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Game of Thrones S04E08: "The Mountain and the Viper"

If I were trying to dig deep and sound smart about "The Mountain and the Viper," I'd say that the episode was all about characters coupling off and the various results that can come from different pairings. Two men fought, two men reminisced about the old days, two men strengthened their brotherly bond, a man and a woman exchanged eyes during bath time, a man apologized to a woman for spying, and so on.

But really, there's only one pairing that means anything in this world, and that's the partnership between our good friends life and death. And boy did death have its hour in "The Mountain and the Viper"! The episode was punctuated by a brutal fight, but there were plenty of other signs that more death is on the way. That's life in Westeros, and if you haven't figured that out yet, then you might want to get your brain replaced. 

Start burping the Game of Thrones theme, and let's discuss what happened in "The Mountain and the Viper."


"When I'm done with this world, I don't want to come back." —Dolorous Edd


Look, I don't think I'm being too mean when I say that Mole's Town got what it deserved. I mean, at best, it's a town named for furry little dirt-diggers; at worst, it's named after spies or skin cancer. So when a game of Name That Belched Tune was interrupted because Ygritte's gang of wildlings and Thenn dropped by to slaughter the townspeople, it wasn't horrific at all. In fact, it was quite a delight! Mole's Town is just a rest stop on the way to Castle Black, and it's full of scoundrels, whores, and oathbreakers, so the blood spilling and pouring through the ceiling felt practically weightless (as opposed to the emotionally draining final scene). But of course, it was heavy in what it portended. 

As the little rascals of Castle Black quickly realized, Mole's Town getting plundered was a sign that Mance Rayder's army was nearby and yet another reminder that the Wall is too severely understaffed to take on an army of 100,000 men. A whole town was bled out by a couple dozen wildlings and Thenn, what will 100,000 men be capable of? Jon and company are in deep doo-doo, and the devastation in Mole's Town was just a set-up for next week's episode, "The Watchers on the Wall," which looks like it's going to be another big one. And if you want proof, it was directed by Neil Marshall, the small-budget action specialist who directed Season 2's "Blackwater." The chances of it being 60 minutes of Samwell fretting over Gilly are slim. 


"The pillar and the stones?" —Daenerys Targaryen


With all the problems of Slaver's Bay apparently well under control, it was time for the Essos storyline to spend some time on... Messandei and Grey Worm? I still don't know what to think about those two having a romance when Game of Thrones could be spending time on more important things, like ANYTHING else. But the show seems determined to make it a thing that we're supposed to root for, so Messandei got naked in a river. Okay, you've piqued my interest, television show. She had a funny way of being shy about being leered at, too, when she stood up to give Grey Worm a look at her goods for a few long seconds and then played coy. He later apologized, she said it was cool, and they clearly have the hots for each other. Was it cute? Sure. Is it necessary for a story about power dynamics in a sprawling fantasy world? Probably not!

Of more interest was the reveal to Dany that a while ago, Jorah "Ser Friendzone" Mormont was spying on her in exchange for a full pardon from the king (at the time, it was Robert Baratheon). Oops! Obviously Jorah is no longer a spy because he's smitten for Khaleesi, but Dany couldn't forgive him, so she gave him the boot by exiling him. It seemed that Tywin was the man behind the letter that outed Jorah as Tywin continued to build up the Lannisters by chipping away at Dany's strength, which he thinks are her advisors. What's next? He'll send a telegram saying Ser Barristan is old and that Daario was making out with a clone on another show


"Remember what you are, and what you're not." —Ramsay Snow


The Greyjoys may say, "What is dead may never die," but Theon Greyjoy's self confidence is dead and it just keeps dying over and over again. The man is a helpless drone whose free will must've been stored inside his penis, because he continued to do Ramsay's bidding even when he was among his own men and could've easily switched back to serving his own house. This week it was suckering a bunch of sick and tired Greyjoys into surrendering Moat Cailin to the Boltons, only to have the Greyjoy men peeled like bananas in the Bolton tradition of flaying. Oh, Theon! That is not going to go over well with your briney dad. 

But it went over swimmingly with Ramsay's dad, who finally let his bastard son take the Bolton name. And let's face it, it was well deserved. Ramsay went from sociopathic bad apple to conqueror of Moat Cailin and reprogrammer of his enemy's prince son. Ramsay may be Westeros's equivalent of the creepy neighborhood kid who tortures cats, but he gets the job done. 


"Better to gamble on the man you know than the strangers you don't." —Petyr "Littlefinger" Baelish


"The Mountain and the Viper" will be forever remembered for its big fight, but the most meaningful sequence was probably Sansa coming around to Littlefinger's way of doing things. Sansa always gets grief because she's a girly girl in a manly man's world, but when she was forced to make a decision between right and wrong, between the truth and lies, between honor and self-preservation, Sansa proved that she's finally learning how to play the game. She insisted that her teary confession full of semi-truths—which she convincingly delivered to the Eyrie PD—was to save Littlefinger, because without him she would be expendable and unprotected, but her little saunter down the stairs in Maleficent cosplay and that look of confidence on her face led me to believe that she's all in, and ready to embrace her role beside Littlefinger. How far she'll go is yet to be seen (Will she marry Littlefinger? Will she marry *gasp* Robin?), but when a women dyes her hair it's kind of a big deal. I love this Sansa transformation, and she and Littlefinger are quickly becoming my favorite pairing in the show. 


Arya and the Hound must've been making good time, because the duo finally arrived at the Eyrie. And when they got there, they were informed that Lysa had died three days earlier. The look on the Hound's face was priceless, as his get-rich-quick scheme was totally destroyed without Arya's rich auntie to pay a ransom. But it was Arya's laughing hysterics that stole the scene. That little Stark lady has a twisted sense of humor, and seeing the Hound's plan fall apart, even if it was tied to the death of her aunt, was just too funny not to cackle over. Now what does the Hound do? The Eyrie guards know he's got Arya, and there's no one to pay for her. Does he even get out of there without being taken into custody? And will Arya and Sansa finally give us a long-awaited Stark family reunion? 


"Today is not the day I die." —Oberyn Martell


If you're so confident about a fight that you have no problem making a statement like that, you don't have to worry too much about being embarrassed because you're dead. And really, for most of this epic (I hate that word, but it's so appropriate here) duel between the Mountain and Oberyn Martell, it seemed like Oberyn was right. But he was spectacularly wrong. And boy was it tough to watch. But also so good that I've already re-watched it like 20 times! The much ballyhooed one-on-one battle lived up to its hype, and Game of Thrones staged it perfectly, jumping right into the action before we were even ready. There was no touching of the gloves, there were no lengthy introductions. Even Maester Pycelle's pre-fight prayer received the "Wrap it up!" sign from Tywin, and then next thing we knew, Oberyn and Gregor Clegane were going at each other. 

What made the fight so thrilling was everything about it. The stakes were incredibly high (the lives of Tyrion AND Oberyn hung in the balance), the choreography was perfectly realistic (I love how Game of Thrones treats a man wearing plate armor), and Oberyn's repeated screams of "You raped her! You murdered her! You killed her children!" were deeply personal. But my favorite part was the roller coaster ride of crowd reactions. Jaime and Tyrion went from uneasy to hopeful to absolutely crushed, and Cersei went from shocked to smug as the Mountain pulled off a late victory by opening Oberyn's head like a girl popping a zit on prom night. 

Oberyn had the Mountain dead to rights, but then he made the common TV mistake of wanting to end the fight with flair by getting the Mountain to confess. Well, the Mountain did confess, so I guess Oberyn got what he came for, but it cost him the structural integrity of his skull. The reason it was so effective was that Oberyn's fortune turned so quickly that we couldn't believe what we were seeing. And neither could Ellaria, as we saw in a shot that was even more horrifying than seeing Oberyn's brains spilled out on the floor. 

That right there is the image of this episode, if you ask me. 

And so Game of Thrones offs another character, and it's a particularly difficult death to take. Oberyn was a new character who was only introduced this season, but he was already a favorite. In this world full of brutality and suffering, Oberyn was a man of passion with a lust for life. But he suffered the most grotesque demise of the series, proving once again that Westeros is no place for the passionate, and that if you have a heart, Game of Thrones will find it and rip it out. Hopefully by now you understand that's part of being a fan of the show, and in some sick way you appreciate it. I knew it was coming and I'm still devastated.

Now Tyrion has a death sentence on his head, and we're left to wonder whether Game of Thrones has the guts to kill him off, too.



WEEKLY POWER RANKINGS

Each week, I'll rank the episodes of Season 4 from best to worst. But remember, these are just my opinions! Feel free to post your own in the comments!

This week: The last minutes of "The Mountain and the Viper" were absolutely perfect, but the episode stalled just a bit on the way there. Still, Oberyn and the Mountain's fight might have been Game of Thrones' best scene to date.

1. "The Lion and the Rose" (Episode 2)

2. "Mockingbird" (Episode 7)

3. "The Mountain and the Viper" (Episode 8)

4. "First of His Name" (Episode 5)

5. "Breaker of Chains" (Episode 3)

6. "Oathkeeper" (Episode 4)

7. "Two Swords" (Episode 1)

8. "The Laws of Gods and Men" (Episode 6)



NOTES FROM THE RAVENS

– In Westeros, Name That Belched Tune is the easiest game ever. There are only like six songs in all of the Seven Kingdoms!

– I don't have a whole lot to say about Tyrion's chat with Jaime about their cousin the beetle smasher, except that it fortified the bond between the two and reminded us that they're brothers, which might be laying groundwork for things coming up. Will Jaime stand idly by while his brother is set to be murdered? What was your interpretation of their discussion?

– A huge jump in acting from Sophie Turner in this episode as Sansa quit whining and started conniving. Turner hasn't always had the best material to work with, but now she's really showing off her skills.

– The Mountain didn't exactly look dead at the end there, did he? If he did die, wouldn't that mean it was a draw and Tyrion could be free?

– One last round of applause for Pedro Pascal for his performance as Oberyn Martell all season long. I didn't think we saw much of the character in the books, but seeing Pascal play him on screen really made him something special.

– Haha at Maester Pycelle getting played off during his fight introduction. 


Please, no book spoilers in the comments!


Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 6/26/2016

Season 6 : Episode 10

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I don't think Arya was laughing at The Hound's plan failing. I think she just finally broke down at her own misfortunes and "almosts". Every time she thinks she's going to finally be done with this, she finds out another family member has died. I think the ridiculousness of the situation finally got to her.
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I finally watched this.

* I haven't read the books, but Oberyn Martell seems to already know that Tywin Lannister ordered the killing. The Martells have their own kingdom and Oberyn was going to kill all the Lannisters anyway. Killing The Mountain would clearly weaken the Lannisters. He could kill Tywin, Cersie, etc. and then simply go back to Dorne. Maybe he takes Tommen as a hostage.
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I read the books ... I knew it was coming ... I still don't have words for it. I'm devastated.
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`Love George R.R. Martin he writes his characters well but does show that they are judged by their actions (Robb, Ned, Theon) Looking forward to next episode battle can see Jon Snow bowing out not much chance against the huge numbers .On a lighter note if Yigerete is carrying a crow baby I am sure the Christening will be eventful "you're carrying that bastard crow baby " then chaos ensues !LOL
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Tyrion spending 10 minutes of quality Thrones time going on about a handicapped relation who used to kill Beetles? Was that just a filler to get the show to the hour mark. Surely Tyrion would have had better things to be talking to his brother about like for example "Where is that cake with a file inside it?"

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George R. R. Martin, you have killed my favorite character. Prepare to die.
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Some research into the mountain and his capabilities may have been useful. Less wine perhaps? Maybe been a little contented with the demise of the monster that murdered his sister. Who knows, but it was tragic to witness Oberyn let his anger and frustration blur his judgement and allow himself to be killed so easily.

Come to think of it I don't know who was more frustrated, Oberyn with the mountain or me having to watch it.
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If only Oberyn hadn't been so bloody hung up on Mr. Mountain making his confession! That hang up proved to be his undoing. In reality, if you're fighting a guy like The Mountain to the death, and you get him down on the ground and helpless, what do you do? 1--kill him off and find some way to cope with lack of confession at post fight orgy/party? 2--get hung up on making huge goon confess, thereby giving huge goon time to rally, land devastating punch, and squish head like a melon. Smart combatants in real world invariably choose 1. But television characters usually go with 2. Oy vay........
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arghhh, damn you with your last sentence!!
although I wasn't going to do a lot of spoilering..
what I wanted to comment is Sansa and Littlefinger finally becoming the interesting, funny and smart pair of characters they are in the books.
however slimy Littlefinger seems in the beginning, later he becomes one of my favorite characters, and he teaches Sansa to think and to play the game of thrones, and here we finally see that.
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Oberyn ----&jet; lee mode...where the f oberyn learn wushu?
*loved the ep*
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I love the show, but the Mountain and the Viper was just WAY too gory and dystopic for my liking. And it is such a shame that an interesting and likable character just gets killed off...
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There is not harm to kill of a main character now and then to keep us all interested but Oberyn could have been so much more in the show. Its a shame when you think about it.
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yup its a shame. by the way, welcome to game of thrones 101. rule of thumb: kool people get killed. not always, but often enough.

The crushed skull gore was meant to be sickening, and by your reaction, I'd say it served its purpose.

If you really think about it, you see this stuff a lot . youre introduced to someone charismatic or funny, and just as you start rooting for him, he dies by some distasteful or unfair means. often betrayal.
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I love the Viper, period.

No character since King Renly won me over as fast as Prince Oberyn.

He was larger than life, and unforgettable from very first moment I saw him to his final breath.
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The best thing about Sansa in this episode is not just that she has begun to play the game but that she did it in such a Sansa way - she told the truth. As Petyr keeps telling her, no one can be trusted, everybody lies. She has constantly been told that she is a terrible liar, and has admitted it herself, and this is why so many have discounted her as a threat. In this moment, she uses the truth, even if she left parts out - Lysa stepped through the Moon Door, because Petyr pushed her, but they don't need to know that.
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Game of Thrones being what it is, when you say "a man and a woman exchanged eyes over a bath" I instantly pictured a man and woman literally swapping eyeballs.

Also I think there are only three songs in Westoros - the Bear and the Maiden Fair, Raynes of Castamere and the Song of Ice and Fire. Anything else is just variations on those.
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Ok. its been 4 days grieving Oberyn, so now I'm ready to grieve Tyrion: he's so dead!!!

Don't let them kill him Bronn-Jaime-Podrick!
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Still recovering from the feels after Oberyn's fate! That was some sinister laugh by Arya couldn't help but join in and looking forward to this new Sansa.
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Sinister to me was Bolton's "fatherly pride"at Ramsay's slaughter...or that disturbing bath the brand new Bolton suggested to 'Reek' later on.

Even when they are being warm the Boltons are sinister.
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I sometimes wonder, if Mr. Martin reckons himself as the - at the time all-controlling - Mad King (no disrespect intended :D): "Live, die, live, live , die, die, die, die, die, live... no wait: die, die, die, die, die; hm, why not: live; die, die, die, die die, die, die. This is tiresome. Just burn them. Burn them all!." In the end, you kinda gotta pick your poison: Burn to a crisp or freeze to a pop. "Excuse me, dear fellow, when's the next tranit to Braavos?"
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A perplexing question. Whether strictly following the books or TV, or indeed both, did Ned Stark contact Stannis Baratheon informing him of Joffrey being the Lannister child of incest before or after confirming the blacksmith boy as Robert Baratheon's one and only true son? I cannot help but think this is such a crucial element, that would throw the whole story thus far into incredulity. I think I'll have to go and watch the first series again to determine the timeline of choices made. But if Ned Stark had identified and confirmed to himself the blacksmith boy as being... well.. the true King... before anything else, then I just cannot help thinking the story has gone the wrong way completely. Not that the story is bad as it is. On the contrary. I just don't see Ned Stark contacting Stannis - thus initiating that whole war -if he's already identified the blacksmith boy as next true King. That would have been Ned's primary objective, protecting the blacksmith boy, not stirring up the shit with Stannis. Ah, well.
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He can't be king, he's not trueborn. Ned was following Arryn's trail, who was looking for Robert's bastards. By doing so, he discovered that there are no true-born heirs, so Stannis is the rightful king, by Westeros logic. It could never be a bastard.
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Yep, that makes all the sense in the world now. Thanks for clearing that up.
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Its why Bolton recognized Ramsay in this very episode: if he is to be a Warden of the North he needs an heir, not a bastard.
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Cheers. As vicious and as cruel as that boy is, it was almost heartwarming to see him finally get his father's recognition. It's all clear to me now. Bastards don't get butts on thrones. True enough.
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This episode started off dull, but it got much better towards the end.
Poor Jorah, friendzoned to exiled... well played tywin... The grey worm and melesandre thing, eh. As long as it doesn't get in the way of the way Dany runs things, I don't care.
As twisted and a sick pos Ramsey snow has been, I have to admit it was a touching scene that Roose finally called him a Bolton. A son finally getting daddy's praise.
Finally I can say Sansa is no longer useless and helpless. There's hope for her character and makes me wonder if she now has the upper hand in keeping Littlefinger safe for the moment. And wow, that outfit was pretty hot. Almost on par with what Dany wore in the previous episode.
I had to rewatch that moment with Arya. I first thought it was a hysterical/ironic/tragic laugh as in she arrived to a 'safe place' only for another relative to die before she got there. Laughing over the Hound not getting his ransom money does make more sense.
Finally the main fight. It was great, but i kinda expected it to be a little longer. To me the talk about that cousin was kinda pointless to draw on the episode. It was just like the episode Jamie was talking to his cousin while captive before he killed him to try and escape. Maybe there was more context to the message, but i would've skipped it. On the fight, wow! poor Oberyon. That was horrible having his head crushed like a watermelon. Well at least the mountain got a worthy opponent instead of some weakling.
I await next week's ep if it is another 1 hr ep devoted to one battle. I like blackwater as well. I'm not a fan of all the jumping around. I think it would be better to specialize on specific areas at a time, imo.
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*messandei
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I kind of liked that whore in the beginning who was mean to Gilly. Girl went down w/ a fight, at least trying.
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I think Oberyn is the perfect example of what this show does so well. It manages the perfect balance of staying true to the source material while making some changes and additions to improve it for a visual medium. Oberyn was not a highlight of the books for me.. but this Oberyn was a work of art...perfect casting, perfect acting gave this character, his story and therefore his death new depth and meaning....and new levels of horror and disappointment. :/

With the death of yet another well liked character some people have been discussing all the character deaths and how it leaves no one to root for. I got past this years ago when I realised its not a story about a single hero and his journey..its a story about the entire world and how its fate is going to play out. That said the people make up the world an are important even if for a very short time. You can still have favourites though, personally I root for Jon and Tyrion even though I have no gaurantee that both or either of them will survive to the end, knowing GRRM they will probably kill each other on the last page :)


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I'd somewhat argue against that :) Sure, they managed to make Prince Oberyn a fan-fav, but surely not as much as he could have been. He's got a rich backstory that hasn't been exploited; I doubt that many people watching the show, know that he was not only an accomplished fighter, but had also forged some links of his maester's chain before getting bored (an information that could have easily been included). If you look at the reactions, where watchers of the show really get riled up? Yeah, when people die, who'd had a tad more screen time than the extras (in a guesome way), Make an episode where we see the "Faceless Man" getting hacked to pieces, well... go figure.
"My Intelligence is four!! OUTRAGEOUS!!!!"
P.S. Sure as sure love it though :D
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An astute analysis I heartily agree with. In our likeminded-ness, we seem to have the right measure of this epic tale, albeit through the books or TV. But then again GRMM likes to mash it up every now and then, just to see if we were paying attention, or simply just because, and that is always a treat. Just glad to be truly enjoying GoT. It's such a refreshing joy to be anticipating the next great twists in this intricate and wholly entertaining television tale. In centuries to come, they will ask "why did humans invent television?" And the brightest child in the class will answer, "why, for Game of Thrones, of course..." Just me having a giggle, but why the hell not?
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Yes, I agree with you completely. Also Jon and Tyrion are my favorites since day 1. its also awesome how throughout the show they swing us from one character to another in rooting to stay alive, i wanted jamie to die, now i want him to live, not sure on this one yet but bronn and shae im not fans for now, but like you said the depth is ridiculous having like 90+ characters so far, you also get a chance to cheer for a bad guy against another bad guy quite often, so for me this has been by far, hands down, the best show i have watched and thinking to top this show is almost impossible. Just have to add, Sansa is becoming into quite a role? Anyone else loving her moment standing up for petyr?
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How in seven hells have 37 people rated this a poor episode? This had everything GoT is about- shock, intense drama, even by the show's own high standards, an exceptional display of cross-cutting stories. Exceptional, one of the all-time greats, and it wasn't even episode 9!!! Cannot wait for next week
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Those 37 people loved Martell even more than the rest of us.
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My stomach still hurts from seeing my new favorite character get his brains smashed in :/ . No truer statement could be made about Game of Thrones ripping my heart out. Damn you Martin.

Anyway, I'm having some difficulty discerning what happened immeditately after that scene where Sansa and Littlefinger discussed "what he wanted." Was Sansa's "transformation" also an indication that her and Littlefinger hooked up? Or did she just mean she knows he wants power (and not so much hot steamy Catlin roleplay)?
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The one thing Sansa has been consistently throughout, at the expense of being utterly boring, is to be a watcher. Even during the scene that could so easily have been her rape and murder, she was still a watcher as the Hound was the player who saved her. But now, just there in front of our eyes, we witnessed her become a player. Little Finger will be nothing more than a stepping stone for her in tales to come, of that I have no doubt. After all, it's called Game of Thrones, not Watchers of Thrones. And Sansa needs to be a player, or else she needs to go. I just watched her become a player. Exciting stuff...
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They haven't hooked up, yet. (I have no idea if they will or not).
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She basically "let him have it" so I don't see her as a player, but a dumb.
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I really missed the warm and gentle people from beyond the wall. The white walkers would have given us some consolation when everything seems bleak.
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To start, and I know this is irrelevant to the present episode, but the three characters I despise before and after the death of Joffrey are MAESTER PYCELLE, VARYS and PETYR BAELISH... Because, these three crooks are the ones that put Ned Stark to death, and the worst part of it all, that there is currently not many back story about them (not in the movies, especially Varys, like where he gt all his little birds??). It is like they are working together and despise each other at the same time.
Well Petyr had made his progress lately, a person who rarely get his hands dirty will do anything for his lovely Catelyn Tulley... now Sansa Stark. I wonder will he ever love her as Lady Stoneheart.

Now, for this episode, isn't Sansa gorgeous? She is becoming more and more like Cersei or Margery. I have a feeling that she will make good use of Petyr... and i hope one day she will learn that he is the culprit of her family demise.

Now the trial by combat, is indeed a wow factor. But Obi should just kill the Mountain NO QUESTIONS ASK. Afterall, the mountain did not hesitate to kill then. Why Obi want to make a performance out of this? Kill and win. Then Tyrion is safe. Of course we all no that is not the case.
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A tad spoilerish maybe?
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Ok, this episode was perfect in any way.....there was not a single flaw in any scene...ok here go's:

Arya and the Hound. That really made me laugh. I read a interview with Williams and she told that it was actually very hard to do that scene, to laug sincerely at command and the laugh was for the Hound. How he kept saying i don't care about you, just the money and i will collect my money...the look on his face was emmy worthy!! Loved that scene.

Ingritte, you just have to love her. She is really pissed at snow. Wonder about their fight..which i guess will come eventually. he cannot keep hiding in the Wall...Next episode we will have the showdown...how cool will that be...100,000 against 102..and all i care is Snow and Irgritte...kicking some ass..!!! Ncie that she let the Wildling live...showing that she is still human somewhere deep deep deep inside...

Sansa...i just love her. She is like a cat, but with more lives...She has survived everyting that has been thrown at her in this series and i have to say...when she came down the stairs, in that Evil Queen dress from OAUT!! the look on her face, she was awesome...!!!! Wish she knew that her sister is like 2 minutes from her away....damn damn damn...Arya is already completely nuts and now Sansa is becoming darker, that would be a good couple to get revenge on everybody who killed their loved ones.

Jorah..the traitor...somehow i had a feeling. He was wat to slick and to close to her...creepy...i read in a interview, that she really didn't like this scene at all. He was with her from the first season and now he is gone...but i am glad...bye bye...have a nice life...!!

Tyrion and Jaime....that was horrible...sorry to say. I almost fell asleep about the whole beetle story...i didn't see why we had to see that...

Then the battle...OMG OMG OMG....first i was very very impressed by the moves off Oberyn...but then he kept shouting about the rape and confessing and that was a mistake. That made him loose some moments his concentration. Then the giant was down. I was shouting and cheering..till the horrible happened. He got a confession...very nasty one...Jeezzzzzzzzz....
I didn't see that coming at all...honestly...

Did anybody saw the look on Cersei....damn that was pure evil...Poor Tyrion..he cannot die..he is so cool!!! Me sad!!

Fantastic episode!


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Stopped watching when Clegane poked Oberyn's eyes, couldn't watch the rest of the scene. not for the faint of heart. I
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Sansa is finally here !
Looks like redhead can't be evil but brunette can.

Just kidding.
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“Before you embark on a journey of revenge, dig two graves.” -Confucius

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Arya's maniacal laugh seemed more a reaction to the sheer weight of her misfortune and the absurdity of it all rather than the Hound's scheme laid waste.
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I got to say: " Jorahs' dismissal by Dany must probably be the basis for which Dany begins to make some wrong decisions.
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The Lannisters just got rid of one of her 2 most trusted advisors without moving anything other than an old paper signed by Robert.

I can't wait to see how they dispose of Ser Barristan, or Missandei
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Yes, it was a clever move by Tywin.
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I'm just gonna keep this simple, the only thing I could say is: shieeetttt....
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True to form, Game of Throne's realism is not lost in this episode.
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Now I want their own spin off!
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HAhahaha
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As some one who has not read the books, I have to say this story is becoming a bit predictable. It's like politics in Russia if you want to know what is going to happen just ask yourself, "What is the worst possible Scenario?" Within a few episodes it will most likely happen.
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It may seem that way at the moment, but it's not always like that. I'm not sure I thought Joff dying was the worst thing, for instance.
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It's not the fact that he died, that was inevitable considering his general personality. It was how he died. The circumstances lined up, again, to implicate one of the few people with the courage and intelligence to make Westeros a better place. So even when something good happens, we are left with the worst of all possible outcomes.
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I knew that he will loose, but, still, I was very shocked of the way he died.
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Totally agree. I was not surprised that Oby lost. Martin seems to think that anyone who is overly evil or overly good or overly confident deserves (and gets) a commupance. Life is not grey and without passion, but I get the feeling that Martin wanted to create such a world. You have to be calm, level headed and unemotionally attached to succeed in Westereos and to an extent it becomes predictable.
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Did my jaw drop after Oberyn's death? Hell yes, Was it in huge part cause that poor Tyrion in a real shitty position? Yep. I liked Oberyn he was hot, unpredictable and awesome but I love Tyrion he is a great character and I don't want him dead so please show don't murder him.
I loved how much Sansa is wising up.
Wait no more Jorah? what?!
And damn Gilly is either really f*cking lucky or cursed.
Is it me or Tywin has some awesome comedy bits? you know when he bosses people around?
Yeah the whole beetle bit was weird but Jaime and Tyrion together are great.
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I've interpreted Arya's laugh differently. To me she was laughing of the ridiculousness of the situation. Everywhere she goes, her family is dead. It was sort of a crazy laugh to me... and the face on the Hound was more like "WTF is wrong with this family?".
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The Hound had a distinctive "Congratulations Dad, it's a girl!" look to me. This was the first time he realized Arya was his in the unspoken father & daughter way they have been interacting ever since he saved her from the Red Wedding.

Arya has no one in the world but him, and he has no one in the world but her.
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"Arise my fellow Dornish. They killed our Princess and her innocent children; we have waited and pondered and ruminated and we sent our most noble Prince to ask for justice! Was he heard? Was he treated as an equal? Were all Lannister debts paid? No, dear friends, nothing of the kind. He had to seek Justice on his own, and he did so with honour and valour, just to be smashed into a pulp by a creature more beast than man. And that creature shall endure the most ignoble, most painful death the most devious minds could ever devise. Let clever Lord Doran scheme and undermine our enemies spirits, for soon it will be known to every man, woman and child in Dorne; soon the call upon our honour will cut through this oppressive silence: Arise! Arise, brave Dornish, and let our words echo throughout eternity: UNBOWED, UNBENT, UNBROKEN!
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is that in the books or did you make that up?
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Naw, just kinda made it up, though as mori1bund said, they do (uhum, did) like Prince Oberyn very much at home; some would argue, even more than their far more cunnig ruler and the older brother of the Red Viper, Prince Doran. ;) P.S. Also, nothing wrong with a bit of pro-Dornish propaganda; would consider the same for the other "neutral" state, the Vale, but they got this strange "a**holism isn't a pit, it's a ladder"-creep and I really don't like this isolationism for the sake of isolation crap at all. :D. Oh, Littlefinger, always going for the low hanging fruit :)
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I tell you so much: Oberyn is VERY popular in Dorne, and the Dornish people are very angry about his death.
Oberyn wanted justice - now Dorne wants vengeance!
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I was just thinking "please don't tell him about Lancel & Cersei, please don't tell him about Lancel & Cersei, please don't..." the whole story.

As obsessed as Tyrion was with his cousin fascination to kill beetles, I was obsessed with Tyrion not to tell Jaime about cousin Lancel.
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Anyone still crushed by the episode...Here is a pretty cool pic
http://splashurl.com/kjvw7fm
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Thanks for the spoiler. Now, I knoiw tyrion was not killed thanks to you.
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I feel like Tyrion being plagued with why his cousin would kill all those beetles is a metaphor for why George R.R. Martin kills so many characters both in the books and the show.
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I'd read the book and for the whole episode I'd completely forgotten about "you raped her, you killed her", bloody excellent. Definitely one thing that was better on tv than in the book, for me anyway, not so much that event, but Prince Oberon in general. I hardly remembered him from the book, so when he died I didn't care, Tyrion's safety was my concern, but on tv I'd got to like Oberon so I cared about his demise.

Two other things that are different from the books to tv, and this won't spoil anything it's all past events: Strong Belwas not being in the tv version was a mistake, the fact he was a big fat smelly former slave of Mereen who was eating all their food made him expendable to Dani, and in the book you felt real danger that the champion of Mereen would slay him, there was no suspense on tv with Johar or whatever he's called, leader of the Seven Sons, all these names are so similar :-), anyway, he was never going to get killed by Mereen's champion so there was no suspense at all, no tension or elation at the victory ; the 2nd is the timeline, there's a great number of changes, I'm not sure some of them work better than the timeline in the book eg. Dani found out about Ser Jorah before Mereen in the book, and she made him go in through Mereen's sewers, they didn't cover the sewers entry to Mereen on tv like in the book, thought that was odd.
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More talking than action in this one, still good though

Some notes
- It does not make sense for Petyr to leave his fate in the hands of Sansa, that is not compatible with his character.
- Poor acting by Emilia when "firing" Jorah. But we already knew that the acting is not her best asset...
- Poor acting by Maisie when she realized The hound will not get any money. But yes, a believable fake laugh is difficult to pull of.
- I really like Tyrion and Jamies conversations. But the long and boring beetle story was, well, long and boring.
- Pycelle needs to work on his announcing skills, funny when Tywin waved him off stage.
- The fight was not so exciting, it was like watching Harlem globetrotters vs some local team. But Oberyn got cocky and was punished for it. Sorry Tyrion...
- Reek did good. It will be interresting to see where the Bolton family goes from here.
- I liked when Messandei was acting shy, so cute! But her story with Grey worm is a fast forward for me.
- It did not make sense that Ygritte would kill a lot of innocent defenseless people and then spare Gilly (also, anything that could potentially lead to less screentime for Sam is good)
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The arya scene was cool and somehow, I felt the beetles story was gonna or supposed to shed more light on Hodor's character.
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Whatever she said, there's nothing more sad than Ser Jorah solitary ride out of the City...

My poor, poor Jorah
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The fact that a series is based on a book doesn't mean everything in the book must happen in the movie. Please stop spoiling the fun for us just because you read some book. And like Cinema sins would say..."THE BOOKS DONT FUCKING MATTER!!!"
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There should be a special article or place somewhere for people who've read the books to discuss it.
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yeah there is weekly review of the show just like on this website but on A.V. Club. there are 2 separate kinds one for newbies & the other for experts (people who have read the books) Here is the link


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Arya's laugh was breathtaking!!!
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It's lovely. Shame Hot Pie didn't get to listen to it!

Brienne better give her that bread now.
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Something that hasn't been bought up yet is how Tywin sought for Oberyn's (Martell Family's) assistance amidst news of a potential attack on Kings Landing. With the Lannister's short on finances, and lack of any real allies (except for the Tyrells maybe ?).
The Lannisters are in the most vulnerable position ever since the beginning of the show. If Stannis or Daenerys decided to attack now, Kings landing would probably be under new leadership.
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Jorah's dismissal was a lot more dramatic in the book. Dany was more ambivalent. Barristan Selmy has some nerve. He failed the Dragons just as Jorah did, but Jorah's redeemed himself a hundred times over.

Then again, the series producers truncated (with extreme prejudice) the period between the introduction of Selmy and Jorah's dismissal. If I remember correctly , a lot more happened in the interim.
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Absolutely LOVED the nod to the book readers the show threw in there with the BLATANT foreshadowing. I won't say when it happened or by whom, but suffice to say, if you're a book reader and know what's coming, you totally should have caught it! ;)
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ITCHING.TO.GIVE.SPOILERS.
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Why? What is wrong with you? Have you no class? No respect for others?
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relax yourself. I didnt actually give any spoilers. cant really take a joke now can you.
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Hehe I get it. Someone spoiled the ending of season 1 for me. I had to wait a full year so that I could forget that and I started GoT from scratch :D. To be honest though I havent read the books anyway so I wouldnt really have any spoilers to give.
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Jokes are ok! No prob. I just had no way of knowing if you're a joker or a real D-bag who gets off on flinging spoilers about. There are quite a few of those foons lurking about!
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*puke* (perhaps an appropriate comment for this entire episode)
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My favorite part was the talk between Tyrion and Jaime. The episode could've ended there and that would've been all right with me. =)
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They are awesome, whether they are reaction to Oberyn's fight or just talking in a cell about a dead cousin.
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