So this is another week where my GoT Liveblog is delayed by my real life goings-on. I finally had the long-awaited (by me, at least) GoT viewing party. There were two dab-hand book fans in the room, one book initiate and one complete novice. And we burned through all six hours of show with meat and mead and day-early birthday cake.
I was fine when the lance with through Ser Hugh Of The Vale’s throat. I bore up well when the horse was decapitated, when the daggar went through Jory Cassel’s eye and when Dany choked down the horse’s heart.
But when Tyrion rolled over to the edge of his cell in the Eyrie I let out a primal scream more often heard in horror movies than real life. I think I terrified everyone there–aside from my husband who has watched me go literally catatonic on the “improved” Tower of Terror. I am, you see, slightly afraid of heights.*
*I once made the server at the now-defunct Planet Hollywood Nashville move us to a table away from the railing on the oh-so-perilous second floor. Nobody ask me why I live in a house with an open interior balcony. It was part of my therapy.
Now that we’re slightly more than halfway in I think I’m getting used to the rhythm of the show. I’ve reconciled myself to the fact that it isn’t going to be the rich tapestry of the books, and I’m striving to be content with what I’ve been given. Still, I’m a bit miffed that we’ve had to add in “Roz, The Winterfell Town Bicycle” and at the same time had to lose the dire wolves. I know that it would get tedious, perhaps, to some folk to see what might seem like endless scenes of wolves ripping out throats. It’d start to feel like Westeros Judge Judy (Oh no, not another frakking Pit Bull Case….) But honestly, I have to be honest and say that the dire wolves were what kept me reading in the first place. And I know that they are the mythos around which Martin crafted the whole story. So having them not even on-set during Winterfell scenes feels hollow to me. Let alone not having the wolf involvement in the Wildings’ attack on Bran.
But that’s such a small quibble for a show that gives us so much to love. How much of a gilty pleasure was that *clank!* when Viserys’ whiny head, encased in molten gold, hit the ground?!? As grand as that was in the books, there was a more visceral sense of conclusion to both see and hear it happen.
Of course you and I both know that Tyrion’s confession at the Eyrie was going to be one of those scenes which passes into legend. It’s too perfect in it’s utter ballsy-ness, while at the same time makes anyone else my age miss Chunk from Goonies. Don’t fret too much, you boob-sucking Robin. We all want to know what happened with the Jackass and the Honeycomb in the brothel.
With all those wonderful goings-on, my money for Best Scene is at the moment placed squarely on the scene where Stark tells his daughters they are all leaving Kings Landing to return north. It was one of the few scenes where the writers decided to step out of the way a bit and let the actors cooperate in telling the story with facial expressions, gestures and light dialogue. The byplay between Ned and Arya while Sansa** is pining away for that roachturd Joffrey is delightful, and more necessary then it would at first seem.*** And as the girls’ totally realistic sibling-sniping starts to penetrate Ned’s thick skull, we realise that Westeros has been invaded by the Mystery Machine. The meddling kids solve the Great Mystery for Ned and the can of incest worms is opened at last. Mama Ptolemy there’d be days like this….
**I found out from another book that those shrunken heads in the Amazon from which all the brains and guts have been removed are called Tsantsas. Pronounced the same way. Tell me Martin did that on purpose. Please.
***That’s going to be one of the moments Arya looks back on when she’s ‘Arry and Cat Of The Canals. And it will be part of what keeps her going.