Tag Archives: sansa stark

Game Of Thrones Season 2 Episode 7: “A Man Without Honour”

SPOILERS, OBVIOUSLY

I’m doing really well with this late blogging thing, aren’t I? Well, here I am again, and I have chocolate and coffee and croissants and I’ve listened to a dupstep remix of the Harry Potter score so I don’t know where we are with this to be honest, not a clue, all I know is whump whump whump SUGAR HIGH which is enough to be getting on with.

No Dragonstone again this week but definite movement where that’s concerned seeing as it’s BUILDING UP TO THE GOOD SHIT YESSSSS PLEASE. Joffrey’s still ruling offscreen, Rickon appears again for more nuts, and MOST AWESOME the prize of Best Scene This Episode goes to the re-introduction of Jaime Lannister. It’s been a long time coming and doesn’t disappoint.

Overall, it’s a functional episode. It has some nice moments but most of it’s about setting up the pieces for the endgame of the series, now looming like a great big loomy thing – Daenerys’ scenes in Qarth had a bit of an adrenaline kick at the end of the last episode but that feels wasted somewhat this week, at least until Xaro and the guy who looks like he’s from the Crystal Maze prove that my fondness for the canny bastards is well placed.

Anyway. This is an episode rich in foreshadowing. It is paving the way for big things to come. It does this without being boring; functional, but spiced with fantastic moments and scenes and characters that really make this series the best thing around now, because it’s a filler episode that excites and delights and saddens and makes you think and usually this sort of episode would be tedious and blah in any other programme. I love Game of Thrones so much, so much. It’s characters sparking off against each other turned into an art form.

Yeah, if you thought I didn’t like it or something.

– Oh good we get to see Theon’s rage response to the loss of the Starks! Alfie Allen’s doing all right in this role, being a prize asshat. “It’s all just a game!” Theon crows as he hunts Bran and Rickon. Well, he’s not exactly wrong.

– WHAT IS IT WITH RICKON AND NUTS

– Jon Snow spends his entire life being uncomfortable around people. It’s exhausting. Why is he anyone’s favourite character? Aside from the lovely Kit Harington I don’t actually see the charm. Yeah, he’s a good boy, but yawn. Ygritte is a nice kick up the arse for his scenes. Gives him something more interesting to angst about.

– BROTHERHOOD WITHOUT BANNERS *PLOT KLAXON*

– The change of actors for Clegane is obvious and unfortunate but it’s good to have someone psychotic and mental back on the show, in Joffrey’s absence I was getting worried about the general sanity here. It was getting too normal. Oh wait he’s not hanging around to do anything violent. He’s just gone off to do it. Okay.

– Tywin doesn’t like mutton. Tywin makes sure his cup-bearer eats. Tywin does nothing without purpose. “My legacy will be determined in the coming months. Do you know what legacy means? It’s what you pass down to your children, and your children’s children. It’s what remains of you when you’re gone.” Arya’s tempted to stab him in the back but can’t because he’s projecting onto her and that would be rude. You can’t disrupt acting as fine as this. It’s just not cricket. Also it doesn’t fit. Arya isn’t that clumsy or obvious.

“Aegon… and his sisters.” GO ARYA GO also check out the best deployment of exposition ever. Well played, script writers.

“You remind me of my daughter,” says Tywin. Everyone sighs because of course she does, it’s spirited ladies from here to Qarth, and Cersei is the only other spirited lady you knew as a child. Oh Tywin. “I enjoy you, but be careful.”

– “IF YOU’RE GOING TO POSE AS A COMMONER YOU SHOULD DO IT PROPERLY” SAYS TYWIN AND GIVES EWA A HEART ATTACK “YOU’RE TOO SMART FOR YOUR OWN GOOD, HAS ANYONE TOLD YOU THAT” “YES” OH GUYS HELP THEY’RE TOO AWESOME how can he not know who she is, the pressure in these scenes is robbing me of oxygen

“Killing’s the sweetest thing there is.” “Why are you always so hateful?” Oh perfect juxtaposition of scenes to illustrate the difference between Arya and Sansa. Arya’s too smart for her own good, and Sansa’s too good for her own good, and that is how they’re going to grow into kickass ladies. Sansa wants people to be better, like stories, so she’ll strive for goodness and the ideal and keeps seeing the potential for it in other people when they can’t see it in themselves. That’s a leader. Contrast her question to the Hound about his hatefulness with Jaime’s conversation with the other Lannister at the end of the episode; seeing the good in others. Arya only sees a path to an end. Now, I love Arya, but she’s not got a character arc, she’s got a plotline. When it comes to characters whole and entire, Sansa’s got so much more to do and achieve, and I really appreciate that.

– And now Dany and Xaro. Nothing really happens except pleading and anger on a staircase. I like Xaro but if he could stop telling us about his background and focus more on his now I’d be more interested. But I like him. There’s something of Littlefinger about him, but with more charm and less disdain. Also I don’t care about the dragons. She’ll get them back. It feels like an excuse to save SFX money.

– Ugh Jon Snow she’s gorgeous what is wrong with you, you utter pillock “YOU KNOW NOTHING, JON SNOW” AND SHE’S RIGHT WE ALL KNOW IT

– LOVE YOU ROBB but let’s be honest this isn’t about anything other than him fancying the pretty medic lady whose name I still don’t know but I know she’s not Jeyne. WOO HOO FIELD TRIP I WONDER WHAT COULD POSSIBLY HAPPEN WHEN THEY’RE ALONE TOGETHER.

– Roose Bolton wandering around being sinister just so we remember he’s there for Season 3. Okay. Okay! *Feeling ill*

– I love the slightly mad camerawork when Theon’s shown as in charge. Works so well. “It’s better to be cruel than weak.” Welllllllll, no.

– Oh THAT’S what’s with Rickon and nuts

– Irri ;_;

“No one can survive in this world without help. No one.” I love Ser Jorah but his relationship with Dany is so suspect. Emilia Clarke needs more to do and Iain Glen rocks, but this feels like we’re going over old ground when the show doesn’t need to.

– Jon Snow gets made fun of by Ygritte and everyone perks up because it’s funny and deserved. “Should have took me when you had the chance,” she says, and everyone laughs.

– Poor Sansa. Awesome Shae. The dangers of sex from Jon Snow’s perspective is something else, but it’s a real danger for Sansa, who is now directly at the most risk of all the Starks (apart from Bran and Rickon, except we know they’re away from Theon now). Stop whining Jon Snow. You’re not at risk of being married to a psychopathic, abusive king and be made to carry his children. Have your damn sex with the pretty willing lady who’d make you interesting. Meanwhile, Sansa’s bedroom is invaded by the Hound, why exactly did that happen?

– “I thought it would be less… less messy.” LIFE, LITTLE BIRD.

“Joffrey’s always been difficult.” WELL. Cersei’s main area of expertise is how to grab power from a husband that she loathed. I’m not sure this pep talk will have the desired effect. And Robert wasn’t half as much of a little shit as Joffrey. “Difficult”. Hahaha. Because obviously Cersei should have some sort of rapport with Sansa here, but Sansa’s protestation that she loves Joffrey is her defence against it. It’s distancing because it’s so patently untrue. She’s defending herself with words while Arya uses death. Best. Siblings. Ever.

“The more people you love, the weaker you are.” You are not Tywin, Cersei, however much you want to be. “Love no one but your children” – arguably Tywin doesn’t even love his children, and Joff is Cersei’s greatest liability while Jaime’s locked up.

– HELLO JAIME “There’s only one fat Lannister. If she was your mother, you’d know it.” oh you’ve been missed, J. Proving himself a good soldier, a good leader, remembering unimportant people. “It was the best day of my life.” I’m having flashbacks to Dr. Watson in Sherlock, missing war. “It’s like stepping into a dream you’ve been dreaming for as long as you can remember, and finding out that the dream is more real than your life.” Lovely. I can’t wait for him to be maimed. “It’s a good thing I am who I am. I’d have been useless at anything else.” That’s Jaime Lannister, right there, whole and entire. Perfect, sad, awesome scene.

“Will you betray her again, Jorah the Andal? Will you betray her again?” “Never.” Subtle world-building is subtle, with the reference to Valyria. Stop being awesome, show runners! I can’t cope with this!

“An upstart and a charlatan. Empires have been built by less. Those on the margins often come to control the centre and those in the centre make room for them, willingly or otherwise.” BEST POWER GRAB EVER LITERALLY CHILLING and I’m not even miserable that we had more magic thrown around because it was done so well and you know what I’m glad they’re giving Dany something to be scared of and Xaro was kind of awesome, let’s watch that again

– House of the Undying is actually a party house where everyone will get drunk and dance. This is not true. But wouldn’t it be nice for Dany to take her people to the beach for a change? All they do is work and stress and die.

– OH OH OH BRIENNE “Keep your hands off me, woman!” “Don’t enter without an invitation, MAN.” GOD I LOVE HER.

– One of the few times Catelyn Stark has actually been one of the most awesome people in the show. WELL PLAYED LADY. “Have you forgotten me, sir? I am the widow of your liege lord Eddard Stark, I am the mother of your king!”

“AND GAG HIM”

– I was wondering what was missing. Tyrion. TYRION. FINALLY.

– Stannis Baratheon’s fleet is moving. I may have rubbed my hands with glee at the prospect of what’s coming.

– That look of sudden, slight shame when Tyrion tells Cersei she’s quoting their father is marvellous. She just wants to be the female version of Tywin, that’s all! Lena Headey is tremendous and I never seem to mention that, but she is, and gets Cersei perfectly. She’s a twisted monster but glorious and wicked and distressing and completely convincing. Contrasting her with Catelyn is so much fun. “Sometimes I wonder… if this is the price for what we’ve done. For our sins.” Hint: YES, IT IS.

– Discussing Joffrey’s utter utter madness in the open like this is sweetly, delightfully painful. Lena Headey and Peter Dinklage being so awesome. Tyrion and Cersei: they may loathe each other but at the end of the day they’re still siblings, they still need each other, and Cersei still needs Tyrion’s support because she wants to be Tywin but the closest she has is her little brother who she detests but but but he’s her brother. I love how problematic their relationship is. They clearly enjoy acting together.

– Just had to pause the show to have a breather because Cat is about to annoy the crap out of me, I can tell. WELL ACTUALLY she didn’t I was wrong, I admit it.

“IS THAT A WOMAN” Brienne’s all “Dude, what”

“Where did you find this beast?” “She is a truer knight than you. Kingslayer.” BEAST >:O

– Ugh I hate it when they cut away during an intense scene because Jaime was being awesome and Cat was being a noble but slightly unhinged mother and Theon’s being a dick and yet I don’t want to look away, it’s like in the books when he changes PoV for each chapter, it’s “UGH NO I WANTED MORE oh no wait I love this one UGH NO IT’S CHANGED AGAI– no hold on I can’t put this down”.

– Well we all saw this coming and I don’t think anyone’s been taken in.

– ENDING MUSIC IS BRILLIANT AND YES THEON YOU ARE A MONSTER DOING MONSTROUS THINGS YOU UTTER SHIT OF A MAN look I’ll feel sorry for him later. He’s pathetic. He’s a pathetic person with power.

Well. I love how much I enjoy being emotionally beaten up by this show. Next week:

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Game of Thrones season 2 Episode 1: “The North Remembers”

HAVE YOU SEEN THE EPISODE?

NO?

THIS POST IS DARK AND FULL OF SPOILERS, OLD MAN, BUT WATCHING IT BURNS THEM ALL AWAY.

I.E., come back later. I will save all the juicy bits for you, I swears.

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The problem with Game of Thrones in a tv series format is that, unlike the books, your doses of it are rationed, wrapped up in adverts and divided into chunks that are delivered to you on a schedule you can’t change. I’m re-reading A Feast For Crows and last night, at 2am, I was having incredible difficulty putting the book down and going to sleep because I just didn’t want to stop reading no matter how tired I was – and now I’m on the verge of re-watching the first episode of Game of Thrones season 2 (or episode 11 as it is) having only watched it a couple of hours ago. It’s so moreish and addictive you just want to immerse yourself in it, but you CAN’T, because you have to WAIT.

And oh GOD I don’t want to wait. I want the entire series put before my eyes right now. You’d expect season 2 of a returning big-hitter show like Game of Thrones to have a few pacing issues, seeing as returning characters have to be juggled with new ones and new settings join the old, but at no point does it misstep or feel uneven or off, not even a bit. It’s so finely tuned that I was shocked when the credits rolled, not just because of the shocking events (truly, this series knows when to hold back and hint, and when to just bludgeon you over the head with the nasty) but because I thought it was barely halfway through. How does it do that? It’s annoying. I’m desperate for next week now, desperate!

What do we get for our hotly-anticipated first hour in Westeros since the events at the end of the first series? Well. WELL.

We see Sansa in the lion’s den, practising the only self-defence she has, using it to save a drunken old fool; we see the dark and delightful Melisandre vamping around the new setting of the storm-blasted Dragonstone, a shadowy castle steeped in the history of Westeros, in a brilliant atmospheric scene of the Seven Gods being burned on the beach. For the night is dark and full of terrors.” We see how Cersei deals with her revolting son Joffrey and how Cat deals with her far more noble son Robb, and the differences between them, and the similarities as each mother tries to control her son and in turn is controlled by them. We see Tyrion vs. Cersei, a bout of verbal sparring that made me love Tyrion even more (how this could be I do not know, I thought I loved him too much already), and we see Littlefinger vs Cersei, in a bout of verbal sparring that causes her to lash out with actual violence. “Knowledge is power.” “Power is power.” We see Jaime in chains, Robb standing tall, and the huge CGI direwolf Grey Wind who runs at his side.

For a re-introduction to the world, the characters and the plot, it’s meaty and layered and rich, like the very best pie. Most pies don’t come laced with death, however.

Who orders the deaths of Robert’s bastards? We’re led to think it’s Joffrey, but I think it’s different in A Clash of Kings. They’re brutal scenes, absolutely gut-wrenching in a way that completely evaded me in the books. In hindsight it’s all there – I remember it as just a few throw-away remarks – but the ramifications of the order aren’t gone into in the text. On screen it’s horrendous, a fitting way to begin a series that’s going to be all about the brutality that men do one another. Let’s face it, the whole of Game of Thrones has always been about that, with Sansa (and, later, Brienne) filled with dreamy idealism about the goodness of man, while the steady ruination of it all makes it clear the world’s a nasty place and she needs to be strong to survive it. But those children aren’t, and it’s a hard, harsh world, and it’s a stunning way to reiterate that point after the drama of the first season.

And there, at the end, the little ray of hope – Arya, who Cersei’s spent the episode looking for, and Gendry, who is being hunted down like the rest of Robert’s bastards to be slaughtered. There they are, trekking up the Kingsroad towards the Wall, away from the rat’s nest that is King’s Landing, away from all the politics and danger and bloodshed–

–oh, wait. We know better than to assume that, don’t we?

Damnit, I don’t want to wait for next week!

Sansa Stark Rocks. Fact.

This post contains spoilers for the end of Game of Thrones, Clash of Kings and Storm of Swords. Basically, if you haven’t read Storm of Swords Part 1 yet, you should probably back off now and come back later. I’ll save the juicy bits for you. Promise.

I am Sansa Stark.

Most women are Sansa Stark. She’s not violent, strong or powerful in the least – she’s normal and totally alone, with no dragons, swords or even a pet wolf to protect her. She’s not touched by magic to make her greater than the surrounding characters. She lacks even a family to support her, and those who claim that they’re on her side are using her to their own ends – which she sees, and she knows, but she can’t escape.

Because she’s an average girl. She’s been thrown into a complete mess of a situation at such a young age it’s amazing she’s not gone off the deep end, and she’s as quick and subtle with her mind as Arya shows all the promise of being with a blade. So, she’s not me (I am about as quick and subtle as a crowbar), but she’s the closest character to who I was at her age and I love her dearly – as annoying as she is at first, she is a child who is growing up in the most insane, grim situation and she’s becoming a fascinating character. I don’t just like her where others detest her; I actually, properly adore the child. She’s fantastic.

Just to reiterate: she is a child.

So many people hate her for making the choices of a child, choosing Joffrey over her family on the Kingsroad, but to her mind she’s choosing between her bratty little sister and the prince she’s been brought up and cultivated like a hot-house flower to adore. Society has given her a reason to put knights and royalty on a pedestal, and she’s all about the unrealistic fairytale. How is she, or any of us, supposed to know the ramifications of her actions? Having to stop and think about the consequences is part of growing up. If anyone reads the books and chooses to see her as nothing else but a bland spoiled princess, they’re missing a wonderful, dark, rich plot that is my favourite in the books for the sheer subtlety and genius of it.

Her experience at King’s Landing at the end of Game of Thrones is her first taste of real court politics. Boy, has she learned her lesson by the end of that book, so brilliantly rendered in the tv series with Sansa’s direct and unyielding gaze at her father’s head on the spike – a scene so powerful it gave me goosebumps. The stripping away of the layers and layers of hopes and dreams that made her the bratty girl she was at the beginning of the book is a harrowing experience, and people complaining that Sansa Stark is boring to read really do my head in. Seriously, she’s boring because she’s not stabbing stable boys? Her strength isn’t in any of the masculine traits. She knows that people aren’t great or good as they are in the stories, but she still lets herself hope that there’s a kernel of goodness in people, and she’s steel inside. She’s the deconstruction of the typical princess in fantasy literature, the truest rendering, the princess to Brienne’s warrior woman. She’s going through hell and she’s going to become amazing.

I mean, who never made stupid ass choices as a child? I know I did, and the learning from those mistakes makes you a better person. That’s exactly what’s happening to Sansa. She’s learning, evolving, and totally has it in for the Lannisters. She’s going to be glorious to watch as she grows up and uses what she’s learned – writing her off because she did something wrong is awful, and no one would write off a child for being silly unless they’re truly heartless. Cersei keeps saying that Sansa’s a silly girl or some variant thereof and I get the impression that many readers assume this is fact, not Cersei’s opinion. The girl isn’t stupid. She’s more of a queen than Cersei is, as she proves at the Battle of Blackwater in Clash of Kings when Cersei leaves the hall and Sansa chooses to comfort the women whose husbands and families are out fighting. I have no idea how things will develop (UGH who does with this series) but I’m willing to bet Sansa comes out on top.

Oh, and on another note, Tyrion. I truly hate the dislike for Sansa based on her dealings with Tyrion. She’s 13, alone, her father’s been killed in front of her, her younger sister is missing and presumed dead, her ideal boy is actually a complete shit who has his men beat her for saying the wrong thing, she’s belittled by his mother the queen (who also ordered her innocent pet wolf killed), she’s without a single person to advise her – and they force her, the bright-eyed optimistic girl with her head full of dreams, to marry an ugly dwarf whose family have been the architects of all her woes. She’s 13, and no one aged 13 should be confronted with this situation. Yes, I love Tyrion. Sansa doesn’t have to, because to her mind his family murdered hers, and this is as near legalized rape as you can get (and, what, she should be GRATEFUL he doesn’t force himself on her now?!). It’s horrendous. And she doesn’t get to read his point of view – she can’t just magically know that this guy isn’t an actual monster, the inversion of Joffrey. He’s a Lannister. He’s not on her side. For Sansa, it’s pretty simple.

And if you want a less rambling, more coherent perspective on all this, this video is amazing amazing AMAZING and explains the Battle of Blackwater scene SO WELL:

Just to add: I’m totally fine with people not liking characters because they don’t click with them. Jon Snow annoys the hell out of me; as Sansa is the GRRM equivalent of the princess stereotype, Jon is the GRRM equivalent of the heroic farmer’s boy. I dislike that character type intensely, though the plot is developing him in much more interesting ways so I have less dislike for him than for, say, Rand al’Thor. So many people hold him up as being fantastic where Sansa’s got all the hate. Dislike a character because they don’t click for you, that’s fine; don’t hate a character for stupid reasons though. Otherwise I get sniffy and write epic blog posts, apparently.

Sansa rocks. She will grow to rock harder. End of.

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Some more Sansa links I highly recommend:

In Defence of Sansa Stark

She longed for a prince in the cold keep and behold, Prince Joffrey shows up on her doorstep. She had to think it was meant to be. He was handsome and charming, and she was blinded by her dream world. She’s young – just 11 in the books – and the news that she would be leaving the dark north for the capital city of Westeros would be enough to dazzle any child. Add the betrothal to the prince arranged by her father and King Robert, and the situation is hopeless. Every silly, improbable fantasy of Sansa’s actually happens. Who wouldn’t allow themselves to be swept away in a similar situation?

Sansa Stark is a strong character (no, really)

If Sansa is overly concerned with fairy-tale ideals, her beauty, and her gods, it’s not because she’s a stupid little girl — it’s because that’s literally all she has left to depend on, small hope as it is. She’s clinging to her innocence because that’s the only thing she hasn’t lost.

Sansa Stark

But there are more ways than one to show strength in Westeros. This woman shows her own strength of character and incredible growth over the series without ever learning how to wield a sword. It’s time to talk about how much I love Sansa Stark.

F*ckYesSansaStark

Images from tumblr.