THIS IS ONLY FOR FOLKS WHOVE READ THE BOOKS AND OR DON’T MIND SPOILERS.
Let me first apologise for not liveblogging last week. We had a touch of the flu and I felt like just kicking back and watching. I was also getting nervous because episodes 2 & 3 left me sort of worried that this was just going to be an Exposition-thon where nothing ever happened except us watching people talking about cooler things that happened before.
Thankfully episode four had actual things happening.
This liveblog is sort of a bastardisation because I did just watch the episode. So there is a bit of lag between that and this. (Tonight I was eating dinner.)
I’ve been reading Alan Sepinwall’s discussions of the show over at Hitfix, but it is soooo bloody painful. See, Sepinwall decided to wait until AFTER the show to read the books so he’s “unspoiled” about the action. Sigh. TV people. If you go over there you aren’t allowed to talk about the books so everyone is casting about in this blind fog assuming things like “Ned is the hero of the series” (AH-hahahahaha! Won’t they be surprised in three weeks?) and not being clear on other stuff. That’s why I was so glad we had the non-book scene with Ser Loras shaving Renly. I wasn’t in the mood for a week-long conference in the comments at Sepinwall’s about “is Loras and that other guy (we aren’t quite sure who he is) gay?” They spent three weeks wondering who the hell Theon was. So even though there was no nipple-nicking in the actual books, it relieved me to see it.
I’m also sort of relieved at seeing Gregor Clegane behead his horny stallion at the joust. Now all the “I can’t abide cruelty to animals” commenters will watch Extreme Makeover Home Edition on TiVo instead. There is a lot more cruelty to animals coming.
It was NOT a relief to watch the whole scene with Robert and Ned while Robert’s enormous 19-months pregnant gut was hanging out. Not that I have anything against fat people. I just wasn’t really in the mood to keep trying to figure out if that was prosthetic or not. There were certain scenes where it looked fake. I know Mark Addy is a bigger man, but that belly in a couple of shots looked like Julia Louis-Dreyfuss’ upgraded latex belly in Arrested Development.
Speaking of fake body parts—WOULD SOMEONE PLEASE REASSURE ME THAT LYSA ARREN’S BREAST WAS FAKE! I do not want to think of that woman having to let a child actor suck her breast, nor do i want to think of a child actor sucking some woman’s breast. That was soooo skeevy.
It was a week of body parts for me, apparently, because the other main question I had was how they filmed the Theon-screwing-the-redheaded-whore scene. I’ve read about the little pieces of cloth they use in sex scenes to keep “simulated” from becoming “actual”, but when he pulled away there WAS no flesh-coloured merkin on either of them. Hmmmm. I am clearly obsessed with this.
How cool was that dragon skull?!? That was one of the things I was hoping to see, and I was glad it finally paid off. It’s a good thing I had that burst of neato, because…
HOW FREAKING LONG WAS THAT TALKING SCENE WITH VARYS? I swear, that Eunuch was never going to shut up. I know they have a lot of information to impart, but honestly.
Speaking of information to impart: Why was Littlefinger offering Varys access to a brothel? Isn’t Varys a eunuch? Isn’t that like offering sunglasses to a blind man? I know there is a whole lot I don’t understand about penises, but I was pretty sure that the lack of one pretty much takes most men out of the sexcapades. And yes, Varys has neither penis nor testicles. He tells us that when explaining to Tyrion in book 2 (I believe) about how and why he became a eunuch.
Not nearly enough of Tyrion in this episode, but I DID about throw up when he looked over the edge of his cell at the Eyrie. What IS the matter with me that I don’t throw up when horses are beheaded, Jory Castell is stabbed through the eye, Tyrion bashes a man’s head in with the point of a shield…but one vertigionous shot of the Vale of Arryn and I’m in weepy nauseated funks.
I hated ending on the fight between Jaime and Ned, if only because that’s (for me) one of the most frustrating parts of the book. I always get so mad at Ned for putting his obsession with playing Nancy Dreugenics ahead of getting his two daughters safely away from the people he knows are planning to kill him.
Fingers crossed that next week gives us more of the Wall (Yay! Sam! I LOOOOVE Sam almost as much as I love Tyrion) and Vaes Dothrak and a little less of King’s Lull-ding. I swear, for me the series drags whenever we hit the red keep.