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April 2019

Game of Thrones/A Song of Ice and Fire

Game of Thrones, Season 8, Episode 2: A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms

April 24, 2019

(this is completely unrelated, but if you aren’t watching Barry on HBO immediately after our medieval murdershow is over you are missing out so much: we binged it over the last couple weeks and it is so weird and so amazing and just watch it, please? I know it’s weird to call a show about a hitman a bit of a palate cleanser, but it is a good gear change to allow you to sleep, if you’re me.)





Guys. GUYS. GGGGUUUYYYSSS. Oh, my entire fandom trash being, I loved this episode. Loved. It. Any criticism I have is minor, and overall I have so few complaints it’s almost not worth writing them down. (I will, obvs, because it’s me, but yeah.) Bryan Cogman, you wonderful genius, thank you for the gift that is this episode.

Plenty of people have said that this episode rides the fine line between enjoyable fanfiction and painful fanservice, and I see how they get there, but I cannot complain because I thought it was a delight. And you may be rightfully saying to me, “but haven’t you complained about fanfiction-y garbage before?” You’re right, I have! So much! All the time, actually! After the material ran out from the books, the show has frequently been lost, and last season was a sterling example. However, the events and dialogue and framing of this episode are not part of the problem. The threads woven from Season 5 to here are an absolute knotted nightmare mess, but if that’s what lands in your lap? This episode is what I want to see.

In fairness, this is coming from a person who was way, way too excited to see Ser Pounce show up and also went a little too hard enthusiasm-wise for the second spotting of Hot Pie, so we know where my standards are. In this episode, they were met and then some.

A lot of people hated that this was “another set up episode” and there was no fighting or action or whatever, and I get it, HBO said we’d have 6 feature-length episodes and we don’t and two are over already. But this show is strongest when you throw characters at each other and let them character, and that was nearly the whole episode, and I loved it. Plus, and uh, not to state the obvious or anything, but the characters in the show don’t know there are 6 episodes total and 4 left. To them, Sunday was it, because they are all dying in the morning. We know that isn’t true because there is show left, but they clearly don’t, and to not allow them to essentially give each other last rites would have been a huge emotional oversight.

And as a prelude to a portion of this post, I call this episode a gift both because I adored it and because many of the worst members of the fandom are Big Mad about it and this is a consumable essential oil of joy for me. I’ll address the specifics later in the post because I’m allowing my positive feelings to avalanche, and I’ll be dividing this in terms of increases in quality. If you’re here to watch me tool on some misogynistic nerds, head to the end of the post.

The actually frustrating

  • I was… not digging the Dany/Sansa conversation of the middle of the episode. I very much dug Sansa’s reaction and Sophie’s acting, I just didn’t really like “I love your brother let’s not fight” as an argument. Sansa legit doesn’t care whether Dany is in love with Jon; she just wants to make sure Winterfell doesn’t starve to death as a result of Jon bringing his girlfriend’s pets home. Her face the whole time was that of a landlord who put a pet clause into the lease but wasn’t specific enough about the kind of pets or the subleasing sections and is just like “dammit I messed up here but in fairness how would I know she’d bring these specific pets.” Sansa and Arya and Brienne are buds and allies now because they want to protect the same thing; Dany is trying to appeal to her like… like a future sister-in-law who met you and immediately made fun of your outfit and then wouldn’t eat the dinner you made because she has a “really sensitive palate.” (For the record this is not my issue and I love my in-laws to the stars I was just trying to paint a picture)
  • Also, pros: sassing the 28-inch inseam sadboi that is Jon Snow by saying “someone taller”
  • Cons: Khal Drogo, like, as a good dude
  • I was sitting there trying to figure out who she was referring to because as much as I love Jason Momoa, the character he played was not a good dude and hella assaulted his wife and is just kind of a mess. Also I think I was hoping she was referring to like, Grey Worm or even better Ser Barristan Selmy Who Deserved Better, and honestly I’m just gonna stop typing this paragraph because I’m fighting a losing battle with this character and this fandom on caring about Drogo and I don’t wanna waste energy here when so much of this episode was good.
  • Again, this is a small flaw in an episode I very liked so I’m not gonna sail to Resentful Island for a week’s vacation; I’m just mildly annoyed by this scene and Dany tbh.

The mildly frustrating

  • I would have liked Dany to hear Jaime (or Brienne, honestly) tell her exactly who her father was and why he needed to die. Part of the compelling nature of Jaime and his redemption arc is that we, the readers/watchers know that what he was blamed for was not a sin; he’s not a good person in season 1, but it isn’t for the reasons everyone else thinks. This may have been a deliberate showrunner choice to allow Dany some Mad-King’s-daughter space later this season, so I’m not passing judgment on it right now. Basically, I would have liked to see it, but Dany has consistently shown tendencies of being at least a little unstable, and if she doesn’t hear how her father was a monster, she might be less inhibited and continue that line of instability. If one of you could check back in on me in May and remind me that I typed this, that would be appreciated.
    • It’s also super possible I just think that the Jaime/Brienne bath scene is some of the best work the show has ever done and I want the story told again but *shrug*

The pretty dang good

  • The conversation between Jaime and Tyrion while strolling through Winterfell was spot-on Lannister vocal shitposting and I liked it a lot. Watching both of them visibly caring about a cause and showing fear while simultaneously trying to not do those things is Peak Lannister, and they wrapped it up very well with the “I wish Dad were here” stinger. I still haven’t completely accepted the diversion of their stories from ASoS and Jaime’s interference with Tyrion’s first wife, but if we cut that plotline out, this conversation is what happens. It was like watching a clip from The Godfather if that movie were a black comedy.
  • Ghost being back. Yeah, it’s fan service and I am a fan and I like to be served things especially giant violencepuppies. GHOST, C’MERE, I MISSTYA BOYYYY
  • Missandei and Grey Worm talking about getting the heck out of the Luke Bryant concert that is the North of Westeros and going to the beach. This of course means that one if not both of them is going to die horribly, but I still love this incredibly sweet pairing, and Nathalie and Jacob are delights. Specifically they both support the heck out of each other, and Jacob recently fought back on the diversity issue of the show: he talked about how there is, of course, a diversity problem, but to tell him “there are no black people on Game of Thrones” drives him up a wall because he is very much on the show and doesn’t like to be forgotten. I’m glad we got this scene, at least, before this show cuts my life into pieces/this is the last cohort
  • The chaotic neutral weirdness that is Tormund Giantsbane. I only recently started to become a bit uncomfortable with his pursuit of Brienne, in that she’s never shown a sign of reciprocating, but there’s a lot of free folk/Seven Kingdoms cultural differences at play there, and while it’s not great, it is compelling as heck to watch. Seeing him tryna pull by telling a story about when he was a lad he ate four dozen eggs every morning to help him get large but the eggs are giantess milk and then he drinks from his weird horn while staring at “the big woman” is just absolute theater. Plus Jon was trying to walk and Tormund wanted to give him a hug so he just beartackled him. I also don’t have high hopes for his survival but he’s been a blast and Kristofer should continue to get work simply off of this deeply weird person.
    • No one’s odd like Tormund
    • Stares at Pod like Tormund
    • Sexes giants like he is a god like Tormund
  • Sandor’s short scene with Arya and Beric was good stuff. I love it when they fight, especially since Arya is one of the few people in this world that Sandor maybe doesn’t completely hate, and I think if he were to die, he’d like Arya to respect him a bit. His line “I fought for you, didn’t I?” was just real good stuff, especially when bookended with his threat to launch Beric off the wall if he kept talking, which he’d absolutely do if Beric bugged him enough. 95% of Sandor is self-hatred, others-hatred, and threats, and the rest is fear of fire/the Mountain and grudging Arya respect. Still holding out for Cleganebowl here.
    • Yes, really, I am, I wanna see them fight
  • The general continuing emphasis on being in the crypts against an enemy that is the dead and can raise the dead. It is comedically ham-handed but I also get it, there’s nowhere else to put these people. Still p amusing.
  • So I’ve fully accepted that John Bradley can basically do no wrong and he’s a perfect Samwell and a perfect human, but he’s just been champion at everything these two episodes. “That’s what death is, isn’t it: forgetting?” is a really good line. His reunion and conversation with Edd and Jon is his small amount of confidence combined with terror coming out, and I can relate: I’d be arguing for my own limited abilities while also cracking a few jokes when it looks like the world is gonna end. When he lists off all the stuff he did it’s like both bragging and weird confession and I just feel that, my guy. Robbin’ the Citadel you an ANIMAL
    • And oof, his giving of Heartsbane to Jorah. Ooooooof. You all know that Jorah the Fedora is far from my favorite and doesn’t deserve a toothpick let alone a Valyrian steel blade, but this scene was a good scene. Sam wasn’t doing this for Jorah; he was doing this for Jeor, who was more of a father to him than Randyll Tarly ever was. And again, this is a deeply Sam Tarly thing to do: if he’s got a chance to try to fulfill a promise he’s made and bring peace to someone right before that person’s (let’s face it) inevitable death he absolutely will. Also Jorah can fight pretty good so it’s better that he have that sword than Sam, which Samwell “Perfection” Tarly knows and has accepted. Jorah is still totally, totally gonna die, he shouldn’t have even been alive vis-a-vis greyscale, and he’s gonna die while whispering “khaleesi” like Bill Nighy’s Davey Jones’ “Calypso’ in the third PotC movie. Yes, I realize that was oddly specific but it is going to happen. *shrug.* I hope he cuts down some of Grandpa Fla-Vor-Ice’s minions before he dies now that he’s got a Tarly sliceyboi.

The really, really excellent

  • Davos Seaworth telling that little girl that she can protect the people in the crypt. Of course, by “really really excellent” I mean that I am nothing but a sponge of tears. How dare you let him meet another little girl with a scar on her face, how actually dare you, he’s looking so hard for something to father and hasn’t come close to finishing his mourning for Shireen and I’m nervous he’s gonna die next week and this scene was perfect and terrible, don’t TOUCH me
    • Plus several people pointed me to this Vanity Fair article that reminded me that Shireen taught both Davos and Gilly how to read and if you need me I’ll be horizontal and making a high-pitched noise till at least Friday afternoon
  • Bran. I know, I know, he’s annoying as seven hells according to me in literally every episode recap since 2014. But his ridiculous, malfunctioning -second edition-iPod-Shuffle personality had stuff to contribute this week and it was wild and it was so wild I just found it hilarious. The Night King put a little tracking device on you and you’re just gonna mention it now? We’re gonna have Theon protect you in the gosdwood for literally no other reason than to make his (also inevitable) death properly Stark-y and redemptive? You just quoted “the things we do for love” back in Jaime Lannister’s FACE which is both an enormous burn and absolutely nothing because you’re a squinty weirdo who can’t feel feelings anymore? Literally the only way this could have gotten better is if someone in the war room just went “okay you keep saying you’re the three-eyed raven but you still only have two eyes so what the fuck, I feel like I’m taking crazy pills”
    • Basically he is bonkers and I’m excited to see that manifest in a plot-advancing way and also I picture the cast trying to keep a straight face when he is saying his lines and just losing it
    • Bran, when done well, can be actually amazing: his Tower of Joy and Hodor backstory scenes from the past seasons were some of my favorites and if they do anything like that next week I’ll actually have a grand old time watching
      • Don’t worry I’ll go back to hating his “dude-who-carries-around-a-notebook-with-no-writing-in-it-at-a-mall” ass the week after; for now, I’m going off the rails on the Brazy Train
  • Theon and Sansa hug! My heart! The only two people who get exactly how horrific Ramsay was trauma-hugging was a very good moment. Again, I can’t stress enough how much I didn’t like what they did with her storyline wrt Ramsay, but since I can’t go back and untangle that misogynist spaghetti, I’m gonna put some quality marinara on it. This is quality marinara.
    • And if everyone could stop shipping them together that’d be A+ because Theon is going to die, and he’s going to die next week, and if I’m wrong you can legit come to my house and throw an octopus at me
      • Yes, of course the octopus is a small kraken
      • What is wet will never dry
  • Podrick. Podrick’s face; Podrick’s looking to Brienne like she is his mother and he did good at fighting today, look, Mom, did you see me hit that guy, Mom, look, MOM; Podrick singing “Jenny’s Song.” Daniel flippin’ Portman you wonderful human, that SONG.
    • I’m sorry y’all I gotta nerd out here about the song I’m sorry
    • “Jenny’s Song” is about Jenny of Oldstones, who married Duncan Targaryen, the son of Aegon Targaryen V, better known as Egg from the Tales of Dunk and Egg. Duncan was a prince who gave up his birthright to the throne to marry Jenny, a peasant woman. The crown passed to his brother, Jaehaerys Targaryen , who was the father of Aerys II, and was the grandfather of Dany. And yes, Dany’s grandfather’s name is an actual name from the actual books, GRRM highkey fuck you for naming a character Jaehaerys, it is the second-worst Targ name after Aenys. ANYWAY PLEASE READ ON
    • Additionally, Duncan Targ was named after Ser Duncan the Tall, Aegon’s bestie, who almost certainly is an ancestor of Brienne of Tarth. Tall recognize tall.
    • And a bunch of those people I named up there? Both Duncans and Aegon V? Died, horribly, in a fire called the Tragedy at Summerhall, which was caused by Aegon’s obsession with bringing back Targ dragons. Dany’s brother Rhaegar was born during this event.
    • Using a song about a woman and her ghosts when the descendants of those ghosts are in Winterfell waiting to die is some delicious bookreader nerd stuff and I am so, so, so pleased this scene was in the show.
    • Peregrine Took passing the “everyone’s gonna die anyway here’s Wonderwall” torch in a perfect handoff to Mr. Podrick Payne
    • The Steward of Hodor
    • Posgiliath
    • Home is behind, the Night King ahead
    • I’m sorry I’m making terrible puns because this scene and this song ruined my life

The catastrophically wonderful

  • Gonna start with the one that made people Big Mad: Arya and Gendry. I have shipped these two hard since I read A Clash of Kings, so I am mired in fandom trash for them, but everything about this was lovely. Their first scene was absolute perfection, and I loved every aspect. Gendry trying to explain exactly how awful the White Walkers are while doing his best to work and not panic and not look bad in front of this young woman he likes was a personal favorite moment of mine: his saying “they’re like death, that’s what they’re like” in a slightly panicky voice was delightful. And Arya showing off her skillz and deathchat as a sort of suicidal foreplay was also perfect: at this point in the episode she is genuinely ready to fight and also hasn’t totally processed that she might die, so she is showing off for her boo.
    • And then we got the sex scene, and people lost their minds.
  • I, personally, loved it, and this is a hill I’ll gladly die on. Arya goes through the episode slowly getting more and more aware that no, really, tomorrow might be the end, the actual end, for her and for everyone she loves, and watching her come to that realization was lovely. Grilling Gendry about his experience both as a bit of an experience test and a bit of a “do I like him” test was equally excellent as it was the most Arya way to negotiate banging ever, including calling him out on the fact that he definitely kept track of who he slept with. Gendry got to see Arya’s scars, literal scars, so any concern that she is still the young girl he knew is shot down. And, most importantly, Arya telling him that she’s not the Red Woman and he can take his own pants off was a flawless, flawless line and I wanna cross-stitch it and put it in my home. Not only is it standard Arya “I will yell at you if I love you” dialogue, but an actual minute prior to that line, Gendry told her about his assault at Melisandre’s hands. Arya is giving him back his control and agency with this line, and because it’s her she’s gonna be sassy about it, but it is perfect. This is the healthiest, most well-negotiated consenting we’ve seen in a while on this show, and I would change nothing about it.
  • But boy howdy did the internet lose its mind over a grown woman sleeping with a grown man. You saw people raging about this fanfaction garbage like it hadn’t been set up from Season 2, and even more so, you saw people be horrified that Arya and Maisie filmed a sex scene. People were frantically Googling how old she and her character are while screeching “nooooo Arya I can’t watch she’s like my little sister noooooo this is the worst thing I’ve ever had to watch on this showwww”
    • I don’t even
    • Like
    • What is wrong, with people, who type things about this show, for other people to read
    • And I’m willing to give you a pass if you reacted a bit oddly at first, but if you both 1. did not check yourself and 2. proceeded to wreck yourself by typing that opinion, I got nothing
  • What we got to see was a whole bunch of mostly male fans lose their minds because a woman they first met as a girl is having consensual sex. That is some gross, misogynistic horseshit, and they don’t own Maisie or Arya’s body just because she is their ***fave*** and they think of her like a little sister. Fun fact: your sisters, your female friends, your daughters, they are incredibly likely to have sex at some point. And if you’re chill with metaphorically standing by your TV with a shotgun telling Gendry you’re friends with the chief of police and to get your little girl home by 9, I really, really, REALLY hope you change your tune by the time you’re responsible for the well-being of any women.
    • Also, bros? Don’t pretend like this is a thing you do with all actresses and characters you meet first as children. The Venn diagram of “people who cannot watch Arya have sex because they watched her grow up” and “people who have spoken aloud about how they’d totally fuck Emma Watson especially in her Hogwarts uniform” is a circle. A circle I can draw around you. Get it the fuck together.
    • Like, we watched a man get his eyes gouged out and then his skull smashed in and exploded during Season 4 but go off, yeah, this was the worst
    • This is the same group of people who were unnervingly chill about Sansa’s rape and defended all the violence against women in this show because “it’s accurate for the time mlehmlehbleh fart noise look at my FunkoPopsnoise.” I’m not here for this, and you shouldn’t give it a pass either, let alone attempt to defend it.
    • I’ve never felt that on-screen nudity enhanced a show or movie I’m watching, ever (I’m a bit of a prude that way), but I’ll still defend this scene forever.

The best scene of this whole show

I don’t even have words, just sounds
  • Brienne of Tarth, Knight of the Seven Kingdoms. I’m a disaster. I don’t think I’ve actually cried while watching this show until this week, and I cried at this. Oh, boy, did I cry. Brienne is my actual favorite character and has been for a while: in a series dominated by thin, sharp knives threading through the politics to stab enemies and get theirs, Brienne is a sledgehammer of justice perched on a boulder of the law. She’s not subtle, she’s not clever, and she’s not a queen. But she is the goddamn best, and she deserved this so much. (I am tearing up while writing this, I’m such a disaster.)
    • If you don’t mind I’m gonna do a quick recap of how we saw her in Seasons 2 and 3
    • Brienne was in love with Renly Baratheon, was sworn to protect him, and watched him get murdered right in front of her. She spent her whole life unable to fit in either the world of men or the world of women, so she fit in nowhere. Renly is the first person outside her family to show her even the smallest bit of decency, and that is all it takes for her to fall in love. It is heartbreaking.
    • She wants nothing more than to become a knight, a ser, an actual protector of the realm, but she knows that this is not going to happen. She’s going to get none of the honor, prestige, or trust that comes with the title, but she still fights and serves as if she’s taken the oaths. She’s a knight when everyone’s back is turned, she’s a knight when no one wants her to be one, and she’s a knight even when she’s very likely to die.
    • Everyone she meets trusts her, most of them instantly. Renly, Catelyn, Sansa, Arya, Sandor. In a world made terrifying because backstabbing is a survival technique, she’s made doing exactly what she says a foundation you could build a castle on. And she’s good enough at fighting to back that conviction up even when outnumbered a dozen to one. Seeing her win the melee in Season 2 was a few minutes of who she is as a person: someone who fights fairly in the chaos and who comes out on top, and then thanks those who trusted her and asks for the next position where she can be relied upon.
    • And she and Jaime have… I’m struggling to say this well, because I love them so much. Jaime became a better person a hundredfold just by being around her for a few weeks – she’s that good. (Yes, he needed to want to change and have started the process, but Brienne was the push he needed.) She was so easy to rile up because she doesn’t talk badly about other people for fun, or for gossip. And (at least in my head canon) Jaime expended more effort than he normally would trying to get under her skin because he doesn’t understand how someone is incapable of conniving to the marrow of her bones. But she isn’t, she never has been, and she never will. She is steady and loyal to a fault and has no idea how to lie and I love her so much. And at this point, Jaime does too.
  • And as much as I ship them together forever having gigantic blond superchildren with their dad’s smile and their mom’s eyes, Jaime making her a knight was the best thing he could ever give her. I would have cheered my heart out had they kissed or had he like, full-on proposed marriage, but Brienne is probably not even looking for that. This is her dream, and it comes on the tails of Ser Jaime Lannister asking to fight under her command. These are the best gifts he could ever give her, and he knows it.
    • Gwendoline Christie has brought everything I could have wanted to this role, and this episode was perfection. From her insisting on not drinking the night before she’s pretty sure she’ll die just so she’ll be in good form the next day, to the tearful smile she gives the room after becoming a knight; I’m a disaster and I’m crying again. And I’m so glad we got both her confused conversation with Jaime out on the field, and her knighting – she’s unsure and confused and a little angry in the first one, and in the second, she gets up and kneels in front of him, no question. She knows he means it, and this isn’t a trick.
    • I am 95% sure we will be seeing her die next week, and the only thing keeping me going about that is that she would likely want death to come this way: fighting to her last breath for people she loves and to try to save the world.

This episode was a waste and had too much talking and not enough action, though. Sure.

Game of Thrones/A Song of Ice and Fire

Game of Thrones, Season 8, Episode 1: Winterfell

April 16, 2019


Ohhhhh my goodness, guys, I’m so happy to be back typing about my favorite monochrome murdershow. It feels like it was only yesterday that I was incredibly angry about Season 7, and that’s because it was yesterday; I have been angry about Season 7 every day since it aired. But now we have a whole new season for me to emote over, and I know you were all waiting for my hot takes, so here I go again on my own.

If you are new to this blog: my previous spoiler policy is not super useful, as it related to the books and we are well past them, but obvious spoilers for the episode I’m reviewing. I also used to breakdown my review by the geographical location of the characters, but that looks like it is gonna be a tough thing to do with nearly everybody in one in a maximum of two spots, so I am going to break this episode down by scenes/relationships. I also swear a lot but, like, the show is the most adult thing ever.

And as a gentle beginning immersion into my feelings: I quite liked this episode. It was a methodical, detailed set piece for the dangerous free kick that is episode 2 and the rest of the season. That metaphor made no sense but I am very excited for the women’s World Cup so my brain is Thrones and soccer right now. If the rest of the season looks like this plus a lot of sobbing, I’ll be very pleased.

Additionally, I’ll be using at least one screengrab from every Chrys Reviews post, because they are perfect, and so that link goes to her Patreon. I’m a supporter and if you have some extra dollars please give them to her, she’s great.


This scene was your first sip of black dark roast coffee in the morning. It’s gonna hurt a little and then it’s gonna be a nice little jolt of energy that you’re hoping you can maintain. I liked it very much a lot thank you. Sansa’s initial look to Tyrion carried a nice mix of “I don’t hate you but if you test me I will launch you off this deck; Petyr Baelish tried to be shady to me here too; this is my Deck of Sacrifices for Sketchy Dudes Who Don’t Respect Me” and I am very here for it. Tyrion had a reasonable amount of respect for Sansa all the way back in season 2, and on her list of people she hates, he’s probably pretty far down at this point. They aren’t friends, but they aren’t enemies, quite. I can’t get a read on whether Tyrion’s being Hand of the Queen could make her more accepting or less accepting of Dany (I’m leaning more, but I don’t have a great reason why, just a feeling), but I am weirdly excited to see how these two people handle the coming mess. Neither are warriors, both are pretty damaged, they both want to be right, and neither of them want to die via White Walker, so they will be a fascinating set of parallel train tracks for this season.

Plus if Sansa is gonna read people for filth about trusting Cersei and drop jokes like “it had its moments” about Joffrey’s wedding, I will attempt to bottle her attitude as a bath bomb and use it and sell it.

“Many underestimated you. Most of them are dead now.” MOOD

Sansa/Jon and The Problem

Yes my tall beautiful faerie goddess tell your doofus big brother that he’s thinking with his dick because he super is. Again, really liked this scene. She was supportive of him and his decisions in public, in the throne room, but she is very gonna check in with her pocket-sized smouldercousin if she thinks he’s being the lovesick idiot he can frequently be. And, to be fair, they are both kinda right! Sansa is right, Daenerys is a stranger in the North, and Jon left Winterfell a king and came back… well, not a king, and with a scary lady who makes jokes about her firedinos eating your children. Jon should be a little wary of her motives and how this will end. And Jon is also right: they need her firedinos, they need her Dothraki army, they need her Unsullied, they need to not die before they can govern.

And we saw this argument come to a weird head in the throne room, too, when Lyanna Mormont goes all “you bent the what to the who now” and the room gets angry and I was low-key waiting for some Umber lord to yell “YOU COASTAL ELITES” from the back of the room. They don’t like change. They don’t like Targaryens (okay this one is fair). They extra don’t like dragons. And they are all looking at Dany as another Aerys Targaryen II in waiting if Aerys II had dragons. They are scared, and I don’t totally blame them. And then Sansa (bless u to the stars this fandom doesn’t deserve you) clears her throat and is like


Jon, shyly: to always check with you first before I invite them


Jon, even more quietly: check with you

Chrys Reviews, bless u

She’s right! “How will we feed everyone” is a vital logistics problem, especially since everywhere on the continent that can actually grow stuff kinda good is in Lannister hands. And for Dany to reply with “whatever they want” to “what do dragons eat” is 1. *groan* such a bad line and 2. NOT A WORKABLE SOLUTION, HONEY.

Dany: there ain’t no budget when I’m on the set

Sansa: thank u, next

This could be great, guys. I’m not shooting this potential rivalry out of the sky immediately. It could be a nuanced, layered, serious look at what ruling during war looks like during ruling during peace. My friend Baird described it as a “conquest v. ruling plotline” and if they do it right, that would be so boss.

However, this is a show that wasted Sansa and Arya in a falsified cat and mouse game for a third of Season 7 for no good goddamn reason so unlike Brendon Urie I do not gotta have high high hopes for a living and I will leave my hopes in the Winterfell crypts until further notice.

Arya/every one of her emotions as a person

That intro tho, of people walking in and Arya just being like “I’m not dying but this is in fact my life flashing before my eyes, so, uh”

In fairness I also got pretty dang excited watching A Girl Has Seen Some Shit be smiley over Jon and Gendry and even Sandor.

Her moment with Sandor was honestly perfect??? I know it felt a little fan-service-y but I think Sandor has grudging respect for anyone who is alive at any time (Sandor hates himself only marginally less than he hates everyone else and that keeps him alive) so being like “hi tiny nightmare I lived bitch” and then moving right along is absolutely in-character for him.

And Gendry calling Arya “milady,” oh my heart, oh every single chamber of my heart and several additional organs, I am fandom garbage and I wish to be fed this chicken McNugget dialogue for eternity. Yes, it’s a stretch that Gendry matters to this plot, or that he was brought back from Olympic rowing at all, but now that he’s here: yep, this works. Make him make these weapons. Make him make Arya a very specific weapon to hurt stuff with. Let him keep calling her “milady” and let her reply “you don’t know any other rich girls” and LET THEM KISS, PLEASE, I LOVE THIS STUPID SHIP AND I WANT TO BE HURT BY IT PLEASE, PLEASE. I went looking for fanfiction of them on Monday. Please give me this.

And Arya and Jon? I’m not crying, you’re crying, you’re all crying, stick ’em with the pointy end right in the first season feelings. This was good. The fact that they put them in front of the tree is good. The discussion over Needle is good.

I’m genuinely curious about how people saw this scene: I saw two people who have killed so many times knowing that this is also true of the person they are talking to. Jon knows Arya used Needle a lot. Arya knows Jon used his “fancy” Valyrian steel sword a lot. They are both holding off on saying this, because when they parted, they were both children, who wanted to do heroic things, and they’ve had to watch themselves become executioners and they’ve liked it to varying degrees. Talking about it will be uncomfortable, and they don’t have time or energy for a recap. But hey this is how I saw the scene, and Twitter seemed to think both of them were very much like “I have only murdered AT MOST two people” but lemme know where you stand.

And maybe I’m wrong, and I read way too far into this dialogue, but this relationship, y’all. And hearing Arya call Sansa “the smartest person I’ve ever met” is phenomenal and my drug of choice. Good. Good job everyone. I’m bringing cookies tomorrow and you can all have five if you want.


First of two parts for this episode because I am extra as hell on this topic

If someone knows this answer can you tell me? Did the show ever explicitly say that Targs are the only ones who can ride dragons? I have this idea in my head that it did but I don’t know when I learned it so it might have been in the books? Or is it not a thing for these characters? Basically, should everyone be losing their shit over Jon riding Rhaegal because it implies something about his heritage, or nah? I should know the answer to this, and I don’t, and I’m ashamed.

This scene was dumb and bad, I’m sorry. Andrew asked “what are they even doing here” and because I am a brat I replied with “blowing through their CGI budget.” I was hoping they’d get back to Winterfell and we’d finally see Ghost (remember Jon the animal that you’ve spent years bonding with) and he’d walk up to Jon and smell dragon on him and then like pee on his boots. Or he just falls off the dragon. But in this fuckin’ show Benjen Stark would catch him or some shit ANYWAY

For me, one of the worst Danys is “Dany being smug about her dragons.” Sassing Jon like it’s not totally reasonable for him to be like “how tf do I ride your firedino” is just lazy writing masquerading as Strong Female Character and I’m not here for it. For further reference please see Season 4 and “but my dragons made no such promises, and you threatened their mother.” *sighs enormously* okay, you know what, motherfucker, if you are the government and you are making a deal with some people they can reasonably assume that your scary Charizards are state actors and are bound by this deal as well. You suck at diplomacy and Sansa will 100% kill one of your Pokemon of Death to feed the North.

Also WHERE IS GHOST. WHERE. IS. GHOST. We can have a minutes-long dragon flyover that looks like a combination of Harry riding Buckbeak in Prisoner of Azkaban plus that thing they do with the planes before NASCAR races but we can’t put ten dollars of CGI into our only remaining housebroken direwolf?


What did this casting listing even look like? “hey yo ladiez can you come be naked for like 8 seconds because we wanna do a quick throwback to when the show was criticized for putting sex scenes and nudity in the background of stuff for no reason”

“super vintage”

“no of course you won’t get names are you kidding”

“also we will imply one of you has syphilis”

Minor good thing: Qyburn giving Bronn this weapon and this assignment. He’ll do it, he wants his castle, he is hired edged muscle and this is what he does, and regardless of whether Qyburn is lying, Bronn wants a castle real bad and there is a non-zero chance he’d succeed at this mission.

Major bad thing: there are only six episodes of this season, there are now five episodes left of the entire show, and if we spend an additional nanosecond on the state of Bronn’s penis I will riot


Can we get her some elephants, please? There’s no Hannibal, there’s no Alps, where are the elephants, she just wants some elephants. No, I don’t know why I liked this plot point so much either. Also heyyyy Harry Strickland, you’re looking very generic and strong. Cersei you should marry him he is blond and doesn’t smell like mildew and clove cigarettes and small dick energy

on that note


Good, we did this rescue fast, we do not have to drag it out, I liked it, Yara def would hit Theon, yes good. Yara noting that the Iron Islands are an escape is spot-on (and in this world there’s apparently a ton of trees to cut down yes I’m still bitter about that no I will not drop this grudge what is dead may never die) and Theon calling her his queen was a little misty-eyed moment for me. And of course Theon wants to go fight at Winterfell. My guy is absolutely gonna die, he’s gonna die trying to protect the remaining Starks, it is gonna hurt because I have hella complicated feelings about his character. I don’t know this for a fact, no, but this is my honest guess, and I think I’m right.

and to prove that I am right, please enjoy several Chrys Reviews caps that I saw after I wrote this

Remember how I said I actually quite liked this episode? There was, *ahem* a notable exception

Euron. Euron happened. Euron dressing like the pickup artist Mystery was strapped to the hull of a ship for a year while it sailed through the Sea of Misogyny and Please Die. Euron wearing what I can only describe as a duster made out of a fishing net that absolutely smells like the contents of a swim-up bar after three days of spring break drink specials when he goes to see the queen he wants to bang. Euron being so terrible at keeping a captive that rescuing Yara isn’t even a story arc, it’s resolved already. (which, good, but also he sucks at everything.) Sex with Euron Greyjoy: when you want the sensation of getting fucked by a flounder that left a clump of steel wool in its kitchen sink drain for six months and then glued it to its face.

I don’t know if Cersei and Euron together is supposed to be some kind of weird thing with her pregnancy and having a supposed non-brother father for her kid, but I really have no idea what the point is. We are already done with one episode of the six remaining episodes of the whole damn show, and I swear to R’hllor if we spend another microsecond on Euron fucking Greyjoy and his barnacle dick I will kill everyone involved and then myself. Get him off my screen.

People I gotta see more next ep

Brienne. And Podrick. And Jaime, who I was glad to see at Winterfell already (it’s okay, they are hopefully giving these characters space, but they had better.) Gilly (she should be in the dang show.) Missandei. Grey Worm.

Brienne, again. Ugh, this show is going to hurt me.

Tormund and the Brotherhood and the Night’s Watch

I appreciate the follow-up on these guys, I like how they handled it, and “I’ve always had blue eyes” is a gem of a line, well done. Also I got to see Dolorous Edd which is a delight and boy howdy I’d like to see him live through this show just to score one for us depressed people.

However, if we could never, ever, ever forever have another scene like the Glover boy nailed to the wall and then WAKING UP SCREAMING AS A WIGHT both I and my delicate heart rate would appreciate it. A million props to the show for doing this scene, as it was genuinely the scariest thing I’ve seen on the whole dang series, but also never do it again thank you I need some tea and a soft large blanket.

Does it sound like I’m leaving something major out from this episode? Best for last, y’all

Samwell Tarly

This is the official start of John Bradley’s Emmy campaign right here. I’ve been an enormous fan of him as a person starting a bunch of years back when I started listening to the cast being interviewed, because he is a generous, hilarious delight who is so thrilled to be playing Sam and to be a part of this cast and this show and he has explained plot points to so many interviewers and talked about Kit’s bachelor party going go-karting and how he was terrible at it and I just *makes fist* like him so flippin’ much. He’s gonna be at Con of Thrones this year and I have found myself Google Maps-ing the drive to Nashville several times this week already.

And that is just him being John Bradley; I think he’s done amazing acting work with this character and it’s never been more clear than in this episode. He’s been very good at the role since day 1, and has had several exceptional moments (“open the fucking gate” at Castle Black; his time at Horn Hill) but this was just exquisitely heartbreaking.

I’m glad they wrapped this up early and didn’t drag it out, and I’m glad they addressed the fact that Dany is not evil, but she is not all good, either. (as a sidenote, did Jorah the Fedora have laryngitis that day or something he literally said nothing despite staring at the dude who saved his life idk idk) I wish the show let Dany do more work in that gray area, since many fans (and the writers, tbh) seem content to just be like YEAH BADASS DRAGON LADY or UNREDEEMABLE WAR CRIMINAL and I think the truth is somewhere in the middle. John even gave an interview where he offered up what he thought Sam’s emotions were during this scene, but did not say they were his, and I like that – this show is all gray areas EXCEPT FOR SAMWELL HIMSELF just kidding even him.

This was just perfect: perfectly acted, perfectly in character, and I am so pleased that they gave him the minutes and emotion to do it. Yes, Randyll Tarly sent his son to take the black under a threat of death; he was horrific to Sam and that was almost certainly never going to change. But Sam is acutely aware (and Bradley has confirmed that these were the direction notes he was given right before shooting) that it can never get better now; he can never fix it. And to try to put that positive spin on it by saying he’ll be allowed home, now, only to find out his brother is also dead? It’s not a Samwell thing to rejoice in someone’s death, even someone who threatened to kill him, and he is so relentlessly optimistic that I think he genuinely hoped that his family might be different someday. And how he just replies with “thank you for telling me”? It’s so deeply Sam: he does not make any sort of emotional fuss, ever, and he’s also almost too good at letting things go. He has things that need to get done, and he knows that mourning the family he wished he had is going to have to happen on his own time. He’ll be angry with and wary of Dany, but he trusts Jon, he knows the Night King is coming, and he can help. He’s so, so wrecked by this, and it wrecked me to watch him cry over a man who never saw his worth.


And while it is definitely a cop-out for Bran to be like “you are more his bestie you tell Jon” to Sam, I’m glad they continued this plot thread the way they did. I wish they were able to CORRECTLY LIGHT THE CRYPT FOR ONCE IN THIS GOSHDARN SHOW but whatever. And this show is infamous for having characters who respond with war and other violence when their family is harmed – not Samwell Tarly. Samwell Tarly hears Dany say that she roasted his family while they were prisoners and thanks her for telling him. Sam has to go do stuff. Sam left the Citadel because he had information that Jon needed to know. In the actual conversation, Sam would and does lead with the fact that Jon is legitimate, not that he’s in love with his aunt. And hearing Sam tell Jon that Ned Stark still did right by him was a nice little ending gut-punch: he’s right, Ned kept Jon safe the best way he knew how, and he cared for him, and Sam just found out about the death of his own father, a man who chained him to a wall for three days. Ned messed up, but Randyll Tarly was a nightmare to his son, and Sam just has to sit there and tell Jon that 1. his dad isn’t his dad 2. he’s the king, technically 3. his girlfriend burned his best friend’s family to death 4. his girlfriend is his aunt. We don’t deserve Sam.

Ya girl is biased to the stars but ya girl also hopes you agree with her.

Ya girl’s gonna end on a high note, especially in that the character might actually be high


If this thing he’s doing with just like sitting in his chair and staring at people is gonna continue I’m gonna be laughing way more than I thought I’d be laughing during this season. Bran Muffin out here like Adobe Reader got an update that accidentally deleted his emotions. Every shot of him just sitting there like a weirdo was a riot, but my personal favorite was Jon coming up and saying he’d become a man.

Jon: look at you, you’ve grown into a man

Bran: almost

Jon: … I do not have the time or emotional bandwidth to deal with you right now

ANYWAY friends as I said I very enjoyed this episode. People are going to die soon, so I’m trying to gear up for that, but I know I’m gonna get hurt real bad. We are off to a quality start, and I hope you’ll stick with me for the last ride into the sunset.

Game of Thrones/A Song of Ice and Fire

The Invisible Hand of the King

April 10, 2019

(or, the Game of Thrones stuff our delicious capitalist system is trying to sell me in advance of Season 8 and why it is working on every possible count)

Guys, I want every bit of this. All of it. Whatever you are. Give me it. I am such Thrones trash that if you put the Iron Throne on a package of a toothbrush I will aggressively be like I SEE IT, I LIKE IT, I WANT IT, I GOT IT and I need to stop. I’m typing this post in an effort to get me to stop, because maybe if I just type all of my wishes into a blog post and share them, people can talk me out of buying everything. Please. Please help.

Alcohol (specifically whiskey)

gimme dat fish

I can’t even recruit any readers’ help with this one, because I already own it. Do I drink? Maybe once a year. Am I gonna drink whiskey? Probably not. Did I still look for and let people know I was looking for the House Tully bottle of Glendullan whiskey? Yep. Is that a fancy kind? Probably, I don’t know, and I’m sorry, I know, I’m a mess, I just really wanted this bottle. It’s a drink I won’t drink in a glass bottle with a fish on it, I know this. I don’t care. Family, Duty, Honor, Swag. A million thanks to my friend Jordan for getting it for me, and I’ll be hanging on to the bottle because, uh, that’s a thing people do, right?


anyway please someone else tell me you’ve also purchased one or all of these bottles so I can feel better about myself

Hodor door stop

Me: oh my word that is morbid as hell and is somewhat mocking of a disabled character and I don’t even have any doors that I need to prop open regularly

Also me: gimme the wood triangle now



Urban Decay’s Game of Thrones collection of makeup

Guys it is lipsticks and eyeshadows which I legitimately never wear unless someone up to and including me is getting married and yet I still want every single high-priced piece

And then they have the audacity, the AUDACITY, to release two brushes for the eyeshadow that are swords from the series, specifically Longclaw and Needle, and I need them more than several of my lesser-used organs

“okay, but if you don’t wear eyeshadow, why would you want to buy brushes for the eyesha-“


Maybe I just wanna wave them around in my bathroom mirror while making swishing noises, okay? Is that so wrong? It’s not like I’m buying actual swords and waving them around! Even though yeah okay I’d totally do that too if I had the disposable income I would absolutely have my own personal Oathkeeper made and hung on my wall and maybe take some swordfighting lessons with it and make sure to lift some weights so I can properly Brienne and you know what you can SHUT IT I can hear you laughing YOU’RE NOT BETTER THAN ME


so many squigglies??

Yep, this is happening! There are Oreos! A tasty mass-produced cookie! With murdershow grimdark packaging! And they are regular Oreos! Not lemon-cake-flavored! They are just stamped with some sigils! And the packaging is the same plastic! Yet! I! Need! It!

Am I gonna save the stupid plastic? Like is that how this will go? I don’t even know how to properly collect all these products and I can’t save the Oreos, I’m gonna eat those, let’s not play, so do I save the packaging? Do I frame it? Is this gonna be like that paper where Truman holds up the “Dewey Defeats Truman” headline? Why am I like this???

Just gonna be like 90 years old and dragging any children I find to come stare at my Oreo packaging

“no, children, unfortunately this was not merely a phase in my life, as you can see by Grammy Christina’s facial tattoo saying ‘valar morghulis’ and her knuckle tatts saying ‘N O T T O D A Y'”

Adidas Ultra-Boosts

This might be the worst one. These things are $180, I don’t wear this sneaker anyway, and they are legit nothing but some colors related to the Houses and the insole saying “Game of Thrones.” They look like sneakers. This would be like Heinz releasing House Lannister ketchup and changing literally nothing and being like “it’s red tho look”

does ya girl want ’em anyway? BOY HOWDY DO I

John Varvatos + Game of Thrones

I lied this is the worst one

I can buy a men’s t-shirt that looks like a screen-printing I could find on any semi-shady Etsy seller plus as a bonus the neckline is stretched out for the low low price of NINETY-EIGHT DOLLARS

this is so bad it’s so bad

I can also buy some clothes to make me look like I’m about to die fighting my lord’s war for up to three grand

middle jacket is a cool $2,698

They look like they come pre-Flea-Bottom’ed and I can smell them from the picture

Did Varvatos see a clip of Euron and was like “okay but what if he were even more of a douchebag and paid the highest gold price for all of his stuff”

Varvatos: Game of Thrones AU where Euron is the worst guy in your MFA program and is trying out a new beard oil that smells like the receding tide

Actual leather-bound books of the series

also George why, with the R’s, it was barely okay for Tolkien

I have copies of all of them, I have an e-reader version of A Dance with Dragons, why on Earth would I need extra-fancy surplus copies of this series that isn’t finished and may have two more books(????) and the box definitely only holds the five so far oh God this is Martin’s way of saying get comfortable with disappointment I’m never releasing book 6 enjoy your sadness

Full-sized Iron Throne

This one is not new, but there is a raffle that the American Red Cross is doing for blood donors; if you come in to donate by the end of April they put you in a raffle to win a throne; yes of course I will donate

Yes throne want throne yes throne good

I hope I have made my point clearly, but if you need a summary for your current events assignment: this fan will buy literally anything with Thrones stuff on it, Sunday needs to be here now, and bless you all for reading this.