Game of Thrones Final Season Discussion Thread. (SPOILERS ABOUND, YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED)

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Samtemdo8:

3. I think I would not mind Arya killing the Night King if she died in the process. Night King fatally stabs her but she still manages to do that knife trick.

Speaking personally, I don't really mind Arya killing the Night King per se, outside of some afterthought about whether or not she really is the best fit for the Azor Ahai prophecy and if there were better ways to affirm/reject the prophecy.

What ends up annoying me is the blocking of the scene itself, wherein the Night King is languidly about to cut down Bran in the middle of a clearing, with the former's entourage staring them down from a good 15-20 feet behind the Night King. And then Arya comes flying of the now blackened clearing behind the Night King.

...What.

They were in a clearing. Where the heck was she hiding? The closest thing we get to a hint on this is one of the Others seeming to notice something as a gust of wind blows by, as if implying Arya had zipped through their ranks at like an anime ninja. I just want to scream at whoever blocked out that scene. Have Arya swing out of the trees, have her lying on the ground imitating a corpse, clutter the clearing to give her places to hide, have Theon desperately try to wheel Bran into a chokepoint where Arya has been hiding above the archway, there are so many ways they could have made this scene work, but they simply went for a very lazy and almost literal "she came out of nowhere" presentation. And for goodness sake, they could have at least given the Night King an "oh shit" moment instead of seeming entirely disinterested in the scene up to the moment he exploded.

As an aside, the rationale for why Bran could bait out the Night King also pissed me off. He's the memory of the world, and death is forgetting, and the Night King wants to kill Bran to erase the world...hoo boy, where to even start on that...It's so spectacularly weak as a justification that it feels up there with when - during the production of The Birds - Hedren asked Hitchcock why the heck her character would be dumb enough to go into the attic after everything she's seen, and Hitchcock simply responded "Because I told you to".

Eacaraxe:

Fuckin' A. Jesus, I get sick of people who blow this show and its writers for how it portrayed women characters post-season 5, when the reality is any sort of real, meaningful social commentary has been stripped away and replaced by topical, social media-friendly, bite-size "you go grrl!" nonsense.

Yup. I actually have real issues with how the writers of GoT seems to have been so bad at imagining what female empowerment looks like (especially in the context of living in a rigid, feudal patriarchy) that their idea of empowering women was to let them be sassy and/or violent. Arya and Dany gets to be at the forefront of this (Sansa's empowerment plot was to hand her the idiot ball so that Ramsay could rape a major character), with both being empowered by their ability to kill their opponents. It is not that I dislike badass women, but they really don't fit within the context of ASoIaF or GoT.

Saelune:

Badass men are a dime a dozen. As long as garbage like Fast and the Furious exists, people need to get over letting women be badass.

When I want to watch bad ass women I put on Legends of Tomorrow. There's a distinct irony in the notion that GoT's writers felt that the best way to empower their female characters was to let them exercise violence and kill people, when a recurring theme of ASoIaF is the heavy cost, both personal and social, of violence as a means to solve problems or exercise power. Book!Arya learns to kill people, but it is also amply clear that she's incredibly psychologically damaged by constantly being so close to death and having to kill people and that the list she uses to cope is actually damaging to her psyche and emotional state. Show!Arya is just sooooo cool, amirite? She totally killed both Walder Frey AND the Night King!

Maybe if GoT hadn't started off on the same page as the books, by showing the terrors of using violence as a solution in the first few seasons, I'd have been more ok with Dany and Arya suddenly becoming murderous psychopaths as a means to show that they are strong women. But considering the source material and the early seasons of GoT, it feels more like the writers just had a collective amnesia, forgot the themes they were working with and wanted to cash in some brownie points with feminists, while not doing anything about the actually disturbing content of the show, such as the casual, borderline exploitative attitude towards women's bodies as titillation for viewers. The fact that the same season which "empowered" the women of GoT was also the season when Sansa got idiot balled so Ramsay could rape her (and the show then treating it as a "learning experience" for Sansa) speaks volumes as to the blindness in terms of women's issues that the writers of GoT suffers from.

Saelune:
Badass men are a dime a dozen. As long as garbage like Fast and the Furious exists, people need to get over letting women be badass.

"Feminists" need to figure out money shots aren't the only way to effectively make a statement or frame commentary.

Eacaraxe:

Saelune:
Badass men are a dime a dozen. As long as garbage like Fast and the Furious exists, people need to get over letting women be badass.

"Feminists" need to figure out money shots aren't the only way to effectively make a statement or frame commentary.

Oh dear...

Anyway, I made more tactically sound battles in Warhammer Total War then this.

Samtemdo8:
Oh dear...

Why do you think I specifically mentioned Eowyn? One of, if not the, deepest and commentary-laden characters in all Tolkein's legendarium, the critical analysis of whom is absolutely key to gaining any kind of real understanding of Tolkein at all.

Literally all of which thrown away in the films for a money shot. A money shot that, in the book, Eowyn's possession of a Vee-Vee instead of a Pee-Pee was barely a tertiary concern (it was about hubris and the treacherous nature of prophecy, just like Macbeth which was Tolkein's inspiration for this moment).

Eacaraxe:

Saelune:
Badass men are a dime a dozen. As long as garbage like Fast and the Furious exists, people need to get over letting women be badass.

"Feminists" need to figure out money shots aren't the only way to effectively make a statement or frame commentary.

To be fair, I don't think the showrunners of GoT are very feminist at all. They pay lip service to feminism in the later seasons (after massive criticism about their mishandling of their female cast) but all of the troublesome content that drew feminist criticism is still there, such as trivialization of sexual violence and prostitution and the insistence on using women's bodies as a way to "keep men watching". If they are feminists, they are disastrously bad at actually doing what they believe in.

Eacaraxe:

Why do you think I specifically mentioned Eowyn? One of, if not the, deepest and commentary-laden characters in all Tolkein's legendarium, the critical analysis of whom is absolutely key to gaining any kind of real understanding of Tolkein at all.

...that women shouldn't aspire to greatness, should not take to the field of battle, should settle down in a garden, and marry someone they get to know after being rejected by your first love?

Much as I like Eowyn as a character, it's an affection that comes entirely from the Jackson films. Book!Eowyn is bland at best, and certainly not an example of an "empowered" character.

Even in one of the show's longest episodes that has the least amount of spoken dialogue in its history the episode still managed to be very very badly written. The writers literally can only think military tactics in terms of "run in a straight line at the enemy". The pre-battle strategies bordered on parody. It was quite funny.

Everything about the episode was just complete nonsense. At one point Winterfell is basically clogged with ice zombies and the battle is raging at the gates, but apparently some of them snuck into the library with no one in it and reverted from retard strength 28 days later marathon sprinters to old school night of the living dead shamblers. Theon and co. are surrounded on all sides by a horde of zombies and then they're not. The zombies are skilled enough fighters to overpower the greatest army in the world, and then they're not. Sam is buried under a horde of them and then he's not. Everyone is nearly falling over from exhaustion and then they're not. The Night King raises an army around Jon Snow, and the next moment it's not there anymore.

But despite all of the absolutely horrible writing, it was very entertaining, and brought back the feeling of genuinely not knowing where things are headed back, even if for only moments. The extremely sparse dialogue was a blessing. And the ending was both a surprise, and to my shock, actually made sense. If there was anyone who could be able to basically ninja their way across an army of zombies, it was Arya. And the effect of Valyrian steel had been well established. For the first time in forever I'm actually anticipating the next episode, which is something I definitely did not expect from this season.

Gethsemani:

Eacaraxe:

Saelune:
Badass men are a dime a dozen. As long as garbage like Fast and the Furious exists, people need to get over letting women be badass.

"Feminists" need to figure out money shots aren't the only way to effectively make a statement or frame commentary.

To be fair, I don't think the showrunners of GoT are very feminist at all. They pay lip service to feminism in the later seasons (after massive criticism about their mishandling of their female cast) but all of the troublesome content that drew feminist criticism is still there, such as trivialization of sexual violence and prostitution and the insistence on using women's bodies as a way to "keep men watching". If they are feminists, they are disastrously bad at actually doing what they believe in.

Feminism is a modern phenomena and I think the display of raw emotions is one of the shows biggest draws, with sexual lust obviously being one of the strongest emotions to derail behavior. The middle-ages didn't hide behind this veneer of hypocrisy until the church came along to subjugate everyone under their rule. Considering the drama and vicious undertones of the sexual violence in the show I don't think it's trivialized at all; but rather it's used to effectively communicate the true nature of certain characters. Similarly how violence is handed out to men in equal measure(castration seems to be a common theme).

I also think the show refuses to portray women as victims without paying lip service to modern feminism. Prostitutes aren't necessarily victims as you like to see and become important characters themselves. Rape victims don't crumble under their trauma but become incredibly resilient. Even Dany, arguably the stongest character of all was initially a sex slave who fell in love with her captor. And even the prize for most cruelest character, Cersei, belongs to a woman. She isn't shy to use her sexuality to manipulate and get what she wants and her vindictiveness and spite know no boundaries. None of the male characters are any kind of match for this evil queen.

So yeah, if there is one thing the show does well it is to refuse to see women as victims who need to be saved from the 'patriarchy' preferably through the value system of a modern day loud mouthed minority. The female characters don't even need male 'saviors', they can stand on their own. The writers don't try to appease any modern day ideologists but rather follow their own line which can only be applauded. Though I have to admit the show started to lose some of it's edge the moment it became so immensely popular. But the show ofcourse isn't written in a vacuum and you never know what kind of restrictions were put on the writers that weren't there before.

stroopwafel:
Considering the drama and vicious undertones of the sexual violence in the show I don't think it's trivialized at all; but rather it's used to effectively communicate the true nature of certain characters. Similarly how violence is handed out to men in equal measure(castration seems to be a common theme).

And both Theon's and Varys' castrations are frequently the butt end of jokes. Theon's castration was a serious topic for all of the scene where Ramsay did it, the very next episode we got the meme-friendly sausage wagging scene and whenever it was brought up later in the show it was for someone to crack a joke about it. Never did we see a scene where Theon, a former womanizer, gets to lament the loss of his metaphorical and literal manhood. Prostitution in GoT is all about the titillation, just look at all the Brothel scenes with Littlefinger, apart from the one scene where Joffrey kills Ros, which was both titillation and cheap shock value at once. Do you know how often Ros was mentioned after that? Never. Similarly, Shae's predicament as a de facto piece of property to Tyrion was never brought up (because buying a woman's body long enough means she'll develop romantic feelings for you!) and the show preferred to paint her as a backstabbing bitch, instead of the books more nuanced portrayal as a desperate woman caught in a really bad spot.

I mean, that's on top of the true gist of the problem, what you describe as "[Sexual violence] is used to effectively communicate the true nature of certain characters". Which really cuts to the heart of why GoT fails to really empower its female characters or even pass a basic feminist litmus test (whether it should pass is another discussion entirely). Sexual violence is a way to characterize male characters, based on how they treat female characters. Ramsay snow rapes Miranda and Sansa, he's so evil! The random guy on Arya's list is a pedophile, he really got what he deserved! Do we ever get to see any of these female characters react to their abuse or rape? The answer is no. Dany develops (a totally unintentional) Stockholm Syndrome and never brings up Drogo's treatment of her, instead extolling his virtues for the rest of the show. Sansa never shows any development after Ramsay rapes her, apart from talking back at Miranda a bit (oh the good ol' "Rape strengthens you" myth!) and Miranda, despite several scenes characterizing her as a victim of Ramsay never gets to go beyond Ramsay's hot sidekick/mistress.

There's nothing well done or realistic about the way GoT deals with sexual violence. The victims, if any attention is even paid to them, are either are unfazed or grow stronger and the sexual violence exists to either provide cheap shock value or to characterize male characters. This is a secondary point to the fact that the showrunners said they'd heard the criticism about how GoT treated female characters and promised to "be better" prior to season 6. This was the "women on top" campaign and the actual contents of Season 6 just showed that the showrunners didn't really understand the criticism levied at their show. Instead they opted for what Eacaraxe aptly called "topical, social media-friendly, bite-size "you go grrl!" nonsense" instead of actually changing the poor way they dealt with topics like sexual violence.

Gethsemani:

Eacaraxe:

Fuckin' A. Jesus, I get sick of people who blow this show and its writers for how it portrayed women characters post-season 5, when the reality is any sort of real, meaningful social commentary has been stripped away and replaced by topical, social media-friendly, bite-size "you go grrl!" nonsense.

Yup. I actually have real issues with how the writers of GoT seems to have been so bad at imagining what female empowerment looks like (especially in the context of living in a rigid, feudal patriarchy) that their idea of empowering women was to let them be sassy and/or violent. Arya and Dany gets to be at the forefront of this (Sansa's empowerment plot was to hand her the idiot ball so that Ramsay could rape a major character), with both being empowered by their ability to kill their opponents. It is not that I dislike badass women, but they really don't fit within the context of ASoIaF or GoT.

Also agreed.

The "kick ass woman" is the laziest of lazy ways to respond to female empowerment. I cannot think of any other reason the Sand Snakes are anything but a trivial subplot, for instance.

Samtemdo8:
Was the Siege of Jerusalem in the movie Kingdom of Heaven realistic?

Almost certainly not, although I haven't seen it.

But there's varying degrees of unrealistic. There's unrealistic in terms of mild artistic licence: you might pedantically point out that that sword they're calling a "longsword" is actually an "arming sword", for instance. Or that their plate or leather armour is impractical, the trebuchet design is not historically accurate, etc.

And then there's pants on head ridiculous - purest fantastical nonsense. The Battle of the Bastards "corpse wall" is simply sense-defying in every way imaginable, including the internal consistency of the shown battle itself. You can say this is a fantasy series, and that's okay reasoning for magic and dragons and undead ice zombies. However, if you're otherwise relying on people's perception of reality to make sense of events (thus a cod medieval world should act rather like the medieval world did) then egregious breaches of reality break viewer engagement.

Agema:

Gethsemani:

Eacaraxe:

Fuckin' A. Jesus, I get sick of people who blow this show and its writers for how it portrayed women characters post-season 5, when the reality is any sort of real, meaningful social commentary has been stripped away and replaced by topical, social media-friendly, bite-size "you go grrl!" nonsense.

Yup. I actually have real issues with how the writers of GoT seems to have been so bad at imagining what female empowerment looks like (especially in the context of living in a rigid, feudal patriarchy) that their idea of empowering women was to let them be sassy and/or violent. Arya and Dany gets to be at the forefront of this (Sansa's empowerment plot was to hand her the idiot ball so that Ramsay could rape a major character), with both being empowered by their ability to kill their opponents. It is not that I dislike badass women, but they really don't fit within the context of ASoIaF or GoT.

Also agreed.

The "kick ass woman" is the laziest of lazy ways to respond to female empowerment. I cannot think of any other reason the Sand Snakes are anything but a trivial subplot, for instance.

Samtemdo8:
Was the Siege of Jerusalem in the movie Kingdom of Heaven realistic?

Almost certainly not, although I haven't seen it.

But there's varying degrees of unrealistic. There's unrealistic in terms of mild artistic licence: you might pedantically point out that that sword they're calling a "longsword" is actually an "arming sword", for instance. Or that their plate or leather armour is impractical, the trebuchet design is not historically accurate, etc.

And then there's pants on head ridiculous - purest fantastical nonsense. The Battle of the Bastards "corpse wall" is simply sense-defying in every way imaginable, including the internal consistency of the shown battle itself. You can say this is a fantasy series, and that's okay reasoning for magic and dragons and undead ice zombies. However, if you're otherwise relying on people's perception of reality to make sense of events (thus a cod medieval world should act rather like the medieval world did) then egregious breaches of reality break viewer engagement.

Here be the whole siege cut into parts:

Gethsemani:

stroopwafel:
Considering the drama and vicious undertones of the sexual violence in the show I don't think it's trivialized at all; but rather it's used to effectively communicate the true nature of certain characters. Similarly how violence is handed out to men in equal measure(castration seems to be a common theme).

And both Theon's and Varys' castrations are frequently the butt end of jokes. Theon's castration was a serious topic for all of the scene where Ramsay did it, the very next episode we got the meme-friendly sausage wagging scene and whenever it was brought up later in the show it was for someone to crack a joke about it. Never did we see a scene where Theon, a former womanizer, gets to lament the loss of his metaphorical and literal manhood. Prostitution in GoT is all about the titillation, just look at all the Brothel scenes with Littlefinger, apart from the one scene where Joffrey kills Ros, which was both titillation and cheap shock value at once. Do you know how often Ros was mentioned after that? Never. Similarly, Shae's predicament as a de facto piece of property to Tyrion was never brought up (because buying a woman's body long enough means she'll develop romantic feelings for you!) and the show preferred to paint her as a backstabbing bitch, instead of the books more nuanced portrayal as a desperate woman caught in a really bad spot.

There definitely was a scene with Theon in a brothel together with his sister where she taunted him about the loss of his manhood and you could see the anguish and utter defeat on his face. I really liked the Tyrion/Shae storyline up to it's poor conclusion where he misunderstood Shae's motivation to cut him loose. Tyrion has always been the underdog; he is a dwarf, his father wanted to initially drown him, his sister hated him so much for whatever reason that she squeezed his nuts till they turned purple. He only got by through cunning, smarts and humor. He is the typical example of 'if life gives you lemons'. Having few to no opportunities it is no surprise he tried to find solace in drink and prostitutes, the only women that would accept him. That he became a regular with Shae and that they eventually developed feelings for eachother isn't that far fetched considering both had a background as outcasts and Tyrion's charisma being able to compensate for his lack in physical stature. When she died it's obvious Tyrion never really recovered and became this semi-depressed mopey guy. Though I have to say I really like the build-up of their relationship but the way it ended was some real messy writing with scenes that felt incongruous and out of character like they had to quickly resolve this particular storyline to move the general plot along. It's something GoT suffers more from I guess b/c they want to give their own interpretation but still rely on the books for important plot points.

I liked the portrayal of Joffrey as this total emotionless inbred psychopath and it underlined everything that is wrong when bloodline is sacred with succession to the throne. His entire storyline tried to make this point and it did so well. Also again, Cersei played no small part trying to manipulate her son's deviancy.

I mean, that's on top of the true gist of the problem, what you describe as "[Sexual violence] is used to effectively communicate the true nature of certain characters". Which really cuts to the heart of why GoT fails to really empower its female characters or even pass a basic feminist litmus test (whether it should pass is another discussion entirely). Sexual violence is a way to characterize male characters, based on how they treat female characters. Ramsay snow rapes Miranda and Sansa, he's so evil! The random guy on Arya's list is a pedophile, he really got what he deserved! Do we ever get to see any of these female characters react to their abuse or rape? The answer is no. Dany develops (a totally unintentional) Stockholm Syndrome and never brings up Drogo's treatment of her, instead extolling his virtues for the rest of the show. Sansa never shows any development after Ramsay rapes her, apart from talking back at Miranda a bit (oh the good ol' "Rape strengthens you" myth!) and Miranda, despite several scenes characterizing her as a victim of Ramsay never gets to go beyond Ramsay's hot sidekick/mistress.

Yeah, sexual violence does serve to portray how evil and malicious some of the male characters are but by the same token so does murder and torture which is dealt out to the men in equal measure(probably even more so). You could say Theon deserved what was coming to him but his humiliation and castration was incredibly mean spirited, and he was eventually just a self-serving coward. That Dany's attachment to Drogo was a form of Stockholm syndrome could be but it's not that different from real life where many women fall for these dominant, physically imposing, leader type men and take their abusive character for granted. Espescially considering the time and circumstances where Drogo also took on the role of protector, and Dany figured how to control him through her sexuality. The 'soft power' of women that would make men risk their life for them in a time that was incessantly hostile shouldn't be underestimated. You could say her assertive character developed in the tribal structure and relationship with Drogo and culminated in the all powerful dragon lady. She started a victim but turned it around by changing the rules and subsequently falling in love with her captor.

Sansa's rape was obviously traumatic but I always had the impression she carried on out of duty for her family and homeland. When she had this arranged marriage with Joffrey she was this totally naive, gullible girl but by the latest season she was this self-assured, confident woman who did what needed to be done by offing Littlefinger having a sharp awareness of men's true intentions and being soft(and even affectionate) of Tyrion.

There's nothing well done or realistic about the way GoT deals with sexual violence. The victims, if any attention is even paid to them, are either are unfazed or grow stronger and the sexual violence exists to either provide cheap shock value or to characterize male characters. This is a secondary point to the fact that the showrunners said they'd heard the criticism about how GoT treated female characters and promised to "be better" prior to season 6. This was the "women on top" campaign and the actual contents of Season 6 just showed that the showrunners didn't really understand the criticism levied at their show. Instead they opted for what Eacaraxe aptly called "topical, social media-friendly, bite-size "you go grrl!" nonsense" instead of actually changing the poor way they dealt with topics like sexual violence.

I don't think a creative process should be undermined by pressure from the fanbase or interest groups and the writers should make the story they want to make. Though ofcourse I can see how it's done for marketing purposes and it probably contributed to Dany being portrayed as this all powerful female icon(and Arya to a lesser extent). They also toned down significantly on the nudity. It's as far as they could reasonably go without alienating a large part of their audience and becoming a sort of ideological pamflet for 21st century feminists that so many media and entertainment is now indoctrinated by.

stroopwafel:
I really liked the Tyrion/Shae storyline up to it's poor conclusion where he misunderstood Shae's motivation to cut him loose. Tyrion has always been the underdog; he is a dwarf, his father wanted to initially drown him, his sister hated him so much for whatever reason that she squeezed his nuts till they turned purple. He only got by through cunning, smarts and humor. He is the typical example of 'if life gives you lemons'. Having few to no opportunities it is no surprise he tried to find solace in drink and prostitutes, the only women that would accept him. That he became a regular with Shae and that they eventually developed feelings for eachother isn't that far fetched considering both had a background as outcasts and Tyrion's charisma being able to compensate for his lack in physical stature. When she died it's obvious Tyrion never really recovered and became this semi-depressed mopey guy.

I by far preferred the way this was handled in the books, where it's clear that Tyrion is disillusioned about everything. He's got a massive victim complex that takes him up to ADwD to even partially overcome (he's born to the richest family on the continent, he is most definitely not an underdog, man), Shae never really loved him, and was mostly a scared girl coerced into prostitution and emotionally abused by Tyrion's obsession and outbursts of possessiveness. Tysha was supposed to be the only real love in Tyrion's life, and the show dropping that plotline seriously jeopardized Tyrion's character growth.

I understand the showrunners want people to root for him, and Dany for that matter, and so had to whitewash them, but I think they seriously compromised Tyrion's story by removing elements such as his one-way obsession with Shae, his venomous hatred of Jaime after the reveal that he lied about Tysha, and the fact that he's one of the most privileged people on the planet and that his shtick about being the underdog and a victim of the world turns out to be BS, just to make him a more relatable character.

People can relate to characters like Tony Soprano, Walter White, or Jax Teller, no reason why they couldn't relate to a Tyrion that is closer to what he was in the books.

EDIT: Also, Theon absolutely didn't deserve what happened to him. He was a scared kid uprooted from his home by the men who killed most of his family and look at his people with permanent disdain and suspicion, and kept hostage by a cold stern man who held the threat of death over his head since he was freaking twelve. His whole arc in ACoK/Season 2 is that of a scared confused child lashing out at the two entities he perceives as his families for not accepting him as is.

stroopwafel:

There definitely was a scene with Theon in a brothel together with his sister where she taunted him about the loss of his manhood and you could see the anguish and utter defeat on his face.

Yeah, Alfie Allen is an extremely good actor, so what? That scene, just like Varys' scene with Tyrion in S8E1 sees the castrated man at the butt end of a joke about losing male genitalia. There's not a single scene where Theon is allowed to voice his feelings on the mutilation that Ramsay inflicted on him, it is always the butt end of a joke. Considering that the Doylist reason Theon gets tortured in the first place is to break him so that he can see what's really important to him (the Stark family), it is really shitty showrunning that we can have a bunch of scenes showing what a total douche Ramsay is, despite Ramsay being a secondary antagonist, but not a single one where Theon is directly allowed to emote about his loss, humiliation and suffering.

stroopwafel:
Yeah, sexual violence does serve to portray how evil and malicious some of the male characters are but by the same token so does murder and torture which is dealt out to the men in equal measure(probably even more so).

You misunderstand me. I'm not opposed to sexual violence (or violence at all, for that matter) as a means to establish characters. I'm opposed to the fact that this sexual violence happens to major characters (like Dany and Sansa) and that the show never bothers to actually show how it affected them. That and the extremely poor writing around the sexual violence. Sansa "learns a valuable lesson" (D&Ds own words) from being raped, which is a traditional shaming of raped women, as it suggests the woman did something wrong and needed to learn not to be raped. Except the lesson is best summed up as "Sansa is catty to Miranda" and then she never mentions it again. It is sexual violence for sexual violence sake and in a show that has won several Emmy's for outstanding writing, I expect more then the same exploitation schlock you get from Direct to Video action B-movies.

stroopwafel:
That Dany's attachment to Drogo was a form of Stockholm syndrome could be but it's not that different from real life where many women fall for these dominant, physically imposing, leader type men and take their abusive character for granted. Espescially considering the time and circumstances where Drogo also took on the role of protector, and Dany figured how to control him through her sexuality. The 'soft power' of women that would make men risk their life for them in a time that was incessantly hostile shouldn't be underestimated. You could say her assertive character developed in the tribal structure and relationship with Drogo and culminated in the all powerful dragon lady. She started a victim but turned it around by changing the rules and subsequently falling in love with her captor.

Except this is all waffle. Dany never again shows that she learned how to control Drogo or any other man through her sexuality. In fact, short of the marriage proposal in Mereen Dany is explicitly asexual in her politicking until Jon comes around and True Love sparks. Dany also never shows any inkling of fascination for dominating, physically imposing leaders or whatever tripe you want to pass off. The scene is adapted to be more violent then the book equivalent (which shows Drogo as a lot more tender), which has weird implications for the rest of Dany's and Drogo's relation. In the books Drogo is tender but firm while they have sex, which shows Dany that he truly cares for her and makes her realize how shitty Viserys has been to her. The whole Dany/Drogo relation is severely underdeveloped on the show, but it still reads as more Stockholm Syndrome then the love shown in the books.

Which is seriously problematic in the same way 50 Shades of Gray is, in that the text of the narrative is that women should just endure bad relationships because men can't show love in any way but being abusive.

stroopwafel:
Sansa's rape was obviously traumatic but I always had the impression she carried on out of duty for her family and homeland. When she had this arranged marriage with Joffrey she was this totally naive, gullible girl but by the latest season she was this self-assured, confident woman who did what needed to be done by offing Littlefinger having a sharp awareness of men's true intentions and being soft(and even affectionate) of Tyrion.

Sansa got raped because Jayne Poole was adapted out and D&D needed someone to be raped by Ramsay. The very fact that she got into that situation in the first place was only possible because they rolled back her entire character development to that point (remember her silly Maleficent dress at the end of S6, the one that showed she had learned to play the game?) and then had it repeated in S6 at the hands of Ramsay. That's bad writing on many, many levels, but once again the show never does anything with Sansa after this. They never show how it affects her or what profound lesson she supposedly learned, which once again makes the rape about how evil the perpetrator is and not about the victim. This time despite the victim being one of the major protagonists and the perp being a secondary antagonist.

We can sit and make up fan fic all day about what Dany and Sansa went through emotionally, mentally and physically in the aftermath of their rapes. But GoT as shown does not care about that and never shows it to the viewer, being much more interested in reminding us that Khal Drogo is a beast of man that fights hard, drinks hard and rides hard (get it, double entendre in the vein of D&D!) and that Ramsay is totally chaotic evil and really nasty.

Sonmi:

stroopwafel:
I really liked the Tyrion/Shae storyline up to it's poor conclusion where he misunderstood Shae's motivation to cut him loose. Tyrion has always been the underdog; he is a dwarf, his father wanted to initially drown him, his sister hated him so much for whatever reason that she squeezed his nuts till they turned purple. He only got by through cunning, smarts and humor. He is the typical example of 'if life gives you lemons'. Having few to no opportunities it is no surprise he tried to find solace in drink and prostitutes, the only women that would accept him. That he became a regular with Shae and that they eventually developed feelings for eachother isn't that far fetched considering both had a background as outcasts and Tyrion's charisma being able to compensate for his lack in physical stature. When she died it's obvious Tyrion never really recovered and became this semi-depressed mopey guy.

I by far preferred the way this was handled in the books, where it's clear that Tyrion is disillusioned about everything. He's got a massive victim complex that takes him up to ADwD to even partially overcome (he's born to the richest family on the continent, he is most definitely not an underdog, man), Shae never really loved him, and was mostly a scared girl coerced into prostitution and emotionally abused by Tyrion's obsession and outbursts of possessiveness. Tysha was supposed to be the only real love in Tyrion's life, and the show dropping that plotline seriously jeopardized Tyrion's character growth.

I understand the showrunners want people to root for him, and Dany for that matter, and so had to whitewash them, but I think they seriously compromised Tyrion's story by removing elements such as his one-way obsession with Shae, his venomous hatred of Jaime after the reveal that he lied about Tysha, and the fact that he's one of the most privileged people on the planet and that his shtick about being the underdog and a victim of the world turns out to be BS, just to make him a more relatable character.

People can relate to characters like Tony Soprano, Walter White, or Jax Teller, no reason why they couldn't relate to a Tyrion that is closer to what he was in the books.

EDIT: Also, Theon absolutely didn't deserve what happened to him. He was a scared kid uprooted from his home by the men who killed most of his family and look at his people with permanent disdain and suspicion, and kept hostage by a cold stern man who held the threat of death over his head since he was freaking twelve. His whole arc in ACoK/Season 2 is that of a scared confused child lashing out at the two entities he perceives as his families for not accepting him as is.

I haven't read the books so I can't comment on that, but going by the show it is indeed obvious Tyrion is a descendant of one of the most powerful families but you can wonder what 'family' is worth when your sister wants you dead and your father would have rather drowned you were it not for some family code. It's not like they are exactly shy about this either, at every point Tyrion's family makes obvious they hate his guts, with his own father even watching in amusement how Joffrey horribly humiliates him in front of everybody. Only his brother Jaime seems somewhat considerate. What is wealth and power worth when you're trapped in a sarcophagus? That has always been Tyrion's dilemma in the show. And despite the loveless upbringing and abuse he still turned out a decent person, as also Sansa sees in the last episode. I do think it's a shame he lost all of his charisma the moment he became part of Dany's posse.

stroopwafel:
Tyrion has always been the underdog... his sister hated him so much for whatever reason...

She had a prophecy in parts. One was that once she had lost everything and exhausted her tears, her "valonquar" (translated as "little brother") would strangle her. That is regarded as the main reason she hates him, although it could be also considered that he disgusts her, she is in ways perhaps envious or resentful of him, and honestly she's just kind of full of plenty of hate for lots of people and things anyway.

We the audience might note that whilst she assumed the "valonquar" was Tyrion, as her twin born a few minutes later, Jaime is therefore also a "little brother" to her...

Hawki:
...that women shouldn't aspire to greatness, should not take to the field of battle, should settle down in a garden, and marry someone they get to know after being rejected by your first love?

Much as I like Eowyn as a character, it's an affection that comes entirely from the Jackson films. Book!Eowyn is bland at best, and certainly not an example of an "empowered" character.

...and here we have exactly the quark-gluon, galaxy-brain, take I was hoping for when I brought up Eowyn in the context of Feminist Money Shots in the first place.

So, Eowyn trundles up to Aragorn and begs his leave to break her sworn oaths to liege, realm, and subjects so she can follow him into a cave populated by men who had been cursed with undeath by Aragorn's own ancestor for breaking sworn oaths.

Why? Well, as Eowyn tells the Dunadan who had been fostered by his great-great-whatever uncle Elrond, one of the great elf-lords, legendary warrior and Ring-bearer, and greatest healer of the age, there's no renown or glory in healing or care-giving.

Nope, the only way to show virtue, says the woman who's never seen battle to the veteran, is to sally forth, kill, and die for king and country. But only as long as your deeds are witnessed and sung about, says court-dweller noblewoman to the man who's had to live his entire life in secrecy, and is trying to execute a task upon the secrecy of which rests the fate of the entire world.

Now, exactly how fucking stupid is Eowyn? Or is she just brainwashed by her hyper-masculine, death-cult culture?

So, at this point, after Eowyn in her pride insults Aragorn, his blood and foster family, his legacy, his beliefs, and his duty, Aragorn still tells her no. Thus, she goes off, because obviously this has to be about how she's a woman. As opposed to...I dunno, being a naive, entitled donkey who talks big about shit she knows nothing about, and is willing to betray and abandon the people whom she'd sworn to lead and protect, to chase a teenage infatuation born entirely out of projecting her own insecurities onto Aragorn? You go grrl, yas kween slay!

So she rides off to commit Suicide by Nazgul, dragging Merry into her culturally-inspired vendetta against her own existence, and damn near succeeds but whacks the Witch-King despite herself. Which is the hollowest victory in the entire goddamn trilogy, considering this didn't influence the outcome of the battle, she didn't actually manage to save anyone, and in fact nearly got a shitload of people killed on her behalf. You go grrl, yas kween slay!

So, the Witch-King beats her ass to within an inch of her life, and that last inch is just about gone thanks to the Black Breath. So here comes the newly-crowned King of Gondor with that lowly, virtue-less, woman work of his to, y'know, make her not die. And....WHAAAAAAAT? there's this pretty cool nobleman over here who doesn't want to charge off to the nearest bloody, muddy, hellpit and die screaming and helpless for the sake of "glory", who just wants to grow and build stuff, and protect people because it's just the right thing to do?

Why it's almost as if Eowyn's entire upbringing, and everything she grew up "knowing" about traditional gender roles and expectations, was utter bullshit! Maybe there's a better way to live than in a hyper-masculinized medieval death cult? Like, you know, celebrate life not death, save lives instead of take them, protect people instead of abandon them, and do something because it's right to do instead of for the asspats?

Who writes this hippy garbage, WWI vets who hate war and the glorification thereof?

Agema:

stroopwafel:
Tyrion has always been the underdog... his sister hated him so much for whatever reason...

She had a prophecy in parts. One was that once she had lost everything and exhausted her tears, her "valonquar" (translated as "little brother") would strangle her. That is regarded as the main reason she hates him, although it could be also considered that he disgusts her, she is in ways perhaps envious or resentful of him, and honestly she's just kind of full of plenty of hate for lots of people and things anyway.

We the audience might note that whilst she assumed the "valonquar" was Tyrion, as her twin born a few minutes later, Jaime is therefore also a "little brother" to her...

That said the prophesy could also be completely false or off base. Maybe the crazy witch made a translation error in the sense that a younger brother would kill her rather than specifically her own, meaning that theoretically Bran could have done the deed. Or Cersei's been deathly afraid for nothing with no little brother coming for her at all. Jaime could also indirectly kill her by Cersei's pregnancy turning into a miscarriage that kills her.

Gethsemani:

Yeah, Alfie Allen is an extremely good actor, so what? That scene, just like Varys' scene with Tyrion in S8E1 sees the castrated man at the butt end of a joke about losing male genitalia. There's not a single scene where Theon is allowed to voice his feelings on the mutilation that Ramsay inflicted on him, it is always the butt end of a joke. Considering that the Doylist reason Theon gets tortured in the first place is to break him so that he can see what's really important to him (the Stark family), it is really shitty showrunning that we can have a bunch of scenes showing what a total douche Ramsay is, despite Ramsay being a secondary antagonist, but not a single one where Theon is directly allowed to emote about his loss, humiliation and suffering.

Things can be implied rather than told directly and I think Theon's lament is present in almost every scene he is in post Ramsay. Sure, maybe this can be conferred to Alfie Allen being a great actor but the message still gets across. With acting this good not everything has to be spelled out. Varys was already a bit older in the show and there was more distance from the moment his castration occured so he was able to speak more matter of factly about it, but despite being seemingly able to accept his fate still relished in the thought of taking revenge on the wizard who threw his balls in the fire to appease some demon(or something like that).

You misunderstand me. I'm not opposed to sexual violence (or violence at all, for that matter) as a means to establish characters. I'm opposed to the fact that this sexual violence happens to major characters (like Dany and Sansa) and that the show never bothers to actually show how it affected them. That and the extremely poor writing around the sexual violence. Sansa "learns a valuable lesson" (D&Ds own words) from being raped, which is a traditional shaming of raped women, as it suggests the woman did something wrong and needed to learn not to be raped. Except the lesson is best summed up as "Sansa is catty to Miranda" and then she never mentions it again. It is sexual violence for sexual violence sake and in a show that has won several Emmy's for outstanding writing, I expect more then the same exploitation schlock you get from Direct to Video action B-movies.

That is not what I took away from it. I don't think Sansa was 'shamed' for being raped and with a 'valuable lesson' they probably meant her naive attitude being shattered by the malice in this world. With the Joffrey story arc Sansa was this totally impressionable naive girl oblivious to the evils in this world who genuinely believed Joffrey was her prince on the white horse despite all indications to the contrary. I believe she even went so far to sell out her own father b/c ''Joffrey would save him''. She became suicidal in the immediate aftermath of her father's execution and suffered even more after being raped. She had it rough and might have had every reason to give up but carried on regardless and became a determined and emotionally resilient woman and shed her naivity for an incisive understanding of other people's intentions be they good or bad(case in point Little Finger, Dany and Tyrion).

Except this is all waffle. Dany never again shows that she learned how to control Drogo or any other man through her sexuality. In fact, short of the marriage proposal in Mereen Dany is explicitly asexual in her politicking until Jon comes around and True Love sparks. Dany also never shows any inkling of fascination for dominating, physically imposing leaders or whatever tripe you want to pass off. The scene is adapted to be more violent then the book equivalent (which shows Drogo as a lot more tender), which has weird implications for the rest of Dany's and Drogo's relation. In the books Drogo is tender but firm while they have sex, which shows Dany that he truly cares for her and makes her realize how shitty Viserys has been to her. The whole Dany/Drogo relation is severely underdeveloped on the show, but it still reads as more Stockholm Syndrome then the love shown in the books.

Which is seriously problematic in the same way 50 Shades of Gray is, in that the text of the narrative is that women should just endure bad relationships because men can't show love in any way but being abusive.

Idk about that. I believe there was a scene where Dany was having a booty call in Mereen. And she always had a secret admirer in the old bloke who she passed over in favor of Jon Snow who might have the charisma of a wet towel but is one the show's greatest heroes. There is a consistency in her preference for a certain physical appearance. I also don't think the relationship between Dany and Drogo was underdeveloped but maybe b/c I found the two having more chemistry than Dany and Jon Snow. It also showed how much Dany loved Drogo and was willing to bring him back from the dead through occult means(probably one of the coolest scenes in the entire show). And Viserys got what was coming to him, also thanks to Drogo.

Abusive behavior isn't necessarily a one-way street when there are women who like to flirt with danger as long as the man is attractive and desirable which is the case with 50 Shades, which is ecactly what makes the book so immensely popular among women.

stroopwafel:
Sansa's rape was obviously traumatic but I always had the impression she carried on out of duty for her family and homeland. When she had this arranged marriage with Joffrey she was this totally naive, gullible girl but by the latest season she was this self-assured, confident woman who did what needed to be done by offing Littlefinger having a sharp awareness of men's true intentions and being soft(and even affectionate) of Tyrion.

We can sit and make up fan fic all day about what Dany and Sansa went through emotionally, mentally and physically in the aftermath of their rapes. But GoT as shown does not care about that and never shows it to the viewer, being much more interested in reminding us that Khal Drogo is a beast of man that fights hard, drinks hard and rides hard (get it, double entendre in the vein of D&D!) and that Ramsay is totally chaotic evil and really nasty.

I agree about Ramsay but Drogo was more nuanced, espescially when he got vulnerable with Dany in the protective role as his wound got infected. Considering the origins of their relationship seeing Dany weeping over a vulnerable Drogo was really a change in direction.

stroopwafel:
I haven't read the books so I can't comment on that, but going by the show it is indeed obvious Tyrion is a descendant of one of the most powerful families but you can wonder what 'family' is worth when your sister wants you dead and your father would have rather drowned you were it not for some family code. It's not like they are exactly shy about this either, at every point Tyrion's family makes obvious they hate his guts, with his own father even watching in amusement how Joffrey horribly humiliates him in front of everybody. Only his brother Jaime seems somewhat considerate. What is wealth and power worth when you're trapped in a sarcophagus? That has always been Tyrion's dilemma in the show. And despite the loveless upbringing and abuse he still turned out a decent person, as also Sansa sees in the last episode. I do think it's a shame he lost all of his charisma the moment he became part of Dany's posse.

That's the thing though, he's not caught in a sarcophagus, he's given as much money as he desires, which allows him to exert power on commoners and lower noblemen as much as he wants. He flaunts his gold and lineage whenever he wants something done, and it usually happens. His father made him the second most powerful person in the realm while he was fighting King Robb for fuck's sake, much to the dislike of Cersei. His sister, nephew, and father might dislike him (both for selfish, and more or less valid reasons), but the rest of his family, his brother, his other niece and nephew, his uncles and aunt and cousins, all treat him with complete respect, and even love.

This notion that he's completely unloved and mocked at every turn is one born of his own egoistical mind. He comes from the proudest family in Westeros, and any show of disrespect to him, even by a fellow Lannister, cuts him deep to the bone and enrages him. Truth is, he's given far more respect and power than the vast majority of the cast, despite being a grotesque dwarf. It's something he only realizes once he goes in exile, meets Penny, and sees how regular dwarfs are actually treated.

SupahEwok:

The thing to keep in mind in most of these dramatic depictions is that in real life, a siege is just the surrounding or blockading of a static position, like a city or fortification. Not letting anything in or out. And the idea there is to deprive the defenders of new supplies, with the natural progression of either starvation, an attempted breakout (which takes them out of their defenses), or surrender.

Well prepared defenses usually included food storage and rationing, so in medieval history, most sieges last for months, or even years. Within a siege, an attack to overcome the defenses is called an assault, and assaults are what are usually depicted in movies and TV when there's talk about sieging. Naturally, assaults are something to carefully consider; they require material for overcoming the defenses, such as ladders or rams or what have you, and the defenders naturally have an overwhelming tactical advantage with their defenses even when you do have machines and materials to scale them. You also aren't likely to overwhelm the defenses in one go, so you're usually talking about multiple assaults. In general, they were a thing to avoid. You have the potential to lose a lot of men, which can result in the siege being broken. Assaults are generally only to be used when your force is overwhelming, the defenses are weak, or for one reason or another, you don't have the time for a siege.

Negotiations were also a vital part of sieges. It saves a lot of time and money to convince the defenders to surrender, and you can find lots of deals where the defending soldiers were allowed to leave in peace with their weapons just to get the thing over with. You also have the case of betrayals, paying off a defender to open up the gates and such was a common tactic.

Looked at like that, very few fictional sieges are "realistic."

To its credit, Robert Baratheon does speak to Cersei about how they cannot just hide behind their walls if/when the Dothracki for the reasons you post. Good call. Makes me think of the siege movies I've seen in a different light.

Eacaraxe:

...and here we have exactly the quark-gluon, galaxy-brain, take I was hoping for when I brought up Eowyn in the context of Feminist Money Shots in the first place.

So, Eowyn trundles up to Aragorn and begs his leave to break her sworn oaths to liege, realm, and subjects so she can follow him into a cave populated by men who had been cursed with undeath by Aragorn's own ancestor for breaking sworn oaths.

Why? Well, as Eowyn tells the Dunadan who had been fostered by his great-great-whatever uncle Elrond, one of the great elf-lords, legendary warrior and Ring-bearer, and greatest healer of the age, there's no renown or glory in healing or care-giving.

Nope, the only way to show virtue, says the woman who's never seen battle to the veteran, is to sally forth, kill, and die for king and country. But only as long as your deeds are witnessed and sung about, says court-dweller noblewoman to the man who's had to live his entire life in secrecy, and is trying to execute a task upon the secrecy of which rests the fate of the entire world.

Now, exactly how fucking stupid is Eowyn? Or is she just brainwashed by her hyper-masculine, death-cult culture?

Neither. The question of "stupid" or "death cult" is a reductionist view on Eowyn as a character, and the Rohirrim as a whole. They can hardly be called a death cult, and any militaristic sides of their society exist because they're in a world that demands one be capable of being able to fight. The Shire is something to be envied, but it's made clear that the Shire is the exception in Middle-earth, not the rule.

So she rides off to commit Suicide by Nazgul, dragging Merry into her culturally-inspired vendetta against her own existence,

Merry's already looking to join the battle, Eowyn just provides the means.

So, the Witch-King beats her ass to within an inch of her life, and that last inch is just about gone thanks to the Black Breath. So here comes the newly-crowned King of Gondor with that lowly, virtue-less, woman work of his to, y'know, make her not die. And....WHAAAAAAAT? there's this pretty cool nobleman over here who doesn't want to charge off to the nearest bloody, muddy, hellpit and die screaming and helpless for the sake of "glory", who just wants to grow and build stuff, and protect people because it's just the right thing to do?

Why it's almost as if Eowyn's entire upbringing, and everything she grew up "knowing" about traditional gender roles and expectations, was utter bullshit! Maybe there's a better way to live than in a hyper-masculinized medieval death cult? Like, you know, celebrate life not death, save lives instead of take them, protect people instead of abandon them, and do something because it's right to do instead of for the asspats?

Okay, let's go over this.

Again, there's no way the Rohirrim can be described as a "death cult." They clearly have a culture beyond warfare, and everything we see of them in terms of warfare is in response to Isengarde or Mordor.

Second of all, let's look at gender roles. So, it's the gender role that the men go off to battle, and the women stay home. Yes, Eowyn's been chosen to lead her people at home, but there's still no women joining the Riders of Rohan, so yes, she's living in a society where men are expected to be one thing, and women are expected to be another. By the end of that, Eowyn's accepted that yes, I'll be the thing my society expects me to be. The arc of warrior to healer isn't bad in itself, but what squanders it is that:

a) Eowyn is still conforming to the expectations of her society.

b) A lot of her character development is compressed into a single chapter, where she falls in love with Faramir over the course of said single chapter

Who writes this hippy garbage, WWI vets who hate war and the glorification thereof?

Also people who might have certain views on the role of women, but whatever.

Thing is, if LotR is read as anti-war (which is a fair reading), it actually does this much better than the Eowyn thing with the Scouring of the Shire section. You can read into this in numerous ways - I generally see it as an analogy for war veterans coming home and having a hard time adjusting (see Frodo), or arguably a case of industrialization ruining the English countryside (Saruman and whatnot - there's a similar 'desolation theme' going on with Mordor vs. everyone else). I don't doubt that Tolkien was against the glorification of war, but the point is that Eowyn's entire arc is a poor conveyance of it. Considering that Eowyn's original role in the story was severely toned down as the story was re-drafted, I have a feeling that this is a symptom of it. We barely see anything of her in Two Towers, and what we have in RotK is rushed.

Hawki:
...reductionist...the Rohirrim as a whole.

No, really it isn't. The thing is, for the entire body of Tolkien's written work up to and including his posthumously published works and letters, and taking into account Tolkien's scholarly background, we know and can reconstruct more of how he envisioned the Rohirrim than literally any other society or civilization in his legendarium, put together. They're an idealized and fantasized Anglo-Saxon society, hybridized with Ostrogothic society, to yield a result of an equine society as opposed to a naval society. Which fits the Rohirrim as plains-dwellers.

And thus, as befitting the authorship of someone who was captivated by Beowulf to say the least, the Rohirrim are a society that embodies without reservation the Heroic Code found within the epic's telling. In other words, death cult.

...everything we see of them in terms of warfare is in response to Isengarde or Mordor.

No, no it isn't in fact. The appendices and Unfinished Tales elaborate upon the history of the Rohirrim as one of near-perpetual warfare against the Easterlings, Dunlendings, and Druedain, and in fact the Riddermark made up much of the Dunlendings' ancestral homelands which had been taken from them by force. Not only that, but the Rohirrim were the predominant oppressors and harassers of the Druedain, at least until the War of the Ring when Ghan-buri-Ghan bargained passage through Druedain lands in exchange for simply being left alone by the Rohirrim.

By the end of that, Eowyn's accepted that yes, I'll be the thing my society expects me to be.

Now who's being reductionist. She could not possibly have made that decision for herself in accordance with her own desires, and been exercising her own agency, in choosing to be a healer after experiencing firsthand the virtue and value of it? That other societies in Middle-Earth don't necessarily consider healing and care-giving a gendered role? That choosing to be a healer isn't merely conforming to a gendered expectation and thereby condemning herself to a life of mediocrity?

You'd think the fact she fell in love with and married a man who also defies gender roles and expectations (well, by Rohirrim standards), is a bit of a cluebat to the head.

...You can read into this in numerous ways...

Now, here's why I go on this tangent, relative to my beef with "Eowyn effect(s)" and "feminist money shot(s)". Yeah, you absolutely can read into discrete characters, events, themes, places, and times in multiple ways. Just the same as a singular phenomenon can act as commentary on multiple subjects at once, or the same subject from multiple angles. Just the same as multiple discrete phenomena within a given work can provide layered commentary, or comment on the same topic from different perspectives.

That seems to have been woefully forgotten in today's social media, 24-hour news cycle, landscape. Unless something can be reduced to a sound bite or meme, it won't get attention. And, unless something can be the subject of a flame war, it won't get clicks, drive "engagement", or whatever the en vogue, corporate-friendly, euphemism for trolling is today. You know, "if it bleeds it leads".

As of editing this post, this entire page has been a litany of the show's ongoing, fundamental problems with the depiction of women, sexuality, sexualization, and sexual violence. Even up to and including the most recent episode, lest we forget the ongoing B-plot about DANY AND SANSA APOCALYPSE CATFIGHT 2K19 XTREMEBOWL GET HYPE, itself about a dude, and the potential for them to finally bond by waxing romantic about...their marital rapists(?!?).

Yes, put that way it is exactly as stupid and condescen--OHMYGAWD ARYA JUMPED OUT OF A TREE AND SHANKED THE NIGHT KING YAS KWEEN SLAY I CAME SO HARD CONSUME PRODUCT GET EXCITED FOR NEXT PRODUCT

The 3rd episode felt like a mediocre but well-produced zombie-movie. I liked the presentation, I felt suspense and terror through most of the episode... hopefully it's what they were going for. There were some silly moments in between, especially at the end, where you'd see the main characters of the show flailing around. It's apparent to most viewers, and to myself, that the show's creators have chosen to reduce its scope, its characters and its writing down to wishful fanfiction. I don't mind it that much, I've come to terms with it after the fifth season. This feels a little like FMA, and I hope there would be a FMA:B some day to remake the second half of this series into something closer to the source material. That said, there isn't really any source material, so I could be very wrong and that what has happened in the show would actually happen in what George publishes...

Who knows, eh? Time will tell. It was still a nice episode with a zombie-movie twist on top. A little over-hyped.

Eacaraxe:

And thus, as befitting the authorship of someone who was captivated by Beowulf to say the least, the Rohirrim are a society that embodies without reservation the Heroic Code found within the epic's telling. In other words, death cult.

Well, not quite, because "death cult" is a pretty massive value judgement. And I didn't see anything textual to suggest Tolkien was making the same one. He seemed to play the "heroic code" archetype pretty damn straight with the Rohirrim.

On Episode 3:

Why was it so bloody dark the whole time?
Why did the Dothraki charge by themselves first, instead of letting artillery go first? What happened to Ghost (he was right there in the charge, completely forgotten thereafter)?
Why was the army standing IN FRONT of the defences?
WTF was Bran doing the whole time he was warging?
Why did Theon charge the NK by himself? Was he a total moron?
How did Jorah teleport to Dany through an army of wights?
Was the entire Azor Ahai prophecy pointless/smoke and mirrors?
Why did an 11 year old girl think she was a battlefield commander and warrior? How was a dying 11 year old girl strong enough to kill a giant? WhoTF made a suit of platemail in child-size?
WTF was the whole library sequence about? I genuinely have no idea why that scene was there.
WTF were Clegane & Melisandre doing from after Arya runs off to the end? What was Davos doing the whole time?
How did no one with a name-tag die in the crypts?
How did Brienne, Jamie and Tormund survive unscathed against such ludicrous numbers?
WhyTF did Jon think he could beat an undead dragon by shouting at it?
What did Arya jump off in an empty clearing? Wasn't her stealth abilities focused around wearing other faces to become someone else?

So many bizarre decisions, bad directing meant the battle was hard to see and follow, characters teleporting all over the place with no sense of time or place. The battle plans were silly, I don't believe the episode did justice to a thousands-year-old threat built up from the very first scene of the pilot.

The writers, in name of drama, turned so many people into idiots. The entire Dothraki, Jon, Theon, Dany, Lyanna Mormont, all turned into idiots. So many WTFs. D&D just aren't up to GRRM's standard of writing.

KingsGambit:
On Episode 3:

Why was it so bloody dark the whole time?
Why did the Dothraki charge by themselves first, instead of letting artillery go first? What happened to Ghost (he was right there in the charge, completely forgotten thereafter)?
Why was the army standing IN FRONT of the defences?
WTF was Bran doing the whole time he was warging?
Why did Theon charge the NK by himself? Was he a total moron?
How did Jorah teleport to Dany through an army of wights?
Was the entire Azor Ahai prophecy pointless/smoke and mirrors?
Why did an 11 year old girl think she was a battlefield commander and warrior? How was a dying 11 year old girl strong enough to kill a giant? WhoTF made a suit of platemail in child-size?
WTF was the whole library sequence about? I genuinely have no idea why that scene was there.
WTF were Clegane & Melisandre doing from after Arya runs off to the end? What was Davos doing the whole time?
How did no one with a name-tag die in the crypts?
How did Brienne, Jamie and Tormund survive unscathed against such ludicrous numbers?
WhyTF did Jon think he could beat an undead dragon by shouting at it?
What did Arya jump off in an empty clearing? Wasn't her stealth abilities focused around wearing other faces to become someone else?

So many bizarre decisions, bad directing meant the battle was hard to see and follow, characters teleporting all over the place with no sense of time or place. The battle plans were silly, I don't believe the episode did justice to a thousands-year-old threat built up from the very first scene of the pilot.

The writers, in name of drama, turned so many people into idiots. The entire Dothraki, Jon, Theon, Dany, Lyanna Mormont, all turned into idiots. So many WTFs. D&D just aren't up to GRRM's standard of writing.

1.Because the Night is Dark and Full of Terrors.

The rest. Fuck if I know.

KingsGambit:
Why was it so bloody dark the whole time?

Because this is The Long Night. Okay, so it wasn't longer than any other night. Maybe even a little shorter. In fact, that's probably it, they had to fit all the darkness of a regular Long Night into a Short Night, and this is what you get. It's kind of like Miller Lite, tastes great less filling?

Why did the Dothraki charge by themselves first, instead of letting artillery go first?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w34cr1HmHHI

What happened to Ghost (he was right there in the charge, completely forgotten thereafter)?

A dire wolf is never late, nor is he early. He arrives precisely when he means to. GHOST IS GANDALF CONFIRMED GET HYPE

No, seriously, Ghost isn't Gandalf. Gandalf is actually Magneto, and Magneto is Nightcrawler's father. Nightcrawler can teleport, and so can Ghost. Ergo, Ghost is actually Gandalf's puppy. Have fun with the mental image of Ian McKellen fucking a dog.

Why was the army standing IN FRONT of the defences?

They let Jaime plan the defenses.

WTF was Bran doing the whole time he was warging?

Watching Endgame.

Why did Theon charge the NK by himself? Was he a total moron?

To experience the pleasure of penetrating something one last time.

How did Jorah teleport to Dany through an army of wights?

He rode Ghost, duh.

Was the entire Azor Ahai prophecy pointless/smoke and mirrors?

No, it was a mistranslation the entire time. What it really said was Azor Hot Pie. What you didn't see was the first wolf-bread he made, he mixed the dough with water, and it wasn't actually very good. The second wolf-bread he made, he made with the blood of a Lannister, and while it wasn't very good it was better. The last pie he served Arya? he killed and butchered his wife, and used her meat for it, thereby granting Ayra the powers of Lightbringer.

That's why you cannot give up on the gravy.

Why did an 11 year old girl think she was a battlefield commander and warrior? How was a dying 11 year old girl strong enough to kill a giant? WhoTF made a suit of platemail in child-size?

The same person who made Joffrey's Babby's First Platemail, duh.

WTF was the whole library sequence about? I genuinely have no idea why that scene was there.

To make Metal Gear memes, that's why.

WTF were Clegane & Melisandre doing from after Arya runs off to the end?

Preparing for Cleganebowl GET HYPE

What was Davos doing the whole time?

Oh come on, he explained this all the way back in season five. He was shitting.

How did no one with a name-tag die in the crypts?

Name tags don't exist in Westeros, now you're just being silly.

How did Brienne, Jamie and Tormund survive unscathed against such ludicrous numbers?

So they can have a threesome later.

WhyTF did Jon think he could beat an undead dragon by shouting at it?

He was using Dragonrend to keep Viserion from helping the Night King, okay?

What did Arya jump off in an empty clearing?

Remember when I said Bran was warging to go watch Endgame? I was just kidding. He actually warged into a bunch of ravens, and they picked up and flew Arya by the scruff of the neck and flew her to the Godswood. Kinda like a medieval air strike.

KingsGambit:
On Episode 3:

Why was it so bloody dark the whole time?
Why did the Dothraki charge by themselves first, instead of letting artillery go first? What happened to Ghost (he was right there in the charge, completely forgotten thereafter)?
Why was the army standing IN FRONT of the defences?
WTF was Bran doing the whole time he was warging?
Why did Theon charge the NK by himself? Was he a total moron?
How did Jorah teleport to Dany through an army of wights?
Was the entire Azor Ahai prophecy pointless/smoke and mirrors?
Why did an 11 year old girl think she was a battlefield commander and warrior? How was a dying 11 year old girl strong enough to kill a giant? WhoTF made a suit of platemail in child-size?
WTF was the whole library sequence about? I genuinely have no idea why that scene was there.
WTF were Clegane & Melisandre doing from after Arya runs off to the end? What was Davos doing the whole time?
How did no one with a name-tag die in the crypts?
How did Brienne, Jamie and Tormund survive unscathed against such ludicrous numbers?
WhyTF did Jon think he could beat an undead dragon by shouting at it?
What did Arya jump off in an empty clearing? Wasn't her stealth abilities focused around wearing other faces to become someone else?

So many bizarre decisions, bad directing meant the battle was hard to see and follow, characters teleporting all over the place with no sense of time or place. The battle plans were silly, I don't believe the episode did justice to a thousands-year-old threat built up from the very first scene of the pilot.

The writers, in name of drama, turned so many people into idiots. The entire Dothraki, Jon, Theon, Dany, Lyanna Mormont, all turned into idiots. So many WTFs. D&D just aren't up to GRRM's standard of writing.

You can't make drama without stupid

I would say that Lyanna killing the giant was as sensible as the episode got. She's literally the only one left, and running is going to do very little. My problem was that dragon glass seem to do nothing to all the other walkers but easily the dusted giant. All the other walkers should have done the same, instead of piling up. Also, just run between his legs and slice at his ankles. That would have killed it.

Also, she's a Lord. Lord wants, Lord gets.

But yes, there was little logic to any of this. How did Arya get past all the other major Walkers? Also, if defeating them was this easy, why haven't they done it before. Arya could have killed him seasons ago

trunkage:
You can't make drama without stupid

Sure you can. I know Tarantino has said (and probably paraphrased someone else) that the key to good drama is to put people with different outlooks and goals in the same room and getting them to interact.
Steven Spielberg famously told the producers of Jaws, when they objected to the ending, that "I've had the audience eating out of my hand for two hours, they'll believe anything I tell them".

My point is that drama can be stupid, but that either means your plots or characters are inconsistent or that you've failed to convince the audience of the make believe you are selling. Whichever it is, it is a fault with the writing and directing. That so many people are bouncing of The Long Night because it is stupid is not a problem with drama, it is a problem with the writing and directing.

I mean, Luke Skywalker somehow nailing a 3 foot wide exhaust port with a proton torpedo without using his targeting computer because he trusts the Force is pretty stupid on its face. But the movie leading up to that scene manages to sell the idea that the Force does this and that Luke can do it very well, which turns a stupid scene into this hugely gratifying dramatic conclusion. Drama only becomes stupid when the writer and director bungles their job.

Eacaraxe:

KingsGambit:
Why was it so bloody dark the whole time?

Because this is The Long Night. Okay, so it wasn't longer than any other night. Maybe even a little shorter. In fact, that's probably it, they had to fit all the darkness of a regular Long Night into a Short Night, and this is what you get. It's kind of like Miller Lite, tastes great less filling?

Why did the Dothraki charge by themselves first, instead of letting artillery go first?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w34cr1HmHHI

image

WTF were Clegane & Melisandre doing from after Arya runs off to the end?

Preparing for Cleganebowl GET HYPE

*somewhere distant, an air horn sounds*

How did Brienne, Jamie and Tormund survive unscathed against such ludicrous numbers?

So they can have a threesome later.

Now that it's been imagined, it has to exist. Bow chikka wow wow.

WhyTF did Jon think he could beat an undead dragon by shouting at it?

He was using Dragonrend to keep Viserion from helping the Night King, okay?

image

What did Arya jump off in an empty clearing?

Remember when I said Bran was warging to go watch Endgame? I was just kidding. He actually warged into a bunch of ravens, and they picked up and flew Arya by the scruff of the neck and flew her to the Godswood. Kinda like a medieval air strike.

That's remarkably insightful...were you privvy to inside information? As it happens, I found Dave and Dan's top-secret, leaked battleplan from the production archives:

Thank you for the post, I can't stop laughing.

trunkage:
You can't make drama without stupid.

The best drama is never stupid: it's powerful because it's realistic. Although that does mean fantasy and SF often have a little more wiggle room because magic/technology.

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