Discussion: Game of Thrones Books vs. Show


After a first season that adhered fairly closely to the source material, Game of Thrones looks primed to move away from absolute adherence to the structure of George R.R. Martin's second volume, A Clash of Kings. That's both exciting and confusing for those of us who have read the books, as we know what to expect but not when to expect it. And because we want the reviews to remain safe for those readers who haven't read the books, we need a place to talk about those changes.

This is that place: a discussion thread for those of us who have something to say about the changes, adaptations, alterations, and deletions as A Clash of Kings is transformed into the second season of Game of Thrones.

The rules are simple: anything in the second book is fair game, but let's not spoil beyond that, at least for now. (This may change, depending on where Season Two takes us.) So this thread is safe if you've read A Clash of Kings, and unsafe if you haven't.

If this thread proves popular, I'll know that you really love me I'll keep linking to it in my reviews of Season Two so we can continue the discussion.

And now, to get us started: What part of A Clash of Kings are you looking forward to most this season?

67 comments:

Sooze said...

Thanks for starting this thread, Josie. I look forward to hearing what folks have to say.
The books are so jumbled in my head at this point (I read 1-4 in a matter of weeks) that I really can't say what happened in book 2 versus 3 versus 4. I started re-reading 2 after Sunday's 1st show only because I needed to remind myself where we are at, but then got frustrated because I really don't want to re-read it so soon...that's what I get for blowing through them in the first place.
Anyway, that was a long way of saying that I'll appreciate the discussion here.

Jess Lynde said...

Great idea, Josie. But I'm not sure I really remember what happens when. It's been awhile since I've read the earlier books, and while I remember the overall thrust of the plot, I don't remember how it breaks down by book.

Plus, it's my vague understanding that the producers have bumped up some of Jaime's material from later books so that character will have more to do this season. I'm curious how they'll accomplish that. Or if they'll create a semi-new direction for his "interim" time between the end of Book 1 and the events of the later books.

I don't actually mind if they change things from the books, so long as the significant character arcs are preserved. That is, I'd like the basic development for the characters to remain, even if the events that bring them to that development are somewhat different.

At the moment, I'm really, really looking forward to meeting Brienne. I'm hoping that with Catelyn heading south, that we'll meet her very soon.

CrazyCris said...

Brilliant idea Josie!

But like Sooze I read the books a while back and all foour of them within a couple of weeks, so some events get jumbled in my mind!

I'm really looking forward to meeting Brienne and all the events surrounding that introduction, particularly Renly vs Melisandre!

The battle of the Blackwater obviously,and the wizard's fire (or whatever they called it, can't remember now). But also discovering the drearyness I expect from Harrenhall! I want to see the dragons growing, I want to see the Iron Isles, I want to see Bran learning more about wargs...

and I want to meet the Blackfish!!! I realised recently that when I wrote my own post comparing the first season to the book that I had forgotten to mention the lack of the Blackfish! I thought perhaps they didn't want to introduce any more characters so near the end and so they'd bring him in in season 2, but nada!... he seems pretty important to me! Also, shouldn't they have liberated Riverrun by now? I want to see Riverrun and more Tullys!

Josie Kafka said...

I'm so glad you all said that! I thought it was just me--I can never keep straight what happens from book to book, except for a few obvious events like Ned's death, the Battle of the Blackwater, and that a bunch of people don't appear in the 4th book.

Should we switch the rules? Maybe stuff from the books except for the last one, which I think many people haven't read?

Ben said...

Good idea!! I only read them recently so I think I pretty much remember what happens.
I think you should make it so that it includes all books except the 5th. Alot of things that happens in book 2 has implications for events later on.
I'm not surprised they are bumping up some Jaime stuff, (if I remember rightly, the Battle of Blackwater and the start of Jaime's ermm adventures happens concurrently in the books). Jaime only appears in one chapter in book 2. Bit of a waste to keep on the actor.
I'm also guessing we'll see Robb meet his future wife in the series, as opposed to just hearing about it and meeting her later. It is, after all, a major turning point for the Starks.

Jess Lynde said...

I also vote for all books but the 5th, because I selfishly want to have more freedom to discuss future events and developments. But I also don't want to exclude newbies who are only through Book 2. Those of us that can't remember what happens when can always check the wiki's for a reminder.

One thing I'm very curious about for this season is how they'll handle the introduction of Arstan Whitebeard. Some mysteries are easier to keep on the page than on the screen (such as the oh-so-blondness of Cersei's children in GOT). And until I know we've got the go ahead on subsequent books, I don't want to discuss this one too much further ...

Mark Greig said...

I read books 2-5 last year so a lot of the major plot details are still fresh in my mind. I am curious to see how they'll handle the increased use of magic. I am a little worried that they might not be able to pull scenes like the shadow baby and House of the Undying without them coming off as a little cheesy.

CrazyCris, you're not the only one disappointed by the lack of the Blackfish. But I can understand why he's been left out. There are so many new characters this season that I'm not surprised that those not crucial to this season's storylines, such as the Tullys (and maybe the Reeds), are being held back for future seasons.

Sooze said...

Hey Jess, good idea. I'll make sure I check the wiki's if I am not sure about which book something happened in.

Josie Kafka said...

Hi all,

Sorry I've been so silent. Work. Ugh.

Anyway, I suppose I should come up with a clear answer to which books are included, huh? How 'bout this:

Anything in Book 2 is fair game.

Anything that you think might be in Books 3-4, put a really big spoiler warning at the top of your comment, and a lot of spoiler space.

Book 5 is off-limits for now.

So here's what I'm looking forward to the most: the Battle of the Blackwater and more Renly, as well as the introduction of Brienne. The battle because I can't wait to see how the stage such an epic thing--on water! Water that's on fire! Renly because he's awesome. And Brienne because she's awesome in an entirely different way.

Iago said...

I'm looking forward to seeing the Reeds: given that they've included Bran's green dreams so early I think they'll introduce both of them. Not too fussed about meeting the Tullys but I really want to see Riverrun on screen (it sounds very cool on paper).

As others have said, looking forward to seeing Brienne and Renly. Brienne gives Jaime some nice character development which he sorely needs.

Also looking forward to Asha (or Yara as I've heard they're calling her) Greyjoy. Generally don't like the ironborn storyline but Asha is great.

Samantha Gomes said...

As Iago and most of you here I want to see Brienne so much because she gave a much needed layer to Jaime's character. And I also want to see much more of Littlefinger, especially his relationship with the Tully/Stark women.
I am looking forward to the House of the Undying, for I'll finally understand what the hell went on there, lol.
And finally, Mance Rayder and his men.
That's a lot to wait for!

CrazyCris said...

So it seems like they're going to skip Riverrun altogether... damn!

It's going to be odd hearing Theon's sister called another name... Asha is different enough from Osha, why'd they have to change it?

I think they've moved forward some of Dany's scenes from the book...

Sooze said...

Interesting that Gendry already knows who Arya is...I thought that didn't happen until much later. Also, I didn't think Gendry had any idea he was even being pursued.
Did Stannis and Melisandre have sex in the books...or was it implied?
I thought Balon was spot on. Asha (Yara)...not sure yet.
I am with Samantha on the House of the Undying and Iago on seeing Riverrun, the Reeds and Brienne.
So much to see in so little time!!

Iago said...

The Melisandre/Stannis stuff was definitely in the books: it's only mentioned obliquely but it's crucial to an important couple of scenes yet to come. The stuff about Melisandre giving Stannis a son is new though and it looks like the series isn't going to show Queen Selyse/Princess Shireen. I wonder if the Edric Storm thread will still happen since Shireen plays a part in that (it's pretty much all she does).

Gendry didn't have any idea he was being pursued in Clash of Kings because he wasn't - the massacre of the bastards never happened in the book.

Am I the only one looking for clues for future books in who the series keeps and deletes? GRRM has said he's told the producers how he intends to end the series so presumably if they get rid of a character in the series, they won't be needed for future books (like Edric Storm).

Josie Kafka said...

Iago, I'm glad you mentioned that about Melisandre and Stannis. I didn't remember it at all!

The massacre of the bastards did happen in the books, but it's only mentioned as having taken place "off-stage," as it were. And I don't think it's ever clarified who ordered it.

My review is coming soon, by the way. Work has kept me busy, and I'm having a really hard time reviewing this episode.

Samantha Gomes said...

Have you guys seen the Game of Thrones drinking game, season 2?
It is really beautiful and fun.
Here is the link for those who have not seen it (no virus, ok, I swear! I fear Melisandre, the Cold Ones and Dany's revenge powers too much)

http://www.lucylle.com/_999_58big.jpg

I am thinking of prniting it out or ptting it on a tee, but I'll definetly not play it while watching the show or I will get drunk and understand less than I normally do. LOL

Josie Kafka said...

Samantha, that's a great link!

"Jon Snow feels guilty about something." Awesome!

CrazyCris said...

SPOILERS FOR LATER BOOKS (don't know how much later, can't remember)

...
...
...
...

Re: Arya and Gendry. I remember when reading the books loving the interaction between these two, and it was brilliantly brought to life in this second episode! Did anyone else, when reading the books, imagine a possible romantic relationship between the two in the future? Gendry seems worthy of Arya! Or was that just my over-active romantic imagination kicking in? I remember being a bit disappointed when they parted ways because that meant that wouldn't happen...

Josie Kafka said...

CrazyCris,
















I'm still holding out hope for those kids.

CrazyCris said...

Josie, here's hoping! ;o)

Iago said...

When re-reading the books in preparation for S2 I realised Margaery was actually a more subtle character than I'd first thought and if there could be said to be a winner right now, it'd be the Tyrells and Highgarden, with Margaery leading the way. Then to see her brought to life as a very knowing, very capable power in her own right was awesome. Should make the later duels between Cersei and Margaery much more entertaining.

Also, yay for Brienne!

Jess Lynde said...

Great review for 'What is Dead May Never Die,' Josie, but since most of the things I wanted to comment on relate to book differences, I thought I'd comment here instead.

I think my favorite bit this week (aside from Tyrion's delightful play to ferret out potential betrayers) was the way they gave an "origin story" for Arya's vengeance prayer. It was a fantastic scene, and a nice way to let Yoren live on.

However, I was really feeling the time compression in that part of the story. The sudden attack and capture just felt too rushed to me. I completely understand why they changed things, but it undercuts the impact when it takes mere seconds for all that to play out, instead of a drawn out battle and then what (in my memory) felt like considerable time spent on the run. Oh well. Hopefully the horror and psychological impact of what's yet to come will be better rendered.

But, yay for Brienne! Yay, yay, yay!

Mark Greig said...

I'm not having a problem with the time compression, but I do wish there had been more of a battle with Arya actually getting to fight.

I wonder if they are deliberately making Arya less violent at this stage so that it has more of an impact later on when she leaves Harrenhall. Actually, now that I think about it, didn't Arya have some kind of encounter with her father's ghost while she was there? Is there a chance we might see Sean Bean again this season?

Sooze said...

Jess, I am with you, I really liked that scene between Yoren and Arya and thought it was very clever of the writers to put that in there. It gave more impact to Yoren's death, as well as giving us a nice "origin story", as you said, for the vengeance prayer (nice label for it, by the way). I thought Maisie Williams did an excellent job in that scene - just with her eyes.
I agree with all of you regarding Margaery - I thought the fleshing out of her character was especially well done. You certainly get the sense in the books that she is smarter than the average daughter-for-wed, and her scenes got that across in a smart way. Acknowledging Renly's sexuality was a good decision right from the start. His character wouldn't have been as interesting had they "hinted" at it, as it is in the books.
Like I said in a previous post, I honestly can't remember all the details from the book - but as far as I can remember, they are hitting all the right notes and picking out the right scenes to show us. And the added ones have been well placed.
Some of you eluded to the fact that Arya's group had another attack before the one that sends them to Harrenhall...as I recall from book 2 it seemed like Arya's story was: travel, get attacked, go to an awful place, escape, travel, get attacked, go to an awful place, escape, etc and she does get very hard through all that. It seemed a bit repetitive in the book, so maybe that is why they are condensing it somewhat in the show. (it seems that pattern repeats itself into book 3, yes? See I just can't keep them straight)
Brienne - wonderful casting.

Josie Kafka said...

This comment might contain spoilers for the third book, possibly the fourth. I'm sorry, but I really can't keep straight what happens when.










So, Arya is Tywin Lannister's cupbearer? Fascinating! She was Roose Bolton's in the books, right? We met Bolton on the battlefield with Robb, so we know he still exists. But I remember in the books being confused by the way he was so obviously playing both sides. Maybe they've decided to streamline that, which I applaud.

Nice to get a mention of the Brotherhood, although I still with they'd included Thoros of Myr (with the flaming sword) in Season One. It would make his later appearance have more impact.

How crazy is this version of Joffrey? I can't believe they made him so openly sadistic. Him beating Sansa was one kind of evil, but this is another.

And: I don't think that nurse was really from Volantis.

Samantha Gomes said...

Is that nurse going to be Robb's wife? I can't remember it, but Robb felt very inclined to her.If so, she's surely not from Volantis.
I'm happy Arya is Twin's cupbearer, it will give her revenge an interesting opportunity. As for Harrental, what a creepy place!

Iago said...

The nurse didn't seem to have a 'foreign' accent and sounding like the rest of the Westerosi so my guess is she lied to Robb. I'm assuming that's Jayne Westerling with her first name changed a la Asha/Yara.

I found the scene between Margaery and Littlefinger to be fascinating (though you really have to check out AfterElton's opinion on her outfit) as it was alluded to in the book but never shown. I'd always assumed it was Loras who negotiated the Tyrell/Lannister alliance but, given they're setting up Margaery as a major and capable player, it makes perfect sense for it to be her.

They're bringing Tyrion's sympathy for Sansa more to the forefront. His line "Lady Sansa, you may survive us yet" was lovely.

Mark Greig said...

Could be wrong about this, but I'm pretty sure that Thoros of Myr was mentioned by Jaime back in season one. It is a shame we didn't get to see him fighting in the mêlée (or the mêlée itself). But considering that the character is meant to undergo a drastic physical change between AGOT and ASOS, I can see why they decided to leave him out.

Agree with you about the nurse. She's definitely not from any of the Free Cities. It could actually be Jayne Westerling, just with a false name.

On the subject of the Boltons, I wonder if we're going to the Bastard at all this season. There's been no casting news about the character so far. He's pretty crucial to both Bran and Theon's stories so I can't imagine him being cut out.

Josie Kafka said...

Mark, your comment raises a tricky question, because I know the complicated answer to your implied question in the second paragraph.

If you really want to know, email me.

CrazyCris said...

As the Iron assault on Winterfell approached... I'm worried we're going to be cheated of the marsh siblings (whose names I can't remember right now!). I thought they'd be in here because of how crucial they are to Bran's story and the green dreams... but I guess in a way Osha is filling that role now as Bran keeps telling them to her and she keeps pushing him to believe...

And all this talk of wolves attacking the riverlands led by a giant wolf... we all know that has to be Nymeria! Did anyone else reading the books hope that Arya would find her wolf again? WOuld Nymeria even remember her? Perhaps that would help her not lose her "Starkness"! ;o)

Iago said...

Yeah Cris, looks like the Reeds have been excised from the series which is a real shame - Meera in particular was cool. I suppose the pay off is that we didn't have to suffer the Frey wards, who were annoying as hell. I wonder if we'll see the crannogmen men at all?

This means they're going to diverge pretty hugely from the books: I wonder if it's part of the conspiracy never to show Rickon since in the books it looked like his only action was going off with Osha and Luwin after escaping Winterfell. I like Osha, she's brilliantly played by Natalie Tena, so I'll be interested to see what happens with her north of the Wall.

I was also sad to see Dany's handmaidens go early: I liked the light comedy that came from the bickering between the three of them. We didn't see Missandei's body though, did we?

Hooray for Ygritte though - she really does look like she's been kissed by fire - and John Snow should finally get some character development.

Jess Lynde said...

Even as I'm enjoying becoming more immersed in the show world, and moving away from constant mental comparisons to the book, I still find myself troubled by some of the changes.

Do we know for certain that Osha will be completely taking over for the Reeds? Maybe they'll meet them along the road, during their escape. Then Osha can take off with Rickon in another direction. I wouldn't really mind sticking with Natalie Tena, but it would be very strange to have Rickon in tow for the journey north.

I'm also bothered by the apparent dispatching of Dany's handmaidens. (Iago, I think the only two handmaidens we have at this point are Irri and Doreah. Missandei comes along later. She's from one of the slaver cities.) Is Irri maybe still alive? She didn't look as messed up as the folks on the stairs, so I'm hoping there's a chance she's just injured. Probably a foolish thought, but I hate that we seem to be losing all of Dany's close associates. First Rakharo, now maybe Irri?

Sooze said...

Like all of you, after last night I found myself wondering when/if the Reeds would show up. I'll be sad if they are not included, I think having them with Bran would be better since they are children like him. Jojen (did I get that right?)and his green dreams I thought were rather important. I don't like the switch to Osha taking on this role.
Also, has Arya completely changed the three she means to have "this man" dispatch for her? I don't remember the 3 exactly - are they just doing them in a different order? I have to say, though, that I like the change with having her serve Tywin.

Ben said...

Why did this episode make me very happy?
THE BASTARD!!!! I thought they would find a way to keep him out, as he dosen't come into it again until much later. But, it turns out he's coming into it after all.
To those of you who have read book 5 I'll say, very subtly, I wonder if we'll see the horrible fate awaiting a certain Prince this series...

CrazyCris said...

Ben: Oh I sure hope so!!! ;o)

Sad for the lack of Jojen and Meera though... I guess with Rickon being older than in the books it might be less of a problem him tagging along?

I sure as hell don't remember any Dothraki massacre and dragon-theft from the book! Was that in there?

Sooze said...

CrazyCris: I don't think so, that seems tome something I'd remember...I am on pg 650 re-reading and it isn't there yet.
Doing the re-read I am realizing just how skillfully the writers are using parts of the book but re-ordering them or changing slightly, or leaving out, or giving parts and lines to different characters, in order to not only tell the important parts of the story, but tell it well, in only 10 hours. Honestly, there is more skill there than I realized.
The part where Davos rows Melisandre to shore and she gives birth to the shadow is not when Renly dies, but is to kill the lord that holds Storms End, which Stannis retakes. The scene itself, however, is pretty much word-for-word.
The names that Arya is whispering to Jaquen (sp?) are different in the book - but the point that she isn't using this power to kill the right people (i.e. those that will truly make an impact) is still the point.
Shae does not come to the castle right away - for a long while she is hidden away in a little house - but it is right to leave all that out of the show, it probably isn't all that necessary. And the mob scene in the last episode - the poor girl who is raped (and actually is raped) is not Sansa. But to have it happen to Sansa in the show is what we needed, not to introduce some new and mostly unneeded character.
Anyway, there are plenty more examples, but I have yet to read something and say - oh, they really should not have changed THAT.
So with regard to the Reeds, I am thinking in the end I'll feel the same.

Josie Kafka said...

I did a quickie search on winteriscoming.net for casting news about the Reeds, and couldn't find any. However, there is some casting news about Ramsey/The Bastard of Bolton over there...it's sort of a "no news so far implies something" kind of thing.

Sooze, I agree that I really like most of the changes they've made, and I understand why they've made them. But [whiny tone] I like Meera Reed!

Ben said...

On the subject of Ramsey Bolton, in book 3 and 4 it's hinted what he's getting up to, so maybe we'll get to see that.
For one thing, it keeps a certain Prince in the cast until he becomes a major player in the story again, and for another if they are splitting book 3 into two series, my guess is we'll see things only hinted at in the book to give them more material to work with.
On that subject, if they do the Red Wedding well, which I'm sure they will, I can see that sequence alone winning awards. I love how they are showing the build up to it already, with Robb, a perfect King so far, is starting to let feelings cloud his judgement.

CrazyCris said...

So Robb has gone to oversee the surrender of the Westerling citadel? And took the nurse with him so she could get provisions? Anyone else wondering if she's going to have a new name in the next episode? ;o)

Maester Luwin's reaction to the burnt bodies at the end of the episode really sold it! I'm wondering what the people who haven't read the books think about that!!! :p But once again, it seems like it wasn't Theon's idea, just trying to impress his men...

And didn't Kat release the Kinglsayer AFTER receiving the news about Bran and Rickon in the book? Makes more sense... but that final scene with her would seem to indicate otherwise...

I'm almost sorry to see Tywin leave Harrenhal... I LOVE the scenes with him and Arya!!! :o)

Finally, wanted to share a fabulous moment I had last week with people who I know will be able to appreciate (unlike most of my friends here at home):
http://crazycrishereandthere.blogspot.com.es/2012/05/iron-throne-is-mine.html

Sooze said...

CrazyCris - Yup, I think there will be a name change...I believe this was a good set-up so we'd all buy in to Robb's decision later.
Seeing the burnt bodies, I was kinda sad I had read the books...
I think the scenes with Tywin and Arya have been the best additions the show has made.
Not sure yet how I feel about the developments in Qarth.
I honestly can't remember who the masked woman is and her role in the story.

Jess Lynde said...

The masked woman is Quaithe, a priestess from Ashaai, like Melissandre. But my understanding is that she's a priestess of shadow, whereas Melissandre is a priestess of fire/light. I could be wrong on that. In the book, Quaithe gave Dany a very cryptic warning/prophecy/bit of advice while she was in Qarth. I don't believe she interacted with Mormont at all, so I'm not really sure where they are going with her character here.

I'm concerned about the change to Jon's story. I'm wondering if they can still get him to the same place from a motivation perspective when they've deviated from the flow of events a good bit. I can easily see Dany's story going to the same place at this point, but I'm things feel a bit more dicey with Jon.

I'm wondering if the Halfhand will still be the one directing him to act, or if he's going to make that decision on his own after what he learned about Mormont's "deal with the devil" with Craster. I'm not sure it works as well in the long run if Jon makes this decision on his own rather than following orders. I guess we'll see.

Ben said...

Jon can't actually turn his cloak. It would completely override pretty much everything that happens in book 3, and book 5 for that matter.
If he did actually become a turn cloak, as soon as a certain very rule orientated King gets to the wall, he'd just hang Jon straight away. On that note, I bet the production team are going to struggle with the massive Stannis/Jon/Wildlings battle in a season or so, more so than Blackwater!

Jess Lynde said...

Oh, Ben, that's not what I meant --- although I wasn't very clear, so I certainly see how you would take it that way. I agree a change like that would be far too substantial a departure!

What I meant was, would Jon pretend to turn his cloak at the Halfhand's behest, or would they change it up and have him decide to pretend on his own. As his own version of the "deal with the devil" in order to get the information the Watch needs. Of course, now that I'm thinking on it, I can't see him being willing to kill the Halfhand without the clear understanding that that's exactly what Quorin wants him to do. So that business will likely still need to go down per Quorin's orders. However they get us to that point.

Sooze said...

Ben, Jess, and anyone else who wants to comment...after last night, now what do you think of Jon's story changes? I am not sure why they have gone this route. It appears that the outcome is going to be the same, but in this case I think the way it played out in the books has a better impact. Did they feel they needed to introduce us to Ygritte more? The book story flow has us getting a better picture of Quorin, so it feels like they may have traded screen time with him for screen time with Ygritte. I know we have yet to see the full outcome, maybe I need to wait (sigh, so impatient!!)

CrazyCris - Are we ever going to find out if Robb's new squeeze is who she says she is? I didn't miss it last night, did I? Gotta say, though, I do like the background they have thrown in so that we viewers can see the attraction. Maybe in the end it doesn't really matter who she is, as long as Robb's action has the same outcome. By the way, your picture on the throne, awesome!

Ben - I had completely forgotten where Bolton's bastard came in and one of his pivotal actions...I just came to that part in Book 2 in my re-read, and hit myself on the head "Oh, ya!!".

As far as Arya's escape, I liked in the book she took care of the guard herself. I wonder if we'll see Jaqen's transformation? We need the coin and the phrase, right? I thought she uses both later in the story...

Finally, the outside shots of Kings Landing and the castle...that was terrific! Where was that shot? Was some of it fake?

Jess Lynde said...

Well, Sooze, I'm feeling better on the motivation front, but I share your concerns about the subsequent impact. I felt more invested in Quorin in the book, and his death had a strong impact. I'm just not sure it will have that same wallop in the show, other than what it means for Jon. But we'll see. I also wonder if they are going to work in the warg business. We haven't seen Ghost in awhile.

I'm with you on the Arya escape, too. Taking that kill away from her is significant. Perhaps they'll give it back to her in another form soon. And I hope we get to see the transformation. The last episode of the season is titled 'Valar Morghulis' so I'm hopeful.

At the moment, my biggest issue is that I'm torn between wanting next week's episode to be entirely focused on the Battle of the Blackwater and wanting GRRM to screenwrite the House of the Undying sequence. I believe GRRM is the writer for next week's episode ('Blackwater'), but I suspect they'll hold the House of the Undying for the finale. If they do, then I'd really like next week to just go all out on the Blackwater. So excited!

Mark Greig said...

Sooze, the Croatian city of Dubrovnik is standing in for King's Landing this year. The CGI of the Red Keep in the background looked really impressive. Makes me more hopefully they'll be able to pull of Blackwater next week.

Jess, I also think that the House of the Undying is being saved for the finale. With where all the various story threads are at the moment I think they could take a break from all of them and focus solely on the Battle of Blackwater Bay next week.

Sooze said...

no comment, really...just wanted to say that IT IS ONLY WEDNESDAY!!!!! Am I the only one just dying for Sunday to arrive??? (I do have a life, really)

Mark Greig said...

Here's something that will make a lot of readers happy. EW.com have released a list of characters that the producers have confirmed will be appearing in season three:

Mance Rayder
Daario Naharis
Jojen Reed and Meera Reed
Edmure Tully
Brynden 'Blackfish' Tully
Stannis' wife and daughter
Olenna Redwyne
Beric Dondarrion
Thoros of Myr
Tormund Giantsbane

So, yay, we are definitely getting the Reeds and the Blackfish next season. Let the casting speculation commence. I don't know about anyone else but I'm think David Tennant would make a great King Beyond the Wall.

CrazyCris said...

Yay the Reeds!!! :o)

I figured we HAD to get Edmure, otherwise how were they going to pull off the Red Wedding?

I don't know about David Tennat for Mance... imo he lacks the charisma needed in the person who was able to unite all the Wildlings...

Sooze said...

Very glad to hear about the Reeds. Honestly, though, I have got to learn to read a little more slowly and actually digest everything I am reading (too impatient to get to the end)...I don't recognize several of the names you listed, Mark. I plan on re-reading Book 3 starting about a month ahead of next season.
I don't remember how the King Beyond the Wall is described (see note above), but in my minds eye he is not a skinny fellow like Tennant...although, I am sure I could make the adjustment to see him on my screen again!

Ben said...

From what I can remember from the books, Mance Rayder isn't a bulky soldier but a thin musician, who just happens to be a brilliant fighter and is a very clever leader.
David Tennant would be awesome as him. Then again, I'm just dying to see DT in GOT.
But no Bastard? This does sadden me. Unless he's coming into it next week. But I doubt it now.

Sooze said...

Ben - Based on what you said, DT would be great...I too would love to see him in GoT.

So, House of the Undying tonight left me underwhelmed. No meeting the Undying Ones...no prophesies...just a couple visions...

But the White walkers...wow! Loved that scene at the end.

Oh, and Brienne continues to be awesome.

They sure packed a lot in, didn't they?

Josie Kafka said...

That last scene was awesome! I love the House of the Undying, though. Especially Drogo and the Iron Throne under ice.

I should probably get working on the review, eh? It will post later tonight.

Mark Greig said...

I was also underwhelmed by the House of the Undying. Rest of the episode was fine, especially the final 'Three Blasts' scene, but can't help but feel that they dropped the ball on Dany's journey through the warlock's home.

Iago said...

That was so filling and satisfying I don't think I need to eat for a while: absolutely loved it.

I thought the House of the Undying was actually an improvement on the book version. The ruined, snow-filled, throne room was beautiful image and I thought it was prophecy as it looked like Harrenhal - destroyed by dragonfire - and showed what Dany would have to do. She also reached out for the Iron Throne but then turned away when more important things (Drogo, her dragons) demanded her attention. That fits in with my pet theory for Dany's arc which is probably completely wrong.

The scenes that really got to me were the ones in Winterfell. First with Theon proving he isn't that stupid but he knows he's too trapped to change course now. I went from hating Theon to feeling his tragedy. Luwin's death was upsetting, particularly Rickon and Osha's reaction to it. The Osha/Luwin relationship has been an interesting one, nicely subtle. Finally the shots of Winterfell burning left me with a lump in my throat.

Varys' scenes in Kings Landing were a highlight too and it started some very long-term setting-up. His scene with Shae and Tyrion made me think to the epilogue of Dance with Dragons and re-evaluate certain things.

Josie Kafka said...

Iago, I agree completely. We seem to be in the minority on the House of the Undying, but I loved it.

I think we should keep this part of the discussion vague, because not everyone has gotten this far in the books, but some of Shae's scenes have me wondering if the writers are taking a different direction with her character. What will that mean for [other character] who is affected by that, not to mention [other other character] who is quite, ahem...impacted by that effect?

I'm thinking about reviewing the books, because I've got a hankering to re-read them. Would y'all be interested in that?

Mark Greig said...

Does a Lannister always pay his debts? Hell yeah we'd be interested.

Jess Lynde said...

The scene between Tyrion and Shae also had me wondering about the future direction of things. I have trouble seeing them taking this version of Shae's character to the same destination. I never quite believed that Book Shae cared about Tyrion more than his gold, but this woman we've come to know in the show seems to genuinely care for the man. Particularly given the juxtaposition of their words to each other "I am yours and you are mine" with what appear to be the standard Westerosi wedding vows exchanged by Robb and Talisa (which ended with something like "She is his and he is hers"). Here's a case where I find myself wishing for a change from the books. I wonder if Varys coming to "hire" Ros will somehow feed into a change in that storyline. I'm not quite sure how they'll pull it off though.

BTW: as noted in my comment on the review, I was also very underwhelmed by the House of the Undying sequence. But I do like Iago's points about what that vision of the Red Keep looking like Harrenhal likely portends.

Sooze said...

Josie - THANK YOU for getting your post up so quickly!!

After reading yours and Iago's comments on the House of the Undying sequence, I like it better, but still feel like Mark and Jess. I do agree that the scenery of the throne room ruined and in snow was beautifully done.

Hopefully, Dany's story will pick up next season.

I gotta re-read books 3 & 4 to remember what the big deal is about the change in story line for Shae...unless it is something that effects events in Dance of Dragons, which I have not read yet.

I forgot about Theon's whole part of this last episode - that's how much happened!! I agree with Jess that Alfie did a great job. On the one hand, he's such a *ick, on the other hand, I did feel for him - stuck the way he was. The book just made me feel like he was a jerk, here I believed his conflicting feelings and why he did what he did.

I really think they should not have changed the Jon Snow sequences of events. It had much more impact in the book when he killed the Qhorin. Non book readers are probably confused, since I don't think it was clear at all that Jon and Qhorin planned this. The one short conversation was really easy to miss.

Sansa's smile/giggle/laugh of relief was so well done.

And, like I said before, the White Walkers were just awesomely creepy. Great picture to leave us with.

By the way, I can't read these new "prove your not a robot" words at all. I know it's not your doing...they take me several tries!

Sooze said...

oh - and a book review ?!?!?!? YES!!! I'd read it, definitely!!

Josie Kafka said...

Consider the book reviews a definite plan.

Part of my impulse for wanting to review the books (and just to re-read them) is that I'm trying to explore the fantasy genre more, and I keep reading really boring books.

Most fantasy novels seem to thin compared to Martin's. And I don't mean the length: there's just one team to root for, everyone says what they mean (or if they're lying, the narrator tells us that right away), the religions and magics are simple and no one thinks critically about them, and the imaginary histories of the nations are painfully reductive and show no real awareness of how countries (or other geo-political entities) exist and interact.

Am I asking too much of a (relatively) young genre? Or have I just had really bad luck in choosing the books I have?

Sooze, by the way: I can't read them most of the time, either. Captcha has started giving me photos of numbers, too, and some of them don't even contain a number. They're just pixelated grayness.

Sooze said...

Glad its not just me...the one I see now is a picture of a light switch, I swear! This one will definitely take 2 tries.

I know what you mean about other series/books feeling "thin". Good description.

Maybe we need to go back to the "What are you reading in 2012" thread and see if anyone has some good fantasy (book!) suggestions.

Samantha Gomes said...

Come on Josie, we'll all love the book reviews - and I'll finally understand what the hell happened in the House of the Undying. As I've said over and over, I couldn't get it =) Winter is coming (at least here in Brazil, south hemisphere), but at least we'll have your book reviews to be a companior in cold white-walkerless nights ;)
Does anybody remember if Jaqen H'ghar changed his looks the way he did in the show in the books as well? That was a hell of a scene. And explains the idea of the faceless killers.
I was talking over the show with a friend and we had the sensation Shae isn't so in love with Tyrion in the books? Is that on purpose so that we'll be more shocked in the future?

Josie Kafka said...

Hi Samantha,

Yes, J'aqen does change his face in the books, too.

I'm really curious to see where the Shae/Tyrion romance goes.

nos es deus said...

i loved the books. thats all i can say about them without babbling uncontrollably. i was impressed with the first season series.... but then season 2 came out.... wow !! ok there were some good episodes, but they changed and over-simplified the story line with dany, made her look rather like a weak queen. and to have the dragons stolen ?!?! what an utter , and useless departure from the book.....as well arrya. my god they took her first three kills away from her!!!! WTF... i call bull shit and total crap. the only thing thats keeping me in it at this point is north of the wall... and tyrion (who seems to have not lost his nose??!!? )

sunbunny said...

I'm only two episodes into season 2, but I was already disappointed! In the books, one of Robb's initial peace conditions was that Ice is returned to him, which (as I recall) Tyrion is willing to do, but it's already been melted down to make new swords. One for Jamie and one for...I actually can't remember. Oh well. Anyway, that was always a really sad detail for me.

Karlie Schaefer said...

I found this article too on different book to screen changes: http://www.infobarrel.com/Game_of_Thrones_Season_4_Book_to_Screen_Changes