TV: Game of Thrones

Tag_Ross

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So who else thinks it's a little odd the (((Iron Bank))) was supposedly so happy to be paid back in full? Or to have one of it's richest kingdoms wiped out?

The whole time I was thinking it would be in their best interest to keep the Lannisters indebted to them, and BAM, an army and a dragon comes by and wipes out all the gold like it's nothing.

Call me tinfoil if you want but somethings up. These damn iron bankers, man. I swear they're playing both sides.
I read a theory that the iron bank had written off the Lannisters as a lost cause and had been hoping to recover as much of their funds as they could before daenerys straight up slaughtered them.

With them being able to pay off the debt in full they wouldn't even be losing anything off that venture and can now fully back Daenerys without having to worry about cutting a loss.

As for the teleporting armies...

I don't have much of a problem when you consider how the story isn't being told chronologically.

I do however have a problem with how they don't make an effort to show a passage of time. Like one episode ended with Arya at the crossroads going north, two episodes later it starts with her at winterfell.

Actually, now that I think about it, how the fuck did the horde make it to them without being spotted? Even if we assumed she got word of Highgarden falling the instant it happened, and that at that moment she was able to get the horde on ships, where the fuck would she land that's safe?

The Stormlands and the crownlands are in Lannister hands, Dorne is long and the only land paths out of Dorne go through narrow mountain passes that exit in the Stormlands (ruled by Lannisters) and the reach (currently filled with Lannister forces)
 

Lumpy

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I read a theory that the iron bank had written off the Lannisters as a lost cause and had been hoping to recover as much of their funds as they could before daenerys straight up slaughtered them.

With them being able to pay off the debt in full they wouldn't even be losing anything off that venture and can now fully back Daenerys without having to worry about cutting a loss.
I actually thought about that a bit after posting. The guy even mentions her three dragons.
 

Easy

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So who else thinks it's a little odd the (((Iron Bank))) was supposedly so happy to be paid back in full? Or to have one of it's richest kingdoms wiped out?

The whole time I was thinking it would be in their best interest to keep the Lannisters indebted to them, and BAM, an army and a dragon comes by and wipes out all the gold like it's nothing.

Call me tinfoil if you want but somethings up. These damn iron bankers, man. I swear they're playing both sides.
Not odd at all; everything Mycroft said before - regarding dragons, unreliable allies, and provisions and numbers - still stands. A massive amount of gold now is strictly better than possibly getting a bit of gold at a time, for a long time, into the future.

That said, the Iron Bank makes a policy of always playing every side to whatever extent possible. In this case, they do not appear to even think it's possible to work with Danaerys in the first place (but we can't really know for sure, at this point in time; for all we know they're doing a Faceless Man / Jaqen H'ghar sort of thing, and a guy who looks and sounds exactly like Braavosi Mycroft is waiting to speak with Danaerys at this very moment).

However, all the gold was successfully delivered to King's Landing before the battle. This may result in a "grain is more valuable than gold, when you think about it, really" sort of theme getting crammed down our throats in the siege arc (probably) to come, or it might not - it occurs to me that unless she's there using her dragons, Danaerys can't effectively siege King's Landing from the sea. This means that any leftover gold, and whatever additional loans the Iron Bank is willing to front the Lannisters now that their priors are paid, can be used to have more food, supplies, and even reinforcements shipped in from abroad.

So, I watched Ep's 3 and 4 again, now that I'm back home and can do it in glorious high-def; got some more in-depth thoughts regarding the battle(s).
On Casterly Rock, and the Iron Fleet: I actually don't know why I hadn't thought of this before, but quite frankly, Euron doesn't need to have teleported - or even simply rowed or sailed - almost anywhere at all. From the beginning, it was made absolutely clear that Euron's naval forces severely out-classed that of Danaerys' alliance in every way. As such, with Danaerys' ships having been split into three separate armadas in three separate locations, each one of those separate naval battles could have been easily won with just a fraction of Euron's forces. We don't even have any reason to believe that Euron himself was present under Casterly Rock at all. Simply having his Ironborn spread thin along the coast, patrolling and raiding how they usually do, would ultimately lead to the same results wherever Danaerys' sails were spotted. If anything, the surprising thing is that she's still willing to risk sending ships anywhere at all - though I suppose it's alright if she's sailing along with them, using the dragon(s) for protection, as in Ep4.

On Highgarden: Something else everyone's been overlooking - the Tyrell bannermen. Cersei made a pretty compelling argument to the Lords of the Reach before, to the point where even the implacable Lord Tarly could be convinced to switch sides and fight for Cersei. While it's not explicitly stated that anyone else declared for the Crown as well, it's still pretty well implied that many or most of them did. The Tyrells got curbstomped not because the Lannister armies, after battling the North and the Trident and then sending off an indeterminate number of forces to the Twins, remained so overwhelmingly strong and numerous, but because the overwhelming majority of the Tyrell's forces were provided by their bannermen, and their bannermen were against them.

All they had left were (more or less) their personal levies, which indeed were every bit as unaccomplished in battle as the Lady implied. Their army's training, command, and equipment were all overseen by Mace Tyrell - a lazy, gluttonous, and thoroughly incompetent buffoon. (Lady Olenna, RIP, was pretty top-tier when it came to matters of intrigue and diplomacy, but wasn't particularly remarkable in terms of military expertise.) The other side's forces were mostly formed, trained, and outfitted by Tywin "What Castamere?" Lannister and Randyll "Only Guy Ever to Defeat Robert Baratheon on the Battlefield" ("Including Beloved Genius-Savant Rhaegar Targaryen") Tarly. Not to mention that the Lannister forces are largely full of recent veterans by now, whereas the Tyrells have done very little fighting apart from their overwhelmingly one-sided part in the battle of the Blackwater.

Now, you may be thinking: "What!? Cersei's the fucking worst! How could anyone legitimately be convinced to join her, after all the major fuck-ups and intentional atrocities she's pulled, without even needing to be bribed or anything, just because plot reasons? Even if at least one of her children really was Robert's, so she could potentially inherit the Iron Throne from said child(ren), she's just so much of a straight-up worse ruler than Danaerys, who's an extremely moral soul and person of deep integrity by comparison and hasn't obviously assassinated any Popes, husbands, or in-laws whatsoever!"

You'd be wrong, though, because they don't know Danaerys at all. All they've heard of her is the big stuff; some heard that the Mad King's daughter married a powerful Dothraki chieftan. Some heard that the Dothraki chieftan's horde started reaving and raping under his command, before more or less disappearing into the desert. Many heard that the Mad King's daughter showed up in Qarth with some Dothraki and three baby dragons after the red comet appeared, asking for ships to go conquer Westeros with.

Most would have likely known that (in the show) the ruling councilmen in Qarth were all murdered soon after, including the man whose guest she was staying as and whose riches she stole and fled with. (They would not have heard the details; there are no ravens flying between Essos and Westeros, and few Westerosi spies active in the area that aren't being run by Illyrio and Varys.) Most would've known that the self-declared Dragon Queen went straight to Astapor and bought a legion of slave-soldiers there, before reaving the entire city in lieu of payment, butchering thousands and inciting a civil war that would see most of its inhabitants slain or starving within months after her departure.

They probably know the Mad King's daughter went to Yunkai, and was offered a large sum of gold to pass by peacefully - which she promptly stole, and then attacked the city anyway, after being joined by a treacherous band of cutthroat mercenaries. They know she then decided she was also the Queen of Meereen, and attacked that city next, butchering its ruling classes and generally continuing to sow fire and blood everywhere she goes. All the cities she'd attacked in the meantime tried to band together and join forces to get rid of her - much as the Lords of Westeros joined forces to overthrow her murderous-SOB father all those years ago, some could say. So she set her dragons on them, ruthlessly burning them by the hundreds in so horrific a display of violence that, apparently, (as far as anyone there could tell), all the rest of the Dothraki in the world were impressed enough to declare her their new leader.

Some rumors say she's actually (sometimes) pretty reasonable and just? So what? Danaerys has what looks very much like a proven track record of simply burning or otherwise destroying whatever she decides she doesn't like. Freeing slaves? Please. Obviously she doesn't like other people having slaves, much as she also enjoys traipsing around with an entire personal army of them. They're supposed to put their lives, their family's lives, and the lives of all the people in their lands on the line - trying to join forces a woman who, besides having a rich and well-documented history of breaking faith in negotiations whenever it suits her, has so dishonorable a reputation that besides the old Tyrell widow, the only allies she has left are a bunch of slaves, sellswords, murderous savages, thieving Iron Islanders, and backstabbing Dornish poisoners - on the word of some rumor?

It's not, as a kinslaying dwarf once said, a reasonable thing to ask.

On the Baggage Train Battle:

It was kinda nice to see the concept of an infantry formation - something we've been missing from the Unsullied battles every time - come into play again, albeit super briefly. For a couple of seconds there, on the first charge, we got something of a look at what makes heavy infantry a good answer to light cavalry; without an exposed flank to hit, speedy and responsive light-cav forces have a hard time breaking through a shieldwall compared to heavy cav, are are a great deal more susceptible to getting felled by arrows/spears/blades in the meantime.

Unfortunately, cinema soon decided that, as usual, Armor Is Useless in movie battles. Determined to prove that Ser Jorah's 1v1 with one of Drogo's bloodriders was a mere statistical outlier after all, Danaerys' Dothraki soon jump in and happily set about realizing the martial artist's dream with the 'one swing, one kill' policy, brazenly ignoring the steel-forged plates and helms of their enemy and felling Westerosi left and right as though reaping the harvest with a rather plus-sized sort of sickle. Pretty sure we even saw saw an arrow go through a tower shield and kill the guy behind it at one point, something like a minute into the battle or so. (Some joke about wasting Hanzo ult.) (Like "I'd probably call it a waste of an ult, but tbf, it was a Hanzo ult. Just be glad that it actually managed to kill someone this time around.")

This is kind of a shame, because while the outcome really wouldn't have been changed either way, (even if the front of the train was able to hold out for reinforcements from the rear, as Tarly said they wouldn't be), having the Dothraki struggle to achieve much of anything by charging directly at the shieldwall, like the lancers they very much aren't, would have let them showcase two things really well: A) The massive edge the horde has in mobility and maneuvering, as they move to encircle and flank the Lannister troops, which are spread out over too much distance to both maintain a cohesive unit and also reform to defend the rear, and

B) The absolutely game-changing nature of having a goddamn dragon on your team, cutting wide chunks out of formations that bows and sabers aren't made to take on directly.

The first of those two would be kinda nice, but it's the second of them I really would've loved to see more of. With the way it went down in Ep4, it was still pretty cool, but there's nothing we see being fundamentally different about having a dragon in the battle besides the sheer firepower it brings to one side - no change in tactics on either side of the battle, apart from Dany's side (not-unreasonably) deciding that the power discrepancy was great enough for them to not even have to bother with extra bonuses like "tactics;" just having everybody charge at the enemy would do. The breaches their dragonfire made in the Lannister forces' formation didn't allow them to break through the shieldwall, scatter the spearmen and archers, and begin slaughtering everybody. Here, they already were breaking through the shieldwall and slaughtering everybody - the dragon was just an extra-big helping of the exact same thing happening.

Nor did Dany seem to have to think at all about where she was firing - and this point, on a bit of a minor 'this-is-a-fuckup' sort of tick, goes beyond even just thinking about what would be the most advantageous point for her to strike at any given time. (BTW: Not the peaceful, non-lethal wagons full of grain that her people could really use when the battle's over). Even Dothraki horses should be incredibly opposed to running straight into massive, ten-foot tall raging bonfires, however awesome the visual is when they come out the other side.

Seems pretty nit-picky, I know, but I'm not saying some shots of mounted raiders charging out of the flames doesn't merit some suspension of disbelief. I'm just pointing out the lack of any examples, throughout the entire battle scene, where it seems like any real thought or judgement is put into how and where that dragonfire is deployed. Hell, she even fires it into the middle of a Dothraki charge at one point.

Anyway, there's a lot more liberal application of Rule of Cool in this season than I'd quite like to see in GoT. Not that I don't like Rule of Cool - I do; but it was never something that made this show stand out from the crowd.

Also, did Qyburn literally invent the concept of the balista in GoT? And did he only have made the one?

Also also, for anyone wondering if the end of that episode leads to a potential "[(re)birth] among salt and smoke" for Jaime. It's not saltwater that he fell into - they were briefly stopping in that area to let their horses drink, before the battle. As to why anyone would think that he's gonna wake up on land and decide that all that carnage he just saw Danaerys dish out makes him hate Cersei a whole bunch, I have no idea. If anything, he's probably even less likely to turn on her now, barring any more atrocities that'd bring back to mind what Olenna told him. Maybe a "I'm gonna kill half of King's Landing so we can survive the siege longer with our current food stores, and blame it on Danaerys' dragons" sorta thing could happen, draw a parallel to way back in the old days, cut to flashback scene with that time he killed Mad King Aerys?
 

Easy

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Sweet fuck, have I nerded out on this one. That shit needs, like, reorganizing or fucking indexing, or something. 'xept I'm heading out to play D&D with some former high-school drama student types.

...

Huh.
 

Requiem

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If anything, Bronn will die from his wounds and then Jamie will somehow make it out of the water. He'll report back to Cersei, tell her what Olenna said about Joffrey, and then that will fuck her up even more.

With Bronn dead, the battle has some level of weight to it in terms of the main characters and then Jaime gets to report back and make the episode 3 stuff worthwhile.

Going off of that, I can see Cersei getting even more trigger happy and Jaime killing her for the good of the kingdom.
 

Anatronman

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I think a good deal more work went into making every shot look a stone age Apocalypse Now than making anything substantially more difficult to understand than "Dragon Wins."

I'm assuming Bronn lived because this is Game of Thrones, and if he had died it wouldn't be from his wounds, it would be from him getting honey roasted by Drogon.
 

Requiem

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To be fair, he definitely falls in the water. I'm assuming that even getting touched by dragon fire is enough to give you worse than 3rd degree burns, even if you put it out immediately.

Someone has to take some form of punishment for Jaime's mistake though. GoT doesn't just let you charge the mother of dragons so stupidly and walk away from it unharmed. I don't want Bronn to pay for Jaime's mistake, but it's gonna be him or Jaime and I don't see Jaime getting too worse for wear, not yet at least. He'll most definitely suffer from drowning though, so maybe that'll be the punishment.
 

Easy

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Nahhh Bronn's got that cured leather armor all around, wouldn't be surprised if that was enough to keep all his fleshy bits moist and tender instead of fried and crispy for all the dozen or so milliseconds during which he was maybe, possibly getting licked up on by some dragon fire. Those big ass oaken shields that the infantrymen were using held intact for entire seconds under direct fire, so I figure it'd make pretty good sense for some leather armor to hold up through less than two full frames of indirect contact burn. And Bronn has pretty good frame of reference for just how dangerous it is and how close he can cut it. He wouldn't be there if it meant probably dying just to possibly save Jaime from dying - for one thing, Jaime is useless to him if he lives but gets captured, anyway.
 

Requiem

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Well, let's remember, this isn't GoT of a few seasons ago. This is this season where everything is fast but still more or less well written.

I wouldn't put it past the writers to have Bronn die right after intentionally choosing to fight a dragon rather than go back for his mercenary gold as well as saving Jaime from said dragon. Whether it makes sense or not logistically, Drogon seemingly let loose some fire. If anyone got hit by it, it was Bronn (or whoever saved Jaime. I'm gonna say it was Bronn because that's the safest bet).
 

Easy

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So.

Turns out you guys were half right. Bronn and Jaime both fine; Dickon RIP'd in pieces.

Jon Targaryen confirmed.

Jon death scene incoming? Everybody else in the show to say "I wish you good fortune in the wars to come," so far, has died very shortly afterwards. And none of them have even deliberately went north of the Wall with a small team of rogues and misfits to capture a whole and complete active zombie, before.
 

Requiem

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Eh, I don't see Jon dying until at least the second to last episode if not the last one. Ratings and money determine that this must be the way of it.

Now, Jon getting horribly maimed? Possible. Gendry, Davos, or anyone else of worth getting killed? Very likely. You don't just walk into the army of the dead without a mount of some kind and expect to accomplish your goal quickly.

Plus, do they even have equipment for keeping the wight intact? Restrained? Looked like it was just a bunch of dudes with swords on their hips. Where's all their stuff? What do the brotherhood have to do beyond the wall? How'd they convince the Hound to go with them? Not enough answers.

But I will say that Davos mentioning Gendry rowing was the perfect way to bring him back into the show. I'm all about it. Gendry even has himself a hammer. What happened to his helmet though? Didn't he get it back after Arya helped get him our of Harrenhal? And didn't he still have it when he rowed away from Stannis' camp? Or am I mistaken in that? Gendry had that badass bull helmet after all.

Anyways, Gendry knows how to make valyrian steel, his master had to have taught him since he was the guy who melted down Ice to make those two other swords. Gendry can't die yet, he's got steel to make.

There's too much to talk about lol.
 

AndyM03

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I think they had a #squad of wildlings with a, not a carriage, but um, a wooden fuckin thing with wheels. Only like 5 of them or so. Think that's what they're meant to restrain the wight/undead with along with bringing supplies.
 

Easy

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Eh, I don't see Jon dying until at least the second to last episode if not the last one. Ratings and money determine that this must be the way of it.
Next episode is the second to last episode though, innit?
Plus, do they even have equipment for keeping the wight intact? Restrained? Looked like it was just a bunch of dudes with swords on their hips. Where's all their stuff? What do the brotherhood have to do beyond the wall? How'd they convince the Hound to go with them? Not enough answers.
Worst-case scenario, I suppose they could just cut off its arms and legs, and then knock out all of its teeth. That's what Swagga, son of Iolaf, First Diplomancer of the Fatboy Nation and the Hero of Arkala would do.
Anyways, Gendry knows how to make valyrian steel, his master had to have taught him since he was the guy who melted down Ice to make those two other swords. Gendry can't die yet, he's got steel to make.
Nobody alive knows how to make the stuff; the most he could possibly do is rework some V-steel that someone else brings to him already made, like that other guy.

Actually, Sam might know the trick? Some of what he was reading involved procedures for melting down obsidian and working it into steel, and there was a picture of a dagger along with it that showed a dagger that looked very much like the one Littlefinger gave to Bran...
What happened to his helmet though? Didn't he get it back after Arya helped get him our of Harrenhal? And didn't he still have it when he rowed away from Stannis' camp? Or am I mistaken in that? Gendry had that badass bull helmet after all.
Oh damn, that's a good question. Did he manage to take it with him from Dragonstone, though? If so, well... I guess you could hypothesize that the Lannister wartime apparatus "requisitioned" it when they started running low on supplies.

And yeah, Gendry swinging a hammer is great. It's really just a shame that there are no more legendary swordsmen left around for him to stave in with it, like his father did to Rhaegar Targaryen.

Speaking of Rhaegar, does anyone else also wonder if that thing Gilly read will ever come up again, now that Sam's completely ignored it and quit that job of his? Or was it just there to confirm the fan theories?
 

Steal Thy Kill

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Thoros and Beric are definitely kicking it on this expedition. Maybe Tormund too. But you know who's gonna live? The Hound. Why? Because when they return with a wight in hand and present it in an armistice meeting between the three rulers, Cersei will make her attempt at a decapitation strike. There will be a conflict, and who will be there alongside her? Ser Robert Strong, aka FrankenGregor. You know who will probably also be there as one of the men that captured a wight from beyond the Wall? Sandor Fucking Clegane.

CLEGANEBOWL CONFIRMED. GET HYPE.
 

Requiem

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By next to last episode, I meant of the whole show, not this season. They wouldn't risk their last season by killing off Jon one season early, especially with all of the confirmations we're getting of Jon being a Targaryen legally. Plus, he still needs to ride a dragon.

And yeah, sorry, I meant Gendry should know how to work the metal, not make it. With Sam reading up on it, I think creating Valyrian steel is part of the next arc for him, along with proving Jon is a Targaryen. He'll teach everyone he can about how to make the stuff, get Dany involved, turn that dragon glass into proper weapons and that'll be one of the last things Sam does, unless he gets in on the actual combat which I don't think anyone would allow.

Also, can we talk about how Littlefinger somehow got one up on Arya? Like, for real? She has to be intentionally playing his game, there's no way he actually tricked her. Littlefinger should not get to survive this season, imho.
 

Easy

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Huh. Somehow, I'd been led to believe that Season 7 was meant to be the last season of GoT. Happily, it seems that's not the case. That's good, because I really was not seeing how they would manage to get it all wrapped up within the next couple of episodes.
Also, can we talk about how Littlefinger somehow got one up on Arya? Like, for real? She has to be intentionally playing his game, there's no way he actually tricked her. Littlefinger should not get to survive this season, imho.
What'chew talkin' about, dude. Arya's been trained as an assassin, not a spy, and she's trying to go nose-to-nose against the one man who's literally the very best there is at this game. She's simply not prepared for that kind of matchup.

Sneaking around, wearing disguises, figuring out optimal ways to go about killing people? Great, that's totally what she's been trained for. Figuring out hidden motives, recognizing when she's getting bullshitted at, reading between the lines of a situation and identifying all the ways in which it could be turning to someone else's advantage? That's Sansa's forte, and most especially Littlefinger's.

Arya's had absolutely no experience in dealing with this sort of thing since Season 1, and she had so little talent for it back then that it's entirely reasonable to expect that she would've been dead within the year if she hadn't managed to escape from King's Landing. She thinks that everything she's been through since then has made her well-prepared to handle conniving, deceptive types like Littlefinger, but she's incredibly wrong about that, and thinking otherwise just makes her all the more easy for him to play.
 
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