Game of Thrones

On Game of Thrones Finale, Neoconservativsm Is Scrutinized

The conquest of Mereen invites obvious comparisons to the Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

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Game of Thrones
HBO / Youtube

(Spoilers for last night's Game of Thrones season finale to follow.)

"Do you remember where the heart is?"

This is what a dying Sandor Clegane asks Arya. He is not asking her in the figurative sense. He is not asking, do you remember how to love? Do you remember how to feel? He is asking her if she remembers the precise location of the heart inside the chest. He is asking her to kill him, and quickly. The closest thing to compassion in the world of Game of Thrones is a speedy death.

Do you remember where the heart is? would be an apt question to ask anyone who has watched Game of Thrones through four seasons of brutal destruction. On the show, even the corpses of the dead find occasion to claw at the boots of the living, attempting murder. Losing oneself in Game of Thrones each week means losing oneself in an orgy of human misery.

It's a realistic orgy, though (except for the fantastical elements). And it is one with parallels to our own world and time that are worth exploring.

Perhaps nothing in GOT resonates as well as Daenerys's conquest of Mereen, which invites obvious comparisons to the Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Earlier this season, Daeny pledged to free the slaves, rescue a downtrodden populace from an antiquated social order, and rule the city as a wise and modern queen. Superior firepower (dragons) is not her only weapon: She also wields the weapon of rhetoric, couching her conquest in terms of liberation and good vs. evil. Her slogan, "Breaker of Chains and Mother of Dragons," might as well be a giant MISSION: ACCOMPLISHED banner.

But killing is simple. Living is the hard part. In the season for finale that aired last night, Daenerysfinds Mereen more easily conquered than ruled. The displaced former rulers, the Wise Masters, rightly feel mistreated. Many of the now former slaves don't know what to do, and some even wish to go back to their chains. And most striking of all, Daeny encounters the Mereneese equivalent of a drone warfare victim: a father whose child was incinerated by death from above, an inadvertent casualty of Daeny's efforts to remake the city.

Daeny has no choice but to hedge on some of her fundamental beliefs, and suddenly, the Breaker of Chains is reshackling her freed slaves, as well as the dragons she claims as her children.

At a time when more and more people are questioning whether U.S. forces can ever achieve their goals in Iraq, and a growing chorus of voices believes the war was a mistake, it is hard not to see our foreign policy foibles reflected in Daeny's story. (Read Lucy Steigerwald at Antiwar.com for more on this viewpoint.)

The Mother of Dragons is not the only person whose children are making trouble in the finale (indeed, it was titled "The Children.") In King's Landing, Jaime, Cersei, and Tyrion all find ways to frustrate their father. Jaime disobeys Tywin by siding with Tyrion and freeing him. Cersei says she would sooner burn their family house to the ground than play the part she has been asked to play. And Tyrion actually walks up the steps to his father's privy and kills the man.

The murder will be hugely consequential for the political reality of Westeros. Tywin Lannister, the man who won the war and united the Seven Kingdoms under his grandson's reign, is now dead. This renews the hope that other political factions have to take the throne, and likely serves to tear the realm further apart in its immediate future—a future where an undead army, dragons, and a change of seasons are likely to play significant destructive roles.

Tywin's death shows how political developments are divorced from practical considerations. The people who rise to the top in Westeros aren't the ones most interested in defending the common people. In fact, the leaders most dedicated to the general welfare of the world are all gathered at the Wall, hundreds of miles from the Iron Throne. In contrast, the people who hover around the throne are the people interested in power for its own sake. And these people keep feuding with each other, and keep dying, further destabilizing the realm.

There was finally good news at the Wall, however, where Stannis's forces arrived to put an end to the wildling assault. The wildlings want to cross the north's giant border fence, but the Night's Watch has balked at the idea of allowing them into the Seven Kingdoms. Would Jon Snow and Stannis be better served by a more lenient immigration policy? It seems clear that the wildlings' primary aim is not war with the people of Westeros, but rather refuge from the hordes of zombies and ice demons. The Watch and the wildlings will need to negotiate some mutua peace in order to survive. Thankfully, Jon's friendly relations with wildling leaders Mance and Tormund will likely come in handy in that regard.

Speaking of immigration, Arya elects to vote with her feet—at long last—and head for the Free City of Braavos. It's a surprisingly hopeful image to close out the fourth season. We don't know precisely what is in store for her, but we know it can't be worse than the world she is leaving behind.

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NEXT: Iraq Is a Terrible Place to Succumb to Sunken Costs Fallacy

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  1. Am I the

    First!

    to ask, why is Game of Thrones featured so much at Reason?

    1. Never seen an episode. I’ve been told I’m a terrible human for this.

      1. There, look! You made children everywhere cry.

        1. Actually, that’s because those children just saw a GOT episode.

          1. No, the episode was titled “The Children”.

    2. Something to do with cocktail parties, gay marriage and Koch money.

    3. More importantly, why do they act like the show is a new creation, and thus can be seen as explictly commenting on recent politics, when it was written more 15 years ago.

      1. George R. R. Nostradamus?

      2. Because the same issues were relevant 15 years ago

        1. 15, try 50.

        2. Yes, but the fact the text of a book is applicable to something doesn’t make it an explicit allegory as the article seems to be suggesting.

      3. So you’re telling me the book 4 character Obara is NOT meant to be a commentary on Obama?

    4. Because when you play the game of thrones, you either die or open a food truck.

      1. Guess I had best get movin’ on that roesti truck then… because I have not seen an episode, and do not wish to inflict fictional misery upon myself, so I shan’t ever, I guess.

        1. Oh my god. I am so hungry now. You said the magic word; roesti.

          1. This. I wonder who I can talk into going to Chalet Edelweiss for dinner.

            1. Looks fabulous. Maybe we can have a Reasonoid meetup here? I’m in.

              1. It’s a good space for it: they have some long tables and do pitchers.

                1. Airport adjacent. I’m in.

                2. I’ll definitely drink beer there. His kids look a little doughy, though, not sure I want to eat the food.

                  1. His kids look a little doughy

                    Mitteleuropean is a sometimes food.

            2. You all need to get to New Glarus, WI

              (Not Wisconsin, but Swissconsin!)

              1. I can’t think of a reason for me to ever be in Wisconsin, but I assume that it would involve me putting on a considerable amount of weight.

              2. I’ve been there. Very Swiss.

          2. Muhuhuhuwha!

            *thinks about next Swiss food mindworm to release*

        2. Those are hash browns. My wife makes really good ones. I don’t need a fancy swiss restaurant for that.

  2. Reading current events into a fantasy show on HBO is a severe stretch. The writers don’t even seem to know what they’re doing vis-a-vis the books, let alone sneaking in messages about Iraq. And killing Jojen was fucking stupid. The whole show is stupid at this point.

    1. Last night’s episode was the final disappointment to a disappointing season. I don’t know how they are going to resurrect it at this point.

      Reading current events into GoT is even dumber than reading WWII into LoTR.

      1. Reading current events into GoT is even dumber than reading WWII into LoTR.

        How about reading WWI into LoTR?

        1. Even dumber, even though yes I know Tolkien was a product of that war.

        2. Given Tolkien’s experiences in WWI it would be the better comparision.

    2. The whole show is stupid at this point.

      Not a fan, huh?
      A friend tore in how horrible and awkward the books are, and so on… then turned around and talked about how the show wasn’t doing the books justice.
      I enjoy the books. I enjoy the show. I even enjoyed watching the Red Viper’s head popped like a pimple as the end to one of my favorite characters.

      1. I was a fan. But Martin is a far better writer than the show writers, and they’re dropping a lot of his stuff for their own. And guess what? That sucks. They created this show because of what he had done, and now they’re discarding it? OK, that’s going to work.

        1. Oh dude, it works all the time! It’s like when I make one of my mom’s recipes and just randomly drop ingredients because I don’t feel like finding it.

        2. The Inn fight scene with Arya and the Hound was better on the show then in the books.

          Though the aftermath was not.

    3. That’s because the books became stupid.

      The first books were decent and refreshing. But the last couple show an author who uses the same schtick over and over and over again- being good means trusting that person with a reputation for dicking people over, ultimately to your death. Whenever you state your plan of how things will unfold you will always be undone and conversely, every time you think all hope is lost, implausible fortune will swing your way.

      I wouldn’t be shocked to see a lot of these plot lines were created as (by Martin) or massaged to be commentary on current events. The problem is that (like the last season of BSG) it’s really hard to stay “Ripped from the Headlines” and still tell a coherent and compelling story.

      1. The books only become stupid if you don’t reread the prior ones before starting a new one. I originally tried reading book four without rereading books two and three first, and I failed. Twice. I finally went back and reread, and then book four was great, and so was five. There’s so much going on that you have to refresh yourself, or you’re lost. But if you do, it’s great.

        1. I’m starting A Feast for Crows again, and already I’m annoyed at the introduction of new characters with similar sounding names: Aeron, Areo, Arys.

          At least the HBO people realized that having two young women named Asha and Osha was dumb.

          1. The real mystery of Season 5 will be how much more screen time they will spend inflicting the actress playing “Asha” upon us.

            And too bad Manjaw Reed didn’t bite it at the same time as her brother.

            1. Not every female character can be as hot as The Red Woman.

              That’s right, even though I commented on the pointless nature of her bathtub scene a few weeks ago, I’ve decided Mel is hotter than Dany.

              1. Sansa is by far the hottest. We just havn’t seen her with her clothes off yet.

              2. I’ve decided Dany is Obama with a blonde wig.

            2. And too bad Manjaw Reed didn’t bite it at the same time as her brother.

              She can’t die.

              She is Jon Snow’s twin sister.

              1. What! You think she’s a Targeran too?

                1. I don’t know about Targarian (i am betting on emasculate conception) but she is the same age as Jon Snow and how the hell did Howland Reed get a daughter the same age as Jon Snow if not the same place Edard Stark got Jon Snow.

                  Howland Reed is also the only person left alive who was at the tower of Joy with Stark.

                  Makes sense that they each took one child to raise as their own.

                  Also makes sense that the birth of twins could have caused complications during birth…complications that can cause a bed to become covered in blood.

          2. I think it’s dumb when I know more than one person with the same first name, but it happens a lot, so I deal with it.

        2. The books only become stupid if you don’t reread the prior ones before starting a new one.

          I had the opposite problem. I started late and read the first 4 books in about a 3 month timeframe. Reading them together made all the cliches and lazy plot devices jump out at me. Every time a person is just about to get kacked and then the final sentence “Then she spoke”, or “Then someone screamed” etc. How many chapters ended with those silly cliff hangers before going to another plotline?

    4. Jojen was dead weight. Why not kill him?

      1. THey could have sent him off to visit Rickon. Wherever that is.

    5. The whole show is stupid at this point.

      I knew you were going to be upset after last night.

      1. The worst was the fight between the Hound and Brienne. The fuck?

        1. Fan service. At least they weren’t naked.

        2. I’ve often complained that vast stretches of the Seven Kingdoms feel totally unpopulated on the show. Then for Brienne to just run into Arya with seemingly no other humans around for miles – it just felt weird.

          1. Ummm, they were both headed to the same castle.

        3. That was awesome.
          Better than the Viper vs. the Mountain, actually, as fight scene go.

          Brienne punching the Hound in the face was great.

          1. She never found the Hound and they never fought! And the fight scene was ridiculous – A guy the size of the Hound punches her in the face, on the ground, and then instead of being knocked out she re-energizes a la Hulk Hogan and turns the tables.

            1. You prefer to have half a season of her following some random bandit down a trail?

              1. You could actually hang quite a story off of that. Plenty of opportunity for adventuring, interesting people to meet and kill, etc. The journey becomes the point, not the random bandit.

        4. I read the books. But at this point I barely remember anything except major plot points. I was wondering last night? Did I totally forget this too?

          Although, I suppose it doesn’t really wreck things as much as I initially feared. If Arya ever makes it back from across the ocean It’s not like Brienne will be able to recognize her. And the hound had to get killed somehow.

          1. Although in the books it’s not 100% certain Sandor Clegane actually died.

            1. It’s not even certain in the show. Arya left him alive.

          2. He’s not dead in the books.

            1. That’s completely unclear. Someone has been spotted wearing his hound helm, but it could just be some dude who took it off his body. Martin is being deliberately vague about the Hound.

              1. SPOILERS, probably shouldn’t read if you aren’t familiar with the books:

                From what I remember, one of the Brotherhood finds his helm and starts wearing it, but Clegane himself is implied to end up as the gravedigger on that little island with the priest that Brienne finds herself on at some point in book 4.

              2. We don’t see him in the sense of someone going “Hey look! It’s The Hound!”, but the book seems to be hinting heavily that the mysterious new gravedigger at The Quiet Isle is him.

                http://awoiaf.westeros.org/ind…..r/Theories

            2. We don’t see him, but he is rumored to be alive.

            3. I’m starting to remember now. If it is the Hound, it’s probably a catelyn-style zombie hound right? I think I remember that being my impression.

            4. jeez. I’m gonna re read these probably. It took me 3 tries to get past first half of first book. Then I flew through the rest. Probably will just start at an arbitrary point in the middle of first book.

  3. Reason’s new slogan: “A Game of Thrones Fanzine, with a sideline in Free Minds and Free Markets.”

    1. One can only dream for that to be true.

      *sigh*

  4. but we know it can’t be worse than the world she is leaving behind.

    You haven’t read much George RR Martin, have you?

  5. So who’s Lady Stoneheart then? Oh wait, she doesn’t exist because the show is written by mongoloids.

    1. I expect she will turn up eventually, and it will be a shocker when she does.

      1. By this point in the books she is dead and zombified and dead again being replaced by Brianne of Tarth as the leader of the brothers without banners.

        There will be no Lady Stoneheart.

        1. Unless you have read book 6, that hasn’t happened.

          Book 4 ends with Brienne about to be hanged by Lady Stoneheart’s crew. We don’t see her again in Book 5.

          1. But then Book 5 turns out to have all just been a Sansa Starks dream!

            I still don’t know who shot J.R.?

            1. Mo, no, Arya is an autistic kid, and the whole story takes place inside her mind.

          2. We don’t see her again in Book 5.

            A Dance with Dragons

            Brienne appears briefly at Pennytree when Jaime camps there, whatever word she shouted apparently making the Brotherhood spare her. She asks Jaime to help her save Sansa Stark from the Hound, claiming they are a day’s ride away. She tells Jaime, however, that he must go with her alone, or the Hound will kill Sansa.[23] The scenario she describes, however, seems unlikely to be real, as Sansa was last seen by readers in the Vale and the Hound is apparently dead.[22]

            http://awoiaf.westeros.org/ind…..th_Dragons

            Also she is not about to hanged, she is hanged in book 4.

            1. K, lets assume she is hanged and ressurected and is now working for Lady Stoneheart.

              1. Thoros’s “fire” can only keep one person alive at once.

                When Lady Stoneheart was resurrected Beric died.

                If Brienne is resurrected then Lady Stoneheart dies.

    2. Mongoloids who think they can tell a better story than the guy that inspired them to make the show in the first place.

    3. WHERE IS COLDHANDS!??!

      1. DON’T TALK ABOUT COLDHANDS!

      2. WHERE IS STRONG BELWAS???

        1. He will show up as one of the former slave gladiators of Mereen turned Queens Guard….just in time for him to get poisoned.

          Coldhands more then likely will never show up.

        2. Goddamnit this.

        3. DON’T TALK ABOUT STRONG BELWAS!

    4. Seriously. How do you ignore the best pre-written cliffhanger ever? They didn’t even have to explain anything about her yet, just leave her as a mystery.

    5. Shut up! You can’t have Strong Belwas, but you can have Ros the whore.

      1. Ros the whore was one of the better improvements…

        1. BAH! Your depraved lust for gingers is well-known, Corning.

          1. Nah…i like brown or blond hair….even black above red.

            Ros was just an exceptional ginger that surpassed my anti-ginger bias.

  6. Arya’s story is the most poignant so far.
    As far as she knows, everyone in her family is dead except her half brother Jon Snow and Sansa, who has disappeared. And apparently the Lannisters are still looking for her. (She has no idea who Brienne is or whether she can trust her.) She’s got no refuge, except maybe the Wall, which of course girls aren’t allowed in, and winter is coming. She doesn’t even have her wolf, which she left back in Season 1.

    So Braavos is really the only place left. The only thing she can do is flee to the one place she can get passage to.

    1. Re: HazelMeade,

      As far as she knows, everyone in her family is dead except her half brother Jon Snow and Sansa, who has disappeared.

      The other night I was watching this telenovela about a your girl who was alone in the world, a sweet maid of humble origins who fell in love with the son of the family patriarch for whom she worked. But how could a girl of such lowly status ever win the heart of the young and handsome heir of the family fortune? Besides, evil forces were conspiring against her: the young heir’s snobbish sister; his mother, a proud woman (of humble origins herself) who wanted her son to marry a wealthy heiress; and the wealthy heiress, who wanted him and despised the sweet humble maid.

      I see no difference. They’re all telenovelas for all I care, except for the fact that one has to pay 28 additional bucks per month to watch this one. At least the women in the telenovelas are much more gorgeous and luscious, not pasty-white and scrawny.

    2. GRRM is awesome. Only he could write a “poignant” story about a serial-killing young woman sailing off to join a death-cult and train as an assassin.

      1. I agree. Aren’t all serial killers really just unloved children, alone in the world? When Arya pays bloody tribute to her assassin’s god, we will know that she is really crying inside.

      2. Arya slowly becoming a sexy slutty super-assassin is the best part of the series.

        1. They might have to replace the actress…which kind of sucks.

          But she really is too short for the role.

          Who is going to believe she is the daughter of Edard and Caitlin.

          1. I hope they don’t replace her. I think she’s one of the better actresses on the show, especially considering her age.

  7. Wait, I thought mentioning Lucy was verbotten by the Jacket?

    1. DON’T TALK ABOUT LUCY

      1. Hey, don’t blame me, Robby put her in the article

        1. Please = we call him, ‘Rico

  8. 1) When did this become the A/V Club?

    2) Proving a political point by drawing on a fictional event is stupid, especially when this fictional scenario differs substantially from events on the ground. (Yes, I know that GRRM intended the parallels to the Iraq War but it was still a very shallow comparison.)

    1. I suppose then that you didn’t like the Soave piece a few months ago in which he explored the Benghazi cover up through the lens of the Hannibal finale?

      1. I’m just pissed that they didn’t accept my suggestion for an article exploring the subtle anarchist message of Transformers.

        1. “Freedom is the right of all sentient beings.” – Optimus Prime

          You may be onto something.

        2. The transformers series in general does portray the government as incompetent.

          Hell the trailer of the new one it shows government as a malicious evil.

    2. Well, at least it’s not a football discussion.

  9. “Perhaps nothing in GOT resonates as well as Daenerys’s conquest of Mereen, which invites obvious comparisons to the Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. “

    Whut

  10. Having only read the books and not watched the series, I’m pretty sure I can tell you the only thing in those books that I can draw a parallel to with current events is:

    Shit can always get worse, and usually does.

    1. Well i still think George W Bush had dragons.

  11. but we know it can’t be worse than the world she is leaving behind.

    Err…

    Into the hands of an assassin death cult ruled by a megalomaniacle bank is better?

    1. Braavos is the perfect anarcho-capitalist city-state.

      All they care about is money, and they don’t waste any of it on armies, they have an assassins guild to collect their debts and enforce contracts.

      1. Except for the slavery.

        1. Braavos does not have slaves.

          In fact it was founded by former freed slaves of Valyria.

          In fact the death cult that Arya joins probably had a hand in the Doom of Valyria and destroyed Valyria in an act of revenge for enslaving them.

          1. I like this theory.

            1. Arya even carries a BitCoin with her.

          2. The books make it clear that while Braavos officially does not allow slaves, this in practice means that the wealthy merchants just call their slaves “servants”. They’re still bought from the slavers in Slavers Bay, are not paid, and are not free to leave.

            1. They don’t call it “The Free City of Braavos” for nothing. They charge for that too.

      2. and they don’t waste any of it on armies

        They have a pretty good Navy that takes out slave ships when they come upon them.

    2. megalomaniacle

      Sweet, sweet typos.

      Seriously. That one got converted into “megalomonocle” in my head. I’m thinking of changing my handle now.

      1. That would be an excellent handle.

  12. Related:

    Chomsky: We should examine carefully what’s being established here in the prologue. For one, the point is clearly made that the “master ring,” the so-called “one ring to rule them all,” is actually a rather elaborate justification for preemptive war on Mordor.

    Zinn: I think that’s correct. Tolkien makes no attempt to hide the fact that rings are wielded by every other ethnic enclave in Middle Earth. The Dwarves have seven rings, the Elves have three. The race of Man has nine rings, for God’s sake. There are at least 19 rings floating around out there in Middle Earth, and yet Sauron’s ring is supposedly so terrible that no one can be allowed to wield it. Why?

    Chomsky: Notice too that the “war” being waged here is, evidently, in the land of Mordor itself ? at the very base of Mount Doom. These terrible armies of Sauron, these dreadful demonized Orcs, have not proved very successful at conquering the neighboring realms ? if that is even what Sauron was seeking to do. It seems fairly far-fetched.

    1. Indeed.

    2. There are at least 19 rings floating around out there in Middle Earth, and yet Sauron’s ring is supposedly so terrible that no one can be allowed to wield it. Why?

      It’s like watching two retards fight… Sure, it’s funny at first, but then you start to just feel bad for liking it so much. Stupid conscience.

      1. Psst. It’s not real. Like your penis.

    3. Talk about missing the point. Wow.

      1. And not having read or understood some basic plot points.

        1. Oh they likely read it, but being the intellectually dishonest fucks that they were, they simply chose to ignore points that were inconvenient to their conclusion.

          1. Dude.
            Parody.

            1. As I told jesse, I’ll admit, I fell for it.

            2. And yet like all the best Parody entirely believable

              1. That is a problem here. It’s a little too on target.

        2. I imagine though that if you are a power worshiper, like most on the left are, then the broad points of the books wouldn’t compute.

      2. We’re aware that McSweeny’s is like a high-concept The Onion and they’re spoofing Zinn and Chomsky, no?

        1. (waves jesse off) “let them keep going!”

          1. It’s too early (Pacific time) to have a beer and spectate though.

        2. Well, I’ll admit to being fooled because David Brin publically embarrassed himself some years back saying very similar things about Star Wars and Lord of the Rings (Heroes are elitist, bloodlines of heroes are feudal…and that’s terrible).

    4. I thought Zinn was going to be all like,

      “Elvish history is riddled with bias!; from the perspective of the Orcs, they were simply attempting to guarantee their own survival. Look at how the West had occupied their land up to their very doorstep. Naturally the real estate beneath Mount Doom was the worst place to live in Middle Earth. Their eventual revolt was inevitable and entirely the consequence of the unbridled capitalist development of the Gondorians.”

    5. Oh McSweeny’s. I remember really liking their Ghost Stories with a Hidden Agenda series.

      CURSE OF THE WEREWOLF

      Over the course of the next two weeks, the werewolf ate only people. While technically not Atkins Approved, this diet rich in proteins yet lacking in sugars and carbohydrates caused his body to burn fat for fuel. In no time at all the werewolf began to notice a difference in his appearance, and his self-confidence soared!

      1. Those were great.

      2. My favorite was Alfred Hitchcock writing an angry letter about his hotel room. The best part was a bit about how he was upset that the closet wasn’t big enough for a psychotic murderer to hide in. Not that he actually wanted a psychotic muderer in the closet, he just wanted the possibility of a psychotic muderer in the closet.

        Which is hilarious if you’ve ever seen Hitchcock being interviewed on his theories of directing.

    6. Gadalf was a villain…but a socialist progressive one.

  13. My wife and I stopped watching this show after the Red Wedding. We both decided that this was a truly malevolent world that we did not want to be a part of.

    1. Pussies. That’s when “A Storm of Swords” gets interesting.

    2. What are you still doing here?

      1. You make a good point. Reason has become A/V Club’s alt site for GOT review and commentary. Christ, Krayewski just posted a piece on libertarian lessons in GOT!

    3. The Red Wedding was a mild blood-letting compared to the fight between the Mountain and the Viper.

  14. Perhaps nothing in GOT resonates as well as Daenerys’s conquest of Mereen, which invites obvious comparisons to the Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    What? No comparison to the “War of Nothrun Aggreshun”?

    Look, carpetbagger, the Ghiscari would have freed their slaves eventually. And, uh, Valyrians kept slaves too! And, uh, by destroying Slaver’s Bay, Danaerys upset the world economy! And, uh, not everybody owned slaves!

    1. What are your feelings on abortion and deep dish pizza?

      1. I’m more in favor of post-natal abortion than pre-natal. At least give the clump of cells a fighting chance.

        “Deep dish pizza” is like “boneless chicken wings.” False advertising. It’s lasagna. Call it what it is.

  15. On the one hand I haven’t seen the episode since I was driving back from my day trip to see my father… On the other hand, I read all the books so there can’t be much of spoilers anyway… What to do?

  16. I liked Dany’s solution for the guy who wanted to sell himself back into slavery – sign a 1-year contract.

    1. I liked that, too.

    2. It’s funny. That one bit stuck with me as either an example of Martin or Daeny being in over their heads and having little knowledge of human nature.

      Here you have a very educated man who is a skilled teacher seeking purpose in his life and a population who has been systematically denied education of self direction. Now clearly this guy was not teaching the sons of the masters to be slaves so he knew how to teach self reliance among other skills. Further there were presumably any number of other similar men throughout the households of the Masters.

      The solution that was begging to be found was for Daeny to make him an counter offer. Rather than go back to his old master she would allow him to sign a contract with her and she would set him up with a school to teach the children of slaves how to grow up and be the next generation of leaders of Mereen. Then she would have sought all of the other tutors in the city and made them the same offer.

      1. So public schools?

        1. If you’re going to be an overbearing tyrant, you should go all the way, right?

          1. She’s basically Abraham Lincoln with blond hair at this point.

      2. I found that part wierd too: “You mean, as a ‘free’ person, you are going to allow me to enter a contract? Gee thanks. Why didn’t I think of that.”

  17. Why not just headline the post, “Spoilers! = *garnished with desperate analogies*”

    If i wanted to read desperate projections of allegory onto poorly written juvenile entertainment I’d have become a high school English teacher.

    Game of Thrones is not any more significant of… anything…. any more than Hannah Montana evokes key themes of Anna Karenina. Its primarily “Tits,Ass, Blood and Guts” layered on top of some ‘*really* dysfunctional families’. Hell, i guess GoT does have some Anna Karenina in it. And a midget! high art indeed.

    It actually reminds me of the last episode of American Gladiator… which, incidentally, evoked a number of themes related to the Invasion of Panama….

    1. He’s a dwarf, you cretin!

      1. Please, Sugar = Little-Americans

        1. You’re both wrong. Normal-sized people are “cis-sized,” dwarves are “trans-sized.”

          1. Small people are life’s “Val-u-Pak”

            1. Fun Sized!

          2. And all the other health problems most little people have are just a coincidence.

          3. Nothing wrong with midget, as long as everyone else is called a madget.

      2. You misspelled ‘munchkin’.

        1. Does that mean he rolled all 18’s for his stats?

          1. Yes. Six sequential natural eighteens.

            It *could* happen.

            1. Once every 34,012,224 attempts on average. Odds are it has happened maybe a couple times by now.

  18. I watched the show last night and not once did I think it had anything whatsoever to do with scrutinizing neoconservatism.

    1. Well gee that just says a lot about you then doesn’t it?

      I bet you had no idea Top Gun was all about being gay either.

      1. And Short. They convienently glossed over the fact that there are almost no Fighter pilots over 6’1″ because GLOC is a far bigger problem for taller people.

        So all those hot gay fighter jocks were also about 5’6″

        1. So Tom Cruise was cast to enhance the realism?

          1. I thought it was for his mad volleyball skillz.

  19. I didn’t see last night’s episode yet. I’m not reading this post or any of the comments and am only here to say

    NO SPOILERS

    and then I’ll watch it tonight and come back here and look at all the dumb shit everyone wrote. Because everyone but me is dumb.

    1. NO SPOILERS

      You better read the books as well.

      The thread is full of em.

  20. The scene with Tyrion and Jaime was really off. They parted on friendly terms, whereas in the book, they had an argument – a really relevant argument – before parting.

    The fight scene between the Hound and The Maiden from Tarth was b.s.

    I’m assuming Stoneheart will turn up next season.

  21. So, when’s someone gonna do the whole Dune library? I mean every. last. fucking. interminable. book. Not just one movie with the dude from Twin Peaks.

    The. Whole. Thing.

    Then we’ll talk weird and weirder and just stupid by the end.

    1. In retrospect, I would have been perfectly happy just stopping with ‘Dune’. The rest didn’t add much to my life.

      1. Oh, and BBC had the 4+ hour version of Dune on the other day, with the concept art added in, etc. The use of the word ‘planet’ before every. single. planet. name just was so incredibly annoying. We get it, Arrakis is a planet, Giedi Prime is a planet, etc. Drop the ‘planet’ after the first mention.

    2. Didn’t the miniseries do the other books?

      Also what Slumbrew said.

      The books after Dune sucked.

    3. Screw that shit. I want to see someone do Lucifers Hammer or Footfall as a 4 season 48 episode series

  22. It seems clear that the wildlings’ primary aim is not war with the people of Westeros, but rather refuge from the hordes of zombies and ice demons.

    And if you believe that, go ahead and leave your horses in the pasture.

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