Game of Thrones: Season 5 reflections

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CombinedpicLewis: Soooooooooo… Game of Thrones.

Ben: Game of Thrones. How do you want to do this? Character by character? Episode by episode? Or, alternatively, wherever the conversation takes us.

Lewis: I think if we talk about it character by character we can cover more ground in less time.

Ben: Righto, shall we start in the North and work down? Starting with Jon (I think we should say now that there will be spoilers)

Poor Jon…

Lewis: Yeah, there will be a whole lot of spoilers here

RIP Jon. The North remembers!

jonsnow

Ben: I felt like he was really coming into his own this series, he became much more likeable and developed into the leader Westeros needs.

Lewis: For sure. He was becoming a lot more like good ol’ Ned (RIP). Unfortunately, GOT has a habit of killing off characters who begin to look like decent people… I do hope he comes back somehow. Everyone likes an underdog.

Ben: He was making good decisions (except for that Oli dickhead). Yes, hopefully they will bring him back, most probably using Melisandre.

Lewis: I don’t like her, but if she manages to bring Jon back she will gain my approval. It was pretty frustrating that Oli couldn’t see past the fact that Wildlings had killed his family, but I guess he is only 13 or something…

As for the Wildlings, I wonder what’s going to happen with them now?

Ben: I think everything is going to kick off between The Night’s watch and the remaining Wildlings, which will allow the walkers in.

Lewis: Hmmmmm, I hope it doesn’t turn out as depressingly as that, but then again it is GOT. Maybe Jon Snow will come back just as all hope seems lost, and he’ll unite the Wildlings and Night’s Watch in a glorious battle against the unending hordes of the undead. Then again, maybe not.

We also have the Boltons to worry about.

Ben: Yeah, the damn Boltons. Stannis burnt his daughter and his wife killed herself all for nothing! That’s my issue with GoT, everything is so futile. I would have forgiven Stannis for killing his daughter if it meant we would be rid of the Boltons, but we aren’t. The whole thing was for nothing, resulting in the loss of an anti-hero I could support.

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Lewis: Yeah, to be honest I actually quite liked Stannis, even if he was harsh. He always had The Onion-Knight to keep him in check though, so I think he would’ve been alright as a ruler.

Obviously my support for him dropped a little after he sacrificed his daughter… but you know, he might not be dead. We didn’t see the killing blow.

Ben: That is true, he was a bit harsh but he always seemed better than the alternatives. Bloody Brianne! Why does she always have to kill people that are ok, she should have been watching for the candle…

brienne

Lewis: She’s a decent person but she’s always so self-righteous… do you think Theon and Sansa will get away?

Ben: She is incredibly self-righteous, it is like they are desperate for us to like her. She killed the Hound though, so I can never forgive her.

I kind of hope so; Theon is starting to redeem himself in my books. However this is Game of Thrones, so I wouldn’t be surprised if they were caught.

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Lewis: I hope Theon has to sacrifice himself for Sansa…

It’s hard not to feel for the idiot though; he has been through a lot. Speaking of people who’ve been through a lot (nice segue, huh?), Cersei is finally getting what’s been coming to her for a long time.

Ben: Yeah that would be a nice touch, provided Sansa gets away…

Very good, but has she though? Yeah she has been ridiculed, but she now has The Mountain to carry out whatever she wants. And being ridiculed isn’t enough, she has to die and soon.

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Lewis: The Starks shall be avenged, Ben. If I had it my way, the Hound would come back and face off against the Mountain in an epic fight. That probably won’t happen though…

She also still needs to have her trial, as do Margaery and Loras

Ben: Ideally she will be killed off next series. It would be epic to have the Hound back. He was one of the most likable characters in the whole show.

The Tyrells were pretty much forgotten by the end of the episode.

Lewis: Yeah, I was a little peeved about how they didn’t really mention them in the later parts of the episode.

What do you think will happen to them?

Ben: I can imagine that Loras will be killed; further fuelling the Tyrell/lannister feud. The Queen of Thorns is a pretty solid character. In a show filled with blood and sex she is one of the few that possesses a quick mind and a sharp tongue, making many of her scenes very funny. Particularly ones where she slags off Cersei.

olenna

Lewis: You know, out of all the houses, the Tyrells are really the only ones who aren’t complete arseholes most of the time. If anyone ends up ruling at all they’d be a good choice. Olenna is definitely one of my favourite characters in the show. Which leads me to think that she might meet a horrific fate at the hands of the Lannisters (or someone associated with them).

Ben: Especially now that Cersei has The Zombie Mountain at her side, they may not last long. The High Sparrow wants them punished for their sins too, I think their only hope is a war between the faith and the Lannisters

Lewis: Hmmmm I can’t imagine Cersei allowing her trial to go ahead. Her plan definitely backfired on her.

I suppose we had better talk about what’s been happening outside of Westeros though

Ben: We shall have to wait and see, Kings Landing is far too complicated to predict. What about Dorne?

Lewis: Yeah, will Jamie turn that ship around and get Myrcella the antidote in time? I have to say, even if he can be a real piece of shit, I do like Jamie.

jamie and mycella

Ben: I think Myrcella is as good at dead, why do all the wrong Lannisters die?

He goes through phases does Jamie, starts off a bellend, then ok for a bit, then a dickhead again. He has been ok this series, paired up with Bronn, I like Bronn. I got a bit scared when he almost died.

Lewis: Unfortunately, that’s the fucked up world they live in. Yeah he’s a complicated anti-hero for sure.

Bronn is awesome I don’t think I’ve ever been as nervous over the show than when he started to have that nosebleed… I think things in Dorne are going to become very complicated next season.

Ben: It just isn’t fair. I was shouting “No, no, no, no” when he was having that fit. I don’t know what I would do if he died. Yes, there will be some political manoeuvres and I’m slightly nervous for the ok-guy in the wheelchair. I wouldn’t want to be on the wrong side of the Sand-Sisters.

sandsister

Lewis: Crazy sisters… I guess Bronn was right about the fucking and killing bit.

Speaking of killing, looks like Arya’s in a tight spot too (another sweet segue), I wonder if her blindness will be permanent?

Ben: He was indeed.

I wasn’t the biggest fan of the Arya story. It was quite slow, but I suppose it comes with the training she is doing but for me it was a bit Bran-ish. And then when she did start fucking shit up it backfired spectacularly… typical Stark…

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Lewis: I have to agree with you there. It was interesting, but out of everything that’s been going on it was the weak link.

Ben: You could have easily cut bits out and not know the difference. I doubt she will be permanently blinded. Hopefully it will just be a temporary thing until she learns her lesson. And then she can avenge hers family.

Shall we move further through Essos to The Mother of Dragons?

Lewis: Yes… good ol’Danaerys

I know she’s an alright person, and I know she’s a bit naïve, but goddam is she frustrating sometimes.

danytyrion

Ben: She has become a secondary character in her own story arc. It is all about Tyrion and my personal favourite, Jorah.

Bless him, Captain friend zone.

Lewis: Ah yes, Mr. Mormont It’s not looking too good for him at the moment. He’s either going to die from the Grayscale or Dario is gonna kill him out of jealousy.

Ben: Poor old Jorah. He has always had her best interests at heart. Another issue I have with that story arc is that it has literally gone nowhere in the last 5 series. Danaerys started off with the Dothraki, then ended up in Quarth, and then on to slavers bay which is all character building stuff but now she has ended up back with the Dothraki thanks to the work of Drogon (that fight in the penultimate episode was pretty cool). The whole story has gone round in a big circle.

Lewis: Well hopefully that circle will have some kind of meaning behind it, but I get what you mean, it does feel like it’s stalled somewhat.

Ben: She was learning lessons in slavers bay that would help her rule Westeros, but going back to the Dothraki almost seems like an effort to get another book out her story if you see my meaning. The constant stopping and starting is getting frustrating.

Lewis: Yeah I understand what you mean, but who knows, maybe she can gain the support of the Dothraki?

Ben: Maybe. I kinda hope so, just so she can get rid of the bloody Lannisters. What do you reckon of Tyrion being given the control of Meereen?

Lewis: I think Tyrion’s been given a chance to come into his own. He’ll do very well, and to be honest, if Dany now has Tyrion as a permanent advisor, she’s going to more than capable of ruling. However, as the series goes on I just can’t see anything good happening to anyone in the Seven Kingdoms… I think it’s just as likely that everything will be destroyed

Ben: I agree which brings me to my final point if you are finished?

Lewis: I am indeed! This sounds exciting.

Ben: I wouldn’t be. My point is this…

I am tired of the emotional manipulation this show puts me through season after season. Not only do all the evil bastards survive while every good character and anti-hero is killed off in increasingly disturbing ways, when you do get to the point, when you, as a viewer, think you may get some redemption for the death of all your favourites, the evil fuckers like Ramsey Bolton prevail at the last minute. Or by some miracle, out of nowhere you develop some form of sympathy for people like Cersei Lannister. I know it is almost the point of the show and the books to throw the reader and the viewer off at the last minute, but after seasons of this bullshit I am tired of feeling depressed after every finale. Good guys had better start surviving because I cannot take the emotional turmoil much longer. End of rant *as I wipe a tear from my eye mourning the death of Ned, Robb, The Hound and all the others*

Lewis: Bloody hell, do you want a tissue?

That was quite the rant. However, surely the fact that the show can manipulate you in such a way is an indication of its quality and the quality of its characters? Yeah it’s depressing, yeah the good guys don’t win very often, but the bad guys do get their comeuppance. It’s the “grey” characters who manage to survive most often in that world. All the very “good” (like Ned) and very “bad” people fair pretty terribly. It’s just a matter of sticking it out until all the “bad” guys are gone.

Ben: Yeah I would agree that it is testament to the actors and the writing that it can invoke this reaction. But the issue is that even the “grey” characters are dying while the bad guys continue to survive. I accept the premise of killing off the “good” guys, but it has got to the point where we are 5 seasons in and we are even further away from the ending we wanted than we were then at the start of season 1. The Hound, Stannis amongst others are the ‘grey’ characters that should be surviving but instead we are left with Brianne who is the most forced and most dislikeable good guy on our screens. We also have the Sand Sisters, who, despite having my support in avenging their Father, are more concerned with killing innocent bystanders. We are now onto season 6; we have to start having some happy endings. Please, I am begging you.

Lewis: Didn’t Ramsey himself say something about happy endings that’s been adopted by fans to describe the series?

“If you think this has a happy ending you haven’t been paying attention.”

Unfortunately, while the people who die may or may not have deserved it, the characters who do survive will be the right ones (if it turns out happily). If it turns out how I think it will (everything frozen over and barely anyone left alive), then I guess that’s the way it has to be and all this has been for nothing.

Ben: It has got to the point where I am actively rooting for the White Walkers to just cleanse Westeros which has become a wretched hive of scum and villainy.

Shall we leave it there then?

Lewis: Hey, maybe that’s actually their purpose? But then again, that’s been done before.

Yeah I’m happy to leave it there, I think we’ve covered most of what’s going on Just as a final thought though, were you happy with this season?

Ben: Erm I suppose so. I think it was better than last season, despite the traumatic ending. I felt it was more evenly paced and the result actually meant something. How about you?

Lewis: I’m not too sure I definitely enjoyed it, and it was as good as Game of Thrones should be, but there weren’t many stand out moments for me, I wasn’t very thrilled by anything…

Except maybe for Stannis and Jon’s storylines.

Ben: I think in comparison to the last season there were many more standout moments. Apart from the death of Joffrey nothing else memorable happened. The series before that had the Red Wedding and nothing else. This series we had the attacks of the White Walkers, the return of Theon and Drogon, and many more important deaths. I take your point though…. perhaps it is a set up for next year.

Lewis: Maybe. We can only hope.

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