Ned didn't give her the order to capture Tyrion because Ned lied to protect his wife in season 1.
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Only two things I canNOT agree with:

1. No matter how wonderfully human Jamie has behaved towards Brienne and others, it is only due to their time spent together (losing hands and all) and of course Brienne's honestly and valor. A good hearted individual is not only kind to his own, but to all. I hope this to be the beginning of change for Jamie but its outrageous to even consider him to be a better person than Ned Stark ever was!

2. Because chugging beers and wearing pajama bottoms come pretty close to birthing Dragons and freeing thousands of individuals out of slavery...like really! haha. SO YES! Anyone that has the ability to free an entire city deserves the title of 'Breaker of Chains' I don't care how ruthless and/or power hungry she may seem, as long as justice is being served, I see no problem with the way she is running things...then again I'm biased because I just love the character!
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It's due to the fact that Jamie respects her.

Jamie sacrificed a lot when he killed the king. In doing so, he saved half a million people. He chose to not defend himself (and, mind you, it was Ned Stark who was responsible for branding him. there sparks his hatred of the Starks. sorry, Bran!)

Then, let's consider the strike against Jamie: pushing Bran. I just went over his thought about the Starks. Of course, it was awful to do what he did. But, let's consider the alternative: Bran tells everybody about the adultery, making King Robert very unhappy... Jamie gets killed, Cersei gets killed, all Cersei's kids get killed, a war erupts as soon as Tywin finds out about it. Well, that is considerably worse, isn't it?

Altogether, not a dissimilar situation to his killing the Mad King.
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Well YES he respects her, anyone that spends that much time with Brienne would...

The Mad King ordered Tywin's head or his own (Jamie)...so was this a sacrifice or an exit strategy?

And I'm sorry but didn't a war erupt anyways?...So NO to me its not 'considerably worse.' Not that I would burn anyone at the stake, but Cersei and Jamie are nasty individuals, and Jamie does not even act like a father to any of his children (not even when no one is looking), so he probably could care less about any of their deaths...
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If I'd have to point out any difference, I would say its the fact Jaime earned Brienne's approval, she didn't just give it to him: he fought tooth and nail to earn it and it means the world to him. I could picture him fighting just as hard to earn the approval of the people whose lives he actually saved. but she was the first and I don't see how he'd ever forget it.
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When Jaime killed the Mad King Aerys he betrayed his oath and now is know as Kingslayer, but he saved thousands of lives, and that is not being 'only kind to his own'. If Ned had been in Jaime's position, he would have been too honourable to break his oath and Aerys would have burnt the city to the ground and the hundreds of thousands of people in it too.
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So you really believe his intentions were pure and the only reason he killed the Mad King was to save King's Landing?

SOO you don't think it had nothing to do with the fact that the King ordered his father's head to prove he was not a traitor? Either way I believe no one still knows the true reason...
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Absolutely, he meant to save those peoples' lives. He knew of the wildfire, and he didn't want it to happen. He may have had additional motivation, sure, but that doesn't change the other fact.
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Why can't his intentions be pure? Why do you doubt it so much? There is nothing wrong with not wanting to kill his father either. He stopped the mad king and what thanks did he get for it.
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I don't think you're giving Ned enough credit. First of all, he wouldn't have been in Jaime's situation, because he would be less willing to serve and protect a psychopath who likes to burn people alive. Second, if he *had* been in that situation, I think he would have handled it the same as Jaime.
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Ned was a "good person" in the sense of being strict to a set of morals. Sticking to a set of principles over seeing the reality of a situation and getting you and your family out of harm's way... is that considered "good"? It surely is "honorable", but I'll take smart over honorable any day.
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Also, Ned knew Robert wasn't a good king, yet he served him, out of "honor". He opposed killing Dany out of honor (which will probably end up being a good thing, but from their perspective, Dany meant pure trouble). Honor gets in the way of rational thinking.
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Now that you mention it, I doubt Ned would stand up and watch while hundreds of people were burned alive, he would've taken the black afterwards but he wouldn't have let the King get away with mass murder.
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Yeh, it's not like she only freed one person... though even then I wouldn't be against the title

She freed 80,000 soldiers as well as however many regular-slaves were in the city. I don't know if we ever got the final tally but I imagine it was more than 80k.
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I think there were 8000 unsullied (plus the ones that were still in training), not 80000. So I think she has probably freed something like 20000 slaves.
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Any episode with Dany and her dragons is a better than one without, IMHO.
I admit to being frustrated when she chose to sack Yunkai instead of going to war and claiming her land, but only because I prefer instant gratification. This show, to me, is all about these men, heroes and villains, fighting and being downright ruthless, sadistic and cruel then insert Dany, mother of dragons, woman of many titles, coming in with her dragons and making things right.

I think of Dany`s quest to free slaves while going on her way to regain her kingdom as good social commentary - work your way to success but dont forget to help others/do charity work. After the way Dany and her dragons played out that satisfying stunt in Astophor. But it took ages to get to that, I guess we are going to have to wait again for her next big power play. LOVED when she randomly and obnoxiously fed her dragons while negotiating with the Yunkai lord. It almost looked like a big exec being confronted by a powerful, rebellious teenager. Cant wait for the dragons to grow!

I could do without Theon torture scenes... I mean, yeah he deserves it, I get it, lets finish him off already and save screen time for stories that actually advance the plot and more key characters. Nudity with his scenes are a little much for me.

Jamie and Bree has me now eager to see where this will go. There is no turning back now, they both did each other a favor, and not in a way that seems easy to say `we are square` after all that they have been through together.

LOL at the scene with Joffrey and his grandfather. I truly believed Tywin was going to slap Joffery`s scowling mug at some point. I loath Joffrey, applaud the actor.

Jon Snow and Ygriette are meh for me. He is too wishy washy and she has this baseless confidence. Compared to the other powerful women on the show, she has displayed little brains and mostly brute strength. Tragedy waiting to happen.

On the contrary I thought Robb and Talisa were sweet, but also think something ominous is lurking beneath all that perfect-wife character.

Margaery and Sansa were great as usual, a nice, genuine break and relief from the darkness and violence going on elsewhere. Sisterly talk in a pretty garden. I hope their friendship lasts.

Arya needs to be cleaned up and have a sword in her hands again soon.

Shae scene - refill time.
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Theon was tortured for weeks and then got his dick cut off. And what bothers you about that scene was that you saw a naked woman?
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All Theon torture scenes in general I can do without going forward.
All of Theons naked scenes, both his and his prostitutes, I could have done without since season 1. Hence `nudity with his sceneS I could have done without`
I did not say what bothers me about that one scene was that I saw a naked woman. (There were in fact, 2 naked women)

In general the whole show could do with less unnecessary violence and nudity. Some of the violence in the show make a point, E.G. Jamie`s hand some of the nudity as well, E.G. I think Dany`s early nude scenes demonstrated how vulnerable she was. We have not seen her in a compromising position since she emerged naked with her dragons from the pyre.

I did not need more scenes of Theon being tortured, did not need to see a drawn out scene with 2 young actresses we will probably never see again get naked to tease him and the implied castration.
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I think this was a fantastic, fantastic episode. I finally figured out what has been bothering me (though not in a bad way) about Dany's scenes since she freed the slaves: the music in the background, the nervous, repeating rhythms, are eerily similar to the Queen of Blades intro movie from StarCraft 2: Heart of the Swarm. Not saying GoT stole the idea, but it's curious that they're so similar.
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This is the best and my favorite episode of the series so far!!!
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Mine too.

Don't get me wrong I've liked the whole season, but this is my favorite episode by far, followed only by episode 2 and then come the rest.
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best part : theon being tortured i hate that guy he simbolizes proud douches and oportunists everywhere
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I so agree....ungratefully jerk deserves to be emasculated. The mind games his captor is playing are insidiously evil.
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He deserves to get killed, but not this.
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I thought the rendition was fitting for the triumph of the Lion of Castemere, Lannisters are responsible for so many things one forget how heroic they can be: Jaime at the bear pit, Tyrion at Blackwater bay, Jaime saving Brienne from rape. Tyrion saving Catelyn from the hill tribes on their way to the Erye, Jaime saving the people of King's Landing from burning at the hands of the Mad King. It's part of the Rains of Castemere tradition too.
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It didn't came from nowhere: Tywin is a giant amongst the lords of Westeros. Plus his wife and mother of his kids must have been a warm and smart lady with a big heart. But when she died the broken giant became a terrible father to the twins and a monster to Tyrion.
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I thought the rendition was fitting for the triumph of the Lion of Castemere, Lannisters are responsible for so many things one forget how heroic they can be: Jaime at the bear pit, Tyrion at Blackwater bay, Jaime saving Brienne from rape. Tyrion saving Catelyn from the hill tribes on their way to the Eryie, Jaime saving the people of King's Landing from burning at the hands of the Mad King. It's part of the Rains of Castemere tradition too.
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That rendition of 'Rains of Castamere' in the end was just breathtaking. One more episode to go before we hear it in its full orchestral arrangement.
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How do you know that?
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It will premiere on iTunes Store, album "100 Westeros Wedding Classics".
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Ok, ok - there was a little misunderstanding then.
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But do we get to hear it in the episode? Because it wasn't in the next episode (Second Sons) - i suppose it will be then in the episode after that (Episode 9 - The Rains of Castamere)
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I was more referring to the episode itself as a full orchestral arrangement (3x09 - one kroe episode to go is the 3x08).
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You should definitely check Irish Moutarde's celtic rock version of The Bear and the Maiden Fair!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zJ0rzsNfmIc
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Thanks! Like this one much more than the other version!
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Jaime showing honour, starting to like him. Another fab episode. Almost felt sorry for Theon too.
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Best thing in this episode, for me, was Sansa's realization (FINALLY) that she's just a stupid little girl with stupid little dreams. I've waited three seasons for this!
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This was a good episode, moved the story along without too much wasted time or effort (and, no, sadistically torturing Lily Allen's kid brother is never either of those).

As someone who has read the books one of the unforeseen enjoyments I get from the HBO series is the ingenious ways in which the writers streamline the sprawl of thousands of pages of source material and a case of characters which, literally, needs its own users guide into fairly compact hour-long doses. Poor, deceased Ros' involvement in key moments was a great example of this as she was able to take the place of any number of secondary or tertiary characters and saved the already overworked casting department some trouble.

The Melisandre and Gendry scene off the coast of King's Landing, however, struck me as the first real poor decision in straying from the source material yet. I'm not complaining about the characters, mind: Gendry's a solid dude, and I never mind me some Red Woman, but sailing within a stone's throw of King Stannis' worst enemies just to be able to make a dramatic reveal to Gendry of his true parentage? Much like Tim asserts, albeit for geographical reasons, it just seemed superfluous, as was actually telling Gendry who he really is. It always struck me that Melisandre is one to play her cards pretty close to her lovely chest, it seemed out of character for her to spill the beans to one of her pawns.

That said, props to the production team on this one, beautiful location shooting partnered with quality visual effects made it a real jaw dropper. Also, I retract any previous comments about Oona Chaplin's Talisa utilizing a butt double, she sure as heck didn't in this one and has thus cemented the title of Best Bum (even the iron throne would melt were she to sit it;)
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Great episode, didn't know George RR wrote it. I definitely feel like I notice things being different from the book, but honestly they all seem for the better.
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I guess it was the lack of “Her name is Brienne," Jaime said. "Brienne, the maid of Tarth. You are still maiden, I hope?" - Her broad homely face turned red. "Yes." - "Oh, good," Jaime said. "I only rescue maidens.” exchange among others.

Don't get me wrong, what we've seen was awesome IMO! But if you expect the memorable one liners from the same scene on A Storm of Sword, you've to read the book. Personally, I think they are both impressive in their own right, but anyone has the right to have its favorite.
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This episode fell a little short for me, and I'm not entirely sure why. I tend to like set-up episodes, but I felt like the previous 2 episodes already acted as that anyway. However, I did like the fact that George R.R. Martin wrote it, because it assuaged any worry I had about the series deviating too far from the books in a few of their plot lines.

For example, on the show, Gendry is absorbing a book character's (Edric Storm) plot line, and when this was first set up last episode, I was nervous about this change. Not because I think the books are sacrosanct; far from it: I actually prefer the TV Series over the books. Most of their changes either serve to make Westeros more palatable (for instance altering ages so that Dany isn't really 14 in that lovely wedding scene) or else they flush out characters we see little of. But I was nervous because I wouldn't put it past Martin to, for instance, write the book-Gendry a major plot line that would clash with Edric Storm's plot simply because he dislikes any alterations to his narrative (he has stated that he's firmly opposed to fan-fic, for instance).

However, knowing that Martin penned this episode was immensely relieving in many ways. He essentially endorsed the direction the show has taken with Margaery, Gendry, and Talisa, which always seemed to me like they could be points of contention with the last two books still unwritten.
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Remember that the set up episodes are pretty much like foreplay. Sure, quickie orgasms are fun, but sex IS better when you've some sweet build leading to a whopping good super O! Same with GOT. The payoff last season with Blackwater was fucking colossal. we all know that these last three episodes will be......watchable, to put it mildly.

In the meantime, I remind you that this episode was loaded with good stuff....the reality check of Ygritte as a wildling bumpkin, Arya's snit leading to her grab by the Hound, Melisandre's coming clean with Gendry (what eyes on that witch!), the fantastic encounter between Joffrey and Tywin, the killer scene between Jaime and Qykin the ex-maester (nice work on that stub! Dayam! What is Cersei gonna do when Bro tries to give her a go with THAT?).....and Bart the Bear, acting his Kodiak ass off when he takes an arrow to shoulder......and I'm not even mentioning Osha's big reveal, Tormund's amazing encapsulated sex ed, and Theon becoming a bro of Varys.....

And you're telling me NOTHING HAPPPENED ON THIS EPISODE?????

I advise a re-watch.
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You must be a guy:P
I prefer multiple orgasms that get better and better--this applied to tv shows as well
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1. Ygritte and Jon - they're so cute together. However, since a word: "happiness" in GoT's dictionary doesn't exist - I'm pretty sure they're doomed. Shame, cause I love Rose Leslie.

2. Dany - long time no see girl! I missed you. I loved your dragons in season 2. They were so cute! Now they just scare me. I don't even want to think how they will look in season 4. Also I suspect that one day Dany will change into a dragon herself.

3. Margaery and Sansa - if we're talking about OUaT I would say I strongly ship Mansa. These girls would make a great pair! They have fantastic chemistry. However, this show is called GoT so I suspect there is no chance for Margaery and Sansa to ever share a bed.

4. Arya - I'm really worried. This girl needs psychotherapy, fast! She's praying to freaking Death. Lord of Light doesn't look so bad now, does he?

5. Jamie - keep doing what you doing and you will become my favorite male character of GoT (especially since Mance was not present in this episode). I really like Jamie with Brienne. It's great he went back for her.

6. Tywin - he's probably the only person who scares Joffrey. And no wonder. When Tywin climbed the stairs I expected Joffrey to scream "Please, don't kill me!". That's what I would do if I were on his place.

7. Theon - no more sex for him? Poor fellla.

Great episode! I can't wait for the next one!
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Noo please don't kill my precious Ygritte..! .. Pretty please.. ? Ok yeah she probably is doomed, but lets hope it doesn't happen this season..
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Arya has been praying to Death since season 1. The whole "There's only one God, and his name is Death. And there's only one thing we say to Death: Not Today" from Syrio, remember?
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I think Arya took Syrio's statement a bit too seriously. Wishing death to your foes is one thing. Claiming that Death is one true god is totally different kind of crazy.
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Gendry has his God, Arya has hers. It's only fair IMO.
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You know how Sydney Bristow ended up? She married Ben Affleck and became housewife. Is that the future you want for Maisie? :P

I hope that if it comes to "Faceless woman" thing writers will use your Scott Bakula's idea. Also I miss the actor who played Jaqen - he was amazing!
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@Mey - for starters this whole faceless thing scares me. Arya following Jaqen's footsteps would probably mean no more Maisie Williams - as Arya would often change faces. Also "Faceless woman" career might be a short one and I don't want Arya to join her father.
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Only till Arya starts to kill for Death (how else could she
celebrate her god?). And since she's mentally unstable I have no doubt it will happen.
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I thought Talisa was writing in Valyrian, hence why we would never read english - a.k.a. the common tongue - in the letter scene.
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Personally i thought this was the worst episode of the season.
Nothing interesting happened at all, they were just setting up the plot for the last 3 episodes.
No great moments, and only the dragons sort of saved the episode from total boredom imo.
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I saw something COMPLETELY different in Talisa's letter. Look at Robb's face in that scene. He is not stupid. He thinks he knows pretty well how this might play out, and he probably does. I think that letter was supposed to signify a hope for the future in the midst of war and how tentatively that future currently stands.
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Osha : How come he always gets to set and chat while we do all the work ?
Hodor : HODOR ?!?!

>>LMFAO<<
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Hilarious indeed!
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Best "Hodor" of the season IMO.
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I don't think being honorable dimishes Ned's heroics: he did lie for his daughters when he said Joffrey was Robert's true heir before they beheaded him. I think that was as brave of him as what Jaime did for Brienne. However, I do believe it dimishes Orell's so called "feelings" for Ygritte, he could say he likes her all the time, but the fact remains that, when it came to his life, he cut her lose and put himself first climbing the Wall.

Jaime hasn't said anything of the sorts, not even once, to Brienne, but when it came to his life he was willing to die with her on a bear pit than to leave Harrenhal without her. Jaime wasn't loyal because it suited him, he doesn't love because it suits him, they weren't willing to let each other die because it suited them, like Orell said. Jaime and Brienne knew it was stupid to argue which one put behind the other in front of a bear, but they did it anyway proving Orell was wrong in the process.
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Okay, I'll be honest. I loved this episode. Sod the Wildlings. I got bored with them pretty quickly. Although Jon and Ygritte were amusing, and I always love to see Tormund. I'm just waiting for someone (*COUGH* Jon Snow *COUGH*) to stab Orell in the eye at the moment. The scene between Joffrey and Tywin was so unbelievably epic. Lannisters get the best one liners. I also loved Bronn and Tyrion chatting away, but I hate Shae so her scene with Tyrion irritated me. At least in the book she was realistic. I mean, in the book she was literally "It's cool. Marry Sansa, knock her up and I'll be happy chilling because I'm a whore so you don't need to worry about it" Literally she was cool with it in the books because she owns what she is. So that scene was irritating to watch. Sansa and Margaery on the otherhand cracked me up. Poor innocent and naive Sansa. Margaery is probably a total slutbag, but she has to pretend to be sweet and virginal because she wouldn't be marrying Joffrey otherwise, and she wants to be Queen. The Tyrells are pretty open about sexuality in general, but Sansa was raised by Catelyn, who's a prude, so you can see the major difference between them. It's quite funny to watch.

I did want to cry for poor Theon. How could they cut off his manhood? The cruelty of that is just horrible. In the books, it's widely suggested that this did happen to Theon. Nobody knew for sure, but seeing as George R R Martin wrote this ep, it's safe to say that Theon got castrated in the books too. The torture arc happened off screen in the terms of the book world, but it's the point that Theon is changing drastically. His whole outlook has done a 10. Think back to when you first saw Theon (be it book or TV show) and think about him pleading for Mercy? It never would have happened. He was a fighter, he was arrogant and he thought he was superior to everyone else. The fact that he's been so broken down that he is willing to cry, beg and plead for his life, or even for his manhood, is rather tragic to be honest. I get the feeling that people will start to feel sorry for Theon. I mean, yes he betrayed Robb, yes he's an idiot because he didn't realise until it was too late that actually he had a pretty good thing going where he was. But does he really deserve the treatment he's getting now?

I did get my Gendry sighting this week. Which I am thankful for. But the promo for next week makes me think I will be finding Melisandre and killing her. But it was rather epic for Gendry to be told that, actually, he's the bastard of a king. I'm disappointed that Arya isn't with him. I like the interactions between Gendry and Arya and I miss their awesome bromance. Arya just had it awesomely this week, what with her blatantly telling the Brotherhood exactly what she thinks about them. "I don't talk to traitors" "I hope the Lannisters kill you all" she was awesome as always. As for her getting snatched by the Hound, I've got an image in my head of her insulting him and him saying something like "Your sister is so much more bangable then you." that would kill me with laughter.

I, however, was waiting for Jaime to run back and save Brienne all episode. Then he went and did it and he did it with style. Like he literally jumped off that horse and RAN to go and save her. He saved her, then he outwitted Locke (who's basically Vargo Hoat of the TV series) and then spat out the epic one liner at the end "Oh, sorry about the sapphires" Classic. I was not disappointed by that at all. I am hoping for Brienne and Jaime to stick together, whether as friends or something else, because I'm a hopeless romantic when it comes to them. But I don't think it'll happen. Still I was very happy with the ending.
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Since I haven't read the books, interesting to see that shae is more nonchalant about Tyrion's betrothal in print than on screen. I'm thinking that even GOT will occasionally pander to modern feminist undercurrents on occasion. That means Shae must feel more scorned and pissy about not getting her romantic Cinderella dream--let's run away and live on a beach somewhere, my love. Actually, her stance in the book WOULD play well with modern female mindset--I'm a ho, and as a ho, I know men to their core better than most women who indulge in silly fantasies (hi, Sansa!) and I'm not surprised at this turn of events and sure, dude, do your duty, I can dig it, here's my number and let me know when you wanna roll on occasion and I'll see if I can squeeze you in and don't forget to bring more gold chains because as a ho I'm certainly not gonna forget what you lannisters are good for.....just don't make them so heavy that they weigh me down as I make my Climb.

But this is a minor quibble......
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Slightly minor, but I'd be taking those gold chains myself. They looked NICE!
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I think the biggest tragedy about Shae is that Tyrion did see her as the mother of his children, accoring to episode he still had planned to grow old with her, have family with her, share a life with her. But Tywin would've killed his children just like Joffrey killed every bastard fathered by Gendry's Dad.
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Yeah but Joffrey killed them because he didn't want any pretenders to his throne. Tywin would kill Tyrion's bastards because he's an ass and he feels like it. (nods)
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I'm not a fan of Orell or Melisandre either (especially since that red biatch took my Gendry from Arya) I'm such a book fan though. I'm hoping that George R R Martin doesn't pop his clogs before he's finished writing the books, because I will be so damn angry if he does. (nods)
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I get what you mean: I'm not the biggest fan of several characters myself (Melisandre and Orell among them), that doesn't mean they don't have some something that makes them tick: Shae just happens to be Tyrion's and I wish they could find a way to make things work for them.
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You make a fair point. However I can't say I'm a big fan of Shae so I can't say I'm too disappointed. LOL!
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It makes it an even bigger tragedy IMO. In any other world, Shae and Tyrion would've had a lifetime together.
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I also enjoyed Jaime getting the better of Locke, but I felt the end of the episode would've been more money if he had nonchalantly tossed him in with the bear...
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Except that that didn't happen in the books. Although the character got his comeuppance in the books sooner or later. I don't know how that will play out in the series though.
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awesome post!
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Uhm... thanks? If you're talking to me. If' you're talking to ElRob above, then I agree. LOL!
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I agree that Gendry finding out about his father was one of the best parts of the episode to me.
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Hey George R R Martin wrote the ep. So It was going to be good. (nods) But I got my Gendry sighting on an epic backdrop so I was happy. LOL!
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Drag. Draggedy Draggson. If it wasn't for Mrs Awesome at the gates of Junkai and Tywin's powerplay I would have had slip into coma. Sansa and Shae have become totally unBEARable. And yes, the bear and the maiden fair and their fight/rescue whatever sucked ass. And we already got it: Jon + Ygritte, super, we need to get deeper into it, more kisses and lovesick crap please! Ugh...
Maybe it serves me right for all the superelevating I did with this show...
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I agree with you. Much of this episode, and the show itself, drags with useless scenes. What makes for good novels may not make good TV. What I found interesting is the Wildings have no knowledge of past attempts at attacking the wall. And how arrogant they are. None of them have ever seen a two story building and now they want to attack a fortress. Who and what have made them so delusional? The rest is filler disguised character development.
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Good point with the wildlings. In the books they have their own history, often wildly different from the history of the "southerners" - I was hoping for a piece of that but it was just Ygritte making fun of Jon's people(again). Yes the wildlings are free folks, but they didn't invent anything in thousands of years and I don't wanna know their infant mortality rate...
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This comment makes me feel sorry for you to miss the real beauty of the show...
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@mey&wiktorgustafs:
Don't pity me, you should know how devoted I am to the cause aehm I mean the song of ice and fire(show and books)! That's not a grinning Richard Gere in my avatar ...
Anyhow, my love for the show doesn't stop me from being critical and impatient. I just fear we all have to endure a whole year with the best still to come. And with that fear chewing at the back of my head can't you understand my fury over two minutes of Talisa butt? It's a fantastic butt yes, but we've seen enough of it already. Same with Sansa and Shae.
And beauty is not everything especially with this show.
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What I reacted most strongly to in your comment was that you said that the bear scene "sucked ass"... if you really love the show you should see the greatness of that scene and not be so extremely hardsh to something with quite fine writing.
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I know, my exaggeration was maybe a little bit unforgiving and unjust. The bear itself was awesome. I'm a spoiled brat when it comes to GoT and almost demand to be overwhelmed - constantly. It's good that you were more than content with this scene in particular but for me it didn't made the cut.
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I too am very confused about geography...especially exactly where Jon and Ygritte are. I thought the nights watch was stationed on the wall which they climbed last week...so where are they? The environment looks jus like where Bran and them are. Plus it was snowy at nights watch but it is like early spring now. Heck seems colder in Winterfell (that's where Theon is right?). I think the dragons are just in their awkward adolescence..
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They crossed the Wall, not Castle Black: Jon may have made it sound like there are thousands of brothers in every corner of the Wall, but its really just the few that left with Mormont to Craster's and the even fewer that remained behind.
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They are in the North, and yes, not too far from where Bran's group are. They had to go further south from the wall, so that they can come to Castle Black from the south as the Night's Watch patrol the wall. Like John said in a previous episode, only 3 castles out of 19 are manned so it's not possible for them to guard the entire wall, hence then crossing at a point where they were unseen. But if they stayed by the wall they would be more likely to be discovered the closer they got to Castle Black.
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Oh and Theon is not in Winterfell, if you remember in the last season Winterfell was burned down and abandoned.
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And his own men betrayed Theon for a pardon.
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I know, but I figured that was why we have only seen that room (and minor spoiler, I haven't read the books, but I peeked) I thought the "Boy" was Bolton's bastard (the guy who so wants Tywin to know he is returning Jamie even though he swore fealty to Robb) who Bolton sent to fix the issue when Robb and everyone heard they had taken Winterfell. I just figured...why move him very far?
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Reading the books definitely helps with following everything that is happening, so much occurs in every episode - I'm not sure I could keep everything straight if I hadn't lol. Though I think it's safe to say, if they had been at Winterfell Theon would most likely have recognised the room, and also the surrounding area when he "escaped". If you know who "Boy" is, then you will know where he is keeping Theon. :)
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Yea... I thought they had climbed the wall already. But i think that was just some big as ice cube, the wall might still be ahead.
I'm probably wrong anyway
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they climbed the wall, i assume so now they can attack castle black from the south. more of a surprise than trying to attack from the north where they're expected.
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I totally forgive your lateness since you included awesome gifs and even a paint job!
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Ok... honestly, i loved this episode, but no way was this a better episode then 'kissed by fire', c'mon!!
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Another great episode and so much happened. I agree that Dany's story is infinitely more interesting that it is in the books, I hope they can continue the momentum with her. Although I do find her to be a bit TOO righteously indignant at times.

Jamie and Brienne again stole the episode. Their story arc has long been my favorite and I love seeing Jamie improve with time, the longer he stays away from his poisonous sister the better he gets. Returning to save Brienne was perfect, how many other men would jump in front of a bear. But then like Jaime said - There are no men like me, only me!

Talisa, I hate this character. I find her so damn irritating and now there's a baby on the way. Be interesting to see how all that plays out. And weren't they on their way to the twins - seems a bad idea to be bringing his new wife there... especially as the pact with the Freys practically fell through because of said wedding.

Bran's storyline is rather boring compared to the rest but he isn't able to walk, so how much could he really do? I would like to see more of the "wolf dreams" though.

Joffrey's face as Tywin loomed over him, priceless. Despite his arrogance the boy king is terrified of his grandfather and rightly so. Perhaps he might have turned out better under Tywin's tutelage! I love the portrayal of Tywin even though I don't like the character, superb acting.

Am also sick of seeing Theon tortured every week, sure no one deserves it more that him but there are other storylines that would benefit more from the time he's getting. Iwan Rheon is awesome though, he plays sadistic just right. I guess the writers just want us to see Theon's character evolution. but seriously, I hope it does not end up with just two more seasons of Theon being tortured!
More+
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I was waiting for the doctor dude to attach a blade to Jaime's stump. Surely only a matter of time?! Had they not killed him off, he could've had a battle to the death with Merle!
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LOL, definitely, the one thing that could make GOT better would be some Michael Rooker action; maybe he could be Theon's long-lost Uncle or something? hahaha
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That would be AWESOME. I'll start a petition....
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After the n-th torture scene of Theon I gave up on my no-spoiler politics and went to the Wiki to read what's in store in the future for him. I must say, it does not bode well for the show's sake...
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If you don't mind telling me, does something actually change soon or is it going to be 3 more seasons of the same?
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cannot really spoiler here, but if you search in the game of thrones wiki the entry on Theon you'll have your answer ;)
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Was hoping for a hint without spoilers of what actually happens but yeah, I do understand, and I care about this plot so little that I may as well look.
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Maybe they'll have the decency to stop showing him for one or two seasons after this one.
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Sorry I thought you wanted more details! :)
At a certain point it will change (but not very soon! unless they invent something to add to it), but it seems to me that his whole story up to book 5 is sloppy, frustrating and boring.
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Actually I LOVE the dragons; they're cute to me. lol.
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Love the dragons too! It is so cute to watch how much Drogon adores Dany... she is really fitting into this mother of dragons role very well.
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Me too! Drogon was practically purring in this episode while Dany scratched his head.
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It was quite obvious that the dragons love her and would do anything for her. I loved that scene.
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Agreed, just because they are bigger and badasses doesn't mean they can't be beautiful, real life bears and fierce too and that doesn't make them ugly IMO.
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Completely agree; the reason I love wolves are because, although predators, they're beautiful animals and their pack mentality is similar to ours as a family. I don't think the dragons are ugly as they get older and bigger - to me they're beautiful. Mind you I love dragons (and wolves), you'd only have to look round my living room to know that. lol!
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Don't get me wrong, I like sex like everyone else...but to mee it felt like this episode was a little too much "sex centered". Like "let's put all of our sex reference and sex scene HERE"...just sayin' ^^
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The sex scenes are just filler disguised as character development.
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That dragon .gif took a second to load and scared the crap out of me while I was in the midst of reading the Notes section. LOL
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Am I the only one who kind of likes the Theon torture scenes? If you have so many characters who are engaged in a saga that will take years, why not let one suffer for a year? I think it's brilliant. The only problem is, that you have to keep it fresh. They failed at that during this episode, but I really liked the excessive form of psychological torture by letting him escape for a while so you can get him back when he thinks he's safe to torture him even more.

Does this make me a bad person?
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No it does not make you a bad person;-)
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I'm totally fine with the Theon torture scenes, mainly because Iwan is killing it as the Boy. Although I did kinda want poor Theon to tell the nymphs something along the lines of, "uh, hey girls, I'm uh, you know, getting tortured here, my little finger just got sliced off, I got my first taste of water in quite some time, I'm completely on edge because I'm scared to death this super creep is gonna return any second, and, well, I'm just not in the mood for a shag right now, you know what I mean?"

But Theon being The Sex Machine, I wasn't horribly surprised when he finally began to respond.......I trust Boy has plenty of soap and gauze handy after completing his Schlongectomy.....
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I hate Theon and am loving Iwan Rheon's totally psychotic "Boy," so I don't mind the scenes one little bit. They are not (yet) nearly as bad as what I imagined from the book.
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I don't hate Theon and even I think the torture is nowhere near as bad as what I imagined from the book
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I liked them at the beginning but now they are becoming tiresome and frankly creepy.
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@ Oh_666: no you're not; personally I couldn't stand Theon, so the torturing is fine with me. Frankly I think broke too soon; but that's just me, I was hoping for a bit more defiance, but then I remember he's just a wimp so what can we expect?
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