Tag: Game Of Thrones Hbo

“The Grump Speaks” for 04/09/14

In an effort to create Game of Thrones related content that is less than a two hour watch, I’m starting a video series called The Grump Speaks. If it becomes a ‘thing,’ I’ll also package it as an audio podcast or as an ‘extra’ for the Beyond The Wall and/or the Consumption podcast feed.

The Grump Speaks will be reviews… or rambles. In this case, I’m talking about the Season 4 Episode 1 episode “Two Swords” of Game of Thrones, called “The Melting of Ice, and the Return of Needle.”

Video – Beyond The Wall – Season 3 Episode 7

Here’s the video we recorded last night.

We have Balticon next weekend. Please post here or send us an email if you have topics you’d like us to discuss on our live show. The live show will be recorded and we’ll post it here after we get home!

Hosts:

P.G. Holyfield (author of Murder at Avedon Hill and SFM Founder
Chooch (Into the Blender Podcast Co-Host, and bassist of Ditched By Kate)
Vivid Muse (Into the Blender Podcast Co-Host), Girls’ Rules Podcast Host)
Christiana Ellis (too many podcasts to list here, but you can check out all things Christiana at her site).
Nuchtchas (Host of Nutty Bites Podcast)

Contact Us:

Email: btw at specficmedia dot com
Phone: 6199-BTW-GoT (619-928-9468)
Comments: On the site

Feature – The Eye of Newb – GoT: Season 2 Episode 6

Editor’s Note: “The Eye of Newb” contains spoilers from the episode listed. If you have not watched the episode written about, you have been warned. But as Matt has not read the books (as of yet), you do not have to worry about future spoilers.

The Eye of Newb: Game of Thrones (HBO) Season 2 Episode 6: \\The Old Gods and The New\\
By: Matt Lynch

“I told you to never trust a Greyjoy!” – Catelyn Stark

Well, Good People, The Newb is hangin’ on by the thread of his Jaqen H’ghar on this one. I had to psyche myself up to watch the this episode. No lie. Mayhap I’ve spent too much time reading about actual cruelty in different times and places, aided only by the magic of antisocial mindsets and chemistry. Perchance my brain is dog-tired and I can’t invest the necessary cerebral space to track the twists and turns. Or it may just be that the introduction of actual magic has jaded me against a series that is predicated on a world of pure fantasy. Contrariwise, it might just have something to do with the fact that the writers, in their infinite duncery, insist on letting Joffrey breathe. In the end, I am forced to utter, with deep conviction, mind you, and swaddled in the dulcet tones of my best Karl Pilkington… “Dunno.” It is, as they say, what it is. So here your Faithful Newb sits, hoping the land of Westeros and its inhabitants will wow me tonight and return me to last season’s awe and wonder.

For the time being, however, settle in and off we go…

Part the first, wherein a crow flies south, and the Ego King sacks his old homestead.

  • When I think of Theon, I swear the first words that leap to mind are “preening” followed by “idiot”. I can’t help it. I’ve tried everything.
  • Threaten the poor crippled boy, Theon. Y’know, the one whom you used to treat like your very own brother.
  • Hey wait… “steaming sack of sh*t” has a ring to it. I think that might be more apt than “preening idiot.”
  • Good Lord, no one will do what Theon commands the first time he commands it. Even the Maester. Can’t SSoS Greyjoy take a hint.
  • Nice try, Osha. Even if Nymphadora Tonks makes for a strange kitchen wench-turned killer.
  • Oh, no. The SSoS is now going to kill Rodrick, but not before he gets a good gobber in.
  • What’s with Johnny Scarface the Henchman here, ensuring the Ser Rodrick will part with his dome? That’s the worst form of enabling. Encourage an incompetent bag of excrement to rash acts against brave and noble men.
  • The enduring lesson of this season is that despite honor, glory in battle and the respect of your bannermen, it will always suck to be a Stark.
  • Oof. That decapitation was gruesomely satisfying on multiple levels. First, there’s the perfect sound effects. Second, blood spatter is nearly always inherently good. Third, and best of all, Good ‘Ole Iron Island SSoS can’t even cut a man’s head off without at least two practice hacks. Wuss.

Part the second, wherein we venture into the Great White North (eh?) and Snow-Tep once again shows his lack of mental agility and killer instinct.

  • Half Hand lets loose his inner cynic for a bit. This old dude is seriously jaded, and he wants Jon to join him in the abyss. Snow-Tep could use a tad more hard-heartedness.

Part the third, wherein Tywin reveals one reason for Rob Starks” battlefield success, and Arya (methinks) gets ‘fingered’.

  • Damn. Surrounded and confounded by dolts is our poor Tywin. Sending the battle plans to the enemy ain’t exactly a winning recipe. No wonder he’s so pissy all the time.
  • Oh, crap. Littlefinger’s here, and he knows what Arya looks like. The tension-o-meter ramps up a bit.
  • Arya is doing her best to both listen and hide, and the game of cat and mouse is riveting.
  • Baelish is once again his very best slippery bastard. He’d play all ends of a circle against the middle if it turned him a profit or secured him more power.
  • Uh-oh. Arya’s made. This little visit will come back to haunt her.

Part the fourth, wherein yet another make character meets a confounding redhead, and I begin to grudgingly like Snow-Tep, despite his squeamish and fundamental stupidity.

  • The MIB are sneaking up on some Inuits, and then all Hell breaks loose for five minutes. Yes! Battle!
  • Well, that was short-lived. This season is so heavy on the jaw-jaw. Couldn’t we, pray, have one good slobberknocker? Sigh.
  • Oh for the love of all that’s holy… ANOTHER redhead?! Does George R. R. Martin have a thing for the ginger temptresses or what? (Editor’s Note: You must remember that Ros is a creation of the show… maybe Benioff and Weiss have it for redheads too.)
  • Poor Jon is so befuddled by this turn of events, you can practically see the twin brain cells behind that caveman crown gasping for oxygen as they struggle to form the word “girl.”
  • Half-Hand doesn’t seem to care much about gender distinctions.
  • Egrid? Mysterious and dangerous that name, like a Norwegian stewardess. (Editor’s Note: Ygritte… but still a good stewardess, um… flight attendant name.)
  • Hundreds and thousands of Free Folk lie beyond the pass? Hmmm… and the Black has roughly four. I don’t think that math works in the favor of the MIB. The upside? Snow could be dead soon. The downside? Fewer eye-popping glacial expanses. (Editor’s Note: You must remember the GoT numerology system, Matt. 40,000 Dothraki = 30 on horseback. Four MIB might be able to turn back hundreds of thousands, right?)
  • Jon can’t bring himself to kill a woman. I’ll give him that. What is this strange sentiment creeping up my spine? I’m starting to actually admire this dimwit? This feels all wierd and wrong somehow. I know that Patman will take delight in it, and yet the glee of my nemesis can’t stop the sensation of growing respect for one Bubba Snow-Tep.
  • Yep, and the confounding redhead is off like a rabbit. Saw that coming.
  • And now you’re lost, Snow. Dumbass.

Part the fifth, wherein a princess sets sail, and the Hound saves a poor lost waif.

  • Does the chanting priest in the segue remind anyone else of Otho from Beetlejuice?
  • Jeebus Christmas, Cersei. No wonder your son is obsessed with dealing in pain. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.
  • Valiant effort, my sweet, sad Sansa, but trying to convince a sociopath like Joffrey that emotions are a normal part of life is akin to preaching truth to a flying buttress.
  • T’would appear that Joffrey is unpopular in regions apart from my couch. Like his whole city.
  • Kill them all? Really, Joff? At least the Hound shows a lick of sense.
  • Bye, Otho.
  • I’ve got a better idea, o random guardsman… don’t protect the king. Think of all the suffering you’ll prevent.
  • Oh, crap, again. Sansa’s been herded away from the main group down a dark alley by what to my eyes appear to be peasant rapists. Not Sansa. I may just give up if greater indignity and pain is heaped on that poor girl.
  • Joffrey, don’t tell the Imp what he can and can’t do. He’ll bitch-slap you either way.
  • Oh, no… I literally can’t watch Sansa get hurt any more… thank you, Sandor.

Part the sixth, wherein Dany gets impatient and Baron Harkonnen goes all ‘never go in against a Sicilian when death is on the line.’

  • I tire of this whole story arc. I mean it. It takes willpower to watch the happenings in Q’arth. The only thing it has going for it is the dragons. Dragons = fire and death. Fire and death = a lot less jaw-jaw. A lot less jaw-jaw = just what this season needs. Well, that and more Tyrion, Brienne and Jaqen.
  • Yes, yes, Daenerys, you’re being put upon again. Do what you do. Get pouty. Blech.
  • Get that man an antigravity suit. Stat.
  • Blah, blah, blah… Something happen soon. Please? Anything? Anything at all?
  • Gawd Ahmighty, if I wanted this much pointed banter I’d watch Masterpiece Theater’s production of Wuthering Heights. The Newb is getting all twitchy and is fighting the urge to break things. Things of value. Gaaaahhhh… make it stop.

Part the seventh, wherein, mercifully, there’s no more Q’arth, and Arya pulls her second marker.

  • Arya, Tywin’s so onto your little peasant act.
  • I do like the “loyalty killed my father” line. Nicely played.
  • This truly is an interesting and redeeming story arc for the night and the series. Tywin’s children (well, grandchild, really) kills Ned Stark and then Tywin unwittingly turns to Ned’s daughter as a sort of private consul. Beautiful twist. Plus, there’s Jaqen here.
  • Whoops. Arya stole herself a message, and it’s about what the Lannisters plan to do to her brother.
  • Oh, crap the third. The wide-eyed waif is caught red-handed. I know what that means… a second name is about to be given to a certain man.
  • Yes! The old fall through the door with a poison dart in the neck routine. Sweet.

Part the eighth, wherein Robb falls further in love, and the realities of arranged marriages rear their ugly heads.

  • Oh, Rob’s feeling all courtship-y, and just then Mom shows up. Dangit.
  • Oh, goody. SSoS’s dirty deeds have come to light. This will seriously piss Rob off, and hopefully end with Theon’s overlarge head screwed securely to a spike. A Newb can dream, right?

Part the ninth, wherein Bubba Snow-Tep spoons with a devious ginger cave girl, and is sorely tempted for his choice.

  • Oh, this Egrid is dangerous and strangely arousing in a noble savage sort of way.

Part the tenth, wherein Rob Stark gets mightily peeved, and promises death for the SSoS.

  • Oh, thank god. SSoS’s days are officially numbered.

Part the eleventh, wherein it feels as if the scenes are getting extremely choppy and quick, and Oshadora Tonks goes half-frontal.

  • Oh, SSoS, your other brain will be your undoing. Somehow fitting, that.

Part the twelfth, wherein Sansa comes to terms with her status courtesy of Shae, and the scenes get even choppier and shorter.

Part the thirteenth, wherein womanly wiles and a quarter-wit “hard man” save two small boys and a giant.

  • Aha! Oshadora’s plan has come to fruition, as she slips naked from the horror that must be SSoS’s bedchamber.
  • Snore on, Theon. Snore on.
  • Oh, you silly Iron Islander. When a wilding girl offers herself to you as a gift, just know that it will end with your throat slit. You’re an idiot, just like your leader. But at least you won’t pollute the gene pool anymore.

Part the ultimate, wherein we venture back to the doldrums of Q’arth and some lizards get lifted.

  • Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz….snrk.! Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz. So painfully tired of Dany in Exile.
  • What ho? That’s a lot of dead guys. I’m up. I’m up!
  • Dead Dothraki? Now that’s an accomplishment.
  • The dragons are gone, apparently in the wicker backpack of a strange hooded figure. Finally, some drama in Q’arth.

Okay, The Newb ends tonight’s fare extremely conflicted. I’m beginning to like the zombified troglodyte of the North, one Mr. Jon Snow. And sweet Dany is beginning to utterly bore me. Her dragons, on the other hand, show promise. Joffrey’s still breathing, shows no sign of stopping any time soon, and this angers me. There wasn’t nearly enough Imp or Jaqen, but what there was of them was priceless, as always. My viewership hangs in the balance, HBO, if you’re listening (as if). I expect more Imply mischief, less Q’arth, and much more war-war than jaw-jaw before this season comes to a close, dammit!

Until next week, Friends, I remain your Faithful Newb.

Feature – The Eye of Newb – GoT: Season 2 Episode 5

Editor’s Note: “The Eye of Newb” contains spoilers from the episode listed. If you have not watched the episode written about, you have been warned. But as Matt has not read the books (as of yet), you do not have to worry about future spoilers.

The Eye of Newb: Game of Thrones (HBO) Season 2 Episode 5: \\Ghost of Harrenhal\\
By: Matt Lynch

“A man has said.” – Jaqen H’ghar

Well, after the end of the last episode, the Newb got to thinking. I’m not sure how invested I can be in this new twist the series has taken. I was fine in an imagined world containing zombies, white walkers, even fire-breathing lizards, but no real magic. Smog monsters belching forth from strange vaginas, however, changed all that. It feels too hokey and strange. Contrived and out of nowhere, actually. Not sure I’m into this new phase, but I’ll buckle up and take the ride one more time, just be sure.

Part the First, wherein Cat attempts to forge an alliance, and bad weirdness comes to a head.

  • Okay, so Cat has her truce, but I’m not sure how the new King of the Nortth will take to all the strings that come with it.
  • Destroy my brother in the morning… end this war in a fortnight. These are words of fatal hubris. It’s too clean and neat…
  • Ah, there we are… Melisandre’s progeny from last week comes steaming into the tent and screws with Renly’s reality and my desire to go on watching this contrived tale any longer. Sigh. I can see it now: ‘We need a twist – I know, a smoky ninja killer thing born of a witch in a cave enters his tent and…’ Bah!!
  • At least Brienne’s murderous grief is real. That woman is something else. She almost makes up for the pathetic wackiness.
  • Cat, ever the sensible one, gets the two ladies, each formidable in their own ways, clear of this ugly situation.

Part the Second, wherein man love begets man-grief, and

  • Loras Tyrell, say what you will about him, makes one hell of a wronged and vengeful lover.
  • And revenge is Littlefinger’s specialty. They make a nice pair.
  • This Tyrell sister, while she has a gorgeous body and entrancing eyes, is getting a mite whelpy and annoying.
  • Interesting differentiation, a queen versus The Queen.

Part the Second, wherein Cersei gets drunk and uppity, and Tyrion learns that the city’s defense has been left to a young sadist.

  • ‘Schemes and plots are the same thing.’ Heh. Awesome.
  • Cersei genuinely despises her dwarven brother, and her pettiness shows forth beautifully in this scene.

Part the Third, wherein Lancel coughs up the secret weapon, and Bronn gets a new assignment.

  • Tons of Impness to start the show this evening.  This is inherently a good thing.
  • Interesting mini-man carriage they’re meeting in here.
  • I love how Tyrion keeps using the sexual relationship with Cersei as a bludgeon against this poor little lost pretty boy.
  • ‘I don’t care about your life.’ ‘Tell my friend Bronn to please kill you if anything should happen to me.’ The Imp is getting so many rich one-liners tonight it’s sinful.

Part the Fourth, wherein a loyal underling demands and does not receive an explanation, and portent is assigned to the presence of a witch.

  • Stannis doesn’t care a whit about his brother, and he doesn’t want to know what happened in the cave, dude.
  • At least the Tyrells got away clean. More vengeance and mayhem awaits. Yay!
  • Stannis is a tad overconfident, methinks.
  • So Melisandre is the weak link and the source of victory for Stannis, yet he won’t be taking her to King’s Landing. Stannis is gonna lose. Ten bucks on that right now.

Part the Fifth, wherein we meet the guild of Alchemists, or at least one of them, and the Imp learns how greatly he’s despised by the common folk.

  • No, no. No snakes or fruit, thank you.
  • The banter between Bronn and Tyrion is priceless.
  • Sweet! A street preacher!
  • At last Tyrion admits admits that Joffrey is a lost cause.
  • Demon Monkey. What a great band name!

Part the Sixth, wherein the Ego King meets his adoring crew and hatches a foul plan.

  • Look, Theon, if you’re captaining a ship called the Sea Bitch, you’re probably not going to get the cream of the crop for a crew. Deal with it, you overblown ass.
  • Hopefully this fat man will kill Ego-boy at sea. Please?
  • No, that’d be too easy.
  • At least he’s got a seasoned first mate. Never doubt that an effective force runs on its NCOs.
  • Uh-oh, Ego King’s got himself a plan… hope he chokes on it.

Part the Seventh, wherein Arya almost betrays her roots and Tywin smacks down his family. Again.

  • This is war. No one’s content. What a beautiful line, and at the very least he now gives Robb his due.
  • Alas, poor Reginald, never show weakness in front of Tywin Lannister.
  • Oh, crap. Arya, don’t lie to this man.
  • Oh, good. At least she picked a home she knew this time.
  • Ooo… holding the gaze of Tywin while stating plainly that anyone can be killed. Sweet!

Part the Eighth, wherein the best new character in the series finally reveals a little more about himself, and Arya picks a man to die.

  • Hmmm… there’s a helmet on the cistern.
  • Jaqen certainly has a cryptic way of referring to boys and girls and men and such. This Jaqen H’ghar is getting to be the most fascinating character since I first met Tyrion Lannister in season one.
  • Yeah, Arya, why is one of us given the leave to become someone she is not, and part of the Lannister retinue, and yet anyone else who does it is somehow wrong for doing so?
  • The Red God, now? That’s like the thirty-seventh god in Westeros! Can a brother get a deity map or something?!
  • Oh, sweet. Arya freed herself a master assassin, and has left him in her debt. Three names he offers. Yoda, suddenly am I. No matter, she’s got a whole list. This is so gonna kick ass.
  • What?! Arya wastes her first name on Captain Rat Patrol? Dammit.

Part the Ninth, wherein the legend of the Half-hand is discussed, and the Fist of the First Men is revealed.

  • Oh, sweet Jeebus! Someone shut Tarley up before he makes a love-sick fool of himself again.
  • Yeah, Samwell. Stop talking. Please?
  • Well, Snow’s got half a brain. This fortress is no place to defend.
  • Apparently, the Black Watch has little use for those uppity reader-types.

Part the  Tenth, wherein I notice that the scenes are a little short and jumpy so far in this episode, and Tyrion finds all hell contained beneath King’s Landing.

  • Of course the subject of melting flesh has to come up.
  • Bronn doesn’t necessarily believe in the efficacy of wildfire. Nor do I, especially given his accuracy at flinging things and burning cities.
  • Holy crap, that’s a lot of flammable stuff buried under the keep of King’s Landing. Hope there are a few fire exits.
  • The Imp has his own wildfire supplier. Nice!

Part the Eleventh, wherein a dragon hosts a barbie, and Isaac Hayes gives Dany a dress.

  • Dragons like their t-bones rare. That’s a sign of a quality individual in my book.
  • That’s a whole lot of squabbling over a slip of fabric, if you ask me.
  • Oh dear god. A cocktail party. What a special little ring of hell.
  • And can we stop the Klingon, fer Chrissakes?!
  • Oh, and enough of the creepy old men who corner you after a few drinks and play screwball sleight of hand tricks. This really is a cocktail party from Hell.
  • House of the Undying? Interesting…
  • Hey, it’s Isaac Hayes again! Cool.
  • And a woman in a strange mask offers statements of portent. Shame she’s dressed as the Gimp. It’s a real Pulp Fiction kind of season here in Westeros.

Part the Twelfth, wherein Brienne makes an overly ceremonial vow of loyalty, and it just about steals the whole show.

  • Brienne’s gonna get Stannis, if it’s the last thing she does.
  • Cat is such a doting Mom it’s sickening.
  • Brienne is a rather intense giantess. and Catelyn plans to use this to Robb’s advantage. Smart. very smart.
  • Now that is one elaborate vow of fealty, and the Newb is completely gripped through the entire sequence. If I’m ever in a foxhole, I think I’d feel very comfortable with Brienne at my side.

Part the Thirteenth, wherein Bran does the dirty business of governing, Rikon bashes nuts, and we learn that the Ego King has made his move.

  • Sheep? There’s a war on, and we’re talking about sheep?
  • Nymphadora Tonks ain’t much of a counselor. But she is fixating and beautiful. Especially in close-up.

Part the Fourteenth, wherein we finally meet the Half-hand, and Iceland hulks gorgeous in the background.

  • Half-hand is boring old drone. Fire, Mance Rayder…. zzzzz… snrk!
  • Now why would Tarley step up and give Bubba Snow-Tep the opening to march north into the swirling white? Summat will come of this, I’m sure.

Part the Fifteenth, wherein Isaac Hayes proposes marriage, and Dany learns that Jorah Mormont is interested in more than just being friends.

  • Is this dude seriously named ‘Duck Sauce’?
  • That’s a big-ass safe, Good People.
  • Oh, Jorah, shut up while you’re ahead. You’re a bad liar, even if you do see through Daenearys to see her kind heart under all that silken-haired khaleesi BS.

Part the Ultimate, wherein Gendry gets a lesson in swordplay, and a man makes good on his word.

  • Jaqen, despite the the bad craziness and hokey religion of last week’s cave, you’ve restored my faith. I’m in it to see what becomes of you. The little single finger-to-the-eye gesture alone is worth it.

Okay, Friends, I’m not gonna lie. This whole series almost lost me with the vaginal smog monster, but I’m in it for one more week to see how the character of Jaqen H’ghar is developed.

Until next time, I remain your faithful and immensely penitent Newb.

Feature – The Eye of Newb – GoT: Season 2 Episode 4

Editor’s Note: “The Eye of Newb” contains spoilers from the episode listed. If you have not watched the episode written about, you have been warned. But as Matt has not read the books (as of yet), you do not have to worry about future spoilers.
Over the next three days we’ll be releasing episode recaps for episodes 3, 4, and 5. Enjoy!

The Eye of Newb: Game of Thrones (HBO) Season 2 Episode 4: \\Garden of Bones\\
By: Matt Lynch

“Careful now. We don’t want to get blood all over your pretty white cloak” – Bronn

 

Part the First, wherein farts (as always) are still funny, and a wolf swings by the stable for a nibble.

  • These fellas aren’t exactly the sharpest forks in the drawer, are they?
  • A direwolf in your siege line certainly helps your cause.
  • So Rob is opposed to torture. Good for him. He’s definitely ahed of his time.
  • Aagh, The Newb is suddenly glad to have both legs intact.
  • And poof, like that, our man Stark is in love. That’s a bad sign for the Frey wedding that got him this far south. Then again, if brothers and sisters and brothers and sisters and husbands are a-okay, who knows? It could work.
  • Plan, schman. Just kill Joffrey and all will be well.

Speaking of the little sadist, Part the Second, wherein Joffrey is, well, Joffrey, and Tyrion  saves a damsel in distress.

  • Joffrey must die.
  • Fortunately, the Imp makes a perfectly timed entrance, and does not shy away from a toe-to-toe with either Joffrey or his Guard.
  • And the line of the night goes to Bronn.
  • Honor? Joffrey? Are you serious, Tyrion?
  • The Imp defies the king, and the king stews. As satisfying as this is in the moment, I think it presages bad things.
  • The exchange between Sansa and Tyrion is a thing of beauty, as you can literally see Tyrion’s esteem for her courage grow.No words are necessary.
  • Bronn has what seems to be a solid theory, but I don’t think sex will cure a sadist, my good sell-sword.

Part the Third, wherein Joffrey proves me right, and Ros is forced into bad craziness, yet again, thanks to the Boy King. It’s turning into a bad season to be Ros.

  • Hee, hee…Joffrey is actually scared of the prospect presented by a name-day gift from his uncle Tyrion.
  • So Joffrey’s got a thing for lesbians, does he?
  • Hit her? Oh, this is about to go bad wrong. And it’s about to go worse wrong for Miss Haystack Hall.
  • Having trouble watching this, in all honesty, Good People.
  • Oh, Jeebus Christmas, Joffrey found his favorite crossbow, and he’s threatening Ros. Bronn was right. There really is no cure for being a c–t.

Part the Fourth, wherein a whoremonger venture northeast, and Littlefinger gets verbally bitch-slapped by the royal incubatrix.

  • It’s clear that Renly doesn’t think much of Baelish, and that’s probably deserved.
  • “I give priority to my head.” Ha! Finally Littlefinger gets a quality one-liner. By my count , that’s two this season.
  • We cut to Renly’s “queen” and Baelish in the camp.
  • Not ‘our’ tent? After the joking of the guards at the Lannister camp and Littlefinger’s jibes, I’m beginning to think that the only person in Westeros who doesn’t clearly believe that Renly is gay is… well, no one, really. And yet they flock to him. So, why the pretense? Why all the “queen” business? No pun intended. Well, maybe a little. Sue me.
  • Not often we get to see Baelish put in his place, but the little speech on not knowing how marriages worked was exactly that, and a beauty.

Part the Fifth, wherein we’re on Saturn and a new name gets thrown about.

  • Well at least this blood rider came back with his head.
  • Yeah. Klingon again. Blech.
  • Qarth? Okay, that’ll be in the opening credits next week. And it sounds as if they have a lovely garden

Part the Sixth, wherein we see the wretched wonder that is Harrenhal, and meet and get an up-close glimpse of medieval shell-shock.

  • Gendry, my man, the dragons aren’t all dead. Take my word for it.
  • Not only is Harrenhal hideous, but it has the bouquet of dead people, and enough war-torn crazies to stock a whole Mad Max film.
  • That woman is gone. Just gone. I’ve got a bad feeling about this.
  • Okay, am I the only one who wondered aloud watching Arya follow Yoren’s last advice in a barren cell with a skylight: how is she going to conceal her need to pee sitting down in these quarters? Can’t be.
  • That recitation of names is flat-out creepy. Like, she’s going to kill them all level creepy. Arya: portrait of young vengeful psycho. That has a certain ring to it.

Part the Seventh, wherein Baelish steps over the line, and Ned Stark takes a little trip.

  • ‘False reports’? Petyr, Petyr, Petyr… that’s the line you’re going with?
  • Really?! Dude, don’t try to rekindle love after you’ve effectively killed the last man.
  • Aha, THAT’s the Littlefinger I know. Using threats against family and treachery to win advantage, even over those he deeply, desperately desires.
  • At least he had the decency, or perhaps Tyrion had the decency, to bring Ned back to his own people. That’s classy.
  • Petyr. Leave. Now. You lost your chance.

Part the Eighth, wherein we meet a couple of sick bastards who torture folks with rats, and Arya runs through her ‘death list’ again.

  • That whole rat in a bucket technique makes my innards crawl.
  • Arya has seen more horror in her twelve or so years than any child should have to. Again, this is a world that should compel me?

Part the Ninth, wherein two brothers disagree, and a sinister redhead makes another veiled threat.

  • Stannis has his own banner. Huh!
  • Again with the Lord of Light? Could someone please explain this whole religion thing to me, in words of one syllable?
  • ‘Now I see why you’ve found religion in your old age.’ Heh.
  • Cat does try to play the wise mother figure, to no avail.
  • Renly states the obvious. No one likes Stannis, despite his sultry redhead fire goddess.
  • The night is dark and full of terrors. This woman in deliciously eeeevil. And at least she’s only obsessed with a single nocturn, not with any season that might follow autumn. I’ll give her that.

Part the Tenth, wherein we return to the Red Wastes and some sort of Harkonnen family reunion outside the gates of Qarth. Ooo… too much sci-fi? Deal with it, suckas.

  • Odd sort of welcome. Soldiers behind shields very rarely mean ‘come on in and make yourself at home.’
  • Who is this freak with the long and difficult to pronounce name? He sure does want to see him some dragons.
  • Apparently no one told the Q’arthans that 13 is a decidedly unlucky number. I don’t see this city being around very long, but maybe I’ll lose another bet on that one, as well.
  • Uh-oh. Dany’s getting turned out to the garden district.
  • Whoa…. good battle speech, Dany. Good enough for Isaac Hayes to save you by slicing up his hand. Awesome, and a slightly hokey twist.

Part the Eleventh, wherein hope is restored by a Lannister saving a Baratheon?!

  • Nothin’ says lovin’ like a head on a spike. Outstanding opening.
  • Oh, crap. Gendry’s up for Rat Patrol.
  • We’ve seen how this bit plays out. It puts the rat in the bucket or it gets the hose again…. but wait…
  • It’s Tywin. Unannounced and early. This won’t end well for the guards.
  • Yep. He goes all ‘where my slaves at?’ on ’em.
  • Tywin also is quick to realize the obvious, that there’s no way that wide-eyed waif can be a boy. Wait, somebody said that once. Oh, who was it… yeah, that’s right… the Newb.
  • Whoa. Arya is to be the cup-bearer for the head of the Lannister clan? Shame he’s not on her list.

Part the Twelfth, wherein there is much Impness, and not-so-veiled threats beget a Lannister spy.

  • When the Imp invites you in for mulled wine, run, Lancel. It will not end well for you.
  • Lancel is an impudent boy. And he’s about to be cut down to size.
  • Ahhh… that Impen grin. Nice!
  • There it is. Tyrion knows that Lancel and Cersei are bumping uglies, and now he’s using it to make the impudent boy grovel. This scene is delicious. Simply delicious.
  • ‘Save it for Joffrey! He loves a good grovel!’ Ha!
  • And there’s the hook hidden in the bait. Now Tyrion has a spy who sleeps with his sister. Well-played, Imp, well-played.
  • Looks like Pycelle is off the council, and apparently has a few harmed hairs.

Part the Ultimate, wherein a smuggler is gob-smacked, and a whole lot of what the f— is unleashed on this poor viewer.

  • Freaky deer heads do not set a nice nautical theme, Stannis. Can’t you even get your symbolism right? No wonder nobody likes you.
  • The good act does not wash out the bad. Stannis truly is a self-righteous tool.
  • Any shore, any night. I love this guy and all his missing fingers. It’s a shame that I’m pretty sure he’s a red-shirt in this season.
  • Umm… why is a red-headed witch being smuggled ashore?
  • Okay, so I begin to see where the attraction is between Stannis and Melisandre (for apparently, that is her name. Thank you, Anonymous Reader for the tip). Her concept of black and white goodness must appeal to him.
  • Melisandre has a pretty high opinion of herself and a fairly low opinion of what our good smuggler wants.
  • Oops, they barred the tunnel. So much for smuggling.
  • WTF? Pregnant in two days time?! Bad weirdness is about to ensue…
  • Seriously, I’m now officially lost and confused. The woman is belching forth a demonic smog monster from her pink parts. That right there is completely f’ed up. Period. Amen.

So, uh, yeah… what to say? I’m in for next week just to see what insane freakishness Melisandre and her belly are capable of.

Feature – The Eye of Newb – GoT: Season 2 Episode 3

Editor’s Note: “The Eye of Newb” contains spoilers from the episode listed. If you have not watched the episode written about, you have been warned. But as Matt has not read the books (as of yet), you do not have to worry about future spoilers.
Over the next three days we’ll be releasing episode recaps for episodes 3, 4, and 5. Enjoy!

Listen closely, Friends… hear that gentle shuffling scrape barely discernible above the pounding rage in yours ears? Yeah. That. Swoosh, swoosh, swooshthat would be the Newb’s forehead brushing the floor as he sways, repentant, nay penitent, groveling before Your kindness and gentle mercy. Before that oil-sheened blade of Yours meets the base of my medulla oblongata with a satisfying, yet coolly lethal crunch, I plead with you, Dear Readers… perhaps Reader by this point… hear my plea!

A paper intervened. A 20-page monster, in fact. Big, hairy monster. With fangs and talons, and a 50% impact on my final grade.

No?

An old friend came in from out of town?
My suit was at the cleaners?
A terrible plague? Locusts?!
Crap. How about a heartfelt ‘I’m sorry’? Thank you, Sweet Intercessors! I will write for Thee, and in abundance…

All kidding and pretense firmly aside, the Newb extends his humble apologies for the substantial delay in posting the column. i had to dive into some obscure books and mount a case revolving around French anarchism and origins of a school of thought. it was immensely fun and enriching, but demanded substantially more time than i thought it would when i began. You, Good People suffered for that loss of time.  but now I offer you my amends in the form of a three-episode super cobo pack of snakry derision, thorough confusion and other horrors too numerous to name.  Get some tea, or perhaps something stronger. make sure you can reach the toilet paper, depending on where you choose to partake. You’ll be here a while.

The Eye of Newb: Game of Thrones (HBO) Season 2 Episode 3: \\What is Dead May Never Die\\

By: Matt Lynch

“Every man who has tasted my cooking has told me what a good whore I am.” – Shae

Part the First, wherein the Black is sent packing and Jon Snow finally proves he’s human – unless the undead bleed in Westeros.

  • Old Craster seems a might peeved that his nighttime Yeti feeding was observed, and Lord Mormont equally so that Jon went and dropped his sword again.
  • Oh, dear me… the moon-faced git has truly fallen hard for Gilly the Sister Wife. He’s handing out his dear Mum’s jewelry now. Those two might just make some ugly kids one day.

Part the Second, wherein incessant off-camera panting reigns, and Bran is informed that he’s not so special after all and may just need better drugs.

  • What is it with Bran and freaky animist dreams?  I really wish that these little vignettes would be, oh, I dunno, maybe explained somehow.
  • The old Maester reminds very much of Terrence Stamp, which makes me think of The Limey. I liked that movie.  A lot. Oh wait, the show’s still on…
  • Apparently Westeros don’t need no stinkin’ magic, and Bran should just get the silly notion that any exists out of his head.  Okay, sure.  That explains the live dragons.

Part the Third, wherein we meet Brienne, the first truly interesting non-Imply character in months, and dueling redheads steal the show.

  • Ser Loras got smoked. And not in the good, tender, loving way, either.
  • Damn! That is a formidable and frightening woman. I like her already.
  • So, now Renly’s got himself his own Dog, or Bitch, or something. Brienne is one hell of a bodyguard, that’s for sure.
  • Cat can’t catch a break. Loras mocks her, the “queen” disdains her, and Renly treats her like a much dumber woman than she is.
  • Oh Gawdamighty! Winter again?!  Somebody put these people in touch with a decent meteorologist for the love of all that’s holy – well, that and for my sanity.
  • On the upside, I like Brienne even more watching her scoff at any feminine title. She promises to be a storyline worth following.

Part the Fourth, wherein high and mighty Ego King gets insolent. and pissy…. again, and is given a commission worthy of his stature.

  • I’m not kidding. That is one wicked-ass fireplace.
  • Ah, the love of siblings long separated.
  • But Daddy… but, but, you never loved me… you gave me away.  Someone please slap  Theon again, please? The flat smacking against his scruffy little cheek does my heart good.

Part the Fifth, wherein Impness finally lends some worth to the broadcast, and Shay brags about her domestic skills.

  • Shae’s going a little stir crazy. Poor thing.
  • Tyrion as a protective lover? Now that’s a new twist.
  • That scene was way too short.  I only hope for more Imp to come.

Part the Sixth, wherein Sansa projects that special desolate fealty of which only she is capable, and gets a new stylist in the bargain.

  • I don’t know the actress who plays Sansa, but I’m pretty sure that if she keeps up this revealing emotion without words bit for the entire season, she may deserve an award as nice as Peter Dinklage’s.
  • I’d lay a fair wager that Cersei is bereft of a conscience.
  • Hmmm… Shae will be serving as Sansa’s handmaiden. Well played, Tyrion. Well played.
  • Uh-oh, loads of suppressed rage pilling forth from poor Sansa, all with such a fragile edge of loneliness.

Part the Seventh, wherein the Imp hatches a bit of skulduggery, and we learn that even in Westeros, they still sell Milk of Magnesia.

  • Tyrion is on a spy-hunt. What a glorious game of ‘Who’s the Rat?’ My money’s on Littllefinger.
  • Can I also say that watching the interplay between between the Imp and Baelish is the most fun I’ve had all night? This means not only that both Aidan Gillen and Dinklage are superb actors, but also that there hasn’t been nearly enough killing going on.
  • Baelish is beginning to see that he actually has a worthy adversary in the Imp. This does not bode well for Tyrion. That Baelish is a slippery bastard.

Part the Eighth, wherein we witness a heaping pile of uncomfortable man-love, and we learn that by the yardstick of royal bedchamber behavior, maybe the Lannisters aren’t the most twisted after all.

  • Eeesh.  I’m an enlightened, open-minded modern man of he world and all, but I really didn’t need, well, pretty much all of that.
  • Apparently, Loras is a little pouty about the whole “Brienne of the Kingsguard” deal. Guess we know who the wife is.
  • Things are looking up, based solely on the new boudoir companion and her choice in vestments, but this has got to be the most awkward love scene ever.
  • Ha! Only a confirmed gay king would open the pillow talk to his fetching bride with “Love your gown.” Just saying’.
  • Shut up and kiss her, Renly. That’s how this dance goes.
  • Gah! Did she just say that it’s perfectly alright for her brother to come in and help? Okay, really, this scene is like the Ving Rhames basement scene in Pulp Fiction. It cannot end fast enough.

Part the Ninth, wherein Cersei (yes!) feels pain.

  • Tyrion tries desperately to explain the world of entangling alliances to his cruel sister, and she just goes all “I’ll rip up your little piece of paper, too” on him. Stay classy, Cersei.

Part the Tenth, wherein Ego-boy finally picks a side, and another bizarre seaside ritual unfolds.

  • Careful with that candle, Theon. You might singe your classic Shaggy van dyke.
  • The Drowned God, now?! How many freakin’ gods are there in Westeros? By my count we’re somewhere around twelve now – in a landmass that seems to be roughly the size of Connecticut. I’m gonna need like a flowchart or something before all this is over, aren’t I?

Part the Eleventh, wherein someone finally gets away with calling Tyrion a dwarf, and the Imp unearths a mole.

  • Bronn is awesome.
  • Pycelle is a rat of high quality. He turned on Varys faster than Eagles fans turned on Ricky Watters.
  • What’s with the beard? think I’m missing something again.
  • Off to jail goes the Maester, as Tyrion shows the kind heart hiding beneath that small and deceitful chest of his.

Part the Twelfth, wherein a Spider and an Imp imbibe, and the runner-up line of the night is spoken.

  • Yeah, yeah, Varys, a priest a rabbi and a sherpa walk into a pedicure joint… your point?
  • “Power resides where men believe it resides.” So true, that. Varys is like an incessantly prattling Silent Bob.

Part the Ultimate: Alas poor Yoren. We knew him well. He was a crafty old bastard who was good with a blade.

  • Wow, so a march to the wall feels a lot like a cub scout campout. Dead-tired boys snoring everywhere.
  • Oh, no… I feel very bad about Yoren chances. My experience with this series is that a big, heart-warming and connective reveal like the speech about killing Willem is a sure harbinger of death.
  • Yep. There it is. Dammit. I liked Yoren.
  • Funny how poorly all these supposed gutter rats run from a fight and can’t seem to obey warnings, isn’t it? Just like their leader.
  • That crossbow scene was flat-out awesome. More like that, please.
  • Hmmm. So Arya saved Jaqen’s life. That feels significant somehow. We’re down a Yoren, but have gained a Jaqen. Fair trade.
  • Oh, crap. Arya’s lot just keeps getting worse. Now she’s in Lannister hands. At least Gendry’s safe now. Poor blonde kid. The penalty for stealing the wrong helmet is death, fool.

Okay, so better than last week, and the introduction of at least two new characters with promise will keep me in for next.

Stay tuned for tomorrow’s Newb review for Episode 4, “Garden of Bones.”

Feature – The Eye of Newb – GoT: Season 2 Episode 2

Editor’s Note: “The Eye of Newb” contains spoilers from the episode listed. If you have not watched the episode written about, you have been warned. But as Matt has not read the books (as of yet), you do not have to worry about future spoilers. Enjoy!

The Eye of Newb: Game of Thrones (HBO) Season 2 Episode 2: \\The Night Lands\\
By: Matt Lynch

“There are no goats, Half-man.” – Shagga

Welcome back, Friends!  The late, great St. Douglas Adams once declared with authority his abiding love of deadlines, especially the little whooshing sound they made as they flew by.  A sage, a visionary and a speaker of great truths was he. ‘Nuff said.

Buckle up and ingest the snark, my gentle snowflakes…

 

Part the First, wherein a waterway is soiled and a Kingsman is very nearly circumcised on horseback.

 

  • We open with a gentle pastoral creek, the tinkling of flowing water our sole companion.  So relaxing… Albeit not for a wary, even jumpy, Arya.  Wait, wait, that’s not water! It is tinkling, though.
  • Jaquen holds promise, as opposed to his two ‘scared straight’-inspired cage inhabitants.
  • I might pay to see someone shave a spider’s arse. Call it a character flaw.
  • What you couldn’t pay me enough to be right about now is this: Gendry.  Seems he is now relying on a den of greedy snakes for his own safety.

Part the second, wherein an arachnid pays a social call, and dietary habits provide an amusing allegory.

  • Woot! The whistling wee man greets the ears… Impness!
  • “Something tells me that Lord Varys doesn’t like fish pie…” Indeed! Snicker.
  • Love the menace fairly dripping from Varys’ jowls as he compliments his own confidentiality.
  • Only to be topped by Tyrion’s “where your friends are concerned.”
  • The fangs truly come out in the exchange at the door.  “…the big fish eat the little fish and I just keep on paddling…” – a definite runner-up for line of the night.

Part the Third, wherein Cersei shows her rending skills yet again and another threat of cold winds or some such rears its ugly head.

  • Cersei is a world-class bitch with an aching heart.
  • Woot! Zombies at the wall! Oh never mind, this scene is all talk-talk, not burn-burn.

Part the Fourth, wherein farts (as always) are funny, and Samwell Tarley is (as always) a moon-faced git.

  • Wrestling with Violet, eh? So that’s what the kids are calling it these days.
  • Uh-oh, Moon-face has fallen for the toothy damsel in distress.
  • What does happen to the boys? I wonder. Could this be, oh what’s the word… foreshadowing. Bah.
  • I will give Sam credit for clearly stating that you can’t steal a person. He does offer the most human perspective this series has to offer, even if he is a soft and whiny moron.

Part the Fifth, wherein we all feel a mite thirsty and the latest Red Waste christmas toy is revealed – hey, Kids, it the one and only Head In A Saddlebag!

  • Props to the acting in the segue.  I actually felt somewhat parched in my own family room.
  • Yeek. Justice is swift and harsh in the Waste. Imagine if all the locals carried Colt Peacemakers.  Why, it’d be… Arizona.
  • Klingon again?! Make them stop. Please?

Part the Sixth, wherein Theon partakes in a little shipboard nasty, and has sex as well.

  • Well, old Theon’s a bit full of himself, and the “hard men” line was groan-worthy.
  • Okay, so I’ve bitched and moaned about Bubba Snow-Tep for a while now, but honestly I’d watch a full hour of that stiff, sullen bastard rather than put up with ten more seconds of the Ego King, here.

Part the Seventh, wherein the cutscene is absolutely priceless and sausage drippings steal the show.

  • For some reason, Elvis Costello leaps to mind, although detectives works much better than perverts, phonetically.
  • Not sure whether to cringe or giggle at the wiping and kissing. Perhaps both.
  • “Poorly handled.” Bwahahahaaa!
  • Okay, so Joffrey made Ros cry, and now Littlefinger is threatening to sell her into horror and death. The one must die, and the other must not remain long in this world if he makes good on his veiled threat.

Part the Eighth, wherein Bronn gets a promotion and the Imp culls the Queen Regent’s herd.

  • Dinklage. Award. Stat. Seriously.
  • Never, ever, ever call Tyrion a dwarf. Good to know.
  • Good old Bronn’s coming up in the world, despite his complete lack of scruples.

Part the Ninth, wherein genitalia and urination feature prominently, and Gendry reveals that he is at least as observant as we are.

  • No way that wide-eyed waif is a gutter rat. Or a boy. Sorry.
  • Well, the companions are officially co-conspirators now.  ‘Bout time.
  • Ha! Gendry is a fairly chivalrous joker.

Part the Tenth, wherein the Ego King gets his comeuppance, Iron style, and a mystery woman makes her entrance.

  • Awww… guess you’re not all that, are you Theon? You’re so loved that no one cares that you’ve returned.
  • See, this old guy here on the docks is the closest to my people I’ve seen thus far in the series. If only he’d spat on Theon’s shoes, the scene would’ve been complete.
  • But wait, who’s this young lady fan from nowhere? Fishy.
  • Theon literally can’t help himself, can he? Even when he’s so clearly being tested. I mean, there’s swagger and then there’s idiocy.
  • Holy crap! That’s a fireplace.  Release the Kraken!
  • Queue tender reunion between a dad and his boy. Can I have one, just one, reason to give a single s–t about any of these people?
  • Oh, so THAT’s what “I just unwittingly fingered my own sister” face looks like. Eewww.
  • Discord, and another self-declared king. Goody. Can we get back to the murder and mayhem again?

Part the Eleventh, which has pirates! Well, okay, pirate. Just the one really. But he has got a sweet accent, and is walking proof that Westeros is multi-cultural after all.

  • I like this pirate’s aspirations, and his general demeanor… and his take on religion. This dude’s got potential.
  • Oh, great, sonny boy is a proselytizer.

Part the Twelfth, wherein the Lannisters have a wee spat, we learn that Joffrey is a psycho, and Cersei reveals the source and depth of her hatred for Tyrion.

  • Ouch.  I mean, really. Ouch.
  • What is this stirring in me? Sympathy? For Cersei? I’ll need a wash after this.

Part the Thirteenth, wherein Stannis plays with toys and a wicked redhead toys with Stannis.

  • Who does this evil witch want burned?
  • Apparently freaky sorceresses want babies, too. Huh.
  • If I had to pick a place for a roll in the hay, an iron table filled with action figures would not be high on the list.

Part the Last, wherein another infant meets a grim fate, and Bubba Snow-Tep meets a blow to the head.

  • No. Don’t go into the woods alone, Snow, you dumbass! Haven’t you seen a single horror flick, or are you really that dense?
  • A baby-snatching Yeti? Wait a minute… maybe I could get back into this series after all.

Well, the Newb has never been one to waltz around the wisteria or otherwise call it differently than he sees it, Dear Friends. That episode? Not much there there, if you catch my drift. I suppose we’re still firmly hitched to the old Exposition Express for another couple of weeks.  Despite my better judgement, I guess I’ll take that ride.

 

Cheers, All!